Throwback Thursday: When a President Was Born in Massachusetts

It’s George H.W. Bush’s 90th birthday.

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Ninety years ago today, in the second floor of an unassuming home on Adams Street in Milton, George H.W. Bush was born. His birthday gives us occasion once again to note that Bush is one of four presidents born in Massachusetts, or to be more specific, in Norfolk County. John Adams, John Quincy Adams, and John F. Kennedy are the other three.

Bush was born on the second floor of what the Boston Globe once called a “drab, sprawling, slate-roofed and gabled house [that] does not stand out among the stately homes on Milton Hill.” He was the second child of Prescott Bush, a businessman and future Senator for Connecticut who moved his family to Greenwich when George was still an infant. For that reason, of the presidents born here, he is probably the one least closely associated with the state. He returned for high school at Phillips Academy in Andover, but for the most part, we associate him with Texas, where he launched his own business and political careers, or Maine (a former Massachusetts colony, of course!) where he has long owned a family home.

Still, he is rightfully ours to claim. And claim him we have. In 1988, when Bush faced off with former Governor Michael Dukakis, the Boston Globe crowed that no matter the outcome, the next president of the United States would be one born in Norfolk County. (Dukakis is from Brookline.)

When Bush does hang out in New England, though, he is usually at the home in Kennebunkport, Maine, where in fact, he will celebrate his 90th this year. Happy birthday, Mr. President!