Andrew Jackson—born on 15 March 1767 at Waxhaw Settlement in Lancaster County, S.C.—fought for American independence during the Revolutionary War and was captured by the British while participating in the Battle of Hanging Rock on 6 August 1780. After the war, he studied law at Salisbury, N.C., and was admitted to the bar in 1787.
The following year, he moved to Tennessee and, before long, had acquired the tract of land where he later built his home, the Hermitage. In 1796, Jackson took part in the Tennessee constitutional convention and was elected as the new state's first member of the Federal House of Representatives. Although elevated to the Senate the following year, he left Washington in 1798, soon joined the Tennessee Superior Court, and remained on the bench until 1804.
Commissioned major general of the Tennessee militia in 1802, Jackson led the state forces that defeated the Creek Indians at the Battle of Horsehoe Bend. Commissioned a major general in the United States Army, he commanded the American troops that routed British forces driving toward New Orleans on 8 January 1815 and thus achieved the national renown which first prompted the public to view him as presidential timber.
He later led expeditions into Florida to protect the rights of American citizens there, but received considerable criticism for his execution of two outlaws who were British subjects, an act that brought the United States near to war with both England and Spain. The later purchase of Florida partially vindicated his position.
A candidate for the Presidency in 1824, Jackson received a larger popular vote than any other candidate; but, since no one had a majority, the choice of the president was left to the House of Representatives which picked John Quincy Adams. However, Jackson won a landslide victory four years later and, on 4 March 1829, began the first of two terms in the White House. His administration was characterized by a democratization of the nation, strong support of the Federal government; the introduction of the spoil system; the confinement of Indian tribes on reservations; and a victorious struggle against the wealthy and aristocratic elements in the nation in his battle opposing the recharter of the National Bank. Jackson died at the Hermitage on 8 June 1845.
(Sch: t. 112; Ibp. 73'4"; b. 20'6"; dph. 7'4"; a. 6 guns)
The cutter Andrew Jackson was built at the Washington Navy Yard in 1832 for the United States Revenue Cutter Service and—under the command of Capt. W. A. Howard, USRCS— sailed late in the year to Charleston, S.C., to be on hand there to support the Federal Government during the nullification crisis over new tariff laws. She and four other cutters forced ships arriving from foreign ports to anchor under the guns of Fort Moultrie and store their cargoes in the fort until the duties on them were paid at the newly established customshouse at Castle Pinckney.
Tension subsided before the advent of spring, but the cutter— which carried the name of the President who had championed the Union cause during the Constitutional crisis—remained in Charleston harbor for regular duty. She apparently served there until relieved by Jefferson on 25 November 1834.
Andrew Jackson then cruised along the coast to discourage smuggling operations and to assist distressed shipping. A year later, she operated briefly in the Chesapeake Bay before heading south to support Army and Navy operations along the coasts of Florida and Georgia during the Seminole War. Besides observing the activities of the Indians as she cruised along the shore, she inspected other revenue cutters and their stations as well as the lighthouses she passed.
The ship returned north in the summer of 1837 but was directed on 19 September of that year to prepare for more service on the Florida coast under orders of the Secretary of the Navy. However, before beginning that mission, she got underway from Baltimore on an unsuccessful search for ". . . the pirate that had captured packet ship Susquehanna." The cutter finally sailed for Pensacola, Fla., on 31 October and operated in the gulf. On 4 December, she moved via Tampa Bay to Charlotte Harbor to cooperate with the Army. Andrew Jackson remained in the gulf until returning to Baltimore on 7 April 1838, but headed back toward Southern waters again on 16 June. She returned to Baltimore that autumn, but set a course for Savannah, Ga., on 28 November 1838. She was called back to Baltimore late in the spring of 1839. Following the end of the Seminole War, the cutter carried out a similar pattern of activity, alternating duty at Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York with service in Southern climes.
Soon after the beginning of the Civil War, the ship entered the New York Navy Yard to receive armament. She departed New York on 26 April 1861 and sailed for Baltimore on 10 September. She served at that port throughout the conflict and, after the fighting ended, was sold there in October 1865.