The Charlotte News

Monday, October 2, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that South Korean troops, one division and two regiments, had driven nearly 30 miles north of the 38th parallel, to Kansong this date, nearly halfway to Wonsan, as reported by Hal Boyle. He said that the offensive across the border had begun at shortly before noon on Sunday. An American officer said the troops were encountering only light resistance. North Korean prisoners said that their fellow troops were planning to make a stand at Wonsan, about 70 miles north of the border, due east of Pyongyang. Correspondent Leif Erickson reported that the South Korean troops had captured Yangyang, about seven miles north of the border.

The North Koreans were ignoring, however, General MacArthur's weekend ultimatum for unconditional surrender.

During the weekend, Communist Chinese Foreign Minister Chou En-Lai said that they would not "supinely tolerate" seeing their neighbors "savagely invaded by imperialists".

B-29's struck targets north of the parallel, at Nanam, 200 miles north of Wonsan, in and around Pyongyang, and along key railroads.

Chief of Naval operations Admiral Forrest Sherman announced that U.S. Navy ships had discovered Russian-type floating mines off the coast of Korea. The prior Wednesday, a U.S. destroyer, the U.S.S. Brush, had hit a floating mine, causing the deaths of nine men and injuries to ten others, with five more missing. He said that floating mines were prohibited by the Hague convention, that moored mines had to be constructed so that they would be rendered ineffective within an hour of breaking loose.

Bem Price reports from Taejon in the South that the pall of death hung over the rubble of that town, with 1,100 enemy-massacred civilians having been discovered, 700 in and around a Franciscan monastery. Some estimated that the North Korean security police may have killed between 5,000 and 6,000 civilians on Wednesday and Thursday. Among the dead were 30 American soldiers and it was believed that 12 more might be discovered buried in a trench. Three soldiers, two Americans and one South Korean, had survived the slaughter to tell of it. One of the Americans had since died. All three had been left for dead, buried alive, but only lightly. They were able to struggle through the dirt for air, at which point they were discovered by friendly forces. The massacre had been coldly calculated, not accomplished by wild machine-gunning. Many had been clubbed to make sure they were dead. One man had a hatchet sticking from his skull. Local citizens said that the dead civilians were known anti-Communists, the wealthy, soldiers' relatives, or national police and their relatives. The object of the massacre appeared to be to make the populace fearful of a day when the North Koreans might return.

Mr. Price also tells of an American sergeant emerging from the hills after 77 days behind enemy lines, having been cut off in the battle of the Kum River on July 16. He had lived in a cave, surviving off rice and vegetation. North Koreans had passed feet from his position several times. During the fight, he had seen a fellow soldier cut down by the enemy while trying to surrender and he had thought he would die fighting. Another soldier with him had died of sunstroke the following day. The sergeant had then fled into the hills.

Seoul City Sue, who had been heard over the radio urging allied troops to surrender, had not been discovered in Seoul and could not be identified.

At the U.N., Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Vishinsky charged that the U.S. had challenged the U.N. and international law by ignoring the four-power agreement on Korea. He spoke during debate on the eight-nation resolution for unification and rehabilitation of Korea under U.N. supervision. Mr. Vishinsky claimed that the elections in which Syngman Rhee was elected President the previous May had transpired in an atmosphere of "unbridled terror". He also claimed that ten divisions of South Korean troops had been concentrated along the parallel to stimulate border incidents prior to the start of the war on June 25 and that a purge of the South Korean Army of Communists had taken place, along with the burning of 400,000 houses.

The new term of the Supreme Court began this date, with several civil rights cases, tests of the validity of the Government loyalty boards, and the convictions of the eleven top American Communists under the Smith Act at the top of the docket.

The Canadian dollar rose in value during the weekend three to six cents versus the American dollar, after the Canadian Government removed controls over the exchange rate for the first time since 1939, at the start of the war. The action came as dollar reserves reached an all-time high in Canada, precipitating a wave of U.S. speculative buying of Canadian dollars.

In Los Angeles, a 400-lb. Mexican bartender ran amok, shooting three persons and killing two others in the downtown area of the city, before blowing his own brains out inside a bar. He had been arguing with two of the wounded earlier. He killed the two men en route to the bar, where he told the bartender to call the police, then shot himself on a second attempt after the gun had misfired the first time.

