Abstract: This article focuses on the museums in presidential libraries. Since 1940 the rise of the federal presidential library has transformed presidential memorialization by largely allowing presidents—initially, at least—to commemorate themselves. This has populated the landscape of public memory in the United States with a series of history museums that promote an expansive view of presidential power. These museums also attempt to elevate individual presidents into the civil religion of the United States. This article examines the largely celebratory accounts in some presidential libraries, and contrasts them with the Truman Library's more balanced and historically accurate approach.
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