U.S. Presidents

Come visit the homes, libraries and museums of U.S. presidents for an entertaining history lesson while gaining insights into their personal lives. And, if you are lucky, a former president will walk up and shake your hand.

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1 First White House of the Confederacy in Montgomery, Alabama

On January 21, 1861, Jefferson Davis resigned as a US Senator and, within a few weeks, was inaugurated as the President of the Confederate States of America. This 1835 home became the First White House of the Confederacy in Montgomery, Alabama. Then, after four months, the White House moved to Richmond, Virginia, until it was seized by Union troops on April 2, 1865. The Confederate Cabinet dissolved on May 5, 1865 and Davis was captured five days later.

644 Washington Ave, Montgomery, AL 36130
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2 Bill Clinton Entering William Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas

A golden rule of road trips is to never leave a building without using the bathroom. So, after touring the William J. Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas, for two hours, I was waiting near the exit while my wife was in the ladies’ room. Suddenly, without fanfare, Bill Clinton strolled through a side entrance with a Starbucks coffee in one hand and the other waving. After I snapped the picture, shook his hand and exchanged greetings, he was gone. My wife missed the whole thing.

William J Clinton Library and Museum, 1200 President Clinton Ave, Little Rock, AR 72201
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3 Oval Office at William Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas

The William J. Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock, Arkansas, is the most expensive of the 13 libraries, plus it is the largest in space and number of archives. The main building in the park cantilevers over the Arkansas River. The large timeline panels and alcoves on the second floor tell the story of his presidency. It also includes a full-scale replica of his Oval Office.

William J Clinton Library and Museum, 1200 President Clinton Ave, Little Rock, AR 72201
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4 Air Force One Pavilion in Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley, California

This Boeing 707 is called Special Air Mission 27000, or SAM 27000 for short. For 29 years, when one of six US presidents was inside, its air traffic control call sign was Air Force One. Nixon was the first to ride in it and, when he resigned, it flew him back to California. When George W. Bush’s presidency ended, it brought him to Texas on August 29, 2001. Then, its last flight was to California where it was dismantled and reassembled at the Air Force One Pavilion in the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. The helicopter is a Sikorsky VH-3 Sea King, called Marine One, when it was used predominately by Lyndon Johnson.

40 Presidential Dr, Simi Valley, CA 93065
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5 Ronald Reagan Portrait at Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley, California

Five US presidents and six former First Ladies helped dedicate the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, when it opened in 1991. It contains over 150,000 square feet of exhibits that chronicle his childhood, movie career, early political life, presidential highlights, the assassination attempt, and world events. His tomb is in an outside memorial. My favorite portrait in the museum is this pose at the White House on October 3, 1984, during his first term.

40 Presidential Dr, Simi Valley, CA 93065
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6 Nixon 1968 Display in Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, California

The Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, California, has timelines of critical years in his life, like 1968, when he became a presidential candidate on February 4. Then he coined the phrase “Bring Us Together” in his November victory speech. During the intervening nine months, the 10,000th plane was lost in Vietnam, Charlie Company slaughtered 500 citizens in My Lai, Martin Luther King, Andy Warhol and Bobby Kennedy were shot, numerous riots occurred in the name of peace, the Yippee Movement was born, and Jimi Hendrix released his last two albums as The Experience. It was a memorable year.

18001 Yorba Linda Blvd, Yorba Linda, CA 92886
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7 Richard Nixon Home at Nixon Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, California

The first line of the Memoirs of Richard Nixon reads, “I was born in a house my father built.” Francis Nixon built this home using a mail order kit in 1913. Nixon and his four brothers grew up there under strict Quaker rules until 1922. During the home’s dedication in 1990 at the Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, California, Nixon said in front of a crowd of 50,000, “Nothing we have ever seen matches this moment – to be welcomed home again.” He and his wife Pat are buried nearby.

18001 Yorba Linda Blvd, Yorba Linda, CA 92886
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8 President Truman’s Little White House in Key West, Florida

This humble, two-story building was constructed in 1890 on the U.S. Navy base. It served as the home for the commander and briefly housed President William Taft and Thomas Edison early in the 20th century. President Harry S Truman spent his winter vacation here in 1946. He enjoyed it so much he returned ten more times. During those 175 days, it was called the Little White House. Eisenhower and Kennedy also used these accommodations during their presidencies. Plus Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton stayed here after leaving office. You can feel the history as you walk through the museum on a guided tour.

