America at war! (1941–) – Part 5

CINCPOA Communiqué No. 331

During the early morning of April 13, the enemy in the southern sector of Okinawa counterattacked in battalion strength but was beaten back with numerous losses by the XXIV Army Corps, supported by naval gunfire and artillery. No substantial change was made in the lines in the South during the day.

On Motobu Peninsula in the North, Marines of the III Amphibious Corps continued to engage groups of the enemy in sporadic fighting. III Corps troops on Ishikawa Isthmus continued to press northward against ineffective resistance.

Aircraft from fast carriers of the U.S. Pacific Fleet shot down over 100 enemy planes in the area of the Ryukyus on April 11-12, in addition to those reported destroyed in Communiqué No. 330. At Tokuno and Kikai Islands, eight more planes were destroyed on the ground and fuel dumps and warehouses were damaged or set afire.

On April 12, Shinchiku and Kiirun airfields on Formosa were attacked by Seafire and Hellcat fighters of the British Pacific Fleet. Sixteen enemy planes were shot out of the air, one was destroyed on the ground, and five were damaged.

On the following day, U.S. carrier aircraft shot one plane down and destroyed 12 others on the ground in the Northern Ryukyus. Attacking shipping end ground installations in and around the Ryukyus our planes destroyed 23 Barges and small craft, damaged airfields and set buildings afire.

During the period March 18 to April 12, inclusive, U.S. Fast Carrier Task Forces under command of VADM Marc A. Mitscher, USN, hot down 841 enemy planes in combat, destroyed 73 by gunfire and destroyed 363 on the ground.

Navy search aircraft of Fleet Air Wing One destroyed a large radio station on Gaja Island in the Northern Ryukyus and sank a picket ship and set second vessel afire north of the Bonins on April 13.

Army Black Widow night-fighters bombed and strafed harbor installations at Chichi Jima and Haha Jima in the Bonins on the night of April 12-13.

On April 12, a single Navy Search Privateer of FlAirWing Two combed installations on Wake Island.

Marine Corsairs and Hellcats of the 4th Aircraft Wing bombed warehouses and buildings in the Palaus and on Yap in the Western Carolines on April 13.

Marine fighters and bombers continued neutralizing raids on enemy-held bases in the Marshalls on April 12.

CINCPOA Press Release No. 72

For Immediate Release
April 13, 1945

The Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet and Pacific Ocean Areas, has authorized the following statement:

For some months the Japanese have been employing aircraft on a gradually increasing scale in suicidal attacks upon our forces in the Western Pacific. These aircraft were initially piloted by a group of pilots who were known as the “Kamikaze Corps” by the Japanese. The enemy has made much in his propaganda of this “sure death-sure hit” suicide technique which is simply an attempt to crash planes on the decks of our ships.

The enemy has expended a large number of planes and personnel on missions of this nature with negligible effect on the continuing success of our operations. Some major units of the fleet have been damaged, but no battleship, fast carrier or cruiser has been sunk. Some smaller ships have been sunk, but in the great majority of cases they have remained in operation after being struck by one of these suicide planes. This reflects considerable credit on our officers and men and also on the designers and builders of our ships.

Effective methods of meeting and destroying suicidal attacks have been developed and will continue to be employed to increase the toll of Japanese aircraft shot down by our aircraft and by our anti-aircraft guns.

The “suicide attack” and the so‑called “Kamikaze Corps” are the products of an enemy trapped in an increasingly desperate situation. Pushed back upon their own inner defenses, the Japanese have resorted to fanatical methods which, from a purely military viewpoint, are of doubtful value.

The “Kamikaze Corps” is apparently being used not only to attempt to damage our ships but also to stir the lagging spirits of the Japanese people. Although these “sure death-sure hit” pilots are reported to be volunteers, many have very willingly become survivors of “suicide” missions and are now prisoners of war.

The enemy claims for the accomplishments of “suicide swimmers, human torpedoes and suicide speedboats” hardly need comment. In the majority of such attacks up to this date these personnel have failed completely in their missions but have been successful in committing suicide.

The “suicide” technique is continuing at the present time. Although it is always considered and prepared for as a factor in estimating the enemy’s capabilities it cannot prevent our continuing success in the war in the Pacific.

The Pittsburgh Press (April 13, 1945)


Truman takes up fight for Roosevelt’s ideals

All world saddened by President’s death – funeral tomorrow
By Lyle C. Wilson, United Press staff writer


WASHINGTON – Franklin D. Roosevelt, for 12 unprecedented years President of the United States, died yesterday – a casualty in history’s greatest war. Last night, at 7:08 p.m. ET, Harry S. Truman became the nation’s 32nd President.

Mr. Roosevelt died suddenly in “The Little White House” at Warm Springs, Georgia, as armies he helped to muster drove momentarily closer to final victory over Nazi Germany.

This morning, President Truman took over the White House responsibility, reaffirmed his pledge to prosecute the war with full vigor, and promised to strive for the high ideals of his predecessor.

Congress, chiefs of the fighting forces and foreign policy leaders quickly closed ranks behind Mr. Truman’s pledge of quick victory and firm peace as a memorial to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

To address Congress Monday

Mr. Truman moved quickly into action. Within a few hours of taking over, he had gone to Capitol Hill and arranged to make a formal declaration of his objectives before a joint Congressional session at 1 p.m. Monday. The address will be broadcast. He also may speak by radio to the Armed Forces Tuesday night.

Worn out at 63, Mr. Roosevelt died as other forces fighting in freedom’s name foretold the doom of militarist Japan.

He died on the eve of what he had hoped would be the inauguration of an era of peace in a world at long last free from want and fear.

Mr. Roosevelt died at 4:35 p.m. of “a massive cerebral hemorrhage.” Mr. Truman took the oath from Chief Justice Harlan F. Stone less than three hours later.

San Francisco parley to go on

The new Chief Executive’s first statement was:

It will be my effort to carry on as I believe the President would have done, and to that end I have asked the Cabinet to stay on with me.

Mr. Truman’s second act as President was to instruct Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius Jr. to go ahead “as planned” with what perhaps was Mr. Roosevelt’s dearest project – the United Nations Conference at San Francisco April 25 to chart a road to peace on earth.

Mr. Roosevelt’s body will be brought here tomorrow. Mrs. Roosevelt went to Warm Springs by plane last night.

Funeral services – in the East Room of the White House at 4 p.m. tomorrow – will be simple, and restricted to Government heads, the family and friends. The President will be buried on his beloved ancestral estate at Hyde Park Sunday at 10 a.m.

Members of the Roosevelt family began gathering today at the White House. Daughter Anna Boettiger was already there. Three daughters-in-law, Mrs. Elliott Roosevelt, the former movie star Faye Emerson; Mrs. James Roosevelt and Mrs. John Roosevelt arrived this morning.

Brig. Gen. Elliott Roosevelt was en route by plane from England. Col. James Roosevelt was on the way from the Pacific but it was doubtful whether he would arrive in time for the funeral. Two other sons, John and Franklin Jr., are overseas and will not be able to attend.

Presidential Adviser Harry Hopkins left Rochester, Minnesota, by Army plane for Washington.

The funeral train will arrive at the Union Station here at 10 a.m. tomorrow.

White House Secretary Jonathan Daniels said the body will not lie in state. He added that the President did not want flowers.

Bishop Angus Dunn, Episcopal Bishop of Washington, the Rev. Howard S. Wilkinson of St. Thomas’ Church in Washington, and the Rev. John C. McGee of St. John’s Church, Washington, will officiate at the White House services.

Rev. W. George Anthony of St. James Church, Hyde Park, will officiate at burial.

Entire world shocked

The President’s death before realization of the victory he worked so hard to assure shocked the world and stunned this capital. It occurred on a pleasant spring day in a charming little room overlooking a green and lovely Georgia valley.

He died in his quarters at the Warm Springs Foundation which he called his “Second Home.” He called it that because in Warm Springs’ healing waters, he had often found surcease from infantile paralysis, the affliction which he had borne without murmur since 1924.

He had gone there in a vain effort to throw off the weariness which seamed his face and sagged his shoulders after perhaps the most momentous event of his international career – the Big Three meeting at Yalta.

The news of Mr. Roosevelt’s death was flashed to Washington from Warm Springs shortly after 4:35 p.m. The President’s old friend, White House Secretary Stephen T. Early, broke the news to Mrs. Roosevelt. She took it with shoulders squared and head high. She said: “I am more sorry for the people of the country and the world than I am for us.”

Then she cabled a brief message to each of the President’s four sons, all of whom are fighting in this greatest of wars.

She told them their father did his job to the end as he would want them to do. She said bless you all and all our love and signed herself, “Mother.”

Served 12 years

Mr. Roosevelt, the first wartime President to die in office, had served 12 years, one month and eight days of the unprecedented four terms to which he had been elected. Mr. Truman had served as Vice President since a few moments after noon last January 20.

The oath was administered to Mr. Truman in the Cabinet room of the White House.

Mr. Truman picked up a Bible resting on the end of the big conference table, held it with one hand, and placed his right hand on top while Justice Stone pronounced the oath from memory.

