PRESIDENT HARRY S. TRUMAN HAS BREAKFAST WITH HIS WWI COMMRADES ON THE MORNING OF HIS 2ND INAUGURATION, JANUARY 20, 1949
Harry S. Truman (1884-1972) Signed Second Inauguration Day "President's Breakfast" Menu, "Harry S. Truman",1 page, 6 1/2x4 1/4 inches, edges gilt; the breakfast was held at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington and was organized by his World War I comrades from Battery D, 129th Field Artillery. Later that day, the men in Battery D marched in the inaugural parade. Truman was the 33rd president of the United States from 1945 to 1953, succeeding upon the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt after serving as vice president. On this date his WWI comrades celebrate his 2nd Inauguration.
WWI: In mid-1918, about one million soldiers of the American Expeditionary Forces were in France. Truman was promoted to captain and became commander of Battery D, 129th Field Artillery, 35th Division, and saw action during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. In an event memorialized in battery lore as "The Battle of Who Run", his soldiers began to flee during a sudden night attack by the Germans in the Vosges Mountains; Truman succeeded at ordering his men to stay and fight, using profanity from his railroad days. The men were so surprised to hear Truman use such language that they immediately obeyed. In other action during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, Truman's battery provided support for George S. Patton's tank brigade, and fired some of the last shots of the war on November 11, 1918. Battery D did not lose any men while under Truman's command in France. The war was a transformative experience by which Truman manifested his leadership qualities and this breakfast was testament to the respect and loyalty of his military comrades. Truman volunteered for active military service during WWII, but was not accepted, partly because of age, and partly because President Franklin D. Roosevelt desired Senators and Congressman who belonged to the military reserves to support the war effort by remaining in Congress. In fine condition, with minor age toning.