Nickname: Uncle Jumbo

Years in office: 1885–1889

Political party: Democratic

Birthday: March 18, 1837

Official presidential portrait of Grover Cleveland

by Jonathan Eastman Johnson, 1891

$1,000 Note (Bureau of Engraving and Printing)

Grover Cleveland appears on the $1,000 bill. Cleveland was on the twenty-dollar bill before he was replaced by Andrew Jackson in 1928. In April 2013, a $1,000 bill from 1891 sold at auction for $2.5 million. It was not Cleveland’s image, however, that graced the front of the bill. It was U.S. General George Meade. Who knew money could actually be worth so much money?

The election of 1884 was rooted in the character traits, both good and bad, of the candidates. Cleveland stood for changing politics, making it less corrupt. He previously made a name for himself by taking on corrupt businesses and political groups. His opponent had the opposite record, finding himself in political scandals. Cleveland’s personal life was not so glamorous, and his possible fathering of an illegitimate son became the focus of the Republican campaign.

In the end, voters chose the candidate with the clean public reputation over the candidate with the clean personal reputation.

In the election of 1888, Benjamin Harrison, a former senator from Indiana, defeated the incumbent president, Grover Cleveland. Tariffs were the main issue in the election, with Harrison favoring a strong, protective tariff. When the votes came in, Cleveland won the popular vote, but lost the electoral vote. Mrs. Cleveland reportedly told the White House staff to take good care of the house, as they would be returning in four years.

The election of 1892 was a rematch of 1888, but with different results. The Populist party emerged during this election, focused on a strong currency and farmers’ protections. And the Republicans lost some favor among Americans with high tariffs that led to higher prices. In 1892, Cleveland again won the popular vote, but this time he also won in the electoral college. His win makes him the only president to serve two non-consecutive terms.


Caldwell, NJ


 City of Presidents, Rapid City, SD


Westland, Princeton, NJ


Princeton Cemetery, Princeton, NJ


Davis, Kenneth C., and Pedro Martin. Don’t Know Much about the Presidents. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2014.

DeGregorio, William A., and Aaron Jaffe. The Complete Book of U.S. Presidents. Fort Lee, NJ: Barricade Books, Inc., 2017.

Kane, Joseph Nathan, and Janet Podell. Facts about the Presidents: A Compilation of Biographical and Historical Information. New York: H.W. Wilson, 2009.


Encyclopedia Britannica, britannica.com

Library of Congress, loc.gov

Miller Center, University of Virginia, millercenter.org/the-presidency

The White House, whitehouse.gov

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