Take a look inside these six presidential homes Eisenhower National Historic Site (fdastudillo/iStock/AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Take a look inside these six presidential homes
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While 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington may be the most notable presidential address, it isn't the only residence our presidents have occupied. Many of the homes and estates of U.S. presidents are open to the public today, offering a glimpse into the lives of these men and their families when they stepped outside the public eye.
 
Here are six presidential homes that you can tour now.
 
Harry S. Truman Little White House, Key West, Florida
 

Harry S. Truman Little White House

As soon as the first hint of a winter chill swept through the nation's capital each year, President Truman and key members of his staff would head south to what has come to be known as the "Little White House." Located a short distance from a beach on Key West, Truman's winter retreat was built in 1890 as officers' quarters for the local naval base. In 1911, it was converted into a private residence, serving for a time as a home for inventor Thomas Edison while he conducted experiments during the First World War.
 
From 1946 until 1952, Truman spent 175 days of his presidency at his southern getaway. After his death in 1972, the home played host as a respite for a number of subsequent presidents, including Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. It also served as the site of the international peace talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan in 2011.
 
Today visitors can explore the bleached-white home, which houses nearly all of its original furnishings (including the famous "The Buck Stops Here" sign on Truman's desk), and stroll through the home's botanical gardens.
 
Eisenhower National Historic Site, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
 

Eisenhower National Historic Site

A mere stone's throw from the Gettysburg battlefield, where one of the most significant battles of the American Civil War unfolded, you'll find former President Dwight D. Eisenhower's 189-acre farm and retreat. Eisenhower purchased the property in 1950 as a retirement home. But he and wife Mamie wouldn't stay in retirement for long. In 1953, the five-star general became the country's 34th president, during which time the couple would only see their homestead on weekends and holidays, as well as a brief period in 1955 while Ike recuperated from a heart attack. He was fond of inviting fellow politicians and foreign dignitaries to the "Temporary White House" to show off his herd of Angus cattle and to relax on the front porch, saying that the informal conversations he had there allowed him "to get the other man's equation."
 
A herd of cattle still grazes at the site, and visitors can walk along the farm lanes and trails that meander throughout the property. The onsite museum houses a collection of approximately 48,000 artifacts that includes everything from military paraphernalia to awards for Ike's livestock, in addition to many photos.  
 
Lincoln Home National Historic Site, Springfield, Illinois
 

Lincoln Home National Historic Site

Abraham Lincoln's home has been a popular spot for visitors since it opened to the public in 1887, 22 years after his assassination. While it was built in 1839, Lincoln purchased the 12-room Greek revival, located 200 miles south of Chicago, in 1844. It was restored in 1860. For 17 years, it served as his home, which he shared with his wife, Mary Todd, until their move to Washington. Lincoln would serve as the country's 16th president.
 
Today, thousands of visitors flock to this property each year, experiencing park ranger-led tours that explore the couple's separate bedrooms, children's rooms, kitchen, formal parlor, sitting rooms and various outbuildings.
 
Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site, St. Louis, Missouri
 

White Haven, Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site

After graduating from the U.S. Military Academy (West Point) in 1843, the Army stationed Grant to the Jefferson Barracks, located on the outskirts of St. Louis. There, he met Julia Dent, the sister of Frederick Dent, one of his former roommates. The couple married in 1848. Over the next four decades, White Haven, the Dent family's homestead, would serve as the couple's on-again-off-again home, where they resided until his death in 1885.
 
Now, more than 130 years after his death, the green-clapboard main house, outbuildings and stables remain a popular draw for visitors, while interpretative tours of the property, as well as a screening of the 22-minute film, "Ulysses S. Grant: A Legacy of Freedom", are available.
 
Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace, New York, New York
 

Interior of Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace

Living in New York City has been a rite of passage for many a U.S. president, but few can actually say they were born there. On Oct. 27, 1858, Roosevelt was born and later raised at 28 E. 20th St. in Manhattan's Gramercy Park neighborhood. In 1872, the family moved Uptown, and eventually the original brownstone was demolished as the neighborhood transitioned from residential to commercial.
 
