The birthplace of President Bill Clinton is an unassuming, two-story home in Hope, Arkansas. Well, technically, he was born at the hospital. But when his mother brought him home, it was to 117 Read more...
The birthplace of President Bill Clinton is an unassuming, two-story home in Hope, Arkansas. Well, technically, he was born at the hospital. But when his mother brought him home, it was to 117 South Hervey Street. The future 42nd President of the United States lived here until he was four, raised by his mother Virginia and his maternal grandparents.
Virginia Blythe was recently widowed. Bill’s father died in a car accident just three months before he was born on August 19th, 1946. Virginia named her son after her late husband, William Jefferson Blythe. Her parents helped care for Bill as she earned her nurse-anesthetist certification to support her son. Bill formed a strong bond with both grandparents during this time. He has said that his grandfather taught him more about equality than all his professors at Georgetown.
Visitors to the historic site find a humble house. Built in 1917, the American four-square is largely original. The house still has its hipped roof porch, paneled newel post and built-ins in the pantry. A non-profit acquired the home in 1994. None of the family’s furnishings remained, so the organization set about buying vintage pieces.
An old-fashioned Blackstone stove sits in the kitchen. A rotary phone rests on a side table. A narrow spindle bed with a Hopalong Cassidy bedspread stands in the tiny room that was Clinton’s. Some items are original to the family, including the numerous family photographs. More personal effects from Clinton’s life are on display next door at the Museum Exhibit Center.
The National Parks Service acquired the home in 2010 from The Clinton Birthplace Foundation. The property is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission is free, with guided tours every 30 minutes.