Fun Inaugural Facts
Bibles are used for presidents to swear on during the oath of office. During George Washington's first inaugural, the book was opened quickly to a passage in Genesis 49-13. That passage talks about hope and promise for the future.
George Washington's wife Martha decided to stay home at Mount Vernon rather than attend her husband's inaugural in 1789.
James Buchanan had the first photographed inaugural in 1857. Harry Truman had the first televised swearing-in ceremony in 1949.
In 1961 the Army had to use fire to melt the ice along John F. Kennedy's inaugural parade route.
At 43 years, Kennedy was the youngest President-elect. Teddy Roosevelt was 42 years old when he was sworn in following the death of President McKinley. Ronald Reagan was the oldest president, reaching 69 years old by his first inauguration.
Kennedy was also the last to wear a traditional stovepipe hat to the inauguration.
On January 20, 1985, Ronald Reagan took the oath privately on a Sunday and delayed the celebration and public oath because it was Super Bowl Sunday.
Bill Clinton had the highest number of inaugural balls in history with 14 simultaneous events. His 1993 inaugural cost $33 million. His second inaugural was the first to be broadcast over the Internet.