[Puzzleblogger Kevan Choset, September 15, 2005 at 11:32am] Trackbacks
Another Presidential Order:

In what order have I arranged these names?

John F. Kennedy, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Harry S. Truman, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush.

Know it when I see it:
It's a trick question. There's no such person as Harry S. Truman (since he didn't use a period after his middle initial).
9.15.2005 12:41pm
Sasha (mail):
Not clear: see here:

Truman did not have a middle name, but only a middle initial. It was a common practice in southern states, including Missouri, to use initials rather than names. Truman said the initial was a compromise between the names of his grandfathers, Anderson Shipp(e) Truman and Solomon Young. He once joked that the S was a name, not an initial, and it should not have a period, but official documents and his presidential library all use a period. Furthermore, the Harry S. Truman Library has numerous examples of the signature written at various times throughout Truman's lifetime where his own use of a period after the "S" is very obvious.

See the source for a picture of an actual signature with a period.
9.15.2005 12:43pm
Sasha (mail):
Oh yes, also see here, if you don't like wikipedia.
9.15.2005 12:44pm
Lev (mail):
The order in which ships named after these men were commissioned?
9.15.2005 12:49pm
Kevan Choset (mail):
Lev's got it. The U.S.S. George H.W. Bush is still in progress, but there's your answer.
9.15.2005 12:58pm
But where's the laundry ship Walter Mondale?
9.15.2005 1:12pm
Dread Justice Roberts:
But who is next in this list:

Jefferson. Pierce Buchanan Harrison Theodore Roosevelt Monroe Kennedy Van Buren _____?
9.15.2005 1:26pm
ChrisF (mail):
"The order in which ships named after these men were commissioned?"

Only if you count aircraft carriers. The USS George Washington (SSBN-598) was the first ballistic missile submarine. She was commissioned on 12/30/1959. The carrier (CVN-73) was commissioned on 4/7/1992.

9.15.2005 1:28pm
Kim Scarborough (mail) (www):
They're naming a ship after George H.W. Bush? Why on earth would they do that? What's next, the USS Warren Harding?
9.15.2005 1:38pm
carpundit (www):
Why George H.W. Bush? Because he began his lifetime of public service at the age of 18 in World War II, was elected to Congress, served as DCI, was elected VP, and elected President, all without ever embarrassing America by any conduct other than vomiting on the Prime Minister of Japan.

Perhaps he's not Lincoln, but the comparison to Warren Harding is inapposite.
9.15.2005 1:48pm
Greedy Clerk (mail):
From best looks to worst?
9.15.2005 1:50pm
Which Harrison, DJR?
9.15.2005 1:54pm
Mark Mandrella:
You could add Franklin Roosevelt to the list before JFK. The USS Franklin Roosevelt was commissioned in 1945 (CVA-42) as a Midway-class carrier.
9.15.2005 1:55pm
James Fulford (mail):
And, while I'm no great big fan of Bush Senior, he's an obvious person to name a carrier after; he's the only president ever to be a naval aviator.
9.15.2005 1:57pm
cirby (mail):
Jimmy Carter, too.

(Yeah, subs are boats, but the Carter is a pretty big hole in the water)
9.15.2005 2:27pm
USS GHWB -- because prostitutes, politicians, and buildings all become respectible if they stick around long enough.
9.15.2005 2:38pm
devon lyon (mail):
I really enjoyed reading about bioethics on and and I think you will too.
9.15.2005 4:46pm
Gordon (mail):
Here's one I've thought of (probably some one else has too)

What is the significance of this list?

Martin Van Buren, John Tyler, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan.
9.15.2005 5:19pm
None of those people has ever been in my kitchen.
9.15.2005 6:33pm
Paul Zummo (mail) (www):

They're the historical mediocrities who served between Jackson and Lincoln who survived their term?
9.15.2005 7:39pm
barbara (mail):
Age in which they were elected president.
9.15.2005 11:09pm
barbara (mail):
I'll amend that.. the age in which they became president.
9.15.2005 11:12pm
Were I a rabid Democrat, I would suggest IQ, in descending order.

Then I would resume whining about something or other.
9.16.2005 12:02am
C. Barthelette (mail):
Actually, Harding seems to have gotten a bum rap. He was a pretty good president. At least if the U.S. History I recently read by Paul Johnson was correct.
9.16.2005 1:26am
Brian G (mail) (www):
Harding was a womanizer without peer (other than JFK) in the White House. Read the story sometime about how his wife caught him in a White House closet with one of his mistresses.
9.16.2005 3:12am
Gordon (mail):
In answer to my post:

What is the significance of this list?

Martin Van Buren, John Tyler, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan.

The answer is: they were the five ex-Presidents still alive at the time Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated in March, 1861. Van Buren and Tyler died in 1862, Buchanan in 1868, Pierce in 1869, and Fillmore in 1874.

The only other time I can find five ex-Presidents alive at the same time was 1993-94 (Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and Bush the Elder).
9.16.2005 4:49pm