David Gaub McCullough is an American author, popular historian, lecturer. He is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' highest civilian award. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, McCullough earned a degree in English literature from Yale University, his first book was The Johnstown Flood. McCullough has narrated numerous documentaries, such as The Civil War by Ken Burns, as well as the 2003 film Seabiscuit. McCullough's two Pulitzer Prize-winning books and John Adams, have been adapted by HBO into a TV film and a miniseries, respectively. McCullough was born in the Point Breeze neighborhood of Pittsburgh, the son of Ruth and Christian Hax McCullough, he is of Scots-Irish descent. He was educated in his hometown of Pittsburgh. One of four sons, McCullough had a "marvelous" childhood with a wide range of interests, including sports and drawing cartoons. McCullough's parents and his grandmother, who read to him introduced him to books at an early age.
His parents talked about history, a topic he says should be discussed more often. McCullough "loved school, every day". In 1951, McCullough began attending Yale University, he said that it was a "privilege" to study English at Yale because of faculty members such as John O'Hara, John Hersey, Robert Penn Warren, Brendan Gill. McCullough ate lunch with the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and playwright Thornton Wilder. Wilder, says McCullough, taught him that a competent writer maintains "an air of freedom" in the storyline, so that a reader will not anticipate the outcome if the book is non-fiction. While at Yale, he became a member of Bones, he served apprenticeships at Time, the United States Information Agency, American Heritage, where he enjoyed research. "Once I discovered the endless fascination of doing the research and of doing the writing, I knew I had found what I wanted to do in my life." While attending Yale, McCullough studied Arts and earned his bachelor's degree in English, with the intention of becoming a fiction writer or playwright.
He graduated with honors in English literature. After graduation, McCullough moved to New York City, where Sports Illustrated hired him as a trainee, he worked as an editor and writer for the United States Information Agency in Washington, D. C. After working for twelve years, including a position at American Heritage, in editing and writing, McCullough "felt that had reached the point where could attempt something on own."McCullough "had no anticipation, going to write history, but stumbled upon a story that thought was powerful and worth telling." While working at American Heritage, McCullough wrote in his spare time for three years. The Johnstown Flood, a chronicle of one of the worst flood disasters in United States history, was published in 1968 to high praise by critics. John Leonard, of The New York Times, said of McCullough, "We have no better social historian." Despite rough financial times, he decided to become a full-time writer, encouraged by his wife Rosalee. After the success of The Johnstown Flood, two new publishers offered him contracts, one to write about the Great Chicago Fire and another about the San Francisco earthquake.
Simon & Schuster, publisher of his first book offered McCullough a contract to write a second book. Trying not to become "Bad News McCullough", he decided to write about a subject showing "people were not always foolish and inept or irresponsible." He remembered the words of his Yale teacher: " Wilder said he got the idea for a book or a play when he wanted to learn about something. He'd check to see if anybody had done it, if they hadn't, he'd do it." McCullough decided to write a history of the Brooklyn Bridge. To me history ought to be a source of pleasure, it isn't just part of our civic responsibility. To me it's an enlargement of the experience of being alive, just the way literature or art or music is. – David McCullough He proposed, from a suggestion by his editor, a work about the Panama Canal. Critics hailed The Great Bridge as "the definitive book on the event."Five years The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal was released, gaining McCullough widespread recognition.