No Vice President

There will be no successor as Vice President to Mr. Truman. In the event of his death, a statute provides that he would be succeeded by the Secretary of State, in this instance Mr. Stettinius.

Shortly after announcement of Mr. Roosevelt’s death, the Cabinet converged on the rambling white building where the Roosevelts have lived so long. Congressional leaders too began hurrying to the White House gate.

Mrs. Roosevelt departs

Shortly after 7 p.m., Mrs. Roosevelt – tall, erect, and all in black – left the White House for the airport and Warm Springs.

Her daughter, Mrs. Boettinger, escorted her to a black limousine.

Mrs. Roosevelt’s face was drawn, and gray. The party lingered a few minutes as daughter Anna, incongruously wearing a bright red suit, leaned against the open door and exchanged a last conversation with her mother. As the cavalcade started off, Mrs. Roosevelt looked out at a sprinkling of saddened servants and reporters and slightly bowed her head.

Mr. Truman left the White House shortly after he was sworn in with the announced intention of “going home – to bed.”

Truman assumes U.S. highest post

Conferences with Army and Navy leaders were high on the new President’s list today.

Mr. Truman walked briskly into the White House at 9 a.m. and quickly called for the leaders of the nation’s war effort to meet with him at 11.

For 55 minutes he talked with Secretary of War Stimson, Secretary of Navy Forrestal, Adm. William D. Leahy, Gen. George C. Marshall and Adm. Ernest J. King.

They left the conference grim-lipped and silent.

A mellow day

It was a mellow day in Washington, soft with the April sunshine. Outside the White House there was little to indicate that the helm of the nation had changed hands at a critical moment in the world’s history.

But inside, in the cool oval room where Franklin D. Roosevelt had guided American destiny, sat a new President and Commander-in-Chief.

Within three hours of his first working day as President, Mr. Truman had shattered his first precedent.

After conferring with military and diplomatic chiefs, he drove to Capitol Hill for a luncheon conference with the leaders of Congress.

Mr. Truman stepped from a black limousine under the watchful eyes of Secret Service men and walked into the White House with a springy step.

Fulton calls

The first caller of his administration was Hugh Fulton, counsel for the Senate War Investigating Committee when Mr. Truman was its chairman. Mr. Fulton, who came to the White House with the President and spent more than an hour with him, is expected to be one of Mr. Truman’s closest advisers.

One of Mr. Truman’s first official acts was the signing of a formal proclamation announcing to the world that President Roosevelt had died and that the former Vice President had been installed as his successor.

Sleep in old apartment

Last night, the Trumans slept in their five-room Connecticut Avenue apartment in Northwest Washington. There they will remain a little while before moving to the White House. But everything last night was beginning to change.

The Secret Service guard which had been somewhat of a formality – and a bit of an innovation, too – was imposed on Mr. Truman in earnest. The modest man from Missouri was discovering himself one of the world’s great public figures with responsibilities to match.

New managing director

The richest nation in the world was adjusting itself to a new managing director. In the sharpest sense of the phrase, Mr. Truman was on the spot, confronted with as difficult a job as this nation ever entrusted to any man.

Mr. Truman will be 61 on May 8.

Twice elected to the Senate after a career in Missouri politics, Mr. Truman became Vice President last January 20. Then in the sequence of a heartbeat yesterday, he became the head of the greatest going concern on earth.

Trumans to attend funeral

President Truman and his family, quiet, gray-haired Mrs. Truman and slim, blond daughter Mary Margaret, will travel north on the Roosevelt funeral train. The Cabinet and the Army and Navy brass, great figures of Congressional and judicial life may go, too.

The new President is a quiet, easy-going, smiling fellow. He can get tough, though. This politically sensitive Capital would put him down as somewhat more conservative than Mr. Roosevelt but inclined toward the underdog. He’s not so left-of-center, if at all.

The men who know him here are confident today that President Truman begins his administration hoping to approach most problems the way he believes Mr. Roosevelt would have approached them.

Changes probable

Above all there is agreement that the new President is a humble man, profoundly impressed by the bigness of his new job and the necessity for surrounding himself with the most competent advisers obtainable.

Almost inevitably there will be White House changes and perhaps in time some Cabinet shifts. The late President’s closest advisers – outside the membership of the Roosevelt family – were Harry L. Hopkins and Judge Samuel I. Rosenman, associates of his New York gubernatorial days. Their era of great influence probably is coming toward a close.

Hurrying to Washington is James F. Byrnes, former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court and until a few days ago director of the Office of War Mobilization. Mr. Byrnes resigned less devoted to Mr. Roosevelt than he had been. He was among those bitterly disappointed at the Democratic National Convention last summer. Mr. Byrnes, Sen. Alben W. Barkley (D-Kentucky) and some others thought they had the nod from Mr. Roosevelt to seek the vice-presidential nomination in an open field.

Wallace hardest hurt

Hardest hurt of all was Henry A. Wallace, then Vice President and now Secretary of Commerce. Mr. Roosevelt flashed the red light against Byrnes, Barkley and the rest. He left even Wallace stranded and let the word be passed that Harry S. Truman was the man.

With Mr. Roosevelt died the force that held together the opposing segments of the New Deal-Democratic Party. Political Washington foresees that about next Monday there will begin a contest between Wallace, the spokesman of the left wing, and the leaders of more conservative party elements for the new President’s support. If the White House swings away from the policies of the Congress of Industrial Organizations, the battle between Mr. Truman and Mr. Wallace is on.

It will come more on domestic issues than foreign affairs. Mr. Truman has not been profoundly informed on international questions, as he would explain even if he were not asked.

Under him the State Department will have a freer hand than under Mr. Roosevelt who was more often than not his own Secretary of State. But Mr. Truman will do everything he can in the field of world collaboration for peace.

Close ties to Congress

And the new president will look to Congress for advice more quickly than Mr. Roosevelt did. He is legislatively minded with a flair for friendship among legislators. This promises for a time, at least, enormously better relations between the White House and Capitol Hill.

Homely and colloquial in conversation, Mr. Truman expresses himself about as your neighbor might. One of his most recent informal remarks on post-war problems went like this:

There’s nothing I can do about it because I’m a political eunuch (he rated the influence of the vice presidency pretty low). But I’d do anything in the world I could to prevent another war.

The new President is expected to translate that pledge into action by maintaining the closest possible association with the Senate – all the Senate – as the San Francisco conferees negotiate toward agreement. The man from Missouri knows his Senate inside out.

Likes a drink

There should be nothing stiff or formal about his conferences with his former colleagues. If anyone is to be shocked by it, they may as well know now that the President of the United States likes a drink before lunch – a good stiff one. And if the company is good, he’ll take two – a bird can’t fly on one wing.

There’ll be many a pre-luncheon conference at the White House in the next four years which should avoid many a bruising battle on the floor of House or Senate.

Changes to be slow

With Mr. Truman, any changes will be slow. His inclination is expected to be to listen more to Democratic conservatives than Mr. Roosevelt ever would do. But he knows and likes many of the left wingers, too. Even Hopkins, one of the most controversial Roosevelt administration figures, may be expected to be around for some time.

Mr. Hopkins has been the late President’s confidante in great matters of state. He has known the secrets that Mr. Stettinius on occasion has blushed for not knowing. Possessing the knowledge that he does, Hopkins may be indispensable to Mr. Truman for a time. They are alike in some ways. It could be that a partnership would develop, but if so, it would be on Mr. Truman’s terms.

What of Cabinet?

There are Washingtonians who feel the new President is not favorably inclined toward all of Mr. Roosevelt’s Cabinet personnel. But the professional military and naval command of the war is believed to be on the job for the duration. Adm. William D. Leahy should make as excellent a chief of staff for President Truman as for President Roosevelt.

Col. Harry Vaughn will become a powerful White House figure now. He was a World War I buddy of Mr. Truman’s and presently is his military aide. Hugh Fulton was counsel of the “Truman Committee” which plowed up so many of the war effort’s errors and made the new President a sufficient national figure to be chosen last summer to be Mr. Roosevelt’s running mate. Mr. Fulton will be appearing around the White House any time now.

Hannegan is popular

Democratic National Committee Chairman Robert E. Hannegan is another man to watch. It was Mr. Hannegan who broke the news to Mr. Roosevelt last spring that he would avoid a lot of trouble if he would scuttle Vice President Wallace for the 1944 campaign. Mr. Hannegan managed the floor fight that nominated Mr. Truman. Furthermore, it was Mr. Hannegan who helped Mr. Roosevelt make up his mind that Mr. Truman was the man he wanted. Mr. Hannegan and Mr. Truman are fellow Missourians. If there is anything within the President’s gift that Mr. Hannegan wants – such as the postmaster generalship, for instance – like as not the chairman could have it.

The political firm of Truman, Hannegan & Co. is not the one with which the CIO-Communist-Left-wing elements of the late President Roosevelt’s party would prefer to do business. So far as is known, Sidney Hillman of the CIO’s Political Action Committee has not met Mr. Truman since the bruising day on which he was nominated for Vice President in Chicago.

