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March 2017




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Mar. 23rd, 2017

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Vice President Schuyler Colfax

On this date in 1823, Schuyler Colfax, Jr., was born in New York City. At the age of 19, he became the editor of the South Bend (Indiana) Free Press, and three years later, bought the newspaper and changed its name to the St. Joseph Valley Register. In 1854, he was elected to the House of Representatives representing Indiana, and he became Speaker of the House in 1863. In 1868, he was elected Vice President on Ulysses Grant's Republican ticket, and when they took office (at the ages of 46 and 45), they were the youngest Presidential/Vice Presidential team ever (Bill Clinton and Al Gore, at the ages of 45 and 44, broke their record in 1993). Colfax was implicated in the Credit Mobilier scandal (which didn't tarnish Grant), and left at the end of the one term (he was replaced on the ticket by Henry Wilson). Colfax died in 1885.

Mar. 22nd, 2017

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Pre-US history and PPT Hatch

On this date in American pre-history, the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony signed a peace treaty with Massasoit of the Wampanoags in 1621. In 1622, the Jamestown massacre occurred, as Algonquians killed 347 English settlers around Jamestown, Virginia. In 1630, the Massachusetts Bay Colony outlawed the possession of cards, dice, and gaming tables. In 1638, Anne Hutchinson was expelled from Massachusetts Bay Colony for religious dissent. And in 1765, the British Parliament passed the Stamp Act.

Today is US Senate President pro tempore Orrin Hatch's 83rd birthday. Hatch has represented Utah in the Senate since 1977, and been President pro tempore for the last two years.

Mar. 21st, 2017

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Signers, rebels, and sports

On this date in 1713, Francis Lewis was born in Llandaff, Wales. He moved to Whitestone, New York, in 1734. He was a member of the Committee of Sixty, a member of the New York Provincial Congress, and was elected a delegate to the Continental Congress in 1775. In 1776, he signed the Declaration of Independence, and in 1778, he signed the United States Articles of Confederation. From 1779 to 1780, he served as the Chairman of the Continental Board of Admiralty. His son, Morgan Lewis, served in the army during the Revolutionary War, and later served as Governor of New York. Francis Lewis died on December 31, 1802.

On this date in 1861, Alexander Stephens (who would become Vice President of the Confederate States of America) gave the Cornerstone Speech, outlining the differences between the Constitutions of the USA and the CSA. He had previously served in the US House of Representatives, and would do so again after the Civil War, as well as serving as the Governor of Georgia in the 1880s.

On this date in 1980, President Jimmy Carter announced a United States boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow to protest the Soviet war in Afghanistan.

Mar. 20th, 2017

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Vice Presidential Brother David Rockefeller Dies

Billionaire banker philanthropist David Rockefeller died today at the age of 101. Born June 12, 1915, he was the sixth and youngest son of John D. Rockefeller, Jr. and Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, the last surviving grandson of John Rockefeller, and the youngest brother of former Vice President Nelson Rockefeller (1974-77). He served as the Chairman of the Board of the Museum of Modern Art, and of Chase Manhattan Bank, and was offered the position of Secretary of the Treasury, by both Presidents Nixon and Carter.

The New York Times has an extensive obituary.
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Presidential children: Donald Trump

On this date in 2006, Barron William Trump was born. Barron is the fifth child of President Donald J. Trump, his only child with his third wife, Melania.

Mar. 19th, 2017

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Cabinet: James V. Forrestal

On this date in 1949, after a year and a half in office, first Secretary of Defense James Vincent Forrestal retired from the Cabinet (he'd previously been the last Cabinet-level Secretary of the Navy, from May 1944). Born in 1892, Forrestal died on May 22, 1949, 64 days after leaving the Cabinet. His is the second-shortest retirement of all Cabinet Secretaries.

The first US supercarrier, the USS Forrestal (CV-59, in service from 1955 to 1993) was named for him.
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Supreme Court: Earl Warren

On this date in 1891, Earl Warren was born in Los Angeles, California. After receiving his LL.B. in 1914, he worked as a lawyer for a few years, before enlisting in the Army during World War I. After the war, he worked as an attorney for the city of Oakland and the state legislature in California. He was the District Attorney of Alameda County from 1925 to 1939, and then the Attorney General of California until 1943. He was the governor of California from 1943 to 1953, and then, on October 5, 1953, Dwight Eisenhower appointed him the 14th Chief Justice. Warren took his seat at the age of 62 years 200 days; he is number six on the list of oldest people appointed to the Supreme Court. Warren retired from the Court in 1969, and died in July 1974.

Mar. 18th, 2017

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President Grover Cleveland

On this date in 1837, Stephen Grover Cleveland was born in Caldwell, New Jersey. He dropped his first name as an adult, and was popularly known as Grover Cleveland. He won the popular vote in three successive Presidential elections, but lost the electoral vote in the second. Thus, Cleveland became the only President to serve two non-consecutive terms: 1885-89 and 1893-97. Cleveland was a bachelor when first elected, but in June 1886 he married 21-year-old Frances Folsom, becoming the second President to marry while in office, but the only one to do so in the White House (the ceremony took place in the Blue Room). Their second daughter, Esther, was born in September 1893, and is the only Presidential child to have been born in the White House. Her younger sister Marion was also born during their father's second term, but not in the White House. Grover died in 1908, and Frances later became the first Presidential widow to remarry.
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Vice President John C. Calhoun

On this date in 1782, John Caldwell Calhoun was born in South Carolina. He began his political career in 1810, when he was elected to the House of Representatives, where he served until 1817, when James Monroe appointed him the 10th US Secretary of War. He served until March 4, 1825, when he took office as the seventh Vice President of the United States. At the time, he was the second youngest Vice President, and is currently the sixth youngest to hold the office. Following the election of 1828, he became the second (and to date, the last) Vice President to serve under two different Presidents (John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson). Calhoun and Jackson disagreed during Jackson's first term of office, and Jackson dropped him from the ticket in favor of Martin Van Buren. Calhoun was elected to the US Senate in 1832, and became the first (now first of only two) Vice President to resign, when he left office on December 28, 1832, to take his seat in the Senate. Calhoun represented South Carolina in the Senate from December 29, 1832, until March 3, 1843, when he became the 16th US Secretary of State. He served John Tyler in that office for just under a year, and then was re-elected to the Senate, which seat he held until his death in March 1850.
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Presidential children: Rutherford Hayes

On this date in 1950, 83-year-old Frances “Fanny” Hayes-Smith died. The fifth child (of eight) of President Rutherford and Lucy Hayes, she had been the Senior Presidential Child since June 30, 1947, when John Tyler's youngest daughter, Pearl, died.

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