Posts Tagged ‘Laddie Boy’

As you all know I love history.  One of the things I love to study is Presidents and their dogs……  One President which stands out to me is Warren G. Harding.  Not only is his history interesting but this guy was…. well…. unique to the Presidency in the last 100 years.  You see, we visited his house n Marion, OH and it was a average size victorian home no bigger than most two story farm houses I am familar with. We left feeling like this guy was a average Joe… which he sort of was.

What I personally like about Harding is that he loved animals.  He was a kind man who never had children of his own (despite rumors, it is now accepted he was sterile… so no children!).   I read about his life and he had a dog who adopted him when he was a child but unfortunately it liked Chickens and his uncle came over one day and grabbed it by the back legs and swung it into the edge of the corn crib killing it.  Harding was crushed……

He also had a dog when he first bought the Marion Star Newspaper.. someone poisoned it…. 😦   But, the man loved all animals and was kind to them and this endears him to me.  🙂

His most famous dog was Laddie Boy!  A Airedale.. Laddie Boy came to Harding the day after he entered the White House and lived in the White House, not some kennel. He was spoiled, treated like the child the Hardings never had.  He became a celebrity in his own rite for while the Hardings were wildly popular during their short time in the White House… Laddie Boy was even more so.

You see Laddie Boy had birthday parties where all the neighborhood dogs in Washington were invited for dog biscuit cake!  Laddie Boy met guests, visitors, led functions, had interviews with the press, led parades for the Humane Society in DC (the White House even had their Press Secretary make the announcement as if Laddie Boy had accepted himself!), was the center of attention at the WH Easter Egg Roll, had his own chair for Cabinet meetings and made headlines such as Laddie Boy trees cat!!!

As you may or may not know Warren Harding died a little over two years into his Presidency due to heart problems and flu that was complicated by pneumonia!

Whiel the Hardings were on that fateful trip, Laddie Boy was left at the White House.  Laddie Boy knew something was wrong…. it is said he howled for three days before Harding died and then after August 2, 1923  sat in the window waiting for him to come home…..

Harding’s wife was in ill health so when she came back to the White House she gave Laddie Boy to her Secret Service Agent Harry Barker who kept him until he died. Laddie Boy was born on July 26, 1920 and died on July 23, 1929.  While other dogs in the White House have proven popular, none have ever come close to the popularity of Laddie Boy.

Harding with Laddie Boy

Harding with Laddie Boy again….

Laddie Boy and Mrs. Harding

Laddie Boy hamming it up with Warren G. Harding

Laddie Boy with Harding and children…

HArding with Laddie Boy

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