Charges recalled

That nomination came amid charges that it was being obtained by unfair means.

“Shady city bossism,” shouted the CIO’s Richard T. Frankensteen from the convention floor, “has even less place in international affairs than in American life.”

Frankensteen was talking about Hannegan and the candidate – Mr. Truman. Perhaps he was alluding to the fact that the new President got his political start under the guidance of old Tom Pendergast, the Missouri boss who died the other day, a paroled felon.

His Pendergast beginnings have been thrown at Mr. Truman from every angle. He never denied them once. Instead, he defended the old man on any and all occasions. Long after Pendergast was disgraced, the new President was his champion. When Pendergast died, Mr. Truman sped to his funeral. and he made no secret of that. When the term of Maurice Milligan, U.S. attorney in Missouri, was expiring this year. Mr. Truman proposed that he be supplanted by another. It was Milligan who sent Old Tom to prison. The President of the United States does not forget his friends.

Record cited

Four lines in the Congressional Directory tell all that Mr. Truman cared to put there as a permanent record of his life and times. His associates attribute that partly, even largely, to modesty. Party it is attributed to the fact that Mr. Truman’s career was not distinguished until 1936.

He had a good World War I record and is proud of it. A little black book contains the names and addresses of most of the men with whom he served in France. He had country jobs from the Jackson County Pendergast machine and he once went broke as a haberdasher. He’d tell you that, himself.

On November 6, 1934, he was elected to the U.S. Senate. On November 5, 1940, he was elected again. Somewhere along there the man who couldn’t sell shirts and collars became a better than run-of-the-mill good senator. He wasn’t tops, but he was good.

Committee work recalled

As chairman of the Senate Committee to Investigate War Production, Mr. Truman undertook to prevent in this war some of the stupidities, inefficiencies and scandals of World War I, Newspaper reporters made it the “Truman Committee.” The Truman Committee made headlines. The Senator became a national figure and a political asset to his party. His committee did a good job along with the mistakes it made.

Mr. Truman was never a 100 percent New Dealer. But he usually went along. As a freshman in 1937, he was in the minority that tried to impose penalties on sit-down strikers. He voted to override Mr. Roosevelt’s Farm Loan Bill veto, but voted against killing the Roosevelt Supreme Court Reorganization Bill. He supported the administration’s Wage-Hour Bill.

He helped to shelve the Anti-Lynching Bull in 1938, but supported Mr. Roosevelt’s Government Reorganization Bill. He ducked votes here and there in his legislative career, as for instance a bill to bar political job-holders from political conventions. Even a Pendergast machine could not survive that kind of legislation.

In general, on domestic issues, Mr. Truman voted considerably more often for Mr. Roosevelt than against him and he almost always supported the Administration in foreign affairs through the difficult problems of neutrality and on the explosive peacetime question of conscription.

Had a premonition

Mr. Truman had a fearful premonition that he might succeed to the presidency. The thought dismayed him. It was not so much that he underrated himself, but he knew the shape and scope of the presidency and like many another man would not believe it could be approached except in anxious humility.

Out in Missouri a very old lady was thinking that way, too.

“We are praying,” she said, “that God will guide him–.”

The President of the United States will join Mrs. Martha Truman, his 92-year-old mother, in that prayer.

Roll of drums starts body on way home

Church bell peals in country steeple
By Merriman Smith, United Press staff writer

How to place flag at half-mast

All flags displayed by civilians should be flown at half-mast for 30 days – the same period as that being observed by the Army – in mourning the death of President Roosevelt, Army officials in Pittsburgh announced today.

In raising a flag to half-mast, they said, the flag should first be hoisted to the top of the mast and then lowered gently to half-mast. In lowering the flag at sundown, it should be raised from its half-mast position to the top of the staff and then lowered completely.

Where flags are fastened to masts and cannot be raised or lowered, the Army official said that civilians should attach black ribbon streamers, about half the length of the flag. These, it was pointed out, should be placed at the top of the staff directly under the ball or eagle, and left to hang down and fly with the colors.

WARM SPRINGS, Georgia – The body of Franklin D. Roosevelt today was borne from the “Little White House” in Georgia to the roll of muffled drums, starting the long, last journey to Washington.

The hot Southern sun shone in a blue sky as the funeral cortege left the green hills the President loved so well. The procession moved slowly down the winding mile-long road to Warm Springs station.

Church bell peals

In the distance a church bell pealed from some country steeple.

The cortege left the “Little White House” at 10:30 a.m. Along the road stood hundreds of residents of the President’s “Other Home.” They bared their heads and stood in silence as the cortege passed.

First came the U.S. Army Band from nearby Ft. Benning, Georgia. The roll of its muffled drums tied softly over the countryside in the still, warm air.

Behind the band marched 1,000 infantrymen, led by three companies of carbine-carrying troops, followed by riflemen. Their colors flew black streamers to signify the mourning of the nation.

Troops present arms

Then came the hearse bearing the President’s body in a copper-lined, flag-draped mahogany casket.

As the troops reached the little station across the tracks from the Warm Springs Hotel and the little row of Warm Springs stores and business buildings, they deployed into company front and presented arms.

Honor guard afoot

Behind the hearse and at each flank was the Honor Guard of high naval officers, afoot. Next came Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt, dressed im black, with a fur cape. She sat stiffly upright, outwardly composed as she has been throughout.

With Mrs. Roosevelt rode Fala. He sat quietly at Mrs. Roosevelt’s feet, apparently sensing that Something was wrong – what, he could not quite know.

Along the route, troops – overseas veterans – stood at attention. Many of them cried openly as they stood rigidly presenting arms.

The cortege wound through the pleasant grounds of the Warm Springs Foundation. Some two hours before the faint beat of the drums signaled the approach of the cortege, the patients – like Mr. Roosevelt, victims of infantile paralysis – had hobbled out in front of the main dormitory. Some were wheeled by their nurses.

Frank and open sorrow

In a semi-circle they watched the cortege pass. Here there were tears, and frank and open sorrow.

A thirteen-year-old, Jay Fribourg, said: “I love him so much.” He clenched his teeth to keep back the sobs.

Chief Petty Officer Graham Jackson, a Georgia Negro who was a favorite of the President’s, stepped from the circle of mourners. He had his accordion which he had often played for Mr. Roosevelt.

As the cortege approached, he lifted the accordion and played the haunting strains of Dvorak’s “Going Home” from the New World Symphony. Then he played “Nearer My God to Thee.”

Standing there, too, was old Tom Logan. For 14 years he had been Mr. Roosevelt’s waiter at Warm Springs. His chin trembling and his shoulders shaking, the white-haired Negro watched the body of his friend pass by.

“Lord God, take care of him now,” said Logan.

Slowly the procession passed on. The victims of the malady with whom Mr. Roosevelt had a special bond watched it disappear in the distance.

Casket put on train

At 10:55 a.m. the President’s casket was placed aboard the train by eight enlisted men, the picked Body Guard for the last journey.

Mrs. Roosevelt, accompanied by the President’s two cousins, Miss Laura Delano and Miss Margaret Suckley, and Grace Tully, the President’s secretary, boarded the train.

The train was the same as the President’s usual special, with one extra car, making 11 cars in all.

As the troops in their olive drab stood at attention and the townsfolk of Warm Springs bared their heads, the train pulled out at 11:13 a.m.

Crowd stands silently

The crowd stood silently as the train gathered speed and rumbled northward along the tracks. Finally, it rounded a bend and all that could be seen was a thin trail of black smoke.

Even then the townsfolk and the troops stood silently as the Georgia sun beat down more strongly. Then, in little knots the crowd broke up.

The Army troops broke rank and clambered into the buses that were to take them back to Ft. Benning.

Townsfolk strolled to their homes and businesses. Farmers climbed into their cabs for the drive back. For the last time the President had left Warm Springs.

The train will make a slow run to Washington. It is scheduled to arrive in the capital’s Union Station at 10 a.m. tomorrow.

Death struck at 4:35 p.m.

Mrs. Roosevelt, bearing her sorrow bravely, flew here to make the sad journey with the body back to Washington.

The President died at 4:35 p.m. ET yesterday of a cerebral hemorrhage that struck him 2½ hours earlier. Death came to him in a small bedroom of “The Little White House” at the Warm Springs Foundation, his “other home.” He was 63.

Funeral services will be held in the East Room of the White House at 4 p.m. tomorrow. At 10 p.m. the funeral party will leave Washington by train for the ancestral Roosevelt estate on the Hudson at Hyde Park, New York. It will arrive there at 9 a.m. Sunday.

The President, will be buried at 10 a.m. Sunday in the sunlit garden between his Hyde Park home and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library – a garden bordered by a hemlock hedge and a profusion of rose bushes.

First Lady ‘heroic’

Until the burial, the President’s body will be guarded 24 hours a day by sentries chosen from enlisted men of the Navy, the Army and the Marine Corps.

White House Secretary Stephen T. Early, who accompanied Mrs. Roosevelt here from Washington, said she bore her grief “very nobly – in fact, she was heroic.”

