Presidents are either having more eventful presidencies or arriving to office with less meaningful/interesting life experience. I scraped every date from each president's wikipedia page (choosing to limit dates to within +/- 40 years of their first year in office and only looking at deceased presidents) to quantify where the 'historical record' places the meaningful life events of each president.
The graphic below shows the difference between the average date on each president's wikipedia page and their first year in office (the pinkish bars show the number of years they lived after their presidency. NOTE: you can hover over the plot to see which President is represented. The outlier is William Harrison... who died a month after taking office).
There is a positive correlation between the date differentials and the number of years lived after each presidency, but it is weaker than the correlation between the date differential and the first year of each presidency (0.52 > 0.34 - years lived after presidency is uncorrelated with the first year of presidency: 0.03). So while the number of post-presidential years explains some of the variation in the date differentials, there is also likely a time trend in the profile of each president that is impacting the date differential (or a bias in the way wikipedia authors interpret recent presidents' lives- a distinct possibility).
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