111 Front St, Key West, FL 33040
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9 Hall of Presidents in Liberty Square at Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida

The Hall of Presidents in Liberty Square is modeled after America’s most historic building: Independence Hall. The original Pennsylvania State House was finished in 1753. In 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved here. In 1787, the Georgian building witnessed the writing of the U.S. Constitution. What a fitting venue for Disney to assemble all of the United States’ presidents for a multi-media show called audio-animatronics. The Magic Kingdom attraction combines a patriotic film of our country’s history, life-size models of our leaders plus speeches by George Washington, Abe Lincoln and the current president.

The Hall of Presidents, Liberty Square, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
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10 Marine One Helicopter at National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida

The National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida, exhibits 150 aircraft from the Marines, Coast Guard and Navy. If you love historical aircraft, you’ll be in heaven. In the photo is a VH-3A Sea King helicopter that was called “Marine One” when it transported a US president. Similar ones are at the Reagan and Nixon museums. On the left is the tail of an S-3 Viking, the only “Navy One.” It transported President Bush to the USS Abraham Lincoln to declare, “Mission Accomplished” regarding the Iraq war. My relative piloted that plane before its final flight.

1750 Radford Blvd, Pensacola, FL 32508
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11 John F. Kennedy Sculpture at Plant Park in Tampa, Florida

In November of 1963, four days before he was assassinated in Dallas, President John F. Kennedy’s motorcade drove along Grand Central Avenue which was a main artery leading into downtown Tampa. The following year it was renamed the John F. Kennedy Boulevard. Then, as a further tribute to the 35th president, a committee commissioned Italian artist Bernard Zuckerman to sculpture this life-size memorial. It stands in Plant Park overlooking JFK Boulevard.

200 UT Poe Pkwy, Tampa, FL 33606
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12 Jimmy Carter Library and Museum in Atlanta, Georgia

The Jimmy Carter Library and Museum in Atlanta is as modest, serene and refined as the man. Its collection contains 27 million pages of documents and over 500,000 photos. Exhibits trace his life from the peanut fields of Plains, Georgia, through the White House and his subsequent humanitarian efforts. On display is a replica of the Crown of St. Stephan and his 2002 Nobel Peace Prize. In the Oval Office replica is a copy of the Resolute desk where many presidents have sat since Queen Victoria gifted it to President Hayes in 1880.

441 Freedom Pkwy NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
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13 Jimmy Carter Portrait by Octavio Ocampo at President Carter Library in Atlanta, Georgia

Look closely at this portrait of Jimmy Carter by Octavio Ocampo. Small, ornate images such as buildings, trucks and flags come together in a “metaphoric style” to create the president. The artwork was a gift from President Portillo of Mexico in 1979. It now hangs in the President Carter Library and Museum in Atlanta, Georgia.

441 Freedom Pkwy NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
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14 Abraham Lincoln’s Burial Room Tomb in Springfield, Illinois

This marble sarcophagus is part of the Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, Illinois. Outside is a massive monument with bronze sculptures and a 117 foot obelisk. Inside is a beautiful rotunda with a Lincoln Memorial statue replica plus symbolism of previous presidents and 36 states at the time of his death in 1865. An ornate corridor, which leads to the burial room, is decorated with eight Lincoln sculptures plus his famous speeches. He rested in this cenotaph for two years but, after a foiled attempt to steal his body, he was moved to a vault beneath the floor.

1500 Monument Ave, Springfield, IL 62702
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15 Abraham Lincoln’s Home in Springfield, Illinois

Twelve buildings in a four block area of Springfield, Illinois, appear as they did when Abraham Lincoln bought this house for $1,200 with Mary Todd in 1844. Lincoln lived here until he became the 16th president in 1861. During this residency, he was a “prairie” lawyer, a Whig representative in the Illinois House, a member of the US House of Representatives, a founder of the Republican Party, a staunch abolitionist, a debater with Senator Stephen Douglas over slavery and a newspaper publisher. He was also the father of four boys. One of them died from tuberculosis in this home.

