123 Facts About Grover Cleveland


Stephen Grover Cleveland was an American lawyer and politician who served as the 22nd and 24th president of the United States from 1885 to 1889 and from 1893 to 1897.


Grover Cleveland was one of two Democrats elected president in an era when Republicans dominated the presidency between 1861 to 1933.


Grover Cleveland was elected mayor of Buffalo in 1881 and governor of New York in 1882.


Grover Cleveland led the Bourbon Democrats, a pro-business movement opposed to high tariffs, free silver, inflation, imperialism, and subsidies to business, farmers, or veterans.


Grover Cleveland won praise for honesty, self-reliance, integrity, and commitment to the principles of classical liberalism.


Grover Cleveland's fight against political corruption, patronage, and bossism convinced many like-minded Republicans, called "Mugwumps", to cross party lines and support him in the 1884 election.


An anti-imperialist, Grover Cleveland opposed the push to annex Hawaii, launched an investigation into the 1893 coup against the Hawaiian queen, and called for her to be restored; the House of Representatives adopted a resolution against annexation.


Grover Cleveland intervened in the 1894 Pullman Strike to keep the railroads moving, angering both Illinois Democrats and labor unions nationwide; his support of the gold standard and opposition to free silver alienated the agrarian wing of the Democratic Party.


Grover Cleveland had no endowments that thousands of men do not have.


Grover Cleveland possessed honesty, courage, firmness, independence, and common sense.


Stephen Grover Cleveland was born on March 18,1837, in Caldwell, New Jersey, to Ann and Richard Falley Cleveland.


Grover Cleveland's father was a Congregational and Presbyterian minister who was originally from Connecticut.


Grover Cleveland's mother was from Baltimore and was the daughter of a bookseller.


On his father's side, Grover Cleveland was descended from English ancestors, the first of the family having emigrated to Massachusetts from Grover Cleveland, England, in 1635.


On his mother's side, Grover Cleveland was descended from Anglo-Irish Protestants and German Quakers from Philadelphia.


Grover Cleveland was distantly related to General Moses Cleaveland, after whom the city of Grover Cleveland, Ohio, was named.


Grover Cleveland became known as Grover in his adult life.


In 1841, the Cleveland family moved to Fayetteville, New York, where Grover spent much of his childhood.


Grover Cleveland returned to Clinton and his schooling at the completion of the apprentice contract.


Grover Cleveland took a new work assignment in Holland Patent, New York, and moved his family .


Grover Cleveland was said to have learned about his father's death from a boy selling newspapers.


Grover Cleveland received his elementary education at the Fayetteville Academy and the Clinton Liberal Academy.


Grover Cleveland returned home to Holland Patent at the end of 1854, where an elder in his church offered to pay for his college education if he would promise to become a minister.


Grover Cleveland declined, and in 1855 he decided to move west.


Grover Cleveland stopped first in Buffalo, New York, where his uncle-in-law Lewis F Allen, gave him a clerical job.


Grover Cleveland later took a clerkship with the firm, began to read the law with them, and was admitted to the New York bar in 1859.


Grover Cleveland worked for the Rogers firm for three years before leaving in 1862 to start his own practice.


Grover Cleveland chose the latter course, paying $150 to George Benninsky, a thirty-two-year-old Polish immigrant, to serve in his place.


In 1868, Grover Cleveland attracted professional attention for his winning defense of a libel suit against the editor of Buffalo's Commercial Advertiser.


Grover Cleveland devoted his growing income instead to the support of his mother and younger sisters.


Grover Cleveland shunned the circles of higher society of Buffalo in which his uncle-in-law's family traveled.


From his earliest involvement in politics, Grover Cleveland aligned with the Democratic Party.


Grover Cleveland had a decided aversion to Republicans John Fremont and Abraham Lincoln, and the heads of the Rogers law firm were solid Democrats.


In 1870, with the help of friend Oscar Folsom, Grover Cleveland secured the Democratic nomination for sheriff of Erie County, New York.


Grover Cleveland won the election by a 303-vote margin and took office on January 1,1871, at age 33.


Grover Cleveland was aware of graft in the sheriff's office during his tenure and chose not to confront it.


In spite of reservations about the hanging, Grover Cleveland executed Morrissey himself.


Grover Cleveland hanged another murderer, John Gaffney, on February 14,1873.


In March 1876, Grover Cleveland accused Halpin of being an alcoholic and had the child removed from her custody.


The child was taken to the Protestant Orphan Asylum, and Grover Cleveland paid for his stay there.


Grover Cleveland later provided financial support for her to begin her own business outside of Buffalo.


Grover Cleveland asked the state legislature to form a Commission to develop a plan to improve the sewer system in Buffalo at a much lower cost than previously proposed locally; this plan was successfully adopted.


Daniel Manning, a party insider who admired Grover Cleveland's record, was instrumental in his candidacy.


The Republican party remained divided, and in the general election Cleveland emerged the victor, with 535,318 votes to Republican nominee Charles J Folger's 342,464.


