Plains, Georgia – Jimmy Carter’s Hometown
We had seen signs for Plains, Georgia, home of President Jimmy Carter, so with GPS being our guide we headed for Plains. Just before you get to town there is a visitor center that tells you where everything is in Plains, funny it is all within 1 square mile, maybe less.
It was a very interesting day, passing the Carter home, they still live there but the house in front is only for the secret service their home is nestled back in the property and cannot be seen through the gate. This is the first and only home the President and his wife have ever lived in. After passing the house we turned around and went into town.
The town is small but history abounds. The train station was the offices for his presidential campaign and is now a historic site.The town is small with a number of buildings including his brother Billy’s service station. One of the stores housed an interesting collection of all presidential campaign memorabilia. The store owner was interesting and quite a character telling us of the many politicians and even ex presidents that had come into the store. He only has items that were made by the campaigns of the various presidential runs going back to Woodrow Wilson, both winners and losers. He has some buttons that he has for sale for as much as $200, the Wilson button being one of the most expensive. He regaled us with his conversations with both of the Carters and so many other stories. We were blessed with a new couple entering the store, we told them how interesting the gentleman was and made a quick exit. We went into “The Peanut Store” Jimmy Carter’s father owned a large peanut farm which he took over upon his father’s death before entering politics, hence “peanuts” are a big item in Plains. We tried fried peanuts and the peanut ice cream, it was spectacular!
We completed the walk about and headed back to the state park and a good night sleep, our next stop Presidential library for Jimmy Carter in Atlanta Georgia.
The library was beautiful inside but mostly focused on before and after his presidency. During his time as president his major challenges were the energy crisis and inflation (some of us remember waiting on-line for gas and Janice remembers her 21% interest on her first mortgage..YIKES).
As president in 1978, Carter mediated negotiations between Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to produce the Camp David Accords. Under the agreement, Israel agreed to return Egyptian territory conquered during the 1973 war, and Egypt in return extended full diplomatic recognition to Israel. Begin and Sadat won the Nobel Peace Prize for that effort. There has not been a conflict between the two countries since the Camp David Accord was reached.
A Wonderful Humanitarian
He has accomplished more since his presidency through the Carter Center, which is located next to the library.
Through the Carter Center, the former president launched a fight against Guinea worm disease, a devastating tropical infection that incapacitated its victims. The center has announced that the disease, which was estimated in 1986 to affect 3.5 million people, was reduced to 126 cases in 2014. It will likely become the first human disease eradicated since smallpox.
His association with Habitat for Humanity gave it wonderful exposure. He created a voting observation group for elections around the world and has personally been to 39 countries and several other endeavors. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.
We have now visited all but two of the Presidential Libraries. We left the Carter Library with the same wonderment of the accomplishments of the individual and dedication to our country. It makes you realize that the nasty rhetoric between all the political parties is just what it is, not important. All these men that have served can be thanked for what they have accomplished for all of us, sometimes we don’t agree, but our thanks go out to all for giving us the best they could.