History's 12 Most Doting Dads

Jim Henson

Kermit the Frog, Museum of American History

(Image credit: Flickr, kevygee)

Henson was a father of five, but his creation of the Muppets and the television show "Sesame Street" delighted many more children.

According to a 1998 profile in Time magazine, Henson's children's only complaint about their father was that he worked long hours. They got around that problem by getting involved in the family business. His son Brian and daughter Lisa are co-CEOs of Jim Henson's Creature Shop, which builds characters for films and movies. His daughter Cheryl is president of the Jim Henson Foundation, a nonprofit that promotes puppetry in the United States.

Barack Obama

Barack Obama

(Image credit: White House (Pete Souza))

We gave Michelle Obama props for being a good mom on Mother's Day, so we've got to tip our hats to Barack Obama as well. The 44th president has two daughters, whose prize when their father came to office was a Portuguese water dog named Bo.

Obama also wrote a book addressed to his daughters, "Of Thee I Sing," (Knopf Books, 2010), which mixes praise and encouragement for the girls with mini-biographies of American role models such as Helen Keller and Georgia O'Keeffe.

But perhaps the sweetest public declaration of love Obama has made for his daughters was an open letter in Parade magazine shortly after his inauguration.

"When I was a young man, I thought life was all about me," Obama wrote. "But then the two of you came into my world with all your curiosity and mischief and those smiles that never fail to fill my heart and light up my day. And suddenly, all my big plans for myself didn't seem so important anymore. I soon found that the greatest joy in my life was the joy I saw in yours."

Sounds like a good Fatherly sentiment to us.

Stephanie Pappas
Live Science Contributor

Stephanie Pappas is a contributing writer for Live Science, covering topics ranging from geoscience to archaeology to the human brain and behavior. She was previously a senior writer for Live Science but is now a freelancer based in Denver, Colorado, and regularly contributes to Scientific American and The Monitor, the monthly magazine of the American Psychological Association. Stephanie received a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of South Carolina and a graduate certificate in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz.