John Jay

In his second term, George Washington faced a crisis that threatened to tear apart the young Republic. His wife Martha later thought the bitterness of the debate may have hastened the President’s death, but Washington gave America the gift of peace, and an important precedent in leadership.

President Washington appointed John Jay to be Chief Justice because the eloquent partisan of the Constitution shared a desire to strengthen the machinery of the central government and to bring about conformity to treaty obligations among the states.