John Quincy Adams, Internet Sensation
No one was more surprised by the immense reaction that accompanied John Quincy Adams's Twitter debut on 5 August than the staff at the MHS, who began posting the daily "tweets" from Adams’s line-a-day diary entries written exactly 200 years ago as he traveled to Russia as the first US minister. By the time the first tweet was posted, over three dozen online news and media sites had picked up an Associated Press wire article about the project. The New York Times, NPR, ABC World News, MSNBC, CNN, and countless other news outlets and blogs subsequently covered the story, leading to a veritable media blitz surrounding the Society's innovative use of historical manuscripts and modern technology. Since then, over 14,500 individuals and organizations across the globe have been inspired to follow Adams's journey via Twitter. The MHS staff is excited that the project has generated so much talk about the MHS, Adams, and American history in general. By bringing this slice of history to the public in an accessible and inventive way, the MHS hopes people will be motivated to learn more about our national story.
For more information on Adams, his trip to Russia, and selected media coverage, visit the Society's new web page devoted to the JQA Twitter Project. Also, keep an eye out for an article about the JQA Twitter phenomenon in the upcoming issue of Miscellany, the Society's bi-annual print newsletter.