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    President Truman pens this letter on his last full day as president

    Harry S. Truman Autograph Letter Signed "Harry S Truman" on his last full day as president. One page, 5" x 8", Washington, January 19, 1953, on White House stationery to Robert V. Fleming president and chairman of the Riggs National Bank Board of Trustees. In this letter, Truman takes his wife's name off his checking account with the Riggs National Bank, but gives her power of attorney to sign checks. In full: "Dear Mr. Fleming, I want to change our joint account to my name and give Mrs. Truman power of attorney to sign checks. It is a legal procedure that has become necessary now. Sincerely yours." The president adds, "Please give Miss Conway the necessary papers & cards." Photographs of Fleming and Conway are included.

    Aside from being president and chairman of the bank's board, Robert V. Fleming (1890-1967) was also a member of the 1950 National Capital Sesquicentennial Commission. Rose A. Conway (ca. 1900-1980) was Harry Truman's personal and confidential secretary from 1945 until his death in 1972. She then worked at the Truman Library until 1975. Truman once said of her, "No man ever had a more loyal secretary."

    The Act of Congress signed by President Washington on April 2, 1792, specified that the term of the President and Vice President shall "commence on the fourth day of March." Legally, even though presidential inaugurations were held during the daytime, the term began as the clock struck 12 earlier that morning. The Twentieth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, effective with the 1937 inauguration, established that "the terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January."

    According to the Truman Library, on January 19, 1953, the president wrote two letters, one to President-Elect Eisenhower at Washington's Statler Hotel, enclosing the report of the President's Committee on Government Contract Compliance, "Equal Economic Opportunity," and the other to James A. Campbell, President of the American Federation of Government Employees, on the "70th Anniversary of the Merit System." He also wrote a Special Message to the Congress on the Nation's Land and Water Resources. Rarely does a handwritten letter of Truman appear on the market. An ALS on White House stationery is exceedingly rare.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2010
    14th-15th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
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