Pierce, Jane (b. Means Appleton)(1806–63) First Lady; born in Hampton, N.H. She married Franklin Pierce in 1834. Tubercular and melancholic from the loss of three sons in childhood, she played little role in her husband's political career and was known as the "Shadow in the White House."
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.