Joe's Daily U.S. History Lesson
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Daily American show that celebrates the great United States of America! Here, I talk about the good, the bad and the ugly with stories ranging from Ben Franklin to Billy the Kid to the New York Yankees and Hollywood. Give me four minutes and I'll tell you all about it!
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Joe's Daily U.S. History Lesson -- Decebmber 5
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DECEMBER 5 1782 – Happy birthday Martin “The Little Magician” “Red Fox of Kinderhook “Van Buren, #8. The son of a farmer and tavern keeper, Matty, as he was nicknamed, was the first U.S. President not to be a British subject. Actually he was Dutch and was born six years after America declared independence from Great Britain. His father couldn’t afford to send Matty off to college, so he worked as a clerk at a law firm where he studied law by himself. In 1803 he opened up his own law practice and began his political career as a member of the Democratic - Republican Party. Four years later, he married his cousin once removed Hannah Hoes. They would have four children together; the oldest would attend West Point. He was elected Senator of New York in 1821, and when John Quincy Adams won a rather controversial election for the president of the U.S., Old Kinderhook Van Buren threw his support towards Andrew Jackson, and helped to forge a new party of Jeffersonian Republicans into what would become the Democratic Party. When Jackson defeated Adams Jr. in the presidential election of 1828, he appointed Van Buren Secretary of State. A political rift grew within Jackson’s cabinet, namely with his Vice President John Calhoun, and as a result Van Buren became Jackson’s most trusted advisor. Old Kinderhook Van Buren and Secretary of War John Eaton resigned their posts, hoping that Calhoun would also resign. Instead, after their resignations, Andy Jackson got rid of his cabinet, appointed a new one, and appointed OK Van Buren Minister to Great Britain. Incidentally, O.K. is short for Old Kinderhook; I’ll get to that in a minute. In the election of 1832, Jackson appointed Old Kinderhook Van Buren as his running mate and they easily defeated Henry Clay of the Whig party. In his second term, Jackson dismantled the federally funded Bank of the United States to create state banks, which would begin a massive depression that would haunt Van Buren’s legacy as president four years later. So the Little magician Van Buren easily defeated Whig leaders Clay and William Henry Harrison to become the eighth president. And now had to deal with the Panic of 1837. Which leads me to some of his many nicknames. He was called the Red Fox by his political enemies, due in part to his political savvy as well as his red-headed sideburns. Other nicknames include Little Van, The Enhancer, The Careful Dutchman, The Great Manager, the master Spirit, the Amer