Franklin Pierce
(1804-1869)
By Gordon

Franklin Pierce was the first President to memorize and recite his inaugural address. Franklin was born in Hillsboro, New Hampshire on November 23, 1804. He easily aced admission tests for Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. After he graduated he studied law and was accepted to the New Hampshire bar. He married Jane Appleton on Nov. 10, 1834 and together they had three children. Unfortunately all three of his children died before he became President. Mrs. Pierce was so deeply depressed over the horrid death of her children that she did not participate in the social activities of the White House.

Pierce worked in congress before he became President. He served in the New Hampshire Legislature in 1829. Franklin was also a member of the House of Representatives. He was a United States Senator and served two terms as Governor of New Hampshire. Pierce was a member of the Democratic Party and won the election by 212 electoral votes. The race was between Pierce and Winfield Scott. Pierce's running mate was William R. King. While running for President, Pierce was called the "compromise" candidate.

As President, Pierce succeeded in constructing a balanced cabinet and planned an aggressive foreign policy in hope to meek the controversy over slavery. Because of this endorsement of the Kansas-Nebraska bill, which approved of the continuation of slavery, the Republican Party was born.

Last of all, lot things happened after his Presidency. First he was unpopular because he was anti-Civil War and still favored slavery. Second his wife Jane died of tuberculosis on December 2, 1863. Finally, Franklin Pierce died in the summer of 1869 after his life rapidly deteriorated.

Franklin Pierce was probably not the best President, but he did help the United States to the best of his ability.

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