The Charlotte News

Friday, April 8, 1955


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that White House press secretary James Hagerty had told newsmen this date that the President believed that "technical military secrets" had been made available to the enemy through publication of such information within the country, and that the President was disturbed about the matter. Mr. Hagerty declined to discuss the question of whether the President's views were related to new Defense Department information control directives put into effect the previous week by Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson. Mr. Hagerty had been asked to comment on a story appearing in the New York Herald-Tribune which said that the President was deeply concerned about what he regarded as an excess flow of military information from the U.S. to the Soviet Union. The story had indicated that it explained the strict directives issued at the Pentagon the previous week by Secretary Wilson. The Secretary had effectively banned release of any information without prior clearance through his office. Some reporters had protested the new policy as a virtual blackout on information, reminding that when the President had taken office he had stated that information restrictions were intended only to protect national security data and should not be administered in such a way as to amount to censorship of legitimate news. Mr. Hagerty stated that the President still believed in that latter principle, but believed there was also no reason to make available to the enemy technical military secrets which could do nothing but hurt the interests of the U.S.

The Government this date called on the Southern Bell Telephone Co. and the striking Communications Workers of America union to resume negotiations and redouble their efforts to end the 26-day strike. Talks were expected to resume in Atlanta during the afternoon, after being broken off two weeks earlier. The main issues were wages and strike privileges. The company had sought a no-strike pledge for the duration of the contract while the union had said that if it agreed to the no-strike clause, it wanted complete freedom to arbitrate any grievances arising during the contract term.

In Birmingham, the sheriff asked Governor James Folsom for state troops to aid in maintaining order in the telephone strike, following recurring violence in and around the city. There was no indication as to whether the Governor would assign National Guard units to duty. A shot had been fired into a Southern Bell building the previous night during a demonstration of strikers and sympathizers.

In Houston, FBI agents sought this date a truck driver whom they said had lost 12 tons of frozen shrimp in a poker game, indicating that he had been charged with unlawful conversion of merchandise in interstate commerce for his own use. The Bureau agent stated that the man in question had left the Brownsville shrimp exchange on April 1 with the shrimp aboard a truck and trailer owned by a trucking line out of San Antonio, with a destination in Detroit, but that he had then become involved in a poker game in Houston with four men and apparently had lost the entire shipment of shrimp, the winners then having attempted to market a portion of the shrimp to cafés in Houston and Beaumont. The FBI had recovered $4,900 of the proceeds of the sales. The four men were charged with receiving the 12 tons of shrimp, valued at $12,500, and concealing stolen merchandise.

In Winston-Salem, the defense attorney for a woman accused of murdering a man rested his case, following a parade of witnesses who testified that the victim had been a violent man when he was drinking, designed to corroborate the defendant's testimony of the previous day. A detective had testified that when he had talked to the defendant right after her arrest, she had blood on her hands and he had asked her if she wanted to wash them, to which she had replied that she did not as it had been the victim's blood and that she loved him. The 26-year old defendant was charged with killing the 41-year old used car dealer on the night of January 25 on the premises of the Old Dominion Box Co. following a night of drinking. The witnesses presented by the defense had been allowed to testify as to the character of the victim only insofar as their testimony corroborated the statements of the defendant that the victim had assaulted her on various occasions, all saying that they had actually either seen him hit or slap the defendant or had seen bruises on her face afterward. One witness said that she had seen the victim throw rocks at the woman on one occasion and then knock her down in the street near her home. Most of the witnesses said that he was a "pretty good fellow", except when he was drinking. He certainly sounded charming and lovable.

In London, Dr. Geoffrey Fisher, the Archbishop of Canterbury, this date denied that he had ever said that there was no truth to the rumor that Princess Margaret would wed Group Capt. Peter Townsend, a commoner who had previously been divorced. He said that he had simply replied to a reporter's question the previous day, while in Cape Town, South Africa, by saying that he had no comment.

In Garden City, N.Y., a man had lain down on a Long Island Railroad track the previous day and stayed there until a frantic motorman halted his electric train just 20 feet away, then rose, dusted himself off and said to an unidentified friend, "Okay, there's the train." The friend then hopped aboard. When he was taken to court on a charge of disorderly conduct, the judge asked him whether he had been trying to commit suicide, to which he replied that he had not, that he had only been seeking to stop the train for his friend, that he and his friend had stopped at a few taverns prior to the stunt. The judge advised him to "take the pledge" and suspended sentence on the charge.

