The Adams Family is one of the more prominent families in American history. They were at the center of the American Revolution, they helped create a new republic, shaped the young nation’s foreign policy, and later were central to the development of the history profession.
Fortunately, we know much about their lives because of the countless letters and diaries they’ve left us. And it is up to a team of editors at the Massachusetts Historical Society to help us make sense of it all.
On today’s show, Dr. Sara Georgini joins Jim Ambuske to talk about what it’s like to edit the Adams Family Papers and the questions they help us answer.
Georgini is Series Editor for The Papers of John Adams, and she is also the author of Household Gods: The Religious Lives of the Adams Family, published by Oxford University Press in 2018.
We’re joined today by co-host Dr. Anne Fertig, the Washington Library’s Digital Projects Editor.
Sara Georgini earned her Ph.D. in History from Boston University in 2016. I am the Series Editor for The Papers of John Adams, part of The Adams Papers project at the Massachusetts Historical Society, and author of Household Gods: The Religious Lives of the Adams Family (Oxford University Press, 2018). Committed to the preservation of and access to rare primary sources, Georgini has worked on the selection, annotation, indexing, and book production of a dozen scholarly editions drawn from the Adams Papers (Harvard University Press, 2009— ), covering the history of American political life in the era ranging from the Declaration to disunion. My research focuses on early American thought, culture, and religion. She is a co-founder and contributor to The Junto and the Society for U.S. Intellectual History blogs. She writes about American history, thought, and culture for Smithsonian and CNN.