Special Report

The Weirdest Fact About Every American President

Source: Gene Forte / Central Press / Hulton Archive / Getty Images

36. Lyndon Johnson (1908-1973)
> Years served as president: 1963-1969
> Political party: Democratic
> Weird fact: Johnson’s life was saved by missing flight to the South Pacific.

Fate intervened on Lyndon Johnson’s behalf during World War II. He boarded a bomber for a mission in the South Pacific, but before the plane took off, he hopped off to use the restroom. When he returned, Johnson boarded another plane for the mission that took off but had to return to the base. The original plane Johnson was supposed to board crashed, killing everyone on board.

Source: National Archive / Newsmakers

37. Richard Nixon (1913-1994)
> Years served as president: 1969-1974
> Political party: Republican
> Weird fact: Nixon could play five musical instruments.

While Richard Nixon is widely associated with the Watergate scandal, what most may not know about him is his hidden musical talents. Nixon played the piano, clarinet, saxophone, violin, and accordion. He could play these instruments without learning to read music.

Source: Michigan University / Getty Images

38. Gerald Ford (1913-2006)
> Years served as president: 1974-1977
> Political party: Republican
> Weird fact: Ford served, but was never elected, as both president and VP.

Gerald Ford was the first and only president so far to serve as both president and vice president without ever being elected to either office. In his earlier years, Ford was a football star at the University of Michigan, where he played center and linebacker. He actually turned down offers from two professional football teams.

Source: Hulton Archive / Hulton Archive via Getty Images

39. Jimmy Carter (1924-present)
> Years served as president: 1977-1981
> Political party: Democratic
> Weird fact: Carter is the first president to have witnessed a UFO.

Jimmy Carter is the only president thus far to report a UFO sighting. Carter claimed to have spotted the UFO in October 1969, but he did not file a report with the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena until four years after.

Source: Hulton Archive / Getty Images

40. Ronald Reagan (1911-2004)
> Years served as president: 1981-1989
> Political party: Republican
> Weird fact: Reagan consulted with an astrologer.

Reagan and his wife were so fascinated by astrology that the president consulted with an astrologer by the name of Joan Quigley. When word got out that Reagan consulted with Quigley, headlines like “Astrologer Runs The White House” ran shortly after. Nancy Reagan confirmed that astrology was merely a factor in determining Reagan’s schedule, not for political decisions.

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