Monday, May 10, 2010

Dead Presidents

I'm not sure why exactly, but stuff about our presidents has always fascinated Bruce and me.  When possible we seek stuff about any of them and check it out.  We've been to all of the presidential libraries (I think) and some a couple of times as the exhibits change.  Here in the Cincinnati area they have historic sites for 2 presidents. 

First, we drove just a few short miles right here in North Bend to the William Henry Harrison Tomb State Memorial.  William Henry was our 9th president.  As president he didn't get a chance to complete many things on his bucket list because the poor guy kicked the bucket just 32 days into his term.  He contracted pneumonia and then pleurisy and nothing the doctors did helped him and he died.  He lies in peace now in this tomb up on a small hill overlooking the Ohio River.  There are a lot of steps here, but to the side of this memorial site is a wheel chair path.

(click on any photo for larger view)



Annie went, too.


After checking this out and signing the register, we moved on to the next dead presidents historic site.  This one belongs to William Howard Taft and it is in Cincinnati.  There is no presidential library or large museum but we did go to a small visitor's center.  They had a short film on Taft's life and a few display boards on his life of public service.  We met up with Dennis, the volunteer tour guide, and he then took us next door to the birthplace and boyhood home of William Howard Taft.  It is not a self-guiding tour but we were the only ones here so good old Dennis gave us his full attention.  Cool....and he said I could take photos and use the flash indoors, too!

Here is the front of the home, which is in the Mount Auburn section of Cincinnati. 


The house eventually was sold off by the Taft family and turned into 7 apartments and remodeled.  In 1960 descendents of William Howard Taft decided to buy back the family home and have it restored to the way it looked in 1850 when President Taft was a boy.  Details found in letters written by Taft's mother helped determine how the house looked in the mid 1800's.  They also uncovered an actual photograph of the Taft home around 1850 to use for guidance.  Some of the furnishings are original to the Taft family and some are period pieces from other sources but identical to those the family owned.

This is the front door and then the side of the home.


This is your view as you enter through the front door.        The formal parlor was to the right of the entry.


This is the library where the family spent a great deal of time.  The children would do their studies here and they had a large home library of books to assist them.


The children's room was on the main floor and held a crib and then a double bed for older children.  All rooms had fireplaces for heat, which had been converted to coal heaters rather than a wood fire.



This was an interesting place to visit and completely handicap accessible.  The Taft home has been fitted with an elevator for visitors.  There was no charge to visit or tour the historic site.  If you need further information look at http://www.nps.gov/wiho  to assist you.  Come on over and meet William Howard Taft like I did.



Until next time......so long for now!

9 comments:

Gypsy said...

If you are still in Cincinnati, you might also check out the Taft Museum of Art, a beautiful federal style mansion on Pike St. at the edge of downtown. It has a small but worthy art collection, and the inside of the mansion is gorgeous! In my young and single days I often attended free chamber music concerts there on Sunday afternoons.

Kenny And Angela's Adventure said...

Very interresting Margie great pictures.Thanks for the tour.
Annie looks like she enjoyed it too.

Phyllis said...

We, too, like to visit historic places and homes of Presidents.

And this one is FREE? I LOVE FREE!!!

Happytrails said...

Nice tour of the birthplace and boyhood home of William Taft. I just love old homes...how beautiful.
It is neat to visit and learn more about our former/present presidents.

Have fun,
Mike & Gerri (happytrails)
http://freedom2roll.blogspot.com

Rick and Paulette said...

Thanks for the tour and great pictures of the Taft home, Margie. Sure looks like a beautiful place. It's fun to see those old houses without tv's, computers and all the gizmos we have today.

Kimberly said...

If you are still in Cincinnati you might want to check out the Creation museum in across the river.
Kim

Carol K said...

We like to tour presidential sites, too. Great post and pictures about Harrison and Taft! You make every place sound so interesting!

Ken and Nanette said...

Great post!

We love the pictures and the narrative.

Just like being there. You have a gift for painting a picture in the reader's mind!

Thank you for sharing!

Ken and Nanette

Jerry and Suzy said...

We agree with all of the above comments, and won't repeat them. BUT -- we really do appreciate your comments about accessibility. That makes a big difference to Suzy, and of course to me. We may never actually go to some of the places, but it's good to see that accessibility is addressed. Thank you for reporting on that iomportant point.