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Contact: Jacob Dinkelaker
Eisenhower National Historic Site invites you to celebrate this holiday season at the home and farm of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower. Tis the season to be jolly as the Eisenhower home will be decorated for Christmas, Friday, November 29, through December 31, 2019. The holiday celebration includes a reception on Saturday, December 7, complete with cider and cookies making spirits bright courtesy of Gettysburg Tours, Inc.
Mamie Eisenhower loved to deck the halls of their Gettysburg home for Christmas. Her hand is evident in the home’s recreated decorations, with mistletoe, wreaths, and poinsettias. A brightly lit, candy cane-covered Christmas tree surrounded by presents illuminates the living room. A life-sized Santa Claus enlivens the casual atmosphere of the Eisenhowers’ porch while, in the kitchen, gifts of sugar cookies and plum pudding await the arrival of the Eisenhower grandchildren. The dining room table is set for Christmas dinner and the Eisenhowers’ Christmas records playing in the background add to the holiday atmosphere. One of the original decorations from the first family on display is a 1950s handmade Christmas shadow box.
In the reception center at the Eisenhower farm, the Eisenhowers’ specially designed White House Christmas cards are on exhibit, along with a Christmas gift print of one of the president’s paintings.
Throughout December, the Eisenhower Nativity dioramas, originally exhibited in the East Room of the White House during his presidency, will be on display in the lobby of the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center. Artists Winfred S. Hyatt and Hanna Weil Fischer-Binder handcrafted the Eisenhowers’ three Nativity dioramas with additional work by Bryn Athyn Studios of Building & Architectural Arts. The first diorama depicts the manger. The others depict the shepherds and wise men. The dioramas remained on exhibit each year through 1960, the Eisenhowers’ last Christmas in the White House.
For the month of December, Eisenhower National Historic Site is open Thursday through Sunday with shuttle buses leaving the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center regularly throughout the day. The site is closed on December 25 and January 1. Advance reservations are available and highly recommended for groups. Reservations can be made by calling 877-874-2478 or visiting the Gettysburg Foundation’s website.
Eisenhower National Historic Site preserves and interprets the home and farms of the Eisenhower family as a fitting and enduring memorial to the life, work, and times of General Dwight David Eisenhower, 34th president of the United States, and to the events of far-reaching importance that occurred on the property. Learn more at www.nps.gov/eise.
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 419 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.
Last updated: November 14, 2019