From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The First President I Remember

I liked Ike.


Seen in a flea market in Cave City, KY
Dwight D. Eisenhower is the first U.S. President that I remember. We didn't have television in the 1950s, so I knew him from the radio and from pictures in magazines and newspapers.

President Eisenhower took office when I was one year old and served until I was nine.  I had the deepest respect and greatest awe for him that a little country girl could muster.

I remember telling my brother once that I wished we had television just so I could see the President.

Dwight was five years older than me and more sophisticated. He didn't share my reverence. "What would be so great about that?" he asked. His scorn shocked me!

I don't remember my reply, but I'm sure I didn't explain myself well. Even 50 years later, it's hard to explain the position of high honor that President Eisenhower held in my little heart and mind.

Related: 
I Grew Up In Radio Land

5 comments:

Kenneth Fred Hilf said...

Hey"G": President DDI's picture in your photo seems to be pre WWII honors which is great! I still have the little metal "I like Ike" button that folded around my lapel. And... it's on display in my work shop for any old visitor's wonderment &
your blog total efforts continues to be amazing right on!
Most Sincerely, kfH~(:-))-

Collagemama said...

I have an "I Like Ike" button, too. I found it in Mom's things. Really don't remember much of anything before the Kennedy-Nixon debate on tv. My parents had an LP of Ethel Merman in "Call Me Madam" with the "We like Ike, and Ike is good on a mike" song.

Genevieve said...

We inherited some old campaign buttons from Dennis's dad. In them, there's an "Ike & Dick". I don't think there's an "I like Ike", though.

Thanks for joining the blog, Kenneth!

Elaine said...

My first President in memory was Harry S. Truman. I well recall the 'I Like Ike' election campaign (though we were staunch Democrats in favor of Adlai Stevenson, who could not overcome the reverence in which DDE was held by the many veterans and families of the men who went to war.) My biggest memory: reading a headline in 'The Saturday Evening Post,' which went something like, IKE CALLED MacARTHUR SOB.' I went in the kitchen with the magazine and asked my parents, "What's a 'sob?'" (pronouncing it as a word, not an acronym.) They both laughed out loud...and never did explain! (I made a point of explaining whenever my own children asked a question, even if it was a bit of a toughie; I have never forgotten the sense of frustration and confusion--though at least eventually I understood their mirth.)

Genevieve said...

Thanks for that great story, Elaine. I was interested that you saw that story in a magazine. News printed on paper was very important in those days -- now, not so much.

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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

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