Plan B

So we didn’t make it to Adena or the Serpent Mounds. But it was a great day yesterday!! Friday night, Callie & I stayed up most of the night with her tooth hurting (why do these things always happen on Friday nights?), so Saturday turned out to be a not-so-great day to drive six hours round trip. We gals ended up at the dentist’s office Saturday morning resulting in Callie’s tooth feeling much better & Keith getting the lawn mowed. Good thing, too. The dandelions were up to about 8 inches taller than the grass & with rain forecast for most of the coming week, it was getting to be a desperate situation. Callie & I got to cuddle for a sweet nap in the afternoon & then we went to my brother & SIL’s for dinner with a missionary friend, Jim Arnold. Good times.

Plan B for Mother’s Day turned out to be wonderfully fun. Having lived within an hour of President Harding’s home for all but about six years of my life, it is ridiculous that I’ve never toured there. One of Keith’s perks to being a part of all these clubs this last year is a family membership to any & all Ohio Historical sites allowing us free admission. So, with the baby coming smack dab in the middle of the summer, we plan to take advantage of our membership & take day trips around to these historical sites we’ve had on the back burner to visit, the Harding Home being one of them. I had actually planned to go with the kids some Saturday since Keith’s been through with his History gang several times already, but it was wonderful going all together. The kids were great and we had our own personal tour guide who really knew her stuff.

Highlights…

– Getting to hear President Harding’s voice on his victrola as his campaign record was played for us in his library. He sold these records containing his plan for “return to normalcy” (don’t you love his wordage?) after The War on one side, with some tunes of the times on the other. The artists volunteered their songs because all proceeds went to the Red Cross relief effort to help Europe rebuild after WWI. Pretty ingenious!!
– Having Anders ask questions like, “Was he a red coat or a blue coat?” & “Where are their goldfish?”, raising his hand ever so sweetly for each one.
– Callie raising her hand & then asking if the tour was over. She was tired.
– Nate noticing the buckeye tree in the front yard.
– The kids listening intently as the guide told about the “haunted clock” in the front room. Nate kept telling the two littles there’s no such thing as ghosts & Anders kept insisting he’d seen one before. (See this post for more on Anders & ghosts.)
– Finding a sundial, although it was raining. We’ll have to come back & check it out in action. We’ve been looking for one since Callie had that in a science lesson early in the year.

(Harding on his front porch in a 1920 speech.)

Most of what I’d heard about the Hardings was rather negative through the years. The tour guide gave us the good stuff which was nice to hear. He reduced taxed by 25% in his two & a half years. Pretty impressive! They didn’t have an inaugural ball because they strongly felt it was not right to use taxpayer’s money on that kind of frivolity. They had no children, so 98% of the Hardings’ things are still in the house – the most we have of any president. We had heard a few rumors locally that were cleared up for us today, one being that the real reason he got the women’s vote was because he was the only person on the ballot who supported the suffrage movement. The rumors that he won because it was the first time women had the right to vote & he was so handsome had always been suspicious to me. In my book, he’s no looker! Anyway, I guess there were seven men on the ballot & he won with 60% of the vote, so he was pretty popular. He was the fourth & last to run a front porch campaign. (I always thought he was the only one.) We finished the tour with a quick romp around the Memorial.

All in all, I’m psyched for the weekend coming up. We are going to tour the Hermitage on Friday morning. That will make the 5th presidential home we will have toured (Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Harding & Jackson). That’s an interesting mix there on that list, huh? One of these days, we need to stop & see Reagan’s childhood home in Illinois. Oh, & one of the other seven Ohio Presidents’ homes.


One response to “Plan B

  • Charley

    If you look close in that picture you might see Grandpa Royal. I remember him telling that he sat on his dad’s shoulders at that speech – I believe.
    Also, one of Dad’s aunts – I think- worked for the Hardings in that house and when he was elected President – they wanted her to go with them but she did not want to move all the way to DC and so she stayed here but they gave here a lamp from their home. It was later converted from a gas lamp to electric and Gary & Marilyn now have it.

    Glad you had a good time!

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