Rachel Donelson Jackson
Born: June 15, 1767 at Halifax County, Colony of Virginia
Died: December 22, 1828 (aged 61)
Spouse: Lewis Robards (m. 1787 – 1790), Andrew Jackson (m. 1791 – 1828)
Spouse: President Andrew Jackson
Children: Rachel Jackson had three adopted children with her husband: Andrew Jackson Jr., Lyncoya Jackson, and Andrew Jackson Hutchings.
Facts about Rachel Donelson Jackson
Some observers described Rachel as an unfashionable country woman. By her own admission, she did prefer the company of her family and religious services to a constant round of parties and social engagements.
- During the presidential election campaign of 1828, supporters of John Quincy Adams, Jackson’s opponent, accused his wife of being a bigamist, among other things.
- During the last months of the administration, Sarah Yorke Jackson, wife of Andrew Jackson, Jr., presided at the mansion in her stead.
- She was an avid reader of the Bible and religious works as well as poetry.
- Even though her maladies began as early as 1825, Jackson always blamed his political enemies for her death.
Though most of her letters were destroyed in the fire that burned the Hermitage mansion in 1834, the few that remain indicate she was an affectionate woman who cared deeply about her friends and family.
Rachel Donelson Jackson Childhood
Rachel Donelson was born in 1767 in Pittsylvania County which was on the western frontier of Virginia. She was the eighth of eleven children born to the Tennessee pioneers, John and Rachel Donelson.
When Rachel was 12 years old, her father led her family, along with a large group of others, on a flotilla down the Cumberland River for nearly 1,000 miles in what today is middle Tennessee. They arrived in April 1780 to become some of the first white settlers of Nashville.
Due to the sustained threat of attack by Native Americans on the Cumberland, the Donelsons soon moved north to Harrodsburg, Kentucky.
It was there in Harrodsburg that Rachel married Lewis Robards at the age of eighteen. By all accounts, it was a most unhappy marriage. By this time, Rachels father had died and her mother had returned to Nashville. After separating several times from her husband, Rachel eventually moved to her mothers house in Tennessee.
Where is Rachel Donelson Jackson buried?
She was buried on the grounds at The Hermitage.
How did Rachel Donelson Jackson die?
She died of tuberculosis on December 22, 1828.