The Charlotte News

Saturday, August 16, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that U.S. Marines had battled 400 Chinese Communists with fists and grenades in the predawn darkness this date to break up the seventh enemy counterattack against "Bunker Hill" on the western front in Korea, the hill having been captured by the allies five days earlier. The enemy had reached to within 30 yards of the Marine positions on the ridge prior to dawn, as enemy artillery and mortars hit allied positions in support of that attack. Fresh Marines were rushed forward at the height of the battle, forcing the enemy to withdraw less than a half hour after the battle had begun. Later, the enemy traded shots with the Marines for ten minutes from a distance, but made no further charge. The Marines estimated that 226 enemy troops had been killed or wounded by the time the attack had been repulsed. The Marines estimated that Communist losses during the week had been 3,735 killed or wounded. Elsewhere on the front, it had been relatively quiet.

In the air war, U.N. planes turned an enemy supply center into flaming ruin on Friday night, after civilians had been warned by Radio Seoul to evacuate the area, south of Pyongyang. Sabre jet pilots had shot down one Communist MIG-15 jet and probably destroyed two others.

King Faisal II of Iraq, 17, was set to land in Washington this date for a luncheon with the President, embarking on a five-week tour of the country to promote international goodwill and inspect U.S. industrial and irrigation projects. He had inspected tourist sites in New York the previous day and made a broadcast via Voice of America to his fellow countrymen.

In Denver, General Eisenhower was set to make a determined bid for the labor vote, with a scheduled speech before the AFL annual convention in New York, starting September 15. The vice-presidential candidate, Senator Richard Nixon, told reporters the previous day that the General would welcome the opportunity to appear before labor organizations any time he could. He said that while the leadership of CIO had endorsed Governor Stevenson, the rank-and-file might have different ideas, indicating that he believed the top political leaders of the CIO PAC could not deliver the rank-and-file vote. He said that he and the General had discussed the matter and had determined not to write off the labor vote. Senator Nixon called on Governor Stevenson to "quit the double talk and the fancy language and tell us where he stands on the issues." He referred to him as a "me-too" candidate, in reverse, because of silence on the issues.

That would be "oot-em". What does that mean, Dick?

Former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen had said earlier in the week, during a visit with the General, that an unidentified labor leader would soon announce his support for General Eisenhower. This same labor leader, according to Governor Stassen, had said that the General would receive half of the organized labor vote. Governor Earl Warren of California would meet with the General this day, set to discuss campaign strategy.

The General would meet with ten Republican Governors of Western states in Boise, Idaho, in his first political speech since the nomination, during the coming week, followed by a meeting with party leaders and candidates of seven Western states in Kansas City. The General then would return to Denver for a final round of appointments and probably some fishing, before he would fly to New York to make a non-political address to the American Legion convention on August 25.

In Springfield, Ill., Governor Stevenson planned to travel to California and the Pacific Northwest early in September, including a whistle-stop train ride up the coast of California. Drew Pearson's column below provides further detail of the Governor's campaign itinerary. Overall, the campaigning would be developed in short tours, and the Governor would rely heavily on television. The Democrats had bought a lot of television time, and it appeared that the itinerary of the Governor was being dictated by the requirements of being at certain key points at specific times to access the pre-purchased television time. Campaign manager Wilson Wyatt indicated that the President would not make specific plans for future speeches beyond his Labor Day address in Milwaukee, until he knew the Governor's full itinerary.

In Jackson, Miss., a militant states' rights group entered the fight between Governor Stevenson's and General Eisenhower's supporters among Democrats in that state. The state Democratic convention would hold its first post-national convention meeting the following Monday, and several officials of the Democratic Party in the state wanted to name a Southerner as the presidential candidate. Among the possibilities were Walter Sillers, Speaker of the State House of Representatives and State Representative Russell Fox. Former Governor Fielding Wright, who had been the vice-presidential candidate on the Dixiecrat ticket in 1948, had not yet declared his sentiment, but would have an instrumental impact on how matters proceeded. He would provide his own report to the state convention on Monday. Supporters of Governor Stevenson believed his statement would not be in concurrence with the majority report at the national convention. Those supporters had spent most of the previous night lining up support, hoping to thwart the states' rights group and the Democrats backing General Eisenhower. Traditionally, 96 percent of Mississippi voters were Democrats and practically all supported states' rights. The Dixiecrat ticket, led by Governor Strom Thurmond of South Carolina, had won the state in 1948.

