October 19, 2016 First Lady Louisa Adams Is Subject of Book Discussion

Wife of John Quincy Adams Is Often Forgotten in History

Press Contact: Guy Lamolinara (202) 707-9217
Public Contact: Center for the Book (202) 707-5221

In “Louisa: The Extraordinary Life of Mrs. Adams” (Penguin, 2016), author Louisa Thomas presents the first comprehensive biography of the nation’s only foreign-born first lady.

Thomas will discuss and sign her book, which was researched at the Library of Congress, on Thursday, Nov. 3, at noon in the Montpelier Room, located on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C. This Books & Beyond event is sponsored by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. It is free and open to the public; no tickets are required.

Louisa Catherine Johnson (1775-1852) was born in London on the eve of the American Revolution. Her parents, an American father who was appointed consul general for the United States in 1790 and a British mother, raised her as an American and wanted her to marry one. She met John Quincy Adams in 1795 at her father’s house. After a tempestuous courtship, Louisa and John Quincy married and eventually moved to America.

Louisa Adams’s story is one of political adeptness and support of her husband’s ambition to become U.S. president.

Louisa Thomas is the author of “Conscience: Two Soldiers, Two Pacifists, One Family – A Test of Will and Faith in World War I.” Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, The Paris Review and elsewhere.

The Library’s Center for the Book, established by Congress in 1977 to "stimulate public interest in books and reading," is a national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages through its affiliated state centers, collaborations with nonprofit reading promotion partners and through the Library’s Young Readers Center and its Poetry and Literature Center. For more information, visit Read.gov.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States—and extensive materials from around the world—both on site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov, and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

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PR 16-186
2016-10-19
ISSN 0731-3527