Click here for a great selection of Amazon.com books about President William McKinley.
William McKinley Quick Facts
- The seventh of nine children, William McKinley was born in Niles, Ohio on January 29, 1843.
- He was the 25th President of the United States of America; first taking office in 1897 and re-elected on November 6th of 1900.
- He is one of four U.S. Presidents to be assassinated. Shot on September 6th of 1901 and dying from his wounds eight days later on September 14th.
- He served as U.S. President from March 4th of 1897 until his death on September 14th of 1901.
- He was a member of the Republican Party.
- His Vice Presidents were Garret Hobart, from 1897 through 1899, and starting in 1901 Theodore (Teddy) Roosevelt who was sworn in as the 26th U.S. President on September 14th of 1901 when McKinley died.
Facts about William McKinley before Becoming President
- On January 25th of 1871 he married Ida Saxton McKinley. Sadly, by the time she moved into the White House, she was an invalid suffering from epileptic seizures.
- William McKinley served in the Civil War for four years as a Union Army soldier. He participated in several battles including the bloodiest one day battle of the war, the Battle of Antietam.
- Before becoming involved in politics, McKinley attended Albany Law School, was admitted to the bar and opened his own law practice.
- In 1876 he was elected to Congress and spent nearly 14 years as a congressman. In 1889, he was named Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee. Unpopular among many voters for raising consumer prices, the McKinley Tariff of 1890 was passed the following year.
- McKinley served two terms as Governor of Ohio and became known for his far reaching tax reform. He was elected in 1891 and again in 1893.
William McKinley Presidential Facts
- An interesting fact is that when McKinley was sworn into office on March 4th, 1897, the inaugural procession was filmed, making him the first President ever to appear on film.
- During his presidency the U.S. experienced great economic growth and prosperity.
- He was re-elected as U.S. President on November 6th of 1900 easily beating Democrat William Jennings who he also beat four years earlier in his first presidential election.
- In one of his most important accomplishments as President, McKinley fought to raise tariffs through the Dingley Act of 1897. The tariff increased taxes on some imported items from between 52 and 57 percent. With higher taxes on foreign products, domestic business and industries were better protected.
- McKinley's favorable Presidential legacy is due, in large part, to his foreign policy accomplishments. As part of a peace treaty in the 1898 Spanish-American War, the U.S. gained control of Puerto Rico, Cuba, Guam and the Philippines. In 1898, McKinley secured Hawaii a U.S. Territory. In 1900, McKinley pressed for an Open Door policy with China which allowed equal trade opportunities to all western nations, helping to secure the United States position as a world power.
William McKinley Assassination Facts
- President McKinley was shot twice on September 6, 1901 inside the Temple of Music at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York.
- Leon Czolgosz, a twenty-eight year old self-proclaimed anarchist, waited patiently for his turn to shake hands with the president. When his turn came, he pushed McKinley's hand aside and instead, shot him.
- After being shot twice, McKinley saw a crowd of angry people beating Czolgosz into submission, and in an act of compassion for his assassin, told his aides, "Don't let them hurt him".
- William McKinley died on September 14th, eight days after the shooting, from gangrene caused by the bullet which remained inside him.
- After being tried for murder and found guilty, Czolgosz was sent to the electric chair on October 29, 1901.
- Vice President Theodore Roosevelt took the Oath of office on September 14th, the day of McKinley's death.