TOPEKA (KSNT) – Tomorrow marks the 125th anniversary of the birth of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States and a native Kansan. Governor Sam Brownback has issued a statement commemorating the birth of the general known as Ike who served as president from 1953 to 1961. He was born October 14, 1890.
According to the official White House website, Eisenhower brought his prestige as commanding general of the victorious forces in Europe during World War II to the presidency. Gen. Eisenhower obtained a truce in Korea and worked incessantly during his two terms to ease the tensions of the Cold War. Click here to read his official White House biography.
“Men like Dwight D. Eisenhower are rare among us,” Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback said. “They embody the qualities to which we all aspire – honor, integrity, courage and steadfast commitment to family, faith and country. On this anniversary of his birth, we rightly feel pride that he called Kansas home.”
Brownback continued: “Eisenhower’s legacy is of a man who understood the need for military force to defeat the world’s enemies and the importance of building a lasting peace and a prosperous America. Despite his many accomplishments, he remained simply ‘Ike,’ a boy from Abilene Kansas, a devoted husband and father. A great American.
“As Governor, I support efforts to memorialize the accomplishments and values that Eisenhower embodied by building a national monument which represents those values for which Eisenhower so valiantly fought. On this 125th anniversary of his birth, let us pause to remember his many accomplishments and take pride in the fact that he, like us, called Kansas home.”
Eisenhower’s Presidential Library, Museum and boyhood home are located in Abilene, Kansas in Dickinson County, just to the west of Geary County. In his speech at the groundbreaking ceremonies on October 13, 1959, President Eisenhower said: “When this library is filled with documents, and scholars come here to probe into some of the facts of the past half century, I hope that they, as we today, are concerned primarily with the ideals, principles, and trends that provide guides to a free, rich, peaceful future in which all peoples can achieve ever-rising levels of human well-being.” Click here to visit the Eisenhower Presidential Library’s official website.
Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower retired to their dream farm home in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in 1961 following his final term in office. They spent eight years of contented retirement together before the President died, after a long illness, on March 28, 1969. First Lady Mamie Eisenhower lived on the farm until her death more than a decade later. They are buried on the Eisenhower Presidential Library grounds in Abilene, KS. Their Gettysburg, PA home and farm is now the Eisenhower National Historic Site.
The Eisenhower’s grandson David Eisenhower is married to President Richard Nixon’s daughter Julie. Nixon served as Eisenhower’s Vice President. The 67-year-old presidential grandson is the namesake of Camp David, the presidential retreat. He has worked as an author and professor. The presidential couple’s eldest granddaughter, Anne Eisenhower, is an interior designer based in New York City. Granddaughter Susan Eisenhower is President of the Eisenhower Group, Inc, which provides strategic counsel on political, business, and public affairs projects according to Wikipedia. Mary, the youngest granddaughter, lives in the Kansas City area and worked to help re-elect Kansas Governor Sam Brownback during an intense re-election campaign for his second term. She recently made an appearance where her grandfather’s name was added to the Walk of Honor at the Kansas State Capitol.
According to the Kansas Historical Society, a Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, DC near the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is in the planning stages. While the family supports the construction of the memorial, many have publicly opposed the proposed design. Most the current generation of the family sit on the Eisenhower Family Foundation board in Abilene.