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James K. Polk Characteristics

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James K. Polk was considered by many to be the most successful president to have ever held office. Polk’s intelligence, ethos, and command during his presidency were contributing factors to a successful term in the White House in which he accomplished every goal he set forth in his inaugural address. With an extremely successful political career, as well as his confident actions as the United States’ Commander and Chief, James K. Polk’s importance became engrained in American history after serving only one term in office.
The United State’s 11th president, James Knox Polk, was born on November 2, 1795, in a small agricultural town of North Carolina known as Pineville. His parents, Samuel and Jane Polk, were the posterity of Scottish families who immigrated to America sometime in the 17th century. Since “he was the oldest of ten children” (Gale), some could argue that Polk’s leadership characteristics were innate. Almost contradictory to this assertive leader’s future, the young Polk’s body was frail and most certainly inadequate for harsh manual labor. Because of this physical detriment, Polk side stepped the life of a hard worker and strolled right into preparatory studies in the state of Tennessee. After completing preparatory school, Polk soon began further studies at North Carolina University in 1815, in which he graduated with top honors in the classics and math in 1818. Upon completion of a commendable college endeavor, the young soon to be president began to study law under the guidance of Felix Grundy, “a successful lawyer who also had served as a member of the U.S. Congress” (Carnegie and Howes 163). The young apprentice was very proficient at his expertise and practiced law in Columbia for three years as well as establi...

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...allowing Texas’ admission into the Union. The Mexican-American War, 1846-1848, was the primary advocate for the gain of more than 1 million miles to the United States; the result of which was the future formation of today’s states such as Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. This attainment of such a large portion of land ushered in one of the greatest immigrations in American history in the famous 1849 Gold Rush. Polk’s presidency and the political career leading up to it was so successful it was coined the “Fabulous 40s.” From modest upbringings to his successful role as an American leader, Polk exhibited outstanding presidential qualities. Unquestionable expertise, profound character, and unassailable leadership led James Knox Polk to become the most successful American leader and set the standard for future presidents to come.
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