Jefferson's First Inauguration,
March 4, 1801
Sheet Music, March 4, 1801
Manuscript Division (4.9)
Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States, was
the first to be inaugurated in the capital city of Washington,
D.C. The ceremonies took place on March 4, 1801, in the Senate
wing of the not yet finished Capitol building. Chief Justice John
Marshall administered the oath of office to Jefferson, the first
of five presidents-elect he would induct. In his speech Jefferson
attempted to assuage the bitter rivalry between the Federalist
and Republicans that had culminated in a deadlock election broken
by Congress's election of Jefferson on the 36th ballot.
Jefferson remarked: "but every difference of opinion is not a
difference of principle. We have called by different names brethren
of the same principles. We are all Republicans. We are all Federalists."
Jefferson's sentiments notwithstanding, his predecessor, former
president John Adams, did not attend the ceremony -- the first
president to do so.