Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub
[ocr errors]

Sixth president of the United States, was the son of John Adams, second president of the United States. He was born in Quincy, Mass., in 1767, and was named for his great grandfather, John Quincy, who bore a distinguished part in the councils of the province. At the age of eleven years he visited France with his father, and remained in various parts of Europe most of the time, till 1785, when he returned to the United States, and became a member of Harvard University. In 1787, he left college, and commenced the study of law with Theophilus Parsons, of Newburyport. After completing his legal studies he removed to Boston, with a view of employing himself in the practice of his profession. His leisure was occupied in political studies and writings, and his reputation was soon established as a distinguished statesman. In 1794, he was appointed minister resident to the Netherlands, by Gen. W. who afterwards apointed him minister plenipotentiary to Portugal; but fore entering on the duties of this station, his destination was changed to Berlin, in Prussia, where he negotiated a treaty of commerce. He was recalled by his father in 1801. In 1802, he was elected to the senate of Massachusetts, and in 1803, was chosen to represent his native state in the Senate of the United States; which place he resigned in 1808. In 1806, he was appointed professor of rhetoric and oratory in Harvard college. In 1809, he was appointed minister to Russia by Mr. Madison, and afterwards one of the commissioners for negotiating a treaty of peace with England. In 1817, he was appointed secretary of state by Mr. Monroe, which office he honorably filled till he was chosen president of the United States, in 1825, by the House of Representatives, he having received the votes of thirteen states, Gen. Jackson seven, and Mr. Crawford of four states. After serving his country as president for four years, Mr. Adams was succeeded by Gen. Andrew Jackson

In 1831, he accepted a seat in Congress, as the representative of his native district. In this body he took the rank to which great talents, experience, and services fully entitled him. His speeches were marked with the stern independence and fearless expression of opinion which, throughout his life, were his great characteristics. He could always command respectful attention. He particularly distinguished himself as the strenuous advocate of the right of petition, which had for some years been trampled under foot by Congress, on account of the clamor of the representatives from the southern states.

Mr. Adams remained in Congress until his death, which occurred on the 23d of February, 1848. As he rose to move the previous question in the house, he was attacked by paralysis, and being conveyed into the rotunda of the Capitol, he remained there insensible till the next day, when, surrounded by many faithful and lamenting friends, his long and useful life was brought to a close. He died like a hero on the scene of his glory !. and left a name and fame of a great and good man to the admiration and reverence of his countrymen.

A NDREW J A C KSON,

SEVENTH President of the United States, was born of Irish parents, at Waxaw, S. C., March 15, 1767. When fourteen years of age, he joined the revolutionary army, with his brother, and was soon after, with his brother and severai others, taken prisoner by the British, and treated with great severity. In a short time his brother died, and in 1783 his mother was taken away, leaving him without kindred in the country of his birth. His mother had destined him for the ministry, and he pursued his studies with that view till he was eighteen years of age, when he commenced the study of the law, under the direction of Spruce M'Cay, Esq., and finished under the tuition of Col. John Stokes.

In 1788, he removed to Tennessee, and commenced tho practice of law at Nashville, in which he was quite successful, and, in 1791, was appointed attorney-general for the district. In 1796, he was chosen a member of the convention for framing a constitution for the State; and the same year elected representative to Congress. In 1797, he became a member of the United States Senate, which office he resigned the following year, and soon after was appointed judge of the supreme court of the State, and major-general of the Tennessee militia.

In 1812, he took command of 2,500 Tennessee volunteers; and continued in the service of the country during the war with Great Britain, until its close at New Orleans, January 8, 1815. Afterwards he commanded an expedition against the Seminoles, and was appointed governor of Florida in 1821. In 1822, he was again elected a member of the United States Senate.

