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James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

National Museum of American History

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery
President George Washington began the practice of presenting peace medals to Indian chiefs on such important occasions as the signing of a treaty or a visit to the capital. By the time of Madison’s presidency, the Indians considered the medals an essential part of negotiations. In May 1812, John Mason, head of the Office of Indian Trade, ordered new Madison medals after learning that several chiefs would be visiting Washington. He did not want to give them leftover hollow Jefferson medals, knowing they preferred the solid ones the British gave out. Mason engaged John Reich, assistant to the chief coiner at the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, to cut the dies and strike the medals. Finally, on December 17, 1814, twelve silver medals of three different sizes arrived in Washington. The largest, pictured here, was given to the most important Indian chiefs.

James Madison 1751–1836

John Reich (1768–1833)

Plata, 1814–15; acuñada después del año 1809 que aparece en la medalla

Galería Nacional de Retratos, Instituto Smithsonian, donación de Betty A. y Lloyd G. Schermer

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits
James Madison, one of the nation’s most astute political thinkers, was the architect of the American Constitution and drafted the first ten constitutional amendments, known as the Bill of Rights. He later opposed the Washington administration, believing it favored too powerful a national government, and with Thomas Jefferson launched the Democratic-Republican Party (AntiFederalists). As secretary of state during Jefferson’s two terms, Madison and the president initiated a policy of economic warfare—denying Britain and France raw materials and food—to counter their interference with U.S. commerce. By avoiding actual conflict, they believed that the United States could protect its rights while still maintaining a pure republican government with low taxes, citizen militias, and little debt. However, their economic warfare failed to alter the policies of Great Britain and France, and by the time Madison became the nation’s fourth president, America was already inching toward war.

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery
Fourth president, 1809–1817

James Madison coauthored, with Alexander Hamilton and John Jay, the Federalist Papers (1787–88), a set of eighty-five essays arguing for the ratification of the Constitution, which remain among the greatest expressions of American political thought. Concerned that the Constitution tilted too far toward the interests of the federal government and neglected the individual, Madison wrote the first ten amendments, known as the Bill of Rights. As president, Madison tried to keep the United States from becoming embroiled in the conflicts in Europe, but after the British seized American ships in an effort to halt U.S. exports, the War of 1812 began. Despite its controversial origins—and conclusion— this “Second American Revolution,” as it was sometimes called, ended European interference with the United States and created a strong sense of American nationalism.

4o presidente, 1809–1817

James Madison fue coautor, junto a Alexander Hamilton y John Jay, de The Federalist Papers (Artículos federalistas, 1787–88), un conjunto de ochenta y cinco ensayos que abogaban por la ratificación de la Constitución. Esta obra constituye hasta el día de hoy una de las más importantes expresiones del pensamiento político estadounidense. Preocupado por que la Constitución se inclinaba demasiado hacia los intereses del gobierno federal y descuidaba al individuo, Madison redactó las primeras diez enmiendas, conocidas como la Carta de Derechos de Estados Unidos. Como presidente, Madison trató de evitar que la nación se involucrara en los conflictos de Europa, pero la apropiación de barcos estadounidenses por parte de Gran Bretaña en un intento de bloquear las exportaciones de Estados Unidos desató la Guerra de 1812. A pesar de sus controversiales orígenes —y conclusión—, esta “Segunda Guerra de Independencia”, como a veces se la llamaba, terminó la interferencia de Europa con Estados Unidos y generó un fuerte sentimiento nacionalista.

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

Catalog of American Portraits

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison

National Museum of American History
Color print; half length portrait of a seated man (President James Monroe) holding a document. In the background is a green drape and column.

James Madison Porter

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison Broom

National Portrait Gallery

James Madison's autograph

National Portrait Gallery
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