129 Facts About Florence Kling


Florence Kling was born Florence Mabel Kling above her father's hardware store at 126 South Main Street in Marion, Ohio, on August 15,1860.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,714

Florence Kling's younger brothers were Clifford, born in 1861, and Vetallis, born in 1864.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,715

Florence Kling attended school at Union School beginning in 1866 and studied the classics.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,716

Florence Kling developed a passion for horses early in life and participated in several horse races.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,717

Florence Kling's father trained her in several business skills such as banking, real estate, and farm management.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,718

On return trips to Marion, Florence Kling often clashed with her father, who would whip her with a cherry switch.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,719

Florence Kling gave birth to her only child, Marshall Eugene, on September 22,1880.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,720

Florence Kling's husband worked in a warehouse but alcoholism led him to abandon the family on December 31,1882.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,721

Florence Kling moved in with her friend Carrie Wallace while her mother Louisa financially supported the mother and child.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,722

Florence Kling became a piano teacher to provide extra income and enjoyed skating at night.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,723

Florence Kling's estranged husband had attempted to rob a train in 1885, and the pair were divorced in 1886.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,724

Florence Kling was five years younger than she was, and his sister Charity was a student of Florence's.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,725

Florence Kling repeated a rumor that Harding had Black ancestry and threatened to shoot the young man at the courthouse.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,726

When her husband entered the Battle Creek Sanitarium for depression in January 1894, Florence Kling became the informal business manager of the Marion Star although she never had any official role, immediately demonstrating both the talent and the character to run a newspaper.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,727

Florence Kling organized a circulation department, improved distribution, trained the newsboys, and purchased equipment at keen prices.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,728

Florence Kling's newsboys became known as "Mrs Harding's boys" throughout the town, and she alternatively gave out awards for achievement and doled out physical punishment.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,729

Florence Kling hired the first woman reporter in Ohio, Jane Dixon, and supported her when there was a backlash from the people of Marion.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,730

Florence Kling knew about the machinery of the newspaper plant and how to fix it.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,731

Florence Kling encouraged her husband in his first political run for the state senate in 1899.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,732

Florence Kling managed the finances and fended off unsurprising objections from her father, who enlisted Mark Hanna for help, though Warren was ultimately elected.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,733

Florence Kling observed the legislature from the balcony and frequently made trips to newspaper offices to win her husband's good coverage and observe their operations.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,734

Florence Kling began her custom of consulting with an astrologer during this first stint in Columbus.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,735

In February 1905, Florence needed emergency surgery for nephroptosis and was initially treated by a homoeopathic doctor Charles E Sawyer.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,736

Florence Kling did not find out until she intercepted a letter between the two in 1911, which led her to consider divorce, though she never pursued it.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,737

Florence Kling tried to discourage the affairs by sticking by her husband's side at all times.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,738

Florence Kling never spoke to Carrie Phillips again, and only acknowledged her in bitter attacks.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,739

Florence Kling continued to be treated by Dr Sawyer at his new White Oaks Sanitarium for various ailments and deepened her study of astrology.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,740

Florence Kling gave her husband advice on his political chances, discouraging a run for governor in 1912.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,741

Florence Kling had her own health problems, suffering a serious kidney attack in the winter of 1913 and went to live at the White Oaks Sanitarium.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,742

Florence Kling made a trip to Colorado later in the year to pay his debts and ended up becoming friends with some of his associates and wife Esther.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,743

Florence Kling helped her husband with his correspondence and invited press attention.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,744

Florence Kling became active in animal rights and joined the Animal Rescue League, Humane Society, and ASPCA.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,745

Florence Kling spoke out against animal cruelty and gave freely of its literature to friends.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,746

Florence Kling did not like automobiles, but relented when making frequent trips back to Marion.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,747

In Washington DC, Florence Kling struck up a fast and lasting friendship with the mining heiress and socialite Evalyn Walsh McLean, frequently playing bridge and visiting movie theaters.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,748

Florence Kling helped Ohio women who moved to Washington, DC for jobs find housing, and helped Lou Hoover set up dining and recreation spaces for the female workers.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,749

Florence Kling frequently visited nurseries and daycare centers to assist mothers who had to work during the day.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,750

Florence Kling volunteered at the Walter Reed Hospital, and found a sense of satisfaction in this work missing from her heretofore existence.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,751

Florence Kling worked with other Senate wives to create a Red Cross Unit and produce clothing for soldiers on the battlefield.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,752

Florence Kling found out about this fact, perhaps being told by her husband, and reacted with rage.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,753

Florence Kling approached her and got into a heated argument, publicly rebuking her in front of many onlookers.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,754

Florence Kling was treated by Dr Sawyer's son Carl, who had been stationed at Camp Meade.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,755

Florence Kling gave him tentative support, apparently influenced by a Washington clairvoyant 'Madame Marcia' Champrey, who correctly forecast that Warren would become president, but added that he would die in office.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,756

