James Madison (1801–1809)
James Madison was born in Port Conway, Virginia, on March 16, 1751, and graduated from Princeton University. Madison entered public service as a member of the Orange County Committee of Public Safety in 1775. By 1776, he was a member of the First Virginia General Assembly and a delegate at the Virginia Convention, earning a unanimous election two years later to Virginia's executive council (1778). He established himself as a national political figure with two stays in the Continental Congress (1780-1783 and 1787-1788), as a delegate to the federal Constitutional Convention in 1787 -- authoriing much of the Constitution and its Bill of Rights (1788) -- and with his contributions to the Federalist Papers. Madison subsequently won four consecutive elections to the United States Congress, serving from 1789 to 1797. Returning to Virginia the following year, he wrote the Virginia Resolutions in 1798 and sat for one year in his second stint with the Virginia Assembly (1799).In 1801, President Thomas Jefferson appointed Madison secretary of state, in which capacity he served until the end of Jefferson's administration in 1809. Elected President in 1808, Madison took office in 1809 and, after his reelection in 1812, served until 1817.
Following his presidency, Madison retired to his home in Virginia, returning to public service for only one more year as a delegate to the Virginia constitutional convention in 1829. A rector of the University of Virginia and a visitor to the College of William and Mary in his final years, Madison died at his Montpelier estate in Orange County, Virginia, on June 28, 1836.