by Karl Kurtz
Do you know your presidents of the United States? And your state legislators? Take our little trivia quiz, courtesy of C-SPAN Classroom's Career Paths to the Presidency. Answers in the jump below (no peeking).
- Which of the following is the most frequent pathway to the presidency? A)State and colonial legislatures, B) Governor, C) U.S. House, D) U.S. Senate, E) Vice President
- Of the 43 presidents, how many served in colonial or state legislatures before becoming president? A) 6, B) 14, C) 22, D) 30
- Who were the five presidents who served in colonial legislatures? (Hint: Five of the first six)
- Eight legislators who became president also served as governors of their states. Who were they? (Hint: The states that they came from are New York (3), Tennessee (2), Georgia, Massachusetts, Virginia.)
- Who were the five state legislators who served as president in the 20th century? (Hint: Four of them served as president before World War II.)
- A) State and colonial legislatures (although the U.S. House and Senate combined as the Congress rank higher)
- C) 22 (That's 51 percent of the total. Fourteen of the 22, though, were presidents before the Civil War, so the state legislature has been a much less frequent pathway in more recent times.)
- George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe (The sixth of the first six, John Quincy Adams, served in the Massachusetts state legislature, not the colonial legislature.)
- Martin Van Buren, Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Delano Roosevelt from New York, James Polk and Andrew Johnson from Tennessee, Jimmy Carter from Georgia, Calvin Coolidge from Massachusetts and John Tyler from Virginia
- Theodore Roosevelt, Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Jimmy Carter
If you got all five right, you get the Millard Fillmore Award for Obscure Political Knowledge.