Wife of the 33rd President of the United States —
BESS TRUMAN WAS BORN on February 13, 1885 in Independence, Missouri. She graduated from Independence High School in 1901 and later studied language and literature at Barstow, a girl’s finishing school in Kansas City, Missouri.
In 1917, she bacame engaged to Harry S Truman. The Trumans were married in Independence on June 28, 1919. Their only child, Mary Margaret, was born on February 17, 1924.
In 1934, the family moved to Washington D.C. Mrs. Truman became a member of the Congressional Club and the PEO Sisterhood. With the outbreak of World War II, she also became active in the H Street United Service Organization and in the Red Cross work of the Senate Wives Club.
On April 12, 1945, Mrs. Truman became the country’s First Lady. She was considered one of the hardest-working of all the White House hostesses. While in the White House, she served as Honorary President of the Girl Scouts and the Washington Animal Rescue League.
After President Truman’s death on December 26, 1972, Mrs. Truman continued to live in her home on Deleware Street in Independence, where she received visits from close friends and relatives as well as distinguished visitors from all over the world, who came to pay their respects. “Friends and acquaintances agree that loyalty and sincerity were the mainsprings of Mrs. Truman’s character,” one writer has observed. “She seldom thinks of the effect she is creating. She exists principally in her relationships with family and friends. To her, duty is a pleasant, everyday word.”
Mrs. Truman died at her home on October 18, 1982 at the age of ninety-seven.