Andrew Jackson: Common Man and General
to President of the United States
Jason E. Thompson
American Military University
Andrew Jackson: Common Man, General, and Statesman
Andrew Jackson is arguably one of the most controversial leaders in early American history. His personality was known to be rough and abrasive at times and his dueling skills were widely known. During his years as an exceptional Army officer, he made many difficult choices which have subjected him to intense scrutiny over the subsequent years. Throughout his political years, many individuals around him became intimately familiar with his quick temper and voracious appetite for using profanity during verbal altercations. Undoubtedly there are character or personality concerns which may be raised or ethical scrutiny which may be applied to some of his military and political decisions. However, Andrew Jackson remains one of the most exceptional examples of a poor, common American winning the hearts and minds of both his soldiers and the American people through his indomitable spirit, work ethic, and substance of character.
Andrew Jackson, the son of Scot-Irish parents, was born on March 15th, 1767 in an uncertain location in vicinity of the North and South Carolina border. Jackson’s father passed away in an accident just prior to Andrew’s birth leaving him to grow up with two older brothers and his mother. Andrew was subjected to the fairly normal experience of poor, common-folk in that his early education was intermittent at best. In his book Andrew Jackson, Robert Remini describes this educational deficit in saying that “he never received an education that prepared him for the great office he later achieved.” He volunteered as a courier for the local militia during the American Revolutionary War during which his eldest brother, Hugh, died in 1779. Shortly thereafter, Andrew and his remaining brother, Robert, were captured by the British and contracted smallpox. Andrew’s...