Thomas Jefferson was the only president to walk to and from his inaugural. He was also the first to be inaugurated at the Capitol. (1801)
The first inauguration to be photographed was 's.
William Taft's wife was the first one to accompany her husband in the procession from the Capitol to the White House. (1909)
Warren G. Harding was the first president to ride to and from his inaugural in an automobile. (1921)
Calvin Coolidge's oath was administered by Chief Justice (and ex-president) . It was also the first inaugural address broadcast on the radio. (1925)
Lyndon Johnson was the first (and so far) only president to be sworn in by a woman, U.S. District Judge Sarah T. Hughes. (1963)
Inauguration Day was originally set for March 4th in order to give members of the Electoral College from each State four months from election day to cast their ballots for president.
Weather's greatest impact on inauguration day came in 1841 when William Henry Harrison decided to brave the elements and deliver the longest inauguration speech ever, an oration lasting an hour, 40 minutes. Harrison wore no coat, and rode a horse to and from the Capitol ceremony. He subsequently caught a cold that developed into pneumonia. A month later, Harrison died.
The warmest January 20th inauguration day came in 1981 when Ronald Reagan was sworn into office under mostly cloudy skies. The temperature at noon on this inauguration day was 55 degrees.
The shortest inauguration speech was delivered by George Washington at his second inauguration on March 4, 1793. The speech totaled 135 words.
There have been nine presidents sworn in on days other than inauguration day — eight following presidential deaths and one after Richard Nixon's resignation.
Former President Herbert Hoover was unable to fly into Washington National Airport due to the weather and missed the swearing-in ceremony. By sunrise, the snowfall had ended and the skies cleared but the day remained bitterly cold. An army of men worked all night to clear Pennsylvania Avenue and despite the cold, a large crowd turned out for the swearing-in ceremony and inaugural parade.
These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................
Tuesday, January 20, 2009