Wednesday, February 04, 2004

James Madison

James Madison This is a good biography of President James Madison. It is from USA Presidents.

From the site:

James Madison ( March 16 , 1751 - June 28 , 1836 ) was the fourth ( 1809 - 1817 ) President of the United States . He was co-author, with John Jay and Alexander Hamilton , of the Federalist Papers , and is viewed by some as the "Father of the United States Constitution ."

Madison was born in King George County, Virginia . His parents Colonel James Madison, Sr ( March 27 , 1723 - February 27 , 1801 ) and Eleanor Rose "Nellie" Conway ( January 9 , 1731 - February 11 , 1829 ) were the prosperous owners of the tobacco plantation in Orange County, Virginia where James spent most of his childhood years. In 1769, James left the plantation to attend Princeton University (it was called the College of New Jersey at the time), finishing its four-year course in two years, but exhausting himself from overwork in the process. When he regained his health, he became a protegé of Thomas Jefferson . In this capacity he became a prominent figure in Virginia state politics, helping to draft their declaration of religious freedom and persuading Virginia to give their northwestern territories (consisting of most of modern-day Ohio , Kentucky and Tennessee ) to the continental congress.

In the 1780s , Madison helped convince the political leaders of the time to call for a constitutional convention. Madison's influence at the convention in 1787 has led some historians to call him the "Father of the Constitution". His notes on the convention became the basis for his contributions to the Federalist Papers , which are considered the definitive contemporary commentary on the Constitution of the USA. Madison's arguments were powerfully influenced by the political thought of Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu .

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