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A Chronology of Millard Fillmore's Life and Career

A self-made man, Millard Fillmore grew up in near poverty and began his working career as a clothmaker's apprentice. He taught himself reading, spelling, arithmetic, and geography, studied law and became a lawyer, then won election to the New York State Legislature and to the U.S. House of Representatives. He did not become known nationally, however, until the Whig Party chose him to be Zachary Taylor's vice-presidential running mate in 1848; in 1850, he became the second Vice-President to become President upon the death of the chief executive.

Millard Fillmore

January 7, 1800 Fillmore birthplace replica Born in Cayuga County, New York.
1814-1819   Apprenticed to a clothmaker.
1823 East Aurora home Opened a law office in East Aurora, New York.
February 5, 1826   Married Abigail Powers.
1828   Elected to the New York House of Representatives.
1830 Niagara Square Home Moved to Buffalo, New York.
1832   Elected to U.S. House of Representatives; served from 1833 to 1835.
1836   Again elected to the U.S. House of Representatives; served from 1837 to 1843.
1844   Defeated in bid for governorship of New York.
1846   Became the first Chancellor of the University of Buffalo.
1847   Elected Comptroller of New York.
1848   Elected Vice-President of the United States.
July 10, 1850 An Overview of Fillmore's Administration Succeeded to the presidency.
1852   Defeated in bid for presidential nomination.
1853   Mrs. Abigail Fillmore died.
1856   Defeated in bid for presidential election.
February 10, 1858   Married Mrs. Caroline McIntosh.
March 8, 1874 Fillmore's grave Died in Buffalo, New York.
1932 Fillmore statue A statue of Fillmore was dedicated in Buffalo.

Notes and Trivia

When Oxford University offered him an honorary degree, Fillmore replied that he had done nothing to deserve the honor, and would not accept it.

Zachary Taylor
New York

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The Robinson Library >> Millard Fillmore's Administration, 1850-1853

This page was last updated on June 30, 2018.