Grover Cleveland brought his opposition to needless spending to the governor's office; he promptly sent the legislature eight vetoes in his first two months in office.


Tammany Hall and Kelly had disapproved of Cleveland's nomination for governor, and their resistance intensified after Cleveland openly opposed and prevented the re-election of Thomas F Grady, their point man in the State Senate.


Grover Cleveland steadfastly opposed other Tammany nominees, as well as bills passed as a result of their deal-making.


The loss of Tammany's support was offset by the support of Theodore Roosevelt and other reform-minded Republicans, who helped Grover Cleveland pass several laws to reform municipal governments.


Grover Cleveland closely worked with Roosevelt, who served as assembly minority leader in 1883; the municipal legislation they cooperated on gained Grover Cleveland national recognition.


Grover Cleveland led on the first ballot, with 392 votes out of 820.


The Mugwumps, including such men as Carl Schurz and Henry Ward Beecher, were more concerned with morality than with party, and felt Grover Cleveland was a kindred soul who would promote civil service reform and fight for efficiency in government.


In general, Grover Cleveland abided by the precedent of minimizing presidential campaign travel and speechmaking; Blaine became one of the first to break with that tradition.


Grover Cleveland's supporters rehashed the old allegations that Blaine had corruptly influenced legislation in favor of the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad and the Union Pacific Railway, later profiting on the sale of bonds he owned in both companies.


Grover Cleveland used his appointment powers to reduce the number of federal employees, as many departments had become bloated with political time-servers.


Later in his term, as his fellow Democrats chafed at being excluded from the spoils, Grover Cleveland began to replace more of the partisan Republican officeholders with Democrats; this was especially the case with policymaking positions.


Grover Cleveland angered railroad investors by ordering an investigation of western lands they held by government grant.


Grover Cleveland was the first Democratic president subject to the Tenure of Office Act which originated in 1867; the act purported to require the Senate to approve the dismissal of any presidential appointee who was originally subject to its advice and consent.


Grover Cleveland objected to the act in principle and his steadfast refusal to abide by it prompted its fall into disfavor and led to its ultimate repeal in 1887.


Grover Cleveland faced a Republican Senate and often resorted to using his veto powers.


Grover Cleveland vetoed hundreds of private pension bills for American Civil War veterans, believing that if their pensions requests had already been rejected by the Pension Bureau, Congress should not attempt to override that decision.


Grover Cleveland used the veto far more often than any president up to that time.


In 1887, Grover Cleveland issued his most well-known veto, that of the Texas Seed Bill.


Grover Cleveland unsuccessfully appealed to Congress to repeal this law before he was inaugurated.


The tariff issue was emphasized in the Congressional elections that year, and the forces of protectionism increased their numbers in the Congress, but Grover Cleveland continued to advocate tariff reform.


Grover Cleveland was a committed non-interventionist who had campaigned in opposition to expansion and imperialism.


Grover Cleveland refused to promote the previous administration's Nicaragua canal treaty, and generally was less of an expansionist in foreign relations.


Grover Cleveland withdrew from Senate consideration of the Berlin Conference treaty which guaranteed an open door for US interests in the Congo.


In 1885 Cleveland appointed the Board of Fortifications under Secretary of War William C Endicott to recommend a new coastal fortification system for the United States.


Secretary of State Thomas F Bayard negotiated an extension to the Chinese Exclusion Act, and Cleveland lobbied the Congress to pass the Scott Act, written by Congressman William Lawrence Scott, which prevented the return of Chinese immigrants who left the United States.


The Scott Act easily passed both houses of Congress, and Grover Cleveland signed it into law on October 1,1888.


Grover Cleveland believed the Dawes Act would lift Native Americans out of poverty and encourage their assimilation into white society.


Grover Cleveland sent in eighteen companies of Army troops to enforce the treaties and ordered General Philip Sheridan, at the time Commanding General of the US Army, to investigate the matter.


Grover Cleveland was 47 years old when he entered the White House as a bachelor.


Grover Cleveland's sister Rose Cleveland joined him, acting as hostess for the first two years of his administration.


Unlike the previous bachelor president James Buchanan, Grover Cleveland did not remain a bachelor for long.


When she returned to school, President Grover Cleveland received her mother's permission to correspond with her, and they were soon engaged to be married.


Grover Cleveland was 49 years old at the time; Frances was 21.


Grover Cleveland remains the youngest wife of a sitting president.


Grover Cleveland was the second president to wed while in office and remains the only president to marry in the White House.


At 21 years, Frances Folsom Grover Cleveland was the youngest First Lady in history, and soon became popular for her warm personality.


Grover Cleveland is the only child of a President to have been born there.


Grover Cleveland claimed paternity of an additional child named Oscar Folsom Grover Cleveland with Maria Crofts Halpin.


When William Burnham Woods died, Grover Cleveland nominated Lamar to his seat in late 1887.


Chief Justice Morrison Waite died a few months later, and Grover Cleveland nominated Melville Fuller to fill his seat on April 30,1888.


