Thursday, January 21, 2010


Harry Truman: Harry Truman was a different kind of President. He probably made as many, or more important decisions regarding our nation's history as any of the other 32 Presidents preceding him. However, a measure of his greatness may rest on what he did after he left the White House.

The only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which was in Independence Missouri. His wife had inherited the house from her mother and father and other than their years in the White House, they lived their entire lives there.

When he retired from office in 1952, his income was a U.S. Army pension reported to have been $13,507.72 a year. Congress, noting that he was paying for his stamps and personally licking them, granted him an 'allowance' and, later, a retroactive pension of $25,000 per year..

After President Eisenhower was inaugurated, Harry and Bess drove home to Missouri by themselves. There was no Secret Service following them.

When offered corporate positions at large salaries, he declined, stating, "You don't want me. You want the office of the President, and that doesn't belong to me. It belongs to the American people and it's not for sale."

Even later, on May 6, 1971, when Congress was preparing to award him the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday, he refused to accept it, writing, "I don't consider that I have done anything which should be the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise."

As president he paid for all of his own travel expenses and food.

Modern politicians have found a new level of success in cashing in on the Presidency, resulting in untold wealth. Today, many in Congress also have found a way to become quite wealthy while enjoying the fruits of their offices. Political offices are now for sale. (sic. Illinois )

Good old Harry Truman was correct when he observed, "My choices in life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference!”



  1. I was doing some research in the National Archives a couple of years ago and came across an Ordnance Corps inspection of the four guns of D Btry 129th FA, (Capt Harry S. Truman Commanding) that showed his guns to be excellently maintained (and having all their gear) despite being heavily employed. Whatever Harry Truman was he was a helluva Btry Commander. This was no light inspection either, another Btry got slammed.

  2. I read a biography of Harry Truman, and it covered his WWI exploits. Apparently his unit saw heavy combat, and the men in his command loved him, because although he drove them; he worked just as hard as they did, every inch of the war.

  3. According to Mr Truman’s biography - the greatest ever accolade bestowed upon him was not that of being President of the USA but of being the Grand Master Mason of Missouri instead - his Secret Service detail were all Masons too thus enabling him to be the only sitting President to regularly attend his Masonic meetings.

    TBD (Scotland)