Presidents' Day, celebrated each year on the third Monday in February, is a day when Americans honor the legacies of the U.S. presidents. The holiday was established in 1800, when Congress declared February 22, George Washington's birthday, a federal holiday. Still legally known as Washington's Birthday, Presidents' Day has become a day to honor not only Washington, but Abraham Lincoln, the 16th U.S. president, as well as the lives and accomplishments of all U.S. presidents.
Did you know?
All of the U.S. presidents except for George Washington lived in the White House; it wasn't completed until after Washington left office.
Thomas Jefferson, the 3rd President, had two pet bears. He kept the bears in a cage on the White House lawn and occasionally went on walks with them. Other strange presidential pets include: Alligator (John Quincy Adams), Elephant (James Buchanan), and Zebra (Teddy Roosevelt).
John Quincy Adams, the 6th President, regularly skinny−dipped in The Potomac! He also wore the same hat every day for ten years!
Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th President, was given a $20.00 speeding ticket for riding his horse too fast down Washington Street!
William Howard Taft, the 27th President, was a stately fellow weighing in at over 300 lbs. Due to his size, he unfortunately became stuck in one of the White House bathtubs (bathtubs were much smaller then). A large custom made tub was eventually installed for Taft.
Warren Harding, the 29th President really liked to gamble. In one poker game, he bet the White House china collection and lost it all in one hand.
Herbert Hoover, the 31st President, moved his family to China before taking office, and he and his wife learned to speak Mandarin Chinese fluently. They would speak the language around the White House to prevent others from understanding them.
While in the Navy, Richard Nixon, the 37th President, noticed that his friends were winning money in poker games. Nixon had the best poker player in his unit teach him how to play the game, and within only a few months, Nixon had won around $6,000 in poker games; which he used to fund his first congressional campaign.