The history of Inauguration Day throughout the years

Wednesday's Inauguration of President-Elect Joe Biden looked and felt different than years in the past, but some things weren't new.

Posted: Jan 20, 2021 8:04 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. - Inauguration Day and the events leading up to it will no doubt go in history books. Some people have never experienced a transition of power like this one and for others, it's nothing new.

If we take a look back at the dozens of Inaugurations throughout the years, no two look exactly the same. The Constitution states what date the Inauguration has to happen on and what oath the president is supposed to take. Everything else is based on tradition, meaning the president elect can start a new one. The day is essentially known as a celebration for Americans. This year though, they have a global pandemic to be cautious of and security is on high alert after the chaos that took place on January 6th. However, that was a similar sight in the 1860's after the Civil War.

Abby Currier from the History Center of Olmsted County explained even though the event will look different, we can learn from it and have a better understanding of what to do in the future. "It's important to remember that while we may disagree on different policy things, it's still important to know that we live in a Democracy and that there was an election, one person won and it's important to maintain that and maintain the transition of power," she said. "And make sure that's done peacefully."

The parade and the Inaugural Ball are two traditions that have stuck throughout the years. Because of the pandemic though, they went virtual. Currier said the meaning behind the celebrations haven't changed. "While there's a lot of new things, there's also several things we've seen before and we've lived through," she explained. "So just being able to gather together and really doing what's right and what's supposed to protect our Democracy is what's going to get us through it."

Inauguration Day used to be on March 4th. But as technology grew, it reduced the time needed to count all the votes, so they didn't need four months between Election Day and Inauguration Day. Then the 20th Amendment passed, moving Inauguration Day up and Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first president to be sworn in on the new date in 1937. The last U.S. President who refused to attend his successor's inauguration was Andrew Johnson, 152 years ago. Presidents Trump and Johnson also share something else as well, they are two of just three U.S. Presidents to be impeached.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 915942

Reported Deaths: 9606
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1786832038
Ramsey739711046
Dakota67683587
Anoka64112577
Washington40545359
Stearns33631279
St. Louis29591409
Scott25994186
Wright25957217
Olmsted22339130
Sherburne19000127
Carver1670669
Clay12104105
Blue Earth1147970
Rice11451138
Crow Wing11213123
Chisago995379
Kandiyohi9815108
Otter Tail9813127
Benton9033125
Beltrami816997
Goodhue811798
Douglas7875101
Itasca772299
Mower733449
McLeod713084
Winona710258
Isanti700783
Steele685731
Morrison672879
Becker628574
Polk603187
Freeborn561246
Carlton546974
Mille Lacs532479
Lyon528461
Nobles525054
Nicollet522460
Pine515043
Cass501253
Todd492843
Brown470759
Le Sueur459734
Meeker433458
Martin386544
Wabasha375510
Waseca374333
Dodge361112
Hubbard355249
Roseau316231
Fillmore305315
Wadena302940
Redwood281445
Houston272017
Renville268451
Faribault258233
Sibley252317
Pennington252130
Kanabec250136
Cottonwood230132
Aitkin222450
Chippewa220542
Pope207410
Watonwan198020
Yellow Medicine188023
Rock177729
Koochiching176725
Swift173123
Stevens167511
Jackson161016
Clearwater158020
Marshall153522
Murray151811
Pipestone149729
Lake132924
Lac qui Parle123025
Wilkin121116
Mahnomen106014
Norman10509
Grant101510
Big Stone9485
Lincoln8805
Kittson73223
Red Lake71410
Traverse6056
Unassigned545124
Lake of the Woods5265
Cook3071

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 525758

Reported Deaths: 7379
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk81677809
Linn32838430
Scott27126295
Black Hawk22334382
Woodbury20736263
Johnson20150108
Dubuque18996243
Pottawattamie16215214
Dallas15573115
Story1398059
Warren8637107
Cerro Gordo8141125
Clinton7928115
Webster7419124
Des Moines7153106
Marshall675494
Muscatine6717117
Wapello6546145
Jasper630591
Sioux622477
Lee5977106
Marion567697
Buena Vista503449
Plymouth493388
Henry427155
Benton414760
Jones413564
Bremer403873
Boone397042
Washington395464
Carroll373355
Mahaska372366
Crawford355647
Jackson324047
Dickinson317555
Buchanan312743
Delaware303255
Clay297636
Kossuth293477
Fayette290356
Hardin289253
Tama282878
Page276133
Wright270050
Cedar269527
Winneshiek267744
Hamilton262757
Floyd261049
Clayton252360
Poweshiek242043
Harrison240979
Madison237425
Butler237346
Cass235667
Iowa234336
Jefferson228544
Mills225330
Hancock222840
Winnebago222339
Cherokee217347
Appanoose210157
Lyon209842
Allamakee209456
Calhoun199519
Shelby199542
Union197141
Humboldt188231
Franklin188031
Grundy186137
Chickasaw184522
Mitchell184343
Emmet180146
Louisa178653
Sac175626
Guthrie169338
Clarke163629
Montgomery163146
Keokuk152639
Palo Alto152332
Howard150624
Monroe144340
Ida134141
Greene128818
Davis126825
Lucas126127
Monona124940
Worth12309
Pocahontas122125
Adair118239
Osceola105718
Decatur104813
Taylor100914
Fremont98913
Van Buren95922
Wayne86125
Ringgold78429
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Adams5869
Unassigned500
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