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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Twenty years of education about H.W.

On+November%2C+2017%2C+the+George+H.W.+Bush+Presidential+Library+and+Museum+will+turn+20.
Photo by Photo by Meredith Seaver

On November, 2017, the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum will turn 20.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the George H. W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum. To commemorate this, the center will feature a special exhibit to recognize the George H. W. Bush Library and Museum, the George Bush Foundation and the Bush School of Government and Public Service.

The exhibit opened Sept. 1 and features highlights of the past two decades at the center. Included are decorations and distinguished honors of President Bush, photos and biographies of the nine recipients of the George Bush Award for Excellence in Public Service, local and national awards the library and center have received and highlights of the center’s partnership with community service projects.

George H. W. Bush Library and Museum Deputy Director Robert Holzweiss said he hopes students and members of the community get a chance to look through the history of the library.

“I would encourage everyone at A&M to come out and take a look at it, because most of the A&M community are students and some of them weren’t even alive when we opened up,” Holzweiss said. “It will be a thumbnail crash course on what the Bush Library is and did and give you a preview of what we are looking to do in the next 20 years.”

The Bush Library and Museum opened Nov. 6, 1997, and Supervisory Archivist Deborah Wheeler had only been on staff for one month when she said she witnessed history unfolding.

“There were thousands of people and all the former presidents and first ladies, and I remember sitting in the audience with this sense of, ‘I can’t believe that I have this personal opportunity to see history unfolding and touch pieces of history has really been an awesome opportunity in the past 20 years, and to have it available to the public as well.”

Supervisory Curator Susie Cox worked closely on the exhibit by writing the descriptions and plaques that visitors can read.

“The hardest part of putting the exhibit together was trying to narrow down content to five walls and what are you going to talk about that has happened in the past 20 years that are interesting things,” Cox said. “I just hope it reminds [visitors] of why we are here. We are here not only to promote President Bush’s administration but also history because we are a history museum.”

The exhibit’s focus on the community is one area in which Wheeler said she hopes visitors can realize the integral part the library has played in the past 20 years.

“[The community] has grown by leaps and bounds since the library opened, and I just feel like it will show [the community] all we have accomplished out here with our exhibits, our tours, our education programs and special events,” Wheeler said. “I’m hoping that people that don’t come out very often or haven’t been out yet will take this opportunity to come out and visit us.”

Echoing Wheeler’s goal for the exhibit, Holzweiss said he wants to show people what the library hopes to accomplish in the next 20 years.

“We want the Bryan-College Station and Texas A&M community to realize they are an integral part of what we do here,” Holzweiss said. “There’s obviously a component on President Bush, but then there is a timeline review of all the things we have done out here as a way of recognizing the community for their support, thanking them and saying ‘We are looking forward to the next 20 years of working with y’all.’”

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  • The exhibit at the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum features photos, awards and more from the past 20 years. 

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