Minot professor discusses history of Inauguration ceremony

Inauguration(Library of Congress)
Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 4:29 PM CST
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MINOT, N.D. – Your News Leader wanted to learn more about the history behind the pageantry of Wednesday’s events.

Presidential inaugurations date back all the way to the first U.S. President, George Washington, in the late 1700s.

Congresses originally declared March 4 as Inauguration Day, however that date was changed in 1933 to what we know it now to be Jan. 20.

A history professor at Minot State University explained the American tradition.

“It’s something has developed over time, there is very little that is prescribed other than the oath the president takes that’s in the Constitution, the rest of it is what has developed over time and the ceremony began of course with George Washington when he was inaugurated as the first president,” said Bethany Andreasen, MSU History Professor.

One of the big points of contention was former President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump not attending the ceremony. However, Andreasen recounts that this is not the first time a former president does not meet his predecessor.

“It’s happened about four of five times. John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Woodrow Wilson did not attend but he was very ill at the time warren hardening was inaugurated as president,” said Andreasen.

Andreasen noted the significance of the first female vice president and overall message of unity surrounding the inauguration.

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