If being the leader of a country isn’t a difficult enough job, dealing with assassination attempts makes the workday even harder. But 67-year-old Andrew Jackson’s attempted assassin would end up regretting his attempt to mess with the surprisingly fit president.

The insane history of Andrew Jackson

Though his whole story is not well known, Andrew Jackson is arguably one of the toughest presidents in history. Jackson joined the Continental Army at the ripe age of twelve and fought vehemently for victory in numerous battles. The seemingly invincible former president also fought a substantial number of sword duels in his lifetime: 103! Think he can’t get any tougher? Wrong.

During one such duel, an opponent pulled a gun on him and shot him square in his chest. Like the true death-defying fighter that Jackson was, he touched the wound, wiped the blood away, and fired right back. Of course, Jackson lived, and after many more epic battles for honor, found his way to the presidency. After all of his incredible duels, its no wonder his assassination attempt took such a crazy turn!

An astoundingly unprepared assassin

While most people imagine assassins as being highly-trained masters of firearms, Richard Lawrence falls far, far outside this trope. Lawrence was a troubled, unemployed house painter when he made his move to try to take out Jackson. However, despite Jackson’s paranoia that it was the Whig party’s doing, Lawrence wasn’t politically motivated.

Rather, he was mentally unstable and believed that Jackson had a personal agenda against him. He was convinced he was the heir to the British throne and that Jackson was withholding his fortune from him. As any faux-British royal might believe, he was certain that killing Jackson would restore his fortune. But at nearly 70 years old, Jackson wasn’t ready to go down without a fight.

Jackson’s jaw-dropping retaliation

On January 30th, 1835, Jackson was leaving the Capitol building when a gun-slinging Lawrence approached him. He lifted the weapon and pulled the trigger, but the gun didn’t fire. This gave Jackson (who was surprisingly fit after a lifetime of dueling injuries) a chance to fight back.

As Lawrence misfired a second gun he had brought along, Jackson used his walking cane to whack Lawrence senseless. Though bystanders jumped in to help, Jackson’s brute force is what truly subdued the delusional Lawrence. It’s certain that the assassin wasn’t aware of the president’s intense battle history. Jackson wasn’t phased by the attempt for long. All in a day’s work, right?