Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

2/18/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Happy President's Day, America!

It's President's Day and we decided to scour the internet for the most interesting and surprising tidbits we could find on the American Presidents. Here is the top 10 list of most surprising facts about the U.S. presidents.

John F. Kennedy was the only Catholic president in American history.

John F. Kennedy was the only Catholic president in American history.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

2/18/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: presidents day, America, holiday, trivia, top 10

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - There's a lot of trivia to choose from when studying the presidents, so admittedly, this list is subjective. Still, some of the staff at Catholic Online got together. Here's the list we came up with.

10. Martin Van Buren - As a child, Van Buren spoke Dutch. His parents were native speakers of the language and he was raised speaking Dutch. The fact isn't surprising, considering the history of the time, for the United States was still a new country, widely populated with immigrants from Europe. Today however, a president who was raised speaking a language other than English would probably have to assert his American credentials, given the unfortunate politics of today.

9. James Polk's election promise was not to be reelected. Polk was a powerful president, whose legacy lasts to this day. Most notably, Polk led the US to the war which took from Mexico the entire region that is now the Southwestern United States. Polk said during his first campaign that he would serve only one term. He kept that promise, which was astounding, even for his time. Polk died three weeks after leaving office, dying of cholera.

8. Benjamin Harrison was afraid of electricity. So scared in fact, that although he had electricity installed in the White House, he and his wife refused to touch the switches for fear of electrocution. He is also the first president to have his voice preserved in recording.

7. Andrew Jackson was a stone cold killer. Jackson was a temperamental man who was fond of dueling. During one notable duel, he was shot first, the bullet lodging in his heart. However, he did not go down. Instead, he took careful aim and killed his opponent. Jackson is also responsible for commanding in several battles against native Americans and the infamous resettlement of the Cherokee nation.

6. John Quincy Adams wasn't a 'free love' advocate, but he did enjoy swimming in the Potomac. Daily, at 5 a.m.  Oh, and he swam naked. On one occasion his clothes were stolen compelling him to walk naked. He is also said to have owned a pet alligator and kept a massive diary of his daily life from the age of 11.

5. Grover Cleveland was thrilled with the telephone and had the first one installed in the White House. When it rang, he would often answer it personally.

4. James Monroe has an easy election. He ran unopposed, although one renegade member of the electoral college cast a ballot for John Quincy Adams.

3. Gerald Ford was never elected. Not once, not even to the vice presidency. Ford became vice president when he was appointed by Nixon, then became president when Nixon resigned. He never stood for an election, and left office at the end of his term. He was replaced by President Carter.

2. Franklin Pierce was arrested. While president. His offense was for running over a woman with his horse. He was released and the case dismissed for lack of evidence.

1. John F. Kennedy was the only Catholic president in American history. This is notable because the United States has a population of almost 80 million Catholics today, about 25 percent of the population. Even in Kennedy's era, the Catholic vote has been substantial. Despite such powerful influences, Catholics have only seen one president elected to office. All other American presidents have been protestants or of no particular religious identification.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More U.S.

Cargo ship missing after sailing into Hurricane Joaquin Watch

Image of Katie and Keith Griffin (Facebook).


El Faro, a cargo ship, was caught in Hurricane Joaquin, leaving several American crew members missing. Worried friends and family of the missing staff members continue to hope for survivors. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The US Coast Guard announced that they ... continue reading

Oregon shooting hero still in recovery: Donations for his medical expenses surpass $700,000 Watch

Image of Chris Mintz.


Chris Mintz left a happy birthday message for his nonverbal autistic son on Thursday before going to his classes at the Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. Later, he reportedly set off fire alarms as a gunman opened fire. Mintz charged the shooter, was ... continue reading

Two farmers in Michigan unearth woolly mammoth remains Watch

Image of Because of the tight harvest schedule, the farmers gave researchers a single day to unearth the find. Excavators worked intently last week until sundown.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two farmers in Michigan made a momentous find while they dug a drainage ditch. The remains of a woolly mammoth, enormous tusks intact, was unearthed. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - James Bristle of Lima Township was digging in a soybean field early last week ... continue reading

President Obama shares how Pope Francis's visit to the U.S. makes him want to be better Watch

Image of President Obama with Pope Francis during the pontiffs visit to the U.S.


It has been a week since Pope Francis' historical visit to the U.S. However, his presence and inspiration continues to linger as President Obama revealed he wants to become better after his meeting with the Pope. WASHINGTON D.C. (Catholic Online) - The pope is back in ... continue reading

HURRICANE FALLOUT: At least four people killed in East Coast flooding Watch

Image of All-time rainfall records in both South Carolina and the southern Appalachians are being sorely tested with the new rainfall.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Hurricane Joaquin made quick work of the Carolinas this weekend; flooding has been reported there, and heavy rainfall was reported from the nation's southeast to New England. At least four people were killed because of flooding. The Weather Bureau says that the ... continue reading

Ten Commandments to be removed from capitol grounds Watch

Image of


The Capitol Preservation Commission in Oklahoma, who is responsible for managing the placement of artwork on public property, has voted to remove a Ten Commandments monument from its capitol grounds. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Reuters reported the Preservation ... continue reading

Rumored co-recipients of next Nobel Peace Prize criticized: one responsible for hundreds of American soldiers' deaths in Iraq Watch

Image of Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif are rumored to be co-recipients of 2016's Nobel Peace Prize (Laurent Gillieron/EPA).


Secretary of State John Kerry is rumored to be receiving a Nobel Peace Prize after finalizing the Iranian nuclear deal due to his close relationship with Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif.  LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Kerry's efforts to seal the nuclear ... continue reading

SHOOTERS LAST WORDS TO VICTIM: You're going to see God in one second Watch

Image of Survivors embrace and pray in the aftermath of the shooting which left 9 people and the shooter dead.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The nation continues to mourn the mass shooting of nine students at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. Although the shooter's motive remains a mystery, religion may have been a factor in the killings. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Officials have ... continue reading

Heroic teacher warned classrooms to evacuate during the Oregon college shooting Watch

Image of Oregon shooting aftermath


A shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg left 10 people dead with one teacher shot in the head by a gunman described only to be in his 20's. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Terrifying and traumatic stories were shared by the survivors of the recent open ... continue reading

Christian Targets: College shooting leaves at least 10 dead Watch

Image of Victims were rushed to a nearby hospital (Roseburg News).

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum announced a school shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon on Thursday, which left at least ten people dead. Reports have come forward that the shooter was targeting Christian students. ROSEBURG, OREGON (Catholic ... continue reading

All U.S. News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jonah 4:1-11
1 This made Jonah very indignant; he fell into a ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 86:3-4, 5-6, 9-10
3 take pity on me, Lord, for to you I cry all the ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 11:1-4
1 Now it happened that he was in a certain place ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 7th, 2015 Image

St. Artaldus
October 7: Artaldus (also called Arthaud) was born in the castle of ... Read More