Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

100 Years of Girl Scouting in the USA

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

With help from the Key West Garden Club and Fran Ford, local Girl Scouts from the Lower Keys planted a pigeon plum tree at the Truman Little White House in celebration of 100 years of girl scouting in the USA. Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent leadership development organization for girls with 3.6 million girl and adult members worldwide. Girl Scouting is the leading authority on girls’ healthy development, and builds girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. The organization strives to serve girls from every corner of the United States and its territories. Girls Scouts of the USA also serves American girls and their classmates attending American or international schools overseas in 90 countries.The Girl Scout Council of Tropical Florida, Inc. is one of 112 councils nationwide chartered by Girl Scouts of the USA to deliver Girl Scout program within specific geographic boundaries. The local council serves more than 20,000 girls and 3,600 adult volunteers in Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties and maintains five campsites each offering unique experiences for girls and adults. For more information on how to join, volunteer, reconnect or donate to Girl Scouts, call (305) 253-4841 or visit

Calling all Locals

Friday, June 1st, 2012

Key West Museum Truman Little White House

It’s June, and that means Local’s Month at the Harry S. Truman Little White House and means free admission to all of the residents of Monroe County, FL. We have Locals Day every year in June to let the folks of Key West and the Florida Keys know how much we appreciate them all year long for their support and their recommendations to their family and visitors. In addition the the Little White House, our partners at the Conch Tour Train, Old Town Trolley, Key West Shipwreck Treasures Museum, and the Key West Aquarium are all participating in Local’s Month with free admission to Monroe Country residents. All we ask is that you bring proof of residency.

See you at Florida’s only presidential museum!

10th Annual Truman Legacy Symposium: Truman and Foreign Aid

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

On May 18 and 19, the Key West Harry S. Truman Foundation and the Harry S. Truman Library will host its 10th annual Truman Legacy Symposium. This year’s topic will be Truman and Foreign Aid. The event starts with a reception at the Harry S. Truman Little White House on Friday, May 18th at 6 pm with guest speaker former Florida Governor and United States Senator Bob Graham. The symposium opens on Saturday, May 19 at the Marriott Beachside Resort with Keynote Speaker Tom Zeiler of the University of Colorado with his topic, Genesis of a Foreign Aid Revolution. The symposium will also feature notable academics and writers discussing the President Truman’s foreign aid policy and the Marshall Plan following World War II.

Admission to the Harry S. Truman Legacy Symposium is $125 and includes admission to all events, the opening night reception, breakfast and lunch on Saturday. Tickets may be purchased through the Harry S. Truman Little White House or on For more information, please contact Bob Wolz, Executive Director or visit

An Afternoon All About the First Ladies

Monday, February 27th, 2012

What an amazing weekend it was at the Little White House. Once again we had the privilege of hosting Susan Ford, Clifton Truman Daniel and Margaret Hoover for an afternoon talking about First Ladies. Margaret’s husband John Avlon, moderated the afternoon that was filled with fond memories of Lou Henry Hoover, Bess Truman and Betty Ford. Jennifer Cornell of Small Chef At Large provided a wonderful reception after the event. We received some wonderful press thanks to our good friends at the AP, which you can read here:

Presidential Planes

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

Air Force one

On this day back in 1969, the Boeing 747 made its debut.  Probably the most famous 747 in the world is Air Force One.  There are two 747’s (or VC-25 as the Air Force calls them) in service.  Actually any fixed wing aircraft carrying the President of the United States is called Air Force One, regardless of the make and model.  When traveling by helicopter, the president travels on Marine One, as the US Marine Corps oversees the fleet of choppers.

Theodore Roosevelt was the first president to use an airplane for travel.  His cousin Franklin Roosevelt was the first president to have a military plane designated for his use when the Army Air Corps became concerned about the security of the president on commercial flights.  President Truman used a C-54 Skymaster named Sacred Cow as his presidential plane.  Sacred Cow had first used by Roosevelt  during the Yalta Conference in 1945.  Truman replaced Sacred Cow in 1947 with a C-118 Liftmaster named Independence, after his hometown in Missouri. The  Independence was also the first presidential plane with distinctive markings painted on it with a bald eagle on the nose.   The term Air Force One was first used in 1953 with President Eisenhower when the plane transporting the president had the same call sign as an Easter Airlines commercial flight while both were using the same airspace. Eisenhower used Lockheed Constallations (C-121) named Columbine I and Columbine II after the state flower of Colorado, which was his wife Mamie’s adopted home state.  Eisenhower was the first president to use jet aircraft, with the addition of a Boeing 707 (VC-137) to the fleet in 1958.  Kennedy also used a modified long haul 707 Stratoliner during his presidency which remained in service until 1998.  In 1990 President George H. W.  Bush took of possession of the first 747 Air Force One in 1990.

Sacred Cow


Coumbine II

The 11th Hour of the 11th Day of the 11th Month

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

Today is Veteran’s Day in the United States. For much of the rest of the world and especially in Europe, November 11 is Armistice Day, marking the end of the great war, World War I.  On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11 month in 1918 when the armistice was signed,  over 20 million people had lost their lives. To the members of the British Commonwealth, today is Remembrance Day and is often symbolized by the red poppy immortalized in the poem,  Flanders Fields. These poppies bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, their brilliant red color an appropriate symbol for the blood spilt in the war.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

American Cemetery, Flanders Field, Belgium

War Memorials

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

United States Marine Corps War Memorial

Two very important memorials were unveiled on this day, November 10. In 1954, the United States Marine Corps War Memorial was dedicated in Arlington, VA.  The bronze sculpture by Felix de Weldon depicts Marines raising the flag over Iwo Jima during World War II and is based on a photograph by Joe Rosenthal.

