Mr. President: The First Publication from the Personal Diaries, Private Letters, Papers, and Revealing Interviews of Harry S. Truman, Thirty-Second President of the United States of America

By William Hillman; Harry Truman | Go to book overview

PART FOUR
Forebears and Biographical Notes

I

PRESIDENT TRUMAN is a descendant of early American pioneers who came from England, Northern Ireland and Germany. These pioneers settled in New England, New York, Maryland and Virginia and some of their many offspring moved westward to Kentucky and Ohio and thence to Missouri and others farther south to South Carolina and Texas.

Most of his forebears based their lives on the land, either as landed gentry or farmers, and many took active part in local community life as officials of one sort or another, and as soldiers.

The land still has a strong hold on President Truman who, "like Cincinnatus," hopes to return to the "plow" in the remaining years of his life. The President still owns the farm that Solomon Young, his maternal grandfather, settled on near Grandview, Missouri, in 1842.

The four grandparents of the President were born in Kentucky. On his father's side, Anderson Shippe Truman lived near Bagdad in Shelby County and Mary Jane Holmes about three miles northwest of Shelbyville. On his mother's side, Solomon Young lived south of Long Run station and Harriet Louise Gregg had her home three miles northwest of Simpsonville. All of his grandparents migrated to Missouri about one hundred years ago. They were among the earliest settlers of Westport Landing, which today is Kansas City, Missouri.

President Truman was born in Lamar, Missouri. The birth certificate shows only "Harry S. Truman." I asked the President what the "S" stood for. The President explained, "I was supposed to be named Harrison Shippe (Shippe is spelled both with and without an 'e' in the family records) Truman, taking the middle name from my paternal grandfather. But others in the family wanted my middle name to be Solomon, taken from my

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Mr. President: The First Publication from the Personal Diaries, Private Letters, Papers, and Revealing Interviews of Harry S. Truman, Thirty-Second President of the United States of America
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Table of Contents *
  • Foreword 1
  • Part One - Problems of the Presidency 7
  • Part Two - Student of History 81
  • Part Three - Diaries, Private Memoranda, Papers 107
  • Part Four - Forebears and Biographical Notes 151
  • Part Five - The Man 195
  • Part Six - The President Speaks of the Future 241
  • Afterword 251
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