The Charlotte News

Wednesday, October 9, 1946


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Rome, the worst riot since the liberation of Italy in 1943-44 took place at Viminale Palace, the seat of Government. At least 15 persons were reported as killed and more than a hundred wounded in the melee between 20,000 to 30,000 demonstrators, some armed with spikes and heavy clubs, and police, wielding sabers and firing carbines after hundreds made their way into government offices on three floors of the palace. One carabinieri captain was killed when a 12-inch spike was rammed through his forehead. Demonstrators, who were protesting widespread unemployment and included 15,000 just laid off road workers, hurled police reserves from their jeeps and took away their weapons.

Stones were hurled at the Communist Party Leader and the Undersecretary of Interior when they tried to address the crowd.

The Vice-Premier eventually agreed to meet with a delegation of the disgruntled workers later in the day. But the delegation could not be heard when they tried to address the mob.

At the Paris Peace Conference, the plenary session adopted several provisions of the Italian treaty including the controversial provision establishing Trieste as an independent free state with frontiers based on the French line. That provision passed 13 to 6, with the Slavic bloc voting against it. Russia supported the provision as it had in the Foreign Ministers Council.

While voting for the proposal, Russia voiced opposition to repositing of power in Trieste in a "foreign governor", V. M. Molotov calling it "a semi-enemy supervised territory under the control of Anglo-American forces" rather than a truly free state.

White Russia and Yugoslavia wanted the boundary line moved westward, a move rejected 14 to 5. The conference rejected by a vote of 16 to 6 the Russian proposal that all foreign troops be removed from Trieste within 30 days of the treaty becoming effective.

Yugoslavia paid $150,000 in indemnity for the shooting down of an American plane on August 19, killing all five crewmen aboard. The sum was to be distributed in equal portions to the five families. The U.S. hoped to obtain further indemnity for the loss of the plane and another transport forced to crash land August 9 without loss of life.

The Army Air Forces took over research into guided missile technology, ending a two-year dispute in the War Department with the Army Ordnance Department, ongoing since 1944 as to which branch would control the research.

In Berlin, Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel asked the Allied Control Council to alter the method of his execution from hanging to firing squad. The other ten condemned defendants were said to have lapsed into despondency, awaiting their execution on October 16. Hermann Goering was staring into space from his cot in his jail cell, had broken down after his wife's visit the previous day. The other defendants did not speak to him, blaming his arrogant behavior for the harshness of the sentences.

Harold Ickes addresses the November election in California, stressing that the dual primary laws, permitting candidates to run in both the Republican and Democratic primary races, contributed to a nonpartisan atmosphere. Governor Earl Warren had won in both primaries the previous summer.

He asserts that it would serve the voters well to select only candidates who were genuinely in support of progressive legislation. California was among the few states in 1946 with the ability to elect several members to the 80th Congress who could prove their liberal philosophy.

"Not many Congressmen can boast so enviable a voting record as can Helen Gahagan Douglas and her Democratic colleagues, [George] Outland, [Jerry] Voorhis, and [Ned] Healy, although Mr. Voorhis would be more effective if he could lose more of his naivete. Their sense of public duty persuaded them to vote against the tricky and insidious Tidelands bill which was designed to grab for the oil interests the oil-bearing submerged coastal properties belonging to the people of the United States." They had also fought for cheap power for residents of the Central Valley.

Other Democratic Congressmen who had supported liberal legislation, though not opposing the Tidelands bill, were Edouard Izac, George Miller, Franck Havenner, and Cecil King. Each should be re-elected. But one Democrat who would not be missed was Alfred J. Elliott, an apologist for the private power companies and large land-owning interests.

Among Republicans, Bertrand Gearhart had supported public power and reclamation of lower California, though weak in his voting record in the 1946 session. He had strongly advocated, against selfish local interests, the effort to establish King's Canyon National Park. Gordon McDonough and Richard Welch also had established good voting records. Each of the three was worthy of re-election.

On the Senate side, incumbent William Knowland, who had been appointed by Governor Warren to serve in the stead of deceased Hiram Johnson, had shown tenderness toward the oil interests with respect to the tidelands issue and echoed the propaganda of the National Association of Manufacturers. Mr. Ickes thinks that former Congressman Will Rogers, Jr., a solid liberal in the vein of Ms. Douglas and Mr. Outland, was a better bet.

"California is more fortunate than many states because it has a chance to perpetuate in Congress public spirited legislators from both parties."