Florence Kling took a more active role at the Republican convention than most candidates wives and curried favor with journalists, who liked to record her often colorful remarks.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,757

Florence Kling lobbied delegates to consider her husband after the convention became deadlocked, and he eventually became the nominee.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,758

Warren largely conducted a front porch campaign, and Florence Kling had control of whom her husband met inside the house.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,759

Florence Kling was very precise with her appointments for her husband and telephoned campaign managers if he was late.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,760

Florence Kling set off a waffle craze after The New York Times reported her eating a waffle at breakfast, and guests asked to be served it during their visit.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,761

Florence Kling accepted, provided her friend Evalyn, who was previously very critical of the Wilsons, was invited as well.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,762

On March 4,1921, Florence Kling Harding became first lady, immediately taking an active role in national politics, at times even appearing to dominate the President.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,763

Florence Kling had a strong influence on the selection of cabinet members, in particular favoring Charles R Forbes as director of the Veterans Bureau and Andrew Mellon as treasury secretary.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,764

Florence Kling approved of the selection of Charles Evans Hughes as secretary of state though privately thought Elihu Root would be a better pick.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,765

Florence Kling ensured that everyone who worked for the campaign in Marion was invited to the inauguration, and asked a woman that fainted in the crowds be helped.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,766

Florence Kling told a senator that she was aiming to become the most successful first lady in history.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,767

Florence Kling read mail after breakfast and wrote invitations for social events.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,768

Florence Kling was the first first lady to send original responses to the many letters received.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,769

Florence Kling carried small bouquets of blue-violet flowers to complement her blue eyes.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,770

Florence Kling relished in her role as White House tour guide, learning about the history of the property from books and displaying a portrait of Sarah Yorke Jackson.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,771

Florence Kling became the first first lady since Frances Cleveland whose face was so recognizable to the public, as she frequently appeared in newsreel footage alongside Warren unveiling statues, attending baseball games, and dedicating the Lincoln Memorial.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,772

Florence Kling became the first first lady to appear in movies with her signature wave to crowds.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,773

Florence Kling became known for her opposition to smoking after a photographer captured her holding down the arm of Helen Pratt, who was smoking a cigarette.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,774

Florence Kling worked to protect the image of herself and Warren, concealing his drinking, womanizing, and corruption in the cabinet.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,775

Florence Kling insisted on being beside him and once told him to get back to work when he was golfing.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,776

Florence Kling was concerned as to her husband's personal safety, partially because of Madame Marcia's prediction of his early demise.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,777

Florence Kling relied on astrology to determine Warren's personal schedule, a fact that became known to many in his inner circle.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,778

Florence Kling feared his susceptibility to blackmail since the Carrie Phillips debacle.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,779

Several other women received money from the President, and Florence Kling employed Gaston Means to spy on Nan Britton to steal her love letters.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,780

Trip to Alaska which Florence Kling eagerly anticipated was planned for the summer of 1921 but had to be postponed in lieu of the work obligations.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,781

Florence Kling developed a thrill for fast driving, nearly having an accident at fifty miles an hour when her car veered toward a telephone pole.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,782

Florence Kling was an avid theatergoer, particularly comedies and musicals.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,783

Florence Kling made her views known on everything from the League of Nations to animal rights, racism, and women's rights.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,784

Florence Kling supported the victims of the Armenian genocide and personally funded a child survivor with monthly checks.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,785

Florence Kling was willing to forgo a meal and donate to the Chinese Famine fund, but was critical of American support to aid relief of the 1921 Soviet famine, arguing that Russia should have given up communism before accepting American food and medicine.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,786

Florence Kling opposed vivisection in a public letter and supported the Humane Education Society, though she continued to eat meat.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,787

Since World War I had left many men disfigured and ill, Florence Kling went out of her way to care for the patients at Walter Reed Hospital, seeking to improve ward life.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,788

Florence Kling's efforts led to women's group funding projects at veterans wards which the federal government failed to do.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,789

Florence Kling lifted the informal ban on "unacceptable women" instituted under Theodore Roosevelt.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,790

Florence Kling sparked a small furor by inviting the National Council of Catholic Women to the White House, as liberals disdained their anti-birth control efforts.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,791

Florence Kling hosted a tennis match between Marion Jessup and Molla Mallory.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,792

When Madame Curie visited the White House, Florence Kling praised her as an example of a professional achiever and excellent scientist who was a supportive wife.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,793

Florence Kling accepted an inscribed book from the Curies, breaking her informal rule against autographs.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,794

Florence Kling raised public awareness of women who managed household finance.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,795

Florence Kling stated that married women should know something about their husband's work.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,796

Florence Kling agreed to sign on to a pledge to reduce the consumption of sugar when its price became exorbitant.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,797

