Here are some quick facts, opinions, quotes and other information on President Franklin Pierce:
Personal Information on Franklin Pierce:
- Fourteenth (1853 – 1857)
- Birthday: November 23, 1804 (Friday)
- Birthplace: Hillsborough, New Hampshire
- Birthplace Website: Franklin Pierce Lake, Hillsborough, New Hampshire
- Zodiac Sign: Sagittarius
- Date of Death: October 8, 1869 (Friday)
- Place of Death: Concord, New Hampshire
- Place of Burial: Old North Church, Concord, New Hampshire
- Cause of Death: Inflammation of the stomach, liver failure
- Age: 64 years old
- Length of Retirement: 4601 days
- Burial Website: Old North Cemetery, Concord, New Hampshire
Interesting Franklin Pierce facts:
- “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States,” is the Presidential oath that the President takes before he enters into his Presidency. Franklin Pierce is the only President to use “affirm” instead of “swear.” He is also the only President to not put his hand on the Bible when he was sworn in. Pierce placed his hand on a law book instead.
- Pierce was so unpopular when he left office that he had to hire a full time body guard. He was the first President who had to do that. He was also the first President born in the nineteenth century and the first President born in New Hampshire.
- Franklin Pierce is the only President who had his entire cabinet stay with him throughout his entire term. Not one of his cabinet members resigned nor were any replaced. Oddly enough, all were also unanimously confirmed. Pierce’s Vice President, Rufus King, wasn’t so lucky. King died 45 days into Pierce’s term and was not replaced. The 25th Amendment to the Constitution, started requiring a new Vice President to be installed on the death, resignation, or removal of a Vice President. That Amendment did not go into effect until 1967. Seven Vice Presidents: George Clinton (Madison’s first term), Elbridge Gerry (Madison’s second term), Henry Wilson (Grant), Thomas Hendricks (Cleveland), Garret Hobeart (McKinley), and James Sherman (Taft) are the other Vice Presidents who died while they were in office. Rufus King, Pierce’s Vice President, had the shortest tenure of the Vice Presidents who died in office.
My favorite Franklin Pierce Quotes:
Frequently the more trifling the subject, the more animated and protracted the discussion.
You have summoned me in my weakness. You must sustain me by your strength.
The storm of frenzy and faction must inevitably dash itself in vain against the unshaken rock of the Constitution.
With the Union my best and dearest earthly hopes are entwined.
I wish I could indulge higher hope for the future of our country, but the aspect of any vision is fearfully dark and I cannot make it otherwise.
Franklin Pierce blogs (click the title to go to that page):
Franklin Pierce page on Presidential Crossroads (click “Franklin Pierce” below):
Franklin Pierce Blogs:
Personal thoughts on Franklin Pierce:
Passion, Strong beliefs, Education, Vision of America as a world leader
Health, Stubborn at times, Alcohol
Presidential Greatness Scale (1-poor to 5-great): 1.0
David Holzel says on the website, Mental Floss, “like Jimmy Carter, Pierce was a better ex-president than president, if for no other reason than he no longer was in office.” That may pretty much sum up most people’s opinion of Franklin Pierce and his Presidency. I would have to agree that Pierce is not the model of what we want our Presidents to look like, although he was considered a “pretty boy” in his day. In the years before the North-South feud hits its peak, Pierce’s lack of action to calm things down, probably did more to help accelerate the Civil War than any other President. If your country is totally falling apart, shouldn’t you at least try to do something to keep it together? Pierce’s opinions seemed to side with the Southern States, even though he was a Northerner. Since, at the moment, the South seemed to have the upper hand on things, his doing nothing was basically an endorsement for the South. Sensing that, I believe the South probably “pushed” themselves and their ideas on the Northerners who were none too happy to hear or see them. Instead of trying to keep a balance, he let the scales tip. Sometimes when you don’t find a middle ground, disaster follows. The Civil War is proof of that.
Favorite Franklin Pierce book:
Franklin Pierce – Martyr for the Union by Peter A. Wallner
Favorite Franklin Pierce story:
The sad story of Pierce’s son’s train wreck on the way to his Presidential Inauguration
Most memorable Franklin Pierce memory:
When my grandson, Noah, had to write a report on Franklin Pierce for school
Favorite Franklin Pierce possession (see picture at the top):
Old, worn Franklin Pierce card