Introduction - Chester A. ArthurChester A. Arthur became U.S President upon the death of President Garfield from an assassin's bullet in September of 1881. This Republican president is considered by many historians to have performed adequately as president. On this page is a list of interesting facts about Chester A. Arthur including where he was born, when he became president, and what some of his accomplishments were. This information is written for both kids and adults.
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Chester A. Arthur Quick Facts
- He was born October 5, 1829, in Fairfield, Vermont.
- Chester Alan Arthur was the 21st President of the United States of America.
- He served as U.S. President from September 19, 1881 to March 4, 1885.
- He died on November 18th of 1886 after suffering from a cerebral hemorrhage the previous day.
Chester A. Arthur Early Years Facts
- Chester A. Arthur was born in Fairfield, Vermont on October 5th of 1829.
- As a boy his family moved several times to towns in Vermont and in upstate New York, finally settling in the Schenectady, New York area.
- In 1845 he attended Union College, in Schenectady, New York where he was the president of the debate society.
- During Arthur's breaks from college he taught school in Schaghticoke, New York.
- Upon graduating from college he became a full-time teacher in Schaghticoke, New York. He later took a teaching job in North Pownal, Vermont.
- In 1852 he became the principal of a school in Cohoes, New York.
- In 1853 he joined a law firm in New York City after studying law at State and National Law School in Ballston Spa, New York.
- In 1854 he was admitted to the bar and the law firm for which he was working eventually was renamed Culver, Parker, and Arthur. He went on to start his own law firm.
- He married Ellen Lewis Herndon in 1859. She developed pneumonia and died on January 12, 1880; before her husband became President of the United States.
- During the American Civil War Arthur served in the New York state militia where he rose to quartermaster general. He became active in, and was very successful in, recruiting additional soldiers for the Union Army.
- After the American Civil War Chester A. Arthur became very active in Republican Party Politics. He attended Abraham Lincoln's second presidential inauguration in 1865 and was instrumental in raising funds for Ulysses S. Grant's presidential election in 1868.
- At the 1880 Republican National Convention James A. Garfield was selected as the Republican Presidential nominee; Garfield selected Chester A. Arthur as his vice presidential running mate.
- In a close election Garfield defeated the Democratic nominee, General Winfield Scott Hancock. Arthur was sworn in as the 24th Vice President of the United States on March 4th of 1881.
- On July 2nd of 1881 President Garfield was shot by a deranged man in Washington, D.C.; his assassin was Charles Guiteau. Guiteau shouted "Arthur will be President!" bringing about suspicion that Vice President Arthur was involved in planning the shooting; this was proven false.
- Garfield lingered near death for two months after being shot, during which there was a sort of void in the executive branch of the United States. Garfield was too weak to command but Arthur was not willing to exercise presidential authority with Garfield still alive.
- Garfield died on September 19th of 1881 and Chester A. Arthur was sworn in as the 21st President of the United States of America.
U.S. President Chester A. Arthur Facts
- He signed the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act into law which created the Civil Service Commission. This law required that people be hired for government jobs based on their ability and not based on political connections. This angered many of his supporters.
- Arthur pushed for modernization of the U.S. Navy. He supported the creation of a fleet of steam-powered ships with steel cladding.
- As president he pushed for lower tariffs and for the simplification of the tariff structure.
- Chester A. Arthur signed into law the Edmunds Act which made polygamy a federal crime.