John C. Breckinridge Advantages And Disadvantages

800 Words4 Pages
The mid-nineteenth century was a very difficult time for the government and for the politicians in America. Slavery was dividing the country at the time between the north and the south. The south even seceded from the Union and formed the Confederacy, so politicians had to decide if they wanted to side with the Union or the Confederacy. One of the politicians that held office in both the Union and Confederacy was John C. Breckinridge. John Cabell Breckinridge was born in Lexington, Kentucky, on January 16, 1821. He was born into a family full of politicians. His grandpa served on the Senate and as Attorney General under Thomas Jefferson. His grandfather also helped present the Kentucky Resolutions and helped with the Louisiana Purchase. His…show more content…
They did not share political views and were not involved with the same political party at all, but they became very good friends (Floyd Jr.). In 1856, Breckinridge was nominated by the Democratic Party to be the running mate of President James Buchanan, and he was elected around the age of 35, which makes him the youngest vice- president in American history (History.com Staff). In 1860, the Democratic Party nominated Stephen Douglas to run as the Democratic candidate in the Presidential election, but the southern Democrats did not like Douglas and held their own convention. They nominated John C. Breckinridge, even though he had no desire to run, because he was pro-slavery with Joseph Lane as his running mate. Lincoln eventually won the election by a landslide. Breckinridge tried to support the Union, but as the succession happened, he acquired southern views. His home state Kentucky supported the Union, so Breckinridge’s commitment to his home state was questioned (“John Cabell Breckinridge”). He moved to Virginia and volunteered to join the Confederate forces, and he was expelled from the Senate. He served as a brigadier general and then was promoted to major general. He participated in the Battle of Shiloh, Battle of Stone’s River, Battle of Chickamauga, Battle of Chattanooga, Battle of New Market, Battle of Cold Harbor, and Jubal Early’s…show more content…
He left his family and moved to Cuba. After three years, he rejoined his family in Canada, and he also travelled to France, England, and the Middle East. On December 25, 1868, President Andrew Johnson pardoned all Confederate officials and allowed them to return to the states. He practiced law for the rest of his life, and he eventually died in Lexington on May 17, 1875, due to a liver injury from the war (“John Cabell Breckinridge”). Some would say John C. Breckinridge lived a short life, but he actually lived a very full life. He held several political positions and served in several battles. He does not receive a lot of credit for his work because people view him as a traitor to the Union. He should not be viewed as a traitor because he was just serving where he was needed and was fighting for what he
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