Justice William O. Douglas's Personal Scrapbook of his 1948 Presidential Nomination Campaign

Justice William O. Douglas's Personal Scrapbook of his 1948 Presidential Nomination Campaign

William O. Douglas

Douglas's Personally Selected Archive (1947-1948)


[The personal political scrapbook of Supreme Court Justice, William O. Douglas's abortive attempt to gain the 1948 Democratic nomination for President.]  Large scrap book (42 x 35 cm) in solander navy cloth case (45 x 37 cm).  The case and book were created by Brewer-Cantelmo.  Manuscript spine title on case, gold lettered title on book. Includes 16 pages of mounted ephemera. Contents in excellent condition. 

Full list of contents:  [1] Four Newspaper articles: News clippings on Douglas's attempt for the Democratic nomination in 1948; [2] Four Newspaper articles and Three Campaign Buttons: News clippings on Douglas's attempt for the Democratic nomination in 1948.; [3] Five Newspaper articles: News clippings on Douglas's attempt for the Democratic nomination in 1948; [4] Large Campaign Poster: 55 x 37.7 cm.; [5] CBS Radio Transcript on William O. Douglas: Newsmakers, June 13, 1948.  6 pages; [6] Large Political Broadside profile of Douglas: "Dynamic Democracy: A Liberal Offers A Way to Beat Reds."  66 x 45 cm.; [7] Two political pamphlets: 1. "Civil Liberties, The Direct and Daring Course," Dec. 30, 1947; [2] "Citizen! Jurist! Statesman! Support Supreme Court Justice Douglas for Democratic Party Candidate."; [8] Political pamphlet: "William O. Douglas: The Man, His life, His Views," 23 p.; [9] Two Pieces of Political Ephemera: 1. "I'm a Douglas Fan!!" A fan with a picture of Douglas; 2. "William O. Douglas For President : Democrats for Douglas" placard/sticker; 7.62 x 13.335 cm.; [10] Political Broadside/Poster: "A wide open convention can turn this into a wide-open campaign by nominating William O. Douglas"; [11] Political Broadside/Poster: "Win with Douglas"; [12] Printed Talking points: "William O. Douglas for President" 5 pages.; [13] Campaign Letterhead: "Douglas for President Clubs"; [14] Campaign Letterhead: "Students for Douglas"; [15] Campaign Literature: "The Fourteen Points for Democratic Victory," 4 pages.; [16] Political Poster: "America Needs a Winner," 56 x 36 cm. 

The man who would have been president.  William O. Douglas (1898-1980) was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939 and served for over 36 years on the court.  He is notable for the longest Supreme Court tenure, the most number of opinions written, and being one of the most liberal justices on the court.  His life's ambition was to become the President of the United States.  After being passed over for Truman for Vice President in 1944, Douglas set his sights on the 1948 convention.  Truman appeared weak, with many Southern Democrats supporting Dixiecrat candidate, Strom Thurmond or Sen. Richard Russell, and many liberals supporting Henry Wallace.  Truman offered the Vice President position to Douglas, who rejected it.  Douglas assumed he might succeed Truman.  After realizing his miscalculation in 1948, he offered to leave the court to join Truman for the 1952 campaign.  However, Truman's decision not to run again, and the arrival of Dwight D. Eisenhower, ended Douglas's presidential aspirations.  Bruce Murphy writes in his 2003 biography of Douglas, "Wild Bill," that after being appointed to the Supreme Court became bored with the staid court and he spent a great deal of time angling to leave the court for a political position that would give him a shot at the presidency.  "Douglas's legal opinions during this period, though reliably liberal, were often highly deferential to the government."  - Ryerson, James. "Dirty Rotten Hero." The New York Times, 13 Apr. 2003.  His pro-government decisions include the 1944 Korematsu ruling permitting the internment of Japanese-Americans during the Second World War, and his 1946 opinion in Zap v. United States where he ruled that governmental contractors waive their Fourth and Fifth Amendment Rights when engaged in government work.  The end of Douglas's political ambitions brought forward an era of more civil libertarian and environmental conservationist court decisions.  This unique archive represents the failure of Douglas's personal ambition to move to a higher position than the Supreme Court.

  • Product Code: 2106070104
  • Availability: In Stock
  • $8,000.00
  • Ex Tax: $8,000.00

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Tags: American History, Featured