The President of the United States, often abbreviated as POTUS, is the head of the executive branch of the federal government of the United States of America and that nation’s government leader. The President also serves as commander-in-chief of the U.S. Armed Forces, and is therefore in charge of the main military superpower of the twenty-first century. The President is chosen indirectly by the voting citizens of the United States by means of the Electoral College. The first U.S. President was George Washington, elected unanimously in 1789; elections are held every four years.
This article includes a list of all U.S. Presidents, their political party, and dates during which they held office with basic summaries of their policies and events which took place during their term. While only one U.S. President so far has been confirmed in the Jurassic Park film canon to express any opinion related to de-extinction, all Presidents would have had some impact on InGen as it is an American company. Any policies or actions by U.S. Presidents which would have affected InGen or de-extinction are explored here; we operate under the assumption that these presidencies in the film canon are the same as their real-life equivalents unless evidence demonstrates otherwise.
George Washington, Independent (April 30, 1789 – March 4, 1797)
The first President of the United States, George Washington was elected unanimously by the Electoral College due in part to his reputation as a hero of the American Revolutionary War in which he led Patriot forces against the British Empire. At the time, a governmental system like that used by the United States was unprecedented, and Washington set the stage for later Presidents. He was instrumental in establishing the federal government as it is known today, and prior to his election had played a role in creating the United States Constitution which outlines the government’s roles and responsibilities. He upheld laws protecting slavery in order to preserve national unity, though he grew to oppose slavery himself; in his will, he ensured that around 160 slaves which he had inherited would be freed. Washington also encouraged the assimilation of Native American peoples into Western culture, though he did engage in warfare with Native peoples as well.
George Washington’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. $1 bill and the quarter-dollar coin.
Paleontology would have still been in its developmental stages during Washington’s presidency; in 1796, Georges Cuvier first presented the concept of extinction, which had yet to be widely recognized as a scientific reality.
John Adams Jr., Federalist (March 4, 1797 – March 4, 1801)
Like Washington, John Adams Jr. was a leader of the American Revolution and had served as Washington’s Vice President. Prior to the American Revolution, Adams had been a political activist and a lawyer, and is known for defending the presumption of innocence and right to counsel. He signed the Alien and Sedition Acts, which controversially made it more difficult to become an American citizen and allowed the government to imprison or deport non-citizens. Adams also negotiated peace in the face of potential military conflict with France, building up the U.S. Army and Navy while doing so. Adams completely opposed slavery and did not own slaves, but did not approve legislature to free slaves because he feared the Southern states would react poorly to emancipation.
John Adams was the first U.S. President to live in what is now the White House.
Thomas Jefferson, Democratic-Republican (March 4, 1801 – March 4, 1809)
Prior to his presidency, Thomas Jefferson had been a diplomat, a lawyer, and an architect, and was a prominent figure in the American Revolution best known for being the primary author of the Declaration of Independence. He served as Vice President under Adams before him. Jefferson sought to protect the United States’ trade and shipping interests, both from the British and from piracy; he also orchestrated the Louisiana Purchase, which dramatically increased the territorial holdings of the United States to include much of the North American territory once controlled by France. Jefferson was the first President to serve two terms, one from 1801 to 1805 and one from 1805 to 1809. He advocated for religious freedom in the United States and forwarded ideas of equality, but unlike Washington and Adams before him he did not oppose slavery and owned a large number of slaves.
Thomas Jefferson’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. $2 bill and the nickel (five-cent coin).
In addition to his political career, Jefferson was an early supporter of much scientific research, including paleontology. During his presidency, Georges Cuvier described the first known fossils of pterosaurs and mosasaurs.
James Madison Jr., Democratic-Republican (March 4, 1809 – March 4, 1817)
Known for his role in drafting the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights, James Madison Jr.’s presidency was primarily defined by the War of 1812. This military conflict occurred due to aggressive British shipping policies, which American embargoes and protests failed to curb. The war ended inconclusively, but was seen by many Americans as a “second Revolution” and a reestablishment of the United States as independent from British power. Due to the war, Madison put effort into establishing a stronger federal government; he oversaw the creation of the Second Bank of the United States and the Tariff of 1816.
James Monroe, Democratic-Republican (March 4, 1817 – March 4, 1825)
In the aftermath of the War of 1812, the United States experienced a period of time defined by a sense of national purpose. This time period came to be known as the Era of Good Feelings, and coincided with James Monroe’s presidency. Monroe is best known for his Monroe Doctrine, which was an effort to bar European colonialism in recently-established countries, and for the Missouri Compromise, which admitted Missouri into the Union as a slave state but banned slavery in northern states. Monroe supported the colonization of Africa by recently-freed slaves and a policy of expansionism against the Spanish Empire (including the acquisition of Florida).
The term “paleontology” was coined in 1822, toward the end of Monroe’s second term as President; during this period of time more paleontological discoveries were being made, including the naming of Plesiosaurus and Mosasaurus, as well as the identification of the first two named dinosaurs Megalosaurus and Iguanodon.
John Quincy Adams, Democratic-Republican (March 4, 1825 – March 4, 1829)
The eldest son of John Adams Jr., the second American President, John Quincy Adams had a long political career extending long before his presidency. During his time in office, Adams called for ambitious infrastructure projects funded by the federal government, the establishment of a national university, and communication with the countries of Latin America. However, many of his proposals were blocked by Congress. Under Adams’s presidency, the Democratic-Republican Party suffered a schism; it divided into the National Republican Party (which supported Adams) and Democratic Party, led by Andrew Jackson (which opposed Adams). This was partly due to his opposition to slavery; many Southern slave-owners controlled the Democratic Party at the time.
