Electric toothbrush stamped with the Presidential seal

[LBJ Library photo by Ruth Goerger]

This week's artifact is an electric toothbrush set stamped with the Presidential Seal. (1973.8831.1)  LBJ kept “give-away” items in the Oval Office and often gave out sets like this. Rumor has it that Doris Kearns Goodwin amassed 5 during her tenure as a White House intern, and finally asked LBJ, “Why toothbrushes?”  LBJ said, “I want people to think of me right away when they wake up and right before they go to bed.” 

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Then & Now

Did You Know…

While an electric toothbrush may seem a strange gift, in 1961 it was the newest gadget on the market, which appealed to LBJ. The first rechargeable electric toothbrush sold in the United States was introduced as the "Automatic Toothbrush" by General Electric in 1961. 

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