These are the greatest social events in American history. This is our royalty, the sons and daughters of the American presidents.
The wedding discussed at cabinet meetings.
1. The White House wedding of Maria Monroe. (Pronounced Ma-rye-a.) An event marred by a murder, it was the first great social event in American history. It became the subject of Cabinet Meetings. The uninvited diplomatic corps became enraged and the resultant furor stiffened the president’s spine as he enunciated his famous Monroe Doctrine, our most enduring foreign policy initiative.
2. The wedding of Fanny Hayes, daughter of President Rutherford B. Hayes. She came to the White House at the same age of Malia Obama. And the nation followed her life. Only when both of her parents died did she finally marry. The nation was overjoyed. The ceremony was held in Ohio and the sitting president and his cabinet took their private trains to journey to the event.
3. The Westminster Abbey wedding of Esther Cleveland. Now this one gets complex. Imagine trying to explain the Clintons in one paragraph? President Grover Cleveland married his own ward in a White House ceremony. He was 49, she was 21. Much of the nation was outraged. The president did not kiss the bride at the White House wedding. But when the couple had a child of their own, the nation was smitten. It was not the baby’s fault. The lives of Ruth Cleveland and later her sister Esther were followed avidly. When Ruth died at age 12, the nation went into deep morning. The Curtis Candy Company issued its controversial “Baby Ruth” candy bar. When Esther finally married minor English gentry at Westminster Abbey in London, England it captured the news on both continents.
4. Alice Roosevelt may have had the greatest wedding in American history. She is referred to by some as the first great female celebrity of the 20th century. She shocked the nation by smoking cigarettes in public and driving a car without a chaperone but was too popular for pulpits to condemn. The number one hit song in the country was about her. There was a color named for her. Alice’s wedding to congressman Nicholas Longworth covered every inch of the front page of the Washington Post.
5. Tricia Nixon’s wedding represented the high water mark in weddings for presidential children. After the two Johnson daughter dress rehearsals, this resulted in national television specials that ran in prime time with photographs and some film footage of the event. Tricia Nixon Cox was a stunner, who appeared twice on the cover of Life Magazine.