You know the old saying “If at first you don’t succeed, try again.” While it sounds nice, actually going through your plans for a second time can possibly lead to failure. One completely insane person learned their lesson about this the hard way.

Painting a disaster

As a simple painter, Richard Lawrence lived a normal life. While painting can seem like a harmful job, many chemicals seeped into his system. Because of this, he started to act irrational to his friends and family. He suddenly became obsessed with President Andrew Jackson. We’re not talking about having posters of Jackson all over his wall, either. He did nothing but talk about Jackson everywhere he went.

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

His obsession turned violent as he decided to kill Jackson.

It takes two

January 30, 1835, the president attended the funeral of congressman Warren R. Davis. The thought of dying at a funeral wasn’t in Jackson’s mindset that day. Nearby, Lawrence was waiting in seclusion for the right time to strike. Following the funeral, Jackson decided to head home. Lawrence stood up and fired a shot at the President with his pistol.

Wikimedia

Fortunately, the bullet missed him. Angered by the result, Lawrence fired another bullet from another gun. When it comes to being unlucky, Lawrence was the unluckiest in the region as his second bullet missed, too.

Coming to take me away

With his two failed attempts, Lawrence was simply dazed at the situation. Fortunately, he snapped out of it with the aid of Jackson beating him down with a cane. The crazed painter was quickly apprehended by the authorities.

Library of Congress / Wikimedia

Two months later, Lawrence was sentenced to a lifetime in insane asylums. After bouncing around from hospital to hospital, his permanent residence until death was St. Elizabeth’s Hospital. Lawrence will go down as the first person to attempt to kill a sitting President. Unfortunately, this led to other lunatics doing the same thing.