Slideshow: 12 surprising facts about the Inauguration
Credit: Universal History Archive/Getty Images
William Henry Harrison – the ninth United States President – gave the longest inaugural address. It was 8,445 words, more than two hours in length and given to a crowd standing out in the elements of a bitter, damp and chilly March day.
Jim Bendat, author of "Democracy's Big Day," says 68-year-old Harrison "extended himself too much" that day. After dragging out his long address and attending all three Inaugural balls – a record for the time – the new president caught pneumonia. Harrison, who was then the oldest man to be elected president, spent less than a month in office before succumbing to the cold.