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List of presidents of the United States

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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 via the Electoral College.[2] The officeholder 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 men 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.[10]

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.[11] 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.[12]

The incumbent president is Joe Biden.[13] 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.[14]

Presidents

List of presidents of the United States from 1789 – till date.
No.[a] Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term[15] Party[b][16] Election Vice President[17]
1 Painting of George Washington George Washington
(1732–1799)
[18]
April 30, 1789

March 4, 1797
Unaffiliated 1788–89

1792

John Adams[c]
2 Painting of John Adams John Adams
(1735–1826)
[20]
March 4, 1797

March 4, 1801
Federalist 1796 Thomas Jefferson[d]
3 Painting of Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson
(1743–1826)
[22]
March 4, 1801

March 4, 1809
Democratic-
Republican
1800

1804

Aaron Burr

George Clinton[e]

4 Painting of James Madison James Madison
(1751–1836)
[24]
March 4, 1809

March 4, 1817
Democratic-
Republican
1808

1812

George Clinton

Vacant after
April 20, 1812


Elbridge Gerry[e]


Vacant after
November 23, 1814

5 Painting of James Monroe James Monroe
(1758–1831)
[25]
March 4, 1817

March 4, 1825
Democratic-
Republican
1816

1820

Daniel D. Tompkins
6 Painting of John Quincy Adams John Quincy Adams
(1767–1848)
[26]
March 4, 1825

March 4, 1829
Democratic-
Republican
[f]

National Republican

1824 John C. Calhoun[g][h]
7 Painting of Andrew Jackson Andrew Jackson
(1767–1845)
[29]
March 4, 1829

March 4, 1837
Democratic 1828

1832

John C. Calhoun

Vacant after
December 28, 1832


Martin Van Buren

8 Painting of Martin Van Buren Martin Van Buren
(1782–1862)
[30]
March 4, 1837

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

April 4, 1841
Whig 1840 John Tyler
10 Black-and-white photographic portrait of John Tyler John Tyler
(1790–1862)
[32]
April 4, 1841[i]

March 4, 1845
Whig[j]

Unaffiliated

1840 Vacant throughout
presidency
11 Black-and-white photographic portrait of James K. Polk James K. Polk
(1795–1849)
[35]
March 4, 1845

March 4, 1849
Democratic 1844 George M. Dallas
12 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Zachary Taylor Zachary Taylor[e]
(1784–1850)
[36]
March 4, 1849

July 9, 1850
Whig 1848 Millard Fillmore
13 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Millard Fillmore Millard Fillmore
(1800–1874)
[37]
July 9, 1850[k]

March 4, 1853
Whig 1848 Vacant throughout
presidency
14 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Franklin Pierce Franklin Pierce
(1804–1869)
[39]
March 4, 1853

March 4, 1857
Democratic 1852 William R. King[e]

Vacant after
April 18, 1853

15 Black-and-white photographic portrait of James Buchanan James Buchanan
(1791–1868)
[40]
March 4, 1857

March 4, 1861
Democratic 1856 John C. Breckinridge
16 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Abraham Lincoln Abraham Lincoln[l]
(1809–1865)
[41]
March 4, 1861

April 15, 1865
Republican

National Union[m]

1860

1864

Hannibal Hamlin

Andrew Johnson

17 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Andrew Johnson Andrew Johnson
(1808–1875)
[43]
April 15, 1865

March 4, 1869
National Union[n]

Democratic

1864 Vacant throughout
presidency
18 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Ulysses S. Grant Ulysses S. Grant
(1822–1885)
[44]
March 4, 1869

March 4, 1877
Republican 1868

1872

Schuyler Colfax

Henry Wilson[e]


Vacant after
November 22, 1875

19 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Rutherford B. Hayes Rutherford B. Hayes
(1822–1893)
[45]
March 4, 1877

March 4, 1881
Republican 1876 William A. Wheeler
20 Black-and-white photographic portrait of James A. Garfield James A. Garfield[o]
(1831–1881)
[46]
March 4, 1881

September 19, 1881
Republican 1880 Chester A. Arthur
21 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Chester A. Arthur Chester A. Arthur
(1829–1886)
[47]
September 19, 1881[p]

