Introduction - Millard FillmoreThe sudden death of President Zachary Taylor in July of 1850 resulted in his vice-president Millard Fillmore becoming the 13th President of the United States. Unlike most of the presidents before him, Fillmore had not been born into wealth and privilege. In fact he was born in a log cabin on the frontier in upstate New York. He had to struggle to get an education; eventually learning to become a lawyer and opened a very successful law practice. With the death of President Taylor he rose to the highest office in the United States. This is truly a remarkable success story; however his presidency would not be remarkable and he makes most historians worst U.S. Presidents list. Just why he is considered one of the worst U.S. Presidents can be found in the list of interesting facts below written for both adults and kids.
Click here for a great selection of Amazon.com books about Millard Fillmore.
Millard Fillmore Quick Facts
- He was born January 7th of 1800 in in the town of Summerhill in upstate New York.
- He married Abigail Powers on February 5th of 1826; they had two children together.
- Millard Fillmore was the 13th President of the United States of America.
- Millard Fillmore's term as U.S. President was from July 9th of 1850 to March 4th of 1853.
- He was a member of the Whig Party.
- He died March 8th of 1874 in Buffalo New York from the effects of a stroke.
Millard Fillmore Pre-Presidency Political Career Facts
- In 1819 he began to study law.
- In 1823 was admitted to the bar (became a lawyer) and began his own law practice.
- In 1828, Fillmore was elected to the New York State Assembly.
- Millard Fillmore was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1832 and served up until 1835 and again from 1837 to 1843.
- He was the first New York State Comptroller serving from 1848 to 1849.
- In 1848 Fillmore was nominated as the Vice Presidential candidate for the Whig Party with the war hero Zachary Taylor as the candidate for President. They would win the election.
Millard Fillmore Interesting Facts
- Fillmore is most criticized for his part in pushing through the Compromise of 1850. This was a package of 5 bills (laws) that dealt with slavery in the territories obtained by the United States after the Mexican-American War. There was heated debate as to whether new states carved out of these territories would be admitted to the Union as free states or slave states. Fillmore is criticized for not making a stronger stand against slavery. The Compromise did little to ease tensions that would a few years later lead to the American Civil War.
- He was the last U.S. president not to be a member of either the Democratic or Republican parties. He was a member of the Whig party.
- One of his famous quotes is "An honorable defeat is better than a dishonorable victory."
- The state of California entered the Union in 1850 during Fillmore's presidency.
- In 1852 he sought but did not obtain the nomination of the Whig party for a second term as president.
- Millard Fillmore sent the famous Perry Expedition to Japan. This U.S. naval expedition resulted in the United States having diplomatic relations with Japan and the opening of international trade with the Japanese which had been sought after by American merchants.
- In 1856 Millard Fillmore ran for U.S. President as the American Party candidate; seeking a second nonconsecutive term. He badly lost the election which James Buchanan won.