In 1982 the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall was opened to the public.  This haunting monument contains the 58,267 names of those killed or missing in action from the conflict and along with Three Soldiers statue, the Vietnam Women’s Memorial make up the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial National Memorial.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall

Two Presidential Birthdays and Election Day All in One

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

In addition to being Election Day 2010, November 2 is also the birthday of two of our presidents, James K. Polk and Warren G. Harding.
Polk was our 11th president, a Democrat and was born on this date back in 1795 in North Carolina. However, he represented Tennessee as Governor and later as a Congressman, and served as Speaker of the House. Polk was known for his strong foreign policy, threatening war with Britain and leading the country to victory over the Mexican American War and the Mexican Cession increasing the size of the United States by nearly one third with California, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. It was during Polk’s single term as having promised he would not run for re-election, that the US Naval Academy and the Smithsonian Institute were opened and ground was broken on the Washington Monument. Polk generally thought of as one of our best presidents for creating an agenda and accomplishing it.

Warren G. Harding was our 29th President. He was born in Corsica, Ohio in 1865. He was a newspaper publisher by trade and served as an Ohio State Senator, Lt. Governor of Ohio and later in the US Senate. Unfortunately, while Polk is always favorably rated, Harding is not, mostly due the the numerous scandals that marked his brief presidency. He was often associated with the Ohio Gang, a group of politicians and industry leaders from Ohio that were responsible for the Teapot Dome Scandal, and acts of corruption. Harding died of a heart attack two years into his term and was succeeded by Vice President Calvin Coolidge.

James K. Polk

Warren G. Harding

We Like Ike, Too.

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

Dwight David Eisenhower, 34th President of the United States

Today, October 13 marks the 110th anniversary of the birth of our 34th President, Dwight David Eisenhower. President Eisenhnower visited the Little White house twice, once for meetings in 1955 and to recover from a heart attack in 1956. The Eisenhower’s list of accomplishments are long: Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe, Chief of Staff of Staff of the US Army, President of Columbia University and Supreme Commander of NATO. And this was before becoming President of the United State of America.

Eisenhower was elected president in 1952 and is one of only 5 other presidents to have never held political office prior to being president. At the time of his election he was the second oldest person (after James Buchanan), at the age of 62, to be elected president. Eisenhower was the first president to be televised on color television, the first president to be constitutionally prevented from running for re-election and the first president fall under the Former Presidents Act, giving presidents a pension and Secret Service protection upon leaving office. Eisenhower was the last president to be born in the 19th century.

The last two American states were admitted to the Union during Eisenhower’s presidency and he appointed five justices to the Supreme Court include Earl Warren as Chief Justice in 1953. One of the greatest accomplishments of the Eisenhower Administration was the creation of and Interstate Highway System. Eisenhower also created the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (today known as the Dept. of Health and Human Services and the Dept. of Education created in 1979) into a cabinet level position.

After retirement, Eisenhower and his wife, Mamie, retired to their farm next to Gettysburg Battlefield and after his death donated the farm to the National Park Service. Eisenhower died of congestive heart failure on March 28, 1969. At his funeral, President Richard M. Nixon, who had served as vice president under Eisenhower said,

“Some men are considered great because they lead great armies or they lead powerful nations. For eight years now, Dwight Eisenhower has neither commanded an army nor led a nation; and yet he remained through his final days the world’s most admired and respected man, truly the first citizen of the world.”

Eisenhower is buried next to his wife Mamie, who died in 1979 and his son Doud, who died at the age of 3 in 1921 at the Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene, Kansas.

The Harry S. Truman Little White House currently has an exhibit, We Like Ike, Too, that is free and open to the public, featuring photos and memorabilia from Eisenhower’s time in Key West. It runs through December.

Happy Birthday Bill Clinton!

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

William Jefferson Clinton

Today is the 64th birthday of our 42 president, William Jefferson Clinton. Clinton was born in Hope, Arkansas. Clinton is a graduate of Georgetown University, Yale Law School and is a Rhodes Scholar. He is married to Hillary Rodham Clinton, the current United States Secretary of State. Their only child, Chelsea, was married on July 31 of this year to Marc Mezvinsky.

Clinton was elected president in 1992 beating incumbent George H.W. Bush. At the time of his election he was the third youngest man ever elected to the office. Prior to being elected president, he was Arkansas Attorney General (1976-1978) and twice elected Governor of Arkansas (1979-1981, 1983-1992).

During his the inauguration speech in 1993 Clinton said, “Our democracy must be not only the envy of the world but the engine of our own renewal. There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America.” While in office, Clinton signed the Family Medical Leave Act of 1983, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Brady Bill.

Clinton appointed two United States Supreme Court Justices, Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1993 and Stephen Beyer in 1994.

Clinton’s job approval rating ranged from the mid 30’s to the high 60’s to a high of 73% when in 1999. His overall rating for his two terms averaged about 68% which matched those of Regan and FDR.

Since leaving office, Clinton has devoted himself to working towards humanitarian causes such as HIV/AIDS, worked with former President George H.W. Bush on the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund and Bush Clinton Tusnami Fund and worked as a tireless campaigner on his wife Hillary’s senate and presidential campaigns. It was during the Hillary Clinton’s senate campaign that the Little White House had the good fortune to host the Clintons.