Another Gallup poll appears, assessing national opinion on the proposed FEPC, with 32 percent of those polled favoring a Federal law to protect equal opportunity in seeking and maintaining jobs and equalizing pay irrespective of race, religion or ethnicity, 44 percent believing the states ought determine the issue, while 16 percent said neither and 8 percent expressed no opinion. When distinguished by regions, 28 percent of Midwestern respondents indicated a preference for a national law, while in the South 13 percent so indicated, in the Far West, 29 percent, and in the East, 44 percent. In the Midwest, 44 percent favored leaving the matter up to the states, while in the South 70 percent so favored, in the Far West, 41 percent, and in the East, 35 percent. In the Midwest, 28 percent said either that neither should determine the issue via legislation or expressed no opinion, while in the South 17 percent so indicated, in the Far West, 30 percent, and in the East, 21 percent. There was little difference in the results between Republicans and Democrats.

John L. Lewis, UMW head, in the midst of bargaining for a new coal contract, ordered union miners to take a break for a ten-day "memorial" work stoppage at the end of the month. The stoppage would reduce the 84-day stockpile of coal available. Maintenance of the mines would continue. Officially, the holiday was to commemorate the deaths and injuries of miners in several mining disasters of the prior eight months, which had, according to Mr. Lewis, taken the lives of 334 miners and caused 20,040 mine workers to be maimed.

In New York, gambling kingpin Frank Costello was now in prison, serving his 18-month Federal prison sentence for contempt of the Senate for refusing to answer questions before the Kefauver crime investigating committee in March, 1951. As he entered the facility, Mr. Costello told reporters: "Tell the boys I have come in to do my bit. I don't want no favors from nobody. I want to be treated like everybody else." He would probably be moved to the facility in Danbury, Conn., early the following week, and would be eligible for parole within six months.

The FBI announced in Washington the apprehension of one of the top ten fugitives, John Thomas Hill, on Federal charges of flight to avoid prosecution. He was arrested in a Detroit suburb, based on a warrant out of Queen Anne's County, Md., on charges of murder, and on another out of Portsmouth, Va., on charges of felonious assault. He had been using an assumed name, and admitted participation in the robbery of a store in Maryland where the elderly storekeeper had been beaten to death with a hammer. He had a criminal record dating back to 1926.

In Walterboro, S.C., an 84-year old man was fatally injured the previous night when he was struck by a bus while crossing a road near his home, the bus having been driven by his son.

Near China Grove, N.C., a 65-year old former police chief was struck and killed by one or two hit-and-run vehicles in the early morning hours on Highway 29, about three miles south of Salisbury. Roadblocks were set up to try to apprehend the driver of a 1950 green Ford, believed to have been involved in the hit and run. In setting up the roadblocks, another car, speeding, had crashed into a parked Charlotte police car investigating the death, which caused the police car, in turn, to smash against a parked County patrol car. The driver was subsequently arrested on a reckless driving charge. A Highway Patrolman at the scene ventured that the victim had been possibly hit by one speeding car and run over by it, and then thrown into the path of another car, which also might have run over him. Bloodstains on the pavement supported that theory. A car owned by the victim had been parked on the shoulder nearby.

In Hollywood, the 2 1/2-year old daughter of actress Rita Hayworth and Prince Aly Khan had been rushed to the emergency hospital the previous night after accidentally swallowing sleeping pills. Both of her parents, estranged, arrived in separate cars at the hospital and Ms. Hayworth indicated that she did not know how the child, who had been ill with the whooping cough, had obtained the pills. The child appeared all right after having her stomach pumped and was in the hospital for only 15 minutes. The Prince had a "most pleasant" visit with his wife the previous day, but refused reporters' questions about any possible reconciliation.

