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Zachary Taylor - with Periodic Presidents 

For many, Zachary Taylor seemed like an unlikely president as he was not heavily involved in politics. Taylor served in the military for four decades. He became a war hero following the Mexican War, and his leadership style became an influence on future general and president, Ulysses S. Grant. When asked during the Mexican War if he would ever run for President , Taylor replied  that it, “never entered my head … nor is it likely to enter the head of any sane person.”. Even though Taylor did not think of himself as the ideal candidate, the Whigs nominated him in 1848. The election pitted Taylor against Lewis Cass, and it was the first time Taylor voted in an election. General Taylor won the election with 63 electoral votes to Lewis’s 127. 


Old Rough and Ready Zachary Taylor took office when sectional tensions were at an all time high. Taylor threatened to use military force against Southern leaders who presented the idea of secession. Taylor never saw the end of the sectional differences in the country, as his presidency was cut short.


After attending a ceremonies on the fourth of July at the then, under construction, Washington Monument, Taylor consumed a feast of cherries and other fruit, and then washed it down with iced milk. Taylor began to feel ill, and 5 days later at the age of 65 Taylor died due to a digestive illness. Taylor, the third Whig president, became the second President to die in office, leading to his vice president, Millard Fillmore, to take over.

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