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Regional Oral History Office 
The Bancroft Library 

University of California 
Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Project 

Frank E. Jorgensen 

Roy Day 

John Walton Dinkelspiel 

Earl Adams 
Roy P. Crocker 

The Organization of Richard Nixon's 
Congressional Campaigns, 1946-1952 

Campaigning with Richard Nixon, 

Recollections of Richard Nixon's 
1950 Senatorial Campaign in 
Northern California 

Financing Richard Nixon's Campaigns 
From 1946 to 1960 

Gathering Southern California 
Support for Richard Nixon in the 
1950 Senate Race 

Interviews Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 


Copy no. 
1980 by the Regents of the University of California 

This manuscript is made available for research 
purposes. No part of the manuscript may be quoted for 
publication without the written permission of the 
Director of The Bancroft Library of the University of 
California at Berkeley. 

Requests for permission to quote for publication 
should be addressed to the Regional Oral History 
Office, 486 Library, and should include identification 
of the specific passages to be quoted, anticipated use 
of the passages, and identification of the user. 


The Earl Warren Oral History Project, a special project of the Regional 
Oral History Office, was inaugurated in 1969 to produce tape-recorded interviews 
with persons prominent in the arenas of politics, governmental administration, 
and criminal Justice during the Warren Era in California. Focusing on the years 
1925-1953, the interviews were designed not only to document the life of Chief 
Justice Warren but to gain new information on the social and political changes 
of a state in the throes of a depression, then a war, then a postwar boom. 

An effort was made to document the most significant events and trends by 
interviews with key participants who spoke from diverse vantage points. Most 
were queried on the one or two topics in which they were primarily involved; a 
few interviewees with special continuity and breadth of experience were asked to 
discuss a multiplicity of subjects. While the cut-off date of the period studied 
was October 1953, Earl Warren's departure for the United States Supreme Court, 
there was no attempt to end an interview perfunctorily when the narrator's account 
had to go beyond that date in order to complete the ( topic. 

The interviews have stimulated the deposit of Warreniana in the form of 
papers from friends, aides, and the opposition; government documents; old movie 
newsreels ; video tapes ; and photographs. This Earl Warren collection is being 
added to The Bancroft Library's extensive holdings on twentieth century California 
politics and history. 

The project has been financed by four outright grants from the National 
Endowment for the Humanities , a one year grant from the California State Legis 
lature through the California Heritage Preservation Commission, and by gifts from 
local donors which were matched by the Endowment. Contributors include the former 
law clerks of Chief Justice Earl Warren, the Cortez Society, many long-time sup 
porters of "the Chief," and friends and colleagues of some of the major memoirists 
in the project. The Roscoe and Margaret Oakes Foundation and the San Francisco 
Foundation have Jointly sponsored the Northern California Negro Political History 
Series, a unit of the Earl Warren Project. 

Particular thanks are due the Friends of The Bancroft Library who were 
instrumental in raising local funds for matching, who served as custodian for all 
such funds, and who then supplemented from their own treasury all local contribu 
tions on a one-dollar-for-every-three dollars basis. 

The Regional Oral History Office was established to tape record autobiogra 
phical interviews with persons prominent in the history of California and the 
West. The Office is under the administrative supervision of James D. Hart, 
Director of The Bancroft Library. 

Amelia R. Fry, Director 

Earl Warren Oral History Project 

Willa K. Baum, Department Head 
Regional Oral History Office 

30 June 1976 

Regional Oral History Office 

^86 The Bancroft Library 

University of California at Berkeley 


Principal Investigators 

Ira M. Heyman 
Lawrence A. Harper 
Arthur H. Sherry 


Advisory Council 

Barbara Nachtrieb Armstrong * 

Walton E. Bean * 

Richard M. Buxbauir. 

William R. Dennes 

Joseph P. Harris 

Janes D. Hart 

John D. Hicks * 

William J. Hill 

Robert Kenny* 

Adrian A. Kragen 

Thoaas Kuchel 

Eugene C. Lee 

Mary Ellen Leary 

James R. Leiby 
Helen R. MacGregor * 
Dean E. McHenry 
Sheldon H. Mes singer 
Frank C. Newnan 
Allan Nevins * 
Warren Olney III 
Bruce Poyer 
Sho Sato 

Mortimer Schwartz 
Merrell F. Small 
John D. Weaver 

Project Interviewers 

Amelia R. Fry 
Joyce A. Henderson 
Rosemary Levenson 
Gabrielle Morris 
Miriam Feingold Stein 

Special Interviewers 

Orville Armstrong 
Villa K. Baum 
Male a Chall 
June Hogan 
George W. Johns 
Frank Jones 
Alice G. King 
Elizabeth Kerby 
James R. Leiby 
Dillon Myer 
Harriet Nathan 
Suzanne Riess 
Mortimer Schwartz 
Ruth Teiser 

Deceased during the tern of the project. 


(California, 1926-1953) 

Single Interview Volumes 

Amerson, A. Wayne, Northern California and Its Challenges to a Negro in the 
Mid-1900s, with an introduction by Henry Ziesenhenne. 1974, 103 p. 

Breed, Arthur, Jr., Alameda County and the California Legislature: 1935-2958. 
1977, 65 p. 

Carter, Oliver J., A Leader in the California Senate and the Democratic Party, 
2940-2950. 1979, 200 p. 

Carty, Edwin L. , Hunting, Politics, and the Fish and Game Commission. 1975, 104 p, 

Chatters, Ford, View from the Central Valley: The California Legislature, Water, 
Politics, and The State Personnel Board, with an introduction by Harold 
Schutt. 1976, 197 p. 

Dellums, C. L. , International President of the Brotherhood cf Sleeping Car 
Porters and Civil Rights Leader, with an introduction by Tarea Pittman. 
1973, 159 p. 

Faries, Mclntyre, California Republicans, 2934-2953. 1973, 155 p. 

Graves, Richard, Theoretician, Advocate, and Candidate in California State 
Government. 1973, 219 p. 

Huntington, Emily H. , A Career in Consumer Economics and Social Insurance, 
with an introduction by Charles A. Gulick. 1971, 111 p. 

Jahnsen, Oscar J., Enforcing the Law Against Gambling, Bootlegging, Graft, 
Fraud, and Subversion, 2922-2942. 1976, 212 p. 

Johnson, Gardiner. In process. 

MacGregor, Helen S., A Career in Public Service with Earl Warren, with an 
introduction by Earl Warren. 1973, 249 p. 

McGee, Richard Allen, Participant in the Evolution of American Corrections: 
29S2-297Z. 1976, 223 p. 

McLaughlin, Donald, Careers in Mining Geology and Management, University 

Governance and Teaching, with an introduction by Charles Meyer. 1975, 318 p. 

Volume II (Continued) 

Heinrichs, Beverly, Reminiscences of a Secretary in the District 

Attorney's Office. 
Severin, Clarence E. , Chief Clerk in the Alameda County District 

Attorney 's Office 

Spence, Homer R. , Attorney , Legislator, and Judge. 
Daly, E. A., Alameda County Political Leader and Journalist. 
Bruce, John, A Reporter Remembers Earl Warren. 

Volume III: 1974, 165 p. 

Coakley, J. Frank, A Career in the Alameda County District Attorney's 


Hederman, Albert E., Jr., From Office Boy to Assistant District Attorney. 
Jensen, Lowell, Reflections of the Alameda County District Attorney. 
Oakley, James H. , Early Life of a Warren Assistant. 


Ashe, Maryann, and Ruth Smith Henley, Earl Warren's Bakers field. 

Gavins, Omar, Coming of Age in Bakers field. 

Vaughan, Francis, Schooldays in Bakers field. 

Kreiser, Ralph, A Reporter Recollects the Warren Case. 

Manford, Martin and Ernest McMillan, On Methias Warren. 

Rodda, Richard, From the Capitol Press Room. 
Phillips, Herbert L. , Perspective of a Political Reporter. 
Jones, Walter P . , An Editor's Long Friendship with Earl Warren. 

Volume I: 1976, 324 p. 

Barnes, Stanley N. , Experiences in Grass Roots Organization. 
Cunningham, Thomas J., Southern California Campaign Chairman for 

Earl Warren, 1946. 

Draper, Murray, Warren's 1946 Campaign in Northern California. 
Mailliard, William S., Earl Warren in the Governor's Office. 
Mull, Archibald M. , Jr., Warren Fund-Raiser; Bar Association Leader. 
McNitt, Rollin Lee, A Democrat for Warren. 

Volume II: 1977, 341 p. 

Knowland, William F. , California Republican Politics in the 1930s. 
Feigenbaum, B. Joseph, Legislator, Partner of Jesse Steinhart, Aide to 

Earl Warren. 

Ladar, Samuel, Jesse Steinhart, Race Relations, and Earl Warren. 
Steinhart, John, Jesse and Amy Steinhart. 
Hansen, Victor, West Coast Defense During World War II; The California 

Gubernatorial Campaign of 19 SO. 
Mellon, Thomas J. , Republican Campaigns of 1950 and 1952. 

Volume III: 1978, 242 p. 

McCormac, Keith, The Conservative Republicans of 1952. 


Clifton, Florence, California Democrats, 1934-2950. 

Clifton, Robert, The Democratic Party, Culbert L. Olson, and the Legislature. 
Kent, Roger, A Democratic Leader Looks at the Warren Era. 
Outland, George, James Roosevelt's Primary Campaign, 2950. 
Post, Langdon, James Roosevelt's Northern California Campaign, 2950. 
Roosevelt, James, Campaigning for Governor Against Earl Warren, 2950. 

THE GOVERNOR'S FAMILY. 1980, 209 p. 

Warren, Earl, Jr., California Politics. 

Warren, James, Recollections of the Eldest Warren Son. 

Warren, Nina (Honeybear) [Mrs . Stuart Brien] , Growing Up in the Warren Family. 

Warren, Robert, Playing, Hunting, Talking. 

Brown, Edmund G. , Sr., The Governor's Lawyer. 
Kenney, Robert, Attorney General for California and the 2946 Gubernatorial 

Kuchel, Thomas H. , California State Controller. 

CALIFORNIA STATE FINANCE IN THE 1940s, with an introduction by Stanley Scott. 
1974, 406 p. 

Links, Fred, An Overview of the Department of Finance. 

Groff , Ellis, Some Details of Public Revenue and Expenditure in the 1940s. 

Killion, George, Observations on Culbert Olson, Earl Warren, and Money 
Matters in Public Affairs. 

Post, A. Alan, Watchdog on State Spending. 

Leake, Paul, Statement on the Board of Equalization. 


Albright, Horace, Earl Warren Job Hunting at the Legislature. 
Stone, Irving and Jean, Earl Warren's Friend and Biographer. 
Henderson, Betty Foot, Secretary to Two Warrens. 
Swig, Benjamin H. , Shared Social Concerns. 

EARL WARREN AND HEALTH INSURANCE: 294 3- 2949. 1971, 216 p. 

Lee, Russel VanArsdale, M.D., Pioneering in Prepaid Group Medicine. 
Salsman, Byrl R. , Shepherding Health Insurance Bills Through the California 


Claycombe, Gordon, The Making of a Legislative Committee Study. 
Cline, John W. , M.D., California Medical Association Crusade Against 

Compulsory State Health Insurance. 


Cavanaugh, Bartley, A Mutual Interest in Government, Politics, and Sports. 
Lynn, Wallace, Hunting and Baseball Companion. 


Masaoka. Two Volumes. 

Volume I: Decision and Exodus, 1976, 196 p. 
Rowe, James, The Japanese Evacuation Decision. 
Heckendorf, Percy C., Planning for the Japanese Evacuation: Reforming 

Regulatory Agency Procedures. 

Clark, Tom, Comments on the Japanese-American Relocation. 
Ennis, Edward, A Justice Department Attorney Comments on the Japanese- 
American Relocation. 

Wenig, Herbert, The California Attorney General's Office, the Judge 
Advocate General Corps, and Japanese- American Relocation. 

Volume II: The Internment. 1974, 267 p. 

Cozzens, Robert, Assistant National Director of the War Relocation Authority. 
Myer, Dillon S., War Relocation Authority: The Director's Account. 
Kingman, Ruth W. , The Fair Play Committee and Citizen Participation. 
Hibi, Hisako, painting of Tanforan and Topaz camps. 


Brownell, Herbert, Earl Warren's Appointment to the Supreme Court. 
Finkelstein, Louis, Earl Warren's Inquiry into Talmudic Law. 
Hagerty, James, Campaigns Revisited: Earl Warren, Thomas Dewey, and 

Duight Eisenhower. 

Oliver, William, Inside the Warren Court, 1952-1954. 
Richman, Martin F. , Law Clerk for Chief Justice Warren, 1956-1957. 
Stassen, Harold, Eisenhower, the 1952 Republican Convention, and Earl Warren. 


Bulcke, Germain, A Longshoreman's Observations. 
Chaudet, Joseph W. , A Printer's View. 
Heide, Paul, A Warehouseman's Reminiscences. 
Simonds, U. S . , A Carpenter's Comments. 
Vernon, Ernest H. , A Machinist's Recollection. 

LABOR LEADERS VIEW THE WARREN ERA, with an introduction by George W. Johns. 
1976, 126 p. 

Ash, Robert S., Alameda County Labor Council During the Warren Years. 

Haggerty, Cornelius J., Labor, Los Angeles, and the Legislature. 


Tallman, Frank F., M.D., Dynamics of Change in State Mental Institutions. 
Hume, Portia Bell, M.D., Mother of Community Mental Health Services. 


Jorgensen, Frank E. , The Organization of Richard Nixon's Congressional 

Campaigns, 1946-1952. 

Day, Roy 0. , Campaigning with Richard Nixon, 1946-1952. 
Dinkelspiel, John Walton, Recollections of Richard Nixon's 1950 Senatorial 

Campaign in Northern California. 

Adams, Earl, Financing Richard Nixon's Campaigns From 1946 to 1960. 
Crocker, Roy P., Gathering Southern California Support for Richard Nixon 

in the 1950 Senate Race. 



Gallagher, Marguerite, Administrative Procedures in Earl Warren's Of Hoe 

Scoggins, Verne, Observations on California Affairs by Governor Earl Warren's 

Press Secretary . 
Vasey, Beach, Governor Warren and the Legislature. 

E. S. Rogers. 1973, 409 p. 

Merrill, Malcolm H. , M.D., M.P.H., A Director Reminisces. 

Stead, Frank M. , Environmental Pollution Control. 

Ongerth, Henry, Recollections of the Bureau of Samitary Engineering. 

Zimmerman, Kent A., M.D., Mental Health Concepts. 

Arnstein, Lawrence, Public Health Advocates and Issues. 

1976, 276 p. 

Ramsay, Ernest G., Reminiscences of a Defendant in the Shipboard Murder Case. 

Grossman, Aubrey, A Defense Attorney Assesses the King, Ramsay, Conner Case. 

Harris, Myron, A Defense Attorney Reminisces. 

Resner, Herbert, The Recollections of the Attorney for Frank Conner. 

Johnson, Miriam Dinkin, The King-Ramsay-Conner Defense Committee: 1938-1941. 

Odeen, Peter, Captain of the Point Lobos. 


Drury, Newton, A Conservative Comments on Earl Warren and Harold lakes. 
Schottland, Charles I., State Director of Social Welfare, 1950-54. 


Hale, Mildred, Schools, the PTA, and the State Board of Education. 
Kerr, Clark, University of California Crises: Loyalty Oath and the Free 

Speech Movement. 
Kragen, Adrian, State and Industry Interests in Taxation, and Observations 

of Earl Warren. 

McConnell, Geraldine, Governor Warren, the Knoulands, and Columbia State Park. 
McWilliams, Carey, California's Olson-Warren Era: Migrants and Social Welfare. 
Siems, Edward H. , Recollections of Masonic Brother Earl Warren. 

EARL WARREN AND THE YOUTH AUTHORITY, with an introduction by Allen F. Breed. 
1972, 279 p. 

Holton, Karl, Development of Juvenile Correctional Practices. 

Scudder, Kenyon J., Beginnings of Therapeutic Correctional Facilities. 

Stark 1 , Heman G., Juvenile Correctional Services and the Corrmunity. 

Beam, Kenneth S., Clergyman and Community Coordinator. 

This series of memoirs is by design a modest effort to get a picture 
of Richard M. Nixon's campaigns during the time that the Republican party, 
led by Earl Varren, dominated the state of California. As a man whose 
political birth occurred in 1946, Nixon was a topic that deserved the status 
of a sub-series within the Earl Warren Oral History Project. 

Although none of the men interviewed about Nixon participated in the 
later drama called Watergate, it was necessary to postpone their interviews 
until the last segment of the Warren series. These Nixon campaign leaders 
recorded their interviews for this volume early in 1975, two-and-a-half 
years after the "plumbers" broke into the Democratic party headquarters, 
less than two years after Alexander Butterfield revealed the existence of 
the secret tapes in the Nixon Oval Office, and six months after the president 
resigned and abruptly flew to his estate in San Clemente. Neither they nor 
I were immune to the reverberations of Watergate. All the interviewees, 
with the exception of Mr. Dinkelspiel, mentioned receiving recent telephone 
calls from Nixon, a few miles away at San Clemente. Our recording sessions 
had a tension that kept pulling us clear of the territory around the subject 
of Watergate. However, Roy Day's natural exuberance bounced him over many 
sensitive potholes, and Frank Jorgensen candidly dismissed the Watergate 
affair in one blunt word, "stupid." 

J. Walton Dinkelspiel, a moderate Republican and friend of Earl Warren, 
was the first to interview, on January 31, 1975, in San Francisco. (Three 
months later he taped a second session.) On February 19th and 20th, Roy 0. 
Day, Earl Adams, and Roy Crocker, who might well call themselves "Nixon 
pioneers" because they helped launch his first campaign, taped their accounts 
in Southern California. A fourth pioneer, Frank E. Jorgensen, added his 
recollections in April in the Bay Area. Asa Call, fundraiser and kingmaker 
par excellence, added a brief few minutes of comment in the vigorous, salty 
style that was still characteristic of the powerful insurance executive even 
at age 82. Because of its brevity, the edited transcript of the tape with 
Mr. Call was deposited in The Bancroft Library after his death in 1978. 

There were eight political campaigns in which Nixon was a contender 
between 1946 and 1968, when he became president. In the first four. Earl Warren 
was also running his own campaigns, alternating gubernatorial with presidential 
races, the latter either as head of a delegation or (1948) as a vice-presidential 
candidate. As the years passed, Warren's immense popularity began eroding, 
inevitably for one who for so long had had so such bipartisan support under 
California's cross-filing system. Nixon likewise utilized the system to run 
on both Democratic and Republican primary tickets. 

This selection of interviewees ranges over all eight campaigns, but the 
emphasis is on Nixon's 1946 entry; all the narrators except Mr. Dinkelspiel 
were a part of it. Only Jorgensen remembers much about Nixon's re-election 
to Congress two years later, but his race against Helen Gahagan Douglas in 
1950 for the U.S. Senate is covered by three: Jorgensen, Day, and to some 
extent Crocker. Jorgensen and Day also make the 1952 convention and vice- 
presidential campaign the subject of retrospection, with Adams adding his 
assessment of the much-publicized Nixon Fund. 

There is some splash-over that sprinkles comments beyond the Warren era. 
Jorgensen has some comments about the Republican fissions of 1956 among the 
Knight, Knowland, and Nixon factions, each of which was striving to fill the 
vacuum created by Earl Warren's departure to the Supreme Court. Adams 
touches upon the 1960 election, speculates about why Nixon lost the race for 
governor in 1962, and goes on to tell of Nixon's decision to run for president 
in 1968; Jorgensen also has a story about 1962, and relates his experiences 
as chairman of the executive committee for fundraising in 1968. Some of the 
narrations are just that, but at times there is reflection on what makes a 
campaign work (Jorgensen), why a campaign fails (Adams on the 1962 race), and 
what Nixon should have done but didn't, such as pile the White House tapes 
on the lawn and burn them, (that from Day). 

Interestingly, or perhaps logically enough, Adams, Call, and Crocker all 
were found either in or across the street from the Pacific Mutual Building 
at 523 West Sixth Street in Los Angeles, the location of many state headquarters 
of the largest savings and loan institutions, insurance companies, and corporate 
law firms. Each man was in easy touch with the other, and each recommended 
that we interview the others. Harold Morton, a major oil lobbyist, was also 
at 523 West Sixth, and Asa Call felt that the series would be incomplete with 
out him; however, Morton had long since declined to be interviewed as a part 
of the Earl Warren project. 

The project research and several preceding interviews raised broad ques 
tions by the time the Nixon leaders were taped. What did Nixon's striving to 
be Eisenhower's running mate in 1952 do, if anything, to or for Earl Warren's 
determined bid for the presidential nomination? What, if any, was Nixon's 
role in Eisenhower's appointment of Earl Warren to the Supreme Court? Where 
was Nixon's clout in relation to the Werdel delegation's challenge to Warren 
in the 1952 primaries? And what portion of the contributions from big campaign 
donors — agribusiness, oil, insurance, savings and loan corporations — was 
Nixon's, compared with Warren's? 

We knew that the interviewees were busy men; we expected that the sessions 
would not be as detailed as our research for questions had been, and this 
proved to be true. Nonetheless, the effort had to be made to gather histor 
ical evidence in as much detail as the interview time would permit. At the 
very least, we hoped to recapture some of the old campaign strategies which 


later, according to some writers, evolved into different, more sophisticated 
campaigns.* Also, no other oral history office was working on Nixon's 
early years in politics, although California State Fullerton's series on 
Nixon contained three interviews that included political topics. Plans for 
the usual presidential library (which would have included an oral history 
program) had collapsed and the Richard M. Nixon Foundation was disbanding; 
finally, the ownership of Nixon's White House documents was in litigation. 
It seemed that any testimony that could be preserved, even if only a sub- 
series of the Earl Warren Era project, would have some value for historians. 

The hour was late. The actuarial imperative, against which all oral 
historians race, had already claimed two potential interviewees, Bernard 
Brennan and Rockwood Nelson. The other Warren era leaders were past middle 
age or, like Roy Crocker, were well into retirement age although still on 
the job. We attempted to interview Richard Nixon himself for this series. 
The ex-President was asked, via Rose Mary Wood, to contribute a taping 
session on early campaigns, but his aide, Colonel Jack Brennan, turned us 
down in March of 1977; Rose Wood pointed out that Nixon was deep into the 
production of his first post-presidency book and that David Frost was just 
beginning the television interviews. We waited. In the meantime Mr. Day 
encouraged us to ask again and to use his name. ("Tell Dick I said he owes 
it to his home state and the people that got him started.") But our second 
request also met with a negative from Colonel Brennan by phone on October 13, 
1978, with the suggestion that if we would forward a particular question we 
might be wondering about from time to time, Mr. Nixon could reply by letter 
(presumably through an aide). We did have some particular questions, mainly 
on the matter of the general chronology of events in 1946; none of the sources 
in print agreed. We are indebted to Ken Khachijian, a San Clemente researcher, 
for straightening out some anachronisms of meeting dates and for giving us 
the lead that the best chronology in print is in the Whit tier News special 
edition that was published on the eve of the inauguration of its home town 
boy in 1969. 

*Nixon critic Frank Mankiewicz in Perfectly Clear (New York: Popular Library, 
1973, page 87) sees 1962 as the campaign in which Nixon shifted from tactics 
that manipulated hot issues such as communism to his advantage, to manipu 
lating the election process itself, such as sending out a mass mailing to 
"fellow Democrats." However, Steven Hess, a 1962 speechwriter for Nixon, 
saw the main strategy of that campaign as "offering the strongest possible 
bulwark against the worst tendencies of entrenched power" — meaning the Demo 
crats under Governor Edmund G. Brown. (Quoted by Mark Harris in Mark the 
Glove Boy (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1964, page 68.) 


Very special thanks are due to Evelyn Dorn, Nixon's long-time California 
secretary, who at the time was helping in the final organization of material 
that would be put with the Whittier College Nixon project, which was being 
turned over to the U.S. Archives branch at Laguna Niguel.* In that collec 
tion were 365 interviews focussed on Nixon as a youth, and "thousands" of 
pictures, many from Nixon's mother, all of which she and Ed and Don Nixon 
had gone over and dated and identified. Evelyn Dorn's knowledge of Nixon's 
life in the forties and fifties was impressive, and her advice and help 
with the tasks of lining up our interviewees deserves our special thanks. 
Finally, we are indebted to Professor Paul Bullock of UCLA, who had inter 
viewed many of these men for his biography of Nixon's first opponent, Jerry 

Considerable oral history documentation still needs to be done with 
knowledgeable persons about Richard Nixon's career, but there are no national 
efforts to organize such a project, as of the summer of 1980. There is still 
time; such projects have been undertaken for other presidential administrations, 
In the meantime, the subject of Richard Nixon can' be found as a topic In many 
other Regional Oral History Office interviews dealing with the Earl Warren 
era, and also the subsequent administrations of Goodwin Knight and Edmund G. 

Amelia R. Fry, Project Director 
Earl Warren Oral History Project 

7 July 1980 
Washington, D.C. 

*National Archives and Records Service, Federal Archives and Records Center, 
Archives Branch, 24000 Avila Road, Laguna Niguel, California, 92677. 

Frank Jorgensen 
ca. 1950 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Project 

Frank E. Jorgensen 


An Interview Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 

Copyright (c) 1980 by the Regents of. the University of California 

TABLE OF CONTENTS -- Frank E. Jorgensen 




Jorgensen Enters Politics: the San Marino School Board Race 1 

Election to L.A. County Republican Central Committee 2 

Origins of the Committee of One Hundred: the Eaton Meeting 4 

A Visit to Whittier 6 

The Committee Selects a Candidate 8 

Herman Perry 10 

Campaign Finance 10 

Analyzing Nixon's Win: Anti-Communism and the Debates 12 

Roy Day, Harrison McCall, and Murray Chotiner 14 


The Central Role of the Primary 16 

South Pasadena Opposition: 1948 and 1950 17 

Support from Women 21 

Comments on Billboards and Cross-filing 25 

Democrats for Nixon 26 

Nixon and Patronage 27 

Early Supporters and Associates 30 


The Decision to Run 36 

Bringing in Brennan and Chotiner 38 

Primary Contenders 42 

Planning Strategy 44 

The Pink Sheet 47 

The Press and Nixon 48 

Thoughts on Some Watergate Figures 49 

The Role of County Organizations 49 

Observations on Earl Warren 50 

Campaign Organizers 52 

Financing the Campaign 54 

The Issues: Oil and Anti-Communism 55 

Campaign Memorabilia 56 

Support from Democrats 59 

More on the Pink Sheet 60 

Joseph McCarthy 62 

Donors and Supporters 63 


The Checkers Speech 65 

The National Convention 67 

The Train Ride 67 

Arriving in Chicago 71 

Ike's Choice of Nixon 73 

The United Republican Finance Committee 76 

Political Campaigns: Then and Now 82 

Jorgensen and President Eisenhower 85 

The Need for Centralization in Campaigns 86 

Women in the Republican Party 89 

Jorgensen Says No to Two Presidents 92 

Private White House Dinners 95 

Earl Warren's Supreme Court Appointment 97 

V LATER CAMPAIGNS: 1956-1968 100 

Selecting California Delegates to the 1956 Convention 100 

Campaigning for the Presidency, 1960 102 

Jorgensen Chooses Not to Head Nixon's 1962 Gubernatorial Campaign 105 

Campaigning for the Presidency, 1968 108 

Jorgensen' s Key Role in California 108 

Ronald Reagan and George Wallace 110 

Some Needed Reforms 112 

Importance of Volunteers 114 

More on the 1968 Race 116 

Dealing With Republican Factions 116 

Support From the San Joaquin Valley 117 

Choosing Issues 119 

Rebuilding the Candidate 120 

Washington Job Possibilities 122 

Winding Up the Campaign in California 124 

Staff Spending Excesses 126 

INDEX 128 

INTERVIEW HISTORY — Frank Jorgensen 

Time of Interviews: April 1 and April 22, 1975 

Place of Interviews: Mr. Jorgensen 's home, Hillsborough, California 

Those present at Interview: Mr. Jorgensen and the interviewer 

The Interview: 

Frank Jorgensen was an indispensable campaign manager, an organizer 
who served in nearly every one of Nixon's campaigns, sometimes as finance 
chairman, sometimes with no official title at all, just "ramrod." He was 
that, certainly: tough-minded, sure of his plans and political strategies, 
determined and effective in fund-raising, and dedicated to his candidate. 
Whenever we considered interviewing the persons who had been the most 
instrumental and the most consistent in Nixon's California campaigns, 
Jorgensen 's name was always at or near the top of the list. As his candidate 
rose in the political world, so too did Jorgensen 1 s position in the insurance 
industry. Jorgensen clashed briefly with his employers in 1952, when the 
corporate leaders insisted that he pull back from politics and stick wholly 
to the insurance business, but Jorgensen managed to keep both jobs by doing 
his political work on a strictly volunteer basis. 

I interviewed Frank Jorgensen in his spacious house, which spreads out 
along a hilltop above San Francisco Bay. Jorgensen greeted me at the door, 
a heavyset man slightly taller than average. Our first interview session 
was held at his desk, in his study. His chair squeaked in protest as he 
occasionally leaned back, seemingly to recreate the picture of the past 
against the ceiling, then rocked forward and talked straight to the inter 
viewer, close to the microphone. Both sessions started with an almost dicta 
tion-like delivery with Jorgensen solemn and attentive, cautiously picking 
his words, even adding "period" and "comma" for the transcriber. As each 
session continued, however, it became more of a conversation, with digressions 
from the straight narrative to distillations of his experience, rules of 
thumb on how to win elections, and the evolution of election practices during 
his career. A wink (unfortunately inaudible) or a twinkle would make the 
ironies and deliberate understatements, but he was never coy. He either 
answered a question or frankly shunted it aside, shaking his head with a firm 
"no comment" or its equivalent. My impression is that there may be holes 
here and there in his picture of the period, but there are not distortions 
outside the normal range of difficulty of recall. 

He asked that the second session be held in the living room, which over 
looked the garden where an even and green lawn was bounded by flower beds 
exploding with spring color. He sat in a large lounge chair which swiveled, 


now toward the window with his right elbow on our card table, then suddenly 
a 180° turn with its occupant staring intently at the hallway; later, 
explaining an elementary law of politics to me, he would sit upright with 
the table and microphone dead ahead. No squeaks on this chair, but a clock 
offstage faithfully recorded each passing quarter hour. 

The sessions evolved into a procedure that seemed the most natural for 
us: I arrived loaded with outlines, questions, and papers that might stir 
his memory, such as Nixon's mailers from the 1950 campaign, after mailing 
ahead the chronologies, notes from newspaper files, and xeroxed passages 
from pertinent books. The memory prods were usually given short shrift — 
he knew what he remembered and it was sufficient — and he told his story as 
it unrolled in his mind. Then came my turn, to fill in with whatever ques 
tions he had not covered. We continued this procedure through each campaign. 

At the first session, he and his wife and I took a long lunch break at 
mid-day at a restaurant with a breathtaking view of the lowlands toward 
San Francisco Bay near Hillsborough. His experiences as a young executive 
with the insurance company formed the lunch conversation, one I hoped we 
could tape later, but our time before the microphone was filled with politics 
and we never got back to insurance. Suffice it to say that his present wife 
had also worked for the company. When his first wife died he found himself 
tragically lonely, unbearably so. Returning to his old offices in Los Angeles 
one day, he and Helen renewed their acquaintance, and later when he suggested 
she come to Hillsborough as his wife, she retorted she wasn't sure she could 
put up with "such an irascible bastard." They both chuckled over the story. 

With the help of Teresa Allen, we combed the transcript for ambiguities 
and made a list of further questions, all of which was sent to him September 29, 
1978. Before he got down to work on it, a health problem hit him and his re 
view had to be postponed, but by March 5, he reported he had almost finished, 
and it was mailed to the office for final typing a few days later. Throughout 
1979 there were phone calls and letters back and forth asking for final clari 
fications, spellings, and pictures, which now in retrospect I realize must 
have challenged the patience of the "ramr odder." However, what emerged is 
an informative, straightforward, no-nonsense interview. Mr. Jorgensen died 
on May 14, 1980. 

Amelia R. Fry 

10 November 1980 
Washington, D.C. 



late spring, 1945 

Initial, preliminary meeting of the 
fact finding committee, at Eaton's 
restaurant, Arcadia, Ca. (Mazo and 
Hess, 36) Paul Bullock thinks this 
meeting was early August. 

August, 1945 

September, 1945 

Notices appeared in newspapers in 
Twelfth Congressional District that 
the fact finding committee was looking 
for a candidate, (de Toledano, 39; 
Lurie, 45; Costello, 38) 

Herman Perry letter to Richard Nixon 
asking if he would be interested in 
being a candidate for Congress. 
(RN autobiography, 34) 
And responds affirmatively. (RN 34) 

September 29, 1945 

Whittier meeting of fact finding 
committee at William Penn Hotel. 
(Costello, 40; Lurie, 46; and 
Mankiewicz, 49 say Nixon was there. 
Nixon in the autobiography does not 
mention being there.) 

October 2, 1945 

Nixon letter to Perry. Date supplied by 
Nixon researcher K.L. Khachijian in 
letter 12/29/78 

October 3, 1945 

Perry to Day letter, suggesting RN as 
candidate. (ROHO o.h. with Day, 30) 

October 8, 1945 

Dexter telegram to Day, saying he had 

not ruled out running (Day correspondence) 

October 13, 1945 

Day to Dexter letter suggesting he, 
Dexter, consider running and asking for 
comments on RN and other possible 
choices. (Day corresp.) 


November 2, 1945 Nixon flies to California; Appears at 

meeting in Whittier with six prospective 
candidates. (Day correspondence; Barnes 
o.h., p. 91; RN autobiography, 35) 

November 28, 1945 Alhambra meeting of Committee of 100 at 

which Nixon is selected. (Roy Day 
correspondence; Chotiner news release) 

November 29, 1945 Day calls Nixon to tell him he was 


December 4, 1945 Nixon accepts committee endorsement in 

letter to Roy Day (Mazo, RN, 44; 
Bullock says public announcement was 
December 21, 1945) 

January, 1946 Nixon leaves the navy. 

February 12, 1946 Formal announcement of Nixon's 

candidacy, kickoff of primary campaign 
at Pomona Lincoln's Day Dinner. 

post-primary General election campaign kickoff at 

Eaton's; Stanley Barnes presided. 

There was a University Club meeting of the fact finding committee of one of 
the Whittier meetings. I think this was either September 29, 1945 or 
November 2, 1945. We haven't really established if RN was even in California 
on September 29, 1945, so the likelihood is that this date was the latter one. 


[Interview 1: April 1, 1975] 
[begin tape 1, side 1] 

Jorgensen Enters Politics: the San Marino School Board Race 

Jorgensen: Mrs. Fry, you tell me that you want to talk about the very 

early days of what I call the Nixon saga or the rise of a young 
man who later became president. I shall do so, as much as my 
memory will recall. Likewise, please ask me questions as we 
go along. I may refer to some material I have here that might 
be useful. 

Basically, in the early part of 1945 we had, in what was 
then the old Twelfth Congressional District, a congressman who 
had been registered as a Socialist until 1932 and changed his 
registration to Democratic to go along with Roosevelt. This 
was Jerry Voorhis, who came from a fine family in Pasadena who, 
I believe, were staunch Republicans. But Jerry was one of 
those new thinkers and was what we consider to be not a good 
representative for at least the conservative element in the 
Twelfth Congressional District. 

You will remember that the Twelfth in those days 
represented South Pasadena, San Marino, Alhambra, and went out 
east to the [Los Angeles] County line, which encompassed 
Whittier and Pomona. The registration as I recall in those 
days was close to fifty-fifty Republican and Democrat. 

I lived in San Marino, which was a bedroom community for 
Los Angeles and which contained a lot of young, energetic 
businessmen. None of us up to this date, who were concerned 
with what later developed, were politicians. I suppose I came 
into the picture because I had been successful in championing 
and campaigning for a school board member in San Marino in a 
write-in campaign, and we won. So they said I was a politician 
and turned to me to get something started. 

Fry: That's pretty good practice usually. Those local school board 

elections can provide good training grounds. 

Jorgensen: The school board members were people who were fine gentlemen, 
but we didn't think they were paying enough attention to the 
education that the children were getting. They were spending 
most of their effort on the equipment and the real estate of 
the schools rather than what the teachers were doing. 

Fry: Was this a recall election? 

Jorgensen: No. In San Marino in those days they had a school election, 
but if there was going to be a change in the school board, 
usually the board would accept the resignation and appoint a 
new member prior to the election. We decided that we would 
run a man by the name of Maurice Jones, who was a young attorney 
very much interested in the civic welfare of San Marino. It 
was too late to file, so we had to run a write-in campaign. 
It was a lot of fun. Some of the time old friends wouldn't 
speak to Mrs. Jorgensen and me as we went down the street. But 
it all washed out in the end. Everything worked out fine. As 
a matter of fact, Jones served on the school board for quite a 
number of years, later became mayor of San Marino, and has 
devoted a good share of his life to the community. So our 
selection, I think, was all right. 

Anyhow, this led to our thinking, 'V/hy are we having a 
congressman who had been a Socialist, and now a Democrat in 
the Roosevelt image, representing us?" So we started moving 
around and talking. Seemingly the same thing was going on in 
other parts of the district, although we were not aware of it. 

Election to L.A. County Republican Central Committee 



But we young bucks came in and got busy. We talked to the 
leaders of the [Los Angeles County Republican] Central Committee, 
of which I became a member in the spring of 1945, in the Fifty- 
third Assembly District, of which San Marino was a part. 

Sometime in your narration I would like for you to explain 
the relationship between the going Republican organization and 
the move to unseat Voorhis. You said that in the meantime you 
became a member of the county central committee. 

Jorgensen: That's right. I will. Remind me of it, please, because I 

have some pertinent remarks to make about it. I might as well 
make them now. 





When I got on the central committee, I took Mclntyre 
Paries' s position on the committee. Mac became national 
committeeman, so he stepped off of the committee and they 
nominated me. There's a rather funny story behind that. I 
can tell it now. I was afraid it would get out over the 
years. I'm diverting here. Is that all right if I wander 

That's marvelous, yes. One nice thing is that you'll have a 
transcript, and we can cut out things and put them back where 
they belong, if you wish. 

Okay. I had lived in San Francisco before moving to San Marino 
in 1938. While I was in San Francisco I knew Jim Rolph, Jr., 
who then became governor [1931-1934], and I know his son [James 
Rolph, III] quite well. His son--I can't give you the year, 
but it was some time in there, the early thirties—decided he'd 
run for state office. I think it was lieutenant governor. 
I 'm not sure. 

It wasn't governor? 

No. I think it was lieutenant governor or one of the state 
offices. But he was running on the Progressive ticket. I had 
voted and registered as a Republican ever since I was eligible 
to do so. But young Jim asked me, "Would you mind changing 
your registration so that you can vote for me in the primary? 
I need votes." So I changed my registration to Progressive. 
It didn't make a lot of difference. I was sure I wasn't going 
to vote Democrat. I didn't care for Roosevelt, I distrusted 

So, as Roosevelt's stature grew and he became king, 
practically speaking, I thought to myself, 'Vftiy not just let 
that Progressive registration stay there, and then if they 
shoot off all the Republicans in the country, at least we 
Progressives may be able to live." 

Anyhow, I went to the central committee meeting, not 
expecting to be elected a member. And I was made a member- 
right now] So the next morning I went down to the registrar's 
office and changed my registration [laughing], as quick as I 
could, back to Republican. 

[laughter] Without fanfare. 

Jorgensen: Nobody discovered that or ever used it against me. 

Origins of the Committee of One Hundred; the Eaton Mee t ing 

Jorgensen: I observed that the central committee of the twelfth district 
was far from energetic. They had given up because of the fact 
that Voorhis had been in Congress for two, maybe three terms- 
two terms at least—and that he was unbeatable. Some of us 
young men and women who didn't have much experience thought, 
"This can't be. You can beat a man if you organize." We said, 
"Let's get a committee together to select a candidate. Let's 
see who wants to run for Congress." 

I believe Roy Day at the time was chairman of the [Twelfth] 
Congressional District [Central Committee], which encompassed 
three of the assembly districts. A meeting was set up at Eaton's 
in Arcadia. I've been trying to ascertain that date. 

Fry: We may have that date.* 

Jorgensen: That's good. I want it before you leave because it'll fill in. 
That meeting was ostensibly under the central committee, but in 
reality it was run by concerned citizens. 

Before this Eaton's meeting we had gone to the newspapers 
in the district and said, "Anybody that is interested in 
becoming a candidate for Congress, come on and meet the 
committee." The committee was loosely put together. What we 
tried to do was to get the Republican leaders and the presidents 
of the women's clubs, the presidents of the Republican clubs 
in the communities like Whittier, the pro -Americans, anybody 
that was interested. We said, "Send representatives to this 
meeting." They paid their own dinner. It wasn't financed. I 
remember I sat in the back of the room counting the money, 
hoping we'd have enough to pay for the dinner. There was a 
good turnout, and Stanley Barnes acted as chairman for the 

*This meeting took place sometime between late spring and mid 
summer, 1945. See: Earl Mayo and Stephen Hess, Nixon, A 
Political Portrait (New York: Harper & Row, 1967), p. 36; 
Paul Bullock, Jerry Voorhis, The Idealist as Politician (New 
York: Vantage, 1978). 

Jorgensen: We young men and women from San Marino and some other places 
were sitting in the back of the room observing. There were 
candidates who presented themselves. But so help me, Hannah, 
we said, 'My God, if this is all we can get to run for Congress, 
let's don't waste our time." They just weren't the kind of 
people we were looking for. They were looking for a job. 

As a matter of fact, in a little cocktail party we had 
one night we were trying to figure out what we would like to 
have in a candidate. We said, "Now, what do we want? Well, 
we want a fairly young man. We want a young man that has 
an excellent education — college or university. We want a 
young man who has demonstrated a forensic ability, the ability 
to get on his feet in front of an audience. We'd like to have 
a young man who has a service record—been in the army or navy 
or air force. We want this young man to be married and living 
with his wife, and we'd like to have some young children. If 
we could find this individual we think this man would be our 
candidate if he's a good Republican and thinks, as we do, that 
things are getting a little crazy. We don't care for what 
Roosevelt is doing." 

So, out of this meeting came nothing, really. None of the 
potential candidates we had were suitable. And so, afterwards 
we got together in a little group and said, "By golly, we gotta 
go find a candidate.' We've got to sell somebody on the idea of 
running for Congress. We can't just take these people who are 
looking for jobs. In the first place, they haven't got the 
qualifications and the ability to do the thing we want." 

Fry: Nixon didn't show up at Eaton's? 

Jorgensen: Oh no. Nixon was not in the picture at this time at all. I 
think that Eaton meeting was in the spring of '45. Do you 

Fry: We haven't been able to tie down that chronology yet. 

Jorgensen: I want that date because I've had a big argument about it. 

Fry: I have Judge Stanley Barnes's notes and program that he jotted 

down at some meeting, I think a kick-off for Nixon's campaign.* 

*See interview with Stanley Barnes in: Earl Warren's Campaigns, 
Volume I. Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, 
University of California, Berkeley, 1976, pp. 40-41. 

Jorgensen: I would be very interested to review that if you'd let me see 
it. If you would I'd enjoy it, because Stan has always been a 
warm friend of mine. I've always thought well of him. He's 
done a fine job and is a man who had great character. 

But no, Nixon was not in the picture at the time of the 
first meeting. Nixon didn't enter the picture for us until 
later in the year when we were looking for this man. Nixon's 
name was not in that meeting, if my memory is correct. 

Fry: Did he send a record to be played there? 

Jorgensen: Not at that meeting. 

Fry: That must have happened at a later one then. 

Jorgensen: As a result of the Eaton meeting in the spring there was a 
so-called committee, and some people referred to it as the 
Comnittee of One Hundred. It was pretty loosely put together. 
In each of the assembly districts there were meetings of the 
members of that so-called committee of one hundred, who were 
looking at candidates. I think Whittier had one or two such 
meetings. I believe there was a meeting out in the east end 
there, where Roy Day lived, in Pomona. [Pause] Excuse me, 
Mrs. Fry. As I get older, I have a little trouble on recall. 
I think there was probably one held in the Twelfth District. 
I can't remember exactly. 

A Visit to Whittier 

Jorgensen: After the Eaton meeting these young concerned voters got busy. 

And now I lead you to Whittier. We started kind of moving around 
and as a result we got acquainted with the people over at 
Whittier who were, for the largest part, a fairly conservative 
group of Quakers. 

Fry: Before you went to Whittier did you have any candidate in mind? 

Jorgensen: No, none whatsoever. As a result of getting acquainted with 
Herman Perry and Harold Lutz over in Whittier, a suggestion 
was made that we might get Walter Dexter (who I believe had 
been previously the president of Whittier College when Dick 
Nixon was a student there) to run for Congress. Dexter at this 
time was the superintendent of education--! think that's the 
correct title—for the state of California. 

Jorgensen: A letter was written to Mr. Dexter by Herman Perry, manager of 
the Whittier Bank of America, asking Dexter if he wanted to 
run for Congress. Perry later made a telephone call to Dexter. 
At least this is the history of the thing. Dexter said he might 
be interested in running for Congress, but he would have to be 
assured of a job equal to what he had in income, which I think 
was around $10,500 a year at that time, if he lost the election 
Obviously none of us could guarantee such a thing. 

In the course of the conversation he raised the name of 
a student that he'd had in school by the name of Richard 
Milhous Nixon. 

Fry: Did he give you reasons why he thought of Nixon? 

Jorgensen: Dexter said he was a brilliant student who had earned his 
scholarship to Duke University to earn his law degree. He 
graduated in law from Duke on a scholarship that he'd earned 
at Whittier. Dexter said that this man had evidence, in his 
opinion, some interest in political endeavor. 

We then checked with Herman Perry, who referred us to Tom 
Brewley of the firm of Bewley, Knopp and Nixon. We found that 
Dick Nixon had been, I believe, an assistant to the city 
attorney's office prior to his leaving to go into the navy 
and into the war. 

I recall Boyd Gibbons, Rocky [Rockwood] Nelson, and myself, 
when the name came to us, making a visit to Whittier. We went 
down to the small crossroads store that Nixon's parents and 
brother were operating. We talked to them and then went back 
up into the town of Whittier and went up to see Tom Bewley. 

Fry: Did you meet his father and mother? 

Jorgensen: Yes. 

Fry: Did you tell them what you had in mind? 

Jorgensen: Yes. We indicated that we were trying to find out something 
about their son, as to whether he could be a candidate. 

Fry: What did you think of his parents? 

Jorgensen: I was very much interested in them, particularly his mother. 
She looked to me like a strong woman. I well remember the 
mother, Hannah. She was quite a down-to-earth person, and 
she knew what she was doing. She had raised these boys of hers 
and there were three or four of them as I recall. One of them 
died, I think, in Arizona History tells you that. 

The Committee Selects A Candidate 

Jorgensen: There's disagreement as to a phone call supposedly made to 
Nixon. For instance, it's supposed to have been made from 
my home; it was not. Boyd Gibbons has maintained that h_e 
called Nixon, and I don't want to dispute him on that. He 
may have later. But the original approach to Nixon was made 
by Herman Perry. I have a copy of that letter somewhere in 
my file, asking if he'd be interested. 

Fry: Perry first wrote him then? 

Jorgensen: Yes. Nixon at that time was still in the navy. He was back 

in Baltimore doing some renegotiation with the Martin Aircraft 
people. As I recall he then came back- -and he may have come 
back in a telephone call—and said, "Yes, I'm interested. If 
you fellows out there think you can put on a campaign, I'd like 
to come out." 

We said, "Can you get out?" 

He said, "Sure." As I recall he came out on a service 
plane, but it may be that he paid his own fare. I don't know. 

The first time I saw Dick Nixon personally was at the 
University Club in Los Angeles. There was a meeting, and here 
again I haven't been able to tie the date down. I'm working 
on it. Somebody will remember it. I've gone to the records 
of the club, but we don't have it. 

We had a small dining room—small room. At this meeting 
I recall there was myself and--I believe Earl Adams was there. 
I think Swede [Willard J.] Larsen was there. I'm not sure 
whether Herman Perry was there or not, but there was somebody 
from Whittier there. Boyd Gibbons was there. Rockwood Nelson 
was there. I think that's just about the group. Nixon was 
in his naval uniform. He was then, I believe, a lieutenant 
commander if I'm not mistaken. We liked what we heard from 
this young fellow. We talked with him very bluntly and very 

Fry: Was this just an evening meeting? 

Jorgensen: No, it was a luncheon meeting. Gerald Keppel, who was associated 
with the local telephone company in Whittier, might have been 
at this meeting for Whittier. I think I remember that Keppel 
took Nixon back to Whittier. That night in Whittier they had 
a meeting of the members of the so-called fact finding committee 

Jorgensen: or the candidate committee. Then Nixon may have visited over 

around in the Pomona district. I'm not sure. But very shortly 
afterwards he went back to Washington. 


Was the main question in Nixon's mind at this point one of 
whether you would have funds to run the campaign? 

Jorgensen: Yes, very much so. He said, "Can you fellows--?" 

We said, "Well, we don't know a hell of a lot about this 
thing, but we'll work our tails off." Herman Perry had some 
experience in campaigns. Roy Day had had some locally. The 
rest of us were all newcomers. 

We didn't know top from bottom how to run a campaign, 
except that we were businessmen and we knew how to sell. We 
took the position that a political campaign was nothing more 
than selling a product --you got a candidate; if that's your 
product, how 're you going to sell it? Are you going to sell 
him by television, or are you going to sell him by radio? 
Television wasn't there then much, if any, but there was radio, 
newspaper, and personal appearance. We knew that. We had 
some advertising people. I was in the insurance business and 
knew how to mass sell and so forth. So we thought we could do 
it. We didn't know how much money we were going to have to 
use. We had no idea. We had no funds. There hadn't been any 
funds raised. 

The last meeting of the so-called committee was called in 
Alhambra. It was held at the Elks Club in Alhambra November 
28, 1945. This I didn't attend. I had to go to the meeting 
of my company, Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, in New 
York at the time. This is really where the Nixon picture was 
presented, although prior to this he had appeared at a meeting 
in Whittier. That night they voted on who they wanted as a 
candidate. In the meantime a lot of work had been done for 
Dick Nixon. He'd met some people and he was out in California. 
On the first ballot — somewhere we have the record here—he was 
the leader. There was a couple of other candidates. Dr. 
Spenser in Alhambra was one of them. There was a retired army 
man in Pomona which had some votes. But in the end, it wound 
up— I think on the second or third ballot --unanimous for Nixon. 
So he was advised that he was the candidate. That's the end 
of the fact finding committee in the 1946 election. 


Herman Perry 

Jorgensen: So, Nixon said, "All right. I can get a release from the navy, 
and you fellows go ahead." So, as I recall, we appointed 
Roy Day as the campaign manager for the primary. We opened 
a headquarters over in Whittier. Uncle Perry--! called him 
Uncle Herman Perry. He was really the political godfather of 
this young Nixon. 

Fry: Can you describe "Uncle Herman"? 

Jorgensen: I'm coming to something that will describe him. I remember 
when he met me it was arm's length. He was a true, shrewd 
banker, and he tested me a few times. Finally he came around 
to where we were very warm friends. I could feel that during 
campaigns later on. I'd call Uncle Herman and say, "Uncle 
Herman, I'm in trouble. 1 " [using a western accent] "How much 
do you need, you darn fool? I know you wouldn't call me without 
you wanted money.'" [laughter] And he'd always get it. 

As a matter of fact when he passed away his son called 
me and said, "Dad would want you very much to be one of the 
pallbearers. He thought so much of you." I was very pleased 
to do it. I was very fond of him. 

Dick Nixon in the navy, not making very much money. 
Pat Nixon had been working and they'd saved some money, but not 
a lot. Uncle Herman got them a little house in Whittier, and 
they scraped together what they could. I remember being in 
that house, and it was pretty thinly furnished. There wasn't 
a lot of furniture, and it wasn't a big house by any means. 

But Dick and Pat were willing to throw all the dollars 
they had--I think there was probably not more than $2,500, 
$3,500 total—I think they spent every dime of it in the 
campaign to help us. 

Campaign Finance 

Jorgensen: Dick came out and we started campaigning—setting up meetings 
and getting the newspaper support that we could. We had no 
idea exactly how much it was going to cost. But we sat down 
and tried to figure it out, and we started to raise money. 
I set up an operation. I say I set it up because Dick more 
or less turned to me to do what I call "ramrod" a campaign. 




That is to see that the money is there and to see that it's 
spent correctly, that it's handled correctly, and to pick up 
all the odds and ends. 

We didn't have a chairman in that campaign. Roy Day 
was the campaign manager to arrange meetings and, as a 
campaign manager should, arrange advertising and so forth. 
In those days you could get a lot of free help in your 
advertising. You didn't have to pay for people to make up 
your newspaper advertising. You had to pay for the insertion 
of it, of course, but advertising men helped us. 

In the financial end I asked Arthur Kruse in Alhambra, 
who was the head of a building and loan organization, to act 
as treasurer. I insisted that we have a committee of five, 
and that no expenditure be made by anyone, including the 
candidate, until at least three of the committee had signed on. 

This was your finance committee. 

Jorgensen: This was the finance committee. The finance committee, as I 

recall, was made up of Kruse, Perry, myself, and--I can't think 
of the other two at the moment. (I'll think of the other two 
before we get through with this.) So we then started to raise 
money. It came in small amounts. I had my office down on 
Spring Street in Los Angeles. It got so that my San Marino 
friends would see me coming and go on the other side of the 
street, because they knew I was going to have my hand in their 
pocket for $15 or $20 for the campaign. [Laughter] 

I do recall that we'd run fairly close. Uncle Herman 
raised some money over in Whittier. There was some money 
raised out in Pomona. But San Marino was supposedly the rich 
village in the district. The money wasn't coming in as fast 
as it should, and it wasn't coming in as I was to know in 
later campaigns, in larger amounts. When we got a $10 or $20 
contribution we thought we were doing very well. 

I remember my wife, Mary, and I over a weekend put out 
three thousand letters in San Marino. She typed the salutation, 
the name of the person, because I had the letters done by the 
San Marino Tribune, and I paid for them. Our heading was, 
"Have you had enough?" That was the slogan in those days. We 
worked over a weekend and mailed those to all the San Marino 
residents. I think that three thousand mailing brought in 
probably about $5,000 in total. It was hard going, but we 
raised the money, and as I say, Dick and Pat put in what they 
could. We all worked hard. 


Jorgensen: The campaign was one which Dick won by a margin of about 
seven thousand votes, if my memory serves me right.* You 
will recall in that Congress we had a swing. Harry Truman 
had become president, and there was a swing. A Republican 
House was elected that year. 

Fry: Right. The Eightieth. 

Jorgensen: So we were the beneficiary of that, 
was not too broad. 

But our margin of victory 

Analyzing Nixon's Win: Ant i -Communism and the Debates 

Fry: What do you think contributed to your victory in the way you 

ran your campaign? 

Jorgensen: I think Nixon caught the imagination of the people. He was a 
conservative individual. He was an ti -Communist, and you 
remember the Communist issue was quite large in those days. 
There was a lot of fear of it. Russia under Stalin had just 
turned back and given us a kick in the rear end, so to speak. 
A lot of us felt that Roosevelt had veen very soft on Communism. 
I wouldn't call him a Communist by any means. I think he was 
befuddled a good deal of the time and fooled by Stalin, no 
question about it, as the Communists have fooled us year after 
year since that time. 

But Nixon was an attractive candidate. Then Voorhis made 
the mistake of suggesting that perhaps we ought to have a 
debate. We accepted the chance to debate because we were 
convinced that our man on the platform could beat Voorhis. 
I remember their first meeting. The first meeting was held in 
the high school auditorium in South Pasadena. Voorhis had 

*Re suits of the primary were: 

Jerry Voorhis 37,264 

Richard Nixon 29,474 

William J. Kinnett 2,732 

Results of the general election were: 

Richard Nixon 65,586 

Jerry Voorhis 49,994 


Jorgensen: received--! feel fairly certain that he didn't solicit it-- 

but he had received the endorsement of the CIO Political Action 
Committee. This was a little pink in those days. There was 
some question as to the Communist infiltration. 

Fry: I think he had received the endorsement of a committee within 

the Los Angeles Chapter of the National Citizens Political 
Action Committee, but not the CIO-PAC. They had turned him 

Jorgensen: Well, it had the connotation in other words. I remember so 
well Nixon's position. He was very ant i -Communist. There 
was no question of it; he believed in it. It wasn't just a 
political thing with him. At this meeting he had the clipping 
that had come out in the newspaper with this so-called 
endorsement. I recall that when Nixon was speaking he dwelt 
on it and he held it out. Voorhis was so wrought that he 
forgot himself and came halfway across the stage to look at it, 
then suddenly stopped, realizing that he had made a mistake, and 
turned around and went back to his seat. 

