Why Police Arrested President Ulysses S. Grant in 1872

With former President Donald Trump’s recent social media post that he is anticipating his arrest on Tuesday, you might be wondering if any other commander-in-chief has ever run afoul of the law and been arrested for it.

Yes, it turns out. William Henry West of the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department apprehended sitting President Ulysses S. Grant in 1872 for speeding in his horse and buggy. No, we’re not kidding.

Grant’s reckless “driving” is the only recorded instance of a sitting or former U.S. president being placed under arrest.

Ulysses S. Grant’s Need for Speed

John Marszalek, the executive director of the Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library, said in a 2018 interview with NPR that Grant—born April 27, 1822, in Point Pleasant, Ohio—loved to race horses during the early part of his life.

According to the Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site in St. Louis, Grant had a…

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