Who was Chester Alan Arthur? Many people do not recognize his name and do not know who he was. This is a shame because he was a very influential person during his time. Who was Chester Alan Arthur? Well, Chester Alan Arthur was the 21st President of the United States. If you knew that then give yourself a big pat on the back. If you did not know that don’t feel bad because he is generally one of the least known and least famous of all the Presidents of the United States. Chester Alan Arthur became President after James Garfield was assassinated.
It was 1829 when Chester Alan Arthur was born. He came into the World in the small town of Fairfield, Vermont according to most historians, although his actual place of birth is still debated. 1829 was also the year that Andrew Jackson was sworn in as President of the United States. There was no thought among the family that this little baby born would one day grow up to be President of the United States.
In today’s World there are a lot of conspiracy theories that President Barack Obama was not born in the United States. During the time of the Chester Alan Arthur Presidency there was a similar conspiracy that Arthur was actually born in Canada. There is a lot of evidence that shows this is a valid possibility, although most historians feel that he was indeed born in or near Fairfield, Vermont.
Regardless of where he was actually born, there is no disputing that he went on to become the 21st President of the United States. In the Presidential Election of 1880 Chester Alan Arthur was voted to become the next Vice-President. The selection of the vice-President was done differently back then as opposed to today’s World where the Presidential candidates pick their own vice-president.
8 Delegate votes were cast for Blanche Bruce to become Vice-President. This was very notable because it was the first time ever that a black candidate received delegates during a Presidential election.
Chester Alan Arthur graduated from Union College when he was only 18 years old. Union College was a hotbed for future Presidents because there have been a total of 18 Presidents of the United States who had also attended Union College.
After graduating from college Chester Arthur begun teaching school but then abandoned this pursuit as he decided to further his education by going to law school. He ended up having to take another teaching job to support himself while he was attending law school. It was fortunate that he did attend laws school like this because it set him for on the path towards eventually becoming President, even though this was not even a tiny dot on his mental radar.
After law school Chester Alan Arthur moved to Cohoes, New York to take a job as Principal of a school. For the next year Chester Alan Arthur saved money and studies hard in preparation for taking the BAR exam in order to get licensed as an attorney. He continued to study law but now he was doing it at State and National Law School in Ballston Spa, New York.
After finishing up at the National Law School in Ballston Chester Alan Arthur moved to New York City to do an internship with a law firm. Arthur was fully admitted to the Bar in 1854. At this point Chester Alan Arthur could have easily become a successful lawyer for the rest of his life and his name never would have entered into the history books, but Chester Alan Arthur was an ingenious man and he had high goals, even though he was not quite aiming as high as President of the United States.
After he was elected to be Vice-President he was very active and also wholly supportive of President Garfield. President Garfield was shot and eventually died about 2 months later from the attack. It was only after President Garfield died that Chester Alan Arthur was sworn in as the President of the United States.
As the 1884 Presidential election reached closer Chester Alan Arthur did not have enough support to get nominated for another term by his party. Chester Alan Arthur term as a President came to an end and the other party got the win with Grover Cleveland becoming the next president after Chester Alan Arthur.
Chester Arthur Left office in 1885 and died in 1886. He knew the end was coming as he had been sick and knew that he was about to pass away.
Chester Arthur passed many different laws but one of the most interesting laws was that he made polygamy a federal crime. At the time the Mormons were openly practicing polygamy and Chester Arthur did not agree with this marriage practice at all. By making polygamy a federal crime it also forbids any polygamist to take federal office.
Today as historians reflect on the Presidential career of Chester Alan Arthur it becomes apparent that there are still a lot of mixed emotions surrounding him. Arthur was not necessarily a bad President, but when he first became president almost all of his Cabinet resigned because they had different political views then did Arthur. A lot of people resented him being President and did everything they could to make him look bad. In reality Arthur did the best he could with what h had and he definitely stood firm in his belief that slavery was immoral and wrong. Regardless of the views you may have of President Arthur, there is no denying that he is one of the few Presidents ever too hold office that was not elected to be there by the People.