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Dear Harry, Love Bess

Bess Truman’s Letters to Harry Truman, 1919–1943

This book can be downloaded and read in iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

One evening in 1955, Harry Truman came home to find Bess burning her letters to him. “What are you doing? Think of history,” he said. “Oh, I have,” she said and tossed in another stack.
Bess Truman thought her business was hers and nobody else’s, so she destroyed her half of the more than 2,600 letters she and Harry exchanged during their courtship and marriage. While making an inventory of the Truman home in the 1980s, archivists discovered 180 letters Bess had missed. Her grandson Clifton Truman Daniel shares them here, along with portions of Harry’s responses, family photographs, and stories. These letters provide new insight into the lives and personalities of Bess and Harry Truman during the formative years of his political life. Despite Bess’s shy and self-effacing manner, her lively correspondence offers a glimpse of a caring and witty woman who shared her concerns about family, politics, and day-to-day activities with her husband.

From Publishers Weekly

May 02, 2011 – Daniel assembles a collection of letters containing the mundane, everyday musings of the devoted Trumans, his grandparents. Early letters are of particular interest, showing Harry, who as a farmer was exempt from the draft but enlisted anyway, traveling to France in 1918. The couple court via correspondence and Harry instructs his betrothed to "please get ready to march down the aisle with me" at the earliest opportunity. Great moments in their lives are recorded through letters, including endless tales of their new daughter Mary Margaret, born in 1924. In these days before air conditioning, there is much discussion of the blistering Independence, MO summers. As Mary Margaret ages, her father chides her for not writing more. Bess tirelessly devotes her time to "pinching pennies." Though the letters offer little insight into Truman's political life, Daniel begins chapters with that information. Though he notes that a 1939 letter contains the raciest line in their correspondence (Bess bought herself a "thin negligee"), readers looking for scandal are more likely to find it in the offhand use of the "n" word. Despite the casual racism, this is a charming, if molasses-paced, look back.
Dear Harry, Love Bess
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: United States
  • Published: May 04, 2011
  • Publisher: Truman State University Press
  • Seller: Truman State University 597826683
  • Print Length: 296 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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