|Cause of Death||Age||Burial Location||President Grave #|
|Asthmatic suffocation||79||Kinderhook, New York||5th in my collection|
* Van Buren had a very impressive political résumé. Van Buren was New York's attorney general from 1815 to 1819, in addition to being the chairman of the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary. He had served as a U.S. senator for almost eight years, and had briefly been the governor of New York before becoming Andrew Jackson's secretary of state, which helped him become vice president four years later. Van Buren took the place of John C. Calhoun, who resigned his position to join the Senate. Then, of course, he succeeded Andrew Jackson as president just a few years later.
* Though the crisis was not his fault, President Van Buren was blamed for the Panic of 1837, which devastated the United States' economy. It turned out that Andrew Jackson, in destroying the Second Bank of the United States, also caused the weakening of America's economy. While he was president, Jackson had federal funds taken from the Second Bank of the United States and transferred to state banks, who then made "many unwise loans," which caused large scale inflation. Jackson also issued the Specie Circular, which forbade the purchase of government land with paper money. This was meant to bring inflation back down. However, there was now too much of a demand for specie (coins made of gold and silver), and the banks did not have enough to supply people with. Jackson's administration escaped unscathed, but it all hit the fan when Van Buren took office. Several banks in New York halted exchanging paper currency for specie, which made it more difficult to get loans. Because they had no loans and bad credit, people stopped purchasing land, and the price for land plummeted. As a result, almost 1,000 banks failed around the United States. In the end, despite the fact that he did not start the disaster, it ended up costing Van Buren the election of 1840.
* Although he did not originate it, Martin Van Buren popularized the term "O.K.". In the late 1830s, a strange wordplay craze swept the nation. For fun, people would use initials of words to create acronyms. In many cases, the words that were used were purposely misspelled. For instance, "Oll Wright", derived from "all right", was "O.W.". A similar term was "Oll Korrect", or "O.K.". In 1840, "O.K." became a campaign slogan for President Van Buren, who was frequently called "Old Kinderhook" because of his hometown of Kinderhook, New York. The use of the term "O.K." was spread by the president's political supporters, who held O.K. galas and attached the acronym to other events and clubs. Though many felt that Van Buren was "O.K.", most Americans voted for William Harrison that November. So, it turns out that one of the most widely-used expressions of all-time owes its popularity to the failed campaign of one of the United States' most forgotten presidents.
First Lady: Angelica Singleton Van Buren
- Spouse: Hannah Hoes Van Buren (m. 1807-1819)
Political Party: Democratic Party
Free Soil Party
Vice President: Richard Mentor Johnson
Last Words: "There is but one reliance."