25 Feb
2011
Posted in: Favorite Things
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When a Coerced, Nude President Was First Interviewed by a Female Journalist

How did I get through so many years of school without hearing this hilarious “presidential history” anecdote about John Quincy Adams and Anne Royall?

According to the story, Adams (son of John Adams) customarily took a nude early morning swim in the Potomac River. Anne Royall, the first U.S. female professional journalist (i.e. did it as her occupation, for which she earned her living), knew of his 5 a.m. swims. After being refused interviews with the president time after time, she went to the river, gathered his clothes and sat on them until she had her interview (a statement from him about the Bank of the United States). Before this, no female had interviewed a president.

Belatedly, I can only say, “You go, girl.”

You can read more about Anne Royall on Wikipedia. She must’ve been quite a character!

John Quincy Adams, the first sitting U.S. President to be photographed. Insert appropriate catcalls--Work It, Hot Stuff!

 

Anne Royall, who definitely had gumption, back before it was considered cool.

So, what do you think?