For Immediate Release: September 9, 1997
Contacts: Larry Hackman
816-268-8200 , Ext. 223
Truman Library and Museum

Julie Goldsborough
or Dean Davison
Barkley & Evergreen Public Relations


Academy Award-Winning Producer Creates Film for Harry S. Truman Library

(Independence, Mo.) In his 88 years, Harry S. Truman was many things, including farmer, war hero, haberdasher, and President of the United States. He led his life with honesty and common sense and ran the country in much the same way. The remarkable life of this ordinary man is captured in "Harry S. Truman, 1884-1972," the Truman Library and Museum's new orientation film by producer Charles Guggenheim.

The 45-minute film traces the life of Harry S. Truman from his birth on a farm in Lamar, Mo., through his landmark presidency. Narrated by Truman biographer David McCullough, the film examines Truman's lengthy courtship of his wife, Bess Wallace, his service in World War I, his entry into local politics under "Boss" Tom Pendergast, his election to the U.S. Senate, and his rise to the Presidency.

Viewers come to understand the weight of the momentous decisions Truman had to make while President, including the bombing of Japan to end World War II, the Marshall Plan, the Berlin Airlift, the recognition of Israel and the Korean War.

The film was produced by Charles Guggenheim, who won Academy Awards for his films "The Johnstown Flood," "Nine from Little Rock," "A Time for Justice," and "RFK Remembered." Guggenheim has had three other films nominated for Academy Awards, including the 1995 film, "D-Day Remembered."

The film was commissioned by the Harry S. Truman Library Institute and produced with financial support from the Missouri Division of Tourism. Following its public premiere on Sept. 21, the film will be shown hourly in the auditorium of the Truman Library and Museum.

"Visitors to the Truman Library who watch this film will have an excellent overview of Harry Truman's life and Presidency and a great frame of reference from which to view the museum's exhibits," said Library Director Larry Hackman. "You won't see this film except at the Truman Library and, frankly, I think it's worth the trip here to view it on our big new screen. Guggenheim tells the Truman story beautifully, and he has found many fresh images to use in doing so."

Production of the film is yet another step towards the complete renovation of the Harry S. Truman Library's museum. In preparation for the Guggenheim film, the Library has enhanced its auditorium by acquiring new sound and projection equipment and a new and larger screen that is closer to the audience. The first phase of the museum renovation was the completion of the Oval Office replica and White House Gallery in 1995.

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 nine Presidential Libraries administered by the National Archives and Records Administration.

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