On January 8, 1835 the United States for the first an only time in its history had zero national debt. We can thank President Andrew Jackson for this feat.
After the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 (the Second Revolutionary War) the United States was $112 million in debt. However it then embarked on a 20-year streak of prosperity and positive cash-flow.
When Andrew Jackson was elected in 1828, he had some very drastic financial policies. He eliminated the Second Bank of the United States, leaving the country without a central bank authority and vetoed many infrastructure public works projects which would have increased the national debt.
Summarized from Motley Fool.
And, of course, he famously on January 8, 1835 zeroed out the national debt to public celebration.
But it was short lived. By the start of 1836, the country had a small debt and in the1860s the Civil War raised the national debt to $1 billion. According to the Peter Peterson National Debt Clock, at the time of this writing, the national debt was over $27 trillion (27,747,857,224,233.)
Happily, we’re not alone. This infographic is courtesy of Visual Capitalist.