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Aaron Burr was the third vice-president of the United States 1801-1805 and he was thought to be one of the greatest students ever to graduate from Princeton in the eighteenth century Woodrow Wilson said he had genius enough to have made him immortal and unschooled passion enough to have made him famous His father was Princetons second president his maternal grandfather Jonathan Edwards was Princetons third president The younger Aaron Burr was left an orphan when he was two years old his mother and father and both maternal grandparents died within a year He did not like the discipline of his uncle Timothy Edwards He attempted to run away from home and go to sea several times He entered the sophomore class at Princeton at the age of thirteen and graduated with distinction at sixteen in 1772 a year after James Madison and Philip Freneau He was a member of the Cliosophic Society and for his Commencement Oration chose the topic On Castle Building He joined the Continental army in 1775 and rose to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel In 1779 he retired because of bad health After the Revolutionary War in which he served as a field officer he took up the practice of law in New York City and entered politics serving as a member of the New York state assembly attorney general of New York and United States senator from 1791 to 1797 and he got the reputation of one of the foremost lawyers in the city He was the leader of the old Republican party which later became the Democratic-Republican party This position brought Burr into conflict with the professional rival the Federalist leader Alexander Hamilton In the presidential election of 1800 he received the same number of electoral votes as Thomas Jefferson The US House of Representatives had to
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