- About Us
- Tours and Events
- Cemetery Map
- Interment Index
- Archive Finding Aid
Hon. John C. Calhoun
(b. 1782 - d. 31 Mar 1850) Public Vault
A Representative and a Senator from South Carolina and a Vice President of the United States. Graduated from Yale College. Studied law and practiced. Elected as a War Democrat to the 12th through 15th Congresses (1811 to 1817). Secretary of War 1817 to 1825. Elected Vice President of the United States in 1824 and reelected in 1828 on the Jackson ticket and served from 1825 to 1832. Elected to the United States Senate 1832 and reelected in 1834 and 1840. Served from 1832 to 1843. Appointed Secretary of State 1844 to 1845. Elected to the United States Senate and served from 1845 until his death. Cenotaph at Range 60 Site 146.
The National Intelligencer, April 1, 1850
Death of Mr. Calhoun
Died, yesterday morning at his lodgings in this city, the Honorable John Caldwell Calhoun.
It is known to all of our readers that this distinguished Senator and citizen has been suffering during the whole winter under a menacing pulmonic affection, which, during the last eight or ten weeks, has, with only a few brief intervals confined him to his room. Thus gradually sinking, he expired yesterday morning between 7 and 8 o'clock.
Mr. Calhoun was born the 18th of March, 1782, and was therefore just turned of 68 years of age. More than forty years of his life were spent in public service, and nearly the whole of that period in the Legislative or Executive Departments of the General Government. With ample materials before us, we yet deny ourselves the satisfaction of entering into the particulars of his long and brilliant career, and eminent character, as that grateful duty will be performed more fitly today in the Senate, by hands more worthy of the task. Without trenching on that privilege, we may be permitted to say of the deceased, that few of our public men, since those of the revolutionary era, have filled a larger space in the public eye; few have acted a more important part on the stage of American politics; few have left a larger void in the public councils, and not one has descended to the tomb with a deeper devotion on the part of personal friends, or with a larger share of public admiration, than this illustrious Carolinian.
The National Intelligencer, Tuesday, April 2, 1850
There was no business transacted in either House of Congress yesterday, beyond the melancholy proceedings occasioned by the death of the distinguished Senator, John C. Calhoun, and the tributes paid to his character by the most eminent members in both Houses. These were solemn and impressive in the highest degree, and were listened to with the profoundest attention and interest by as many auditors as could find room in the galleries, lobbies, and doorways of both halls. The Funeral will take place today.
The National Intelligencer, Wednesday, April 3, 1850
Funeral of the Hon. J.C. Calhoun
The two Houses of Congress were yesterday engaged in the performance of funeral rites over the remains of the Hon. John C. Calhoun, and the Senate chamber presented a solemn and deeply interesting aspect. The corpse of the deceased Statesman--enclosed in a metallic case, bearing the following simple inscription on the plate: "John C. Calhoun: born March 18, 1782; died March 31, 1850"--was placed on a bier in the centre area, around which were grouped relatives and friends, amongst whom were a son of the deceased, the surviving Senator and the Representatives in Congress from South Carolina, and veteran statesman as pall-bearers, some of whom have been Mr. Calhoun's contemporaries during the many years he has been in the National Councils--Mr. Clay and Mr. Webster, Mr. Mangum and Mr. Cass, Mr. Berrien and Mr. King. The other members of the Senate, in two semi-circular rows of seats, enclosed the melancholy group.
The President of the United States was present, seated on the right of the Vice President, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives occupied a chair on his left. The Chaplains of the Senate and House of Representatives occupied the Secretary's desk, to the right and left of whom were the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House, and immediately in front were the Committee of Arrangements. The subordinate officers of the two Houses were in appropriate positions around the platform.
The Chief Justice and Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States, and its officers, in their robes, and two of the Judges of the United States Court for the District of Columbia, were assigned seats in the chamber on the extreme left of the Presiding Officer, and the extensive Diplomatic Corps were on the right. The Members of the House of Representatives, with the Heads of Departments, occupied the residue of the body of the chamber, leaving the outer circle behind the bar for Officers of the Army and the Navy. Ex-Cabinet officers, Senators, Members of the House of Representatives, Mayor and Councils of Washington, Heads of Bureaus, and other civilians entitled to admission, were accommodated beneath the marble gallery and in the adjacent aisles.
The circular gallery was exclusively appropriated to ladies, leaving only the limited space in the marble gallery behind the Reporters for such male spectators as could gain admittance.
The Service performed was that of the Episcopal Church, of which the Chaplain to the Senate, the Rev. C.M. Butler, is a Minister. The ritual, commencing with "I am the Resurrection and the Life," was followed by a Sermon, brief but impressively appropriate, from Psalm 82, 6 and 7: "I have said ye are gods; and all of you are children of the Most High. But ye shall die like men and fall like one of the princes."
The funeral cortege left the Senate chamber for the Congressional Burial Ground, where the body is for the present deposited, in the following order:
Order of Procession:
The Chaplains of both Houses of Congress
Physicians who attended the deceased
Committee of Arrangements
Mr. Dodge, Wisc.
Mr. Davis, Miss.
The family and friends of the deceased
The Senator and Representatives from the State of South Carolina as mourners
The Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate of the United States
The Vice President and Secretary of the Senate
The Senate of the United States
The Sergeant-at-Arms of the House of Representatives
The Speaker and Clerk of the House of Representatives
The House of Representatives
The President of the United States (Taylor)
The Heads of Departments
The Chief Justice and Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States and its officers
The Diplomatic Corps
Judges of the United States
Officers of the Executive Departments
Officers of the Army and Navy
The Mayor and Councils of Washington
Citizens and Strangers
"Some when they die, die all; their mould'ring clay
"Is but an emblem of their memories;
"The space quite closes up through which they passed:
"That some have liv'd, they leave a mark behind
"Shall pluck the shining age from vulgar time
"And give it whole to late posterity."
©2013 Historic Congressional Cemetery