Christians around the world made pilgrimages to Good Friday services this date, commemorating the death of Christ on the cross. Thousands from many lands assembled at St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City to attend the solemn Mass of the Pre-sanctified Host. In the Holy Land, some 5,000 pilgrims, many of whom had to pass through the no-man's land dividing warring Israel and Jordan, had flocked into Arab Jerusalem. They followed the narrow, twisting cobblestone Via Dolorosa, the Way of the Cross, following the path which tradition said Christ had taken, after being tried before Pontius Pilate, to be crucified on Calvary, the present site of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. In the U.S., Catholic and Protestant churches from all over the country opened their doors for Good Friday services, and many scheduled three-hour sermons commemorating the hours Christ spent on the cross. In Buenos Aires, throngs of Argentines showed up for Holy Week observances, despite the church and El Presidente Juan Peron's Government having been at bitter odds for months. The previous day, an estimated 100,000 worshipers had marched in the traditional Holy Thursday parade in Buenos Aires, the first religious procession allowed in Argentina in four months. The procession had been orderly, but marchers had defied Government orders to keep off the main streets and paraded directly to Buenos Aires Cathedral.

In Charlotte, Trailways Carriers serving Charlotte and other principal Carolina centers had reported this date a substantial increase in their passenger traffic following the strike of the Atlantic Greyhound drivers begun the previous day, with L. A. Love, general manager of the Queen City Trailways and president of the Charlotte Union Bus Terminal, having reported that extra buses were being operated to accommodate the Easter season passenger traffic.

On the editorial page, "The Vilest Profession: A Crackdown" indicates that the State House Judiciary Committee gave its unanimous approval the previous day to a bill to provide stricter punishment for drug dealers who sold "goof balls" and "yellow jackets", barbiturate drugs without a prescription. It reiterates the provisions of the bill, which were covered on the previous day's front page, as well as the punishment provisions. It indicates that the problem was an old one and that there was evidence that dope peddlers had been selling barbiturates to North Carolina high school children for years. An earlier crackdown, it posits, might have prevented a large amount of human misery and some juvenile delinquency, but the legislation was better late than never.

It indicates that the drug dealer was a member of "man's vilest profession" and should be hit and hit hard. It urges passage of the bill without delay.

"How Many Wrongs Make a Right?" tells of a committee hearing before the General Assembly on a bill to require county commissioners to hold all of their meetings in public, and after some discussion, the sponsor of the bill had become convinced that it would not be approved as a statewide measure and so had asked that it be amended to apply only to Nash and Person Counties, which was then done and the amended bill received a favorable report.

It points out that an old statute required county commissioners to transact business in public, but it had been inadvertently repealed in 1951, and the new bill was only designed to restore that law. But because the press had expressed outrage over secrecy, the legislators were concerned about anything which even remotely resembled a retreat in time, including the correction of an error from four years earlier, which it regards as carrying pique too far.

"A New Blueprint for Progress" indicates that broad outlines had been sketched during the week for plans for a Mecklenburg County Academy of Medicine, with a building proposed to house an auditorium and extensive library. Pledge cards to be fulfilled over a five-year period had been distributed by the county medical society's cabinet to fund the project.

It would not add any hospital beds but would strengthen Charlotte's position as a major medical center, as it would become a site for important scientific lectures and medical meetings, and would expand library facilities to provide Charlotte doctors a better opportunity to continue their education at the post-graduate level. Those opportunities could translate to benefits for citizens of the community, as doctors who could keep up with medical science could contribute that much more in knowledge and training to their patients. It hopes that the academy would come to fruition.

"Memo to the Groundskeeper" indicates that Representative Francis Dorn of New York had stated recently in Congress that the people had to stop calling the Brooklyn Dodgers the "Bums", inserting in the Congressional Record extended remarks in which he had stated that the dictionary defined a bum as "an inebriate, a mendicant, a tramp and a loafer." So, he thought, especially for the sake of the children, it was wise to lay off calling the Dodgers the "bums", that the word should be saved for the visiting teams. He added that Brooklyn would win the National League pennant in 1955 and go on to be World Series champions, and that it was important to maintain the dignity of the champions.

