National Veep Day on August 9th recognizes the succession plan of the President of the United States. The day also acknowledges the one president who was neither elected vice president nor president – Gerald Ford.
In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office, the Same shall devolve on the Vice President, and the Congress may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.
ARTICLE II, SECTION 1, CLAUSE 6
In the history of the United States, 14 vice presidents became President. The people elected only 5 of them at some point after completing their terms as vice president. The other eight ascended to the presidency due to the death of the president. And then there is one vice president who became president who was never elected at all.
Vice President Facts
- John TylerAfter one month of being sworn in, President William Henry Harrison died in office in 1841. His vice president, John Tyler, ascended to the presidency.
- Millard FillmoreMillard Fillmore filled the vacancy left by the death of President Zachary Taylor in 1850.
- Andrew JohnsonAndrew Johnson was President Abraham Lincoln’s second term vice president. His term began when Lincoln died after John Wilkes Booth’s successful assassination of the president at Ford’s Theater.
- Chester ArthurWhen Charles J. Guiteau assassinated President James Garfield in 1881, Vice President Chester Arthur completed his term.
- Theodore RooseveltPresident William McKinley’s first vice president died of a heart attack. During McKinley’s second term, Theodore Roosevelt served as his Veep. Then McKinley was assassinated six months into the term. Roosevelt became the third vice president to step up under these circumstances.
- Calvin CoolidgeAfter the death of President Warren G. Harding in 1923, Vice President Calvin Coolidge ascended to the presidency. He also ran and won a second term.
- Harry S. TrumanPresident Franklin D. Roosevelt was the only president to run for and win three terms. He also had three different vice presidents. His third Veep, Harry S. Truman, ascended to the presidency when FDR died in 1945 after just three months in office.
- Lyndon B. JohnsonThe fourth president to be assassinated in the United States was John F. Kennedy. Lyndon B. Johnson served as his vice president. An interesting note: Richard Nixon, whom this day is partially inspired by, ran unsuccessfully against JFK. Before running for president, Nixon served two terms as veep for President Dwight Eisenhower. After his losing presidential runs, Nixon would run again and win two consecutive terms.
- Gerald FordNixon’s first vice president was Spiro Agnew. However, Agnew resigned in 1973. Gerald Ford obtained the position of vice president by appointment. When Nixon later resigned in 1974, Ford ascended to the presidency. He’s the only president to service who was neither elected to the position of veep or president.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalVeepDay
Brush up on your vice-presidential history. While you’re at it, check into your government history, too. Have you ever heard of Levi Morton or William King? Well, they were vice presidents, too. You can also test your knowledge of the vice presidents or read up on them, too.
- Take this quiz to find out how many Veeps you can name: sporcle.com
- How did you do on the quiz? Pick up these books to improve your knowledge: First in Line: Presidents, Vice Presidents, and the Pursuit of Power by Kate Andersen Brower or At the President’s Side: Vice Presidency in the Twentieth Century by Timothy Walch.
- Host a trivia night and challenge your friends on their vice presidential knowledge.
Use #NationalVeepDay to post on social media.
NATIONAL VEEP DAY HISTORY
On August 9, 1974, Vice President Gerald Ford became President of the United States upon the resignation of President Richard Nixon.
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On This Day in History
The Webster-Ashburton Treaty is signed. United States Secretary of State Daniel Webster and Britain’s Alexander Baring, Lord Ashburton, come to an agreement regarding the Canadian and U.S. border east of the Rocky Mountains. The border had been in dispute since the end of the Revolutionary War.
Author, philosopher and transcendentalist, Henry David Thoreau, publishes Walden.
The U.S. Patent Office issued patent No. 608,845 to Rudolf Diesel for the internal combustion engine.
Alva Fisher receives a patent for a drive motor for washing machines. Patent no. 966,677 led to the production of the Thor electric washing machine.
Betty Boop debuts as a French poodle in the cartoon short “Dizzy Dishes.”
Jesse Owens wins fourth Olympic medal becoming the first American to reach this achievement.
The U.S. drops its second atomic bomb, this time on Nagasaki, Japan. The bomb was nicknamed Fat Man.
Once President Richard Nixon’s resignation went into effect at noon, Vice President Gerald Ford takes the oath of office as the new president of the United States.
Major League Soccer debuts David Beckam in a game between the LA Galaxy and D.C. United.
After 56 consecutive days of high temperatures of at least 80 degrees, the city of Fort Wayne, Indiana breaks the streak with a 79 degree day.
Usain Bolt earns his 2nd 200-meter Olympic win, making him the only man in history to do so.
Born on This Day
Elizabeth Hamilton – 1757
Born Elizabeth Schuyler, she would marry statesman and military commander Alexander Hamilton. Following the deaths of her son and husband, she would co-found the Orphan Asylum Society – the first private orphanage in New York City. She lived to the age of 97.
George Hoyt – 1883
Basketball referee and author of The Theory and Practice of Basketball Officiating, Hoyte also founded the New England Interscholastic Basketball Tournament. Hoyte was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1961.
Lenard Sutton – 1925
Racing for 10 years in the AAA and USAC Championship Car series, Sutton garnered 43 top ten finishes and 3 wins.
Smokey Bear – 1944
The U.S. Forest Service authorizes a forest fire prevention campaign with Smokey Bear as the mascot.
Sam Elliott – 1944
Leading man and the voice of the “Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner” campaign, Elliot is known for his numerous roles including in The Ranch, Ghost Rider, Tombstone, and Mask.
Chris Haney – 1950
The Canadian journalist joined forces with Scott Abbott to create the popular board game, Trivial Pursuit.
Michael Kors – 1960
A life long interest in design launched this fashion designer into the spotlight when he created the Michael Khor brand.
Whitney Houston – 1963
Houston released her first album at the age of 22 and went on to become one of the best-selling recording artists ever.
Brett Hull – 1964
With a 20 year career in the National Hockey League, Hall played with the Calgary Flames, St. Louis Blues, Dallas Stars, Detroit Wings, and Phoenix Coyotes. He was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.
Hoda Kotb – 1964
The Egyptian-American journalist joined the NBC TODAY show in 2007 as host of the fourth hour. She now shares the hosting duties with Kathie Lee Gifford.
Deion Sanders – 1967
First drafted in 1989 as a first-round pick, Sanders played 14 seasons with the NFL.
Gillian Anderson – 1967
Best known for her role as Dana Scully in the television series The X-Files, Anderson would also go on to star on stage and the big screen.
Arion Salazar – 1970
The Grammy-nominated bassist was an original member of the band Third Eye Blind.
Ashley Johnson – 1983
The actress launched her career at a young age in the role of Chrissy Seaver in the television sitcom Growing Pains. One of her most recent roles included NBC’s Blindspot.