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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Birthplaces of the Presidents

Where the Presidents Were Born by Louis Picone





Nine presidents were born in log cabins, and some were, indeed, humble log cabins.  Thomas Jefferson's father bought 200 acres of  prime Virginia land from his first cousin by marriage for a bowl of Arrack punch, and Thomas was born in the house that he built there.

These are just some of the many interesting details to be learned from reading this book.  I liked it, but be prepared because it's a sad tale - so many of the president's birthplaces have been destroyed or disappeared. Some are privately owned, and can't be visited.  Picone managed to find out the history of each birthplace, and he includes many excellent photographs.  He includes Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederate States.

The accounts of the preservation or lack of preservation of each birthplace are a bit dry.  However, Picone's tales of travelling to each birthplace with his young son are enjoyable.  He provides a lot of practical information on how to get to each one, and the opening hours.
The monument commemorating Jefferson Davis's birthplace.

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