Ida McKinley

Let’s talk love for a minute.

This is Ida Saxton McKinley, wife of President McKinley. After her children and mother passed away, Ida began to suffer from epilepsy. She would have seizures in public, once even at her husband’s inaugural ball as Governor of Ohio.

But her husband was deeply devoted and loving to his wife. He changed traditions so that he could better care for his wife. One for example was making sure that she would sit with him during State dinners as opposed to them sitting on opposite ends of the table. This way, if she’d suffer a seizure, he would patiently cover her face with a napkin or handkerchief until the seizure passed.

As one man noted, “President McKinley has made it pretty hard for the rest of us husbands here in Washington.”

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