James Buchanan

JamesBuchanan was born on April 23, 1791, near Merseburg, PA. He died on June 1, 1868, near Lancaster. He was the famous American statesman, the fifteenth President of the United States (1857-1861), the Democratic Party. Through compromises and concessions to the slave South was trying to prevent a civil war.

Coming from a family of Irish immigrants, James Buchanan received his legal education from 1812 to practice law. Political career started in the ranks of the Federalist Party, after its collapse in the mid-1820s. Became a Democrat. He was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Pennsylvania (1814-1816) and the U.S. House of Representatives (1821-1831). Was U.S. ambassador to Russia (1831-1833), contributed to the conclusion of 6 (18) December 1832 trade agreement between the U.S. and Russia.

Back home, elected U.S. Senator (1834-1845). Under President James Polk served as Secretary of State (1845-1849). In 1846 signed an agreement with Britain to establish the border between the U.S. and British possessions in North America on the 49th parallel west of the Rocky Mountains. Thus was brought an end to decades territorial dispute between the two countries the ownership of Oregon. The contract was wearing a compromise: the most militant American policy sought to establish the boundaries farther north.


Condemning slavery on grounds of moral order, James Buchanan advocate of the Constitution, which allowed slavery. He tried to enlist the support of the South, and in many ways acted in their best interests. As Secretary of State Buchanan was one of the organizers of the aggressive US-Mexican War, 1846-1846. In 1846 he spoke out against the “terms of Wilmot” – legislative amendment to prohibit slavery in the territories, whose incorporation into the United States was expected at the end of the Mexican-American War. In 1848 unsuccessfully sought nomination for the presidency of the Democratic Party, after which time away from politics. In 1853-1856 he held the post of U.S. ambassador to the UK and took part in the preparation manifesto (1854) – a secret plan to annex Cuba, which would lead to the emergence of the U.S. as part of another slave state.

With the support of the South, James Buchanan made his candidature for the presidency of the Democratic Party and won the presidential election in 1856, John C. Fremont. As president of the abolitionists hindered, to enforce the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, which provides for prosecution of slaves in free states, to support the supporters of slavery in Kansas. Overall James Buchanan toward slavery held indecisive position unsuccessfully pursued a policy of “appeasement” of the South, which contributed to the deepening political crisis in the U.S. has led to a split in the Democratic Party.

In 1860, Buchanan lost the presidential election of Abraham Lincoln. In recent months in Buchanan in office in the southern states began the process of secession – to secede from the United States. The President condemned the Department of South Carolina, ordered garrisons federal forts in the South to resist the rebels sent reinforcements to Fort Sumter, which was attacked by the southerners. Publicly, he admitted that he saw no way to stop the disintegration of the country. James Buchanan was the only U.S. president who has never been married.