Zachary Taylor by Will Largin
Taylor was a career officer in the United States Army, rising to the rank of major general
His success in the Second Seminole War attracted national attention and earned him the nickname "Old Rough and Ready". He became a national hero, and political clubs sprang up to draw him into the upcoming 1848 presidential election.
Zachary Taylor was a part of the Whig Party.
Taylor's status as a national hero as a result of his victories in the Mexican-American War won him election to the White House despite his vague political beliefs. His top priority as president was preserving the Union, but he died seventeen months into his term, before making any progress on the status of slavery, which had been inflaming tensions in Congress.
Effects of his Administration
sectional debate over slavery and its expansion into the country’s new western territories. In February 1850, after some incensed southern leaders threatened secession, Taylor angrily informed them that he personally would lead the army if it became necessary in order to enforce federal laws and preserve the Union.
Good or Bad President
Zachary Taylor was an ok president. He was probably the least politically aware man to occupy the White House in American history.
Taylor said it would be best to let the people themselves decide if New Mexico would be a slave or free state. Taylor's opponents described these proposals as his "no action plan."
Things to learn about Taylor
Taylor sent a large portion of his army to join Winfield Scott's men in taking Veracruz. Taylor achieved a tremendous victory at the Battle of Buena Vista, defeating a much larger Mexican army. Taylor did not support the expansion of slavery into western territories.
- I have always done my duty. I am ready to die. My only regret is for the friends I leave behind me.
- It would be judicious to act with magnanimity towards a prostrate foe.
- I have no private purpose to accomplish, no party objectives to build up, no enemies to punish nothing to serve but my country.