president james k polk

Presidents Day fun facts

Today, February 15, is President’s day in the United States! To celebrate, I’ve accrued an interesting bit of information for every American president from Washington to Obama!

George Washington is the only president so far to not be affiliated with any party.

John Adams served as a lawyer for British soldiers charged in the 1775 Boston massacre, despite his own anti-British sentiments.

Thomas Jefferson spoke 6 langauges; English, Welsh, Greek, Latin, French, and Arabic.

James Madison was the shortest president ever, standing 5'4" tall.

James Monroe had the Liberian capital city of Monrovia named after him, as he helped establish the country.

John Quincy Adams was the first president to be interviewed by a female reporter, Anne Royal, who stole the president’s clothes when he went skinny dipping and refused to give them back until he answered her questions.

Andrew Jackson’s birthplace is unknown, but it’s in one of the Carolinas.

Martin Van Buren is the only president to not speak English as his first language, he actually spoke Dutch.

William Henry Harrison died a month after becoming president.

John Tyler has two living grandsons as of 2016.

James K. Polk died the youngest of any president, not counting those that were assassinated.

Zachary Taylor was nicknamed “Old Rough and Ready” because as a soldier, he went into battle in old farm clothes instead of a uniform.

Millard Fillmore is the only president to have never had a VP for their entire presidency.

Franklin Pierce’s wife believed God didn’t want him to become president, since their son died shortly after his election.

James Buchanan sometimes bought slaves just to set them free.

Abraham Lincoln is the only president to have held a patent, on a type of buoy.

Andrew Johnson was the only Southern Senator to stay loyal to the Union during the civil war.

Ulysses S. Grant’s real first name was Hiram.

Rutherford B. Hayes was the first president to use a telephone.

James A. Garfield was the last president to be born in a log cabin.

Chester A. Arthur was accused of being born in Canada during his presidency, and the allegations have persisted to this day.

Grover Cleveland was accused of having an illegitimate child, and his detractors protested by chanting “Mama, where’s my pa? Gone to the White House, ha ha ha!”

Benjamin Harrison was the grandson of William Henry Harrison, and his presidency, although 48 times as long, was just as uneventful.

William McKinley was the first president to ride in an automobile, however, this auto was an ambulance used to transport him after he was assassinated.

Theodore Roosevelt was the first American to receive a Nobel prize, for his role on ending the Russo-Japanese war.

William H. Taft kept a cow at the White House named Pauline to provide fresh milk.

Woodrow Wilson suffered from dyslexia as a child.

Warren G. Harding entered college at age 14.

Calvin Coolidge liked to wear a cowboy hat around the White House.

Herbert Hoover has a comet named after him.

Franklin Roosevelt was diagnosed with polio after falling into the Bay of Fundy while vacationing in Canada.

Harry S Truman kept a sign on his desk that said “The buck stops here” representing how he couldn’t pass on his duties to anyone else. The other side read “I’m from Missouri”, as Truman was very proud of his home state.

Dwight Eisenhower’s reputation as a war hero made him so popular, that both parties asked him to run on their ticket.

John F. Kennedy’s father encouraged him to go into politics and become the first catholic president, which he did.

Lyndon B. Johnson owned an amphibious car that he liked to surprise foreign diplomats with by offering them a ride and then driving straight into a lake.

Richard Nixon could play five musical instruments: Piano, saxophone, clarinet, accordion, and violin.

Gerald Ford is the only president to have never been elected to any executive office, he won both the vice presidency and the presidency by accident.

Jimmy Carter won a Nobel prize in 2002 for his humanitarian work.

Ronald Reagan kept a jar of jellybeans on his desk, and he would eat them whenever he was stressed. When he became president, the Jelly Belly company introduced blueberry jelly beans so the jar on Reagan’s desk could have red, white, and blue beans.

George H.W. Bush served as VP for Reagan, an ambassador to China, and head of the CIA before becoming president.

Bill Clinton originally wanted to be a jazz musician, but was inspired to enter government after meeting JFK in 1963.

George W. Bush is the first president to have run a marathon. In 1993, he completed the Houston marathon in 3 hours, 44 minutes, 52 seconds.

Barack Obama collects Spider-Man comics.