Andrew Jackson, Democratic (March 4, 1829 – March 4, 1837)
Andrew Jackson was a former soldier and served in both houses of Congress representing the state of Tennessee. He was considered a hero of the War of 1812, and during his presidency he presented himself as standing up for the common people and aiming to preserve the Union during a time of increasing social tensions. He dismantled the Second Bank of the United States, effectively becoming the only U.S. President to ever completely resolve the national debt. Jackson is also known for having signed the Indian Removal Act in 1830, which forcibly relocated Native Americans to designated territory farther west and caused widespread death and disease among the people affected. This set a precedent for future treatment of Indigenous American people. During his second term, the abolitionist movement grew in strength; Jackson himself supported slavery and contended with abolitionism throughout his presidency.
Jackson was the first U.S. President to suffer an assassination attempt in January of 1835, though he survived and finished his term. His portrait appears on U.S. $20 bills produced between 1928 and 2020; beginning in 2020, the portrait of Harriet Tubman will appear on new bills.
Martin Van Buren, Democratic (March 4, 1837 – March 4, 1841)
The first President born after the American Revolutionary War ended, Martin Van Buren is known for his role as an advisor during Jackson’s presidency and for playing a part in the formation of the new Democratic Party. Jackson strongly supported Van Buren as a candidate, which played a role in his popularity. Van Buren largely carried on Jackson’s policies; he continued the forcible relocation of Native Americans in the South, denied Texas admission to the United States, and maintained peaceable relations with Britain. His refusal to allow Texas into the Union lost him support among Southern Democratic voters, one of several events which caused him to lose his attempt at reelection.
William Henry Harrison, Whig (March 4, 1841 – April 4, 1841)
William Henry Harrison was previously a military officer known for playing a role in the Battle of Tippecanoe. He was the first member of the Whig Party to win the presidency, and delivered the longest inaugural address in American history upon his election (nearly two hours long, despite having been edited for length) on a cold, rainy day. Thirty-one days later, he died of either pneumonia or typhoid fever. As compensation, Congress voted to give his wife Anna a year’s worth of Harrison’s salary and the right to mail letters for free in the United States.
John Tyler, Whig/Independent (April 4, 1841 – March 4, 1845)
The Vice President to Harrison, John Tyler became President due to Harrison’s death a month after taking office. He continued many of the Whig Party’s policies that were intended to be passed under Harrison, but rejected bills to create a national bank and raise tariffs. This resulted in the Whigs rejecting him as a member of their party, leaving him unaffiliated for the rest of his term. Tyler is known for strongly believing in states’ rights and manifest destiny, and supported the annexation of Texas which would be accomplished under the following administration. He considered slavery to be evil, but did not free any of the forty slaves he owned and believed that the federal government did not have the right to end slavery.
James Knox Polk, Democratic (March 4, 1845 – March 4, 1849)
James Polk was a supporter of Andrew Jackson and advocated for democracy as Jackson had envisioned it. He was a highly effective President, accomplishing every major goal he set during his term. These included settling disputes with Britain over the Oregon Territory, which set in place the northern border between the United States and what is now Canada. He also led the United States into war against Mexico, soundly defeating Mexico and gaining a considerable amount of its territory in what is now the American Southwest. Polk brought the United States to the Pacific coast, meaning that it now had territory on both North American coasts. He is criticized for leading the United States into the Mexican-American War, which many considered unnecessary, and for owning and purchasing slaves during his term as President.
Zachary Taylor, Whig (March 4, 1849 – July 9, 1850)
Former major general Zachary Taylor was considered a hero of the Mexican-American War and was known for being largely disinterested in politics. Nonetheless, the Whig Party persuaded him into accepting the candidacy. As President, he did not push for the expansion of slavery in the new territories acquired from Mexico; to avoid causing sociopolitical conflict between slaveholders and abolitionists, he encouraged settlers in California and New Mexico to push for statehood directly. Sixteen months after his election, he died suddenly of a stomach disease.
Zachary Taylor was the last U.S. President to own slaves while in office.
Millard Fillmore, Whig (July 9, 1850 – March 4, 1853)
Upon the death of Zachary Taylor, his Vice President Millard Fillmore assumed office. Having been largely ignored by Taylor during his presidency, Fillmore ousted Taylor’s cabinet members and urged Congress to pass the Compromise of 1850, which temporarily halted the growing aggression between slave-owning Southern states and abolitionist Northern states. Taylor had opposed this compromise. A part of the deal was the Fugitive Slave Act, which would return escaped slaves to the plantations they had fled; Fillmore did not personally agree with this act, but Fillmore believed that it was his executive duty to uphold all parts of the compromise. Fillmore’s actions delayed further conflict within the Union, but at the cost of Fillmore’s reputation and the Whig Party’s unity. The Whig Party broke up after Fillmore’s presidency.
Franklin Pierce, Democratic (March 4, 1853 – March 4, 1857)
Franklin Pierce was popular in his day, but is remembered as one of the worst American presidents due to his vehemently anti-abolitionist sentiment and policies. He was a stalwart supporter of slavery and his policies alienated anti-slavery groups, furthering the longstanding sociopolitical divide in the United States between pro-slavery and anti-slavery societies. The Democratic Party intended him to compromise between the pro-slavery South and anti-slavery North, but he failed to do so; he supported the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which nullified the Missouri Compromise and led to bloodshed on the Kansas border between 1854 and 1861. This drastically harmed his reputation among Northern states. In the following election, the Democratic Party abandoned Pierce despite his firm belief that they would nominate him again.
