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Extend the following sequence forward and backward:

   ???? ???? 1808 1816 1824 1828 1836  
   1840 1840 1844 1848 1848 1852 1856  
   1860 1864 1868 1876 1880 1880 1884  
   1888 1896 1900 1908 1912 1920 1920  
   1928 1932 1944 1952 1960 1960 1952  
   none ???? ???? ???? ???? ???? ????  
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Backward:

1789 1796

Forward:

1976 1980 1980 1992 2000 2008

They are:

The dates that a president won an election for the first time.

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I think the first two numbers are

1789 and 1796

And the future of the sequence is

1976 1980 1980 1992 2000 2008

The pattern is:

The years of the first US presidential election that each president was on the winning side of

The pattern "seems" to distort near the end because:

Nixon was elected to the vice presidential position before he was elected as president, and Gerald Ford was never elected to office at all.

Actually, I think the original list of numbers may have contained an error.

I think 1836 should be 1832, because van Buren was elected vice president in Jackson's second term.

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