|Cause of Death||Age||Burial Location||President Grave #|
|Stomach inflammation||64||Concord, New Hampshire||18th in my collection|
*** Interesting Facts ***
* When the Mexican-American War broke out in 1846, Franklin Pierce chose to enlist in the army. Declaring himself a private, Pierce gathered volunteers and marched south. Despite the fact that he was a lawyer with no military experience whatsoever, he was soon promoted to colonel, then later brigadier general. This was not a wise move though, as Pierce was not cut out to lead men into battle. Many viewed him as a coward, as he fainted countless times during confrontations. This left his men without a clear leader, which resulted many of them deserting.
* In January of 1853, Pierce and his family boarded a train in Boston, Massachusetts. Shortly after, in Andover, their train car was derailed and traveled down a nearby embankment before coming to an abrupt stop. Everyone onboard survived, with the exception of Bennie Pierce, the president-elect’s son. This event sent the president’s fragile wife into a downward spiral. Thinking that it was a punishment from God, Jane Pierce spent much of her husband’s term upstairs and out of site of visitors. She left hostess duties to her close friend Varina Davis, the wife of Jefferson Davis, Pierce's secretary of war.
* Once a member of the House of Representatives and the Senate, Franklin Pierce was what was known as a doughface (someone from the North who sympathized with the South). A dark horse candidate in 1852, Pierce was dubbed "Young Hickory of the Granite Hills", and he won the election. By the time 1856 rolled around however, the America wanted a new president. Unhappy with the way Pierce had handled the violence that resulted from the Kansas-Nebraska act, his own party came up with the slogan, "Anybody but Pierce,". The president was not re-nominated, and, in 1857, he went home to New Hampshire.
* Even back in the day, it was common knowledge that Pierce drank heavily. Frequently depressed, he began to drink excessively during his time in the Senate. His drinking increased after the train accident that killed his last surviving son, Bennie, and it grew worse after his wife, Jane, passed away in 1863. Having lost the Democratic nomination for the 1856 election, the politician stated, "There's nothing left... but to get drunk." His drinking habits caught up with him in the end, though, and Pierce died on October 8, 1869.
First Lady: Jane Appleton Pierce
- Spouse: Jane Appleton Pierce (m. 1834-1863)
Political Party: Democratic Party
Vice President: William Rufus DeVane King (1853)
Last Words: Unknown