Then we knew that we had pricked his hide, that this 
bothered him. So naturally that was one of the things that 
Nixon referred to. All he said was, "Here it is. Make your 
own judgment. I'm not calling Mr. Voorhis a Communist or 
anything of the sort, but this is where he's getting his 
endorsement." Of course, some of his supporters got a little 
bit hysterical about it. 

Fry: What do you mean? 

Jorgensen: Well, in the district. The district supporters of Voorhis 

got pretty hysterical about this endorsement and about Nixon 
raising it. They protested that Voorhis wasn't. 

It's like a husband who gets caught out, and he makes 
a big mistake by protesting, "No, it wasn't me." He'd 
probably be better off to say to his wife, "Honey, I'm sorry. 
The moon was right. I won't do it again, I promise you." 
She'd probably forgive him. She'd never let him forget it. 
She'd never let him forget it; that's for sure. 

Anyhow, it played a part. It played a part. 

Fry: I wondered if--when you said they got hysterical — if any of 

Voorhis 's old supporters changed over to Nixon at that point. 

Jorgensen: I think probably some of them did. I don't know how much. 
As I say, we only won that election by I think around seven 
thousand votes in that district. 




Was that much of a percentage? 

It sounds like a lot for one 

Mrs. Fry, I don't know. You'll have to go back in the 
records to see what the registration was at that time. 

Okay, we can get that information somewhere else, 
decisive at any rate. 

But it was 

Yes, it was a decisive victory. It wasn't a landslide by any 
means, but it was decisive. I think that some of the people 
had voted for Voorhis because Voorhis himself, as an individual, 
was very much a gentleman. There wasn't any question about 
the man. He just was one of those thinkers who--I think at 
one time he said, "If the country runs out of money, let's 
print more." This sort of thing. He was a great man for 
cooperatives and he was a great man to tax. He just didn't 
think the way we did, and so the people in the district said 
to themselves, "Maybe it is time for a change. We've had 
enough of this. Let's try this new young fellow." And Nixon 
was elected. 

Roy Day, Harrison McCall, and Murray Chotiner 

Jorgensen: During this 1946 campaign at the end of the primary, Roy Day 

had to step out as the campaign chairman simply because it had 
taken too much of his time. We asked an old friend of ours 
over in South Pasadena, Harrison McCall , to become campaign 
manager for the general election. 

Fry: Who was he? 

Jorgensen: Harrison was a businessman in Los Angeles. He had a testing 
laboratory where they tested concrete and that sort of thing 
for buildings. 

Fry: Oh—engineering? 

Jorgensen: Engineering. Harrison, though, had always been interested in 
politics. He passed away about two or three years ago, up in 
his eighties. He was a wise man, and he knew the district 
pretty well. He was smooth. You never got Harrison concerned. 
So I said to Harrison, "We need a campaign manager. Can you 
take on the job?" 


Jorgensen: He kind of spoke in a high voice, and he said [imitating voice], 
"Well, I guess maybe I could. I like Nixon very much." 

I said, "Now, we can't pay you very much." 
He said, "Well, do what you can." 

I said, "If we have enough money, we will pay you $500 
for the whole campaign." [laughter] And that's what we did-- 
that's what he received for the whole primary campaign. 
And Harrison worked very hard. But he had a good rapport with 
the newspapers and reporters. 

There has been some talk about Murray Chotiner in this 
early campaign. 

Fry: I wanted to ask you--was he in it or not? 

Jorgensen: No. Murray and I were members of the Los Angeles County 

Central Committee. I later became chairman of the Los Angeles 
County Central Committee. Murray at that time was a smart 
young politician who had participated in some statewide campaigns 
and was on the central committee. We would turn to Murray when 
we needed some political advice and counsel, but Murray was not 
a part of the 1946 Nixon campaign. I'll tell you where he comes 
into the picture later. 

Fry: I was trying to remember what Roy Day told me about Chotiner, 

because he does give him a role in the campaign. 

Jorgensen: Not in the '46 campaign. I don't think so. 

Fry: But, in other words, he was there to help you when you needed 

advice on campaign methods and tactics and things like that. 

Jorgensen: Yes. He may have come out to one of our meetings and given 
us some counsel and advice, but to the best of my knowledge 
he was not an active member of that 1946 campaign. 



The Central Role of the Primary 

Jorgensen: In 1948 Nixon more or less turned to me to get things done in 
the district. I had become the chairman of the central 
committee for the Fifty-third Assembly District. In the '48 
campaign, we set up headquarters in El Monte, as I recall. 
Nixon cross-filed and won both tickets. 

Fry: I have quite a few questions here on '48. Who else was in 

the primary against Nixon? Do you remember? I have Steven 
Zetterberg and a Mrs. Porter. I couldn't tell from reading 
these minutes of a March 30 meeting of your committee whether 
she was a Democrat. Maybe she was from the Independent- 
Progressive party. 

Jorgensen: By George, I can't remember. I remember the name Zetterberg. 

Fry: I suppose she'll be on the ballot, if we can get ahold of a 

county ballot. Steve Zetterberg was an attorney. 

Jorgensen: It didn't amount to anything. There was really no opposition. 

Fry: The vote between Zetterberg and the Independent -Progressive 

party candidate split. 

Jorgensen: Yes. It didn't amount to anything. 

Fry: Did you start out in that campaign going for victory in the 


Jorgensen: Yes. You see, by this time Nixon's star was starting to rise 
in the sky because the Alger Hiss matter had come before the 
House Un-American Activities Committee. Nixon at that time was 


Jorgensen: nationally known. He had represented his district, and he'd 

pleased the people. We thought there was a pretty good chance 
that he could win both nominations in the primary. 

My position on this tactic was that it would save money. 
In those days of cross-filing if you could get your man elected 
in the primary, you saved yourself a few thousand dollars 
because you didn't really have to run a general election. You 
could make a few speeches and you could have a few newspaper 
ads, but you could save quite a few thousand dollars in the 
congressional race. I was always thinking of dollars as well 
as the candidate, because it was usually my job to scurry 
around and get the dollars together. Anyhow, we re-elected 
our candidate very handily in the primary of this '48 campaign. 

South Pasadena Opposition; 1948 and 1950 





Could I ask you just a few questions about your March 30, [1948] 
organization meeting. There was a group with four initials 
that were opposing Nixon in South Pasadena, particularly. 
Could you tell me about this group? 

You always had a group that wanted, I think probably, to be 
recognized more than anything else. But they didn't represent 
very many voters. After Nixon decided to run for the Senate 
they caused a great deal of trouble in the congressional 
election of Patrick Hillings for Congress, to replace Nixon. 

What were the characteristics of this group? How was it 
different from others? 

Well, it's kind of a story. Is this the place to talk about it? 
I don't mind talking about it. When Mr. Nixon decided to run 
for the United States Senate, I was chairman of the Twelfth 
Congressional District at the time. So I put into operation 
a campaign committee for a congressional candidate and again 
followed out much of what we did in 1946 by inviting all the 
representatives of the Republican organizations to become members 
of the committee. We held our first meeting in--I think it was 
Arcadia, at which time I was going to formalize the committee, 
more so than was done in the '46 campaign. Remember, this is 

I recall saying to Nixon, "Will you endorse the candidate 
that comes out of the committee?" 


Jorgensen: He said, "Yes. I came out of such a committee. I don't see 
anything wrong with the way you people do it. You've got a 
representative group of people. It's not run by a small 

I said, "Fine. I've got the original meeting of the 
committee in Arcadia." I put out a call for them. 


[end tape 1, side 1; begin tape 1, side 2] 

As we turned the tape you were putting out a call for the 

Jorgensen: "And I would like for you [Nixon] to come to the meeting before 
the committee is formalized and make any statement that you care 
to make. " 

I picked Nixon up at his hotel that evening and drove him 
out to Arcadia and called the group together in the meeting and 
said, 'for. Nixon would like to talk to you before we formalize 
the committee." He told them of his decision to run for the 
United States Senate and that he appreciated all the work they 
had done and would do for him, and that he would endorse the 
candidate for Congress in the Twelfth Congressional District 
that was agreed to by this committee. 

A subsequent meeting of the committee was held, at which 
we issued invitations to all people who were interested in 
running for Congress to appear. We carefully allocated the 
time for each candidate to speak and present himself or herself. 
I might interject a personal note here, that it was assumed 
by some of the newspapers in the district, particularly the 
San Marino Tribune, that I would be the candidate for the 
congressional seat. 

Fry: Really? Why weren't you? 

Jorgensen: As a matter of fact, I gave it considerable thought. But at 

the beginning of a committee meeting in Alhambra I said, "I will 
not be a candidate. I don't wish to be a candidate. There is 
nothing coy about me. This is final, that I will not be a 

My reason for it was simply this. (I'm not sure that I 
told the committee all of this, other than to tell them that 
I would not be a candidate.) I didn't think I had the 
temperament to be a congressman. I enjoyed campaigns. The 
organization work and the planning and the financing and such 
like was enjoyable, and I liked to do it. But to be a candidate 
and to have to appear in meetings--oh, some gal would have a hold 


Jorgensen: of my sleeve, I'm afraid, and be hanging on, trying to get 

my attention, and I'd probably turn around and insult her and 
tell her to go home and shut up. I just didn't feel that I 
had the temperament to be a congressman. 

There were financial considerations at the time too. As 
I recall it, I think a congressman was paid $10,500 a year, and 
in my business I was doing considerably more than that. 

Fry: You were in insurance? 

Jorgensen: I was in the insurance business, and I didn't want to give that 
up. I'd spent just under forty years with Metropolitan Life 
Insurance Company before I retired. I would have given up a 
lot of things. As a matter of fact, I carried around in my 
coat pocket a piece of paper. It weighed the decision. I had 
a line drawn down the middle of it, and I had "do's" and 
don'ts." The don'ts outweighed the do's, and I never regretted 
my decision. But I did tell them that I wasn't going to be a 
candidate. We had a number of candidates, and a number of good 
ones, people who were in the image of the Nixon picture, 
energetic, able people. 

I forget how many meetings of the committee we held. We 
held, I think., four. The final meeting was in El Monte, at 
which we were to ballot and choose a candidate for Congress. 
As a matter of fact, we had quite a night of it because the 
rivalry for the position had grown quite intense. In the voting 
we had a chap by the name of Patrick Hillings, who was a young 
attorney in Arcadia who associated with William Price in a 
law firm of Hillings and Price. Hillings was a candidate. 

When we started the balloting after dinner in El Monte 
a schism that had risen, led mainly by this group in South 
Pasadena who did not care for Pat Hillings too much. 
Unfortunately, it had undertones of religious misunderstanding. 

Hillings was born a Catholic, raised a Catholic. I don't 
know whether he was practicing his religion to a great extent. 
But there was a group of Christian Science people principally 
who took a very dim view of this. They were behind a candidate, 
a lady in South Pasadena, Helen--very fine person, nice person, 
and a real campaigner. 

So during this El Monte meeting I could see that if I let 
this meeting break up without coming out with a candidate, the 
district would be in one hell of a shape. So I kept them there 
till three o'clock in the morning, until one candidate had a 
majority. I wasn't concerned who it was. I just kept one 
ballot rolling after the other. 


Jorgensen: Of course, in the beginning there was more than one candidate. 
But as I recall, Mr. Hillings was always the leading candidate 
on each ballot. Finally at some time around three o'clock in 
the morning he got the majority vote. Then it was cast as a 
unanimous vote, as I recall. 

But immediately after that this group decided that they 
wouldn't support Hillings. They started a campaign of their 
own and chose a man by the name of Wheeler from the Claremont 
area, a fine gentleman, as far as I know, and not a very able 
politician as events proved. I believe he was on the town 
council or something of that sort. So they started to raise a 

I took the position that they had given their word in 
the committee meeting to support Mr. Hillings. They came to 
me and tried to bring pressure on me, as chairman of the meeting 
and chairman of the district, to release them of their 
obligation, which I refused to do. I said, "I can't stop you 
from what you want to do, but I will not release you, because 
the committee acted in accordance with the rules, and as far 
as I'm concerned, Hillings has your endorsement." 


In other words, everyone who had gone to that meeting had gone 
knowing that they were pledged in some way? 

Jorgensen: We said to them that if it was unanimous we expected everybody 
to support the candidate. "This has been a democratic affair. 
There hasn't been any logrolling. There hasn't been any 
cheating, as far as I know. We "ve tried to give everybody a 
fair chance. Any candidate—we would give him the same amount 
of time to present himself." That's the reason I kept them 

Always when I chaired a meeting of this sort I would have 
a parliamentarian. But that night I decided I had to have 
three parliamentarians. Earl Adams and two other men acted 
as parliamentarians. Of course, the people on the floor ask 
for a ruling, etc. So I would turn and refer to my 
parliamentarians to give me a ruling on the question. They'd 
get in such a damn argument [laughing] among themselves. I'd 
say, "I think I know what you're talking about. Here's how it's 
ruled. So ordered." [laughter] 


You became your own parliamentarian. 

Jorgensen: Well, not really. But you had to keep a meeting like that 

moving. Otherwise it would bog down and you'd be in terrible 


Fry: So there you were, then, caught with these people who were 

trying to pull out and trying to get your permission to stick 
to their own candidate. 

Jorgensen: They mounted a campaign for Wheeler, and it became pretty 

rough. Young Hillings--! think Pat was only about twenty-six 
years old at the time—would come to me and say, "Do I have 
to take what I'm getting?" 

I said, "Sure you do. You're a candidate, and these 
people have the right to say what they damn well please about you. 
But you've got some pretty good support too." Anyhow, Hillings 
was elected. That goes back to the South Pasadena group which, 
as you mentioned, attended the March 30, 1948 organizational 
meeting for Nixon's congressional re-election campaign. It was 
the nucleus that came out in "50. 

I recall --and I should not give you names on this because-- 
but one of the leaders of this was Helen Garrison, who lived 
in South Pasadena. 

Fry: Was this '48 you're talking about? 

Jorgensen: This is 1950. 

Support from Women 

Fry: I wanted to ask you about some of the women that were mentioned 

in '48. 

Jorgensen: All right. Go ahead. 

Fry: In the minutes, as you go through this meeting you're introducing 

people. One was Mrs. Noyd who "started the first Nixon 
committee. " 

Jorgensen: Helen Noyd. She didn't live in South Pasadena. She lived in 
Alhambra. She was quite an active person and very positive 
and fought hard for her position. 

Fry: When it says "the first Nixon committee" does this mean the 

first Nixon women's committee? 

Jorgensen: I think so. 

Fry: Was she in on this initial group with you? 










She might have been in on the 1946 campaign. She might have 
been in the women's group. You have committees and you have 
committees. You don't have a record of all of them. She 
probably headed up the Alhambra women's committee for Nixon 
in '46. I suspect that's probably true, because I know she 
was active. 

Other names that I picked up in '48 were Helen Wysong, head 
of San Gabriel- 
Yes, a very active person and very much a staunch supporter of 
Mr. Nixon in all of his endeavors. Helen worked hard for us. 

Cecil Kenyon, San Marino. 

Cecil Kenyon in San Marino was the wife of Spike Kenyon, who 
was the vice-president of the Southern California Edison 
Company. Cecil was quite active, as was Spike when he was 
alive. In later years she headed up the San Marino women's 
group. Then she went on to higher things. I believe she 
headed the state Republican women at one time. 

In the March 30, 1948 organizational meeting the ladies' 
organization of Alhambra was introduced as the largest 
organization on the West Coast. It would be the largest 
women's organization, I guess. 

It might have been the largest women's group. 

Of course, everybody was whooping it up in the meeting. I 
don't know whether they were given to hyperboles, but-- 

I don't remember this meeting. I'm quoted in there, but I had 
so many meetings. 

You gave a very good speech, I thought. 

There were so many meetings in those days that I just couldn't 
keep track of it. As a matter of fact, in 1952 my then wife 
kept a record during the campaign, and I averaged being home 
for dinner two times a week. I was out every night. I was 
chairman of the Los Angeles County Central Committee. I'd 
usually have dinner home on Sunday, and generally I'd save 
Saturday night so we could have something. So, I had a lot of 

Goodness.' The other thing about this meeting was that there 
was a lot of talk about how the registration had passed the 
fifty-fifty mark, and now there were more Democrats than 


Fry: Republicans, and that therefore you needed to go after those 

Democratic votes, and every vote for a Democrat counted as two 
votes. You remember that? 

Jorgensen: Sure. 

Fry: There was a mailing of a postcard that was sent out to 

"Fellow Democrats" and to a lot of new people, apparently, 
in some of the districts. 

Jorgensen: We used all those things that you use in a campaign to bring 
Democrats across with you. Those towns were growing out 
there, because they were all bedroom towns—South Pasadena, 
San Marino, Alhambra, El Monte, Whittier, Pomona, Arcadia. 
They were all growing towns. 

Fry: There were some groups too that we don't have anymore today 

that I wanted to ask you about. There was the Pro-America, 
which you mentioned a while ago in the '46 campaign. What 
was their ideology? Were they to the right or the left of the 
regular Republicans? 

Jorgensen: Pro-America, I would say, in that area were conservative. 

I think you'd find Pro-America mostly Republican in all that 

Fry: I see. Their name, Pro-America, does that mean they were the 

leading edge in the anti-Communist groups, or what was the 
purpose of their organization? 

Jorgensen: Pro-America, as I know it, was primarily an organization that 
was to the conservative side. They were anti-Communist, of 
course. There's no question about that. The strength of their 
organization, by and large, was localized, I think. In 
Southern California in those days they were a fairly good 
group. They were a strong group. For instance, in San Marino 
I think they were a very ineffective group. That is, the group 
doesn't have a large membership and it doesn't exert itself. 
But in Southern California when we entered the campaigns, 
Pro-America was always a good organization to supply us with 
a lot of good workers, women who would really work. 

Fry: It was a woman's organization? 

Jorgensen: Pro-America was purely a woman's organization. It still is, 
as far as I know. 


They would choose candidates? 


Jo rg ens en: 
Jorgensen : 








They would endorse candidates. 

It was represented by Eunice Lowell. 

Great gal, Eunice Lowell. She was a hard working individual, 
good organizer, fine person. I remember her very well. 

Then there was another interesting thing in that March 30 

meeting when Mr. McLaughlin (and I don't know his first name) 

was introduced as the fellow who "turned the tide." He got 
a big cheer. What does that mean? 

Roy McLaughlin. Roy had run in that district for Congress 
on at least one occasion, maybe two, and Voorhis beat him. 
But Roy set himself up as the senior statesman of the 
district. A nice enough person, but really when it was all 
said and done, we younger man would say, "That's okay, Roy. 
Good, glad to hear it." And we went about our business and 
got things done. He was a fine gentleman. 

So this business of him turning the tide, then, was a kind of 
polite gesture. 

Patting him on the back for "turning the tide." Mr. Nixon 
turned the tide. 

I see. I thought maybe I'd missed something there. [laughter] 
Now, there's an Ed Collier who was in South Pasadena. Was he 
in this group that you told me about that was a maverick group? 

No. Ed Collier, was it? 

That's what it says. 
Pasadena chairman. 

Ed Collier was introduced as the South 

There was a Collier who was an assemblyman from that section, 
but I didn't think it was Ed. Collier was an assemblyman. 
There may have been another Collier. I didn't think his name 
was Ed. But the Collier name is familiar in South Pasadena 


Comments on Billboards and Cross -filing 




You mentioned in your pitch for money at this meeting how 
expensive it is to have billboards and that you had already 
signed up for billboards [laughing]. I wondered how important 
billboards were then as something you chose for your selling 

Back in the days before television billboards were important 
to get the image of the individual. You usually had the 
candidate's picture on the board if he was a good looking 
candidate and you had a good picture of him. Here again, you 
come into the advertising end of a campaign. You've got an 
article to sell. Let people see him; let them know him. And 
so you use a billboard to constantly project his image—his 
face if he's got a good face. 

God, you work over the statements that go on those 
billboards by the hour. You fight it and your work it--your 
advertising people. You're trying to get something that 
every time that fellow drives down the road he sees that, and 
it imprints and imprints. So when he goes to the ballot box, 
he's got it. 

Now in some instances if you're running an incumbent, you 
don't use his picture, but you use your billboard for the 
message—elect Bill Jones; he's done a great job for you. 

Re-elect your congressman? 

Jorgensen: Re-elect your congressman. Of course, there isn't any question 
about it. In California over the years the Republican party 
has been a minority party for quite some years. Cross-filing, 
of course, was always in favor of the Republicans because you 
had name familiarity, he was an incumbent, and so forth. 

I remember when it came up in Sacramento. The first move 
was made to identify the individual. You didn't have to 
identify on your filing. You could just say "incumbent." The 
first move was to say "Republican" or "Democrat." I was 
chairman of the Los Angeles [County Central Committee], and 
"Lock" [Laughlin] Waters was heading up the committee considering 
cross-filing. I said, "Don't change iti We're going to get 
beat on cross-filing. Hang to it as long as you can because 
it's in favor of the Republicans to have cross-filing." (Of 
course, that had been put in by [Hiram] Johnson to break the 
back of Southern Pacific's control of politics, so history 
tells me; I wasn't here at the time.) But the committee didn't, 
and so as a result the cross-filing went out the window. 


Democrats for Nixon 











There were a number of Democrats of a conservative nature who 
did organize for you in 1948 apparently. Here are the names 
I have. I think it's Albert—but I'm not sure — Hoberg from 
Alhambra, and Don Fantz. Then the man who signed this postcard 
that was sent out to fellow Democrats was J.R. Blue. Did you 
know any of those? 

Yes, I knew them. 

Were you the one who tried to bring in some of the Democrats? 

Of course, I did. You got your man introduced to 
leading Democrats, select people who other people in the area 

Who had contacts with them. 

And respected their opinion, who had appeared in public, who 

had appeared in the press, so that your man had name familiarity. 

Who were they? 

I can't remember. We tried to organize a Democratic committee, 
a Democratic Cotunitte For. You always do that in a campaign. 
Sometimes it's paper, but most of the time it's headed up by 
people--! remember when Nixon was running for the United States 
Senate. My heavens, we worked hard to get a Democratic listing 
for him. 

You had to have it because the registration statistics were 
heavily Democratic. 

I still have one more question. There was a man in 1948 
called Mr. Arnold whose approval the newspaper ads had to meet. 
I had the impression that maybe Nixon stayed in Washington the 
whole time in '48 and never could get home. Did he ever 

In the primary but not in the general election. 

In the primary he did come to California? In this March 30 
meeting they kept saying that you pretty much had to run that 
yourselves because the candidate was pretty busy in Congress. 

He was up to his ears in this Hiss situation. It seems to me 
Bill Arnold was a secretary to Nixon. He was in the campaign, 
but he never was a heavyweight. I believe he was a secretary to 
Nixon at one time. I think that's where he came into the picture, 


Fry: It sounded that way. Maybe he was an administrative assistant. 

Was he in the local office, do you think? 

Jorgensen: No, I think Arnold was back in Washington and came out. He 
came to the district. I don't know how. I don't have much 
memory of it. He didn't stick around very long. We didn't 
have much to do with him. I didn't think much of him, as I 

Fry: But apparently all the newspaper ads had to get his approval. 

Jorgensen: Well, he was representing Nixon. He felt, I suppose, at that 
time that Nixon should have somebody review them. That's 
my answer to that. 

Fry: What about billboards and handouts and things like that? 

Did you have to wait for Nixon's approval to come from 
Washington on those, or how did you do it? 

Jorgensen: That wasn't difficult. We'd always consult him, of course; 

he was the candidate. We'd design stuff and send it along to 
him, get his approval of it, surely. He was a pretty wise 
politician, you know. 

Nixon and Patronage 

Jorgensen: As a matter of fact, Mr. Nixon always had full control of his 
campaign. He was rather an interesting individual to work 
with over the years. You see, in those years I was rather 
close with him and saw him a great deal. I'll tell you more 
about him when we get into the senatorial campaign. But in 
the final analysis, he'd listen to you. You could discuss 
anything you wanted to with him. He'd listen to you; he might 
ask some questions. But you didn't always know the decision 
right away, because he liked to take that yellow pad of paper 
(like you've got there), put down the do's and the don'ts, 
and make his decision. 

I look back now over the years and I understand some 
things better about him than I did in those years, in the 
subsequent events that have happened. He was not a man that 
you asked a favor of. I never asked any favors of Dick Nixon, 
never, even after he became Senator, during the days of 




I had people come to me, knowing my close association with him, 
and also being the chairman of the Los Angeles County Central 
Committee, wanting this or that or the other thing. You always 
get that, of course. On most of the things that they ask for, 
you try to help them. 

I recall during the war many fathers and mothers coming 
to me and saying, "My son is in school and I don't want him to 
go in the army." 

I said, "That's not my province." I remember one case of 
a man whose son I knew. He was a brilliant boy who was in the 
university. The army drafted him, and he only had about sixty 
days to go to get his degree. 

His father said, "My gosh, if they take him in the army, 
he'll never come back and get that degree. Can you postpone? 
The boy will go in the army. He'll enlist, as a matter of fact. 
That's not the question. He wants to get his degree before he 
goes in the army. Can't you go to Nixon?" 

I said, "No. I won't go to Nixon, but I'll go to a friend 
of mine in Congress who is on the armed forces committee and 
give him the story." 

I called him. It was Carl Henshaw, who was a congressman 
from the Pasadena area. I said, "Carl, is there anything to 
be done for the young fellow? He'll enlist. He'll go down 
and enlist right away if you let him have sixty days to get 
his degree." 

In a matter of hours he came back and Carl said, "He's back 
in school." 

But, I would never ask Nixon for a favor. He was not the 
person that would give favors. I didn't want to be refused, 
so I never asked him. 

Why wouldn't he give favors for his constituents? Most 
congressmen kind of exist on that for their support in between 

Jorgensen: Well, that was a facet of him. I saw him do things for people 
that I would not think that he would. Then I saw him on 
occasion when I suggested he do something and he wouldn't do 


Was this a distinction between favors that were of a kind of 
errand-boy variety, as opposed to favors that could really 
accomplish something? 


Jorgensen: I recall one incident, for instance, after he became Senator. 
Uncle Herman Perry, whom we've talked about and were so fond 
of, and who I say was his godfather, was retiring from the bank 
[Bank of America]. I said to Herman one day, 'Vould you like 
to hold public office for a while? He said, "Veil, Frank, yes, 
if I could do anything." 

I said, "How would you like to be collector of customs 
in the Los Angeles Port?" 

"By golly," he said, "I'd like that. But I'll tell you 
now, if I get the appointment and you find somebody else that 
you want to have it, just tell me and I'll step out." 

So I wrote a letter to Nixon suggesting Uncle Herman. I 
was going back to Washington and so I said, "What '11 we do 
about it? Are you going to do anything about Uncle Herman?" 

"Well," he said, "Bill Knowland has the patronage throughout 
the state of California." Bill then was senior Senator. He 
said, "Why don't you talk to Bill about it?" 

I said, "I will if you want me to." 

I dropped into Bill's office. He said, "The only letter I 
got is the one you wrote to Dick, as far as Perry's concerned, 
and I got a bunch of letters over here for"--another man. I 
can't even remember his name, a congressman out in Santa Monica. 

I said, "Hell, Bill, if you want letters, I'll get a stack 
this high, [gesture] Didn't Dick tell you that he'd like to 
have him?" 

He said, "No, it was up to me." 
I said, "Forget it." 

Now, here was a very dear old friend of his. This appointment 
was of no great consequence- -the career people do the work--and 
I thought it would be nice for Uncle Herman to have a job, to 
go out and say, "Well, I was a collector of customs for a year." 
Anyhow, that was a facet that I watched. 

Still, on the other hand, I saw in a couple of incidents, 
people who'd really done him some harm, and they got into 
messes and he was trying to get them out. He's a complex fellow. 

Fry: I'm still trying to get at the distinction of people he would 

help and people he wouldn't help. 


Jorgensen: There wasn't really a distinction that I knew of. 
Fry: No underlying pattern. 

Jorgensen: No pattern at all. 

Early Supporters and Associates 

Jorgensen: These pictures up here that you're looking at—for instance, 
that picture in his naval uniform is how he looked when I 
first met him. 

Fry: Yes. That's becoming a Nixon classic now. 

Jorgensen: Then the picture to the left of it, that's Roy Day. You 

recognize Roy Day and Nixon. Then, the president of the college 
and myself. That was the night that we launched the senatorial 

Fry: My goodness.' You look so young there. 

Jorgensen: This over here is another picture of the same time, the senatorial 
campaign. This picture over here where you see the word 
"California," that's the time he was nominated as vice-president 
in Chicago. Then the other picture there is Pat Hillings, who 
took his place as congressman. 

There's a couple of letters there of interest. On Nixon's 
twenty-fifth anniversary in politics I sent him a telegram 
congratulating him. He wrote back saying that he couldn't have 
done it without me--horse feathers, of course. 

These other pictures are just from time to time. This 
picture up here — the large picture with the dinner party—that 
was a testimonial dinner given in my honor in Los Angeles, 
when I left Los Angeles to come to San Francisco. Just below 
that Bill Knowland is sitting there pointing his finger. In 
the background is Lock Waters, myself, and Charlie Thomas. 

Fry: Yes, I wanted to ask you who Charlie Thomas is. 

Jorgensen: Well, Charlie has done quite a bit of things. At that time 
Charlie was the national finance chairman for the Republican 
party. Then Al Hardwick, who was our Los Angeles finance 
chairman, and then there's Bill Knowland and Tom Pike. This 
is the first $100-a-plate dinner that was ever put on in Los 
Angeles. I organized it and asked Tom to be chairman of it. 










We had 4,200 people in the Shrine Auditorium at $100-a-plate. 
We had that place absolutely jammed full. We couldn't build 
the speaker's platform. You see, the auditorium has a balcony 
all the way around, and then the other side here, [showing 
photograph] We couldn't figure out how we could get the 
speakers so everybody could see them. 

Finally Tom, who was in the construction business, said, 
"I think I've got the answer. I'll bring in a couple of these 
heisters." You know, the ones that raise packages up and down? 
You've seen them. The trucks go around and they stack up stuff, 
So Tom brought two of them and he fitted a platform on each 
one about this big [demonstrates]. So we had those things 
going up and down in the middle of the floor all night long. 
A speaker would get on, and we'd raise him up [laughing] and 
let him down. 


Your own elevator. When was that $100-a-plate 

That would be in 1952. 

Was it primarily for funds for the Nixon and Eisenhower 


We want to get to that. 

Then down below here--below that picture—is John Rousselot 
who is in Congress now from our old twelfth district, and 
myself and Pat Hillings and Harold Lutz. 

Was that '52 also? 

Yes, it could be '52. Eisenhower, who was a friend of mine. 
Then I have a picture up there I call the "bully boy" picture. 
I was back in Washington. The delegation back there had a 
luncheon for me, so we came out to have our picture taken. 
Bill Knowland and Tommy Kuchel, who were Senators then, were 
behind me. Just as they took the picture they both pushed and 
I had my arms out. I call it the "bully boy" picture. 

We'll have to have some of these pictures to illustrate your 
final manuscript. 

And then in some pictures over here, I'm director of the 
Panama Canal Company. This is a picture up here of the canal 


Jorgensen: There's Charlie Thomas when Charlie was secretary of the navy. 
As a matter of fact, I was having dinner at the White House 
with Ike and about a dozen men. I used to go back. He asked 
me back four or five times for these little dinners he used to 
have. Charlie was just resigning from the navy, and we were 
getting ready for the "56 campaign. Ike was elected in '52 
the first time, and in '56. 

Ike was saying to me, "We're having a hell of a time 
finding a finance chairman." Charlie had already said good-by, 
and he was out in the car waiting for me. We were going back 
to the hotel together. Ike said, "Do you have anybody to 

I said, "Get Charlie." 

He said, "Charlie's resigning from the navy. He's tired 
and wants to rest." 

I said, "You call him tomorrow morning and tell him you 
need him, and Charlie Thomas will do it." I told Charlie about 
a year later, "I got you into that job." He did a good job 
for us too. 

Fry: Was that the whole national campaign? 

Jorgensen: Yes, national. He was national finance chairman— did a good 
job too. 

Fry: I wanted you to give us a picture of what profession, what 

business, these people were in who first started Nixon out. 
We know Roy Day, and we know Uncle Perry. 

Jorgensen: Ask the names and I'll try to fill you in. 

Fry: Did Murray Chotiner have an advertising agency at that time? 

Jorgensen: No. I think Murray more or less— he had an office, the family 
affairs. Murray was an attorney in his own law office. But 
I think he handled family affairs and such like. Call him an 
attorney. He was always an attorney. 

Fry: I see Earl Adams was an attorney. Swede [Willard J.] Larsen— 

who was he? 

Jorgensen: Swede was a dairyman out in the Whittier area. 
Fry: Was that the name of his dairy—the Larsen Dairy? 


Jorgensen: It could have been but I'm not sure. He was a rancher and a 
dairyman. Now wait a minute--Larsen. No, I think Larsen was 
associated with one of the oil companies. He had a ranch out 
there too, but I think he was with Standard Oil. I'm not sure, 
but I think so. Yes, I believe that's right. Who was the 
next one? 

Fry: Boyd Gibbons. 

Jorgensen: Boyd was an automobile dealer in Los Angeles with his father. 

Fry: And Rockwood Nelson. 

Jorgensen: Insurance business. He was an insurance broker in San Marino, 
south of Pasadena. 

Fry: And then you said Gerald Keppel was with the telephone company. 

Jorgensen: I think there was a little telephone company on there, and I 
want to call it the Associated Telephone Company. Gerald 
Keppel was vice-president and general manager of it. They 
later merged it into the General Telephone Company of 

Fry: What was Arthur Kruse? 

Jorgensen: Arthur Kruse was president of a building and loan company. 
I think it was the Alhambra Building and Loan Company in 

Fry: I think that covers that. What about people who did a lot 

of contributing to big statewide campaigns—at least later 
they did — like Asa Call. Did they pitch in any on Nixon's 
early campaigns for Congress? 

Jorgensen: Not the congressional campaigns. On the senatorial campaign, 
very much so. 

Fry: We can get to that later. Were you aware of any of the CRA 

people — the California Republican Assembly people— working and 
pitching in on the congressional campaigns? 

Jorgensen: Oh yes. 

Fry: Someone told me you would know about that. Were you in CRA 

at the time? 

Jorgensen: California Republican Associates? No. 
Fry: No, this is the assembly I'm talking about. 


Jorgensen: Oh, the California Republican Assembly. Yes. Harrison McCall 
was quite influential in the California Republican Assembly. 

Fry: Judge Stanley Barnes was also in some of the CRA activities.* 

Was the CRA important? Did they swing a lot of weight, move 
a lot of votes? 

Jorgensen: Their importance was before I got interested in politics. It 
seems to me they came into existence when the Republican 
party organization was at low ebb. 

Fry: Yes--in the mid-thirties? 

Jorgensen: Yes. They came in, and for a while they were fairly strong. 

By my time they were fading out. They thought they were still 
strong, but they didn't really swing a hell of a lot of weight. 

[ tape off] 

Fry: You mentioned the California Republican Associates. What was 

that? Was this a central research group, or did they do 
something else? 

Jorgensen: Let's see if I can give you some background, because it came 
into existence when I was in Los Angeles. 

Charlie Jones, who was president of Richfield Oil, I 
think was probably the godfather of it. He had a young man 
working for him. Gosh, I can't remember his name. He's still 
with the company. They were attracting the attention of a lot 
of good names in Los Angeles, and they were instrumental in 
raising some money. It was Rod something [Rood] who carried 
on, but before him there was an employee of Richfield who was 
really the godfather, under Charlie Jones's direction. 

Fry: Was it primarily of Southern California membership? 

Jorgensen: Yes. 

Fry: And primarily a fundraiser? 

Jorgensen: Fundraiser, and then they'd hold luncheon meetings and have 

speakers and that sort of thing. They would endorse candidates. 

*See interview with Judge Stanley Barnes in Earl Warren's 
Campaigns, Vol. I, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft 
Library, University of California, Berkeley, 1976. 


Fry: Speakers for what—for candidates? 

Jorgensen: They just had speakers come in and tell them what's going on 

in the world. I don't think they really ever had a great 
deal of clout. 




[end tape 1, side 2; begin tape 2, side 1] 

The Decision to Run 

Fry: I wanted to ask you about this letter from Roy Day which gives 
us the date here of November 1, 1949. Nixon writes to Roy 
Day and says, "I promised to let you know my decision relative 
to the United States Senate race next year. I have now decided 
to seek the post." 

Jorgensen: The decision was made some time before that. 

Fry: What can you tell us about the beginnings of that decision? 

Jorgensen: Having to do with the 1950 Senate race of Nixon, I received 
a call from Nixon saying that a number of his friends were 
suggesting that he run for the United States Senate against 
Sheridan Downey, the Democratic incumbent. Some of us were 
fairly sure that Sheridan might not run because he was in ill 
health. I said I'd heard such talk in California but it was 
only talk. He asked me my opinion, and I said, "Stay in the 
United States House of Representatives where you're gaining 
seniority. This district will send you back again and again 
and again. You've got a good, safe district." 

He ignored my advice and asked me if I'd check around 
and said he'd call me back in a week or ten days. I did and 
he called me back. 

I said, "Well, I found some people interested, but it's 
pretty early." 

He said, "I can come out to California for a visit. Will 
you arrange a couple of meetings for me? We'll go up to 
San Francisco, for instance, and check around." 


Jorgensen: I said, "Okay." 









So I called Bert [Albert Chester] Mattel, who was then 
president of the Honolulu Oil Company and had been active in 
politics in Northern California for some years. I told Bert 
that I had been talking to Nixon. He said he knew him and 
thought well of him. I said, "Could you get together a small 
group and I'll bring Nixon up." 


So we arranged a luncheon at the Pacific Union Club at 
which Bert had about five or six influential San Franciscans, 
the majority of whom were bankers and businessmen. 

Was that the one Dinkelspiel was in on? 

Did he say he was? 

I can't remember. 

I don't think John was. I don't think he was, no. 

I think he came into the campaign later. 

Yes, I remember when. So when I arrived with Dick we had 
lunch. Mattei leaned back and he said, "All right, kid," 
(as he usually addressed me), "what's on your mind?" 

Facetiously, I said, "I'd like to introduce you to the 
next Senator from the state of California." 

Bert said, "I allow how that is a pretty good idea." 

That opened up the conversation, and the result was that 
each one around the table had a little something to say. But 
they were all favorable. 

Could you tell me who these men were? 

I cannot. I'm sorry. I really don't have a clear memory. 
Most of them were strangers to me. I had met only one of them 
before, and then I can't remember his name. He was a banker. 
The rest of them were all strangers to me. I had not met 
them before. 

What were they in ma inly --bank ing? 

Banking and general top businessmen in the community that Bert 
had worked with. 


Fry: If I knew what their businesses were, we could tie it in with 

the interview that Mr. [J. Walton] Dinkelspiel gave, or those 
people who were Northern Californian powers in the campaign. 

Jorgensen: John wasn't there at all. I just can't give you the names. 
I don't remember. Anyhow, the important thing was to get 
Mattei in our camp. He came in very readily. We went down 
and visited around with two or three people in the afternoon. 

We had already had a meeting in Los Angeles which I 
didn't attend. I set it up, but I was busy that day and 
couldn't go with Nixon. He got the same reaction there. 

I can remember that Dick and I shared a bedroom going 
back on the Lark to Los Angeles that night. It was a warm 
evening, and both of us were sitting in our shorts in the 
bedroom talking. I was going to climb in the upper bunk and 
go to sleep. He was sitting in deep study. As I was about 
ready to get up, I said, "Well, you've made up your mind, 
haven't you?" 

He said, "Yes. We're going to go." That was the final 
decision that he made that he was going to run for the Senate. 

Bringing in Brennan and Chotiner 

Jorgensen: Then I came awake and said, "Well, now, if you're going to do 
that, you've got to think about getting organized. Who the 
hell's going to run your campaign?" 

"Why," he said, "you fellows in the district." 

I said, "Dick, we're amateurs at this business. None of 
us has ever been involved in a statewide campaign. We could 
run one for you on the district, but when you talk about state 
we've got a real problem on our hands." 

So we started discussing names of people that might 
head up the campaign as chairman. We finally pretty much 
centered on a fellow by the name of Bernard Brennan, who 
was an attorney in Los Angeles. Bernie (as we knew him) 
had been involved in statewide campaigns with Warren and 
Bill Knowland. We felt that he would have the know-how to 
get us started. 


Jorgensen: He said, "Now who will we get to manage the campaign? Would 
you do it?" 

I said, "No, Dick, I can't take the time to do it, but 
I'll act as the ramrod and keep it glued together." So we 
talked about this and that one. We wanted to get a man who 
had showed some ability along this line. I finally suggested, 
"Why not Murray Chotiner? Murray's a pretty agile individual. 
He's got good political sense." 

He said, "All right. If you decide to do it, you make 
your deal with him." 

The next day in Los Angeles, I called Bernard Brennan 
and said, "Bernie, would you like to be chairman of the Nixon 

He said, "Yes, I would." 

I said, "What will it cost us?" 

He said, "I'll take the chairmanship, but I don't want 
any pay, except expenses." 

I said, "That's very nice of you because we haven't got 
any money. Why don't you meet me over at the Athletic Club 
for lunch," which he did. We talked about this and that and 
the other thing. 

When I brought up Chotiner 's name, he said, "I don't think 
we could find a better man." 

I said, "Fine. I'll call Murray Chotiner and get him 
together for lunch." So I did. 

A few days later Murray came in to have lunch with Bernie 
and I at the club. I said to Chotiner- -whom I knew quite well 
by that time, knew how to deal with him--'Murray, are you 
interested in the Nixon campaign?" 

He said, "Sure, I am." 

I said, "How would you like to take on the job of 
campaign manager?" 

He said, "Fine." 

I said, "All right. Now, how much money is it going to 


Jorgensen: Murray then got his negotiating hat on and gave me a price. 
I said, "Murray, you're talking through your hat. We can't 
raise that kind of money." As I recall (and I could be in 
error on this point), I think he wanted $25,000 for the primary 
and $35,000 for the general election. Don't hold me to these 
figures because it's been too long ago and I have nothing to 
substantiate them. 

Finally I said, 'Murray, I'll tell you what we'll do. 
We'll promise you $12,500 for the primary. If we win the 
primary and we get the money, we'll talk about the general 
election when it comes along. Is that agreeable?" 

He said, "It is." 

I said, "fine," and we shook hands on it. 

I knew that Murray was very impatient with people who 
didn't have the I.Q. that he had. He had the habit of a man 
like that of tramping on them. He'd move ahead. He'd just 
leave wreckage behind him, but he would get the job done. 
So before we left I said, "Murray, now, you're going to be 
campaign manager, and here's what Bernie and I expect you to 
do. We outlined our organizational plan. We said, "If you 
do not follow the plan, just pick up your hat and go home. 
Do we understand this?" 

Murray said, "I understand it." 

I'll say this for Chotiner, he did a magnificent job for 
us in that campaign and never caused a bit of trouble and had 
greatly to do with the success of the campaign- -there 's no 
question about it--his thinking, his facility to execute, to 
get the campaign rolling, on the move. I did have to shield 
him a bit from the volunteers. I more or less took on the 
volunteer activities because Murray, being the pro that he 
was, was impatient with people who didn't move as fast as 
he wanted them to do. 

Now at this point we had no money whatsoever, so that 
for the beginning, we kind of handled the campaign out of my 
office. I can recall [laughter], Nixon would be in the 
office and some clients would come in, and I'd have to ask 
him to go to the back office. We were in the W.M. Garland 
Building at Ninth and Spring Streets. Jack Garland was then 
the owner and manager. 

Fry: Yes. That's the man you were telling me about at lunch. 


Jorgensen: He was the brother-in-law of Norman Chandler. 

I said, "Jack, we need some office space for the Nixon 
campaign." He was very favorably impressed with Nixon. 

He said, "All right. I've got a couple of offices down 
on the second floor you can have." Before we were through, 
we had the whole second floor. We ran the campaign out of that 
during the primary and the general election. Jack was very 
fair to us as to the charges he made, because we weren't in a 
position to raise very much money. 

We then started to organize the state—that is, Brennan 
did--and from then on we were into the campaign. 

Fry: Is it time yet for you to describe to me what the differences 

were in the way you had your plans drawn for Chotiner's duties 
and Brennan 's duties and your duties? 

Jorgensen: Brennan was chairman of the campaign, and that meant overall 
jurisdiction of the campaign. He was the boss man. Chotiner 
was the campaign manager, reporting to Brennan. I occupied 
the position of no title, except as a ramrod who was kind of 
keeping the whole thing together, [laughing] When there was 
difficulties I always got them. But my job was to start 
arranging for money, get the volunteers organized as much as 
possible, and just generally do all the jobs that had to be 
done. I had no title whatsoever and never sought one. My 
situation was at the time that I didn't particularly seek a 
title. I didn't have to have a title. I just enjoyed doing 
the work. That's about it. 

Fry: Mr. Dinkelspiel thought you were the head of the whole state 

and that Brennan was Southern California. Is that the way it 
sort of worked out? [laughter] 

Jorgensen: That's sort of the way it worked out, because they all knew 
that Nixon depended on me to get this thing done. Therefore, 
they knew that I had his ear and that I was being consulted 
by him and that I was indicating to him what he ought to do 
and what he ought not to do, organizational-wise at least. 
I was just the invisible man, so as to speak, enjoying the 
job. Generally people listened to me, because the main thing 
I did — there was no money spent on that campaign without I 
approved it. I found that in politics, he who controls the 
funds has pretty good control of the campaign. That was 
basically what I did. 

Primary Contenders 


Jorgensen: The campaign went along, and we won, as you recall. In the 

primary we had really no opposition. We had one young fellow 
who filed in on a Republican ticket—oh, wait a minute. I'm 
wrong. I'm thinking of something else at the moment. 

Fry: What about Raymond Darby? 

Jorgensen: [laughter] Oh yes, I'll tell you a little story about Raymond 
Darby. Darby was a supervisor on the board of supervisors in 
Los Angeles. He wanted to run. One day I get a call from a 
chap. I'll be damned if I can remember his last name. He 
was head of the Merchants' Association or something like that, 
and quite an important man. He said so himself. 1 

He said, "I wish you'd bring Mr. Nixon and meet with Mr. 
Darby in my office." 

I said, "What for?" 

He said, "Well, you've got two heavy contenders here, and 
we ought to talk about this." 

I said, "Fine." 

I called Dick. He'd come back to California by this time 
and was ready to campaign. So we went over to the office. We 
were shown into this nice office and presented to Mr. Darby, 
who I had met, and the telephone rang. This fellow got on the 
phone and he said [in a loud voice], "Oh, is that right] You 
raised $10,000 already? Wonderful, wonderful] How much are 
you going to get--$100,000? Oh, fine. 1 " Down went the telephone. 
No comment. 

Pretty soon the telephone rings again, [loudly] "Hello, 
Jim. 1 Is that right, Jim? They're really going for it, huh? 
You think you can raise your $100,000? That's fine." I'm not 
saying so, but I know what's going on. These telephone calls 
are coming from the secretary outside. 

In the meantime Darby says to Nixon, "Dick, you're a nice 
fellow," or something along this line, "but you can't win. 
I'll kill you. I'll just smother you in this campaign and the 
primary." Richard looks at me, and I just smiled and sat there. 
Another telephone call came in--some more money reported. So 
this went on for a while, and finally we said, "Thank you very 
much. We've enjoyed visiting with you. We're still running 
for the United States Senate." And we got up and left. 


Jorgensen: When we got downstairs we were both laughing so damn hard as 
we went out of the building to think that they could pull a 
trick like this on us. Darby, of course, never was much of a 
factor. And we went on. I don't recall any more opposition 
than that. Do you have anything? 

Fry: At one point Knight may have been considered. Then Judge 

Frederick Houser. 

Jorgensen: Fred Houser thought that he wanted to, but we had a talk with 
Fred. I knew Fred, and after we'd had some conversation, he 
decided not to run for Senator. 

Fry: He agreed to pull out? 

Jorgensen: I don't know that he agreed to pull out, but he didn't run. 
You see, Nixon had at this time a tremendous national 
reputation as a result of the Un-American Activities Committee. 
He was a big man. 

Fry: And the Hiss Case had just happened. 

Jorgensen: The Hiss Case had built him. He was a tremendous figure in 
the public mind. All we were worried about now was, "Is 
Downey going to run again?" There were two opponents in the 
Democratic ticket—Manchester Boddy, who ran a newspaper called 
the Los Angeles Dally News, as I recall, and Helen Gahagan 
Douglas who was the actress. They were running in the primary. 
We were only concerned with who won there really. We weren't 
concerned about our getting the nomination. We were pretty 
sure that Dick could get the nomination. Every poll indicated 
to us there was no question about it. And we were hoping that 
we would get Helen Gahagan Douglas as the opponent rather than 
Boddy. Boddy we thought would run a better campaign than 

Now, nothing personally against her—she's a very charming 
person. I met her on two or three occasions, a very lovely 
lady. Unfortunately, she was a congressman from the Fourteenth 
Congressional District, which was a district from which people 
ran for Congress but didn't live in the district. Jimmy 
Roosevelt was elected out of that district. It was a district 
located down Central Avenue and had a large Negro population. 
I think Roosevelt, Gahagan Douglas, and it seems to me there 
was one other person, were elected from that district and never 
even lived in it. 


Planning Strategy 

Jorgensen: So when the primary was over we had won our nomination, and 
Helen Gahagan Douglas had won hers. I can remember then 
planning for the general election and sitting around and 
planning, as you do, what are going to be the issues. Of 
course, Nixon at that time was very high on this Communist 
thing. That was one of his chief points. He used that quite 
regularly. But his other things that he was talking about 
in the campaign made sense to the farmers up in the Valley 
and industrialists and people generally. It was his time— 
a time that he fit into the picture, no question about it. 

Fry: By this time you had come around to think that he shouldn't 

stay forever in the House? 

Jorgensen: Well, I came around because I was a friend and he wanted to 

do it, and I'd work for him. But at the time he asked me, it 
seemed to me—and I must say a lot of people joined me in it. 
Herman Perry felt the same way about it. 

Fry: That he shouldn't run. 

Jorgensen: That he shouldn't run for the Senate because we'd like to see 
him gain seniority in the House and get to be an important 
chairman of an important committee. 

Fry: Did you also have other meetings in the south at this time 

to sound out whether he had enough support before the final 
decision was made? 

Jorgensen: Not just meetings as such, but I moved around San Diego and 
out in Orange County and talked to politicos and people who 
ordinarily get involved in campaigns and people who form 
opinions. Likewise, the newspaper situation. 

Fry: I wondered if they were checked out early. 

Jorgensen: You always do, my dear. They don't commit themselves always, 
but you'll get the feel. Kyle Palmer, for instance, was the 
political editor of the Los Angeles Times at the time. 

Fry: But much more than a political editor, I think. I get the 

idea that he really was a doer as well as a reporter. 

Jorgensen: Kyle was an important fellow in politics because he had such 
a big newspaper behind him. By and large, the Chandlers 
trusted Kyle's opinions, and they would generally follow his 


Jorgensen: lead as far as politics are concerned. Norman Chandler then 
was running the paper. So Kyle was an important man to have 
in your corner. There wasn't any question about it, that 
Kyle was with us. 

We thought the Hearst papers were coming along. The 
Chronicle here in San Francisco had indicated support. We 
knew that we wouldn't get the McClatchy papers in the Valley. 
We didn't expect those because they generally go Democratic 
regardless of who's running. But overall it looked very 

Jorgensen : 


When we won the nomination we started to decide on 
strategies. I recall one of the strategies. I had something 
to do with this. Excuse me for using the "I," but I remember 
it very well. We were up in Santa Barbara over a long weekend 
to discuss and plan the campaign. 

At San Ysidro Ranch. 

San Ysidro. Yes, that's right, sitting around and talking and 
planning this campaign. I said to them, "Now we have a woman 
who is running in opposition. I've learned enough in politics 
to know that the average woman in politics reasons with her 
emotions rather than her head." This proved true in this 

As you know, in political campaigns --this thing that 
happened at Watergate was such a silly, stupid thing--your 
opposition will always try to plant somebody in your campaign 
headquarters, usually a big, tall, statuesque, blond, blue-eyed, 
endowed with nature's things so she shows off well. She's a 
secretary or she's a clerk, and she listens in and she looks 
at correspondence and reports back to the enemy's camp. 
Everybody did this in those days, and I think they still do, 
as far as that's concerned. But it's stupid.' 

Allow me to go back to what happened in Watergate, 
was no reason for this whatsoever. 

You mean to break in in the first place? 


Jorgensen: To try to bug a headquarters, and particularly national 

headquarters, which knows nothing. But what are you concerned 
about in your opposition? 


Cubans? [laughter] 


Jorgensen: How much money do they have? Doesn't make a damn bit of 

difference to you how much money they have. It's how much 
money you have to defray your campaign, to do what you want. 
You don't need to know how much money they have. That's 
beside the point. 

Secondly, what is their strategy? A successful candidate 
lays the strategy, and he makes his opponent play his game. 
Particularly, an incumbent officeholder should never let his 
opposition debate him. He should never meet him in debate. 
Nixon made that mistake when he met with Kennedy in the first 
presidential campaign. He made a tremendous mistake. You 
don't let your opposition get on the same platform. You 
ignore him'. The only thing you're really concerned about is 
knowing what his itinerary is so you can move ahead of him. 

Fry: Not afterwards? 

Jorgensen: No. A good politician, in my opinion, doesn't answer his 
opponent. He makes the opponent answer him. He ignores. 
Oh, he can't ignore entirely, but he does for the most part. 

So it was decided that we would move up ahead of Mrs. 
Douglas, which we did in the Valley, starting at Bakersfield, 
right up the line. (And you don't have to bug a headquarters 
to get an itinerary. Any newspaperman can give you that.) 

We equipped a station wagon with broadcasting equipment 
and had a sedan for Mr. Nixon and the staff sent along with him. 
They moved into a town or city, picked a street corner, set 
up the equipment, and he'd start talking. 

In the meantime we had several advance men there to 
arrange an interview at the radio station. He'd always have 
interviews with the newspapers in town. He 'd have a 
breakfast meeting at which he'd probably speak to the 
businessmen or a luncheon where the women would be together. 
We worked the hell out of him. But he was ahead of his 

Fry: By how far--a day or two? 

Jorgensen: Two, three, four days --whatever you could work out. He'd 
stop and drop something for Mrs. Douglas to answer. 

Fry: This was largely the 160-acre limitation issue? 

Jorgensen: Lots of things. 




And the Brennan plan? 

Jorgensen: Yes. Our suspicions were right. Helen Gahagan Douglas spent 
up until the last thirty days of her campaign answering the 
question Mr. Nixon had asked her. 

Was Reagan on her staff? 

Jorgensen: He was a Democrat and on her staff. He worked for her in that 

Finally, somebody got to her and told her, "Hell, you're 
not running your own campaign. You're doing nothing but 
answering this man [Nixon]." 

The Pink Sheet 

Jorgensen: Now we come to the "pink sheet." The press never forgave him 
for this. They keep hammering. I had a man out here from 
Washington about two months ago. He called me from Washington 
and said, "I want to have lunch with you." He was a reporter 
from the Washington Post. He brought this up. 

'Veil," I said, "do you want facts?" 

"Yes, I want the facts. Why did you use pink paper?" 

I said, "Look." Remember Marcantonio when he was a 
congressman from New York--a red-ass Red if there ever was 
one. When Dick started to run for the Senate, Marcantonio 
was supposed to have come to him (Dick told me this) and said, 
"Dick, do you want me to work for you or against you?" They 
were friends in the House. But Marcantonio was a Communist, 
and he said he was. 

You see, Mrs. Douglas was a liberal, quite liberal in 
those days. Her voting record had been fairly liberal. So 
all that was done was list the voting record of Marcantonio 
and list the voting record of Helen Gahagan Douglas. 

No lies—these are facts we got out of the Congressional 
Record. But we put it on pink paper. People drew their own 
conclusion. Now you say, well, that isn't good politics. Oh, 
there's been a lot rougher politics than I'd ever useJ And 
that's the story of the pink sheet. 


The Press and Nixon 





But you see, the press — the media — had been after this man 
ever since he proved they were wrong in the Alger Hiss case. 
Practically to a man your media said, "Hiss is innocent. 
He can't be a traitor." This man proved they were wrong. 
That's the first thing that happened. They never forgave him 
for that. This goes way back in time. They never forgave him. 

If you go back through his campaigns — and I was sensitive 
to it, of course, watching television, listening to radio and 
reading — they were always giving him poor coverage. As an 
example, "Senator Nixon rose in the chamber and gave a tirade 
against So-and-so and So-and-so. [Changing tone] Senator Doe 
from Oshkosh gave them a learned discussion of the subject." 
Always cutting, cutting, cutting. This man, I think, held up 
under it pretty well. 

