The Charlotte News

Saturday, October 25, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that South Korean troops fought yard by yard up the highest pinnacle of "Sniper Ridge" this date in Korea and routed fresh Communist Chinese troops in a 4 1/2 hour battle. They then drove up the ridge toward the "Yoke", a network of enemy trenches and caves commanding the northern end of the ridge. Allied warplanes hit the Yoke in an effort to open a breach in the fortification network. Seven hours earlier, the South Koreans had withdrawn from "Pinpoint Hill", the highest peak on the ridge, under onslaughts from two fresh Chinese battalions which had just arrived at the front. Elsewhere on the central front, the enemy held control of "Pikes Peak", their last stronghold on "Triangle Hill", just west of "Sniper Ridge". The enemy had resisted attacks the previous night and this date by the U.S. Seventh Division. The Chinese also held "Iron Horse Mountain".

In the air war, U.S. Sabre jets shot down two enemy jets over northwest Korea, near the Yalu River border with Manchuria.

At the U.N. in New York this date, Colombia, Lebanon and Denmark were elected to the Security Council. The General Assembly voted to refrain from making any decision at the current session on the question of seating Communist China. American sources disclosed that U.S. delegates had talked to Soviet delegates during the previous eight months regarding the chances of an armistice in Korea, but nothing had come from the talks.

General Eisenhower the previous night, speaking in Detroit at the Masonic Temple to a capacity crowd of 4,000, pledged to go to Korea personally if he were elected President and engage in a personal attempt to end the war without appeasement. The promise had elicited loud applause and cheering. This date, he headed to Harlem, where he would make an outdoor speech at the Hotel Theresa in the afternoon, intending to speak on the civil rights issue.

DNC chairman Stephen Mitchell accused General Eisenhower of making a "grandstand play to win votes" by promising to go to Korea.

Governor Stevenson was conducting a whistle-stop campaign through Massachusetts, on his way to Boston for a major speech. The Governor paid tribute to FDR this date, visiting his grave at Hyde Park, N.Y. He then addressed a crowd in Poughkeepsie, stating that the U.N. was FDR's "final legacy to the American people". He spoke from the balcony of Nelson House, where FDR traditionally ended his campaigns with a speech. He said that the country would never go back to the pre-Roosevelt period, "to the reign of the Republican old guard", no matter how much the enemies of FDR inveighed against its progress. In making this speech a tribute to FDR, he departed from his recent attacks on General Eisenhower. On Thursday in Cleveland, he had accused the General of condoning a "sly and ugly campaign". That general tone was expected to predominate in his speeches across New York and Massachusetts.

Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon, in a recorded speech for the Volunteers for Stevenson, formally quit the Republican Party the previous night and said that henceforth he would be an independent, but would call himself an "independent Republican". It was yet to be determined how that would impact his committee assignments.

Tom Fesperman of The News tells of Vice-President Alben Barkley, in an address in Charlotte at the Armory the previous night, having rallied attending Democratic leaders around the state, engendering in them a belief that they could win again based on the good economy and the fact that they had been right on foreign policy all through the years since World War I, despite Republican opposition. He said that the people still remembered the depression during the Republican years. He did not read from a speech and elicited loud cheers and applause frequently. He did not sound like a 74-year old man who had been bitterly disappointed at his party's national convention, when a large faction had suddenly turned against him. He called on North Carolinians to give Governor Stevenson a big vote and a full slate of Democratic Congressmen. Nearly all state party leaders were present for the speech.

Elizabeth Blair of The News tells of Vice-President Barkley's wife thanking a representative of the Democratic women of Mecklenburg County for presenting her with a bouquet of roses on arrival in Charlotte. She said that she loved campaigning. The Vice-President had said that he believed more people were interested in her than him. She said that she had been in the state many times before, but had never been to Charlotte, found everything, including the weather, fine.

In Nashville, Tenn., a 15-year old, the youngest of three suspects sought in the kidnapping of 20 persons and the theft of four automobiles had been arrested early this date. The other two still at large, one 29 and the other 19, were former Florida convicts released in August and April, after serving terms for armed robbery. The arrested suspect had gone to the home of friends who were away, had fallen asleep, and when the friends returned, was taken to another residence by prearrangement with law enforcement officers and there taken into custody. He said that he had been forced to take part in the crime spree and was given an empty gun to use in the commission of the robberies and kidnappings.

In Miami, two young men sat in a tavern the previous night drinking beer and watching the rain, and one said to the other that he had nothing to live for, to which the other replied that he did not either. They agreed that they would go to an apartment of one of the men and play Russian roulette. They flipped a silver dollar to see who would go first, after preparing a .22-caliber revolver for the game. The winner of the coin-flip pointed the gun to his temple, to which the other man protested, saying that he was supposed to point it at him, whereupon he pointed the revolver at the other man's heart and pulled the trigger. It fired and killed the other man instantly. The man who shot the gun called the police and waited for their arrival, broke down and cried when they arrived, saying that they had been foolish. He was arrested for murder.