In the first of a series of five articles by Tom Fesperman of The News, he tells of the committee, chaired by David Ovens, which had formulated the plan for the Charlotte auditorium and coliseum complex—to be completed in 1955. Winston-Salem, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Mobile, Ala., also had formed study committees on coliseums or auditoriums. Other cities, such as Richmond and Chattanooga, already had auditoriums which served to draw big attractions.

On the editorial page, "A Vote for Our Children" finds that the voters had done well by the children of the county by approving on Saturday the 5.3 million dollar education bond issue. Yet, only 5,844 people of the 47,000 registered voters had cast a ballot. It finds it emblematic of apathy in local elections of importance and suggests it as a typical failure of American democracy.

"Closed Minds in Georgia" tells of the anti-Communist hysteria in the country having side effects which produced rigidity of thought and behavior, such as the banning by the Georgia State Board of Education of a 1917 book by Dr. Frank Magruder, titled American Government. It had been approved by twelve states and 40 of the leading cities of the country. A committee of Atlanta educators had also passed on it. But a member of the DAR, Mrs. Julius Y. Talmadge, had objected on the basis that the book did not represent the American "way of life". The Board then found it too controversial for the school children.

The Atlanta Journal disagreed, saying it had found nothing in the book which even slightly would justify the ban. The work, for instance, favored churches and disapproved of whiskey, supported the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and the U.N. Charter.

The piece accepts the opinion of the Journal over that of Ms. Talmadge, stressing that while it was her right to differ, a state board of education should not accept the opinion of a single citizen as to what constituted the American "way of life" and should have resisted the opinion of a fanatic.

Though not specified, perhaps at the heart of her objections were passages as one declaring that while unegalitarian poll taxes were designed to prevent blacks from voting, they also in fact kept many whites from exercising the franchise, "some worthy and many worthless ones."

"Casualties in Korea" suggests that there was some truth behind the President's recent controversial statement, even if poorly worded, regarding the propaganda arm of the Marines being equivalent to that of Stalin. To read the newspaper accounts, it finds, one would think that the Marines had won the Korean war on their own. It was true that the Marine landings on Inchon had broken the back of the North Korean forces in the South and their efforts had also led to the finishing off of the southern forces around Masan.

But the Army had carried the primary burden of the war, as demonstrated by the comparative casualties, 2,221 dead from the Army to 175 from the Marines, and 16,087 total Army casualties to 951 from the Marines. The Marine casualties would rise after those suffered in the Seoul offensive were reported, but notwithstanding that fact, the Army had suffered the brunt of the fighting, holding the line in the defense arc around Pusan until adequate reinforcements could arrive at the front. It adds that it wishes only to give the fair share of credit to the "unglamorous, patient, suffering doughfoot" who did not always get the press attention he deserved.

A piece from the Daily Tar Heel, the UNC student newspaper, titled "Not Reasonable", finds unreasonable the request of Charlotte for State money to establish an institution of higher learning in the community based on the fact that there were a million people within a 50-mile radius of Charlotte. It finds the argument unpersuasive and the proposal overly expensive when Charlotte was not centrally located within the state.

It neglects Davidson College, located near Charlotte, when it suggests that every other city in the state over 50,000 population, save Asheville, had at the time an institution of higher learning of recognized academic standing.

UNC-Charlotte would be established in 1963 as a four-year college, growing out of the special overflow facility for G.I.'s returning from the war, established in 1946, and then transforming into a two-year community college in 1958.

Drew Pearson again discusses the salary kickbacks from a secretary being received by Congressman Walter Brehm of Ohio. The FBI had learned, after talking to the secretary's son, that the Congressman had urged him to tell the Bureau that he had carried the money to the GOP campaign committee in the Congressional race and that the money was no more than $1,200 over the course of three years. The son refused, as the amount totaled about $10,000, and to have contributed that much to the committee would have violated campaign finance laws.

He follows up on a previous story about two Alabama businessmen who had made more than a million dollars selling jewelry at Army PX's during the war while cheating the Government out of about a half million dollars in tax money. The case against them had been allowed to languish through political pull, until he had published the story, at which point the Justice Department reopened the case and took it away from the U.S. Attorney in Birmingham. The previous week the two men had pleaded guilty to tax evasion and each was sentenced to two and a half years in prison.