Still, it you travel across this country and buy a 
newspaper, which I've done so many times, you read the feature 
writers and then you turn to the editorial page, and you 
wouldn't think you were reading the same paper — the editorial 
page fully supporting the Republican and the feature writers 
cutting him up all the time. 

Yes. The percentage of papers that had Republican editorial 
politics was way up, I think, above the 80 percent mark in the 
early fifties. But there was a horizontal line across 
newspaper staffs, I guess, and below a certain point they 
were anti-Nixon. 

I've watched these television people. Ed Murrow was one of 
the worst of the group. I hated Ed Murrow with a fervor 
because I thought he was a mountebank; he was a cutter too. 

Then, of course, after Nixon was defeated for the 
governorship [1962] out here in California, he did something 
which he shouldn't have done. H_e got mad, went downstairs, 
and blew his top. "You can't kick me around anymore." A 
little of a cry-baby attitude. They never forgot that. 

That was years and years and years of resentment coming out. 


Thoughts on Some Watergate Figures 

Jorgensen: That's one of the places he got into trouble in this Watergate 
mess — the media was waiting for him. Now they had something. 
History will record that the media convicted him and ran him 
out of office. 

I condone nothing that he did. I think he was stupid. 
I think the people around him were stupid. He made the 
mistake of having people around him who were inexperienced 
in day-to-day politics. [H.R.] Haldeman didn't know anything; 
[John] Ehrlichman didn't know anything; [John] Dean didn't know 
anything. These were all young men. Jeb Magruder — I knew Jeb , 
an ambitious kid. But none of them knew a damn thing about 
how the Hill works. 

Fry: Their experience had been in his campaigns out here, I guess, 


Jorgensen: Yes. Let me give you Magruder 's experience. He was working 

for the Broadway Department Stores. Jeb wanted to do something 
in the 1968 presidential campaign, and I gave him a job in Los 
Angeles. Here was a fine-looking young man, good brain, hard 
worker, and full of ambition. My chief job with Jeb was to 
keep him doing the thing he was supposed to do and not try to do 
everything for everybody else. But that was his political 
experience before they took him to the White House. 

Fry: That was it? 

Jorgensen: Haldeman worked with Nixon in his first presidential campaign 
and in his gubernatorial campaign. 

Fry: His first campaigns? 

Jorgensen: When he ran against Kennedy. Ehrlichman was an advance man in 
the campaign. The rest of them I don't know too much about. 
But basically they were all young. Haldeman admits that in 
his television appearance here he's making. 

The Role of County Organizations 

Jorgensen: Anyhow, we won the senatorial campaign. As I remember, around 
700,000 plurality, or something in that neighborhood. So 
that's the end, unless you have some questions on the 
senatorial campaign. 





Yes, I do. 

Who was your county organizer? Was that Bernie 

Yes, that was Bernie's job. 

Okay. Were you separate from the Republican county organizations' 
You set up a separate organization? 

You generally do, not always. The county organization should 
remain neutral in the primary because you'll have more than one 
Republican running for the job, and they can't take the 
position of endorsing one. Occasionally they do, but not very 

As a matter of fact, I think there's a law now that 
prohibits it. In the general election county organizations 
are supposed to support the nominee, of course. But by that 
time the candidate has built his organization. He had to 
start building it in the primaries, so he was going to carry 
it through if it worked well for him. Otherwise he'd change it 
and restructure it. So, by and large, your statewide candidate 
will organize his own campaign. 

We always worked with the county chairmen. I would talk 
to them. For instance, I might get in the car and drive in 
some of the larger counties, tell them I'm coming and sit 
down with them and say, "Joe, tell me, I'm going to run Joe 
Dokes for office. What do you think?" He's supposed to reflect 
back to me. He's got his ear to the ground; he should have 
if he's doing his job. You get a feel from him. Likewise, 
if you're trying to recruit able people, he will lead you to 
able people and tell you who he thinks is good people to do a 
job for you. So you get help in your recruiting. 

Observations on Earl Warren 




What about Nixon's relationship to the other candidates 
running statewide? Shattuck was running for attorney general 
and Warren was running for governor. Were there any places 
where these three ran together? 

Warren would never run with anybody; you know that. He would 
never allow another candidate on the platform with him. Did 
you know that? 

Yes, I had heard that. But I had also heard that Nixon or 
Chotiner tried very hard to get Warren to come out for Nixon. 


Jorgensen: He did. 

Fry: One of the stories that appears in books about the 1950 

campaign, one of Chotiner's I think, is that they sent some 
young Republicans around to bug Helen Douglas into coming 
out for Jimmy Roosevelt, so that they could use this as a 
lever to apply to Warren to come out for Nixon. Do you know 
anything about that? 

Jorgensen: No, I don't know anything about that. I never believed in 
bugging. I don't think you'd accomplish anything. 

Fry: I'm sorry. By "bug" I meant after meetings that she was 

holding, to stand up from the audience and bother her into 
coming out for Jimmy Roosevelt. 

Jorgensen: I suppose those things are done, but certainly the head of the 
campaign shouldn't condone anything of that sort. 

Fry: The object wasn't really to get her to come out for Roosevelt. 

It was to get Warren to say something about Nixon. I think 
eventually he did. 

Jorgensen: He did not. 

Fry: In sort of a neutral way? 

Jorgensen: Not very much. He never would endorse him. Why hellj His 

own man, Bill Knowland--he wouldn't even endorse Bill KnowlandJ 
And he appointed him to the Senate. 

I didn't know Warren too well. I'd met with him. I 
remember one session I had. I had come up to a meeting in 
Sacramento. We had a school situation. A certain law had to 
be revised which was routine, I was told by our school people. 

So I went up to Sacramento and I was talking to the 
governor. I said, "Governor, we need this piece of legislation 
to go through so that we can do so-and-so." My memory doesn't 
serve me, but certainly there would have been nothing wrong 
with it. 

"Oh," he said, "I can't do that." 

I said, "Why not? It's not controversial. It's allowing 
us to do what other school districts are doing." 

And for some reason, he said, 'Veil, that's the trouble 
with you county chairmen. By God, the only time you ever come 
around to see me is when you want something done." 


Jorgensen: I said, "What's wrong with that? We work our ass off for you 
during election time." And we got into quite a hassle. 
There were words, which I won't repeat on this tape, passed. 
So I never saw eye to eye with Earl Warren. 

The last time I saw Earl Warren was in Washington. There 
was a meeting down there; it was a big one out at the armory. 
I went down from New York, and as I was walking around, here 
was Earl and Nina, standing alone, not a soul coming up to 
greet them or say hello! I thought, "What a shameful thing 
to happen to a manl" 

Fry: He was Chief Justice then? 

Jorgensen: Yes. There was something; I've forgotten what it was. 

Fry: Was it a Republican-- No, it wouldn't — 

Jorgensen: Yes, it was a Republican thing. I don't know what the meeting 
was for. It was a waste of time I know, and money. 

Campaign Organizers 

Fry: Let's see. I have a few more questions to ask you on the 

organization of the 1950 senatorial campaign. Did you use 
these Republican Associates in this campaign? 

Jorgensen: I just can't answer. Were the Associates in being at that 

Fry: Yes, I think so. 

Jorgensen: Well, if they were, I'm sure that they endorsed Nixon. 

Fry: Did you have a speaker's bureau? 

Jorgensen: Yes. 

Fry: That went out all over the state? 

Jorgensen: It didn't go out all over the state, but covered large 
population centers. 

Fry: They were local --through the counties? 

Jorgensen: Sidney Laughlin in Los Angeles was chairman of the speaker's 


Fry: What were the flying squadron? 

Jorgensen: Damned if I know. As you get into a campaign a lot of these 
young people want to get involved, and so you get a lot of 
hoopla. They'll go to meetings and put up the whoop-de-doo, 
and singing and dancing and costumes and waving banners. I 
suspect that's what it was. I don't remember anything about 
a flying squadron. 

Fry: I was going to ask you about some names here that have 

appeared in the press. Was Herbert KLein a publicity writer? 

Jorgensen: Herbert KLein worked for the one big newspaper in Alhambra. 
Herb helped us—let's put it that way--on publicity and 
writing, I believe, in both of the congressional races. I 
think so. I'm sure he was involved in the senatorial campaign. 
Herb worked in publicity and editorial writing. 

Fry: Nixon's close friend, Jack Drown, we haven't talked about 

very much. I'm told that he was an advance man in the 

Jorgensen: You see, Jack's wife [Helene] and Pat Nixon were schoolgirls 

together, and they've remained friends. Jack has a distribution 
outfit in Long Beach, magazines and that sort of thing. He's 
done very well, as far as I know. I know Jack quite well. 
When the Nixons were young, they and the Drowns saw each other 
and visited back and forth. Jack lives out in Palos Verdes. 
He has a lovely home out there. 

I can't tell you about the senatorial campaign- -what 
Drown did—but I know in the presidential campaign he was an 
advance man. I think when Nixon went for vice-president, Jack 
was in charge of the train operation—in other words, we had 
a special train— but he was always closely involved, along with 
Ray Arbuthnot. Is that another name you have there? 

Fry: That's the other name I have, yes — Ray Arbuthnot. 

Jorgensen: Ray did the same thing. Ray is a rancher and has a couple of 
thousand acres of orange groves out in Riverside County and 
a big spread up in Nevada. Wonderful guy. He was always 
working. But he was an advance man. He never held any job 
that I know of. He always helped in the district. He lived 
out in Azusa. 

tend tape 2, side 1; begin tape 2, side 2] 


Fry: There was another man whose name comes up quite a bit, 

particularly in the financial reports of the campaign. 
That's Harvey Hancock. 

Jorgensen: Harvey Hancock was in the senatorial campaign. As I recall, 

John Dinkelspiel was our Northern California chairman. Harvey 
Hancock was our Northern California manager, acting under 
Chotiner's direction. 

Fry: I understand he's down in Carmel now. 

Jorgensen: He's lived down there for years. 
Fry: How did you work with Harvey Hancock? 

Jorgensen: Oh hell, I was up and down and all around, just the same as I 
worked with everybody else—kick him in the tailbone to get 
some money, get the job done. 

Fry: In '50 was the medical profession part of your picture? 

Jorgensen: I don't particularly recall. 

Financing the Campaign 




I brought along the financial reports that were turned in to 
the state, which might not be too much help, because at that 
time I think you only had to turn in those things that were 
given to the candidate's own financial committee. 

I can't help you. I don't have any-- 

I just thought the names might mean something to you. I notice 
that you had an agriculture committee. Some of those names 
which might make you recall something were Henry L. Strobel, 
Colonel F.B. Robson. At lunch you said that a Robinson was 
important for raising money with Asa Call. Is that right? 

The Robinson you're talking about was with the Security 
Bank back in the thirties. He was a powerful man. The 
Security Bank was a powerful institution in Los Angeles. 
At that time Asa Call was the president of the Pacific 
Mutual Company. So, it was a powerful group. They were 
great op in ion -makers and influenced considerable in the 
political field. 


Fry: I just wondered if these agriculture committees served mainly 

as liaisons or as somebody who could really bring in money from 
your large agrarian landowners. 

Jorgensen: Both. 

Fry: Who were some of your big farmers in the Valley who were the 

most successful contributors to Nixon? I'll bet [Wofford B.] 
Camp was one. He's one of the best friends of our office 
[laughing], I think he mentioned that in his oral history 

Jorgensen: That name is familiar. I can't really answer that question. 
The names don't come to me readily now. But I know that we 
had good support. 

The Issues: Oil and Ant i -Communism 




I'm moving more into issues now. One of the big issues in 
that campaign was state control of tidelands--the oil. Do 
you remember if this was connected primarily with Standard 
and the big oil companies, or whether it was largely the 
independent oil companies? 

My guess and memory would indicate it was the independents. 

Then the Korean war broke out. I wondered if this changed 
the campaign any. Your anti-Communism issue was already pretty 
well established. The Korean war broke out during the 
senatorial campaign, about the middle of June, 1950. 

I don't recall that it had much effect one way or the other. 

Backing up a little bit from the Korean war, on March 12, 1950, 
Nixon came out with a public press release and speech on his 
four-point program of action to combat the Communist conspiracy. 
I think Vito Marcantonio and his voting record figured in that. 
So, I wondered if this press release was something that had 
been carefully planned for release right at that time. Do you 
remember anything about that that we should get down for the 
record? It looks like in the newspapers that this was a very 
important thing in Nixon's campaign. 

*See interview with Wofford B. Camp, Cotton. Irrigation, and 
the AAA, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, 
University of California, Berkeley, 1978. 


Jorgensen: I don't recall. As a matter of fact, Mrs. Fry, a lot of the 
decisions on issues were not consulted with me particularly, 
because I was so damn busy with the nuts and bolts that the 
boss himself, with Brennan and Chotiner, handled that. I 
would sit in and listen, but I never prided myself on being 
a great man as far as issues were concerned. I let someone 
else do that, the candidate. Mine was the nuts and bolts 

Fry: Did you do very much with techniques like torchlight parades 

or the debates? 

Jorgensen: We covered the debates. 

Fry: We covered them for the Voorhis campaign. There was one in 

the Commonwealth Club up here where he again got Helen 
Douglas off balance by pulling out a telegram from one 
"Eleanor Roosevelt." 

Jorgensen: Yes. We gave the poor woman kind of a rough time. She's 

a very nice person personally. She just was in water over her 
head. She unfortunately didn't have people around her who 
could be a hell of a lot of help for her. No, I don't think 
we used the debate much after the campaign against Voorhis 
until we got to Kennedy, and that was a cardinal mistake. 

Campaign Memorabilia 




There were a number of radio addresses. I was wondering if this 
John Wolfe and Company, which apparently made the recordings, 
might have some of those. It would be good to have them in 
the archives. Do you know anything about those? 

I don't remember. 

Do you remember anything about the things which, as historical 
evidence, would self-destruct instantly, like the radio 
addresses or the billboards? I haven't seen any pictures of 
billboards, and I haven't heard anything about the radio 
addresses that Nixon gave. This is something that there's no 
record of. 

You see, the trouble with political campaigns is nobody acts 
as an historian. 




Jorgensen : 


[laughter] I know. I've been saying for years that each 
political campaign needs an historian. But, it's the last 
thing in the world they want. 

I have boxes of stuff down in the basement that I've saved. 
I've gone through some of it and thrown it away. The other 
day I was going through something, and I found some quarter 
cards. Quarter cards are the ones you stick up on windows. 
It was the first quarter card we used with Dick Nixon. 
Which picture was on it? This picture over here [gesture], 
I think, maybe--! don't know — one of these. My son had dug 
them out some place in the attic. He'd drawn circles on the 
back of them and used them as targets, [laughter] I was 
going to send one to Dick, and then I thought no, I won't do 

None of us save any material. I recall we always used 
the red, white and blue motif on his billboards as much as 
we could—American, American, American, American. I wouldn't 
know where to turn for that stuff. I just doubt that there's 
very much around. I suppose everybody might have a little bit 
here and a little bit there. 

The financial records for instance--! have never taken a 
set of financial records after I look at the final ones and 
approve them. I leave them with the treasurer. I don't want 

I wonder if any of those would be around. 

Sure, there would be. Doug McLellan, who's the vice-president 
of the United California Bank in Los Angeles, was the treasurer 
of the 1952 campaign. Wait a minute; hold it. I'm wrong. 
Douglas J. McClelland was the treasurer of the 1968 campaign, 
and he was treasurer of the 1972 presidential campaign. He was 
treasurer of the George Murphy senatorial campaign in 1970, I 
think. I can't remember who the hell was the treasurer of the 
1952 campaign--Hartwick. Hartwick was the treasurer of the 
'52 campaign. 

Of course from now on you'll go to the secretary of state 
and you'll get a complete record because the financial reporting 
now is very tight. You have to be very thoughtful about it. 

You can tell that these earlier financial reports are just 

Jorgensen: That's right. 











It would be good if we could have some of those deposited. 
You may want to put it under seal for a while, but that would 
help eventually. Any of the campaign materials would also 
help; they would be a good supplement to your interview. 

It's unfortunate that you didn't ask me earlier. I remember 
the 1968 campaign. We had the state headquarters at the corner 
of Wilshire and Western Boulevard, and then I secured the 
same space for the Murphy campaign in 1970. I went up in the 
upstairs room, and here were bundles of presidential materials 
[laughing] still there. I had given specific instructions: 
"Get everything out of here. Don't let anything stayj Get 
it out into the campaign. 1 " And still there were things left 
over. This is always true of every campaign. It's unfortunate. 

So what did you do with it? 

I had the junk man come and get it. 
car strips and things like that. 

There were posters and 

Those things are eventually interesting museum items. 

Someday I may get down in the basement. I've got buttons and 
things that go back to the days of Nixon, for instance, in his 
first campaign. Harrison McCall got the bright idea of buying 
thimbles and have printed around the thimble, "Give the needle 
to the PAC" or something like that. We gave away thousands of 
those thimbles. 

And do you still think you have one? 

I think there's two or three around here somewhere. 

Marvelous. I hope you'll have time to come over across the 
[San Francisco] Bay and see our present exhibit which centers 
on the Earl Warren era, and includes all of the campaigns in 
this period. We didn't have very much on Nixon. You might 
enjoy seeing it. Then you can also get an idea of the sort of 
material we need. 

I will someday. 

I have just a few things to clean up here. You've already 
told me about the pink sheet. Someone mentioned that at one 
point there were some leaflets dropped by air in Southern 
California saying that if you would answer your phone--these 
were the final days of the campaign- -and instead of saying hello 
say, "Vote for Richard Nixon," you could get a sugar and creamer 
or something sent to your house. Do you remember that? [laughter] 


Jorgensen: Could be. I don't recall that. You've got people coming to 
you in a campaign saying, "I got an idea'." 

Fry: All kinds of ideas, yes. 

Jorgensen: And so, after listening to them I say, "All right. If you 
can finance it, I have no objection to your doing it." 
That's the last I'd hear of it. 

Fry: There were some interesting problems, I think, in Richard 

Nixon's support. One of them was Gerald L.K. Smith who was 
coming out strong for Nixon. Nixon repudiated him on 
September 7, 1950. Why was that? He was a good anti-Communist. 

Jorgensen: Yes, but he was nutty as a fruitcake. The boss felt that he'd 
been doing more harm that he was good. 

Support from Democrats 





We haven't talked any about the Democrats in the '50 campaign. 
Large factions of the Democrats opposed Helen Gahagan Douglas 
in the north and then came over to Nixon--more so in the north 
than in the south. I get this from a San Francisco Examiner 
article. George Creel headed some Democrats for Nixon? 


Was that the Creel who was Woodrow Wilson's publicity man? 


Are you the one who rounded up these people? Or how was that 

Jorgensen: I can't take credit for that. Always my finger was around 
in somewhere, but if I said I took care of it for him, I'd 
be lying to you. A great majority of people came and 
volunteered. Creel volunteered, I'm sure. We didn't have 
to recruit him. 

As each Democrat would come over, like Maud K. Symington and 
Alfred J. Elliott of Tulare, they would make their statement 
to the press that they had decided to come over to Nixon's 
side. Their statements always referred to the Communist 
world-wide conspiracy. I didn't know whether this was a 
determining factor in their coming over, or whether it was just 





the theme of the campaign and they all were told to make that 
statement. In other words, I'm trying to find out why they 
left the Democratic party and came to Nixon. 

I suspect that some of them came because of the Communist 
issue. We're talking about the senatorial campaign now. I 
suspect others felt that Mrs. Douglas was a little bit too 
liberal; I suspect it. 

Just generally you mean? 

Jorgensen: That's right, and a little befuddled too, because her campaign 

You see, people commence to size up a campaign long 
before election day. Take, for instance, Nixon's win against 
McGovern. Anybody with any sense could have told you sixty 
days before that campaign that McGovern didn't have a chance. 
He didn't have a chance. 

Fry: You could detect that in this campaign too, in '50? 

Jorgensen: Sure. After you've dealt with campaigns a while you get a 
sense. You sense it; you feel it; it comes to you. You're 
not wrong very often. 

More on the Pink Sheet 

Fry: As the campaign progressed did you pay any attention to what 

Helen Douglas was saying in her answers to Nixon? 

Jorgensen: Oh, sure. 

Fry: Her answer to the Marcantonio thing apparently was that Nixon 

had voted with Marcantonio too a certain number of times on 
foreign policy. Did you answer that? 

Jorgensen: We didn't say he didn't.' 
Fry: Or just let it drop? 

Jorgensen: No! The record is there. There's no use saying that he didn't 
do it. The record speaks. That's all we did on the pink sheet- 
here 's the record, but you draw your own conclusions. 

Fry: Then you didn't answer her comeback? 


Jorgensen: No.' Why? The record is there. You can't erase the record. 
Fry: Did Nixon have much support from labor? 

Jorgensen: Yes. Of course, in this last election [1972], he had a big 
labor support. In the senatorial campaign he had good labor 

Fry: I noticed that in 1950 Nixon had come out saying that trade 

unions have done the "best job in this country" in combating 
Communism. He commended AFL president William Green. Did 
they come out officially for him in this? 

Jorgensen: I don't think nationally they did, but you'd have your local 
unions which would endorse him. Of course, we were always 
working on that too. We had labor men. For instance, in the 
motion picture business in Los Angeles we had certain Republicans 
in the labor union working. They were paid. They were part of 
the job. 

We had a labor committee set up. In politics you set up 
committee, committee, committee, committee. You have a 
committee for beauticians, a committee for aviation, a committee 
for garbage collectors, a committee for masseurs. You have 
committee, committee, committee. Most of these committees are 
paper committees. But some gal is interested and you say, "All 
right, Mrs. Fry, you go ahead and organize a committee for the 
interviewing industry or whatever you want." 

Fry: Oral historians, [laughter] 

Jorgensen: She'd say, "Well, how will I finance it?" 

"You can certainly finance it yourself. You were able to 
get enough people interested. It doesn't cost you much to buy 
some paper you could print it on and mimeograph. Now you send 
that out to all your members." 

Fry: You make it sound so easy. 

Jorgensen: It is easy. You send it out to them. Maybe you send it out 
to ten thousand in the state of California, and you add in 
there, "Help financially." You'll defray your expenses more. 
That extra money comes back into the campaign fund. So you 
get all these committees you want. Hell, I had committees from 
knife-sharpeners down, [laughter] You lose track of them; 
they get just that long. 

Fry: Did you have to have ethnic groups too then? 


Jorgensen: Sure. I should say so. You have Italian. Hell, the Chinese 
here in San Francisco are organized up to their earlobes. 

Fry: Really? 

Jorgensen: You bet your life. They really go to work. And the Italians, 
the Jews, the Negroes. Sure. You try to get all of those 
groups to have representation to your campaign. You don't have 
to recruit them. They seek you; they'll come to you — leaders. 

[tape off] 

Joseph McCarthy 






Helen Douglas had Averell Harriman and Attorney General J. 
Howard McGrath come out to California for her. I think fairly 
early in the campaign McCarthy came out and made a speech in 
Los Angeles. But I didn't find any speeches that he gave here 
in Northern California. Was that the extent of his speeches? 

I don't think I recall McCarthy's visit to Los Angeles frankly. 
I can't give you the date on it, but it's in — there's a note. 
I don't say it didn't happen. I just don't remember. 

I thought maybe if I could tell you whether it was in the fall 
or spring. 

No, it doesn't bring anything to memory. 

He may not have come out precisely for that. He may have come 
out for something else, because at that time McCarthy was just 
beginning to get started on his own anti-Communist campaign. 

Of course Nixon was getting — he had supported McCarthy, I think, 
or rather had stood back of him until McCarthy finally just 
got to be a psycho case. Then Dick moved away from him. 

I think just the day before Nixon announced, on November 4, 
[1949], he had called for a special commission to be formed to 
follow up McCarthy's charges for an investigation of the 
State Department. I think the reason McCarthy had asked them 
to do that was because of Nixon's position as the top Republican 
on the House Un-American Activities Committee. So at this 
point they were probably working together a lot more than they 
did later on. Do you remember if there were any other out-of- 
state people — big, national guns — who came in? 






I don't recall really that there was. I think we ran our 
campaign pretty much ourselves. Nixon had a real beautiful 
image at this time. 

Apparently he was a terribly effective public speaker. 
He was an excellent man on the platform. 
That's why I wish we could get some records. 

I'll tell you what I'll do, Mrs. Fry. I don't know how 
successful I'll be. I'll be in Washington in about ten days. 
They're gathering the stuff up back there. I'll ask a couple 
of people who are working on it if they've got any records. 
I imagine it's in a hell of a mess. They've been cleaning out 
his stuff up at the White House and getting it out of there 
and shipping it out. Of course, part of his papers are being 
held. But this stuff would be back. I'll see what I can do. 

Yes, this would be his California years that I think would 
belong in The Bancroft Library, or the California sections of 
his national campaigns or anything like that. It can sit there 
under seal for any length of time. 

Donors and Supporters 




Let me hand you this list here. Here's a list of people whose 
names I've picked up from other interviews and from the budget 
list who might have helped, especially in the '50 campaign, and 
others who might have been just general Republican donors. I 
thought that might bring some more names to mind. 

Jes Dart. He's head of Dart Enterprises, which is the drug 
outfit. He has a series of drugstores. Jes is a pretty good 
Republican. He's raised money for everybody, as well as for 

Leigh Battson. Yes, he's helped. Leigh at one time was 
a good money raiser. Mendel Silberberg was always a good man in 
the movie business. Mendel always came through. Frank Doherty — 
always stable. [tape off] Of course, he's always been a good 
money man. 

Did Dean Witter go back as far as 1950? 
what time span he covered. 

I don't know quite 


Jorgensen: Yes. Neil Petrie was in the furniture business down in Los 
Angeles. I can't think of the firm. He was a civic leader. 

There was Willard Keith also, who was basically in the 
insurance business, but many other things. They were always 
good. Charlie Thomas — I've already told you about Charlie 
Thomas. He was a money raiser and was secretary of the navy. 

Fry: After he was secretary of the navy was it Knowland's campaign 
that he headed? 

Jorgensen: He was finance chairman. Paul Shoup was a little ahead of my 
time, but he had a good reputation. 

Fry: What was Paul Shoup in? 

Jorgensen: Southern Pacific and many other things. 

Fry: I was connecting him with Merchants and Manufacturers Association. 
A lot of other things, I guess. 

Jorgensen: Yes, many things. We've talked about Silberberg and Kyle 

Palmer. Frank Freeman was always a big help to us in the movie 
business. Louis Meyer was always helping, and he also told you 
how to do it. He was the king of the roost in his place. 

Fry: [laughing] Did he ever tangle with Asa Call? 

Jorgensen: Not that I know of. Keith Spalding — another man in Los Angeles 
who was always a good party man; he'd raise money. Harold 
Morton — he represented the independent oil companies for 
quite a number of years. Carl Miller — he was always a help. 
He ran the Pacific Coast edition of the Wall Street Journal. 

Fry: That was his main job? 

Jorgensen: Yes. Roy Crocker was one of the men who was early in the 
Nixon camp. He's in the building and loan business. 

Fry: When I talked to Asa Call, I talked to Roy Crocker that afternoon. 

Jorgensen: How is Roy? I haven't seen him in a couple of years. 

Fry: He still goes to his office too every day. 

Jorgensen: Must be getting pretty well along in years. 

Fry: But he's still right there with his fabulous collection of 
historic documents from Napoleon to Abraham Lincoln. 



The Checkers Speech 

Jorgensen: Were you in on the events around the fund that Dana Smith was 
trustee on? 

Fry: Yes. That's in 1952 — the Checkers fund. 

Jorgensen: I was there. 

Fry: Were you? That broke on that train, didn't it? Nixon was on 

the train. 

Jorgensen: The St. Louis Dispatch was the one that broke the story, and 
Nixon was up in Oregon when the story broke. 

Fry: I thought he was in Bakersfield. 

Jorgensen: He was on his way up. He was going through the Valley, 
[end tape 2, side 2] 

[The following segment is taken from the end of tape 3, side 1. ] 

I pitched off the rally in Pomona as the chairman of the 
county. Then we had introductions. Dick got on the train and 
went off, and I went back to work. The next I heard of him was 
Chotiner calling me from up in Oregon, I guess it was, about 
this so-called secret fund. 

Then we decided to raise some money. I got on the telephone 
to a few people here and there and took calls back East — I was 
calling all during the night — saying that they'd raise some 
money. I forgot the figure that it took, but it was something 
around $75,000, I think, at that time to put on that television-- 












The Checkers speech? 

The Checkers speech. Of course, that Checkers speech was 
a fantastic thing, the results that came in. Really, the 
telegrams come in by just mailbags full of them. We'd pile 
them up . 

And all to urge him to stay in, right? 
Yes, sure. 

Yes. That was amazing. Was that typical of the type of 
public speaker that Nixon was, or did he do a lot of additional 
boning up and get additional training for that one key speech? 

Oh, no. That's one of the reasons we selected him to run for 
Congress. You see, he had won quite a few prizes in debating. 
We wanted a man who could stand on a platform and express 
himself, and he had the ability then. Well, I'll tell you 
what happened. 

We sat around the Ambassador Hotel for two or three hours 
in the afternoon with him, offering suggestions. He kept notes 
on this yellow pad that he carried. Finally he said, "All 
right, fellows, I'm going into the bedroom and think about 
this." So he wrote out his remarks there. 

He only wanted one person to go to the television station 
with him, and that was Chotiner. The rest of us scurried 
around. I went home. I was having a dinner party that night. 
I went home and we delayed the dinner until the TV speech on 
the fund came on. I said to my guests, "Watch what happens. 
The American people will just absolutely endorse this 100 

And they did. But do you mean he wrote that speech by himself? 
Yes , oh yes . 

No kidding! I thought he would have had batteries of experts 
on that, because here his whole career was at stake. 

No, even when he became president he would make out 
the outline of his speeches. 

So he didn't have anyone to help him? 

No, I don't think he had a speech writer while he was vice- 
president. I'm sure he did after becoming president, naturally 
with all the speeches he had to make. But he would write down— 


Jorgensen: even then — the main points and let somebody fill in material 
to support it. Then he would check it back and forth. Rose 
Woods wrote most of those for him. I was in Washington last 
week. We were talking about various and sundry things. We 
mentioned his speech writing, and she said, "Well, Frank, he 
wrote almost all of his own speeches." When I say he wrote 
them I mean he wrote the guts and then have people fill in 
materials to support it and polish it and make suggestions. 

I've watched him many times when he was in California 
before he went back as vice-president. We'd be riding in the 
car and that yellow pad would be out on his knee and he'd be 
jotting down things as we were driving out someplace where he 
was going to give a talk. 

The National Convention 

The Train Ride 

[Interview 2: April 22, 1975] 
[begin tape 3, side 1] 


When did you first begin in the '52 campaign? Were you in on 
the decision to form the delegation? I think this was the 
coalition delegation with Earl Warren as a definite presidential 

Jorgensen: And Senator Knowland. 
Fry: Yes. 



In 1952 I was living in Los Angeles and was still the head of 
the Los Angeles County Central Committee. I did not have a 
great deal to do with the formation of the delegation except to 
advise and counsel Bernard Brennan. 

I was also a delegate to the Republican national convention, 
which would normally come to the chairman of the county central 
committee. As I recall, I gave up my appointment as delegate 
to Jack Garland, who had been a staunch supporter of the party 
and who felt it was a great honor to be a delegate. I took the 
alternate position on the delegation. 

Yes, there's your name on the delegation list there. [refers 
to list] Do you remember who asked you to be on the delegation 
and how? 


Jorgensen: I think it was just a foregone conclusion that the chairman 

of the biggest county in the state would be on the delegation. 
There wasn't any question about it. I don't remember having 
to ask to get on or even suggesting that I would be on. As a 
matter of fact, I felt at that time that I had enough clout 
in party organization that I didn't need to be a delegate as 
long as I could attend the convention as an alternate — my 
reason for giving up the seat to Mr. Garland. But I can't 
give you much from memory as to the formation of the delegation. 
I think that probably went to the grave with Bernie Brennan 
when he passed away. 

I do know that we had a special train that was going to 
the convention. We came up from Los Angeles to Sacramento, 
and the delegation met in the assembly chambers at the state 
capitol to form itself into the formal group that would 
represent California at the Republican convention. As I 
recall, Senator Knowland was chosen as the chairman of the 

Fry: Before this there was quite a bit of talk in the newspapers 

and elsewhere about the delegation being a sort of back-up 
delegation for Eisenhower. In other words if Warren didn't 
get in, then it would go to Eisenhower. Nixon had sent out 
some questionnaires — do you remember them? — to the California 
voters, to some 23,000 selected voters, asking who they thought 
would be the strongest candidate, and it was Eisenhower. 

Jorgensen: As a matter of fact, I don't recall that there was a strong 

Taft group in the delegation. There were those who felt that 
Taft was a good candidate, there were those who felt that 
Eisenhower was a good candidate, and there were those who were 
hoping that Warren might be the candidate. 

The delegation was pledged, as I recall, to support Warren 
through the first ballot. There had been some infighting among 
the delegates, as there always is in a political endeavor of 
this sort. It became apparent that some of the delegates 
would desert Warren on the second ballot. Bill Knowland was 
trying to hold the delegation together. There was much political 
palaver on the train going to Chicago. 

At that time I think I was fairly neutral. I felt that 
Taft was probably the stronger candidate. But when I arrived 
in Chicago on Sunday morning, by the middle of the afternoon 
I realized that Taft was losing and that Eisenhower would 
probably come along very strong on the first ballot. As 
history will tell you, Mr. Nixon flew out to Denver. He was a 
member of the delegation. 


Fry: That was when he boarded the train. 

Jorgensen: Yes, he came aboard the train. I recall that he came up to 
our joint drawing room to report on what had been going on. 
At that time he indicated that Eisenhower was running very 
strong and that Taft had lost ground in the delegation fights 
of two or three states regarding their seating. History will 
tell you what went on. The little cadre around Warren on the 
train were incensed that he would talk to his friends before he 
would report to the governor, and they managed to stir up 
considerable commotion. 

Fry: What happened? 

Jorgensen: You know, Mrs. Fry, when you get into a group like this rumors 
fly here and fly there and you start rumors and you make 
statements. If you're on the front end of the train you have 
to run pretty fast before the statement gets to the back end of 
the train. You stay up all night and you drink a lot of liquor 
and you eat a lot of food and you don't accomplish a blessed 
thing, except to enjoy yourself. 

It was apparent that probably as much as a third of the 
delegation — maybe even more — were not solid Warren supporters. 
This goes back to the fact that the governor had not been a 
leader in the Republican party. Many of us resented that. I 
was one that did, and I had so told the governor on two occasions. 
He used us for his purposes for election but gave us little or 
no direction. I remember doing so the last time in his office in 
Sacramento, and there ensued a heated discussion, but all in 
good nature. Nevertheless, a section of the delegation was — 
if I say "lukewarm" that would be about it. 

Fry: Back on the train, you were on a car with Ray Arbuthnot, Pat 
Hillings, and Harrison McCall. 

Jorgensen: The four of us had two bedrooms, and we took out the partitions 
so that we had one big room for the four of us. 

Fry: Who was the other couple? 

Jorgensen: There was Arbuthnot, Hillings, McCall and myself. This was 
fairly well up on the front of the train, as I recall. I 
guess it would be car 101. 

I remember [laughing] when we got to Sacramento it was 
hotter than the hinges of hell. We got there in the morning 
and went over to the assembly hall and held a meeting. Then 
we had a lunch and came back to the train. They had let 
these cars sit out in the boiling sun all day long and hadn't 
turned on the air conditioning. When you got in it was like 
walking into an oven. 


Jorgensen: So, we bribed the porter to bring a tub of ice. He brought 

up a couple of little jugs of ice. We said, "That won't work. 
Get a tub or something." We set that in the middle of the room. 
I think we went Western Pacific to Salt Lake City and Rio Grande 
probably over to — I don't remember. Anyhow, as we went up the 
Feather River Canyon, I can remember we were hoping it would 
cool off. They got the air conditioning started, but the cars 
just baked all night. So we stripped down and were all sitting 
in just our shorts and drinking ice cold drinks, which had 
a little something in them. I remember we didn't eat dinner 
that night till about — the steward was going out of his mind 
because we wouldn't come to dinner. [laughter] 

Fry: And you just let the tub of ice sit there? 

Jorgensen: We'd dip in it every once in a while. [laughter] 

Fry: I didn't know whether you were using it for drinks or using it 

to put your feet in. [laughter] 

Jorgensen: Somebody might have put their foot in it. But no, it was used 
for drinking. We thought it might cool off the room a little 
bit too. It melted pretty fast. 

Fry: Sounds pretty miserable. When Nixon boarded the train then in 

Denver, I think — as near as I can tell from talking to other 
people — Hillings helped him in talking to the other delegates 
about Eisenhower's chances. Was it clear to you at this time 
that there was any effort made to get people to change their 
vote from Warren to Eisenhower on the first ballot? 

Jorgensen: I don't really think so. There's been stories about that. 

Nixon did talk to us. He told us what went on in Chicago. We 
had the story pretty well. As he came on the train he came up 
to our joint bedrooms and sat there and talked to us for quite 
some time. It was evident from what he said. He even mentioned 
his own possible candidacy, as I recall. Naturally you're going 
to get all kinds of stories that come out of these delegations 
because everybody interprets their way. I'm sure that probably 
in talking to others, he told them the story that Eisenhower 
looked strong and so forth, but I don't know that there was any 
effort. Certainly in my purview there was no effort made to 
change anybody's record. 

After we were in Chicago for twenty-four hours we were 
sure. The governor hasn't got a chance at all! The bulk of 
them went over to Eisenhower, as you recall. In the final vote 
we did. No, I don't think there was a great effort on the train. 
I've heard that story too many times. 


Arriving in Chicago 

Jorgensen: We arrived in Chicago. All of us who were visiting with friends 
of ours from other states, and particularly on Monday, were 
pretty sure that the tide would run to Eisenhower. As a matter 
of fact, I bet one of my friends one of the large steaks that 
were served in the restaurant next to the Pavilion out in the 
packing yard area. I forget the name of it. There's a hotel 

Fry: But it was famous for its steaks because it was near the 
stockyards . 

Jorgensen: Yes. It was right next door to the stockyards. You could eat 

your steak and smell the stockyards at the same time. [laughter] 
They served an eighteen ounce steak. It was all steak, I must 
admit. I bet one of my friends one of those steaks, which in 
those days cost about $6.50, that Eisenhower would win the 
nomination. I remember his buying the steak the evening after 
the nomination. I tried to eat it all, and it was a real job. 

Nevertheless, Warren was trying to hold his delegation, 
hoping that there would be a deadlock between Taft and 
Eisenhower and that he would have his run. But this never 

I recall sitting next to Senator Knowland during the roll 
call at the convention. When the roll call indicated that 
Eisenhower was running very strong, Knowland said that California 
after the first ballot should get to the platform and get the 
recognition that you seek in such an affair, to try to swing the 
tide. We couldn't do it in the first roll call because we had 
pledged to support Governor Warren. 

It turned out that by the time Warren gave his permission 
to Knowland, all that Bill got on the platform was elbows and 
knees. He had to stand in the wings to wait his turn, which 
was an unhappy thing for this big state of California, 
particularly in the light of wanting to be the state that would 
swing it, which is a lot of malarkey anyway. Nevertheless, that's 
the way it happened. 

Fry: But Knowland did try to get up there and change — 

Jorgensen: Yes, my memory indicates that Bill was anxious to move. Here's 
an interesting sidelight to this convention. One morning at 
the convention before the balloting there had been considerable 
talk of Bill Knowland possibly being a vice-presidential candidate. 












When did you first start hearing that? 

You'd hear it as you do in conventions, and even before 
conventions. Somebody — some newspaperman — says, "Knowland 
would make a good vice-president." So he becomes a contender, 
a man who may not have even considered it. But there was 
talk around in the delegation. I rode out to the convention 
hall with Senator Knowland and his father and Senator Knowland' s 
wife. I remember his father pleading with Bill not to let 
himself become a candidate for vice-president. 


I can only guess that old Joe Knowland, his father, was getting 
along in years and probably wanted Bill to be closer to 
California to help manage their family affairs. Being a 
Senator he could get out, but being a vice-president would be 
more difficult. That's conjecture on my part, of course. 

But at any rate, his father did not want him to be vice- 

That's right. His father asked him not to consider it. 

Knowland would have been more likely as a vice-president for 
Taft than for Eisenhower? 

I'm in no position to give you an answer on that, 

I don't 

Do you remember the contested delegations from Texas and Georgia 
and Louisiana? 

I remember it happened, yes, but I don't remember the details. 
It was a question of seating the rival delegations. Taft lost 
ground on all of those. 

Yes. That's what made it look so certain for Eisenhower. 
That's right. The pro-Ike delegations were seated. 

I just wondered if you remembered the discussion that went on 
in the delegation about that — if you could give us any clue 
about what the consensus was before the vote on the delegation, 
and if Nixon or Warren made any speeches to the delegation for 
either part of these contested delegations. 

I don't recall any speeches. There might have been, but I feel 
quite sure the governor didn't make any because I think he 
was trying to keep himself clear of any obligation one way or 








the other, or intended obligations or indicated obligations, 
so that if the deadlock developed he would be ready and 
available and clear. I don't recall anything else. 

Do you remember Gordon X. Richmond? 

He was a member of the credentials committee that handled this. 
When this came up to a vote on the floor of the convention, 
according to the proceedings, he made an appeal to the 
convention as a whole to vote for those pro-Eisenhower delegates. 
I thought maybe that might refresh your memory a little bit on 
what went on. 

I don't recall. I remember Gordon being there, of course, 
and participating, but I don't recall the speech that you're 
talking about. You realize that when you're in one of these 
conventions, you're not on the floor. You're moving around; 
you're talking; you are listening. 

For instance, on Warren's behalf, because we had pledged 
to support him on the first ballot, and also because we're 
honorable people, we tried on Monday and Tuesday to get around 
the convention and talk to people about our governor and see if 
we couldn't build something. I did my proportional share of 
this. I didn't back away from it, even though I was not a warm 
friend of the governor. You don't listen to all these speeches. 
If you did you'd go out of your mind. 

I think we know that now from the television coverage, 

Ike's Choice of Nixon 



There was some newspaper account at the time that Nixon's 
selection as vice-president was the reward for the key part 
that he played in producing an Eisenhower-Stassen (of Minnesota) 
and Warren coalition, which forced through this change in the 
convention rules that enabled the contested delegations to pile 
up votes for Eisenhower. That was the Georgia and Texas votes. 

The newspaperman must have had two or three drinks to dream 
something like that up. I know nothing about it. 

You weren' t aware that Nixon was trying to get the delegations 
to vote for the Eisenhower contested delegates? 


Jorgensen: No, I have no knowledge of it. 

Fry: Do you know anything that you can tell us about the actual 

decision of Eisenhower to make Nixon vice-president? 

Jorgensen: I think Herb Brownell, Tom Dewey, and Paul Hoffman were men 

who had Eisenhower's ear and who proposed Nixon as a possible 
vice-presidential candidate. You must recall now that Nixon 
was a rising young star in the Republican ranks. He had had 
two terms in Congress. He had gained national recognition 
because of the Hiss case. He was then elected in California 
taking a Democratic Senator's place. He was well and widely 
known. Eisenhower was undoubtedly looking for such a man who 
would appeal to the younger middle-aged voters. 

At that time we were being double-crossed at every turn in 
the road by Russia and the Communist countries. I think that 
probably had something to do with Nixon's selection. 

If I may deviate here a moment, I have a suspicion, more 
than a suspicion, that Eisenhower would take Nixon because he 
felt that Nixon was an astute politician. After Eisenhower was 
elected I was invited back on a few occasions to usually sit 
with Eisenhower in the morning and talk for a half or three- 
quarters of an hour about this and that and the other thing. 
On one occasion we discussed the possibility of the national 

I remember the first night that I had dinner at the White 
House. Eisenhower was in the habit of having little stag dinners. 
He would have, oh, twelve or fourteen men. We'd go to the 
White House and have a nice dinner and then leave the dinner 
table and go usually into the Lincoln study or one of the rooms. 
Ike would sit himself in a big chair, and everybody else would 
gather chairs up in a kind of semi-circle. The butlers would 
come in and serve an after dinner drink or coffee and cigars. 
Then he'd just generally talk off of the record. 

I remember the first such session we had. I was amazed at 
the ineptness of the president when it came to political 
questions; it bothered him. When I say political questions 
I'm talking about the day to day operations of government and 
campaigns and patronage. 

As I was leaving that evening I was the last one to go 
out. He was in the foyer saying goodbye, and as I went by he 
said, "Jorgensen, wait a minute. You know Nixon pretty well, 
don't you?" 


Jorgensen: I said, "I've lived with him for a while." 

He said, "I think he has one of the keenest political 
minds that I know of," and went along to extol the political 
thinking of Nixon. He said to me, "When we're in cabinet 
meetings, when I have a political problem, I instinctively turn 
to him," which I thought was a fine endorsement. 




But going back to the convention, I was up in the hotel 
we were thinking about — it's called the Stockyard Inn. The 
Nixon people had a couple or three rooms there where we could 
gather and keep reports moving and all this liaison work 
that goes on in these conventions. 

We were sitting around up there waiting because Dick knew 
that his name had been in the pot for vice-president. He 
knew more than he was telling us, I'm sure, about the people 
who were espousing him. But we were waiting for the — and 
the telephone call came in that the nominated president, 
Eisenhower, would like to see him. That was the signal that he 
was the boy! 

I forget who went down with him, one or two of us. I didn't 
go down. I had some other work to do there and I had to stay 
at the convention. But I remember when he came back we had 
arranged — the telephone call came through — so we arranged for 
him to come in through a side door. I remember coming into the 
convention hall with him. I have a picture around here some 
where that was taken when we were surrounding him, trying to 
get him in. He came back into the delegation and got quite an 

In the account I read, he got a call at a very, very awful 
hour in the morning — like three o'clock or four o'clock? 

I don't remember the hour, but it was quite early. Quite late; 
let's put it that way. 

Late at night. Was Chotiner around too? 

Oh yes, Chotiner was there. Chotiner was on the central 
committee. He was a delegate. 

Was there any reluctance at all on Nixon's part to take the 

I never noticed any. [laughter] No, not at all, not at all. 


The United Republican Finance Committee 

Fry: To move on into the election campaign, what was your role in 

that? According to my notes Chotiner was the manager of it. 
Is that right? They were going to begin a whistle-stop tour 
of the West Coast from Pomona on September 17. 

Jorgensen: That's right. It started out in Pomona. Chotiner was manager. 
That is, he was the manager in the sense that he was riding 
with the candidate and putting it all together. At that time 
I was chairman of the central committee. I established a 
campaign headquarters out on Wilshire Boulevard. Bernie 
Brennan, as I recall, was the California campaign manager, 
[to Mrs. Jorgensen] Helen, you worked for Bernie, didn't you, 
during that campaign in 1952? 

Helen: Yes, for a few weeks, Honey. 

Jorgensen: I thought you did. That was on Wilshire Boulevard, as I 

Helen: Yes, it was on Wilshire Boulevard near Vermont. 

Jorgensen: On the north side of the street, as I remember. 
Helen: Yes, not too far from Bullock' s-Wilshire. 

Jorgensen: I had my hands full [laughing] as the chairman of the Republican 
Central Committee of Los Angeles. I had all the candidates 
to think about, and that was the year that we put in the United 
Republican Finance Committee. We were getting that organized, 
and were raising the kind of money we needed. 

Fry: How was that Republican finance organization different from 

previous campaigns? 

Jorgensen: A real finance committee as such didn't come into existence 
until 1951. Here again is a businessman's thinking. I knew 
we'd have to raise something over $1 million in that section 
to support the national campaign as well as our own finances. 
E.S. Hardwick acted as the treasurer. He was vice-president of 
the Carnation Company. Charlie Thomas was the national finance 
chairman. So I took it upon myself to see if I couldn't work 
out an organization that would raise the maximum amount of money 
the easiest way. I got ahold of people like Charlie Jones of 
Richfield Oil, Reese Taylor of Union Oil, Ed Valentine of 
Robinson Company, and many others. I got them together and 
told them what I thought we' d have to raise and the kind of 


Jorgensen: money to support a campaign. I asked their cooperation to get 
it. I said, "Let's run this like we would run a business 
organization. I represent the political end of the business 
and the operating end, if you please. I will come before the 
board (or in this case, it will be the committee) and I will 
lay my budgets on the table. I will be willing to answer any 
questions you raise. 

You will form yourselves into a finance committee called 
the United Republican Finance Committee. You will raise the 
dollars . I will spend them. But I will spend them only after 
you have approved the expenditures. So you appoint members to 
a budget committee which will meet once a week during the 
campaign." (I've forgotten how many members, say five or six 
or seven or eight members.) "I will then appoint on the political 
side an equal number. We will meet here in Mr. Hardwick's 
board room out on Wilshire Boulevard once a week for a meeting. 
I will report to you after you have examined the original 
budget, and I'll know what my cash flow has to be. You tell me 
you can meet it, or you can't meet it, or you don't think we 
ought to spend for this or that or the other thing. I will 
attempt to convince you that we should. Then we would take a 
vote of the meeting, and the majority rules. You've got as much 
weight on this committee as we have — political." This is 
something new, something entirely new. 

Fry: You did have a budget to present in '48 at that meeting, I 

Jorgensen: Always. But I'm talking principally about '52 now. You 
always prepare a budget. You have to have a budget. 

Fry: I see. But it was quite a breakdown. I was impressed that 
at that point you did have a breakdown. 

Jorgensen: You have to break it down. You see, one of the problems in a 
campaign — it's getting me off here for a moment — you've got to 
control your money. You don't know that you're always going 
to get it. You play brinkmanship. Only experience will tell 
you how much brinkmanship you can play. Or you can end up at 
the end of the campaign a quarter of a million or a half 
million dollars in the hole and no place to get it. I have 
always been a stickler for "know what you've got, what you 
think you're going to get within a conservative estimate, and 
by God, run your campaign like that." 

Anyhow, this appealed to these businessmen. They said 
fine. So they went to work. The dinner in Southern California 
was one of the things we did, this big dinner I was telling you 


Jorgensen: about, the United Republican $100-a-plate dinner for 4,200 

people. That was part of United Finance. That money didn't 
come to me. That money went into the treasurer's office. 

Fry: What treasurer? 

Jorgensen: The treasurer of the United Finance Committee. That money was 
sent over to me as weekly I presented my cash needs for that 
week. It worked beautifully. We raised more money than we spent. 

Fry: Fantastic. You said this was going to be the easiest way to 

raise the most amounts of money. Why was it easy? 

Jorgensen: You know why? This was the very secret of it. 

Take a fellow like Tom Pike, for instance. He'd go to 
his friend in the oil business. He was an oil supplier — 
pipe and all that sort of thing. He said, "Bill, I'm going to 
put $500 or $1,000 in. I think you ought to." 

He said, "I don't know about political — " 

He said, "Bill, I'm sitting on the committee. I know 
where your money's going to be spent. I have control over it." 

"Well," he said, "I know you, Tom. If you tell me that, 
I ought to." 

So, Pike could go to John Jones and get $1,000, where as 
a solicitor I'd be lucky to get $100, you see, because he had 
trust in Pike. We built this up. The finance committee was 
a good one. They said, "We're going to spend your money for 
you. We're not going to turn it over to Jorgensen, the politician, 
and these boys." It worked out beautifully. 

As a matter of fact in that campaign, as I recall, there 
was a good surplus, after we finished up, left in the treasury. 
I said to my successor as the county chairman, "Don't spend it 
all at once. Use that as your nest egg to get ready for your 
next campaign." Well, the first thing I knew they had new 
headquarters, etc. [laughter] 

Fry: Carpets on the floor and so forth, [laughter] 

Jorgensen: It's easy to spend but sometimes hard to come by. Of course, 
in those days too, in running and financing a campaign you 
didn't have the stringent laws you have today about contributions. 






For instance, you could take an accounting firm. I had in that 
campaign my own auditor, who gave me a day-to-day report. I 
had it on my desk every morning, what we spent yesterday and 
how the bank account was. My auditor was always ten days ahead 
of me. Expenditures had to be ten days ahead. I could see 
them. So I could go to my finance committee and say, "Look, 
here they are. Here's where it's going." 

Then we had one of the national audit firms (and I won't 
name it) who lent their aid to us to run a final audit. As I 
recall, in that campaign when we finished up the audit the 
first one showed we couldn't account for something around $700 
out of over $1 million of money that was handled. I said, 
"Well, let's go back and check it again." They finally got it 
down to less than $100. You can't do that today. You have to 
pay for that service. That was given to us. 

Take your advertising — I think it was in the '52 campaign, 
some of the finest advertising brains in Los Angeles were on 
the advertising committee. One day I just roughly figured out 
what it would cost a year to hire these men. It would cost a 
quarter of a million dollars a year. 

And you had them for free. 

Nothing. Well, they didn't give full time, of course. For 
instance, if you could find somebody that would give you 
headquarters rent free. Furniture for instance — when you had 
a campaign, I'd go to various banks and insurance companies and 
say, "Can I go down in the basement and get all the old desks 
and chairs?" And they could let you use them. You can't do 
that now. You have to pay rent on furniture. You have to pay 
rent on the building. It's a contribution otherwise. 

You have to count it as a contribution, yes. 

And contributions are limited now. If you've got a statewide 
campaign you can get those kind, but if it's a federal campaign 
there are different rules. So the cost of a campaign today is 
different than it was in those days. Of course, television is 
just a hog. It just chews up money fearfully. It costs so dang 

I think it was Asa Call who told me that in the finance committee 
you had to work carefully with the p.r. people who were 
handling the newspaper releases because you had to put ads in 
certain papers in order to get coverage; the two had to work 
together to get the stories in. I wondered what kind of liaison 












you had with newspapers. Or was it a loose enough organization 
so that you just naturally had the communication necessary to 
establish money for ads in newspapers, and the people who were 
sending out press releases and visiting the editors could 
work that way? 

Well, you had your press people, of course, visiting the 
newspapers. But the newspapers knew they were going to get 
ads. The old feeling used to be that if you gave a newspaper 
a lot of ad money, they'd endorse your candidate. That's a 
lot of hogwash. 

Was that true in '50? 

Not true. Your big papers are going to be independent. The 
amount of advertising you give them is not going to make or 
break them by any means. 

It sure won't. You had the Chandlers anyway, and the Camerons. 

That might work on a small, throwaway paper or something like 
that — these dodgers that go out and that sort of thing. 

Or the weeklies maybe in California. 

It could be. But in your big newspapers that is a lot of 

Also I think it was Mac Faries who said that you have to be 
careful to always get a good representation on finance 
committees of the major business and financial interests and 
not leave out anybody so that you can get a good spread of 

It goes without saying. 

Yes, but I'll bet it's hard to do. 

Not if you work through this finance committee. Take, for 
instance, Reese Taylor calling up a buddy in the oil business 
and saying, "You've got to come along with us and help us on 
this thing." We had Tom Pike in the other area of the oil 
business and Robinson in the department store business. We 
had a man in the trucking business, a railroad man. Sure. 

And you were insurance. Did you function as a businessman too 
on this committee for insurance people? 

No. I was purely the politician this time, purely the guy that 
was running the committee. 


Fry: Was Asa Call part of this? 

Jorgensen: He'd been on finance committees, sure. 

Fry: He was on this finance committee? 

Jorgensen: Sure, he's been in United Finance. Certainly. 

Fry: Would you like to put in right here some indication of Asa 

Call's clout? We were talking about it at lunch and I wanted 
to be sure to get it down because it doesn't quite come across 
in the interview that he gave me. 

Jorgensen: You must remember that Mr. Call is now close to eighty years 
old. The old rascal that I'm talking with had a pacemaker in 
his chest; he's had broken bones; he's had broken hips. I 
think about everything's happened to that fellow that can 
happen, and he was in the office every day. 

Of course, going back a number of years, he was a powerful 
figure. He had great respect in that area. The younger 
generations have come up around him, but in his heyday, back 
in the thirties and the forties, Asa Call was a man to be 
reckoned with in the business world in Los Angeles, and still 
is, as far as that's concerned. He was a confidant of governors 
and senators and presidents — a hard bargainer, but once he gave 
his word to you, you didn't have to worry about having it in 
writing. That's for damn sure. 

Fry: Would he guarantee a certain amount of money for a campaign in 

advance and then go out and raise it? Or how did it work? 

Jorgensen: I don't know the word guarantee. I think Asa probably said to 

candidates from time to time, "I'll raise you number of dollars 

if I can get it." He could usually get it all right, but I 

don't think he made any guarantees. If he did he was foolish. 

Fry: I was wondering if you were able to get a significant amount of 

money from the medical segment, because the doctors at this 
point were pretty discouraged with Earl Warren since he had 
tried to put in compulsory health insurance. 

Jorgensen: The medical fraternity had always been good contributors to 
political campaigns. 


