Person:Richard Johnson (58)

Vice President Richard Mentor Johnson
m. Jun 1771
  1. Elizabeth 'Betsy' Johnson1772 - 1845
  2. Sen. James Johnson1774 - 1826
  3. William Johnson1775 - 1814
  4. Sarah 'Sally' Johnson1778 - 1846
  5. Vice President Richard Mentor Johnson1780 - 1850
  6. Benjamin Johnson, Esq.1784 - 1849
  7. Robert Johnson1786 - 1812
  8. Hon. John Telemachus Johnson1788 - 1825
  9. Joel Johnson1790 - 1846
  10. George W. Johnson1792 - 1810
  11. Capt. Henry Johnson1794 - 1862
  • HVice President Richard Mentor Johnson1780 - 1850
  • WJulia Chinn1780 - 1833
  1. Adaline Chinn Johnson1812 - 1836
  2. Imogene Malvina Johnson1812 - 1883
Facts and Events
Name Vice President Richard Mentor Johnson
Alt Name[2] Col. Dick Johnson, Esq.
Gender Male
Birth[1] 17 Oct 1780/81 Beargrass, near Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Marriage Common law relationship
to Julia Chinn
Residence[2] Scott, Kentucky, United States
Death[1] 19 Nov 1850 Frankfort, Franklin, Kentucky, United States
Reference Number? Q109463?
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the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Richard Mentor Johnson (October 17, 1780 – November 19, 1850) was an American lawyer and politician who served as the ninth vice president of the United States, serving from 1837 to 1841 under President Martin Van Buren. He is the only vice president elected by the United States Senate under the provisions of the Twelfth Amendment. Johnson also represented Kentucky in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. He began and ended his political career in the Kentucky House of Representatives.

Johnson was elected to the House of Representatives in 1806 in the early Federal period. He became allied with fellow Kentuckian Henry Clay as a member of the War Hawks faction that favored war with Britain in 1812. At the outset of the War of 1812, Johnson was commissioned a colonel in the Kentucky Militia and commanded a regiment of mounted volunteers from 1812 to 1813. He and his brother James served under William Henry Harrison in Upper Canada. Johnson led troops in the Battle of the Thames. Many reported that he personally killed the Shawnee chief Tecumseh, a claim that he later used to his political advantage.

After the war, Johnson returned to the House of Representatives. The state legislature appointed him to the Senate in 1819 to fill the seat vacated by John J. Crittenden. With his increasing prominence, Johnson was criticized for his interracial relationship with Julia Chinn, a mixed-race slave who was classified as octoroon (or seven-eighths white). Unlike other upper-class planters and leaders who had African-American mistresses or concubines, but never acknowledged them, Johnson treated Chinn as his common law wife. He acknowledged their two daughters as his children, giving them his surname, much to the consternation of some of his constituents. It is believed that because of this, the state legislature picked another candidate for the Senate in 1828, forcing Johnson to leave in 1829, but his Congressional district voted for him and returned him to the House in the next election.

In 1836, Johnson was the Democratic nominee for vice-president on a ticket with Martin Van Buren. Campaigning with the slogan "Rumpsey Dumpsey, Rumpsey Dumpsey, Colonel Johnson killed Tecumseh", Johnson fell one short of the electoral votes needed to secure his election. Virginia's delegation to the Electoral College refused to endorse Johnson, voting instead for William Smith of South Carolina.[1] The Senate elected him to the vice-presidential office. Johnson proved such a liability for the Democrats in the 1836 election that they refused to renominate him for vice president in 1840. Van Buren campaigned for reelection without a running mate. He lost to William Henry Harrison, a Whig. Johnson tried to return to public office but was defeated. He finally was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1850, but died on November 19, 1850, just two weeks into his term.

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Richard Mentor Johnson. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.
  1. 1.0 1.1 Richard Mentor Johnson, in Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Biography, in Gaines, B. O. The B. O. Gaines history of Scott County. (Georgetown, Kentucky: B.O. Gaines Printery, 1905)