25 Fascinating Facts about First Ladies of USA

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1 Lou Henry Hoover

Lou Henry Hoover

First Lady Lou Henry Hoover was the first American woman to earn a geology degree. She spoke 5 languages fluently and is the only first lady to speak an Asian language. She established the American Women’s War Relief Fund, founded the National Women’s Conference on Law Enforcement.

2. According to the memoir of a former slave, First Lady Dolley Madison did not save the Lansdowne portrait of George Washington from the British burning it during the War of 1812. Rather, a Frenchman and a gardener saved it, while Dolley just ran off with silver.

3. Eleanor Roosevelt held weekly press conferences and allowed female journalists to attend, forcing many news organizations to hire their first female reporters.

4. Former First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson repeatedly declined the dubious honor of having Austin Town Lake named after her, so the City Council waited until she died and named it after her anyway.

5. Rose Cleveland, the U.S. First Lady was a lesbian. She served as the First Lady for her brother who was unmarried. She carried on a relationship for more than 30 years with Evangeline Whipple until Rose died of the Spanish Influenza in 1918.

6 Pat Nixon

Pat Nixon

Pat Nixon, the wife of Richard Nixon, was actually named Thelma. She gained the nickname Pat from her father because her birthday was the day before St. Patrick’s Day.

7. First Lady Betty Ford was a supporter of the equal rights amendment (ERA), publicly pro-choice, and a breast cancer survivor who raised awareness about breast cancer as well as alcohol addiction as a result of her own struggle with both conditions.

8. In 1906, Eleanor Roosevelt bought a chicken-wire cage to hang out the window of her New York City townhouse for her first child, Anna, to nap in—a practice known as “airing” for city-dwelling children.

9. During a visit to Egypt in 2012, Hillary Clinton was pelted with tomatoes and shoes, while the protesters chanted “Monica, Monica.”

10. Jacqueline Kennedy requested an eternal flame for her husband’s grave. Later, when a group of Catholic schoolchildren were sprinkling the temporary flame with holy water, the cap came off the bottle and water poured onto the flame, putting it out.

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11 Martha Washington

Martha Washington

When Martha Washington recalled the two saddest days of her life the first was December 14, 1799, when her husband died. The second was in January 1801 when Thomas Jefferson visited Mount Vernon. “Next to the loss of her husband” Jefferson’s visit was the “most painful occurrence of her life.”

12. Edith Bolling Wilson, the second wife of President Woodrow Wilson, is considered to be the first unofficial female President. She functionally ran the Executive branch of the government for the rest of her husband’s term after he suffered a devastating stroke in 1919.

13. Frances Folsom Cleveland, the US president Grover Cleveland’s wife was the youngest first lady and the first to be married in the White House, and the first to give birth while her husband was president. Grover met her shortly after she was born when he was 27 years old.

14. Nancy Reagan met and fell in love with her future husband Ronald when she was blacklisted as an actress in Hollywood and sought out his help as the then Screen Actors Guild president to clear her name from the suspicion of being a communist.

15. After President Kennedy was shot Jackie Kennedy wore her blood-soaked, pink dress to both the hospital and the swearing-in of President Johnson. The unlaundered suit was donated to the National Archives and Records Administration and will not be placed on public display until 2103.

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16 Abigail Adams

Abigail Adams

Abigail Adams is considered to be the first Second Lady and the second First Lady of the United States because she was the wife and closest advisor of John Adams, as well as the mother of John Quincy Adams. She is sometimes considered to have been a Founder of the United States.

17. Woodrow Wilson’s First Lady, Edith Wilson, grazed sheep on the White House lawn to raise money for the war effort during World War I by selling their wool.

18. Harriet Lane Johnston, the niece to the bachelor president, James Buchanan, served as hostess for her uncle in the White House and was the first woman to be referred to as “First Lady.”

19. USA first lady Dolley Madison served ice cream in the White House around the 1810s. Her favorite flavor to serve was Oyster flavored ice cream.

20. Emily Donelson was only 21 years old when she became the de facto First Lady of the United States. She was replaced in the role during Andrew Jackson’s second term, making her the “first First Lady” of the Jackson administration.

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21 Edith Wilson

Edith Wilson

First Lady Edith Wilson was a direct descendant of Pocahontas, helped run the presidency after her husband’s stroke, and attended JFK’s inauguration at the age of 88.

22. American first lady Sarah Childress Polk encouraged the use of the song “Hail to the chief” when the president entered a room to avoid the embarrassment of short President Polk entering a crowded room unnoticed.

23. Former USA president Barack Obama’s wife, Michelle Obama has strabismus also called crossed eyes.

24. Eleanor Roosevelt regularly refused Secret Service protection, and instead traveled with a .22 Smith and Wesson on her person.

25. In 1990, First Lady Barbara Bush criticized The Simpsons as “the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen.” Marge wrote a letter to her, in character, politely telling her not to be so judgmental and explaining that her family tried their best. Barbara later apologized for her “loose tongue.”

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