Military Firsts

The presidential firsts related to military service by the President of the United States.

Please visit the Military Service fact page to learn more about in which branches the presidents served.

 PresidentNote
First president to have served in the ArmyGeorge Washington
First president to have served in the NavyJohn F. Kennedy
First president to have served in the Air ForceGeorge W. BushAir National Guard
First president to command a standing armyGeorge WashingtonWhiskey Rebellion
Fisrt president to serve as a war-time commander-in-chiefJames MadisonWar of 1812
First president to serve in the Civil WarUlysses S. Grant
First president to serve in World War IHarry S. Truman
First president to serve in World War IIDwight D. Eisenhower
First president to serve and not become an officerJames Buchanan
First president to have never served in the militaryJohn Adams

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