1 page, 4to, integral blank, on White House stationery. Fine." />
15 November 2005
TRUMAN, Harry S. Typed letter signed ("Harry") as President, to David H. Morgan, White House, Washington , 9 March 1948. 1 page, 4to, integral blank, on White House stationery. Fine.
"GIVE 'EM HELL HARRY" ON THE "BALLYHOO" OF HIS UPHILL 1948 PRESIDENTIAL RACE: "THINGS ALWAYS GO UP AND DOWN IN A POLITICAL CAMPAIGN"
A delightfully pithy response to an old friend (a former partner in an unsuccessful oil leasing firm) who had expressed concerns about the dismal progress of Truman's Presidential campaign. Truman clears the air: "I appreciated your letter...very much....Don't worry about the political situation--things always go up and down in a political campaign. There never was a blacker one than in 1940 and 1944. All this ballyhoo is a pattern which will definitely outline the issues when we really get around to it." Then, in closing, Truman adds: "All my friends need to do is keep a stiff upper lip and keep an eye on the ball...."
Eight months before the 1948 election, Truman's chances of returning to the White House appeared slim indeed. His political base in the traditionally Democratic South was crippled by Dixiecrat Strom Thurmond's candidacy, and, on the left, Henry A. Wallace and the Progressives appeared certain to siphon off significant votes. Many of Truman's supporters expressed the view that the campaign was hopeless. But Truman himself remained unshaken and mounted an aggressive 30,000-mile whistle-stop campaign across the nation, delivering some 300 stump speeches to an electorate whose concerns and needs he knew intimately. But still, the polls predicted confidently that Dewey would be the victor. This letter vividly expresses the same unwavering resolution and calm self confidence that would carry Truman through to his very remarkable upset victory in November.
Contact Client Service
New York +1 212 636 2000
London +44 (0)20 7839 9060
Asia +852 2760 1766
Using lots from our upcoming Collector sales, the Italian writer and Vogue stylist designs a series of vignettes in London’s most spectacular conservatory
A 360-degree view of our upcoming auction, Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds Including Oriental Rugs and Carpets, featuring a Hijazi Qur’an folio and a rare Cairene prayer rug