While Polk studied at UNC, dad was busy building

“On the same day the U.S. Treasury announced Andrew Jackson’s image would be removed from the front of the $20 bill, Congress moved a step closer toward declaring [James K.] Polk‘s Tennessee home a national treasure.

“A bill that passed the U.S. Senate contains a provision directing the Interior Secretary to study the feasibility of preserving the 11th president’s home in Columbia, just southwest of Nashville, as part of the national park system.

“The two-story brick structure, built in 1816 by Polk’s father while the future president was attending the University of North Carolina, is where Polk returned after graduation and where he began his legal and political career. The house contains more than 1,300 objects and original items from Polk’s years in Tennessee and Washington, including furniture, White House artifacts and political memorabilia.”

— From “James K. Polk home moves closer to national park status” by Michael Collins in the Knoxville News Sentinel (April 25)

Considerably less well situated is the site of Polk’s 1795 birth in Mecklenburg County, which in recent years has endured trial by both fire and legislature