Martin Van Buren Facts | 8th US PRESIDENT

US President: (1837-1841)
US Vice President: Richard Johnson
Political Party: Free Soil (1848-1854), Democrat-Republican (Before 1825), Democrat (1828-1848)
Birth: December 5, 1782 in Kinderhook, New York
Death: July 24, 1862 (aged 79) at Kinderhook, New York

Offices held:
8th President of the United States (1837 – 1841)
8th Vice President of the United States (1833 – 1837)
United States Minister to the United Kingdom (1831 – 1832)
10th United States Secretary of State (1829 – 1831)
9th Governor of New York (1829)
United States Senator from New York (1821 – 1828)
Member of the New York State Senate (1813 – 1820)

First Family
First Ladies: Hannah Hoes (m. 1807 – 1819)
Children: Abraham, John, Martin Jr., Winfield, Smith
Pictures of Hannah Van Buren from the Library of Congress
Angelica Van Buren – White House Hostess

Martin Van Buren Genealogy

Biography from
Congressional Biography
Biography from the U.S. Senate

Facts about Martin Van Buren

A slight 5’6 tall, Van Buren garnered the nicknames a Little Magician, Sly Fox, and Fox of Kinderhook for his skills as a politician, less-than-intimidating stature, and reddish-blond hair. The first published edition of Van Burens autobiography came in at 776 pages and covered his life through 1834, three years before he was elected president.

He resigned as Secretary of State to quell a minor sex scandal of his Secretary of War, John Eaton. Van Buren, baptized as Maarten van Buren in Kinderhook, N.Y. in 1782, became the first President who was born after the American Revolution.

Although Jackson favored bringing Texas into the American fold as he finished his term, many northerners were leery of a slave-owner conspiracy in adding Texas, which would have been a slave state. Van Buren blocked the annexation in 1837, in part because of the slavery issue but also to avoid further tensions with Mexico.

While going to school as a youth, Van Buren worked in his father’s tavern which had regular customers of lawyers and politicians like Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. Martin Van Buren created one of the first political machines, the Albany Regency.

Van Buren Wife & Politics

Van Buren’s wife Hannah Hoes Van Buren died in 1819. After her death, his daughter-in-law, Angelica Singleton performed the first lady duties. Van Buren had bought the Van Ness estate two miles from his hometown of Kinderhook, New York in 1839.

Though a good politician, one of the most commonly accepted Martin Van Buren facts is that he was not a very good economist. Under the former president, severe restrictions has been placed on the country’s banks, resulting in the Panic of 1837, when people withdrew their money in droves, causing financial ruin.

Van Buren is famous for being the only American president who spoke English as his second language. His first language was Dutch. Martin Van Buren was responsible for the Trail of Tears.

Pictures from the Library of Congress

Martin Van Buren Childhood

Van Buren was born on December 5, 1782, in Kinderhook, New York. His parents, Abraham and Maria, were of Dutch descent and modest means. His father was a farmer but also ran a tavern, which frequently served as a political meeting place and where young Martin was first exposed to politics.

The boy attended local schools and the Kinderhook Academy until age 14, when his father, unable to afford to send Martin to college, managed to secure him an apprenticeship with a lawyer. He studied law in the subsequent years, and in 1803 was admitted to the bar. Van Buren began his own practice shortly thereafter.

Where is Martin Van Buren buried?

He is buried in the Kinderhook Reformed Dutch Church Cemetery, as are his wife Hannah, his parents, and his son Martin Van Buren, Jr.

How did Martin Van Buren die?

Van Buren’s health began to fail later in 1861, and he was bedridden with pneumonia during the fall and winter of 1861-62. Additionally, he did not recover, and died of bronchial asthma and heart failure at his Lindenwald estate in Kinderhook at 2:00 a.m. on July 24, 1862, at the age of 79.

Martin VAN BUREN Biography

VAN BUREN, Martin, (half brother of James Isaac Van Alen), a Senator from New York, a Vice President and 8th President of the United States; born in Kinderhook, Columbia County, N.Y., December 5, 1782; attended the village schools; studied law; admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Kinderhook, N.Y., in 1803; moved to Hudson, N.Y., in 1809; surrogate of Columbia County 1808-1813; member, State senate 1813-1820; attorney general of New York 1816-1819; delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1821; elected as a Democratic Republican (later Crawford Republican and then Jacksonian) to the United States Senate; reelected in 1827, and served from March 4, 1821, until December 20, 1828, when he resigned, having been elected Governor; chairman, Committee on the Judiciary (Eighteenth through Twentieth Congresses);

Governor of New York from January to March 1829, when he resigned to enter the Cabinet; appointed Secretary of State in the Cabinet of President Andrew Jackson and served from March 1829, until his resignation, effective May 1831, when he was commissioned Minister to Great Britain; the Senate rejected his nomination in January 1832, and he returned to the United States; elected, as a Democrat, Vice President of the United States on the ticket with Andrew Jackson and served from March 4, 1833, to March 3, 1837; elected, as a Democrat, President of the United States and served from March 4, 1837, to March 3, 1841; unsuccessful candidate for reelection as President on the Democratic ticket in 1840 and on the Free-Soil ticket in 1848; withdrew from political life and retired to his country home, Lindenwald, in Kinderhook, N.Y., where he died July 24, 1862; interment in Kinderhook Cemetery.


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