Grover Cleveland had previously declined Cleveland's nomination to the Civil Service Commission, preferring his Chicago law practice.


Grover Cleveland nominated 41 lower federal court judges in addition to his four Supreme Court justices.


Grover Cleveland was renominated at the Democratic convention in St Louis.


Grover Cleveland continued his duties diligently until the end of the term and began to look forward to returning to private life.


The Harrison administration worked with Congress to pass the McKinley Tariff, an aggressively protectionist measure, and the Sherman Silver Purchase Act, which increased money backed by silver; these were among policies Grover Cleveland deplored as dangerous to the nation's financial health.


At first he refrained from criticizing his successor, but by 1891 Grover Cleveland felt compelled to speak out, addressing his concerns in an open letter to a meeting of reformers in New York.


Grover Cleveland's enduring reputation as chief executive and his recent pronouncements on the monetary issues made him a leading contender for the Democratic nomination.


Grover Cleveland's leading opponent was David B Hill, a Senator for New York.


The panic was worsened by the acute shortage of gold that resulted from the increased coinage of silver, and Grover Cleveland called Congress into special session to deal with the problem.


Grover Cleveland was outraged with the final bill, and denounced it as a disgraceful product of the control of the Senate by trusts and business interests.


In 1892, Grover Cleveland had campaigned against the Lodge Bill, which would have strengthened voting rights protections through the appointing of federal supervisors of congressional elections upon a petition from the citizens of any district.


Grover Cleveland obtained an injunction in federal court, and when the strikers refused to obey it, he sent federal troops into Chicago and 20 other rail centers.


When Grover Cleveland took office he faced the question of Hawaiian annexation.


Five days after taking office on March 9,1893, Grover Cleveland withdrew the treaty from the Senate and sent former Congressman James Henderson Blount to Hawai'i to investigate the conditions there.


Grover Cleveland agreed with Blount's report, which found the native Hawaiians to be opposed to annexation; the report found US diplomatic and military involvement in the coup.


Grover Cleveland delivered a December 18,1893 message to Congress, rejecting annexation and encouraging Congress to continue the American tradition of non-intervention.


Grover Cleveland expressed himself in forceful terms, saying the presence of US forces near the Hawaiian government building and royal palace during the coup was a "substantial wrong" and an "act of war," and lambasted the actions of minister Stevens.


However the Senate, under Democratic control but opposed to Grover Cleveland, commissioned and produced the Morgan Report, which contradicted Blount's findings and found the overthrow was a completely internal affair.


Grover Cleveland dropped his push to restore the queen, and went on to recognize and maintain diplomatic relations with the new Republic of Hawaii under President Dole, who took office in July 1894.


Closer to home, Grover Cleveland adopted a broad interpretation of the Monroe Doctrine that not only prohibited new European colonies, but declared an American national interest in any matter of substance within the hemisphere.


The second Grover Cleveland administration was as committed to military modernization as the first, and ordered the first ships of a navy capable of offensive action.


Grover Cleveland decided to have surgery secretly, to avoid further panic that might worsen the financial depression.


Grover Cleveland enjoyed many years of life after the tumor was removed, and there was some debate as to whether it was actually malignant.


Several doctors, including Dr Keen, stated after Grover Cleveland's death that the tumor was a carcinoma.


In 1893, after the death of Samuel Blatchford, Cleveland nominated William B Hornblower to the Court.


Further, Grover Cleveland had not consulted the Senators before naming his appointee, leaving many who were already opposed to Grover Cleveland on other grounds even more aggrieved.


Grover Cleveland continued to defy the Senate by next appointing Wheeler Hazard Peckham another New York attorney who had opposed Hill's machine in that state.


Reformers urged Cleveland to continue the fight against Hill and to nominate Frederic R Coudert, but Cleveland acquiesced in an inoffensive choice, that of Senator Edward Douglass White of Louisiana, whose nomination was accepted unanimously.


Later, in 1895, another vacancy on the Court led Grover Cleveland to consider Hornblower again, but he declined to be nominated.


Grover Cleveland silently supported the Gold Democrats' third-party ticket that promised to defend the gold standard, limit government, and oppose high tariffs, but he declined their nomination for a third term.


Grover Cleveland consulted occasionally with President Theodore Roosevelt but was financially unable to accept the chairmanship of the commission handling the Coal Strike of 1902.


Grover Cleveland's health had been declining for several years, and in the autumn of 1907 he fell seriously ill.


Grover Cleveland secretly bought a farmhouse, Oak View, in a rural upland part of the District of Columbia, in 1886, and remodeled it into a Queen Anne style summer estate.


Grover Cleveland sold Oak View upon losing his bid for re-election in 1888.


Grover Cleveland was a member of the first board of directors of the then Buffalo Normal School.


The first US postage stamp to honor Grover Cleveland appeared in 1923.


Grover Cleveland's portrait was on the US $1000 bill of series 1928 and series 1934.


Grover Cleveland appeared on the first few issues of the $20 Federal Reserve Notes from 1914.


In 2013, Grover Cleveland was inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.