On the editorial page, "An Endorsement, For What It's Worth" finds that the endorsement of Governor Stevenson by the CIO executive board to have been something expected rather than so much a benefit in terms of having an effect on voters. The endorsement had been given without any great enthusiasm by CIO leaders. It was a foregone conclusion that the CIO would not back General Eisenhower, not so much because of any views he had expressed against labor but because of the traditional Republican policies in that field, especially Taft-Hartley. But Governor Stevenson was not the close friend of labor which the President and Averell Harriman were.

A top CIO strategist had told Stephen Galpin of the Wall Street Journal that they he feared that the open-door policy to labor, which had characterized the Roosevelt-Truman era, was coming to an end.

It suggests that the final judgment on that conclusion would await the Labor Day speech by the Governor in Detroit, in which he was expected to detail his views on labor problems and, specifically, Taft-Hartley. He had stated in his acceptance speech at the convention that he favored revision of Taft-Hartley, whereas the Democratic platform favored repeal.

It concludes that labor leaders were no longer able to deliver labor votes as a bloc and that both presidential candidates would be wise to evaluate official labor endorsement or lack thereof in that light, and make their appeals accordingly.

"Don't Let Them Take It Away, Ike" finds that if the professional politicians would leave General Eisenhower alone, he would do fine as a politician. But, unwisely, he had permitted his advisers to convince him to issue an angry, "and rather ridiculous", denunciation of the meeting between Governor Stevenson and the President at the White House earlier in the week. It suggests that had the General had it his way, he would have probably said something to the effect that the Governor had naturally gone to Washington to receive his orders and that he would expect him to make similar trips in the future. The piece thinks, in that event, he would have described the situation accurately.

It finds that the General's written reply to the President's invitation to receive a similar briefing to that given the Governor, had been so courteous and gentlemanly as to leave the President looking foolish. When General Omar Bradley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, had indicated that it had never occurred to him that the timing of notification of the General of the invitation might become an issue, or he would have gotten in touch with him immediately, the General's response had been a big laugh, rather than saying something to the effect that he had no confidence in the Joint Chiefs anyway, as, it suggests, Senator Taft might have said.

It concludes that the General's best assets were his winning personality and fresh and refreshing approach to political affairs. It hopes that he would resist the attempts of the professional politicians to provide him a new personality and counsels that if he remained in character and said what he wanted to say in the manner in which he wished to say it, he would do all right.

"A Big Shout—But No Wolf" finds that it was unlikely that internal Communism would ever become a serious problem within the U.S., given the diligent and "often hysterical pursuit" of Communists and potential Communists during the previous five years. It indicates, however, that if there were to be a threat, it might not be recognized because of the continued cry of "Wolf!" by such groups as the McCarran Internal Security subcommittee, which had so dulled the senses of the public that it would not be able to recognize a real threat if it arose.

It cites the recently disclosed Boy Scout "infiltration", as detailed by a lengthy McCarran subcommittee report, wherein it had been stated that a self-styled former Communist, testifying before the subcommittee on March 5, had said that the Communists had futilely sought to undermine the Scout movement in the 1930's, and then changed to a plan of "infiltration". The witness had said that the Communists had sought to set up a rival organization, the "Young Pioneers". A Baptist clergyman, continued the witness, who was a Communist, with seven Boy Scout troops under his jurisdiction, had planned to "indoctrinate" the Scouts. The witness stated that the plan was to infiltrate high schools, community and church clubs, and labor unions.

The piece indicates that this general Communist plan had been of common knowledge for years, but with one witness having highlighted the allegation that a Baptist clergyman and a Scout leader had planned to "indoctrinate" the Scouts, the matter suddenly became news. When the alleged "Baptist clergyman" had been contacted by the Associated Press, he said that he had never been a Baptist minister and denied having been a Communist, disclaiming also any connection with the Boy Scouts. It finds the story of the witness not to add up to "infiltration", and that if such was an example of the type of facts developed by the McCarran subcommittee, Americans might decide that the whole threat of Communism was a farce and disregard its real dangers.

