Presidents Day is a great time to remember and celebrate the accomplishments of our nation’s
past leaders. To commemorate this day, here are 10 interesting facts about United States
Presidents that you may not have known.
The only president who studied to become a medical doctor was William Henry
Harrison, the ninth president. Harrison entered medical school but was forced to leave in
1791 when his father died.
In 1862, Abraham Lincoln politely declined a gift of elephants from the King of Siam
Claudia Alta “Ladybird” Taylor declined a marriage proposal by Lyndon B. Johnson on
their first date. After ten weeks of persistent pursual by President Johnson, Ladybird
accepted his proposal and the $2.50 ring from Sears, Roebuck that came with it.
In 1872, Ulysses S. Grant received a speeding ticket because he was riding his horse and
buggy too fast down a road in the Washington, D.C. area.
John F. Kennedy was the first president who was a Boy Scout. He was a member of
Troop 2 in Bronxville, New York from 1929 to 1931.
Standing at 5’4’’, James Madison was the shortest U.S. president. In fact, he only
weighed about 100 pounds. The tallest presidents were Abraham Lincoln and Lyndon B.
Johnson, both of whom stood at 6’4’’.
James Garfield, the 20 th president of the United States, was ambidextrous. He could write
in two languages simultaneously: Latin and Greek.
Only one U.S. president has spoken English as a second language. Martin Van Buren’s
first language was Dutch. He grew up in Kinderhook, NY, a predominantly Dutch region
at the time.
Herbert Hoover’s son, Allan Henry, owned two pet alligators. The gators occasionally
would run loose around the White House, but they were normally kept in a bathtub.
Last but certainly not least, during President Reagan’s visit to Guam in 1986, his
cardiovascular & thoracic care was assigned to our own Dr. Gary P. Jones of Louisiana
Cardiovascular & Thoracic Institute / Diabetes Relief of Louisiana.