413 S 8th St, Springfield, IL 62701
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16 Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa

The Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa, was the fourth of the presidential libraries now managed by the National Archives and Records Administration. It was dedicated in 1962 and expanded to 44,500 square feet thirty years later. Inside is the 90 year story of how a great man helped millions around the word with his relief efforts and assisted millions more in the U.S. during the Great Depression years of 1929 through 1933.

210 Parkside Dr, West Branch, IA 52358
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17 Hoover Grave Site at Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum in West Branch, Iowa

This is the gravesite of a very successful businessman, mining engineer, provider of world relief efforts, head of the U.S. Food Administration, Secretary of Commerce and 31st president: Herbert Hoover. A few yards away are his two-room boyhood home, his father’s blacksmith shop and the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum. You walk away from this visit with an immense appreciation of what Hoover accomplished during his 90 year life.

210 Parkside Dr, West Branch, IA 52358
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18 Presidential Seal at Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum in West Branch, Iowa

The presidential seal originated with President Fillmore and has evolved several times since then. It always contained an eagle holding an olive branch (symbolizing peace) and three arrows (for war) plus a shield in the middle. This version, called the Bailey Banks & Biddle representation, was designed in 1916 for President Wilson. It is displayed at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum in West Branch, Iowa. In 1945, the eagle began facing left and 48 stars were added. Two more stars were added in 1960 after Hawaii and Alaska joined the union.

210 Parkside Dr, West Branch, IA 52358
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19 Dwight Eisenhower Gravesite Statue at Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene, Kansas

An 11 foot statue of Dwight D. Eisenhower as a five-star general stands near his tomb at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum in Abilene, Kansas. He began his military career in 1911 when he entered West Point and later graduated first in his class. He proceeded to become a five-star general as the commander-in-chief of the Allied Forces and then the first Supreme Allied Commander of NATO. Eisenhower was the 34th President from 1953 to 1961.

200 S E 4th St, Abilene, KS 67410
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20 Dwight Eisenhower’s Boyhood Home at Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene, Kansas

In 1898, when Dwight Eisenhower was eight, his parents and brothers moved into this house in Abilene, Kansas. After graduating from a local high school, he worked at a creamery and as a fireman before being appointed to West Point Military Academy in 1911. Members of his family remained here until 1946. The home is near the Eisenhower Presidential Library.

200 S E 4th St, Abilene, KS 67410
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21 George H. W. Bush Summer Compound on Walker’s Point in Kennebunkport, Maine

In 1903, George H. Walker built a mansion on what was called Point Vesuvius in Kennebunkport, Maine. George H.W. Bush spent his boyhood summers here. The former president eventually inherited his grandfather’s view of the Atlantic Ocean, now called Walker’s Point. There are nine bedrooms in this New England style home, plus a pool, tennis court, guesthouse and boathouse. The Bush compound became the Summer White House during his presidency. Guests have included Vladimir Putin, Bill Clinton, Mikhail Gorbachev, Margaret Thatcher and many other world dignitaries.

292 Ocean Ave Kennebunkport, ME 04046
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22 John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts

It took almost 16 years after the death of President John F. Kennedy to complete his Library and Museum in Dorchester, Massachusetts, near Boston. Built on a landfill overlooking Dorchester Bay, the front concrete profile resembles a sail and the back reflects the glass pavilion. Inside are fascinating exhibits of the life, presidency and death of the first president I remember as a kid. I vividly remember the live TV coverage of his assassination, Ruby’s shooting of Oswald, the horse drawn carriage, his flag draped coffin at the US Capitol and the funeral processions.

Columbia Point, Boston, MA 02125
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23 John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Sailboat in Boston, Massachusetts

On John Kennedy’s 15th birthday, his parents gave him a 26 foot Wianno Senior sailboat he called Victura. It was the first of many boats that he’d captain, including the PT 109, a 92 foot Presidential yacht called Honey Fitz and a 62 foot sailboat called the Manitou. But it’s said he loved his first boat best. The night before he died, he doodled an image of it on stationery from the Rice Hotel in Houston. The boat, hull number 94, is now proudly displayed outside the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston, Massachusetts.

Columbia Point, Boston, MA 02125
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24 Presidential Seal at John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, Museum in Boston, Massachusetts

The logo for the President of the United States was defined by executive order in 1960 but versions were used over 100 years before then. Only one official seal die exists and it’s still used to close official envelopes from the President to Congress. This display is at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts.

