Quintin and I left the Indianapolis Zoo a little after 3:00pm, and headed over to Delaware Street to the Home of President Benjamin Harrison, our nation’s 23rd president who was an Indiana citizen.

This was my third visit to the Home of President Benjamin Harrison, and his wife, Caroline Scott Harrison. Our docent, Bob, was very good, and very thorough with the right balance of information. What I appreciated most was that he did not editorialize by offering his opinion as so many guides do, especially those associated with the National Park Service at the Lincoln home in Springfield, Illinois. The tour was, to me, one of the best I’ve attended in years.

Benjamin Harrison was born on his father’s farm in North Bend, Ohio, and moved to Indianapolis when he was 21.  Benjamin’s great-grandfather signed the Declaration of Independence, and his grandfather, William Henry Harrison was our 9th president; his father represented Ohio in the US House of Representatives. Benjamin Harrison, prior to assuming the presidency, was a distinguished officer in the Civil War, and a United States Senator.

 Please follow the link to more information on this president’s life, and public service; Harrison’s contributions are sorely overlooked, and underestimated.

The Harrison Home history was quite fascinating, as outlined by Bob. I felt I learned more about the house, the man, and the family on this tour than on my previous two.  I am convinced, after today’s tour, President Harrison’s home is right at the top of the list of presidential homes due to the tremendous amount of authentic items within the home. Bob presented a superb picture of Benjamin Harrison, the man, without embellishment, or suggestions of sainthood. And, I learned that one of Harrison’s granddaughters is still living!  How neat is that?

On the third floor, in what was once a ballroom, is a collection of political memorabilia, with a very nice tribute to Wendell L. Willkie who was born, and raised in my home town of Elwood, Indiana.  Willkie, a Republican living in Rushville, Indiana, ran against incumbent Franklin Roosevelt in the 1940 presidential election. I was quite proud of my hometown-roots connection to this man, and grateful to the Harrison home staff for establishing a prominent display in the museum.

The City of Indianapolis should be very proud of this historical gem!  As a native Hoosier, I am quite taken with this connection to one of our celebrated state-citizens.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Advertisements