This gif shows all of the US presidents in order of height

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U.S. Presidents, youngest picture and oldest picture compared: 

11) James K. Polk (1795-1849): date unknown and mid 1840s

12) Zachary Taylor (1784-1850): 1847 and 1845

13) Millard Filmore (1800-1874): date unknown and early 1860s

14) Franklin Pierce (1804-1869): date unknown and 1851

15) James Buchanan (1791-1868): date unknown and 1860

Presidents: #1-5, #6-10

Trump claims “no politician in history has been treated worse”

So I decided to dispute this claim for him in a list form. I even just stuck to presidents, though he left it open to “all politicians.” Here are some examples of criticism our former presidents received:

  • President George Washington: had to borrow money to attend his own inauguration; Jefferson repeatedly accused him of treason especially regarding the Jay Treaty
  • President John Adams: entire reputation scourged by a scathing 72-page letter written by Alexander Hamilton (a member of his own party) about how horrible he was
  • President Thomas Jefferson: election called the “greatest misfortune our nation has ever experienced” by Martha Washington; also historically despised by many of his colleagues
  • President James Madison: was frequently made fun of for being small/frail/weak (5'4", about 100 pounds, very sickly); the wife of a Virginia politician once labeled him “the most unsociable creature in existence"
  • President James Monroe: was nicknamed “The Last Cocked Hat” due to his outdated revolutionary-era fashion sense he still kept later in life; also…he acquired Florida
  • President John Quincy Adams: constantly plagued by calls of illegitimacy for his term because of the backroom deal he made with the House to be elected over Jackson
  • President Andrew Jackson: basically almost caused mutiny of Southern states over a tariff; was chastised for his nepotism and also nicknamed “King Andrew” for his selfish/monarch-like tendencies as president (also committed genocide but I’m not counting that in here because he was actually LAUDED for it)
  • President Martin Van Buren: nicknamed “Little Magician,” “Sly Fox,” and “Red Fox of Kinderhook” for his shitty political skills, small stature, and red hair; Charles Ogle called him “Martin Van Ruin” on the floor of the House of Representatives
  • President William Henry Harrison: gave an ill-advised address in the freezing cold rain & was literally president for 30 days 12 hours and 30 minutes before he died of pneumonia, after which the nation quickly forgot about him
  • President John Tyler: nicknamed “His Accidency” after inheriting the presidency from Harrison
  • President James K Polk: so obscure that one of his rivals coined the slogan “Who is James K. Polk?” during his campaign; highly criticized for his war with Mexico
  • President Zachary Taylor: though only president for 16 months, often remembered as one of the worst presidents in history; as a total outsider he completely demolished the Whig party after his victory
  • President Millard Fillmore: entire cabinet unanimously resigned after disagreeing with him over a free vs. slave state issue
  • President Franklin Pierce: was abhorrently despised for his hand in the Kansas-Nebraska Act and failed to be re-nominated for a second term
  • President James Buchanan: pre-civil war, became so hated during his presidency part of his cabinet resigned; said to Lincoln upon leaving, “If you are as happy entering the presidency as I am leaving it, then you are a very happy man.” Also has evidently been ranked among 3 worst presidents in every poll and survey conducted since 1948
  • President Abraham Lincoln: shot & killed
  • President Andrew Johnson: literally faced impeachment over his failure to work with Congress; during his trial he blamed his troubles on “a mendacious press” that continually criticized him
  • President Ulysses S Grant: no political experience entering office; was loyal to people close to him and as a result failed to remove ineffective people; presidency riddled with scandals and corruption, though none involved him directly it caused him to be remembered as guilty by association
  • President Rutherford B Hayes: official inauguration secretly held inside the White House for fear of the trouble his opponents might stir up
  • President James A Garfield: shot & killed
  • President Chester A Arthur: plagued by a negative reputation of cronyism garnered in his early political career
  • President Grover Cleveland: sexually abused a widow (which he threw into an asylum) and fathered an illegitimate child (which he threw into an orphanage); was criticized with chants such as “Ma, Ma, where’s my pa?”
  • President William McKinley: shot & killed; also had a poor reputation due to his relationship with Republican party leader Mark Hanna who was seen as manipulating McKinley
  • President Theodore Roosevelt: shot & lived; also seen as egotistical and somewhat of a bully, greatly expanding executive powers
  • President William Howard Taft: Ballinger-Pinchot controversy gained so much bad press it led to the split of the Republican party
  • President Woodrow Wilson: aside from massive criticism over his handling of WWI, also garnered criticism for an investigation launched during his presidency over claims of homosexual interactions between naval personal and civilians
  • President Warren G Harding: Teapot. Dome. Scandal.
  • President Calvin Coolidge: actually criticized for saying too LITTLE
  • President Herbert Hoover: severely criticized for his handling of the Great Depression; also ordered Army to break up protesting veterans & his harsh methods got him a lot of public dissent
  • President Franklin D Roosevelt: faced allegations from Republican leaders in Congress who said he left his dog in the Aleutian Islands after a family trip & sent a Navy destroyer to rescue said dog at the taxpayers expense
  • President Harry S Truman: involved in a scandal when an investigation into the IRS lead to the firing of 166 IRS employees; stained with allegations of corruption in the aftermath
  • President Dwight D Eisenhower: many in his administration under investigation as to how many of their “gifts” and personal purchases were allegedly funded by taxpayer money
  • President John F Kennedy: shot & killed; also had a lot of alleged affairs
  • President Lyndon B Johnson: Pentagon Papers indicated he systematically lied to the American people about American involvement and actions in the Southeast Asian region
  • President Richard Nixon: …do I really have to say anything about this one?
  • President Gerald Ford: pardoned Nixon & hated for it
  • President Jimmy Carter: shit ton of criticism for Iranian Hostage Crisis
  • President Ronald Reagan: shot & lived; Iran-Contra affair; AIDS crisis…yet somehow remembered as America’s sweetheart
  • President George HW Bush: secretary of treasury arrested and sentenced to prison for tax evasion and obstruction of justice
  • President Bill Clinton: almost impeached over Monica Lewinsky
  • President George Bush: a journalist literally threw shoes at him
  • President Barack Obama: birth certificate fiasco, “THANKS A LOT, OBAMA”