"A Setback, but No Catastrophe" indicates that it did not know the identity of the "Agriculture Department Spokesmen" who had told the United Press that it could take ten years for the South to recover from the recent drought, but it suspects that they were talking through their hats. The South had been hard-hit by the drought and some estimates had the total damage to crops and livestock at a billion dollars.

It maintains confidence in Southern farmers, however, not to return to complete dependence on cash crops, no matter how great the temptation, having learned the value of grassland-livestock farming. It indicates that the South had great resilience and would emerge from the drought with unshaken confidence in its new agriculture, regaining its losses in far less than a decade.

A piece from the Monroe Journal, titled "Mr. Deane's Oversight", tells of the Richmond County Journal having noted that upon the arrival of Congressman Charles Deane at his home in Rockingham, he had provided some of his impressions of the recent Democratic convention and the leadership displayed therein by a number of outstanding men who were practically new in the political field, stating his favorable impression of Governor Stevenson, finding him to compare favorably to Abraham Lincoln and Woodrow Wilson. Mr. Deane also believed that the party had made a wise choice in nominating for the vice-presidency Senator John Sparkman, whom he regarded as an able, conscientious and hard-working man.

It indicates that had Mr. Deane come away from the convention with a feeling of hostility toward the nominees, it would have been news. It finds interesting that he had omitted any reference to FDR, "the Democratic Moses", in his comparisons to the Governor, while understanding why he would not have included President Truman, despite the fact that Mr. Deane might highly esteem him. It thus takes the liberty to set forth an equation: "Lincoln plus Wilson plus Roosevelt minus Harry equals Stevenson. Hurrah for Stevenson."

Presumably, this piece of "wit" comes from editor R. F. Beasley.

Werner Imhoof, Washington correspondent of Neue Zurcher Zeitung in Switzerland, provides his impressions from a drive through the South, finding it initially not encouraging, viewing a "bleak and ill-groomed countryside, low-rolling hills dotted with pine woods, cotton fields and purplish brown in the early spring sun". He had driven past "dilapidated but inhabited cabins and deserted mansions with window frames askance and hollow, suggesting some vague kind of horror." The approach to every town led through "colonies of desolate barracks, the dark interiors of which are filled with swarms of unkempt Negroes." Yet, he had also come upon the "most beautiful old residences, exquisite examples of the colonial style, in park-like settings where the first azaleas glow." Such estates appeared "barely touched by the ghostlike shantytowns and slums which disfigure the countryside and the cities."

He had seen much poverty among blacks and whites and had come close to agreeing with the Northerners who considered the South to be the "problem child" of the nation. But he also remembered that Harlem in New York, "Skid Row" in Chicago, and certain sections of Pittsburgh, to name but a few, also had their problems in the North. So, he asks, why would anyone judge Atlanta by its Decatur Street, with its "dark accumulation of Negro joints full of miserable figures".

Wherever one went, factories were being constructed for textiles, synthetic fibers, paper and cement production. Seventy years earlier, during Reconstruction, Henry Grady had prophesied the industrialization of the South, and his dreams were now being realized. The first step had to be departure from a one-crop economy, which had periodically plunged the region into severe crises. Crop diversification had begun with a transition to corn, soybeans and fruit, and was now being carried forward with the development of dairy and livestock farming.

In South Carolina, cotton planting had been cut in half to about one million acres, whereas pastureland had been increased by about three times, to 750,000 acres, between 1948 and 1951. Tupelo, Miss., illustrated the rise of the New South, wherein the young editor of the Tupelo Journal had convinced the citizenry to create a Community Development Foundation and call in a county agent from the Mississippi Agricultural Institute, under whose guidance, the farmers had begun to shift from cotton planting to livestock and chicken farming. The Foundation had convinced five or six companies to construct small factories in Tupelo, advantaged by the cheap electric power afforded by TVA.

