Skip to main content

Presidential Fun Facts: Presidential Inauguration

U.S. Presidential Inaugurations

Come Watch the Presidential Inauguration

The Inauguration of the President
Friday, Jan 20, 2017 
CLICK HERE to view the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States, Donald J Trump

How the Date was Determined

The Constitution, as originally adopted, made no mention of a date to inaugurate the president. March 4 was codified as Inauguration Day in 1792, and was written into the Constitution with adoption of the 12th Amendment in 1804.

But the March inauguration meant an extended lame-duck session for Congress, and in 1933, the 20th Amendment established that the terms of the president and vice president end at noon on Jan. 20. 

Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first president sworn in on January 20 in 1937.

Washinton, D.C. was not the only city for the Presidential Oath ceremony

Presidential Moments

Inaugural Trivia

The shortest inaugural speech was delivered by the first president, George Washington It was 135 words.  (1793)

The longest speech was delivered by William Henry Harrison.  It was 8,495 words, taking 100 minutes to complete.  He delivered in the speech outside in the middle of a snowstorm wearing no coat. (1841)

Theodore Roosevelt was the youngest person to become president at 42 years,322 days. (1901)

 Donald J Trump is the oldest person to become president at 70 years, 220 days. (2017).


Click here to learn more Inaugural Trivia.

Online Resources

Library of Congress

‚ÄčThe Library of Congress digital collections include a wide variety of primary source materials documenting presidential inaugurations. This Web guide includes diaries and letters written by presidents and those who witnessed the inaugurations, handwritten drafts of inaugural addresses, broadsides, inaugural tickets and programs, prints, photographs, and sheet music.

U.S. Presidential Inaugurations: "I Do Solemnly Swear..."  A Resource Guide

Test you Knowledge

How much do you know about the history of the Presidential Inauguration Day?  Take the Christian Science Monitor test   Click here to take the quiz.

(Published January 15, 2013)


Recorded for History

James Buchanan was the first inauguration to be photographed in 1857.

William McKinley was the first inauguration to be recorded by a motion picture camera in 1897.

The first inaugural address to be broadcast by radio was Calvin Coolidge in 1925.

Harry Truman was the first president to have his inauguration televised in 1949.

The first inaugural address to be streamed live on the Internet was Bill Clinton in 1997.


Projects for Children

The Our White House Inauguration Celebration Kit for Kids! 

Created by The National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance for parents, family members, teachers, librarians, and community leaders