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Eisenhower Museum

The drive back to Lake Wabunsee from Abiline, Ks. The drive was through the flint hills.  We went through Alma, Ks from Eskridge, Ks. Great scenery but windy roads so a 15 mile drive might take 20 – 30 minutes. Well worth the drive if you like to drive and see the scenery. It is referred to as the Native Stone Scenic Byway. This drive allows you to see old fences that were built by local rocks and used by ranchers as an alternate to using medal and wooden posts. 


Eisnhower child hood home.  It was very small by today’s standards.  Many of the items on the inside were original to the family home. Much of the tour was confined to a small section of hallway.  The upstairs is off limits to the public. They have a guided tour. That part of the tour lasts about 20 minutes.


A picture of the museum on the outside.


A few vehicles from the period.


A painting by Adolf Hitler.  He was actually denied access to art school for not being able to draw people.  Art takes many forms and not always in the shape of people! Just saying! I am pretty sure Picasso was not penalized for not drawing his people to scale especially in any Pablo Picasso painting.  For what it’s worth he was actually a good artist.  Just think how the world could have been different if he would have been accepted into art school instead.  The possibilities….


Another Adolf original. He was actually a pretty good artist.


A view of the entire campus.  A very nice campus. A great place to take the family. Lots of open space for kids to play. 


The statue of General Eisnhower.


Even though World War 2 seems to be taught a lot in schools it was still very educational.  It covered all the countries small and large in the war.  Even Asia.  For me when I was in school Asia was never really covered or very much.  Which, it seems like anymore more schools focus on Adolf Hitlers rise to power, the Holocaust, the war on both fronts and post war.  Very little seems to be covered of the other countries that were victims of the war or involved in the war.  

There have been countless biographies and auto biographies about General Eisnhower so I will not take a chance on trying to cover his accomplishments and life story in a short blog. All I will say is he is and was one of the people that made the transition from military life to politician successfully.  He guided the country through World War 2 and through civil rights. The general was not without his faults but they were so few to count.  He was probably one of the Presidents to be well like nationally and internationally.  During his presidency he put into place term limits.  Before that time it was more of a guideline or a gentlemens agreement to not exceed two limits.  Until then it had been followed tell President Roosevelt. 

In the actual museum they have a section all about hi wife Mamie Eisenhower.  Much of it covered fashion and how important she was during her time as First Lady. The First Lady always plays a major role in the presidents life.  Following the small section about Mamie Eisenhower the museum begins to discuss her husband. Much of it covers the time during the Cold War. 

There is lots of information on Richard Nixon as well. Richard Nixons parts do not cover Waterhate or anything during his presidency. It actually paints a positive picture of him.

They had a temporary exhibit there when my wife and I were there. Normally, temporary exhibits are maybe a year. This exhibit I think had been there for three years. I believe it was coming to close not long after Valentine’s Day. The exhibit was called World War 2 Remembered. This exhibit had a lot of reading. This part of the visit easily took about 45 minutes and we did not read every word. It was very good.

There was a small chapel on site where the Presidenent and his wife were buried with one of their sons.  Well worth the stop.

The description of the World War 2 Rememebrered which was located in the museum states as follows: 

(The core exhibit located in the Museum Temporary Gallery provides an overview of World War II. The chronology of the war is located on your right-hand side while more in-depth information is provided on your left. Artifacts bringing the story to life are intermingled throughout the entirety of the exhibit. Focusing on the personal stories of unsung heroes and the lesser-known events of the war, World War II Remembered showcases the major theaters of the war and special units including the Tuskegee Airmen and Native American Code Talkers. Discover the brave contributions of the Ritchie Boys – Jewish refugees from Hitler’s Germany who returned to Europe as U.S. soldiers. In addition, the exhibit features the heroic stories of women at war and on the working home front. Artifacts bringing the story to life are intermingled throughout the entirety of the exhibit. The curatorial staff is pleased to display rare artifacts from our very own holdings alongside those borrowed from collections around the world.

