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Commanding commanders

by Noah segal 

This is Book is dedicated to Scott who tried so hard to give us two page spread(also to ms.jones who literally went to war with him). and to all the presidents who made the USA possible.



-Dear president Adams; why did you have an alligator?


John Quincy Adams having an alligator is kind of weird or at least to me, but to John Quincy Adams, I bet getting a gift of an alligator was cool and exciting. Many presidents have goofy, funny and straight out weird stories that I bet you didn’t know existed. Some of these stories help us remember the president. In Commanding Commanders we asked 10 different presidents to explain these odd tales about them. So, what does John Quincy Adam have to say about his alligator?

I had an alligator given to me by the Marquis De Lafayette. The alligator lived in my bathtub for 2 years and I showed him off to terrify guests. Sadly, I had to move him from the my bathroom in the west wing because my security was getting nervous, I barely saw him after that.


-Dear presidents Jefferson; when was the last day of your life?


I died on July the fourth, 1826, on the same day and year as John Adams and the same month and day as James Monroe. John Adams and I  were enemies until the end of my life when we apologized to each other. Maybe this is why John Adams' last words were, "Jefferson survives,” unaware that I had died 5 hours earlier.

Before and as president, I arguably did more things than almost any other modern day president ever has. In the year 1776, I signed and wrote the Declaration of Independence. I also served as an ambassador to France during the Revolutionary War and I was Secretary of State under George Washington. As president, I signd the Louisiana Purchase almost doubling the size of the USA. I don’t mean to brag, but I was one of the best presidents the USA has ever seen.


Before and as president, I arguably did more things than almost any other modern day president ever has. In the year 1776 I signed and wrote the Declaration of Independence. I also served as an ambassador to France during the Revolutionary war and I was Secretary of State under George Washington. As president, I signed the Louisiana purchase almost doubling the size of the USA. I don’t mean to brag, but I was one of the best presidents the USA has ever seen.


-Dear president Jackson; why does your parrot curse?


I had a pet parrot named Polly that I taught to curse. After I died ,the pet parrot Polly was brought to the funeral but had to be removed because she wouldn’t stop cursing. The reverend there said “Before the sermon and while the crowd was gathering, a wicked parrot that was a household pet got excited and commenced swearing so loud and long as to disturb the people and had to be carried from the house”.


 I was a hero from the War of 1812. I won the election of 1829 with 5 times as much of the popular vote as my opponent. As president, I destroyed the second bank of America. I have also been credited with being one of the founders of the Democratic party. On June 8, 1845 I passed away from lead poisoning (I had two bullets in my chest from duels). My last words were ,“I hope to meet each of you in heaven. Be good, children, all of you, and strive to be ready when the change comes.”






Dear president Harrison; what did you do as president?


I didn’t get to do much as president because just 31 days into my presidency I died from hypothermia. I got hypothermia while I was giving my inaugural speech. I wouldn’t wear a jacket in 48.5 degrees weather because I wanted to show my enemies that I was tough (they thought me weak because I was the oldest person to become president). I then gave a 8500 word speech. After that I caught hypothermia and shortly after died.


The ironic thing about me dying from a very preventable disease is that I was the only president to study medicine. At the time I was also the first president from the whig party. They thought I was old and weak and I tried to prove them wrong, but freezing yourself to death doesn't show really show people anything.






-Dear president Grant; have you ever gotten in trouble with the police?


Believe it or not in the year 1872, while I was president, I got a ticket for speeding on a horse by officer William West. I had to pay a 20 dollar fine and walk home without the horse. I had always loved horses and it hurt me to have one taken away from me. I then commended the officer for doing his duty and wrote him a good report.


Besides being hailed one of the greatest equestrians of all time I was also a civil war hero who won countless battles under Abraham Lincoln. As president I tried to annex the Dominican Republic into the USA. I also signed the treaty of Washington which ended wartime tensions between the USA and the British. After being president, I started a small financial firm, but sadly it went bankrupt. I died on July 23rd, 1885, without money for a tomb, but people donated 600,000 dollars to build my tomb (Grant's tomb). You can see my tomb in upper Manhattan.

-Dear president Tyler; did you have any children?


Yes, as a matter of fact I had 15 children with my two wives, Julia and Letitia. My children were named Mary, Robert, John, Letitia, Elizabeth, Anne, John, Alexander, Julia, Lachlan, Lyon, Robert, and Pearl. I also have two living grandchildren even though I was president 175 years ago . I am the president with the biggest family.


