History of Presidents of United States

The Presidents of the United States have been at the forefront of shaping the country’s political, social, and cultural landscape throughout its history. From George Washington, the first President, to the current President, Joe Biden, each individual who has held the office has played a pivotal role in molding the course of American history.

George Washington, who served two terms from 1788 to 1797, is considered one of the nation’s greatest leaders. He was a military hero who led the Continental Army to victory in the American Revolution and played a key role in establishing the country’s political institutions. He was also known for his wise and statesmanlike leadership.

Throughout the 19th century, Presidents continued to hold significant influence over the direction of American history. Andrew Jackson, the seventh President, was a populist leader who stood up against political and economic elites, while Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President, is widely regarded as one of the greatest American Presidents for his leadership during the Civil War and his role in ending slavery and preserving the Union.

The 20th century marked a period of significant change and turmoil, and Presidents played a critical role in leading the country through this time. Franklin D. Roosevelt, the 32nd President, is remembered for his leadership during the Great Depression and World War II and his New Deal policies, while John F. Kennedy, the 35th President, is remembered for his charisma and commitment to social and political reforms, including the Civil Rights Movement.

Since the end of World War II, the role of the President has continued to evolve in response to new challenges and opportunities. The end of the Cold War, the rise of globalization, and the increasing importance of technology and the internet have all had a profound impact on the President’s role. Despite these changes, the President of the United States remains one of the most powerful and influential figures in the world and continues to inspire people around the globe.

This is a list of the 45 Presidents of the United States, including their tenure in office, birth and death dates:

