SEPTEMBER 25, 1789: MONROE BEFORE MADISON EXCEPT AFTER JEFFERSON

MONROE BEFORE MADISON EXCEPT AFTER JEFFERSON

When the Constitutional Convention sent the proposed U.S. Constitution to the states for ratification, Anti-Federalists criticized the power it gave the national government and its lack of explicit constitutionprotections for individual rights. Several states ratified the Constitution only given the promise that it would be immediately amended.

James Madison from Virginia proposed 19 amendments to answer the states’ objections. The Senate then whittled these down to 12, which were approved by Congress on September 25, 1789,and sent on to the states by President Washington.

The states ratified the last 10 of the 12 amendments, and they became the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, now referred to as the Bill of Rights.

The first of the two rejected amendments would have established how members of the House of Representatives would be apportioned to the states. Although it was rejected, it is covered elsewhere in the Constitution. The second forbade Congress from raising its own pay; Congress could vote for a raise but it would only apply to the next Congress. Nearly two hundred years later, a clever university student realized that the amendment remained “alive” because it had no deadline for state ratifications. He organized a successful campaign seeking ratification of the amendment, and it became the 27th (and most recent) amendment to the Constitution.

Another important editing job:

king me

Many of those members of the Constitutional Convention wanted Washington to become America’s own King George I. Although cooler heads prevailed, it’s interesting to think about the possibility. A list of our royalty might look something like this.

George I (George the Honest)

John I

Thomas I

James I

James II

John II (John the Junior)

Andrew I (Andrew the Old Hickory)

Martin I

William I (William the Tippecanoe)

John III (John the Tyler Too)

James III royal

Zachary I

Millard I

Franklin I

James IV

Abraham I (Abraham the Emancipator)

Andrew II

Ulysses I

Rutherford I

James V

Chester I

Grover I

Benjamin I

Grover I Part II

William I

Theodore I (Theodore the Big Stick)

William II (William the Fat)

Woodrow I

Warren I

Calvin I

Herbert I

Franklin I

Harry I

Dwight I (Dwight the Ike)

John IV

Lyndon I

Richard I (Richard the Not a Crook) Abdicated the throne

Gerald I

James VI

Ronald I

George II

William III

George III (George the W)

Barak I (Barack the Kenyan)

A mental block prevents the final entry.

 

 

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JULY 11, 1921: BATHTUBS OF THE PRESIDENTS II — SPLISH SPLASH, I WAS STUCK IN THE BATH

Former President William Howard Taft became the tenth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court on July 11, 1921,  serving until his death in 1930. He was the only person to ever hold both positions. His long career also included stints as Secretary of War, Solicitor General, Governor of Cuba and Appellate Judge. The Almanac will, however, ignore all that stuff to concentrate on the burning question: Did Taft really get stuck in the White House bathtub?

 

Taft was a heavy-set fellow, weighing in at 340 pounds. Occasionally, chairs challenged his girth. He did have the White House bathtub super-sized during his presidency. That tub remained in taftthe White House until removed during renovation by a narrower president.  And, in an interesting coincidence (?), the Taft Justice Department was involved in breaking up the Bathtub Trust (aka the Loo League), a cartel of porcelain makers who were playing price-fixing games with bathtubs and toilets. Jump on that, conspiracy theorists.

Then there’s that telling photograph of four men sitting in the Taft Tub. White House plumbers, perhaps. Precursors of the Nixon gang?

Some stories have the entire Joints Chiefs of Staff extricating Taft from the tub. Others talk of lots and lots of butter. But is it true? Or was it a political dirty trick? Or a clever hoax?  H.L. Mencken maintains his innocence.

For further enlightenment see Part I of our  Bathtubs of the Presidents series.  And how many people share the bathtub of our current president?

Will we have a part III?