The book won the National Book Award in History, the Samuel Eliot Morison Award, the Francis Parkman Prize, the Cornelius Ryan Award. In 1977, McCullough travelled to the White House to advise Jimmy Carter and the United States Senate on the Torrijos-Carter Treaties, which would give Panama control of the Canal. Carter said that the treaties, which were agreed upon to hand over ownership of the Canal to Panama, would not have passed had it not been for the book. McCullough's fourth work was his first biography, reinforcing his belief that "history is the story of people". Released in 1981, Mornings on Horseback tells the story of seventeen years in the life of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th President of the United States; the work ranged from 1869, when Roosevelt was ten years old, to 1886, tells of a "life intensely lived." The book won McCullough's second National Book Award and his first Los Angeles Times Prize for Biography and New York Public Libr
The Korean War was a war between North Korea and South Korea. The war began on 25 June 1950 when North Korea invaded South Korea following a series of clashes along the border; as a product of the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States, Korea had been split into two sovereign states in 1948. A socialist state was established in the north under the communist leadership of Kim Il-sung and a capitalist state in the south under the anti-communist leadership of Syngman Rhee. Both governments of the two new Korean states claimed to be the sole legitimate government of all of Korea, neither accepted the border as permanent; the conflict escalated into warfare when North Korean military forces—supported by the Soviet Union and China—crossed the border and advanced south into South Korea on 25 June 1950. The United Nations Security Council authorized the formation and dispatch of UN forces to Korea to repel what was recognized as a North Korean invasion. Twenty-one countries of the United Nations contributed to the UN force, with the United States providing around 90% of the military personnel.
After the first two months of war, South Korean and U. S. forces dispatched to Korea were on the point of defeat, forced back to a small area in the south known as the Pusan Perimeter. In September 1950, an amphibious UN counter-offensive was launched at Incheon, cut off many North Korean troops; those who escaped envelopment and capture were forced back north. UN forces approached the Yalu River—the border with China—but in October 1950, mass Chinese forces crossed the Yalu and entered the war; the surprise Chinese intervention triggered a retreat of UN forces which continued until mid-1951. In these reversals of fortune, Seoul changed hands four times, the last two years of fighting became a war of attrition, with the front line close to the 38th parallel; the war in the air, was never a stalemate. North Korea was subject to a massive bombing campaign. Jet fighters confronted each other in air-to-air combat for the first time in history, Soviet pilots covertly flew in defense of their communist allies.
The fighting ended on 27 July 1953. The agreement created the Korean Demilitarized Zone to separate North and South Korea, allowed the return of prisoners. However, no peace treaty was signed, according to some sources the two Koreas are technically still at war, engaged in a frozen conflict. In April 2018, the leaders of North and South Korea met at the demilitarized zone and agreed to work towards a treaty to formally end the Korean War. In South Korea, the war is referred to as "625" or the "6–2–5 Upheaval", reflecting the date of its commencement on June 25. In North Korea, the war is referred to as the "Fatherland Liberation War" or alternatively the "Chosǒn War". In China, the war is called the "War to Resist America and Aid Korea", although the term "Chaoxian War" is used in unofficial contexts, along with the term "Hán War" more used in regions such as Hong Kong and Macau. In the U. S. the war was described by President Harry S. Truman as a "police action" as the United States never formally declared war on its opponents and the operation was conducted under the auspices of the United Nations.
It has been referred to in the English-speaking world as "The Forgotten War" or "The Unknown War" because of the lack of public attention it received both during and after the war, in relation to the global scale of World War II, which preceded it, the subsequent angst of the Vietnam War, which succeeded it. Imperial Japan destroyed the influence of China over Korea in the First Sino-Japanese War, ushering in the short-lived Korean Empire. A decade after defeating Imperial Russia in the Russo-Japanese War, Japan made Korea its protectorate with the Eulsa Treaty in 1905 annexed it with the Japan–Korea Annexation Treaty in 1910. Many Korean nationalists fled the country; the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea was founded in 1919 in Nationalist China. It failed to achieve international recognition, failed to unite nationalist groups, had a fractious relationship with its U. S.-based founding president, Syngman Rhee. From 1919 to 1925 and beyond, Korean communists led internal and external warfare against the Japanese.