  1. George Washington (1789-1797)
  • Born: February 22, 1732 in Westmoreland County, Virginia
  • Died: December 14, 1799 in Mount Vernon, Virginia
  1. John Adams (1797-1801)
  • Born: October 30, 1735 in Quincy, Massachusetts
  • Died: July 4, 1826 in Quincy, Massachusetts
  1. Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809)
  • Born: April 13, 1743 in Albemarle County, Virginia
  • Died: July 4, 1826 in Charlottesville, Virginia
  1. James Madison (1809-1817)
  • Born: March 16, 1751 in Port Conway, Virginia
  • Died: June 28, 1836 in Orange County, Virginia
  1. James Monroe (1817-1825)
  • Born: April 28, 1758 in Westmoreland County, Virginia
  • Died: July 4, 1831 in New York City, New York
  1. John Quincy Adams (1825-1829)
  • Born: July 11, 1767 in Quincy, Massachusetts
  • Died: February 23, 1848 in Washington, D.C.
  1. Andrew Jackson (1829-1837)
  • Born: March 15, 1767 in Waxhaws, North Carolina
  • Died: June 8, 1845 in Nashville, Tennessee
  1. Martin Van Buren (1837-1841)
  • Born: December 5, 1782 in Kinderhook, New York
  • Died: July 24, 1862 in Kinderhook, New York
  1. William Henry Harrison (1841)
  • Became the 9th President of the United States
  • Served the shortest term in the office, only 31 days
  • Died of pneumonia, which he contracted while giving his Inaugural Address on a rainy day
  1. John Tyler (1841-1845)
  • Became the 10th President of the United States after Harrison’s death
  • Known for his veto of a bill that aimed to re-establish the National Bank
  • Had a difficult time in office as he faced opposition from both the Democrats and Whigs
  1. James K. Polk (1845-1849)
  • Became the 11th President of the United States
  • Known for his foreign policy, especially the Mexican-American War
  • Accomplished his main objectives, which were to acquire California, establish the 49th parallel as the border with Canada and lower the tariffs
  1. Zachary Taylor (1849-1850)
  • Became the 12th President of the United States
  • Served only 16 months in office before dying of an illness
  • Had a military background, having fought in the Mexican-American War
  1. Millard Fillmore (1850-1853)
  • Became the 13th President of the United States after Taylor’s death
  • Signed the Compromise of 1850, which attempted to ease tensions over slavery
  • Pursued a policy of neutrality in the European conflict over Hungary
  1. Franklin Pierce (1853-1857)
  • Became the 14th President of the United States
  • Had a controversial presidency, marked by the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which reopened the question of the spread of slavery
  • Struggled with sectional tensions and the growing rift between North and South
  1. James Buchanan (1857-1861)
  • Became the 15th President of the United States
  • Considered one of the weakest Presidents in the history of the country
  • Failed to prevent the secession of several Southern states, which eventually led to the American Civil War
  1. Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)
  • Became the 16th President of the United States
  • Led the country through the Civil War, preserving the Union and ending slavery
  • Assassinated by John Wilkes Booth in April 1865
  1. Andrew Johnson (1865-1869)
  • Became the 17th President of the United States after Lincoln’s assassination
  • Had a difficult time in office as he struggled with the Radical Republicans in Congress
  • Impeached by the House of Representatives but was acquitted by the Senate
  1. Ulysses S. Grant (1869-1877)
  • Became the 18th President of the United States
  • Led the country through a period of reconstruction after the Civil War
  • Had a controversial presidency, marked by scandals and corruption
  1. Rutherford B. Hayes (1877-1881)
  • Became the 19th President of the United States
  • Ended Reconstruction and removed Federal troops from the South
  • Had a peaceful presidency, marked by an effort to promote civil service reform
  1. James A. Garfield (1881)
  • Became the 20th President of the United States
  • Served only 200 days in office before being assassinated by Charles J. Guiteau
  • Had a short but eventful presidency, marked by efforts to reform the civil service
  1. Chester A. Arthur (1881-1885)
  • Became the 21st President of the United States after Garfield’s assassination
  • Known for his efforts to reform the civil service and fight corruption
  • Signed the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, whichestablished a merit-based system for government jobs
    1. Grover Cleveland (1885-1889, 1893-1897)
    • First president to serve two non-consecutive terms, making him both the 22nd and 24th president
    • Focused on reducing government spending and vetoing unnecessary bills
    • Supported the gold standard and signed the Interstate Commerce Act to regulate railroads
    • Also signed the Dawes Act, which aimed to assimilate Native Americans into American society
    1. Benjamin Harrison (1889-1893)
    • Grandson of William Henry Harrison, the 9th president
    • Signed the Sherman Antitrust Act to regulate monopolies
    • Supported high tariffs, which led to an economic downturn
    • Established national parks and signed the Land-Grant College Act, providing federal funding for higher education
    1. Grover Cleveland (1893-1897) (Second term)
    • Continued efforts to reduce government spending
    • Dealt with the Pullman Strike, a nationwide railroad strike, by sending in troops
    • Faced opposition from the silver lobby, who wanted silver to be used as currency, and signed the Gold Standard Act
    • Lost re-election due to the economic depression of the 1890s
    1. William McKinley (1897-1901)
    • Supported high tariffs and American imperialism
    • Led the country into the Spanish-American War, resulting in American control of Cuba and Puerto Rico
    • Negotiated the annexation of Hawaii and Guam
    • Assassinated by Leon Czolgosz, an anarchist, during his second term
    1. Theodore Roosevelt (1901-1909)
    • Became the youngest president at age 42 after McKinley’s assassination
    • Promoted the “Square Deal” domestic policy, balancing conservation, corporate regulation, and consumer protection
    • Took a more active role in foreign affairs, mediating the end of the Russo-Japanese War and winning the Nobel Peace Prize
    • Signed the Newlands Reclamation Act, which allowed for government dam and irrigation projects
    • Championed the “Big Stick” diplomacy, advocating for American military strength
    1. William Howard Taft (1909-1913)
    • Served as Roosevelt’s Secretary of War before becoming president
    • Supported conservation and infrastructure projects, but faced opposition from progressives
    • Appointed a number of conservative judges, leading to a split within the Republican party
    • Lost re-election to Roosevelt, who ran as a third-party candidate
    1. Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921)
    • Led the country through World War I and helped establish the League of Nations
    • Implemented progressive reforms, including the Federal Reserve Act, Clayton Antitrust Act, and the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote
    • Suffered a stroke in 1919, leaving him partially paralyzed for the remainder of his presidency
    1. Warren G. Harding (1921-1923)
    • Promised a return to “normalcy” after World War I and the progressive era
    • Known for his relaxed and informal presidency, but faced criticism for corruption within his administration
    • Died in office of a heart attack, leading to the appointment of Calvin Coolidge as president
    1. Calvin Coolidge (1923-1929)
    • Adopted a hands-off approach to government and favored limited government intervention
    • Signed the Immigration Act of 1924, which limited immigration to the US
    • presided over a period of economic growth, known as the “Roaring Twenties”
    1. Herbert Hoover (1929-1933)
      • Born: August 10, 1874 in West Branch, Iowa
      • Died: October 20, 1964 in New York City, New York
      • Tenure: March 4, 1929 – March 3, 1933
      • Achievements:
        • Experienced difficulty responding to the onset of the Great Depression.
        • Signed the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, which raised tariffs on goods, further deepening the depression.
        • Created the Reconstruction Finance Corporation to provide aid to struggling businesses.
  1. Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945)
    • Born: January 30, 1882 in Hyde Park, New York
    • Died: April 12, 1945 in Warm Springs, Georgia
    • Tenure: March 4, 1933 – April 12, 1945
    • Achievements:
      • Implemented the New Deal, a series of programs aimed at promoting economic recovery during the Great Depression.
      • Led the US through World War II and formed the Allied powers with the UK and Soviet Union.
      • Signed the Social Security Act, which provided financial support to elderly, disabled, and unemployed citizens.
      • Instituted the “fireside chats,” a series of radio addresses that helped to build public trust and support.
    1. Harry S. Truman (1945-1953)
      • Born: May 8, 1884 in Lamar, Missouri
      • Died: December 26, 1972 in Kansas City, Missouri
      • Tenure: April 12, 1945 – January 20, 1953
      • Achievements:
        • Made the difficult decision to use atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, effectively ending World War II.
        • Instituted the Marshall Plan, which provided aid to help rebuild Europe after the war.
        • Desegregated the armed forces and took steps to address racial inequalities.
        • Signed the National Security Act, which established the Department of Defense and the Central Intelligence Agency.
    1. Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961)
      • Born: October 14, 1890 in Denison, Texas
      • Died: March 28, 1969 in Washington D.C.
      • Tenure: January 20, 1953 – January 20, 1961
      • Achievements:
        • Oversaw the end of the Korean War and the beginning of the Cold War with the Soviet Union.
        • Instituted the Eisenhower Doctrine, which stated that the US would support any Middle Eastern country threatened by communism.
        • Launched the Space Race by creating the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
        • Signed the Civil Rights Act of 1957, which provided for federal protection of voting rights for African Americans.
    1. John F. Kennedy (1961-1963)
      • Born: May 29, 1917 in Brookline, Massachusetts
      • Died: November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas
      • Tenure: January 20, 1961 – November 22, 1963
      • Achievements:
        • Proposed the Peace Corps, a volunteer program aimed at promoting peace and friendship between nations.
        • Established the Alliance for Progress, a program aimed at promoting economic and social development in Latin America.
        • Advocated for Civil Rights, giving a famous speech in which he stated that “the civil rights of every man are diminished when the civil rights of one man are threatened.”
        • Took a strong stance against the Soviet Union during the Cuban Missile Crisis, helping to prevent nuclear war.
  2. Lyndon B. Johnson (1963-1969)
    • Born: August 27, 1908, in Stonewall, Texas
    • Death: January 22, 1973, in San Antonio, Texas
    • Achievements:
      • Signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
      • Launched the “Great Society” program, which aimed to combat poverty and racial inequality and included legislation on healthcare, education, and environmental protection.
      • Escalated U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, but later attempted to negotiate a peace settlement.
      • Signed the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which significantly reformed immigration laws and removed quotas based on national origin.
  3. Richard Nixon (1969-1974)

