[1809] - Madison inaugurated as fourth US President

Born in Port Conway, Virginia on 16 March 1751, James Madison was one of the founding fathers of the United States of America, a chief architect in framing the constitution, and the author of the Bill of Rights. His Federalist Papers, designed to explain the constitution throughout the thirteen states, was described by Thomas Jefferson as ‘the best commentary on the principles of government, which ever was written’. After Jefferson’s two terms in office, Madison was elected president in 1808, and sworn into office on 4 March the following year. He served in office for two years, presiding over the War of 1812 against Britain. As his second term came to an end in 1817 he retired to Montpelier, from where he founded the American Colonization Society that was dedicated to freeing slaves and transporting them to the west coast of Africa. He died on 28 June 1836 at the age of 85.

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