Archive for U.S. Presidents

Abraham Lincoln

Posted in Oak Ridge Cemetery with tags on August 15, 2017 by Cade

February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865

Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States. Arguably, one of the most famous presidents in U.S. history, Lincoln guided the country through its bloody civil war. A largely self-educated lawyer who grew up in Kentucky and Indiana, he went on to represent Illinois in the United States congress. After a return to private law practice, and amidst a rising tension between Southern, slave-owning states and the North, Lincoln was persuaded to run for President as a moderate in the newly founded Republican party. Despite receiving virtually no votes from the Southern states, Lincoln won the election in 1860. His victory led the first states in the South to begin working toward secession and the war followed quickly. Lincoln navigated the war with admirable skill and prowess. In 1862, he issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which effectively freed the slaves in the Southern states. In 1864, he was reelected while the war raged on and began to work toward what post-war Reconstruction would look like. Continue reading

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Calvin Coolidge

Posted in Plymouth Notch Cemetery with tags , on November 9, 2015 by Cade

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July 4, 1872 – January 5, 1933

“The words of a President have an enormous weight, and ought not to be used indiscriminately.” – Calvin Coolidge

John Calvin Coolidge, Jr. was the 30th President of the United States. Known far and wide as “Silent Cal,” the conservative Republican worked his way up, as a lawyer, through state politics in Massachusetts, eventually becoming the governor of the commonwealth in 1918. Coolidge’s handling of the 1919 Boston Police Strike earned him a reputation as a politician who acted quickly and wisely. As his actions in the Massachusetts state house became more and more known, many in the Republican party started to urge him to seek the Presidency. Continue reading

Martin Van Buren

Posted in Kinderhook Cemetery with tags , on August 4, 2015 by Cade

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December 5, 1782 – July 24, 1862

Martin Van Buren, the 8th President of the United States, was born in mostly-Dutch-speaking Kinderhook, NY in 1782. He was the first U.S. President to be born AFTER the country had declared its independence from Britain. He was 5’6″. And, because of his upbringing, was the only President to speak English as a second language.

But, fun factoids do not a great president make. Continue reading

Chester A. Arthur

Posted in Albany Rural Cemetery with tags , on July 13, 2015 by Cade

President Chester A. Arthur

October 5, 1829 – November 18, 1886

A relatively quiet cog in the post-civil war New York political machine, Chester A. Arthur was thrust into the U.S. Presidency when his predecessor, James Garfield, was assassinated in the first year of their administration. Arthur served out the single term in surprisingly successful fashion considering his general lack of public opinion prior to being nominated as Garfield’s  vice-president. Originally from Vermont, Arthur studied and practiced Law in New York before getting into politics. His rise through the New York Republican “Stalwarts” put him at odds with Garfield and the two were never close. Continue reading

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Posted in Franklin D. Roosevelt Historic Site with tags , on May 7, 2014 by Cade

fdr1January 30, 1882 – April 12, 1945

The former Governor of New York and 32nd President of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt is the only President to have served more than two terms and be elected FOUR times. Of, course, with term limits now in place, no President will ever again get the chance to do that. FDR was more than just the name of a highway. His optimism and overcome-all-odds spirit helped pull the U.S. out of the grips of the Great Depression. His New Deal policies shaped modern American society and transformed the political landscape of the country for decades. Continue reading

John Quincy Adams

Posted in United First Parish Church with tags , on March 19, 2014 by Cade

adams2July 11, 1767 – February 23, 1848

John Quincy Adams was the sixth President of the United States. While his presidency was unremarkable, even by early standards, his life in national politics was certainly impactful. He is the only U.S. President to serve in the House of Representatives AFTER leaving the presidency. He represented Massachusetts in Washington D.C. for the final 17 years of his life. Prior to being elected President, he served in the U.S. Senate and as Secretary of State under James Monroe. Despite all of this, he is probably best remembered for his service and prowess as a foreign diplomat. Continue reading

James K. Polk

Posted in Tennessee State Capitol with tags , on March 6, 2014 by Cade

polk1November 2, 1795 – June 15, 1849

I believe many would consider James Knox Polk – the 11th President of the United States – as one of the “lesser known” Presidents. Sort of wedged in there between Millard Filmore and Franklin Pierce. But, in his single 4-year term in office, Polk managed to create quite the legacy. His biggest accomplishment, from a historical standpoint, was taking the nation to war against Mexico over a little plot of land called “Texas.” The U.S. won the Mexican-American war and the landscape of the country, specifically the southwest, was altered forever. And, just for good measure, he also threatened to go to war with Britain over the Pacific Northwest. But that conflict never materialized. Continue reading