In early November, the Harry S. Truman Little White House located in the Florida Keys began the restoration of its historic roof. The only Presidential Museum in the state of Florida, the Truman Little White House last had a roof replacement more than 100 years ago, in 1911. That roof endured considerable damage from Hurricane Irma. So, during the 2019 Florida Legislative session, Representative Holly Raschein and Senator Anitere Flores sponsored a request by the Key West Harry S. Truman Foundation to replace the roof and secure related moisture issues.
The Florida Legislature included the request in the final budget which was then presented to and signed by Governor Ron DeSantis with final amount totaling $339,000 to help preserve the Little White House. The contractor performing the first part of the project is A Plus Roofing, which has managed many historic renovations including St. Paul’s Church and most recently the Southernmost House. The roof portion of the project was scheduled to be complete in about four to five weeks.
Originally Navy property from 1890, the Little White House was known as “Quarters A & B” to house the Paymaster and Commandant of the Navy Base. The house was converted in 1911 to a single-family home for top military brass and known as “Quarters A”. Most notably Harry Truman spent 175 days of his presidency running the country from Key West, FL. Today the house now contains 80% to 90% of the original Truman artifacts.
As the State of Florida’s only presidential museum, the Harry S. Truman Little White House is committed to providing visitors and the Key West community with programs about Truman’s legacy and the American democratic process. The Key West Harry S. Truman Foundation is a non-profit organization. Special events with local artists painting on the over 100-year-old artifacts are in the works and a fundraiser with the historic roof shingles is also planned.