Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, Kansas

The Dwight D. Eisenhower Library is part of the National Archives and Records Administration. The Presidential Library preserves papers, audiovisual materials, and other historical items relating to President Eisenhower. Contact the library for information about access to the library’s collections. The adjoining museum depicts President Eisenhower’s life and career. Five major galleries include exhibits ranging from presidential gifts from the world’s heads of state to highlights of Mamie Eisenhower as First Lady to the simple artifacts of everyday life. The Place of Meditation is the final resting place of the President, his wife and their first-born son, Doud Dwight Eisenhower.

Abilene is located on I-70 approximately 150 miles west of Kansas City and 90 miles north of Wichita on K-15. The Eisenhower Library is about 2 miles south of I-70 on K-15.

Harry S. Truman Library and Museum, Missouri

The Harry S. Truman Library and Museum is part of the Presidential Library system administered by the National Archives and Records Administration. The Library preserves the papers and other materials produced during and before Truman’s presidency. The Truman Library’s collections are available to all researchers on an equal basis. A small portion of the library’s manuscript collection, less than one percent of the total volume, is restricted and not open to research (primarily for national security reasons). Visit the library’s Web site or contact the library staff for further information.

Harry S Truman Library (500 W US Highway 24, Independence, MO 64050) is approximately 35 miles from Kansas City International Airport, about three miles east of the Winner Road exit off I-435 (Kansas City’s circle highway). from the airport: east and south on I-435 (Kansas City’s circumferential highway) approximately 32 miles, to the Winner Road exit (Winner Road becomes U.S. Highway 24), and then east 3 miles to the library, which is prominently visible on the north side of U.S. Highway 24.; from the north: I-35 to I-435 south to Winner Road/U.S. Highway 24 east.; from the east: I-70 to Noland Road north (about 5 miles) to U.S. Highway 24 west (about 1 mile). Watch carefully for the Truman Library direction sign at the intersection of Noland Road and U.S. Highway 24.; from the south: I-35 to I-435 east and north, to Winner Road/U.S. Highway 24 east.; from the west: I-70 to I-435 north, to Winner Road/U.S. Highway 24 east.

Harry S Truman National Historic Site, Missouri

Harry S Truman (1884-1972), 33rd President of the United States, lived from 1919 until his death in a white Victorian house at 219 North Delaware Street in Independence, Missouri. The house was known as the “Summer White House” during the Truman administration (1945-1953). Harry S Truman National Historic Site includes the Independence home and the Truman Farm Home in Grandview, Missouri, both within the Kansas City metropolitan area. Built in 1894 by Harry Truman’s maternal grandmother, the Farm Home is the centerpiece of a 5.25-acre remnant of the family’s former 600-acre farm. Mr. Truman worked the farm as a young man, from 1906-1917.

The visitor center is located at the intersection of Truman Road and Main Street, in historic Fire Station No.1. From the north or south, take I-435 to the Truman Road exit. Travel east on Truman Road three miles (you’ll pass the Truman Home at Delaware Street). From the east or west, take I-70 to the Noland Road exit. Travel north on Noland Road four miles to Truman Road. Turn west on Truman Road and travel two blocks. To Grandview: The Truman Farm Home is located amid the retail and commercial district along Blue Ridge Boulevard. From the east or west, take I-435 and exit southbound on Route 71. From the north or south, travel Route 71 and take the Blue Ridge Boulevard exit. Travel west one mile. The Farm Home is on the left, set back from the road.

American Jazz Museum, Kansas City, Missouri

In early twentieth-century Kansas City, segregation confined the African American community to a neighborhood around 18th and Vine, isolated from the white world. In this neighborhood, the black community cultivated two forms of jazz music, swing, which was born in Kansas City, and Bebop, which came from elsewhere but grew and developed in the city. Kansas City now celebrates its jazz heritage at the American Jazz Museum. The museum features permanent exhibits on jazz greats Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong, Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Charlie “Bird” Parker. The “Studio 18th and Vine” exhibit displays the components of a working music studio with five listening stations to each visitors about the instrumental sections of a jazz band. A resource center called “Jazz Central” houses a collection of research materials, Internet access to jazz-related Web sites, and more than 100 great jazz recordings. The museum’s “Blue Room” recreates the old nightclub of the same name, which was one of the hottest venues in the 18th and Vine District during the 1930’s and 1940’s. The Blue Room displays exhibits on the Kansas City jazz heritage by day, and serves four nights a week as a working jazz club featuring local and national jazz artists. The Charlie Parker Memorial Plaza, featuring a 17-foot bronze reflection of “Bird,” is located just west of the American Jazz Museum at 17th and Vine. Charles Christopher Parker was born in Kansas City, Kansas, August 29,1920, but he cultivated his craft in the Missouri city. The museum is housed with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in 18th and Vine Complex, in the heart of Kansas City’s historic African American neighborhood.

Santa Fe National Historic Trail

From 1821 to 1880, the Santa Fe Trail was the main commercial route connecting Missouri and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Prior to the Mexican War, the trail was used by Mexican and American traders across the international boundary. In 1846, the Army of the West used the trail to invade New Mexico. After the war ended in 1848, the trail became a national road connecting the United States to the new southwest territories. The trail was used by stage coach lines, gold seekers heading to the California and Colorado gold fields, adventurers, fur trappers, and emigrants. The trail declined when the railroad reached Santa Fe in 1880. The Santa Fe National Historic Trail extends from the site of Old Franklin, Missouri to Santa Fe, New Mexico, crossing Kansas, southeastern Colorado, and the Oklahoma panhandle along the way. Numerous historic sites are found along the trail route. Some of these sites, such as Pecos National Historic Park, are managed by the National Park Service. Others are owned and managed by other Federal agencies. Many sites, however, are ‘certified’ by the National Park Service in a partnership agreement between the Park Service and a private land owner, agency, or private organization. These certified sites are open and available at the discretion of the landowners and may require prior permission before your visit. Contact the trail administrators at the address below for touring information.

Links: Santa Fe Trail National Historic Trail

Jefferson National Expansion Memorial

Thomas Jefferson recorded what he considered to be his greatest
achievements on his tombstone: ” “Here was buried Thomas Jefferson, Author of
the Declaration of Independence of the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom
and Father of the University of Virginia.” With respects to the great man, he
may have neglected at least one of his enduring legacies: the territorial
expansion of the United States. Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase, and the Lewis
and Clark expedition that he sent out to explore it, more than doubled the size
of the United States and brought the country’s territorial claims to the Pacific
Ocean. Jefferson National Expansion Memorial commemorates the Louisiana Purchase
and the Lewis and Clark expedition in the city from which the explorers set out.
The memorial consists of the Gateway Arch, the Museum of Westward Expansion, and
St. Louis’ Old Courthouse. The arch is 630 feet of stainless steel from which
you can get a magnificent view of the Mississippi River and the St. Louis area.
For those of you afraid of heights (OK, we talking to ourselves here), it sways
only one inch in a 20-mph wind, and is built to sway up to 18 inches. The Museum
of Westward Expansion, located below the Arch, is as large as a football field
and contains an extensive collection of artifacts, mounted animal specimens, an
authentic American Indian tipi, and an overview of the Lewis and Clark
expedition. Just two blocks west of the Arch, the Old Courthouse is one of the
oldest buildings in St. Louis, dating from1839. The courthouse was the site of
the first two trials in the notorious Dred Scott case, which were held in 1847
and 1850. Today, the building houses a museum charting the history of the city
of St. Louis and restored courtrooms.

Location Map and Directions: Click Here

Links: Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Homepage