INAUGURAL SCHWAG

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Associated Press

Posted on January 21, 2013 at 2:07 PM

It seems like everyone wants a piece of history today — and a way to stay warm, too.

The White House Gifts shop near the White House was doing brisk business at midday — especially in scarves, hats and sweatshirts as shoppers looked for ways to stay warm in the January air.

Nancy Johnson of Manassas, Va., was buying a commemorative, navy hoodie after learning she couldn't easily reenter the parade zone if she left to get coffee. "I figured I better put some more clothes on," she quipped.

Along 18th Street, dozens of vendors are hawking Obama wares, from calendars and posters to hoodies and stocking caps. Police barricades funneled thousands of people through the street, but customers generally don't have to wait in line very long to make a purchase.

One man hawking a bundle of T-shirts featuring a picture of the president held a wad of cash in his hand but said business was disappointing.

"Business is a fraction of what it was four years ago," he says. "Shirts selling for $20 then are going for $5 now."

Would he mind providing his name?

That could be trouble, he said. "I don't pay taxes on this."

—David Dishneau and Kevin Freking.

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Inauguration Watch follows the events of President Barack Obama's second inaugural. Look for short items and photos throughout the day.

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