« AnteriorContinuar »
position to the Stamp Act of Great Britain. When the first outbreak at Lexington occurred, he joined the patriot forces in defending their liberties and lives. In 1774, he was chosen a member of the Continental Congress and honorably represented his constituents in that body. He had the honor of proposing George Washington as Commander-inChief of the American Army, and the proposal reflects great credit upon his judgment. He assisted in preparing the Declaration of Independence and bore an active part in the debate it occasioned. In Nov., 1777, he was appointed Minister to France. He was the first American Minister to Great Britain, being appointed in 1785. In 1788, he was elected to the office of Vice-President, and performed its duties with zeal and success. He was elected President in 1797, defeating Jefferson in the contest for that position. His administration was active and at first popular with the people, but was environed with difficulties of a perplexing character and closed amid the unscrupulous upbraidings of his political foes. Leaving Washington, he returned to the retirement of his quiet home, and there, with the grand sentiment of "Independence forever!" breaking from his lips, he passed away, on the 4th day of July, 1826.
THOMAS JEFFERSON, Vice-President.-For biographical sketch, see Third Administration.
Electoral Vote, Second Administration.
Sixteen States voting, Tennessee having been admitted during the First Adm. Whole number of Electors, 140.
John Adams, of Mass., FEDERAL, received 71 Electoral votes, and was declared President.
Thomas Jefferson, of Va., DEMOCRAT, received 68 Electoral votes, and was declared Vice-President.
Thomas Pinckney, S. Ca., 58; Aaron Burr, N. Y., 30. Samuel Adams, Mass., 15; Oliver Ellsworth, Conn., 11. George Clinton, of N. Y., 7; John Jay, of N. Y., 5. James Iredell, N. Ca., 3; Samuel Johnston, N. Ca., 2. George Washington, of Va., 2; John Henry, of Md., 2. Charles C. Pinckney, of S. Ca., 1.
Important events of the 2d Administration.
1797 March 4. John Adams inaugurated President. Difficulties arise with France. Congress convened preparatory for war.
1798 George Washington appointed Commander-in-Chief of the American Armies, with the rank and title of Lieut.-General.
Alien and sedition laws passed Congress. The first gave power to the President to expel from the country aliens suspected of conspiring against the government. The sedition law was designed to suppress publications that were disloyal to the Republic.
1799 Dec. 14. Death of Washington, in his 68th year.
Naval combat between the U. S. Frigate Constitution and the French frigate L'Insurgente, the latter captured.
Feb. 26. Three Commissioners sent to negotiate peace with France.
1800 The Capital located at Washington.
Sept. 30. Treaty of Peace concluded with France.
CABINET OFFICERS, 2D ADMINISTRATION-1797-1801. Secretaries of State-Timothy Pickering, Mass.; John Marshall, Va.
Secretaries of the Treasury-Oliver Wolcott, Conn.; Samuel Dexter, Mass.
Secretaries of War-James McHenry, Md.; Samuel Dexter, Mass.; Roger Griswold, Conn.
Secretaries of the Navy-George Cabot, Mass.; Benjamin Stoddert, Md.
Postmuster-General-Joseph Habersham, Ga.
NATIONAL EXPENSES AND DEBT, 2D ADMINISTRATION.
THOMAS JEFFERSON.-Not least renowned among the historic characters of the American Republic, is Thomas Jeferson, third President of the United States.
He was born at Shadwell, Virginia, April 2d, 1743. His ancestors were of Welsh extraction. His father decided to give him a classical education, and sent him, as a student to William and Mary College.
He was very studious and made rapid advancement; at the end of two years left College and began the study of law. He pursued his legal studies for five years, and thus laid the foundation for that great skill and ability that distinguished him as a counsellor and logician.
In 1769, he was elected to the House of Burgesses, and
at once became an active and prominent member. In 1772, he was united in wedlock to Mrs. Martha Skelton, a lady of great personal worth and beauty. At about this time he was elected a member of Congress, and proved himself in every way worthy of the honor.
He was chosen to prepare the immortal Declaration of Independence, which, after a stirring debate of three days, was adopted on the Fourth of July, 1776. He was elected Governor of Virginia, in 1779, and held the office for two years. In 1784, he was selected to negotiate with European Statesmen, upon the subject of commercial treaties.
He was elected to the office of Vice-President, in 1797, and at the next election was chosen President. In his inaugural address, he used the following memorable expression: "We are called by different names, brethren of the same principle. We are all republicans: we are all federalists. If there be any among us who would wish to dissolve this Union, or to change its republican form, let them stand, un. disturbed, as monuments of the safety with which ERROR OF OPINION MAY BE TOLERATED, WHERE REASON IS LEFT FREE 10 COMBAT IT." His administration was so popular that, at its close, he was elected for a second term, by a very large electoral vote. His second administration was active and aggressive in its policy, and contributed to the growth and stability of the nation. He died at the age of eightythree, on the 4th day of July, 1826.
AARON BURR, Vice-President, was born at Newark, N. J., Feb. 6, 1756. Died on Staten Island Sept. 14, 1836. He graduated at Princeton, 1772, admitted to the bar at Albany,