Shortly after she reached the Little White House, Mrs. Roosevelt went into seclusion. Previously, however, she had discussed the funeral plans with members of the staff and reached quick, clear-cut decisions for the simple rites which she felt the President would have wanted.

Staff works on

All through last night the President’s staff worked at a feverish pace for “The Boss,” as they called him. Hundreds of Warm Springs and Meriwether County neighbors wanted to stop by and shake a hand and offer a word of consolation, but Marine and Secret Service guards stopped them at the gates to the Foundation.

While Mr. Roosevelt lay dying yesterday, a large party of his friends were waiting in innocence for him to appear at an old-fashioned barbecue given by Mayor Frank Allcorn of Warm Springs. The Brunswick stew was bubbling in a huge cook pot, country fiddlers were playing “The Cat and the Chicken,” and everyone was on his toes for the Chief Executive’s arrival.

He was supposed to have been there at 4:30 and when he didn’t arrive at that scheduled moment, someone called the Little White House switchboard to ask what the trouble was. At the same moment, Louise Hackmeister, the President’s personal telephone operator. Reached Mr. Allcorn’s cottage with the news.

Truman becomes President in simple ceremonies

Oath is administered in Cabinet room by Chief Justice Harlan F. Stone

WASHINGTON (UP) – The gray-haired man with the gold-rimmed spectacles walked into the awesome confusion that was the White House and into the most momentous hour of his life.

He came in as Vice President Harry S. Truman and he walked out again as the 32nd President of the United States.

He stepped around reporters eager for more news of the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He walked past red-eyed secretaries and stenographers who couldn’t believe the news. He moved quickly through the glare of photographers’ flashlight bulbs.

He made his way into the apple-green Cabinet Room of the White House. Cabinet members were seated there, solemn-faced. Leaders of Congress were there, too. They stood in groups, talking quietly.

Harry S. Truman sat down in an overstuffed leather chair. It was understandable that he was not completely at ease. Then up stepped Chief Justice Harlan F. Stone of the United States.

The Vice President got to his feet. Someone gave him a Bible from President Roosevelt’s office.

He held it reverentially on his left palm. His right hand was on the cover. The clock on the mantlepiece pointed to 7:05 p.m. Three minutes later, the Chief Justice began administering the oath of office.

I, Harry Shippe Truman, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

The Chief Justice recited the oath from memory. The new President repeated the words after him, phrase by phrase.

But when he came to his name, he said, “Harry S. Truman.” He did not use the name “Shippe,” and persons who know him well said that was because he really has no middle name; that he was christened plain Harry Truman and adopted the letter “S” when he was grown up because it looked and sounded better.

It was 7:08 p.m. when Harry S. Truman became the 32nd President of the United States.

No Roosevelts present

Not a member of the Roosevelt family was present at the ceremony. When it was over, the official witnesses shook his hand, whispered words of courage and congratulations. There was no backslapping. There were no smiles.

Three reporters were present, representing the three press associations.

Mr. Truman was there too, a proud wife and mother who a few moments before had dabbed at tear-stained eyes with a crumpled handkerchief. Her hand held that of their 20-year-old daughter, Mary Margaret. Both stood in the background as the oath was administered. They were just spectators.

Wallace is there

One of the witnesses was the man who might have been in Mr. Truman’s place had the political fates been different – former Vice President Henry A. Wallace. Mr. Wallace, who will remain in President Truman’s Cabinet as Secretary of Commerce, was so shaken that Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius had to help him from the room.

Mrs. Roosevelt was 11 blocks away at a “Thrift Club” meeting when Secretary Stephen T. Early telephoned and asked her to return to the White House as soon as possible.

Mr. Early and Vice Adm. Ross T. McIntire, the President’s physician, brought the tragic news to her sitting room.

The President “has slipped away,” they told her.

Mr. Early then telephoned Mr. Truman and asked him to come to the White House. Ten minutes later, he heard the news from Mrs. Roosevelt. She told him Mr. Roosevelt had “passed away.”

“What can I do?” he exclaimed.

“Tell us what we can do,” replied Mrs. Roosevelt. “Is there anything we can do to help you?”

Someone suggested that Mr. Truman summon the Cabinet.

He did.

Later, following the oath-taking, President Truman went home to his five-room apartment on Connecticut Avenue for a night’s rest.

Civilization’s hope –
Roosevelt’s last speech released

Plea for world to live together quoted

WASHINGTON (UP) – If Franklin D. Roosevelt had lived to address the Jefferson Day Dinner here tonight, he would have told his listeners that all of the peoples of the world must learn to live together in peace if civilization is to survive.

The last public address Mr. Roosevelt prepared was ready for delivery when he died. In it, he revealed his great concern for the pattern of the world’s future when hostilities end.

The nation, he said, does not intend to abandon its determination that there shall be no third world war.

Mr. Roosevelt wrote:

We seek peace – enduring peace.

More than an end to war, we want an end to the beginning of all wars – yes, an end to this brutal, inhuman and thoroughly impractical method of settling differences between governments.

But the mere conquest of our enemies is not enough.

Today we are faced with the pre-eminent fact that if civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships – the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together and work together, in the same world, at peace.

The work ahead, Mr. Roosevelt wrote, is peace.

He wrote:

Today, as we move against the terrible scourge of war as we go forward to the greatest contribution that any generation of human beings can make in this world, the contribution of lasting peace, I ask you to keep up your faith.

The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today. Let us move forward with strong and active faith.

The late President pointed to the lesson the nation learned in the time of Thomas Jefferson, another great American President his audience was to have gathered to honor. That lesson, he said, was that America could not avoid the consequences of attacks by the Barbary Coast Corsairs.

Recognizing the nearness of military victory and its significance on peace plans, Mr. Roosevelt wrote:

The once-powerful, malignant Nazi state is crumbling. The Japanese warlords are receiving, in their own homeland, the retribution for which they asked when they attacked Pearl Harbor.

We must go on to do all in our power to conquer the doubts and the fears, the ignorance and the greed, which made this horror possible.

Resistance cracks before Berlin

9th Army reported 15 miles from capital – Reich almost cut in two

Very heavy raid made on Tokyo


WASHINGTON (UP) – A fleet of Superfortresses “in very great strength” dropped incendiary bombs upon military and industrial targets in Tokyo today, the War Department announced.

GUAM (UP) – The Japs were revealed today to have Jost 118 planes in two desperate suicidal attacks against U.S. forces in the Okinawa area yesterday.

Adm. Chester W. Nimitz disclosed that one U.S. destroyer was sunk in the action and several other ships damaged, although the latter continued in operation.

A Tokyo broadcast admitted the loss of only two Jap planes and claimed that the suicide forces had sunk or damaged 11 American vessels in the raids yesterday.

Tokyo said the attacks were directed against eight separate groups of U.S. warships stretched 100 miles off the eastern coast of Okinawa. The enemy report claimed the entire American naval force included at least eight aircraft carriers and seven battleships.

On Okinawa, the stalemated ground campaign north of the capital of Naha went into its fifth day today. Adm. Nimitz disclosed the identity of four more divisions fighting on Okinawa, making a total of five known to be taking part in the campaign. They were the 27th and 96th Infantry Divisions and the 1st and 6th Marine Divisions.

Death of Roosevelt casts mourning pall over city

Schools dismissed – city offices shut – theaters, stores close Saturday – plants open
Friday, April 13, 1945

The Pittsburgh District joined the nation today in mourning the death of President Roosevelt.

City and parochial schools suspended all classes. County schools convened this morning, but were dismissed after “appropriate services.”

Duquesne University discontinued classes, while both the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Tech adjourned classes at noon today after memorial services.

The Retail Merchants’ Association announced this afternoon that the large department stores would be closed all day Saturday.

The East Liberty Chamber of Commerce announced late this afternoon that the large stores in that section of the city will follow the example set by the downtown merchants.

State liquor stores will remain closed all day at the order of Gov. Martin. Warner, Harris, Fulton and Loew’s theaters will be closed tomorrow as well as most of the independent “neighborhood” theaters.

Mayor Scully said he had been told by Louis Little, attorney for the Cafe Owners’ Association, that all cafés in the area have withdrawn their floor shows for tonight and tomorrow. The cafés will be closed during the time of the President’s funeral services tomorrow.

Members of the Allegheny County Retail Druggists’ Association will close their stores from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m. tomorrow.

In Pittsburgh, all City and County offices closed today, in addition to the Superior, Orphans’, Common Pleas and Criminal Courts. Federal Court adjourned shortly before noon. All courts will resume sessions Monday.

There was no cessation of activity in the humming war plants, for despite the President’s death, both the management and labor knew that the task of forging the weapons of war must go on.

Fourteen mines in this area were shut down as miners paid tribute to the President.

Scores of affairs scheduled for tonight and over the weekend were postponed or cancelled by clubs and other organizations. Nearly all churches planned memorial services.

Carnegie Library branches will close tomorrow afternoon during the funeral services. The main library in Schenley Park will remain open.

Collector of Internal Revenue Stanley Granger announced that the two Pittsburgh offices of his bureau in the Federal Building and 715 Penn Avenue and 15 branch offices will close at noon tomorrow instead of 5 p.m.

