President Barack Obama was not the first president to have his birthplace questioned — instead it was Ike, who once was believed to have been born here in Tyler.
“We had a sign up saying that Tyler was the unrepudiated birth place of Ike, but the city had to take it down when it was learned he was actually born in Denison,” she said.
She said Eisenhower told U.S. Army personnel at West Point that he was born in Tyler, and later told Ellis Island officials he was born in Tyler when returning into the country from abroad.
A Tyler Courier-Times—Telegraph article stated in 1999 that people still believed Eisenhower was born in Tyler.
Connally said during breakfast, he was asked where he was from, and he said Tyler.
Connally said the general was asked about a 1945 report that Denison was his birthplace.
“He said that some reporter had asked his aging mother, and that was what she told him, but he thought she was confused,” Connally said. “He said his father and brothers ‘all told me I was born in Tyler.'”
“There was a lot of pride in the fact that Eisenhower was from Tyler, and then we had to remove the sign. There were people that believed he was born here,” she said.
However, Ms. McNamara said the documents show that Eisenhower's parents moved from Abilene, Kan., to Denison in 1890 because of a failed crop.
His father “went to work for the railroad and eventually he and his family moved to Tyler and bought the home on Rosedale Street. They didn't live here long before they went back to Kansas,” she said.
Eventually the ruckus about Eisenhower's birth place all but came to a standstill, but there always was someone claiming Tyler as the beloved president's hometown.
“He was born in Texas, and everybody liked Ike, so that's why some in Tyler wanted us to be the place,” she said.
Updated Monday, January 9, 2012 at 10:16 a.m. CST