List of presidents of the United States

Summary

The president of the United States is the head of state and head of government of the United States,[1] indirectly elected to a four-year term by the American people through the Electoral College.[2] The office holder leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.[3]

Since the office was established in 1789, 45 people have served in 46 presidencies. The first president, George Washington, won a unanimous vote of the Electoral College;[4] one, Grover Cleveland, served two non-consecutive terms and is therefore counted as the 22nd and 24th president of the United States, giving rise to the discrepancy between the number of presidents and the number of persons who have served as president.[5]

The presidency of William Henry Harrison, who died 31 days after taking office in 1841, was the shortest in American history.[6] Franklin D. Roosevelt served the longest, over twelve years, before dying early in his fourth term in 1945. He is the only U.S. president to have served more than two terms.[7] Since the ratification of the Twenty-second Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1951, no person may be elected president more than twice, and no one who has served more than two years of a term to which someone else was elected may be elected more than once.[8]

Four presidents died in office of natural causes (William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Warren G. Harding, and Franklin D. Roosevelt), four were assassinated (Abraham Lincoln, James A. Garfield, William McKinley and John F. Kennedy), and one resigned (Richard Nixon, facing impeachment).[9] John Tyler was the first vice president to assume the presidency during a presidential term, and set the precedent that a vice president who does so becomes the fully functioning president with his presidency, as opposed to a caretaker president.[10] The Twenty-fifth Amendment to the Constitution put Tyler's precedent into law in 1967. It also established a mechanism by which an intra-term vacancy in the vice presidency could be filled.[11] Richard Nixon was the first president to fill a vacancy under this provision when he selected Gerald Ford for the office following Spiro Agnew's resignation in 1973. The following year, Ford became the second to do so when he chose Nelson Rockefeller to succeed him after he acceded to the presidency. As no mechanism existed for filling an intra-term vacancy in the vice presidency before 1967, the office was left vacant until filled through the next ensuing presidential election and subsequent inauguration.[12]

Throughout most of its history, American politics has been dominated by political parties. The Constitution is silent on the issue of political parties, and at the time it came into force in 1789, no organized parties existed. Soon after the 1st Congress convened, factions began rallying around dominant Washington administration officials, such as Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson.[13] Greatly concerned about the capacity of political parties to destroy the fragile unity holding the nation together, Washington remained unaffiliated with any political faction or party throughout his eight-year presidency. He was, and remains, the only U.S. president never affiliated with a political party.[14]

As of May 2022, there are five living former presidents: Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump. The most recent to die was George H. W. Bush, on November 30, 2018.[15]

Presidents

List of presidents of the United States from 1789 – till date.
#[a] Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term[16] Party[b][17] Election Vice President[18]
1   George Washington
(1732–1799)
[19]
April 30, 1789

March 4, 1797
Unaffiliated 1788–89 John Adams[c]
1792
2   John Adams
(1735–1826)
[21]
March 4, 1797

March 4, 1801
Federalist 1796 Thomas Jefferson[d]
3   Thomas Jefferson
(1743–1826)
[23]
March 4, 1801

March 4, 1809
Democratic-
Republican
1800 Aaron Burr
1804 George Clinton[e]
4   James Madison
(1751–1836)
[24]
March 4, 1809

March 4, 1817
Democratic-
Republican
1808
Vacant after
Apr. 20, 1812
1812 Elbridge Gerry[e]
Vacant after
Nov. 23, 1814
5   James Monroe
(1758–1831)
[25]
March 4, 1817

March 4, 1825
Democratic-
Republican
1816 Daniel D. Tompkins
1820
6   John Quincy Adams
(1767–1848)
[26]
March 4, 1825

March 4, 1829
Democratic-
Republican
[f]
1824 John C. Calhoun[g][h]
National Republican
7   Andrew Jackson
(1767–1845)
[29]
March 4, 1829

March 4, 1837
Democratic 1828
Vacant after
Dec. 28, 1832
1832 Martin Van Buren
8   Martin Van Buren
(1782–1862)
[30]
March 4, 1837

March 4, 1841
Democratic 1836 Richard Mentor Johnson
9   William Henry Harrison[e]
(1773–1841)
[31]
March 4, 1841

April 4, 1841
Whig 1840 John Tyler
10   John Tyler
(1790–1862)
[32]
April 4, 1841[i]

March 4, 1845
Whig[j] Vacant throughout
presidency
Unaffiliated
11   James K. Polk
(1795–1849)
[35]
March 4, 1845

