harry s. truman presidential museum & library


We are nearing the end of our study of Missouri state history and recently read about Harry S. Truman's life. It's quite convenient that his home and Presidential museum and library are located just down the street from our neighborhood. We really do live in a historic area near the city of Independence, the Missouri River and the Santa Fe Trail.

Saturday found us at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Museum and Library. To be honest, museums are not on the kid's list of things to do! However, there was no way I was going to bypass this excursion and how well it would complement learning about Truman's life and presidency. As its usually the case after a history event the kids said they enjoyed it. 

The museum has a simplistic beauty with a large front lawn and an inner courtyard of gardens and sidewalks. The museum's layout is easy to follow. Near the entrance is a reproduction of the Oval Office containing Truman's own items and a recording of him describing the room. 

After an introductory video we followed chronological exhibits that featured his time in office, first as Vice President, then President. The final exhibits led us to the courtyard, and it was nice to have a walk outside (some of us had a run...) before we descended to the exhibits on the lower level that featured Truman's personal life. These were specifically designed with children in mind and were hands on. The children declared this their favorite section. 

We spent just over two hours at the museum, and like I said it was enjoyed by all. Ella even mentioned her interest in taking next year to study the lives of all of the United States presidents, and I have to say I like that idea myself.