President Obama is in Mexico today, and will speak from the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City. In 1947, Mexican President Miguel Aleman greeted Harry Truman in the nation’s capital.
Here’s a photo of Aleman and Truman’s Presidential motorcade touring Mexico City. March 3, 1947.
-from the Truman Library
“Where is Mamie Eisenhower’s 1955 Chrysler limousine? I would like to see it again. I once installed some Secret Service equipment on it when Mrs. Eisenhower was using it after the presidency.”
This week’s “Ask and Archivist” question at the Eisenhower Library comes from Washington State. For the answer, read more here.
PHOTO CAPTION: On November 14, 1955, President Eisenhower rode through Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in the rear of a 1955 Chrysler Imperial limousine that was part of the White House fleet.
-from the Eisenhower Library
June 13, 1922: Veterans Bureau employee Viola LaLonde and Census Bureau employee Elizabeth Van Tuyl pose beside a Ford automobile before making their cross-country drive from Washington, DC to San Francisco. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Keep in mind, these women crossed the country before the construction of a national highway system. Forget Econolodges and Denny’s restaurants, they packed their own fuel and food, sleeping in the car.
Eisenhower drove cross country on the Lincoln Highway in 1919 as part of an army convoy which took four months to cross the country. The contrast between that experience and his experience driving on the Autobahn during World War II led to Eisenhower’s proposal for a national highway system.
Road Trip Roots
On this day in 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act. Popularly know as the Interstate Highway Act, it was designed to meet the challenge of the growing number of automobiles on the nation’s highways.
Ike was convinced of the overwhelming need for safer and speedier highways. He had served as a young Lieutenant Colonel in the Transcontinental Convoy, and had seen the ease of German autobahns during World War II. The President also felt that newer, multi-lane highways were essential to a strong national defense.
Here, Ike participates in the ribbon cutting ceremony opening the new extension to the George Washington Memorial Parkway, Washington, D.C. 11/3/59.
What Interstate Highway do you travel on?
On this first day of summer, here’s a photo to inspire warm weather adventures. In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson took a break from White House duties for a ride with friends in his Amphicar.
What’s an Amphicar? Why, an amphibious car, of course. In this photo, LBJ steers his land-to-water vehicle into a lake at his ranch in Stonewall, Texas. 4/11/65.
Happy Summer Solstice!