March 4, 1849
Democratic 1844 George M. Dallas
12   Zachary Taylor[e]
(1784–1850)
[36]
March 4, 1849

July 9, 1850
Whig 1848 Millard Fillmore
13   Millard Fillmore
(1800–1874)
[37]
July 9, 1850[k]

March 4, 1853
Whig Vacant throughout
presidency
14   Franklin Pierce
(1804–1869)
[39]
March 4, 1853

March 4, 1857
Democratic 1852 William R. King[e]
Vacant after
Apr. 18, 1853
15   James Buchanan
(1791–1868)
[40]
March 4, 1857

March 4, 1861
Democratic 1856 John C. Breckinridge
16   Abraham Lincoln[l]
(1809–1865)
[41]
March 4, 1861

April 15, 1865
Republican 1860 Hannibal Hamlin
National Union[m] 1864 Andrew Johnson
17   Andrew Johnson
(1808–1875)
[42]
April 15, 1865

March 4, 1869
National Union[n] Vacant throughout
presidency
Democratic
18   Ulysses S. Grant
(1822–1885)
[43]
March 4, 1869

March 4, 1877
Republican 1868 Schuyler Colfax
1872 Henry Wilson[e]
Vacant after
Nov. 22, 1875
19   Rutherford B. Hayes
(1822–1893)
[44]
March 4, 1877

March 4, 1881
Republican 1876 William A. Wheeler
20   James A. Garfield[o]
(1831–1881)
[45]
March 4, 1881

September 19, 1881
Republican 1880 Chester A. Arthur
21   Chester A. Arthur
(1829–1886)
[46]
September 19, 1881[p]

March 4, 1885
Republican Vacant throughout
presidency
22   Grover Cleveland
(1837–1908)
[47]
March 4, 1885

March 4, 1889
Democratic 1884 Thomas A. Hendricks[e]
Vacant after
Nov. 25, 1885
23   Benjamin Harrison
(1833–1901)
[48]
March 4, 1889

March 4, 1893
Republican 1888 Levi P. Morton
24   Grover Cleveland
(1837–1908)
[47]
March 4, 1893

March 4, 1897
Democratic 1892 Adlai Stevenson I
25   William McKinley[q]
(1843–1901)
[49]
March 4, 1897

September 14, 1901
Republican 1896 Garret Hobart[e]
Vacant after
Nov. 21, 1899
1900 Theodore Roosevelt
26   Theodore Roosevelt
(1858–1919)
[50]
September 14, 1901

March 4, 1909
Republican Vacant through
Mar. 4, 1905
1904 Charles W. Fairbanks
27   William Howard Taft
(1857–1930)
[51]
March 4, 1909

March 4, 1913
Republican 1908 James S. Sherman[e]
Vacant after
Oct. 30, 1912
28   Woodrow Wilson
(1856–1924)
[52]
March 4, 1913

March 4, 1921
Democratic 1912 Thomas R. Marshall
1916
29   Warren G. Harding[e]
(1865–1923)
[53]
March 4, 1921

August 2, 1923
Republican 1920 Calvin Coolidge
30   Calvin Coolidge
(1872–1933)
[54]
August 2, 1923[r]

March 4, 1929
Republican Vacant through
Mar. 4, 1925
1924 Charles G. Dawes
31   Herbert Hoover
(1874–1964)
[55]
March 4, 1929

March 4, 1933
Republican 1928 Charles Curtis
32   Franklin D. Roosevelt[e]
(1882–1945)
[56]
March 4, 1933

April 12, 1945
Democratic 1932 John Nance Garner
1936
1940 Henry A. Wallace
1944 Harry S. Truman
33   Harry S. Truman
(1884–1972)
[57]
April 12, 1945

January 20, 1953
Democratic Vacant through
Jan. 20, 1949
1948 Alben W. Barkley
34   Dwight D. Eisenhower
(1890–1969)
[58]
January 20, 1953

January 20, 1961
Republican 1952 Richard Nixon
1956
35   John F. Kennedy[s]
(1917–1963)
[59]
January 20, 1961

November 22, 1963
Democratic 1960 Lyndon B. Johnson
36   Lyndon B. Johnson
(1908–1973)
[60]
November 22, 1963

January 20, 1969
Democratic Vacant through
Jan. 20, 1965
1964 Hubert Humphrey
37   Richard Nixon[h]
(1913–1994)
[61]
January 20, 1969

