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A Peaceful Transfer of Power

The First Peaceful Transfer of Power

By Stacy Conley

Middle School Bible Study, Math 8/7, Classical Composition/Literature.

On March 4, 1791 John Adams took office as the second president of the United States of America. This was monumental, as a peaceful transfer of power from one man to another.

On February 17, 1801, 223 years ago this weekend, Thomas Jefferson was elected the 3rd president of the United States. This election would bring the first peaceful transfer of power from one political party to another in the United States.

The campaign for the presidency that year was volatile and slanderous. There was heated debate between Democratic-Republicans and their support of the French Revolution, and the Federalists and their desire to adopt British policies into American government. After a close and complicated vote, Democratic-Republican Thomas Jefferson won the


Because of the adversarial nature of the campaign, Thomas Jefferson, fearing violence, arrived at his inauguration with an armed guard, but no violence would occur. In his inaugural address, Jefferson sought to heal political differences by declaring, “We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists.” Since 1801, the peaceful transfer of power has remained a hallmark of the United States government.


This historical thought was delivered by our middle school students at devotional on 2/15/24. Each week one class leads the student body in prayer, the Pledge of Allegiance, scripture recitation, a meditation, and an historical thought. Family and friends are welcome, Thursdays 8:30-9:05 am.

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