Thursday, March 8, 2012

Grover at Clinton Library

Although I have visited the Clinton Library in Little Rock, Arkansas ( ), on several occasions in the past, I was delighted to have the opportunity to visit it again this past weekend with my son, who was visiting from out-of-state. This photo shows the eight exhibits inside the library that make up the Clinton Administration Timeline, from 1993 through the year 2000. Each year begins with an introductory text panel and video. Important events of each year are also highlighted.
Arranged on either side of the main gallery are alcove exhibits where visitors can explore a wide variety of topics in more depth. Each alcove focuses on a significant policy area, presenting the challenges, the responses, and the results.
There is a full-scale replica of the Oval Office that shows how the room and its furnishings appeared during President Clinton's administration.
Although visitors cannot go inside the Oval Office replica, there are sufficient doors surrounding the room that you can get a very good view of all its contents.
Archive boxes in the Alcoves' Piers contain agency liaison correspondence. In spite of the fact that enough archive boxes are stacked to form almost a dozen piers, they still represent only about 2 percent of the 80 million pages of documentation in the Clinton collection!
The Mezzanine level, above the main museum gallery, includes exhibits on state events. The signature Dale Chihuly blown glass Christmas tree is seen in the foreground. On this level, you can also see the Clinton's official White House dinnerware, dress attire they wore on various occasions, and the assortment of gifts they received from heads of state, and other famous celebrities, from around the world.
There is usually some kind of special, traveling exhibit on loan from other museums, and the current special exhibit if from the St. Louis Cardinal Baseball Team. This photo shows that you will get the view the beautifully-designed Baseball World Series Champions trophy.
I also learned at the St. Louis Cardinals exhibit, that famous St. Louis Cardinal player, known as "Dizzy Dean", was from Arkansas. Likewise, his brother Paul Dean was born in Arkansas, and played for the St. Louis Cardinals.
Coincidentally, this special baseball traveling exhibit at the Clinton Library, also had the name of my son on display! This antique quilt was showing that back in the "Old Days", the champion of the World Series of Baseball only received a pennant to fly at their ball park for a year, and a quilt with their name on it. My how things have changed!
One of the President Clinton gifts on display on the Mezzanine level is this autographed bicycle and jersey, once worn by Tour De France champion, Lance Armstrong.
There are numerous places throughout the library to sit down, rest, and take in the expansive view of the Arkansas River, with the cities of North Little Rock and Little Rock providing the cityscape on each side. As I saw my son sitting in such a contemplative pose, I was hoping he was having nice thoughts, remembering how his mother had taken him as a boy to the Arkansas state capitol, to meet William Jefferson Clinton, and have his picture made with the then-governor of Arkansas. Or maybe he was thinking about how ironic it was, that he now lived in a predominantly republican county of California, that only once in modern history was carried by a Democrat in a presidential election. That Democrat was his fellow Arkansan, William Jefferson Clinton!
The Mezzanine level also had a display of all the specially-designed Christmas cards that the Clintons had sent out during their years in the White House. I was proudly pointing out this card to my son, reminding him that we actually received this Presidential Christmas card in our own personal mail box one year. I was feeling a little bit proud, and "special", that one year, I had received a signed Christmas card from the President of the United States of America! And then I realized that I have received correspondence far more valuable than a card from the president---I have received correspondence from the CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE!! It is called The Holy Bible---God's Word! That is enough to bring me "miles of smiles" the rest of my life! Tricia
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