Political Campaigns; Then and Now 

Jorgensen: But basically, Mrs. Fry, I always look upon political campaigns 
as a businessman. For instance, if I were going to make soap, 
how would I go about selling my soap? Well, I'd first try to 
get a fairly good product that would stand the test of the 
user. But the thing I would do is I'd advertise it. I'd use 
gimmicks — sales promotion ideas, I should say — and in this day 
and age, use television, radio. Then I would have to raise 
the money to do that. I'd either do that by funds that I would 
borrow or that I would raise through stock subscriptions and 
so forth. 

Now the same thing is true in a political campaign. You've 
got a product; that's your candidate. You've got to sell him. 
First, you've got to get name familiarity. That's the main 
thing. That's what we used to do with billboards all the time — 
name familiarity. Get people to see that name — Bill Jones, Bill 
Jones, Bill Jones, Bill Jones. You had a bumper stripper — Bill 
Jones, Bill Jones. You had stickers — Bill Jones, Bill Jones. 
You had quarter cards — Bill Jones, Bill Jones. It's the old 
gimmick in advertising — if you say a thing often enough it makes 
an imprint on the mind, and the action will follow, without 
they have a very strong conviction to the opposite. 

Think of the articles you buy because of that idiot box. 
They have drummed into your mind, your subconscious mind and 
your active mind, that this is the best damned product. So you 
go to the supermarket, and you're looking for a box of soap and 
you take this kind of soap because that stayed with you. You're 
not sure that it's any better than anything else. 

Fry: Then how do you choose the main issue or motto or motif for 

selling that candidate? What's your criterion — something that 
is very simple and easy to remember? 

Jorgensen: Yes, if you can. For instance, I remember in the regional 

congressional campaign that Nixon ran in 1946 — and we picked 
this up somewhere — "Have you had enough? Have you had enough? 
Have you had enough?" We just drove that. We had signs and 
stickers and bumper stickers. "Have you had enough? Have you 
had enough? Have you had enough?" 

People said, "Well, I guess I've had enough. I'll try 
something else." We'd had enough of the Democratic regime, 
Mr. Roosevelt and Mr. Truman. Yes, let's try something; let's 
try something. 


Jorgensen: Oh, you may say, "He has represented his people!" You search 
for it sometimes [laughs] to try to find it. Or, "He's been 
a good servant to the people!" 

That, I think, is disappearing a little bit with the 
billboard. Billboards have gone out of political campaigns 
to a great extent. First, they're expensive. I recall, I 
think it cost around $125,000 to post California. Posting 
as I remember — it has probably changed by this time because I 
haven't dealt with it for four or five years — posting was 
considered to be about 1,450 boards. Of course, a lot of them 
are down alley ways and back off in corners of buildings. 
You always fought to get locations. 

As a matter of fact in the old days (I don't think you 
can do it now because of the laws and such like) we used to 
take a survey, for instance, and pick out the boards we wanted — 
like a good board on a freeway, or a good board on an overpass. 
Then we'd go to the advertiser who was using that board and 
say to them, "Would you release your board?" We'd get a release, 
and then we would use it for thirty or sixty days. 

We would pay the rent for it, except in some yesteryears 
when it could be done that companies might just donate the 
board. But you can't do that now, and I don't recall that I 
was ever in a campaign when we did it. We usually paid for 
the board. So the company that had the board was not out 
anything, except they'd let the board loose — let us have it — 
for a period of sixty days. 

But billboards are going out, I think, because television 
gets into the home, and it catches the voter with your thirty- 
second spots, your sixty-second spots. Here again, you're 
driving home, "Vote for Mrs. Fry. Vote for Mrs. Fry." There 
isn't enough time to say very much during that period of time, 
but there's the picture, and if you've got a slogan there's 
the slogan. So, with radio and TV, for the same amount of money, 
you can plant more impressions in the mind of the voter than 
you can from a billboard. 

Likewise, I think, the so-called bumper strippers. You 
don't see many in elections anymore. People hesitate to put 
them on because there's been too much vandalism. Partisan 
people come by and say, "Why, he's going to vote for a Republican. 
I'll bust his window in." So, people hesitate to put them on. 

The same thing is true of what we called quarter cards. 
We used to distribute quarter cards to sit in store fronts. 
Stores don't take them so easily. You're sniping. Sniping is 
pasting something on a wall somewhere without permission. 


Jorgensen: I think campaigns are going to more and more television and 
radio. Likewise, the day of the train trip and the trips 
across the country will be used less and less. A candidate 
can't really cover these fifty states of ours, but he can reach 
them by TV very quickly. The result is, I think, that 
campaigns to come will eat up practically all their money in 

Fry: I think this campaign we're talking about now, this '52 

campaign, was one of the last to use the train extensively. 

Jorgensen: Yes, it was. 

Fry: It's sort of historic, I guess, just in that sense. 

Jorgensen: It used to be used where the candidate couldn't get out and 
he had to come, and so he'd take a train and then stop at 
every little whistle-stop. He'd be on the back platform and 
make an innocuous speech of some sort. A local politician 
would get on and ride to the next station and shake the hand. 
Then he went back and said to the people, "I shook the hand of 
the man." 

Fry: Yes. Of course, the impact of that is just tremendous — to 

actually meet the candidate in person. 

Jorgensen: Well, a lot of people think so. 

[end tape 3, side 1; begin tape 3, side 2] 

Jorgensen and President Eisenhower 



I wanted to go back to an interesting little tidbit that you 
dropped when you said that you would go back and talk to 
President Eisenhower.* Was this in any official capacity in 
the Republican party? 

No, I think Nixon probably had something to do with it because 
one of the first White House visits I had — I got a call. I was 
in Florida at a meeting. I remember lying out on the beach. 
Of course, my associates — this was a company affair — were aware 
that I was interested in Nixon. This was after Nixon had been 

*For further discussion of Jorgensen' s relations with 
Eisenhower see pp. 92-97. 


Jorgensen: elected vice-president. A beach boy came along and said, 

"Mr. Jorgensen, the White House is calling. Mr. Jorgensen, the 
White House is calling." So that set up quite a fuss. 

Fry: [laughing] 

Jorgensen: So I went to the phone, and the president's secretary, Miss 
Whitman, asked me if I was going to be in Washington, and 
if I was, the president would like very much for me to come in 
and see him, and if I could arrange to have dinner. I hadn't 
the slightest idea what he had in mind. 

We had quite a chat. I must have talked with him an hour 
in the morning. We were talking about campaigns. He reminded 
me that on his first political trip as a candidate to Los 
Angeles he was nearly knocked out with a bale of shredded 
newspaper that came down off the top of a building. 

Fry: My God! 

Jorgensen: When you arrange for your candidate to come in you arrange to 

give him a welcome. These welcomes are not always spontaneous; 
you work on them. So, we had picked Eisenhower up at the Long 
Beach airport when he came in. There were good crowds on the 
way in. We started out at Spring Street. The Young Republicans 
had gone on top of the buildings. In those days we didn't 
have anything in Los Angeles above a twelve-story building 
because of earthquakes. The Young Republicans had taken bales 
of shredded newspaper, which is used for packing purposes, and 
opened them out. Then they would throw this out, as though you 
had confetti floating in the air. But somebody forgot to loosen 
it up enough, and a big chunk flew down. Eisenhower said, "By 
golly, it plopped along beside of me. It just missed me." 
[laughter] But we had a nice conversation, and I was there for 
dinner that night. 

Fry: What was he wanting to talk to you about? It still isn't clear 
to me. 

Jorgensen: Just general political things. 

Fry: And the lay of the land in California? 

Jorgensen: Yes, as a matter of fact, he did. But, I went along to the 

later meetings after Warren had gone onto the Supreme Court and 
Goodie Knight had become governor. The president said to me 
[laughs], "You know, when I cross the state line in California 
I think the governor expects me to bow down three times facing 


Fry: [laughter] Because Eisenhower had finally arranged for Knight 
be to governor. 

Jorgensen: The next time I think I was in was near the end of his first 

term — I don't remember. Anyhow, I got a call asking if I would 
come in. He'd like to talk with me. He asked me if I would 
consider taking the chairmanship of the Eisenhower Volunteers, 
which is what I always call a private campaign organization. 
Every candidate seems to have it. I'm not sure how effective 
they are. But it's a hoopla group. Walter Williams of Seattle 
had been the first chairman. They had enlisted the young 
people, and they had had rallies and that sort of thing. 

Fry: You mean the ones who carry the banners and make all the noise? 

Jorgensen: Yes, and the little girls dressed up in the straw hats and 

the skirts and so forth. So I talked to Eisenhower about that, 
and he arranged for me to go up to New York. He said, "If 
you're going to New York, I'll call Cliff Roberts." Cliff 
Roberts you know today as the man who's the real leader of the 
Masters golf tournament down in Augusta. He was a good friend 
of Eisenhower. So I went up to New York and talked to Roberts 
and a couple of other people. I came back home. I was living 
in San Francisco at that time. 

Fry: What did Roberts do in this? 

Jorgensen: He was a backer of the Eisenhower Volunteers and the president. 

Fry: Money. I see. 

Jorgensen: Yes. I came back to California. It took me about four days to 
write a letter to the president saying that I did not wish to 
take on the position. If you ever have a letter that's 
difficult to write, it's writing one to the president telling 
him you won't do what he's suggested that you do. But I indicated 
to him I thought I'd be more effective in California. But 
basically I just didn't believe in this organization. It seemed 
to me it was siphoning off needed money that didn't produce 
very much in results. 

The Need For Centralization in Campaigns 

Jorgensen: I was always a stickler, even when I was chairman in Los Angeles, 
that the Republican organization be the only organization, and 
that they don't splinter out and lose all the power that comes 
from that. I don't mean political power but I mean campaign power. 


Fry: Workers — man hours, you're talking about. 

Jorgensen: That's right. I can remember very definitely — and I'm rattling 
around; I suppose it's what you want — on the first Eisenhower 
campaign the chairman of California for the Eisenhower Volunteers 
came to Los Angeles. Charlie Jones of Richfield Oil had a little 
luncheon for him. Of course, I, being the chairman of the 
party organization, was invited over. The name of this chap 
slips my mind. He was a stockbroker here in San Francisco, I 
believe, at that time. He gave a glowing speech about what the 
Eisenhower Volunteers would do. 

When he finished, Charlie looked at me and he said, "Frank, 
have you got anything to say?" 

I said, "Just one thing, Charlie. When the Eisenhower 
Volunteers come to Los Angeles I want them to come through my 
front door at the office, because when they try to come in and 
organize independently, we're going to cut their legs off." 
Charlie got pretty incensed at me. I said, "We're working to 
raise the kind of money we need to run a campaign. We can't 
siphon it off for a bunch of kids to dress up in straw hats. 
They waste our money, without effectiveness. I can get the 
straw hat girls and the kids to do this, and we don't have to 
spend the kind of money that we're envisioning here." 

But I believe in that. I think if you have a strong 
organization that you ought to control all of the activities 
in the campaign so that it's coordinated. It saves the 
contributor considerable dollars. 

Fry: In California, where often campaigns are run independently, 

where each candidate is out collecting his own money and running 
his own campaign, you must have had a lot of trouble with this, 
because there were so many Republican candidates cross-filing and 
running independent campaigns. Right? 

Jorgensen: You get the contributor. Here's a contributor, for instance, 
who is in a position to contribute a fair amount of money; 
let's say $100 to begin with. Now, he'll put $100 into the 
total campaign. You get $5 from this one and $10 from this 
one. It doesn't accomplish what you wanted to do, because if 
you can coordinate your campaigns, a lot of work can be done 
that you pay for once. 

For instance, you might have a slate of campaigns. I'm 
talking, say, within a county or within a congressional district. 
You might have an assemblyman; there's usually two or three 
assembly districts and a congressional district. You have those 







and you have your congressional candidate. It would be better 
if you could run that as a consolidated campaign with a 
consolidated headquarters, all in one headquarters here, and 
if you have store fronts down here, all in one store front. A 
good deal of your advertising is slate advertising. Now candidates 
will generally shy away from this because they want their own 
pictures; they want their own campaign. It just wastes a lot 
of money in my opinion. When this goes on the record I'd 
better delete it, because a lot of politicians don't agree 
with that. 

I hope you're not just putting down things you think everyone 
will agree with. [laughter] 

I'm not. But yes, separate contributions do cause problems. 
That's what we tried to correct in the United Republican Finance 
Committee. I think earlier in our discussion I explained that 
finance operation to you. I found that the candidates could 
devote more of their time to actually campaigning rather than 
trying to raise money. I thought also that it put him in a 
position of being independent of the contributor, because it all 
went into one pot. Of course, people on the other side say, 
"It brings power. If you control it here, with this money all 
in the hands of one small group, then they can choke off." 
Well, there's that possibility too. I think you have to have it 

But it seemed to me, the way we ran it in '52 in Los 
Angeles, we had good balance there and it was properly accounted 
for. Money was wisely spent, and every nickel was accounted for. 

Yes, it does create problems with all candidates seeking 
money. It's going to be particularly difficult now with the 
new laws in, where your large contributor is no longer able 
to make a contribution to your campaign in that sizable amount. 

Yes, it looks like they're going to have to give you cut-rate 

After the train ride to the national convention what else 
did you do in the '52 campaign? 

I stayed in Los Angeles and worked my tail off raising money 
and directing an organization. I didn't do anything on the 
national picture at all. 

What organization? 

The Los Angeles County Republican Central Committee, 
me, that took all my time. 




Fry: You were raising money for the national campaign? 

Jorgensen: National campaign, senatorial campaign, congressional campaign. 
We had seventeen congressional men running in the county 
and twenty- four assemblymen. I was busy making speeches and 
pushing the people out to get the necessary funds to set up a 
precinct organization. As I recall it — don't hold me to these 
figures, but I'm close — in 1952 there was roughly ten thousand- 
plus precincts in Los Angeles County. 

I had two fellows by the name of Smith and Tremaine. 
Smith was an aircraft executive, and Tremaine was a lawyer. 

Fry: Do you remember Smith's first name? 

Jorgensen: Walter Smith. He worked for Lockheed, I think. I can't remember 
Tremaine's first name. I'll think of it. Those two, without 
compensation of any sort and with one paid employee, organized, 
staffed and had the operation of better than 8,700 precincts. 

Fry: They must have been whizzes. 

Jorgensen: They were wonderful organizers, and they worked their tails 
off. I helped them because 1 was at their behest to speak 
as the chairman. But they actually had precinct operations — 
precinct captain, workers, and material. They did a magnificent 
job. It only goes to show you, if you get people who are 
dedicated to the job and have the ability, it can get done. 

Women in the Republican Party 

Fry: What role did the Republican women play down there? I think in 
San Mateo County and in Kern County they were terribly active. 

Jorgensen: We used them to the fullest extent. I remember the dinner that 
I mentioned to you, the first $100-a-plate dinner that was 
given down there where we had 4,200 people in the Shrine 
Auditorium at $100-a-plate. 

Margaret Brock, who has been very active in Republican 
politics, bless her soul, and to my knowledge has never seeked 
anything in return, was the women's chairman. To put this 
dinner over we wanted to sell tables in blocks of ten seats — 
$1,000. So Margaret said to me one day, "Let's make a social 
affair out of this." 


Jorgensen: I said, "What do you want? A fashion show?" 

She said, "No, but let's see if we can't put a connotation 
that it's socially right to attend this affair." 

And so we did. I remember she went to Adolph Menjou (the 
movie actor, as you recall), and we had a number of them. 
Margaret got them to appear at luncheons and such like. We 
launched this over at the California Club one day at lunch. I 
was to make a little speech as the politician, and Adolph 
was to charm the girls, which he could do. 

He came in immaculately dressed, as he always was, with 
his winged collar and so forth (incidentally, was a very 
pleasant individual, very interesting person). So I got up 
and give them the necessity, what this money was to be used for. 
Then Adolph got up and just really charmed them. These women 
then went out and took it upon themselves. I think one woman 
sold nine tables. 

Fry: Oh, that's $9,000. 

Jorgensen: Nine thousand dollars. They just did a beautiful job, and we 
had a nice party that night. Dinner was a very nice affair. 

Fry: Did the women also do a lot of this precinct work that was 


Jorgensen: I used to say in these talks I gave out in the district, "God 
bless you women, because you're the shoe leather that makes 
campaigns work." Groups would come in to sell the women on 
precinct work. I said, "You know, it's a natural thing for 
you girls. You've had some new families move in. You don't 
know anything about them, do you? But now you can go ring the 
front doorbell and say, 'I'm the precinct captain, or block 
worker.' You get in, and you can look around, see what kind 
of furniture they've got, how well off they are, how many 
children they've got, and you'll know all there is to know about 
the neighborhood very shortly." I used to kid them. 

Sure, the women did 99 percent of the precinct work. 
You couldn't get men to do it. You could get men to act as 
supervisors or captains or something, but women did the job. 
Oh yes. You couldn't run a campaign — you can't run a campaign 
today without women. 

I was talking to a candidate running for statewide office 
the other day. He said, "What do you think we ought to do?" 


Jorgensen: I said, "I think we old guys could sit around and give you 

a lot of counsel and advice, but it seems to me, with the money 
situation such as it is today, that you're going to have to run 
a very lean campaign. You're not going to be able to raise 
the $2.5 to $3 million that it takes to run a statewide 
campaign." I'm talking about both the primary and the general 
election. You cannot do one in California under the method that 
has been done. 

He said, "What 1 11 we do?" 

I said, "You've got to go back to the old days. You've 
got to get your supporters fired up in the boondocks to the 
point where they will organize up to their teeth to do precinct 
work. Those people have got to go door to door and sell your 
campaign, or you're not going to be elected." 

And I believe it, because I don't think a candidate is 
going to be able to raise the kind of money needed in light of 
what's happened politically, the milieu we've been in. The 
people have lost their faith in the political structure of 
this country, to a certain extent, and some of them quite a bit. 
I know tried and true Republicans who say, "Oh, the hell with 
it. I won't have anything to do with it this time." I know 
some of them get the fever before the campaign gets underway. 
They can't stay out of it. But it's going to be difficult. 
I think we're going to have to go back and start doing the shoe 
leather again. 

Fry: When the 1952 campaign was going on there was one of those 

radio spot announcements — or maybe it was television; I don't 
know — that came into us written on yellow paper here, with some 
emendations. It's an announcement that Nixon apparently was 
to put on the air. You can read that. In the script, he says, 
"Hello folks, I'm Dick Nixon, your United States Senator" and 
he goes on to ask them to support the Earl Warren delegation in 
the June 3 primary. This came into us from some San Mateo County 
campaign materials. Although you weren't in San Mateo County 
then, I thought you might just be able to explain this and that 
you might remember if Nixon ever did record a spot announcement 
on behalf of Warren and whether it was actually aired. 

Jorgensen: I don't know. I don't really remember this, but I wouldn't 

be surprised that he did, because I think up until the time of 
the convention he had taken a position that he would support 
the governor of California. But I think that probably very 
shortly before the convention Nixon had become convinced that 
Eisenhower looked like the candidate. He was in Chicago for a 
few days before he came out to Denver to meet us. 


Fry: This would be related to the battle against the Werdel delegation, 

which was before the primary. 

Jorgensen: Wouldn't your radio stations have records of that? 

Fry: They might. I don't know. Radio stations really don't keep 

records very long. 

Jorgensen: I don't recall it, Mrs. Fry. I wouldn't be surprised that 
it was made. I think probably it was sometime before the 

Fry: I judged that this was after you had all formed the delegation 

but before you went to Chicago. I mean it was before the 
primary. The primary was June 3 so this could be April even. 

Jorgensen: That's right. You see in the primary you're voting for a 
delegation pledged to — 

Fry: Warren. 

Jorgensen: That's right. 

Fry: Which was a distinction. 

Jorgensen Says No to Two Presidents 

Fry: After '52 could you tell me what role in the Republican party 

you considered. You mentioned that Eisenhower had talked to 
you about possibly chairing the national organization. 

Jorgensen: That was the Eisenhower Volunteers at that time. 
Fry: It was? 

Jorgensen: Yes. You see, your memory plays tricks when you don't keep a 
history of this. I told you about getting the call down in 
Florida. What I was being looked at at that time was the 
question of being the national chairman. 

Fry: Of the Republican party. 

Jorgensen: Of the Republican party. I had, as I say, a nice chat with the 
president. He didn't bring the subject up, but I was tipped 
off by Nixon's office that this was the possibility. After 
talking to the president he asked me to go over and see 


Jorgensen: Summerhill. Summerhill then was the postmaster general. He 
broached the subject of whether it was possible that I might 
consider public service. All the time we knew what we were 
talking about. 

Fry: Oh. [laughter] But he kept it in general terms. 

Jorgensen: That's right. I recall that I indicated that a position without 
compensation would be very difficult for me because I was not 
a wealthy man and I had to work for a living, and that if I 
took any job or position it would have to be compensated for. 
He indicated that there would be no problem there. I think he 
indicated to me that a previous chairman — I believe a Mr. Roberts 
from Kansas if I'm not mistaken — was compensated by the national 
committee. I then told him that I didn't think I'd like to take 
a salary if I were doing work for the party. 

Fry: Why? 

Jorgensen: I had a fetish, and I guess it was wrong. I thought to take 
money for working in the Republican party organization was 
wrong, that everyone should be willing to give of their time 
and effort to bring about a better party organization. I recall 
when I became chairman of the Los Angeles County Republican 
Central Committee in Los Angeles a check came over to me from 
the treasurer's office for $25. I called up and asked what it 
was for. 

They said, "We give the chairman $25 a month for expenses." 

I said, "I'll send the check back to you, and don't ever 
draw a check on county funds to me again." 

They asked, "Why?" 

I said, "I have two reasons. In the first place, $25 
is peanuts. I expect to spend considerably more out of my 
pocket. It will cost me to have this office. I'm willing to 
pay that as my contribution. Secondly, I don't want any record 
ever to appear that I was paid for what I did in political work, 
because I never have been." I never have. I've never taken 
anything at all except expenses when I've had to travel and 
that sort of thing. I properly feel that they should pay that. 
That was my basic feeling. 

I had a position, Mrs. Fry, with my company which at that 
time I would have had to give up, because my company was dead 
set against its employees being involved in politics. I think 
we talked about that earlier. 


Fry: I think that was just over lunch, though, about the time you 

got called on the carpet. 

Jorgensen: Yes. As a matter of fact, in the 1952 convention, a few days 
before we were to go to Chicago, I got a call from the vice- 
president who was my immediate superior. He said, "Are you 
going to the convention?" 

I said, "Yes, I'm going to be a delegate." 

"Why don't you come into New York?" That's where our head 
office was located. 

I said, "I don't have anything to come to New York for. 
It's going to be hotter than hell in Chicago, and by the time we 
get through with a week of that I'm ready to come home." As 
the conversation went on I realized that I was being commanded 
but in an easy way. So I finally said, "Well, do you want me to 

He said, "We've made a hotel reservation for you." [laughter] 

So, I went into New York after the convention. I went in 
to see this vice-president, who was very friendly to me. We 
always had been. But he didn't even ask me to sit down. He 
said, "We're going up to see the president." We walked into the 
president's office. He didn't even ask me to sit down but 
started to upbraid me because of my political activities. 

I listened to it for a while and finally said to him, "Mr. 
President, I think as a citizen I'm doing something that has to 
be done. I don't take any money out of it, I'm not running for 
public office, and it's not impairing my ability to carry on 
the company's business, as is evident by my record these years. 
I think you're being damned unfair about it." 

With that, my vice-president grabbed me by the elbow. He 
said, "Frank, we're going to leave now." [laughter] 

We went out, and on the way down to his office I said, "Am 
I fired?" 

He said, "I'm afraid that you might be." But fortunately 
I wasn't. 

Now the attitude of the company has changed completely. 
They urge their people to actively participate in political 
endeavor. They say to them, "If you do and you're elected to 
public office, you can come back to the company. We'll have the 
job for you." 


Jorgensen: But in my day, if I had taken this political job, I would have 
had to resign from the company. I was a young man on my way 
up — I hoped — and it eventually worked out that way. I would 
have forfeited all that. It was too big a loss for me to take, 
at least I felt so. 

Fry: It must have been a terribly black, black moment after you 
talked to the president. 

Jorgensen: Well, I always kind of took a little pride in being able to say 
that I've said to two presidents, "I won't do what you asked me 
to do." [laughter] 

Fry: The president of the United States and the president of your 
company. I bet you were a little shaky, though, after you 
finished. [laughter] 

Jorgensen: I must admit, Mrs. Fry, it took all my letter writing ability, 
plus a couple of people in my office, to get the phrases to fit 
right in the letter to President Eisenhower, because I really 
had quite a bit of trouble putting that one together. 

Private White House Dinners 

Fry: Have I exploited you completely on you and Eisenhower? I don't 
want to leave out any important presidential stories here. 

Jorgensen: The only thing I can say is I think he invited me back over the 
years to either four or five of these small dinners. As I've 
explained to you, at one we talked about becoming chairman of 
the Eisenhower Volunteers, and the other was a feeling out of 
my ability or my willingness to consider the national chairman. 

I'm not sure I would have gotten the national chairman. I 
saw Len Hall later. Len was then going out of office as 
national chairman. He said, "I was disappointed to hear that 
you rejected the chairmanship of Eisenhower Volunteers. I 
didn't know Len. I got better acquainted with him after I moved 
to New York, but he evidently had some interest in my accepting 
the chairmanship of the Eisenhower Volunteers. 

The other trips were just small dinner parties, usually 
to see the president in the morning and talk about this and that 
and the other thing. 


Jorgensen: But I remember so well his distaste for what I call practical 
politics. I recall one dinner. I arrived a little late, the 
last one there. The usher brought me upstairs to the oval study 
where he usually met his guests and had a cocktail or two. 
When he saw me he came over. He was pretty red-faced. I 
learned later, watching him, that when he got mad the blood 
started to rise from his neck up. I could see that he was 

He said, "Jorgensen, I'm glad to see you. Come on, I'll 
get you a drink." So we had a drink. But he didn't lead me 
back to the group that was standing around yakking. We looked 
at some things that some governments had given him, like a 
jeweled sword from Saudi Arabia or something like that. Then 
finally he said, "Gentleman, why don't we go down to dinner." 

Ordinarily when he wrote you a little note inviting you 
to dinner he'd say, "I'm going to wear a black tie, but come 
as you please." Of course, naturally you always put on a 
dinner coat. But this one character came in. I'm not sure if 
he had boots on, but he had an old green suit on that looked 
like it had been in the cedar chest for a while. I won't 
identify him for obvious reasons. It wouldn't be fair. But 
he came from a western state. 

We sat down to dinner; a very lovely dinner we always had. 

But this fellow was sitting practically across from the 

president on the other side of the table. Charlie Thomas was 

This man kept yelling down from the end of the table, "Now, 
Mr. President, by God, you've got to do this and you've got to 
do this." I could see that it was bothering the president. 
He would try to ignore it, but this character just kept right 
on going. A number of us tried to break up the conversation. 

So after dinner we went in to another room to have cigars 
and talk. This character took the floor. What he was concerned 
about was patronage. He hadn't got the patronage. He just 
couldn't get the patronage. His Senator wouldn't let him have 
the patronage. 

Finally the president took enough of it and he in his 
language, which he can use as an ex-army man, which was very 
spicy, proceeded to tell this politician that he was going to 
run the government as he saw the way to run it, and he wasn't 
going to give any credence to any damn politician that was 
worried about patronage. He really laid him in the aisle. There 
was no clapping by the rest of the guests, but they all wanted 
to cheer that the president laid him low. 


Jorgensen: But those were the days when Shenn [Sherman] Adams was the 
watchdog at the White House on problems having to do with 
political problems — he and Dick Nixon. Sherm had the day to 
day problems. If you wanted something, if you wanted to talk 
about an appointment, you would go to Sherman. Sherman, of 
course, was an old hand on the hill. He knew what he was about. 
This is what Nixon missed in organizing his organization as 
president. Sherm was tough, but he was fair. You either got a 
"yes" or "no" and that was it. There was no use appealing it 
any farther. 

After Adams left the president then had to address himself 
to the political situation and became, in my opinion, a pretty 
astute politician in a short period of time. I kidded him on 
one of the trips after this had happened. I said, "Mr. 
President, you're getting to be a pretty good politician." 

"Well," he said, "I didn't think I like it, but now that 
I've got to do it, I get a little fun out of it once in a while." 

Fry: You said Sherm Adams was the political watchdog on day to day 

problems. Nixon, I gather, was also a sort of political aide 
and sensor and planner for Eisenhower. 

Jorgensen: Remember what I said earlier about Eisenhower's remarks. 

Fry: Yes. But were you differentiating here that Adams was day to 

day and Nixon was more long range? 

Jorgensen: I think so, yes. That's what I meant to infer. 

Earl Warren's Supreme Court Appointment 

Fry: Did Eisenhower ever talk over anything with you about candidates 

or appointments or anything like that? Did you ever hear him 
mention what he felt about Earl Warren a few years after he 
appointed him? 

Jorgensen: It's interesting that you should bring that up. I never could 
understand — of course, I was not a great admirer of Earl Warren. 
I thought he was a decent individual, sure. But his thinking 
sometimes, and some of the things he did when he became a Supreme 
Court justice, didn't sit well with me. Maybe I'm too conservative. 
I think perhaps he was a little more liberal in his thinking 
than I would be. I didn't agree with some of the things that he 


Jorgensen: For instance, this integration thing. God knows we need to 
bring about integration. But the Warren system of shoving 
it down the throats of the American public as roughly as has 
been done or was tried — and now we're seeing that the colored 
folk themselves are commencing to resist some of these 
things — seemed to me pretty drastic. 

I thought that it would take time and education for the 
black population of ours to assume the correct position in 
society. They had not had the opportunity, I must grant, in 
the southern states, of equal opportunity of education. But 
to my way of thinking, education was the main thing. I don't 
think you can legislate citizenship by laws. I think you 
have to do it so that it may take two or three or four 
generations to do it. Then there will be opportunities for 
them as far as employment is concerned. 

Anyhow, I often wondered why, because Eisenhower did not 
owe Warren a blessed thing as far as his election was concerned. 
Warren, in my opinion, was ineffective in the campaign. He 
did some speeches and traveling, but I don't think he had a 
great deal of weight. He certainly didn't help in the 
convention. Warren held off to the last minute hoping that he 
could get a nomination himself. 

I asked Nixon. I said, "Why?" He never gave me a 
satisfactory answer. After Eisenhower was out of office they 
had a birthday party down in Hershey, Pennsylvania. I went down 
with Tom Dewey and a planeload of New Yorkers. I was living 
in New York then. 

We were having cocktails out on the porch of the old 
Hershey Inn there. I said hello to the ex-president and was 
chatting with him. I was just about on the point, "Now I'm 
going to ask him directly," and somebody come up and engaged 
him in conversation. I couldn't get back in the position. But 
I had my courage worked up to the point that I was going to 
say, "What in the world caused you to nominate Warren to the 
Supreme Court?" But I never did. 

I'm not sure the Warren court will go down in history as 
earthshaking. I must give the ex-governor credit though. He 
was an exceedingly good leader. He had pretty near an unanimity 
of opinion on this subject that I was just talking about. But 
anyhow, that's the background. I never did find out why. 

Fry: You don't have any ideas now on why he was appointed? 


Jorgensen: Oh, I suspect Bill Knowland. Bill was the leader of the Senate, 
and I think Bill probably had a good deal to do with it. 
Bill owed Warren the fact that he was in the Senate. He was a 
Warren appointment. I expect there probably was as much influence 
there as anyplace. Paul Hoffman might have had some influence, 
I'm sure. 

[end tape 3, side 2] 


[begin tape 4, side 1] 

Selecting California Delegates to the 1956 Convention 

Jorgensen: You've got the '52. You want the '56 now, the second term of 
office. Was that convention in San Francisco? 

Fry: Fifty-six? I believe so. 

Jorgensen: Sixty was in Los Angeles, wasn't it? Yes. That's when 

Kennedy was nominated. Fifty-six was in San Francisco because 
I was living in Hillsborough. I had moved up from Los Angeles. 

Goodie Knight was governor. That delegation was put 
together up at the Mark Hopkins Hotel. I know it caused a 
little trouble here in San Mateo County because I was appointed 
the delegate. After all, I had only lived in the county — not 
too long. It lifted some eyebrows, but nevertheless I was 
an old-timer. 

Fry: Was Goodie Knight the nominal head? 

Jorgensen: I'll tell you a story. The delegation was picked. Basically 
we had three factions. There was a Knight group, a Knowland 
and a Nixon. Chotiner came up here as a Nixon representative. 
They set the Mark Hopkins Hotel as a meeting place to select 
members of the delegation. Each group submitted the names they 
wanted on the delegation. After some bargaining back and forth- 

Fry: You mean Knight and Knowland and Nixon each gave their names 
that they wanted on the delegation? 

Jorgensen: That's right. It finally worked out that this would be the 

delegation that would represent the state. In the meantime Mr. 
Knight and Mr. Nixon weren't seeing eye to eye by any means, 
although Dick tried to calm Knight, who was a prima donna. 


Fry: What were they differing over? 

Jorgensen: Well, my dear, politicians are like children sometimes or old 
ladies. They get incensed about a thing and they start a feud 
and there's no real reason to it. Basically, this started 
between Nixon and Knight — they were both jealous of each other, 
of course, as politicians are — at the Los Angeles airport one 
day. Nixon came in. I believe he was then Senator, or he 
was vice-president. Anyhow, there was a bunch of us out to 
meet him at the airport, and Knight came out, of course. 

Goodie Knight had the greatest faculty of getting himself 
smack-dab in the middle of a picture. I've watched him work, 
and it was amazing! There 'd be five or six individuals to be 
in a picture, and Goodie would get himself in the middle every 
time! He was an artist at it; he really was. And I've watched 
him do it. 

Anyhow, in this picture — they were taking some pictures just 
after Nixon got off of the airplane. There was a bit of 
elbowing, and Goodie got elbowed out of the picture. He raised 
hell about it. I can remember he was madder than a — left the 
airport, got in his car and left in a hurry. That started the 

Fry: You mean he was elbowed out of the picture? 

Jorgensen: Yes, or elbowed out to the outer edge. He was incensed about it, 

anyway. As I say, there was a jealousy there. Then the supporters 
of each side would feed fuel to this feud. 

The delegation met at the Palace Hotel to form itself into 
a formal delegation. There was much yakking. "We're not going 
to have Knight as the chairman of the delegation. By God, 
we're not going to have him." And Knight had some people that 
were screaming. So, it was arranged that Knight and Knowland 
and Nixon would go upstairs and sit down and see if they could 
solve this thing. 

Fry: Oh, really? Just by themselves. 

Jorgensen: That's right. I said to Dick, "I'll wait for you down here 

by the elevator and you give me the tip-off." As they got off 
of the elevator, Dick said, "Talk to Bill [Knowland]." 

I said to Bill, "What'll we do?" 

He said, "Go ahead and do what you want." Bill knew what I 
wanted to do was to really dump Knight, because I wanted Bill 
Knowland to be the chairman of the delegation. 


Jorgensen: We went into the meeting room, and parliamentary procedure 

started to move. But I quickly got three people lined up to 
make the motions I wanted. Knight was told by his supporters 
that he was going to be dumped because I had told them I was 
going to dump him now in favor of Knowland. 

Knight got up before the delegation, and he just pleaded 
with them. He said, "Don't do this. Don't take me out of 
this picture. As the governor of the state, I — " and so forth 
and so forth. Then the camps broke up. One group met over in 
this corner, another group over here [gesturing] , another group 
over there. There was much yakking and going back and forth 
of emissaries. 

They came to me and I said, "No, I'm still set. Dump him! 
Right now. Now's the time to whip him. That's my politics. 
If you're going to whip a guy, whip him!" 

Nixon came over to see me and he said, "Frank, let's 
don't do this. Let's try to create some harmony if we can, and 
please don't push it." 

So it finally wound up that the Knight people started to 
leave the room, and Knight pleaded for them to come back. 
They finally came back in, and we finally fixed it so that 
Knight was head of the delegation, which amounted to nothing 
because Eisenhower was coming up for a second term. 

Then we met out at the Cow Palace. Of course that convention 
was just a normal convention, normal amount of yak — speeches. 
Nothing exciting happened that I can recall. Eisenhower and 
Nixon were nominated for the second term. Because I had moved 
from Southern California, I did not do a great deal in that 
campaign. I had just taken on a new job in San Francisco and 
was devoting a great deal of time to it. There wasn't any 
question but what Eisenhower was going to be elected the second 
term. That's about all there is to the '56 campaign. 

Campaigning for the Presidency, 1960 

Jorgensen: Now the 1960 campaign, when Nixon ran against Kennedy — here 
again I had just been shifted by the company to New York. I 
was on a new job. I had the responsibility for the production 
of our group sales organization in both the United States and 
Canada, which in itself was a pretty demanding job. 











I went down to Washington on two or three occasions and sat in 
on some meetings. I sat on a committee in New York that 
Maurice Stans, John Lodge, Walter Williams and so forth started 
in the fall of '59 to raise some necessary funds to allow 
Nixon to go into the primaries in the early spring. In the 
actual campaign I was not able to do much except in the last 
month or month and a half. I made some trips into the Middle 
West on specific problems. 

Was this in the general election? 

Yes, general election, 
in the '60 campaign. 

But in total, I did not do very much 

What were those specific problems? 

Personnel problems. More or less, most of them were factions 
fighting each other. I went, having had some experience over 
a long time. I could go in and say that I was there at Mr. 
Nixon's request, and sit down with these people and see if you 
can't put it together before it grew out of hand. That's 
about it. Nothing of any skullduggery that I can report. 

This was your first campaign in which you were in kind of a 
nationwide organization, wasn't it? Before this you had always 
been limited to California? 

That's right, and not much in this one. I can't take any credit 
for doing very much in the '60 campaign. 

I wondered if you did a lot of the fund-raising in California 
for the national campaign? 

No, not that campaign. I think that's about it. Let's move 
along. Of course, Kennedy beat him by the Chicago and 
Philadelphia vote. 

Did you confer with Nixon much during this campaign? 

Not a great deal, no. I saw him in New York, and I'd see him 
in Washington. But no, I didn't. I really wasn't in the 
campaign to any extent. 

I want to ask you one more question, though. Did you happen 
to talk to Nixon about whether to participate in the debate? 

Yes. I had one discussion, and that subject was in it. I said 
to him, "Don't do it." He listened to some amateurs. All of 
us who'd had any experience said, "Don't do it." 


Fry: He was such a proven debater. How did you know that he 

shouldn' t do it? 

Jorgensen: You can't use this entirely, but basically a politician who's 
in office should never debate his opponent. He ignores his 
opponent as much as he can, because he has to defend something. 
The opponent can make the most outrageous charges, but if 
you're on a platform, you've got to answer him. Some of the 
statements an opponent will make are not answerable because 
they're just plain lies. 

I thought at the time that no purpose would be served 
by these debates. Here again, Mrs. Fry, it becomes my mistrust 
of the media. I've always distrusted the media, and my 
distrust certainly worked out in this case because they really 
worked him over. 

Then, basically, while he was not the incumbent in office, 
he was the vice-president and he had to answer for the 
Eisenhower years. Regardless of how much you appreciated 
Eisenhower (and I thought he was a fine gentleman; I enjoyed 
knowing him), I didn't think he was a particularly good president. 
I think there was a lot of things that he let go. He didn't 
want to stir up the water. 

Likewise, as a president he was not prepared, in my 
opinion, to deal with the domestic problems which were arising. 
They were starting to come up. We were starting to see the 
outgrowth of the Roosevelt years when we started all of this 
basic welfare work and all of these things that are now costing 
us billions of dollars and eventually will bankrupt the government 
if we keep on. He didn't do anything about those things. I 
don't mean by that they should discontinue them, but to commence 
to channel them and to control them where they had not got out 
of hand, as they have at the present time. 

Nixon was in the position of having to defend that record, 
so he was an incumbent in a sense of the word. I could see 
no reason for him to debate this young Kennedy, because Kennedy 
was in a position to level charges, level charges, level charges. 
And that's what he did. Richard knew better than this, but he 
listened to wrong advice who said, "Oh, this would be a great 
thing." The debate killed him. 

Fry: Who gave him the advice to do it? 

Jorgensen: Oh, some of his friends in the media. I can't name them for 
you. Some of the latecomers in politics who'd never been 
through real tough campaigns. Of course, his inherent feeling 
was that he was vice-president and that was it. 


Fry: As vice-president he could always manage to win. 

Jorgensen: Sure. As you get into that rarefied atmosphere, you become 
practically proof-free in making mistakes or wrong thinking 
or bad thinking. You're now endowed with a gift that Jesus 
Christ only himself could give to you. This is the arrogance 
that the position breeds, that power breeds; it really is. 

Fry: Yes. That's a classical pattern, isn't it? 

Jorgensen: Sure it is. It's interesting to see. I watched him as he 

came up the line and more and more very much sure, sure that, 
"I know the answer, I know the answer." Nobody knows all the 
answers by any means. He has to listen to counsel. He has 
to listen to advice. Then he has to be wise enough to take 
the right kind of advice. 

Fry: [laughing] He gets plenty, I guess, too at that level. 

Jorgensen: Well, that's that on the 1960 campaign. 

Jorgensen Chooses Not to Head Nixon's 1962 Gubernatorial 

Jorgensen: Now in 1962 he ran for governor, didn't he? 
Fry: That's right. Were you in on that? 

Jorgensen: I'll give you a story about that. It's an interesting one. 

Dick was out here in California getting ready for the campaign, 
and I was in New York. I had a call from our financial vice- 
president. He said, "Frank, when are you going out to 

Fry: This is your company? 

Jorgensen: Yes. I said, "Harry, I'll be going out one of these days. Why?" 

He said, "I understand you're going out to run Mr. Nixon's 
campaign for governor." 

I said, "That's a rumor, of course. I haven't even talked 
to him about his gubernatorial campaign. I haven't seen him for 
some time. I don't know anything about it." 


Jorgensen: Then Len Hall called me. Len said, "Frank, I'd like to talk 
to you. I've got some ideas for that campaign out in 
California before you go out." 

I said, "Len, where did you get your information?" He 
told me. I said, "Len, I haven't even talked to him. Come on 
down and have lunch with me." So Len came down the next day 
at the office and we had lunch. 

He said, "It's pretty well rumored around there that 
you're going back out and take on his campaign." 

I said, "Len, I'm not going to do it. I can't do it." 
So, I thought, "Well, I'll get ahold of Dick one of these days 
and talk to him." 

I didn't think anything about it till the president of 
my company called me. He always called me Jorgy. That was 
always my nickname. But this time he said, "Mr. Jorgensen, if 
you have time I would like for you to come by the office." 

I said, "Right away, Sir." He was a kindly man and we'd 
never had a harsh word between us. But I could see he was 
disturbed about something. 

He said to me, "I think you should talk to me before you 
leave the company." 

I said, "I think I know what you're talking about. Somebody's 
told you that I'm going out to California." 

He said, "Yes. You know, we don't want to discourage you, 
but we brought you back here and we have some plans for you. 
You'll have to resign, but of course you can come back." 

I said, "Mr. President, I will now get some dope on this 
thing because — " and I recited it to him that Harry had 
talked to me and my other friend, the ex- chairman of the national 

I went back to my office and I got a hold of Mr. Nixon, who 
was out here in California. I said, "There's a plane leaving 
this afternoon at about four thirty. I will be on it. Have 
somebody meet me at the airport." They did. As a matter of fact, 
Rose Woods met me. We drove out to Beverly Hills. He'd rented 
a house. 

This was in the fall. I remember there was a fire in the 
fireplace. We sat down and started talking and had a drink. I 
said, "What about this?" 


Jorgensen: He said, "I thought if I came directly to you, you'd back away. 
I thought maybe I'd get some friends to kind of urge you to 
come along." 

I said, "It can't be done." 
He said, "Why not?" 

I said, "In the first place I'm now living in New York. I 
have been out of California politics." This was 1962, so I 
had been four years out of California and actively out of 
politics for probably six or seven years. That's number one. 
Number two is that I can't economically afford to leave my job 
and to spend a year. That's what you want. It will take a 
year through the primary, through the general election. No, I 
can't do it. 

"There's a third reason. Your opposition, I think, would 
have a lot of fun and make big capital out of the fact that 
you had to go out of the state of California to get a chairman, 
a senior executive of the biggest life insurance company in 
the business, to run your campaign." 

He didn't take kindly to any of this, and we got into an 
argument. When he and I have had some confrontations, we use 
some four letter words to express our feelings. Anyway, I 
left and things were not happy. The next day I got a telephone 
call asking if I would meet again. I did. Same results. We 
left at that meeting pretty much both disturbed. 

Later on during the week he telephoned me, I think in 
Seattle, and said he was sorry that we had disagreed on this 
thing and perhaps I was right and asked who would I recommend 
for chairmanship of the campaign. I gave him some names that I 
thought would be good people. He didn't select any of them. 
But that's beside the point. So that's my total contribution to 
his gubernatorial campaign in 1962. 

I understand later — I've talked with some people who worked 
with him; I'll not name them — but they said they were having 
one hell of a time, I think, to get him to take counsel and 
advice and so forth, and that I had been the one individual in 
the days when I was out here that could stand toe to toe and 
eyeball to eyeball, give and take, and he sometimes would 
listen to me. This had happened because I never wanted anything 
that he could ever give me. I wasn't seeking public office or 
anything of that sort. So I always could be pretty independent. 

As a matter of fact, I was known in some circles an an 
irascible son of a bitch. 


Fry: I see. That means independent, doesn't it? [laughter] 

Jorgensen: [laughter] I guess so. Anyhow, that was it. So that's 
the end of the gubernatorial campaign. 

Then, as you recall, he came to New York and joined the 
law firm of Mudge, Rose and so forth.* I would see him. He 
and Pat took an apartment up on Fifth Avenue, which was only 
about three blocks from the apartment I had over on Third 
Avenue. I would see him from time to time. Then, as I 
previously recited here, I was on a committee in the early 
fall of 1967 to raise finances, to make plans for the primaries, 

Campaigning for the Presidency, 1968 

Jorgensen 1 s Key Role in California 

Jorgensen: I retired on Jure 1, 1968, and immediately moved back to 

California. I received a call from Tom Evans, which was one 
of the members of his law firm whom I'd known, asking me if I was 
coming to the convention in Miami. They had reservations and 
they would set aside space for me. I asked Tom what they wanted 
me to do. He said, "Well, the boss just thought you'd like to 
be here." 

I said, "Tom, it doesn't make any sense for me to come. 
He's got the convention locked up. There isn't any question in 
my mind. As long as he keeps Strom Thurmond holding the 
Southern delegation and the Southerners in line. 

Fry: This was the '68 convention. 

Jorgensen: That's right. I was saying to Evans that I had been in Miami 
in August and I didn't care for it. I'd just gotten out here 
and Mary and I were just establishing our home and I wouldn't 
come down. I wouldn't go to the expense of it. 

So then, the next thing I hear, I get a call — will I come 
to San Diego. After the convention was over the whole group 
came out to San Diego to confer for a week or ten days and set 

*In the spring of 1963 Nixon joined the firm Mudge, Stern, 
Baldwin, and Todd (later Nixon, Mudge, Rose, Guthrie and 
Alexander; later Nixon, Mudge, Rose, Guthrie, Alexander and 




up a national campaign. In this group were John Mitchell and 
Bob Finch and Haldeman — the group that eventually got into 
the campaign. 

I went down and we had a meeting on, I believe, a Sunday 
morning, at which the Calif ornians who were in attendance 
were going to have a meeting to form the California organization 
and campaign. It had been decided that Dr. [Gay lord] Parkinson, 
who lived in San Diego and who had been a very successful 
Republican state chairman, would head the organization. 
However, when we met Dr. Parkinson didn't attend. I think 
efforts to reach him by telephone were unsuccessful. Then the 
word came through that he wasn't about to take on the job. I 
haven't been able to firm up this idea. I think what happened 
was that a few days beforehand he'd had a confrontation with 
Mitchell, or others who were heading up the national campaign, 
and decided to have nothing to do with it. 

Anyhow, Bob Finch acted as the chairman of the California 
meeting. After the meeting he said, "We'll talk to Mr. Nixon," 
who then asked who was going to head up the California campaign. 
They turned to me and said, "Will you do it?" Now, keep in 
mind that I had been out of California for ten and a half 
years, plus the fact that I wasn't active probably to any extent 
the previous four years, which is really about twelve to 
fourteen years . Keep in mind also that this meeting took 
place around September 1, 1968, and you've got two months to 
election time. 

Finally I said, "I'll do this: I'll act as coordinator"— 
call it what you please; we finally decided it would be chairman 
of the executive committee — "providing Mr. Finch takes the title 
of chairman of the state campaign." This was agreed upon. My 
reasoning for this was , with the time so short that I would feel 
that I would have to call upon the former Finch-for-Lieutenant- 
Governor people to form the nucleus of the campaign organization 
for California. Bob Finch agreed with me on this point. There 
was no money available at this time. Nothing had been raised. 
No finance organization had been organized. 

We fought like a dog to raise enough money to do it. We 
gave Nixon roughly 50 percent of his plurality. We gave him 
224,000 votes plurality in California. That was half of what 
he got in all the fifty states together. He won nationwide by 
less than half a million votes. 

So California really put him in there. 

Jorgensen: If he hadn't have had California, he wouldn't have been in there; 
let's put it that way. [laughter] 



Why wasn't there anything left over from the primaries in the 
way of organization? Was Nixon's organization nonexistent 
in the primaries? 

Jorgensen: Practically so. 

Ronald Reagan and George Wallace 




The delegation was another nominally headed one, headed by 
Reagan, who said he was not running for president. [laughter] 

Jorgensen: But the delegation was a Nixon delegation. 

Was it? Because underneath, Reagan was really running too. 
was putting in a lot of effort. 


Oh, sure. I'll deviate here. In my opinion Reagan listened 
to some bad advice. Some of his people counseled him that he 
would be in a good position. Keep in mind that Reagan didn't 
have too much experience with these national conventions. When 
he got there he got a bad thumping, because there was no support 
for him at all. Nixon had this thing tied up. When I say 
"tied up" I don't mean to use that word in any sense except to 
suggest that Nixon, in the years that he was out of office, had 
worked diligently for the Republican party. You've got to give 
him credit. He'd go anyplace, make any speech, anytime, 

Now, the true politician doesn't forget those obligations. 
So who runs the conventions? The conventions are controlled 
by your state chairmen, your big county chairmen, and your big 
city chairmen of the Republican party. Those are the nucleus of 
it. They appreciate when a guy comes out and fights for one of 
their candidates. Likewise the candidates — all congressmen — 
are members of a delegation, members of the convention, and they 
don't forget the help that you give them when you work for 

So, Dick had all of these notes owing to them. All he 
had to do was ask for them and they were there. Nobody could 
take that convention away from him. As you noticed a moment 
ago, I said as long as the southern tier of states were in hand, 
he's got it! No question about it. 

Reagan made a very bad mistake, in my opinion, in letting 
his underlings tell him that he could be a prime candidate. I 
don't think that he would have been a bad candidate. But at that 
convention he didn't have a chance. 









Could you tell me what Finch's position was in relation to 
Reagan or Nixon at this point? 

With Nixon. No question about it. You see, Reagan and Finch 
didn't get together well. It's according to whose side of the 
story you listen to. But here you're going to have a lieutenant 
governor that felt that he wasn't being consulted by government 
at all — that the governor was ignoring him entirely. I suppose 
that Reagan felt this, being a politician. 

You see, in that election, when they won the election, 
Finch had more votes than Reagan did. He ran a hundred thousand 
or more ahead of Reagan in the state. This is a sign. These 
politicians see these things; they smell them; they feel them. 
They get it in their gut, and they never get it out. I suspect 
that's had something. No, Finch has always been a Nixon man. 
There's no question about that. 

And you feel that most of the members of that delegation were 
Nixon men. Was Rockefeller a problem at all in this state? 

No, I don't believe so. 

What about George Wallace? That was his third party here. 

That's right. Wallace was helping us probably more than hurting 

I wondered how he was perceived at that time. 

In some of those Southern states I think he was more of a help 
than he was a deterrent because he was taking away. 

From the Democrats. 

That's right. But none of us ever felt that he had the power 
to ever be elected. At least I didn't. 

Going back then to the '68 campaign, we started and Finch 
was chairman. I was up about ten days later after this meeting 
in San Diego, and Finch said, "Now you're chairman." 

I said, "Where are you going?" 

"Well," he said, "Nixon wants me to go on the tour with 

I said, "Fine. I'll go with you, because I'm not going to 
take the chairmanship." 


Jo rg ens en: "Why not?" 

I said, "It's a very simple thing in my book. I've got 
to lean on the notes that are owed you. You've got a lot of 
friends in California. If you're not the chairman, I can't go 
to them and get the support I need, the workers I need, the 
organization I need, and the money I need." 

We argued about it awhile. I said, "You keep the chairmanship 
title, and I'll ramrod this thing as chairman of the executive 
committee," which entailed financial responsibility as well as 
organization. We had to raise some money quick, which we did — 
some good friends did. 

Fry: Was this Asa Call and Harrison McCall? 

Jorgensen: Yes. So then Bob Finch and I persuaded Asa Call to head up the 
financial operation and raise the kind of money that we needed. 
We had a very thin campaign. Having mounted and financed a 
campaign in a matter of sixty days, there's a question as to 
how — to be frank — about how effective it is. You just can't 
take a big state like this and organize it in that period of 
time and get back the kind of results you want. 

The results of the election were Nixon received a 214,000 
plurality in the state, which was roughly half of his total 
plurality in fifty states. 

Fry: You don't think it had anything to do with how good a campaign 
you carried out? [laughing] 

Jorgensen: We can't take any credit for it all. We ran a campaign. We did 
the best we could in the period of time that was available and 
the amount of money that was available. 

Some Needed Reforms 



Raising that question, I'm not sure that campaigns contribute 
to the election of a man too much. Today with the idiot box 
where we can reach all people — everybody has a television set 
practically or a radio set — I'm not sure that campaigns and the 
kind of money we spend in campaigns is just worth it. Frankly, 
I'm not. 

You mean you're not sure whether the television campaigns are 
worth it? 







The television — that's your campaign. 

Yes. But that takes an awful lot of money. 

It sure does. It eats it up like a monster. But all the 
other extra activities — the public appearances, the advertising 
in the newspaper. You go into these dailies and you're 
talking about a full page and costing $5,000 for one insertion 
or more, and weekends it would cost you another five, six, 
seven, or eight hundred dollars more. 

Another thing too, Mrs. Fry — these campaigns of ours are 
too long. That causes us to spend too much money. Some of 
these days — we're trying in a clumsy sort of way to limit the 
money intake. But here again, regardless of what laws you 
have for contributions, smart operators are going to find ways 
around it. It just stands to reason that they will. It'll 
put the brakes on them to some extent. This taking a dollar from 
your federal income tax — that's for the birds. That isn't going 
to work. 


If I was an incumbent I wouldn't want my opponent to be financed 
out of the public funds. Make him work for it. 

Secondly, the length of the campaigns. This, I think, is 
where we've really got to do it. England does it to some 
extent. We should limit our primary campaign to a period of 
sixty or ninety days at maximum and the general campaign to 
sixty days. No candidate should spend a dollar prior to those 
campaigns, and they should limit the number of dollars he's 
going to spend in the campaign. 

Then a time will come when these fat cats who operate that 
idiot box are going to force themselves into a position where 
they're going to have to give free time to candidates. They're 
coming to it. It's coming. The atmosphere is getting ripe for 
it, and people are getting ripe for it. So they're going to 
have to set aside time. I think this will happen. Our campaigns 
in the past have been just too much money, too much time, too 
much effort. 

You were saying that when you started this campaign on September 
1, which gave you two months before the election, that it was 
difficult to organize a state as big as California in two 


Jorgensen: It's impossible! 


Fry: So what do you mean you think the cqmpaigns were too long? 

Jorgensen: Well, organization is another thing. You're not actually 
campaigning when you're putting an organization together. 
You're getting the people who will act at the time the campaign 

Say we had a primary of two months or three months — I 
think the primary should be three months — you can start building 
your organization months ahead of that time. I can come to 
you, Mrs. Fry, and say, "We're going to start a campaign next 
spring, and I want to act as a chairman of your precinct. You 
start getting four or five women who will work with you." I've 
expended no money to do this, I've given no material, but I've 
got a commitment, so that when I come up to the beginning of 
that ninety days I've got counties organized, I've got communities 
organized, and I've got precincts organized. I can save money 
doing this too. [tape off] 

Importance of Volunteers 

Jorgensen: I've always had a feeling that in campaigns, you get better 
campaign results if you've got volunteers who are dedicated 
people who believe in what they're doing. Modern thinking, 
however, seems to be to get money, hire people. This last 
presidential campaign I observed coming into our headquarters 
here in the Bay Area one after another, smart, for the most 
part fairly long-haired, classily dressed with sport coats, young 
experts on salary by the national campaign headquarters, who 
were telling the volunteers what to do and how to do it. 

