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President Who?

April 25, 2019

He was born in April, but it was almost June before this future President received his first name.

His father’s name was Jesse, but unlike the Bible character whose son would become King of Israel, this Jesse did not even consider naming his son David.

His mother’s name was Hannah, but unlike the Bible character whose son would become a great prophet, this Hannah did not even consider naming her son Samuel.  Others would eventually nickname him Sam, but for a different reason.

Some other names were considered.  Hannah liked the name “Albert.”  She would have given her son this name in order to honor Albert Gallatin who had been Jefferson and Madison’s Treasury Secretary and who was now serving the Monroe Administration as United States Minister to France.  Gallatin was from Hannah’s native Pennsylvania.

Someone suggested “Theodore,” another “Hiram,” and another proposed the name by which he later became famous.  After Jesse, Hannah, and a few close relatives made their suggestions, Hannah’s sister drew a name out of a hat.

Jesse liked the name that was chosen and always called his son by that name, but he overruled the entire procedure.  The name drawn from the hat would be his son’s middle name.  His son’s first name would be “Hiram,” which had been suggested by Hannah’s father.  It was not her father’s name, but Jesse wanted to honor his father-in-law by accepting his proposal.

When we review the list of Presidents, we find no one called “Hiram.”  So, who was this child who later became President of the United States?

 

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