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A Review of The Secret Lives of The First Ladies

Updated on August 26, 2012

Fun Facts about The First Ladies


How much is known about the First Ladies? The history books sometimes fail to tell the reader fun facts about these ladies we only see the serious side. The book The Secret Lives of The First Ladies by Cormac O’ Brian provides us a look at the ladies that we never would have known reading our school textbooks.

I read another of Cormac O’Brian’s books called The Secret Lives of The U.S. Presidents which was in the same vein as Secret Lives of The First Ladies. It gave fun facts about the Presidents their astrological signs, and quirky things that history books don’t provide. I decided the check out the First Ladies and the book doesn’t disappoint.

Being a trivia lover this book was perfect for me. I enjoyed learning those trivial facts about the ladies who stood with their men in the position of the most important job in the land. Here are some fun facts about a few of the First Ladies. You will soon see that this book will make very interesting reading.

I will start with some of the earliest First Ladies and then jump more to the present time.


ABIGAIL ADAMS her husband was John Adams.

Abigail was a Scorpio.

She had two loves in her life John Adams and politics.

When she was in the White House it was understaffed she had to hang her laundry in the building’s reception area if you can believe that.


DOLLEY MADISON her husband was James Madison.

Dolley was a Taurus.

Aaron Burr introduced Dolley to James Madison.

Dolley was a Quaker, but because she married outside her faith they denounced her. Dolley didn’t really care and she really blossomed. She began to wear turbans and low-cut gowns. She was the first fashion diva in the White House.


JULIA DENT GRANT her husband was Ulysses S. Grant.

Julia was an Aquarius.

Poor Julia was hit in the head with an oar during childhood and she could never see straight after that. She couldn’t cross a room without bumping into furniture.

She was an accomplished dancer, a horsewoman, she could charm with her humor, and she had a smile for everyone.

She loved living in Washington and having her husband serve two terms delighted her.


BESS TRUMAN her husband was Harry S. Truman.

Bess was an Aquarius.

Bess helped to keep the White House in tack when Congress wanted to tear it down and build a new building. She was determined it should remain a landmark. Good for you Bess.

When Bess was young her father committed suicide. She had to run the family while her mother worked.

Harry fell in love with Bess when he was just six years old. They attended the same Sunday school class.


LADY BIRD JOHNSON her husband was Lyndon Johnson.

Lady Bird was a Capricorn.

Lyndon was bossy and kind of dictated to her. Lyndon had a brief courtship and said unromantically “We either get married now or we never will,” he said.

Lady Bird was made to shine Lyndon’s shoes, bring him breakfast in bed, make sure his cigarette lighter was filled, etc.

Lady Bird’s first wedding ring cost $2.50.


JACQUELINE BOUVIER KENNEDY her husband was John F. Kennedy.

Jacqueline was a Leo.

Jacqueline first visited the White House when she was 11, but she didn’t get much from the experience. When she got into the White House she remedied that.

When she was a girl Jacqueline loved to draw, read the classics, and write poetry.

When Jack had to have spinal surgery Jacqueline tried to lift his spirits by having Grace Kelly come into the room dressed as a nurse. Kennedy was so exhausted he didn’t recognize her. Grace Kelly was heard to say, “I must be losing it.”


PAT NIXON her husband was Richard Nixon.

Pat was a Pisces.

She had to pick vegetables as a child to help support the family

She was once a cleaning lady in a bank.

Pat didn’t want to be a politician’s wife, but she handled her end of it very well.

Pat’s first name was really Thelma, but she was born the day before St. Patrick’s Day and her father being an Irish American took to calling her Pat.


The book The Secret Lives of The First Ladies is a book that will have you turning pages. You find that like eating peanuts you can't stop at one First Lady you will want to read more and more about these great women who stood by their men. Being the First Lady was just as hard as being President some liked the experience and some didn’t, but they all played the hand they were dealt.

The Secret Lives of The First Ladies lets the reader take a look at the human side of these women and we find that they were,for the most part, just like us. It is a book that will take no time to finish,not because it is short, but because it is so interesting.


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