March 4, 1885
Republican 1880 Vacant throughout
presidency
22 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Grover Cleveland Grover Cleveland
(1837–1908)
[50]
March 4, 1885

March 4, 1889
Democratic 1884 Thomas A. Hendricks[e]

Vacant after
November 25, 1885

23 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Benjamin Harrison Benjamin Harrison
(1833–1901)
[51]
March 4, 1889

March 4, 1893
Republican 1888 Levi P. Morton
24 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Grover Cleveland Grover Cleveland
(1837–1908)
[50]
March 4, 1893

March 4, 1897
Democratic 1892 Adlai Stevenson I
25 Black-and-white photographic portrait of William McKinley William McKinley[q]
(1843–1901)
[52]
March 4, 1897

September 14, 1901
Republican 1896

1900

Garret Hobart[e]

Vacant after
November 21, 1899


Theodore Roosevelt

26 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Theodore Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt
(1858–1919)
[53]
September 14, 1901

March 4, 1909
Republican 1900

1904

Vacant through
March 4, 1905

Charles W. Fairbanks

27 Black-and-white photographic portrait of William Howard Taft William Howard Taft
(1857–1930)
[54]
March 4, 1909

March 4, 1913
Republican 1908 James S. Sherman[e]

Vacant after
October 30, 1912

28 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Woodrow Wilson Woodrow Wilson
(1856–1924)
[55]
March 4, 1913

March 4, 1921
Democratic 1912

1916

Thomas R. Marshall
29 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Warren G. Harding Warren G. Harding[e]
(1865–1923)
[56]
March 4, 1921

August 2, 1923
Republican 1920 Calvin Coolidge
30 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Calvin Coolidge Calvin Coolidge
(1872–1933)
[57]
August 2, 1923[r]

March 4, 1929
Republican 1920

1924

Vacant through
March 4, 1925

Charles G. Dawes

31 Black-and-white photographic portrait of Herbert Hoover Herbert Hoover
(1874–1964)
[60]
March 4, 1929

March 4, 1933
Republican 1928 Charles Curtis
32 Photographic portrait of Franklin D. Roosevelt Franklin D. Roosevelt[e]
(1882–1945)
[61]
March 4, 1933

April 12, 1945
Democratic 1932

1936


1940


1944

John Nance Garner

Henry A. Wallace


Harry S. Truman

33 Photographic portrait of Harry S. Truman Harry S. Truman
(1884–1972)
[62]
April 12, 1945

January 20, 1953
Democratic 1944

1948

Vacant through
January 20, 1949

Alben W. Barkley

34 Photographic portrait of Dwight D. Eisenhower Dwight D. Eisenhower
(1890–1969)
[63]
January 20, 1953

January 20, 1961
Republican 1952

1956

Richard Nixon
35 Photographic portrait of John F. Kennedy John F. Kennedy[s]
(1917–1963)
[64]
January 20, 1961

November 22, 1963
Democratic 1960 Lyndon B. Johnson
36 Photographic portrait of Lyndon B. Johnson Lyndon B. Johnson
(1908–1973)
[65]
November 22, 1963

January 20, 1969
Democratic 1960

1964

Vacant through
January 20, 1965

Hubert Humphrey

37 Photographic portrait of Richard Nixon Richard Nixon[h]
(1913–1994)
[66]
January 20, 1969

August 9, 1974
Republican 1968

1972

Spiro Agnew[h]

Vacant:
October 10 – December 6, 1973


Gerald Ford[t]

38 Photographic portrait of Gerald Ford Gerald Ford
(1913–2006)
[67]
August 9, 1974

January 20, 1977
Republican 1972 Vacant through
December 19, 1974

Nelson Rockefeller[t]

39 Photographic portrait of Jimmy Carter Jimmy Carter
(b. 1924)
[68]
January 20, 1977

January 20, 1981
Democratic 1976 Walter Mondale
40 Photographic portrait of Ronald Reagan Ronald Reagan
(1911–2004)
[69]
January 20, 1981

