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Statue of Harry S Truman to be unveiled Thursday at US Capitol

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Posted at 5:09 AM, Sep 29, 2022

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — President Harry S. Truman returns to Washington, D.C. 75 years since his presidency. Leaders will unveil a statue of the 33rd president in the U.S. Capitol rotunda Thursday afternoon.

Truman’s statue will be only the 10th presidential statue in the Capitol rotunda.

The statue is part of the National Statuary Hall collection — each state has two statues in the collection. Truman replaces a statue of former Sen. Thomas Hart Benton.

“I think Missourians should feel incredibly proud that the statue of the 33rd president, and either the fifth or sixth rated president in American history, one of our country’s greatest leaders, will be installed and will be honored in a building that was very important to him: the Capitol building,” explained Alex Burden, Truman Library Institute’s executive director.

The nonprofit organization was instrumental in campaigning for the statue and raising the $400,000 necessary to sculpt and transport it. Kansas City, Missouri-based sculptor Tom Corbin created the statue.

Corbin paid particular attention to details like Truman’s glasses, his World War I lapel pin, his masonic ring and even used measurements of Truman from Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum.

“He put a lot of emphasis on the way he dressed. He was really known for his double-breasted suit, which I included,” Corbin said.

Corbin’s goal with the statue was to capture Truman’s love of walking. The 7.5 feet tall statue shows Truman coming down a staircase.

Many Independence, Missouri, residents have stories of seeing Truman walking around the city after his presidency.

“I wanted Harry to be very approachable and put him in motion,” Corbin said.

Burden hopes the statue’s prominence in the Capitol sparks new interest in Truman.

“It’s going to be a really special moment for Truman, and it’s going to be a really fun time for those of us in the business of representing Truman, to celebrate him,” Burden said.

The unveiling and accompanying ceremony can be viewed online beginning at 2 p.m. Thursday.