I kind of smirked to myself when I came up with this idea – I wanted to record my “big picture” of what I recall about presidents – and how the history books might see them years down the road.  I was born in 1975, so some of these at the top I have great recall – those lower on the list I wanted to add based on what I know of them of history.  Those I skipped over, I don’t have anything of interest to recall about them.  Some presidents were just that uneventful….or uninteresting.


  1. President elect Trump – who knows?  So far, before he even took office, he seems to be someone who is “getting things done”.  Much of the campaign idiocy may be a footnote in history if he delivers on a lot of his promises.  If he is a huuuuuge failure, his campaign idiocy will be the sole way he is remembered.  Could be a “pragmatic nationalist” that gives re-birth to our manufacturing.  What you then find from the list below is that history only really imprints bread crumbs about some presidents.  Other presidents like FDR, Lincoln, Washington I could go on about.  Even Reagan for that matter.  Could Trump be a Millard Fillmore?  Or, is he more like a despised Andrew Jackson who took on big banks and commanded the room? Could he be a “great communicator” at some point using his TV talent?  Could he use his business prowess to roar back America to higher rankings?  Or, could his presidency be permanently stained like that of Clinton (pun intended) over a large scandal that overshadows any progress?  His energy is interesting – he feeds off of crowds.  His Machiavellian means to get into office also may go down as a form of “arab spring” in the US, using media to create a form of uprising against the system.
  2. Obama – inspirational speeches, Obamacare, killing Bin Laden, adding $9 trillion to national debt, globalization
  3. Bush 2 – decent man, incompetent leader, 9/11, Katrina, illegal war
  4. Clinton – Lewinsky, budget surpluses, slick willy
  5. Bush 1 – “read my lips” and Desert shield/storm, which might go down as one of the most brilliantly executed war plans of all time.
  6. Reagan – end of cold war, strengthening the military, “the great communicator”
  7. Carter – long gas lines, firing staff, Iran, incompetence, good man
  8. Ford – not Nixon
  9. Nixon – “I am not a crook”, Watergate, end of Vietnam, China relations
  10. LBJ – civil rights era, many reforms to rights of all kinds
  11. Kennedy – desire to send people to the moon, Marilyn Monroe, grassy knoll, “ask not what your country can do for you…”
  12. Eisenhower – general officer, 1950s.
  13. Truman – dropped the bomb
  14. FDR – fireside chats (communication over the radio), TVRA, public infrastructure, great depression, world war 2, polio
  15. Hoover – created FBI.  Dam named after him.  Welcomed in Great Depression
  16. Coolidge – roaring 20s
  17. Harding – rated among worst presidents ever. Died in office.
  18. Wilson – World War 1
  19. Taft – fat guy who later served on Supreme Court
  20. Teddy Roosevelt – Teddy Bear, Rough Riders
  21. McKinley – assassinated, won Spanish American war
  22. Grover Cleveland – won 2 presidential elections, not back-to-back
  23. Benjamin Harrison – got nothing
  24. Chester A Arthur – got nothing
  25. Garfield – assassinated
  26. Rutherford B Hayes – got nothing
  27. Grant – won civil war, drunk, rebuilding of the south
  28. Andrew Johnson – First president to be impeached.  Took over from Lincoln
  29. Lincoln – emancipation proclamation, civil war, “honest abe”, assassination plot which spanned several others as well as him.
  30. Buchanan – I’m from Pennsylvania.  So is he.  That’s all I got.
  31. Pierce – nothing
  32. Fillmore – looks like an older Alec Balwin
  33. Taylor – died in office, general officer, Mexican American war hero
  34. Polk – got nothing
  35. John Tyler – Tippecanoe and Tyler too!  Took over from Harrison, who died in office. I thought he was influential in taking land from Native Americans.  Could be wrong
  36. William Henry Harrison – died after serving 30 days in office.  Got pneumonia during inauguration.
  37. Van Buren – nothing
  38. Jackson – asshole, fought native Americans, tough dude, hated banks,
  39. John Q Adams – famous name, father was president, won presidency in house in 1825 rather than by electoral college
  40. Monroe – I got nothing.  I’m horrible.
  41. Madison – father of the constitution
  42. Jefferson – high IQ, Louisiana purchase, had affair with one of his slaves, rival and best friend of John Adams.  Died on July 4th, 1825 – within 2 hours of Adams.
  43. Adams – politician from Mass, policy “wonk” if you will, not a great people person.  Rival and best friend of Jefferson, died same day as Jefferson.  Great book and HBO series about him.
  44. Washington.  Cherry Tree.  Wooden teeth.  General in Revolutionary war.  Colonel in French and Indian War.