A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover


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The Bureau of Labor Statistics U. The private sector, profit and non-profit, poured forth a flood of studies and statistics. Starch provides figures for the number of consumers who responded to advertisements of certain sizes, colors and positions on the page, as well as the number who responded to advertisements accompanied by coupons.

America's Worst President? Recovering the Truths and Exploding the Myths Surrounding Harding

Starch's survey enabled industry managers to gauge the commercial viability of products based on consumer inquiries about advertisements. Wilbur C. Plummer's career brings to light the intricate network of governmental, academic, and social science leaders involved in the outpouring of studies and statistics during the s. The relevance, the quantity, and improving precision of their work increased the prestige of the social science disciplines, generating more work for their practitioners in government..

This organization, founded by University of Chicago political scientist Charles E. Merriam, spurred efforts to collect and synthesize social science data in forms useful to the technocratic professionals filling the managerial ranks of business and government. Economist Wesley Mitchell, chairman of the President's Research Committee on Social Trends , and psychometrician and economist Beardsley Ruml collaborated with Merriam on furthering the SSRC goal: to enhance social sciences in the hope that technical expertise could contribute to the management of society.

Ruml was director of the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial Foundation, a Rockefeller family foundation that led the Carnegie Corporation, the Russell Sage Foundation, and other smaller philanthropies in subsidizing social science research. The Robert S.

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Investigations for the study began in The work was completed in February , the month before Coolidge's second term expired. Though published in , the study reflects back on the prosperous years of Calvin Coolidge's administration The Rockefeller Foundation supported the study's investigations, the Social Science Research Council contributed various services and personnel, and a number of federal departments and bureaus provided additional assistance. Among the organizations most heavily involved with the project were: the U.

Department of Commerce, the Bureau of the Budget U. Department of Agriculture; the U. Department of Labor; and the Women's Bureau U. Department of Labor. In the beginning, they failed to attract much attention because they appeared at the onset of the Great Depression. Nevertheless, they tell us much about the evolving social science disciplines. Most importantly, they show us a detailed view of the Coolidge era refracted through the developing theories and methodologies of that period. They are primary sources in their own right, to be counted among the age's richest self-portraits.

Those chapters with the greatest bearing on consumer issues are reproduced here. Data-gathering increasingly contributed to decision-making in the s.

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The relevance, quantity, and precision of the data did much to establish information gathering as a practice in government and industry and in particular to validate the role of social science research methods. The careers of Bruce Barton and Edward L. Bernays aptly illustrate the influence of advertising and public relations in the s.

Bruce Barton , son of a Congregational minister, founded an advertising agency with Roy S.

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Slavery to Tyranny: America’s First Airplane Terrorist Attack Happened on Warren Harding’s Watch

Barton created the Betty Crocker image for General Mills and was noted for his ability to bridge the tension between modern, corporate business consciousness and the traditional spiritual concerns of his youth. This helped make him an enormously popular writer for the mass-circulation magazines. This retelling of the life of Jesus Christ casts Jesus as the world's first business executive and super-salesman. The book perched at the top of the nation's nonfiction best-seller list for two years. Barton was invited by Cecil B.

A pamphlet by Barton highlights the beginnings of modern advertising's forays into politics during the twenties. In , Coolidge was still governor of Massachusetts. There was some thought of his running for president, though he ultimately was nominated as Harding's vice president. Edward L. Bernays is considered the father of the field of public relations. His papers, just recently opened, contain a wealth of information on the founding of the field in the twenties. Harding may not have been a great President, but he was a good man.

And as I read more, an oddly modern figure began to emerge. Here was a man of considerable gifts, all of them largely forgotten today.

A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover | Βιβλία Public

The claim that Harding imported an Ohio Gang of criminals is disingenuous. Other Ohio friends, like Howard Mannington, who later became enmeshed in scandal, cashed in on their access to Harding as lobbyists rather than as officeholders. When Harding learned of the influence peddling, bootlegging, and other nefarious activities of Jess Smith, the male companion and closest friend of his Attorney General, Harry Daugherty, he immediately removed Smith from his inner circle. Enjoying the confidence of both Hardings, Forbes was able to dupe the President for some months after the first reports that he was getting kickbacks from resold medical supplies and hospital building-site contracts.

But no evidence has ever turned up that he was more deeply involved in the scandals that darkened his administration or that he personally profited from any of them.

As I delved further into the Harding archives, I kept finding evidence of a more positive side to his administration. For instance, he is rarely credited for his best appointments, like that of Charles Evans Hughes as Secretary of State, or for convening the Washington Naval Conference on the limitation of armaments, the first global peace summit. Nor is he remembered for creating the Bureau of the Budget, headed by Charles Dawes, which first gave the federal government an operational budget.

Davis certainly counterbalance those of Fall and Daugherty.

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Some historians, most notably Robert K. Kornfeld as minister to Persia and Father Joseph M. Dennig as agent and consul general at Tangier. We cannot go on, as we have gone on for more than half a century, with one great section of our population. Let the black man vote when he is fit to vote, prohibit the white man [from] voting when he is unfit to vote. Weeks after his inauguration, with the support of the NAACP, Harding proposed an anti-lynching bill and an interracial commission to recommend ways to improve race relations.

This alarmed Southern white Republicans who were trying to purge their party of any black influence so they could wrest the South from the Democrats. Nevertheless, Harding persisted. I came across two fascinating speeches he made just before his death. No President until FDR welcomed women more strongly into politics—or more firmly defended their interests.

Early in his administration he tried to abolish the twelve-hour workday and the six-day workweek, putting persistent pressure on the steel industry. Throughout his career he promoted businesses growing up around radio, civil aviation, the movies, and the automobile.

The Coolidge | A Scholarship for America

He and his wife were the first White House residents to install a radio, and he felt strongly that the quickly proliferating stations needed federal regulation. He introduced a radio bill just months before his death; five years later it gave rise to the Federal Radio Commission.

The Federal Highway Act he pushed through Congress provided a generous seventy-five-million-dollar appropriation for a national highway system. In the sum grew to eighty-eight million. Outside of the automobile, the movies most fascinated Harding. Florence Harding was behind the first use of movie stars in a presidential campaign, the first invitations of movie actors and executives to the White House and the first showing of films there Harding began a White House movie library.

It possesses potentialities of vast service, civic, educational moral. To present on the screen the industrial, commercial, and intellectual activities of the country can not but widen the vision of the great audience that you daily serve. As I sifted through his papers, I saw how seriously Harding took the educational possibilities of film.

Indeed, he was first to articulate an issue that continues to compel us today.


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I do not want to be understood as assuming that education can or ought to be made a mere pleasure, a titillation of the fancy, by making it too easy. I would not by any means turn the school room into a moving picture theater. Despite later claims that Harding read only Zane Grey novels and the funny pages, he was extremely well read, counting Dickens, Carlyle, Pope, and Shakespeare among his favorite writers.

He was also devoted to early American and European history and thought the movies could help plant similar interests in other Americans. I should think that if it were done in a series of reels, and if these, gradually unfolding the story, were interspersed with studies and lectures on the history of the period, it would constitute an ideal method.

The European of the latter middle ages, of the period just before and at the beginning of the Renaissance, would be wonderfully portrayed in a similar series of pictures dramatizing The Cloister and the Hearth.

A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover
A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover
A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover
A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover
A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover A Companion to Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover

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