We shall see if Mr. Ickes follows up after the election and comments on the defeat of Mr. Voorhis by a newcomer to politics, a solid liberal who got his start at OPA.

A top level round table meeting was held to try to resolve the meat shortage. The meeting included Secretary of Agriculture Clinton Anderson, OPA head Paul Porter, and DNC chairman Robert Hannegan.

Senators Burnet Maybank and Olin Johnston of South Carolina stated to the President in a White House meeting that the meat crisis was worsening in their home state.

Senator Claude Pepper of Florida, one of the staunchest defenders of OPA, stated that if public opinion had shifted against price control to the extent that it could no longer prove effective, then he was giving serious consideration to an alteration of his position, to support junking of all controls.

OPA announced the release of all price controls on meals and beverages served on trains, except by private vendors. Railway station meals would remain under control.

The meeting was called in part in response to the former three developments.

In New York, a restaurateur was so distraught over the meat shortage that he jumped from the Brooklyn Bridge into the East River. He was rescued by police and taken to Gouverneur Hospital where he was expected to recover.

The stock market was again down, from $1 to $4 per share, carrying it to its lowest point since just prior to the end of the war in Europe, following the death of President Roosevelt.

Attorney General Tom Clark announced that the Justice Department would seek grand jury indictments in the Garsson brothers war contracts case which had been under investigation for several months by the Senate War Investigating Committee. The Committee indicated it would seek to hear the testimony of Representative Andrew May of Kentucky prior to the election four weeks hence.

Ms. Evalyn Walsh McLean Reynolds, who had died on September 20 of what was termed an accidental overdose of barbiturates, left an estate valued at $497,000. The 24-year old heir to the Hope Diamond had been married to former North Carolina Senator Robert Rice Reynolds since July, 1941. She died intestate and a third of the estate would therefore pass by law to Senator Reynolds and the remainder would pass to their four-year old daughter.

In Juarez, Mexico, a wealthy 71-year old man from Los Angeles divorced his 29-year old wife, a former WAVE, after two months of marriage on grounds of incompatibility. He was tired of all the publicity.

*In Chicago, William Heirens, who recently had pleaded guilty to the slaying of two women and six-year old Suzanne Degnan and was sentenced to three consecutive life terms, was adjudged to be insane and would be transferred to the state prison for the criminally insane. The previous afternoon, he had been in the prison yard with other inmates and suddenly began hurling stones at a guard in one of the towers, telling another guard he wanted the guard to shoot him.

New legal standard: Kill an innocent child and two women: sane. Throw stones at a prison guard in a tower: insane.

*Alaska endorsed statehood in a vote the previous day by a margin of 7 to 6. Alaska would become the 49th State in 1959.

The hurricane which had passed through Florida and then into the Carolinas as a tropical storm had blown itself out. Little damage was done in the United States.

Astronomers predicted that the most spectacular display of meteors in the memory of modern man would appear this night throughout the United States and Canada, left from the tail of the comet Giacobini-Zinner which had passed by earth nine days earlier from a distance of 24 million miles. Astronomers said that the best time to watch for the display would be between darkness and dawn. Good luck.

At Fenway Park in Boston, the Red Sox led 3 to 0 over the St. Louis Cardinals after five innings of the third game of the World Series. The Red Sox would score one more run and win the game 4 to 0. The Red Sox had won game one in 10 innings 3 to 2 on Sunday; the Cardinals had won game two 3 to 0. Stay tuned.

On the editorial page, "Needed: Tighter Traffic Laws" suggests that while laws alone could not cure the woeful North Carolina traffic accident rate, improvements in the drunk driving laws and in vehicle inspections would help.

During the first nine months of 1946, there had been 4,233 drunk driving convictions in the state, likely a fraction of the actual offenders. In most cases, it assumes, they received the minimum sentence of 30 days in jail or a fine of $50 and suspension of the license for a year.

New Jersey, by contrast, where open bars were legal, had only 644 drunk driving convictions during 1945, more than in North Carolina the previous month. New Jersey had a tough law, with a mandatory fine of $200 and a year suspension for the first offense, a mandatory 90-day sentence and permanent revocation for the second offense. The commissioner of the N.C. Department of Motor Vehicles believed the stiff penalties made the difference.

The piece also hopes that he would seek tougher inspection laws as the state had become a dumping ground for old jalopies taken off the roads in neighboring states.

