QUINCY, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — The city of presidents is taking a big step to honor the men behind its nickname.
Quincy officials announced Tuesday it will create a new Adams Presidential Center, to honor former President John Adams and John Quincy Adams, along with first ladies Abigail Adams and Louisa Catherine Adams. The announcement signals the beginning of the formal process to create the center.
Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch told WBZ's Chris Fama he wants the center to be more than a traditional presidential library or museum.
"We don't want a stuffy museum and we don't want a library where it's just scholars coming," Mayor Koch said. "We want classes to come in and be wowed, not necessarily by the building, but by the presentation and the content."
Retired Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, the 19th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will be the chairman of the new non-profit foundation that will help set up the center. In a speech, General Dunford said
"It seems particularly timely for us to go back to the Adams family right now as we grapple with the challenges of the 21st century," he said. "We believe the true value of the center will be its relevance to today and tomorrow. This is not really about preserving history it's about inspiring people to do things today."
Mayor Koch said the center is it important because he thinks John Adams is often overlooked as one of the founding fathers.
"He was the one getting the votes together to separate from Great Britain and he was the one who nominated George Washington to be commander and chief," Mayor Koch said. "It wouldn't have happened without John Adams. Why that was missed nationally? I don't know, but it's long overdue and we're going to do it right here in Quincy."
The announcement ceremony was held at the Adams Academy, a former school left to the city by John Adams that was built on the site of John Hancock's birthplace.
WBZ's Chris Fama (@CFamaWBZ) reports.