James Buchanan Jr., Democratic (March 4, 1857 – March 4, 1861)
Previously having served as Secretary of State and in both houses of Congress, James Buchanan Jr. is considered by historians (like Franklin Pierce before him) to be among the worst U.S. presidents due to his failure to prevent the American Civil War. Buchanan supported the decision in the Dred Scott v. Sanford case in which Dred Scott unsuccessfully attempted to sue for his own freedom and that of his family. This brought Buchanan’s popularity down in the North, as he was believed because of this to have pro-slavery views. His reputation was further harmed in the North when he sided with Southern leaders in attempting to make Kansas a slave state; both Republicans and Northern Democrats turned against Buchanan as a result. At the end of his term, when Abraham Lincoln was confirmed as the next U.S. President, several Southern states seceded from the Union. The American Civil War began mere weeks after Buchanan left office in 1861.
James Buchanan Jr. is the only U.S. President to remain a bachelor for life.
While political tensions at the time overshadowed most scientific achievements and Buchanan was not involved with most major scientific development, Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species was published during the Buchanan administration in 1859. This book popularized many concepts in evolutionary biology that are still in use in the modern day, upon which some aspects of modern genetic research are based.
Abraham Lincoln, Republican/National Union (March 4, 1861 – April 15, 1865)
The election of Republican Abraham Lincoln, who publicly supported the abolitionist movement, was a catalyst for the American Civil War; the seceded Southern states went on to form the Confederate States of America. Lincoln himself initially sought simply to bring the Union back together, but later in the war affirmed that the complete emancipation of American slaves was a vital part of the Union’s terms. Lincoln’s presidency was a political minefield; he navigated it by pitting his many enemies against one another while seeking to mend relationships where he could. The CSA surrendered on April 9, 1865, ending the American Civil War and reuniting the states. Five days later, Lincoln was shot in an assassination perpetrated by John Wilkes Booth. Lincoln remained in a coma for nine hours after being shot before dying on April 15. Most historians recognize Abraham Lincoln as one of the most effective, successful, and morally sound presidents, with many calling him America’s greatest president.
Abraham Lincoln’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. $5 bill and the penny (one-cent coin).
On June 30, 1864, Abraham Lincoln signed into law an act of Congress to transfer Yosemite Valley and Mariposa Big Tree Grove to the State of California for preservation. This eventually developed into the National Park Service almost ten years later; today, National Parks exist throughout the United States, such as Big Rock National Park which in 2019 has become the site of events relevant to the history of de-extinction.
Andrew Johnson, National Union/Democratic (April 15, 1965 – March 4, 1869)
Hours after Abraham Lincoln’s death, his Vice President Andrew Johnson was sworn into office. He is generally considered to have failed to uphold Lincoln’s plans for restoration of the Union, favoring a quick return of the former Confederate states. Many of these states implemented local laws which openly oppressed freedmen, and while Congress attempted to stop such legislature from going through, Johnson blocked Congress’s actions and permitted the codes to pass. Johnson also opposed the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which gave citizenship to freed former slaves. In 1866, he went on tour around the country promoting his executive policies, furthering contention between the branches of government; Congress passed the Tenure of Office Act to prevent him wantonly firing Cabinet officials that he opposed. When Johnson attempted to violate this act, he was impeached by the House of Representatives; he avoided conviction and being expelled from office by a single vote. His main contribution to American history was the Alaska Purchase, which bought Alaska from the Russian Empire.
Toward the very end of Johnson’s term, Swedish doctor Friedrich Miescher discovered a substance in used medical bandages which he named nuclein which came from the nuclei of cells. This substance would later be known as deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA. It would not be fully understood until well after Johnson’s lifetime, and was unaffected by political events in the United States.
Hiram Ulysses “Sam” Grant, Republican (March 4, 1869 – March 4, 1877)
Ulysses S. Grant served as a general in the U.S. Army during the American Civil War, serving under Abraham Lincoln. After Lincoln’s assassination, he had also served under Andrew Johnson, but disagreed with Johnson’s lax approach to Southern Reconstruction. Unlike Johnson, Grant sought to eliminate the vestiges of Confederate nationalism, racism, and the legacy of slavery. His approach brought him closer to the so-called “Radical” Republicans, making him more politically extreme than his two predecessors. He made history by appointing African-Americans and Jewish-Americans to prominent offices, though he had supported anti-Jewish legislature prior to his election. Grant served two terms, being reelected despite opposition from moderate Republicans and Democrats alike. Despite his mixed bag of successes and failures, his presidency involved many public scandals and economic depression, leading to a negative view of his terms as President throughout history.
Ulysses S. Grant’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. $50 bill.
In 1872, the National Park Service was founded, overseen by Grant during his first term. During Grant’s second term, American paleontology expanded westward into territories that had thus far remained largely untouched. By 1877, the end of Grant’s second term, paleontologists Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Charles Marsh would have developed a bitter rivalry termed the “Bone Wars” which resulted in a great many major, if haphazard, American paleontological discoveries. Grant’s policies with regards to Native American peoples initially reduced conflict, but later would spur on increased conflict as Native Americans responded to their poor treatment under the U.S. government; this often came into play during paleontological expeditions in the American West, which largely took place on land where Native American peoples still held political and military presence.
Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Republican (March 4, 1877 – March 4, 1881)
Rutherford B. Hayes is best remembered as a staunch abolitionist, and was elected via the Compromise of 1877 which permitted the South to resume governing itself. He had lost the popular vote, but won a contested vote of the Electoral College; the compromise was that the Democrats would allow his victory so long as he withdrew military forces from the South and ended the Reconstruction era. Hayes complied, effectively ending military support for Southern Republican governments and freedmen. Throughout his presidency he was faced with the difficult task of amending divisions in the country left over from the Civil War and Reconstruction; he promoted civil service reform and promoted meritocracy, a system in which a person’s value is based on the quality of work they perform rather than social class, race, or wealth.
Hayes continued policies toward Native Americans that his predecessor put in place, furthering conflict between Native peoples and settlers from the Eastern United States. The Bone Wars would have been in full swing during Hayes’s presidency, and would therefore have been impacted by his policies with regards to Native American territories and their treatment.
