Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Chester A. Arthur: The Gentleman Boss

Born on October 5, 1829, Chester Alan Arthur was to become the 21st President of the United States.

Arthur was born in the town of Fairfield, Vermont close to the Canadian border. Political rivals later circulated rumors that he had been born in Canada, to create doubts to his eligibility the American Presidency and simply because no one in the U.S. really ever trusts Canadians. I sure find them shifty. Always watching hockey and eating maple syrup! What are you trying to hide Canada? What is your filthy secret???

The truth, however, was simply that Arthur was born near the Canadian border. His parents were William Arthur and Malvina Stone.

Arthur attended public school and in his early 20s he became principal of an academy in North Pownal, Vermont. It is assumed that he would remind children that "I am not your 'princi-PULL' I am your 'princi-PAL' and that is because I am your pal!"

It is also assumed that he would pick his nose when he felt no one was looking.

A few years later, in 1854, he begin law practice in New York City. His legal work often focused on equal rights for blacks who objected as he worked to desegregate city transportation.

In October 1859 Arthur married Hellen "Nell" Lewis Hern. Hellen (not a typo) was unwilling to take Arthur's last name at first because, as she said, "look how many danged names I have! When I sign a check I always have to write 'continued on other side.'"

Hellen later relented and took Arthur's name.

Arthur served as acting quartermaster general of the state during the Civil War. Although the title SOUNDS important the 'quartermaster general of the state' has only one job "to give the soldiers change when they enter an arcade, a Laundromat or need to make a call from a pay phone."

Arthur became Vice President of the United States with Republican President James Garfield in 1881. President Garfield was assassinated months later and, on September 19, 1881, Arthur became President of the United States.

Arthur was a very society-conscious president, earning him the nickname "the Gentleman Boss" for his fancy style of dress and sophisticated manner.

Although popular, Arthur was not re-nominated for an additional term.

His accomplishments as President including helping to establish the Greenwich Meridian which has something to do with maps and the Prime Meridian.


Mark Twain once wrote "It would be hard indeed to better President Arthur's administration."

His other nickname was "Elegant Arthur."

He would often change his pants several times a day.

Is buried in Albany, New York.


Once considered changing his middle initial "A" to the word "An" so as to be more grammatically accurate.

Wrestled Bruno Sammartino for the WWWF heavyweight championship.

His third nickname was "C Double A." He hated that nickname.

Started a war with Costa Rica over an aggressive game of 'pin the tail on the donkey.'


  1. "The Gentleman Boss" would be an AWESOME name for a rock band. Anyone here play the drums?

  2. Anonymous9/21/2005

    I love this site! I love Chester A. Arthur!
    I love all the presidents! They are way cool.
    I like Garfield (the prez and the comic!) I even like Pres. Garfield's assasin Charles Guiteau.

    Also, I am HIV positive.

  3. Anonymous9/21/2005

    Chester A Arthur was president! You should mention that!

  4. Anonymous9/21/2005

    Yeah, I have changed my pants more than once during a poker game. I bet none of you newbies do that. But us poker players that go way back have done it.

    I have been a big poker player for at least 3 months!

  5. Anonymous9/21/2005

    Oooh lookie at me. I am a Presidential hankerchief. Nooooo! Don't blow your nose on me.
    Hankerchief of Staff is what they call me (if you catch my drift.)

  6. I think I caught your drift. Now I must find a doctor to remove it.