President John Tyler Has Living Grandsons—Today!


Hat Tip To James as we honor President’s Day!

John Tyler was born in 1790. He took office in 1841, after William Henry Harrison died. And he has two living grandchildren.

Not great-great-great-grandchildren. Their dad was Tyler’s son.

How is this possible?

The Tyler men have a habit of having kids very late in life. Lyon Gardiner Tyler, one of President Tyler’s 15 kids, was born in 1853. He fathered Lyon Gardiner Tyler Jr. in 1924, and Harrison Ruffin Tyler in 1928.

We placed a somewhat awkward call to the Charles City County History Center in Virginia last week to check in on the Tylers.

After we shared this fact on Twitter in 2012, Dan Amira interviewed Harrison Tyler for New York Magazine. Lyon Tyler spoke to the Daughters of the American Revolution a while back. Snopes is also in on the fact.

There’s no information about him having marital affairs, but that’s probably just because he didn’t have time!

And he was also happy, apparently. A love letter written to his wife just before they married contained this awesome line, “Whether I float or sink in the stream of fortune, you may be assured of this, that I shall never cease to love you.”

He married for the first time when he was twenty-three years old. His wife was twenty-two. They had seven children live to maturity. She suffered a stroke though, and died when she was fifty-one.

Two years later, when Tyler was fifty-four, he married for a second time. His bride was twenty-four. They had seven more children, the last of whom was born when Tyler was seventy!

One of Tyler’s children, Lyon Tyler, who was born when John Tyler was sixty-three, had children late in life as well. Lyon’s last son was born when Lyon was seventy-five years old. (These Tylers are a virile bunch!) And that son—John Tyler’s grandson, the same John Tyler who was born in 1790 while George Washington was president—is still alive today!

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