Monday, February 18, 2008

Fun facts about U.S. presidents

Here's a five-minute time-waster for you this Presidents Day, once you get home from all the sales: Fun facts about U.S. presidents. You can read this and much more "Homework Help" here.
1. How many U.S. presidents have there been? It depends on how you count. Since George Washington, the first president under the U.S. Constitution ratified in 1789, 42 different men have held the office of president. However, Grover Cleveland had two non-consecutive terms of office and is usually listed as both 22nd and 24th presidents. So George W. Bush is the 42nd man to be president, but the 43rd president by consecutive term of office.

2. Who lived longest after he left office? Herbert Hoover lived more than 31 1/2 years after leaving office.

3. Which Presidents have lived past the age of 90? John Adams, Herbert Hoover, Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford.

4. Who is the president that lived the longest? Gerald Ford was the longest-lived president by living 34,133 days, only 45 more days than Ronald Reagan.

5. What President lived the shortest time? John F. Kennedy

6. How many Vice Presidents have become President due to the President's inability to serve the remainder of his term? Eight vice presidents have become president due to the death of the president and one, Gerald Ford, due to resignation.

7. One president served two full terms and yet served 57 days short of eight years. Why? George Washington, because he was inaugurated on April 30, instead of March 4, which was customary after that.

8. I have been attempting to assist my 9 year old daughter find the middle name of George Washington, a seemingly easy task. However, after an exhaustive search, I have had no luck. Why is it so difficult to locate? Because he did not have one.

9. What is Abraham Lincoln's middle initial? Lincoln did not have a middle name.

10. Which president switched his initials from HUG to UHG? Hiram Ulysses Grant did not like his birth initials, so on his way to West Point he decided to change it to Ulysses Hiram Grant. However, upon arriving, he discovered the Army had him enrolled as Ulysses S. Grant. He eventually decided to accept the name change given him by the Army.
And here's some more presidential trivia, a list of presidents who were Freemasons:
  • George Washington, 1st President, 1789 - 1797, Commanding General during American Revolution, made a Mason August 4, 1753, in Fredericksburg Lodge (now No. 4), A. F. & A. M., Fredericksburg, Virginia.

  • James Monroe, 5th President, 1817 - 1825, made a Mason November 9, 1775, in Williamsburg Lodge (now No. 6), A.F. & A.M., Williamsburg, Virginia.

  • Andrew Jackson, 7th President, 1829 - 1837 Harmony Lodge No. 1, Nashville, Tennessee, an Honorary Member of Federal Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M., Washington, D.C., and Jackson Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M., Tallahassee, Florida. In 1822 and 1823 he served as the Grand Master of Masons in Tennessee.

  • James Knox Polk, 11th President, 1845 - 1849, made a Mason September 4, 1820, in Columbia Lodge No. 31, F. & A.M., Columbia, Tennessee.

  • James Buchanan, 15th President, 1857 - 1861, made a Mason January 24, 1817, in Lodge No. 43 (it has no name), F. & A.M., Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

  • Andrew Johnson, 17th President, 1865 - 1869, made a Mason during May, 1851, in Greeneville Lodge No. 119 (now No. 3), F. & A.M., Greeneville, Tennessee.

  • James Abram Garfield, 20th President. 1881, made a Mason November 22, 1864, in Columbus Lodge No. 30 F. & A.M., Columbus, Ohio.

  • William McKinley, 25th President, 1897 - 1901, made a Mason May 3, 1865, in Hiram Lodge No. 21, A.F. & A.M., Winchester, Virginia.

  • Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President, 1901 - 1909, made a Mason April 24, 1901, in Matinecock Lodge No. 806, F. & A.M., Oyster Bay, New York.

  • William Howard Taft, 27th President, 1909 - 1913 - Chief Justice Supreme Court 1921 - 1930, made a "Mason at Sight" in an "Occassional Lodge" called for that purpose on February 18, 1909, in the Scottish Rite Cathedral, Cincinnati, Ohio, by Charles S. Hoskinson, Grand Master of Masons in Ohio.

