Learn: TV, Film & Online

John Adams is the widely acclaimed HBO miniseries based on David McCullough’s biography of the same name. The seven-part series won multiple Emmys and Golden Globe awards. A teaching kit is available on the series website.

John & Abigail Adams, available on DVD, is a two-hour PBS documentary based on the couple’s correspondence. A teacher’s guide is available at the website.

Amistad, a historical drama directed by Steven Spielberg, portrays the Amistad uprising, the ensuing legal battle, and John Quincy Adams’s successful defense of the captives before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Smithsonian Institution, a nine-minute video from the C-SPAN library, describes the key role John Quincy Adams played in establishing the Smithsonian Institution in the face of strong political opposition.