He indicates that the rise of the New South was characterized by a third phenomenon, the mechanization of agriculture. A single tractor replaced 3 to 5 men and a single cotton picker did the work of 30 men. On a cotton plantation in Montgomery County, Alabama, five black workers operating a tractor plow equipped with flamethrowers to kill the weeds, and with harvesters, were able to cultivate 2,000 acres. The tenant farmers who had cultivated the land had departed, their huts removed and burned. The five black workers lived in stone houses with running water and electricity, and their wives looked after the households while their children went to school nine months of the year.

With the elimination of this old plantation economy, dependent on the white sharecroppers and the blacks, there was taking place a transformation which would resolve itself in making the South more similar to the North economically and socially. When General Robert E. Lee had surrendered at Appomattox in 1865, the economic depression brought on by the Civil War remained, made deeper by Reconstruction and the vengeful aspects of it. The people of Georgia still lamented that they had no Marshall Plan by which to rebuild after the war, and maintained, in vivid rotogravure, the bitter memory of Sherman's ruinous march to Atlanta.

Of the 15 million blacks in the country, 10 million lived in the South, according to the 1950 census, the same number as in 1940, when the country had a total of 13 million blacks. Most Southern states showed either a relative or absolute decrease in the black population. The Democrat-Times of Greenville, Miss., had said, "The Negro problem moves north." That migration from the South had two effects, that, in direct proportion to the amount of migration northward, the resolution of the South's racial problem would become less urgent, and, commensurately, pressure would be placed on Northern politicians to improve the lot of blacks, especially in the South. He suggests that it was doubtful that the FEPC was a solution to the problem, which had "its roots in depths difficult to reach by legislation." Courts had contributed to a reduction of segregation and so had unquestionably encouraged blacks and their organizations to seek redress therein, as well to rely on the vote for the purpose.

Drew Pearson's staff, while Mr. Pearson was on vacation, remark on the conference earlier in the week between Governor Stevenson and the President, indicating that those who were present stated that the President's attitude toward the Governor was that "of a father toward a slow-moving son itching to get the boy out into battle". The President had been gracious and retiring, telling the Governor that he awaited his command, despite the fact that his feelings had been somewhat hurt by the fact that the Governor believed the campaign had to be kept separate from the Administration. A political rally in New York, for instance, to take place in the last two days of the campaign had been discussed, at which the Governor and vice-presidential nominee Senator John Sparkman would speak, along with the President and Vice-President Alben Barkley. The question had arisen as to whether it would align the Governor too closely with the President, and the decision on whether that speech would occur was still in abeyance.

About the only political question decided at the meeting was that the President would make his Labor Day speech in Milwaukee in the evening while the Governor would make his Labor Day speech in Detroit during the morning, so that each could have opportunities for reporting on the speeches in the afternoon and morning newspapers.

It had been decided, at least for the time being, that the President would not undertake a full whistle-stop tour, as in 1948. He would, however, make speeches in some of the big Eastern cities, probably in New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, while another trip to dedicate Hungry Horse Dam in Montana was also contemplated. Those trips would be by air, and after the trip to Montana, the President would probably tour parts of Oregon and Washington.

Governor Stevenson would first go to the Far West, between September 2 and 14, flying first to Albuquerque, Phoenix, and then Los Angeles, then by train up the California coast, with rear-platform appearances along the way to San Francisco. He would then fly to Portland, Seattle, Butte, Montana, and then either to Boise or Pocatello, Idaho, with a stop at Casper or Cheyenne, Wyoming, another at Omaha, one in Iowa, and then back home to Springfield.

A second trip would follow around the middle of September, with stops in St. Louis, Oklahoma City, Dallas and Houston, then to New Orleans or Miami, then probably to Atlanta, Raleigh, near which some of the Governor's relatives, including his sister, lived, then to Norfolk, then back home via Louisville, Kentucky, and Evansville, Indiana.

A third trip would be through the industrial East, beginning in early October, by train, with stops in Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, then through New Jersey to Connecticut and Massachusetts. At Boston, the Governor would leave the train and fly to Buffalo for a speech, then return home via Detroit and either Milwaukee or St. Paul.