August 9, 1974
Republican 1968 Spiro Agnew[h]
1972
Vacant, Oct. 10 – Dec. 6, 1973
Gerald Ford[t]
38   Gerald Ford
(1913–2006)
[62]
August 9, 1974

January 20, 1977
Republican Vacant through
Dec. 19, 1974
Nelson Rockefeller[t]
39   Jimmy Carter
(b. 1924)
[63]
January 20, 1977

January 20, 1981
Democratic 1976 Walter Mondale
40   Ronald Reagan
(1911–2004)
[64]
January 20, 1981

January 20, 1989
Republican 1980 George H. W. Bush
1984
41   George H. W. Bush
(1924–2018)
[65]
January 20, 1989

January 20, 1993
Republican 1988 Dan Quayle
42   Bill Clinton
(b. 1946)
[66]
January 20, 1993

January 20, 2001
Democratic 1992 Al Gore
1996
43   George W. Bush
(b. 1946)
[67]
January 20, 2001

January 20, 2009
Republican 2000 Dick Cheney
2004
44   Barack Obama
(b. 1961)
[68]
January 20, 2009

January 20, 2017
Democratic 2008 Joe Biden
2012
45   Donald Trump
(b. 1946)
[69]
January 20, 2017

January 20, 2021
Republican 2016 Mike Pence
46   Joe Biden
(b. 1942)
[70]
January 20, 2021

Incumbent
Democratic 2020 Kamala Harris

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Presidents are numbered according to uninterrupted periods served by the same person. For example, George Washington served two consecutive terms and is counted as the first president (not the first and second). Upon the resignation of 37th president, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford became the 38th president even though he simply served out the remainder of Nixon's second term and was never elected to the presidency in his own right. Grover Cleveland was both the 22nd president and the 24th president because his two terms were not consecutive. A vice president who temporarily becomes acting president under the Twenty-fifth Amendment to the Constitution is not counted, because the president remains in office during such a period.
  2. ^ Reflects the president's political party at the start of their presidency. Changes during their time in office are noted. Also reflects the vice president's political party unless otherwise noted beside the individual's name.
  3. ^ Political parties had not been anticipated when the Constitution was drafted, nor did they exist at the time of the first presidential election in 1788–89. When they did develop, during Washington's first term, Adams joined the faction that became the Federalist Party. The elections of 1792 were the first ones in the United States that were contested on anything resembling a partisan basis.[20]
  4. ^ The 1796 presidential election was the first contested American presidential election and the only one in which a president and vice president were elected from opposing political parties. Federalist John Adams was elected president, and Jefferson of the Democratic-Republicans was elected vice president.[22]
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Died in office of natural causes.
  6. ^ Early during Adams' term the Democratic-Republican Party dissolved; his allies in Congress and at the state-level were referred to as "Adams' Men" during the Adams presidency. When Andrew Jackson became president in 1829, this group became the "Anti-Jackson" opposition, and organized themselves as the National Republican Party.[27]
  7. ^ John Calhoun, formerly a Democratic-Republican, founded the Nullifier Party in 1828 to oppose the Tariff of 1828 and advance the cause of states' rights, but was brought on as Andrew Jackson's running mate in the 1828 presidential election in an effort to broaden the democratic coalition led by Jackson.[28]
  8. ^ a b c Resigned from office
  9. ^ John Tyler was sworn in as president on April 6, 1841.[33]
  10. ^ John Tyler was elected vice president on the Whig Party ticket in 1840. His policy priorities as president soon proved to be opposed to most of the Whig agenda, and he was expelled from the party five months in office.[34]
  11. ^ Millard Fillmore was sworn in as president on July 10, 1850.[38]
  12. ^ Died April 15, 1865; see Assassination of Abraham Lincoln for further details.
  13. ^ When he ran for reelection in 1864, Republican Abraham Lincoln formed a bipartisan electoral alliance with War Democrats by selecting Democrat Andrew Johnson as his running mate, and running on the National Union Party ticket.
  14. ^ While president, Johnson tried and failed to build a party of loyalists under the National Union banner. Near the end of his presidency, Johnson rejoined the Democratic Party.
  15. ^ Died September 19, 1881; see Assassination of James A. Garfield for further details.
  16. ^ Chester A. Arthur was initially sworn in as president on September 20, 1881, and then again on September 22.
  17. ^ Died September 14, 1901; see Assassination of William McKinley for further details.
  18. ^ Calvin Coolidge was initially sworn in as president on August 3, 1923, and then again on August 21.
  19. ^ Died November 22, 1963; see Assassination of John F. Kennedy for further details.
  20. ^ a b Appointed as vice president under terms of the Twenty-fifth Amendment, Section 2.