Truman proclaims mourning period

WASHINGTON (UP) – President Truman today proclaimed Saturday as a day of mourning and prayer throughout the United States in respect to the late Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The presidential proclamation was issued by Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius. At the same time, by order of the President, Mr. Stettinius ordered that:

  • Flags to remain at half-mast on all public buildings of the United States for one month – until the close of Monday, May 14.

  • All executive departments and agencies of the government be closed tomorrow afternoon – the day of the funeral.

If you ever pray, pray for me, Truman pleads

WASHINGTON (UP) – President Harry S. Truman said to reporters in the Capitol today: “Boys, if you ever pray, pray for me now.”

The honest, earnest little Missourian left a meeting with Congressional leaders to shake hands with reporters he had known as Senator and Vice President.

“You boys of the press have been good to me,” he said.

When a reporter addressed him as “Mr. President,” he smiled wistfully, and said: “I wish you’d never had to call me that.”

Let a patient testify

By Florence Fisher Parry

President’s death numbs Pittsburghers

First report greeted with much skepticism
Friday, April 13, 1945

Sometimes, when you’re seriously Injured, it doesn’t hurt much at first – and that’s the way Pittsburgh reacted to the first news of the President’s death last night.

The news swept across the city like wildfire during the dinner hour. Some heard it on their way home from work, and others as they were getting an early start for an evening’s entertainment.

Finally realize it

Most were incredulous, “Why, he hadn’t even been sick!” they exclaimed. But it shortly became apparent that the report was all too true.

Not knowing what else to do, men and women continued with what they were doing. Along the streets, it wasn’t apparent that a world-shaking event had taken place.

Only in the privacy of homes were tears allowed to flow.

Talk gravely of tragedy

Downtown, in hotel lobbies and on street corners, small groups of men talked gravely about what the tragedy meant to the country. The name Truman seemed to be on every tongue.

From one of these groups came the words: “It was almost like Lincoln’s death. He saw his work practically completed.”

The parking lot attendant, bringing out your car, murmured, “Didja hear about the President dying? Too bad!”

The girl at the cigar counter told customers, excitedly, “I liked to have dropped when I heard the news.”

Talk of new President

In the bustling lobby of Hotel William Penn, men gathered in groups to discuss the tragic news. Already their thoughts were turning to the new president,

“What kind of a President do you think Truman will make?” … “They should yank Stettinius out of the Secretary of State and make him President” … “Who becomes Vice President – Stettinius?” … “Nah! The Senate’ll elect him” … “We won’t have a Vice President for four years” … “The President pro tem of the Senate will serve as Vice President.”

Endless arguing, speculation, conjecturing.

Some didn’t relieve news

There was shocked disbelief that Franklin D. Roosevelt was dead.

On the street… “When did it happen?” … “One o’clock in the afternoon” … “No, I heard it was 1:35” … “No, you’re both wrong, it was 3:35.”

A man made a hasty call to his wife to break the news.

“Whatya doin’ – pullin’ one of your lousy jokes?”

Judge reads tribute

More than 650 persons packed into the Wilham Penn ballroom stood in silence while Judge Alexander Cooper read the lines penned by Walt Whitman after the death of Abraham Lincoln:

The ship is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done,
From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won;
Exult O shores, and ring O bells!
But I with mournful tread,
Walk the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

The 650 attended the annual dinner of the Allegheny County Chapter, Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association. A year ago at the same organization’s dinner the apeaker was the then Sen. Harry S. Truman, now President of the United States.

As the evening wore on, the full import of the tragedy began to dawn on everyone. Telephone lines were jammed with calls made to talk it over, or to newspaper offices and other centers of information.

Questions fly fast

“Who will become Vice President?” they asked, and “How long should flags be kept at half-staff?” and “Should I close my place of business?”

The thing had been so unexpected that few restaurants, taverns and places of amusement were closed last night. Hours after the first word was received, there were few outward signs of mourning in the city.

In the hearts and minds of the City’s residents, however, you knew that memorial services were being conducted for this man who had been their national leader through a dozen troubled years.

His monument

The teeming Hill District, where thousands have benefited from the reforms Mr. Roosevelt sponsored, was quieter than usual. Folks sat on their doorsteps and talked about the thing that had happened.

One elderly man gazed thoughtfully at the lighted buildings of the Terrace Village housing project and observed – “That will be his monument.”

Truman decides to hold ‘Frisco parley as planned

President urges world security organization be erected as memorial to Roosevelt

WASHINGTON (UP) – Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius Jr. today called in the British, Russian and Chinese ambassadors to confirm to them President Truman’s decision that the San Francisco conference on world security will be held as scheduled April 25.

Mr. Stettinius was expected to express officially to the representatives President Truman’s intention that the San Francisco structure shall be erected, as planned, as a memorial to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

British Ambassador Earl Halifax, Soviet Ambassador Andrei A. Gromyko, and Chinese Ambassador Wei Tao-ming were to meet with Mr. Stettinius at noon. They constitute the preliminary steering committee for the meeting.

To affirm policy

The U.S. Secretary of State, it was believed, will convey to them Mr. Truman’s intention that the San Francisco gathering shall constitute an immediate affirmation of the continuity of U.S. foreign policy and of his support of the peace structure of which Mr. Roosevelt was one of the major architects.

His great collaborators – Premier Joseph Stalin and Prime Minister Winston Churchill – described him on his death as the world leader in the cause of ensuring security for the whole world.

Mr. Roosevelt, who had done so much to prepare the United States this time to take its proper place in the new organization and to avoid the mistakes of 1920, had planned to address the opening session at San Francisco.

His sudden death will not delay the conference. His name and his thoughts still will dominate the opening meeting. Representatives of the United Nations vowed within hours of his death that the memory of his vision, courage, statesmanship and leadership would inspire them in the task of building world peace.

Had two objectives

Mr. Roosevelt devoted the last years of his life to two great objectives: (1) Winning the ears; (2) Building the foundation for an international accord that would give some assurance of lasting peace.

Accomplishment of the first objective was in sight before he died. The crucial test for the second one begins – as scheduled – 12 days from today in San Francisco.

The first question which arose after the shock of Mr. Roosevelt’s death had passed was: “Will the conference go on.”

First Truman decision

It was the first major decision President Truman had to make. And less than an hour after he had taken the presidential oath, he made it, Mr. Stettinius announced: “With the authority of President Truman, I wish to announce that the San Francisco conference will open on April 25 as planned.”

One high official explained it this way: “Just as the war must go on, so must the planning to prevent another one.”

The sentiment of those who will represent the United States at the conference, as well as the representatives of the other United Nations, was: “Carry on.”

Trumans await convenience of Mrs. Roosevelt

WASHINGTON (UP) – It’s not known just when the Truman family will move into the White House. But President Harry S. Truman went to work this morning in the mansion’s executive wing where the business of the nation’s Chief Executive is carried on.

Occupation of the White House living quarters by President and Mrs. Truman and their 20-year-old daughter, Mary Margaret, will await the convenience of Mrs. Roosevelt. It will take time to move out the Roosevelt family’s personal possessions.

Mrs. Roosevelt promised to give the new First Lady every possible assistance in becoming adjusted to her duties in the White House. Her 12 years’ experience should stand Mrs. Truman in good stead.

Stalin lauds Roosevelt as peace pioneer

Russians grieved – news brings tears

MOSCOW (UP) – Marshal Joseph Stalin hailed President Roosevelt in death today as “a great politician of world significance and a pioneer in the organization of peace and security after the war.”

Russians hearing the first word of Mr. Roosevelt’s death were stunned and deeply grieved. Their reaction was believed representative of the masses, as well as their highest leaders.

The Russians never forgot the fact that Mr. Roosevelt was the first President to recognize the Soviet regime.

Mr. Roosevelt’s and Marshal Stalin’s personalities clicked at the Tehran and Yalta conferences. They understood one another perfectly, parted genuine friends, and kept up extensive cable correspondence.

Won hearts of Russians

Once between sessions at Yalta, the two with an interpreter alone sat on a beach facing the Black Sea waves, chatting about everything but politics. Few if any foreign dignitaries could have had a similar session with Marshal Stalin.

Mr. Roosevelt’s warmth and simple manner won the hearts of every Russian on his personal staff at Yalta. His chambermaid, a 60-year-old peasant woman named Fenya who works on the third floor of the Hotel Metropole here, said the President was “such a dear, fine. sympathetic man.”

Fenya wept when she heard of Mr. Roosevelt’s death, as did several others of the Metropole staff who served the President.

Sends messages

Marshal Stalin’s tribute to Mr. Roosevelt was expressed in messages he sent to Mrs. Roosevelt and President Truman. That to Mrs. Roosevelt said:

Please accept my sincere condolence on the occasion of the death of your husband, and my expression of my sincere sympathy in your great sorrow.

The Soviet people highly valued President Roosevelt as a great organizer of the struggle of freedom-loving nations against the common enemy and a leader in the cause of insuring security for the whole world.

‘A great politician’

To President Truman, he messaged:

On behalf of the Soviet government and myself personally, I want to express profound condolence to the Government of the United States of America on the occasion of the premature death of President Roosevelt.

