12 Interesting George W. Bush Facts You Probably Don’t Know
George Walker Bush is the 43rd president of the United States, who led the country’s response to the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11 in 2001 and started off the Iraq War in 2003.
Even though many people think that the Bush family comes from a Texas family, that’s not true. George W. Bush was born in 1946 in New Haven, Connecticut. Soon after his birth, the family moved to Texas, where they live today.
George W. Bush held the Presidency of the United States for eight years, from 2001 to 2009, and was succeeded by Barack Obama. In 2000, George W. Bush won the electoral college vote over Vice President Al Gore in one of the most controversial and the closest elections in US history. After Benjamin Harrison in 1888, G. W. Bush became the first candidate to be elected president even though he lost the nationwide popular vote.
Before George W. Bush became the president, he was a businessman and served as governor of Texas from 1995 to 2000. George is the eldest child of George H. W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States, and Barbara Bush. Bush Junior is married to Laura Bush, and the couple has two daughters. (1)
While there are many facts about George W. Bush you already know, we’ve sourced a list of those you probably never heard about. Let’s find out more!
1. He’s the second president who’s a son of a president
It is a well-known fact about George W. Bush that he’s the son of the 41st president of the United States, George H. W. Bush, who’s also known as George Bush Senior. However, here’s something you probably didn’t know. He wasn’t the first one to succeed his father in the presidential title.
The 6th US president was John Quincy Adams, who served from 1825 to 1829. John Quincy was the son of the 2nd president of the United States, John Adams, who served from 1797 to 1801.
George Bush Junior comes from a family of politically involved individuals. Prescott Bush, his grandfather, was the US senator from Connecticut, and his younger brother, Jeb Bush, served as the governor of Florida and ran for president in 2016 against Donald Trump. (1)
2. G. W. Bush had 2 main houses
Besides being based at the White House, George H. Bush had two other houses where he would retreat with his family. One of them is the Walker’s Point Estate, also known as the Bush Compound. The estate lies along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in Maine, and it was known as his Summer White House. (2)
His second residence is the Prairie Chapel Ranch in Texas which spreads over an area of 1,583 acres. Bush acquired the estate in 1999, and during his presidency, the house was known as the Western White House. The First Family used to vacation here, and host numerous guests from around the world. George W. Bush is based here today. (3)
3. Painting became one of his hobbies in retirement
What does one do after serving as the president of the United States? Well, you can pretty much become anything you want, and Bush decided to dedicate his time and effort to oil painting. However, this wasn’t just a hobby of his.
In February 2017, he published a book that would later become a New York Times bestseller. The book entitled “Portraits of Courage: A Commander in Chief’s Tribute to America’s Warriors” portrayed 98 men and women, and their stories about injuries, recoveries, and lives lived after serving in the military.
George W. Bush first started painting animals, and landscapes. As he was learning how to paint people, he decided to paint the faces of the world leaders he worked with, including Tony Blair, Vladimir Putin, Hamid Karzai, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and more. After that, his instructor encouraged him to paint the faces of people nobody knows, and that’s how the idea for the book was born. (4)
4. He was a cheerleader at Yale University
Here’s one of those facts about George W. Bush you probably never had a chance to hear about. During his college years, he was very involved in societies and activities. He was a member of a fraternity Delta Kappa Epsilon, and a secret and elite society named Skull and Bones, and the rugby team in college. However, the most interesting one is the fact that he was a cheerleader at Yale University. (5)
5. Bush was a CEO of an oil company
Before Bush became president, he was a businessman. From 1979 to 1988, he was the CEO of the company Arbusto Oil, which will later be renamed Bush Exploration Company. In 1989, he became a part-owner of the Texas Rangers baseball franchise. He bought 2 percent of Texas Rangers for $800,000 and sold it for $14.9 million. (6)
6. Bush married Laura only three months after they met
One of the facts about George W. Bush that’s very surprising is that he married his wife only three months after they met.
George Bush and Laura Welch met in 1977 at a friend’s barbecue. The couple seemed to hit it off right away, and three months later, they got married in a small ceremony for the closest friends and family.
Laura enthusiastically supported Bush’s bid for the office in 1978. However, he failed to win his first election, and the two of them decided to settle down and raise their twin daughters, while George went back to running his oil business.
As a first lady, Laura Bush kept a relatively low profile. She avoided controversial subjects such as abortion rights, and health care. In 2001, she became the first first lady to deliver the weekly presidential radio address instead of her husband. (7)
7. Bush was the first and only president to run a marathon
At the age of 46, George W. Bush ran in the Houston Marathon in 1993. He was the first and only president to compete in such a race. He continued running while serving in the Oval Office. In 2002, he told the Runner’s World “As a matter of fact, I don’t believe it – I know it. If the President of the United States can make the time, anyone can.” Bush finished his first marathon in 3 hours, 44 minutes, and 52 seconds. (8)
8. Bush quit drinking after his 40th birthday
Before running as a political candidate, Bush was struggling with alcoholism. When he hit the 40-year old mark, he came to the realization that alcohol was affecting his relationships with other people and his energy. His wife, Laura, was one of the key people who helped him overcome his addiction. (9)
9. He’s the only president who has an MBA
After graduating from Yale University, George W. Bush continued his studies at the Harvard School of Business, where he received an MBA. He’s the only president of the United States who had an MBA. (10)
10. George W. Bush loves animals
George and Laura Bush love animals, and throughout their lives, they had several pets. At the moment, they have a dog named Freddy, and a cat named Bob. Their daughter, Jenna Bush Hager, has a cat named Bernadette that also lives with the couple at the moment.
While Bush was living in the White House, he had two black Scottish Terriers, Barney and Miss Beazley. The dogs were featured in videos like “Barney Reloaded” and “Where in the White House is Miss Beazley?” (11)
11. He founded George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
In 2013, George W. Bush founded a Presidential Library and Museum in Dallas, Texas. The dedication ceremony was a one-of-a-kind event, which was attended by all five living presidents at the time – Jimmy Carter, George Bush Senior, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. (12)
12. He was the first president of the United States to visit Iraq
After the war with Iraq was started off in 2003, Bush visited the country several times for important meetings. However, his first visit was a surprise one. He visited the US troops that were stationed in Baghdad and joined them for a Thanksgiving dinner. This was the first trip ever to Iraq by a US president. During his presidency, he would visit the country four more times. After him, both Barack Obama and Donald Trump visited Iraq on several occasions. (13)
George W. Bush Facts
There you have it – those were some of the interesting facts about George W. Bush you probably never heard about before. Now, we give the microphone back to you. Which one of these facts about George W. Bush surprised you the most? Did we miss some of your favorite ones? Leave a comment below and let us know!