James Monroe Accomplishments

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On April 28th, 1758 in Westmoreland County, the fifth president of the United States, James Monroe, was born. Monroe had a mother and a father, Spence and Elizabeth Monroe. Spence was an affluent planter who also practiced carpentry as a hobby. Both of his parents married in 1752 and they had several children. His parents died when he was a teenager, leaving him part of the family farm. He enrolled at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg in 1774, and almost immediately began participating in revolutionary activities. With a group of classmates, he invaded the arsenal at the British Governor's Palace, escaping with 200 muskets and 300 swords, which the students presented to the Virginia militia. He became an officer in the Continental…show more content…
Liberally interpreting his vague instructions, Jackson led his troops deep into areas of Florida under the control of Spain and captured two Spanish forts. In addition to securing greater protection for American settlements, the mission pointed out the vulnerability of Spanish rule in Florida. Monroe and his secretary of state, John Quincy Adams, used that vulnerability to pressure Spain into selling Florida to the United States. As Spain's dominion in the America's continued to disintegrate, revolutions throughout its colonies brought independence to Argentina, Peru, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. When European powers threatened to form an alliance to help Spain regain its lost domains, Monroe, with the prodding of Secretary of State Adams, declared that America would resist European intervention in the Western Hemisphere. Announced in the President's message to Congress on December 2, 1823, the Monroe Doctrine thus became a cornerstone of American foreign policy. Leaving Washington after a lifetime of public service, Monroe and his wife retired to their estate in Loudoun County, Virginia. Monroe returned to private life deeply in debt and spent many of his later years trying to resolve his financial problems. He petitioned the government to repay him for past services, with the government eventually providing a portion of the amount he sought. After his wife died in 1830, Monroe moved to New York City to live with his daughter. He died there on July 4,
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