In China, the Nationalist National Revolutionary Army and the communist People's Liberation Army helped organize Korean refugees against the Japanese military, which had occupied parts of China. The Nationalist-backed Koreans, led by Yi Pom-Sok, fought in the Burma Campaign; the communists, led by Kim Il-sung among others, fought the Japanese in Manchuria. At the Cairo Conference in November 1943, the United Kingdom, the United States all decided that "in due course Korea shall become free and independent". At the Tehran Conference in November 1943 and the Yalta Conference in February 1945, the Soviet Union promised to join its allies in the Pacific War within three months of the victory in Europe. Accordingly, it declared war o
United States Secret Service
The United States Secret Service is a federal law enforcement agency under the Department of Homeland Security charged with conducting criminal investigations and protecting the nation's leaders. Until 2003, the Secret Service was part of the Department of the Treasury, as the agency was founded to combat the then-widespread counterfeiting of US currency; the Secret Service is mandated by Congress with two distinct and critical national security missions: protecting the nation's leaders and safeguarding the financial and critical infrastructure of the United States. Ensures the safety of the President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, the President's and Vice President's immediate families, former presidents, their spouses, their minor children under the age of 16, major presidential and vice presidential candidates and their spouses, foreign heads of state; the Secret Service provides physical security for the White House Complex, the neighboring Treasury Department building, the Vice President's residence, all foreign diplomatic missions in Washington, D.
C. The protective mission includes protective operations to coordinate manpower and logistics with state and local law enforcement, protective advances to conduct site and venue assessments for protectees, protective intelligence to investigate all manners of threats made against protectees; the Secret Service is the lead agency in charge of the planning and implementation of security operations for events designated as National Special Security Events. As part of the Service's mission of preventing an incident before it occurs, the agency relies on meticulous advance work and threat assessments developed by its Intelligence Division to identify potential risks to protectees. Safeguards the payment and financial systems of the United States from a wide range of financial and electronic-based crimes. Financial investigations include counterfeit US currency, bank & financial institution fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, illicit financing operations, major conspiracies. Electronic investigations include cybercrime, network intrusions, identity theft, access device fraud, credit card fraud, intellectual property crimes.
The Secret Service is a key member of the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force which investigates and combats terrorism on a national and international scale, as well as of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Task Force which seeks to reduce and eliminate drug trafficking in critical regions of the United States. The Secret Service investigates missing and exploited children and is a core partner of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children; the Secret Service's initial responsibility was to investigate the counterfeiting of US currency, rampant following the American Civil War. The agency evolved into the United States' first domestic intelligence and counterintelligence agency. Many of the agency's missions were taken over by subsequent agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Central Intelligence Agency, Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Explosives, IRS Criminal Investigation Division; the Secret Service combines the two responsibilities into a unique dual objective.
The two core missions of protection and investigations synergize with the other, providing crucial benefits to special agents during the course of their careers. Skills developed during the course of investigations which are used in an agent’s protective duties include but are not limited to: Partnerships that are created between field offices and local law enforcement during the course of investigations being used to gather both protective intelligence and in coordinating protection events. Tactical operation and law enforcement writing skills being applied to both investigative and protective duties. Proficiency in analyzing handwriting and forgery techniques being applied in protective investigations of handwritten letters and suspicious package threats. Expertise in investigating electronic and financial crimes being applied in protective investigations of threats made against the nation's leaders on the Internet. Protection of the nation's highest elected leaders and other government officials is one of the primary missions of the Secret Service.
After the 1901 assassination of President William McKinley, Congress directed the Secret Service to protect the President of the United States. The Secret Service is authorized by law to protect: The President, Vice President, President-elect and Vice President-elect The immediate families of the above individuals Former Presidents and their spouses for their lifetimes, under the Former Presidents Act. From 1997 until 2013, legislation was in place limiting Secret Service protection to former Presidents and their spouses to a period of 10 years from the date the former President leaves office. President Barack Obama signed legislation on January 10, 2013, reversing this limit and reinstating lifetime protection; the widow or widower of a former President who dies in office or dies within a year of leaving office for a period of one year after the President's death Children of former Presidents until age 16 or 10 years after the presidency Former Vice Presidents, their spouses, their children under 16 years of age, for up to 6 months from the date the former Vice President leaves office (the Secre
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the second-highest officer in the executive branch of the U. S. federal government, after the President of the United States, ranks first in the presidential line of succession. The Vice President is an officer in the legislative branch, as President of the Senate. In this capacity, the Vice President presides over Senate deliberations, but may not vote except to cast a tie-breaking vote; the Vice President presides over joint sessions of Congress. The Vice President is indirectly elected together with the President to a four-year term of office by the people of the United States through the Electoral College. Section 2 of the Twenty-fifth Amendment, ratified in 1967, created a mechanism for intra-term vice presidential succession, establishing that vice presidential vacancies will be filled by the president and confirmed by both houses of Congress. Whenever a vice president had succeeded to the presidency or had died or resigned from office, the vice presidency remained vacant until the next presidential and vice presidential terms began.
