“Who shall write the history of our revolution?”

Introduction: “This poignant segment from the HBO series John Adams describes the years of correspondence between John Adams in Massachusetts and Thomas Jefferson at Monticello in Virginia. Hard feelings had come between Adams and Jefferson over the election of 1800, which Jefferson won. Adams had returned to Massachusetts defeated and resentful. He thought he had lost any chance of being remembered in history as Washington, Franklin, and Jefferson would be. But over the years, his bitterness lessened, and with encouragement from an old friend, Benjamin Rush, he sat down and wrote a letter to Jefferson. ‘You and I ought not die, before we have explained ourselves to each other,’ he wrote. Jefferson immediately wrote back. In their remaining years, they wrote 150 letters to each other, one of the greatest correspondences in American history.”