Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Harry S. Truman Library & Museum

I used to hate history class when we studied the 20th century, for some reason. While I enjoyed learning about early American history, the first half of the 1900s was filled with the Great Depression, WWI and II, and the Korean War. And we were in the Vietnam War while I was in school. It was very scary to see teenagers going off to war and people protesting in the streets. I have little formal knowledge of the years before the 1960s so our trip to the Truman Museum was fascinating.

Vice President Harry Truman stepped into the role of President when Franklin Delano Roosevelt died suddenly in office of a stroke.

During his first term in office as the 33rd President of the United States, Truman dropped the atomic bomb on Japan, killing 200,000 people and ending WWII. He signed the charter ratifying the United Nations. Problems with the Soviet Union triggered the start of the Cold War.

While Truman won the race for reelection, it was an upset over Governor Thomas Dewey

that shocked the nation, Truman having lost the popular vote but winning the Electoral Collage. Hmmmm....that sounds familiar! The Republicans who won the majority in both houses opposed nearly every policy that Truman proposed. Despite the opposition, he managed to increase Social Security benefits and expand eligibility, increase the minimum wage, enact the National Science Foundation for scientific research, decrease the number of city slums, promote urban redevelopment and low income housing, pass increased funding for new power and electrification projects, and beef up anti-trust laws.

Truman was a tireless worker. Here was a typical day for him as President. No time for golf, or even for lunch.

The Oval Office replica showed more somber colors than later Presidential decor.

Truman was not a tall man, as evidenced by Bob standing next to this statue. One of the Presidential vehicles was on display--very impressive!

We started to move more quickly as the exhibits continued, since the museum was kept so cold. Outside, it was a beautiful day with temperatures in the mid-80s. Time to head back to the campground.

We were able to find a You Are Here mug for my daughter Kristen's collection.

It was a very good day.

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