Recreation As president, Wilson golfed regularly for exercise on the advice of his doctor but took little pleasure in the game he defined as "an ineffectual attempt to put an elusive ball into an obscure hole with implements ill-adapted for the purpose.(So true, for any of you that have ever attempted to golf) His average for 18 holes was 115 strokes. He also took up horseback riding as president. On weekends he occasionally cruised the Chesapeake Bay aboard the presidential yacht Mayflower . He enjoyed the theater, especially vaudeville and musical comedies. A gifted mimic, he delighted in telling dialect jokes in English, Irish, Scottish, and black accents or imitating a drunk. With his daughters, he liked to sing or play billiards. He was fond of the poetry of Shelly, Keats, Tennyson, and Browning, the novels of Jane Austen and Sir Walter Scott. Marriage Woodrow Wilson, 28, married Ellen Louise Axson, 25, on June 24, 1885. Axson met Wilson in April of 1883 at the home of his cousin in Rome, Georgia. They were engaged 5 months later but postponed the wedding while he did postgraduate work at Johns Hopkins and she nursed her ailing father. As First Lady Mrs. Wilson painted and drew sketches in a studio set up on the third floor of the White House, donating much of her work to charity. She lobbied Congress to fund slum clearance in Washington D.C. Mrs. Wilson died of Bright's disease at the White House on August 6, 1914, and was buried with her parents in Rome, Georgia. President Wilson was so devastated at her loss that he confided to aide E.M. House that he hoped to be assassinated. President Woodrow Wilson, 58, then married Mrs. Edith Galt, 43, a widow, on December 18, 1915. Edith was a great-granddaughter of Pocahontas. She married Norman Galt, a Washington D.C. jeweler in 1896, he died in 1908. In March 1915 she was introduced to President Wilson at the White House by Helen Bones, the president's cousin and official White House hostess since the death of Mrs. Wilson. Woodrow invited her to stay for tea and instantly took a liking to the attractive, intelligent widow. The president proposed in May, she consented in July, but the engagement remained secret until October. As news of the courtship became public, there followed much malicious gossip of the president's lack of respect for the memory of his first wife and even rumors that he and Mrs. Galt had murdered the First Lady. A typographical error in a Washington Post article drew snickers. "The president spent much of the evening entering (should be Entertaining) Mrs. Galt," said the report of one of their evenings out together. Post editors frantically recalled the edition from newsstands but not before some hit the streets. Distressed at the effect all this might be having on his fiance, Wilson offered Mrs. Galt the opportunity to back out of their engagement. She spurned the offer, replying that she would stand by him not for duty, pity, or honor, but for love. As First Lady during World War I, Mrs. Wilson observed gasless
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- Fall '06