Sam Adams - Against the Crown
Samuel Adams
 Samuel Adams
Samuel Adams was a passionate supporter of the American cause for independence. The Massachusetts native and older cousin of John Adams vocally opposed Parliament’s tax increases and played a vital role in orchestrating anti-British sentiments among colonists.

Some might consider Adams a surprising leader. Despite his Harvard education, he was a failure as a businessman, shabbily dressed, and reportedly, a poor public speaker. However, his shortcomings were eclipsed by an intense passion for politics. During a time when many Americans colonists wanted to keep their ties to Europe, Adams felt deeply that America should be independent.

His displeasure with Parliament spurred him to start the Committee of Correspondence in Boston. The Committee kept Massachusetts citizens informed of political events via letters and pamphlets. The idea quickly spread to other colonies, and the committees soon played a key role in informing the public and propagating the protest movement, much like Internet blogs keep people informed today.

In addition to the Committee, Adams was present at many events that unified the colonists against Britain. Before the Boston Tea Party, it was Adams who tried reasoning with Britain about tax demands and announced his fury to the townspeople when rebuffed. He also worked behind the scenes at the first Continental Congress, secretively trying to convince the colonies to declare independence despite a popular vote to salvage relations with Britain.

Britain was very aware of Samuel Adams’ influence, and several times British officials tried to bribe him with money and positions of authority. Despite being very poor due to his failing business practices, Adams never considered the temptations. He stood staunchly against the Crown, despising royalty and all that it represented.

When the war had been won and the government was taking shape, Adams continued to support individual liberties and strong states’ rights. However, during the debate over ratification of the new Constitution, it was Adams’ openness to opposing federalists’ viewpoints that made passage of the Constitution possible. His fellow anti-federalists were clearly being out-debated and they knew it. Many simply wanted to vote down the Constitution and go home, but the typically quiet Adams spoke up, asserting that the debate should continue. His support of the debate ultimately led to ratification of the Constitution.