Martin Van Buren

Early Career

What was Van Buren’s initial occupation?

Van Buren worked in the law office of Kinderhook lawyer Francis Silvester when he was only fourteen years old. He worked at Silvester’s office for five years and did everything from sweeping floors and running errands to helping with more substantive legal matters. One story said that when Van Buren was only fifteen years old, he impressed a local judge with his note-taking in court. The judge asked the young teenager to sum up the case for the jurors.

Portrait of Hannah Hoes Van Buren by engraver John Chester Buttre.


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