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Cumberland Township near Gettysburg in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Helicopter Landing Pad

Eisenhower National Historic Park

 
 
The Helicopter Landing Pad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, November 4, 2010
1. The Helicopter Landing Pad Marker
Inscription.  
The smoothest ride I ever had in my life.
Eisenhower referring to
his first helicopter ride

President Eisenhower was the first president to travel by helicopter. His first ride was in 1957 during Operation Alert, a Cold War exercise to evacuate the president and his cabinet officers to safety in the Virginia mountains in case of nuclear attack. The helicopter soon proved to be very convenient, as well.

A drive from the White House to Gettysburg took about two hours. On a helicopter, he could travel to Gettysburg in about 35 minutes. Camp David, another presidential retreat, was a 10-minute flight to the south.
 
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Air & SpaceGovernment & PoliticsWar, Cold. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #34 Dwight D. Eisenhower series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1957.
 
Location. 39° 47.628′ N, 77° 15.845′ W. Marker is near
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Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. It is in Cumberland Township. Marker is on Eisenhower Drive, on the right when traveling south. Marker is located at the Eisenhower National Historic Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gettysburg PA 17325, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Guest House (within shouting distance of this marker); Guest House Railings (within shouting distance of this marker); Welcome to Eisenhower National Historic Site (within shouting distance of this marker); Follow in the Footsteps (within shouting distance of this marker); The Stables (within shouting distance of this marker); President Eisenhower’s Gettysburg Farm (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Secret Service Office (about 300 feet away); a different marker also named Welcome to Eisenhower National Historic Site (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Gettysburg.
 
More about this marker. The bottom of the marker features a photograph of Eisenhower and French President de Gaulle exiting a helicopter. It has a caption of “Charles de Gaulle, walking next to Eisenhower, visited the farm in April 1960, during a break from talks at nearby Camp David. Eisenhower found the farm a perfect setting for conducting one-on-one diplomacy.”
The right of the marker contains a photo of “A
Marker at the Eisenhower Farm image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, November 4, 2010
2. Marker at the Eisenhower Farm
Marine helicopter with the President aboard land[ing] near the Eisenhower home in 1958,” and a picture of a portable light with the caption “When the Secret Service received word of the President’s impending arrival, agents would place portable lights around the landing pad and turn on a strobe light in the barn.”
 
Also see . . .
1. Eisenhower National Historic Park. National Park Service website. (Submitted on November 4, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.) 

2. Dwight D. Eisenhower. Biography of President Eisenhower from the White House website. (Submitted on November 4, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.) 
 
The Helicopter Landing Pad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, November 4, 2010
3. The Helicopter Landing Pad Marker
Eisenhower National Historic Park image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, November 4, 2010
4. Eisenhower National Historic Park
The Helicopter Landing Pad marker is located on President Eisenhower's Gettysburg farm.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 7, 2023. It was originally submitted on November 4, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,476 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 4, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.

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Feb. 21, 2024