20th U.S. President March 1881 – September 1881
LIFETIME: 1831-1881, of English and French ancestry
BIRTHPLACE: Moreland Hills OH - a rough-hewn log cabin
PHOTO CREDIT: unknown
PRIMARY HOME: "Lawnfield" in Mentor OH - a Victorian style home on 148 acres of land, and expanded from a 1½-story farmhouse to a spacious, gabled mansion
PHOTO CREDIT: 2003 Calendar of Presidential Homes by Presidential Avenue
The last U.S. president born in a frontier log cabin, James Garfield worked his way through school as a carpenter to become a professor of ancient languages and literature. He was also an ordained minister, served with distinction in The Civil War, and was a U.S. Congressman for 17 years.
Because Garfield campaigned for the presidency from his own front porch, the property was christened "Lawnfield" by the press who camped out on his farmland! The Victorian mansion had modern gas lighting, and 30 rooms with plenty of space for his wife, their seven children, and his mother.
Only four months in office, President Garfield was shot by a vindictive office-seeker. He lingered for several weeks, but ultimately died of a lethal infection from the non-sterile instruments used to locate the bullet.
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