Inside of months of the official chartering of Hamilton County by the Tennessee Common Assembly, then-President James Monroe visited its most distinguished web page, the Brainerd Mission, all through a tour of the Southwestern states and territories.
When the majority of citizens are common with 3 of the members of the “Virginia Dynasty,” the four Virginians who served as president in the course of the early years of the country, few can give any data regarding the fourth member, James Monroe, other than a point out of the Monroe Doctrine. And that deficiency of recognition is considerably understandable when one particular considers the historical importance of the 1st 3 Virginians.
George Washington reluctantly experienced agreed to become the new nation’s initial president subsequent his part as commander in chief of the Continental forces in the course of the Groundbreaking War, creating quite a few of the founding concepts related with our governing administration. Immediately after John Adams’ just one phrase as president, the Virginians returned with the election of philosopher-scholar Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson, who served from 1801 right up until 1809, was succeeded by his secretary of state, James Madison. Madison, viewed as the “Father of the Constitution” who supplied scholars with his copious notes documenting the Constitutional Convention, would himself serve two terms.
James Monroe, who would later on shell out the night time at the Brainerd Mission, dropped out of the College of William and Mary just before his 18th birthday to battle in the American Revolution. By 1776, he became an officer in the Continental Army, afterwards getting seriously wounded in the course of the Battle of Trenton. He served as U. S. senator from Virginia, minister to France, a few terms as Virginia’s governor, the main negotiator of the Louisiana Order and, during the War of 1812, as both secretary of state and secretary of war, the only particular person in our heritage to have at the same time held two Cupboard positions.
He would be sworn in as president on March 4, 1817, in the very first inaugural ceremony outside the U. S. Capitol, with a crowd of much more than 8,000 individuals in attendance.
A lot less than two several years later, President Monroe left Washington, D.C., for a Southern tour. By early spring of 1819, he and his modest entourage have been crisscrossing Georgia, with a closing quit at the Spring Location Mission in Chatsworth. He visited the most affluent plantation in the Cherokee Nation, owned by influential Cherokee chief James Vann.
A notation about his go to was bundled in the daily logs held by the Moravian missionaries living at the mission. In accordance to Brother John Gambold’s note, “On May well 25, I experienced the pleasure of seeing the President of the United States for a minute. He experienced arrived the night before in the organization of Normal Gaines and his wife and two younger gentlemen, all through large rain I invited him to arrive to us for breakfast. He said he regretted not remaining equipped to accept this invitation, because he would be happy to see our school and confident me he would generally acquire pleasure in furthering the nicely-getting of the Cherokees in just about every way achievable, and wished us God’s blessings “
Two times afterwards, the president would look at the Brainerd Mission, set up two several years earlier as an educational institution for the Eastern Cherokees. In accordance to the journal kept by the missionaries, Monroe ” was pleased to convey his approbation of the plan of instruction.” The missionaries had “just place up and have been ending a log cabin for the use of the women. He [the president] stated that such structures ended up not excellent ample and encouraged that we make it a good two-story house, with brick and stone chimneys, glass windows and that it be carried out at public expense. He also observed that right after this was carried out, it might probably be considered very best to establish a further of the identical description for the boys.” He then donated $1,000 to the do the job of the mission prior to departing for Huntsville, Alabama, and the continuation of a tour again to Murfreesboro and Nashville that, as included by a Washington newspaper, regarded as the president as getting handed “from the abode of civilized person, as a result of the depths of our Southern forests to the borders of Tennessee.”
As Tennessee methods its 225th birthday, President Monroe’s stop by to Chattanooga, with an entourage of less than 5 people today, stays a historic substantial stage.
Linda Moss Mines, the Chattanooga and Hamilton County historian, is a member of the Tennessee Historical Commission and is regent, Main John Ross Chapter, NSDAR.