The sixth hurricane of the season had lost much of its strength as it passed over Cuba and was now positioned off Florida, but still had squalls registering up to 115 mph, while its sustained velocity barely reached hurricane force at 75 mph. It had hit Cuba's south coast near Cienfuegos the previous day packing winds of 165 mph. It was one of the most powerful hurricanes ever to hit Cuba, leaving 70 persons injured and hundreds homeless, with heavy crop and property damage. Storm warnings which had been in effect along the Florida coast from Vero Beach to Key West were withdrawn this date after the hurricane weakened.

In New Brunswick, N.J., a 26-year old man told a judge that the highway was so beautiful that he could not resist stepping on the gas, following his arrest on Friday for driving 110 mph on the New Jersey Turnpike for a distance of about 25 miles. He was fined $100 for speeding and $10 for not having his registration with him. His driving privilege was also revoked in New Jersey for two years. At the time, he had been driving a 1952 Cadillac.

In London, a leading British bookie placed a 100-pound limit on bets on the U.S. presidential election, following what he said was a "rush of wagers on Adlai Stevenson". The heavy thrust toward the Governor had made the odds the same for both candidates, four to five. Prior to that time, General Eisenhower had been the favorite by the same odds. The bookie would not indicate how much money was placed on the Governor in the previous two days, but said that it ran into the thousands of pounds.

On the editorial page, "The Independent Voter" indicates that the definition of an independent voter was a person who was a free agent in politics, who might be a registered Democrat or Republican to enable participation in the primaries, but was not bound by party loyalty to either party.

Gallup had indicated that 9.5 million voters had classified themselves as independents in 1948, and the polling organization believed that the figure was higher in 1952. The piece ventures that it was likely the independents would determine the outcome of the election, as they had in the previous three quadrennial elections.

It suggests that the increase in numbers of independent voters reflected the deterioration of party discipline and party responsibility, and the fact that both parties were so diverse in the types of politicians they produced, with the Democrats having Senators Hubert Humphrey and Harry F. Byrd, and the Republicans having Senators Wayne Morse, William Jenner, Robert Taft and Governor Dewey. Each party had liberal and conservative wings and neither had a clear-cut program, either domestic or foreign, which the voter could embrace with full expectation that if the party were victorious, the program would be enacted. Congress instead worked through coalitions across party lines.

It finds signs in the current campaign that a slow realignment of the two parties was taking place, to produce more clearly defined differences in policy and philosophy. It suggests that when that process was complete, the number of independent voters would diminish.

"Better Balance Means Prosperity" indicates that in 1929, "a year free of the economic influences of war or depression", 21 percent of all income in the eleven Southeastern states had come from agriculture. Regional experts who understood that was too high began stressing the slogan, "Balance Agriculture with Industry". Since 1929, there had been a dramatic change in the economy of the Southeast. William Davlin, writing in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, had traced those steps. It provides that analysis and a table of statistics showing each Southern state and its increase of factory payrolls over those of 1929, and the totals for 1951.

It indicates that the figures showed the wisdom of the slogan adopted by the leaders in the Southeast in 1929. Such balance between agriculture and industry meant prosperity in good times and also provided a brake against disaster in a period of recession. It concludes that the Southeast was coming into its own after years of being the nation's number one economic problem, and it thanks those leaders who had the foresight to bring it about.

"Footnote" indicates that during the July Republican convention, followers of Senator Taft had been saying some nasty things about General Eisenhower, some of which had been about as mean as the remarks of late by the President. The chief criticism of the General was that he was not a "real" Republican and that only a "real" Republican, such as Senator Taft, could win in November. The piece suggests that the national polls offered a footnote to those assertions, as, without exception, the Gallup poll had shown the General running well ahead of the Republicans as a party, with the latest poll showing that party preference was even when undecided voters were allocated, while the voters continued to lean toward General Eisenhower by a margin of 4 to 5 percentage points over Governor Stevenson.

It indicates that one reason the newspaper had supported the General in the pre-nomination period was its belief that he had a better chance of winning the general election than Senator Taft, and finds that current voter reaction measured by the polls appeared to bear out that belief.

A piece from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, titled "Homily on Horse-Radish", thanks the Wall Street Journal for its essay by Jeanne F. Kaufman regarding the horseradish growing industry centered around St. Louis, indicating that the area produced 60 to 80 percent of all of the horseradish consumed in the U.S., Cuba, Canada and Puerto Rico. It attributes the centrality of the industry in the area to climate, the right soil and about 300 farmers with the proper knowledge to grow it. Farmers in Texas and California had tried to raise horseradish, but the product lacked the "zip of St. Louis area horseradish".

