29 July 2015

Fun Presidential Facts to Know and Tell

Prior to serving as our nation’s 16th president, Abraham Lincoln was a waiter in a Chinese restaurant. The rest of the wait staff and the owners were all Chinese so Honest Abe picked up some of the lingo. He’d hoped to visit China after his presidency, a plan foiled by an assassin’s bullet. Ironically, Lincoln’s younger brother Gordon was an executive in a rival Chinese restaurant chain. That chain was the first to introduce Chinese cuisine to the Indian territories. (Apaches had a particular fondness for dim sum.)

Before taking the reigns of the continental army in the American Revolution and later becoming America’s first president, George Washington was a tap dancing enthusiast who gave lessons in his spare time. In fact, during the war Washington would relieve tension for himself and the troops by doing a little soft shoe. However contemporaries noted that Washington was a mediocre dancer at best who got by because of his flamboyant style.

William McKinely had a conjoined twin sister, Esther. They were separated in the days leading up to McKinley’s first senatorial run. In a remarkable bit of historical coincidence, the operation was preformed by Maximums Ford who was the grandfather of future president Gerald Ford. Esther went on to a successful career as a madam in San Diego’s first bordello. At the instant that McKinley was assassinated Esther claimed to have a severe headache, although historians now claim the headache was the result of particularly vicious hangover.

Franklin Roosevelt is the only president to have been elected to four terms though he died early in his fourth term and was succeeded by Harry Truman. FDR, as he was known, contracted polio as an adult and was confined to a wheelchair throughout his presidency. Roosevelt introduced what were called New Deal programs in an effort to combat the Great Depression which was in full swing when he took office. He was also the nation’s commander-in-chief during all but the final months of World War II.

Ronald Reagan is believed to be the only U.S. president whose IQ was in single digits. After working as a below average actor in Hollywood, Reagan ratted on colleagues to the FBI during the Red Scare and gained the support of its treacherous leader, J. Edgar Hoover. Reagan was elected governor of California in 1966 and proceeded to start the dismantling of the state’s previously top rated educational system. Reagan believed government was evil and he is largely responsible for much of today’s paranoia and hatred toward the government. He was much fonder of corporations and believed they should be free to ravage the economy. He was disdainful of the environment, African-Americans and poor people. He liked jellybeans.

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