Skip to main content
  1. News
  2. Top News

President dies in Lancaster today

See also

The President died in Lancaster today. That is to say, the 15th President, James Buchanan, died in Lancaster today, 1 June, back in 1868. He was 77 years old and died of Rheumatic Gout.

More Photos

Buchanan was born 23 April 1791 into a prominent Irish-Pennsylvania family in Cove Gap, PA. His parents were James Sr., and Elizabeth Spear Buchanan. He was the second of 11 children. He graduated Old Stone Academy and Dickinson College. It was after college that he moved to Lancaster.

Buchanan enlisted and served during the War of 1812. He volunteered in defense of Baltimore.

Before serving as President, he served five terms in the House of Representatives, as a Minister to Russia, and in the Senate for a decade. He also served as Secretary of State to President James Polk and as Minister to Great Britain under President Franklin Pierce, his predecessor.

In March 1861 Buchanan returned to Lancaster to his home, known as Wheatland, to retire. Tensions continued to heat up between Northern and Southern states. A little over a month later, Confederate forces fired upon Fort Sumter, thus throwing the nation into the Civil War. He became a recluse after his memoir, published in 1866, was largely passed by.

From 1857 to 1861, he served as our nation’s 15th President. He is the only US President from Pennsylvania and the only bachelor President. His niece, Harriet Lane, stood as the First Lady during his presidency.

He is buried at the Woodward Hill Cemetery. The Reverend John W. Nevin, his friend and neighbor, officiated at his funeral. A Masonic burial service was performed at his graveside by his fellow Masons.

On Saturday, 7 June, the Lancaster Historical Society will open Wheatland and take visitors back to this day in 1868 when the President slipped into history. The Living History Tours run hourly from noon to 4 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults. Seniors and children are discounted.

Advertisement

News

  • Israel, Hamas clash in Gaza
    At least 550 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza in the third week of the war
    Video
    Video
  • Pro-Russia guards
    President Obama criticizes pro-Russian rebels for blocking off the MH17 crash site
    World News
  • National Guard at Texas border
    Texas Gov. Rick Perry sending National Guard troops to the US-Mexico border
    US News
  • Unlikely Putin defender
    The unlikeliest US politician comes to the defense of Russia's president, Vladimir Putin
    Politics
  • iPhone 6 coming soon
    Apple is gearing up for the iPhone 6, orders tens of millions of units
    Tech
  • Gynecologist settlement
    Johns Hopkins agrees to $190M settlement for patients recorded by gynecologist
    Strange News