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Tippecanoe (and, sadly, MLK, too)

William Henry Harrison

On April 4, 1841, William Henry Harrison died of pneumonia, becoming the first President of the United States to die in office and the one with the shortest term served (he died on his 32nd day as president). Renowned Indian killer (having risen to fame for his part in 1811’s Battle of Tippecanoe), a proponent of the expansion of slavery into Northwest Territories, and a Whig, Harrison won the presidency in part by turning the Democrats’ “log cabin and hard cider” aspersions on his character as the basic symbols of the campaign.

Though hardly a “limited government man,” some limited government history buffs proclaim him the Greatest President, on the ostensibly droll and possibly cynical grounds that he spent so little time in office.

On a sadder note, Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated on this day in 1968.

By: Redactor

1 Comment

  1. Kenneth H. Fleischer says:

    Harrison was the first in a sad succession of U. S. presidents elected in years ending in zero, all of whom died in office. This persisted until Ronald Reagan, elected in 1980, survived an assassination attempt and completed his two terms in office.

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