Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Needing inspiration and getting it from an unlikely source.."Silent Cal" Coolidge!

30th President Calvin Coolidge

You know sometimes you are looking for a light at the end of the tunnel and realize that there is none...  So you look around for inspiration so that you can keep going… Well… that’s when I play “type into Google” and wham…I am usually off on a history quest and forget my problems.

The “Googling” last night turned up a phrase from one of the most interesting Presidents of the United States…”Silent Cal” Coolidge.  His quote is a gem of realistic inspiration….

"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'press on' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."
I smiled and as usual was off head first on the quest.  I dug out some remembered thoughts on Coolidge, and then looked up some other information on our 30th President of the United States. Coolidge was a man of character.  He was the only President born on the Fourth of July (didn't know that).  He was well liked because of his honesty and good thoughtful action... a good President.
Vice President Coolidge became President at the death of Warren G. Harding…a President whose administration had smacked of corruption.  Harding died of a heart attack in the west while Calvin was at his father’s house in Vermont visiting in 1923.   The house had no electricity or phone….so a messenger had to run the news up to the house.  His father (a notary) administered the oath of office on the family Bible, by kerosene lamp... in the parlor!  It is said that upon hearing the news Calvin went to his bedroom, got dressed, took the oath of office, and then went back to bed.
History can be so much fun.  
He was called “Silent Cal” because he used few words in public...though a good public speaker.  My favorite stories about him come from the wit and poet Dorothy Parker.  Once while sitting next to him at a formal dinner she said, “Mr. Coolidge, I've made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you."  His famous reply was...."You lose."
Coolidge actually became a popular President and was re-elected yet refused to run again saying that it was a job tough on family and that no man should do it for more than ten years… his public statement was simply… “"I do not choose to run for President in 1928."
When he died in 1933, wit Dorothy Parker was noted as saying when she was told of Coolidge’s death…”How can you tell?”
   As I said history can be FUN and inspiring! 

**It is interesting to note that on Feb. 22, 1924 Calvin Coolidge became the first president to make a public radio address to the American people. President Coolidge later helped create the Federal Radio Commission,  now evolved into the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
For more history and videos visit my website at www.historystarproductions.com

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