John and Abigail Adams to renew their vows 250 years later in Weymouth

PATRIOT LEDGER.com – It’s part American history bedrock and part timeless love story.

And South Shore residents will have a chance to see it up close and personal through a re-enactment of the wedding of John and Abigail Adams on Friday in honor of the couple’s 250th anniversary.

The re-enactment at the First Church in Weymouth will kick off a weekend of events hosted by the Abigail Adams Historical Society, the Adams National Historical Park in Quincy and the First Church in Weymouth.

The romance between Adams, who would become the nation’s second president, and Abigail Smith, the daughter of a Weymouth minister, still resonates today, especially for couples separated by military or public service for long periods, said Caroline Keinath, deputy superintendent of the Adams National Historical Park.

“The Abigail and John story is not only a story of history and the development of the United States, it’s a love story, a story of challenge, accomplishment, perseverance and resiliency, most importantly,” she said.

John and Abigail were married on Oct. 25, 1764, in the parlor of Abigail’s family’s home. The house, which is now at 180 Norton St., has been preserved as a museum.

The re-enactment begins at 11 a.m. Friday when Abigail, portrayed by her descendant Abigail Elias LaCroix, will prepare for the wedding at the Norton Street home and then travel by horse and carriage to the First Church in Weymouth on Church Street. Weymouth school students will line the route.

The event is free and open to members of the public, who are encouraged to wear 18th-century attire to the wedding and the reception after at the Abigail Adams birthplace.

The Adams National Historical Park and the Abigail Adams Historical Society last hosted a re-enactment of the Adams wedding in 2007. The couple were married on Oct. 25, 1764, in the parlor of Abigail’s family’s home.

Much of the basis for the 2007 re-enactment and the one coming up is the deeply personal letters that John and Abigail wrote to each other during their courtship.

“They’re more eloquent than the way we speak now, but the same feelings and the same sentiments are there,” said Cathy Torrey, a board member and past president of the Abigail Adams Historical Society. “That endures through history.”

Other events planned for the weekend celebration include a symposium, an original musical performance based on the couple’s many letters to each other and a wreath laying at the graves of Abigail’s parents in the North Weymouth Cemetery.

For a full list of events and ticket information, visit www.abigailadamsbirthplace.com.

By Christian Schiavone

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