Every four years, Washington, D.C., is home to the historic presidential inauguration and ceremonies. This quadrennial celebration of democracy draws hundreds of thousands of participants and on-lookers to the nation’s capital. The United States presidential inauguration and ceremonies mark the beginning of a new four-year term of president. Past presidents were traditionally sworn in on March 4th, however upon the passing of the 20th Amendment in 1933, the date forever changed to January 20th.
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
—Presidential Oath of Office, Article II, Section 1, United States Constitution
• Since 1977, the outgoing president and first lady have left the Capitol grounds by helicopter (weather permitting) following the swearing-in ceremony.
• The inaugural platform is constructed entirely of lumber, in order to preserve the marble surfaces of the Capitol.
• Thomas Jefferson was the first president to be inaugurated in Washington, D.C.