Skip to comments.The First President Of the United States Was A Black Man (John Hanson)
Posted on 01/22/2007 2:38:46 PM PST by mcg2000
Let me start black history month a few weeks early. Barack Obama has plans of running for President of the United States, But will he be the first Black President or the 8th Black President? I know this posting will stir controversty but George Washington was not the first President of the U.S. Let's take a look at history.
A "Black" Man, A Moor, John Hanson Was the First President of the United States! 1781-1782 A.D.??? George Washington was really the 8th President of the United States! George Washington was not the first President of the United States. In fact, the first President of the United States was one John Hanson. Don't go checking the encyclopedia for this guy's name - he is one of those great men that are lost to history. If you're extremely lucky, you may actually find a brief mention of his name. The new country was actually formed on March 1, 1781 with the adoption of The Articles of Confederation. This document was actually proposed on June 11, 1776, but not agreed upon by Congress until November 15, 1777. Maryland refused to sign this document until Virginia and New York ceded their western lands (Maryland was afraid that these states would gain too much power in the new government from such large amounts of land). Once the signing took place in 1781, a President was needed to run the country. John Hanson was chosen unanimously by Congress (which included George Washington). In fact, all the other potential candidates refused to run against him, as he was a major player in the revolution and an extremely influential member of Congress. As the first President, Hanson had quite the shoes to fill. No one had ever been President and the role was poorly defined. His actions in office would set precedent for all future Presidents. He took office just as the Revolutionary War ended. Almost immediately, the troops demanded to be paid. As would be expected after any long war, there were no funds to meet the salaries. As a result, the soldiers threatened to overthrow the new government and put Washington on the throne as a monarch. All the members of Congress ran for their lives, leaving Hanson as the only guy left running the government. He somehow managed to calm the troops down and hold the country together. If he had failed, the government would have fallen almost immediately and everyone would have been bowing to King Washington. In fact, Hanson sent 800 pounds of sterling siliver by his brother Samuel Hanson to George Washington to provide the troops with shoes. Hanson, as President, ordered all foreign troops off American soil, as well as the removal of all foreign flags. This was quite the feat, considering the fact that so many European countries had a stake in the United States since the days following Columbus. Hanson established the Great Seal of the United States, which all Presidents have since been required to use on all official documents. President Hanson also established the first Treasury Department, the first Secretary of War, and the first Foreign Affairs Department. Lastly, he declared that the fourth Thursday of every November was to be Thanksgiving Day, which is still true today.
The Articles of Confederation only allowed a President to serve a one year term during any three year period, so Hanson actually accomplished quite a bit in such little time. Six other presidents were elected after him - Elias Boudinot (1783), Thomas Mifflin (1784), Richard Henry Lee (1785), Nathan Gorman (1786), Arthur St. Clair (1787), and Cyrus Griffin (1788) - all prior to Washington taking office. So what happened? Why don't we ever hear about the first seven Presidents of the United States? It's quite simple - The Articles of Confederation didn't work well. The individual states had too much power and nothing could be agreed upon. A new doctrine needed to be written - something we know as the Constitution. And that leads us to the end of our story. George Washington was definitely not the first President of the United States. He was the first President of the United States under the Constitution we follow today. And the first seven Presidents are forgotten in history.
Hanson was not President of the United Staes, he was the president of Congress, I believe.
John Hanson was a SWEDE! He was descended from those who settled the New Sweden colony in the the Philadephia area--as am I! We Swedish-Americans are proud of John Hanson.
Damned herring shuckers. ;~)
What a great bar bet.
Does not support the "First President" position...and provides some explanation as to where the story may have come from.
Who would've guessed James Baker has 15-20% African blood??
John Hancock was also an early President. An indication of how minor the position was, is this: Hancock was too ill to go from Boston to the Capitol, then in New York, for the entire year of his term. So, he didn't go, and the government functioned just fine in his absence.
This is trash--do some research. From wiki:
MYTH-- Hanson was black
Dick Gregory, comedian and black activist publishes an on-line column called Global Watch. In one of his columns he repeated most of the myths and added a new one, that John Hanson was the descendent of a slave. (The column can be seen at .)
There are two possible origins for this belief. The first is that Hanson's grandfather, another John Hanson, was an early immigrant to Maryland; as was common at the time, he worked as an indentured servant on his arrival in the New World. In 1661, his first master, William Plumley, sold his contract to Edward Keene and recorded the contract with the court of Calvert County, Maryland; similar court records were also used to transfer title to land and slaves. But, in six years, the immigrant John had worked his way out of debt, and a few years afterwards had purchased his own small farm. There is no record that the grandfather was black, but if indentured servitude was confused with chattel slavery, it is easy to see where this belief would have appeared.
Another may be a simple case of confusion with Senator John Hanson, a politician from Liberia, who was involved with the resettlement of freed slaves in that country. Whilst this Hanson was indeed black, he also lived a hundred years too late.
Note: During the 1600s, blacks were in the USA as indentured servants. The law for chattel slavery didn't come completely into effect until around 1705. Looking at Hanson's picture, he has the appearance of the triads (Wesorts and others) that inhabited Southern Maryland. The black men that were initially there under indentured servitude inter-married with white women and bore children, until a law was passed making their union illegal.
OK, for the sake of argument, I'll concede that Hanson was the "first black president." Who are the other six?
Thanks for the ping...this is an urban legend. See above.
(BTW, my ancestor, Peter Gunnarsson Rambo, one of the founders of New Sweden, is buried at that church).
He was President of the Continental Congress, and the third president at that. No BFD...
What is really scary are some of the comments at that blog.
yet another myth based on nothing...
maybe he's related to this guy who hold the world record
fastest checkout from the Hyatt Regency ...
so are you related to john rambo?
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