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The US Presidents knighted by The Queen and King George VI

Her Majesty The Queen has met all but one of the US Presidents during her reign. In total, the Queen has reigned during the tenure of President Harry Truman to the current leader, President Donald Trump. In total, 11 of the 12 presidents of the United States who have taken office during The Queen’s reign have met her.

Her Majesty has honoured two US presidents with honorary knighthoods (and her father one) as members of the Order of the Bath which was founded by King George I in 1725. It is the fourth most senior order of the British Orders of Chivalry.

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There have been three US leaders to be bestowed the honour; they are President Dwight D. Eisenhower, President George H.W. Bush and of course, President Ronald Reagan who had a very close relationship with The Queen.

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President Dwight D. Eisenhower, or Ike as he was commonly called, served from 1953 through 1961 as the 34th President of the United States. He was also the first president to meet Her Majesty after she had become queen. In October 1957, Elizabeth II travelled to the United States on an official visit and her first as Queen, where President Eisenhower and First Lady Mamie Eisenhower hosted her and the Duke of Edinburgh for four days at the White House.

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President Dwight D. Eisenhower was made a Most Honourable Order of the Bath, Knight Grand Cross (G.C.B.) on 12 June 1943. He was also given the Order of Merit on 12 June 1945. Both honours were presented to Ike by The Queen’s father, King George VI.

These were two of the many foreign orders and honours that the then General Eisenhower was presented due to his service in the Second World War as a Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces.

President Ronald Reagan was known to have an excellent relationship with Queen Elizabeth and met her a couple of times. The 40th President of the United States was a guest at Windsor Castle in 1982, where the Reagans shared a formal dinner with Her Majesty and Prince Philip. Queen Elizabeth visited President Reagan at his ranch in California in 1983. The pair shared a strong love of horses and were pictured riding together at Windsor.

President Reagan was presented his knighthood on 15 June 1989 at Buckingham Palace, and the President said afterwards, “I feel greatly honoured.”

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In 1989, President George H. W. Bush was inaugurated as the 41st President of the United States. He had lunch at Buckingham Palace with The Queen in 1989, and she travelled to America in 1991, where she was the guest of honour at a state dinner.

The last President of the United States to receive the honour was President George H.W. Bush. He was presented with it in 1993 after he had left office.

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Bush and Reagan were given the Order of the Bath from the civil division while Ike was given it as part of the military division as a result of his role as a general during the Second World War.

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