James Abram Garfield, Republican (March 4, 1881 – September 19, 1881)
James A. Garfield narrowly won the 1880 election and assumed office in 1881, despite not having sought the presidency before being selected by his party. Garfield fought against corruption in the Post Office and increased the President’s legal authority against the Senate, and also supported civil rights for African-Americans. On June 2, 1881, Garfield was shot by Charles J. Guiteau (who believed himself instrumental in Garfield’s election and therefore deserving of consulship), and died of infections related to the wound on September 19.
Chester Alan Arthur, Republican (September 19, 1881 – March 4, 1885)
Chester A. Arthur was the Vice President to James A. Garfield and assumed the presidency upon the assassination of his predecessor. Arthur took up the civil service reform policies that had been left to him by Garfield’s administration, despite assumptions by many that he would not. His presidency began with the public and government largely distrusting him due to a background with Garfield’s enemies, but managed to overcome this setback by upholding Garfield’s policies. However, he also approved the Chinese Exclusion Act, which barred all Chinese-Americans from holding citizenship until 1898 and prevented Chinese immigration into the United States until 1943. This was the first immigration ban against an entire nationality or race that the United States enacted. He also barred the mentally ill, intellectually disabled, and criminals from immigrating.
During the Arthur administration, wars with Native American peoples were subsiding, and Arthur encouraged the provision of education to Native people. However, these were not provided to the extent that he had wanted. Under his administration, settlers continued to encroach on Native land, and some reservations were opened up for colonization. While Native ownership of these lands would be partly restored during the following administration, it served to increase tensions between settlers and the original inhabitants of those areas. The Bone Wars were still going on at this time, and continued to be affected by the government’s treatment of Native Americans.
Stephen Grover Cleveland, Democratic (March 4, 1885 – March 4, 1889)
Upon election, Grover Cleveland was tasked with filling government jobs that the President has the power to appoint. However, rather than appoint more Democrats to the position, Cleveland opted to keep employed the Republicans who were doing the job well enough. However, his Democratic colleagues did not entirely approve of this decision, and later in his term he became less bipartisan and appointed more Democrats. He was also known for vetoing acts which would have provided aid to individuals or smaller communities, believing that these people should rely on one another rather than look to the government for help. Cleveland opposed expansionism and imperialism, supported a defensive military strategy involving coastal fortifications and defenses, and opposed efforts to provide rights to African-Americans and Chinese-Americans. He also established a naval base and coaling station in Pearl Harbor in Hawai’i and supported free trade with the islands.
Cleveland approved of efforts to assimilate Native Americans into white society, but also reversed the Arthur administration’s executive order to allow settlers into reservations in the Dakota Territory. Under the Cleveland administration, these settlers were evicted and the land was returned to the Native Americans residing in the area.
Benjamin Harrison, Republican (March 4, 1889 – March 4, 1893)
Benjamin Harrison’s contributions to American history are largely economic. He is remembered for having passed the Sherman Antitrust Act, which regulates competition among enterprises, and the Tariff Act of 1890, which introduced protective trade rates. His other contributions include strengthening the U.S. Navy and attempting to provide federally-funded education and voting rights for African-Americans; the latter, despite his efforts, was not supported by the government and did not come to pass. Harrison is generally ranked among the lower half of presidents in terms of effectiveness, though he is not considered especially ineffectual.
Stephen Grover Cleveland, Democratic (March 4, 1893 – March 4, 1897)
Grover Cleveland was reelected for a second term, becoming the first president to serve two non-consecutive terms in office. This term was riddled with economic depression, beginning shortly after he was elected in 1893. Labor conditions worsened as a result, and workers’ strikes occurred. This period of labor unrest under the Cleveland administration caused Democrats to lose ground in the government to Republicans. Cleveland’s second term also included the annexation of Hawai’i, which had been overthrown by white businessmen during the Harrison administration. Cleveland’s policies led to the annexation of Hawai’i a year after he left office.
William McKinley Jr., Republican (March 4, 1897 – September 14, 1901)
William McKinley was elected on the promise that higher tariffs would increase American prosperity, and his presidency was marked by economic growth. During his first term, he attempted to negotiate Cuba’s freedom from Spain; when negotiations failed, McKinley led the United States to a quick victory in the Spanish-American War of 1898. As part of the peace deal, Spain turned over its overseas colonies (the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico) to the United States while giving Cuba its independence. That same year, the United States annexed the Republic of Hawaii as a territory. McKinley’s second term promised imperialism, protectionism, and free silver; on September 6, 1901, the newly reelected McKinley was shot by Polish-American anarchist Leon Czolgosz and died eight days later.
Theodore Roosevelt Jr., Republican (September 14, 1901 – March 4, 1909)
Following McKinley’s assassination, Vice President Theodore Roosevelt Jr. assumed office. Roosevelt’s administration is considered one of the best American presidencies by many historians, and was also very liked by the public in his day. His presidency was the start of the Progressive Era, in which the United States developed considerably in terms of infrastructure, land management, and domestic life. His domestic reform plan, the “Square Deal,” promised fairness to the average citizen as well as transportation reform and food and drug safety.
Roosevelt was an ardent naturalist and conservationist, and greatly expanded the National Park system and protected natural lands. He also was known for involvement in Latin America, including construction of the Panama Canal. A supporter of infrastructure reform but also the preservation and understanding of nature, Roosevelt’s policies have greatly influenced the development of science and domestic society in the United States.