January 20, 1989
Republican 1980

1984

George H. W. Bush
41 Photographic portrait of George H. W. Bush George H. W. Bush
(1924–2018)
[70]
January 20, 1989

January 20, 1993
Republican 1988 Dan Quayle
42 Photographic portrait of Bill Clinton Bill Clinton
(b. 1946)
[71]
January 20, 1993

January 20, 2001
Democratic 1992

1996

Al Gore
43 Photographic portrait of George W. Bush George W. Bush
(b. 1946)
[72]
January 20, 2001

January 20, 2009
Republican 2000

2004

Dick Cheney
44 Photographic portrait of Barack Obama Barack Obama
(b. 1961)
[73]
January 20, 2009

January 20, 2017
Democratic 2008

2012

Joe Biden
45 Photographic portrait of Donald Trump Donald Trump
(b. 1946)
[74]
January 20, 2017

January 20, 2021
Republican 2016 Mike Pence
46 Photographic portrait of Joe Biden Joe Biden
(b. 1942)
[13]
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.[19]
  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.[21]
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Died in office of natural causes[23]
  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[23]
  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 in office;[23] 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.[42]
  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.[43]
  15. ^ Died in office;[23] see Assassination of James A. Garfield for further details.
  16. ^ Chester A. Arthur was initially sworn in as president on September 20, 1881,[48] and then again on September 22.[49]
  17. ^ Died in office;[23] see Assassination of William McKinley for further details.
  18. ^ Calvin Coolidge was initially sworn in as president on August 3, 1923,[58] and then again on August 21.[59]
  19. ^ Died in office;[23] 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[23]

References

  1. ^ Rossiter (1962), p. 86.
  2. ^ Shugart (2004), pp. 633–636.
  3. ^ Epstein (2005), p. 318.
  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. ^ Peabody & Gant (1999), p. 565.
  9. ^ Abbott (2005), pp. 627–644.
  10. ^ Dinnerstein (1962), pp. 447–451.
  11. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 197; Nardulli (1992), p. 179.
  12. ^ LOC (2); Jamison (2014).
  13. ^ a b whitehouse.gov (h).
  14. ^ Tumulty (2018); Horsley, Rosenbaum & Kesbeh (2018).
  15. ^ LOC; whitehouse.gov.
  16. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), pp. 257–258.
  17. ^ LOC.
  18. ^ McDonald (2000).
  19. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), pp. 197, 272; Nardulli (1992), p. 179.
  20. ^ Pencak (2000).
  21. ^ Guide to U.S. Elections (2010), p. 274.
  22. ^ Peterson (2000).
  23. ^ a b c d e f g Neale (2004), p. 22.
  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. ^ McSeveney (1986), p. 139.
  43. ^ a b Trefousse (2000).
  44. ^ McPherson (a) (2000).
  45. ^ Hoogenboom (2000).
  46. ^ Peskin (2000).
  47. ^ Reeves (2000).
  48. ^ Cohen (2019), p. 171.
  49. ^ Greenberger (2017), pp. 174–175.
  50. ^ a b Campbell (2000).
  51. ^ Spetter (2000).
  52. ^ Gould (a) (2000).
  53. ^ Harbaugh (2000).
  54. ^ Gould (b) (2000).
  55. ^ Ambrosius (2000).
  56. ^ Hawley (2000).
  57. ^ McCoy (2000).
  58. ^ whitehouse.gov (a).
  59. ^ Senate.
  60. ^ Hoff (a) (2000).
  61. ^ Brinkley (2000).
  62. ^ Hamby (2000).
  63. ^ Ambrose (2000).
  64. ^ Parmet (2000).
  65. ^ Gardner (2000).
  66. ^ Hoff (b) (2000).
  67. ^ Greene (2013).
  68. ^ whitehouse.gov (b).
  69. ^ Schaller (2004).
  70. ^ whitehouse.gov (c).
  71. ^ whitehouse.gov (d).
  72. ^ whitehouse.gov (e).
  73. ^ whitehouse.gov (f).
  74. ^ whitehouse.gov (g).

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.
  • "Presidents". whitehouse.gov. Retrieved May 14, 2022.

Expert studies

Presidential biographies

Online sources

External links