On March 4 1909, William Howard Taft was to be sworn in as the 27th President of the United States. The night before a fierce storm struck the East Coast and all but shut down travel. With Temperatures well below freezing snow began on the afternoon of March 3 in Washington DC and continued into the after dawn hours of Inauguration Day, which at the time was still held on March 4th. The blizzard left more than 10” of snow. The inauguration ceremony was moved indoors, into the Senate Chamber, limiting the number of persons who could attend. Despite the adverse weather conditions, the inaugural parade was not cancelled. 6,000 city workers used 500 wagons to remove 58,000 tons of snow to clean the parade route. For the first time in inauguration history, the incoming First Lady joined her husband in leading the parade from the Capitol to the White House. Before heading off that evening with his wife, to an inaugural ball at the Pension Building, Taft hosted a celebratory dinner at the newly opened Metropolitan Club for those fellow members of his Yale Class of 1878 who had come to the event. In his remarks he said that . “I always said it would be a cold day when I got to be president,” and so it was.
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