Dept. of Surprising Facts

Buried in this “list of things” story at the Houston Press is staggering notion that John Tyler, the 10th President of the United States and a man born in 1790, has two living grandchildren today, in 2011.

  • Lyon Tyler, Jr , born in 1924, and
  • Harrison Ruffin Tyler, born in 1928, who maintains President Tyler’s home in Virginia.

This is, of course, only possible because President Tyler had many children between two wives; his oldest schild was born in 1815, but his youngest wasn’t born until 1860. The surviving grandchildren are sons of Lyon Gardiner Tyler, his fifth child from his second wife. Lyon Sr. was born in 1853 — when Tyler the elder was about 63.

Further, Lyon Sr. had these surviving sons quite late as well: he was about 71 and 73 for their arrivals. But that’s the kind of age spread you need to have living people with grandfathers born during the Washington Administration.


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