For Immediate Release: February 8, 1999
Contacts: Edeen Martin
816-268-8218
Truman Library and Museum

Michelle Manuel
816-842-1500
Barkley & Evergreen Public Relations

TRUMAN LIBRARY TO HONOR BIRTHDAY OF BESS WALLACE TRUMAN

First Lady Biographer Carl Anthony to Speak

(Independence, Mo.) - For most of her 97 years, the date February 13 found Bess Wallace Truman at home in Independence, quietly spending her birthday with family. One of her favorite gifts came on her birthday in 1952, when husband Harry presented her with a gold watch engraved, "To Mother, From Margie and Dad, Feb. 13, 1952." She wore it frequently, and kept it in her dresser drawer.

This year, the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum will celebrate what would have been Bess Truman's 114th birthday on Feb. 12 with a special program and book signing by nationally-recognized author and First Lady expert, Carl Anthony. This event is free and open to the public.

Beginning at 1:30 p.m. in the Truman Library auditorium, Mr. Anthony will speak on "The Political Influence and Power of First Ladies." Following his presentation, Mr. Anthony will be available for a book signing, and the Independence Pioneers Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will host a reception. To augment Mr. Anthony's presentation, a videotape of the 1950's television program, "Person to Person," featuring the Truman family will be shown at 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. in the Library auditorium.

Carl Anthony is the author of four books on First Ladies, including biographies of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Florence Harding. He writes regularly for George and American Heritage magazines, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, and Vanity Fair, among other publications. Anthony's 1994 interview series with First Ladies Rosalynn Carter, Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush and Hillary Clinton was carried in full by C-Span.

The Truman Library and Museum is located at U.S. Highway 24 and Delaware in Independence, Mo. The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursdays from 9 a. m. to 9 p.m., and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. The museum is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. Admission is $5 for adults, $4.50 for seniors, $3 for children ages 6 to 18, and free for children 5 years and under.

The Harry S. Truman Library is one of ten Presidential Libraries administered by the National Archives and Records Administration.

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