Dwight D. Eisenhower, born in Texas and raised in Kansas, was appointed Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces during World War II and then elected President of the United States in 1952. He was serving as President when I was born in 1954. The only home that he and his wife Mamie ever owned was their Gettysburg, PA, farm which was purchased in 1950. During his two terms as President, Eisenhower used the farm as a weekend retreat and “temporary White House.” The house and grounds are now a National Historic Site (717/338-9114; www.nps.gov/eise/ ).
Tickets must be purchased at the Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor Center, and shuttle bus service is available from there. The reception center contains exhibits, a 10-minute video on Eisenhower’s life, and a bookstore. Although Mamie lived in the house until she died in 1979, the house has been restored to what it was like during the 1950s when Ike and Mamie lived there. I am just barely old enough to remember “I Like Ike.” We took the Eisenhower house tour Wednesday afternoon following our visit to the Gettysburg Battlefield Visitor Center.