John Quincy Adams (17671848)

By George Caleb Bingham, ca. 1844

Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

Not to be used without permission

In 1836 John Quincy Adams was 68 years old, a former Secretary of State, minister to several European nations, U.S. Senator, and the only former President of the United States to serve in the House. His efforts against the gag rule earned him the title "Old Man Eloquent" from his friends, but he also received death threats from slavery supporters. In the House, Southern representatives tried unsuccessfully to pass a resolution of censure against him.