A Presidential Farewell
Truman’s Farewell Address to the Nation
On January 15, 1953, President Truman delivered his farewell address to the nation.
In a mere 24 minutes, President Truman spoke about the peaceful transition of power, the presidency and presidential decision-making, forging alliances, containing the Soviet threat and the Cold War, the Korean Conflict, the use of atomic power, the White House renovation, and the American people.
The 3,757-word address was broadcast nationwide from the Oval Office at 10:30 p.m.
Read on for some of our favorite excerpts from President Truman’s Farewell Address.
The late, great Harry S. Truman was quoted as saying, “I don’t believe in little plans. You can always amend a big plan, but you can never expand a little one.” And his Presidential Library in Independence, Missouri stands testament to the fact he lived by those words.
The Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum holds many educational exhibits and hosts various events, all aimed at providing a place where the public can learn about this great Democracy, the United States of America. Your membership gift helps maintain this outstanding endeavor for generations to come.
As a member of this great institution, The Harry S. Truman Library and Museum you will be supporting something far more than a library, far more just a museum, you will be joining Harry Truman’s own dream when he built this vast library. You will be helping to provide present and future generations an invaluable place of learning.
From the Desk of Harry S. Truman: Presidential Debate Advice
Fifty-six years ago today, Democratic Presidential nominee John F. Kennedy debated then-Vice President and Republican nominee Richard M. Nixon in the first-ever televised debate. More than 65 million people viewed the debate. Harry and Bess Truman were two of those viewers.Two days later, President Truman sent a telegram to Senator Kennedy with a single piece of advice for future debates. What did the former president write to the future president?
Free museum admission, History Alive! programs, Preamble Challenge and more on
Saturday, September 17
“We venerate these documents not because they are valuable historical relics, but because they still have meaning for us. So long as we govern our Nation by the letter and the spirit of the Bill of Rights, we can be sure that our Nation will grow in strength and wisdom and freedom.”
—Harry S. Truman
Presidential Proclamation 2976: “Olympic Week”
May 16, 1952
Whereas, by a joint resolution approved this day, the congress has noted that “the XVth Olympic Games of the modern era will be held at Helsinki, Finland, from July 19 through August 3, 1952” and that “experiences afforded by the Olympic Games make a unique contribution to common understanding and mutual respect among all peoples”; and
1948 Democratic National Convention
Truman’s Acceptance Speech
On July 15, 1948, President Truman delivered the following remarks after receiving his party’s presidential nomination. The address was delivered at 2 a.m. in Convention Hall in Philadelphia and carried on a nationwide radio broadcast.
In 1948, nearly everyone – The New York Times, LIFE Magazine and even Bess Truman – believed Harry Truman would lose the 1948 presidential election. But 68 years ago, the Democratic National Committee understood the power of branding through personal storytelling. We found the proof in the digital archives of the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum and this 1948 graphic biography of Truman’s life, published by the DNC:
President Truman’s Address Before the NAACP
On June 29, 1947, as the first American president to address the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Harry Truman pledges his support for upholding the civil rights of all Americans.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY: June 6, 1944
President Roosevelt’s D-Day Prayer
In a national radio broadcast on June 6, 1944, as 160,000 Allied troops land in Normandy in an attempt to liberate France, President Franklin D. Roosevelt asks “my fellow Americans” to join him in this prayer: