Barack Obama’s inauguration bound to be raucous. People are streaming in from around the country, and CNN reports that a single ticket is selling for as much as $20,095. Craigslist has a bevy of requests to sell, buy, or trade inaugural tickets, and some of the requests seem suspiciously amorous.
No matter how wild the Obama inauguration proves to be, attendants will be hard pressed to live up to the standards set by Andrew Jackson 180 years ago. According to the Smart Set, drunken supporters stormed the White House during Jackson’s inauguration, partying and destroying china and upholstery. Jackson was nearly crushed by the throngs of unruly well-wishers.
One eyewitness described the scene as, “a rabble, a mob, of boys, negros, women, children, scrambling, fighting, romping… Ladies fainted, men were seen with bloody noses, and such a scene of confusion as is impossible to describe.” Eventually, according to the Smart Set, the chaos was diffused when “servants struck upon the idea of passing barrels of liquor and ice cream out the window in order to get the revelers out onto the lawn, where they could do less damage. It worked.”