William Howard Taft, Republican (March 4, 1909 – March 4, 1913)
Having been personally groomed for the presidency by his friend Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft easily defeated his rival William Jennings Bryan to assume office. In terms of foreign affairs, he focused more on East Asia than Europe, as well as focusing on Latin America where he propped up governments as they formed in the region. He sought to reduce tariffs, which at that point in time were a major source of government income. His administration was plagued with conflict between the Republican Party and the Progressive Party, as well as controversy surrounding antitrust cases and conservation.
William Howard Taft was the last U.S. President to have noticeable facial hair.
Thomas Woodrow Wilson, Democratic (March 4, 1913 – March 4, 1921)
Woodrow Wilson won the presidency due to competition between former friends Taft and Roosevelt for the position, which divided the Republican voters and gave Wilson the majority. Wilson was the first Southerner to be elected President since the end of the American Civil War in 1865. During his first term, he reduced tariffs and instead implemented a federal income tax. Like his predecessors, he also focused on antitrust legislature. In 1914, the first conflicts of World War I occurred; Wilson maintained neutrality between the warring Allied and Central Powers, but during his second term he advised the United States to enter into the war on the side of the Allies in response to Germany’s use of unrestricted submarine warfare. Congress complied, and the United States entered World War I. Wilson oversaw most foreign affairs during the war, which ended with the negotiation of peace in November 1918. Part of Wilson’s proposal for peace included the founding of the League of Nations, which was succeeded by the United Nations decades later.
John Hammond was born in 1913, which would have been the first year of Woodrow Wilson’s first term. However, Wilson’s foreign policy did not greatly affect Scotland, where Hammond would have been living during his infancy and childhood. The founding of the League of Nations, which gave rise to the United Nations, does hold significance in the history of de-extinction as the UN has been involved with these affairs on several occasions.
Warren Gamaliel Harding, Republican (March 4, 1921 – August 2, 1923)
Warren G. Harding’s campaign mostly promised a return to normalcy after World War I, and his policies during his presidency reflected this. He was quite popular during his time, and was known for implementing international naval limitations and releasing anti-war political prisoners. Technology developed rapidly during the early 1920s, including the popularization of cars, which Harding supported. He died of a heart attack in 1923; after his death, information came to light about corruption among his cabinet members and extramarital affairs which resulted in a child. These scandals seriously damaged his posthumous reputation.
John Calvin Coolidge Jr., Republican (August 2, 1923 – March 4, 1929)
Calvin Coolidge assumed the presidency upon the death of Warren G. Harding and was reelected for a second term after this. Coolidge is famous for his support of laissez-faire economics and small, non-invasive government. This made him popular among conservatives, but unpopular among supporters of strong supportive central governments. However, even his critics note his strong support for racial equality. Coolidge’s presidency coincided with a period of time known as the Roaring Twenties, a time of rapid economic growth, increased social mood, and general prosperity. He greatly encouraged business development and reduced tax rates.
The first steps toward cloning were made in 1928, when German scientists Hans Spemann and Hilde Mangold successfully performed somatic-cell nuclear transfer on amphibian embryos. This breakthrough was not directly impacted by American scientists, and likely was unaffected by any policies passed by Coolidge.
Herbert Clark Hoover, Republican (March 4, 1929 – March 4, 1933)
Herbert Hoover’s presidency was dominated by the onset of the Great Depression, a period of economic disaster which began shortly after he took office and persisted throughout the 1930s. He attempted to alleviate the crisis throughout his term, but refused to directly involve the federal government to provide relief. He mostly opposed government intervention in private or public life, as he believed that this would impose on American independent-individualist values.
Bemjamin Lockwood may have been born during the Hoover administration, or possibly the subsequent Roosevelt administration; however, as he lived in England, the policies of these American presidents likely did not have much impact on his early life.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Democratic (March 4, 1933 – April 12, 1945)
With the United States still suffering under the Great Depression, Franklin D. Roosevelt took office with great challenges already ahead of him. He took action by implementing the New Deal, which included unprecedented federal legislature and a series of executive orders intended to produce relief from the Depression. In order to present a comforting presence to the American people, he spoke to the populace via radio to explain to them what his administration was doing to solve the crisis. His efforts ensured that he would be reelected for a second term, though the economy took another downturn after his reelection and conservatives in Congress blocked further New Deal legislature. During his second term, he was able to ban child labor and establish a minimum wage, which he believed would provide for the welfare of American working families. He was elected again for a third term beginning in 1941, by which time World War II had begun. Roosevelt officially kept the United States neutral against the Nazi threat in Europe, but brought the country into war against the Axis Powers following a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in late 1941. Roosevelt was elected for a fourth term in 1945, but died of heart complications due to his lifelong smoking habit eleven weeks into his term. Roosevelt’s record-breaking four election wins prompted the U.S. government to establish term limits for Presidents.
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. dime (ten-cent coin).
Roosevelt’s eventual involvement in World War II shaped the international stage. His policy was to defeat Nazi forces in Europe before focusing on Japan. During World War II, John Hammond would have been in his twenties, meaning he would have served in the war; it is unknown in what capacity or how Roosevelt’s international policies beginning in 1941 affected the Scotsman’s life. Roosevelt also oversaw the creation of the first atomic weapons in the later part of his terms, which provided a dramatic precedent for the weaponization of scientific discoveries which would persist for many decades to come.
Harry S. Truman, Democratic (April 12, 1945 – January 20, 1953)
Taking office after the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman oversaw the end of World War II with the surrender of Germany and Japan. (Truman’s middle initial S. does not stand for anything and honors the names of both his grandfathers.) Shortly after assuming office, Truman authorized the first use of nuclear weapons in war against the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He renounced isolationism, pushing the United States further into the international stage, and oversaw the creation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Truman also provided aid to western European countries that had been ravaged during World War II. During his second term, he was authorized by the United Nations to go to war in Korea; the resulting Korean War ended with the country split into North and South Korea. Truman supported racial integration in the military and federal offices, using executive orders to promote these opportunities.
