How many U.S. presidents have been to Duluth? Well, we don’t know for sure, but the best answer available seems to be “at least a dozen.” As far as we know at Perfect Duluth Day, no one has ever compiled a list before. There was, however, a fairly detailed exchange of info in the 2011 post “How many U.S. presidents visited Duluth?”
Combining that info with more recent discoveries, below is the best available information. History nerds can feel free to add more info.
Donald J. Trump
June 20, 2018
President Trump held a rally at Amsoil Arena to speak about the U.S. economy and support Minnesota Eighth District Congressional candidate Pete Stauber. Trump had previously held a rally in Superior while campaigning for president in 2016.
George W. Bush
July 13, 2004
Campaigning for reelection, President Bush spoke to about 8,000 supporters at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center Arena with the slogan “America: Safer, Stronger, Better.”
George W. Bush
Nov. 1, 2000
Prior to his presidency, Bush campaigned in front of nearly 10,000 people at the DECC Arena.
William J. Clinton
Nov. 4, 1994
President Clinton spoke at UMD’s Romano Gym during a stop in Duluth to support Ann Wynia, Minnesota’s DFL candidate for U.S. Senate. Clinton stayed at the Holiday Inn downtown, which is why rooms 1609 and 1610 are called the Presidential Suite now. The president also went for a jog on Skyline Parkway.
James E. Carter
Nov. 3, 1978
President Carter spoke in the Duluth Auditorium during the Democratic Party’s Unity Rally.
John F. Kennedy
Sept. 25, 1963
President Kennedy spoke about conserving natural resources to a crowd of about 5,000 at UMD’s Physical Education Building, now called Romano Gym.
Richard M. Nixon
Sept. 22, 1954
Prior to his presidency, but as vice president under Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon spoke in the Denfeld Auditorium on the topic “Against Socialism, for Capitalism: the Seriousness of the Communist Threat.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Oct. 4, 1952
While campaigning for the presidency, Dwight Eisenhower spoke to a crowd of about 4,000 at the Duluth Civic Center.
Harry S. Truman
Oct. 13, 1948
While campaigning for reelection, President Truman visited the Duluth Armory.
Aug. 20, 1928
President Coolidge used Superior Central School as a summer White House from mid-June through August of 1928. On his visit to Duluth his motorcade crossed the Arrowhead Bridge, passed through West Duluth on Grand Avenue on the way downtown, then proceeded along Skyline Parkway.
While campaigning for the presidency, Herbert Hoover passed through Duluth on a Western driving tour.
William H. Taft
Feb. 9, 1920
Following his presidency, William Taft spoke at Duluth’s First Methodist Church.
William H. Taft
April 24, 1916
Following his presidency, Taft had dinner at the home of Thomas Wood in Duluth.
Oct. 13, 1899
President McKinley was the first sitting president to visit Duluth. He spoke in front of Duluth Central High School and also at the Duluth Boat Club. McKinley is also said to have visited Duluth twice before his presidency, dates unknown.
Ulysses S. Grant
Sept. 17, 1883
Following his presidency, Ulysses Grant and his party traversed Duluth by carriage, toured the harbor on the tug Eliza Williams, and visited Superior.
Rutherford B. Hayes
Prior to his presidency, Hayes financed construction of the Hayes Block in Duluth in 1870. It still exists as part of what is now called the Wieland Block. Hayes is thought to have visited Duluth after his presidency, and perhaps before, though the dates are unknown.
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