John C. Calhoun (1782-1850) was educated at Moses Waddell's Academy and Yale College, from which he graduated in 1804. After studying law, he opened a law office in Abbeville. Calhoun's political career began in 1808 when he was elected to the state legislature. In 1810, Calhoun was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, and soon became known as one of the War Hawks who persistently called for war with Britain. Throughout the War of 1812, he was determined to raise troops, provide money, speed up supply lines, and anything else that would assist the military effort. After three terms in Congress, Calhoun was appointed Secretary of War by President James Monroe. This portrait of Calhoun was painted by Charles Bird King while Calhoun was Secretary of War. (For more on Calhoun's career, see John C. Calhoun)
Courtesy of the South Carolina State Museum.