It finds that things were really not so bad after all, that such issues as whether or not the U.S. would defend Quemoy and Matsu, whether Princess Margaret would wed a commoner, segregation, and all the other such weighty issues were not so great after all, as it had almost forgotten that the baseball season was about to begin—"that magic period when Everything Is Going To Be All Right." "Here's to baseball, peace on earth and good will to one and all—Sen. Knowland, Chiang Kai-shek and Giant fans notwithstanding, by jing."

There you go again, pulling the old switcheroo, first urging us to go watch baseball, then getting us to read poetry, now going back to baseball. Make up your mind. And it should be "Giants fans", not "Giant fans", unless you are dealing with the story about the beanstalk and those who favored the villain of the piece, or Sally Rand.

A piece from the New York Times, titled "Recreation Leaders for the South", tells of the Southern states being badly in need of recreation leaders to serve in communities, youth-serving agencies and educational organizations, a conclusion reached by a two-year research study sponsored by the Southern Regional Education Board and the National Recreation Association. The 160-page report, made public the previous week, recommended an action program for the South which included intensified recruitment to increase the number of students preparing for the field of recreation, expansion of undergraduate major curricula in recreation, and improvement of graduate major curricula.

More than 4,200 full-time recreation leaders were presently employed in the South and employers expected to double that number within the ensuing five years. Fourteen colleges participating in the study reported fewer recreation graduates annually than were needed to meet the requirements of the expanding field, and graduate study opportunities were also limited. If the present needs were met in the South, according to the study, the colleges with recreation majors would have to award five times as many degrees in that field annually as they presently did.

The study recommended creating sufficient educational opportunities for professional recreation leadership training to provide an adequate number of qualified beginning workers to meet the demand of the field, to establish a system of graduate training centers for advanced study, to develop certain colleges and universities as training centers in specialized areas of service, particularly at the graduate level, to recruit students for professional preparation within the South, and to develop research centers and programs.

Drew Pearson indicates that the backstage dinner which White House press secretary James Hagerty had held with newsmen recently had not dealt exclusively with the offshore islands of Quemoy and Matsu, though it was called to counteract the scare headlines emanating from a press dinner with Admiral Robert Carney, chief of Naval Operations, that the islands would be attacked by the Communists by April 15 and therefore a decision needed to be made on whether the U.S. would defend them. It had also dealt with the President's reading habits, his enthusiasm for Western stories and lack of enthusiasm for reading newspapers, which had long been the subject of comment in Washington. On this occasion, Mr. Hagerty answered the query of newsmen who had wanted to know whether the President had read the military intelligence reports on the Far Eastern crisis and whether he had read the Far Eastern reports published in the newspapers, to which Mr. Hagerty responded that the President read the same newspapers that he read, and when asked what those were, responded that it included the New York Times, the Washington Post and Times-Herald, the New York Herald Tribune, the New York Mirror and the Chicago Tribune. Mr. Hagerty insisted that the President got up early and looked at some of those newspapers and that staff then prepared a summary for him in the morning and another summary for him in the evening. He also stated that the President read news magazines, such as Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, and Look, omitting Time, in response to a question by the Washington bureau chief of that magazine, Jim Shepley.

The husband of the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, Oveta Culp Hobby, William P. Hobby, had been able to get the FCC to reverse itself and order a new hearing on whether he would be provided a television station. Mr. Pearson indicates that, insofar as pulling strings and influence-peddling, it surpassed any of the deep-freeze controversies on which the column had reported during the Truman Administration. Mr. Hobby had applied for a television station license in Beaumont, Tex., but because he already owned a television and radio station in Houston, plus a powerful newspaper, the Houston Post, the FCC had turned him down. It had also turned down the Enterprise Co. because it published newspapers in Beaumont, instead awarding the television license to the Beaumont Broadcasting Co. The FCC then suddenly moved to reopen the decision and hold a new hearing, nearly unprecedented, with only one other case out of Tampa having occurred in which there had been a rehearing ordered after a decision of denial of a television license. But in Beaumont, unusual forces had been at work behind the scenes. No comment was forthcoming from the FCC as to who initiated the move to reopen the decision, but the commissioners who had voted on the initial 4 to 3 decision for granting the license, had been Robert E. Lee, John Doerfer, and Rosel Hyde, each of whom were Republicans, the first two having been friends of Senator McCarthy, and the latter consistently lining up with the new McCarthy-aligned members of the Commission.

