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The American Presidency

A Glorious Burden: "As to the presidency, the two happiest days of my life were those of my entrance upon the office and my surrender of it." President Martin Van Buren

Newlyweds Nancy and Ronald Reagan enjoy ice cream cones. On July 9, 1984, President Reagan issued Proclamation 5219 that designated July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of the month as National Ice Cream Day.

Martin van Buren

Postcards of the Past - Vintage Postcards of US Presidents

On July 4, 1872, Calvin Coolidge was born and would become the 30th president of the United States, when he got to put on an Indian headdress and pose for this picture. Actually in 1924, President Coolidge signed a bill granting Native Americans full citizenship. In the photo left, Coolidge was made a chief of the Sioux by Henry Standing Bear.

Ethic Soup: July 4th in History

In 1930, Congress passed a bill that created the Veterans Administration, authorizing the president to “consolidate and coordinate Government activities affecting war veterans.” (photo: U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs)

President Reagan talking with actress Audrey Hepburn and Robert Wolders at a private dinner for the Prince of Wales at the White House. May 2, 1981. Audrey Hepburn and Robert Wolders were partners from 1980 until Hepburn’s death in 1993.

Reagan with Audrey Hepburn & Robert Wolders, 1981

Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) as Secretary of Navy at the Brooklyn Navy Yard (NARA) December 12, 1916

Former presidents George H.W. Bush and son, George W. Bush

September 6th 1901: McKinley was shot by anarchist Leon Czolgosz at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. The President died from gangrene which developed from the bullet wounds on September 14th and was succeeded by his Vice-President, Theodore Roosevelt.

November 25, 1963 Arlington Cemetery - The First Lady Jackie Kennedy with Bishop Philip Hannan at the funeral of President John F. Kennedy.

Eddie Adams Day: Celebrating the photojournalist

President Dwight D. Eisenhower was the first presidential candidate to use television advertisement. The clip, which aired in 1952, depicted a wide range of people – with differing professions - showing their support for Eisenhower. The cartoon also featured a caricature of the soon-to-be Commander in Chief. Around this time, television began playing a large part in American politics.

Video: "I Like Ike", 1952

First Ladies Barbara Bush, Nancy Reagan, Rosalynn Carter, Betty Ford, Pat Nixon, and Lady Bird Johnson at the Dedication of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library , 11/04/1991

In 1917, as Assistant Secretary of the Navy, FDR was sent to the Caribbean to inspect the Marine operations in Haiti and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, to determine whether the approaches to the Panama Canal were wholly secure. These photos are from that trip. He served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy from 1913-1920 during Woodrow Wilson’s presidency.

FDR in Haiti & the Dominican Republic

Susan Ford dancing in the East Room during her senior prom that was held at the White House on May 31, 1975.

The White House Prom of 1975

Susan Ford with her prom date Billy Pifer on board the Sequioa - the presidential yacht - before going to the dance that was held at the White House.

The White House Prom of 1975

Susan Ford talking with reporters during her prom that was held at the White House on May 31, 1975. Follow link for story.

The White House Prom of 1975

On May 31, 1975, Susan Ford, daughter of President and First Lady Ford, held her high school prom at the White House. Follow link for story.

The White House Prom of 1975

Herbert Hoover speaking during commencement exercises at Howard University. 6/10/1932.

Eleanor Roosevelt watches Senator Lyndon B. Johnson planting a tree in front of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library as part of a memorial service in Hyde Park, New York. May 30, 1959.

Warren G. Harding, the 29th President of the United States, reeling in a big one in Florida, ca. 1922.

President Harding Fishing, 1922

Jackie Kennedy

In a letter to President William McKinley dated April 5, 1898, famed sharpshooter Annie Oakley offered up an interesting service. The United States was on the cusp of a war with Spain. In case a war was to break out, Oakley offered the government the service and expertise of 50 “lady sharpshooters” who would also provide their own arms and ammunition. McKinley did not accept her offer.

Annie Oakley's Letter to Pres. McKinley

In June 1778, a 700 wagon caravan escorted the Liberty Bell on its return to Philadelphia from Allentown along Towamencin's Allentown Road. Nine months earlier, when British troops threatened to capture the city, the bell had been whisked into hiding via the same route. Zion's UCC Church,in Allentown, PA, is where the Liberty Bell was hidden during the Revolutionary War

Painting of Paul Revere by Gilbert Stuart, circa 1813. Paul Revere was born 01/01/1735 - he died 05/10/1818 at age 83. He was a Patriot in the American Revolutionary War. His midnight ride to warn about the coming of the British has become the stuff of legends.

Paul Revere: Patriot and Artisan

Martha Washington: "I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances." Martha Washington Born June 21, 1731, the 1st "First Lady".