Friday, September 28, 2012

BOOK WEEKEND: GOING HOME TO GLORY

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I haven't watched any movies this week. I've been too busy reading and giving good lovin' to Elvis Aaron Schwarz.

Hi! Remember me?
I'm Elvis Aaron Schwarz.
Janie gave me lots of good lovin' and I gave her three books she's never read.


That Elvis Aaron Schwarz. He's a keeper.

I haven't started reading the books he gave me because I want to finish what I'm reading right now. For your reading pleasure, however, I'd like to suggest a book I read recently called Going Home To Glory. It's David Eisenhower's account of the end of his grandfather's (Dwight Eisenhower's) presidency, his grandfather's move to Gettysburg with wife Mamie, and eventually, his grandfather's death.

Julie Nixon Eisenhower co-authors.

I found David Eisenhower's memories of his grandfather quite sweet and endearing. I thinks it's especially poignant when the family arrives at a welcome ceremony in Gettysburg, and David recalls that he couldn't run to his grandfather:

My sisters and I had taken places among a crowd of grade school classmates. I had seen my grandfather many times on television, as he returned from trips overseas, or addressed Congress or the United Nations. I had seen documentaries about his role during World Was II, and I had ridden with him in the presidential limousine through parades and motorcades, but I had never watched him as part of a crowd. The connection between the man on a television screen and the man I knew had always been somewhat abstract. I had never comprehended the barriers between Granddad and others, or experienced them as others had. I realized that if I ran forward that night to the podium, a policeman would restrain me and that I would wreck the decorum of the ceremony. This tugged at me slightly. Yet looking around me, all the people I knew seemed to regard the sight of Granddad on the platform addressing the crowd, waving, being blinded by cameras, ringed by police, as perfectly natural. This, I thought, either set me part from my friends or set me apart from my grandfather. It occurred to me I had not fully appreciated that familiar and now suddenly distant bald, silhouetted figure being serenaded and honored by my friends.

David Eisenhower goes on to recount many interesting stories about "Granddad," who seems to have been a rather stern taskmaster, yet loving and generous grandfather. One year, Granddad even fired young David from his summer job at the Eisenhower home.

The Eisenhower home in Gettysburg is the only house Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower ever owned because of the many moves they made during the General's career with the Army. We visited the house one summer and found it very interesting. It's fun to read David Eisenhower's recollections of a place I've actually seen. I remember the sun porch, where it was said the Eisenhowers liked to watch TV. David recalls his granddad as a remote control hog.

David also points out that when his grandfather left the presidency, he regained the title of "General," which was for life, whereas "President" is only for the time in office. I wish David Eisenhower had more to say about his grandmother, Mamie. He mentions that she often spent the day in bed. I read an article some time ago that stated Mamie Eisenhower suffered from depression. Perhaps this is the reason David remembers his grandmother staying in bed. Anyway, I'm curious about the former First Lady, and I feel a bit sorry for her. Next up in the White House was the stylish and sophisticated Jackie Kennedy. Poor Mamie was then considered rather dowdy.

If you have any interest in history or these unique memories of a famous family's relationship, then I recommend you read Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life With Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961 - 1969. You can purchase the book at amazon.com by clicking on the following link:

http://www.amazon.com/Going-Home-Glory-Eisenhower-1961-1969/dp/B007BWD0U2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1348870400&sr=1-1&keywords=going+home+to+glory+a+memoir+of+life+with+dwight+d.+eisenhower.+1961-1969

This book has The Janie Junebug Seal of Approval.

I'm sorry, but you have to go to amazon
to "Click to LOOK INSIDE." There you also can ask the Amazons
to send a copy to you, if you pay for it.


Visiting the Eisenhower's home in Gettysburg also has The Janie Junebug Seal of Approval. Touring the battlefield is fascinating and quite moving. Following the battlefield with a visit to the house is rather soothing after hours of imagining the horrors of battle. Besides, it's a beautiful house.

However, I do not recommend visiting The Eisenhower Presidential Museum in Abilene, Kansas, unless you are a huge Eisenhower fan or scholar. It is one of only two presidential museums that has bored me. The other is Herbert Hoover's. At least I can guarantee that if you visit these museums you aren't likely to contend with crowds of worshipful onlookers.

Happy Reading!

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug




14 comments:

  1. My great grandfather was secret service to six presidents. His unpublished memoirs are all the history I need. :)

    But this could be a great gift idea for Tony.

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    1. That's so interesting about your great grandfather, Juli. Could I possibly read his memoir? I'd be glad to pay you for the copies. I love presidential history.

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    2. Wow, those memoirs must be fascinating. Have you ever considered having them published?

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  2. Sounds like a good book. And I like the looks of Elvis Aaron Schwarz. LOL!

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    1. A number of people have mentioned that Elvis looks familiar to them, but they can't quite place him.

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  3. Yes, that Elvis is a handsome devil! Now I am wondering what books he gave you to read. ;)

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    1. You'll find out when I review them, Rita.

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  4. This sounds like a book I would really enjoy. It's always fun to read about a person of historical significance from a more personal viewpoint. I remember when Ike died... in '69 or thereabouts, maybe? If his grandson remembers him as being a remote control hog, they must have gotten new electronic gadgets before most of us. I don't remember seeing a TV remote control until the '70s. (Of course, it's entirely possible that we were simply BEHIND in getting the latest electronic gadgets...)

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    1. Yes, Ike died in 1969. It also occurred to me that he had electronic gadgets not yet available to the rest of us, but my family was very slow in getting things. We didn't have a color TV until the mid '70s.

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  5. Dear Janie, I've been to only one presidential library: President Harry S. Truman. It's right here in Independence and is quite innovative and instructive. Having been raised a Democrat, I did not appreciate President Dwight Eisenhower when he was in office. But I did appreciate all he'd done to help us win the war in the European Theater. Only later in life, when I began to read history, did I understand what he'd done for us as a president--one of the most notable things being the super highway system we have, which links all parts of the country. (That infrastructure surely needs much work in 2012, but I don't hear either presidential candidate talking about this.) I'll look for the book at the library. Peace.

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    1. I love the Truman library, Dee. I think it's a lovely and fascinating place.

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  6. To JULI: Like Janie, I would love to have a copy!!
    I'd also pay you for it!

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    1. The votes are in! Juli, We want to read that memoir.

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  7. I'll have to see if I can find out what happened to them, I had them in college, then they went back to my mother. He was commissioned to do them once he retired, and became head of the FBI in RI. They were unfinished which is why they were never published. I'll look into it...

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