The Vice President is a statutory member of the National Security Council, the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution. The Office of the Vice President organises the vice president's official functions; the role of the vice presidency has changed since the office was created during the 1787 constitutional Convention. Over the past 100 years, the vice presidency has evolved into a position of domestic and foreign policy political power, is now seen as an integral part of a president's administration; as the Vice President's role within the executive branch has expanded, his role within the legislative branch has contracted. The Constitution does not expressly assign the vice presidency to any one branch, causing a dispute among scholars about which branch of government the office belongs to: 1) the executive branch; the modern view of the vice president as an officer of the executive branch is due in large part to the assignment of executive authority to the vice president by either the president or Congress.
Mike Pence of Indiana is the current Vice President of the United States. He assumed office on January 20, 2017. No mention of an office of vice president was made at the 1787 Constitutional Convention until near the end, when an 11-member committee on "Leftover Business" proposed a method of electing the chief executive. Delegates had considered the selection of the Senate's presiding officer, deciding that, "The Senate shall choose its own President," and had agreed that this official would be designated the executive's immediate successor, they had considered the mode of election of the executive but had not reached consensus. This all changed on September 4, when the committee recommended that the nation's chief executive be elected by an Electoral College, with each state having a number of presidential electors equal to the sum of that state's allocation of representatives and senators; the proposed presidential election process called for each state to choose members of the electoral college, who would use their discretion to select the candidates they individually viewed as best qualified.
Recognizing that loyalty to one's individual state outweighed loyalty to the new federation, the Constitution's framers assumed that individual electors would be inclined to choose a candidate from their own state over one from another. So they created the office of vice president and required that electors vote for two candidates, requiring that at least one of their votes must be for a candidate from outside the elector's state, believing that this second vote could be cast for a candidate of national character. Additionally, to guard against the possibility that some electors might strategically throw away their second vote in order to bolster their favorite son's chance of winning, it was specified that the first runner-up presidential candidate would become vice president. Creating this new office imposed a political cost on strategically discarded electoral votes, incentivizing electors to make their choices for president without resort to electoral gamesmanship and to cast their second ballot accordingly.
The resultant method of electing the president and vice president, spelled out in Article II, Section 1, Clause 3, allocated to each state a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of Representatives membership. Each elector was allowed to vote for two people for president, but could not differentiate between their first and second choice for the presidency; the person receiving the greatest number of votes would be president, while the individual who received the next largest number of votes became vice president. If there were a tie for first or for second place, or if no one won a majority of votes, the president and vice president would be selected by means of contingent elections protocols stated in the clause; the emergence of political parties and nationally coordinated election campaigns during the 1790s soon frustrated this original plan. In the election of 1796, Federalist John Adams won the presidency, but his bitter rival, Democratic-Republican Thomas Jefferson came second and became vice president.
Thus, the president and vice president were from opposing parties.
Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman was the 33rd president of the United States from 1945 to 1953, succeeding upon the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt after serving as vice president, he implemented the Marshall Plan to rebuild the economy of Western Europe, established the Truman Doctrine and NATO. Truman was elected to the United States Senate in 1934 and gained national prominence as chairman of the Truman Committee aimed at waste and inefficiency in wartime contracts. Soon after succeeding to the presidency he authorized the first and only use of nuclear weapons in war. Truman's administration renounced isolationism, he rallied his New Deal coalition during the 1948 presidential election and won a surprise victory that secured his own presidential term. Truman oversaw the Berlin Airlift of 1948; when Communist North Korea invaded South Korea in 1950, he gained United Nations approval for the large policy action known as the Korean War. It saved South Korea but the Chinese intervened, driving back the UN/US forces and preventing a rollback of Communism in North Korea.
