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Choosing Truman

The Democratic Convention of 1944

Robert H. Ferrell

Publication Year: 2000

As Franklin D. Roosevelt's health deteriorated in the months leading up to the Democratic National Convention of 1944, Democratic leaders confronted a dire situation. Given the inevitability of the president's death during a fourth term, the choice of a running mate for FDR was of profound importance. The Democrats needed a man they could trust. They needed Harry S. Truman.

Robert Ferrell tells an engrossing tale of ruthless ambition, secret meetings, and party politics. Roosevelt emerges as a manipulative leader whose desire to retain power led to a blatant disregard for the loyalty of his subordinates and the aspirations of his vice presidential hopefuls. Startling in its conclusions, impeccable in its research, Choosing Truman is an engrossing, behind-the-scenes look at the making of the nation's thirty-third president.

Published by: University of Missouri Press

Cover

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p. 1-1

Frontmatter

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pp. 2-7

Contents

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pp. 8-9

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Preface

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pp. ix-x

In the way that history sometimes moves with inevitability, a dire progression of political events became dimly visible in the summer of 1944, when President Franklin D. Roosevelt decided to run again for ...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xiii

The almost unbelievable story of how Roosevelt came to choose Truman, a man whom he admitted he hardly knew, is scattered through the presidential libraries and several collections of personal papers, not to mention the testimonies of varying quality in many ...

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1. Days Of Uncertainty

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pp. 1-34

The nomination of Senator Harry S. Truman of Missouri for the vice-presidency in the summer of 1944 was tantamount to election as successor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was a devious, furtive, roundabout business: at the outset, nothing was clear,...

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2. Decision

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pp. 35-62

Byrnes was so insistent, so pushing, that the first thing the president had to do was get him out of the race. As matters turned out, the next essential was to convince Truman to get into ...

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3. Roosevelt and Truman!

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pp. 63-88

The final drama in the choice of Harry S. Truman took place in the Chicago Stadium, as it was called. It was a big barn of a hall near the center of the city that could seat twenty-four thousand ....

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4. "I Shall Continue…"

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pp. 89-95

After Truman won, the reporter Alistair Cooke, standing below the auditorium at a lunch counter, suddenly heard the voice of the convention chairman say, "Will the next Vice President of the United States come to the rostrum?" He was standing next to a man ...

Notes

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pp. 97-125

Bibliography

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pp. 127-132

Index

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pp. 133-137

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About the Author

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pp. 138-156

Robert H. Ferrell, a leading scholar of the American presidency, ...


E-ISBN-13: 9780826272980
E-ISBN-10: 0826272983
Print-ISBN-13: 9780826213082
Print-ISBN-10: 0826213081

Page Count: 155
Publication Year: 2000

Series Title: GIVE 'EM HELL HARRY
Series Editor Byline: John Smith, Will Wordsworth