|Presidential Visits to Washington, Pennsylvania|
There is record of 5 United States presidents visiting Washington: 1817 Monroe, 1869 & 1871 Grant, 1892 Harrison, 1922 Harding, 1962 Kennedy. On May 4-1817 James Monroe spoke at Washington College, the next day at Jefferson College. He was exploring "the west." U.S. Grant dedicated the Washington Town Hall on September 18-1869. On a later visit, September 17-1871, he attended services in the Methodist Church on West Wheeling Street. This building later belonged to the Saint Paul African Episcopal Church and was torn down recently. Benjamin Harrison made a quick trip, December 2-1892, for the funeral of his father-in-law, Professor John W. Scott. In July 1922 (3rd and 7th) Warren Harding a visit in connection with a National Pike celebration. Earlier he had attended a Vankirk reunion, as a Vankirk descendant. On October 13-1962 John Kennedy spoke at the courthouse. His motorcade came in from the east on Beau Street with sirens sounding. The crowd extended for half a block in all directions. The National Pike in early days was the principal road from the west. Presidents-elect were in Washington: Andrew Jackson February 1-1829, James Polk February 10-1845, Zachary Taylor February 21-1849. They were all headed for inauguration day. Jackson made other visits, e.g. 1825. There may have been others. Former president John Q. Adams was in Washington November 25-1843. Taft spoke at W. and J. College in 1915. Truman liked to stop at the George Washington Hotel. Before election to the presidency McKinley spoke at the fair grounds, Nixon visited Jessop Steel Company. Other important visitors have been: Lafayette May 25-1825, James G. Blaine October 26-1886, William J. Bryan 1915. Henry Clay was in Washington frequently, for his son attended Washington College, class of 1840. In recent years vice-presidential candidates have spoken at the courthouse: 1952 Sparkman, 1968 Muskie, 1976 or 80 Mondale. The visit of Muskie made national headlines. More research may reveal more interesting events in Washington. Raymond M. Bell
This article was transcribed by Les Peine of Canton, OH in February 1998.
|Raymond M. Bell Anthology   Genealogy in Washington Co., PA|
Published with permission of Raymond M. Bell.