A penny saved…Coolidge thrift in the White House

TIME Magazine reported in its issue of Mar. 2, 1925 that Coolidge practiced the thrift he preached. While some of the orders may seem somewhat petty, I do wonder what Coolidge would think of the truly imperial and bloated White House organization of today. No doubt he would find plenty of room for cutting waste and extravagance:

The press headlined “Coolidge Feels Saving Lash,” “Coolidge is Victim of Own Thrift,” etc. apropos of the fact that the President has had the White House budget reduced by $12,500. Incidents of the retrenchment: replacement of paper drinking cups by old-fashioned glasses; no free pencils for newspaper correspondents; reduction of the number of towels placed daily in White House office lavatories from 175 to 88; orders that all lights be turned out promptly when not needed; repeated use of manila envelopes for documents to be carried from one department to another; rationing, by weight, of food in the White House kitchen; replacement of a torn White House flag by a new one, with the understanding that the torn one be mended and used elsewhere. When the President turned in a dull eraser, the stockroom returned it with the comment that no new ones had been provided.

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