Americans are familiar with the successes and achievements of the presidents in office, but sometimes, the secrets and intricacies of their wives were just as interesting. First Ladies are meant to be revered, or at least they were in times past. Most of them managed to hide any scandal from the press, which was significantly more forgiving in those years. Here are seven First Ladies you may not know had a less than perfect lives.

1) Julia Tyler

Julia Tyler was born Julia Gardiner in 1820 to a wealthy state senator, David Gardiner and his wife Juliana, nee McLachlan.

They lived in Long Island and she enjoyed a wealthy lifestyle. She later married President John Tyler, who was 30 years older than her. He was the first president to marry while in office. But before she married him, she caused quite a scandal for her family and their wealthy friends.

Sent away for a year to quieten the scandal

In her biography written by Betty Boyd Caroli, Brittanica noted that when she was 20-years-old she shocked her family and embarrassed friends when she lent her likeness to an advert for a department store.

The family was so shocked by this behavior that they sent her away overseas and kept her there for a year until the scandal died down. When she returned, she met, and a soon fell in love with incumbent president John Tyler. Her parents were unhappy as he was so much older than her. A couple of years later her father died when the Princeton Frigate blew up, and the wedding went ahead.

She only lived in the White House for eight months, but apparently was very charming.

2) Abigail Fillmore

Abigail Fillmore, nee Powers, became the wife of the 13th president of America, Millard Fillmore long before he rose to power. She became a school teacher at the age of 16 in New Hope, NY and met her future husband. He was one of her students and was two years younger than her.

They married in 1826 and she continued teaching. Millard's political career took them to Buffalo and she often left the kids at home to travel with him.

Disliked White House receptions and got her daughter to stand in for her

When Millard became the POTUS, she demanded a library in the White House and got funding for it. She enjoyed entertaining intellectuals like William Thackeray and Charles Dickens. But she disliked and avoided the receptions and public functions, so she trained her daughter to stand in for her.

Her health was not good and she died on March 10 from pneumonia after getting a cold at the inauguration of Millard's successor, Franklin Pierce.

3) Lucretia Garfield

Lucretia Garfield, nee Rudolph was well-educated and met James Garfield at Western Reserve Eclectic Institute where they were both students. They became married eight years later but James once described her as dull. She was independent-minded, but when James began his tenure in the White House, strangely, she refused to endorse the Woman Suffrage movement. Perhaps this was because she never publicly disagreed with her husband's politics.

Refused to ban alcohol in the White House

A little bit more out there, for her time, she also refused to stick with the White House ban on alcohol, despite disapproval from prohibition advocates.

But her time in the White House was cut short after James was shot at the train station in 1881 and he died shortly thereafter.

4) Elizabeth Monroe

Elizabeth Monroe, nee Kortright. She married James Monroe who became the fifth president. Her time in the White House, from 1817–25 seemed to mainly annoy people - a lot. She'd spent time in Europe and was considered rather too European for American tastes. In France, she was known as "la belle americaine." She was thoroughly disliked in Washington, although she was admittedly beautiful.

She was so insulting it was discussed in Congress

In fact, she was so insulting to the wives of other legislators that they were enraged and the matter ended up being discussed in Congress.

She refused to call on the wives of dignitaries and snubbed society by holding a private wedding for her daughter.

5) Bess Truman

Bess Truman, nee Elizabeth Virginia Wallace, was the wife of Harry S. Truman, who was the POTUS from 1945 to 1953. They were childhood sweethearts, though she refused his first proposal. There were no major scandals or even much to gossip about as she was such a quiet and reserved person. People simply hardly ever saw her and during political campaigns, in her own words, she just sat there making sure her "hat was on straight." In fact, she became known for her elaborate hats rather than for an engaging personality. She disliked the lack of privacy in Washington and spent as much time as she could back home in Livingston.

Bess avoided Washington and only ever gave one press conference

She tried to avoid Washington unless it was the social season, and that was when she really was expected to be present and couldn't get out of it. She disliked it intensely and struggled with people and only ever gave one reluctant press conference. She did carry out work with the Red Cross but did only as much institutional work as was demanded of her. These days, people may be more understanding about her desire to be unencumbered with social niceties.

Her father committed suicide when she was a child which affected her personality.

6) Rachel Jackson

Rachel Jackson never became the First Lady when her husband Andrew Jackson was POTUS between 1829–37. But she's in here as society and the press would have made her life a pure misery. She died three months before his inauguration. There were all sorts of gossip and scandal about her and her husband, and it even extended to her mother. She came from a Virginia family and later married Lewis Robards. However, he was abusive and committed adultery. They separated in 1790 and he filed for divorce. But unknown to her, the divorce was never finalized. Her lawyer, Andrew helped her through the legal maze.

She married Andrew Jackson while she was still married

They mistakenly thought the divorce was done and dusted, but legally she was still married when they got married. She was accused of adultery and they had to get married a second time. Jackson's political campaigning was full of accusations that his wife was not sophisticated as she smoked a corn cob pipe. She was labeled a bigamist, her husband, an adulterer and Andrew's mother was termed "as a prostitute." She died from a heart attack while suffering terrible depression just before Andrews's inauguration.

7) Jane Pierce

Jane was born Jane Appleton and married Franklin Pierce who was the 14th POTUS. During his political career in the Senate and House of Representatives, she blamed political connections for his overindulgence in alcohol. She became obsessed with idea that family tragedies like the death of their child were connected to Franklin's political ambitions. In 1842 she convinced him to resign from politics and he later refused other offices like Governor of New Hampshire. When a second son died, she became ill and fainted when the Democrats nominated him for president.

Confined herself to the White House living quarters

When a third son died in a train accident, she was convinced God didn't like Franklin in politics.

She refused to attend the inauguration and had nothing to do with anybody in Washington. She cloistered herself in the White House living quarters for two years and passed her time writing letters to her dead son. She only did occasional duties thereafter.