The American people and the United Nations have lost, in Franklin Roosevelt, a great politician of world significance and a pioneer in the organization of peace and security after the war.

The government of the Soviet Union expresses its sincere sympathy for the American people in their great loss, and their conviction that policy of friendship between the great powers who have shouldered the main burden of war against the common enemy will continue to develop in the future.

United Press writer wins news award

Mrs. Truman stunned by news of presidency

Roosevelt successor phones wife at 5-room apartment

First Lady keeps ‘Midwest humor’ despite fame

By Scripps-Howard Service

WASHINGTON – “In spite of all that has come to us, thank God I still have my Middle West sense of humor.”

It would be difficult to say whether that is a characteristic sentiment of new First Lady, Mrs. Harry Truman. Yet it is the one remark which friends remember having heard her make time and again since January 20 when her husband became Vice President.

Mrs. Truman has not been a whooper-upper for Harry Truman, but a steady, appreciated and aided the ambitions of her husband. She never worries about herself. But she does jeep a weather eye on the man who yesterday was sworn in as President.

She’s of medium height, more than medium waistline, nicely dressed. Her greying hair is soberly parted, waved and curled. She’s rural America come to Washington.

WASHINGTON (UP) – Harry S. Truman himself informed his wife of the fateful event which made him President of the United States.

Mrs. Truman received a telephone call from her husband late yesterday while she was in their unassuming five-room Connecticut Avenue apartment which they have occupied for the last four years.

Mrs. Truman, stunned, immediately called a friend, Mrs. Oscar J. Ricketts, manager of the apartment house, and asked her to come up.

Mrs. Ricketts said she found the new First Lady in tears, overcome and stunned.

Leave by back door

A few minutes later, Mrs. Truman, with her 20-year-old-daughter, Mary Margaret, left the apartment house by the back door in a White House limousine which took them to their future home.

There they witnessed the simple ceremony which made Harry S, Truman the new President. The new President, his wife and daughter returned to their apartment at 7:30 p.m.

They entered by a back door as Secret Service men held back a small crowd of curious neighbors gathered around the front entrance of the apartment house.

Apartment guarded

A quad of about a dozen Secret Service men were stationed about the apartment house. They permitted no one to disturb the family and did not permit the delivery of any telegrams. All phone calls were refused.

Mrs. Truman, trim, gray-haired, and Mary Margaret, slender, with long blond hair, wore simple brown suits.

“We’ll miss them,” Mrs. Ricketts observed pensively. “They just don’t come any nicer or any finer. I never saw a family with more I never saw a family with more affection for each other. It’s rather outstanding.”

Mrs. Ricketts was unable to recall any remarks that Mrs. Truman made before she departed for the White House.

Busy answering phone

“I was too busy answering the telephone and everything was so strange,” she said. “I just can’t remember.”

Margaret, she said, displayed extreme emotion. Tears welled in her eyes.

Soon after the news reached them, Mrs. Truman’s next-door neighbor and friend, Mrs. Leonard Davis, wife of Maj. Gen. Davis who is now serving in Europe, arrived at the Truman apartment.

Mrs. Ricketts recalled that Mrs. Truman affectionately calls her husband “Boss."

Formerly taught school

The new First Lady, a one-time schoolteacher of Independence, Missouri, first skyrocketed to national prominence at last July’s Democratic National Convention in Chicago when her husband was selected as Franklin D. Roosevelt’s fourth-term running mate.

Meeting reporters in numbers for the first time in her life, she admitted frankly that she was thrilled by it all – and just as frankly admitted that she would be glad when the excitement was over and she could get back to her home in Independence.

The Trumans have no servants and Mrs. Truman does all the housework herself. She also prepares the family’s two meals a day, except on those rare occasions when the Trumans’ presence is required at social functions.

Helped her husband

In the years when her husband was chairman of the well-known Senate War Investigating Committee, she had an almost full-time job helping him with details of his investigation work. Most of her work was done at home but, on occasion, she worked in his office at the Capitol.

The everyday touch which the new First Lady has in abundance was demonstrated the day Mr. Roosevelt was sworn in for his fourth term and Mr. Truman took the oath as Vice President.

Her one complaint after a grueling day of standing for hours shaking hands with the White House guests was that her feet hurt.

Given a tip

Her predecessor gave her a tip that day for which she probably will be eternally grateful.

“If you will relax your knees, you will not become so tired from standing for long periods,” Mrs. Roosevelt is said to have told her. “I have learned to do it since I came to live her.”

Washington bets Truman will oust some top men

Friends say new President, given tough job, insists on capable assistants
By Charles T. Lucey, Scripps-Howard staff writer

WASHINGTON – Harry S. Truman is an everyday American who ploughed a straight furrow as a Missouri farm boy and who, as President, is expected to do the same.

Extreme views on both sides can be heard about him today. Truth, as usual, lay somewhere between.

No one knows better than Harry Truman how sharp is the contrast between him and the Franklin Roosevelt he succeeded last night.

He has followed the President, but he is no New Dealer. He has been beholden to bosses, but he has been able to say no to them. He is a man adroit in compromise who can work well with Republicans as with Democrats.

Gets into hot water

And he is a rather frank-spoken man whose bluntness more than once has got him into hot water.

Harry Truman came to the Senate in 1934 with advice from Boss Tom Pendergast to work hard, keep his mouth shut until he knew the ropes, and answer his mail. It wasn’t until 1937 that he did anything that put him in the national spotlight, and that was as vice-chairman of a committee investigating the railroads.

When it came to digging into the Missouri Pacific, names of politicians and others back in Missouri began to bob up. Telegrams and telephone calls poured in on Sen. Truman asking him to ease up on that home-state stuff.

Brushed aside ‘heat’

Boss Pendergast was one of those who turned on the heat. But Mr. Truman told his committee investigators: “I don’t want you to ease up on anything. Treat this investigation just as you do all the others.”

As senator, Mr. Truman never apologized for Boss Pendergast and when the old man died a few months ago he went to Kansas City to his funeral. Pendergast had been his friend and there was still loyalty there, that was all.

Harry Truman has a certain gentleness about him, but back of this is the shrewdness which, despite what some people have rated only average ability, has carried him to political success.

Best man sought

When he became chairman of the Senate war investigating body that came to be called the Truman Committee, he went to his friend, Bob Jackson, then Attorney General, and asked him for the best man he had to run an investigation. The Attorney General gave him Hugh Fulton, and other able investigators were found.

Friends cite this to show that, given a job, Mr. Truman tries to surround himself with able people.

That’s why the betting today is there will be plenty of changes at the top of the government’s executive branch – in the Cabinet and in the White House coterie.

Opposed nomination

Harry Truman didn’t want the Vice Presidency when it came to him last year. He told friends he would be happy to spend the rest of his life in the Senate and, a man of modest means, he was afraid he couldn’t afford the fanfare that would have to go with it.

At the Chicago convention, he thought his biggest role would be to nominate James F. Byrnes for the Vice Presidency. Mr. Byrnes had asked him to do so and he had agreed.

But when Sidney Hillman’s boys thumbs-downed Mr. Byrnes, when the city bosses and National Chairman Robert Hannegan bucked Henry Wallace and when Mr. Roosevelt finally gave the Senator his blessing, Mr. Truman went in fighting.

Genial fellow

“I’m in this now,” he said, “and I’m staying in it until I win.”

On the campaign train he was a genial fellow who played poker and had a drink with the newspapermen but who always knocked off no later than 11:30 p.m., to be up early for the back-platform stops of early morning.

At Uvalde, Texas, he got out on the platform and he and Jack Garner threw their arms around each other. Friends say he likes Cactus Jack and that he is also closer to Jesse Jones and others on the conservative side of the New Deal Party than to the Harry Hopkins’ New Dealers. In the Senate, his closest crony is Carl Hatch (D-New Mexico).

What’s New Deal’s fate?

A big question asked here today was: Is the New Deal dead? Those who looked at Mr. Truman’s many conservative friends said yes; those who looked at his voting record said no. It has been strongly pro-Roosevelt for 10 years.

Harry Truman’s biggest ambition, in recent months, has been to put everything he could into the job of getting acceptance of the post-war international treaties, including Bretton Woods and the one to come out of San Francisco. He was working among Republicans as well as Democrats.

He’s good at that, too. He had Republicans on the Senate War Investigating Committee – and they didn’t file even one minority report.

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – Our war with Japan has gone well in the last few weeks.

We are firmly on Okinawa, which is like having your foot in the kitchen door.

Our wonderful carrier pilots have whittled down the Jap air force daily. Our anti-aircraft from ships and from shore batteries has plugged Jap fliers for the highest ratio I’ve ever known from ack-ack.

Our task forces have absolutely butchered the only Jap task force to put to sea in many months. B-29s are hitting Japan, with fighter escort from Iwo Jima. Airfields are springing up on Okinawa. We all say we sure are glad we are not in the Japs’ shoes.

One main question asked over here now is, “How long will the Japs hold out?” There are all kinds of opinions, but actually nobody knows.

