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Friday, 21 August 2015



Thomas Jefferson was the first president to be inaugurated in Washington, D.C. Jefferson walked to and from the ceremony, rather than riding in a carriage as George Washington and John Adams did.

The Marine Band first performed at an inauguration when they played at Thomas Jefferson's inaugural ceremony, as they have at every inauguration since.

Andrew Jackson was the first president to be sworn in on the east front portico of the U.S. Capitol. Ten thousand people arrived in town for the ceremony

Martin Van Buren's inauguration on March 4, 1837, was the first where the president and the president-elect rode together to the Capitol for the ceremony.

James K. Polk's inauguration was the first covered by telegraph and to be shown in a newspaper illustration. The picture appeared in the Illustrated London News,

James Buchanan's inauguration was the first known to be photographed.

William McKinley's inauguration was the first to be recorded by a motion picture camera

Warren G. Harding was the first president to ride to and from the inauguration ceremony in an automobile on March 4, 1921. He was also the first to deliver his address using speakers.

President Calvin Coolidge's inauguration on March 4, 1925, was the first to be nationally broadcast on radio.

Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first to take the oath of office on January 20th. The date was moved from March by a constitutional amendment to shorten the lame duck period between the election and the inauguration.

President Harry S. Truman's inauguration on January 20, 1949, was the first to be televised.

Lyndon Baines Johnson's hasty swearing-in was the first time the ceremony has occurred on an airplane. Johnson took the oath of office on November 22, 1963, hours after President John F. Kennedy's assassination in Dallas, on Air Force One.

Johnson's swearing-in also marked the first time a woman administered the oath of office. U.S. District Court Judge Sarah T. Hughes administered the oath to Johnson.

Johnson is sworn in on Air Force One by Judge Sarah Hughes as Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Kennedy look on.

Lady Bird Johnson became the first presidential wife to participate in inaugural ceremonies when she held a family Bible for her husband, Lyndon Baines Johnson, as he swore the oath of office. The wives of all Johnson's successors have taken part in the oath-taking ceremony.

Lyndon Johnson became the first president to ride in a bulletproof limousine at his second inauguration on January 20, 1965.

President Richard Nixon was the last president to be inaugurated wearing a top hat.

President Jimmy Carter became the first president to walk the parade route from the Capitol to the White House when he stepped from his bulletproof limousine with his wife, Rosalynn.

The inauguration ceremonies were moved to a platform on the west front of the Capitol for the first time when President Ronald W. Reagan took the oath of office beginning his first term on January 20,1981.

Ronald Reagan's first inauguration was the warmest January 20th Inauguration Day on record (55°F),

The coldest inauguration was Ronald Reagan's second in 1985. The morning low was 4 degrees below zero - the high was only 7°F.

President Bill Clinton's inaugural ceremony on January 20, 1997, was the first to be broadcast on the Internet.


At just 135 words, George Washington's second inaugural address in 1793 was the shortest in history.

The longest inaugural address was delivered by William Henry Harrison -- after delivering the 8,445-word address on a cold day in March 1841, he died a month later of pneumonia.

The largest inaugural parade was for Dwight Eisenhower in 1953. It lasted more than four hours.

The largest turnout for an inauguration was in 2009, when 1.8 million came to see Barack Obama be sworn in.


George Washington had to borrow money to travel to New York to be inaugurated as the first President.

Most, but not all, of the inauguration oath ceremonies have included a Bible. George Washington started the practice by using a Bible from a nearby Masonic Lodge. John Quincy Adams was inaugurated on a book of law, not a Bible. The tradition of using a Bible was only documented for presidents following John Tyler.

In 1853, Franklin Pierce delivered his inauguration address without using notes.

Andrew Johnson was thought to be drunk when he delivered his inaugural address in 1865.

President Calvin Coolidge's inauguration was done twice when he first became president in 1923. His father, who was a justice of the peace, swore him in at the family's farmhouse in Vermont, hours after Warren G. Harding's death. Amid concerns about its validity, Coolidge took the oath again before a judge in Washington.

Sources Washington Post,

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