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Harry S. Truman Papers Staff Member and Office Files: Philleo Nash Files

Dates: 1939-1953

Special Assistant to the Director for White House Liaison, Office of War Information, 1942-1946; Special Assistant to the President, 1946-1952; Administrative Assistant to the President, 1952-1953

The files of Philleo Nash document some aspects of his service as Special Assistant to the President and as Administrative Assistant to the President from 1946 to 1953. The collection consists of documents pertaining to fair employment practices, conscientious objectors, Indians, African-Americans, civil rights, and desegregation of the armed forces.

[Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List]

ADMINISTRATIVE INFORMATION

Size: 14.4 linear feet (about 28,800 pages).
Access: Open
Copyright: Harry S. Truman donated his copyright interest in writings in these files to the United States government. Documents created by U.S. Government officials in the course of their official duties are likewise in the public domain. Copyright interest in any other writings in these files is assumed to remain with the authors of the documents, or their heirs. Processed by: James R. Fuchs (1956); Anita Holland, Jan Davis, Sharie Simon and David Clark (2003).


[ Top of the page | Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List ]

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

1909 (October 25)

 

Born, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin

1932

 

B.S., University of Wisconsin

1935 (November 2)

 

Married Edith Rosenfels

1937

 

Ph.D., University of Chicago

1937-1941

 

Lecturer, University of Toronto

1941-1942

 

Special Lecturer, University of Wisconsin

1941-1942

 

Manager, Biron Cranberry Company

1942-1946

 

Special Assistant to Director, White House Liaison, Office of War Information

1943

 

Special Consultant to the Secretary of War

1946-1952

 

Special Assistant to President Truman

1946-1977

 

President, Biron Cranberry Company

1952-1953

 

Administrative Assistant to President Truman

1959-1961

 

Lt. Governor, State of Wisconsin

1961

 

Assistant to Secretary, Public Land Management, Department of the Interior

1961-1966

 

Commissioner, Bureau of Indian Affairs

1966-1987

 

Consulting Anthropologist

1971-1973

 

Professor, American University

1987 (October 12)

 

Died, Marshfield, Wisconsin

[ Top of the page | Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List ]

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

The Philleo Nash Files, part of the Staff Member and Office Files of the Harry S. Truman Papers, document some of his service as Special Assistant and Administrative Assistant to President Harry S. Truman. Nash left the material in these files at the conclusion of his government service and when the administration ended in 1953, his files were shipped to Kansas City as part of Mr. Truman's presidential papers, which Truman subsequently donated to the United States government. The collection consists of seven series: General Correspondence File, Committee on Government Contract Compliance File, Conscientious Objectors File, Fair Employment Practices Committee File, Indian File, President's Committee on Civil Rights File, and the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services File.

The General Correspondence File, which is the largest part of the collection, consists of correspondence, handwritten notes, legal documents, memorandums, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed material, reports, speeches, executive orders, legislative bills and Congressional hearings. These documents pertain to topics such as churches, civil rights, civil liberties, human rights, Alaskan statehood, Alaska Indian land claims, veterans, the armed forces, segregation, discrimination, riots, immigration, naturalization, displaced persons, campaigns, health care, and housing. This series also contains records related to the District of Columbia, Guam, Haiti, Hungary, Israel, Palestine, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Other subjects documented in this series include the Committee on Government Contract Compliance, Fair Employment Board, the Democratic National Committee, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Booker T. Washington Birthplace Memorial, the Point IV Program and the United Nations. Correspondents include Joseph F. Albright, William Batt, Earl Beck, Thurgood Marshall, Gordon Dean, Dillon Myer, and Hubert Humphrey.

Notable records within the General Correspondence File include an Attorney General's list of totalitarian, fascist, communist and subversive organizations; a 1950 list of Negroes appointed to policy making positions; A Study of "Witch Hunting" and Hysteria in the United States; a letter of regret from Puerto Rican citizens about the assassination attempt on President Truman; a 1939 Community Survey of Social and Health Work in Kansas City, Missouri Summary Report; and a Report on Korea: The Shameful Story of the Courts Martial of Negro GIs by Thurgood Marshall.

The Committee on Government Contract Compliance File consists of correspondence, memorandums, newspaper clippings, reports, speeches, legislation, executive orders, and telegrams pertaining to fair employment practices, nondiscrimination in employment, equal economic opportunities, and employment training. Correspondents include Hubert Humphrey, Walter White and Anna Rosenberg.