We don’t know, because no one in his right mind can pretend to understand the Oriental manner of thinking. They are unpredictable. They are inconsistent. As one officer said, “They are uncannily smart one day, and dumb as hell the next.”

Jap claims ridiculous

Their values are so different from ours. The news broadcasts from Tokyo and Shanghai are an example. These broadcasts are utterly ridiculous.

During our first week on Okinawa, they constantly told of savage counterattacks when there weren’t any. They told of driving a large part of our landing forces back to the boats and far out to sea, when actually they fired only a few shots onto the beaches.

On D-Day plus four, they broadcast that despite their counterattacks we finally succeeded in landing 6,000 troops. The truth is that by sunset of

Everything that Tokyo said about us was a downright lie. Yet maybe Tokyo really believed it. No one can tell. The Japs don’t think as we do.

The crippled Jap air force cannot do us anything but spasmodic harm from now on. And their navy needn’t ever be considered. If you could see the colossal naval power we have here, you could hardly believe your eyes. It’s one of the most impressive things I’ve seen in this war.

More supplies arriving

We have plenty of troops in reserve, and new convoys of supplies have already begun to arrive just as we finished unloading the original massive supply fleet.

On Okinawa, the majority of the Japs are on the southern tip, and in considerable strength. The northern area is being combed and a few scattered ones mopped up.

There is tough fighting in the South and it will remain tough to the end. I’ve heard some officers say the south end of Okinawa may turn into another Iwo Jima. That will mean heavy casualties on our side, but the end of Okinawa is inevitable.

And while the Army’s XXIV Corps of infantry is doing that job, the rest of the island apparently is wide open for us to develop and we are doing it with our usual speed.

This island has everything we could want in such an island. There is plenty of room for more airfields, room for roads and vast supply dumps and anchorages for ships. And the civilians from whom we had expected trouble are docile and harmless.

Island to be built quickly

The way Americans can build, this island can be transformed in two months. Before long it could look like Guam or Pearl Harbor. We are in Japan’s backdoor and while we are here, they can’t really do very much to us.

Of course, Japan’s vast land armies are still almost intact. But if it does come to the great mass land warfare of Continental Europe, we now are able to build up strength for that warfare right on the scene.

There is a fighting spirit among us. People are conjecturing about the possibility of the Pacific War ending sooner than we had ever allowed ourselves to think.

For years it looked endless, but now you hear people talk about being home maybe by Christmas. Some really believe they will. Others have their fingers crossed, but they are more hopeful than ever before.

Instead of a war weariness, there seems to be a new eagerness among our forces to sweep on and on, and wind the thing up in a hurry.

Gracie Allen Reporting

By Gracie Allen

With the great and eloquent of the world paying their tributes to our late President, I realize how futile will be any effort of mine to pay him homage.

Perhaps I can add in sincerity what I lack in eloquence and just say what every American is thinking.

We have lost a great and beloved leader, and this is a time for sadness and mourning. And it is also a time for determination to carry on the principles which he gave his life to establish.

Let us all work to make his dream of a better and more decent world come true. That will be the finest tribute we can pay him.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt – Story of his life

Became one of world’s leaders despite his physical handicaps


Born: January 30, 1882, in Hyde Park, New York.

1891: Traveled to Germany, made bicycle tour of Black Forest.

Education: Matriculated at Groton School in 1896. Matriculated at Harvard University in 1900. Graduated from Harvard in 1904. Graduated from Columbia n 1907.

Married: Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, a fifth cousin and niece of President Theodore Roosevelt, on March 17, 1905; matriculated at Columbia University Law School.

1907: Joined legal firm of Carter, Ledyard & Milburn.

1910: Formed own law partnership of Marvin, Hooker and Roosevelt,

1911: Elected to New York State Senate.

1912: Aided presidential campaign of Woodrow Wilson.

1913: Appointed Assistant Secretary of the Navy under President Wilson.

1917: Given charge of transporting all U.S. troops to France in World War I.

1918: Went to France on U.S. destroyer to supervise naval operations from abroad.

1920: Nominated for vice presidency as running mate for James Cox; was defeated; joined Fidelity and Deposit Company of Maryland as vice president in charge of New York office.

1921: Stricken with infantile paralysis while vacationing at Campobello Island in North Atlantic.

1924: Took part in Democratic National Convention in New York, nominating Alfred E. Smith for presidency from wheelchair; went to Warm Springs, Georgia, when he heard of infantile paralysis cures there.

1928: Took part in Democratic National Convention at Houston, struggling to platform on crutches to again nominate Alfred E. Smith for the presidency; ran for governorship of New York with Mr. Smith’s support and was elected while Mr. Smith lost to Herbert Hoover in the presidential race.

1930: Reelected New York Governor.

1932: Announced candidacy for Democratic nomination for presidency; was nominated at convention in Chicago after split with Al Smith; conducted campaign tour throughout country; defeated Mr. Hoover.

1933: Escaped assassination at Miami, Florida, on February 15; was inaugurated as President March 4 in midst of greatest financial panic in history; brought about repeal of prohibition law, recognition of Russia, and reforms in nation’s banking structure; took nation temporarily off gold standard; established huge funds with which to subsidize employment; established “codes of fair competition” for hundreds of industries under the National Industrial Recovery Act.

1934: Called one of the greatest Presidents United States has ever had, on anniversary of inauguration.

1936: Reelected by defeating Alfred M. Landon.

1939: Appealed to world leaders for maintenance of peace.

1940: Elected to third term, defeating Wendell Willkie.

1941: Framed Atlantic Charter with Prime Minister Winston Churchill; Japanese made their sneak attack on Pearl Harbor.

1943: Casablanca and “unconditional surrender” conference.

1944: Toured U.S. bases in Hawaii and Alaska; elected to fourth term, defeating Thomas E. Dewey.

1945: Conferred with Mr. Churchill and Marshal Stalin.

Died: April 12, 1945, in Warm Springs, Georgia, of cerebral hemorrhage.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt surmounted a crippling malady and early political defeat to become President of the United States four times and one of the world’s most powerful leaders in peace and war.

The poor and depression-weary knew him as their provider, the champion of “the forgotten man.” But many other Americans regarded him as a hated Robin Hood who pillaged their fortunes, through taxes and restraints on business, to perpetuate himself in office.

His name became a household word all over the earth and during World War II, it was a symbol of American might and generosity.

Probably no other administration was so marked as his by political cleavages which cut frequently across party lines. It was not unusual for him to be opposed by the more conservative members of his own party while some of the more liberal Republicans were supporting him.

Broke precedent

Overwhelmingly defeated for Vice President in 1920, Mr. Roosevelt eventually became the first President to serve more than two terms.

When he ran for his third term, the reaction from his political foes was deafening. The opposition was even more vitriolic when he sought a fourth term. But he sailed into both with winning majorities.

Crippled by infantile paralysis in 1924, he spurned invalidism, projected his personality into virtually every aspect of national life, and was the most widely traveled Chief Executive the country ever had.

Although he could walk only with assistance, and spent much of his time in a wheelchair, he was one of the most dramatic men ever to enter the White House.

Mr. Roosevelt delighted in smashing precedents. He loved to surprise the people by turning up unexpectedly in strange parts of the world. He thrived on political battles seeming to enjoy them more and more as he grew older.

He was commander-in-chief of the largest armed force the United States ever mobilized which participated in the world’s greatest war.

More than any predecessor he brought the federal government into the life of every citizen. He was responsible for far-reaching social and economic reforms, and his administration spent billions where administrations before his spent in millions or even thousands.

Public debt soars

From July 1, 1933, the start of the first fiscal year after he was inaugurated, through April 5, 1944, when World War II was approaching a climax, the federal government spent $248 billion – more than twice the total of $112,300,900,000 spent by all previous administrations.

From July 1, 1933, to yesterday, the day of his death, the public debt soared from $22,538,672,560 to $235,232,077,362.

Mr. Roosevelt was protagonist in one domestic drama after another – the bank holiday, NRA, Social Security and the WPA. But the excitement and impact of these efforts to cope with stifling economic depression in the 1930s, were paled by the verve of his war leadership – dashing trips to Cairo, Tehran and Casablanca, and conferences with other world leaders almost in the shadow of enemy planes and guns.

He was born on January 30, 1882, and grew up on a 1,000-acre family estate overlooking the Hudson at Hyde Park, New York.

Joining the Democratic Party, he was elected to the New York Senate in 1910 and was reelected in 1912. He early espoused Woodrow Wilson and campaigned for his nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Baltimore in 1912. When Wilson was elected, he made young Roosevelt Assistant Secretary of the Navy.

Backed League of Nations

After World War I, he fought vigorously for the League of Nations. Though only 38, the 1920 Democratic convention picked him as James M. Cox’s vice-presidential running mate. He made more than 800 campaign speeches but he and Mr. Cox were defeated by the Republican Harding-Coolidge ticket and he began practicing law.

Four years later, while swimming at Campo Bello, Maine, during a summer vacation, he became infected with infantile paralysis.

Tall, handsome, inexhaustibly energetic, still youthful, he was paralyzed from the waist down.

