The James Madison Papers

James Madison Timeline 1751-1836




James Madison returns to family plantation, Montpelier, and takes up practice and work of resident plantation owner. Elected president of Agricultural Society of Albemarle, leading forum of agricultural education and reform. Through years of bad harvests and depressed agricultural markets, avoids bankruptcy mainly through savings from public-office salaries and selling-off lands in Kentucky. Founding member, American Colonization Society, which calls for emigration of free blacks to Africa; continues to hold own slaves.


Thomas Jefferson, Madison, and 21 other eminent Virginians gather to discuss, organize, and establish, with support of state of Virginia, the University of Virginia. As leading member of Board of Visitors, heavily involved with recruiting suitable faculty for fledgling institution, which opens to students in 1825.


Upon Jefferson's death, becomes rector (head) of University of Virginia (July); holds position for eight years.


Serves as delegate to Virginia Constitutional Convention in Richmond, Virginia.

Mother, Nelly Conway Madison, dies at age of 97 (February).


Elected president, American Colonization Society.


Writes "Advice to My Country" and continues plans to publish his notes of debates in Federal Constitutional Convention.


Dies (June 28). Last of the Founding Fathers, his will does not free his slaves.


James Madison monument

descriptive record icon enlarge image icon James Madison Monument, Montpelier, Virginia.
Photographic print, c1908.
Prints and Photographs Division. Library of Congress.