13 Things You Didn't Know About America's First Ladies

Because let's be honest, they're a lot more than just the president's wife.

  1. 1

    Three presidents married their First Ladies while in office.

    John Tyler, Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson all married during their term.

  2. 2

    In 1850, Lucy Webb Hayes was the first First Lady to earn a degree.

    She earned a liberal arts degree at Cincinnati Wesleyan Female College.

  3. 3

    The Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington exists still because of Dolley Madison.

    She managed to save it during the War of 1812 right before the White House was burned.

  4. 4

    Abigail Adams was the first First Lady to live in DC.

    However, it wasn't for long and she wasn't a fan.

  5. 5

    The oldest First Lady during the time of her "reign" was Florence Harding.

    She was 61 at the start of her husband's term.

  6. 6

    Eleanor Roosevelt refused Secret Service protection.

    Instead, she learned how to shoot with her own pistol.

  7. 7

    Abigail Adams was the first woman to be both a wife and a mother to presidents.

    She was married to John Adams and was mother to John Quincy Adams.

  8. 8

    Andrew Jackson's wife was technically a bigamist.

    She married him before she was technically divorced from her first husband.

  9. 9

    Louisa Adams, John Quincy Adams' wife, was the only First Lady to be born in another country.

    She was from England.

  10. 10

    James Polk's wife worked as the president's secretary while in the White House.

    And she did so without taking a salary.

  11. 11

    Ellen Wilson was the only professional artist to become a First Lady.

    After she passed away, Woodrow Wilson got remarried - to a direct descendant of Pocahontas.

  12. 12

    Barbara Bush wrote a rather unique memoir.

    It was from the perspective of her dog!

  13. 13

    Hillary Clinton is the only first lady to be elected to public office (the Senate!).

    And the only one to pursue the presidency herself.

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