I've been in this business long enough to know that if 
I'm a volunteer and I've come from my home and I've maybe hired 
a babysitter to sit with my baby and I've taken my car and used 
my gasoline, and then to have somebody come in here who's been 
paid a nice salary (and expense accounts, of course, that run 
out of your ears), I'd say, "The hell with it! I'm not going 
to be told by this kind of character." 

On the other hand — as I mentioned to you a moment ago I used 
to brag about this that I never got paid for anything that I 
did — I could say to the volunteer, "Look, I'm in the same 
position you are. I happen to have a position that's the boss, 
but I don't make a damn dime out of this, and I'm not paid. I 
do it because I believe in it." Now they worked for me. 


Jorgensen: Then the secret of getting volunteers to work is somebody doing 
something and you go along and say, "Mrs. Fry, you're doing a 
beautiful job." 

Fry: Right. You'll do anything for those strokes. 

Jorgensen: Now what you will get as the overall chairman is credit for 
things you didn't have a thing to do with because you were 
able to get Mrs. Fry to do the job. They forget this. The 
average chairman thinks, "I've got to be recognized." He makes 
a mistake, until he's worked with some great people and praised 
them. They'll work their tail off for him. 

Fry: Sure, and the esprit de corps that comes from this is probably 

the source of a lot of energy in a campaign. What you're 
saying about these paid people that come in is — 

Jorgensen: They're as ineffective as dimples on a boar pig. [laughter] 
Pardon my expression. 

Fry: That's the effect they have on the people below them or working 

with them. Does this make a difference in how a campaign is 
carried on with the mark of the candidate and the people who 
are above? In other words, wouldn't this detract from the 
influence of those on the finance committee who hired these 
men, and maybe women, to come in and be the experts in various 
phases of the campaign? It seems to me that it would turn over 
some of the direction of the campaign to these, because they're 
experts who are supposed to know all about it. 

Jorgensen: Sure, the direction of the campaign is turned over to them. 
Certainly. I've had some real fun with them. I'll go even 
further than that. Hiring so-called campaign experts — there's 
a bunch of them grown up. Here in California they've had a 
good feeding ground because of these initiative measures we 
have. They make a lot of money on that. I won't name the 
firms, but you know them. They hold themselves out as being 
experts in running campaigns. I see the kind of money that's 
paid to them. I say they're much overpaid. 

Give me the chairmanship of an operation. Let me hire one 
man, as a Murray Chotiner, for instance, who I thought was one 
of the best organizers and expediters in a political campaign 
that was ever born — you may not agree with his philosophy, but 
he got it done — a man like that, and pay him maybe some salary. 
I don't need all these other characters who are just spending 
money out . 


Jorgensen: I think the American people are sick of this money business. 
They're not going to put that kind of money in. The average 
worker isn't going to do it. 

[end tape 4, side 1; begin tape 4, side 2] 

More on the 1968 Race 

Dealing With Republican Factions 

Fry: Do you know very much about why [George] Romney withdrew in the 

primaries of that campaign? 

Jorgensen: No. 

Fry: Nixon entered a number of primaries and came out with very high 
percentages in a lot of them. In some of them he was unopposed. 
Do you think that this was necessary? 

Jorgensen: No. 

Fry: Primaries do seem to sap a lot of money. 

Jorgensen: Sure they do. 

Fry: I wondered how Nixon's support lined up along the lines of the 

various Republican factions which developed four years earlier 
when Goldwater ran [1964] and when Reagan captured the governorship 
[1966]. There was a Raf ferty-Kuchel contest going on here in 
1968 for senatorship that was very hot and divisive in the 
Republican primary. Could you tell us how this affected the 
Nixon campaign? Was one group more pro-Nixon than the other, or 
did you try to unify them? 

Jorgensen: We tried to ignore them, I remember very definitely. I was 

careful as I could be, keeping in mind the time element, to not 
engage a heavy supporter of either of those candidates in our 
campaign. We tried to just run our own campaign and ignore the 
other candidate. 

Fry: In your volunteers did you try to balance it and get as many 

of one as another? 

Jorgensen: No, I don't think we consciously did. I think we avoided getting 
a red-hot, someone who supported one candidate or the other in 
our headquarters. I don't recall but maybe one incident where 
candidates tried to move into our headquarters when we had to 
move a person out. 


Fry: Did Nixon remain neutral on the [Thomas] Kuchel — [Max] Rafferty 

fight in the Republican primary? Kuchel was the incumbent U.S. 
Senator who had developed a certain amount of seniority in 
Washington, and he lost to Rafferty. 

Jorgensen: Nixon didn't take an open stand on it. 
Fry: Do you know how he felt about it really? 

Jorgensen: No, I don't. 

Fry: It was looked upon as a sort of disciplinary action by the 

Republicans against Kuchel. 

Jorgensen: No, I don't really. I could guess, but that wouldn't be worth 
putting down. What's your next question? 

Fry: There were some other groups like the California Republican 

Assembly and the United Republicans of California. I thought 
maybe you could tell how these all — 

Jorgensen: They were all pro-Nixon. 

Fry: Then what was the source of any opposition that you had to deal 


Jorgensen: In the state of California, where you're a three to two 

registration, to win a Republican campaign you've got to have 
a lot of Democrats come over to join you. The lunatic fringe 
and the very liberal element of the Democratic party we couldn't 
hope to reach. They were on the Governor Knight's — we're 
talking about '68, though, aren't we? Yes. 

Fry: Yes. This was Humphrey — the Humphreyites. 

Jorgensen: Honestly, as far as the state of California, my answer to you 
awhile ago, there was just 224,000 more people wanted Nixon 
than they did Humphrey. 

Support From the San Joaquin Valley 


I was reading a book yesterday after I called you, which had a 
chapter in it on the '68 convention. I'll enter this into the 
record. It's by Delmatier, Mclntosh and Waters, called 








The Rumble of California Politics.* Their analysis says that 
Nixon won because Humphrey did poorly in the nine counties 
that are usually Democratic in the San Joaquin Valley. 
Humphrey lost Kern, Tulare, and San Joaquin Counties, and in 
the rest of those nine counties his margin was so low that it 
didn't offset Nixon's margin in the traditionally Republican 
counties. So, I wondered if there had been a conscious effort 
made to capture the Valley Democrats. 

Oh, yes. In '68 I had a pretty good organization out of Fresno 
and on up the Valley. They worked very hard. As I recall, we 
had economic conditions too that at that time were in our favor. 
Nixon had taken positions on certain of the issues affecting 
agriculture which those ranchers up there liked. And the 
McClatchy papers, which control that area up there, were not 
vehemently anti-Nixon. They weren't supporting Nixon, but they 
weren't taking him on. 

Then, of course, we had the big metropolitan dailies which 
get circulation through that area. I think that had more to 
do with it. Humphrey didn't catch on out here; his organization 
wasn't too much. We got an awful lot of blue collar voters. 
They were coming in our direction then. Then, of course, in 
the '72 campaign they came over completely because McGovern was 
completely off his rocker. 

The main issue in those Valley counties in 1968, I think, was 
the threat of the organizing farm workers at that time, which 
Humphrey came out for. I suppose Nixon — 

Dodged it. 

Dodged it or came out against it. 

Moved around it. Pat it on the back and then give it a kick. 

*Royce D. Delmatier, Clarence F. Mclntosh, and Earl G. Waters, 
The Rumble of California Politics, 18A8-1970 (New York: 
John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1970), pp. 404-406. 


Choosing Issues 







When you read the old newspapers the main idea was to bring 
peace and stop the riots here at home. It seemed like Nixon's 
campaign said, "We want peace and we want to stop the riots 
here at home, which we'll do through better enforcement of law 
and order." Humphrey on the other hand was saying, "We want 
peace and we want to stop the riots at home, and I propose 
1-2-3-4-5 and on this other matter 6-7-8-9-10" — very specific 
ones. Nixon never answered Humphrey on these very specific 
things , or he never countered with his own very specific 

He didn't have to. 

Why did you think he didn't have to? 

Just a question of judgment — reading the public's mind. Nothing 

Do you mean that it was enough just to know that this is what 
Nixon had in mind, as he would proceed into the presidency, 
without knowing how he was going to do it? 

His broad statement was sufficient for them. As you go into 
a campaign you have people rushing to you and saying, "Are 
you going to answer him on this? Are you going to answer him 
on that?" It's just a question of your judgment. You've got 
your ear to the ground. You're listening and you're getting 
reports in from around the state. You say, "Now forget it," 
and walk away from him. You may guess wrong. Occasionally 
you do. But it's just a question of political judgment. This 
judgment doesn't come out of a machine. It comes out of a 

What kind of feedback did you get? Did you have constant polls? 

Oh yes, we had polls. But I got most of my information — I'd 
be on the telephone to my county chairmen, those which I had 
figured had good judgment. I'd call them up and say, "John, 
how are things this morning?" Then I'd have a little tab list 
of things that were current and I'd remind him. I'd get an 
answer from him. I'd do that for twenty or thirty counties, and 
I'd have a pretty good feel of what the feeling was on the daily 
issue. Your candidate gets it too as he moves around, because 
the local people will talk to him. If he sees a thread here, 
he can see. 


Jorgensen: Of course, a good politician, a man who remains in office, has 
an ability to understand what the public wants before they ask 
for it. He knows what they think. I'll tell you how he does 
it. They give you a lot of fancy answers and that sort of 
thing, but it's just the ability to think ahead. Not that he's 
a great thinker, but he picks up their thinking and he can 
project it and be ahead of them. Now if he's ahead of them, 
he's a good politician. 

Fry: Then when he suggests it everyone recognizes this is what they 

want. [laughing] 

Jorgensen: That's right. He takes full credit for it. 

Fry: In the 1968 campaign you were getting this feel. Did you pipe 

this in turn into the national campaign frequently? 

Jorgensen: Sure, we'd have conversations. I'd say, "Out here, we think 

we're hearing this. If the boss cares to comment on it, fine." 

When he came out on his trips to campaign here, we pretty 
well had localized for him. He'd go up the Valley and speak 
on agriculture. He'd speak favorably on points there. In the 
city here [San Francisco] he'd talk about this or that or the 
other — stopping the war, peace, and too much crime. The theme 
of the thing is always the same, but you highlight it as you 
come into a community or an area. 

Fry: I gather from what you're saying that you simplify the message. 

Jorgensen: Sure you do. People with a master's degree in political science, 
well, yes. But a true politician, the guy that's been through 
the mill, can succinctly say it in two seconds. They'll take 
two pages. [laughter] 

Rebuilding the Candidate 



There was an effort to project a new Nixon in '68. Here was 
a candidate who really hadn't won an election on his own right 
for eighteen years. I wondered if that really worked — if you 
feel that that was an important ingredient. 

I'm sure it was. We made suggestions about his personal 
appearance — shave. One of the great problems was to get that 
black beard off of his face. You'd have to shave him about 
three or four times a day to keep the beard down and powder him 








because we put him on camera. With a day's growth of beard, if 
he hadn't shaved since morning, he looked like a gangster! He'd 
be black as could be; he had a very black beard. 

Oh, I'm sure there were suggestions about what you should 
wear; there always is. And certain language and certain cliches 
he might be in the habit of using — discard them and so forth. 
Those always come in a campaign. I don't know that there was 
any great effort. I didn't see any great effort to rebuild 
the man. He was the same man. 

He was rebuilding himself, as I mentioned earlier in our 
conversation — a succession of offices, first to Congress and 
then Senator and then to vice-president and now a candidate for 
president. He had built and become more knowledgeable because 
of the jobs that he had and the effort that he made, the work 
that he did to improve his knowledge, particularly in foreign 
affairs. Yes, it was a different man. Bound to be. 

Did he really seem different to you? I remember Nixon said in 
one of his early statements in this campaign that he felt he 
really was different, that he had gone through a certain amount 
of psychoanalysis in New York and had read some philosophy and 
so forth. Did you find him essentially different, besides what 
you mentioned awhile ago, the perhaps arrogance that he picked 
up in public office as vice-president? 

Oh yes, he was different. You see, as I knew him before he was 
ever in public office, he was never a man that was given to 
small talk. Like stories — men get together for a drink and 
tell stories. He never participated in that. He didn't seem 
to have time for it. His mind was somewhere else. Eating and 
that sort of thing never seemed important to him in the early 
days. He was satisfied with a bowl of chili or a hamburger or 
meat loaf or something of that sort. 

As I've said to some of my old friends who were disappointed 
when they met him and couldn't sit down and reminisce about the 
past, "This man is too damn busy. He's president. He doesn't 
have time to sit down. He's working all day long." It's a hell 
of a job. 

It sure is. Eisenhower had his golf for recreation, 
have any hobby like that? 

Did Nixon 

I don't think he had any hobby except politics. He played a 
little golf, and so I guess he played a fair game. 

I guess he liked football. [laughter] 


Jorgensen: He liked to watch football games, and baseball maybe once in 
a while for public appearances. No, I never knew of any 
hobbies he ever had. 

Fry: Did you and Nixon get along better in this 1968 campaign or did 

you find it a little more difficult? If you were the — what 
did you call yourself? 

Jorgensen: The irascible son of a bitch. 

Fry: [laughter] Did you and Nixon have this same relationship in 

this campaign that you'd had in previous ones? 

Jorgensen: Oh, yes. Although I didn't see an awful lot of him because I 
was busy in California. When he came to California I was with 
him on these appearances. There are those people who head up 
operations who want to hold on to the sleeve of the candidate 
and appear on the platform with him because that's what they 
need. They have to have it; that's their pay. Or they have in 
mind public office and they want to get exposure. I never had 
that urge. So it was perfectly all right with me if he got on 
the platform and I was in the back room counting the money or 
somewhere trying to get something done. As a result, I didn't 
seek to be with him. As far as the campaign was concerned, he 
felt it was in capable hands, and certainly we never had any 
interference with it. 

Washington Job Possibilities 

Jorgensen: After the campaign was over and I was in New York he was very 
appreciative of the job that had been done and went out of his 
way to say so, even to the point of asking me what I might want 
down in Washington. 

Fry: Did you want anything? 

Jorgensen: No. As a matter of fact, I was visiting with him in New York 
before he was inaugurated. We were chatting and talking about 
the California campaign and how much he appreciated what we'd 
done out here. He said, "What do you think you want?" 

I said, "I don't want anything." 

He said, "Don't you want to come down and join us in 



I said, "No. 
I worked hard 
a little bit. 
who's worked 
me, you can* t 
of the United 
that I can do 

I just retired and I've moved back to California, 
all my years and I think I'd like to enjoy life 
Now, if you're talking to me as an old friend 
for you and you're trying to find the way to pay 
do it because I don't need it. But as President 
States, if sometime you feel that there's a job 
and I'm qualified for, I'd give it serious 

He took me at my word and never asked me after 

Fry: And never suggested a specific job? 

Jorgensen: No. 

Fry: What sort of specific job would you have liked? 

Jorgensen: None. As a matter of fact, when Mr. Finch was going to be 

appointed the HEW chairman, he asked me to come down and work 
with him in the transition period, which might indicate it 
would lead on probably to something else. I said, "I don't 
want to get in that can of worms — 118,000 employees." He 
found I was right because he left there. 

No, I had no desire to. I knew enough about Washington to 
know that in these jobs back there you work at them. If you're 
around the White House — a friend of mine, George Murphy, 
suggested that perhaps I ought to be on the staff. I said, 
"That's something I wouldn't touch with a ten-foot pole, for the 
simple reason that I'm too old. I can't take the pounding. I 
can't be on call eighteen, nineteen, twenty hours a day, which 
the staff is. That takes somebody that's a little bit younger 
than I am, and I'm not going to try!" 

I probably could have put up with it for a little while, 
but I didn't have to. There was nothing back there that appealed 
to me. I've had offers before to go back. Charlie [Charles 
Erwin] Wilson, who was secretary of defense, asked me one time 
when I was back and had a meeting with Charlie Thomas and Tom 
Pike. They said, "Why don't you come back and join us?" I 
said, "Oh, the hell with it." 

Fry: What did he want you to do? 

Jorgensen: Who knows? Get into that operation. But I've always, I think, 
been able to make a fairly good analysis of my own ability. I 
was always a salesman and dealt with sales, and I didn't see 
any place in government where a salesman could operate. 


Fry: So you've always avoided, then, getting caught up in the 

"Peter Principle"? Going beyond where you would be happy. 

Jorgensen: What's the use? What do you get from it? If you can't make 
a contribution to your government, then why hold a position, 
just to hold it and say, "I was undersecretary or I was 
secretary or I was this." That doesn't make any sense to me. 
That doesn't buy any groceries at the grocery store. 

Winding Up the Campaign in California 

Fry: I think this campaign wound up in California, or at least it 

had one of its final big blows here. You must have been terribly 
busy organizing that. There was one in San Jose and one in 
Los Angeles. 

Jorgensen: Yes, we had a nice big meeting in San Jose at the stadium there. 

Fry: I didn't get to read up on that beforehand, but as I remember, 

there was a riot or danger in San Jose and an investigation 
afterwards on whether the rioters were real or imported. 

Jorgensen: That was an earlier meeting. Nixon always took precautions. 

The last time he was in San Jose — that was in the '72 campaign, 
I guess — I went up to the hotel and rode down with him. Then 
we came down the highway with an entourage and police. We 
got into the stadium, came around the back way, brought him 
into the athletic building, and held him there until he was 
to appear. There was no trouble that time, but we had security 
around up to our ears. You never can tell what some kook is 
going to do, as we've seen happen. I've never seen Nixon show 
any fear of crowds, never at all. I've never seen it. But I 
take caution. 

Fry: I think everything in '68 was sort of volatile. 

Jorgensen: That was when we were having so much trouble with these colleges 
and campus riots. There was an unrest. He was the recipient 
of it. He'd gone through this, hell, when he was down in Peru, 
Venezuela, and Chile. 

Rose Woods was talking to me when I saw her — I usually see 
her when I go back to Washington and talk to her. She's still 
back there. She said, "You'll never know what it is to be in 
a car and have these angry people trying to turn your car over, 


Jorgensen: trying to break the window. We just fear for our lives. And 
you know, the boss was just as calm as could be. He wanted 
to get out of the car, and the Secret Service men wouldn't let 
him out. He said, 'Let me out. I'll talk to them.' They 
wouldn't let him out." So he's not afraid of crowds. He never 
has been. 

Fry: Were you ever with him when anything like that happened in 


Jorgensen: Oh, yes, I've been to meetings where we've had — I remember 

one time in San Mateo. I guess it was in the '68 campaign. We 
had a meeting down here at a school. There was a little group 
up in the back, and they tried to harrass him. There was one 
particular one. I asked three of our big boys to go up and see 
what was the matter with him. Dick was on radio and he had 
said, "When this is over I want this young man to come up and 
have his say." So when the radio was shut off my associates just 
took this fellow by the arms, without any manhandling, and simply 
took him down on the platform. He gets down, but he won't go 
on the platform. 

I said, "Now, say what you have to say. You have a right 
to say what you want to." He wouldn't do it, so our fellows 
then left. The police grabbed him and right on out the door he 
went. He was just there to raise a fuss. There always are 
hecklers around, but you choose to ignore them. You have to 
ignore them. 

Fry: There were charges made, I think in the '68 campaign, that some 

of the hecklers weren't real. Do you remember that? 

Jorgensen: What do you mean, they weren't real? 

Fry: I think it was the San Jose meeting where — 

Jorgensen: You mean the Nixon people set it up themselves? 

Fry: Yes, as I remember — this was in the headlines at the time. 

Jorgensen: Why would a candidate risk what might come out of such an 

affair by asking or even paying people to raise a riot at one 
of his meetings. Doesn't make any sense. No. 

Fry: Did you have anybody else come into the state, like Goldwater 

or anybody like that, to help the campaign along here? 

Jorgensen: Oh, sure. In this last campaign there were a lot of surrogate 
Nixons. Sure. Every campaign you have them come in. I don't 
even recall who it was. 





I think this is about my last question. When Spiro Agnew was 
selected after Bob Finch didn't want it, as I understand it, 
for vice-president — is that your understanding? You look 

Well, that's the story. I can't deny it or not affirm it I 
think it's possible that Nixon did offer Bob Finch the vice- 
presidency — because Bob had been a good, solid supporter of his. 
I've never talked to Finch about it, so I don't know, and never 
talked to Nixon about it. So I can't tell you. 

Did Agnew come into the state? At first he was kind of a 
problem as a speaker in his unfortunate selection [laughing] of 
words referring to ethnic groups. I wonder if you remember 
having to deal with Agnew and his speeches. 

Jorgensen: I don't recall, but I do believe he came into the state. 

Staff Spending Excesses 

Fry: We could check that out in the newspapers, but I just thought 

maybe you remembered how you had handled setting him up. 

Jorgensen: No. In those sort of things the candidates have their own 

advance people come in. The only thing was as chairman of the 
campaign I had to be sure they didn't put me in debt up to my 
ears so that I couldn't get it out, because these campaign 
organizations live pretty high on the hog. They leave some real 
debts behind them when they come in to visit your state. 

Fry: You mean just the travel expenses? 

Jorgensen: Travel expenses. You see, all these nicely paid people have 
never lived so well in their lives. So they have nice thick 
steaks for breakfast and bottles of liquor. I've even had them 
come in and leave a hotel, and the hotel manager would call up 
and say, "We've got some specialty shops here. We have some 
bills for blouses, trousers, and belt buckles," and they were 
charged to the room. I'd say, "Fine. That's your problem, not 
mine. I won't pick up anything." 

I remember one — without naming him — went up to the St. 
Francis Hotel in San Francisco. Dan London called me and I said, 
"Dan, I'm sorry. I'm not picking up those expenses. You get 
them from that operation itself," because they just go hog wild. 


Jorgensen: Here again, they're young people and they think that there's 
an unlimited amount of money that you can spend for politics 
and so the hell with it. Telephone bills — my God! Call 
Aunt Sarah, Uncle Joe and everybody they know! 

Fry: Good heavens! 

Jorgensen: "Good heavens" is right. 

Fry: And they expect the local campaign organization treasury to 

do that? 

Jorgensen: Yes, oh yes. Advance men come in — these sharp, dressy — 
Have you got this thing off? 

Fry: No. 

Jorgensen: Turn it off. 

Fry: Go ahead — this is very colorful. 

Jorgensen: Well, you have advance men in the campaign come out. They come 
into your office and say, "We're the advance men here to 
arrange for this meeting we're going to have here. We're going 
to need so many thousands of dollars." 

"What for?" 

"Well, you know, we've got to take care of things, got to 
take care of things." 

I said, "Fine, go ahead and take care of things." 
"But you're supposed to give us money." 

"Nope, I'm sorry. No money from me. I'm running a 
campaign here. You've got a national fund — the national people 
will pay it." Mr. Stans and I never used to see eye-to-eye on 
that at all. He thought that was a terrible thing, just an awful 

Fry: I'll bet they try to push all the expenses they can off onto the 


Jorgensen: Sure. 

Fry: I surely do thank you. I'll let you eat lunch now. And by 

the way, here's the tablet that you loaned me last time. Thank 
you very much. [laughing] 

Transcriber: Lee Steinback 
Final Typist: Keiko Sugimoto 


INDEX — Frank E. Jorgensen 

Adams, Earl, 8, 20, 32 

Adams, Sherman, 97 

advertising, in election campaigns, 82-84, 88 

agriculture, and politics, farm labor, 54-55, 118 

an ti- communism issue, 12-13, 23, 44, 47, 55, 59-60, 62 

Arbuthnot, Ray, 53, 69 

Arnold, William, 26-27 

Barnes, Stanley, 4, 6 

Battson, Leigh, 63 

Bewley, Tom, 7 

Boddy, Manchester, 1950 Senatorial campaign, 43 

Brennan, Bernard, and 1950 Nixon campaign, 38-41, 50, 57, 67 

Brock, Margaret, 89-90 

business, and politics, 76-79, 80, 82, 93-95, 106 

California Republican Assembly, 33-34, 117 

California Republican Associates, 52 

Call, Asa, 33, 54, 81, 112 

campus unrest, 124 

Chandler, Norman, 41, 45 

Chotiner, Murray, 15, 32, 39-41, 50-51, 54, 56, 65, 66, 75, 76, 100, 115 

Collier, Ed, 24 

CIO, Political Action Committee, 13 

Creel, George, 59 

Crocker, Roy, 64 

cross-filing, 17, 25 

Darby, Raymond, 42-43 
Dart, Justin, 63 
Day, Roy, 4, 10, 11, 14, 36 
Dean, John, 49 
Democrats, 117-118 

for Nixon, 26, 59-60 
Dewey, Thomas, 74, 98 
Dexter, Walter, 6-7 
Dinkelspiel, John, 37, 54 
Doherty, Frank, 63 
Douglas, Helen Gahagan 

1950 Senatorial campaign, 43-44, 46-47, 51, 56, 59-60 
Downey, Sheridan 

1950 Senatorial campaign, 36, 43 
Drown, Helene (Mrs. Jack), 53 
Drown, Jack, 53 


Ehrlichman, John, 49 

Eisenhower, D.D., 31-32, 68-69, 73-75, 85-86, 92, 97-98, 102, 104 

Eisenhower, Volunteers, 86-87, 95 

election campaigns, 112-115, 119-120 

consolidated, 89-91 

"dirty tricks," 45-47, 51, 56 

finance, 9-11, 15, 17, 30-33, 39-42, 54-55, 61, 63-65, 76-84, 86, 87, 
91, 103, 109, 112-113, 116, 126-127 

1946 congressional, 1-2, 4-6, 9-15, 58, 82 

1948 congressional, 16-17, 21, 26-27 

1950 senatorial, 17-21, 36-50, 52-54, 59-61 

1952 presidential, 30-31, 65, 68-78, 84, 88, 91, 98 

1956 presidential, 32, 100-102 

1960 presidential, 102-105 

1968 presidential, 109-118 

election laws, on contributions, 78, 79, 113 
Elliott, Alfred J. , 59 
Evans, Thomas, 108 

Fantz, Don, 26 

Finch, Robert, 109, 111, 112, 123 

Fourteenth Congressional District, California, 43 

Freeman, Frank, 64 

Garland, John, 40-41, 67 
Gibbons, Boyd, 7-8, 33 

Haldeman, H.R. , 49, 109 

Hall, Leonard, 95, 106 

Hancock, Harvey, 54 

Hardwick, E.S. , 76, 77 

Henshaw, Carl, 28 

Hillings, Patrick 

1950 campaign for Congress, 17, 19-21 
1952 Republican convention, 69, 70 

Hoberg, Albert, 26 

Hoffman, Paul, 74, 99 

Houser, Frederick, 43 

Jones, Charles, 87 

Jones, Maurice (San Marino school board), 2 

Jones, Charles, 76 

Jorgensen, Mary, (Mrs. Frank), 11, 108 


Keith, Willard, 64 

Kennedy, John F. , 1960 presidential debates, 104 

Knight, Goodwin, 85, 100-102 

Knowland, Joseph, 72 

Knowland, William 

as U.S. Senator, 29, 51, 99 

and 1952 Republican convention, 68, 71-72 

and 1956 Republican convention, 100-102 

Kenyon, Cecil (Mrs. Spike), 22 

Keppel, Gerald, 8, 33 

Klein, Herbert, 53 

Kruse, Arthur, 11, 33 

Kuchel, Thomas, 116, 117 

labor unions, support for Richard Nixon, 61 
Larsen, Willard J. (Swede), 8, 32-33 
Laughlin, Sidney, 52 
Lodge, John, 103 
Lowell, Eunice, 24 
Lutz, Harold, 6 

Magruder, Jeb , 49 

Marcantonio, Vito, 47, 60 

Mattei, Albert Chester, 37 

McCall, Harrison, 14-15, 58, 69, 112 

McCarthy, Joseph (Senator), and Richard Nixon, 62 

McClelland, Douglas J. , 57 

McLaughlin, Roy, 24 

media, and election campaigns, 25, 44-45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 53, 84, 104, 112. 

See also newspapers 
Menjou, Adolph, 90 
Meyer, Louis, 64 
Miller, Carl, 64 

minority groups, and elections, 62 
Mitchell, John, 109 

movie industry, and politics, 63, 64 
Murphy, George, 123 

Negroes, and politics, 43, 62 

Nelson, Rockwood, 7-8, 33 

newspapers, and election campaigns, 64, 80, 118. See also media 

Nixon, Hannah, 7 

Nixon, Patricia (Mrs. Richard M.), 10, 53, 108 


Nixon, Richard Milhous , 24, 30, 41, 98 

and House UnAmerican Activities Committee, 62 

as president, 66, 97, 123 

as senator, 27-29 

as vice-president, 75, 84, 97, 105 

1946 campaign for Congress, 4, 6-9, 12-15, 58, 82 

1948 campaign for Congress, 16-17, 21, 26-27 

1950 campaign for Senate, 17, 36-50, 52-56, 59-63 

1952 campaign for vice-president, 68-70, 72-74, 91; Checkers speech, 65-67 

1956 Republican national convention, 100-102 

1960 campaign for president, 102-105 

1062 campaign for governor, 48, 105-107 

1968 campaign for president, 108-112, 116-118, 120-122, 124-127 

1972 campaign for president, 61, 124, 125 
Noyd, Helen, 21 

Palmer, Kyle, 44-45 

Parkinson, Gaylord, 109 

patronage, 28-29, 96 

Perry, Herman, 6-9, 10, 11, 29, 44 

Petrie, Neil, 64 

Pike, Thomas, 30-31, 78, 80, 123 

Pro-America, 23-24 

Progressive party, California, 3 

Reagan, Ronald, 47, 110, 111 

Republican party, California, 25, 33-34, 52, 91, 117 

Los Angeles County Central Committee, 2-3, 15, 51-52, 67, 76, 78, 88-89, 93 

state central committee, 109 

United Republican Finance Committee, 76-81, 88 

voter registration, 22-23 

Young Republicans, 85 

1950 Senatorial campaign, 50 

See also Twelfth Congressional District, election campaigns 
Republican party, national, 45-46, 49, 86-88 

national committee, 74, 76, 92-93 
Republican national conventions 

1952, 67-75 

1956, 100-102 

1968, 110 
Roberts, Cliff, 86 

San Marino, California, 1-2 
San Marino Tribune, 11, 18 
Shoup, Paul, 64 
Silberberg, Mendel, 63 


Smith, Dana, 65 
Smith, Gerald L.K. , 59 
Smith, Walter, 89 
Spalding, Keith, 64 
Stans, Maurice, 103, 127 
Symington, Maud K. , 59 

Taft, Robert, 68, 72, 74 

Taylor, Reese, 76, 80 

Thomas, Charles, 30, 32, 64, 76, 96, 123 

Twelfth Congressional District, California, 1, 4 

Committee of 100, 6, 8-9 

1946 congressional campaign, 11, 13-14 

1948 congressional campaign, 26 

1950 congressional campaign, 17-20 

voter registration, 22-23 

United Republicans of California, 117 

Valentine, Ed, 76 

volunteers, in politics, 40-41, 53, 79, 85-87, 89-91, 95, 114-116 

Voorhis, Jerry, 1, 4, 14, 24 

debate with Nixon, 12-13 
voter registration, 22-23 

Warren, Earl 

election campaigns, 50-52, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72-73, 98 

and Supreme Court, 97-99 
Watergate, 45-46, 49 

Whit tier, California, and Richard Nixon, 6-8, 10, 11 
Williams, Walter, 103 
Witter, Dean, 63 
women, and politics, 45, 114 

in Republican campaigns, 19, 21-22, 23-24, 89-90 

1950 senatorial campaign, 43 
Woods, Rose, 67, 106, 124 
Wysong, Helen, 22 

youth, and election campaigns, 85, 86, 127 
Zetterberg, Stephen, 16 

Roy Day 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Project 

Roy Day 


An Interview Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 

Copyright (c") 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 




The Day Printing Corporation 1 

Day's Early Campaign Experience 2 

The Fact Finding Committee Begins 4 

Richard Nixon as Campaigner 7 

The Candidates Debate 10 

Comments on Murray Chotiner 12 

Nature of the Fact Finding Committee 15 


Republican National Conventions: 1948 and 1952 20 

Nixon Runs for U.S. Senate, 1950 23 

Nixon's Decision to Run for the Senate 35 

Day's Tasks for Nixon in 1952 38 

APPENDIX A - Partial listing of original members of Committee 

of One Hundred 41 

APPENDIX B - Roy Day to Walter F. Dexter, October 13, 1945 46 

APPENDIX C - Brief autobiographical summary 48 

APPENDIX D - Telegram, Walter Dexter to Roy Day, 9 October 1945 49 



Time of Interview: February 21, 1975 

Place of Interview: Roy Day's office in the Day Printing Corporation, 

Fourth and Thomas Streets, Pomona, California 

Those Present: Roy Day and the Interviewer 
The Interview: 

From the first, as we sought advice for a possible subseries on the 
campaigns of Richard Nixon, we were told to talk to Roy Day. At UCLA, 
Paul Bullock, who was writing a biography of Nixon's first opponent, Jerry 
Voorhis, recommended that we interview Day, as he had. Judge Stanley 
Barnes went so far as to offer to help arrange the interview with Day, 
which he later did. The other interviewees in this series all asked to 
make sure that we had also included Roy Day. 

Day's natural affability may be one factor that accounts for his 
incurable state of civic activism, from fundraising for the Campfire Girls 
to serving on the school board, with many projects in between. As a local 
Republican with both clout and enthusiasm, he entered Richard Nixon's cam 
paign on the ground floor and loyally repeated his aid in nearly all future 
campaigns. Meanwhile, his employment with the Pomona Progress Bulletin 
ceased when he organized his own printing corporation in 1951. 

The interview helps to identify contributors, campaign workers and 
their connections — to each other, to the candidate, and to the particular 
community or city of each. We learn how the planning was accomplished for 
Nixon's successful campaigns and how and when the candidate and his staff 
made decisions. (Day, for example, is certain that Nixon decided to run 
for the U.S. Senate long before incumbent Democrat Sheridan Downey withdrew, 
and that Nixon had no problem at all in deciding to stay in the race against 
Downey's replacement, Helen Gahagan Douglas.) It is obvious that politics 
is a great game to Roy Day. He enjoyed setting the stage for winning, 
whether it was a victory for an entire campaign or just one speech of the 
candidate; "We always had a few persons seated throughout the audience to 
ask questions which Dick had formulated beforehand," he says, describing 
routine campaign appearances. 

The interview was recorded after an hour or two of going through his 
papers and discussing an outline prepared beforehand. Files and tape re 
corder equipment were spread out on a low cocktail table on which there 
were also cushions to sit. His desk was covered with papers, too, which 
we had separated into stacks of "Take With You," "Copy," and "Re-file here." 
He sat in a chair at the side, and sometimes, in referring to papers, walked 


around behind his desk to find a particular letter or article. He enjoyed 
recalling the battles, the plots, the wars; he described, he characterized, 
he narrated, he chortled, and we both laughed frequently. 

Day has other joys in his life, too. His wife worked in the outer 
office and also had a record in politics, as the head of important Republican 
women's groups in the area. Day's office walls were hung with photographs 
of his daughters, unusually good-looking both as children and grown women, 
and a handsome son. One of the daughters is named Pat, for Pat Nixon. Later 
in 1978, the Days had dinner with the Nixons while Pat was recuperating from 
a stroke. 

On October 20, 1978, we sent the transcript to him. Research assistant 
Teresa Allen and I included several questions about identities, ambiguities, 
and just plain inaudibilities on the tape. Day lost no time in reviewing it, 
adding corrections, and mailing it back to the office November 22, 1978, with 
a packet of more papers which he rightfully judged were needed to supplement 
the interview. As we struggled with chronology and inconsistencies among 
various interviewees, Day sent more papers — on January 24, 1975, and October 
and November, 1978. He also contributed his transcript of an interview he 
had recorded earlier with Professor Paul Bullock. 

Some of the papers are reproduced here where the supporting or illustra 
tive quality adds measurably to our discussion. Other letters furnish clues 
to questions that the project has pursued since its inception, such as the 
role that Murray Chotiner played in the first Nixon campaign. It is partially 
answered — or perhaps made even more ambiguous — by a 1945 press release marked 
"copy for Roy Day," in which the announcement is made of the unanimous recom 
mendation that Lieutenant Nixon be the Republican candidate for Congress. 
Although the letterhead reads Murray M. Chotiner and Associates, it is 
scratched out in blue ink with the notation, "Do not use — R. N." Other letters 
of that first campaign were invaluable in sorting out the sequence of events 
at a time when the Nixon papers were unavailable in the San Clemente compound. 
The Nixon Library at Whittier College was being dissolved and any related 
collection, such as Roy Day was sending to us, had no official archival home. 
All papers reside in The Bancroft Library, where one letter in particular 
will surely lighten heavy research days for future historians. Day, responding 
to the horrifying news of the existence of the now- famous White House tapes, 
wrote to Rose Mary Woods, April 24, 1974, to either "turn over every damn tape 
he has knowledge of" or, if too confidential, burn them in a ceremony on the 
White House lawn. Later the Supreme Court was to wrestle with the collision 
of the First Amendment versus the Fifth over those tapes, but Roy Day did it 

Amelia R. Fry 

12 November 1980 
Washington, D.C. 


[Interview 1: February 21, 1975] 
[begin tape 1; side 1] 

The Day Printing Corporation 

Fry: I would like mainly to get information that isn't available in your 
papers.* Can you give me just a quick paragraph on where you were 
born and where your schooling was? 

Day: I was born right here in Pomona, the son of an orange rancher. I 
grew up on an orange ranch.** I attended Pomona schools and left 
school my junior year and joined the navy. After two years in the 
navy, I decided to see a little of the world. I went to Central 
America and worked two years as secretary of the chief man of the 
United Fruit Company in Puerto Limon, Costa Rica. Then I came home 
and went to work selling classified advertising for the Pomona 
Progress, as it was known then. It's now the Progress-Bulletin — 
the merger of two papers. 

Fry: Then you became head of their advertising department. Is that right? 

Day: No. I was selling classified advertising for them. Then later I was 
selling automobile advertising (I became automobile editor) and 
selling the grocery market advertising for them. During that period 
I developed a high-gear run to Mt. Baldy and had people like Ralph 
Hepburn and some former great racing drivers who came out here and 
participated. We gave them trophies. It was interesting and good 

*The Roy Day papers will be deposited in The Bancroft Library, 
University of California, Berkeley. 

**For a brief autobiographical summary see Appendix C. 

Day: Then the newspaper wanted to develop the commercial printing plant 
when the newsprint became rather scarce during World War II. So 
they asked me if we could develop some commercial printing accounts. 
I started out to sell some, and the first thing I knew I was selling 
more commercial printing than advertising. So the paper decided to 
put me entirely in commercial printing. Then a conflict developed with 
the press equipment on who had the priority to get the use of the 
presses. The newspaper had to have access right away because they 
had the time element. They had to hit the streets with the newspaper 
at a certain time. So the paper offered to sell me the commercial 
printing equipment so that I could form my own company, which I did 
in 1951. 

At first I called it the P.B. Press, using the initials of the 
Progress-Bulletin because I was too scared at that point to give it 
another name. I was trying to cling to the "mother" that I'd worked 
for all this time. But in 1957 I bought my own building, which is 
next door. It was a former garage and Cadillac-Pontiac agency. I 
bought the building and have added a lot of equipment. Now we're 
about the same size as the newspaper. It's called Day Printing 
Corporation. We do about $1.5 million volume a year now in commercial 

Fry: As we were going through your papers, I thought you mentioned to 

me that you had stopped something in your printing career when you 
went to work on the Nixon campaign. Is that right? I just thought 
you mentioned that in passing. I could have heard you wrong. 

Day: The publisher of the paper was kind enough to spring me loose to 
work in the 1950 Nixon campaign. I gave up my vacation so that I 
could do it and still stay on the payroll of the Progress-Bulletin. 
I worked without any pay or remuneration whatsoever anytime in the 
Nixon campaign. The only time any money was given me at all was for 
traveling expense, and that was in the Senate campaign when I had to 
travel up to the northern part of California. 

Fry: You had to foot the bill for your own travel for all those other 

Day: Oh, yes. 

Day's Early Campaign Experience 

Fry: Also, before 1946 when Nixon first ran, you handled or did some work 
in other campaigns. In 1944, didn't you work in Ernest Geddes's 
campaign as his manager? Or was there something before that even? 

Day: Yes. I had observed some ill-fated campaigns that Republicans had 
conducted. I felt that they did not approach a campaign in the 
proper method. They seemed to have two or three bigwigs meet in a 
locked-up room someplace and pick a candidate. I felt that was the 
reason they weren't getting the right candidates and that people 
weren't buying them. 

So in 1944, the situation developed where our assemblyman, Lee 
Bayshore of Glendora, who happened to be a very good one, died of a 
heart attack in a St. Louis hotel after his name was already on the 
ballot and could not even be removed. Some people talked to me about 
running for the Assembly. I said I wasn't interested but I was 
certainly interested in trying to see if we could get a candidate. 

It so happened that Ernest Geddes had ridden in to Los Angeles 
with me to attend a Tom Dewey rally. He made a statement on the way 
back. He said, "I think anybody should give some time to politics." 
Geddes was just that concerned with government. He was a past master 
of a Masonic lodge, and I happened to belong to the Masonic fraternity. 
So, looking for a candidate, I went over and talked to Ernest Geddes. 
He was just getting ready to leave the position he had as an advertising 
manager for a local laundry system, so I talked him into running. I 
took his campaign. That was my first one. It was very interesting. 
We had bumper strips with his name on them and we parked cars near the 
polling places. It was completely a write-in campaign because we 
couldn't get his name on the ballot. Lee Bayshore's name was on the 
ballot as the Republican candidate. We were so successful that Mr. 
Geddes was elected. The man who had passed away ran second, and the 
Democrat candidate ran third. So we were quite proud of our activities 
in that campaign. 

Then in 1944 I also took a look at the congressional campaign. 
We had a candidate, Tom Ball, who I felt just wasn't qualified for 
the office. I felt that we couldn't elect him. I met with the Twelfth 
Congressional District Central Committee. I accepted a position as 
chairman of the county central committee for the old Twelfth 
Congressional District. (Now Pomona is a part of the Twenty-fifth 
District. It's been changed.) I went to a meeting in a schoolroom 
at El Monte High School where the central committee picked the 

The conversation and the way they picked the candidate was rather 
discouraging to me. They didn't really go into the merits of the 
situation. They came up with a candidate who was a very fine person. 
He knew the oil business, but he didn't know anything about the problems 
of the people of the Twelfth District. In his first speech, which he 
made to the blue-ribbon section of our district over in the San Marino- 
South Pasadena area, he talked about labor unions and the working 
man. He did everything he could to discourage anybody that had over 15c 

Day: in the bank. Consequently he went down the drain. He couldn't make 
a good speech. He couldn't even explain why he was running in any 
forceful manner. So I made up my mind right then that something had 
to be done. I decided right after that 1944 election was over — 
and I forgot it very rapidly — that I was going to try to develop some 
kind of a plan. 

The Fact Finding Committee Begins 

Day: That's when I conceived the idea of a candidate and fact finding 

committee comprised of citizens all over the district.* I went to 
each town and found out how many registered voters they had on each 
Republican ticket. I prorated that among a hundred so I'd have a 
total committee of a hundred. Then I asked who the people were in 
each community who had prestige and a reputation. I said, "I don't 
necessarily want the presidents of the bank or the building and loan 
or all the big shots up and down the main street. That's been the 
trouble with our party. What I want is people that have a following. 
They can be a past president of women's club. They can be somebody 
that's been active in the Scout movement. I preferably want somebody 
that has children, preferably somebody that even loves pets. This is 
the kind of a person I'm looking for as a congressional candidate." 

Preferably I wanted someone that had a service record, because 
Jerry Voorhis, who'd been in for ten years and is highly intelligent 
and a good congressman from his side of the fence, the Democrat side, 
was really going to be difficult to beat. He was no pushover. But 
the fact was that Voorhis was not a veteran. He hadn't been in the 
service. I thought that was a weak point that we could attack. I 
believe in attacking and not being on the defensive in a campaign. I've 
always operated that way, and it's been very successful. 

So, the fact finding committee had a series of meetings. We heard 
about this man Richard Nixon through the retired manager of the Bank 
of America over in Whittier, a grand person by the name of Herman 
Perry who is now passed on. He told me about Richard Nixon. Perry 
said Nixon was president of his student body at Whittier High School — 
Whittier College, that he received a scholarship to Duke University 
School of Law, and that he was an outstanding person. At that time 

*For a partial listing of members of the fact finding committee (the 
Committee of One Hundred) see Appendix A. For an explanation of the 
committee's purpose as conceived by Roy Day and a discussion of 
potential candidates see Appendix B, Roy Day to Walter Dexter, 
October 13, 1945. 

Day: Nixon was in the navy, and he was doing re-negotiation of navy 

contracts back at Baltimore. So the next thing was to get him out 
here so the committee could get a look at him and listen to him. 
I asked Perry to get him out here for me to see. 

Fry: [pause to check tape recorder] There is a letter that Perry wrote 

to Lance D. Smith [pause] recommending Nixon, and you sent it to him. 

Day: Yes, Perry called me and then I reviewed a copy of the letter.* So 
we managed, through the cooperation of Boyd Gibbons, who knew the 
president of American Arlines, and Roy Crocker and a few others 
to fly Mr. Nixon and his wife out here. I met them for the first 
time at a small informal dinner over in Whittier. He made a few 
remarks there. Pat Nixon had gone to the luncheon over in San 

There's a very interesting sidelight on Pat. The reaction from 
one rather die-hard, so-called Republican woman leader in San Marino 
who soon faded out of the picture was, "Why, this girl doesn't even 
know what color nail polish to wear!" Later I made this same remark 
in Australia. That was the heading in the newspaper that they used 
that Nixon's wife didn't know the right nail polish. But the 
newspaper went on to say some very nice things that they picked up 
that I did say about Pat. 

Fry: And how many people were at this dinner? 

Day: About eighty would be my guess. 

Fry: Did you get to talk to him personally? 

Day: Oh yes, I talked to him personally. I heard him talk, and I went 
up and talked to him afterwards. He made a statement that he felt 
he'd like to be of service to the community, that he felt that he 
owed this to his country and to the community, that if he had 
something to offer he wanted to give it, and that he was interested. 
I made the statement, "This man is salable merchandise," when I heard 
him talk. That's just the very words I used. 

*See page 6, 

•nittior Branch 

fthittier. California 
October 5, 1945 

M-. Lanoe It. Soith 
111 Vw»8t ;*ia Street 
Puente, California 

Lanoe i 

1 acknowledge receipt of your lott«r of Ootober 1, 1946, in 
to the Paot Finding Conaittea and the meeting to be held at 
UonrOTrla on Ootober 5. Uowwror, due to a prerlou* engagement, it will 
not Le poo«lbl« for 1*0 to attend thi» 

X would lik« to adrl»« that •oma of th« p«opl« in th* Khittiar 
ar«a ar* iut«reit«d in *ugg««tin£ th« oatta of Lt. Riohard Nixon, Q8HR, 
(attorney at law- foro*r law partner of Thoaaa n. B«vl0y» City Attorney 
tor the oity of Kilt tier.) £a aerrvd hi* oountry a* an attorney for the 
OPA at the requaet of Duke Jniveraity. He re«ignad hi* poaition vdxen 
«aa deolared and obtained a oooodation in the Haiy. He aerred the 

first in Naahington, £». C. and then in the South Rnoifio. for the 
pare six or eight month* he ha« b«en in charge of a dapartauent in re 
negotiation for the M-i-ry. He ha* had over three year* of war aarriee* 

Lt. tfixon oon0* from good Quaker atook and i* about thirty- 
fire yecrc of age. Be i* a graduate of V&ittier College and a mfabrr 
of the Board* By hard work he obtained a •oholarahip to Dike Uairereity 
law school. He i* a very eggreaiii* individual. Ho *aa a.i orator and 

debater in h^gh »ohool and oollego* 

Youra-^ary truly. 

L. Perry' 


Richard Nixon as Campaigner 

Day: So, then the next thing was to get Nixon out here. He was still in 
navy uniform, but he got his discharge soon after that [January, 
1946] so we could get him out here. The next thing was to set up 
meetings. We had our kick-off for the primary campaign on Lincoln's 
birthday, 1946, at the old Ebell Club House in Pomona.* It was packed 
to the brim. 

Fry: What club house? 

Day: Ebell. It's a ladies' club. [spells it] It was packed to the rafters 
because everybody wanted to hear him because we'd picked him at a 
meeting of the candidates and of the fact finding committee. Nixon 
got all but eight votes on the first ballot, and that was made 
unanimous [November 28, 1946] . Then he made a terrific impression on 
the people at this kick-off banquet. We felt we had something we could 
really take out and sell to the people. We didn't have to apologize 
for our product in any way, shape, or form. 

The next thing was to get him some civilian clothes. He has 
terrifically large feet and we had trouble getting a pair of shoes 
that was big enough for him [laughter], but we finally found a pair 
here in Pomona. We got him a nice suit of clothes in a local clothing 
store. Johnny Evans went down in the basement and drug up a suit that 
he hadn't even put out to show yet — Johnny Evans's store. He's very 
proud of the fact that he could furnish the first suit of civilian 
clothes for us. So we got the candidate fixed up for the campaign. 

Fry: I read somewhere also — I think it was a comment of yours in later 

years — that not only did Pat Nixon wear the wrong color nail polish, 
but Dick Nixon liked awfully loud ties. 

Day: Yes. In the campaign, some of the incidents in the campaign — and I've 
said this in talks I've made about him — I criticized him for certain 
things which are interesting in view of where he went from there on. 
The first point I noticed about him was that he wouldn't look women in 
the eyes, in the face. He'd turn his head; he was shy. He was 
anything but a coward because later events certainly proved it — his 
travels in Russia when he put Krushchev in a corner and when he put 
some people in a corner that treated Pat and himself badly in South 
America. But he was just shy and he'd turn his head. 

*See p. 8. 


February 13, 1946 




Dear Soy: 


You will be interested in knowing that — as I expected — the 
reports which are flying about town this morning on your last 
night's meeting are nothing but good. Trie meeting was really 
nagnificant, Roy, and you are to be congratulated for producing 
the largest single district meeting which I personally have seen 
in so3e fifteen years. I only wish that your brother congressional 
district chaimen could hare been present to see what intelligent 

organization can do. 

Best regards, 

JS3 :nd 

S. Bare one, Chairman 
jpublican Central Coanittee 





copy of a ticket mailed to Stanley 
N. Barnes by Rockvood C. Nelson 
— from the files of Judge Stanley 
N. Barnes 

"I'll Be There" i 


SpontoreJ by RcpuUicon» of 
Twelfth ConfTcuionol Duirict 


585 E Holt Avenue 

Tuesday Evcninq, Isbruonj 12ln :: 7:OO p. m. 



Day: Then he wore real loud ties. I made the comment to him, "Dick, 

these women are going to remember the tie you wore, and they won't 
know a word you said." And I also said, "You have to look these 
people in the face or they won't think you're telling the truth." 
These are some of the ridiculous criticisms I made, which were very 
factual at the time, but now they seem funny to me when I look back 
and see what's happened to this man and how he developed from that 
point on. But Dick had some sterling qualities. 

We set up the coffee hours. Both his wife and himself met with 
different groups. I planned these hours so that Pat and Dick didn't 
dress up. These weren't dressy affairs. They'd just go in their 
house clothes during the day. It was mainly women during the day and 
then husbands and wives in the evening. Pat would go to some meetings 
during the day and meet with the women. 

Pat by the way, in my estimation, is one of the finest women 
that ever lived. Anybody that throws any bricks at her, I'd 
personally take them on. She's a lovely person and so are the 

But Dick would sit down and ask people what kind of government 
they wanted, what do they expect from the government. Now a mistake 
had been made by a previous candidate that I'd worked some with. He 
was telling everybody what he was going to do for them. This didn't 
go over because they felt they were being dictated to; they didn't 
buy it. Nixon's strongest point was that he would ask people what 
they would like to have from their government and then he'd reason 
with them. 

I remember having about forty girls from Scripps College for 
Women [Claremont, Ca.], down to my home one evening. They sat around 
on the floor and talked to Dick Nixon. I did this purposely because 
Jerry Voorhis had been on the staff at Scripps as sort of an extra 
professor, and he had them pretty well spellbound. So these girls 
came down loaded for bear for Dick Nixon. He wrapped them up 
beautifully before the evening was over just by his attitude and the 
way he handled them. He would ask them what they wanted, and he'd 
let them speak their piece. And rather than make a direct contradiction 
he would lead them around to right field, center field, and second 
base, into the pitcher's box, until he had them over in his corner. 
He has terrific ability in that regard. He was a champion debater 
both at Whittier and Duke. He knows the value of being on the 
affirmative and not getting on the defensive. He was very successful 
in that regard. 


The Candidates Debate 

Day: I had a letter that Jerry Voorhis had written, the same letter he'd 

written to two previous Republican candidates. Voorhis said, "I hope 
we will be able to meet on the platform and discuss the issues for 
the people of the Twelfth District." He had two sitting ducks in 
the two campaigns before that, and that's about all he had to do to 
win, because he just made them look silly on the platform. But when 
he took on Dick Nixon he had the wrong one. 

We kept that letter. So when the right time came I sent the 
answer that Mr. Nixon would like to accept Voorhis 's offer to meet 
on the platform. We would like to meet him in certain cities — we 
named them — at any time convenient to Mr. Voorhis. We said this so 
Voorhis couldn't back out of the debates, and so that he couldn't 
duck it and say that he was busy. I'm sure after the first debate 
he'd liked to have ducked them. 

Then we had questions planted in the audience, of course, to ask 
him. In the meantime I'd done some research on Mr. Voorhis 's record. 
I found out one very interesting fact, that in the ten years that Mr. 
Voorhis was in Congress not one bill introduced by him was ever 
enacted into law. So we saved that for a rather rough meeting we 
were going to have over in San Gabriel where the mission is. The 
crowd there was more Democrat than some of the other areas of our 
district at that time, so we saved the Sunday punch for there. I 
asked a question in the question period. I said, "Congressman Voorhis, 
what bill introduced by you in the entire ten years that you have 
been in the Congress of the United States has ever been enacted into 
law?" Jerry Voorhis had been running all over the district telling 
about all the legislation he had introduced, and the people didn't 
detect that introducing it and getting it through into law were two 
entirely different things. This was where we had him. 

Fry: That took a piece of research on your part because I know how hard 
it is to find out about bills. 

Day: Well, yes. So, Voorhis got up to the microphone with the same old 
line and thought he'd get by with it. Nixon walked up slowly. He 
had a copy of the Congressional Record in his hand. He said, "While 
Mr. Voorhis has been in Washington I've been in the service of my 
country in the South Pacific," which in itself was a dig because 
Voorhis was of military age, "and according to this Congressional 
Record, which I assume is supposed to be fairly accurate," (this is 
throughout the way he said it) "not one bill introduced by Congressman 
Voorhis in the entire ten years that he's been in the Congress of the 
United States has been enacted into law. There was only one resolution 
introduced by Congressman Voorhis, transferring authority over domestic 


Day: rabbits from the Department of Agriculture to the Department of 

the Interior. Therefore, I assume you have to be a rabbit to have 
representation in the Twelfth Congressional District." He brought 
the house down. Voorhis slumped in his chair; he was whipped. From 
then on we had him on the run. That was the ball game right there, 
on that first election. 

Fry: What I need from you in this election is a picture of the way you 
worked with Nixon, how you presented your ideas to him and how he 

Day: All right, yes. Mrs. Nixon had been a school teacher. I'm sure you 
know all that history. When Dick came back to California from the 
service they rented a house that some barber had owned over in 
Whittier, a very modest bungalow. I would go over there. He had 
ample foolscap paper and we'd sit down and he would write out notes. 
He said he was going to say this, and he'd say that. Then he would 
analyze and write what he thought Voorhis would say in reply to him. 
This was, I felt, where the man was very smart. I've used these 
same tactics in other campaigns. His tactic and mine was: I'm 
going to say something to reason out what the opposition's answer is 
to it. Is the answer going to flatten the question? I gave you a 
prime example a few minutes ago. [laughter] Of course, that was a 
very unusual situation. But this was what he would do. He'd scratch 
that out and he'd say, "Well, that's no good." He would try to 
emphasize just a few important points, rather than try to cover the 

Fry: That sounds like your advice. Was it? 

Day: It is. Many politicians, in my experience, try to have an answer 
for everything that happens, and people end up not knowing where 
they stand on anything. People get confused. A candidate should pick 
something that will appeal to a majority of the people and which will 
not, at the same time, lose 40 percent of the voters that may be opposed 
to this very thing. That's the tough part of a candidate. He has 
to pick some issue that a majority of the people will support and not, 
at the same time, alienate almost half of them. 

Fry: Did you have trouble finding your issue in this campaign? 

Day: No, we didn't. We talked about the ranchers and farming and diversified 
industries here and water. 


Comments on Murray Chotiner 

Fry: I get two different stories on whether or not Murray Chotiner did 
anything for Nixon in the 1946 campaign. 