On domestic issues, bills endorsed by Truman faced opposition from a conservative Congress, but his administration guided the U. S. economy through the post-war economic challenges. In 1948 he submitted the first comprehensive civil rights legislation and issued Executive Orders to start racial integration in the military and federal agencies. Allegations of corruption in the Truman administration became a central campaign issue in the 1952 presidential election and accounted for Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower's electoral victory against Democrat Adlai Stevenson II. Truman's financially difficult retirement was marked by the founding of his presidential library and the publication of his memoirs; when he left office, Truman's presidency was criticized, but scholars rehabilitated his image in the 1960s and he is ranked as one of the best presidents. Truman was born in Lamar, Missouri, on May 8, 1884, the oldest child of John Anderson Truman and Martha Ellen Young Truman, his namesake was Harrison "Harry" Young.
His middle initial "S" honors Anderson Shipp Truman and Solomon Young. A brother, John Vivian, was born soon followed by sister Mary Jane. Truman's ancestry is English and less Scotch-Irish, German or French. John Truman was a livestock dealer; the family lived in Lamar until Harry was ten months old, when they moved to a farm near Harrisonville, Missouri. The family next moved to Belton, in 1887 to his grandparents' 600-acre farm in Grandview; when Truman was six, his parents moved to Independence, so he could attend the Presbyterian Church Sunday School. He did not attend a traditional school. While living in Independence, he served as a Shabbos goy for Jewish neighbors, doing tasks for them on Shabbat that their religion prevented them from doing on that day. Truman was interested in music and history, all encouraged by his mother, with whom he was close; as president, he solicited political as well as personal advice from her. He rose at five every morning to practice the piano, which he studied more than twice a week until he was fifteen.
Truman worked as a page at the 1900 Democratic National Convention in Kansas City. After graduating from Independence High School in 1901, Truman enrolled in Spalding's Commercial College, a Kansas City business school, he made use of his business college experience to obtain a job as a timekeeper on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway, sleeping in hobo camps near the rail lines. He took on a series of clerical jobs, was employed in the mail room of The Kansas City Star. Truman and his brother Vivian worked as clerks at the National Bank of Commerce in Kansas City, he returned to the Grandview farm in 1906, where he lived until entering the army in 1917 after the beginning of the Great War. During this period, he courted Bess Wallace. Truman said he intended to propose again, but he wanted to have a better income than that earned by a farmer. To that end, during his years on the farm and after World War I, he became active in several business ventures, including a lead and zinc mine near Commerce, Oklahoma, a company that bought land and leased the oil drilling rights to prospectors, speculation in Kansas City real estate.
Truman derived some income from these enterprises, but none proved successful in the long term. Truman is the only president since William McKinley not to earn a college degree. In addition to having attended business college, from 1923 to 1925 he took night courses toward an LL. B. at the Kansas City Law dropped out after losing reelection as county judge. He was informed by attorneys in the Kansas City area that his education and experience were sufficient to receive a license to practice law. However, he did not pursue it. While serving as president in 1947, Truman applied for a license to practice law. A friend, an attorney began working out the arrangements, informed Truman that his application had to be notarized. By the time Truman received this information he had changed his mind, so he never sought notarization. After rediscovery of Truman's application, in 1996 the Missour
The Truman Doctrine was an American foreign policy whose stated purpose was to counter Soviet geopolitical expansion during the Cold War. It was announced to Congress by President Harry S. Truman on March 12, 1947, further developed on July 12, 1948, when he pledged to contain threats in Greece and Turkey. Direct American military force was not involved, but Congress appropriated financial aid to support the economies and militaries of Greece and Turkey. More the Truman Doctrine implied American support for other nations threatened by Soviet communism; the Truman Doctrine became the foundation of American foreign policy, led, in 1949, to the formation of NATO, a military alliance, still in effect. Historians use Truman's speech to date the start of the Cold War. Truman told Congress that "it must be the policy of the United States to support free people who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures." Truman contended that because totalitarian regimes coerced free peoples, they automatically represented a threat to international peace and the national security of the United States.
