President Truman’s House
Former owner still enjoys his favorite place!
DESCRIPTION / HISTORY
This Victorian style house is a two story, 14-room home, which is now a museum, run by the National Parks Service: U.S. Department of the Interior, located at 219 North Delaware Street. After first watching the video about Harry Truman’s life at the Truman Visitor Center, located at 223 North Main Street, Tom and I bought tickets at the center and took the tour (first floor only), at the actual home which is about 3 blocks away in an older residential neighborhood.
As we walked through the first floor, it was like going back in time, because the decorum, the furnishings and the family’s special artifacts/treasures are just the same as when Harry died in 1972. Bess didn’t change much, and lived in the home until her death in 1982. The interior reflects the lives of 4 generations of one family.
We saw all the places which were near and dear to Harry and Bess on the first floor. We got to see their spacious back porch, their study, their library, their living room, family room and a kitchen which reflected the bells and whistles found in the 1950s, which suited the Trumans just fine. It is just like the Trumans stepped out for a moment on an errand.
The President Truman Home was called the “Summer White House.”
This Victorian home was originally built and extensively remodeled in 1883-85 by Bess Wallace Truman’s maternal grandfather George Porterfield. This is the home where Bess Wallace grew up. She wound up marrying the boy across the street, Harry Truman who often visited his Aunt and Uncle who lived at 216 N. Delaware, a home directly across from the Wallace/Porterfield home.
After a nine year courtship, Harry and Bess Truman were married and they moved into the Wallace/Porterfield home and stayed there, making the mansion their main home, from 1919 to the time of their deaths.
As much as Harry loved this oasis, he found himself more and more tied to Washington D.C., though he tried to get home when he could. After he finished his second term as President in 1957, he retired from politics and headed home to Independence, where he spent the last 15 years of his life.
Spirit of President Truman
He has been seen by staff visiting his beloved home. It makes sense that his spirit may be tempted to visit his old oasis on occasion, especially since everything was kept the same!
On occasion, his apparition has been seen relaxing in his living room, by the staff of his museum.
The smell of his favorite brandy sometimes wafts through the house.
On occasion, he has been seen walking around the sidewalks near his home.
- Harry S Truman Pamphlet, by National Park Service, US Department of the Interior.
Our Haunted Paranormal Stories are Written by Julie Carr