The Conscientious Objectors File consists of correspondence, handwritten notes, memorandums, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, legislative bills, and executive orders pertaining to those individuals that objected to participating in World War II. The documents relate to the President's Amnesty Board, the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Service Board for Religious Objectors, the Selective Service Board and the Committee for Amnesty for All Objectors to War and Conscription and their efforts regarding those individuals who were opposed to and convicted of violating the Selective Service Act. The records include information about amnesty efforts, public service camps for convicted persons, parole plans, history of legislation pertaining to conscientious objectors, and Jehovah's Witnesses. Notable items in this series include a 1944 study authorized by President Franklin D. Roosevelt titled Suggestions Concerning the Treatment of Conscientious Objectors and the Report of the President's Amnesty Board which lists conscientious objectors convicted of violating the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940.

The Fair Employment Practices Committee File contains correspondence, telegrams, memorandums, press releases, printed materials, progress reports, final reports, speeches, legislative bills, executive orders and Congressional hearings pertaining to employment discrimination, unemployment, wage rates, employment opportunities, and the National Council for a Permanent Fair Employment Practices Committee.

The Indian File includes correspondence, telegrams, handwritten notes, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, press releases printed materials, reports, and Congressional bills pertaining to Native Americans and related subjects such as self-government, discrimination, attorney contracts, health, education, social security, tribal funds, assimilation, tribal elections, federal appropriations, lands, voting, Alaskan statehood and taxation. Correspondents include the Association of American Indian Affairs, the National Congress of American Indians and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The President's Committee on Civil Rights File consists of agendas, telegrams, correspondence, handwritten notes, memorandums, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, transcripts of hearings, executive orders, and proceedings and transcripts of the meetings of the Committee on Civil Rights. The documents pertain to subjects such as civil rights, lynching, education, discrimination, employment, housing, health, poll taxes, interstate transportation, Jim Crow laws, equality, self-government in the District of Columbia, statehood for Alaska and Hawaii, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Among the minority groups specifically mentioned in this series are Japanese-Americans, Mexican-Americans, American Indians, Puerto Ricans, and African-Americans. A notable record in this series is the report titled To Secure These Rights; The Report of the President's Committee on Civil Rights from 1947 [This report is available online].

The President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services File contains telegrams, correspondence, handwritten notes, memorandums, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, executive orders, and Congressional bills. The documents relate to the military, education, housing, civil rights, health, equality, racial quotas, enlistment, the McCarran Bill, racial discrimination, the Navajo-Hopi Rehabilitation Bill, integration in the military, Puerto Rico's Constitution, and Samoan civil government. A large part of this series consists of drafts and background information pertaining to the 1948 campaign speeches, civil rights speeches and the 1952 State of the Union address.

Related holdings at the Truman Library include the Philleo Nash Papers; the Philleo Nash oral history interview; the White House Central Files: Official File 3327 and President's Personal File 557; Record Group 220: Records of the President's Committee on Civil Rights; and Record Group 220: Records of the President's Committee on Equality of Treatment and Opportunity in the Armed Services.

[ Top of the page | Administrative Information | Biographical Sketch | Collection Description | Series Descriptions | Folder Title List ]

SERIES DESCRIPTIONS

Container Nos.

 

Series

1-18

  GENERAL CORRESPONDENCE FILE, 1946-1952
Correspondence, handwritten notes, legal documents, memorandums, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed material, reports, speeches, executive orders, legislative bills and Congressional hearings. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

19

  COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT CONTRACT COMPLIANCE FILE, 1950-1953
Correspondence, memorandums, newspaper clippings, reports, speeches, legislation, executive orders, and telegrams. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

20-21

  CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTORS FILE, 1939-1948
Correspondence, handwritten notes, memorandums, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, legislative bills, and executive orders. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

22-23

  FAIR EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES COMMITTEE FILE (INACTIVE), 1941-1948. (Bulk Dates, 1946-1948)
Correspondence, telegrams, memorandums, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, legislative bills, executive orders and Congressional hearings. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

24-25

  INDIAN FILE, 1946-1952
Correspondence, telegrams, handwritten notes, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, and Congressional bills. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

26-30

  PRESIDENT'S COMMITTEE ON CIVIL RIGHTS FILE, 1945-1948
Agendas, telegrams, correspondence, handwritten notes, memorandums, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, press releases, printed materials, reports, speeches, transcripts of hearings and executive orders. Arranged alphabetically by subject.

31-36

  PRESIDENT'S COMMITTEE ON EQUALITY OF TREATMENT AND OPPORTUNITY IN THE ARMED SERVICES FILE, 1948-1952
Telegrams, corr