Of US, White House - Facts and Trivia on the President
White House: Why
White House - The most popular 'seat of power' in the World.
After the formation of "United
States of America" as one nation in 1788, one of the
first orders of business was to choose a location for the
new nation's capital. First, New York City was designated
as the temporary capital of the USA for 16 months beginning
in 1789 (in time for the inauguration of the first president,
George Washington); the American seat of government was then
moved to Philadelphia until 1800, and finally it was relocated
to its permanent home in the newly created District of Columbia.
The new capital needed to include
a residence for the chief executive, of course, and so the
cornerstone for the "President's House," designed
by Irish-born architect James Hoban, was laid in October of
1792. Although George Washington oversaw the building's construction,
he retired before its completion, and thus the 2nd president
John Adams and his wife Abigail became the first occupants
of the residence in 1800.
The "President's House"
had no official designation, and that is what it was called
until the term "Executive Mansion" replaced "President's
House" around 1850. After war broke out between the United
States and Great Britain in 1812, President James Madison
and his wife were forced to flee the residence when a British
expedition won an easy victory and took Washington in August
1814, setting fire to several public buildings including the
Capitol and the President's House. This historical event has
since been used in a legend which proclaims that the White
House obtained its name after its torching by the British,
when portions of the residence were rebuilt and the exterior
was painted white (over the original gray) to cover the obvious
Not so. The President's House
had been given a coat of whitewash as early as 1798 in order
to protect its locally quarried sandstone against the deterioration
caused by winter freezes, and from then on white paint was
used for the exterior. People started calling it the White
House. President Theodore Roosevelt in 1901 made the popular
name official when he had "Theodore Roosevelt, The White
House" printed on his presidential stationery.
There are 132 rooms in the
White House. 32 of them are bathrooms!
Different presidents had different
pets in White house. But the most unusual pet was an alligator
that John Quincy Adams kept because, he said, he enjoyed the
spectacle of guests fleeing from the room in terror!
A few facts on American Presidents:
4 (America's Independence Day and Birth/Deaths of Ex-Presidents)
Calvin Coolidge was born on
July 4, 1872. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams both died on
July 4, 1826. James Monroe died on July 4, 1831
James Garfield had extraordinary
ability to write in Greek with one hand and Latin with the
other simultaneously. He was also proficient in German.
President who was stuck in the White House bathtub
William Howard Taft was the
nation's most corpulent chief executive, his weight fluctuating
between 300 and 350 pounds during his term in office (1909-1913).
Once, after getting immovably lodged in the White House bathtub,
he ordered a new one installed, large enough for four men.
only President who never married
James Buchanan was unmarried
(= single = bachelor = did not marry!)
only president to take the oath of office on an airplane
It all happened so fast: Barely
two hours after the assassination of President John F Kennedy
in Dallas on Nov 22, 1963, Vice-President Lyndon B Johnson
succeeded him. Normally the chief justice of the Supreme Court
administers the oath of office on the steps of the Capitol.
But under the extraordinary circumstances, the new President
was sworn in by a Federal judge aboard the presidential jet
Air Force One.
was the only man physically present at the assassination of
three U.S. presidents ... Lincoln, Garfield and McKinley?
That was Robert Todd Lincoln
(Abraham Lincoln's son). He was not present at Ford's Theater,
but was at his father's bedside later. He was secretary of
war under Garfield and went to the train station to speak
to the president. He actually arrived moments after Garfield
was shot. He also arrived at the exhibition at which McKinley
was shot shortly before the assassination. And if you want
more, Robert Todd Lincoln also has a connection to John F
Kennedy, the other assassinated president: They are both buried
in Arlington National Cemetery!!
and only President to get a speeding ticket by “Mama” that
too during his Presidency and not just when he was a common
Ulysses S Grant ( But that
ticket was not for his speed driving a motor car; He rode
his horse too fast and got a ‘speeding ticket’! ). By the
way, Ulysses and then later, Richard M Nixon (the ONLY to
resign), were two least popular presidents of all.
The present President George
W Bush and his father, George Herbert Walker Bush, are the
second father and son both to serve as president, after John
Adams and John Quincy Adams.
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