References

  1. ^ Rossiter (1962), p. 86.
  2. ^ Shugart (2004), pp. 633–636.
  3. ^ Fairman (1949), pp. 145–146.
  4. ^ Matuz (2001), p. xxii.
  5. ^ Schaller & Williams (2003), p. 192.
  6. ^ McHugh & Mackowiak (2014), pp. 990–995.
  7. ^ Skau (1974), pp. 246–275.
  8. ^ Willis & Willis (1952), p. 473.
  9. ^ Abbott (2005), pp. 627–644.
  10. ^ Dinnerstein (1962), pp. 447–451.
  11. ^ Kassop (2005), pp. 147–153.
  12. ^ Gilbert (2003), pp. 877–879.
  13. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 197; Nardulli (1992), p. 179.
  14. ^ Seasongood (1932), pp. 265–271; Jamison (2014).
  15. ^ Tumulty (2018); Horsley, Rosenbaum & Kesbeh (2018).
  16. ^ LOC; whitehouse.gov (a).
  17. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), pp. 257–258.
  18. ^ LOC.
  19. ^ McDonald (2000).
  20. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), pp. 197, 272; Nardulli (1992), p. 179.
  21. ^ Pencak (2000).
  22. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 274.
  23. ^ Peterson (2000).
  24. ^ Banning (2000).
  25. ^ Ammon (2000).
  26. ^ Hargreaves (2000).
  27. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 228; Goldman (1951), p. 159.
  28. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 892; Houpt (2010), pp. 26, 280.
  29. ^ Remini (2000).
  30. ^ Cole (2000).
  31. ^ Gutzman (2000).
  32. ^ Shade (2000).
  33. ^ Abbott (2013), p. 23.
  34. ^ Cash (2018), pp. 34–36.
  35. ^ Rawley (2000).
  36. ^ Smith (2000).
  37. ^ Anbinder (2000).
  38. ^ Abbott (2005), p. 639.
  39. ^ Gara (2000).
  40. ^ Gienapp (2000).
  41. ^ McPherson (b) (2000).
  42. ^ Trefousse (2000).
  43. ^ McPherson (a) (2000).
  44. ^ Hoogenboom (2000).
  45. ^ Peskin (2000).
  46. ^ Reeves (2000).
  47. ^ a b Campbell (2000).
  48. ^ Spetter (2000).
  49. ^ Gould (a) (2000).
  50. ^ Harbaugh (2000).
  51. ^ Gould (b) (2000).
  52. ^ Ambrosius (2000).
  53. ^ Hawley (2000).
  54. ^ McCoy (2000).
  55. ^ Hoff (a) (2000).
  56. ^ Brinkley (2000).
  57. ^ Hamby (2000).
  58. ^ Ambrose (2000).
  59. ^ Parmet (2000).
  60. ^ Gardner (2000).
  61. ^ Hoff (b) (2000).
  62. ^ Greene (2013).
  63. ^ whitehouse.gov (b).
  64. ^ Schaller (2004).
  65. ^ whitehouse.gov (c).
  66. ^ whitehouse.gov (d).
  67. ^ whitehouse.gov (e).
  68. ^ whitehouse.gov (f).
  69. ^ whitehouse.gov (g).
  70. ^ whitehouse.gov (h).

Works cited

General

  • Guide to U.S. Elections. SAGE Publications. 2010. ISBN 978-1-60426-536-1.
  • "Chronological List of Presidents, First Ladies, and Vice Presidents of the United States". Library of Congress. Retrieved February 20, 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  • "Presidents". whitehouse.gov. Retrieved May 14, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

Expert studies

Presidential biographies

News articles

  • Horsley, Scott; Rosenbaum, Marcus; Kesbeh, Dina (November 20, 2018). "Former President George H.W. Bush Dies At 94". NPR. Retrieved January 11, 2022.
  • Jamison, Dennis (December 31, 2014). "George Washington' Views on Political Parties in America". The Washington Times. Retrieved February 20, 2020.
  • Tumulty, Karen (November 30, 2018). "George H.W. Bush, 41st President of the United States, Dies at 94". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 23, 2021.

External links

  • Presidents — via whitehouse.gov
  •   Media related to President of the United States at Wikimedia Commons
  •   Quotations related to List of presidents of the United States at Wikiquote