The Papers of Andrew Jackson


Andrew Jackson


Sam B. Smith and Harriet Chappell Owsley



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Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States, is an American folk hero. His strong personality and natural gift for leadership contributed to his wide influence throughout his lifetime. Jackson was known to be quarrelsome, honest, loyal, and self-willed, and the examination of his early years as documented in this volume provides insight into his career before he became a military and national hero.

During these years Jackson developed into a local and statewide leader of importance. His career as an attorney prospered and he became successively a member of the Tennessee Constitutional Convention, the first congressman from Tennessee, and a member of the United States Senate. He also served as one of the three members of the state superior court. Besides an active public life, Jackson owned and managed general stores with a succession of partners, raced horses for substantial stakes, operated a large farm with slave labor, and engaged in trade and commerce with the Natchez and New Orleans areas. The documents in Volume I chronicle Jackson’s growing influence spanning the years to 1803.

This volume contains not only letters to and from Jackson, but documents that relate to him and are important in a variety of ways to our knowledge of him. Represented are samples of slave and land sale records, land appraisals, and receipts from his farm near Nashville. Jackson’s early years in Washington are recorded in petitions, licenses and commissions, election returns, court appointments, speeches, and legislative reports. Jackson’s financial transactions are also included, as are powers of attorney.

George Washington, John Adams, William Polk, and Thomas Jefferson are among the many who wrote to Jackson and received letters from him long before his rise to national prominence. Their letters, as well as exchanges between Jackson and Tennessee statesmen William Blount and John Sevier, his wife Rachel, and the countless neighbors and friends with whom he associated, shed light on Jackson’s temperament and priorities in a variety of situations. The editors have included only brief annotations, allowing the documents to speak for themselves. An appendix includes important information previously unavailable.

During the years to 1803, Jackson demonstrated substantial entrepreneurial talent and a remarkable degree of resourcefulness, qualities that stood him in good stead throughout his career. This first volume of a landmark series clearly reveals the character, personality, and abilities that were to make Jackson a major force in American political history.



Publication Date



University of Tennessee Press




Jackson, Andrew, 1767-1845, Presidents--United States--Correspondence, Presidents, United States--Politics and government--1829-1837, United States, Records and correspondence, Electronic books


History | Political Science

The Papers of Andrew Jackson: Volume I, 1770-1803