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tv   Harry Trumans Education  CSPAN  November 29, 2021 7:11am-7:41am EST

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slavery. >> welcome to our new program series. thank you for joining us today for our next trip down the track. i'm director of strategic initiative and host of our journey after a spectacular 20 money million dollar renovation. with fascinating galleries for films and stories. so before i give the all
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aboard a quick thank you to our generous whistle stop series sponsor. today we will travel to missouri at the turn of the century to explore truman's formative years. after watching truman and with the introduction film which was brilliantly detailed in the first episode in the whistle stop series, so to explore the origins of the very first thing that prepared him for the presidency. and with that hands-on interactive in the first room the gallery was idea to the construction of a strong foundation to lead in the
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presidency in this first life experience and personal relationships this includes when those that left a lasting impression on truman. so for today's journey we have a very special conductor is me. in addition to hosting whistle stop for the truman library institute for the nationally recognized renovation of the truman library and i am honored to be your conductor so i will take your tickets and let's get the locomotive rolling. although truman was a last of nine presidents not have a college degree and the only one of the 20th century he was far from uneducated at an early age he was an avid reader and would be throughout the rest of his life to history and fiction and poetry. david mccullough once said
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truman himself is a great student of history which is extremely important to understand if one wants to understand him. you will see as an famous classes like this at age 13. as a child his poor eyesight limited his ability to play sports or enjoy actor activities. instead he filled his time with reading and playing the piano. and in the galleries place several of the pieces that truman enjoyed playing. but piano playing is a whole story by itself so that's another day. at the stop we focus on the reading. this is a photograph of his brother. many years later in 1884 he
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would catch listeria before there was a vaccine it could be deadly especially in children. he was temporarily paralyzed in the arm and leg. so his sister said that's when he started to read so much he cannot do anything else and cannot get up without help you lie on the floor and put the books down on the floor in front of him and read that way. by his tenth birthday his mother gave him a four volume set great men and famous women ten and pencil sketches of the lives of 200 of the most prominent people in history. the four volumes were sold workmen and heroes. so it is not the original ones
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and then later he would recount be a seats as just of one of the turning points in his life. and then to gift him of the noble grecians in romans. and then the characteristics he hold dear and with the presidency. so today not only to what truman read and what he took away from it but how he put it to use. and with that literary bookshelf and then those individuals for far from the only books that truman read. and then something to fill the grandview farm so he gathered
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loose change which truly quickly consumed. and to copy that in longhand for the rest of his life. published in 1842 it captured his idealism and with the federation of our world and the kindly earth shellac in universal law. and then to take truman two or three books home every weekend and truman claimed by age 12.
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by age 14 and said he had read every volume at least 2000 books, three or 4000 by some estimations in the independent library which is seen here. on truman wrote to his friend and former secretary of state dean and justin about it. and believe it or not i read them all. maybe i was a damn fool but it served me well when my trial came. and then with those history or religion and then one of the classmates called truman a
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great historian remembering a particular instance with lively conversation that was between 1890 and 1892. and then when they started the group and how many were killed. of course truman had the answers. they wanted to call them mrs. even if they didn't do it because they had a lot of respect. the boys may not call him a sissy but he called himself a sissy when he recalled those years. looking back, truman said was far more than a romantic adventure. following instruction and why is teaching which somehow i
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felt i wanted and needed. i can see the history had extremely valuable lessons to teach. a leader is a man who has the ability to get other people to do what they don't want to do and like it. that is a collection of the truman library and that truman gathered from his readings. and said that shame was detestable and encourage truman wrote the virtue i called courage is taking care of those at home. and those would get to the world. and through his postwar democratic order down the track. and that truman wrote about
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what he believes is the ideal man. that must not be hypocritical. so with the student the only have his second grade report card on exhibit. but then he was a good student but not exceptional. with the future press secretary. so it was clear that truman had a special something. so perhaps the memory had change with the benefit of time i never thought he would
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be president and that was the first lady. after high school truman had ambitions to study law and finance but it was the family's finances and truman's duty to his family that led him through his careers. timekeeping for the railroad and working in banks and downtown commerce city with the employment application and a good employee. and with his diaries that we continue to read. just for fun. if you're familiar with the truman story the next leaves the family farm to serve in world war i.
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with the city's cathedral. but the books that they read are evident in the 30 years of public service providing ethical and moral guidance in making decisions whenever an issue arose. truman seen here look to history for inside of civil rights and the recognition of israel, fighting communism, postwar policy and whether or not he should run for another term. and those advisors and experts before making a decision. but the lesson he had taken away from his favorite book as a young boy were not far from his mind.