Drew Pearson finds that the Wage Stabilization Board's reduction by 40 cents of the $1.90 daily wage increase negotiated between the UMW and the coal mine operators, causing a coal strike, might backfire on the Democrats on election day. Preliminary reports were that the miners were angry within the key states of Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Illinois, taking their anger out on the Government, as the mine owners had agreed to the wage increase. Yet the person who had stiffened the Board's backbone, Economic Stabilizer Roger Putnam, was a loyal Democrat, appointed through former DNC chairman Frank McKinney. Mr. Putnam had sent a confidential letter to WSB chairman Archibald Cox, urging him to "adhere strictly" to the Government's stabilization standards in making its decision. Mr. Pearson indicates that Mr. Putnam had disregarded those standards in previous disputes, but had encouraged Mr. Cox to hold the line in this instance, apparently out of concern that otherwise the Administration would be accused of buying the votes of the coal miners on the eve of the election.

Britain was looking for a cheaper way to defend Europe, based on atomic power, wanting to reshuffle European defense plans, slacken the pace of rearmament and fall back on the atomic arsenal of the U.S., requiring a free exchange of atomic information among the Western allies. General Omar Bradley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, had advised the British and French privately, however, that the most they could expect from the U.S. was data on how many atomic bombs and other weapons would be available for Europe's defense in case of an attack. The British were planning to propose at the December NATO meeting that the present goal of a 96-division European Army by 1955 be reduced. That was in the face of an urgent warning from NATO supreme commander General Matthew Ridgway that the European Army was dangerously weak and had to be built up more rapidly. General Bradley had insisted that the defense effort could not be relaxed and had to be based on Russian capabilities rather than an estimate of their intentions. The situation might produce a serious split between the U.S. and Britain at the December conference.

Mayor John Hynes of Boston had sent out speeches to 988 other mayors who had promised to campaign for Governor Stevenson in their towns.

The League of Women Voters had received numerous requests from people who wanted to know how they could vote for General Eisenhower but not for Senator Nixon. The Pennsylvania Power Company had given its employees time off with pay to attend a political rally for Senator Nixon.

Jay Franklin, who had helped write some of the President's whistle-stop speeches in 1948, was now working for General Eisenhower.

If Governor Stevenson were elected, it was likely that Senator Estes Kefauver would be named Attorney General and Secretary of the Air Force Thomas Finletter, Secretary of Defense.

The RNC had given up all hope of the re-election of Senator Harry Cain of Washington, and so had refused to send him any more campaign money. The Committee was also holding back money from Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., of Massachusetts, in a fight for re-election with Congressman John F. Kennedy. All other Senate candidates had received $5,000, but Senator Lodge had been limited to half that.

One thing which had held up the campaign of Governor Stevenson was that he routinely stayed in his office until 3:00 a.m. writing his own speeches.

Senator William Jenner of Indiana complained that it was a "smear" to call him an isolationist, but in a Senate speech, he had boasted that he was proud to be known as an isolationist, and had told a reporter that General Eisenhower had espoused everything which Senator Jenner opposed.

General MacArthur's name would appear on the ballot for the presidency in about six states as a candidate of the Christian Nationalist Party, backed by Gerald L. K. Smith, including Arkansas, Washington, Texas, Missouri and Tennessee, with a write-in possibility in California. The General had not asked that his name be placed on the ballot but had also taken no steps to remove it. Top Republican strategists claimed that it was silent revenge against his old friend General Eisenhower, as California, Texas and Missouri might be close and General MacArthur's name on the ballot could make the difference between defeat or victory for General Eisenhower.

An editorial from the Citizen-Advertiser of Auburn, N.Y., tells of the newspaper having switched from its February endorsement of General Eisenhower to an endorsement of Governor Stevenson. It indicates that the reason for the switch was that in February, the newspaper believed that the General "would bring a fresh inspired leadership to this country" and "unite men and women of goodwill in a reassertion of American influence in the world" and do so in a manner above partisanship. But "by his acceptance and endorsement of some of the most dangerous and reactionary elements in the Republican Party and by his indiscriminate pursuit of votes General Eisenhower has surrendered to the very men whom he vanquished in the convention at Chicago." It indicates that his defense of needing to unify the Republicans was not acceptable as the newspaper had believed he would prefer to cooperate with "right-minded Democrats rather than with Republicans like Jenner and Capehart and McCarthy."

It indicates that it was serious and nearly unprecedented for a newspaper to change an endorsement from one candidate to another and that it would not take that step even under the present circumstances were it not for the fact that Governor Stevenson had shown that he was a "leader of brilliant mind and steadfast character", in whom it discerns "the marks of true greatness". It finds that he had set a standard which had not been seen since the days of Woodrow Wilson. He had appealed to the best instincts of voters, "refusing to angle for votes by concession to pressure groups." "His program is that of a sound conservatism lighted by faith."

