Ohio History Journal

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1. Willard Shelton, "Portrait of a Conservative," New Republic, April 4, 1949, p. 19.

2. William V. Shannon, "The Politics of Stalemate," Commentary, XXVIII (1959),


3. The Commonweal, LVIII (1953), 458.

4. Eric Goldman, The Crucial Decade and After: America 1945-1960 (New York,

1960), 53-56. Walter Johnson's interpretation of Taft, in his perceptive 1600 Pennsyl-

vania Avenue: Presidents and the People, 1929-1959 (Boston, 1963), p. 227, coincides

with that of the author. Johnson says that Taft's forthright statements on controver-

sial issues made him appear far more conservative than he actually was. Johnson says:

"His following included those old-stock Americans who had not taken well to the new

power of the unions and the minorities in the big cities. Although he was not as dog-

matically conservative as most of his supporters pictured him, nor to the degree the

Democrats and his Republican opponents, including Governor Dewey, encouraged the

public to believe, his forthright exposition of his views made him appear so." Taft's

biographer, William S. White, in The Taft Story (New York, 1954), devotes a chapter

(pp. 41-52), to Taft's "liberal" activities.

5. Most current texts used in courses in American colleges and universities under-

standably treat Taft in a cursory manner and attempt to synthesize his views on all

domestic and foreign matters into one or two sentences. Only two texts discuss Taft's

housing activities: Arthur Link, American Epoch (New York, 1959), 636, and David

A. Shannon, Twentieth Century America (Chicago, 1963), 517. Two other texts do not

give specific examples but do say that Taft cannot simply be understood by the term

"conservative." They are: Perkins and Van Deusen, The United States of America:

A History (New York, 1962), II, 721, and Patrick, Owsley, Chitwood, and Nixon, The

American People: A History Since 1865 (Princeton, N. J., 1962), II, 573. The text by

Blum, Catton, Morgan, Schlesinger, Stampp, and Woodward, The National Experience

(Boston, 1963), equates Taft with Senator Barry Goldwater's views (p. 806), and

Hofstadter, Miller, and Aaron, The Structure of American History (Englewood Cliffs,

N. J., 1964), p. 371, calls Taft "ultra conservative." George H. Knowles in his The

New United States: A History Since 1896 (New York, 1959), p. 552, refers to Taft

as "a staunchly conservative Senator from Ohio." Most texts, however, simply identify

Taft's position by describing his major political supporters and their views. They

simply assert that Taft derived his major support from traditionalists who clung to a

laissez faire and isolationist position. One popular text, for example, refers to Taft

as "the favorite candidate of the conservative, nationalistic, and Asia-minded element

in the Republican Party." Hicks, Mowry, and Burke, The American Nation (Boston,

1963), 751. Other important texts which make this associational identification are:

Morison and Commager, The Growth of the American Republic (New York, 1962);

Current, Williams, and Freidel, American History: A Survey (New York, 1961); and

Carman, Syrett, and Wishy, A History of the American People (New York, 1961).

6. Elmo Roper, You and Your Leaders: Their Actions and Your Reactions, 1936-1956

(New York, 1957), 190-191.

7. U. S. Senate, 79 cong., 1 sess., Special Committee on Post-War Economic Policy

and Planning, Hearings Before the Subcommittee on Housing and Urban Redevelop-

ment (Washington, 1945), 1606-1608.

8. Paul F. Wendt, Housing Policy: The Search for Solutions (Berkeley, Calif., 1963),


9. William E. Leuchtenburg, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, 1932-1940

(New York, 1963), 134-136.

10. New York Times, March 19, 1947.

11. Toward Unity in Post-War Housing (Washington, 1945), 11-14.

12. Congressional Record, 79 cong., 1 sess., 10652-10653.

13. Ibid., 81 cong., 1 sess., 4843.

14. Ibid., 79 cong., 1 sess., 10652-10653.

15. Ibid., 77 cong., 2 sess., 1596.

16. Richard O. Davies, "The Truman Housing Program" (unpublished Ph.D. disser-

tation, University of Missouri, 1963), 16-27.

17. Congressional Record, 79 cong., 1 sess., 8248.

18. The creation of the subcommittee resulted directly from congressional action

which killed the National Resources Planning Board, a liberal-oriented advisory body.

The 1943 NRPB Report called for extensive study of post-war housing. The anti-

Roosevelt coalition decided to strip the president of this advisory body to help prevent