Peggy Eaton Research Paper

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Pages: 4

Peggy Eaton, formerly known as Margaret O’Neill Eaton, was married to Senator John Eaton who would eventually become the Secretary of War. Her father owned a tavern in the DC area where she gained a reputation as beautiful and was also very well educated. Her first husband, John Timberlake, died at sea in 1828. She was quick to marry John Eaton in 1829 which caused a lot of scrutiny among Jackson’s cabinet members’ wives who felt it was too short of a mourning period and thought that she was having an affair with Eaton well before their marriage. Also the wives felt that Peggy lacked morals that all cabinet wives should have since she said her mind and spoke on issues that women weren’t supposed to ever talk about. The cabinet wives, led by Vice President John C. Calhoun’s wife Floride, ostracized the Eatons and also got their husbands to do the same. Peggy was a very good friend of Jackson’s and usually agreed with most of his political views. President Jackson, who had just lost his wife due to what he believed was stress from negative press, sided with the Eatons and tried to diffuse the negative press around Peggy. This caused the cabinet to oppose Jackson’s rulings and views, mainly John C. Calhoun. All of this division among the cabinet caused all of the members to resign and Jackson was forced to create …show more content…
An issue that plagued Jackson in the beginning of his first term were state rights, and Jackson sided with the belief that Federal power trumped states’. I believe that Peggy Eaton would agree with his consensus of federal power since she grew up in Washington DC where a strong national government was very prevalent. Another reason I believe her to side with Jackson is that she was married to someone who sided with him and she was very vocal in her opinions and I feel it would be rather difficult to be married to someone with such polarizing