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Friday Jan 23, 2009

Happy Independence Day!

Fun Presidential Facts for the Fourth:

US Presidential Seal

from the book Facts About the Presidents by Joseph Nathan Kane et. al.:

 Q. Who was the first President not born a British subject?
A. Martin Van Buren

 Q. What were the closest elections?
A. Six elections have been extremely close. The 1880, 1884, 1960, and 1968 elections were won with margins of less than 1% of the popular vote. The 1888 and 2000 elections had similarly narrow margins but in those elections the winner of the popular vote lost the vote in the electoral college and so did not become president.

 The 1824 and 1876 elections were also close, in the sense that they were thrown into the House of Representatives when no candidate won in the electoral college. Again, the popular vote did not determine the outcome.

 Q. How many bachelors have been elected President?
A. Two: James Buchanan and Grover Cleveland. Buchanan never married; Cleveland married while he was president.

 Q. Was any President an only child?
A. Franklin D. Roosevelt, Gerald Ford, and William Clinton were the only children of their parents' marriages. However, Ford and Clinton grew up with younger half-brothers from their mothers' second marriages, and Roosevelt had an older half-brother from his father's first marriage.

 Q. Which Presidents never exercised the veto?
A. John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Buren, William Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, and James Garfield.

 Q. Who delivered the shortest inaugural address?
A. George Washington, at his second inauguration—135 words.

 Q. Which sons of Presidents fought in the Civil War? On which side?
A. Union: Robert Todd Lincoln (served in a noncombatant position), Frederick Dent Grant, Charles Johnson, and Robert Johnson.
Confederacy: David Gardiner Tyler, John Alexander Tyler, Tazewell Tyler (army surgeon), and Richard Taylor.

 Q. Which First Lady danced the polka in the White House?
A. Julia Gardiner Tyler, a famous belle

 Q. Who was the first President to use the Internet?
A. William Clinton

 Q. How many Vice Presidents have there been?
A. Richard Cheney is the 46th Vice President. (p. 689-692)

 Q. How many Presidents didn’t attend college?
A. Eight: George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, and Grover Cleveland.

 Q. How many Presidents were left-handed?
A. Six: James Garfield, Herbert Hoover, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, and William Clinton.  Update: make that seven; President Obama is a leftie.

 Q. Who was the tallest President?
A. Lincoln—at 6 feet, 4 inches.

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