Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia in 1819, making him the first president to found an institution of higher learning. On the topic of higher education, James Madison was Princeton's first graduate student after finishing his undergraduate degree in only two years. Millard Fillmore's first wife, Abigail, was his teacher while he was a 19-year-old student at the New Hope Academy, although she was only two years older than he was.Continue Reading
Franklin Pierce didn't swear his oath of office, he affirmed it, placing his hand on a law book rather than on the Bible. John F. Kennedy was the first president born in the 20th century, the first boy scout to become a president and the first Roman Catholic president. Rutherford Hayes held gospel sing-alongs every night in the White House and banished alcohol from the building.
Abraham Lincoln was the first president to receive a patent and was the first president to have been born outside the original 13 colonies. The capital of Liberia, Monrovia, is named after President James Monroe. Thomas Jefferson composed his own epitaph and neglected to mention that he had been a president of the United States. The first attempt to assassinate a U.S. president was on Andrew Jackson by Richard Lawrence. Both of Lawrence's guns misfired, however, making the attempt unsuccessful.Learn more about US History