    • Born: January 9, 1913 in Yorba Linda, California
    • Died: April 22, 1994 in New York City, New York
    • Tenure: January 20, 1969 – August 9, 1974
    • Established diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China
    • Signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with the Soviet Unio
    • Created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
    • Created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
  1. Gerald Ford (1974-1977)
  • Born: July 14, 1913, Omaha, Nebraska
  • Died: December 26, 2006, Rancho Mirage, California
  • Achievements: Pardoned former President Richard Nixon, signed the Helsinki Accords, ended the draft during the Vietnam War
  • Work: Served as Vice President under Richard Nixon before becoming President after Nixon’s resignation
  1. Jimmy Carter (1977-1981)
  • Born: October 1, 1924, Plains, Georgia
  • Died: Still Alive
  • Achievements: Negotiated peace between Egypt and Israel, signed the Camp David Accords, established the Department of Energy and Department of Education
  • Work: Worked as a farmer and served as the governor of Georgia before becoming President
  1. Ronald Reagan (1981-1989)
  • Born: February 6, 1911, Tampico, Illinois
  • Died: June 5, 2004, Los Angeles, California
  • Achievements: Improved US-Soviet relations, signed the INF Treaty, oversaw the end of the Cold War
  • Work: Served as Governor of California before becoming President
  1. George H. W. Bush (1989-1993)
  • Born: June 12, 1924, Milton, Massachusetts
  • Died: November 30, 2018, Houston, Texas
  • Achievements: Overseen the end of the Cold War, signed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), led a coalition of nations to victory in the Gulf War
  • Work: Served as Vice President under Ronald Reagan before becoming President
  1. William J. Clinton (1993-2001)
  • Born: August 19, 1946, Hope, Arkansas
  • Died: Still Alive
  • Achievements: Passed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), signed the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, signed the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993
  • Work: Served as Governor of Arkansas before becoming President
  1. George W. Bush (2001-2009)
  • Born: July 6, 1946, New Haven, Connecticut
  • Died: Still Alive
  • Achievements: Responded to the 9/11 terrorist attacks, started the War on Terror, passed the No Child Left Behind Act
  • Work: Served as Governor of Texas before becoming President
  1. Barack Obama (2009-2017)
  • Born: August 4, 1961, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Died: Still Alive
  • Achievements: Became the first African American President of the United States, signed the Affordable Care Act, oversaw the end of US military involvement in Iraq
  • Work: Served as a senator from Illinois before becoming President
  1. Donald J. Trump (2017-2021)
  • Born: June 14, 1946, New York, New York
  • Died: Still Alive
  • Achievements: Passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, appointed three Supreme Court Justices, signed the First Step Act to reform the criminal justice system
  • Work: Worked as a businessman and television personality before becoming President

46. 46th President: Joe Biden (2021-present)

  • Born: November 20, 1942, Scranton, Pennsylvania
  • Death: N/A
  • Achievements:
    • 46th President of the United States
    • Former Vice President under Barack Obama from 2009-2017
    • Longest-serving senator in Delaware history
  • Work: Biden has focused on COVID-19 response, racial justice, climate change, and economic recovery. He has signed several executive orders to tackle these issues and has proposed a major infrastructure plan to create jobs and boost the economy.