Matthew Algeo discusses his new book Harry Truman's Excellent Adventure: The True Story of a Great American Road Trip on Wednesday, May 6, at 6:30 p.m. in the Truman Forum at the Plaza Branch, 4801 Main St.
In 1953, ex-president Harry Truman and his wife Bess packed their Chrysler New Yorker and headed out for a road trip, thinking that they could drive from Missouri to the east coast without Secret Service protection—and without being recognized. Unlike today's ex-presidents, Truman had no lavish retirement package or paid staff. He thought that he could return to the ranks of ordinary Americans. As Algeo recounts, Truman was wrong, often with hilarious results. He was recognized by everyone from bellhops to cabbies, pedestrians to the press, including the day that he accidentally walked into a sidewalk shot for the Today show.
In Harry Truman's Excellent Adventure, Algeo retraces the Trumans' travels, visiting the same hotels and diners that catered to Harry and Bess. His book gives the reader a view of America in the midst of change—the aftermath of World War II, the rise of global communications, and the transformation of the presidency from a public service role to an executive position that's never out of the public eye.
Matthew Algeo is a journalist and author. His first book, Last Team Standing: How the Steelers and the Eagles—"The Steagles"—Saved Pro Football During World War II was published in 2006.
Admission is free. Refreshments will be available prior to the event. Click here  or call 816.701.3407 to RSVP.