5. President Coolidge Officially Opened the Tunnel From a Yacht

Calvin CoolidgePresident Calvin Coolidge. Image from Library of Congress/Wikimedia Commons

From his Mayflower yacht in the Potomac River, President Calvin Coolidge opened the tunnel from a distance at 4:55 pm on November 13, 1927. He turned a gold telegraph key (these keys used to send Morse code) which moved two American flags apart at the entrance of the Holland Tunnel. This same key, operated by President Woodrow Wilson, detonated the last blast in the construction of the Panama Canal as well.

United States Presidents were often remotely involved in the opening ceremonies of important construction during this era. In 1913, President Herbert Hoover turned on the lights to the Woolworth Building from his desk in Washington D.C.