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Happy Birthday, JAMES MADISON 4th President of the United States, 1809-1817 Called by many, THE FATHER OF THE CONSTITUTION. 1 Born March 16, 1751 at Port Conway, Virginia. Died June 28, 1836 at Montpelier at the age of 85. Early Education: His grandmother, Francis Madison taught him to read and write. Tutored for 8 years: by Reverend Robertson (5 years), and Reverend Thomas Martin (3 years), who encouraged James to attend the College of New Jersey (now Princeton).2 College and Graduate Education: James skipped the freshman year because his entrance exam showed him to be well prepared as well as Proﬁcient in Latin and Greek. He was extremely industrious and excelled in his studies and graduated in 2 years. He stayed for another year to be tutored under the President and Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Reverend John Witherspoon. He studied very hard and became renown for his historical knowledge, political philosophy as well as theology, ethics, and Hebrew. Rev. Witherspoon infused his star pupil with his beliefs in revelation as well as reason and in the historic truth of the Bible, including the miracles of the Old and New Testaments.3 James Madison was elected: to the Orange County Committee of Safety in 1775, First Virginia State Legislature in 1776, appointed to the Virginia Council of state where, under the direction of Governors, Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson, he prepared many state papers, was elected to the Continental Congress from Virginia in 1780 where he discovered how limited the Congress was to raise money, support the war or control the state governments.4 Preparations for The Constitutional Convention 1786: Madison began full time study of republican and federated forms of government. Thomas Jefferson sent many books from France and James pushed himself until he became an expert on Confederation and Republican forms of government. He wrote many letters to George Washington until he convinced him that no Constitution could be approved without the support of the most beloved hero in America.5 1787: James was ﬁrst to arrive at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia armed with plans for a new Constitutional Republic and convinced most of the other 55 delegates from 12 states to form a new government. He spoke 161 times and was the leader for many of the components of the Constitution. He also wrote the 5th Article, which allowed for the constitution to be amended. When contention threatened to destroy the convention, 81-year-old Ben Franklin called the assembly to daily prayer...”Mr. President, I have lived a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this Truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot to fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid?”... ”I move that prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven and its Blessings be held every morning before we proceed to business.” 6 A miraculous cooperation soon settled on the convention and by the 17th of September, the constitution was approved and sent to the states for ratiﬁcation. James Madison later exclaimed, “The happy union of these states is a wonder; their constitution is a miracle; their example the hope of liberty throughout the world!” 7 John Quincy Adams called James Madison the “Father of the Constitution” not only for what he did in Philadelphia at the convention, but equally important how he helped enact it.8 To convince delegates of State ratifying conventions, he, with Alexander Hamilton and John Jay, wrote the Federalist Papers in 1787 and 1788. Madison campaigned hard to become a member of the ﬁrst House of Representatives in 1788. In 1789, James Madison re-wrote George Washington’s ﬁrst Inaugural address condensing it from 73 pages to 463 words including; “No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the Invisible Hand which conducts the affairs of men more than the people of the United States.” and... “The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.” 9 James then wrote the response to the President from Congress, after which Washington asked him to write the Presidential response to both the House of Representatives and the Senate. He completed the Promise of the Federalists to pass a Bill of Rights in the ﬁrst Congress. They agreed on 12 amendments, 10 of which were ratiﬁed on December 15, 1791. “He was our First Man,” said one of the delegates.10 “Never again in the history of the United States would any politician’s voice reverberate as Madison’s did in the early days of the Republic.”11 In 1792, Madison talked Washington into a second term to which he received all 132 electoral votes.12 Thomas Jefferson, our third President, asked Madison to be his Secretary of State, and in 1803 he oversaw the Louisiana Purchase doubling the size of the United States. James Madison served as our fourth and smallest president (5 foot 3 or 4 inches and less than 100 pounds) 1809-1817. His terriﬁc wife, Dolley, saved a famous portrait when the British burned the White House in 1814.13 James Madison Quotes: “Every word of the constitution decides a question of power and Liberty.”14 “The civil rights of none shall be abridged on account of religious belief or worship, nor shall a national religion be established.”15 James Madison stated in his First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1809: “My conﬁdence will under every difﬁculty be best placed ... in the guardianship and guidance of that Almighty Being whose power regulates the destiny of nations, whose blessings have been so conspicuously dispensed to this rising Republic, and to whom we are bound to address our devout gratitude for the past, as well as our fervent supplications and best hopes for the future.”16 Compiled by Mark, The Freedom Poet, Skogerboe 1. Davis, Kenneth C. Don’t Know Much About Presidents. (Harper Collins Publishers, 2002), 13. 2. Bradford, M. E. Founding Fathers. (University Press of Kansas, 1981), 136. 3. Cheney, Lynne. James Madison. (Viking Penguin Publishers, 2014), 28. 4. Bradford, Founding Fathers, 137. 5. Peters, William. A More Perfect Union. (Crown Publishers, 1987), 8-9. 6. Jacobs, P. Jake. The Gospel, God’s Law & Government. (Liberty Productions, 1776), 130-131. 7. Davis, Don’t Know Much About Presidents, 13. 8. Cheney, James Madison, 153. 9. Federer, William J. America’s God and Country. (Fame Publishing, 1994), 652. 10. Cheney, James Madison, 189. 11. Ibid., 188. 12. Chernow, Ron. Washington. (Penguin Press, 2010), 684. 13. Davis, Don’t Know Much About Presidents, 13. 14. Peters, A More Perfect Union, 1x. 15. Barton, David. Original Intent. (Wallbuilder Press, 2000), 208. 16. Federer, Bill. American Minute with Bill Federer, https://myemail.constantcontact.com/ He-introduced-FIRST-AMENDMENT-in-Congress----PRAYED-as-President-during-War-of1812.html?soid=1108762609255&aid=WeyPdtCl74o (accessed Mar. 13, 2019).