Saturday, February 23, 2008

Presidential Pets

President William Taft brought a growing family into the White House and with them came a Holstein Cow named Pauline Wayne. Besides providing for the practical dairy needs of the presidential family—Pauline produced about 16 gallons of milk a day—she was also considered a pet. Pauline was given free range of the White House lawn and there are a number of pictures of her peacefully grazing there.

When William Taft gratefully left the presidency, Pauline also went into retirement. Her final home was the Wisconsin farm of Senator Isaac Stephenson. She did have one last moment in the headlines when she was featured at the International Dairy Show in 1911. Her milk was sold to souvenir hunters for $0.50 /small bottle. The net result was $80/day for President Taft. Pauline was the last presidential cow to live at the White House. Below is a picture of Pauline in front of the then Navy building, now known as the Eisenhower Executive Office building.

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

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