James Madison


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Basic Information

James Madison was the fourth president of the United States and served from 1809 to 1817. He was the founder of the democratic - republican party. Unlike most presidents James Madison had two vice presidents. George Clinton was the first vice president but he died in office due to declining health problems and was succeeded by Elbridge Gerry.

Background Information

The first lady was Dolley Madison, they had only one child although he was not James Madison's son, John Payne Todd was the result of Dolley's previous marriage. Madison went to college at Princeton University. His father died in 1801 at the age of 50, he inherited a large plantation, and his father's 108 slaves.


At age twenty nine Madison became the youngest member of the continental congress.

After Jefferson became president madison became the secretary of state and was closely involved with the louisiana purchase.

Presidency (Successes)

Madison co-authored the Federalist papers and was instrumental in the drafting of the constitution and the bill of rights. He also renewed the charter for the bank of the united states to raise funds for the war of 1812. Madison signed Macon's bill no.2, which repealed the non-intercourse act that allowed French and English goods on American ships as long as the trade rights were respected.

Presidency (Failures)

Madison led he nation into the war of 1812 after the failure of the diplomatic protests and a trade embargo against Britain. The war began badly for the U.S., it was fought until it was clear that we had lost the war. The embargo act and the non- intercourse act were created and then abolished because they didn't create the intended effect against England and France's attacks on American shipping.