Day: I engaged Murray Chotiner in 1946 to write publicity midway in the 
campaign because well-meaning people, town chairmen throughout the 
Twelfth Congressional District, were writing their own versions of 
what Nixon stood for, and it was causing us some trouble.* So, I 
felt the only way to cure it was to get an experienced writer. 

[end tape 1, side 1; begin tape 1, side 2] 

Day: I heard about Murray Chotiner through some friends of mine in Los 

Angeles, that he was a very able writer and had a keen knowledge of 
politics. I was able to get him to write our releases. It enabled 
me to tell our town chairmen that I did not want them writing their 
own news releases. We wanted releases to come from one source and 
say what we wanted to say and at the time we wanted to say it. 

We wanted to save our Sunday punches until just before the 
election, which is very important in a campaign. A lack of timing 
is what cost Tom Dewey the presidency in '48. He didn't have anything 
to talk about the last two weeks, and little Harry Truman, the necktie 
salesman, cut him to ribbons and Dewey couldn't defend himself. That's 
another story. 

But Murray would get these releases out. I paid him $1,000, I 
think it was, to write some releases for us. He sent his Ruth Arnold 
out to cover meetings. So that's where Murray got into the act. 

Fry: Well, it was Earl Adams who thought — 

Day: Earl Adams. Maybe he's the one that knew Chotiner. I don't remember 
where I got the name. 

Fry: Adams didn't think that Murray Chotiner had had anything to do with 
the campaign, because Adams had only seen Chotiner at one speech of 
Nixon's, making some notes. 

Day: Chotiner didn't and he wasn't. He sent Ruth Arnold to cover it. I 
think that was her name, Ruth Arnold. 

Fry: Ruth Arnold? 

*See p. 13 


Pomona, California, 
December 9, 1945 

Mr, Hurray k. Chotiner, 

500 Fox .iils*iire Theatre Bldg. , 
202 "outh Hamilton Drive, 
Beverly Hills, California, 

Dear liuriay, 

I am e:. closing copy of letter of acceptance from Lt. Comi»nuer 
Richard ~. 1,'ixon, as tie candidate eelecteu by our 12th District 
C&FF C'j~a~iitet, which I believe should be incorporated in a ne*e 
release to all papers in the district, as veil as the metropolitan 

I believe it very in^ortant to Keep something coding aloru from 
time to ti-ie, to maintain interest until Hixon ie out here and can 
carry the ball ou Lis ovtn behalf. 

Incidentally I **nt to take this opportunity to thank you for 
your fine work in covering our meetings and getting releases out 
to the press. We plan to airaage a dinner for the press as soon 
ae Sixoa is here, followed by several large meetings spotted throughou 
the 12th Si strict. I Jcap*' tne 53d district plans one, and I have a 
hunch we can .arrange a whale of a good Lincoln Day dinner here in 
Pomona, for a capacity gathering of 400-450 -In the Pomona Bbell Club 
if it Rests •!•& general approval of the district. > Comudttees are 
being set up tiixoughout the district to get Jfixon under way when he 

Tbaru.6 for your cooperation liuriay. 


Roy Day 
D Chairman 


Day: Yes. There was a Dorothy Arnold who was a pest in our camp, bothering 
us all the time. She was against us. Ruth Arnold, I think, worked 
with Chotiner. 

Fry: She was kind of Chotiner 's "leg man"? 

Day: Yes. She's the one that got the stories. 

Fry: Oh, so that's why Adams didn't remember Chotiner. 

Day: Anyway, I batted back and forth to Los Angeles with Murray. Murray 
never ran around with us in the campaign at all. So, Earl is right 
on that. 

I learned a lot about politics from Murray. I don't completely 
respect a lot of the ways he operated. But Murray is the one that 
taught me, if I was making a speech or trying to sell a candidate, to 
pick out somebody about six or eight rows out and keep my eye on them 
quite a bit of the time to see how they were reacting to my talk. 
If Nixon was speaking, I would watch this person the same way and see 
when he was losing interest and at what point he picked up interest. 
Then I would tell Dick to pick that part out of his speech and put that 
in near the end. We want the audience to walk out blazing for Dick 
Nixon. A lot of speakers will build up their case and then look at 
their watch and say, "Oh, I have to talk fifteen minutes longer, but 
I haven't anything to say, so I'll just rattle." This is part of the 
ball game, particularly in politics or with any public speaker. 

I had that criticism of Senator [William] Knowland — a very fine 
man. Senator Knowland would speak looking up at the sky. He never 
would pick up his audience. He'd never look down at somebody or pick 
out somebody. I think this is a very important thing in trying to 
reach people; you reach somebody out there and then hope you have 
your whole audience. 

Fry: Did Chotiner help Nixon with his speeches in '46? 

Day : No . 

Fry: Was that you who helped him? 

Day: I worked with him more than anybody else. Nixon knew about what he 
wanted to say anyway. He didn't need much help with his speeches. 
I don't claim any glory for that. We'd throw in some ideas, some 
things I'd heard here and there, and I'd tell him. No, Nixon has a 
brain. He knows what he's doing. 

Fry: With campaign handouts, I guess you must have had the same problem you 
had with some of the newspaper stories, the problem of controling what 
local communities might print up. Did you do all the printing of 
literature during the primary? 


Day: I did the printing of our actual literature that we sent out, but 
town chairmen were always putting some statement in the paper or 
something on their own. Some things just weren't what we wanted to 
do or didn't even represent Nixon. These chairmen thought they 
were doing him a favor, but they hadn't had experience in campaigns. 
We had people that hadn't run campaigns. 

Fry: I should get an example from you, so researchers can be alerted when 
they are reading newspapers and there's something there that really 
wasn't what Nixon would've said. 

Day: The first thing in the story is to tell your whole story in the first 
two paragraphs or else don't write it. 

Fry: Just poor journalism then? 

Day: That was a lot of it, yes, but these chairmen would go off on some 

tangent. You'd say, "Well, who cares about this?" They'd go off on 
something that might have been important to fifteen people in some 
town but didn't even represent the area or was not important to the 
area. People wanted to know where he stood on the important things. 

Nature of the Fact Finding Committee 

Fry: On this handwirtten letter here that Nixon wrote on foolscap he's 

asking you to write a nice, "breezy" pep letter thanking people for 
all the work that everybody had done to put him over in the primary. 
Down here he says, "I'd be darned sure copies went to Biddick — " 

Day: Yes, Walter Biddick. 

Fry: Can you read this? A couple of others are also mentioned — Boardman 
and Arnold. 

Day: Yes, Walter Boardman, I think it was. Larimer, Boardman, and William 
Arnold. They're the ones that were bucking him for the primaries, 
[quoting from the Nixon foolscap] Which "will spike the sniping which 
went on before the primaries and I feel you deserve a helluva lot of 
credit. .." [laughing] This is a funny letter. It's lousy penmanship. 
It's about as bad as I write, isn't it? 

Fry: Well, you can read it anyway. I wondered who those four people were. 

Day: They were a bunch of — they were over around the Alhambra area. They 
were bitching about — well, they didn't quite warm up to somebody 
moving in and taking the whole ball game and running with it. They 
didn't mind my idea to start with, but they — we ignored them and 
failure to recognize them destroyed their opposition in a hurry. 


Fry: Did they have their own candidate? 

Day: No, they didn't have anybody definitely in mind. 

Fry: Could you characterize the type of Republicans who got behind Nixon 

in this committee? Was it a young and upcoming group who felt that 

some reforms needed to be made, or was it an established group that 
was reliable? 

Day: No, it was an established, reliable group. It wasn't a Bolshevik, 

young group at all. There were substantial business people in their 
communities, and women of stature. No, it wasn't like the Governor 
Jerry Brown group we have now, not that type at all, no. 

Fry: What about the California Republican Assembly? Did it play any role 
in the fact finding committee per se? 

Day: No, they didn't. I don't think they even — no, they weren't effective 
at that point. 

Fry: What was Herb Klein's role in '46? I noticed in that newspaper 
article he was mentioned as working also on publicity.* 

Day: Herb Klein was with a San Diego paper. We got him to be Nixon's 

public relations man, press man, in the final campaign. Herb Klein is 
a very high caliber person. You notice he got out of this mess of 
Watergate back there in Washington. 

Fry: Yes. 

Day: You notice Bob Finch got out of it. Klein and Finch knew something; 
don't think they didn't. I've talked to both of them, but I never 
tried to even ask them that question. But I know darn well they knew 
things were going haywire, and they just got out. 

Fry: They got out in time. 

Day: Oh, yes. Herb Klein's a very fine person. I like him very much. 

Fry: Did he work with Murray Chotiner in sending in the press releases? 
Or do I have the picture right? 

Day: I don't think Herb Klein was mixed up with Chotiner. No, Herb Klein 

wasn't in the '46 campaign. I think you got your timing wrong on that. 

*Alhambra Post-Advocate, November 13, 1968, p. 6a. 


Fry: It's mentioned in that newspaper article, and it could be wrong, 

you know the one that came out on the day Nixon was elected president. 

Day: Herb Klein wasn't in the 1946 primary at all. I know, because he 

was working with the San Diego paper. No, the Alhambra Post-Advocate 
got him later. 

Fry: I want to add right here that the letter from Perry to Lance Smith, 
suggesting Richard Nixon, is dated October 3, 1945. I just want to 
get that date in the transcript. 

Day: Yes, '45. That's right. That's where I heard about Richard Nixon. 

Perry called me about Nixon and then I reviewed a copy of the letter. 

Fry: Where did Perry get the idea to write Smith? Do you think Perry 
read the newspaper articles about the committee? 

Day: I'd gone to all these towns, setting up this fact finding committee. 
I had meetings in different places with different key people. They 
came and I told them what I wanted to do. I ran a story in the papers 
telling what I was going to do. 

Fry: Yes, we've got a copy of one of those stories.* There were about seven 
candidates who were not selected. It would be interesting to talk 
about them. 

Day: Yes, Judge Harry Hunt of San Gabriel was one of them. Sam Gist, a 

Pomona furniture dealer, was one, and Ernest Geddes threw his name in 
just to make my show go, with no idea of taking it. 

Fry: Just to be sure there was enough competition? 

Day: Yes, that's right. He had no idea of taking it. He was working 

with me hand and glove. Oh, gosh! We had — oh, thunder! I wonder 
where the write-up is on that stuff. We had a guy that appeared before 
our committee and made the best Republican talk probably of any of 
them. But I found out he'd been registered as "declined-to-state" 
and was a registered Socialist before that. I have said this in my 
talks. I don't know how I ever had sense enough to check his background, 
but I did. I picked it up. Being a dope, just starting on this stuff, 
I don't know why I didn't just accept what he said. He made a 
beautiful talk, but we sure crucified him in a hurry! I said, "We 
happen to have your record, Buddy. Just walk away." 

*See p. 18. 


Story sent by Roy Day to The Progress-Bulletin, Pomona, California, 
announcing the November 2, 1945 meeting of the fact finding committee 
in Whittier, at which Richard Nixon spoke. 

Evening, October 31, 194 

icans of 

. qmdiaatss for 
wCl (peak at a dinner 

, -- Jfctetf -Friday T •'clock; faLuU VlUiam 
hotel 'at Whittle^,' -Chairman 
O. Day of "th« 'District Bepub- 
i Centra^ commttte* atcnounced 

i» ! .. - : _V ^-.-. 

the poUntlai candidates 
heduled to speak •!<• I^t. ,Col. 
Benedict of Arcadia, Ju_dge 
Hunt of San Gabriel an<3 T,t 
omdr. Richard >• Lion of ' Whittier, 
ho la flying Treat Tiom BaWmore, 
" , especially for the occasion. 

• At a recent -meeting: In Monrcrrla 
be committee beard Aasemblymar. 

neat Oedde* And Captain €am 
both of the 48th. -ajiaembly dla- 
and Lleui ' Andrew Porter, 
for «f Bouth Pasadena. 

• Any man or woman who ha* any 

lire to 'become a* candidate for 
tmgresi In the 13th district is Invit - 
to appear before ,th« committee. 
airman Day «ald.. Sid Hatch of 
ite, vice-chairman of the com- 
. Is in charge of arrangements 
the Whittier xaeetln* Friday 
nln«. '•- '•"-' '-..^ : -V ••/ •. ' '. r ~ r 
"It U my belief that 4he Repub- 
' of' the Uth district can win 
i,19<8,- said Chairman Day la an- 
ouncLng the Friday meeting. 
'• '"We were only defeated by a email 
rcentace last year, -after dividing 
our strength in the primary election 
ad then being forced to marshal ; 
force* for the final campaign, 
a time we do not intend to com- 
Jt that error. • " .. 

t "Our committee con^ku of ap- 
roilmately 100 men and women. In 
cluding every leader of a Republl- 
»n organization in the Ittb dlstrct 
ad representative citizens from ag- 
. Industry, finance, labor, 
reteran and civic organizations. 
: .it group. conaUtlng -Of people 
rom all walks of life. Is a real cross- 
tlon of the Republican party in 
be 12tb congressional district. It Is 
fable to ascertain the wishes of the 
at mass of voters In our district 
as to unite before the primary 
; one outstanding: Republican can- 
lldate for congress. .,"„» 

"We are determined, to rscotn- 
" a Republican candidate to the 
ters ~wbo will truly represent our 


Day: You know they're going to pick up your record in the campaign anyway. 
But I can't remember his name, darn it, or a couple of others. When 
it came down to it there were only about three or four candidates 
left in the thing. Some were mentioned, but they didn't run. Dr. A. 
Kenneth Spencer, we talked to him a little bit but never got serious. 
I think it was Dr. Spencer, a dentist in Alhambra. Bob French was 
one of our leaders, too, in Alhambra, but I don't think he was going 
to run. He was one of our key people. But all these people are 
dead now. I don't know what's keeping me going, but a lot of them are 
kicked out. 

Fry: Well I don't know, but I'm glad you're here. 

Day: I spoke over at Alhambra at the Lincoln Day dinner that they had; the 
Republican County Central Committee wanted me to speak a couple of 
years, three years ago, or whatever it was. I don't know whether 
you got that write-up or not. I think it was in that stuff somewhere. 

Fry: Yes. 

Day: Land! I checked the list, and we only had about fifty left of our 

committee of One Hundred. The Committee of One Hundred finally ended 
up with a hundred and twenty-one, because Los Angeles County leaders 
made me put the members of the county central committee on, through 
the three assembly districts. You see, I wasn't even going to use 
the committee members. I wanted to make it completely a citizens' 
committee, but they bitched so much about it that I finally included 
the members of the county committee. See, there are seven members of 
the county central committee in each assembly district, so they made 
me include them on the thing. But it didn't change it any; it worked 
out all right. 

Fry: Including the members from the central committee would have interfered 

with the plans to make the campaign as bipartisan as possible, which was 
necessary in those days of cross-filing. 

Day: I know. But the technique of a fact finding committee worked. That 
was the last time this method has been used in our district, so now 
we have a Democrat in part of the new area. 

Fry: What Democrats did you have really working? 

Day: Oh, I didn't have any. No, it really wasn't a bipartisan effort 
particularly. I don't think it says that anyplace. 

Fry: The bipartisan effort was more in his senatorial campaign in 1950. 

Day: Yes, we tried to separate the sound Democrats from this flaming 
liberal, as we painted [Helen Gahagan] Douglas. 



Republican National Conventions; 1948 and 1952 

Fry: You told me off tape that when you went to the Republican convention 
in 1948, where Dewey and Earl Warren were nominated, you went as a 
delegate and that you were Richard Nixon's roommate there. 

Day: Yes, we roomed together. 

Fry: How did that happen? Just tell me the story. 

Day: I talked to him about it; it was just a mutual agreement. He wanted 

to have a room with me. He came as a congressman and I was a delegate, 
and we just decided to room together. He seemed to want to. I don't 
know actually who made the approach, whether he did or whether I did. 

Fry: How did you get on the delegation? How was it selected? 
Day: Recommendations. You saw some of those letters. 

Fry: I've got a letter here of recommendation, but, you know, they probably 
had hundreds of those for various other people. 

Day: I'd say Mclntyre Faries was a real wheel on this thing. 

Fry: Did you know Mac Faries? He was national committeeman and chairman 
of the Executive Committee of the Republican National Committee. 

Day: Oh, very well. Yes, both him and his wife. And I knew the governor 
[Earl Warren]; I had met him. He knew who I was. He knew what I'd 
done with the fact finding committee. So, Dick made it pretty plain 
he wanted me on the delegation. 

Did you get the letter I threw out there where Nixon recommended 



Fry: Was that letter a recommendation to this 1948 convention? I was 
reading so fast. 

Day: Yes. In '52 I was just a guest. I didn't even try to be a delegate 
to that. I wasn't even going and somebody wanted me to go. 
Somebody from Pomona thought I ought to go, that I could do some 
good for the ticket they wanted. That's why I went in '52 — through 
my stooging. 

Fry: Yes, because '52 was entirely different. 
Day: Oh, yes. 

Fry: Warren was a serious candidate in '52. In '48 he was just a nominal 
head, as I understand it. Was that your understanding? 

Day: That's right. 

Fry: Was it essentially a free delegation in '48, but with a unit rule? 

Day: No, it's a unit rule. That's it, see. Delegates go tied to the 
governor till he releases them. 

Fry: This is important in relation to what happened in '52, because some 
of the Earl Warren supporters in the '52 delegation got very upset 
when there was a move for Eisenhower before Warren had released the 
California delegation. 

Day: I know it. 

Fry: So the question is, when you signed that pledge to support the head 

of your delegation in 1948, was it the same pledge of allegiance they 
all signed in 1952? 

Day: I don't know that we signed anything. We were pledged to Tom Dewey. 
I don't think I signed anything. We just had conferences. 

Fry: But you were pledged anyway; that's the difference. 

Day: Actually it's no better than your word; let's put it that way. If you 
signed in blood I don't think it'd make any difference. If you 
wanted to change it, you'd change it. Some delegates do break over, 
at least sometimes. But in '48 there was no problem. That's the 
reason I didn't go to the darned floor. Somebody called for a roll 
call, and here I was down in some place having dinner and talking to 
a bunch of people [laughter] . I heard it on radio or something and 
had a fit, but I couldn't get back. 

Fry: You mean when they had the roll call for — 
Day: Yes, I wasn't there. 


Fry: Why weren't you there? 

Day: I decided there wouldn't be any roll call to it. It was going to be 
automatic [to nominate Dewey] for the ballot, so I didn't see any 
reason to be there. I was running around Philadelphia someplace. 

Fry: What can you tell us about Richard Nixon and the '48 convention, 
because he's practically invisible there. 

Day: He didn't do anything in the '48 convention frankly. He really 
didn't. He didn't have any prominence there, or anything. 

Fry: He didn't have any official capacity? 

Day: His whole reputation at that point was on the Alger Hiss thing. 
He had cracked that with the congressional committee. 

Fry: Did he express any opinion on the selection of the vice-president to 
you? I wonder how he felt about Warren at that point. 

Day: I can't remember. Frankly I think he just kind of went along with 
the thing. I can't remember him really taking a stand or talking 
much about it. I think he just kind of went along with — 

Fry: He didn't have a personal opinion? 

Day: I don't remember. I know if he had a forceful or strong opinion 
that was different I'd remember it. I don't remember him taking 
any position against what the ball team was doing. It just seemed to 
be slated. 

Fry: I guess it must be an advantage to go to a convention, since all the 
other members of your party are gathered from all over the United 

Day: Oh, yes. 

Fry: I suppose if you go as a congressman and not a delegate, you are 

there really to meet and talk with these other people and make good 
medicine with them for your future. 

Day: Oh, yes. It's darned good public relations, sure. It's probably not 
the place to start a rumpus anyway, unless you really have something 
you really want to sell yourself, and he wasn't in any position then 
to be doing anything like that. 

Fry: One of the things we ask everybody is about the relationship between 
Richard Nixon and Earl Warren, because neither man has really said 
very much about that. Yet there are endless inches of copy written 
about the relationship, based on almost nothing. 


Day: I don't think they have much to go on. I don't think you can write 
much about it, because I don't recall if he's ever ripped into Earl 
Warren or said a great deal about him one way or another. 

Fry: Nixon certainly didn't publicly, except once. 
Day: No. I don't think privately he did either. 

Fry: I think we're ready to go into the 1950 campaign, 
[end tape 1, side 2; begin tape 2, side 1] 

Nixon Runs for U.S. Senate, 1950 

[The following insert is taken from tape 1, side 1] 

Day: Then particularly I traveled with Dick in the 1950 Senate campaign — 
if I can switch to that, and this Helen Gahagan Douglas that we 
tangled with in that campaign. While we were flying up and down 
the state Dick Nixon would do research on the community where he was 
going to speak and find out some issue or something of particular 
interest to that community so that he could talk about something of 
strictly local interest. This is something else a lot of candidates 
don't do. They give their canned speech. They just cover the whole 
waterfront. But Nixon always had something that he'd dug up about the 
various towns and communities we were going into. He'd get information 
from their local chairman, or I'd get it. Anyway, we had it. He 
would always pick up his audience by referring to that and then go 
into his basic policy statewide and fit that policy into the national 

Helen Gahagan Douglas — an interesting sidelight in that campaign — 
her organization had a girl working in our headquarters in Los Angeles. 

Fry: You mean hired by Helen Gahagan Douglas? 

Day: Hired by Douglas's group. I don't say that she did it; it was her 
campaign organization. Douglas had a girl on our payroll that was 
briefing her on what our travel schedule was. First thing you knew 
Douglas was following us, just running along about — sometimes a few 
hours and sometimes a day behind us, so we found out that it had to 
be that kind of a situation. We decided we would do something about 
it. We had an invitation to appear in Beverly Hills High School 
auditorium jointly with her. 

Fry: You mean Nixon and Helen Gahagan Douglas were appearing together? 


Story sent by Roy Day to The Progress-Bulletin. Pomona, California, 
announcing the November 2, 1945 meeting of the fact finding committee 
in Whittier, at which Richard Nixon spoke. 


Evening, October 31, 194! 

k'^vjj*. " . 'v.V.: -|. 

LepUDlicans or 



•»»TaT Wrtenttal candidate* for 
I will apeak at JL Sinner 
«f tip Utk CtmgreMiona: 
Kejru&Bcarr.'Candldat « 'and 
ndins ' ." eomnilu e* Friday 
: at 7 o'clock, la.anar'rnillani 
hotel at 'Whittles?' -Chairman 
p. Day or 'th« platrtet Repub- 
i Central committee announced 
' .. . •. / *% , 

— • •- •<• 

on i? the poUntlaJ eaadlda tea 
tiled to apeak are I^t. ,Col. 
Benedict of Arcadia, Jod^e 
Bunt of San Gabriel and'Lt. 
,dr. Richard >TLron «f'Wnlttl«r, 
Is flying -WMt trom Baltimore 
especially for the occasion. 
'. a recent meeting In Monrovia 
ie committee beard Assemblyman 
Jrneat Q«dde« and Captain ««m 
lilt, both of the tith'-auembly dls- 
rict, and IXeu t_ • AnSr ew : Porter, 
i«yoT t>f Sooth Paaadena. 
•Any man or woman who ha* any 
lealr* to "become »- candidate for 
s In the 12th district li invit- 
te appear- before .the commlUee, 
n Day »ald. Bid Hatch 'of 

ante, vice-chairman of the com- 
Ittee, IB In charge of arrangements 
the Whittier meeting Friday 
a Ins. ""*'..' 

"It IB my belief that the Repub- 
cf the 12th district can win 
r,1948," >ald Chairman Cay In an- 

nclng the Friday meeting. 
^f*We were only defeated by a email 
stage laet year, -after dividing 
• •trength In the primary election 
then being forced to marshal 
force* for the final campaign, 
liia time we do not Intend to oom- 

i-that error. • ." ^^ • 

; "Our committee coneteta of ap- 
oilmately 100 men and women, In- 
Judlng rvery leader of a Republl- 
»n organization in the llth diatrct 
ad representative citizens from ag- 
cylture, Industry, finance, labor, 
eteran and civic organization!;. 
group, constating of people 
rom all walka of life, la a real crosa- 
ction of the Republican party in 
He 12th congreasional dlitrlct. It la 
ble to ascertain the wlabes of the 
at mass of voters In our district 
as to unite before the primary 
: one outstanding Republican can- 
ite for congress. £j ' ' 

Vie are datermln*4 to T*com- 
nd a Republican candidate to the 
i wbo will truly represent our 
; .tnWaJblngton.' 


Day: Yes, both of them speaking, two sides of the fence. We knew that 
she wouldn't accept if Nixon was going to appear because she had 
ducked a few situations like it. 

Fry: She did appear with Nixon at the Commonwealth Club once — 

Day: He nailed her at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, yes. 

Fry: The newspapers picked that up. 

Day: Yes. I wasn't in San Francisco at that point. I didn't go there. 

But anyway, this other incident — I was very much in it. I 
helped put it together with Murray Chotiner. What happened was we 
told this girl from the Douglas campaign we didn't see how we could 
get to the joint meeting because we had to be in Arlington for a meeting, 
which was true. But we got out of the Arlington meeting as fast as we 
could into my car and phoned up and rented a room at the Beverly Hills 
Hotel in my name. We drove up and parked the car out in front and had 
the man keep it there. Murray Chotiner was over casing Douglas's 
talk because she went on ahead of us. She didn't know we were even 
going to appear. 

A couple of days before that — and I don't want to leave this out — 
the garment workers had put out a real smear sheet on Nixon. (We got 
ahold of most of the sheets and threw them out in the Pacific Ocean, 
but some of them got out.) So, Nixon had one of them. 

We went up to this room. We had paid in advance for the room. I 
thought afterwards I wonder what they thought of the two of us going 
up to this room since we were only going to be there for an hour 
[laughter]. It looked a little suspicious. To register, Nixon stood 
over by the magazine rack because he was trying not to be identified. 
I went over and paid for the room. 

Then Murray Chotiner phoned us the minute Douglas was through 
speaking. Nixon was pacing the floor in the room. He said, "We 
ought to get the word. We ought to get the word, Roy. It's time." 
We got the call and we tore down, got in my car, and drove over to the 
auditorium to the high school. Murray met us outside and he hurriedly 
briefed Nixon as we were walking in about what she had said. 

So Nixon goes strutting down the aisle with his briefcase and his 
garment workers' smear sheet on the outside of it where Douglas could 
see it. He walks up, walks backstage, shakes hands with the gal that 
was the chairman of the meeting. It was really funny to see Helen 
Gahagan Douglas, an experienced actress and a very fine actress. Her 
shoulders just absolutely slumped. She answered one question and 
ducked out of there. She said she had to get to another meeting. She 
just absolutely tore out of there. That is where Nixon tore her to 
shreds. He really let her have it. 


Fry: Was this in response to the garment workers' sheet? 

Day: Yes, he attacked that and her whole campaign. He just ripped her 

whole campaign to shreds and told what she'd been doing, some of the 
things that was going on. He was talking to largely a Jewish 
audience, and the Jews have never been particularly fond of Nixon, 
at least up to that time. In fact, I don't think they ever have been 
too fond of him. But he really went over because he had everything 
on his side. It was very interesting. That was one of the most 
interesting incidents that I've ever been involved in in politics; it 
was really a lot of fun. 

Fry: You were able to pull it off because you could rent that motel room? 

Day: Oh yes, it was a hotel room, Beverly Hills Hotel. Oh yes, right in 
the top hotel. 

Fry: [laughter] For one hour. 

[end insert from tape 1, side 1; begin tape 2, side 1] 

Fry: What was your position in the 1950 campaign? Did you have an exact 
title that we should know about? 

Day: No. That's when Bernie Brennan called me and wanted me to join them 
and travel, just on the basis of my political savvy. That's where 
I joined Dick in Fresno and traveled with him in the Helen Gahagan 
Douglas campaign. 

Fry: What we haven't recorded is about your being called for the campaign. 
You told me off the record. You mentioned it, but it wasn't put in 
the time context. 

Day: Bernie Brennan called me, asked me if I could possibly get away, 

and said that Nixon needed help. He needed somebody to travel with 
him that could break him loose from crowds and keep him on his 
schedule and help him. And so I went. I was working for the 
newspaper then; I wasn't my own boss. That was two years before I 
bought the commercial printing business. So I went to them and they 
said, "Well, you haven't had any vacation. You want to do it?" 

I said, "Yes, I'd like to." So I traveled with Nixon, oh, I 
guess about the last three weeks. I flew to Fresno, as I recall, 
and I went to the California Hotel and checked in a room there, and 
then went over to the Fresno Hotel where Dick was. He told me what 
the problem was, that he couldn't get loose. Bernie Brennan had 
rather well briefed me on what the problem was. So, I told him what 
I was going to do, what I was supposed to do, and it worked out real 
well. I'd case the crowd and I'd try to check and see if we'd got 
the right people in the front rows, so there wouldn't be hecklers up 
there to upset him or get on the radio or the loudspeakers. I'd find 
some excuse to get him to move on to the next speaker. 

Kickoff for Senate race. 
Pomona, California 1950 

Pat and Richard Nixon 

At a 1950 campaign dinner. 

Left to right: Roy Day, Congressman Richard Nixon, 
Dr. George C.S. Benson, Frank Jorgensen 


Day: We had a lot of interesting things. We had a girl who was writing 
for Life magazine who was on the plane flying up to Auburn in the 
northern part of the state. She just pestered the dickens out of 
Dick. When she was on the plane, we couldn't do anything about it. 
He had to listen to and put up with her. But she was really a pest. 
She just really bugged him. He was trying to think what he wanted to 
say in the speech when he got to Auburn. He was really upset with her 
because she was getting awfully sticky with her questions, I remember. 
He told me afterwards, "I think if there was any way of doing it, I'd 
have thrown her off the plane." [laughter] He usually doesn't say 
things like that, but he was really burned up. She was a little 
ridiculous. She didn't use much tact. She was sent to cover the 
speech, so she was really covering it before she got there [laughter]. 

Fry: She practically stopped the campaign whole in the process. 

Day: In most of the places it was real nice. We were very well treated. 
It was very enjoyable. I really enjoyed that trip. 

Fry: You were going up through the San Joaquin Valley with him? 
Day : Yes . 

Fry: You were able then to observe his speeches. It looks like there was 
an important give-and-take there, one of the few instances where 
Richard Nixon and Helen Douglas did tangle on an issue. Otherwise 
it looked as if Helen Douglas was talking about her things here, and 
Nixon was ralking about different things here, and they never really 
argued with each other. 

Day: Yes. The place they tangled was the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco. 
That is where they tangled. He blew her out of the water there, and 
so she just managed not to be with him. But she was following Dick 
until we caught up with this girl, who was on the Douglas payroll and 
was working in our place and knew what our schedule was. They got rid 
of her. 

Fry: How did you find her out? 

Day: Murray Chotiner dug it up some way. He found out because he was 

sort of running the office in Los Angeles and was in there all the 
time. He found out; he trapped her some way. I don't know exactly 
how they did it, but they did. They found out who it was and got rid 
of her. 

Fry: Going up through the agricultural counties, the two candidates did differ 
on two issues. One was the Brannan [Secretary of Agriculture Charles 
F. Brannan] plan for farm subsidies, and the other was the 160-acre 
limitation on farm ownership for the right to use water from federal 
projects . 


Day: I don't remember. 

Fry: Did you have anything to do with talking to Mr. Nixon about these 

Day: No, not about those. I remember the two things, but I don't even 

remember the details of them now. No, I didn't have anything to do 
with briefing him on anything in that regard. He was briefed by 
people from those areas ahead of time. 

Fry: Who was helping him determine the major campaign issues? Who was 
on the campaign staff? 

Day: I'd say Brennan had an awful lot to do with determining issues. 

Brennan was a very shrewd campaign organizer and manager. He knew 
what he was doing. I had a very high regard for him. He's gone now. 

Fry: How was Chotiner in picking issues and deciding what to hit? 

Day: Chotiner was very good, too. He's one of the ablest men I've ever 

Fry: How important was he compared to Brennan in deciding on issues in 
this campaign? 

Day: Actually you can't compare them. I think you'd have to contrast them, 
as they were both very important. Brennan, I think, had more depth 
and probably would have more stature. Chotiner knew more tricks of 
the game maybe. 

Fry: I'd like to run down some of the names here who helped on the 

campaign. Maybe you could help me place what their slot was in the 


Day: Gee, I doubt if I know that. 

Fry: I know Frank Jorgensen and J. Walton Dinkelspiel were important. A 
very important person, I understand, was V. John Krehbiel, who is 
now Ambassador Krehbiel, just retired. 

Day: John Krehbiel in Los Angeles, yes. 
Fry: What did he do? 

Day: He helped raise money. He was one of the key people in that campaign 
along with Frank Jorgensen. Frank Jorgensen was a good friend of 
mine. I liked him. 

Fry: I'll be talking to him in a couple of weeks. 


Day: Are you? Tell him hello for me. Jorgensen is a real fine person. 

He was very active over in the San Marino area right from the start. 
Krehbiel was a real wheel along with Earl Adams and all those guys. 

Fry: I tried to find Krehbiel. 

Day: Is he alive? 

Fry: Yes, he just retired. 

Day: Oh yes, as ambassador. 

Fry: We don't know whether he's back in the United States. 

Day: I didn't know what had happened to him. Krehbiel was a substantial 
person in Dick's campaigns, but not in the first ones. Jorgensen 
was. Rodney Rood, do you have his name? R-o-o-d. 

Fry: No. 

Day: He was one that I worked very closely with. He was a — Richfield Oil, 
I think. 

Fry: Yes, I was going to ask you about the role of Richfield Oil in here. 
Day: They were friendly. 

Fry: And Keck and that group. The reason we're interested in that is 
because they were so important in '52 in forming an anti-Warren 

Day: Yes. Rodney Rood is somebody you should track down — I don't know 

what he's doing. He was rather young; he shouldn't be decrepit, yet. 
Oh, he's probably up pretty close to my age; I don't know. 

Fry: It's really hard to find people in the Los Angeles area, because the 
information operator always wants to know the precise locality where 
they live [laughter], and there are so many areas. 

Day: Rodney Rood did live in San Marino, so you might try and see if it's 
in the phone book. I don't know. Of course, I don't even know if 
he's still alive, but I'm fairly sure he is. 

Fry: Now Harrison McCall — 

Day: Yes. He died. He was with L.A. Testing Laboratory. He was on my 

first fact finding committee. He became campaign manager in the final 
campaign and that's what the big — 


Fry: In '46? 

Day: Yes, in the general election campaign, not the primary campaign. I 
was the primary campaign manager. Some of these papers carry the 
story and say he was the first campaign manager, but he wasn't. Of 
course, they argue that he was when Nixon was elected, but I still 
dispute that. That's a sore spot with me. That gets my fighting 
blood up when I see that. Nixon himself has straightened that out 
when anybody has asked him. I was manager in the primary campaign, 
McCall in the final campaign. 

Fry: I'm glad we have those letters. What did Harrison McCall do in 1950 
in the senatorial campaign? Was he involved in it? 

Day: I don't know. I don't think he did much of anything. He was around 
locally, there around his own bailiwick. 

Fry: And Jack Drown? 

Day: Jack Drown has always been very close to Nixon. His wife, Helene, 

of course was close to Pat. Helene and Pat went shopping together the 
other day, I hear. Pat wore a wig of some kind, [laughter] Isn't 
that awful, to have to disguise themselves. 

Fry: It must be terrible to be a prisoner there in their home. 

Then I have Charlie Soderstrom's name down here. 
Day: Oh yes, Charlie Soderstrom was very active. 
Fry: What did he do? 

Day: He wasn't any campaign manager or chairman or anything, but he was 
active. I remember his name. 

Fry: In Northern California Harvey Hancock was the paid professional. 
Who was his equivalent in the south? 

Day: In the Senate campaign? 

Fry: Yes. 

Day: Darned if I know; I don't remember. Earl Adams ought to know that. 

Fry: Maybe Chotiner took care of everything. 

Day: I didn't know that we had a paid pro. That doesn't stand. I don't 

recall a single person down there that was calling the shots, because 
Bernie was down here. 


Fry: Yes. So was Chotiner, wasn't he? 

Day: Yes. Well, sure. I just don't remember any paid pro. 
Fry: Perhaps they didn't need anyone else. 

Day: I remember Harvey Hancock was very active in Northern California. 
[The following insert is taken from tape 1, side 2] 

Fry: The Voorhis campaign came just at the time when the U.S. was beginning 
to lose its feeling of being an ally with Russia. There was a lot 
of concern about the way that the Communists were infiltrating labor 
unions and things like that. 

Day : I know . 

Fry: So this became one of the main themes in Nixon's campaigns. 

Day: Nixon made a statement which led to Helen Gahagan Douglas and some of 
her supporters saying that he'd called her a Communist. But he never 
called her a Communist, and I know because I've traveled with him. 
Nixon said that she was the wife of Melvyn Douglas, who was listed as 
a Communist sympathizer. Her voting record paralleled that of, I 
think it's Vito Marcantonio, a congressman from New York. 

Fry: I wanted to ask you who discovered all this and who did the research 
on the Marcantonio voting record. 

Day: I didn't do the research, but I had the information. I don't know 
where we got it, but we had it. That's what Nixon said. He said 
that up and down the state. Douglas or some of her buddies twisted 
that around and accused Nixon of calling her a Communist finally. 

Fry: I have some copies of your campaign literature that now and then were 
handed out during the Douglas campaign. 

Day : Have you? 

Fry: I got them out of the archives at the University of Oklahoma, believe 
it or not. 

Day: The University of Oklahoma! [laughter] 

My son-in-law was working for Governor Bellman back there. When 
he got out of the University of Oklahoma he worked as a public 
relations man in Governor Bellman's office. 


Fry: Oh, yes? Well, what happened was this came from a Helen Gahagan 

Douglas collection. I told you there aren't any Nixon collections. 
I just ran through her collection there. When Douglas stepped down 
from Congress there happened to be a man from the University of 
Oklahoma walking down the halls of the House Office Building. He 
noticed that her office was packing up, so he asked if the university 
could have her papers. She said yes, so they just took them. 

Day: Well, I'll be darned! 

Fry: I did go through them and got what material I could from the Nixon 

campaign, which apparently her campaign workers had collected. In 

her papers there is a lot of printed material which probably was done 
at your printing office. 

Day: Oh, yes. We printed stuff for the Senate campaign — or I wouldn't 

have been traveling with the campaign because I was under salary of 
the Progress-Bulletin at that time. I put that stuff together from 
the layouts and copy with him. 

Fry: Oh, you did? With Nixon? 

Day: Oh, yes. Nixon saw everything I did. Obviously, I'd take it over and 
go over it with him. 

Fry: Did Chotiner help there? 

Day: Chotiner saw it and went over it. 

Fry: Was that an expansion of Chotiner 's role over 1946? 

Day: Oh, yes. Chotiner got some real money then. I think maybe $3,000 or 
someting, not too much at that. [laughter] Maybe $5,000; I don't 

Fry: It doesn't sound like very much. 

Day: No, I don't remember what he got for the Senate campaign. He got more 
than that; he must have. Of course, in the '46 campaign we didn't 
have much money to spend on the whole campaign. We did it by work then. 

Fry: Oh, while we're talking about campaign literature we've got to talk 
about that famous "pink sheet" and whose brain child that was.* 

*See p. 32. Another piece of campaign material printed on pink paper 
was entitled "Congressman Richard Nixon for U.S. Senator 'Let's 
Look at the Record.'" It compared the Nixon and Douglas voting records. 

32 TV <• <:,-.- - " 

Many persons have requeued a comparison of the voting records of Congresswoman'Helen Douglas and the notorious 
Communist party liner. Congressman Vito Marcantonio of New York. 

Mrs. Douglas and Marcantonio have been members of Congress together since January 1. 1945. During that period. Mrs. 
Douglas voted the same as Marcantonio 354 times. While it should not be expected that a member of the House of 
Representatives should always vote in opposition to Marcantonio, it is significant to note, not only the great number of 
times which Mrs. Douglas voted in agreement with him, but also the iisues on which almost without exception they 
always saw eye to eye. to-wit: Un-American Activities and Internal Security. 

Here is the Record! 


Both Douglas and Marcantonio voted against establish 
ing the Committee on Un-American Activities. 1/3/45. 
Bill passed. 

Both voted on three separate occasions against contempt 
proceedings against persons and organizations which 
refused to reveal records or answer whether they were 
Communists. 4/16/46, 6/26/46. 11/24/47. Bills passed. 

Both voted on four separate occasions against allowing 
funds for investigation by the Un-American Activities 
Committee. 5/17/46. 3/9/48, 2/9/49, 3/23/50. (The last 
vote was 348 to 12.) All bills passed. 


Both voted against Creek-Turkish Aid Bill. 5/9/47. 
(It has been established that without this aid Greece 
and Turkey would long since have gone behind the 
Iron Curtain.) Bill passed. 

Both votet,' . m two occasions against free press amend 
ment to UNRRA appropriation bill, providing that 
no funds should be furnished any country which refused 
to allow free access to the news of activities of the 
UNRRA by press and radio representatives of the United 
States. 11/1/45. 6/28/46. Bills passed. (This would in 
effect have denied American relief funds to Communist 
dominated countries.) 

Both voted against refusing Foreign Relief to Soviet- 
dominated countries UNLESS supervised by Americans. 
4/30/47. Bill passed 324 to 75. 


Both voted against the Selective Service Act o{ 1948. 
6/18/48. Bill passed. 


Both voted on two separate occasions against bills re- 

Suiting loyalty checks for Federal employees. 7/15/47. 
/29/49. Bills passed. 

Both voted against the Subversive Activities Control Act 
of 1948. requiring registration with the Attorney Gen 
eral of Communist party members and communist con 
trolled organizations. Bill passed. 319 to 58. 5/19/48. 
AND AFTER KOREA both again voted against it. Bill 
passed 8/29/50, 354 to 20. 

AFTER. KOREA, on July 12. 1950. Marcantonio and 
Douglas and 12 others voted against the Security Bill, to 
permit the heads of key National Defense departments. 
such as the Atomic Energy Commission, to discharge 
government worker! found to be poor security risks! Bill 
passed, 327 to 14. 


Both* recorded against confirming title to Tidelands in 
California and the other states affected. .4/30/48. Bill 
passed 257-~>. 



ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES voted against investigating the "whitewash" of the 
AMERASIA case. 4/18/46. Bill passed. 
Both voted against investigating why the Soviet Union 
was buying as many as 60,000 United States patents at 
one time. 3/4/47. Bill passed. 

Both voted against continuing investigation of numerous 
instances of illegal actions by OPA and the War Labor 
Board. 1/18/45. Bill passed. 

Both voted on two occasions against allowing Congress 
to have access to government records necessary to the 
conduct of investigations by Senate and House Com 
mittees. 4/22/48. 5/13/48. Bills passed. 

ON ALL OF THE AIOVE VOTES which hov* occurred the* Congressman Nixon took offict on January I. If 47. 

HE hat »o»ed tioe f/y opposff • to th« Ooyglos-Morcanto«io Axil! 

After studying the voting comparison between Mrs. Douglas and Marcantonio. is it any wonder that the Communist line 
«icv«paper, the Daily People's World, in its lead editorial on January SI. 1950. labeled Congressman Nixon as The Man 
To Beat" in this Senate race and that the Communist newspaper, the New York Daily Worker, in the issue of July 28, 
1947, selected Mrs. Douglas along with Marcantonio as "One of the Heroes of the 80th Congress." 

REMEMBER! The United State* Senate votes on ratifying international treaties and confirming presi 
dential appointments. Would California tend Marcantonio to the United States Senate? 



1151 M..»»f Smrt 
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ti**m Hma 441 It 

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Day: The "pink sheet"? [puzzlement] 

Fry: The "pink sheet." I wish I had a copy with me but I don't. 

Day: When? In the Helen Gahagan deal? 

Fry: In the Helen Gahagan Douglas campaign. The account in one of the 

books I read suggested that this was a very important turning point 
maybe in the campaign, or at least an acceleration of it, because it 
was so graphic. It was Helen Douglas's record put up alongside Vito 

Day: Oh yes. 

Fry: The story I got — I shouldn't tell it to you because I want to get 
your story on it. 

Day: Well, I don't remember the story on it. 

Fry: The story in the book was that Chotiner said to whoever was printing 

it — you had some pink paper stacked around — "Hey, that's great, instead 
of just plain black and white," because the whole inference then was 
the connection with the New York Communist member of Congress. 

Day: I don't remember whether we printed that thing or not. We probably 

did, because I did all of his printing. And I did everything when he 
ran for governor, I know. 

Fry: Probably during the heat of the campaign it seemed like just one 
more thing you printed up. 

Day: It probably did. I can't remember the darned thing. The pink is 

throwing me. I just don't remember. But, as I say, I can't remember 
people's names even. That's what bugs me sometimes^-things I should 
remember and I don't. I do remember we had something contrasting 
their records, I should say. But I don't remember the pink. Isn't 
that funny? It seems like I'd remember that. 

Fry: Oh dear, and we can't ask Chotiner about it anymore. 

Day: Oh, he's gone. Well, there are people — 

Fry: At the time it was probably just one of many that you printed up. 

Day : Oh , yes . 

Fry: But as historians go back over the campaign they always pick that 
sheet out as something that was important. 

Day: I'll be darned! 


Fry: I don't know whether it had that much of an impact at the time or not. 
That was the other question I wanted to ask you, if you felt that it 
did have an impact. 

Day: I don't remember. It's a funny part. I was only one cog in the Senate 
campaign. That was a statewide deal. Bernie Brennan did call me 
to travel with Nixon because they knew I could get him in and out of 
crowds. I seem to have — at least they thought I had — ability in a 
certain area that most of the campaign staff didn't have. They didn't 
know how to handle it. The trick was to do it without offending 
people, to get him shaken loose. You had to come up with some reason. 
You had to do something. 

I remember the last meeting was at Kenny Washington's home, the 
black football player. Dick kidded with him and he really lightened 
it up. He said he had the best seat at Whittier for all the football 
games; he was on the bench. [laughter] He kidded with Kenny Washington. 

Fry: Was that the senatorial campaign. 

Day: Yes, the Senate deal. That was the night before the election. We 

came back. We'd been up north someplace, Santa Barbara or somewhere. 
The night before the election we were in Los Angeles. 

Fry: Were you with Nixon? 

Day: I was with him. Yes, we had a deal down there. This is where Helen 
Gahagan Douglas had claimed that was her congressional district. 
Nixon made a point that she hadn't lived there, didn't even live in 
the district, which she didn't. We did blast her about that. She was 
trying to claim all that vote down there as her home bailiwick. 

Fry: Yes, she lived outside the district, which was legal. 

Day: I know. That's one thing I remember. Some of these things come 

back to me, but it's hard on me to remember all this stuff so long 

Fry: You've been in so many campaigns. 
Day: Oh, I know it. [laughter] 
Fry: From school board on up. 

Day: Yes, I'm thinking now when I've got to suit up. They've lost three 
of them and now are supposed to win this one. 

[end insert from tape 1, side 2] 


Nixon's Decision to Run for the Senate 

Fry: There's a very important point here that we need to back up and cover. 
That's your conversation with Nixon when he was trying to decide 
to run for the Senate or not, or you were trying to get him to decide 
to run. You just mentioned it in passing in your interview with 
Paul Bullock from the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Day: Several of us met over in Tom Bewley's law office, I guess it was. 
Fry: That was Nixon's old law partner? 

Day: Yes. We talked about whether he should run or not. Herman Perry 
didn't want him to run. Perry said, "You're going to crucify this 
young man if you send him out and run him." He was really upset 
about it. 

Fry: He thought it wasn't the time? 

Day: No, he just wanted to keep Dick in Congress. You know, his buddy from 
Whittier. So I made the crack there, "When your star is up, that's 
when you have to move." Dick had just made the limelight with the 
Alger Hiss case. That's where Nixon made his move. That's where he 
got in the limelight, because he, practically alone, dragged that out. 
That's where the press started to hate him, the liberal press, and 
they've hated him from that day to this. 

Now, I don't know that you should — well, I guess this is all 

Fry: You can put it under seal for as many years as you want to. 

Day: No, this is all right. I don't think there's any reason why I 
shouldn't tell you. 

What happened was Dick wanted me to meet him ahead of this 
meeting in Bewley's office. So I met with him at a little restaurant 
over there somewhere west of Whittier. I can't remember the name of 
the place. Dick said that he had been all up and down the state, and 
he'd decided that he wanted to run, and he wanted me to push for it 
when we went into that meeting. 

So I said, "Okay. Are you sure you want to run?" 

He said, "Yes." He had some inkling that Sheridan Downey was 
going to drop out, which hadn't happened at that point. Dick felt that 
his chances were pretty — that he had a shot at it anyway. 

Roy Day and Richard Nixon 
1950 Senatorial Campaign 

Left to right: 

Roy 0. Day, Jr. 

Diana Day Brady 

Florine Day (Mrs. Roy) 

President Nixon 

Roy 0. Day 

Patti Day 

Linda Day Dickerson 


Day: So, my job when we sat down in the circle — I managed to sit on the 
end of the semicircle facing him. When he got ready to talk to us 
he looked around, knowing darn well who he was going to call first. 
He called on me. So, I made the sales pitch. When I got through 
they didn't have anything left to talk about. [laughter] 

Fry: Nixon knew who to pick to do that, yes. 

Day: Well, I knew he was going to do that, see. The decision was made 
and an announcement came out, and that was it. 

Fry: Who was present at this meeting? 

Day: There was about seven of us there, I remember. I think Frank Jorgensen 
was there. I believe Pat Hillings was in on it, if I remember right. 
I know Tom Bewley was there, and of course the banker [laughter] 
who didn't want him to run. I don't know whether Harrison McCall 
was there. I think Harrison McCall was there. It was a very small 

Fry: Since I'm somewhat unacquainted with the way these different relation 
ships operated, I should ask you if this was a group of people who 
really were key people? 

Day: Oh, yes. 

Fry: Could they have stopped him right at that point if they hadn't wanted 
him to run? 

Day: Yes, if we had all come out against him — told him not to — I don't 
think he would have run. But he made up his mind what to do. 

Fry: What was the next step then, after he had the approval of these people? 

Day: Well, he got busy to get his announcement ready. 

Fry: He just went right into it? 

Day: Yes. 

Fry: Well, I think we've covered most things. I have too many other 

questions to ask you, to go on. [laughter] We haven't covered your 
work with him in those subsequent campaigns. 

Day: I was east San Gabriel Valley chairman in the 1960 presidential 

campaign. I tried my best to stop him from running for governor in 
1962, but I couldn't do it. 

Fry: Oh, tell about that. 


Day: I just told him that I didn't think people would buy it. 

Fry: Was this at a meeting? 

Day: No, I did that privately. I couldn't get anywhere with it. 

Fry: Is that the time when you flew back to New York to talk to him? 

Day: No, it was in California. I just told him I didn't think people 
would go for a candidate stepping down after a defeat. I said I 
thought it was a mistake. But I was out-voted by the powerhouse in 
Los Angeles and I think, actually — I don't know who got to him, 
really. I think people in Los Angeles talked him into it. Maybe 
Earl Adams and that gang; 1 don't know. 

Fry: That group and the intersection of Sixth Street and Grand Avenue in 


Day : Yes . 

Fry: I was amazed, as my interviews stacked up, they were all located 
right there, which certainly simplifies parking problems. 

Day: The Rowan Building. You bomb the Rowan building and you'd get rid 
of half of them. [laughter] Well, Bob Rowan was a good friend of 
mine, too. You ought to interview Bob Rowan. I don't know where he 
is, but he was very active. He owns the Rowan building. He's quite 
a guy. I don't know whether he's president of anything. No, he's 
just got money. He's a nice guy. 

Fry: Where did this group enter Nixon's career — at the senatorial campaign 

Day: Well, most of them did. They participated in the first presidential 
election [1968] and then for this re-election [1972] he probably sent 
his own henchmen out here, all new, with this guy from a college 
down here. 

Fry: What college? Pomona? 

Day: No, down in Los Angeles. The guy you read about who's talking about 
running for something — Senate. Oh, heck. I've got the letters from 

Fry: I probably have missed his aspirations for the Senate, so I can't 
help you. 

Day: Well, he won't get anywhere. The president of Pepperdine College, 
William Banowsky. He was a guy that was really running the show in 
the '72 campaign. He was going around the organization. They had me 


Day: into the county committee meeting with a lot of the people. I told 
them what I thought of it. I said, "Not a way to run a campaign. 
You can't ignore the party organization." The Committee to Re-elect 
the President were running the whole deal and ignoring the Republican 
organization. The Republican organization was kind of weak, I'll 
admit, but you don't slap them in the face. The Committee to Re-elect 
should have just added to the party organization but not ignored it. 
They absolutely ignored the party organization. So, I'm not too hot 
for that guy. 

Day's Tasks for Nixon in 1952 

Fry: Well, I will let you go. Even though we didn't talk about 1952. 

Day: Well Honey, I don't really know much. I really don't have much I 

can give you on that that's of interest to you. We should get the 
people — 

Fry: We always want to know when the vice-presidency idea came up and who 
backed that. 

Day: I didn't have anything to do with that, really. It just happened. 

I just knew about it when it happened and that was it. I was through 
with it, really, after the Senate campaign pretty much, as far as 
being an activist anyway. Except I've always had some assignment 
with the campaigns. 

Fry: Didn't you tell me, off-tape, that you went to later conventions as 
a guest? 

Day: I was a guest in '52. 

Fry: Tell about what you did at the 1952 convention about Taft. 

Day: My assignment was this. Some of the California leaders that I had 

respect for said, "Roy, this is something you could do that would be 
very effective. See what you can do to discourage them on Taft." 
So I decided the thing to do was just not tear down Taft, because 
that would build his strength up actually, and being from California 
and so on, it was no smart thing to do. So, I went around and I'd 
say, "Isn't it too bad that Taft is such a wonderful person, but he's 
just not electable. It's just a shame." I'd shake my head from side 
to side and put on a forlorn look and then go on and talk to somebody 
else. I made the elevators and I made the restaurants — anybody I 
could find to talk to. I proved very successful because it really 

Richard Nixon and Roy Day 
January 25, 1978 

"Best wishes to my first 
campaign manager & good 
friend - Roy Day 

Sincerely y 

Dick Nixon " 

Kickoff Campaign for Vice President 1952 at 
Pomona Southern Pacific Railroad Station. 
Left to right: Laughlin Waters, Diana and Lind. 
Day, George Murphy, Pat and Richard Nixon. 


Day: spread. I really covered the hotel lobbies. I did a job of it. 
Nixon knows about this; he knows what I was doing. That was my 
assignment in '52. 

Fry: Did you help any during the campaign after the convention in '52? 

Day: I just locally helped set up some meetings in the east San Gabriel 
Valley around — oh, from the eastern part of Los Angeles County. I 
helped set up some meetings and worked with the local organizations. 
1 didn't do a whole lot though. 

Fry: Were you here when that rather sensational story broke about the 
Nixon fund? 

Day: Yes, I was on television in Washington. In '48, wasn't it? 
Fry: Fifty- two. 
Day: Fifty- two? 

Fry: With Eisenhower, remember. Nixon had to fly back and Eisenhower met 

Day: No, it was the $18,000 deal they were talking about. They had me on 
television in Washington about that. 

Fry: Oh, what were you doing in Washington? 

Day: I happened to be back there on a trip. So some station back there 

put me on television and I refuted the whole thing. I said the fund 
was completely legitimate. I said that it wasn't from a group of 
millionaires. I said there's only one on there that had a big bank 
roll and that'd be the Rowans. I said that they were just a group that 
raised this money to do this job. So I went on the air, defending 
him on that, on a station in Washington, D.C. I was on the Fulton 

Fry: Fulton Lewis, Jr.? 

Day: Fulton Lewis Jr. I thought that was in '48. Wasn't it? 

Fry: No, that was resolved when Eisenhower met Nixon at the airport and 
said, "He's my boy!" 

Day: Oh, yes. I was back there, anyway, at that time. So, they stuck me 
on the air. That's about the same time Earl Mazo interviewed me, too, 
down in a hotel room. 

Fry: Oh, he did? For his book? 


Day: Yes. That's where he got me. He talked to me for quite a while 

about it. I don't know whether it was during that trip or another 
one that Earl Mazo talked to me. I can't even remember when. Mazo 
collared me in my hotel room, worked me over. 

Fry: Tell me what you think about his book. Do you think it's fairly 

Day: Yes, I do. I think it's one that's quite accurate — the parts that 
I know anything about. [pause] 

Fry: We didn't get to talk about your trip to Honolulu. You said that 
was set up by Nixon? 

Day: He said he got Charlie Thomas to give me that trip. I came back on 
this crazy wooden flying boat. 

Fry: What was Charlie Thomas at the time? 

Day: Secretary of the Navy. 

Fry: Oh, yes. And what was the purpose of your trip? 

