Tags: Presidential History | president andrew johnson | pets

First Pets: Four-Legged or Feathered Friends of President Andrew Johnson

By    |   Monday, 04 Apr 2016 03:13 PM

While some United States presidents had rather famous pets, President Andrew Johnson had none — at least not until he was impeached. During this dark time in the White House, President Andrew Johnson befriended a family of white mice. Rather than exterminate the mice, he gave them food and water, and the mice gave President Andrew Johnson comfort.

Born in 1808, Johnson's humble beginnings were not exactly ordinary for a president. The White House reports that he was an apprentice to a tailor as a boy but ran away, ultimately opening his own tailor shop in Tennessee. While running his store, he participated in debates at the local academy, a stepping stone that eventually led him into politics.

Vote Here: Which US President Would Be Considered the Greatest in History?

In the 1840s and 1850s, he served in the House of Representatives and the Senate. Even when his native state of Tennessee seceded from the nation, he stayed in the Senate, earning him the respect of Northerners while alienating him from Southerners, who viewed him as a traitor.

This act caught the attention of the Republicans, who claimed that all loyal men had a place in their National Union Party so, in 1864, they nominated him to be vice president under President Abraham Lincoln.

After Lincoln's assassination in 1865, Johnson continued the former president's plan to reconstruct the Southern states. While he saw the abolition of slavery, he also allowed the formation of black codes that kept the newly freed people in check.

Dismayed by this fact, the faction of Radical Republicans in Congress fought to wrest control of the path of reconstruction from the president, gaining the ability to do so after winning a number of congressional elections in 1866.

Latest: Tell Us About Your Pets! Which Do You Have?

Congress then passed several laws designed to restrict the president, and when Johnson broke one, he was impeached on 11 different articles. Although he was ultimately acquitted, it was only by one vote, revealing how tumultuous politics during his presidency were.

During his time in the White House, President Andrew Johnson had no pets of his own, but he did adopt some that he found in his new home.

According to the Presidential Pet Museum
, Johnson took a liking to a group of white mice that were living in the White House. Discovering them during his impeachment, he would leave flour for them at night. They provided a glimmer of happiness for the 17th U.S. president during what was otherwise a dark time.

Although few people knew about these secret pets, President Andrew Johnson reportedly told his secretary William Moore about the mice, according to an account in Moore's diary.

“The little fellows give me their confidence and I give them their basket and pour upon the hearth some water that they might quench their thirst,” Johnson told Moore of the mice.

Vote Now: Who Was the Greatest American President?

Related Stories:

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
FastFeatures
While some United States presidents have had rather famous pets, President Andrew Johnson had none — at least not until he was impeached. During this dark time in the White House, President Andrew Johnson befriended some white mice, giving them food and water, while they gave him comfort.
president andrew johnson, pets
514
2016-13-04
Monday, 04 Apr 2016 03:13 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved