January 27th, 2010 19:23 EST
The Dirty Secret of our 10th President, John Tyler
John Tyler was an amazing human being who led our country through many devastating times. John Tyler Jr. was born March 29, 1790, in Charles City County in Virginia, as the second child to John and Mary Tyler. He spent his childhood there with his eight siblings while believing and never swaying from the idea that the Constitution should be strict and supreme. His father was part of the Virginia legislature and was good ol` pals with Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was John Tyler`s hero during his entire lifetime! John attended the college of William and Mary to study law. When John was 19 years old, his father became governor of Virginia.
John originally was part of the Whig party, founded by Henry Clay, which had ideas similar to today`s Democratic Party. Tyler was also against the ideas and beliefs of Andrew Jackson. John didn`t support a federal bank, federally funded roads or canals, high taxes to protect northern industries, and more subjects like the Whigs did.
When John was 21, he was elected to the Virginia legislature. At 26, he made it into the House of Representatives. After his second term was up, he moved back down to the Virginia legislature again. He followed in his father`s footsteps when, at 35, he became governor of Virginia.
Only two years after becoming governor, he ran and made it into the U.S. Senate. Two-thirds of the way through his term, he resigned from the Senate. When he was 50 years of age, he ran as the vice-president for William Henry Harrison who was running as the representative from the Whig party. Only a month after being sworn into office, Harrison contracted pneumonia. He shortly passed away and Tyler took office as the new president.
John Tyler was the first president to take office when elected as vice-president. People called him the acting president " and didn`t think he really deserved to be president, even though our constitution stated that he should take office. Many people wanted to impeach him. Some of the first bills passed to him, from the Whigs, about a federal bank, he vetoed-- which made the rest of the party furious. Most of his cabinet quit being followers of Clay. He became an outcast to his own party.
Before his presidency, he was married and divorced. In the middle of his presidency, he got married again to a wife 24 years younger than he. He had a total of seven sons and six daughters. John Tyler also almost died on the USS Princeton cruise ship.
Tyler had many successes during his presidency, such as: the Webster-Ashbury Treaty with Britain to settle the dispute between the borders of the U.S. and Canada, the Preemption Act of 1841-- which put squatters on government lands and enabled the government to buy 160 acres of land in an auction for minimum bidding price with no competition, and helped Texas join the United States and be freed from Mexico.
During his one term of presidency, he vetoed TEN bills, which came in second for most bills vetoed behind Andrew Jackson with twelve. John Tyler was the first president to have one of his vetoes overridden. The law stated that the president needed to get congressional approval before commissioning any new military craft.
After his presidency, James K. Polk took over and John Tyler was elected to the permanent Congress of the Confederate States, but died before he could take this position. John Tyler supported slavery, but thought the Civil War was not worth fighting and thought the Confederates should withdraw.
John Tyler died on January 18, 1862, in Richmond, Virginia at the age of 72. He died of bronchitis and an astoundingly high fever. Tyler was buried in Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond.
My opinion of John Tyler, which was stated throughout this essay, is that John Tyler SAVED our country from falling into turmoil, chaos and despair. I believe he was an amazing president for many reasons. Even though we didn`t directly elect him to manage our country, he deserved the job according to our constitution that WE made. I can`t believe people would question his authority as president and I don`t blame him for not listening to the putrid junk people said and sent to him. John Tyler`s legacy will always be a great one that people should know and honor.