Doris Fleeson discusses the enticement of Senator Walter George of Georgia by the Eisenhower Administration, noting that when the Democrats had regained control of Congress in January, 1953, Senator George had switched from his seniority position on the Finance Committee which would have entitled him to become chairman, to Foreign Relations, where, if he had ceded his position to the next Democrat in line, the chairman would have been New Dealer Senator Theodore Green of Rhode Island, whereas on Finance, the next in line was a conservative, Senator Harry F. Byrd of Virginia. Thus, even though the chairmanship of the Finance Committee, which dealt with taxes, would bring to a Senator sure support and campaign contributions, Senator George opted to maintain the chairmanship of both committees under conservatives, including himself on Foreign Relations.

As chairman of that Committee, the Senator had, within weeks, become a pillar of strength for the President in that area, involving no change of principle on his part, as the Eisenhower foreign policy essentially rested on the same premises of the previous 20 years during Democratic control of the White House.

It had become clear in the interim that neither party was ready to start completely afresh regarding Asia. The Democratic liberals believed that the President was being forced by the Republican right into an ever-closer embrace of Chiang Kai-shek, which was dangerous to world peace. The Republican right believed that the President ought to do more for Chiang and the Chinese Nationalists. Their argument now pivoted on whether or not Quemoy and Matsu should be defended by the U.S. in the event of attack by the Communist Chinese. Senator George had placed his great prestige into the issue to give the President the right to decide that question, and had prevailed. He was still insisting that the President ought decide the issue and could be trusted to do so correctly.

To that extent, the Senator had usurped the leadership powers both of Senate Majority Leader Lyndon Johnson and Minority Leader William Knowland, and neither was happy about it, though the White House thought it splendid. The President had gone out of his way to praise Senator George.

Georgia editors began to ask questions of Senator George and were told that, in view of the Senator's new position, the Georges should do some entertaining. It was noted by Georgians that among the ladies who had come to Washington as the guests of Mrs. George to shake Mrs. Eisenhower's hand at the famous tea party the previous week, had been wives of several of Georgia's influential figures, chiefly Eisenhower Democrats. For example, one such guest had been Mrs. Robert Woodruff, wife of the president of Coca-Cola, headquartered in Atlanta.

In a struggle for conservative support back home in Georgia, the President could help Senator George through his friendship with Mr. Woodruff and others with whom he played golf in Augusta.

Winston Churchill, in Painting as a Pastime, tells of it being more restful and refreshing to read in a different language from that in which one's ordinary daily work was done, and urges choosing one other language and concentrating on it to the point where one enjoyed reading it. He says that it rested the mental muscles and enlivened the mind by a different sequence and emphasis of ideas. "The mere form of speech excites the activity of separate brain cells, relieving in the most effective manner the fatigue of those in hackneyed use."

Try this: "Icónico" no significa especial o significativo, solo una representación de otra cosa. (We, incidentally, on Easter Sunday, 1965, April 18, after church and luncheon, cut our left index finger in the afternoon while playing basketball with our brother, when we jammed it against the bottom of the rim after jumping too high, too fast; but there was the concession that, on the way home from the emergency room after being stitched up, our papa allowed us, in the last block, to drive for the first time, the vehicle being his brand new 1965 Ford Custom 500, spring green in color, which he had just purchased about a week earlier. The scar from the dolorous injury still faintly remains as a reminder: watch out for the nightshades when jumping too high, too fast. Pero no llamamos a la lesión, o al automóvil, o al borde de la solanácea, icónico, sino solo un dedo cortado y un automóvil y una pantalla de lámpara.)

A letter writer praises the section of the newspaper which had first appeared on April 2 under the title "Week-End Market Place", and finds the articles relating to real estate activities in the city very interesting to his real estate company, for which he was sales manager. He compliments the section and believes it would be of considerable interest to the general public.

A letter writer, the director of public relations for Ervin Construction Co., congratulates the newspaper on the new section which had appeared the prior Saturday.

Eight additional letters from other companies likewise compliment the new real estate section of the newspaper.

A letter from a couple thanks the police department and its detective division for the trust and kindness they had shown them the previous Saturday and Monday, indicates that they were "the swellest bunch of guys this town has." They do not relate, however, what it was they had done to deserve the praise.

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