Columbia Point, Boston, MA 02125
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25 John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts

In Cape Cod, along Nantucket Sound, is the Kennedy Compound of three, clapboard houses in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts. Nearby is the JFK Museum. It traces the family’s history to the area, including Joe Kennedy’s purchase of the home in 1927, his nine children’s early summers there, how it became the Summer White House of JFK, and how Ted lived there until his death at the compound in 2009. A 50th anniversary tribute to JFK’s last summer and months in 1963 opened in 2013.

397 Main St, Hyannis, MA 02601
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26 Gerald Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Unlike other presidents, the Gerald Ford Presidential Museum is located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, while his library is 130 miles away in Ann Arbor on the campus of the University of Michigan. The later reflects his loyalty to the town where he was raised and also where he was voted the most valuable football player. This museum faces the Grand Rapids skyline. It includes a replica of his oval office, a Watergate gallery, plus 20,000 exhibits and artifacts from his life and political career.

303 Pearl St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
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27 President Ford Statue at Gerald Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Born as Leslie Lynch King Jr., Gerald Ford did not legally change his name to his mother’s second husband until she had been married to him for 19 years. Gerald Ford was the only Vice President and President of the United States not voted into either position. Although he had been a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for 24 years, his role in the Warren Commission positioned him for the first appointment after Spiro Agnew’s resignation. In 1974, he became president after Richard Nixon was driven from office by the Watergate Scandal. In 1975, I had the honor of hearing him as the commencement speaker at my graduation from the University of Pennsylvania.

303 Pearl St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504
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28 Harry S Truman Presidential Library and Museum in Independence, Missouri

The Harry S Truman Presidential Library and Museum in Independence, Missouri, does an excellent job of portraying American history from 1900 to 1953. In addition to the highlights of Truman’s early political career, it focuses on the end of WWI, the Truman and Marshall plans, the Korean conflict, the McCarthy communism accusations and his Fair Deal program. Truman worked at the library from 1957 until his death in 1972. Then the former president was buried in the courtyard.

500 W US Hwy 24, Independence, MO 64050
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29 Harry S Truman Summer White House in Independence, Missouri

In 1867, the grandfather of Bess Walker purchased land in Independence, Missouri. He converted a small house into this 14 room, Victorian mansion. Bess was living here when she met Harry S Truman in 1890 at the age of six in a local elementary school. When they married in 1919, he moved in with her mother and brother. This is where he was a clothing retailer and a judge. It became a summer home during his Washington, D.C. career as senator and vice president. Then it was the Summer White House while he was the 33rd president. In 1953, he retired here until he died at 88 in 1972.

219 N Delaware St, Independence, MO 64050
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30 Franklin Pierce Manse in Concord, New Hampshire

When Franklin Pierce went to college in 1820, his classmates in a literary society included Nathaniel Hawthorne and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. His father’s role as governor drew Pierce into politics. He was a U.S. House member, a U.S. senator and the 14th president from 1853-1857. He lived here in 1842-1848. This house in Concord, New Hampshire is now called the Franklin Pierce Manse. His boyhood home, built in 1804 by his father, is located in Hillsborough.

14 Horseshoe Pond Ln, Concord, NH 03301
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31 FDR Music Room at Franklin D. Roosevelt Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York

This music room, also called the Dresden Room, is part of the Springwood estate located in Hyde Park, New York. On the piano are signed photos of royalty and dignitaries who were entertained by Franklin D. Roosevelt while he was the 32nd president. The pieces of Chinese porcelain were collected by his mother, Sara, during her father’s business trades with China. An adjoining room is very historical. In September, 1944, FDR and Winston Churchill solidified their countries’ cooperation for developing Tube Alloys. This was the code name for the atomic bomb. The two unprecedented blasts over Japan ended World War II about four months after Roosevelt died.

4079 Albany Post Rd, Hyde Park, NY 12538
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32 FDR Springwood Home at Franklin Roosevelt Library, Museum in Hyde Park, New York

On the grounds of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York, is the 32nd president’s home called Springwood. FDR was born on the second floor, lived here most of his life and is buried in the rose garden. Interred beside him are his wife and family dogs. The mansion remains furnished as it was when it served as the Summer White House. Roosevelt’s wife, Eleanor, lived two miles away in a home called Val-Kill. Both of these fascinating homes are available for tour.