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and presiding judge jackson county wrote in an autobiographical manuscript which entitled the military career of the missouri and i found the first victory was over there urges. >> in referring to great men the way he found man anyway.
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that truman responded i.e. think so it would be not so much trouble. with his years of reading truman was aware of the fact demagogues and the bigotry. and as a descendent of confederates truman you he did not sit idly by any longer to do nothing of those injustices. and was civil-rights. as if they are living 80 years behind the times the sooner they come out of it the better it will be for the country and themselves. as we look forward.
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and then to inform truman of the great republic with a challenge to our democracy engine 16 number, 1949 inquiring about the red scare to the jefferson administration hysteria died down in the country did not go to hell and it will not now. and then a threat to democracy. and then to assess the situation. because it's just the history that we don't know. had we know truman read the bible? presumably the family bible twice before the age of 12?
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because he said so. once writing i will i great deal of my bible because i read it twice by the time i was 12. after joining the masonic large he became a 33-degree mason the highest order obtained by a president. his badge and pin and rings including the 33rd degree which he wore throughout the presidency are on exhibit. as well as the bible given to him and honor of the highest of the nation. and now we will let president truman tell you himself.
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>> the fundamental basis of this nation's ideals. like moses on mount sinai. they the basis of the constitution comes from the teachings we get from exodus and matthew and isaiah and st. paul. the sermon on the mount that maybe someday man will understand it. and then to do unto others as you would have them do unto you. treat others as you would like to be treated. and has no place in politics or government. but it is the only philosophy on which you can base a lasting government.
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>> one of truman's favorite songs was psalm 137. we wept when we remembered zion. and then in support of the jewish state. it's also believe that it allows them to return home to influence truman's views on the homeland. the idea resonated even though many in the political military establishment strongly oppose the idea. on may 14, 1948 declaring the provisional government to the state of israel it is a fascinating story from another whistle stop. that the roman military leader was famous for holding power no longer than necessary.
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by george washington truman admired the men's ability to know how and when to lay down the great power. truman had in mind when he wrote a memorandum he would not run for a third term in 1852. in my opinion, eight years the president is enough and sometimes too much for any man to serve in that capacity. there is a lower of power. you can get into a man's blood just like gambling and a lust for money has been known to do. this is a beautiful republic i want the country and as the country to continue as a republic. when ron forgot cincinnati's the downfall began. when we forget the examples of such men of washington, jefferson and jackson, all of them could have had a continuation of office. then we start down the road to
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dictatorship and ruin. they both inspired and then seen here in the home on delaware street independence missouri. and then to have himself truman answered no. i like to read myself awake. interesting to be in his bibliophile here is a list. these are commentaries. benjamin franklin's autobiography. with the struggle for statehood. and the complete works of lord byron.
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so little piece of advice from the president, it is been a lifelong program for me and if you start out even on this incomplete list is a lengthy study although worthwhile and keep you out of mischief. now i will turn over the control for the final thoughts on truman's literature. so in honor of the library's 50h anniversary in 2007. >> nolan who was harry truman's cousin wrote very perceptive things about truman. i don't know anybody in the world who ever read as much or as constantly as he did.
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and is what you would call a bookworm. history became a passion going through the standard works of ancient greece and rome. but it wasn't something in the book but it was a part of life and dissection of life of the former time. because it had to do with people. truman understands that history is human. he understood that history is not simple. and america is not simple. so there is no such thing as the past. nothing ever happened in the past. it only happened in the present. somebody else's president not ours. john adams, harry truman.
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are we remarkable? truman understood the english language. look at the famous speeches of the 1948 campaign. almost all delivered extemporaneously from the back of the train. look at the quality of the language. good, clear english language. if a one syllable word would suffice. just as abraham lincoln did. and then it had much to do with a classical education.
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or henry knox or general nathaniel green. and then you read the classics and english translations. a classical education is what they understood history to mean in the founding times. there was no american history so they read classical history which came the notion of honor, virtue, honesty, charact. character is destiny. and to study that in a living model look at the story very truman. common sense is not common and is full tear observed or how
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many before. truman understood that. interest value. >> the first real test of common sense of character and leadership is the subject of our next stop. on october 14 find out what happened i wouldn't be left out of the greatest history making efforts the world has ever seen and all there is to live for. you can find information about future installments
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>> how did your life change our guest, 1974? >> [laughter] drastically. first of all i grew up in alexandria in the same house

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