Andy Osterdahl

Member for
6 years · 1 month · 25 days
Find A Grave ID
Home Page


What to say...I spend far to much time occupying myself with goofy history based projects that most would consider eccentric....and then some. If I had to describe myself in one sentence, it would be "A purveyor of the historically obscure and the factually trivial." That pretty much sums it up! Also be sure to visit my Facebook page as well as the Strangest Names In American Political History Facebook page for even more needless information!!

The above caption is a small bio that appears on my blog/website called "The Strangest Names In American Political History". The title of the primary work that the blog is based upon is called by the same title. The written project highlights various American politicians, jurists and candidates with strange, odd, unusual and sometimes humorous names. The time frame consists of the colonial era to the present day. This project was started on December 31, 1999 by myself and my cousin and has since expanded to lengths we couldn't have possibly imagined.

This project/blog allows only American political figures to be added, and while the exact definition of strange or unusual will consistently be in flux, the aforementioned rule will not be. Biographies of the men and women in question will be added here with some regularity, and a picture will usually accompany the biography, as its always nice to have a face to place with the name.
The purpose of this blog is mainly to point out some of the silly named individuals that have held or ran for public office since the founding of our country. As an amateur historian, its something that I've been truly fascinated by for the majority of my life. For example, the current United States Congress is made up of 435 members of the House of Representatives and 100 Senators. Exactly two hundred years ago in 1811, the U.S. Congress was home to 36 Senators and 143 representatives. Amongst these 179 persons were men with such names as Harmanus Bleecker (a Representative from N.Y.), Epaphroditus Champion (a Representative from Connecticut), Barzillai Gannett (a Representative from Massachusetts), Outerbridge Horsey (a Senator from Delaware) and Arunah Metcalf (a Representative from New York) amongst others.

Overall, I find it fascinating that some of the aforementioned people were elected to public office with names like those. The primary aim of all this is to create yet another corner of internet silliness, albeit with a historical/political bent to it. Most of the politicians that will be profiled here are extremely unknown, and some are so obscure that maybe 1 in 1,000,000 people have heard of them. Any prospective readers/lurkers on the site are welcome to contribute comments or politicians that I might not know about, but as there are nearly 2200 politicians on the written list already, that might prove to be difficult!

And now on to why I'm here.....I established an account here a year or so ago under the name "aladdinsane85" and my contributions mainly centered on adding portraits and info on some of the men/women profiled in my project. Unfortunately for me my original account is no longer active (unforeseeable e-mail account problems) and it was deleted last year.
This being what I would call a "new" start, I must admit that I've managed to compile a substantial backlog of portraits/gravesite pictures taken over the last year or so and will try to add them with some regularity. I developed a keen interest in history (as well as cemeteries) at a fairly early age and many of the photos I've taken deal with local political/historical figures buried in the Chautauqua/Cattaraugus/Erie/Warren County areas. Most (if not all) of the gravestone pictures taken by me have also (or will eventually) appear on the aforementioned blog.
With all that being said, I greatly look forward to contributing here and who knows? I might make a few friends here as well!I'd also like to please ask (if you want to use any pictures/information from my site on Find-a-Grave)contact me and please list my site as the source! Thank you!

Also be sure to visit the site and its Facebook Page at the following links!


No Find A Grave members followed yet.

Search memorial contributions by Andy Osterdahl