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A Delicate Game to Play: James K. Polk's Cabinet

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  • Overview

    This special exhibition will focus on the eight men (six original appointees and two replacements) who filled the six cabinet level positions in the Polk administration from 1845 to 1849. Except for Secretary of State James Buchanan who was later elected as the 15th U.S. president, these men are mostly forgotten. All were able executives, however, and greatly contributed to the success of Polk's presidency. Among their accomplishments were treaties that added nearly one million square miles of U.S. territory, tariff reform, the creation of the independent treasury system, prosecution of America’s first foreign war, the formation of the U. S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, and important reforms to the postal system. The exhibit will feature historical artifacts and documents that illustrate these accomplishments.