Saturday, September 04, 2004

200 Candles and a Postage Stamp

200 Candles and a Postage Stamp. This site tells about President Polk's childhood and family life.

From the site:

November 2 is the 200th anniversary of the birth of James K. Polk, 11th president of the United States and one of three Tennesseans to become the nation's chief executive. UT Knoxville is home to a treasure trove of historical information about Polk -- the James K. Polk Presidential Papers Project. The documents in the collection tell a far more interesting story than the textbook accounts we've all read about Polk, who lived in Columbia, Tennessee, and served as president from 1845 to 1849. As the papers are collected, annotated, and published, a rich backdrop emerges of the times and the people who knew Polk. Little known details are revealed about him and his family.

Dr. Wayne Cutler, who's in charge of the project, has worked on Polk's papers for 20 years and talks about the former president like an old friend. Cutler can speak at length about "James K.," and does so in the present, not the past tense.

As Cutler has studied letters that Polk received after being elected president, the Polk family history has come into clearer focus.

"When Polk became president, lots of people wrote him about his genealogy, so we're getting some new leads on when his family came over from Ireland and with whom."

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