The citizens of Independence, Missouri are wild about Harry......Harry Truman, that is. Today Bruce and I drove the short distance across town to visit the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum. This was our second visit, the first being in the summer of 1991. Since we were in the area, we decided we needed to check it out again.
The lower level had exhibits of:
*His childhood living on a family farm, and his early school years
*Harry's family life at home with wife, Bess, and their daughter, Margaret
*His early years as a farmer, soldier in World War I and businessman
*His political career beginning in county politics and later as a U.S. Senator
*Harry's election as Vice-President serving with Franklin Roosevelt, and his life in the White House
*Returning to Independence as a private citizen once his presidency had ended
The main level above was focused on the Presidential Years. Harry Truman was Vice-President for only 82 days before being sworn in as president when F.D.R. passed away. There is an exact replica of his Oval Office here. It includes his massive desk and a huge globe presented to him my General Eisenhower.
Truman was our 33rd President and served for nearly 8 years. He faced enormous decisions during his tenure as our Chief Executive. There were many displays that concerned (among many other subjects) the bombing of Japan to end the war in the Pacific, Post-War economic problems, the Korean conflict, the birth of the Cold War and the issue of recognition of Israel.
In one area there was a small sampling of letters from the citizens who wanted their president to hear from them. According to the exhibit, President Truman read a lot of these letters himself.
The area on the Presidential Years ends in 1952 when Eisenhower is inaugurated. Harry Truman and Bess returned to their beloved Independence, Missouri to live out the rest of their years in their own home. This home is located at 219 Delaware Street. We had hoped to tour the home, but it was closed for renovation and will not be open until the end of the month.
Outside of the main library is a large courtyard with a lot of trees and beautiful lawns. You can follow a path that leads to the gravesites of President Harry Truman and his wife, Bess Truman.
This presidential library was dedicated in July of 1957. It is a fascinating place to relive major historic moments from our United States history. We spent over 2 hours here today and it was well worth our time.
Until next time.....so long for now!