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Warren G.Harding (1865-1923) | Teapot Dome Scandal

Warren G.Harding (1865-1923) | Teapot Dome Scandal

Top 5 in Top 8 Shocking Presidential Scandals in American History

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Warren G. Harding and the Teapot Dome Scandal

  • 29th President of the United States
  • Term: 1921-1923
  • Scandals in 1922

Warren G. Harding - 29th US President (1921-1923) - is one of the presidents with the shortest tenure in American history with only 881 days in office. However, in just those 881 short days, this very handsome-looking leader made many mistakes, including one of the top 8 shocking presidential scandals in American history, the Teapot Dome Scandal.

What happened?

The story began with the fact that the 29th president of the United States - a man famous for his pleasant and sociable personality - despite all warnings, still trusted the appointment of his old friends, the people whom the newspaper at that time sarcastically called the "Ohio Gang" on the cabinet list and served as commanders in many key areas.

Among them, the most notable names are: Albert B. Fall was appointed to the position of Secretary of the Interior. Public opinion and the press at that time did not hesitate to mock that among the 27 million American men at that time, the 29th President chose the worst one. After that, Albert B. Fall persuaded Harding to transfer supervision of oil reserves from the Navy Department to the Interior Department. His scheme was to make his own money from leasing land to oil companies around the Elk Hills oil field in California and the Teapot Dome in Wyoming. When the incident was revealed, investigations showed that Albert B. Fall had received more than $400,000 in bribes. Secretary of the Interior Albert B. Fall had to resign and was convicted of corruption, becoming the first cabinet member in American history to go to prison. 

Consequences

First of all, The Teapot Dome scandal and the President severely damaged the public's trust in the government because top officials were doing secret deals. And of course, the reputation of the Harding administration also became disappointing in the public’s eye. Albert B. Fall, who was in charge of federal oil reserves, got caught taking bribes from oil companies. He was even sent to prison, which was a big deal because it was the first time a high-ranking government official went to jail for a crime like this.

Second, the scandal led to new rules and laws to make sure government deals were fair and open. These changes aimed to prevent more corruption and keep government officials honest. So, while the scandal was a dark moment in U.S. history, it also helped make the government more accountable to the people.


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Last updated: October 25, 2023

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