5 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Barack Obama

On November 4, 2008, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois defeated Senator John McCain of Arizona to become the 44th U.S. president, and the first African American elected to the White House. Here are 5 things you didn't know about the 44th President of the United States...


Illinois Celebrates His Birthday On August 4, 2017, Governor Bruce Rauner of Illinois signed a bill into law that declared a new state holiday. The law designated August 4th as “Barack Obama Day,” which happens to be the former president’s birthday. The yearly celebration went into effect in 2018.

The Former President Carries Good Luck Charms Obama said he began carrying mementos when he began his campaign for president because people would give him keepsakes or charms that were important to them. Although he says he has a bowl full of these mementos, he obviously can’t carry them all, so he takes along a few each day as a reminder of people he’s met over the years. Some items he carries can include rosary beads that were a gift from Pope Francis, a small Buddha that was a gift from a monk, a lucky poker chip a biker gave him, and a Coptic cross from Ethiopia.


He Shares Something Unusual With FDR Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected as president of the United States four times, so, of course, he had to take the oath of office each time. Obama took the oath of office four times as well, the first because Justice Roberts made several errors, and the president had to take the oath again the following day. The third and fourth times, the date for the swearing-in fell on a Sunday, so he took the oath privately on Sunday and then again on Monday for the public ceremony.

Obama is a Big Fan of Comic Books Obama is a long-time aficionado of comic books, especially Marvel Comics. He is reportedly fond of Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian especially. When the creators of Marvel Comics found out, they put Obama on The Amazing Spider-Man cover, which sold out in minutes, as well as the other four special editions with Obama on the cover.

Obama Has Won Two Grammys Obama won two Grammys for “Dreams from My Father” and “The Audacity of Hope,” which came out as books and audiobooks. He won the Grammys as Best Spoken Word Album in both cases. The books themselves have sold around 4.7 million copies in the print versions.