Note that this is an insanely brief overview of criticisms, but the point is IT’S PART OF THE DAMN JOB, DON. NOW GET THE FUCK OVER IT BECAUSE NO ONE IS ATTENDING YOUR PITY PARTY.

The oldest known photo of the White House, a daguerreotype dating from 1846. James K. Polk was president, and the building was a little over 50 years old at the time. Much of the White House was destroyed in the War of 1812 when the British burned the building, but the exterior walls survived the fire.

2

December 14th 1780: Alexander Hamilton and Elizabeth Schuyler marry

On this day in 1780, Founding Father Alexander Hamilton married Elizabeth Schuyler. Hamilton was born to a troubled family in the British West Indies, and moved to America as a teenager for an education. However, as the American colonies teetered on the brink of revolution, Hamilton found himself drawn to the Patriot cause. Soon into the war, Hamtilon became the assistant and adviser to General George Washington. It was during this time that he met and married Elizabeth Schuyler, who came from a prominent New York family. Elizabeth, or Eliza, was known for her sharp wit, and Hamilton was immediately smitten with her. The couple married in 1780, and went on to have eight children. As Hamilton’s career progressed, Eliza was his chief companion and helped him with his political writings. Hamilton was a fierce advocate of a strong central government, penning the majority of the Federalist Papers which supported the ratification of the Constitution, and became the nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury. Hamilton and Schuyler’s marriage was not without its trials; in 1797 the so-called Reynolds Pamphlet was published, revealing Hamilton’s affair with a woman named Maria Reynlds. In 1801, their nineteen-year-old son Philip was killed in a duel defending his father’s honour. Just three years after losing her son, Elizabeth was widowed when Alexander was killed by Aaron Burr in a duel. Elizabeth then devoted her life to philanthropy and preserving Hamiton’s legacy; in 1806, she founded New York’s first private orphanage. By the mid-nineteenth century, Elizabeth was one of the last living links to the revolutionary era, making her a very famous figure. In 1848, during the cornerstone-laying ceremony for the Washington Monument, Elizabeth rode in the procession with President James K. Polk and future presidents James Buchanan, Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson. Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton died in 1854, aged 97, fifty years after her husband’s death.

“With my last idea; I shall cherish the sweet hope of meeting you in a better world. Adieu best of wives and best of Women. Embrace all my darling Children for me.”
- Alexander Hamilton to Elizabeth Schuyler, just days before his death

anonymous asked:

How many sitting congressman have been elected President? The only ones I can think of off the top of my head is Obama & possibly Kennedy?