4097 Albany Post Rd, Hyde Park, NY 12538
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33 Roosevelt’s Maltese Cross Ranch Cabin at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota

In 1883, during a buffalo hunt in the North Dakota badlands, Theodore Roosevelt invested $14,000 in the Maltese Cross Ranch near Medora and had this three-room cabin built. A few months later, when his wife and mother died on the same day, he wrote in his diary, “The light has gone out of my life,” and then retreated here for a couple of years. It still contains some original furniture and is part of the 110 square mile Theodore Roosevelt National Park, which also includes his Elkhorn Ranch. These experiences shaped his conservation policies while the 26th President of the US.

201 E River Rd, Medora, ND 58645
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34 First Ladies National Historic Site in Canton, Ohio

There are 14 presidential libraries managed by the National Archives and Records Administration. There are also several private presidential museums, sites and monuments. But only Canton, Ohio, pays tribute to all of the first ladies. This exhibition is in the Ida McKinley home. Nearby is the National First Ladies’ Library. Together, these museums tell the stories of their lives, contributions and tragedies plus displays over 150 of their dresses.

329 Market Ave S, Canton, OH 44702
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35 McKinley National Memorial Gravesite at McKinley Presidential Museum in Canton, Ohio

There have been over twenty attempts to assassinate U.S. presidents. Four of them were killed including William McKinley. The 25th president now lies in this McKinley National Memorial in Canton, Ohio. This tribute was completed six years after his death in 1901. 108 steps lead up to the tombs of the former president and his wife, Ida Saxton. The statue was based on a photograph of him the day before his assassination.

William Mckinley Tomb, 800 Mc Kinley Monument Dr NW, Canton, OH 44708
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36 William McKinley Presidential Library and Museum in Canton, Ohio

The William McKinley Presidential Library and Museum in Canton, Ohio, is a joy to visit. Of course it explains the life and assassination of the 25th president. The museum also has a series of rooms reconstructing life in the late 19th century. These include a living room, bar, barber shop and dentist office. Also on display are antique cars and a fire engine. In addition, the building hosts a science center and a planetarium.

McKinley Presidential Library & Museum, 800 Mc Kinley Monument Dr NW, Canton, OH 44708
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37 LBJ Bas-relief Mural of Lyndon Johnson at Presidential Library in Austin, Texas

This is a bas-relief of Lyndon Baines Johnson as the 36th President. The photo-engraving is one of five, eight-by-ten feet, etched magnesium plates by Naomi Savage at the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin, Texas. This impressive mural in the Great Hall below the library stacks also includes the likeness of Presidents Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower and John Kennedy.

2313 Red River St, Austin, TX 78705
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38 Library Stacks at Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, Texas

If you are a presidential archives researcher, it must be overwhelming to stare at the four floors of the Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library. The resource contains about 45 million pages. Inside is a treasure-trove of historical information. You will also find personal insights into the 36th President. Examples include a list of his favorites: dessert (coconut macaroon cookies), food (very spicy deer sausages), beverages (Scotch and Fresca), movie (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) and after shave (Old Spice).

2313 Red River St, Austin, TX 78705
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39 George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas

The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum is located on 90 acres at the Texas A&M University’s west campus in College Station, Texas. The museum contains 120,000 artifacts of the 41st President’s life. The exhibits start with a 1952 home movie of his first steps in Kennebunkport, Maine. You will then learn about his career as a Congressman, U.N. Ambassador and CIA Director. Interesting reproductions include his Oval Office, Camp David office and the White House Press Room.

1000 George Bush Dr W, College Station, TX 77845
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40 Presidential Limo at George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas

The president’s car is often referred to as Limo One. The Secret Service calls it, “The Beast.” The auto is equipped with advance communications, armor plating, defense weapons and a blood bank in the trunk. The typical motorcade includes 45 vehicles. The limo used by George H. W. Bush was a 1989 modified Lincoln Town Car with a Ford F-250 Heavy Duty pickup truck engine. It is on display at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas.

