James Buchanan

US President

1791 – 1868


Who was James Buchanan?

James Buchanan, Jr. was the 15th President of the United States, serving immediately prior to the American Civil War. He is, to date, the only president from Pennsylvania and the only president to remain a lifelong bachelor.

He represented Pennsylvania in the United States House of Representatives and later the Senate and served as Minister to Russia under President Andrew Jackson. He was also Secretary of State under President James K. Polk. After he turned down an offer for an appointment to the Supreme Court, President Franklin Pierce appointed him minister to the Court of St. James's, in which capacity he helped draft the Ostend Manifesto.

Buchanan was nominated by the Democratic Party in the 1856 Presidential election. Throughout most of Pierce's term, he was stationed in London as a minister to the Court of St. James's and therefore was not caught up in the crossfire of sectional politics that dominated the country. His subsequent election victory took place in a three-man race with John C. Frémont and Millard Fillmore. As President, he was often called a "doughface", a Northerner with Southern sympathies, who battled with Stephen A.

Famous Quotes:

  • But be this as it may, it is the imperative and indispensable duty of the Government of the United States to secure to every resident inhabitant the free and independent expression of his opinion by his vote.
  • What a happy conception, then, was it for Congress to apply this simple rule, that the will of the majority shall govern...
  • Public virtue is the vital spirit of republics, and history proves that when this has decayed and the love of money has usurped its place, although the forms of free government may remain for a season, the substance has departed forever.
  • ...slavery in the states is beyond the reach of any human power except that of the respective states...


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Apr 23, 1791
Cove Gap
Also known as
  • Бьюкенен, Джеймс
  • Presbyterianism
  • Scotch-Irish American
  • United States of America
  • Dickinson College
    ( - 1809)
  • President, Federal government of the United States
    (1857/03/04 - 1861/03/04)
Lived in
  • Pennsylvania
  • Lancaster
Jun 1, 1868
Resting place
Woodward Hill Cemetery

on July 23, 2013