While many Presidents had Congressional experience at some point in their careers, only four were elected President directly from Congress – three from the Senate and just one member of the House of Representatives. Oddly enough, of the four sitting members of Congress directly elected to the Presidency, only one – Barack Obama – completed a full term as President. The other three died in office, one (Warren G. Harding) of natural causes and two (James Garfield and John F. Kennedy) who were assassinated: 

U.S. House of Representatives
James Garfield – Nineteen Presidents served in the House of Representatives during their political careers, including James K. Polk, who is the only President to have also served as Speaker of the House. But Garfield, who represented Ohio in Congress from 1863-1880, is still the only sitting member of the House of Representatives to be elected President. As an interesting side note, the Ohio State Legislature had actually elected then-Rep. Garfield to the U.S. Senate in 1880, as well (prior to 1913 there was no direct election of U.S. Senators by the public; they were chosen by their state legislature). Congressman Garfield had been elected to the Senate on January 13, 1880, but the Senate term was scheduled to begin on March 4, 1881. However, at the 1880 Republican National Convention in June, Garfield was surprisingly nominated as President – Garfield was perhaps the most surprised of all at the turn of events because his expected role at the convention was to ensure the Presidential nomination of fellow Ohioan John Sherman – and won the election on November 2, 1880. Garfield resigned his House seat a week after his election as President and also declined to accept his election as Senator. Instead of joining the Senate on March 4, 1881, Garfield spent the day being inaugurated as President.

U.S. Senate
Warren G. Harding – Sixteen Presidents served in the U.S. Senate at some point during their political careers, but Harding was the first sitting Senator to be elected President. Harding represented Ohio in the U.S. Senate from 1915-1921.
John F. Kennedy – Kennedy was the only U.S. Senator nominated for President by a major party in the 40 years between Harding’s 1920 Republican nomination and JFK’s nomination by the Democrats in 1960. However, in 1924 the Progressive Party nominated Senator Robert M. La Follette, Sr. of Wisconsin as their Presidential candidate and actually ended up winning Wisconsin’s 13 electoral votes.
Barack Obama – The 2008 election between Obama and John McCain was the first – and, to this day, only – time in American history that both major party nominees were sitting U.S. Senators. Obama represented Illinois in the Senate from 2005 until his resignation a week-and-a-half after being elected President in November 2008. McCain had been representing Arizona in the U.S. Senate since 1987 after two terms in the House of Representatives.

James K. Polk's Presidency: A Summary
  • polk: tis i, the dark horse (i came out of fucking nowhere)
  • polk: well lookie here i won the presidential election
  • polk: here's my list of goals
  • *4 years later*
  • polk: well lookie here i accomplished every goal
  • polk: *drops mic*
  • polk: not even gonna run again
  • polk: peace
Book Report

8-8-2017

This morning I finished Robert W. Merry’s book, “A Country of Vast Designs: James K. Polk, the Mexican War and the Conquest of the American Continent.” Jeez, what a mouthful.

Nonfiction, a very commendable look at James K. Polk, 11th President of the United States (1845-1849). Polk was a protege of Andrew Jackson, member of the Democratic Party, and fully embraced Manifest Destiny. His four years as president were extremely active: Annexation of Texas, the Oregon Territory Treaty, and the Mexican-American War, occurred under his administration. Busy, busy.

The author’s style was informative and although it took me longer than expected to finish - my nonfiction reading usually does - I was glad to have read it, I learned a lot.

Recommended. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

jettcyber  asked:

In reference to your post about how Obama is actually only the 43rd president: What about David Rice Atchison?

DAVID RICE ATCHISON IS OFTEN PURPORTED TO HAVE BEEN “PRESIDENT FOR ONE DAY” BETWEEN THE ADMINISTRATIONS OF JAMES K. POLK AND ZACHARY TAYLOR, BUT THIS IS INACCURATE FOR A NUMBER OF REASONS.