  • Warren Gamaliel Harding, 29th President, 1921 - 1923, made a Mason August 27, 1920, in Marion Lodge No. 70, F. & A.M., Marion, Ohio.

  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 32nd President, 1933 - 1945, made a Mason November 28, 1911, in Holland Lodge No. 8, F. & A.M., New York, New York, the same Lodge in which George Washington, the Nation's first President, held Honorary membership.

  • Harry S. Truman, 33rd President, 1945 - 1951, made a Mason March 18, 1909, in Belton Lodge No. 450, A.F. & A.M., Belton, Missouri. He served as the Grand Master of Masons of Missouri in 1940. Initiated: February 9, 1909, Belton Lodge No. 450, Belton, Missouri. In 1911, several Members of Belton Lodge separated to establish Grandview Lodge No. 618, Grandview, Missouri, and Brother Truman served as its first Worshipful Master. At the Annual Session of the Grand Lodge of Missouri, September 24-25, 1940, Brother Truman was elected (by a landslide) the ninety-seventh Grand Master of Masons of Missouri, and served until October 1, 1941. Brother and President Truman was made a Sovereign Grand Inspector General, 33ยบ, and Honorary Member, Supreme Council on October 19,1945 at the Supreme Council A.A.S.R. Southern Jurisdiction Headquarters in Washington D.C., upon which occasion he served as Exemplar (Representative) for his Class. He was also elected an Honorary Grand Master of the International Supreme Council, Order of DeMolay. On May 18, 1959, Brother and Former President Truman was presented with a fifty-year award, the only U.S. President to reach that golden anniversary in Freemasonry.

  • Gerald R. Ford, Jr. 38th President, 1974 - 1977. He was raised to the Sublime degree of Master Mason on May 18, 1951 in Columbia Lodge No. 3, F. &.A.M., of Washington, D.C., as a courtesy for Malta Lodge No. 465, F. & A.M. of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

  • Lyndon Baines Johnson 1908-1973. 36th President, 1963 - 1969. Entered Apprentice degree Johnson City Lodge No. 561, Johnson City, Texas October 30, 1937. Did not advance.
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1 comment:

  1. A curious fact about MWBro. Truman is that the letter S in his name technically has no period after it, even though one usually appears incorrectly. Why? It's not short for a real name.

    Harry's parents picked "S" as his middle name, as an attempt to appease both of Harry's grandfathers, Solomon Young and Anderson Shippe Truman. But it didn't actually stand for a specific name.

    A frequently told (and true) story happened in Indianapolis when Truman was president. Mark Tabbert describes it in his book, "American Freemasons":

    October 15, 1948, three weeks before election day and in the midst of the political fight of his life, President Harry S. Truman spent the evening attending a Masonic lodge meeting in Beech Grove, Indiana. Earlier that day, Truman was giving a “whistle-stop” speech in Kokomo when he spotted in the crowd a sailor from his presidential yacht. He invited young Seaman Donald Bauermeister and his father to ride along on the presidential train down to Indianapolis. During the journey, Mr. Bauermeister mentioned to the president that his son Donald was receiving the third degree in Freemasonry at Beech Grove Lodge No. 8 that night. Knowing Truman to be a Mason, the father invited the president to attend.

    Much to the surprise of the Bauermeisters, Truman accepted the invitation.

    Following a major speech at the Indianapolis War Memorial, Truman slipped away from the crowd and was driven to Beech Grove five miles away. Despite attempts by the Secret Service and Masonic leaders to keep the visit a secret, scores of local citizens and many prominent Freemasons awaited the president’s arrival in the small town. Truman had been a Mason for nearly 50 years and had served as Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Missouri, yet the local Masons still followed protocol and examined Truman’s Masonic credentials before he could enter the lodge. The Secret Service agents and presidential aides who were not Masons were made to wait outside the lodge door. After Donald Bauermeister’s initiation, Brother Truman asked the lodge master and was invited to address the brethren. Truman ended his visit to the lodge by asking if he could keep the Masonic apron that he had worn as a token of his visit.


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