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The egg roll holds such an important place in White House history that no president wants to be known for canceling it. World War I and food rationing stopped the event from 1917 to 1920. In 1942, egg rollers were sent back to the Capitol grounds, the place from which they had been ousted 64 years before. World War II then completely stopped the festivities from 1943 to 1945.

President Harry Truman did not host an egg roll. During 1946 and 1947, food conservation efforts caused him to reluctantly cancel the affair. Then from 1948 through 1952, his renovation of the White House made the South Lawn a construction zone. President Dwight D. Eisenhower revived the tradition after its twelve-year hiatus, but a string of his successors could not be at the White House on Easter Monday to greet their egg roll visitors. President Gerald Ford reinstated the presidential appearance in 1976—the first since Eisenhower had acted as host in 1960.

The Washington Times, April 1, 1918


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