The double-helix structure of DNA was photographed by Rosalind Franklin and Raymond Gosling at the University of Cambridge in 1952, during which time Truman was President of the United States. As the discovery was made at a British laboratory (and would not be publicized until the following year), it is unlikely that Truman’s administration affected it in any way. However, his overseeing of the end of World War II concluding with the dramatic atomic bombing of Japan would certainly have influenced the life of a young John Hammond. The country of Costa Rica established its modern constitution in 1949; it had previously held a trade relationship with the United States, which it maintained.
Dwight David “Ike” Eisenhower, Republican (January 20, 1953 – January 20, 1961)
Dwight D. Eisenhower’s presidency is best remembered for his many attempts to prevent the spread of communist ideology and reduce the American national deficit. To force China out of the Korean War and end the conflict, Eisenhower threatened the use of nuclear weapons. He was also involved in other international conflicts; he provided aid to the French in the First Indochina War, and during the Suez Canal crisis he forced British, French, and Israeli forces to retreat from their invasion of Egypt. He also supported military coups in Iran and Guatemala. In 1957, the Soviet launch of the satellite Sputnik 1 prompted Eisenhower to approve the founding of NASA, which directly led to the Space Race. The Eisenhower administration also firmly supported civil rights, using executive power to drive the racial integration of public schools.
While Eisenhower’s fight against communism did extend to Central America, the newly-reformed Costa Rica was not one of the nations he chiefly focused on (likely due to its lack of a military, which it abolished after its reformation in 1949). Alan Grant was most likely born during the Eisenhower administration.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Democratic (January 20, 1961 – November 22, 1963)
Tensions with communist states were already high due to the Eisenhower presidency’s campaign against communism, and John F. Kennedy inherited this political climate. He also contended with the Cold War, a time of hostility without active violence between the United States and the Soviet Union. In 1962, it was discovered that the Soviets had established a military presence in Cuba, leading to what has been named the Cuban Missile Crisis; the Kennedy presidency narrowly managed to avoid global thermonuclear war. Kennedy supported the Civil Rights Movement and the Apollo space program. On November 22, 1963, he was shot and killed; Lee Harvey Oswald, a Marxist, was charged with the assassination, though Oswald denied shooting the President. Oswald was himself shot and killed by nightclub owner Jack Ruby before he could be prosecuted, leaving many questions open surrounding Kennedy’s assassination.
John F. Kennedy’s portrait is depicted on the U.S. half-dollar coin.
Kennedy is remembered as a generally pro-science President, supporting space exploration through the Apollo missions, but focused mainly on the political minefield of the Cold War and preventing the mutually-assured thermonuclear annihilation of the United States and Soviet Union.
Lyndon Baines Johnson, Democratic (November 22, 1963 – January 20, 1969)
Following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, his Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson took office to complete Kennedy’s term. After he completed this term, he was reelected by a large majority of voters. His time in office was defined by economic growth. Johnson pushed for social reform, expanding healthcare, civil rights, education, the arts and sciences, nature preservation, infrastructure, public services, and public broadcasting. He is remembered for signing bills which banned racial discrimination in many aspects of public life, and for passing immigration legislature which allowed people to more easily emigrate from regions other than Europe into the United States. Johnson also escalated the Vietnam War, and beginning in the summer of 1965, the nation was affected by riots in cities. Protests became common as popular opinion turned against Johnson, the American people becoming fed up with violence both at home and abroad.
Two people significant to de-extinction were born during the Johnson administration: Ellie Sattler (born sometime during 1964-1967) and Simon Masrani (born in 1967). Of these two, only Sattler was born in the United States; Masrani was born in Bombay, India.
Richard Milhous Nixon, Republican (January 20, 1969 – August 9, 1974)
Having previously served as Vice President and having made attempts at the presidency before, Richard Nixon was considered to be a politically experienced candidate and became popular among the people. His main accomplishments were ending American involvement in Vietnam, establishing diplomatic relations with China, and forming the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with the Soviet Union. His administration supported desegregation of schools, created the Environmental Protection Agency, and oversaw the end of the U.S./Soviet race to the moon. During his second term, an oil crisis and the Watergate scandal severely impacted Nixon’s popularity; facing impeachment for the clandestine illegal actions revealed in the Watergate scandal, Nixon resigned from office.
Sarah Harding was born under the Nixon administration, in 1973.
Gerald Rudolph Ford Jr., Republican (August 9, 1974 – January 20, 1977)
Gerald Ford assumed the presidency upon the resignation of Richard Nixon in 1974. He is remembered for signing the Helsinki Accords, which eased Cold War tensions. Ford’s administration presided over a suffering economy, and the powers of the President were generally curbed by Congress.
International Genetic Technologies, Inc. was founded during the Ford administration, in 1975. At the time, inflation and a recession were afflicting the economy and Ford encouraged Americans to control their spending and proposed tax cuts to stimulate the economy. This would have affected InGen in its early days, and the founding of the company would have helped to alleviate some amount of unemployment which was a major issue in 1975.
James Earl Carter Jr., Democratic (January 20, 1977 – January 20, 1981)
Jimmy Carter’s first act as President, on the second day of his term, was to pardon all draft-dodgers from the unpopular Vietnam War. He is known for having created the Department of Energy and Department of Education. His energy policies fostered technological growth in the United States. His administration faced many crises in its later part, including the Iran hostage crisis, the Three Mile Island incident, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The latter event resulted in Carter escalating the Cold War once again, ending a period of reduced tension between the United States and the Soviet Union.
Carter’s policies in the late 1970s resulted in economic growth and reduced unemployment; around a million new jobs were created under the Carter administration. InGen, as a young company, would most likely have benefited from the growing economy as it sought to establish itself.