Following the core exhibit, you will find the supplemental exhibits that will be completely changed out approximately every nine months.) (Website)

The other exhibit located in the Library which was called: Be Ye Men of Valour: Allies of World War II

(“Centuries ago words were written to be a call and a spur to the faithful servants of Truth and Justice: ‘Arm yourselves, and be ye men of valour, and be in readiness for the conflict; for it is better for us to perish in battle than to look upon the outrage of our nation….'” –Winston Churchill, 19 May 1940

This exhibit strives to tell the untold and forgotten stories of the many allies involved in the war effort. While it was major industrial powers like the United States, England, and the Soviet Union that provided the bulk of manpower and resources, dozens of other Allies selflessly spent blood and treasure of their own to defeat the Axis powers. This exhibit explores the important victories, defeats, personalities, and causes associated with the lesser-known Allied nations and resistance groups.) (Website)

The museum is worth the visit if you have the time.  It could take you a 2-3 hours depending on the exhibits they have at that time.  Defenatly a good day trip.  Not much left in Abilene it self.  A few restaurants and a few small sites. It is not far from Fort Riley.   

Extra Reading:




In Pursuit of Kansas Whitetails

Movement caught my eye a hundred yards to the North as a feeding deer materialized through the tree limbs and brush. The buck raised his head and my heart skipped a beat. It was the big nine. I slowly reached for my bow as the big buck continued to feed,


Worst Places to Live in Kansas

Road Snacks rated the worst places in Kansas to live.  Most if not all are considered the biggest cities in the state.  The ratings were based on population density, crime, unemployment etc…  


Wabunsee Pines Golf Course

Wabunsee Pines golf course is a community golf course that is next to Lake Wabunsee in Alma County, Kansas. This golf course is mainly kept up by volunteers. From what I understand there is one full time staff that oversees the whole project. It took the community volunteers about ten years to clear, mow and actually bring the whole thing together. Now, this course will not be featured on the PGA or LPGA anytime soon but well worth the time if you are looking to play and have a great view while brushing up on your skills or just wanting to start playing. The whole thing operates in the honor system. Meaning they have a mailbox and a sign in sheet to keep track of who comes in and who borrows a golf cart.


My wife playing golf for the first time. At least golf that dies not include windmills, waterfalls or any other unnatural obstacle that may have a motor.


One of the wholes on the back nine that you can see a portion of the lake and farm land.


Lake Wabunsee before the storm

Lake Wabunsee is just outside Eskridge, Ks.  Eskridge is located in Alma County, Kansas.




Small Town U.S.A

Many small towns in America are struggling to survive with people moving away and the town not always having enough things to attract visitors, business or keep its residents. Small towns like Alma, Paxico, Wamigo and Council Grove in Kansas are trying to make a resurgence to attract people. Some of these communities have become antique, wine or historic communities.

Paxico, Ks had a number of articles articles written about in the Topeka Capital Journal about how it had a resurgence in the number of out of town interest because many of the stores had become antique stores. Many of them are small stores and sell specific items like boutiques and the like. A town like this actually started to decline again with some shops closing; there are other new business’ opening up like a winery called Prairie Fire and another winery called Wydle Wood. So the town could be on the verge of yet another rebirth.

Then there are places like Alma, Ks. It is close to Paxico, Ks but dose not have as many shops other then normal business’s like insurance companies and restaurants. Alma does have a creamery and bakery which are both very good and worth checking out if you are in the neighborhood. There is a factory there in town for a food distributer, but it is not really a tourist spot. The town is sleepy and has a lot of nice small houses built from stone.

Wamego, Ks had the right idea about trying to keep itself steeped in American pop culture. The town itself, is the home town of The Wizard Of Oz Museum. It is also becoming an art community in a sense with an art gallery and a winery called The Oz Winery. The wine there is good and has won a number of awards and accolades but is a little pricy side. There is also a restaurant called Totos Tacos. It is a Mexican restaurant with a beach them but worth the visit for lunch or a quick beverage. So the town has branded it self has the town of OZ.

Council Grove has embraced it’s historical roots. One of the big attractions is the historic trail through Council Grove. There a number of stops along the way; mainly during the spring through fall months but a few are open year round. It is worth the drive if you are looking for a day trip in the area. The Tall Grass Nature Preserve is a nice way to see the prairie the way it use to be before westward expansion began. You can see bison and get a get a feel for what the pioneers saw.

Many small towns in Kansas are trying to keep themselves revel lent in today’s fast paced society. Some have worked better then others; while others have seen better days. Who knows for sure if some these towns will become ghost towns or just another place people read about in history books as a historical site. Much of that area is nestled in the flint hills of Kansas which makes for a scenic drive. Many homes use the native flint rocks as decoration like many modern homes use bricks.