James Madison-4th President of the
"The Father of the Constitution".
2) James was the Fourth President of the United States. His term was from March 1809 to 1817. He is also the cousin of the 12th president, Zachary Taylor. He connects two ways to President George Washington: Edwin conway (James' first cousin twice removed) married Ann Ball (half sister) of Mary Ball Washington, Mother of President George Washington. Also: Colonel francis Thornton III (James' first cousin twice removed) married Francis Gregory, first cousin of President George Washington. Her mother Mildred Washington, is the sister of Augustine Washington. (Georges' Father.)
3) James Madison was born at Port Conway, Va. on March 16 1751. He later became the fourth President of the United States. However, Madison is also known as the great participator in the writing of the Constitution of the United States. Moreover, he is also known to be in the Orange County Committee of Safety during the American Revolution. Two years later, Madison was elected to the Virginia convention that voted for independence and that drafted a constitution for the new state. In the debates on the constitution he successfully changed a clause guaranteeing religious toleration into a general statement of "liberty of conscience for all." During 1778 and 1779 he served on the council of state under governors Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson.
Madison was elected to the Continental Congress
in December of 1779. He became a nationalist group that advocated a strong
central government. He was convinced that The Articles of Confederation,
the first constitution, was too weak and must, at least be modified. The
country could not bind the states together in the face of domestic and
foreign threats to the unity of the new nation. At the failed Annapolis
Convention, he rallied nearly all the states to attend the Constitutional
Convention that would meet the following year in Philadelphia.
At the Constitutional Convention, in 1787, Madison was a persuasive proponent of an independent federal court system, a strong executive, and a bicameral legislature with terms of differing length and representation according to population. He also articulated the premise that became an important base of American government: he argued that the wide variety of interests, or factions, in a large republic would tend to balance and counteract one another and that from this interaction the public interest would eventually emerge. To win the radification of the newly made Constitution, Madison contribution to a series of journals, called the Federalists Papers. At the Virginia ratifying convention (1788) he won a dramatic debate with Patrick Henry, one of the opponents of the proposed Constitution (known as the Anti-Federalists). Serving in the new House of Representatives from 1789, Madison sponsored the Bill of Rights and became one of the chief advisors of President George Washington in inaugurating the new government.
Despite the fact of the Embargo (which strengthened the Federalists for a short period of time), Madison won the election of 1809 easily. Under pressure from the newly elected "war hawks" in Congress, a group led by Henry Clay, John C. Calhoun, and Richard M. Johnson, Madison asked for and received a declaration of war on Britain in June 1812. Shortly after his election, the United States entered the War of 1812, mostly fighting near home in ships. The British ships, although better, were nearly always beaten by American ships despite the fact that America was short of civilians and military leaders. These setbacks encouraged the British to settle peacefully with the United States. However, Madison was not aware of such offers, and in this period, a panic occured. To further the gloom, a group of people met in Connecticut, in The Hartford Convention. In this manifestation of Federalist discontent, a group of prominent men, twenty-six in all, met in secrecy for three weeks - December 15 1814 to January 5 1815 - to discuss their grievances and to seek redress for their wrongs, especially "Madison's War". The Hartford Convention sent three envoys to Washington D.C. the next year (1816) to receive the glorious news of the end of the war.
The War of 1812, also called the Second War of Independence, was the point at which the United States was finally recognized, by the British as an independent country. Moreoever, the War of 1812 caused an upsurge of Nationalism during 1815-1824. This Era of Good Feeling, was a time period at which the country was essentially one. There was no real political faction; the country was in prosperity and the Americans had just won a war. Madison proposed wide-ranging domestic programs in December 1815: recharter of the Bank of the United States, a moderate tariff to protect young industries, creation of a national university, and federal support for roads and canals. Although Congress accepted only part of this program, the public acclaimed Madison upon his retirement, indicating its approval of his policies of "national republicanism."
Handing over the presidency to yet another member of the so-called Virginia dynasty, James Monroe, Madison retired to his Virginia estate, "Montpelier," in 1817. He subsequently helped Jefferson found the University of Virginia and served Monroe as a foreign policy advisor. He strongly resisted the nullification movement of 1830-33, denying that he and Jefferson had advocated nullification in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798, and extolled instead the benefits of union for the United States. Bedridden in the last years of his life, Madison died on June 28, 1836.
Interesting historical events during Madison's
1) Hans A.M. Weebers Genealogy
2) Information on the Madison & Cutts from the research of Deborah D. Stanley, entitled the Descedants of John Woodson.
3) The White House Web Page