It indicates that a newspaper in a small city rarely affected a large number of voters or exercised decisive political influence, but it hopes that by endorsing the Governor, it would help to show that the American press recognizes "intellectual honesty and courage".

An editorial from the Boston Herald reaffirms that it "likes Ike" after the General's visit to Boston had dispelled the rumors that he had become weak, had compromised his strongest beliefs and was serving as a "vague figurehead for sinister forces, that his crusade is a capitulation."

It finds that in Worcester he had reaffirmed his credo to "serve all the people", to improve and extend the social gains of the past, cut waste from government, clean up Washington, bring inflation under control, lower taxes, make trade unionism effective, protect private ownership of business and industry, help the farmer, encourage local government, defend America and at the same time aid its allies, making certain that public servants were loyal to the government and bringing dignity and ethics to public life. It finds that he had not compromised himself and stated in blunt language what he stood for.

Still sounds pretty vague…

The "Congressional Quiz" of the Congressional Quarterly addresses the question of whether Senators John Sparkman and Richard Nixon had resigned from the Senate in light of their candidacies for the vice-presidency, responds that they had not, as had not Vice-President Barkley when he was running as a Senator for the vice-presidency in 1948.

It also answers the question of what issues the two nominees for the vice-presidency agreed on in their votes in Congress, responding that the Congressional Quarterly had determined recently that on all important postwar roll call votes, among the 30 most important issues, they had agreed on 12 and disagreed on 18, primarily agreeing on matters of national defense, disagreeing usually on civil rights, rent control, housing, tax bills, and tidelands oil. Both had originally voted for the Taft-Hartley Act in 1947, but Senator Sparkman had voted to sustain the President's veto of it, while Senator Nixon voted to override.

A letter writer from Rock Hill, S.C., talks about reaction, citing some want-ads from Gastonia—and we don't know what the hell he's talking about. We move on.

A letter writer indicates that many people to whom she had spoken were planning to vote for General Eisenhower but were ashamed to say so. She finds that people who would go to the polls and vote for an Administration which "holds them in fear turns me cold with horror at what my great country has become, and it makes me think of the quotation by Mr. T. S. Eliot: "This is the way the world ends—not with a bang but a whimper."

The editors respond: "Buck up, old girl. You haven't been reading the People's Platform. If there is one thing there is no shortage of these days, it's people who are willing to speak their minds against the present administration."

We doubt seriously, incidentally, that Mr. Eliot had in mind a political campaign when he wrote his poem.

A letter writer thanks the newspaper for its fair coverage of the candidacy of Charles Jonas for the local Congressional seat, and says she intended to vote for him.

A letter writer from Albemarle finds that General Eisenhower did not care what happened to the people as long as he received glory, says that if he was such a good leader and cared about the welfare of the country, he would be attempting to help the men and boys "who need all the trained help that we have", instead of "running around condemning the party that made him a General."

A letter writer is willing to overlook the newspaper's surprising endorsement of the Republican ticket, because of the good coverage and the pictures given to the Democratic Party. He thanks the man who had driven the Hoover Cart along Tryon Street on October 18, finds the suggestion timely, as many older citizens, as he did, remembered those earlier dark days.

A letter writer indicates that the Democratic Party was "the greatest organization ever concerned with the hopes, needs and ideals of the people", that the Republican Party, by contrast, was "tied to a reactionary past and precludes future progress." He urges voting, and indicates that Governor Stevenson should be the next President, predicts his victory by five million votes, winning 39 states with 420 electoral votes.

With all due respect to your hope, we don't recommend entering the polling business.

A letter writer suggests to the newspaper that it endorse Mr. Jonas for Congress, urges his election.

A letter writer thanks the newspaper for its help in promoting the Charlotte Opera Association's 1952-53 season, which had made possible two good audiences at the East Mecklenburg Auditorium for performances of La Traviata. She indicates that for the first time in the company's history, it had been engaged by an out-of-town sponsor for performance of the opera, in Statesville on October 11. She thanks a list of reporters from The News.

A letter from a representative of the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Mecklenburg County thanks the newspaper and others associated with the event for helping to bring a cerebral palsy specialist to Charlotte for a talk.

A letter writer from Valdese responds to a letter of October 8, saying that if another war was desired, a Democrat should be elected to the presidency, that the letter writer who had mentioned the depression under President Hoover had failed to mention the panic under President Grover Cleveland, concedes that FDR had brought the country out of that depression, but with World War II, indicates further that President Truman was giving the country prosperity, but with the police action in Korea and a Federal debt which could never be paid.

What are you giving the country but Richard Nixon for the next 22 years?

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