Congressman Gordon McDonough, who had urged the President to appoint the commandant of the Marine Corps to the Joint Chiefs, to which the President had responded by stating controversially that the Marines were represented adequately by the chief of Naval operations and, in any event, had a propaganda wing equal to that of Stalin, had not served at all during World War I. The President had explained that he thought he was responding to a member of his artillery unit during that war. Congressman McDonough instead had been working in a war plant.

Robert C. Ruark tells of having fifteen years earlier covered his first football game as a sports reporter. He found baseball the only sport which came close to being an exact science, boxing, a complete fiction, but football, foolishness, one fourth algebra and the rest, public relations.

After mentioning the current UNC coach, Carl Snavely—and after his stock would dim considerably from his four good years in succession during the Justice-Weiner era of 1946-49, starting to fade in the 1950 season, even if the team was briefly ranked number 11 in the A.P. poll this week for a one touchdown loss the prior Saturday to number 1 Notre Dame, and continuing the slide into oblivion the following two years—, he also happens to mention his successor at UNC in 1953, George Barclay, a former UNC star who would have three decidedly unsatisfactory years at the helm. He then discusses Joe Mellendick, a Georgetown player who had told him he was a candidate for All-American but for the facts that he had a big mouth, was so good in the broken field that he inspired jealousy, and drank a lot. Mr. Ruark agrees on all three counts, then relates of UNC All-American Charlie Justice, who had graduated the previous spring, having once been asked what he would have become had he not been a football star, to which he had responded that he might have been a bum.

He concludes by thanking God that he no longer had to shiver in the press box during the falls, interview coaches, players, predict scores, or fret of Army, Navy, or Notre Dame on the gridiron. He had never learned a thing about the game and prefers instead the relatively simple sport of "rassling".

Army, incidentally, which would supplant Notre Dame as number 1 the following week, would finish undefeated and number 2 behind Oklahoma, while Notre Dame would plummet to obscurity with a 4-4-1 record. The hapless Tar Heels, 1-1 at this juncture, would finish 3-5-2. The typical collegiate academic school year in those days, and through the late 1960's, sensibly did not begin until around the third week in September and ran through the first week of June.

James Marlow explains why it was that Justice Robert Jackson of the Supreme Court had authority to overrule the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals and admit to bail ten of eleven of the convicted top American Communists pending the hearing of their case before the Supreme Court. The eleventh was in jail for a separate contempt charge and not eligible presently for bail.

Each Justice oversaw one or more of the eleven circuits and the Second was assigned to Justice Jackson. Certain routine matters of this sort, interim rulings pending review by the entire Court, were handled by the single Justice of the particular circuit involved.

The District Court Judge, Harold Medina, had originally refused bail on appeal to the defendants, but the Second Circuit had overruled him. But after the Second Circuit had affirmed the convictions the prior August, two of the three judges on the panel revoked the appellate bond. That left it up to Justice Jackson whether to reinstate it or not, pending the outcome of the granted review by the Supreme Court.

A letter writer tells of Monroe High School having won its football game against North Wilkesboro, 20 to 0. In years past, Monroe had been written off as an easy opponent by sportswriters and other schools. But the previous year they had posted a 12-0 record, winning two postseason bowl games. Even so, he thinks, the sports reporters for The News had made excuses for their wins.

The editors respond that The News made nine predictions on the outcome of Monroe games the previous year and chose them to win eight of them. Monroe had won the other game by a single point. This season, the prognosticator picked them to lose their first three games, was wrong by a point on the first, correct on the second, and wrong on the North Wilkesboro result. They explain that the loss of several of the players to the Army had prompted the predictions.

Well, you better repent or the sky will fall. This is Mon-roe we're talkin' 'bout.

A letter writer comments on the Tremont Avenue rock quarry and its big hole which served as a dumping ground for garbage. A similar eyesore, he recalls, had existed in San Antonio, Tex. The City bought the property and used bond money to convert it to a park with a recreation facility, paid for by concessions.

That's a good idea, unless the methane builds up and causes an explosion.

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