U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower Vital Statistics & Early Career

About the U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, his vital statistics including birth and death place and time, and early career.

34th President



Born: Oct. 14, 1890, in Denison, Tex. The modest home in which he was born (and lived for less than a year of his life) has been made into the Eisenhower Birthplace State Park, under the supervision of the Texas Dept. of Parks and Wildlife. Admission 50 cent. The future president's name at birth was David Dwight Eisenhower, but he was always called by his middle name in order to distinguish him from his father, David Eisenhower. Before he went away to West Point, the young man had reversed the order of his first and middle names.

Died: Mar. 28, 1969, at Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington, D.C. The 78-year-old former president had been hospitalized for 11 months, following a heart attack; during that period he lived through three more heart attacks before he finally succumbed. Just two months before he died, Eisenhower had the satisfaction of seeing his protege, Richard Nixon, sworn in as president. Nixon delivered the eulogy at Eisenhower's funeral, reporting that the general's last words had been: "I've always loved my wife, I've always loved my children, I've always loved my grandchildren, and I've always loved my country." The former President was laid to rest on the grounds of the Eisenhower Center in Abilene, Kans. This center contains his reconstructed boyhood home plus an Eisenhower library and museum. Located off Interstate 70, 2 mi. south of the Abilene exit, the center is open to the public. Admission 50 cent.


Career: "Ike" Eisenhower was a good student at Abilene High School, and when he graduated, his admiring classmates predicted that he would one day end up as a professor of history at Yale. Ike's father, a mechanic at the local creamery, couldn't afford to pay for college, so the boy laid plans to win an education at government expense. Ike took the examination for the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, but afterward he found out he was too old for admission. He changed his plans and got into West Point at the last minute, when the top local candidate failed to meet the physical requirements. Cadet Eisenhower was a standout in football, but an undistinguished scholar, graduating 61st in his class of 168. A 1st lieutenant when W.W. I broke out, Ike longed to command a regiment at the front; instead, he was put in charge of a tank training school. In the postwar years, Eisenhower's military career advanced slowly but steadily. He won high honors at the army's Command and General Staff School, served at various posts in Panama and the U.S., and was an aide to Gen. Douglas MacArthur in Washington and the Philippines. In 1941, as the army prepared for the impending war, a huge mock battle was staged in Louisiana; Eisenhower commanded his troops so successfully in this exercise that he won the attention of his superiors and was promoted to the temporary rank of brigadier general. Shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, General Eisenhower was called to Washington to serve as an assistant to Army Chief of Staff George C. Marshall.

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