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When a presidential neighborhood enters history : community change, competing histories, and creative tension in Independence, Missouri

Author: Jon E Taylor
Publisher: 2004.
Dissertation: Ph. D. University of Missouri-Columbia 2004
Edition/Format:   Thesis/dissertation : Thesis/dissertation : Manuscript   Archival Material : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Independence, Missouri, has three nationally significant histories that have competed for space and place in the community's memory in the twentieth century. They include the city's association with its Mormon history--Joseph Smith's declaration of Independence as Zion, the place his followers were to prepare for Christ's return to earth; its role in the nation's westward expansion as a gathering and provisioning  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Electronic books
History
Material Type: Thesis/dissertation, Manuscript, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Archival Material, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Jon E Taylor
OCLC Number: 56823394
Notes: Typescript.
Vita.
Description: vii, 342 leaves : maps ; 29 cm
Responsibility: by Jon E. Taylor.
More information:

Abstract:

Independence, Missouri, has three nationally significant histories that have competed for space and place in the community's memory in the twentieth century. They include the city's association with its Mormon history--Joseph Smith's declaration of Independence as Zion, the place his followers were to prepare for Christ's return to earth; its role in the nation's westward expansion as a gathering and provisioning point for the Santa Fe, Oregon, and California trails; and its long association with Harry S. Truman. Truman spent sixty-four years of his life in Independence and connected with the community through his morning constitutionals that took him past places that were personal and political landmarks during his career in public service. The National Park Service designated the area around the Truman home a National Historic Landmark in 1972 to honor this sixty-four-year association. Geographically, the landmark designation was just to the east of land that was significant to the community's Mormon history and to the west of the Independence square, the focus of its trails history, even though few structures on the square date from the trails period. The landmark designation and the city-designated Harry S. Truman Heritage District, which followed in 1974, challenged how the community would preserve the resources associated with Truman. This study, grounded in archival research related to each of the histories and their commemoration in Independence, assesses the roles the three histories have played in the history and memory of Independence and the political tensions that have arisen among them as the community has strived to preserve portions of the built environment associated with each. It argues that, though the cultural landscape of the Truman era has retained extraordinary integrity, it is endangered by the competition of histories and the way the community has remembered them. The study attempts to explain how Independence has dispossessed aspects of its presidential history from its historical memory and how that dispossession has affected the preservation of the cultural landscape Truman would have recognized on a morning walk.

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