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    Description

    Harry S. Truman Proclamation Signed "Harry S Truman" as president. One page, 14.75" x 21.75". Washington, D.C., May 8, 1945. A multicolored lithograph of President Truman's proclamation of May 13, 1945, as a day of prayer following the end of the war in Europe. In full:

    "The Allied armies, through sacrifice and devotion and with God's help, have wrung from Germany a final and unconditional surrender. The western world has been freed of the evil forces which for five years and longer have imprisoned the bodies and broken the lives of millions upon millions of free-born men. They have violated their churches, destroyed their homes, corrupted their children, and murdered their loved ones. Our Armies of Liberation have restored freedom to these suffering peoples, whose spirit and will the oppressors could never enslave. Much remains to be done. The victory won in the West must now be won in the East. The whole world must be cleansed of the evil from which half the world has been freed. United, the peace-loving nations have demonstrated in the West that their arms are stronger by far than the might of dictators or the tyranny of military cliques that once called us soft and weak. The power of our peoples to defend themselves against all enemies will be proved in the Pacific was as it has been proved in Europe. For the triumph of spirit and of arms which we have won, and of its promise to peoples everywhere who join us in the love of freedom, it is fitting that we, as a nation, give thanks to Almighty God, Who has strengthened us and given us the victory. Now, therefore, I, Harry S. Truman, President of the United States of America, do hereby appoint Sunday, May 13, 1945 to be a day of prayer. I call upon the people of the United States, whatever their faith, to unite in offering joyful thanks to God for the victory we have won and to pray that He will support us to the end of our present struggle and guide us into the ways of peace. I also call upon my countrymen to dedicate this day of prayer to the memory of those who have given their lives to make possible our victory. In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed."

    President Truman read this proclamation at a news conference held in his office at the White House at 8:35 A.M. on Tuesday, May 8, 1945. His wife and daughter, members of his Cabinet, high ranking United States and British Army and Navy officials, and Congressional leaders were grouped in chairs around the President's desk. Before reading the proclamation, President Truman said, "This is a solemn but glorious hour. General Eisenhower informs me that the forces of Germany have surrendered to the United Nations. The flags of freedom fly all over Europe. It's celebrating my birthday, too -- today, too." Reporters responded with shouts of "Happy Birthday, Mr. President." As he was reading the proclamation, he stopped after certain passages to comment. After "...The victory won in the West must now be won in the East..." he said, "I want that emphasized time after time, that we are only half through." After "...the tyranny of military cliques that once called us soft and weak..." Truman commented, "I would like to know what the Germans think about that now." After proclaiming the day of prayer, he added, "And it's exceedingly fitting that it is Mother's Day, too."

    This lovely broadside belonged to Major Robert Cleveland Ellis (1892-1977) who worked in the post office of the White House during the years 1942 through 1945 during the third term of FDR's presidency and at the beginning of President Truman's first. The document was a gift to Ellis from Truman, who placed his signature directly under the proclamation. Major Ellis was a veteran of the Mexican Expedition to capture or kill Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa, the First World War, and the Second World War, though the extent of his service in the latter consisted of training troops in Georgia. Ellis died in 1977 is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

    Water staining at upper left corner with light to moderate toning at the edges. Small foxing spots are found near the bottom under the signature of Truman, which remains unaffected.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2012
    4th-5th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
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