March 4, 1933: First Inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt
On this day in 1933, the first inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt was held in Washington, D.C. The longest-serving president in U.S. history, and leader through the Great Depression and World War II — two of the nation’s worst crises — Franklin Delano Roosevelt is considered by many to be our greatest president.
Photo: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Joseph Robinson in Washington, Washington, D.C., March 4, 1933 (National Archives).
(Nice use of the Content Source link, pbsthisdayinhistory!)
Happy President’s Day!
Half a dozen Commander-in-Chiefs, via Media Matters » Images of the Week (02/14/2014)
Can you name all 6 in just once glance?
Abraham Lincoln, congressman, patent holder, and sixteenth President of the United States was born 205 years ago on February 12, 1809.
All images from the series: Mathew Brady Photographs of Civil War-Era Personalities and Scenes.
It’s #SuperBowl Sunday! Our staff at the National Archives at Seattle and the National Archives at Denver are getting ready to cheer on their teams.
In the meantime, here are ten facts about the Presidents and football to keep you busy before you dive into the chips and dip. (Did you know that Theodore Roosevelt helped to legalize the forward pass? Or that Dwight Eisenhower was injured tackling Jim Thorpe?)
Herbert Hoover, Secretary of War Patrick Hurley, and members of both teams signed this football auctioned off at the 1930 Army-Navy game in Yankee Stadium to raise money for the unemployed.
In 1836, President Jackson accepted 1,400-pound wheel of cheese from Col. Thomas Meacham, a dairy farmer near Sandy Creek, NY. The cheese was mammoth, and it sat, ripening, in the White House for over a year. Eventually, Jackson invited everyone in Washington, DC, to stop by and help consume the massive wheel. He threw the doors open, and in just two hours, the cheese was gone.Even members of Congress went crazy for cheese and were absent from their seats. From the Vermont Phoenix, March 3, 1837:
Mr. Alford opposed the motion for a recess. He said it was time, if they intended to do any public business this session, that they forthwith set about it, for they had wasted enough time already. As for the battle with the great cheese at the White House, he was for leaving it to those whose tastes led them there, and to-morrow they might receive a full account of the killed and slain. The gentleman from Maine, (Mr Jarvis) could as well finish the speech he was making to the few members present, as not.
Mr. Wise remarked that it was pretty well understood where the absent members had gone. There was a big cheese to be eaten at the White House to-day, and the appetites of members had driven them there to partake in the treat. To obtain a quorum he therefore moved that the Seargent-at-arms be directed to go to the President’s house, and invite the members there to return to their seats. [“Those that have done eating!”—exclaimed a member.] “Oh yes,” continued Mr. W. “those that have done eating their cheese, of course.” [“And let them bring a portion with them,” said a third.] “No, he did not want any of it—he had no wish to partake of any thing at the White House.”
A motion was again made that the House take a recess till 4 o’clock.
This true story is the basis for today’s first virtual “Big Block of Cheese Day” at the White House, which is hosting an online open house for citizens to ask questions. Sadly, there will be no physical cheese giveaway!
When we heard about the event, our archivists hunted through our records, but there are no official Federal documents relating to the cheese, probably because the cheese was a private gift. (In fact, we only turned up a handful of cheese-related records, including a recipe for making “loaf” from cottage cheese.)
However, we did find a mention of Jackson and cheese in this handwritten note (see page 4 and 5) from President Truman in 1952. The White House was being renovated, and Truman was thinking of previous Presidents and their treatment of the official furnishings.
Truman wrote, “Then old Andy Jackson and his rough, tough backwoods [illegible] walking on the furniture, with muddy boots and eating a 300-pound cheese, grinding it into the lovely Adams and Monroe carpets!”
Jackson was not the first President to receive a giant wheel of cheese as a gift. President Jefferson received on as well. There is even a monument in Cheshire, MA, to the cheese press used to make the cheese for Jefferson.
Alas, this cheese slicer was patented 30 years too late to help President Jackson get rid of his cheese more quickly….
Cheese Press & Slicer patents thanks to our colleagues at the National Archives at Kansas City!
Patent for a cheese press, given to Luke Hale in June, 1838 (National Archives at Kansas City).
Patent for a cheese slicer, granted to J. G. Barker in 1860 (National Archives at Kansas City)
Article II, Section 3, Clause 1 of the Constitution requires that the President “… shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.”
President Reagan’s 1986 State of the Union was originally scheduled for the day of the Challenger explosion, January 28, 1986, but it was postponed by a week in response to the accident. Reagan began his message by paying tribute to “the brave seven” Challenger crew members and later reiterated the nation’s commitment to the space program. The version shown above is the official copy Reagan handed to the President of the Senate before the address. The text differs slightly from the final speech made by the President.
First and Last Pages of President Ronald Reagan’s State of the Union Message to Congress, 2/4/1986, Records of the U.S. Senate
Eisenhower’s “Military-Industrial Complex” Speech Origins and Significance
Given on January 17, 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s farewell address, known for its warnings about the growing power of the “military-industrial complex,” was nearly two years in the making. This Inside the Vaults video short follows newly discovered papers revealing that Eisenhower was deeply involved in crafting the speech, which was to become one of the most famous in American history. The papers were discovered by the family of Eisenhower speechwriter Malcolm Moos and donated to the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum. Eisenhower Library director Karl Weissenbach and presidential historian and Foundation for the National Archives board member Michael Beschloss discuss the evolution of the speech.
The War on Poverty
Fifty years ago today, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a war on poverty. In his Annual Message to Congress on the State of the Union, LBJ outlined his plan to alleviate poverty in America.
LBJ believed that the most effective way to “win the war on poverty” was to introduce legislation, programs, and tax cuts that would result in a Great Society, giving all Americans — not just the poor and underprivileged — a better quality of life.
On January 7, 1999, the impeachment trial of President William Clinton began in the Senate. This is the oath that Senators took before participating in the trial. The President was acquitted by the Senate on February 12.
Oaths of Senators for the Impeachment Trial of William Jefferson Clinton (1157606), 1/7/1999, Records of the U.S. Senate
Need that perfect drink for your New Year’s Eve celebration? Try Ike’s Five-Star Bourbon Egg Nog:
Ike’s Bourbon Egg Nog
Our Presidents is celebrating the holiday season with First Family foods! We’ll be serving up festive Presidential recipes and White House menus all month long.
To whet your appetite, here’s Dwight D. Eisenhower’s recipe for Egg Nog. The former President and Five Star General made some serious stuff — scaled to serve a small army of revelers. Make sure you’ve got a quart of bourbon and a pound of sugar on hand!
Ike was an avid cook and kept a personal collection of favorite recipes. These were either typed by his staff or clipped from newspapers and magazines. Take a look at more recipes from Ike’s cookbook here.
July 18, 1918 - December 5, 2013
President William J. Clinton with Nelson Mandela participating in the Philadelphia Liberty Medal Awards Ceremony and Festival outside Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 07/04/1993.
Robert McNeely, photographer.
Records We’re Thankful to Have at the National Archives
Thanksgiving is an anticipated time of year…unless you’re a turkey! While our traditions today may not even include the iconic bird (hello, Tofurkey!), this holiday is still cherished as a time to gather with friends and family and give thanks. But before you start setting the table, enjoy a “harvest” of some of our favorite Thanksgiving records!
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?