In 1828, General Jackson was elected President of the United States, to which high office he was again elected in 1832. His popularity during his administration was great and uninterrupted. After the close of his second term, General Jackson issued a valedictory address to the people of the United States, and withdrew wholly from public life, to his residence in Tennessee, where he died on the 8th of June, 1845, aged 78 years. Men will accord to him the merit of possessing great energy and strength of will, remarkable military skill, and warm patriotism, whatever opinion may be entertained of the wisdom of his policy while in official stations.

MART IN VAN BUR EN,

EIGHTH President of the United States, was born at Kinderhook, New York, December 5, 1782. His parents were of Dutch descent, and in humble circumstances. At the age of fourteen he commenced the study of the law, in the office of Francis Sylvester, Esq., in his native village. In 1803,

he was jould to the bar of the supreme court, and com. menced practice in Kinderhook. In 1809, he removed to Hudson for the improvement of his professional prospects.

In 1812, he was elected to the state senate, and in 1815, was appointed attorney-general of the state. In 1816, he removed to Albany, where his practice became extensive and lucrative. February 6, 1821, he was appointed to the United States Senate, and in August following was returned a member of the convention to revise the constitution of the State. In November, 1828, he was elected governor of the State of New York, which office he resigned March 12, 1829, in consequence of his appointment as Secretary of State of the United States by General Jackson. In the summer of 1831, he was sent to London as minister to the court of St. James; but the Senate refused to confirm the appointment in December following.

In 1833, Mr. Van Buren was elected Vice-President of the United States; and in 1837, he was elected President by 167 of the 311 electoral votes. After four years' service in this exalted position, he resigned the “White House” to General Harrison.

In 1848, Mr. Van Buren was nominated for the presi dency by a portion of the Democratic party in the N., opposed to the extension of slavery. He did not, however, receive the electoral vote of a single State. He continues to reside at Kinderhook, New York, where he is engaged in agricultural pursuits.

WILLIA M HENRY HARRIS ON,

NINTH President of the United States, was born in Charles City county, Virginia, on the 9th of February, 1773, and was the third son of Benjamin Harrison, a distinguished patriot of the revolution, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and governor of Virginia, in 1781–3. Young Harrison was educated at Hampden Sidney College, and turned his attention to the study of medicine. The hostilities of the Indians on the northwestern border having begun to excite genero. attention, the young student resolved to relinquish his professional pursuits, and join the army destined to the defence of the Ohio frontier. In 1791, soon after the death of his father, who died in April of the same year, he received from President Washington, when only in his nineteenth year, the commission of ensign; in 1792, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant; and he fought under General Wayne, who spoke of his gallant conduct in a very flattering manner. After the desperate battle at the Miami Rapids, he was promoted to the rank of captain, and was placed in the command of Fort Washington. In 1797, he resigned his commission in the army, and was immediately appointed Secretary of the Northwest Territory. In 1799, at the age of 26, he was elected a delegate from this territory to Congress, and in this office he performed very important services for his constituents. On the erection of Indiana into a territorial government, he was appointed its first governor, and he heki this office by reappointment till 1813. In addition to the duties in the civil and military government of the territory, he was commissioner and superintendent of Indian affairs; and in the course of his administration, he concluded thirteen important treaties with the different tribes. On the 7th of November, 1811, he gained over the Indians the celebrated battle of Tippecanoe, the news of which was received throughout the country with a burst of enthusiasm. During the last war with Great Britain, he was made commander of the northwestern army of the United States, and he bore a conspicuous part in the leading events in the campaign of 1812–13, the defence of Fort Meigs, and the victory of the Thames. In 1814, he was appointed, in conjunction with his companions in arms, Governor Shelby and General Cass, to treat with the Indians in the Northwest, at Greenville; and in the following year he was placed at the head of a commission to treat with various other important tribes. In 1816, General Harrison was elected a member of Congress from Ohio; and in 1828, he was sent minister plenipotentiary to the republic of Colombia. On his return he took up his residence at North Bend, or the Ohio, sixteen miles below Cincinnati, where he lived upon his farm, in ... [..." retirement, till he was called by the people of the United States to preside over the country as its chief

« ПредишнаНапред »