We recently traveled to the Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site in St. Louis, Missouri. Here are five things that stuck with us after our visit to White Haven.

Paris Green Paint

So, you’re telling me that White Haven is actually green? Say what you will, the Paris green paint color works.

After analyzing layers of paint and historical documents, historians determined the house was Paris green during Grant’s ownership.

The Icehouse

We were immediately drawn to this red building that appeared to be sunken into the ground.

This is the Grants’ icehouse, and it was used to keep perishable items cool—like a nineteenth century refrigerator.

During winter months, blocks of ice were cut from local water sources and packed in saw dust (for insulation). According to our tour, the ice could stay frozen until June!

The Memoirs

This signed first-edition copy of Grant’s personal memoirs reminds the visitor of a full life. 

Throughout the tour, we reflected on the ups and downs of Grant’s life: from struggling farmer to Civil War hero. And from becoming president of the United States to enduring near financial ruin in his later years.

Grant completed his memoirs shortly before his death, and the work remains a valuable historical resource.

Grant’s Farm

Adjacent to the U.S. Grant National Historic Site, you’ll notice Grant’s Farm, a family park owned by Anheuser-Busch.

Inside the park’s gates, you’ll find Grant’s Hardscrabble cabin. Ulysses and Julia lived here for only a short time: from September 1856 to January 1857.

The Hardscrabble cabin was dismantled and moved three times before it found its present location at Grant’s Farm.  

A Great Reminder

On the way out of the site, we snapped this picture. It’s a great reminder that we all have a part in preserving our country’s past.


St. Louis, Missouri

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