A fourth trip might be a return to the West, contingent on the political situation in California and whether time would permit the trip, with the Governor flying to either Los Angeles or San Diego, with stops along the return route in Salt Lake City and Denver.

A fifth trip might also occur, time permitting, through the industrial Midwest of Indiana and Ohio to West Virginia.

We lay it all out in detail, should you decide to catch the Governor when he comes to your state or town. He will wear out a good pair of shoes in the process, so you might wish to go out and take a listen and encourage him to save our future, not so much from the Republican presidential aspirant but rather from the Republican veep nominee.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop tell of the meeting between Governor Stevenson and the President having undone Republican hopes and predictions that there might be a feud brewing between the two which could undermine the Governor's candidacy. Shortly after the convention, the Governor had made it clear to the President that he did not wish the President to engage in a full campaign, as the President desired to do, which might overshadow the Governor's independence and candidacy. The other stipulation that the Governor made was that he wanted to replace DNC chairman Frank McKinney with his own man, Stephen Mitchell. The President had wanted to retain Mr. McKinney.

Eventually, within a short time, the President and his advisers decided to accept the Governor's terms and respect him as an independent candidate from the White House. Thus, the meeting during the week in Washington between the two had been, according to intimates, "not cozy but comfortable". In any event, the hopes of the Republicans for trouble between the two had been dashed.

The next brewing problem, however, was the tendency on the part of Governor Stevenson to compromise on civil rights, labor and the tidelands oil issue, something which the President did not think right or politically wise. Averell Harriman had done his best to smooth over the earlier difficulty between the two, but he disapproved of any form of compromise on the issues. During the talks earlier in the week, the great policy questions were omitted and it was possible that the President and the nominee would begin to make conflicting statements on the campaign trail. The word had come from Springfield, however, that the risk of that trouble was also diminishing and that the Governor would begin to take a more forceful stand on the issues, in a manner which the President would approve.

The Alsops conclude that a powerful Democratic bid for victory appeared to be shaping up.

Marquis Childs suggests that there were comic overtones in the fact that both General Eisenhower and Governor Stevenson wanted to keep their distance from the President, despite both having taken part in shaping the course of the Administration's foreign policy, the General in his principal role as supreme commander of NATO, and the Governor in a lesser role, having prepared the way for participation in the U.N. in 1944-45.

The General had to remain aloof from the Administration on both foreign and domestic policies to avoid the recurring charge of "me-tooism", a charge besetting Governor Dewey in both 1944 and 1948. It explained the reaction to the invitation by the President to participate in a foreign policy briefing, similar to that provided to Governor Stevenson, which the General had declined.

The advisers to the President, however, believed that he was doing the right thing by offering to brief both candidates on foreign policy, to avoid irresponsible statements on the campaign trail, based on lack of information, which could make it difficult to implement policies later.

Mr. Childs points out that the briefing of Governor Stevenson was in fact of a routine nature, with Joint Chiefs chairman General Omar Bradley and General Walter Bedell Smith, director of the CIA, both in attendance, but the briefings actually provided by members of their staffs, who routinely provided such briefings, using maps and statistics to show the relative strength of the Communists and the free nations. The essence of the report had been consistent with that of General Matthew Ridgway, in his first press conference after becoming NATO supreme commander. In essence, he had said that the danger of a Communist attack had not decreased and would remain acute during the coming fall until winter weather made the roads impassable. That would not have been news to General Eisenhower, who had given up his NATO command only two months earlier, with nothing having changed much in the meantime.

General Eisenhower, with his knowledge of the NATO buildup, its strengths and weaknesses, was in a unique position to discuss it with complete candor. He had accepted the NATO command reluctantly at the urging of the President after the NATO policy had been determined, and, as supreme commander, he had put all of his energy and ability into making it work. Thus, Mr. Childs concludes, no one had a better right to speak on the matter.

Framed Edition
[Return to Links
Page by Subject] [Return to Links-Page by Date] [Return to News<i><i><i>—</i></i></i>Framed Edition]
Links-Date Links-Subj.