George Washington by Gilbert Stuart

Samuel Adams

Founding Father and Fourth Governor of Massachusetts


Samuel Adams was born on September 27, 1722, and is known as one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He was a strong opponent of British taxation and was involved in organizing the opposition to the Tea Act of 1773. Adams was the one who sent the secret signal for the Sons of Liberty to start the Boston Tea Party. He was a fiery and vocal leader of the early independence movement. His strong personality also pushed hard in opposition to taxes such as the Stamp Act. John Hancock looked up to him for political guidance. In 1794, he was elected as the fourth Governor of Massachusetts. He is the second cousin to President John Adams and is one of the signers on the Declaration of Independence.

“If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

“All might be free if they valued freedom, and defended it as they should.”

“[N]either the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt.”


“It does not take a majority to prevail … but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.”

Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty boarded three ships in the Boston harbor and threw 342 chests of tea overboard.

Adams founded Boston’s Committee of Correspondence, which was used for important communication in the Revolutionary War.

Adams served as a legislator of Massachusetts from 1765 to 1774.


Adams graduated from Harvard College in 1740.


Paul Revere and Samuel Adams buried a time capsule in 1795 at the Massachusetts State House. The time capsule was retrieved in December 2014 and contained a 1652 pine tree shilling coin, a copper medal showing George Washington, dozens of coins, newspapers, and a silver plate possibly engraved by Paul Revere.