Florence Kling became the president of the Southern Industrial Association, an informal role in an organization that provided education for mountain women.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,798

Florence Kling personally helped a man get a job at a factory after his wife wrote asking for help.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,799

Florence Kling sought to make herself available to the press, a stark contrast with her predecessor Edith Wilson who denied press access.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,800

Florence Kling had more press interviews than all the First Ladies before her combined.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,801

Florence Kling enjoyed talking to journalists she liked, such as Kate Forbes and Jane Dixon.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,802

Florence Kling referred to female reporters as "us girls", owing to her history in running the Marion Star.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,803

In public, Florence Kling always bragged about the President and his accomplishments.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,804

Florence Kling kept up on the latest political news and knew the details of government better than almost any woman of her era.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,805

Florence Kling sometimes argued with him over the content of his speeches, occasionally shaking a finger at him if she was upset.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,806

Florence Kling even had a hand in selecting minor public officials, particularly postmasters.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,807

Florence Kling's authority was respected by politicians from all levels of governance.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,808

When she wanted information on someone, Florence Kling used unconventional methods particularly on Herbert Hoover, whom she disliked.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,809

Florence Kling informed Senator Hiram Johnson that his Democratic challenger was a stooge for Hoover, which caused Johnson to send election information to her via Evalyn McLean.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,810

Florence Kling scheduled private citizens to meet with him, and in return, he always complied with her requests.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,811

Florence Kling requested that Daugherty commute a death sentence in Alabama, but he replied that the Justice Department had no jurisdiction in the case.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,812

Florence Kling's authority received some ribbing from Life magazine, which depicted "The Chief Executive and Mr Harding" in a 1922 cartoon.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,813

Florence Kling pressured her husband to rescind an appointment of Helen Dortch Longstreet to a political position since she favored rule by white men only.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,814

In terms of international affairs, Florence Kling was not as active, although she did participate in the International Conference on the Limitation of Armaments from November 1921 to February 1922.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,815

Florence Kling considered her role important in bringing together the various nations in a common understanding.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,816

Florence Kling took part in the burial of "Buddy" in the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, reflecting her longstanding interest in veterans' affairs.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,817

Florence Kling insisted her family spend Christmas 1921 with the McLeans after hearing about a bomb threat against Warren.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,818

In May 1922, Florence Kling met and became close to a naval doctor, Joel Thompson Boone, who relished his presidential posting.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,819

Florence Kling greeted Nan Britton during the festivities, unaware she was carrying on an affair with her husband.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,820

Florence Kling followed the events of the strikes closely, while Warren drank excessively to deal with the anxiety it brought about in him.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,821

Florence Kling instructed her Secret Service agent Harry Barker to keep tabs on her husband, especially if she happened to be away from him.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,822

News of Florence Kling's illness sparked an outpouring of support throughout the country.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,823

Florence Kling eventually gave the option to Florence, who was now lucid and did not favor surgery.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,824

Florence Kling insisted she would not die because her husband needed her.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,825

Florence Kling was informed of Republican losses the day after the midterm elections and was incredulous that several Senators had lost.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,826

Florence Kling continued to keep tabs on who was entering and exiting the White House, which prompted Warren to use the Friendship estate for his rendezvous with Nan Britton.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,827

Florence Kling had a session with psychologist Emile Coue to deal with the frustration during her convalescence after being impressed with his writings.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,828

Florence Kling declared, "this illness has been a blessing, " since it drew the two closer together.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,829

Florence Kling placed her complete trust in Dr Sawyer, whom Warren believed had brought her back to life.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,830

Florence Kling was responsible for making sure he did not undertake much work during his illness, once sending away an aide who handed the President some papers to review, and brought Warren to bed.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,831

Florence Kling felt personally betrayed by Forbes and wanted him dismissed at once.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,832

Florence Kling eventually persuaded her husband to fire him, after throttling Forbes by the neck.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,833

Florence Kling's treachery caused Florence to call in Madame Marcia to see who else of her husband's associates might be treacherous.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,834

Florence Kling enjoyed her stay in Miami, with the city using the Presidential visit as a selling point for developers.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,835

In interviews with reporters, Florence Kling indicated that she wanted to get back to doing things due to her return to health.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,836

Florence Kling became aware of Harding associate Jess Smith's illegal efforts, which was only confirmed during a session with Madame Marcia.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,837

Florence Kling distanced herself from Evalyn somewhat, not visiting her house though she did send flowers and notes.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,838

Florence Kling was the first first lady to vote, operate a movie camera, own a radio, or invite movie stars to the White House.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,839

Florence Kling proved highly popular at their many scheduled stops, but Warren was visibly ailing.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,840

Florence Kling had intended to make a new life in Washington and was planning a tour of Europe.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,841

Until the completion of the Harding Tomb, Florence Kling's body lay with that of her husband in the common receiving vault at Marion's city cemetery.

FactSnippet No. 2,516,842