"How Did We Ever Come to This?" asks what had become of the American spirit, posits that it had been battered by too many crises and social and economic changes compressed into a relatively short period of time.

The country was jealous of its dream and refused to accept the detractors. They suddenly became "Communists". If Henry Wallace did not like America's foreign policy, he was a Communist. If Emergency Housing Administrator Wilson Wyatt wanted the Government to build houses, he was a Communist. Elliott Roosevelt was one because his father questioned British imperialism, just as did Stalin. Paul Robeson was one for wanting to end racial discrimination.

It asks how the country had allowed the experiment in Russia so to color American thinking about other Americans. It suggests that the country get back to its original American dream, not one premised on opposition to everything Russian and anything smacking of the same things to which Russians gave approval.

It needed to return to a state in which "principles were constant and methods were not; a land where a thousand good Americans could hold a thousand conflicting opinions; a land that encouraged disagreement, and employed it to generate the energy of progress; a land that set its own high standards and measured its accomplishments against them; a land peopled by tall men who never believed they had found the final answer and demanded only the right to seek it."

"How's That Again, Coach?" examines the first full postwar college football season and finds that it was drawing record crowds. The teams were overflowing with talent for the first time since prior to Pearl Harbor. No one except a few college presidents seemed to look askance at the statement attributed to Wake Forest coach Peahead Walker, that he had not stolen a promising back from UNC, but rather from Villanova, out of conference.

After the surprising tie by Virginia Tech of expected powerhouse UNC, coach Carl Snavely had remarked that his problem was too much talent on the team. A few days later, it was reported that several players were withdrawing from school because they did not get enough playing time.

Inflation, it concludes, had finally reached football.

A piece from the Richmond Times-Dispatch, titled "Cracking Down on Divorce", states that the conviction of a Charlotte attorney and his secretary on charges of suborning perjury for obtaining divorces in North Carolina for South Carolina residents falsely claiming North Carolina residence, focused attention on the rising divorce rate in the land, a third of the marriage rate in 1945. South Carolina did not permit divorces at all. The prosecutions were attempting to eliminate a racket.

It counsels that the 48 states ought adopt uniform divorce laws to eliminate such anomalies. If the current rate continued, it says, it would climb to one of every two marriages ending in divorce by 1965.

A leading psychologist had attributed the rise to the increasing economic independence of women, increased mobility and changing populations, the tensions of war and depression occurring in a single generation, the desire generally for change, and the increasing number of childless marriages.

It thinks that given the proper background at home, church, and school, most should be able to make their marriages last. It was wrong, it concludes, for states to give approbation to divorce through quick and easy divorce mills. It hopes that other jurisdictions would follow the lead of Charlotte.

Drew Pearson tells of Governor-nominate Eugene Talmadge having selected his Democratic delegates to the state party convention to set up the program for his administration. Among them were some of the most prominent members of the Ku Klux Klan, including Grand Dragon Dr. Samuel Green, Exalted Cyclops of an Atlanta Klavern, Sam Roper, Klan members and recorder court judges Luke Arnold and A. W. Callaway, City Council member and Klan member Joe Allen. The list continued with ten others, all Klan members or, in one case, a member of the Columbians, who considered themselves "forty times worse than the Klan". They would be charged with building the Democratic platform, which included abandoning all regulations of the primaries and blocking interstate buses carrying blacks from entering Georgia, in defiance of the Supreme Court ruling in Morgan v. Virginia issued June 3.

**He next informs of the "Truculent Turtle", which had the previous Monday broken the non-stop flight record, traveling from Perth, Australia, to Columbus, Ohio, over 11,200 miles in 57 hours, having encountered St. Elmo's fire between Reno, Nevada, and Ogden, Utah, while flying at 12,000 feet. The phenomenon, which the experienced commander, Thomas Davies, had never encountered in flight, enveloped the entire windshield of the airplane, appearing to penetrate inside the bulletproof glass after surrounding the propeller. All radio communications were cut off during the period. The commander said it made their hair stand on end.

As part of his "Capital Chaff", he reports that Wall Street would be pleased if Senator James Mead were to defeat Governor Thomas Dewey in the November gubernatorial race in New York as it would end the hopes of Governor Dewey to become the Republican nominee a second time in 1948. Wall Street wanted Senator Robert Taft of Ohio as the nominee.

Many in the Cabinet were making obligatory pilgrimages to seek the advice of Henry Wallace and of former Undersecretary of State Sumner Welles.