Beside taking care of the children, I did other things. I went to the college of William & Mary where I studied law. I was part of the House of Representatives until being nominated to be Benjamin Harrison’s vice president until he passed away from hypothermia (R.I.P) . So I became president with the nickname his “accidency.” As president I annexed Florida to the USA. After being president I lived a quiet life until passing away at the age of 71.


-Dear president roosevelt; have you ever been shot at?


As a matter of a fact I have. When I was giving a speech to try to get elected for my second term as president, Joe Zangara (my would be assassin) shot me in the chest. Luckily I had a very large manuscript paper there that stopped the bullet from killing me. then the doctor checked my bullet wound to make sure i was safe, after that I continued the speech with the bullet in my chest saying that ,“It takes more than that to kill a bull moose,” and that ,“The bullet is in me now, so that I cannot make a very long speech, but I will try my best.” I continued the speech for 20 more minutes, then I was rushed to the hospital.




As president I helped conserve our national parks. I created 4 national game preserves, 18 national monuments and 5 national parks. I also started the United states national forest authority. did i mention i constructed the panama canal and won the nobel peace prize for helping to end the russo-japan war? I will leave you with my favorite quote,“speak softly and carry a big stick.”


  • Dear president Van Buren; are you an author?


In the year 1920 I published my book called  The Autobiography of Martin Van Buren (I know what an original name). It was an immediate bestseller. However, there was one tiny critique everyone gave me: how I failed to mention my wife's name in my 818 page book not even one time. It’s not like I'm a bad husband but I just forgot to mention her. Some things just slip your mind.

As president of the USA I decorated the white house with gold. People considered me a “wannabe aristocrat." While I was president, the country's economy just collapsed. At the time the USA was a one crop country (the crop being cotton) and when the cotton  market collapsed, hundreds of thousands of people were left unemployed.  The USA had no major business .I had to deal with that but I couldn’t .However one eventful thing came out of my presidency while being president I created the phrase “OK”.


-Dear President Harding;did you play poker?


I did play poker. I bet money and once I even bet a set of priceless White House china from President Benjamin Harrison's time as president and lost it.According to various poker websites (who I don't believe) I’m not even the best poker player out of all the presidents. President Nixon is said to have gotten his base money for his presidental campaign from playing poker. He won over 10,000 dollers in the navy.


I won the presidency in the biggest landslide of that time. As president I cut the unemployment rate in half but I thought my position was just ceremonial and spent my time partying and playing poker. My presidency earned a bad name when members of my cabinet started taking bribes, I had no idea (ok maybe I had a little idea but I wasn’t doing it too).  Today my presidency is ranked as one of the worsts.


-Dear president polk; what were some promises you made while running for president?


The year was 1844. I was running for president of the United states of America. I was making many promises, but the one that I think got me elected was that no matter how good or bad I was at being president, I would not run for a second term. During the years 1845-89 I was president. After my term was over I kept my promise and retired from politics.


In my four year presidency,I lead the USA during the Mexican-American War which we won. The victory gave us more territory and made Texas part of the USA. I am also considered the last strong pre-civil war president. I died on June 15, 1849. My last words were, “I love you, Sarah. For all eternity, I love you.”




I am probably the most known president there has ever been because I abolished slavery in the USA during Civil War (The war between the South part of the USA and the North). When the North won the war, slavery was abolished, but there were still many southerners who could not accept the change. On April 15, 1865, I was assainated by John Wilkes Booth an actor because of what I believed in. To this day I am considered a hero for freeing hundreds of thousands of slaves.


- last but not least,

Dear president Lincoln; did you play any sports?

As a kid I wrestled, and was only defeated 1 out of 300 times. I was very big and tall as an adult I grew to 6 feet 4 inches. I was taller than Steph Curry, and Odell Beckham. I am in the wrestling hall of fame. Once after winning a wrestling match I said to the crowd "I’m the big buck of this lick. If any of you want to try it, come on and whet your horns.”

turn to the next page for more fun facts about our presidents!

A timeline of the mentioned presidents.


Anndrew Jefferson 

John qincy adams




Andrew JAckson

Martin van Buren



James polk

Abraham lincoln


Benjamin Harrison

A timeline of the mentioned presidents (continued).

Ulyses Grant




Warren Harding

jTheodore roosevelt






















Lincoln   T.Roosevelt   Jeffereson  Jackson   Quincy Adams

Our Presidents Ratings

(courtsey of Washington Post)

The end