George Washington

Some Little Known Facts About George Washington's 1789 Inauguration

As we prepare for President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration, here's a quick nod to the past with a look at the very first inaugural of our Founding Father, George Washington

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On Wednesday the U.S. will mark the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden with a celebration of our nation's traditional transfer of power. As we prepare for the future, here's a quick nod to the past. Let's look back at the very first inaugural of Founding Father and first U.S. President George Washington.

Did You Know

  • Washington's inauguration was held in 1789 in New York City, the nation's first capital.
  • Washington traveled 200 miles from his home in Mount Vernon, Virginia, to New York to attend the ceremony.
  • At sunrise on Inauguration Day, cannons blasted from Fort George in a military salute and church bells rang for 30 minutes throughout New York City.
  • Washington traveled to Federal Hall on Wall Street, the first seat of the U.S. government and the site of the inaugural ceremony, in a cream colored coach escorted by 500 military men and a group of supporters.
  • The oath was administered on an outer balcony by Chancellor Robert Livingston as onlookers watched from the street.
  • Washington was sworn in on a Masonic Bible. After taking the oath of office, Livingston declared, "Long live George Washington, president of the United States."
  • The day ended with fireworks over the Bowling Green in downtown Manhattan.

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