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Hail to the chiefs

There have been 43 of 'em. All white males at least 35 years of age. The latter is a constitutional mandate, don'tcha know. And today is the day we're supposed to honor all of them since it's Presidents' Day. (The Rail will honor 42 of them. It's...

There have been 43 of 'em. All white males at least 35 years of age. The latter is a constitutional mandate, don'tcha know.

And today is the day we're supposed to honor all of them since it's Presidents' Day.

(The Rail will honor 42 of them. It's never been crazy about Franklin Pierce, above.)

The holiday is actually a national observance of Washington's birthday. Since 1971, it has been celebrated on a Monday to create a three-day weekend for overworked federal employees.

The following trivia about presidents and North Dakota was sent to The Rail last year by Rick Collin, communications director with the State Historical Society of North Dakota. However, it was too late to include. Somehow, it survived 365 days on The Rail's desk without getting lost. Go figure.

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First president to visit what is now North Dakota

Rutherford B. Hayes, 1878. He visited Fargo for a breakfast and speech.

How many times did Teddy Roosevelt visit North Dakota while he was president?

Once, in 1903, during a train tour of the West

Which president received an honorary degree from the University of North Dakota?

John F. Kennedy received an honorary law degree in 1963.

Which president visited Bismarck to help North Dakota celebrate its 100th birthday?

George Bush, in 1989.

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What happened to the tree that Bush planted on the Capitol grounds?

It died.

Which former president stopped in Fargo to fill up his car while he was taking his family on vacation heading west?

Herbert Hoover in 1939

Other presidential trivia

E Andrew Johnson was the only president who was not a professed church member.

E John Adams was the first president to live in the White House.

E James Buchanan was the only president who never married.

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E Ronald Reagan was the only president who was divorced.

E Gerald Ford is the only president who wasn't either elected to the office or the vice presidency.

E Calvin Coolidge is the only president born on the Fourth of July.

To contact The Rail, send an e-mail to features editor Dean Rhodes at drhodes@forumcomm.com and he'll forward it to the guilty parties, or click on the Valley R&R icon at In-Forum.com.

Today's best bet

"Artsy People -- Claude Monet," 6:30 p.m., Fargo Park District hosts art event for youths age 10 to 13.

Robert D. Johnson Building, Fargo

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