On September 15th, 1794, James Madison married my favorite first lady, Dolley Payne Todd (Madison.) The History Channel has described Dolley as "vivacious", "voluptuous", AND "robust", which is quite the trifecta of adjectives. Most people remember Dolley Madison because she smuggled a really big painting of George Washington out of the White House to save it from the British during the War of 1812. She loved turbans and parties, and also her husband, even though he sounds kind of boring.
|Dolley Madison saving some papers while some guy looks on|
This is my problem with writing about the Madisons - I'm always distracted by Dolley and spend no time on James whatsoever! Like today I learned that some newspapers in 1808 attempt to smear Dolley's reputation by claiming she'd been "intimate" with Thomas Jefferson! (Of course I don't believe it. But imagine if that were true!)
Also, many historians believe that Dolley Madison popularized ice cream as a dessert, so you're welcome, America. And I'm sure James Madison did some stuff while he was president, too. Happy anniversary, Madisons!
Labels: Dolley Madison, history, women's history