After serving nearly eight years as President, Truman went
home in 1953. For Harry and Bess, the love of his life, home meant 219
North Delaware Street in Independence, where they had lived together since
their marriage in 1919. Mr. Truman lived more like a retired mayor than a
former President. Upon leaving the White House, he had no Secret Service
protection, often drove his own car, and sometimes helped with the dishes.
Ordinary citizens lined the front gate each morning hoping for an
autograph, a handshake, or just a tip of his hat. Mr. Truman obliged them.
“I realize they’ve come to see the striped mule of Missouri, and I don’t
want them to be disappointed.”