THE REASON PEOPLE BELIEVE ATCHISON WAS PRESIDENT IS THAT HE WAS “PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE” OF THE SENATE ON THE SUNDAY WHEN POLK’S TERM EXPIRED, BUT POLK’S SUCCESSOR, ZACHARY TAYLOR, REFUSED TO TAKE THE OATH OF OFFICE ON A SUNDAY, INSTEAD DOING IT THE FOLLOWING DAY. SOME CONTEND THAT THE PRESIDENT PRO-TEMPORE OF THE SENATE, AS THE HIGHEST IN THE PRESIDENTIAL LINE OF SUCCESSION AT THE TIME, WAS LEGALLY PRESIDENT FOR THE DAY BETWEEN THE END OF POLK’S PRESIDENCY AND THE BEGINNING OF TAYLOR’S.

THE PROBLEM IS THAT THERE WAS NO “DAY BETWEEN” THE TWO ADMINISTRATIONS. FOR THE SAKE OF CONTINUITY OF POWER, THE PRESIDENT-ELECT’S TERM AS PRESIDENT BEGINS WHEN THEIR PREDECESSOR’S TERM ENDS, WHETHER THEY’VE TAKEN THE OATH OR NOT. THE OFFICIAL SWEARING-IN IS NOT A MAGIC SPELL THAT MAKES SOMEONE THE PRESIDENT. IT’S NOT CEREMONIAL, IT’S JUST FOR SHOW. 

ZACHARY TAYLOR BECAME PRESIDENT WHEN JAMES K. POLK’S TERM ENDED. THERE WAS NO “IN BETWEEN,” AT LEAST LEGALLY SPEAKING. ESSENTIALLY, ZACHARY TAYLOR TOOK HIS FIRST DAY AS PRESIDENT OFF. ATCHISON NEVER IDENTIFIED HIMSELF AS HAVING BEEN PRESIDENT, AND IT WAS ONLY IN RETROSPECT THAT THOSE MISINFORMED ABOUT THE MECHANISMS OF PRESIDENTIAL SUCCESSION REASONED THAT HE MAY HAVE HELD THE OFFICE. 

ALSO, EVEN IF THE CONTENTION THAT ATCHISON ACTED AS PRESIDENT ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE TAYLOR ADMINISTRATION WAS TRUE, IT WOULD NOT COUNT HIM AMONG THE OFFICIAL PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES, AS “PRESIDENT” IS A DIFFERENT POST THAN “ACTING PRESIDENT.”

“ACTING PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES” A TITLE HELD BY SOMEONE WHO HAS BEEN DESIGNATED TO ACT AS THE PROXY OF THE OFFICIAL PRESIDENT. IT’S LIKE WHEN A PERSON OFFICIALLY DESIGNATES THEIR SPOUSE OR FAMILY MEMBER AS SOMEONE WHO IS ALLOWED TO MAKE MEDICAL DECISIONS ON THEIR BEHALF SHOULD THEY BE UNCONSCIOUS OR OTHERWISE INCAPABLE OF DOING SO. THEY ACT ON BEHALF OF THE PRESIDENT WITHOUT ACTUALLY BEING THE PRESIDENT

THIS POWER HAS BEEN INVOKED THREE TIMES, AND TWO MEN HAVE SERVED AS “ACTING PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES.” RONALD REAGAN AND GEORGE W. BUSH BOTH APPOINTED THEIR VICE PRESIDENT (GEORGE H.W. BUSH AND DICK CHENEY, RESPECTIVELY) TO ACT AS PRESIDENT WHILE THEY UNDERWENT A MEDICAL PROCEDURE. WHILE BUSH SR. AND CHENEY BOTH CARRIED OUT THE DUTIES OF PRESIDENT, THEY DID NOT ACTUALLY HOLD THE OFFICE AND ARE THUS NOT COUNTED IN THE LIST OF AMERICAN PRESIDENTS. 

1 in 3 Republicans believe President Obama wants to invade Texas.

170 years after President James K. Polk authorized the annexation of Texas, a new poll has found that a third of Republicans believe the federal government is “trying to take over Texas.” The survey conducted by Public Policy Polling between May 7 and 10 found that 32% of likely GOP voters believed the broad strokes of the “Jade Helm 15” conspiracy theory. 

The idea of Jim Polk being President of the United States! We are more disposed to laugh at it here than to treat it seriously.
— 

A Congressman from James K. Polk’s home state of Tennessee dismissing Polk’s chances as a dark horse candidate in the 1844 Presidential election.

Polk was elected President several months later.