Think you know everything about former US presidents? Despite how many documentaries you watch on the History Channel, we found a collection that may surprise you!
Greek and Latin
Elected as the twentieth president of the United States, James Garfield sure was a man of many talents. He was ambidextrous, and he was also the first left-handed president. But his talents don’t just end there. Aside from being able to use both hands efficiently for writing, he could also write Latin with one hand and Greek with the other at the same time! That’s some crazy skills right there!
The Rough Rider Roosevelt
If you already see Theodore Roosevelt as a pretty cool guy, you’ll be more amazed after knowing this fact about him. An assassin shot him in the chest during a speech in Milwaukee. After getting shot, he uttered the words “I don’t know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot.” Despite having a bullet still lodged in his chest, he finished his 90-minute speech after waiving off everyone who rushed to his aid so they could take him to the hospital to get medical attention. Talk about grace under pressure!
Former US president Gerald Ford worked as a fashion model in New York City before he became president. His wife, Elizabeth Bloomer, was also a fashion model. In 1942, he even made it to the cover of Cosmopolitan with Phyllis Brown.
Abraham Lincoln used to be a bartender before he became a lawyer, then eventually becoming a president of the United States. Along with his friend William Berry, he owned a saloon named Berry and Lincoln. However, Berry buried the saloon in debt with his alcoholism, resulting in a short-lived entrepreneurial experience for Lincoln.
Warren G. Harding had a thing for gambling. He even hosted weekly poker games at the White House, that’s how much of an avid gambler he was. He even bet a set of priceless White House china, which he lost during a game.
President Bush Sr. visited Asia for a trade conference in the early ’90s. He fainted after vomiting all over the banquet host, at a state even held by the then Japanese prime minister. He later explained that the cause of his sudden illness was a previous tennis match mixed with a flu bug. The term Bushusuru, meaning “to vomit” or “to do the Bush thing,” was later coined and used by the Japanese.
Jimmy Carter might actually take the cake from some of the presidents who have strange beliefs. He was making a speech in Georgia when he saw a UFO, which happened before he became president. He stated that what he saw was a self-illuminating bright white object in the sky. He reported the sighting to the International UFO Bureau.
“Being a little crazy” might be a bit of an understatement to describe Pres. Andrew Jackson. He accepted most of his duels to protect his wife’s reputation, and he was involved in over a hundred duels. Jackson even politely offered Charles Dickinson the first shot during their pistol duel. Dickinson shot Jackson as he accepted the offer. However, Jackson made it look like it was merely a bee sting before he shot and killed the unfortunate opponent.
Despite being a man of few words, Calvin Coolidge had a sense of humor. He would frequently prank the White House staff by pressing all the buttons in the Oval Office just so he could observe how everyone would look like as they were rushing in frantically, expecting the worst. He was certainly the kind of guy who didn’t speak much but turned out to be pretty funny every time he did.
The White House didn’t house an alligator, no, but two US presidents owned a couple of these reptiles during their presidency. John Quincy Adams had his alligator stay in an unfinished bathroom. He received his pet from a French general who gave it to him as a gift. During Herbert Hoover‘s presidency around the 1930s, the large reptiles made a reappearance. The White House had two alligators that frequently roamed its grounds, who were owned by his son.
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