The spotlight did not appeal to Bess Truman. "She would return home to Independence as often as possible, leaving the President feeling very alone, often desolate," says historian David McCullough. "It's hard for some people to understand what she was like, and why the President was so devoted to her."
Narrator: Bess never wanted to be first lady. After just one month in the White House, Bess and Margaret went home to Independence.
David McCullough, Biographer: Bess did not like living in the White House. She felt very uncomfortable, very ill-at-ease with all the fanfare and the attention of the press. Particularly when photographers pressed in around her, she would freeze and become kind of old stone face. And get an expression that looked as if her feet hurt. The spotlight, the limelight, did not appeal to Bess Truman ever. And she would return home to Independence as often as possible. Leaving the President feeling very alone, often desolate. It's hard for some people to understand what she was like and why the President was so devoted to her. But he adored her there's no question about that.
Lyndon Johnson pushed progressive programs before the Vietnam War eroded his support. Part of the award-winning Presidents collection.
The stories of ordinary people in the tumultuous years after the Civil War, when America struggled to rebuild the Union.
The women's suffrage movement won the right to vote when the 19th Amendment passed in 1920.
After the Soviet blockade of West Berlin, British and American pilots delivered tons of food and fuel to the German city by airplane for nearly a year.
General Douglas MacArthur led American troops in World Wars I and II before being fired by President Harry Truman during the Korean War.
The staggering death tolls of the Civil War permanently altered the character of the republic and the psyche of the American people.
The story of a farm boy who rose from obscurity to become the most influential American innovator of the 20th century.
A peanut farmer who rose to become America's 39th president. Part of the award-winning Presidents collection.