5. Look out, Lincoln.
James Buchanan (1857-1861) is often rated among the worst presidents in history. But political legacy notwithstanding, he might have accomplished a feat that would be tough to repeat - even today. Buchanan might well have been the first gay president.
Buchanan never married, but he did have a close ‘friend’ with whom he lived for a decade - a senator from Alabama named William King. Andrew Jackson called the two of them "Miss Nancy and Aunt Fancy" when they weren't around - understood at the time as a clear homophobic reference.
After King left him to move to France, Buchanan wrote the following: "I am now solitary and alone, having no companion in the house with me. I have gone a wooing several gentlemen, but have not succeeded with any one of them."
6. Riding under the influence.
Franklin Pierce (1853-57) was one of the most forgettable presidents. It’s safe to assume he didn’t remember much about his own reign either, because he was a raging alcoholic. On one occasion, Pierce was allegedly arrested for running over an elderly woman with his horse while he was trashed. Charges were never brought. I guess it’s a good thing cars hadn’t been invented yet.
7. You can't account for taste.
You might think Richard Nixon (1969-74) has already been forced to give up all his secrets. You would be wrong. It turns out that Nixon’s favorite thing to eat was cottage cheese, which he liked to pair with either pineapple or ketchup. If you ask me, that’s worse than Watergate.
8. Taft Punk.
We all know that the ‘Teddy bear’ was named after Teddy Roosevelt, but did you know they made a stuffed toy and named it after President William Taft (1909-13). It was called the ‘Billy possum’, and it was meant to replace the teddy bear. Unfortunately (?) it never took off. But why a possum? The answer is pretty disgusting. (continued…)