Franklin Pierce (1804 – 1869) [cite this] More images » Life in Brief: Franklin Pierce, the 14th President of the United States, came to office during a period of growing tension between the North and South. A politician of limited ability, Pierce was behind one of the most crucial pieces of legislation in American hist… more life in brief » Essays about Franklin Pierce Life in Brief Life in Brief: Franklin Pierce, the 14th President of the United States, came to office during a period of growing tension between the North and South. A politician of limited ability, Pierce was behind one of the most crucial pieces of legislation in American history. Although he did not author the Kansas-Neb… Life Before the Presidency Life Before the Presidency: Born on November 23, 1804, Franklin Pierce, though by no means wealthy, had more advantages than most young boys in rural New Hampshire. His father, Benjamin Pierce, had led the local militia to victories in the American Revolution, and as a result, he enjoyed a status in the area of Hillsborough th… Campaigns and Elections Campaigns and Elections: The Campaign and Election of 1852: In preparing for the 1852 presidential election, the Democratic Party confronted a dilemma. Every leading Democratic presidential candidate—James Buchanan, Lewis Cass, William Marcy, and Stephen A. Douglas—faced strong opposition from one faction of the party …Domestic Affairs Domestic Affairs: The bitter, windy March cold that settled over Washington, D.C., on inauguration day seemed fitting for Franklin Pierce, who mourned the tragic loss of his son two months earlier. Using his renowned oratorical skills, the new President delivered his twenty minute speech without notes. "It is a …Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs: Like several of his predecessors, Franklin Pierce found foreign policy a welcome change from the domestic conflicts over slavery. Unfortunately, his lack of leadership and his tendency to give in to pressure groups hampered his effectiveness in the foreign arena. Even though the Mexican War had ende…Life After the Presidency Life After the Presidency: Pierce settled in New Hampshire after his presidency. When the Civil War erupted, Pierce voiced support for the northern cause, as did many doughfaces—that is, northern men with southern principles. A loyal Democrat, Pierce did not support the new president, Abraham Lincoln. In fact, Pierce public…Family Life Family Life: Jane Pierce was a deeply religious woman, born into the Congregationalist church, and her beliefs penetrated almost every aspect of the family's life. No meal took place without grace. Before his tragic death, her son, Benjamin Pierce, was sent to church every single morning and after his death,…The American Franchise The American Franchise: During the 1850s, America experienced a great influx of immigrants, mostly from Ireland and Germany. The campaign of 1852 was the first to acknowledge the foreign born as a political force. Winfield Scott boasted to Irish Catholic voters that his daughter had been schooled in a convent. His campaign…Impact and Legacy Impact and Legacy: It could be said that Franklin Pierce had little business being President, but in a nation fragmenting over slavery, only a bland, affable political lightweight was palatable to the electorate. Yet the irony of Franklin Pierce's administration is that a man less than qualified to be President wa… About His Administration First Lady Jane Pierce Vice President William R. D. King (1853) Secretary of State William L. Marcy (1853–1857) Secretary of the Interior Robert McClelland (1853–1857) Attorney General Caleb Cushing (1853–1857) Postmaster General James Campbell (1853–1857) Secretary of the Treasury James Guthrie (1853–1857) Secretary of the Navy James C. Dobbin (1853–1857) Secretary of War Jefferson Davis (1853–1857) Facts about Franklin Pierce Term: 14th President of the United States (1853 – 1857) Born: November 23, 1804, Hillsborough (now Hillsboro), New Hampshire Political Party: Democrat Died: October 08, 1869 Nickname: "Young Hickory of the Granite Hills" Education: Bowdoin College (graduated 1824) Religion: Episcopalian Marriage: November 19, 1834, to Jane Means Appleton (1806–1863) Children: Franklin (1836); Frank Robert (1839–1843); Benjamin (1841–1853) Career: Lawyer, Public Official Buried: Old North Cemetery, Concord, New Hampshire Franklin Pierce Image Gallery More images » I believe that involuntary servitude, as it exists in different States of this Confederacy, is recognized by the Constitution. March 4, 1853 Citation Information Consulting Editor Jean H. Baker Professor Baker is a professor of history at Goucher College. Her writings include: Sisters: The Lives of America’s Suffragists (Hill and Wang, 2005) James Buchanan (Times Life Books, 2004) The Civil War and Reconstruction (Co-authored with Michael F. Holt and David Herbert Donald, W.W. Norton, 2001) James Buchanan » « Millard Fillmore American President has changed! Click here to take a short survey and tell us what you think!