Here are some important facts about James Monroe.
- He was a combat veteran, wounded in the American Revolution war at the battle of Trenton.
- He served as a delegate to the Continental Congress and Declaration of Independence. While he was not a strong proponent of slavery, he knew it could not be abolished at the time of the Declaration of Independence because southern states would have left the fragile union of states.
- As a diplomat to France, he helped secure the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 that opened up vast territories for American expansion, including Minnesota.
- He was the author behind the Monroe Doctrine in 1823 that forbid European countries from establishing colonies on United States soil.
- Monroe supported the founding of colonies in Africa for freed slaves. This eventually led to the formation of the nation of Liberia, whose capital, Monrovia is named after our fifth President.
The Thirteenth Amendment (Amendment XIII) to the United States Constitution abolished slavery in 1865. In total, twelve US Presidents owned slaves at some point in their lives, eight of whom owned slaves while serving as president.