Ronald Wilson Reagan, Republican (January 20, 1981 – January 20, 1989)
Ronald Reagan’s early acts as President were to implement supply-side economic policies including deregulation and tax rate reduction, as well as a decrease in government spending. He is also remembered for starting the War on Drugs, an effort to forcibly reduce the usage rate of recreational drugs by Americans. He was reelected for a second term, which was dominated by issues of foreign policy. He continued to escalate the Cold War, encouraged the reunification of Germany, and eventually reduced the nuclear arsenals of both the United States and the Soviet Union.
Reagan’s economic policies have been criticized in more recent years, but were certainly beneficial to corporations. InGen, now having been established for over five years, would have benefited from lower taxes and fewer regulations; with controversial and revolutionary genetic research taking place at the company in the 1980s, Reagan’s acts as President would have been a boon to InGen. Major advancements in de-extinction were made by InGen during the Reagan years, including the first test fertilization of an artificial ovum (1984), the first extraction of Mesozoic DNA (1985), and the first prehistoric animal, a Triceratops, being successfully cloned (1986). Other de-extinct species followed, and several had been cloned by 1989. InGen also moved to operate on Isla Nublar during the Reagan years. Significant births during the Reagan administration include Claire Dearing, born in 1984 or 1985.
George Herbert Walker Bush, Republican (January 20, 1989 – January 20, 1993)
George H. W. Bush’s presidency began with major foreign affairs and continued to be dominated by overseas events. The Berlin Wall fell shortly after his term started, reuniting Germany as Reagan had urged. Military operations were carried out by the Bush administration in Panama and the Persian Gulf, and the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991, ending the Cold War. With this looming conflict no longer a driving force for the United States, Bush became less popular; foreign policy was of lesser importance. This, combined with an economic recession in the early 1990s, cost Bush the following election.
Bush increased federal spending for advanced technology research, which would have benefited InGen; by the early 1990s, their research with Dr. Henry Wu had reached many breakthroughs, but there is no evidence that President Bush was aware of the extent of their work. Taxes were increased during the early 1990s under Bush, which coincided with a falling-out between John Hammond and his business partner Benjamin Lockwood. As Lockwood had been InGen’s primary financial beneficiary, the tax increases occurring at the same time may have harmed InGen.
William Jefferson Clinton, Democratic (January 20, 1993 – January 20, 2001)
Bill Clinton was President during a lengthy period of American economic growth, and signed into law the North American Free Trade Agreement. His second term was defined by welfare reform and financial deregulation, as well as his infamous 1998 impeachment; he was impeached on grounds of perjury and obstruction of justice, which he had committed to hide an extramarital affair. However, he was acquitted by the Senate in 1999 and completed his second term. He oversaw numerous military operations in foreign countries, including Afghanistan, Somalia, Bosnia and Herzegovinia, Iraq, Iran, and others. However, he failed to act against the Rwandan genocide, for which he has been criticized.
Both the 1993 Isla Nublar incident and 1997 Isla Sorna incident took place during the Clinton administration, as did the 1997 San Diego incident which made de-extinction a public fact. The United States Armed Forces responded to the San Diego incident by shepherding the S.S. Venture back to Isla Sorna, releasing the father and son Tyrannosaurus onto the island safely. It is unknown in how much capacity President Clinton was involved with this operation. He was also President during the writing of the Gene Guard Act by the U.S. House Committee on Science and signed it into law, but failed to adequately enforce it during 1998 and 1999. Masrani Global Corporation bought InGen in 1998, and in 2000 the United Nations granted the company limited access to Isla Sorna. This would make Masrani Global firmly entrenched in the United States of America, as it now had an American subsidiary, and thus affected by regulations imposed by the U.S. government.
George Walker Bush, Republican (January 20, 2001 – January 20, 2009)
Son of former President George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush is mostly remembered for his aggressive policies following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks which made him wildly popular among many Americans. He brought the United States to war in Afghanistan and Iraq and passed the Patriot Act, which allowed the government greater access to surveillance of its citizens. He did also act to improve healthcare, including Medicare benefits for senior citizens and AIDS relief. Bush was widely criticized in his second term for his handling of the Iraq War and Hurricane Katrina, among other issues; an economic recession beginning in 2007 reduced his popularity further, leaving him one of the most unpopular American presidents.
George W. Bush was President during many significant events in the history of de-extinction, beginning with the incident on Isla Sorna during the summer of 2001. The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps were issued to the island to rescue civilians after a tip was brought to State Department official Mark Degler, who would have worked under Bush. While Bush’s aggressive foreign policy did not come into play until much later, this rapid mobilization of the U.S. military into the waters of another sovereign nation sets precedent. At the time, both Vic Hoskins and Owen Grady were involved with the U.S. Armed Forces and would have served under Bush. Masrani Global Corporation officials interfered with the incident’s aftermath; they bribed members of the U.S. government to cover up some aspects of the incident to avoid knowledge of their illegal activities in the late 1990s leaking. Three escaped Pteranodons from Isla Sorna were neutralized in Victoria, British Columbia by Vic Hoskins, marking the second de-extinction-related cause for the United States to intervene in a foreign country in 2001. Hoskins would retire from the U.S. military after this incident due to being hired by Simon Masrani to lead InGen Security. After Jurassic World came under construction, further government corruption was perpetrated. In March 2003, a Masrani Global official made a case for watering down the Gene Guard Act. This was supposedly an effort to better provide medical care using genetic research; Bush was known for supporting improvements in medical care, so the rollback was in line with existing policy. That same year, Masrani Global founded its subsidiary Medixal Health in New York City, but it is unknown if these events are related. Jurassic World opened in 2005, during the Bush administration; it is not currently known whether George W. Bush visited the park. He was also responsible for signing into law the Prehistoric BioSecurity Act.