 

 

November 7, 1811: Tippecanoe and So Do You

Long before the confederacy of southern states, United States forces faced the uprising of a confederacy under the Shawnee leader and Native American folk hero Tecumseh who had visions of a Midwestern Indian nation allied with the British. Confederacy forces led by Tecumseh’s brother Tenskawatawa (One with Open Mouth) met government forces under the direction of William Henry Harrison, Governor of the Indian Territory, on November 7, 1811, in the Battle of Tippecanoe (and Tyler too).

The battle took place in Indiana, at the confluence of the Tippecanoe and Wabash too Rivers. The day gave government forces an important political and symbolic victory and dealt a devastating blow to Tecumseh’s confederacy. Public opinion in the United States blamed the entire brouhaha on buttinsky Brits. The War of 1812 broke out six months later.

The Battle of Tippecanoe (and Tyler too) also served as an important springboard for Harrison’s political ambitions which culminated in his becoming president in 1841. At the age of 68 years and 23 days when inaugurated, Harrison was the oldest president to take office until Ronald Reagan in 1981. During the campaign, Democrats characterized Harrison as an out-of-touch old fart (One Who Sits in Log Cabin Drinking Hard Cider). Harrison and running mate John Tyler (and Tippecanoe too) turned the tables on the Dems, adopting the log cabin and hard cider as campaign symbols along with one of the most famous campaign slogans ever (Tippecanoe and you know who).

Harrison caught cold shortly after his inauguration and went quickly from bad to worse. Harrison’s doctors tried applications of opium, castor oil, leeches, and Virginia snakeweed too. But to show his disdain for modern medicine, Harrison became delirious and died. He served only 32 days in office – some would say the perfect tenure for some presidents (who shall go unnamed).

 

There are moments, Jeeves, when one asks oneself, ‘Do trousers matter?’ ~ P. G. Wodehouse

 

 

September 25, 1789: Monroe Before Madison Except After Jefferson

When the Constitutional Convention sent the proposed U.S. Constitution to the states for ratification, Anti-Federalists criticized the power it gave the national government and its lack of explicit constitutionprotections for individual rights. Several states ratified the Constitution only given the promise that it would be immediately amended.

James Madison from Virginia proposed 19 amendments to answer the states’ objections. The Senate then whittled these down to 12, which were approved by Congress on September 25, 1789,and sent on to the states by President Washington.

The states ratified the last 10 of the 12 amendments, and they became the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, now referred to as the Bill of Rights.

The first of the two rejected amendments would have established how members of the House of Representatives would be apportioned to the states. Although it was rejected, it is covered elsewhere in the Constitution. The second forbade Congress from raising its own pay; Congress could vote for a raise but it would only apply to the next Congress. Nearly two hundred years later, a clever university student realized that the amendment remained “alive” because it had no deadline for state ratifications. He organized a successful campaign seeking ratification of the amendment, and it became the 27th (and most recent) amendment to the Constitution.

Another important editing job:

The Madness of George III

Many of those members of the Constitutional Convention wanted Washington to become America’s own King George I. Although cooler heads prevailed, it’s interesting to think about the possibility. A list of our royalty might look something like this.

George I (George the Honest)

John I

Thomas I

James I

James II

John II (John the Junior)

Andrew I (Andrew the Old Hickory)

Martin I

William I (William the Tippecanoe)

John III (John the Tyler Too)

James III royal

Zachary I

Millard I

Franklin I

James IV

Abraham I (Abraham the Emancipator)

Andrew II

Ulysses I

Rutherford I

James V

Chester I

Grover I

Benjamin I

Grover I Part II

William I

Theodore I (Theodore the Big Stick)

William II (William the Fat)

Woodrow I

Warren I

Calvin I

Herbert I

Franklin I

Harry I

Dwight I (Dwight the Ike)

John IV

Lyndon I

Richard I (Richard the Not a Crook) Abdicated the throne

Gerald I

James VI

Ronald I

George ii

William III

George III (George the W)

Barak I (Barack the Kenyan)

It is interesting to note that the British have had several women monarchs (Mary I, Elizabeth I, Mary II, Anne, Victoria, Elizabeth II), while our American list has nary a one.  Just sayin’.

Inspirational Quote for 9/25/16

lemony2