Truman made the plea in the midst of the Greek Civil War. He argued that if Greece and Turkey did not receive the aid, they would fall to communism with grave consequences throughout the region; because Turkey and Greece were historic rivals, it was considered necessary to help both even though the crisis in Greece was far more intense. Critics of the policy have observed that the governments of Greece and Turkey were themselves far from democratic at this time, neither were facing Soviet subversion in the spring of 1949. Historian Eric Foner writes that the Doctrine "set a precedent for American assistance to anticommunist regimes throughout the world, no matter how undemocratic, for the creation of a set of global military alliances directed against the Soviet Union."For years, the United Kingdom had supported Greece, but was now near bankruptcy and was forced to radically reduce its involvement. In February 1947, Britain formally requested for the United States to take over its role in supporting the royalist Greek government.
The policy won the support of Republicans who controlled Congress and involved sending $400 million in American money but no military forces to the region. The effect was to end the Greek revolt, in 1952, both Greece and Turkey joined NATO, a military alliance, to guarantee their stability; the Truman Doctrine was informally extended to become the basis of American Cold War policy throughout Europe and around the world. It shifted American foreign policy toward the Soviet Union from anti-fascism ally to a policy of containment of Soviet expansion as advocated by diplomat George Kennan, it was distinguished from rollback by implicitly tolerating the previous Soviet takeovers in Eastern Europe. At the conclusion of World War II, Turkey was pressured by the Soviet government to allow Russian shipping to flow through the Turkish Straits, which connected the Black Sea to the Mediterranean; as the Turkish government would not submit to the Soviet Union's requests, tensions arose in the region, leading to a show of naval force on the side of the Soviets.
Since British assistance to Turkey had ended in 1947, the U. S. dispatched military aid to ensure. Turkey received $100 million in economic and military aid and the U. S sent the aircraft carrier Franklin D. Roosevelt; the postwar period from 1946 started with a "multi-party period" and the Democratic Party government of Adnan Menderes. Seven weeks after the Axis powers abandoned Greece in October 1944, the British helped retake Athens from the victorious National Liberation Front, controlled by the Greek Communist Party; this began with a mass killing of unarmed EAM supporters known as the Dekemvriana on December 3. The leftists attempted to retaliate, but were outgunned by the British-backed government and subjected to the White Terror. With the full outbreak of civil war, guerrilla forces controlled by the Greek Communist Party sustained a revolt against the internationally recognized Greek government, formed after 1946 elections boycotted by the KKE; the British realized that the KKE were being directly funded by Josip Broz Tito in neighboring Yugoslavia.
In line with the Churchill-Stalin "percentages agreement", the Greek communists received no help from the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia provided them support and sanctuary against Stalin's wishes. By late 1946, Britain informed the United States that due to its own weakening economy, it could no longer continue to provide military and economic support to royalist Greece. In 1946–47, the United States and the Soviet Union moved from being wartime allies to Cold War adversaries; the breakdown of Allied cooperation in Germany provided a backdrop of escalating tensions for the Truman Doctrine. To Truman, the growing unrest in Greece began to look like a pincer movement against the oil-rich areas of the Middle East and the warm-water ports of the Mediterranean. In February 1946, Kennan, an American diplomat in Moscow, sent his famed "Long Telegram", which predicted the Soviets would only respond to force and that the best way to handle them would be through a long-term strategy of containment, stopping their geographical expansion.