1000 George Bush Dr W, College Station, TX 77845
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41 Texas School Book Depository Building Facing Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas

On November 22, 1963, John F. Kennedy’s limousine drove slowly down Elm Street in Dealey Plaza. At 12:30 P.M., an Italian Carcano, bolt-action rifle emerged from the sixth-floor window (upper right corner) of the Texas School Book Depository Building on the left. Shots were fired. The bullets wounded Governor Connally and killed the 35th President of the United States. The photo is taken from the spot of the first impact.

411 Elm St, Dallas, TX 75202
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42 George Washington Grave at Mount Vernon Estate in Alexandria, Virginia

When George Washington died in December, 1799, at the age of 67, Congress wanted to build a pyramid mausoleum at the Capitol. Instead, the nation’s founding father was buried in a family crypt on the grounds of his Mount Vernon estate in Alexandria, Virginia. 37 years later, his body was moved to this tomb. Also interred here are Martha and other family members.

3200 Mount Vernon Hwy, Mt Vernon, VA 22121
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43 George Washington Mount Vernon Estate in Alexandria, Virginia

One of the best views overlooking the Potomac River was acquired by George Washington’s great-great grandfather in 1674. 87 years later, this picturesque property became Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate until his death in the master bedchamber in 1799. The first president’s main house is flanked by two others. Also on the grounds are a greenhouse, a coach house, a blacksmith shop and other buildings restored to their 18th century appearance.

3200 Mount Vernon Hwy, Mt Vernon, VA 22121
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44 Thomas Jefferson Monticello Plantation in Charlottesville, Virginia

Thomas Jefferson spent much of his adult life designing, building and refining an 11,000 square foot mansion called Monticello. The historic landmark is located on 5,000 acres in Charlottesville, Virginia. The dome and portico were inspired by French architecture. The guided tour starts in the foyer with an explanation of a two-story clock and Lewis & Clark artifacts. Then you are led through his library, see the dumbwaiter in his dining room to the wine cellar below, and view the alcove bed where he died on July 4, 1826. Afterwards, walk to his grave. Along the way you will see outbuildings including the slave quarters called Mulberry Row.

949 Monticello Loop, Charlottesville, VA 22902
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45 James and Dolley Madison Plantation in Montpelier Station, Virginia

James Madison was raised with 11 siblings on a 5,000 acre tobacco plantation in Orange County, Virginia. In 1797, shortly before James Madison became Secretary of State under President Jefferson, he moved back to Montpelier Station near the town of Orange with his wife Dolley. He received extensive architectural advice from the third president. When Madison became the fourth president, he again solicited advice from his neighbor during further additions. The mansion has been restored to its appearance before Dolley sold it in 1884.

S Montpelier Rd & W Gate Rd, Orange, VA 22960
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46 Jefferson Davis White House of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia

Jefferson Davis was a two-time senator and Secretary of War before being inaugurated President of the Confederate States of America on February 22, 1861.The first White House was moved from Alabama to this Richmond mansion when Virginia ceded the Union a few months later. Davis and his family lived here. During his residency, two children were born and one died in an accident. On April 5, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln toured the home after it was seized by Union troops. A week later, Lincoln accepted Robert E. Lee’s surrender. Two days after that historic event ended the Civil War, Lincoln was assassinated. This building is now the Museum of the Confederacy.

401 N 12th St, Richmond, VA 23298
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47 Abraham Lincoln Statue at Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

The most iconic statue of the 16th U. S. President was sculpted from 1916 to 1920 by Daniel French and sits in the Lincoln Memorial. The white marble sculpture is 19 by 19 feet. Surrounding this imposing figure are inscriptions from the Gettysburg Address and Lincoln’s second inaugural speech. An interesting debate is whether his hands form the initials “A” and “L” in sign language. Lincoln has a wonderful view of the Washington Memorial and the U.S. Capitol from across the Reflecting Pool.

2 Lincoln Memorial Cir NW, Washington, DC 20037
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48 The White House in Washington, D.C.

The world’s most famous address is 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. Construction of the White House started in 1792. In November of 1800, John Adams, the 2nd US President, became the first resident. When Thomas Jefferson moved in the following year, he described it as “Big enough for two emperors, one pope and the grand lama in the bargain.” It was burnt down by the British in 1814. Sections of the historical structure have been expanded, renovated or refurbished during almost every administration. The West Wing contains the Oval Office plus the Cabinet, Situation, Press Briefing and Roosevelt rooms.

1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20500
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