Time to Write Now By Julaina Kleist-Corwin

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Which Three U.S. Presidents Died On July 4th?

Jefferson and Adams on July 4th deathsOn July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both passed away. Six years later on July 4, 1831, James Monroe, the fifth president died at the age of 73. Newspapers reported about the remarkable coincidence that three revolutionary presidents passed on July 4th.

New York’s Journal of Commerce noted: “Thus three of four ex-presidents have died on the memorable Fourth of July and two of them on the same Fourth of July. A coincidence so extraordinary is scarcely to be found in history.”

An excerpt from Margaret P. Battin’s research concerning the same day deaths of Adams and Jefferson included “different criteria, ranging from mere coincidence and divine intervention to men’s willingness or desire to die on the anniversary day.” She concluded that the possibilities are “the very questions about death and dying that are so controversial today.” (She did not add Monroe to her study.)

Daniel Webster’s eulogy for Adams and Jefferson in 1826 had made the point “that something other than coincidence was involved.”

To read more from this article in Constitution Daily click here.

Adams and Jefferson were at odds about policy-making. Although previous friends, their deep-rooted political differences  turned them into bitter enemies. When their presidential terms were over, they renewed their friendship and corresponded with each other for fourteen years.

“On July 4, 1826, at the age of 90, Adams lay on his deathbed while the country celebrated Independence Day. His last words were Thomas Jefferson still survives. He was mistaken: Jefferson had died five hours earlier at Monticello at the age of 82.”  Click here.

James MonroeWhat do you think? Coincidence or not?





Julaina Kleist-Corwin

Editor of Written Across the Genres

Author of Hada’s Fog


  1. Gary Lea says:

    I’m in the “no such thing as coincidence” camp.

  2. ladywinfred says:

    Lots of weird stuff goes on in this old universe of ours, doesn’t it? I loved the part about the two old warhorses going within hours of each other. Think that might almost slip into the Twilight Zone kind of explanation!

    • julaina says:

      Yes, Lady Winfred, Twilight Zone is all around us, we just don’t pay attention to it all the time.

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