After the British warned that they could no longer help Greece, following Prime Minister Konstantinos Tsaldaris's visit to Washington in December 1946 to ask for American assistance, the U. S. State Department formulated a plan. Aid would be given to both Turkey, to help cool the long-standing rivalry between them. American policy makers recognized the instability of the region, fearing that if Greec
Independence is the fifth-largest city in the U. S. state of Missouri. It lies within Jackson County. Independence is a satellite city of Kansas City, is part of the Kansas City metropolitan area. In 2010, it had a total population of 116,830. Independence is known as the "Queen City of the Trails" because it was a point of departure for the California and Santa Fe Trails. Independence was the hometown of U. S. President Harry S. Truman; the city is sacred to many Latter Day Saints, with Joseph Smith's 1831 Temple Lot being located here, as well as the headquarters of several Latter Day Saint factions. Independence was inhabited by Missouri and Osage Indians, followed by the Spanish and a brief French tenure, it became part of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. Lewis and Clark recorded in their journals that they stopped in 1804 to pick plums and wild apples at a site that would form part of the city. Named after the Declaration of Independence, Independence was founded on March 29, 1827, became an important frontier town.
Independence was the farthest point westward on the Missouri River where the steamboats or other cargo vessels could travel, due to the convergence of the Kansas River with the Missouri River six miles west of town, near the current Kansas-Missouri border. Independence became a jumping-off point for the emerging fur trade, accommodating merchants and adventurers beginning the long trek westward on the Santa Fe Trail. In 1831, members of the Latter Day Saint movement began moving to Missouri area. Shortly thereafter, founder Joseph Smith declared a spot west of the Courthouse Square to be the place for his prophesied temple of the New Jerusalem, in expectation of the Second Coming of Christ. Tension grew with local Missourians until the Latter Day Saints were driven from the area in 1833, the beginning of a conflict which culminated in the 1838 Mormon War. Several branches of this movement returned to the city beginning in 1867, with many making their headquarters there; these include the Community of Christ, the Church of Christ, the Church of Jesus Christ and the Restoration Branches.
Independence saw great prosperity from the late 1830s through the mid-1840s, while the business of outfitting pioneers boomed. Between 1848 and 1868, it was a hub of the California Trail. On March 8, 1849, the Missouri General Assembly granted a home-rule charter to the town and on July 18, 1849, William McCoy was elected as its first mayor. In the mid-19th century an Act of the United States Congress defined Independence as the start of the Oregon Trail. Independence saw two important battles during the Civil War: the first on August 11, 1862, when Confederate soldiers took control of the town, the second in October 1864, which resulted in a Southern victory; the war took its toll on Independence and the town was never able to regain its previous prosperity, although a flurry of building activity took place soon after the war. The rise of nearby Kansas City contributed to the town's relegation to a place of secondary prominence in Jackson County, though Independence has retained its position as county seat to the present day.
United States President Harry S. Truman grew up in Independence, in 1922 was elected judge of the county Court of Jackson County, Missouri. Although he was defeated for reelection in 1924, he won back the office in 1926 and was reelected in 1930. Truman performed his duties diligently, won personal acclaim for several popular public works projects, including an extensive series of fine roads for the growing use of automobiles, the building of a new County Court building in Independence, a series of 12 Madonna of the Trail monuments to pioneer women dedicated across the country in 1928 and 1929, he would return to the city after two terms as President. His wife, First Lady Bess Truman, was born and raised in Independence, both are buried there; the Harry S. Truman National Historic Site and the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum are both located in Independence, as is one of Truman's boyhood residences. Independence is located at 39°4′47″N 94°24′24″W, it lies near the western edge of the state.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 78.25 square miles, of which 77.57 square miles is land and 0.68 square miles is water. As of the census of 2010, there were 116,830 people, 48,742 households, 30,165 families residing in the city; the population density was 1,506.1 inhabitants per square mile. There were 53,834 housing units at an average density of 694.0 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 85.7% White, 5.6% African American, 0.6% Native American, 1.0% Asian, 0.7% Pacific Islander alone, 3.2% from other races, 3.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.7% of the population. Non-Hispanic Whites were 82.2% of the population, down from 98.4% in 1970. There were 48,742 households of which 29.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.5% were married couples living together, 13.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.4% had a male householder with no wife present, 38.1% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 11