A planned speech by Secretary of Interior J. A. Krug, which would have been critical of Secretary of State Byrnes's foreign policy, had been heavily censored by the State Department prior to the debacle with Henry Wallace regarding his September 12 speech at Madison Square Garden, leading to his forced resignation on September 20. It was in response to the State Department excision of portions of the Krug speech which led Mr. Wallace to go directly to the President for preliminary approval of his speech.

DNC chairman Robert Hannegan had appealed to the President to send Ambassador-at-large Ed Pauley to London to try to effect a resolution of the impasse with the British regarding immigration of displaced Jews in Europe to Palestine.

**Denotes portion of Pearson column not in The News version this date.

Marquis Childs, still in Copenhagen, tells of there being 200,000 German refugees in Denmark, most from the Russian zone of occupation who fled in the latter days of the war, in spring, 1945. At first ousting Danes from castles and other desirable housing, the Germans were quickly rounded up after the armistice and placed in carefully guarded camps. It took a third of the national budget to feed and house them.

In contrast to the Nazi camps, the camps were well maintained and the occupants received 2,400 calories daily. The head of one of the camps near Copenhagen, housing 18,000 refugees, most peasants from Silesia and East Prussia, had been in a Nazi camp and understood well therefore the mistreatment. He did not want to repeat it, in the hope of teaching the Germans a lesson in humanity. But he was not hopeful.

Denmark's Foreign Minister, Gustav Rasmussen, had obtained an agreement from Josef Stalin to permit 100,000 of the refugees to re-enter the Russian occupation zone provided that the U.S. and Britain would accept the other half. Thus far, his entreaties to both Britain and the U.S. had been without reply.

The situation was an example of the confusion and uncertainty created out of Germany. As long as the German iron, steel, and coal were not being produced, it was difficult to imagine how European recovery would take place. Thus, internationalization of the Ruhr appeared to be one initial step. But as long as the West and Russia remained at odds, it would not be a completely soluble problem.

Samuel Grafton comments on the astonishment with which General Eisenhower had greeted the Nuremberg verdict of guilty and death sentence for Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel. The same had applied to former German chief of staff Alfred Jodl. Both were found guilty of responsibility for specific atrocities rather than only for the planning of the war and so the criminal responsibility for same remained murky. The verdicts would, however, change the way military men worldwide viewed warfare. No longer could they defer all moral responsibility for their actions onto political heads of state.

An odd twist in the verdicts was that banker and former Reich Finance Minister Hjalmar Schact had been acquitted by the Tribunal, leaving the idea that business leaders and financiers could not be held responsible for making war when military leaders could be. It was, Mr. Grafton suggests, perhaps the product of a society which placed more stress on business than the military.

Regardless, Nuremberg had redefined the relative responsibilities of leaders in making war.

A letter from the chairman of the American Veterans Committee responds to the editorial of two days earlier, "The Legion Keeps on Rolling", saying that, as a veteran of World War II, he did not agree with the idea advanced that the Legion was seeking to have veterans milk the Treasury. He believes veterans were interested only in returning to civilian life and receiving what they rightfully deserved.

He also does not think that the Legion's attack on V.A. administrator General Omar Bradley represented two thirds of the membership. An article the previous week in the newspaper had stated that there had been only a meager turnout at the Legion meeting in San Francisco, as younger veterans had not yet become established in the Legion.

A growing organization, he points out, formed during the war, was the American Veterans Committee, dedicated to the principle of becoming citizens first and veterans only second. It was liberal without being radical. He lists several prominent citizens who were members.

A letter from the Classroom Teachers' Association of Mecklenburg County thanks the newspaper for its articles advocating increases in teacher salaries.

A letter responds to a letter the previous week from perennial letter writer Inez Flow, plumping for prohibition as a curb on insanity and crime. He points out that the Topeka Daily Capital, from which she had quoted the pro-dry argument, that prohibition caused drops in crime and insanity, was conservative, while the Wichita Beacon, from which the editors had quoted the pro-wet argument, that under prohibition in Kansas, liquor and gambling thrived as never before, was a "sensational journal".

He believes that North Carolina was doing much better under county by county prohibition than during the days of open saloons.

Another couple of letters, one from the special counsel for the Charlotte Aviation Committee, and the other from a representative of Delta Airlines, thank the newspaper for its series of reports by Pete McKnight promoting more air routes into Charlotte.

*Denotes story not on the front page of The News, as culled from front pages of other newspapers of this date.

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