JAMES K. POLK

11th U.S. President 1845-1849
LIFETIME: 1795-1849, of Scotch-Irish ancestry


James Polk homes and drawings

RETIREMENT HOME: " Polk Place " in Nashville TN - a large two-story mansion with Federal style windows and a Greek Revival colonnade and formal gardens that occupied an entire city block
PHOTO CREDIT: James K. Polk Ancestral Home, Columbia TN

ELEVATION DRAWING of " Polk Place "
FLOOR PLAN DRAWING of " Polk Place "
James K. Polk Ancestral Home, Columbia TN

ANCESTRAL HOME: Columbia TN - a two-story Federal style brick structure with a Colonial style front entry, double parlor on the first floor, three bedrooms on the second
PHOTO CREDIT: Homes and Libraries of the Presidents by William G. Clotworthy

BIRTHPLACE (bottom left): Pineville NC - a 16'x32' two-story log cabin on a cotton and corn plantation. The original cabin was destroyed but a replica preserves the birthplace site.
PHOTO CREDIT: Cabins, Cottages, and Mansions: Homes of the Presidents of the United States by Nancy D. Meyers-Benbow and Christopher H. Benbow


James Knox Polk was another "log cabin president," but his parents were considered prosperous with five slaves and 400 acres of farmland in North Carolina. When James was 11 years old, the family journeyed through 500 miles of mountainous wilderness to Tennessee, settling in a fine brick house in the city of Columbia.

Here Polk lived with his parents until his marriage to Sarah Childress in 1824. After practicing law, he became first a Congressman and then Governor of Tennessee. During Polk's presidential administration, America waged the Mexican War, annexed Texas, acquired California and New Mexico, settled boundary disputes over Oregon Territory, and admitted three new states to the Union (including Iowa).

Exhausted after four years of the presidency, he retired to a beautiful home in Nashville, only to die of cholera three months later. The city razed the mansion after his wife's death in 1891.

 

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