Roosevelt was youngest president at 42

Published 12:36 am Saturday, November 28, 2015

Here is a bit of “this and that” about presidents and other famous people, along with a few interesting facts. Did you know …

That President Rutherford B. Hayes’s wife was nicknamed “Lemonade Lucy” because she did not serve alcoholic beverages at the White House?

That during the war, Martha Washington visited her husband George at his encampments, including Valley Forge? That President Washington had such a fear of being buried alive, he requested that he not be buried until three days after his death?

That Samuel Adams and John Adams were cousins and both leaders during the Revolutionary era?

That President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s wife, Eleanor, was also his cousin? That he had polio when he was 39 and was told he would never walk again, but overcame his disability enough to walk with the aid of braces and cane?

That Theodore Roosevelt was the youngest at 42 to become president? That he assumed that office upon the death of William McKinley?

That President John F. Kennedy was the youngest elected president at 43 and the youngest to die in office at 46? That he was the first Catholic elected to the presidency?

That Benedict Arnold was a hero before he was a traitor?

That President Andrew Jackson’s life was threatened through a foiled assassination attempt?

That Robert E. Lee was asked by President Abraham Lincoln to lead the Union forces of the Civil War, but refused because he was from the State of Virginia? That, along with other southerners during the Civil War lost his citizenship? That it was not restored until the 1970s?

That Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee were devout Christians?

That diarrhea killed more men in the Civil War than were killed fighting on the battlefield?

That during World War II, all baseball games on the East Coast were played during the day as a precaution against enemy boats detecting the lights?

That popular songs of the Civil War were “Goober Peas,” “When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again,” and “The Yellow Rose of Texas?”

That the song, “John Brown’s Body,” and the expletive, John Brown, comes from abolitionist John Brown who took the arsenal in Harper’s Ferry, Va.? That Brown was captured by Corp. Robert E. Lee and hung?

That for every mile of the 2,000 pioneers of this country traveled to Oregon from Missouri, seventeen people died?

That the lead Japanese pilot in the bombing of Pearl Harbor later was converted to Christianity?

That Benjamin Franklin was responsible for public libraries, as well as the invention of bifocals? That another of his accomplishments was serving the nation as its first postmaster? That he had a son who was a royal governor in America during the American Revolution?

That during WWI before machine guns were mounted on airplanes, pilots threw bricks, wrenches and guns at enemy planes?

That those whiskers men grow on the sides of their faces are named for a Union general, Ambrose Sideburn, who was known for his own facial adornment?


Nina Keenam is retired from the newspaper business. Her column appears on Saturdays.