Adams & Eve’s Paradise

Wondering why there’s an “s” on Adam? Read on to find out about this Eden of the 19th century.

When Sarah Eve was a young woman, she was intrigued by a list of books that she found in her uncle’s trunk. Sarah lived much of younger years with her aunt Catherine in Charleston, South Carolina. To escape the warm summer months, Sarah accompanied aunt Catherine, uncle Christopher, and their children north each year. The summer she found the list, the family was staying in Newport, Rhode Island.

The list was an order for two volumes of poetry, written in beautiful handwriting: James Campbell’s The Pleasure of Hope and Oliver Goldsmiths’ The Deserted Village, both commentaries on different contemporary issues of morality. Sarah imagined the writer of the list to be among the best of men and superior to any suitors she currently had.

Back in Charleston, later that year, Sarah was introduced to the writer of the list, her uncle’s clerk, John Strong Adams. Sarah thought John the perfect example of a gentleman and her beau ideal. John, an immigrant from Randalstown, Antrim, Ireland, was well educated and very handsome. Sarah’s beauty, refinement and high cultivation complimented John’s attributes and the two were wed 2 March 1803.

The couple settled in Charleston in a pretty house, calling it Adams and Eve’s paradise, indicating the great bliss they found in their marriage. They spent 9 happy years together until John’s death in 1812. Sarah never remarried.

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