William Howard TAFT

Family tree of William Howard TAFT

Head of state

AmericanBorn William Howard TAFT

27th President of the United States

Born on September 15, 1857 in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA , United States

Died on March 08, 1930 in Washington, D.C., USA

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William Howard Taft was born near Cincinnati, Ohio, the son of Louisa Torrey and Alphonso Taft. His paternal grandfather was Peter Rawson Taft, a descendant of Robert Taft I, the first Taft in America, who settled in Colonial Massachusetts. Alphonso Taft went to Cincinnati in 1839 to open a law practice, and was a prominent Republican who served as Secretary of War and Attorney General under President Ulysses S. Grant.

Young William attended Cincinnati's First Congregational-Unitarian Church with his parents; he joined the congregation at an early age and was an enthusiastic participant. As he rose in the government, he spent little time in Cincinnati. He attended the church much less frequently than he had but worshiped there when he could.


Taft attended Woodward High School in Cincinnati, and laid the cornerstone of the new Woodward High School, now the site of the School for Creative and Performing Arts (SCPA). Like others in his family, he attended Yale College in New Haven, Connecticut. At Yale, he was a member of the Linonian Society, a literary and debating society; Skull and Bones, the secret society co-founded by his father in 1832; and the Beta chapter of the Psi Upsilon fraternity. He was given the nickname "Big Lub" because of his size, but his college friends knew him by the nickname "Old Bill". Taft received comments, sometimes humorous, about his weight. Making positive use of his stature, Taft was Yale's intramural heavyweight wrestling champion. In 1878, Taft graduated, ranking second in his class out of 121. After college, he attended Cincinnati Law School, graduating with a Bachelor of Laws in 1880. While in law school, he worked on the area newspaper The Cincinnati Commercial.

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Geographical origins

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