PRESIDENTS OP THE tUNITED STATES.
rest for the fortune of our political bark."
But Mr. Madison declined to be a candidate.
His term in Congress had expired,
and he returned from New York to his
beautiful retreat at Montpelier.
In 1794 Mr. Madison married a young
widow of remarkable powers of fascination
-Mrs. Todd. Her maiden name was Dorothy
Paine. She was born in 1767, in Virginia,
of Quaker parents, and had been
educated in the strictest rules of that sect.
When but eighteen years of age she married
a young lawyer and moved to Philadelphia,
where she was introduced to brilliant scenes
of fashionable life. She speedily laid aside
the dress and address of the Quakeress, and
became one of the most fascinating ladies
of the republican court. In New York,
after the death of her husband, she was the
belle of the season and was surrounded with
admirers. Mr. Madison won the prize.
She proved an invaluable helpmate. In
Washington she was the life of society.
If there was any diffident, timid young
girl just making her appearance, she
found in Mrs. Madison an encouraging
During the stormy administration of John
Adams Madison remained in private life,
but was the author of the celebrated " Resolutions
of 1798," adopted by the Virginia
Legislature, in condemnation of the Alien
and Sedition laws, as well as of the " report"
in which he defended those resolutions,
which is, by many, considered his ablest
The storm passed away; the Alien and
Sedition laws were repealed, John Adams
lost his re-election, and in I80o Thomas Jefferson
was chosen President. The great reaction
in public sentiment which seated
Jefferson in the presidential chair was largely
owing to the writings of Madison, who
was consequently well entitled to the post
of Secretary of State. With great ability
he discharged the duties of this responsible
office during the eight years of Mr. Jeffer.
As Mr. Jefferson was a widower, and
neither of his daughters could be often with
him, Mrs. Madison usually presided over
the festivities of the White House; and as
her husband succeeded Mr. Jefferson, holding
his office for two terms, this remarkable
woman was the mistress of the presidential
mansion for sixteen years.
Mr. Madison being entirely engrossed by
the cares of his office, all the duties of social
life devolved upon his accomplished
wife. Never were such responsibilities
more ably discharged. The most bitter
foes of her husband and of the administration
were received with the frankly proffered
hand and the cordial smile of welcome;
and the influence of this gentle
woman in allaying the bitterness of party
rancor became a great and salutary power
in the nation.
As the term of Mr. Jefferson's Presidency
drew near its close, party strife was roused
to the utmost to elect his successor. It was
a death-grapple between the two great
parties, the Federal and Republican. Mr.
Madison was chosen President by an elec.
toral vote of 122 to 53, and was inaugurated
March 4, 1809, at a critical period, when
the relations of the United States with Great
Britain were becoming embittered, and his
first term was passed in diplomatic quarrels,
aggravated by the act of non-intercourse of
May, 18io, and finally resulting in a declaration
On the i8th of June, 1812, President
Madison gave his approval to an act of
Congress declaring war against Great Britain.
Notwithstanding the bitter hostility
of the Federal party to the war, the country
in general approved; and in the autumn
Madison was re-elected to the Presidency
by I28 electoral votes to 89 in favor of
March 4, I817, Madison yielded the Presi.
Lewis Publishing Company. Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County, Texas.. Chicago, Illinois. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth20932/. Accessed May 29, 2015.