O.K? It’s Martin van Buren’s birthday, December 5


Former President Martin van Buren, circa 1855-1888. Matthew Brady photograph (Imperial print of Martin Van Buren. Salted paper print from glass negative. Provenance from W.H. Lowdermilk & Co., Rare Books, 1418 F Street, Washington, DC) Metropolitan Museum image, via Wikimedia

Former President Martin van Buren, circa 1855-1888. Matthew Brady photograph (Imperial print of Martin Van Buren. Salted paper print from glass negative. Provenance from W.H. Lowdermilk & Co., Rare Books, 1418 F Street, Washington, DC) Metropolitan Museum image, via Wikimedia

Martin van Buren was our nation’s 8th president, serving one term, 1837-1841.

This photo is roughly 15 years after van Buren left office, taken in the Washington, D.C., studio of Matthew Brady, whose photography gained fame from his work photographing battle sites during the American Civil War.

Martin van Buren was born December 5, 1782, in Kinderhook, New York. He is the only president to have the first name Martin. He’d be 236 years old today, and still king of the mutton chop sideburns among presidents.

One the grammar school myths of Van Buren is that the initials for his nickname, “Old Kinderhook,” are the origins of the term “O.K.”

Van Buren died on July 24, 1862.

More:

At Broad and Hudson Streets in Kinderhook, New York, one can sit with a statue of Martin Van Buren, and see if one can decipher the newspaper he is reading. PresidentsUSA image

At Broad and Hudson Streets in Kinderhook, New York, one can sit with a statue of Martin Van Buren, and see if one can decipher the newspaper he is reading. PresidentsUSA image

 

2 Responses to O.K? It’s Martin van Buren’s birthday, December 5

  1. Ed Darrell says:

    I confess, I’m not sure where in New York, Kinderhook is. I suspect it’s not far from the Hudson Valley.

    Were one to head in that direction, it would be a great idea to learn where the bench is and join him.

    I also recommend the statues of presidents in Rapid City, South Dakota. There are 44 of them.

    And there’s a Ben Franklin on a bench, at the University of Pennsylvania.

    After recommending those, I confess I haven’t yet found the Mark Twain on the bench in Fort Worth, let alone joined him in discussing a book.

    Too soon old, too late sentimental and informed enough to do it all.

    Like

  2. Oh, I would love to sit on that bench with him!

    Like

Please play nice in the Bathtub -- splash no soap in anyone's eyes. While your e-mail will not show with comments, note that it is our policy not to allow false e-mail addresses. Comments with non-working e-mail addresses may be deleted.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: