QUEBEC-RESEARCH-L ArchivesArchiver > QUEBEC-RESEARCH > 2005-01 > 1105136322
Subject: Excerpt Of History
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2005 17:18:42 EST
June 15, 1849 Nashville
"James K. Polk, eleventh US president, died at age 53 of dysentery. Polk's
campaign slogan in 1844 was "fifty-four Forty or Fight," which referred to a
dispute with Britain over the US-Canadian border. He settled this and led a
successful war in Mexico that established US claims over Texas and California.
Some thought cholera killed Polk, as that waterborne disease was in the area
at the time and had similar symptoms. Texan Sam Houston observed of Polk's
death, "A victim of the use of water as a beverage."
The practice of playing "Hail to the Chief" to announce the entrance of the
president was started by Polk's wife. She had noted that her short husband was
often ignored when he came into a room. The formal, musical salute