Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

8th United States Congress

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Senate President  Aaron Burr (DR)
Senate Majority:  Democratic-Republican
House Speaker:  Nathaniel Macon (DR)
House Majority:  Democratic-Republican
8th United States Congress
Senate Pres. pro tem:  John Brown (DR) Jesse Franklin (DR) Joseph Anderson (DR)
Members:  34 Senators 142 Representatives 1 Non-voting members

The Eighth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, consisting of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, D.C. from March 4, 1803 to March 4, 1805, during the last two years of the first administration of U.S. President Thomas Jefferson. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the Second Census of the United States in 1800. Both chambers had a Democratic-Republican majority.


Major events

  • April 30, 1803: Louisiana Purchase was made by the United States from France
  • February 16, 1804: In the First Barbary War, Stephen Decatur led a raid to burn the pirate-held frigate Philadelphia
  • May 14, 1804: Lewis and Clark Expedition departed from Camp Dubois to begin their historic journey by traveling up the Missouri River
  • July 11, 1804: Aaron Burr killed Alexander Hamilton
  • November 30, 1804: Impeachment trial of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase
  • December 3, 1804: United States presidential election, 1804: Incumbent Thomas Jefferson (DR) beat challenger Charles Cotesworth Pinckney (F)
  • March 1, 1805: Samuel Chase acquitted of impeachment charges by the U.S. Senate
  • Constitutional amendments

  • December 9, 1803: Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution was passed by Congress.
  • June 15, 1804: Twelfth Amendment was ratified by the states.
  • Treaties

  • October 20, 1803: Senate ratified the Louisiana Purchase Treaty
  • States admitted and territories organized

  • March 26, 1804: Territory of Orleans was organized. It was formerly a portion of the District of Louisiana.
  • January 11, 1805: Michigan Territory was organized.
  • Party summary

    The count below identifies party affiliations at the beginning of the first session of this Congress, and includes members from vacancies and newly admitted states, when they were first seated. Changes resulting from subsequent replacements are shown below in the "Changes in membership" section.

    House of Representatives

    Following the 1800 census, the size of the House was increased to 142 seats from 108.


  • President: Aaron Burr (DR)
  • President pro tempore: John Brown (DR), October 17, 1803 – February 26, 1804
  • Jesse Franklin (DR), March 10, 1804 – November 4, 1804
  • Joseph Anderson (DR), January 15, 1805 – December 1, 1805
  • House of Representatives

  • Speaker: Nathaniel Macon (DR)
  • Members

    This list is arranged by chamber, then by state. Senators are listed in order of seniority, and Representatives are listed by district.

    Skip to House of Representatives, below


    Senators were elected by the state legislatures every two years, with one-third beginning new six-year terms with each Congress. Preceding the names in the list below are Senate class numbers, which indicate the cycle of their election. In this Congress, Class 1 meant their term began with this Congress, requiring reelection in 1808; Class 2 meant their term ended in this Congress, requiring reelection in 1804; and Class 3 meant their term began in the last Congress, requiring reelection in 1806.

    House of Representatives

    The names of members of the House of Representatives are preceded by their district numbers.

    Changes in membership

    The count below reflects changes from the beginning of the first session of this Congress.


    Lists of committees and their party leaders.


  • Whole
  • House of Representatives

  • Accounts
  • Claims
  • Commerce and Manufactures
  • Elections
  • Revisal and Unfinished Business
  • Rules (Select)
  • Standards of Official Conduct
  • Ways and Means
  • Whole
  • Joint committees

  • Enrolled Bills
  • Officers

  • Architect of the Capitol: Benjamin H. Latrobe, appointed March 6, 1803
  • Librarian of Congress: John J. Beckley
  • Senate

  • Secretary: Samuel A. Otis of Massachusetts, elected April 8, 1789
  • Sergeant at Arms: James Mathers of New York, elected April 7, 1789
  • Chaplain:
  • Edward Gantt, Episcopalian
  • Alexander T. McCormick, Episcopalian, elected November 7, 1804
  • House of Representatives

  • Clerk: John Beckley of Virginia, elected October 17, 1803
  • Sergeant at Arms: Joseph Wheaton of Rhode Island, elected October 17, 1803
  • Doorkeeper: Thomas Claxton, elected October 17, 1803
  • Chaplain:
  • William Parkinson, Baptist
  • The Rev. James Laurie, Presbyterian, elected November 5, 1804
  • References

    8th United States Congress Wikipedia

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