He previously was Speaker of the House of Representatives — and governor of Tennessee — Polk is chiefly known for extending the territory of the United States during the Mexican—American War ; during his presidency, the United States expanded significantly with the annexation of the Republic of Texasthe Oregon Territoryand the Mexican Cession following the American victory in the Mexican—American War.
After building a successful law practice in TennesseePolk was elected to the state legislature and then to the United States House of Representatives inbecoming a strong supporter of Andrew Jackson. After serving as chairman of the Ways and Means Committeehe became Speaker inthe only president to have been Speaker. Polk left Congress to run for governor of Tennessee ; he won inbut lost in and He was a dark horse candidate for the Democratic nomination for president in ; he entered his party's convention as a potential nominee for vice president, but emerged as a compromise to head the ticket when no presidential candidate could secure the necessary two-thirds majority.
Historians have praised Polk for having met during his four-year term every major domestic and foreign policy goal he had set. After a negotiation fraught with risk of war, he reached a settlement with Great Britain over the disputed Oregon Countrythe territory for the most part being divided along the 49th parallel. Polk achieved a sweeping victory in the Mexican—American War, which resulted in the cession by Mexico of nearly all the American Southwest.
He secured a substantial reduction of tariff rates with the Walker tariff of The same year, he achieved his other major goal, re-establishment of the Independent Treasury system. Historian Thomas A. Bailey says that during the Mexican war, "Polk was an energetic and indefatigable war leader, and he emerged, partly through rare good luck, with uninterrupted success. He kept the sole direction of the war in his own hands, from grand strategy to the procurement of mules. Though he is relatively obscure today, scholars have ranked Polk favorably for his ability to promote and achieve the major items on his presidential agenda.
However, he has also been criticized for leading the country into an unnecessary war against Mexico and for exacerbating sectional divides. An owner of property who worked with slave labor for most of his adult life, he owned a plantation in Mississippi and purchased more slaves while president.
A major legacy of Polk's presidency is territorial expansion, as the United States reached the Pacific coast and became poised to be a world power. However, sectional divisions in the U. The Polks had immigrated to America in the late s, settling initially on the Eastern Shore of Maryland but later moving to south-central Pennsylvania and then to the Carolina hill country. The Knox and Polk families were Presbyterian. While Polk's mother remained a devout Presbyterian, his father, whose own father Ezekiel Polk was a deistrejected dogmatic Presbyterianism.
He refused to declare his belief in Christianity at his son's baptism, and the minister refused to baptize young James. Rawley 's American National Biography article. InEzekiel Polk led four of his adult children and their families to the Duck River area in what is now Maury County, Tennessee ; Samuel Polk and his family followed in The Polk clan dominated politics in Maury County and in the new town of Columbia.
Samuel became a county judge, and the guests at his home included Andrew Jacksonwho had already served as a judge and in Congress. Polk suffered from frail health as a child, a particular disadvantage in a frontier society.
His father took him to see prominent Philadelphia physician Dr. Philip Syng Physick for urinary stones. The journey was broken off by James's severe pain, and Dr.Hi there! Sign in Create an account Buy images Sell images.
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Save to lightbox. Hand-colored woodcut President James K Polk portrait. Polk, 11th U. President James K. Polk American politician. Portrait by George Peter A. James K. Detail from a larger painting, HPAA James K Polk. Polk, lawyer and politician who was the 11th President of the United States, From the New York Public Library. Engraved portrait of James K. English: Mrs. Polk, head-and-shoulder portrait, facing slightly right.
Polk, by George W.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. Polk, James K.James Polk served as the 11th U. Before his presidency, Polk served in the Tennessee legislature and the U. Congress; in he became governor of Tennessee. A Democrat who was relatively unknown outside of political circles, Polk won the presidential election as the dark horse candidate.
As president, he reduced tariffs, reformed the national banking system and settled a boundary dispute with the British that secured the Oregon Territory for the United States.
Polk also led the nation into the Mexican-American Warin which the United States acquired California and much of the present-day Southwest. Polk kept his campaign promise to be a one-term president and did not seek reelection. Soon after leaving the White House, he died at age As a boy, Polk, the eldest of 10 children, moved with his family to Columbia, Tennesseewhere his father became a prosperous land surveyor, planter and businessman.
The younger Polk was often sick as a child, and as a teen he survived a major operation for urinary stones. The surgery was done before the advent of modern antiseptics and anesthesia; Polk was reportedly given some brandy as a sedative. A top student, Polk graduated from the University of North Carolina in and studied law under a leading Nashville attorney.
He was admitted to the bar in and opened a law practice in Columbia. He entered politics inwhen he was elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives. InPolk married Sarah Childressa well-educated Tennessean and devout Presbyterian from a wealthy family. As first lady, she was a charming and popular hostess, although she banned hard liquor from the White House and eschewed dancing, the theater and horse races.
James K. Polk – 11th President of the United States
InTennessee voters elected James Polk to the U. House of Representatives, where he would serve seven terms and act as speaker of the House from to Polk left Congress in to become governor of Tennessee. He ran for reelection in and lost; another run for the governorship in also ended in defeat. George Dallasa U. In the general election, Polk ran against U. He narrowly won the presidency with At age 49, James Polk was younger than any previous president when he entered the White House.James K.
Polk was the 11 th President of the US, serving from to His predecessor was John Tyler. He accomplished all the goals he set out to achieve during his first term in office and did not contest for reelection.Worst 10 American Presidents
He was sickly during his formative years and underwent surgery for urinary stones as a teenager without anesthesia. Polk went on to study law at of North Carolina and graduated in with honors. Polk went back to Tennessee filled with ambition and took up legal training under Felix Grundy, who was an acclaimed trial attorney.
