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Old 10-01-2009, 02:35 PM
ralph124c ralph124c is offline
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Where Can I Find Attendance #s for Presdidential Libraries?

I think these libraries are an insane waste of the taxpayer's money. The idea was good (preservation of a president's papers, so that historians could research and learn from the history). But now we have $162 million for Bill Clinton's records! Also, the late Sen. Ted Kennedy is getting his own library-to the tune of $22 million.
Anyway, I would like to know how many people per year actually visit these places-and are they self-supporting? I suspect major Federal subsidies are required to keep most of these places open.
I cannot imagine that there is much public interest in the Herbert Hoover presidential library-how many people who even remember the guy are alive today?
Why can't the government just make a low-cost deal with a local college or university, to store and archive the papers, with access for qualified scholars-or even add a wing to an existing library. I don't see why the taxpayers have to pay millions to keep Jacky O's old dresses in storage-by 2100 nobody will know (or care) what the heck she wore to the Lincoln Center gala (in 1960).
By the way, is there a Gerald Ford PL? What on earth does it contain?
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Old 10-01-2009, 02:44 PM
Giles Giles is offline
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Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
By the way, is there a Gerald Ford PL? What on earth does it contain?
There's a Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I suspect it includes a library.

Most of these "presidential libraries" seem to me to function more as museums than as libraries, so I think they should be judged as that. And I suspect that most get a lot of financing from private sources.
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:02 PM
kunilou kunilou is offline
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According to this, the Presidential Libraries seem to be pretty popular.

Quote:
Since its opening in April 2005, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum has ranked as North America's most visited Presidential Museum. In about six months the museum generated about $1,000,000.00. In less than twenty-one months, the museum received its one millionth visitor. In comparison, the second most visited Presidential Museum, the Clinton Library, received 800,000 visitors in its first two years of operation.
And the Geralld Ford Presidential Library (which is on the campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor) lists its collections as:
Documents - 25 million pages
Still photographs - 450,000
Video - 3,500 hours
Audio - 3,000 hours
Motion picture film - 787,000 feet
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:08 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
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The Carter Presidential Library is part of the Carter Center (although I think the library itself is administrated by NARA), which has done more than you ever will for African people. Their work has almost eradicated the guinea worm, which is a parasite that you get from drinking bad water that then crawls out of your skin. I have no problem with that one.
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:42 PM
Nametag Nametag is offline
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Presidential libraries are built using private donations, and transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration. They are maintained with a mixture of government and private money. Starting with the Bush library, all future Presidential library foundations must provide an endowment to NARA to help offset facility operating expenses.

Source: National Archives website
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:46 PM
Hello Again Hello Again is offline
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Originally Posted by Giles View Post
There's a Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I suspect it includes a library.

Most of these "presidential libraries" seem to me to function more as museums than as libraries, so I think they should be judged as that. And I suspect that most get a lot of financing from private sources.
Going to Presidential Museums is a kind of hobby my Dad & I share. Gerald Ford is one of your more quintessential Presidential Museums - it epitomizes the "there was nothing special about this dude except that he was president" vibe that I find so fascinating.

That said, GFPM contains a lot of the Watergate physical evidence (including the actual door the was broken into and the actual lockpicking set, both labeled as state's evidence). They also have the gun Squeaky Fromme brandished. There's a life-sized replica of the Oval Office, kinda neat. Other less interesting items include the Presidential China and objects from GF's childhood and especially football career. Oh, and a framed, preserved copy of the "Ford to NYC: Go to HELL" headline.

At any rate there was a lot of private funding to build it, and some from the State of Michigan, but none from the Federal Government as far as I know.
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