Misquoting Old Hickory

Day 48
Listening to: Who Can it Be Now
Thought for the day: George Washington, the only president who couldn’t blame a prior administration. Poor guy.


Though today is really about George’s birthday, we call it President’s Day. With that in mind I am sharing a story about the president who taught me the importance of not trusting the internet. Four years ago, the Old Hickory Veterans Memorial Park decided to install a monument in honor of one of the founders of our beloved Old Hickory and 7th President, Old Hickory himself Andrew Jackson. My responsibilities for the Jackson monument included getting permission from the White House to use the presidential seal on the monument (another interesting story) and the inscriptions that would go on the four sides of the monument. On one of the sides, I decided the inscription should be a quote of Jackson’s. Like any non-expert of a president, I Googled, “Andrew Jackson quotes,” chose a few, and presented them to the committee so we could choose one. After much deliberation we chose, “One man with courage makes a majority.” Everyone was pleased. I thought my job was done. NOPE! I sent the monument plans to a representative at The Hermitage (Jackson’s home) for approval. Here was the response I received:

“The Quote ‘One Man with Courage Makes a Majority’ has often been attributed to Jackson but we have consulted with Dan Feller, editor of the Papers of Andrew Jackson at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, and he has never found any evidence that Jackson ever wrote or said it.


All was not lost. I kicked Google to the curb and asked The Hermitage representative to choose the quote. Today’s photo is of the completed monument and shows the quote that was chosen. I quote people in my 365 all of the time. There isn’t a single time that I use a quote from a famous person that I don’t remember my experience with Andrew. I always wonder if what I am posting is legit.

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