The Info List - William J. Duane

William John Duane (May 9, 1780 – September 27, 1865) was an Irish born American politician and lawyer from Pennsylvania. Duane served a brief term as United States
United States
Secretary of the Treasury in 1833. His refusal to withdraw Federal deposits from the Second Bank of the United States
United States
led to his dismissal by President Andrew Jackson.


1 Early life 2 Secretary of the Treasury 3 See also 4 References 5 Bibliography 6 External links

Early life[edit] Duane was born on May 9, 1780 in Clonmel, County Tipperary, Ireland, Duane emigrated to the United States
United States
with his parents, William Duane, and Catherine Corcoran in 1796, settling in Philadelphia. He assisted his father in publishing the Aurora, a pro-Jeffersonian Philadelphia newspaper, until 1806. He became an influential lawyer and served several terms in the Pennsylvania
General Assembly, becoming one of the most powerful state politicians in Pennsylvania
at the time.[1] His father-in-law was Richard Bache, Sr., a marine insurance underwriter and importer in Philadelphia. Bache served as United States Postmaster General from 1776 to 1782. His mother-in-law was Sarah Franklin Bache, the daughter of Benjamin Franklin. He was married on December 31, 1805 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Deborah Franklin Bache, who was born on October 1, 1781 in Philadelphia, and died on February 12, 1863 in Philadelphia. Secretary of the Treasury[edit] In 1833, in the midst of the Bank War, President Andrew Jackson attempted to remove federal deposits from the Second Bank of the United States, whose money-lending functions were taken over by the legions of local and state banks that materialized across America, thus drastically increasing credit and speculation.[2] Jackson's moves were greatly controversial. He removed his moderately pro-Bank Treasury Secretary Louis McLane, having him serve instead as Secretary of State, replacing Edward Livingston. On May 29, he replaced McLane with Duane.[3] However, Duane also refused to remove the deposits. As a result, Jackson fired him in September. He replaced him with Attorney General Roger B. Taney, a strong opponent of the Bank.[4] Under Taney, the deposits began to be removed.[2] Duane defended his own position in his book Narrative and Correspondence Concerning the Removal of the Deposites, and Occurrences Connected Therewith, published in 1838. Jackson biographer James Parton
James Parton
heaps high praise upon Duane. He lauds the Treasury Secretary for refusing to yield to a position that he could not in good conscience accepted, therefore preserving his integrity and honor. "In not yielding," Parton says, "he displayed a genuine moral heroism."[5] Unlike Parton, later Jackson biographer Robert V. Remini
Robert V. Remini
faults both Jackson and Duane for the turmoil that characterized Duane's brief time in office. He criticizes Jackson for not doing enough background checking upon appointing Duane, for allowing members of his administration to treat him poorly upon taking office, and for his dismissal of Duane. He continues:

But Duane is not without fault. When all is said and done, he placed his own judgment above that of the President. All because of wounded pride, he challenged not only Jackson's policy but his authority to make that policy. He was a small-minded, inconsequential bureaucrat, and he deserved to be sacked.[6]

See also[edit]

List of foreign-born United States
United States
Cabinet Secretaries


^ Phillips 1977 ^ a b Bogart 1907, pp. 219-221. ^ Remini 1984, pp. 57-58; 171. ^ Wilentz 2006, p. 395. ^ Parton 1860, pp. 531-532. ^ Remini 1984, p. 104.


Bogart, Ernest Ludlow (1907). The Economic History of the United States. London, UK: Longmans, Green, and Company. ISBN 978-1-176-58679-6.  Parton, James (1860). Life of Andrew Jackson, Volume 3. New York, NY: Mason Brothers.  Phillips, Kim T. "William Duane, Philadelphia's Democratic Republicans, and the Origins of Modern Politics." Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography (1977): 365-387. online Remini, Robert V. (1984). Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson
and the Course of American Democracy, 1833–1845. New York: Harper & Row Publishers, Inc. ISBN 0-8018-5913-1.  Wilentz, Sean (2006). The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln. New York, New York: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. ISBN 0-393-05820-4. 

External links[edit]

Media related to William J. Duane
William J. Duane
at Wikimedia Commons

Political offices

Preceded by Louis McLane United States
United States
Secretary of the Treasury 1833 Succeeded by Roger B. Taney

v t e

United States
United States
Secretaries of the Treasury

18th century

Hamilton Wolcott Dexter

19th century

Gallatin Campbell Dallas Crawford Rush Ingham McLane Duane Taney Woodbury Ewing Forward Spencer Bibb Walker Meredith Corwin Guthrie Cobb Thomas Dix Chase Fessenden McCulloch Boutwell Richardson Bristow Morrill Sherman Windom Folger Gresham McCulloch Manning Fairchild Windom Foster Carlisle Gage

20th century

Shaw Cortelyou MacVeagh McAdoo Glass Houston Mellon Mills Woodin Morgenthau Vinson Snyder Humphrey Anderson Dillon Fowler Barr Kennedy Connally Shultz Simon Blumenthal Miller Regan Baker Brady Bentsen Rubin Summers

21st century

O'Neill Snow Paulson Geithner Lew Mnuchin

v t e

Cabinet of President Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson

Secretary of State

Martin Van Buren
Martin Van Buren
(1829–31) Edward Livingston
Edward Livingston
(1831–33) Louis McLane
Louis McLane
(1833–34) John Forsyth (1834–37)

Secretary of the Treasury

Samuel D. Ingham
Samuel D. Ingham
(1829–31) Louis McLane
Louis McLane
(1831–33) William J. Duane
William J. Duane
(1833) Roger B. Taney
Roger B. Taney
(1833–34) Levi Woodbury (1834–37)

Secretary of War

John H. Eaton (1829–31) Lewis Cass
Lewis Cass

Attorney General

John M. Berrien
John M. Berrien
(1829–31) Roger B. Taney
Roger B. Taney
(1831–33) Benjamin F. Butler (1833–37)

Postmaster General

William T. Barry
William T. Barry
(1829–35) Amos Kendall
Amos Kendall

Secretary of the Navy

John Branch
John Branch
(1829–31) Levi Woodbury (1831–34) Mahlon Dickerson
Mahlon Dickerson

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 16268847 LCCN: n86855034 SN