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Julia Gardiner Tyler 1820 ~ 1889


Julia Gardiner Tyler

President John Tyler married, as his second wife, Miss Julia Gardiner, on the 26th day of June, 1844, at the Church of the Ascension, New York City. Their wedding was the first instance of the marriage of a President during his term of office.

Miss Gardiner was the daughter of a wealthy gentleman from Gardiner's Island who had come upon a visit to Washington in the winter of 1843, accompanied by his beautiful daughter. They were invited by Captain Stockton to accompany the President and other friends to Alexandria on the trial trip of a new ship which had been manned by large guns. On their return, when opposite the fort, an explosion took place which changed the merry party to one of mourning, Miss Gardiner's father being among the number who were killed. There were a great many lost in this accident. The bodies of the killed were taken to the White House, from which they were conveyed to their last resting places.

The President's marriage to Miss Gardiner took place some months after this disaster. Mrs. Tyler was a queenly woman and presided over the White House with exceptional grace and acceptability for eight months prior to the expiration of President Tyler's term of office. On his retirement they repaired to his home in Virginia. The ex-President died in Richmond, January 17, 1862.

After the Civil War, Mrs. Tyler received from Congress a pension which was voted to her in the winter of 1879. She had suffered great pecuniary losses after the death of her husband, and it was proper that she should receive this recognition of her husband's services to his country. For many years she resided in Georgetown, D. C, and being a devout Catholic, found it agreeable to be near the Greorgetown Convent, where her daughter was educated. She died in 1889.

Women of America

Source: The Part Taken by Women in American History, By Mrs. John A. Logan, Published by The Perry-Nalle Publishing Company, Wilmington, Delaware, 1912.


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