First Ladies of the United States

circa 1830: First Lady Dolley Madison (1768 - 1849), nee Payne, the wife of American president James Madison and a renowned Washington socialite.

First Lady

President Interesting Fact
Martha Dandridge Custis Washington George Washington Burned all correspondence between herself and her husband before her death
Abigail Smith Adams John Adams Highly respected and intelligent as seen by correspondence between herself and both her husband and Thomas Jefferson
None. Wife Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson died before he took office. Thomas Jefferson Martha was extremely wealthy and Jefferson was heartbroken when she died.
Dolley Payne Todd Madison James Madison Well-loved first lady credited with saving many national treasures when Washington was under attack during the War of 1812
Elizabeth Kortright Monroe James Monroe Often ill and disliked as first lady, especially after the popular Dolley Madison
Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams John Quincy Adams Only foreign-born first lady
Rachel Robards Jackson Andrew Jackson Had been married before and marriage was not legally ended when she married Jackson causing much scandal
Hannah Hoes Van Buren Martin Van Buren Not much is known but she was deeply religious
Anna Tuthill Symmes Harrison William Henry Harrison Never actually occupied the White House because her husband died before she arrived
(1)Letitia Christian Tyler (2)Julia Gardiner Tyler John Tyler Letitia died while Tyler was in office; Julia became the first woman to be married to a sitting president
Sarah Childress Polk James Knox Polk Well respected first lady who was noted for her sobriety and tactful conversation
Margaret Mackall Smith Taylor Zachary Taylor Did not enjoy being first lady and would not attend any formal social occasions
Abigail Powers Fillmore Millard Fillmore Had a deep love of learning and was a major part in the creation of the White House library
Jane Means Appleton Pierce Franklin Pierce Was very religious and spent most of her time in the White House in grief over her youngest son's death
None James Buchanan Buchanan's ward, Harriet Lane, served as first lady
Mary Ann Todd Lincoln Abraham Lincoln Was unpopular as first lady and had a mental illness diagnosed as "cerebral disease" after her death
Eliza McCardle Johnson Andrew Johnson Was an invalid throughout Johnson's presidency
Julia Boggs Dent Grant Ulysses S Grant Gracious first lady who helped refurbish the White House
Lucy Ware Webb Hayes Rutherford B. Hayes Staunch opponent of slavery who was nicknamed "Lemonde Lucy" for banning alcohol at the White House
Lucretia Rudolph Garfield James Garfield Was reluctant to be first lady and was known for talking with her husband and the press about political issues
None. Wife Ellen Lewis Herndon Arthur died before he took office. Chester A Arthur Arthur's sister acted as the unofficial first lady
Frances Folsom Cleveland Grover Cleveland Cleveland married Frances while president and she became an instant celebrity and trendsetter
Caroline Lavinia Harrison Benjamin Harrison Was active as first lady performing major renovations and acting as a huge advocate for women's rights
Ida Saxton McKinley William McKinley Was an epileptic and suffered through many illnesses during her time as first lady
Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt Roosevelt's second wife, Edith was an active first lady who remodeled the White House
Helen "Nellie" Herron Taft William Howard Taft Had a stroke while first lady yet continued to serve at functions throughout Taft's term in office
(1)Ellen Louise Axton Wilson (2)Edith Bolling Galt Wilson Woodrow Wilson Took control of the presidency after husband had a stroke in office
Florence Mabel Kling DeWolfe Harding Warren G. Harding Was a good businesswoman who helped Harding become president
Grace Anna Goodhue Coolidge Calvin Coolidge Very popular first lady who gracefully dealt with the death of her son Calvin Jr. while Coolidge was in office
Lou Henry Hoover Herbert Clark Hoover Very involved in the Girl Scouts and spent time as first lady restoring White House rooms
Anna Eleanor Roosevelt Franklin D. Roosevelt Used her position as first lady to advance important causes such as civil rights and women's rights
Elizabeth "Bess" Virginia Wallace Truman Harry S Truman Spent as little time as possible in Washington, not relishing her role as first lady
Mamie Geneva Doud Eisenhower Dwight D. Eisenhower Very popular first lady who held many state dinners for heads of state
Jacqueline "Jackie" Lee Bouvier Kennedy John F. Kennedy Known for her fashion sense and poise, she spent much of her time as first lady restoring the White House
Claudia Alta Taylor "Lady Bird" Johnson Lyndon B. Johnson Her pet project while first lady was helping improve the way America looked through her beautification program
Thelma Catherine Patricia "Pat" Ryan Nixon Richard M. Nixon Espoused volunteerism as her pet project along with continuing the restoration of the White House
Elizabeth "Betty" Anne Bloomer Ford Gerald R. Ford Spoke openly about personal issues including seeing a psychiatrist and dealing with breast cancer
Eleanor Rosalynn Smith Carter Jimmy Carter One of her husbands closest advisors, sitting in on many cabinet meetings
Nancy Davis Reagan Ronald Reagan Caused controversy after purchasing new china for the White House during a nationwide depression
Barbara Pierce Bush George H. W. Bush Well-loved first lady who advocated for many causes including AIDS awareness, homelessness, and literacy
Hillary Rodham Clinton Bill Clinton Powerful first lady who advocated nationalized health insurance along with rights for women and children around the world
Laura Welch Bush George W. Bush Former librarian who has spent her time championing education issues including literacy
Michelle Robinson Obama Barack Obama Michelle Obama has worked hard to help working and military families along with focusing on childhood nutrition.