His father, a farmer, also named John, was of the fourth generation in descent from Henry Adams, who emigrated from Devonshire, England, to Massachusetts about 1636; his mother was Susanna Boylston Adams. Young Adams graduated from Harvard College in 1755, and for a time taught school at Worcester and studied law in the office of Rufus Putnam.
Her grandfather, Benjamin Adams, married Susanna E. Goodhue, and lived in Newbury, Massachusetts, for many years.
Kepler's second courtship forms the subject of a highly characteristic letter addressed by him to Baron Stralendorf, in which he reviews the qualifications of eleven candidates for his hand, and explains the reasons which decided his choice in favour of a portionless orphan girl named Susanna Reutlinger.
He was the fifteenth child of Samuel and Susanna Wesley (see Wesley Family).