Thursday, March 23, 2006

Truman Museum & the Miniature Whitehouse

While on our vacation last week, one of the places we stopped in Independence, MO was the Truman Museum. We found it kid friendly and I would highly recommend it. We did walk very quickly through the section about the atomic bomb. Alexandra was scared and we didn't explain any of it - just walked right on through!

Alexandra really enjoyed a little computer terminal where you could press on different presidents and hear some interesting things about them. Pres. Polk was one of them and she got excited about him because one of her ancestors was a cousin to the president! Also, I share a birthday with Washington and she shares a birthday with Teddy Roosevelt, and they were both there, too!

There were also some hands-on exhibits - a dress up area, a mail area (she wrote a letter to Truman), an area to make a campaign button (her's says "I Love Truman"), and a few others.

Another highlight was the traveling exhibit of the miniature Whitehouse. Incredible! And, it had just been decorated for Easter! There were tiny eggs & bunnies in many rooms and on the lawn. We had our own personal tour as one of the guides walked along beside us explaining the various rooms, etc.

Unfortunately, the digital camera we use had a defective chip so all of our pictures were ruined. So, I took a picture of our souvenirs. The campaign button Alexandra made says "I love Truman." And, she loves the postcard that says "Dewey Defeats Truman." We've seen that picture several times since and I think it's neat that she knows the story behind it.

(updated 4/13/06): A friend loaned me some books about the White House. We didn't have time to read them all right now, but I wanted to save this resource list for later:
  • The White House: An Illustrated History by Catherine O'Neill Grace - we enjoyed looking at the pictures of this one
  • A Kid's Guide to the White House by Betty Debnam - great book with some activities - I'm going to try to buy a copy of this book
  • First Pets: Presidential Best Friends by Nell Fuqua - cute book with cartoon illustrations - shows some very unusual first pets and some neat, sometimes funny, stories about them
  • First Kids by Gibbs Davis (Step Into Reading book) (we own this one) - antedotes about some of the First Kids
  • Smart About the First Ladies by Jon Buller (a Smart About History book) - another series we like - we just got this in the mail this week and are still reading it - it goes through each First Lady (including Laura Bush) and tells some about them - neat stories!
  • Woodrow, the White House Mouse by Barnes - we read this one and Alexandra really enjoyed it - there are others in this series

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