Day: That was the one handout I've had all the time I've — 

Fry: That's your complete payment? [laughter] 

Day: Yes. I am proud of all aid I have given in campaigns, and of the 
men who received any help from me. If more of our citizens would 
participate, and not just opinionate, our government would rapidly 
regain the plateau of integrity and sensible progress our forefathers 
intended for it. 

Fry: I really will let you go this time. Thanks for being so patient. 

[end tape 2, side 1] 
[end interview] 

Transcriber: Marlene Keller 
Final Typist: Keiko Sugimoto 



APPENDIX A — Partial Listing of Original Members of Committee 
of One Hundred 

j,*ttt+ v /* 

A^ &>»?$*- ^^^T^T 

^^L^- ^^~ 

Aa^aS^'Cr * 




49th District 

Chairman, -fioy-er- Day" P. C. Box 1372 Pooona 
""George fe, Meier 615 San Gabriel, Azusa - J* 

900 Hicrest, Glendora 
675 Ha.-apton Road Arcadia 
/..-nherst and Bradford La Verne 
550 fc. Harrison Clareraont 

/ C. b. Shoeaaker 

s Leo M. Meeker 

i/ Hugh Stiles v 

</' :^r; . Myron Powell 

• -Mack E. Wright " 

j talker •;. Downs ^ 

/Vernon Yost 

J V,c»lter L* Gatten 

S Ralph Connor 

' N^rs. T -. :4. Harris 

/ Herbert Jack 

' Richard Helwig 

; Fred Hannsen »/- 

^Robert Kadford , 

/ J. Li. Johnson ^ 



J '*;rs. Anita Fuhr 
* vfc. . Arthur Brandes 
v ."4rs. Roy Ferguson 
/ Mr. Sam Gist / 

128 E. Lemon Monrovia 
920 Harvard ;-ve. Clare.;sont 
125 East Colorado Blvd. Monrovia 

La Verne 
San Dim.'ij 

1104 E. Meda 
315 San Antonio Road 
1101 Foothill Blvd. 
129 E. Colorado Blvd. 
2034 No. Mills 
;-'jrs. Clarence Ste^ele 167 No. San Diius Ave, 

1033 N. Soldano Street 
605 Norunbega Drive 
?. O.Box 96 
400 west Second St. 

Assaablyaan Krnest a. Geddes ' 560 W. Harrison 





fefcrofen H. Ervin 1136 tillow h Puente 

s Charles B. Cooper 
/Lance D. Saith 

1649 Ontario ftreet Corona 

158252 H. Main Street /Puente 


/Judge Gerald C. Senple 
i/ killard J. Larson 
/'Mrs. Ralph Robbins 
/John *, Johnson 
' Porter Kerckhoff 

* Carl Bras 

t i^rs. C. J. Taylor 
' Harold Lutz 

Mrs. Harvey Stewart 
/ John ftfood 
r .''irs. J. A. McGee 

Genevieve Tedrow 
. Guy Morelock 
J Lyle Spilman 
»/ Charles Thomas 
S Louis lawyer 

* Ralph Chase 
•Frank Blake 

•/.'irs. Hazel T. Rhodes 

5749 Valley Oak Drive Los /xngeles 
627 Khea Vista Drive 'rfhittier 
705 ::. Sarlhaa 1/rive :..;ittier 
421 -Mildred Street El ;>tonte 


14936 C. Pala Avenue La Puente 

La Puente 

Bank of America Whittier 

Box 691 La Puente 

Franklin & College 
QIC Vk. Mildred 
221 V,'alnut Street 

3052 No. Richrand 
8907 Bexley Drive 

El .Monte 
El >k>nte 
El ?-bnte 

V.'hittier National Trust &. Havings BanH 


631 N. V.ash ngton V.hitticr 
520 No. Friends Whittier 

346O Turnbull Canyon Road Whittier 



53rd DI3TUICT 

f •Assemblyman Montivel ;*. Burke 100 No. First 


' Leo £• Anderson 
' Mrs. H. J. Garretson 
/Mrs. K.Li. Hotchkiss 
* Judge Frederick F. Houser 
* Roy P. 

' Harrison .^cCal! 
djjL ttilliam Martin ( Attorney) 
/ Judge Aclntyre Faries <- 

120 \;. Sierra Kadra 
461 Prospect Circle 
;1415 Circle Drive 
State Plug. 
2055 Milan Avenue 

1625 Laurel venue 

So. Pasadena 
San Marino 
LOG Angeles 
So. Pasi.d?na 
Santa Barbara 
So . Pasadena 

frferyert Spencer 
' Roy r. Crocker 
f Ron Stever 
/ Aarle C. Adaros 
/ Lr. .». Kenneth Spencer 

s J. H. Strube 

^ Ira. Eunice Lowell 

J J. :., Sloan 
' Robert French 
• hockwood C. Nelson 

'rrtzrer'^o-rgonoen — 


1015 Hi-,.. land 


Kuys lilcii;. T ,OJ: Anrteloo 
403 ..IhaTibra :1 P.ld;:. 

1005 S. Second Jtruet Alhu-;bra 
512 : . Foothill Blvd. Arcadia 
650 Grand ,\ venue % So. Pasaden: 


rt »vlh..';bra 
f'onterev Koad S-m Aariuo 

Re~ional Manager, Group Division 
"e Insurance Co. 6 --0 Stockton T't. San ? 

^ 'lr. . Daisy Sherwood 
/ Arthur Kruse 

437 North Cordova 

Sierra Vista .-.Iha.nbra 

314 S. First Street ..lha:ibra 

2^0 U. Main i'treet ^Alhu.-nbra 

/ f6*^f /2&Z* /& 

1 i-bnterey Park 



.San Gabriel 

53rd DISTRICT (cont.) 

/ ... K. Boardman 115 Highcliffe Garvey 

./ .Xi. Roy Ensign 2047 Courtland f,an Marino 

^.-lr . Monroe Reuland 2504 El *oe*sy^£i-c? Alharabra 

John J. Garland £. K. Garland Bldg. 117 W. 9th St. 

Los «n-;eles 15 

i^*««— Brosrxrweil --- £26-ftaltisore -Ave. Monterey Park 

>: P. Karbert 235 E« Graystone \ve. Wonrovia 

APPENDIX B — Roy Day to Walter F. Dexter, October 13, 1945 
f Air 46 

Pomona, California 
October 13, 1945 

i'» •*. ^ 

Dr. Walter T. Derter, 

State Supt. of Public Instruction, 

Sacramento, Calif. 

Dear Walter, 

I have intended writing you sooner, but hare been very busy 
between two assignments, my regular job, and setting up this 
candidate and fact finding committee which you know something of 
by now. 

To give you the entire picture - from past experience I know 
it is useless and hopelees to spend our time prior to the primary 
fighting among ourselves, then come up with a minority candidate, 
set up a campaign organization, iron out injured feelings, raise 
money, and even hope to beat the incumbent new deal congressman. 
To get on the right track, I worked out a plan, parallel in idea, 
at least to some degree, to an overall plan of the Los Angeles 
County Central Committee, adapting it to fit our picture in the 
Twelfth District. This plan calls for the setting up of a district 
wide candidate and fact finding committee, oonprieing all leaders 
of all republican organizations, both men and women, in the district 
To thepe are added outstanding men and women not identified with any 
organization, political in nature, to give us an excellent cross 
section of political thinking and wishes in our area. These men 
and women are charged with the responsibility of combing the distrid 
for the most capable and eleotable candidates for Congress and 
State Legislature, and inviting them to participate in our meeting?, 
be heard, questioned, eto. finally, and we hope before the end of 
November, we will endorse ONE candidate, set up a finance committee, 
public relations committee, campaign organization, and unite our 
efforts to elect this one man or woman our congressman or congress- 
woman. We cannot deprive anyone from running if they so desire, 
however, anyone would think at least twice before they would buck 
the strength of this group and hope to get anywhere. For your 
information, this plan has already eliminated Tom Ball, who ran 
in the primary last time. 

I am Betting remarkable support from many men and women, new 
in politics, and I believe the feeling is widespread, that Repiib- 
lioanism must be rebuilt on a new, modern, streamlined basis, 
learning many things from our adversaries in the matter of conducting 
campaigns. This district wants to go Republican, but it wants a 
candidate we can be really FOR and not Just regifter a protest vote 
against Jerry Voorhis. 'fie can't win that way, and we all know it. 

NOW^this is where you come into the picture Walter. At a certai 

Dr. .'alter F. Dexter - 2 

inforiual gathering I attended in San .-arino, and was asked wao we could 
get with a name an^ pufflcient standing in the district, worthy of a 
really all-out effort, I pugge?ted your namo. It caught on Immediately, 
not alone because of your present statewide and nationwide r »putation, 
but because of certain factors which work In your favor in a race with 
Voorhis. He has had the advantage in the pt st because he would follow 
our candidate at service clubs, had access o all churches, and would 
gain votes by comparison. This he definitely cannot do against you, as 
you would make him appear to be a schoolboy on the platform agalnpt you. 
,vhile I am chairman of this committee and w: 11 conduct all proceedings 
in an impartial manner, I do want you to ve:ry seriously consider 
matter from all angles, and be in position -;o give us an answer when 
you ge-c down south on t&e 25th. T,e have pui-popely postponed our next 
meeting until the 2nd of Nov-anber for tuls reason, ^ind one other. 

The other reason is Lt, fJomdr. Nixon, a: so of yhlttier, who is 
very nuch interested in this race, and whom we are interested in knowing 
more about. I recall that you spoke very highly of him In our telephone 
conversation. Others under consideration include Capt. 3am Grist, a 
returned veteran of two wars, member of our lions club incidentally, 
Assemblyman Geddes, who does not Intend to nin, but threw his name 
into the picture, Judge Harry Hunt, of 9an (abriel, who seems to ha ve 
good standing in his community, but has shom no signsof wanting to 
really get into this race. I believe his e1 rategy Is to wait and 
play "hard to get". *hich has already backf J red with the committee. 
The other man is Lt. Andrew Porter (navy), formerly mayor of South 
Pasadena, .-Just returned to civilian life, I e seems to ba a fine 
young man, with good background, but so far I fail to s«3 In him the 
dash and fire necessary to knock over Voorhis. 

I know 7-alter that very powerful inter?* ts want to sit down and 
talk this over with you or go to bat for yox: if you will make a 
definite decision to go into the race. I feel certain that you could 
and would win, after a strenous, hard campaign. I do not know enough 
about anyone elee in the picture to have this same confldencj, at least 
at present. 

I believe this letter gives you the picture as it stands at tiils 
time. We are all tremendously interested in your decision aid twist 
you will be able to make one very soon. 


. \,N <A -' ' 

APPENDIX C — Brief Autobiographical Summary 


1 190 Case Vista Drive 

Pomona, California 91768 


Native Son, Born Pomona, 1900. Attended Pomona Schools. Left 
High School for Navy 2 years. Corked as Secretary United Fruit 
Company, Puerto Limona, Costa Rica, 2 years. One Year in Ray, 
Arizona, as Secretary Ray Con Copper Co., and pitching semi-pro 
Baseball there. 

Came home and joined advertising staff of what is now Pomona 
Progress-Bulletin as salesman, Classified, then Display Adver 
tising. rhen followed Commercial Printing, until 3years ago. 

After 27 years with Progress-Bulletin, purchased Commercial 
Printing Dept. and formed Bay Printing Corporation, now very 
successful in this area, including much work for Disneyland. 

During this time became closely associated and headed many 
Political and Civic Campaigns, at Federal and local levels. 
Launched political campaigns of Richard M. Nixon, Congressman 
John Rousselot, former Congressman Patrick Hi_lings, State 
Comptroller Houston Flournoy, and many, many lesser lights. 
Only lost one (but of over twenty campaigns had direct leadership 
of. Others included Assyblmn Ernest G-eddes and Supervisor Schab 

Sold business three years a£0, retaining life income and working 
position for my wife, Florine. 

Four children, all successful in their own right; Mrs. Mason 
(Linda) Dickerson, Mrs. Robert (Diana) Brady, Miss Patricia Day, 
(nameg for Patricia l.'ixon) and Roy Otis Day Jr. unmarried. 

Since retirement I have kept "alive" by active participation in 
Community, State and National Affairs. In my studied opinion 
our beloved Country would be better off if there was a decided 
increase in "people participation" by concerned citizens, rather 
than just by those segments with a small axe to grind. 

For Amelia R. Fry 

Project Director 



CLASS o? sni vies 

TS.» : J a full-rare 
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jjrom unless its Jo- 
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dicated by a suitable 
symbol above or pre 
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Ti. aims :une shown m tb. d»U lin. oa Ul««r»in. md d»y l»tUn i, STANDARD TIME at point ol ori*n. 


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INDEX — Roy 0. Day 

Adams, Earl, 12-14 
Arnold, Ruth, 12-14 
Arnold, William, 15 

Banowsky, William, 37-38 
Bewley, Tom, 35-36 
Biddick, Walter, 15 
Boardman, Walter, 15 
Brennan, Bernard, 25-27 

Chotiner, Murray, 12-13, 24, 26-28, 31-33 

Dinkelspiel, J. Walton, 27 
Douglas, Helen Gahagan 

1950 Senate campaign, 23-25, 30-35 
Drown, Jack and Helene, 29 

election campaigns 

1946, Twelfth District congressional, California, 4-19 

1950 Senate, California, 23-26 

1962 California gubernatorial, 36-37 

1972 presidential, 37-38 

Faires, Mclntyre, 20 
Geddes, Ernest, 2-3 

Hancock, Harvey, 29-30 
Hillings, Patrick, 36 

Jorgensen, Frank, 27-28 

Klein, Herbert, 16-17 
Krehbiel, V. John, 27-28 


McCall, Harrison, 28-29, 36 


Nixon, Patricia Ryan, 5, 9, 29 

Nixon, Richard Milhous 

1946 Congressional campaign, 4-19 

1948 Republican national convention, 20-23 

1950 Senate campaign, 23-36 

1962 California gubernatorial campaign, 36-37 

1972 presidential campaign, 37-38 

Republican national conventions 

1948, 20-23 

1952, 38-39 
Rood, Rodney, 28 
Rowan, Robert, 37 

Soderstrom, Charlie, 29 

Voorhis, Jerry 

1946 Congressional campaign, 4, 10-11 
Warren, Earl, at 1948 Republican national convention, 21-23 

John Walton Dinkelspiel 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Office 

John Walton Dinkelspiel 


An Interview Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 

Copyright (TT) 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 

TABLE OF CONTENTS -- John Walton Dinkelspiel 



En Route to Chicago: Nixon Boards at Denver 1 

The Fair Play Amendment 4 

Bill Knowland's Role 11 

A Look at the Delegation 13 


Post-Primary Strategy Session at San Ysidro Ranch 16 

"Northern California Citizens for Nixon" is Formed 19 

Harvey Hancock Comes to the Campaign 24 

The California Republican Assembly Endorses Nixon 29 

Campaigning in Northern California 32 

Civic League of Improvement Clubs and Associations 38 

Campaign Workers and Issues 41 

No Strong Endorsement From Earl Warren 47 


INTERVIEW HISTORY— John Walton Dinkelspiel 

Dates of Interviews: January 31, and March 24, 1975 

Place of Interviews: Mr. Dinkelspiel f s law of f ice on the 18th floor 

of Steuart Street Tower, at One Market Plaza, 
San Francisco 

Those Present: Mr. Dinkelspiel and the interviewer 

Federal Judge Albert Wollenberg, a former interviewee who was close 
to Earl Warren, recommended that we interview Mr. Dinkelspiel as an informed 
source on the Nixon side of the 1950 Republican campaign and the 1952 Repub 
lican convention, especially because he would "give a good straightforward 
account . " 

Mr. Dinkelspiel not only donated his time and memory, but also more 
than the normal amount of preparation by looking through his papers and 
scrapbook beforehand. In addition, the Regional Oral History Office sent 
him the usual memory-boosters: notes from newspaper files on the campaigns. 
The San Francisco Examiner was chosen as a source because it has the fullest 
accounts on early Nixon campaigns. At the second session the interviewer 
brought pertinent primary and general election reports on campaign donations 
and expenses filed with the California Secretary of State. (These reports 
are only partial pictures of campaign finance, but at least they contain 
names of campaign personnel and committees as well as types of services 
contracted for by candidates.) 

For a jumping-off point, the account of the 1950 campaign in Earl Maze's 
Richard Nixon: A Political and Personal Portrait (New York, 1959) was used 
and for 1952 Mr. Dinkelspiel 's own copy of the convention Proceedings served 
as a guide. 

As the northern California chairman of Nixon's 1950 senatorial campaign, 
Mr. Dinkelspiel affords us a view of Nixon somewhat different from the high 
visibility and old-friend network enjoyed by the young congressman in southern 
California. Dinkelspiel and others had hardly heard of Nixon in 1949, and 
the San Francisco Chronicle was slow to affirm the Nixon candidacy. Too, 
the distinction between "Warren Republicans" and what became "Nixon Republicans" 
was not as sharp in the north, where there was more overlapping of campaign 
workers, at least in these early years. 

This long-time San Francisco attorney answered the questions in a style 
that was a mix of social conversation and a legal deposition. Above all, he 
wanted to be accurate and if he could not be sure of his memory, he said so. 
At one point he asked that a sentence of two be erased because he did not 


want names mentioned, although the context seemed harmless enough to the 
interviewer. We sent the transcript to him for review in December 1978, 
and Mr. Dinkelspiel returned it to us with his remarks in April 1979. He 
made some corrections in the transcript and answered all our queries about 

Amelia R. Fry 

August 1980 
Washington, D.C. 


[Interview 1: January 31, 1975] 
[begin tape 1, side 1] 

En Route to Chicago: Nixon Boards at Denver 

Fry: I think the first thing we need is your relationship with Earl 
Warren — your father's and yours and your brother's. 

Dinkelspiel: I had known Governor Warren for many years, but not intimately. 
My family, however, have had many years' association with him, 
going back to my father at the time Earl Warren was the district 
attorney of Alameda County. This is just from memory, and 
I possibly can get you more detailed information. Earl Warren, 
my father (Henry G.-like-George, W.-like-Washington, Dinkelspiel) 
and a third person were active members of the Native Sons and 
Daughters of the Golden West, an organization which established 
the Homeless Children Agency of California, an adoption society 
in the days when adoptions were much rarer than they are today. 
Thereafter, and from time to time, I would meet Earl Warren, 
but I never was what I would call an intimate friend of his 
or associate. 

I became active in the Republican party about 1950. In 
1952, when the California delegation was being created for 
attendance at the Chicago convention, it was more or less 
determined (with the exception of certain musts such as 
Senator [William F.] Knowland; Senator [Richard M. ] Nixon; 
Mclntyre Faries, who was then the national commit teeman; 
Majorie Benedict, who was then the national commit teewoman; 
and certain other persons) that the delegation would be 
composed generally speaking of one-third the so-called nominees 
of Earl Warren, one-third nominees proposed by Senator 
Knowland, and one-third nominees proposed by Senator Nixon, 
who was then the junior Senator from California, having been 


[Interview 1: January 31, 1975] 
[begin tape 1, side 1] 

En Route to Chicago: Nixon Boards at Denver 

Fry: I think the first thing we need is your relationship with Earl 
Warren — your father's and yours and your brother's. 

Dinkelspiel: I had known Governor Warren for many years, but not intimately. 
My family, however, have had many years' association with him, 
going back to my father at the time Earl Warren was the district 
attorney of Alameda County. This is just from memory, and 
I possibly can get you more detailed information. Earl Warren, 
my father (Henry G.-like-George, W.- like-Wash ing ton, Dinkelspiel) 
and a third person were active members of the Native Sons and 
Daughters of the Golden West, an organization which established 
the Homeless Children Agency of California, an adoption society 
in the days when adoptions were much rarer than they are today. 
Thereafter, and from time to time, I would meet Earl Warren, 
but I never was what I would call an intimate friend of his 
or associate. 

I became active in the Republican party about 1950. In 
1952, when the California delegation was being created for 
attendance at the Chicago convention, it was more or less 
determined (with the exception of certain musts such as 
Senator [William F.] Knowland; Senator [Richard M. ] Nixon; 
Mclntyre Faries, who was then the national committeeman; 
Majorie Benedict, who was then the national commit teewoman; 
and certain other persons) that the delegation would be 
composed generally speaking of one-third the so-called nominees 
of Earl Warren, one-third nominees proposed by Senator 
Knowland, and one- third nominees proposed by Senator Nixon, 
who was then the junior Senator from California, having been 






elected in 1950. On that basis the delegation was 
established. When I refer to delegation, I refer to the 
seventy delegates and seventy alternates. 

The California delegation was pledged to Earl Warren, 
who had been opposed in the primaries by Tom Werdel of 
Bakersfield. Earl Warren defeated him by at least two to one. 
The delegation went to Chicago via a special Western Pacific 
train. The first stop was at the state capitol in Sacramento 
where we met the then-governor Earl Warren and greeted him. 
After a luncheon all of the delegates and persons on the train, 
there being a number of people who were not delegates or 
alternates, boarded the train, including Senator Knowland and 
Governor Warren. 

Senator Knowland was on the train? 
on this list of passengers. 

I couldn't find his name 

He was there. My best recollection was that he was on the 
train. Senator Nixon was not on the train. But when we 
arrived at, I believe it was Denver or some intermediate stop, 
Senator Nixon, who had been in Chicago, joined the group. He 
reported that in his opinion, notwithstanding that we were 
pledged to Earl Warren, that Governor Warren, in the face of 
the developments in Washington, had very little if any chance — 

You mean the developments in Chicago? 

Yes. Nixon reported that Governor Warren had very little if 
any chance of getting the nomination. He said that the two 
top contenders were Eisenhower and Robert Taft, and that he, 
Nixon, felt that the California delegation should therefore 
place its strength in favor of Eisenhower. 

A great majority of the California delegation in my 
opinion were favorable toward Eisenhower at least as a second 
choice, rather than Taft. In other words if they could not 
elect Warren, a majority would definitely, in my opinion, 
have supported Eisenhower. 

I don't understand exactly what Nixon was proposing. Was he 
trying to get them to vote that way on the first ballot, or 
was he telling people that the vote would go that way? 

No, I think Nixon felt that, in view of the fact that in his 
opinion Warren's chances were not good, that the California 
delegation could effectively insure Eisenhower's victory by 
voting for Eisenhower forthwith; that the impetus of the 
seventy California votes, if they could be counted on by the 











Eisenhower people, would have a very strong effect on the 
convention and would probably be very effective in defeating 
any possible Taft bandwagon movement. 

Did Nixon talk to you about this? You've told us a good 
story, but now put yourself into it. Let us know where you 
were . 

There were several meetings in various staterooms on the 
train which I attended, in which he expressed that view to 
me and to other people who had been appointed to the delegation 
by him, or at least people whose names had been suggested to the 
delegation by Nixon. 

Were you one of the people that Nixon had suggested? 

The timing of this still isn't clear to me. Did Nixon feel 
that it should be made publicly known that the delegation 
would throw its strength to Eisenhower as soon as it could? 
Is that what he wanted? 


Even though the delegation probably would have to vote for 
Warren on the first ballot? 

Yes, either that the delegation should not vote for Warren on 
the first ballot, if Warren were willing, or if he insisted 
that the delegation keep its pledge, that it be made known 
in advance that the delegation at least on the second ballot 
would vote for Eisenhower rather than Taft, not just sit back 
and not state its position. 

The possibility of the convention hitting a deadlock between 
Taft and Eisenhower was one of the things that Earl Warren 
was counting on. By the time Nixon boarded the train, was 

I think that is correct. I think that Governor Warren 
recognized at that time that he would not and could not and 
did not have sufficient p re- convent ion votes to have a chance 
for the nomination. But he did hope, I think, that there was 
a chance of a deadlock between Eisenhower and Taft, and that 
he was the logical person to pick up the nomination in that 



What were the pro-Warren delegates feeling at this point? 
Did any of them think that there was any chance yet for 

I gather that some of them did. They must have, because the 
decision, as expressed by Senator Knowland, was that the 
California delegation would stand pat on its pledge. That 
position was continued although the California delegation, 
which was headquartered at the Knickerbocker Hotel in Chicago, 
did have caucus at which both Senator Taft and General 
Eisenhower attended and expressed their opinions to the 
delegates. That is the customary and traditional way of 
wooing votes. 

The Fair Play Amendment 







The situation in Chicago developed into somewhat of a further 
crisis, if you will term it that, in reference to the 
advisability of a vote on the first ballot because of a 
situation which developed in the seating of the Georgia 
delegation and the delegation from Texas, but in particular 
the seating of the so-called Georgia delegation.* This seating 
dispute created an issue between the Eisenhower and the Taft 
people and gave an absolute decision on what was to happen 
when the two candidates came up for a vote. It was a very 
heated situation. 

I believe that was the minority vote of the — 
Credentials committee. 

Credentials committee of the convention. 
That's correct. You're quite right. 

The majority had voted to set the rule so that the pro-Taft 
delegates would win, and the minority — 

*This seating dispute, usually referred to as the "Fair Play 
Amendment" issue, revolved around which delegates from contested 
southern delegations, the pro-Taft or the pro-Eisenhower, would 
be allowed to vote on the remaining contests. 





That is correct. I'm sure that if you look in this transcript 
of the convention, you'll find it all written out in there. 

[flips through some papers] This is the Twenty-fifth 
Republican National Convention proceedings.* 

After the vote of the convention for its adoption of the 
minority report of the credentials committee, which resulted in 
the seating of the pro-Eisenhower Georgia delegation and the 
unseating of the pro-Taft delegation, the "handwriting," if 
one would use that word, was pretty well written that General 
Eisenhower was going to win the nomination, because the 
issues were personal rather than substantive. 

Nixon again suggested and urged at a California caucus — 
either he was possibly present or through some of his 
spokesmen (not myself however) — that in view of the results 
of the Georgia delegation vote, California's prestige and 
position would be better if California would take a "realistic," 
as it was termed, position. His position was that the 
convention was going to elect General Eisenhower and therefore, 
in view of the fact that the California delegation was 
favorable to Eisenhower as a second choice as against Taft, it 
should take that position. 

On the first ballot? 

Yes. I'm certain that some of the alleged hard feeling 
between Warren and Nixon resulted from the story that I have 
told you. Both on the train and subsequently in Chicago the 
Warren people, at least, felt that Nixon was undercutting 
Earl Warren's chances of possible success. Although in 
defense of Nixon, Nixon expressed many times — and I can only 
quote what his expressions were that he did this to be 
realistic. In his opinion, an opinion confirmed by what the 
convention had done in the so-called " Georgia vote," the 
only realistic position to insure that Eisenhower, rather than 
Taft, would be the candidate was to support Eisenhower. By 
supporting him I mean agreeing to announce in advance at 
least that on the second ballot California would vote for 
Eisenhower if there was a deadlock, although Nixon felt that 

*"0fficial report of the proceedings of the Twenty-fifth 
Republican National Convention, July 7-11, 1952," Washington 
D.C.: Judd and Dudweiler, Inc. 







it would be better yet if California would cast its seventy 
votes forthwith for Eisenhower, which would practically assure 
Eisenhower of a victory on the first ballot. 

Senator Knowland, as chairman of the delegation, refused 
to take this position. When the roll of the states was 
called California voted on the first ballot seventy votes 
for Earl Warren. 

Was this in opposition to some of you on the delegation? 

No. No, I had no opposition to it, because after having 
talked to most of the delegates present, knowing most of them 
personally, in my opinion I felt that if Earl Warren did not 
succeed — well, let me correct myself. If there was a deadlock 
I felt without any question that if we maintained the unit 
rule, California would vote seventy votes on the second ballot 
or the third ballot or whatever ballot there would be, for 
Eisenhower rather than Taft. If we abandoned the so-called 
"unit rule," by which I mean you have to vote in bloc, a great 
majority of the California delegates would vote in favor of 
Eisenhower. You're asking my personal opinion. I was 
personally in favor of what Senator Knowland was doing because 
I saw no reason at that moment why California had to back away 
from its pledge. 

What about the delegation's caucus before the convention voted 
on this so-called "fair-play amendment" for seating the 
contested delegations? The figures that I have seen on it 
indicate that [checks paper] only eight votes voted the way 
that would have seated the Taft delegates and therefore maybe 
helped preserve a deadlock. 

That's my recollection. I think that confirms exactly what I 
said to you: my recollection is that the great majority of 
the California delegates were favorable to Eisenhower as 
against Taft. 

Who spoke to the delegation during the delegation seating 
dispute? We'd like to know what went on. 

I can't remember the names. We had a couple of caususes at 
which representatives supporting both views presented their 
case to us. But I just do not recall who they were. I can 
recall, however, several meetings on that subject. As I 
point out, it was most important to the ultimate result of 
the convention. 

Was that when Nixon gave an eloquent plea to seat these pro- 
Eisenhower people? 



I cannot remember that. I just cannot. 





What about Warren? 
the delegation. 

Did he take a position? He was head of 

I can't remember either Warren or Nixon, as such, taking a 
position on the "fair play amendment." I'm looking at page 184 
of the official proceedings which you referred to a moment 
ago.* I see that the official tabulation indicates that 
California voted sixty-two "yes" and eight "no" in favor of 
the adoption of the minority report; that is, the report 
favorable to Eisenhower. I cannot recall at this time who 
spoke at the caucuses, but I would assume, in view of the 
overwhelming vote of the California delegation, that there 
was no real opposition to the adoption. It confirms my 
recollection that a great majority of the California delegates 
were favorable to Eisenhower as against Taft. 

I think the Chicago Daily News came out with an item about 
this time that Richard Nixon was assured of the vice-presidency 
because he had given an eloquent plea in the caucus for the 
seating of these delegates by the California delegation. 

If that's so I know nothing of that. When I heard, after the 
nomination of Eisenhower, that General Eisenhower's choice was 
Nixon, it was as much a surprise to me as it was to anyone 
else. I had heard of absolutely no pre-convention agreement 
or anything of the sort between Nixon and Eisenhower. 

What were your attitudes toward Eisenhower and Taft when you 
first went on the delegation. Were you pro one over the 

Yes. I was favorable to Eisenhower. It's kind of hard in 
1975 to evaluate your political thinking of 1952, but Taft 
was painted as a very conservative Republican. Eisenhower 
was considered, for what the word may mean, a liberal. Also 
as a Republican — the Republicans had gone through many years 
of political starvation. We were of course anxious to see a 
Republican victory. It was my opinion, and shared in by many 
others, that Eisenhower was by far the most popular, by far 
the most electable and would have been, end-wise, the best 

*Proceedings of the Twenty-fifth Republican Convention, 
1952, p. 184. 












So at some point, you changed from Taft to supporting 

No, I never supported Taft. If I said that I didn't mean it 
at all. No, never. 

Oh, I thought you said you supported Taft at the first. 
Eisenhower then, at the first? 

Yes, as against Taft, at all times. 

Was Bill Knowland on the delegation as a Taft man? 

I couldn't say. Bill Knowland was a very hard man to find out 
what his thinking was — a very able, but very difficult man and 
not gregarious. 

I think in this series of events around the seating of the 
Eisenhower delegations that Knowland suggested that the 
California delegation split its vote evenly for seating the 
Eisenhower and Taft delegations or something like that. Do 
you remember that? 

I have no recollection of that, no. 

His thinking I suppose was that this would preserve the way 
the delegation was selected. But the vote didn't come out 
that way when they voted. 

No. I have no recollection of Knowland' s making any such 
suggestion. I do remember — and as I say it's a matter now of 
twenty- three years so I'm amazed that I can remember anything — 
but I can remember very vividly the meetings in the Knickerbocker 
Hotel in reference to the Georgia delegation because that 
was the big excitement of the convention. 

Do you remember when Eisenhower came over to meet with the 
California delegation? 

Dinkelpsiel: Yes. 



What did he say? What was the reaction of the delegation? 

The reaction was very favorable. You have to bear in mind 
that both he and Taft — particularly Eisenhower at that time 
was a great national hero. When they came they didn't come 
in on the basis of trying to woo you on logic. It was more 
or less a question of meeting and selling their personalities. 
The logic of attempting to get the votes by logic was done by 
their representatives rather than by themselves or their 
friends. When they came in it was more in the nature of a 
cocktail party, as it would be known today, than anything else. 






Dinkelspiel ; 

Back on the train: you said that you thought that a majority 
on the train were pro-Eisenhower. I wondered if any thumbnail — 

Say, "pro-Eisenhower as against Taft." The majority, of 
course, were pro-Warren. I would say — well, obviously we 
were. We were all pledged to Earl Warren. If we hadn't 
been — I can't conceive of anybody being on the Warren delegation, 
and not having been for Earl Warren. 

I just wondered if there were any informal surveys made of 
the delegation on the train. 

No, not that I recall. The only time that there was any real 
discussion was after Nixon boarded the train at Denver — if 
it was Denver, or wherever it was. I think it was Denver. 
Then that word got around. So then the delegates got concerned. 

Do you think there was any connection between a backlash 
against Nixon's behavior and the exposure of the so-called 
"Nixon fund" later by some members of the California delegation? 

I don't follow your question. 

Some writers have implied that the reason that the story of 
the Nixon fund (which Dana Smith was holding for Nixon's 
campaign expenses) was given to the press was that there were 
a number of disgruntled pro-Warren people after this sort of 
thing had happened on the train. 

Oh, I don't think so. 

Do you think there was any — 

No, I think there was some fellow — he was a New York reporter — 
who had got hold of the story, wrote the story. No, I think 
that incident was blown up. I don't know by whom or how or 
for what reason. Most people would forget and today it is 
so de minimus that no one would pay any attention — only $16,000 
involved. There was never any assertion of any kind that the 
$16,000 was being used improperly. The purpose of it was 
simply to assure that there would be some extra funds to carry 
on a campaign. Certainly there was no payoff or even 
intimation of payoff when you consider the amount of funds 
involved. I've never heard it ever suggested that this was 
a matter of vindictiveness by Warren. I couldn't believe it 
if that were so. I think this was just a newspaper scoop. In 
the year of 1952, $16,000 was sufficient to hit the front 
pages, whereas today you wouldn't look at it. 













Pretty small potatoes, isn't it? [laughs] 
Pretty small potatoes. 

Especially when you think of what happened in the last 
election [1972]. 

[laughs] Yes. 

There was a questionnaire that Nixon sent out early — I don't 
have a date on it, but it must have been March or April of 
1952 — to 23,000 California voters asking who they thought 
would be the strongest candidate, Eisenhower or Taft. 

I don't remember that. 

You don't? You must not have been one of the receivers of 
that. This was also another point that rankled a lot of the 
Warren supporters. 

I wasn't aware of it. At least if I was aware of it I've 
forgotten about it. I don't remember that. 

Do you know very much about the arrangement for Nixon to be 
vice-president? I have a note here that some people think 
Henry Cabot Lodge negotiated that. Do you know anything about 
negotiations of that sort? 

I know nothing about that at all. As I've mentioned to you, 
when the choice was announced — when I heard it the night after 
General Eisenhower received the nomination — I was very, very 
much surprised. 

Did you think someone else might be vice-president? 

I hadn't any idea. We speculated that Earl Warren would 
certainly be more likely to be named than Richard Nixon. Bill 
Knowland said he wouldn't accept the position, as I recall. 
So I would not have been surprised at all had it been said 
that Earl Warren would be the nominee. He was a very logical 
person. He had been the nominee before, with Dewey. So I 
was completely stunned when I heard the news that Eisenhower 
had picked Nixon. 

Did you think Warren would have accepted it? 
I have no idea. 

What I'm really asking you is what the general opinion was 
then on whether Warren would have accepted it. 



I don't know. I couldn't answer that. 

It's hard to remember all the rumors of things that didn't 
happen twenty-five years later. But sometimes that's as 
interesting as what actually did happen. 

Bill Knowland's Role 








I was also wondering if you had heard anything at the time 
about Knowland being offered the vice-presidency by Taft. 

I heard certain rumors of it, because Knowland had been 
reasonably close with Taft in the Senate. But I don't 
recall whether at that time Knowland was on the foreign 
affairs committtee or not or what committees they had been 
on together. But it's kind of hard to remember without going 
back to some reference. Yes, I always felt that Knowland was 
more sympathetic to Taft than he was to Eisenhower. But of 
course Knowland was loyal to Warren because his appointment 
to the Senate had come through Earl Warren and they both had 
been Alameda County products. There had been a kinship. 

It was interesting to note that Mr. and Mrs. Joe Knowland 
and Joe Knowland, Jr. were also aboard the train, and I 
guess Bill Knowland's wife was aboard also. 

That's right. Helen. 

So there was quite a Knowland "delegation" too. 

That I don't think had any significance as such because 
Knowland was the chairman of the California delegation, and 
at that time he and Governor Warren were the two big shots 
in the California Republican party which controlled almost 
every office in California. His father at that time was the 
active publisher of the Tribune. I don't remember the son 
being there, but Knowland was then happily married to Helen, 
and he would naturally take his wife with him. 

I wondered if there was any overt talk at all by Knowlands — 
especially Bill Knowland but also any of the other Knowlands 
on the train — about a possibility of the delegation eventually 
supporting Taft. 

Not that I recall. 

Was there any talk along that line later at the convention, 
before the vote? 









I don't think so. I think Knowland's position was, "Well, 
we're pledged to Earl Warren, and we'll stick to that and 
see what happens." Only after the vote was in, and I think 
recognizing that the great majority of the California 
delegates were favorable to Eisenhower as against Taft, did 
Knowland immediately get to his feet on the floor of the 
convention, (which is reported in the proceedings* at page 407) 
and move for the unanimous election of General Eisenhower. 

Yes, after the completion of the first ballot. After the 
completion of the first ballot, as appears on page 406 of 
the official proceedings,** Eisenhower received 845 votes, 
MacArthur 4 votes, Taft 280 votes, and Warren 77 votes, of 
which 70 were from California. So, Eisenhower was elected 
whether California did anything further, but Bill Knowland 
immediately stood up and then made this motion that it be 
unanimous . 

He was the only and first one to do that? 

That is correct. Well no, let me just correct it. In looking 
through this book here, Senator John W. Bricker of Ohio, 
who was then as I recall the manager of the Taft campaign, was 
the first to move that the nomination be made unanimous. 

Then the chair recognized Senator Knowland. 
Right. Senator Knowland. 

Knowland says, "It gives me a great deal of pleasure to join 
Senator Bricker in the motion for the unanimous election of 
General Eisenhower." 


The question still comes up about whether Knowland could have 
beaten Minnesota in getting the recognition of the chair as 
the state to put Eisenhower over the top during the first 
ballot. What do you think about that? 

Dinkelspiel: That's right. The way you stated it is quite correct. 

*Proceedings of the Twenty-fifth Republican Convention, 1952, 
p. 407. 

**Ibid., p. 406. 



After the Georgia vote on the contested delegation and after 
it appeared certain that Eisenhower would win, a great number — 
I would almost feel possibly a majority — felt that California's 
prestige was such that Knowland, as the spokesman for the 
convention, should have at that time arisen and been recognized 
and said, "The California delegation changes its vote." I 
recall it had been expressed to Knowland whether by formal 
vote or otherwise, that our second choice was Eisenhower. 
So that created some kind of a critical feeling about what 
Knowland did after it was all over. 

A Look at the Delegation 






Let me ask you about these names of convention delegates. Are 
these a lot of the men that Nixon had chosen? [reading from 
paper] [Frank] Jorgensen, [Jack] Drown, [Pat] Hillings, [Joe] 
Holt, [Roy P.] Crocker. 

With reference to the names, Alan Pattee was a so-called 
Nixon appointee. Frank E. Jorgensen had been a very close 
friend of Richard Nixon's and was appointed by him. Jack 
Drown was, and I guess still is, a close personal friend of 
Nixon. Pat Hillings had been the congressman and was a close 
friend of Nixon. You indicate that Joe Holt was not on the 
delegate's list. I know Joe Holt; I knew him. He was a friend 
at that time of Nixon's. If Holt had been on the list and was 
a delegate, he would have been put there by Nixon. Ray 
Arbuthnot, A-r-b-u-t-h-n-o-t, was a very close friend of 
Nixon's. Ron Button, as I recall, was a friend of Earl Warren's 
Ron had been the Republican state chairman at one time. He was 
what I would term a Warren man. I don't know if Ron is still 
alive or not. 

Yes, he is. He's in Los Angeles. 

Is he? I haven't seen him for many years. Bramblett I don't 
know, nor do I recall Roy P. Crocker. 

Who were Warren's biggest supporters, the really strong ones, 
the type of delegate who would not want much discussion of 
Eisenhower or Taft or any other? 

[pause] I'm looking at the list because I have to do that 
and go back. I would say that Mclntyre Faries was one, as 
were Mrs. [Marjorie] Benedict, Truman or "Tony" DeLap as he 
was known, Laughlin E. Waters, Marvin Sherwin from Piedment. 
















Is he still there? 

I have no idea. Jesse Steinhart, now dead. Thomas J. 
Mellon. Some person from Eureka was really a — what's his 
name? [looks through papers] 

Would he be in this top list right here? 

Yes, but I could possibly find it easier here. [V.A.] 
Caracappa, C-a-r-a-c-a-p-p-a — he was an alternate. As I 
remember he was a very enthusiastic Warren supporter. He 
provided all the delegates with blue and gold sweaters to 
wear on arrival in Chicago — 

Oh, my goodness! 

— all kinds of Warren paraphernalia and forms and balloons. 

Oh, that's what we need for our University of California 
library exhibit on the Warren Era. [laughs] 

I was hoping I would have something like that. [laughs] 
It's amazing how those campaign items have just evaporated. 

The only other question I have to ask you is what did 
you do in 1950? You said you entered politics in 1950. 

I had been in the senatorial campaign of Richard Nixon. I 
was his Northern California manager. 

Oh, you were? 


Oh, marvelous. Then you know — 

Well, I don't know anymore. [laughs] 

I've been trying to design a series of interviews on the Nixon 
side of that campaign. We talked to Helen Douglas, and we 
need the other side presented. So maybe I'll be back. I 
don't want to take your time now. 

You're more than welcome to come back. There are two people 
that could be helpful on that besides myself and that's 
Harvey Hancock who handled the public relations. He was what 
they call in politics "the pro." I was "the amateur." Harvey 
lives in Carmel. 









Oh, that would be very fine. 

If you would like to get back together. 

Yes, I would. We could talk about who worked on the 1950 
campaign and so forth. 

As a matter of fact last night I was looking through — I do 
have some documents or newspapers that you probably have 
yourself that go back to that kind of thing. 

We like to have clippings because they're so handy to put in 
research files. It saves a lot of time for us. 

Of course it does. 

So that would be very nice. 

You give me a buzz at your convenience, and I'll be happy to 
get what I can for you. I think these things are very good, 
and if you see [The Bancroft Library Director, James D.] Jim 
Hart you tell him "hello" for me, won't you please? 


I certainly will. 



[Interview 2: March 24, 1975] 
[begin tape 2, side 1] 

Post-Primary Strategy Session at San Ysidro Ranch 








Today is the twenty-fifth anniversary of the day that Nixon 
filed in the senatorial campaign. [laughs] We really didn't 
schedule the interview to coincide with that date. 

That I haven't got down in my anniversary book. 

His public announcement came earlier, though, as you remember, 
on November 4, 1949. The day before that he had called for 
a special commission to be formed to follow up Senator Joseph 
McCarthy's charges with an investigation of the State 

I don't recall that. [gets up to search for material] 
I wondered at what point you began work in the campaign. 

My first contact or interest in the Nixon prospective campaign 
was started around November, 1949. So, I wouldn't have any 
knowledge of what you're telling me now. 

That must have been shortly after he announced. I have one 
thing here that you might like to see which I picked up in 
Southern California. Roy Day gave me a copy of this. That's 
Nixon's November 1, 1949 letter that he sent out to tell some 
of his closest associates of his decision to run. 

Yes, it's about the time. I didn't know Nixon before that at 
all. Go ahead. I'm just getting myself oriented. 










One of the things that happened early in the campaign was 
a meeting at the San Ysidro ranch in Montecito. Do you know 
about that? Did you attend it? 

Yes. [pause] I'm trying to — that was later. The meeting I 
attended at San Ysidro, if my memory bears me correct, was 
after the organization was beginning to take roots and the 
meeting was to discuss campaign strategy. There may have been 
a meeting there prior to that time, but I don't have any 
recollection of it. 

I don't know when the meeting was, but according to Roy Crocker 
it lasted for most of three days. 

I believe it was two or three days, 
[phone interruption] 

Back to the San Ysidro meeting. What do you remember about it? 
Can you tell me what was discussed? What alternatives were 
considered for campaign tactics? 

The time, I'm quite satisfied, was after November, 1949, probably 
after whatever the time was that Nixon announced formally that 
he would run [November 4, 1949]. The purpose of the meeting 
was to get the people from Northern California, Central 
California, and Southern California to meet each other and to 
more or less determine who was going to do what with reference 
to the campaign that was coming up. 

Who was handling that meeting? 

The two dominant people were Murray Chotiner and Bernie 
Brennan, who was an attorney in Los Angeles. He became the 
Southern California campaign chairman and apparently had been 
a good friend of Nixon's. 

At that meeting did they discuss any issues to bring out in 
the campaign? Or did they discuss tactics? 

No, there were no tactics. I think the main thing was the 
methods and allocation of the funds between Northern and Southern 
California, how those funds should be used. 

I'm going to correct myself because, as I now recall this 
meeting I attended, it was after Nixon had received the 
Republican nomination or was running in the primary. During 
the campaign itself or [pause] — 
















Or maybe after the primary? 

It was after the primary. I'm sure of that. Yes. 

And for the general election? 


Was there shuffling of funds back and forth between the 
north and the south? 

I wouldn't say there was shuffling of the funds. I think we 
were pretty well autonomous in the handling of our own 
finances . We may have had to get some funds (supplemental 
to ours) from Southern California, who were then and have 
since been the rich uncle [laughs]. 

I talked to Asa Call and a few other people in Los Angeles 
there around Sixth Street and Grand Avenue. 


Is that where the primary source of funds was from? 

I wouldn't know where the funds were from in Southern 
California. I know Asa Call was one of the contributors, 
but I couldn't tell you, at this time, who the principal 
people were who gave money in 1949. I just don't know. I 
can say this. The funds that were used in that campaign, as 
compared to the funds used today in any campaign, were so 
negligible in amount that you're not talking about the same 
kind of ammunition. 

Right. You had a totally different kind of campaign. I 
couldn't find any television expenses listed in those state 

I don't recall that we had any. 
There was a lot of radio. 

A great deal of radio. They used to use what they call 
throwaways (handouts) and billboards, quarter sizes and half 
sizes, which have been superseded now to a large extent by 
television expense. There was considerable newspaper 


"Northern California Citizens for Nixon" is Formed 




Now the first time that I got involved with the Nixon- for- 
Senator campaign was about November 1, 1949. 

How did he happen to get in touch with you? 

It's rather interesting. 1 had just come back from the service. 
I'd spent four years in the navy. I had served, during the 
last part of the service, as the flag secretary to Admiral 
John H. Hoover, who was "Commander Forward Area." In the 
course of my service I met and got to know, not intimately but 
professionally, Harold Stassen, who was the flag secretary to 
Admiral [Raymond Ames] Spruance. 

I guess, like all young warriors, you have dreams of a 
better country when you return. I was no exception, although 
I had never had any political experience before that time. 
When I came back and retired from the navy — I got out in 1945-- 
the 1948 campaign was about to develop. At that time, if you 
recall, Harold Stassen was a young ex-serviceman with quite a 
distinguished record. He had been the governor of Minnesota 
and was approximately my then-youthful age. I thought he would 
be a rather likely person, although I personally did nothing 
in connection with the campaign because at that time, in 1948, 
Earl Warren was running. 

As far as I am concerned, I always have been a great 
admirer of, and supporter of, Earl Warren. However, a small 
group of my friends had met at luncheon and they felt that if 
by any chance the Republican nomination should go to Stassen, 
they would like to do what they could to support him. I said 
I would only be interested in the event that Stassen became 
the Republican presidential candidate. History was that he 
did not become the candidate. However, through that I had 
met a nucleus of men of my own age and thinking. In 1949, I 
received — 


I'm sorry. Could you tell us who this nucleus 

I'll get to it in a moment, because I think it would follow 
better later in the narrative. 

In 1949 I received a call from an attorney whom I then 
knew — I haven't seen him now for many years and whether he's 
alive or not I don't know — named David Saunders, S-a-u-n-d-e-r-s, 
of Los Angeles. Dave Saunders had been very active in this 


Dinkelspiel: so-called Stassen group. He had been up to San Francisco, 
and he was the one who had more or less put together these 
small luncheons. When I say luncheons — they were small 
meetings. I don't think at any time they ever exceeded over 
twelve or fifteen maximum. 

In November of 1949 I received a call from Dave Saunders. 
He said that he had met and was very excited about a young 
congressman from Southern California, who he felt would be a 
fine candidate to run for the United States Senate. This 
candidate was the congressman from Whittier. He was well 
regarded in that area. Nixon was a sort of national figure 
because of the Hiss case hearings in his congressional committee. 
He had been a war veteran, having served in the navy, which 
at that time to we people who had been in the service, was an 
important factor, etc. Saunders asked me if I would be 
interested and if I would meet Nixon. I said, "Well of 
course I would, if he was everything that you describe." 

There was some Republican meeting being scheduled about 
that time at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. Saunders 
phoned me to say that Nixon was in San Francisco at that 
meeting and could I meet with them. So I went to the Palace 
Hotel and met Nixon, chatted with him for a few moments, 
came away quite impressed with his personality. 

A short time after that I received another call from 
Saunders to ask if I could get together a group (more or less 
the same group that had met some years before in reference to 
Harold Stassen) and meet with Congressman Nixon to see whether 
they would be interested in sponsoring a Northern California 
group. I said, "Yes, I would happy to do that." 

And I may say, at that time Nixon was almost an "unknown" 
in Northern California. But I called up a group and asked 
them if they would come to my office, which was then at 333 
Montgomery Street, on such and such a day, the date of which 
I can't recall. It was at or about that time. I phoned 
Saunders and told him that I had made this appointment tentative 
on Mr. Nixon coming to San Francisco and meeting with the group. 
So, Saunders advised me that that was satisfactory. Nixon 
arrived and we had the meeting. 

I am looking at some old records that I have here, which 
may be of some use. The meeting was held on December 14, 1949. 
Let me see something here, [pause as Dinkelspiel rechecks 
papers] No, the meeting was apparently sometime in October, 
1949 — i sa y my dates are rather hazy — because I have here a 
letter that I wrote to Dave Saunders on the date of November 


Dinkelspiel: 2, 1949. In it I advised him that it had been impossible to 
write him sooner but that, "as you have no doubt heard from 
Congressman Nixon, our group met with him last week, and after 
rather extensive discussion determined upon associating 
ourselves as the 'Northern California Citizens for Nixon.' 
Mr. Nixon suggested we find out, if we could, whether there 
would be any newspaper acceptance of him in this part of the 
state." This was because at that time, as far as we believed 
and as far as he knew, he was an unknown person politically. 

We prepared a press release giving the usual information 
that one would give if one were supporting a candidate. I 
called up Paul Smith, who was then the editor of the [San 
Francisco] Chronicle, whom I knew, and told him of the meeting 
and that I was sending over this press release to him. The 
archives of the Chronicle will undoubtedly show you the press 
release, which was about three inches long and one inch wide 
and was rather disappointing. We had of course expected to 
have front page headlines and got very little publicity. But 
at any rate, the press release announced the formation of a 
Northern California committee. [pause as Dinkelspiel looks 
through papers] I hope by talking as I am I'm not mixing this 
up. But you have to bear in mind that this goes back almost 
twenty- five years and it's difficult to remember. I'm looking 
back here. 

I have a copy of a letter that I wrote to the Honorable 
Richard Nixon, Whittier, on the date of November 2, 1949. I 
wrote at that time, 

Dear Mr. Nixon: 

I was indeed sorry to miss you both at my office 
and at home, having arrived at the latter place only a 
few moments after you had called. The Northern California 
group, as you are aware, formally announced its organization 
and received favorable newspaper publicity. In line 
with our discussion we hope to be of further service to 
you in whatever way you or Mr. Brennan may determine best. 
I understand you and Mr. Brennan [Aside to Fry: Mr. Brennan 
being Bernard Brennan that I referred to before] will 
return to San Francisco shortly. I should like very much 
to have a few moments discussion with you as to the 
details. We have particularly in mind arranging some 
form of reception for you to enable you to meet the persons 
who may be helpful to your cause. If you have any 
suggestions please let us know..." and so forth. 








So, that sort of fixes when the time of the meeting was. 
Then I wrote again to David Saunders, whom I mentioned 
previously, and sent him the newspaper clipping which I 
referred to, which I do not have a copy of. Now this was 
done, apparently, prior to the time of Mr. Nixon's announcement 
of his candidacy. In my letter (the second paragraph) I say, 

The enclosed newspaper clipping will give you 
some idea of the publicity which has been given in 
this part of the state to the movement, and which 
of course is in line with the thoughts conveyed by you 
to us when we met recently at the Palace Hotel. 
Meanwhile we are biding time until the formal announce 
ment of Mr. Nixon's candidacy is made. 

That letter is November 2, 1949? 
November 2, yes. 

And I think his formal announcement came in the November 4, 
1949 San Francisco Examiner. 

Yes, you can see that the timing is approximate, but it's 
about that time. Because of my friendship with David Saunders, 
arising by the circuitous route of having met Harold Stassen 
in the Mariana Islands and elsewhere, I was the one that Dave 
Saunders asked to call the meeting. 

So I called the meeting and somebody said, "We ought to 
have a committee." 

Somebody present said, "Well, the meeting is in your 
office. We have to have a chairman. I guess on all committees 
you should have a chairman, a vice-chairman, a secretary, 
and a treasurer," although we had nothing to treasure at the 

So someone said, "Inasmuch as the meeting is in your 
office, would you be the chairman?" 

And that's how I became the Northern California chairman, 
as it developed. 

Who was David Saunders? That name is new to me. 

He was the head of what they called the Young Republican 
Volunteers or some such name. He was a youngish lawyer in 
Los Angeles and had been very active or sympathetic to Harold 

[phone interruption] 









So through his interest in Harold Stassen prior to 1948, 
David Saunders had called me. I guess maybe Stassen had 
given him my name because of my meeting him in the war. I 
presume that he called me again in the fifties because of the 
fact that he had called me some years before and I had evinced 
some interest in politics. 

Were the other men in this initial committee also people 
that had been interested in Stassen earlier? 

They may or may not have been. They were men that I knew in 
San Francisco from my profession. A number of them I knew 
from the days when I was a director and active in the San 
Francisco Junior Chamber of Commerce. The men that were 
there at the meeting were: Mr. John Marshall; Joseph A. 
Moore, Jr. , who is now a regent of the university; Edward 
Turkington; Mortimer Fleishhacker, Jr.; Francis B. Hutchins, 
who is now retired (he was an attorney in San Francisco) ; 
Aylett B. Cotton, who was an attorney in San Francisco (his 
father was a judge for many years in San Mateo County); 
Dwight Merriman, (during the period I served as the director 
and was active in the Junior Chamber of Commerce; he's since 
deceased; he was a very well-known real estate person in San 
Francisco); Leland Kaiser, who ran subsequently for U.S. 
Senator; Phelps Hunter; David Smith; Frank Belcher; Arthur 
Dolan; John Wiley; Howard Ahmanson; Carl Miller; and Milton 

Did you say none of these had any political experience? 

Yes. None of them had ever run for any political office. 
They were just men in the community I considered of very fine 

That's interesting because Earl Warren's campaigns also were 
frequently made up of people that would not necessarily have 
any political experience. 

That's right. I know it. 
What was your next step? 

The next step was to wait till Mr. Nixon was to formally 
announce that he was going to be a candidate. In the 
meantime we did enlarge our group. We asked everybody to get 
a few more names and there were a number — but the committee 
itself was rather a straw committee. We didn't do very much 
because we couldn't until such time as Nixon announced his 
candidacy. I don't recall when he did announce. Do you 
have the date? 










Yes, the formal announcement came November 4, 1949. 

So it was at or about this time. We then set up the committee. 
Nixon had only one person of any potency who indicated he was 
going to run in the primaries against him. 

Raymond Darby? 

No, it was Houser. 

Oh, Judge Frederick Houser. 

Judge Frederick Houser, not to be confused with the — 

Attorney general. This was the ex-lieutenant governor. 

Frederick Houser from Los Angeles. He had announced that he 
was going to run for the U.S. Senate. 

So the question was to develop what we were to do in the 
primary. We set up and enlarged our committee, the Northern 
California committee. We then started to try to get funds 
necessary for the approaching primary. We had some considerable 
difficulty because of the fact that Nixon was an unknown 
person, but we were able to get enough to stumble by. 

How did you manage that? Did you appoint a finance committee 
or did each of you take some responsibility? 

No, we had a finance committee. I can't recall whether Leland 
Kaiser was the chairman or someone else. I would hate to say 
at this time just who was the head of it. I think it was 
Robert Hornby if I'm not mistaken, H-o-r-n-b-y, who became 
the president of Pacific Light Company. I may be mistaken, but 
I think one of those was finance chairman. Additionally, we 
individually sought funds from available sources. We weren't 
talking in any great, extreme amounts. 

