John Adams vs. Thomas Jefferson

Imaginary Fight Adams and Jefferson
Share Button

Before voting on this fun opinion poll, read the article below to gather a little background information on our two contestants.

Vote button

Who would win in a street fight, John Adams or Thomas Jefferson?

John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the second and third presidents of the United States, died only hours apart from one another (Jefferson died at 12:20 PM and Adams at 5:30 PM).  Ironically, they both died on the 50th birthday of the great nation they helped to create, July 4th, 1826. To honor of our nation’s birthday, and the memory of these two great men, we decided to create another imaginary fight poll, this time pitting Adams vs. Jefferson.

In all likelihood, there was a time in history when these two galient figures would have wanted to strangle each other.  While they closely collaborated during the founding and building of our country, and respected one another on their deathbeds, their friendship certainly had a sour stage. According to Kerwin Swint of CNN.com, while the two were running against each other for president in 1800, Jefferson said that Adams had “a hideous hermaphroditical character, which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman.”

Adams responded by referring to Jefferson as “a mean-spirited, low-lived fellow, the son of a half-breed Indian squaw, sired by a Virginia mulatto father.”

The insults continued for years. During that time, I’m sure the two would have relished the thought of a good, old-fashioned street fight.  They later resumed their friendship, writing to one another on frequent occasions.  But that is not where we are going to play imaginary history.  We want to know what you think.  If these two intelligent “gentlemen” decided to have a blue collar brawl, who do you think would win?

Consider the measurables, and the intangibles:


John Adams, 2nd President of the United States

John Adams

“Official Presidential portrait of John Adams (by John Trumbull, circa 1792)”

Height: 5′ 7″

Weight: Unknown; Referred to as “short, but muscular” (Doctor Zebra).

Advantages:  Known to have a quick temper and potentially some mental instability, both of which are highly positive traits in a streetfighter.  He also likely had the stout physique that one typically associates with a wrestler.  Further, he would have had a low center of gravity.  If the fight went to the ground, Adams would probably have the advantage.

Disadvantage:  Adams would have had a significantly shorter reach than Jefferson.  Therefore, if the fight was a punching match, Adams would have had a problematic disadvantage.


Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of the United States

Thomas Jefferson

“Thomas Jefferson” by Gilbert Stuart – 1821

Height: 6’2 1/2″

Weight: 181 lbs.

Advantages: Thomas Jefferson was clearly much taller than John Adams, meaning he would have had a longer reach.  If Jefferson would have been able to keep the fight from going to the ground, he would have the advantage because it would have been easier for him to land punches.  Also, Thomas Jefferson was one of the most brilliant men in the history of the world.  Not that Adams was an idiot, it’s just that Jefferson was a special kind of smart. Therefore, Jefferson would also have had a schematic advantage over Adams.

Disadvantage: If the stout Adams found a way to take the fight to the ground, Jefferson’s lanky figure would place him at a significant disadvantage.


Our Winner:

John Adams

John Adams

My first thought was that Thomas Jefferson’s height advantage, combined with his intelligent and wily ways, would lead to a lopsided butt-whoopin’, with poor John on the receiving end.  After thinking a little bit more about it, I began considering the notion that Adams was probably much more athletic than Jefferson.  Jefferson spent the majority of his life with his nose in a book.  Further, while they both owned farms, Adams would have been much more active as an actual farmer, thus developing his physical nature.  What’s more, while Jefferson was certainly the intellectual superior to Adams, Adams was by no means an idiot.  Neither of these men actually fought in the Revolutionary War as a soldier because their intellect was a more important weapon for the colonists. This would negate, or at least diminish, the intellectual advantage of Thomas Jefferson.  Therefore, the only advantage Jefferson would be left with would be his reach.  If the fight were a boxing match, I might give the match to Jefferson.  But, if the fight turned into a true brawl, which I believe it would have, Adams would be able to overpower Jefferson with his strength advantage.

I believe this would be a quick fight, with Jefferson whimpering for mercy within the first minute of action.


Do you see this imaginary fight turning out differently, or are we correct?  Celebrate the birth of our country, and the memory of these honorable men, by voting on this fun opinion poll. Click the caveman below to vote.

Also, stop by our other imaginary fight polls for more smashing fun:

Who would win in a street fight, George Washington or Theodore Roosevelt?

Who would win in a street fight, Justin Bieber or Miley Cyrus?

Vote button

Who would win in a street fight, John Adams or Thomas Jefferson?

2 Comments on “John Adams vs. Thomas Jefferson”

  1. Hosting

    thomas jefferson had more things listed under the prior positions and john adams didn’t and thomas jefferson had more things under his profession and john adams didn’t

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *