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  • John Adams

    Adams collaborated with his cousin, revolutionary leader Samuel Adams, but he established his own prominence prior to the American Revolution. After the Boston Massacre, he provided a successful (though unpopular) legal defense of the accused British soldiers, in the face of severe local anti-British sentiment and driven by his devotion to the right to counsel and the "protect[ion] of innocence."[1] Adams was a delegate from Massachusetts to the Continental Congress, where he played a leading role in persuading Congress to declare independence.

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