Martin Van Buren
8th President of the United States

(1837 - 1841)
Vice President: Richard M. Johnson

Mr. and Mrs. Martin Van Buren owned two tiger cubs.

President: Martin Van Buren

Wife: Hannah Hoes (1783-1819), on February 21, 1807

Kids: Abraham Van Buren (1807-73); John Van Buren (1810-66); Martin Van Buren (1812-55); Smith Thompson Van Buren (1817-76)

Pets: two tiger cubs

Bio: Martin Van Buren, (1782-1862), was the 8th President Of The United States. Born to a tavern keeper in Kinderhook, N.Y., on Dec. 5, 1782, he began to study law at 14, and was admitted to the bar at the young age of 21. In 1807, he married his distant cousin Hannah Hoes. Unfortunately she died young in 1819, after bearing four sons.

Van Buren's first political office was that of surrogate, which he held until election to the state senate in 1812. Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1821, where he earned the nickname "Little Van" because he was a short and plump man at only 5’6". Reelected to the Senate in 1827, Van Buren became the leader of an anti-Adams coalition, and supported the candidacy of Andrew Jackson. He was appointed to secretary of state in Jackson's cabinet, but in Jackson’s second term became his vice-president. The natural next step for him was the presidency in 1836.

As president, his challenges were mainly problems with the economy. Within weeks of his inauguration the Panic of 1837 struck, with disastrous results for the national economy and the revenues of the federal government. Many politicians were very unhappy with the way he handled the situation. In addition, he ignored the popular opinion that Texas should be annexed. He was defeated in the next election by the Whig party candidate, Harrison.

Not one to give up easily, Van Buren attempted to be nominated for the 1844 election, but Polk won out. After spending several years in Europe, Van Buren retired in 1855 to Lindenwald, his home in Kinderhook, where he died on July 24, 1862.

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