He set up his law practice firm and enjoyed a successful professional career. He took interest in politics and, at the age of 27, won a legislative seat in the Tennessee. It was during this time that he met Sarah Childress and was entranced by her intellect and grace.
Inat the age of 29, Polk won his seat in the Congress. The programs he attempted to institute during his tenure did not get approved by the legislature and he lost his reelection in Polk had hoped for the Vice Presidential slot when the Democrat delegates met at the convention. Martin had lost popularity after losing the Presidential Elections in and also because he was opposed to the annexation of Texas. None of the two contenders garnered sufficient support from the delegates.
The convention arrived at a deadlock, and James K. Polk had ambitious objectives to expand the US aggressively to the west and create one large nation. Polk pursued the annexation of Texas, and it became the 28th state. England gave up its claim in Attention shifted to New Mexico and California.
Polk had delivered on his promise of the US expansion. An independent treasury for federal funds was established. Polk expanded the US territory successfully as he had promised but prompted the North and South further into the division. Polk was a slaveholder himself and his administration failed to address the issue of slavery which continued to haunt the Presidency even after he was gone.
He died three months after leaving office from cholera leaving his wife with instructions that their slaves were to be freed after her death. His successor was Zachary Taylor.In the eleventh in a series on American presidents, the life and career of James Polk was discussed. Seale talked about President Polk and the… read more.
Seale talked about President Polk and the events of his presidency, including the acquisition of Oregon and Texas, his dark horse candidacy, and the Mexican War. Various rooms of the house and the exterior were shown throughout the program.
A fifth grade student was interviewed about President Polkin honor of whom her school was named. In the ninth in a series on American presidents, the life and career of William Henry Harrison was discussed. In the eighth in a series on American presidents, participants discussed the life and career of Martin Van Buren as….
Robert Remini discussed…. In the eighteenth in a series on American presidents, the life and career of Ulysses S. Grant were discussed. Simon and…. A fifth grade student was interviewed about President Polk, in honor of whom her school was named. Polk Ancestral Home James K. More information about Life Portrait of James K. Request Download.
Error requesting format availability. Your request has been submitted. There was an error processing your purchase. July 12, Life Portrait of Ulysses S. Grant In the eighteenth in a series on American presidents, the life and career of Ulysses S. May 28, User Clip: Polk's Cabinet daguerreotype. May 28, User Clip: Sarah Polk's concern for her husband's health.Post a Comment.
Click on photos to enlarge. Tuesday, November 3, James K. Polk Portraits. James K. Read that line carefully; don't be confused; he was not the second President of the United States, but the eleventh man to hold that office. Polk was born on November 2, Yesterday would have been his th birthday Actually, he died just days after leaving office in March of Ironically, just four years before, when he took office, he was in robust health.
The job of President took a devastating toll on him physicallly. Healy, painted insome twelve years after Polk died, is pleasantly dignified, in the long tradition of Healy presidential portraits, giving little indication any weakness or ill health. Polk,Matthew Brady photograph restored James K.
Polk,Miner Kellogg, National Portrait Gallery Polk's National Portrait Gallery painting by Miner Kellogg leftwas done ina full four years before Polk became president, yet he appears older than in Healy's posthumous portrait. This weath-ering away is all the more noticeable when we compare most of the portraits of Polk, which tend to be fairly flattering, to the photo of the president made in by the famed Civil War photographer, Matthew Brady above. Given the date, it would appear to be shortly before Polk died.
It goes without saying that Healy would have presented the former President in a posthumous portrait at his best. And Kellogg's earlier, dour, version can largely be chalked up to simple ineptitude.
However the important thing to keep in mind is that virtually all of the subsequent portraits of James K.
Polk were based in part or in whole on either Healy's or Brady's images. What really adds an extra element to this discourse is that Healy had earlier painted a portrait of Polk belowpresumably from life, about the same time as Brady's photo. The variation between the two says quite a lot about Healy's ability to capture an honest likeness while at the same time discreetly flattering his subject. Polk, George P. Healy Brady's photograph of Polk was only the second of a president taken while still in office Polk's predecessor, John Tyler was the first.
And inasmuch as Polk died so soon after entering retirement, only George Healy discounting Kellogg's feeble attempt seems to have been the only artist to have painted Polk from life. Historians for several generations tended to minimize Polk's presidency as merely a compromise between the political forces of the North and the South during the tenuous years before the Civil War. He was not a favorite for posthumous portraits. In more recent years, Polk biographers have sized up the magnitude of his achievements and his legacy.
Truman summarized this view by saying that Polk was " Said what he intended to do and did it.Hi there! Sign in Create an account Buy images Sell images. Share Alamy images with your team and customers.
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James K. Polk
Create a lightbox Your Lightboxes will appear here when you have created some. Save to lightbox. Hand-colored woodcut President James K Polk portrait. Polk American politician.
Portrait by George Peter A. Polk, half-length portrait, seated, facing right. Between and President James K. Polk, 11th U. President James K.
POLK Photographed by Mathew Brady. President James K Polk He previously served as the 13th Speaker of the House of Representatives and as Governor of Tennessee.
Antique c engraving, James K. Currier, James K. Detail from a larger painting, HPAA James K Polk. Polk at his desk. Hand-colored steel engraving President James K. Polk President James K. Polk James K.