For four agonizing years, he fought his affliction, supported loyally by his wife and friends, and ultimately won out. His legs were withered, but his spirit and energy flamed anew.

Just as he won this victory in 1928, the late Alfred E. Smith, whom Mr. Roosevelt had helped into the New York governorship in 1920, called him back into politics.

Mr. Roosevelt ran for governor to bolster Mr. Smith’s campaign as the Democratic candidate for President against the Republican Herbert Hoover. Mr. Smith lost New York State and the nation, but Mr. Roosevelt won the governorship by 25,000 votes. In 1930, he was reelected by 725,000 votes. With a record like that, he was the strongest candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1932.

Before the 1932 convention, the Roosevelt-Smith friendship cooled Mr. Smith, wanting the nomination again, made a futile attempt to “stop” his erstwhile protégé and disciple. In winning the nomination, Mr. Roosevelt was aided by a new political friend, James A. Farley, who later was to break with him on the third-term issue.

Flew to Chicago

Mr. Roosevelt started breaking precedents even before he became President. To show the country that his affliction could not immobilize him, he flew to Chicago to accept the nomination. That was the eve of his historic tenure in the White House.

He was never happier than when breaking a precedent. He was the first to win a third term. He was the first President to leave the country in wartime. He was the first President to fly. He roamed the world by train, battleship, auto and airplane.

In peace and in war, Mr. Roosevelt was a man of action and battle. Most of his major domestic reforms required drive to put them across and he relished his role as an active war leader, which required dangerous trips across oceans and continents to map strategy firsthand with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin and Chinese Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek.

Each of Mr. Roosevelt’s terms was filled with drama. His first, starting in 1933, saw his fight for the “forgotten man” and it succeeded to a great extent in bringing the nation out of a deadening economic depression.

Supreme Court battle

His second term began with the Supreme Court battle in 1937 – in which he tried unsuccessfully to increase the membership of the court after it had declared several New Deal laws unconstitutional. Less than a year after he started his third term in 1941, the nation was plunged into war.

The final two years of his second term were the basic period of transition from peace to war.

In 1939 and 1940, menacing and spreading wars in Europe and Asia forced him to subordinate the social objectives of the New Deal to a simultaneous effort to maintain American neutrality, prepare for the eventuality of war, and help the peaceable nations that had already been set upon by the aggressors – Germany, Italy and Japan.

The Germans went into Poland in the fall of 1939 after the President had made fruitless appeals to Germany and Italy “to find a peaceful and constructive solution of existing controversies.”

Great Britain and France declared war September 3, 1939, and a titanic world struggle was on. France fell and the Germans and Italians took over most of Europe by force of arms.

The isolationists in this country charged Mr. Roosevelt was leading the country into the war by sending aid to Britain. It was 1940 – and his supporters said it was no time to change leadership and he was elected to his third term, defeating Wendell L. Willkie, the Republican nominee, by a popular vote of 27,243,466 to 22,304,755.

First peacetime draft

In the spring of 1940, he had enacted the nation’s first peacetime conscription act, and in October, millions registered with thousands of local draft boards throughout the country.

After the election, Mr. Roosevelt traded 50 World War I destroyers to Great Britain, which urgently needed them in the Battle of the Atlantic against German U-boats, for 99-year leases on British-owned sites for defensive military bases in the Western Hemisphere.

In the spring of 1941, Congress authorized the administration-proposed Lend-Lease program which, before this country was brought into the war, helped to keep Great Britain and Russia fighting effectively against a then-superior Axis enemy.

This first year of Mr. Roosevelt’s third term was spent largely in marshaling American production and building up the Army and Navy. It was in this “darkness-before-dawn” era when the government was preparing for war while trying to stay out of it, that Mr. Roosevelt created the largest federal establishment in history.

Industrial leaders were drafted to head up a gigantic producing program. The President began delegating his powers so as to have more freedom to plot this country’s international course.

Mr. Roosevelt held his Atlantic Charter conference with Mr. Churchill off the coast of Newfoundland in August 1941.

Eight-point charter

On the British battleship HMS Prince of Wales and the American cruiser USS Augusta, Mr. Roosevelt, Mr. Churchill and their ranking staff chiefs composed the brief Charter, an eight-point declaration of policy which was the foundation for the organization of the United Nations.

The “day of infamy” that plunged the United States into war came on December 7, 1941, when the Japanese attacked Pear Harbor. Germany and Italy then joined Japan in openly declaring war against the United States.

The President asked and received war declarations from Congress against Japan, Germany and Italy within 48 hours.

Mr. Churchill rushed to Washington, arriving on December 22, and remaining until mid-January. The United Nations declaration was drafted and signed.

Mr. Churchill made another trip to Washington in June 1942, shortly after Mr. Roosevelt had received Soviet Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov in the White House.

The Anglo-American staff chiefs reported that a lowland European invasion was impractical for the time being, and the decision was made to go into North Africa.

The African invasion began in November 1942, and shortly after the New Year, Mr. Roosevelt flew to Casablanca, which was then within fighter plane range of the Germans, to meet again with Mr. Churchill. From that meeting came the Roosevelt-Churchill pledge to accept nothing but the unconditional surrender of the Axis.

Met again in Quebec

At Casablanca, the High Command of the American and British armed forces decided to intensify the Mediterranean offensive. Allied armies took Sicily, invaded Italy, and during the summer of 1943, Italy surrendered.

Mr. Roosevelt and Mr. Churchill got together again in August 1943 in Quebec and later in Washington, and made plans to meet again in Cario and Tehran with Premier Stalin and Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek.

From those four-power conferences held during November and December came the decision to invade Western Europe in the spring of 1944 and Dwight D. Eisenhower, the American who commanded the invasion of French Africa, was named Allied commander-in-chief.

Mr. Roosevelt came home and found the Congress, which had become more Republican in the midterm election, in growing revolt against his domestic policies. There were many complaints against restrictions on wages and prices. The President twice vetoed attempts by Congress to abolish anti-inflation food subsidies.

The demand of the armed services for more than 11 million men by mid-1944 complicated an already existing manpower problem and mounting government expenditures pointed to the pressing need for new revenue.

Battle over tax veto

Congress was reluctant to impose new taxes. Early in 1944, objecting to the veto of a tax bill which the administration considered insufficient, Senate Majority Leader Alben W. Barkley, one of his oldest friends, resigned as Democratic leader of the Senate and was promptly reelected by his colleagues.

Congress as promptly enacted the tax measure over the veto. But later, Mr. Barkley supported the President for a fourth term.

Mr. Roosevelt fell ill in late 1943 just after he got back from Tehran. Physically and mentally tired, he was an easy victim for colds and sinus and bronchial irritations which continued to affect him during the first months of 1944.

His doctor, Vice Adm. Ross T. McIntire, in late March 1944, put him through a painstaking physical examination and wrote this prescription: sun, salt air, and complete rest.

The prescription was filled at Hobcaw Barony, Bernard M. Baruch’s 23,000-acre South Carolina estate, from April 9 to May 7.

When he came back to Washington, before him lay his big personal decision for 1944: Whether to seek reelection.

He followed his pre-third term policy of saying nothing. But enough Democratic convention delegates were already pledged to assure his nomination.

Invasion of France

Before the 1944 political season blossomed fully, the country forgot, for a time at least, about forthcoming political conventions and concentrated on the invasion of France which began June 6.

The President continued to play his game of saying nothing – even after the Republicans gave their presidential nomination to Gov. Thomas E. Dewey of New York, late in June.

Finally, about a week before the Democratic convention in July, Mr. Roosevelt informed Robert E. Hannegan, the national Democratic chairman, that he would accept nomination for a fourth term, but would not run for office “in the usual partisan, political sense.”

He accepted the nomination July 20 in a radio speech from the U.S. Marine base at San Diego, telling the nation that while he would not campaign in “the usual sense,” he would “feel free to report to the people the facts about matters of concern to them and especially to correct any misrepresentations.”

Then the President, always a great showman, emphasized his role as wartime Commander-in-Chief by sailing out into the Pacific, and conferring with Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Adm. Chester W. Nimitz and other Pacific war leaders at Pearl Harbor.

Visited Aleutian Islands

He came home via the Aleutian Islands and a few minutes after arriving at Bremerton, Washington, reported to the people by radio, stressing the need for a fence of island bases around Japan to prevent aggression until the Japanese proved their ability to live as a neighbor to other nations.

Mr. Roosevelt then went back to Washington and watched Mr. Dewey build his campaign. Mr. Dewey made a long swing from the East to the West Coast and back again, speaking frequently.

But the President bided his time. At last, on September 23, he opened his campaign with an avowedly political speech in which he accused the Republicans of irresponsibility, fraud, “callous and brazen” falsehoods and an “ostrich” attitude in foreign affairs.

Mr. Roosevelt waited until late October, however, to campaign in earnest. Then he made rapid swings through New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston. He stood on his record, particularly the war achievement, and on November 7, was reelected by approximately 25,500,000 popular votes to 23,000,000 for Mr. Dewey. His electoral vote margin was a landslide – 432 to 99.