It’s dangerous to go alone

Presidential Quiz

By Dave Menendez
Thursday, July 6, 2006, at 7:38 PM

Summary: A little quiz for my fellow Americans (and others).

A little quiz for my fellow Americans (although foreigners are welcome to participate): How many U.S. Presidents can you name? Don't get up or check the web, just open a notebook or a text document and start writing. Forty-two is a perfect score.

As a bonus, how many of them can you get in the correct order?

This isn't an internet meme, so far as I'm aware. It's just something that popped into my head this afternoon. If you try this, post your results on your own blog or send me an e-mail and I'll note your score here.

You can check your results using the list of presidents at Wikipedia.

My results

I came up with thirty presidents and zero non-presidents. The twelve I missed are a mixed bunch. I'm kicking myself for missing Madison, Monroe, Jackson, and Taft, and I should have gotten Tyler, what with the "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too". I feel less bad about missing, say, Pierce.

I did manage to get the most recent sixteen in order. Aside from Taft, I also got every president who took office during the twentieth century. I even remembered that Grover Cleveland served two non-consecutive terms, but I only counted him once. (This is why George W. Bush is the forty-third president, even though there are only forty-two presidents.)

I'm not sure whether my showing is good or not. Certainly, I would expect a historian to clean my clock.

Oh, for super-double, bonus points, try listing the Presidents of the United States in Congress Assembled.