Which President Never Married?

In many regards, people expect for the President of the United States to be married. However, there is one case where one of the United States presidents never married. Some say that this particular President enjoyed being a flirt and didn’t want to settle down. Others say that he chose not to marry for a variety of personal reasons. In any case, the 15th President of the United States James Buchanan was the only president who never married.

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Reasons Buchanan Never Married

No one know for sure why Buchanan never married; however, there are possible causes including:

  • Buchanan's flirtatious nature
  • A broken heart
  • A homosexual orientation

Buchanan's Flirtatious Nature

Some claim that Buchanan was a flirt and like the company of different women, making it difficult for him to maintain a steady relationship.

Buchanan's Broken Heart

Another possible cause for his decision to remain a bachelor could have been a broken heart. It was said that Buchanan was engaged to Ann Caroline Coleman who was the daughter of a well to do iron businessman. Although he was engaged to this young women, he rarely spent time with her because he was too busy with his political aspirations and law firm to court Miss Coleman properly. There were speculations that Buchanan only proposed to Coleman because of her prestigious background and was courting other women while engaged to her.

When Coleman became aware through others that he may only be interested in her for status and money and his possible infidelity she confronted him, but he denied it.

Coleman broke off the engagement after discovering that Buchanan visited the wife of a friend. Later Coleman would die of an overdose of the substance laudanum. Upon hearing the news, Buchanan was said to be grief stricken and vowed never to marry because he only wanted to be with Coleman and no other woman would do.

Buchanan's Homosexual Orientation

There is speculation that President James Buchanan was homosexual, and this is the reason that he never married.

Prior to his presidency Buchanan lived for 15 years with William Rufus King the Senator of Alabama. The closeness of the relationship was regarded as unusual during those times and Andrew Jackson even referred to the two as “Miss Nancy” and “Aunt Fancy.”

The nieces of Buchanan and King burned all the letters that the two wrote each other, causing further speculation about Buchanan’s sexuality. Because Buchanan was single and chose not to marry, he had an adopted orphaned niece act as First Lady.

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Background on the Unmarried President

There are several interesting facts about James Buchanan besides his martial status.

  • He is the only President from the state of Pennsylvania.
  • Buchanan is consistently rated as one of the worst presidents in American history because of his handling of the country prior to the beginning of the Civil War.
  • Buchanan is known for having a say in the very infamous Dred Scott Decision. This decision basically stated that Dred Scott, a black slave, was his master's propoerty and was not a citizen of the United States. This decision was a controversial ruling which was rendered shortly before the Civil War.

Because President Buchanan wanted the Supreme Court to make the final decision about the issue of slavery in the states, many people felt he used the Supreme Court to indirectly achieve the his goal of maintaining slave owners rights.

There were many people that were not particularly pleased with Buchanan as a president. In fact, the displeasure with the way in which he led the United States became such an issue that Buchanan had problems getting anything passed through Congress. It has even been noted that Buchanan vetoed a bill passed by Congress to create more colleges because he personally felt that, “there were already too many educated people.”