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Today in history: May 10
In 1877, the White House got its first telephone
 
A telephone wasn't installed at the president's desk in the Oval Office until Herbert Hoover was president.
A telephone wasn't installed at the president's desk in the Oval Office until Herbert Hoover was president. Pete Souza/White House via Getty Images

May 10

On this day. 1877: The White House gets its first telephone. The phone number was "1." But President Rutherford B. Hayes got few calls. The only other direct line to the White House at the time was from the Treasury Department next door (it wouldn't be for half a century, though, until a president — Herbert Hoover — had the first telephone line installed in the Oval Office). Hayes, who was interested in new technology, also had the first typewriter in the White House, and was personally given a briefing on the phonograph by Thomas Edison.

On this day. 2005: An assassination attempt against President George W. Bush. A man threw a hand grenade at him during Bush's visit to the former Soviet Republic of Georgia. It landed 65 feet away but failed to explode.

Quote of the day

"I like the noise of democracy." –James Buchanan


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