TRU Blog

TRU Blog

David McCullough on Truman, Presidential Libraries and Education | August 8, 2022

On June 13, 2007, David McCullough, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Truman, returned to Independence, Missouri and the Truman Library to deliver a keynote address marking the 50th anniversary of the Library’s dedication in 1957. The transcript of his address follows.

What a pleasure it is to be back here and what a lot I learned in the 10 years that I worked here.  A time that flew! And my heart is still very much in Jackson County wherever I am, and to be welcomed – as I have been by so many people even before I arrived at the Library this afternoon –has been a great kick… people stopping when I was out walking in the street.  Just this morning one very friendly, nice lady came up and greeted me and she said, “Welcome back, how good to see you here Mr.  Cronkite.” (Laughter) Read More

David McCullough on Truman, Presidential Libraries and Education

This Day in History | July 26, 2022

The National Security Act of 1947 at 75 Years

By William Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center for National Security and associate professor of Public Policy and History at the LBJ School of Public Affairs

Seventy-five years ago, on July 26, 1947, President Harry S. Truman signed into law the National Security Act of 1947. The scholar Douglas Stuart has rightly called it “the law that transformed America.” Some of the most important institutions of America’s national defense and international leadership, including the National Security Council, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Defense, and Air Force, all trace their birth to this one law.[1]

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Online Exhibit: 75th Anniversary of the Marshall Plan | June 5, 2022

75th Anniversary of the Marshall Plan

June 5, 2022 marked the anniversary of a speech that altered world history. Secretary of State George C. Marshall, who had been a five-star general in World War II, was at Harvard to receive an honorary degree and deliver the commencement address. In unadorned remarks – and with little fanfare – he laid out a plan that would redefine U.S. foreign policy and transform the modern world. To mark the 75th anniversary of the Marshall Plan and share the rich historical resources archived at the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum, the Truman Library Institute has partnered with the German Marshall Fund of the United States to highlight the achievements of one of the most important American diplomatic initiatives of the 20th century. Commemorative exhibits are on display at GMF’s headquarters in Washington, D.C., highlighting the post-war crisis, President Truman’s recovery program, and the beginning of a new epoch in western Europe. Read More

Commencement Address at Princeton University | May 23, 2022

Commencement Address at Princeton University

Delivered at Princeton University on June 17, 1947, following the conferment of an honorary degree on Harry S. Truman, 33rd President of the United States of America

President Dodds, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen:

The President of Princeton University spoke of crises a while ago. He should try sitting in my chair for about an hour and a half!

It is with a great deal of pleasure, and much pride, that I am now able to count myself as a member of the Princeton family. Princeton University has conferred an honor upon me for which I am deeply grateful. I consider it a special privilege to have received the degree of Doctor of Laws at the Final Convocation of the Bicentennial Year in the presence of this distinguished company. Read More

Commencement Address at Princeton University

80th Birthday Greetings from President Johnson to Former President Truman | May 5, 2022

80th Birthday Greetings

from President Johnson to Former President Truman

On May 6, 1964, Harry S. Truman was in the Grand Ballroom of the Muehlebach Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri, attending a luncheon in his honor when he was informed that he had a telephone call from The White House. In his greetings, President Lyndon B. Johnson shared these words with the 33rd president, who guided the nation and the world through the perilous years following World War II: “When you blow out those candles, Mr. President, I hope you think of all the lights you have turned on during 80 years. They are still burning in Greece and Turkey and Western Europe and the Far East and in the hearts of your countrymen.” Thanks to the archival work of the presidential libraries, we have the full transcript of their phone conversation, which took place two days before President Truman’s 80th birthday. Read More

80th Birthday Greetings from President Johnson to Former President Truman