Barack Hussein Obama II, Democratic (January 20, 2009 – January 20, 2017)
Inheriting the recession economy from George W. Bush, Barack Obama was immediately faced with challenges in stimulating this economy. He utilized tax relief programs, unemployment insurance, reinvestment, and job creation to do this. Obama’s presidency is remembered largely for his personal humanitarian views, rather than his policies, though his Affordable Care Act has since played a large role on the sociopolitical stage. Despite his famously amicable personality, Obama did authorize significant amounts of military involvement overseas during his two terms, including an increased use of remotely-operated drones to execute strikes against enemy combatants. Obama’s environmental, social, and justice agendas are all considered progressive, and were met with approval by many Americans. However, conservatives were irked by his youth, race, and progressive policies, which they saw as a threat to their traditionalist culture. Rural Americans especially hated him due to his intellectual background. By the end of Obama’s second term, traditionalists had rallied against everything his supporters stood for, setting the stage for a widening of the American cultural divide. Obama was known for teasing his opponents, which incensed them further. The later years of his presidency were marked by a dramatic increase in racist violence and capitalist propaganda.
Barack Obama was the first non-white person to be elected U.S. President.
In terms of de-extinction and related topics, Jurassic World would have been open in its later years during both terms of Obama’s presidency. According to Jurassic World: The Game, the First Family was welcome in Jurassic World with the personal invitation of Simon Masrani; while this is not confirmation that the Obama family visited the park during his term in office, Masrani and Obama express remarkably similar political and humanitarian views, and it is not unbelievable that the two would have been familiar with one another. On the other hand, Vic Hoskins was highly skeptical that drone technology was the future of the military, contrary to Obama’s frequent use of drones. Hoskins instead believed that intelligent biological weapons were more applicable. It is unknown if the Obama administration was aware of the true nature of the Indominus rex or Hoskins’s plans for the I.B.R.I.S. project. Obama would have been President at the time Jurassic World closed, but would have been out of office by the time the Mount Sibo crisis began.
Donald John Trump, Republican (January 20, 2017 – January 20, 2021)
Former reality television personality Donald Trump was elected chiefly on the promise that he would undo the social progress of his predecessor and reestablish the norms of the conservative American mythic past. The policies espoused by Trump include large reductions in environmental protection and corporate regulation, tax cuts for wealthy Americans, and severe punishment for illegal immigration. Legal immigration from nations with largely Hispanic or Arabic populations was also heavily discouraged. Critics of Donald Trump stated that his policies and personal views discriminate against women, transgender people, all racial minorities, sexual minorities, disabled people, the poor and middle class, small businesses, young people, students, and scientists; his most fervent supporters largely agreed. Toward the end of 2020, he began openly giving orders to white supremacist groups, using them as his personal militias. Trump took little to no action to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic from affecting the United States from 2019 onward, resulting in hundreds of thousands of deaths. Due to his plummeting popularity, he encouraged voter suppression, police violence, and the dismantling of the U.S. Postal Service to prevent his opposition from voting him out of office in 2020. Despite his efforts, people of color in the United States rallied in sufficient numbers to overcome suppression and threats of violence and vote him out. As a final parting act, Trump instigated a violent attack on the U.S. Capitol, threatening the lives of members of Congress and leaving several rioters dead, but was acquitted by his supporters in the government and so suffered no consequence for doing so. He was notably the first U.S. President to refuse a peaceful transition of power at the end of his term.
While he is not named directly, Donald J. Trump is the first U.S. President to be canonically referenced in the Jurassic series of films. According to a June 22, 2018 report by the BBC, the President at the time (assumed in this article to mean Trump) questioned the “existence of dinosaurs in the first place” with regards to the proposition to rescue them from a volcanic eruption. This is generally assumed to mean that he believes Jurassic World was a hoax and that no dinosaurs exist at all, but it could also mean that he questions whether dinosaurs should exist in the first place. Both are plausible meanings in line with Trump’s general approach to science, and in either case mean that Trump had no intention of providing aid to the threatened animals. Mercenary Ken Wheatley is believed to have been a supporter of Donald Trump, as he was heard to use the phrase “nasty woman,” an antifeminist dogwhistle popularized by Trump.
Joseph Robinette Biden Jr., Democratic (January 20, 2021 – January 20, 2025)
The former Vice President under President Obama, Joe Biden was elected despite mass efforts at voter suppression and inherited a United States afflicted by multiple disasters: the COVID-19 pandemic, economic recession, climate change, and the resurgence of white supremacist violence. However, Biden’s primary goal was to gain the support of Republican politicians and voters, despite their professed disinterest in supporting anyone but Trump’s hand-picked successors ever again. Biden failed to accomplish this goal, but did successfully maintain many Trump-era policies such as those related to immigration; he also managed to abandon most of his campaign promises related to climate change, enacting only the minimal changes necessary to demonstrate that some action was taken. While he was President, conservative leaders in state governments enacted sweeping anti-LGBTQ+ and antifeminist legislature. The country’s COVID-19 response was ended by Biden at the behest of conservative interest groups, allowing the disease to continue spreading and mutating without the hindrance of health protections. Biden’s poor performance among many political demographics played a key role in the success of traditionalist Republicans attaining power.
Major events related to de-extinction during the Biden administration were centered around the proliferation of de-extinction technology and the organisms it created. Management of the animals was hotly contested, with governmental, corporate, and private interest groups all vying to decide their fate. Trade of de-extinct animals had already made it to the international stage, and despite U.S. attempts to curb the movement of these species, the technology had gone open-source and there was no longer a way to determine how many creatures had been created or where they were. The lack of adequate response from the U.S. government during this time, as well as the increasingly significant role corporations played in deciding the course of events, mirrors other environmental crises during the Biden administration.