However, in 1919 the Women's Roosevelt Memorial Association purchased the lot and built a replica of the former home. It has served as a national historic site since 1962, when the National Park Service assumed management of the property. Today the home's rooms are decorated with period furnishings and family-owned possessions, and visitors will find ranger-guided tours available. 
 
Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park, Johnson City, Texas
 

Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park

An hour's drive west of Austin sits Johnson's famed ranch, which the 36th president occupied with his family as a boy beginning in 1913. At the time, many residents living in this rural corner of Texas didn't have electricity or indoor plumbing in their homes, which later compelled Johnson to introduce programs designed to help fellow U.S. citizens who were living in similar circumstances. This includes his famous "war on poverty" legislation, which he discussed during his State of the Union Address in 1964.
 
Visitors can experience the 1,570-acre property in person, which includes Johnson's boyhood home, stockyards, farmhouse and the family gravesites for LBJ and his wife, Lady Bird Johnson.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why do presidents live in more than one place?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (82)
  • zakrym-ste
    2/10/2017 - 01:37 p.m.

    I cannot wait to visit these houses. There are so many historical items that they owned. I think it would be cool to visit these houses with my school.

  • irisp-ste
    2/13/2017 - 09:21 a.m.

    Presidents frequently have to travel and own multiple homes in key areas of their lives to visit families and historical sites. It is a common tradition for Presidents to own vacation homes after they are retired from the Presidency. I always thought it would be nice to have enough money to do this.

  • ryana-pel
    2/13/2017 - 09:32 a.m.

    Because they are wealthy enough to buy winter houses ,vacation houses ,and they live in the white house.

  • peytonw-cel
    2/13/2017 - 10:10 a.m.

    Well, when the President is inducted he lives at the White House. The White House is another house they have to live at. I believe that some presidents live in more than one place so nobody really knows where they are. I think it's safety reasons that they live other places. The White House is the main house they live at during the presidency but when they aren't the president they move out.

  • charleyh1-pla
    2/13/2017 - 06:26 p.m.

    The overview of six different presidential homes really intrigued me, especially considering the variety of presidents and locations. I am happy the houses didn't include Mt. Vernon since George Washington, occasionally, can be overdone. The inclusion of artifacts information, such as the sign in Truman's home, brought together the details of the story.

    I really enjoyed looking at all the different styles of house that former presidents lived in. Your writing style definitely brought me in and told like a story. This story is perfectly timed with the "controversy" over First Lady Melania Trump and her son continuing to live in their apartment building despite President Trump living in the White House.

  • loganb-4-pla
    2/14/2017 - 09:33 a.m.

    This article was a great view into how a president might have lived. Previously I didn't know that presidents left the White House on weekends to visit their "Little White Houses". These homes offer us a great look into what life was like as the president and not being at the White House. The best house in my opinion was Harry Truman's house in Florida. It's especially nice that it has almost all the furnishings that were there when Truman was president.

  • basilek-pla
    2/14/2017 - 03:06 p.m.

    The article's purpose is to inform the audience about various presidential estates open for touring. The estates include: Truman, Eisenhower, Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Grant, and LBJ. I thought the coolest one was the Little White House used by Truman because public policy and international treaties were actually designed, modified, negotiated, and signed into law there. This relates to civic engagement because the public has the option to tour these houses. In addition, it is important that we as citizens know our country's history so that we don't repeat the same mistakes.

  • mckinleyo-pel
    2/15/2017 - 10:51 a.m.

    To visit family and historical places.

  • arturov-pel
    2/15/2017 - 10:56 a.m.

    Presidents need a place to away

  • alexisa1-pel
    2/15/2017 - 11:04 a.m.

    They live in more than one place because their family so when they travel they have somewhere to stay.

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