2 , SifUl ~ 



Harvey Hancock Comes to the Campaign 


Besides trying to get some funds together to carry this thing 
through, our committee decided the next step that would be 
required was to engage a campaign manager, someone with some 
public relations know-how. Of the group that we had, only 
one of the men was in the advertising business. But beyond 
that nobody knew anything. Oh, I won't say anything, but 
nobody had had any experience in public relations. 






So, I checked about and the name of Harvey Hancock was given 
to me as a very able fellow. He had done a good deal of 
public relations work for Pan American Airlines. He was very 
well known throughout the state, which later proved to be 
absolutely correct. He had retired or was about to retire from 
his position with Pan Am. Whoever told me about him thought 
that he might be a very likely person and very much interested. 
I checked up and found out that Harvey was then in South 
America. I sent him a cable and asked him if he would be 
interested and when was he coming home. He cabled me back 
that he would be back at such and such a time. 

He did come back. He came in to see me. I interviewed 
him and then called the committee together and made the 
necessary arrangements to engage him as the campaign director 
to handle the so-called public relations and the day-by-day 
running of the campaign. I was still not able to give up my 
time completely, as I was a practicing lawyer. So, the actual 
running of the campaign was turned over to Harvey. 

What did that include? 

That included the preparations, the purchasing of and placing 
of billboards, getting radio spots, getting newspaper ads 
and doing whatever would have to be done to run a political 

What about scheduling meetings? 

Hancock would arrange the schedules subject to our okay. He 
would coordinate these meetings with Murray Chotiner, who 
was doing the same work in Southern California but was more 
or less the overall planner of the campaign. 

Did Harvey report to Murray Chotiner? 

Well, he was in touch with Chotiner. Hancock would report to 
me what he was proposing to do. I met Chotiner a number of 
times during the campaign, but I had no direct association 
with him in any way. We had engaged Harvey Hancock. 

As I started to say, I have a letter here from Richard 
Nixon on the letterhead of the Congress of the United States, 
Twelfth Congressional District, January 9, 1950. I must have 
written him about a conversation I had with Paul Smith, who 
was the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle. Paul Smith 
was only reasonably enthusiastic in his support, more or less 
because of the fact that Nixon was an unknown. I had 
suggested under the circumstances that we let nature take its 
course and not press Smith. In his letter here to me Nixon 
concurs that that was good thinking. 












I noticed that there were some nice, relatively large donations 
to the Nixon campaign from the publisher of the Chronicle, so 
you must have been pretty successful. 

Well, if I was I don't remember it. But I'm glad to hear that 
I was. 

I hate to give you this great big thing right now — * 
All right; well, don't bother. 

It's very thick. I went through it and I just checked those 
that were over $500. I think the biggest were $1,000. 
There were a couple contributions from [George Toland] Cameron, 
[publisher of San Francisco Chronicle] . 

That may well be. 

There was one very early in the campaign and then one later on. 

This is just a guess, but I would doubt that those large 
contributions came prior to the time of this letter, because 
at that time we were still having some difficulty getting the 
full, unadulterated support of the Chronicle. Maybe I'm 
wrong. Maybe Paul Smith was autonomous in his endorsement of 
candidates. I don't know. 

This contribution was to the United Republican Finance Committee 

of Northern California, so it wasn't directly to Nixon himself. 

But it was $1,000, yes, after the primary and early in the 
general election campaign, in August. 

Yes, I would have been sure of that. 

So, at any rate, he was pitching in for the general election. 

*The report referred to here is a statement of receipts and 
expenditures of the United Republican Finance Committee of 
California (Northern California Division) , including a 
similar statement from its Nixon for United States Senator 
Sub-Committee. The report, dated November 21, 1950, was 
received by Secretary of State Charles J. Hagerty. California 
State Archives. 






Eventually the San Francisco Examiner, the Chronicle, and 
the Oakland Tribune supported Nixon. The only local paper 
that was against Nixon, but was pro-Democratic at the time, was 
the Scripps-Howard paper, the San Francisco News, which was 
then in existence. 

At any rate, I mentioned that I'd had several conversations 
with Paul Smith and hadn't gotten his full support. In this 
January 9, 1950 letter from Nixon he says, 

I hope that it will be possible for us to get 
together during my trip to California on the weekend 
of February 12. Even though no formal meeting will be 
scheduled for the San Francisco area, I wonder if you 
might think it advisable to arrange a meeting of the 
campaign committee for the [San Francisco] Bay Area at 
that time. If so I think we would be able to work it 
into my schedule. I am sending copies of this letter 
to Murray Chotiner and Bernie Brennan and will follow 
any suggestions which you might work out with them. 

Then Nixon goes on to discuss the advisability of setting 
up organizations in the valley towns, Sacramento Valley and 
San Joaquin Valley, and to consider the employment of a public 
relations man for that area to supplement the work that 
Hancock was doing from San Francisco and that Brennan was doing 
from Los Angeles . 

You asked me a moment ago what Hancock did. After we 
got going and decided we would go on — and I can't tell you 
when this was done — part of what we were doing was to set up 
county committees, city committees. For instance, there was 
a Nixon- for-Senator committee in Alameda County, probably one 
in Oakland and Berkeley and the main cities , and one up in 
Mendocino County and so forth. Hancock would go around and 
set these committees up. 

Did you go ahead and have a public relations man for the valley 

I don't remember. I see in here the mention of a name, but 
I don't want to mention it because I just haven't any 
recollection anymore. I think we had a PR man, but I can't 
remember who it was. 

(We probably won't finish this interview today.) I can show 
you the list of campaign expenses, and his name will probably 
be on it where his salary appears. 










It's very interesting as I look through my book here. We 
had a budget from Harvey Hancock and Company to me for the 
Northern California campaign. It's interesting when I think 
of what the 1972 committee for president spent and what our 
budget was. The budget was $34,050. 

For the whole campaign or per month? 

No, the whole campaign. [reading from book] "Estimated cost 
of primary campaign." 

According to the reports in the state archives, you went about 
$10,000 over that. So, you held to it pretty well. 

That's right. 

You got the money for the campaign too. 
cover just Northern California? 

Does this budget 

Yes, this was Northern California. [reading from book] "To 
Richard Nixon at Northern California headquarters." 

I think that report is for the whole state campaign. 
I don't know whether we spent it. 

It looked like a lot of the expenses were billboards. They 
must have been one of your more expensive items. 

Dinkelspiel: I can't tell you what these references are, but I have a 

letter here to Murray Chotiner from myself on February 21, 
1950. "Dear Mr. Chotiner, I have your letter of February 16, 
suggesting certain billboard slogans. You asked for my 
opinion, so' I will give you my frank reaction. I think 
'New Leadership for America's Future' is excellent. [with 
emphasis] 1^ do not care for the others. Sincerely," 

What the others were I don't know. Chotiner would submit 
to me for my opinion some of the political material, which he 
was originating for the most part. We would generate maybe one 
or two localized items from our office. But the Southern 
California headquarters would send material to us and we could 
use it or not. In many instances, as you gather from this 
letter, we did not use it. We did not agree with what Mr. 
Chotiner had planned. 


The California Republican Assembly Endorses Nixon 




As I mentioned before, the principal opponent against Nixon 
in the primary was Frederick Houser. The incumbent Senator 
was [Democrat] Sheridan Downey, who first announced that he 
was running for re-election. Then around March, 1950, for 
reasons which I don't know, Sheridan Downey decided he was 
not going to run and he withdrew from the race, at which time 
Helen Gahagan Douglas and then Manchester Boddy , B-o-d-d-y, 
a Southern California publisher, announced they were going to 
vie for the Democratic nomination. 

As far as we were concerned we thought that was very 
helpful, because the incumbent is always difficult to defeat. 
Sheridan Downey had had a pretty good record as a senator, so 
it would have been a harder campaign, although we anticipated 
that even against a non- incumbent the campaign would be 
difficult, assuming Nixon would get the nomination. 

Sometime in the spring of 1950 there was a CRA [California 
Republican Assembly] meeting set at the Del Monte Lodge in 
Pebble Beach. The CRA at that time was a very influential 
organization. I went down there for the purpose of assisting 
and doing what I could to get the group to endorse Nixon 
rather than Houser. 

Yes. That was such an important goal. 

There was rather an interesting side bit to this. Nixon 
had planned to attend the meeting, and something came up in 
the House of Representatives which made it impossible for him 
to get away. That, of course, was very disappointing to us 
because Fred Houser was there in person. Fred Houser was not 
a very articulate speaker, whereas Nixon was always a very 
effective speaker. We felt that his presence would be helpful 
to his cause. 

But I got a phone call from someone in Washington — whom 
I can't remember, probably Nixon's administrative assistant — 
advising me that he couldn't get away, but that he had a 
speech prepared and he was going to have it taped. That was 
the first time I had ever experienced a tape recorder. It's 
rather ludicrous that the first tape I heard should have been 
one which Mr. Nixon [laughing] — 

A harbinger of things to come [laughing]. 


Dinkelspiel: At any rate we went down to the meeting. They had the 
endorsement before a committee. I don't know the exact 
numbers, but the CRA committee voted in favor of Houser if 
I recall correctly. 

Fry: Can I show you my notes on that? 
Dinkelspiel: Yes. 

Fry: I'm not sure where I got this. I may have gotten it from a 
book instead of from some primary source, but apparently the 
CRA subcommittee for selection chose Houser six to three. 

Dinkelspiel: That's correct; that's right. 

Fry: Then in the full committee Nixon squeaked by by one vote. 

Dinkelspiel: That is right. 

Fry: Something like twelve to thirteen. Is that right? 

Dinkelspiel: That is right. It was very close. We played the tape to the 
full committee. The tape was very effective. He won by one 
vote. That's what I was trying to say, yes. 

Fry: You don't think that tape still exists, do you? 
Dinkelspiel: [laughing] Well, I'm sure not. 
Fry: It'd be quite an archival prize. 

Dinkelspiel: Yes, it would be. No, I don't have any idea where it could 

Fry: Could you put in perspective for us just how important it was 
to have the CRA endorsement at that time? 

Dinkelspiel: It was very important. 

Fry: The CRA was outside the main Republican party. 

Dinkelspiel: Well, it was important for us to get any and all good 

endorsements, because we had an unknown candidate who was 
seeking the backing of as many people as he could. I guess 
in numbers the CRA endorsement was not important, but 
prestige-wise it was. 










How it is important is something I can't quite get defined. 
I don't know whether it was important because they were a 
good source of finances, or whether it was made up of men who 
were prestigious and could lend good names to the campaign. 

I would say the latter. It's the same as when any candidate in 
any campaign seeks the endorsement of a labor union, of this 
union, or of that organization. The endorsement per se is 
not too important. The endorsement is indicative of general 
support, of popularity. I don't think, as I got into the 
political arena later on, that the support or non-support of 
these organizations is necessarily the kiss of victory or the 
kiss of death. But the CRA was probably the most prestigious 
non-official Republican convention. It always more or less 
represented middle-of-the-road Republicanism, and therefore 
it had some stature. We were anxious to get its support. I 
guess we would have gone ahead with the campaign without it, 
but this was helpful. 

Since I've interrupted you already I want to back up and ask 
you another question. Were you unhappy with Senator Sheridan 
Downey's record? Or why did you personally want to see a 
different senator elected? What were your personal reasons? 

Well, I've always been a Republican. 
Your reasons were primarily party — ? 

Primarily party — it wasn't too far after the New Deal. I 
wasn't in favor of that political philosophy then, and I 
haven't changed very much since. No, I would say that as 
far as the man was concerned Sheridan Downey did espouse his 
cause, but I didn't believe in his cause. That was about my 
interest in it. 

So, you won the CRA endorsement. Did CRA work for Nixon in 
the campaign or did they not have a working organization? 

I don't recall. I doubt if they did. I don't think so. They 
may have worked for Nixon by giving volunteers and working in 
the general campaign. I just wouldn't know what they would 
do. They probably got their members to go out, the younger 
members to hand out badges or whatever. 

Do you remember how Downey was kind of off again-on again 
about not running? 

Vaguely, yes. I never did know why he didn't run. 
it was his health, but I can't recall. [pause] 

I think 











Yes, here I wrote a letter to Nixon on March 1. "Dear 
Dick, We are still trying to figure out what it's all about, 
namely the indication that Downey will not run for re-election 
and Judge Houser's statements as per newspaper clipping." So 
apparently, Downey was on and off. But again, that's twenty- 
five years ago. 

From that time on we tried to get as many endorsements 
as we could and to enlarge our committees throughout the 
state. I can't give you any more details on this. Maybe if 
you have an opportunity, on a nice weekend you might go down 
to Carmel and talk to Harvey Hancock, who lives there. He 
set up the committee meetings. 

I do have here a letter in which I advise Nixon that, "I 
attended the San Francisco County Republican committee 
Saturday night on your behalf, and as you no doubt have heard 
obtained its endorsement." 

There is a value in politics in getting the endorsement 
of an official organization if you can get it. 

That letter was dated April 3? 

Yes, that was April 3, 1950. 

Isn't a party endorsement unusual in a primary? 

I guess it is, but — [laughter] 

How did you get that endorsement? 

I guess I was a good manager. 

[laughing] Now, come on. You must have known somebody on 
the committee. 

[chuckling] I just don't know. I just happen to have this 
letter here from that time. 

Campaigning in Northern California 


You ask about whether our people were tried and true politicians. 
I have a letter here from Peter Howard, of Oakland. His 
family owned the Howard Terminals as it was then called. They 
were very well known citizens of Alameda County. Howard says, 
"Thank you for your letter of March 17, regarding my chairmanship 









of Alameda County for the Richard Nixon campaign. I trust 
you realize that I am a high-grade neophyte as to political 
campaigns and I so warned those who first asked me to serve. 
Nevertheless, I am most interested in promoting Mr. Nixon's 
cause and I will lend every effort possible, etc." So that 
bears out pretty well what I'm saying, that none of them 
had any real political experience. 

Then we went ahead and we set up different committees, 
clubs. I have no way of knowing at this time where they 
were. I see here's a roster of the East Bay Nixon club, 
because I apparently kept for some reason the correspondence 
from Mr. Howard. 

We can put some of that in the appendix. 

For instance, here I have a typical Alameda County itinerary: 
Richard M. Nixon, Friday, May 26, 1950. That's the accepted 
format of any political campaign. [quoting the itinerary] 

You arrive at Irvington. 


12 noon 
to 1:30: 

Visit newspaper offices. No speeches planned. 
Claremont Hotel, check in. 

City Commons Club, Berkeley Women's Club — 
luncheon and forty minute speech. Probably 
be asked for answer to questions for twenty 
or thirty minutes. Speech will be recorded 
for later evening broadcast over KRE. [tape off] 

Tour industrial plants, casual handshaking, 
speeches . 

Tours without 

The name of the person who was going to be the chairman of 
each of these events is also listed. 

Did you go with Nixon when he was touring? 

No, only on a few occasions. 

It was mostly Harvey Hancock who would see that he got around? 

Harvey Hancock would do that when he came into the area. He 
would go out. If it would appear to me to be important 
enough or if he wanted my presence then I would go. I was 
an emcee [master of ceremonies] at a number of large meetings. 
But when they would go over to Emeryville and go around 
casually handshaking, there was no purpose, for instance, in 
my going along. Whether or not I was with them in Alameda 
County on that day I just don't know. 











I just meant in general. 

Here is a list of the candidates in that campaign. I don't 
know if it's of any interest or not. [shuffling papers] 

This is the so-called scurrilous document where they 
link Douglas and Marcantonio — I don't know if you have that 
one — which we did not put out here. 

It's pink and white on the inside. I don't think that's the 
famous "Pink Sheet." I think that's another one. 

Yes well, that may be. 

Let me just read it. It says, "How would you have voted? 
Check this record. Congressman Nixon versus two left- 
wingers." Oh, so I see. Versus two left-wingers. Would that 
be Douglas and Marcantonio? 


Was that Chotiner's — 

Yes, they got up all that stuff in Southern California. I 
think actually the one who really started it was Manchester 
Boddy in the Democratic primary. 

I wondered about that. 

Yes, actually my recollection is that that germ was born in 
Boddy's campaign. But that I can't recall for sure. 

Well, Boddy entered the campaign after Nixon did, and Nixon 
entered it with strong statements about the Communist menace. 

Dinkelspiel: Yes. 

But, of course, at the time Nixon entered Helen Gahagan 
Douglas had decided to run, but you didn't know that Downey 
was going to run too. 

I don't know whether she had decided to run or not. My best 
recollection at this late date is that she had not. I think 
that she only ran when it became apparent that Downey was not 
going to run. That was my best recollection, but I may be 
wrong on that. 


She was not a serious contender as long as Downey was in? 


Dinkelspiel: That's right. 









Dinkelspiel : 


I've got a piece of stationery here which says, 
"Congressman Richard Nixon for United States, Northern 
California Campaign Committee," which shows myself as 
chairman and Dwight L. Merriman, co-chairman. He had been 
the president at one time of the Junior Chamber of Commerce. 

[end tape 2, side 2; begin tape 3, side 1] 

Oh, I wish I'd kept some more of this. [showing scrapbook] 

How far does your scrapbook go? 

This is just about all I've got on the senatorial race. 

But what you do have is really valuable. 

Yes, that material is interesting. But that's about all that 
I have in there of any interest. I had some clippings of 
some of Helen Gahagan Douglas's literature in there. 

I was able to visit her papers at the University of Oklahoma 
and I got some xeroxes of her campaign material and some of 
Nixon's too. Then Roy Day gave me some more of Nixon's. 
So we're gradually getting a little archive together. 

A. Brooks Berlin would be helpful for her campaign. Have 
you talked with him? 


He's in San Francisco. 

Who was he? 

He was her local campaign manager. 

Oh, I see. Well, I have a few more questions here on 
relationships in the organization. Was the Northern California 
section of the United Republican Finance Committee something 
you could always depend on for funds when you ran low? How 
did it function? The reason I ask is that in the state reports 
the committee gave quite a bit to Nixon and quite a bit to 
[Ed] Shattuck. I noticed they didn't give anything to Earl 
Warren's gubernatorial campaign except when something came in 
that was specifically earmarked. 









Warren ran his own campaign always . 

He never was a part of the Republican party? 

No, no. 

So that makes sense; but I wondered how you jockeyed for 
funds from that organization, because you were competing with 
other candidates. 

Well, you jockeyed, 
[laughter] You jockeyed? 

You pled and you made a showing. You would go to them and 
say, "Well, look. We need the funds. Warren has financed 
himself. He's well financed. We are financing our campaign 
through the United Republican Finance Committee," which is 
the way ordinarily it would operate, with the exception of a 
man as anomalous as Earl Warren or as popular as he was that 
he could afford the luxury of running his own campaign. 
Therefore, you would go to them and convince them if you 
could that it was more important to have a Republican United 
States Senator than possibly a Republican attorney general. 
Therefore, if they had a dollar we should get 75c of it. The 
candidate for attorney general would only get 25c. You would 
argue and show what you needed the money for. 

In politics you always could use twice as much as you 
have, unless you are as successful as the Republicans were 
in 1972. Then I guess you don't know what to do with it 
and you get into mischief. 

I did notice that you turned back some funds. At the end of 
the campaign there was a refund of $2,500 to the Northern 
California branch of the United Republican Finance Committee. 
Now I don't know whether that was a bookkeeping thing or 
whether it was a real refund. 

I would doubt it. I will say this. I don't mean to sprout 
wings at this late date, but we ran it absolutely on the up 
and up. The names I mentioned, most of whom are unknown to 
you but generally they're all people of the highest integrity 
that we had in Northern California. [emphatically] I know 
of no one that we had that; had any questionable reputation of 

At that time when these men — they were mostly men, it 
being before the day of real activity of women in politics. 
It seems strange today, but as you notice most of them are men, 








although we did have a few women later on as chairmen. 
But we did not overspend, and we accounted for everything. 
As I say, we were not extravagant. We got along on very 

There was one interesting experience that I did have. 
You asked if I ever went around with Nixon. On one occasion 
during the campaign — and I'm sure this was during the actual 
campaign rather than the primary — but he came to San Francisco 
to campaign. We had several different appointments, but one 
of the things that we had planned was to have him go around 
and talk at different spots. For instance, one of the plans 
was to have a so-called parade up California Street to 
Montgomery Street and stop at the corner of California and 
Montgomery Street. 

Was that the torch light parade I read about in the newspapers? 

No, this was in the middle of the day at noontime. You 
always had those in the noontime because that was when all 
the workers would come out of the buildings and you'd get the 
biggest crowd. Then we would stop and Nixon would get up 
and have a loudspeaker and make a speech. I always felt 
Nixon was a very effective speaker. 

But anyhow, on this one visit that evening we scheduled 
a meeting out near the Marina High School which had a sort 
of plaza which we thought would be a good place to make a 
speech. I'd guess you'd call it dirty tricks on the other 
side, the first time I'd ever seen it. Some people from the 
Douglas campaign came out there with lots of sound machines 
so that every time he opened up they would start the noise. 
So, they wouldn't let him speak. 

In a sound truck? 

Yes, a whole bunch of them. 

Yes, I think I read something about that in the San Francisco 
Examiner. There was sort of a war of loudspeakers. 

Then Nixon just stood his ground. He just stood and put up 
his hand, and finally they shut the thing off. He then spoke 
and said that the very fact that they were making this noise 
was one of the reasons why he felt as strongly as he did on 
the right of speech. They're the ones who feel that he was 
throttling free speech, and they were the very ones who 
refused to let him talk. He said he didn't object to them 
disagreeing with him, but at least he had a right to talk. 













I can't remember any more than numerous trips he had made. 
He made three or four visits to this area. We would plan 
which part of the northern part of the state he should visit, 
where the votes were and where they needed buoying up, 
which I guess is done in every political campaign. 

Not necessarily. In Jimmy Roosevelt 's governor campaign the 
same year, they decided he should appear in every county, 
and he spread himself pretty thin going to counties of very 
low voting population. 

Yes, that's a mistake. I guess it was poor advice. 

What was the Flying Squadron? Did you have that up here? 


Or was that just a Southern California thing? 

I don ' t know what it is . 

I don't either, except it was either a group of women workers 
who were separated out for that function, or else it was a 
squadron that went around and was assigned to visit Helen 
Gahagan Douglas's speeches. 

I don't know anything about that. If that existed we never had 
any part of it. 

Did you have a group that rode to opponents ' speeches? In 
most campaigns they're called truth squads. I don't know 
what they were called in this campaign. 

No, we did not. To the best of my knowledge we had nothing 
like that at all. 

No follow-ups after her speeches? 


Civic League of Improvements Clubs and Associations 


Do you remember the Commonwealth Club debate between Nixon 
and Helen Douglas that was held in San Francisco? 

Dinkelspiel: No, I really don't. I don't remember that they did debate 
I'm not saying they didn't but, but I don't have any 
recollection of it. 








The other thing that's come out in my research is that there 
was a Civic League of Improvement Clubs and Associations in 
the Mills Building in San Francisco. 


They received $4,000 from the United Republican Finance 
Committee of Northern California for mailing. 


What was this league? [laughing] There goes your grin 
again, but I don't know what it means! 

That league has been here as long as I've been in San Francisco. 
It's completely — it was set up by some people whose names I 
shan't mention. You can do the research yourself. It's 
been a racket in my opinion. They use the name, so it implies 
to the public that it's a nonpolitical, honest, fair thing. 
Very potent — has been; I don't know if it is today anymore, 
but it was at that time a very potent organization. They 
would vote in your favor, but you had to pay for the mailing. 
As I remember they supported Earl Warren too. 

I couldn't tell who they were supporting because the record 
is with this general Republican committee. 

Yes, but that's what it is. I'm sure if you look back in 
Earl Warren's campaigns, you'd find that they probably 
supported him. I'm sure they did a mailing for Goodwin 
Knight — if they supported him. 

It looks like they funneled their funds through this general 
committee which in turn then — 

Dinkelspiel: I don't know how they worked. 

Fry: It's hard to find in the records. 

Dinkelspiel: I don't know if it's still around. 

Fry: That's interesting. But it was primarily Republican, right? 

Dinkelspiel: I wouldn't think so, no. 

Fry: How did they decide on who to back—whoever would give the 

mailing money? 

Dinkelspiel: No, I presume they had a vote. They had a committee and I 
guess they voted. 





Dinkelspiel: Yes. 





How were they potent? In what way? 

Because they had a complete mailing list in San Francisco. 
They had a name of — Civic Improvement League? 

It was a funny name, Civic League of Improvement Clubs and 
Associations . 

It sounds like it was a conglomerate of everything, which in 
effect it wasn't. As far as I knew, it was just a group with 
a conglomerate name, with a good name. They had some important 
people involved, so when they sent out their mailing the 
average voter would follow its recommendations, like some 
people follow the recommendation of the League of Women 
Voters, others the Commonwealth Club, etc. But this was 
"across the board," and it was a very important and influential 
organization. I don't know whether it still has its potency, 
but we considered it very important to obtain its support. 

[laughing] You had to go along with it, operate with it. 

You also had an agriculture committee within the Nixon 
campaign structure. 

I'm sure we did. We had different ethnic groups. We had 
different professional groups. That's part of the organization, 
as I found out after I got into the political swim, that those 
had to be formed. They were effective. We had doctors' 
organizations and lawyers for Nixon, as I remember. I can't 
remember all the different categories. We had Irish Americans 
and so forth. That was accepted practice. But I'm sure that 
the Douglas campaign had exactly the same thing. 

Warren's campaigns too had those. But they are fairly 
invisible in the Nixon campaign reports in the state archives 
and the newspapers, except for this agriculture committee. 
I wondered if there were any other committees like this? 

I can't remember, but I wouldn't be surprised if we didn't 
have other committees. I think we did. 


Campaign Workers and Issues 











There are other names that keep popping up, and I wondered 
how much they have to do with the Northern California part 
of the campaign. You say Bernie Brennan was fairly important. 
Was he mainly in Southern California? 


Did you work with him? 

Yes, he was my counterpart in Southern California. Nixon was 
from down there, so he was better known in the south. Through 
his friendship at that time with Chotiner, that was the 
headquarters. We were the country cousins up here. 

Was Herbert Klein a publicity man in this campaign? 

Not that I recall. I met him later on. I don't remember 
him in the senatorial campaign. 

Jack Drown, one of Nixon's oldest friends, was he in it? 


Did he help any in Northern California? 

No, I think Jack was at some of these meetings that we had 
back and forth. Once in a while we'd have a meeting here or 
down south — mostly down south or at San Ysidro; you mentioned 
the one that we had at San Ysidro — and Jack Drown would come. 
They apparently were very close personal friends of the Nixons . 
I believe Helene, Mrs. Drown, was a classmate of Pat Nixon. 

I think they taught together. 

I knew there was some social background. They were always 
close together during all of the time that I knew Nixon, yes. 

Was Jack Drown an idea man like Murray Chotiner was? 

Oh, no. No, I think he was just a friend, just a friend and 
that's all. 

There's another name, Ray Arbuthnot. Was he in the Drown crowd? 

Yes. He was more politically activated than Drown, but I 
think he also had been a personal friend of Nixon's. Ray 
Arbuthnot had a ranch, as I recall, out near the Whittier area. 









We had a meeting at his ranch on one occasion. That's 

about all I know. I knew him. I haven't seen him in a 

number of years, but I always believed that he and Drown 
were old friends. 

Ray Arbuthnot ran for the vice-chairman of the Republican 
State Central Committee when I was on the committee some 
years later and was opposed by Howard Ahmanson, who was a 
friend and political benefactor of Goodwin Knight. This was 
when Knight was the governor. A very heated contest developed 
because under the party traditions the vice-chairman of one 
year automatically becomes the chairman the following year. 
The chairmanship and vice-chairmanship rotate between north 
and south. So it was important. 

There's a man who was very big in International Rotarians, 
Carl Miller. 

I never heard of him. 
He must be Southern California. 
What about Milton Essberg? 

Oh, he didn't have much to do with it. He was the — sort of 
the chairman of the San Francisco branch of the United 
Republican Finance Committee. That's about all. He wasn't 
particularly active. He's always been active in the Republican 
party as such. But he had no particular identification with 

Oh, this was the state Republican convention? 

Essberg is either the Republican county committee, or I think 
he is the public relation man for the United Republican 
Finance Committee's Northern California group. He's the one 
that, as I understand it, goes out and keeps the list up and 
sends out the appropriate letters. I think he's in the public 
relation business or something of that sort. 

In San Francisco was there an Orla St. Clair? 

Yes. He was an attorney who subsequently became a superior 
court judge. He has since died. He was the San Francisco 


Was he a person that you had chosen? 










Can you remember what it meant to the campaign when the 
Korean War broke out in June, 1950, right after the primary? 
It appears superficially that this was quite a shot in the 
arm to Nixon's theme of the encroachment of Communism. 

I guess it was. I couldn't remember it now. It obviously 
was, because that was the clear case of a Communist group 
moving over the Yalu River. 

Nixon came out with a four point program of action to combat 
the Communist conspiracy — I'm moving backward in time now, 
before the Korean War broke out, to his first really big 
speech on the Communist conspiracy. It was a major policy 
address on March 12, 1950. I think that was where he put 
forth this four point program for the first time. I wondered 
if you remembered any discussion of this? 

No, the only thing I recall — I was with him on numerous 
meetings and he always permitted questions. I can recall him 
remarking on several occasions (as to the time and place 
I can't recall), "I would like to talk on some other subject 
other than Communism." No matter whatever happened the very 
first question would be on Communism, and the next question 
and the next question would all be aimed back at Communism. He 
finally remarked one time, "There's no use trying to talk about 
anything else, because that's all the people want to hear 

What else was he trying to talk about? 

Oh, he talked at that time of various agricultural plans 
when we were down in the [San Joaquin] Valley. I can't 
remember the issues of the — 

Brannan plan? 

Yes, the Brannan plan. At that time there was some issue being 
brought up on the development of a water system in the state 
or the Reber plan. I remember the name Reber plan. R-e-b-e-r. 
It's almost impossible, without some refreshment of memory, 
to recall what the issues were. 

In agriculture were his speeches mainly anti-Brannan plan and 
for protective tariffs on farm products? Those two issues 
came up in one of his Valley speeches. 

I wouldn't have any recollections on that, no. 

What about tidelands oil as one of these other issues? 











I don't ever recall the subject. 

He did mention sometimes that he thought the Hiss case should 
be reopened and some of the other people involved in it 
investigated. Do you remember any about that? 

I don't remember that. I think he felt very strongly that 
Hiss was guilty and he so expressed numerous times. I don't 
remember him ever reopening the case at all. 

There was a March 12, 1950 story in the [San Francisco] 
Examiner, written expressly for the Examiner by Richard Nixon. 
I thought this was quite a publicity coup. It was a pretty 
long column. Do you remember anything like that? 


I could just see you going and talking to the editor of the 
Examiner and setting this up. 

I don't remember it. 

It was headlined "Exposure in Hiss Case Brings Stern Demand 
for Action." That was kind of a theme of his article. 

The other thing I wondered about was the recordings that 
were made. This must have been for radio stations, but I don't 
know. John Wolf and Company on New Montgomery Street was paid 
$1,280.20 for recording. 

Those I'm sure would be for radio, 

There was no other 

Who would have written the scripts for those, do you know? 
Would that have been Hancock? 

I guess Hancock or maybe the scripts would have come out of 
Los Angeles and they were retaped here in Northern California. 
I'm only guessing, but I would assume that if they were made 
here that, apparently, on one of his trips, they would go in 
and Nixon would make these tapes. Now whether they had short 
tapes and long tapes — the word "tape" is an ugly word today, 
but at that time it was used. 

I think they were records. 

They were records for use and, I would think, for radio. 

I gather that Murray Chotiner worked out the copy for the 
billboards and other campaign materials. 












That's right. 

I wonder how much influence Murray Chotiner had on the Northern 
California campaign? 

As I mentioned, he would prepare it and if we didn't like it 
we wouldn't use it. As I read in the letter, I don't know what 
I didn't like, but apparently I didn't like something very 
badly because I was very abrupt. So if we didn't like it, we 
didn't use it in Northern California. We had no control over 
what they were using in Southern California. I don't remember 
where our boundary went, but there was some point — I think 
we went probably down through Monterey or Kings County. Then 
from there Southern California picked it up. 

I keep picking up inferences that there was a difference 
between the Southern California campaign and the Northern 
California campaign. 

In some of the literature and some of the methods, yes. We 
did not use in Northern California some of the items which 
they developed in Southern California. 

Like what— the "Pink Sheet"? 
That's right. 

What about the whole bit about Marcantonio? Did you try not 
to use that or did you go ahead? It was an ongoing thing 
over a period of a number of weeks. 

We may have used it — used that reference in some respects. 
Again, I don't recall exactly where, but we didn't harp on 
the fact or the implication that Helen Gahagan Douglas was 
tied in with and saw completely eye to eye with Marcantonio. 

Why didn't you? 

Well, I didn't feel then, and I don't now feel, that it's 
necessarily a proper approach. 

I noticed that Helen Gahagan Douglas's literature then came 
out and said that Nixon had voted with Marcantonio 112 times, 
mostly on foreign policy. I thought maybe that had something 
to do with not using the Marcantonio issue. 

Maybe. The pot is calling the kettle black or red I should 









[laughing] Or red, yes. 

What do you think of the reports of the phone calls? 
[end tape 3, side 1; begin tape 3, side 2] 

I don't understand your question. 

You know, after the campaign was over reports came out about 
the telephone calls that were made anonymously. I don't 
know whether this was Northern California or not. It could 
have been only Southern California. A receiver of the call 
would pick up the phone and a voice would say, "Vote for 
Nixon. Helen Gahagan Douglas is a Communist," or something 
like that and would hang up. There were a number of scattered 
reports of this. 

If there were I never heard of it. 

You never heard of that? 

No. We had nothing to do with that. We never had that. 

It could have been centered in Southern California. 

Never! When you're in a political arena people get very 
exercised and there's no way one can police millions of people. 
If you were to ask me did we ever have such a plan, my answer 
would be emphatically no! We never did. Now, whether people 
would call up, as you say they did, I just wouldn't know. 

We always felt also that the other side were using unfair 
tactics. Whether you ever could prove it or not, I just 
don't recall. I mean there were various items. For instance 
in the campaign — we never could put our finger on it — we 
always felt there was an underlying accusation against Nixon 
for being anti-Semitic. We attempted to counter that as best 
we could. It's a very difficult problem to solve. 

Also on one occasion he was speaking, there was some 
situation that implied that he was anti-Catholic. I know 
that members of the committee, Arthur Dolan and Alvin Derre 
(I mentioned his name; he had been very active in the campaign) 
were Catholic. They were very much upset about the implications 
that were made. I remember meeting at the St. Francis Hotel 
a few days before the election to consider what if anything 
could be done to counter this. So, those things occur. You 
can't prove them and you can't say that the other side originated 
them, unless you can actually prove that the director said go 
and do it. But we did not ever have any part of that. 



But then it existed you had to deal with it. 

As I say, in politics you do have that general situation. 
When you get it, you try to deal with it the best way you 
can under the circumstances. I know of no campaign by Nixon 
of picking up the phone, as you've just mentioned. If that 
occurred, it's certainly something that I know nothing about. 

No Strong Endorsement From Earl Warren 







There's one other very important question that I forgot to 
ask you. Was there any attempt made to get Earl Warren to 
come out for Nixon? Some books discuss Murray Chotiner's 
plan to force Warren to come out for Nixon. 

Yes. Yes. Yes, there was. There was an attempt made to get 
Warren to come out, and he just wouldn't. He wouldn't do it. 
He wouldn't take a position. 

What was the attempt? 

I guess someone who knew Warren closer than I did, or people 
closer to him, tried to get him to come out and say, "I 
support Richard Nixon." I think he more or less at the very 
last, kind of by faint praise, came out. But Warren never 
strongly endorsed Nixon. 

Chotiner's story, as given in these books, is that after a 
speech, in a question and answer period, they finally forced 
Helen Douglas into a position of coming out for James Roosevelt. 
Then the Nixon campaign people took this to Warren and said, 
"Now will you come out for the Republican candidate?" I don't 
know whether that a true story or not. 

It's like what happens today. Every Democrat aspirant for the 
presidency is asked a question on every program, "Would you have 
Governor [George] Wallace as a running mate?" I've yet to have 
one answer yes or no. [laughter] 

[end tape 3, side 2] 

I know it is late and you have to run. Thank you very much. 

Final Typist: 

Marlene Keller 
Keiko Sugimoto 


INDEX — J. Walton Dinkelspiel 

Ahmanson, Howard, 23 
Arbuthnot, Ray, 13, 41-42 

Belcher, Frank, 23 
Boddy, Manchester, 34 
Brennan, Bernard, 17, 41 
Button, Ronald, 13 

California Republican Assembly 

and 1950 Senate campaign, 29-31 
Caracappa, V.A. , 14 
Chotiner, Murray, 17, 25, 28, 44-45 

Civic League of Improvement Clubs and Associations (San Francisco) , 39-40 
Cotton, Aylett, 23 

Dolan, Arthur, 23 

Downey, Sheridan, 29, 31-32 

Drown, Jack, 13, 41 

Eisenhower, Dwight David 

1952 presidential nomination, 2-15 
election campaigns 

1950 Senatorial, California, 16-47 
Essberg, Milton, 23, 42 

Fleishhacker, Mortimer, Jr. , 23 

Hancock, Harvey, 14, 24-28, 33, 44 

Hillings, Patrick, 13 

Holt, Joseph, 13 

Hornby, Robert, 24 

Hunter, Phelps, 23 

Hut chins, Francis, 23 

Jorgensen, Frank, 13 


Kaiser, Leland, 23 
Knowland, William 

and 1952 Repbulican national convention, 1-2, 6-8, 11-13 

Marshall, John, 23 
Merriman, Dwight, 23 
Miller, Carl, 23 
Moore, Joseph, Jr., 23 

Nixon, Richard 

1950 Senatorial campaign, 16-47 

finance, 18, 24, 26-28, 35, 37 

issues , 43-47 

Northern California organization, 19-24 
1952 Republican national convention, 1-15 

Pattee, Alan, 13 

Republican party (California) 

California Republican Assembly, 29-31 
Northern California organization, 19-24 

Republican national conventions 
1952, 1-15 

Saunders, David, 19-20, 22-23 
Smith, David, 23 
Smith, Paul, 21, 25, 27 

Warren, Earl 

and 1950 Senatorial campaign, 47 

and 1952 Republican national convention, 1-15 
Wiley, John, 23 

Earl Adams 

San Francisco Chronicle 
April 3, 1986 

Earl C Adams ; 


Earl C. Adams. 93. an architect 
of the early political campaigns of 
Richard Nixon, died Monday. . 

Adams, who practiced law in 
Los Angeles for more than 60 jean, 
was one of the Southern Calif or- 
' nians who first encouraged Nixon 
to run for Congress. after ^'orld 
War tt ; 

Adams remained clow tp the 
future president, and Nixon jbined 
Adams' law firm after he lost the 
1960 presidential race to John F. 

A graduate of Stanford Uaiver- 
sity. Adams interrupted his sflidles 
: at Harvard Law School to serve in 
the Army in World War I. Relcom- 
pieted hi* tew degree at Stanford in 
1920. J 

Adams worked for the Jtate 
Corporation Department bef oce en- 
;lering private practice in 1926. He 
'. was campaign chairman and advis 
er to the senatorial campaigns .of 
Thomas Kuctael. William Knowlafcd 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Office 

Earl Adams 

FROM 1946 TO 1960 

An Interview Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 

Copyright (~c) 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 



Childhood, Education, and War Experience 1 

Richard Nixon is Elected to Congress, 1946 3 

Adams's Political Background 3 

Murray Chotiner 4 

Campaign Fundraising 6 

The Nixon Fund, 1952 7 

Earl Adams and the Republican Party 11 

The Kuchel Campaigns 11 

The Big Switch: An Insider's View 13 

Adams's Political Philosophy 15 

Richard Nixon: 1960-1968 17 

The Decision Not to Contest 1960 Election Results 17 

Adams, Duque & Hazeltine 19 

Defeat in 1962: An Analysis 22 

Nixon as Attorney: The Move to New York 24 

The 1968 Presidential Campaign 26 

Adams is Appointed Los Angeles County Chairman 26 

Financing the Campaign 28 

The Issues 29 

Comments on Earl Warren, Nixon, and Republican Solidarity 30 

The Decision to Run and the Building of a Staff 31 

Richard Nixon in Retrospect: Power and Public Office 33 



Time of Interview: Afternoon of February 20, 1975. 

Place of Interview: Mr. Adam's law office in the firm of Adams, Duque 

& Hazeltine, in the Pacific Mutual Building in 
downtown Los Angeles . 

The Interview: 

As one who had helped launch Richard Nixon for Congress in the 1946 
race, Earl Adams stands as a fund- raiser and an important political 
force in the Earl Warren era; his significance is heightened when one 
acknowledges his state leadership roles in Nixon's subsequent campaigns 
for vice-president in 1952, president in 1960, governor in 1962, and 
president in 1968. In addition, he has been a member of the executive 
committee of the Republican State Central Committee; and he worked for 
U.S. Senator Thomas Kuchel, first as a member of his finance committee 
in the 1954 short-term election, then as his Southern California campaign 
chairman in 1956; in 1958 he was U.S. Senator William Knowland's southern 
campaign chairman in his race for the governorship. 

We do not dwell at length on the 1946 campaign in this interview 
because Mr. Adams had already taped one such interview with Paul Bullock 
for the latter's biography of Jerry Voorhis, Nixon's opponent in 1946; 
also because a year and a half before our meeting he had joined with three 
other Nixon leaders, Frank Jorgensen, Rockwood Nelson (deceased by the 
time of our interview), and Boyd Gibbons, in taping their joint recollections 
in a do-it-yourself session. The availability of the information he gave 
to Professor Bullock was assured by the publication of the Voorhis book, 
and Adams volunteered to donate a copy of the Jorgensen-Nelson-Gibbons-Adams 
transcription to The Bancroft Library as soon as all four have had a chance 
to review it. 

This transcript, then, focuses on the 1952-to-68 period, with 
diminishing emphasis as the interview moves beyond the final year of the 
Earl Warren time frame (1953) for which larger project research was 
designed. Much of that should be recaptured in more detail in an additional 
oral history interview, as should also some of Adams's personal background, 
including data on his grandfather who came to California after the gold 
rush by coursing down the Mississippi River, across the Gulf of Mexico, and 
through the Isthmus of Panama. 


Still a busy lawyer in the financial district of Los Angeles, Mr. 
Adams nonetheless obligingly cleared his calendar to make time for a 
session. We talked briefly before turning on the tape recorder, in order 
to determine what areas of Adams's life we should concentrate on, 
particularly concerning Richard Nixon. At the time we taped, the trauma of 
the Watergate affair was in its denouement, and Adams's longtime friend 
was recuperating and rebuilding his health in nearby San Clemente. The 
abrupt turn of events in the career of the man he had known for so long 
had left Adams mulling the big "Why" after reading some of the White House 
tape transcripts. 

Still looking every inch the Harvard lawyer — well-dressed, slim, 
sparkling white hair — he would be picked out of a crowd as a distinguished 
gentleman. Mr. Adams sees himself as "ultra conservative" on fiscal and 
foreign policy matters, as "liberal conservative" on others. A fluent 
elocution ability, which must contribute to the success of a campaign 
leader, was apparent in the session as he couched his sentences with easy 
eloquence. A few questions he fielded; others he voluntarily expanded on, 
much to the benefit of future historians. 

Preliminary emendations, questions on the ambiguities that arise 
when converting oral speech into written, and aurally obscure words were 
noted by Teresa Allen on the transcript and then mailed to him October 9, 
1978. After checking these problems, Mr. Adams tightened language here 
and there to reflect more closely what he had originally meant, cautiously 
put a small section under seal, and softened two passages which he felt 
were sharp and inaccurate in their connotations as a result of the conversion 
from oral to written language. He returned the interview July 23, 1979, and 
we conferred further by telephone on some inserts needed to fill in the 
story of his relationship to Senator Kuchel as the 1960s progressed, another 
bit to help identify his father, a passage left hanging unfinished when a 
tape had been turned, and a final agreement to shorten the passage to be 
placed under seal until 1990. These changes were photocopied and sent to 
him September 10 and he approved them and the whole transcript for final 
typing September 17, 1979. 

At the present time he is negotiating the permission necessary for the 
deposit of the transcript on the 1946 Nixon campaign which he had taped 
with his three political associates; Mr. Adams plans to get together within 
a few weeks with Boyd Gibbons and Frank Jorgensen to iron out some 
discrepancies before depositing the manuscript. 

Altogether, thanks are due Mr. Adams for his persistence and follow- 
through in seeing that his portion of California history and Nixoniana are 
appropriately preserved. 

Amelia R. Fry 

September 30, 1979 
Berkeley, California 

Childhood, Education, and War Experience 

[Date of Interview: February 20, 1975] 
[begin tape 1, side 1] 

Fry: Just to begin with, could I have a little thumbnail sketch of 
where you grew up and where you went to school? 

Adams: I was born in San Jose, California, a little town about fifty miles 
south of San Francisco — a little then, large now. I was educated 
in the schools of that county, Santa Clara County. The grammar 
school in my district — which on reflection now and as I look back 
I'm happy to say that I had that sort of an education — was one of 
those semi-country schools where they had as many, sometimes, as 
three grades in one room. When I graduated from that grammar 
school I went to the high school at San Jose and graduated from 
there, and then went to Stanford University. 

Fry: What was your father? 

Adams: My father was a contractor — not a building contractor, but a road 
contractor. His name was John F. Adams. He built the first big 
road from Los Gatos over the Santa Cruz Mountains to Santa Cruz. 

Fry: Is that still the same route that we take now? 

Adams: Yes. Before that you went 'way on down south by the Hotel de 

Redwood, way up on top of the hill, and then came around via 

Soquel to Santa Ctuz. But the new road cut that off, shortened the 

Fry: So you're a native Californian. And you went to Stanford? 

Adams: I'm a native Californian, and my father was a native Californian, too. 

My granddad, William Henry Adams, was born in 1828. He came here 

a little after the days of the gold rush. He settled in Grass 
Valley, California, where my father was born. 

Fry: We're going backwards instead of forwards, but how did your 
grandfather get here? Did he come around the Horn? 

Adams: No, he was with one of those groups that went down the Mississippi 
and crossed the Gulf of Mexico and landed on the Gulf side of the 
Isthmus of Panama, and then crossed the Isthmus and came out onto 
the Pacific Ocean. Then they came by steamer or boat up the Pacific 
coast to San Francisco. Most of them in his group died of cholera, 
I used to hear him say, in crossing the Panama. 

When my granddad got out on the Pacific slope — and by the way 
this hasn't much to do with Nixon — getting a ship to San Francisco 
was difficult because they were scarce, and there were lots of 
people who wanted to get aboard. Being anxious to get up here, he 
managed to get on a boat to what was San Pedro,* hoping that from 
San Pedro he could get a boat to San Francisco. So in those days 
he came up through Los Angeles from San Pedro to see what was 
here, and I often heard him say that there was only fifteen hundred 
people in Los Angeles at that time, all Mexicans and Indians. I've 
taken the time since then to look at the census — or what was 
available to compare to a census — and I found that there was 1,650 
people here. So he wasn't very far off. 

Eventually he became deputy county clerk in Nevada County, 
California. After he died, I tried to find the records, but the 
courthouse in Nevada City burned down about 1856, and the records 
were destroyed. 

Anyway, I entered Stanford University in 1912 and graduated in 
1916. I went then to the Harvard Law School. I was there until war 
was declared. We're talking now, strange as it may seem, about the 
First World War. Then I left Harvard Law School and enlisted in 
the army. War was declared, I think, in early April, April 6th 
or thereabouts, and before the end of the month I was in the army. 

I was sent out to the Presidio and from there I went to Camp 
Lewis, Washington, then to Camp Jackson, South Carolina, and then 
went overseas. I served with the artillery of the Ninety-first 
Division for a while — that would be Battery A of the Three hundred 
and Forty-sixth Field Artillery — and from there to Battery F of the 
Hundred and seventh Field Artillery, 28th Division, until the 
termination of the war. Then I came home in May of 1919. If that's 
helpful, that's a capsule of my childhood, my education, and my 
war experience. 

*The village of San Pedro was consolidated with the city of Los 
Angeles in 1909. — ed. 

Richard Nixon is Elected to Congress. 1946 
Adams's Political Background 

Fry: Now we need a capsule of your political experience up to the time 
when you were in this small group known as the fact-finding 
committee or the Committee of One Hundred Twenty-five. 

Adams: I was living then in San Marino, where I still live. San Marino 
was a part of what was then the Twelfth Congressional District.* 
I've forgotten what it is now, but that was the old congressional 
district. Our congressman at that time was Jerry Voorhis, a man of 
fine character and an honest man and a good man and a well- 
intentioned man. But from my viewpoint and those around me who 
were interested in obtaining a change, we didn't think Jerry 
Voorhis was very effective. Not effective not only in respect to 
us, but he wasn't really effective within his own Democratic party. 
And frankly, he represented a political philosophy that I didn't 
adhere to, that I didn't think was in the best interests of our 
country. In other words, we were philosophically at opposite ends 
insofar as politics was concerned. 

Fry: Before that had you been in any campaigns, or were you connected 

with the volunteer organization, the California Republican Assembly? 

Adams: The only experience I had before that in a political way was when 
Wendell Willkie ran for the presidency against Franklin Roosevelt 
in 1940. I was chairman of the Willkie campaign in my area out 
there, San Marino. 

Fry: So you were working with Mac [Mclntyre] Faries? 

Adams: Yes. I think Mac was the county chairman or state chairman. I 
can't remember which. But in my own area out there I was the 
chairman of the Willkie campaign. So that answers your question as 
to my prior political experience. 

Fry: What was the role of the California Republican Assembly in Nixon 
getting started in '46?** 

*The Twelfth District at that time stretched from the eastern border 
of Los Angeles to the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. — ed. 

**Richard Nixon was elected to the U.S. Congress from the California 
Twelfth Congressional District in 1946, defeating William J. Kinnett 
in the primary and incumbent Jerry Voorhis in the general 
election. — ed. 

Adams: Oh, none that I recall. I may be in error here, but I can't 
recall our group getting any help from any of the established 
Republican organizations insofar as Nixon's first campaign was 
concerned. As a matter of fact, I know of instances where people 
wanted to donate money and, being cautious before they did so, 
would make inquiry to the Republican headquarters over here. They 
were told that we were just a rump, inexperienced organization, 
and that they'd do much better to send their money in to the 
Republican headquarters and they would spend it where they 
thought a candidate had a greater chance of being elected. The 
Republican organization didn't feel that Nixon had any chance at 
all to lick Voorhis. Now, I'm not trying to cut down the 
Republican organization. You asked me a question, and I'm telling 
you as I remember it. I think Mr. [Frank] Jorgensen and Mr. Boyd 
Gibbons will tell you the same thing. I don't think there's any 
question about that. 

Fry: What were the Republican Associates? 

Adams: I don't remember whether the Republican Associates was functioning 
at that time. It may have been. No, I think it came into being 
afterwards, and I may be wrong. But anyway, the Republican 
Associates was really founded not to be a participant in a political 
campaign. It was more a research and educative function of the 
Republican party. I don't think it was ever intended by the 
Republican Associates to select candidates, sponsor candidates, or 
do things of that kind. But I don't remember it being in existence 
at that time. It may have been, but you'll have to count me out. 

Murray Chotiner 

Fry: I wonder if you could explain to me again Murray Chotiner 's role 
in 1946? I'd just like to get that on tape. 

Adams: What I can say in that regard is that, notwithstanding what I have 
read in the newspapers and periodicals and in the books that have 
been written by various authors about Nixon — his life, his political 
life particularly — it seems to me that it is generally always 
mentioned that Murray Chotiner ran Nixon's campaign in 1946. When 
I say Nixon's campaign of 1946, I mean the first time that Nixon 
ever offered himself to the public as a candidate for a public 
office. I have no recollection of Murray Chotiner being part of 
the group that found Nixon and promoted him and participated in the 
activities that led up to his election in 1946. 

Adams: The man who ran his campaign, if you want to talk about chairmen, 
was Roy Day in the primary. But that wasn't much of a campaign 
because of the fact that the Republican, William J. Kinnett, that 
was opposing Nixon for the nomination in the primary was an 
unknown — much more unknown than Nixon — and didn't have any great 
amount of support. No one paid much attention to him. His name 
has long since been forgotten. Whatever that campaign was in the 
primary, Roy Day did manage that campaign, principally because 
of the fact that he was then a member of the Republican County 
Central Committee [Los Angeles County] and the chairman of that 
area [the Twelfth District] and automatically stepped into that 
post or that authority. 


The chairman of the Nixon campaign in the general election was 
a man by the name of Harrison McCall, who has since died, so you 
can't talk to him. But it was not Murray Chotiner. It was 
Harrison McCall who was his chairman. 

Fry: Some records look like Murray Chotiner was pretty busy in Bill 
Knowland's campaign. 

Adams: Well, he could have been. 

Fry: I think maybe he was the head of the Knowland campaign in Southern 

Adams: No. It was Ed Shattuck, who I believe was Knowland's state 

chairman. I don't remember seeing Murray Chotiner at any of the 
meetings, any of the house meetings or public meetings we had in 
the first Nixon campaign of 1946, except at the last meeting that 
was held in Alhambra. I saw him there, but he wasn't there as a 
member of the fact-finding committee. He wasn't a member of the 
organization. He was there meeting people and, what little I 
observed him, he was taking notes. I don't know whether or not, 
even at that time, he knew Nixon. 

Fry: I wonder why he was there? 

Adams: He was a member, I think, of the county central committee, and he 
may have been out there as an observer. 

Campaign Fundraising 

Fry: I thought maybe you could fill in, if something needs to be filled 
in, about Harrison McCall's role in 1946. 

Adams: I know that Harrison McCall was hired at a dinner meeting we had 
at Frank Jorgensen's home to be Dick Nixon's campaign chairman 
in the general election. Frank Jorgensen was then living in 
San Marino. I can recall that during the course of the meeting 
we settled upon a compensation for McCall for $500, not $500 a 
month, but $500 for the campaign. When the meeting was over I 
remember walking out with Frank Jorgensen onto the lawn of the 
yard, and saying to him, "Frank, where are we going to get the 
$500?" So that's how much $500 meant in those days. 

Fry: Were your really big money raisers, like Asa Call in Los Angeles 
and people like this, approached for that campaign? 

Adams: No, I don't think so. I can't remember that. Now, Asa may have 
helped, but it was all within our district. I mean my activities 
were all within the district. For instance, I gave a $25 dinner 
at my home, trying to raise a little money. Mr. Kenneth Norris, 
who lived back of me, gave a like dinner. We used means such as 
that to raise money. There was no $100 a plate, or $500 a plate, 
or $1000 a plate. It was $25, which we all thought was an awful lot 
of money. And I'm sure that people who came thought they were 
being overcharged for what they got. 

[interruption, tape off] 

Adams: The recollections of these four — Jorgensen, Rockwood Nelson, Boyd 
Gibbons, and myself — have been transcribed. I'll try to make 
a xerox of it and let you have it, if Mr. Jorgensen and Mr. Gibbons 

Fry: That would help a lot. 

We can just move on then to 1952, since you said that you 
didn't have anything to do with 1950. 

Adams: No, I didn't. And this transcript of the tapes that I mentioned, 
which represents the recollection of the four of us, will take 
you through the 1945-46 bringing out of Rixhard Nixon. 

Fry: Were you glad that Nixon ran for the Senate in 1950? Why weren't 
you participating in that campaign? 

Adams: I can't remember. I was glad. I was fearful he might not be 
elected, but I was glad that he was moving on up. 

The Nixon Fund, 1952 

Adams: Nineteen fifty- two was when he ran for the vice-presidency. I had 
nothing to do with that, other than that I was on a finance 
committee in this area to raise money for the Eisenhower-Nixon 

Fry: After the convention? 

Adams: After the convention. I did not go to the convention. I was not 
a delegate. I came into it only in that small way, after General 
Eisenhower and Richard Nixon had been nominated for the presidency 
and vice-presidency on the Republican ticket. 

Fry: Then they started a campaign on a train down here in Southern 
California that went up the state. 

Adams: That was a little bit before the fund — the "Checkers" matter — 

Fry: I think that when the train got to Bakersfield the story was 

Adams: Somewhere around there; I can't remember. The fund itself had 
started before that, and I can't give you how much before that. 
But the catalyst in connection with that fund was Dana Smith of 
San Marino or South Pasadena, I don't remember which. 

I can remember attending a meeting, and it may have been the 
first meeting that Smith called — I can't be sure if it was the 
first or some subsequent meeting, but it was one of the early 
meetings — in which he outlined under the then-present law (I'm 
now talking about the time immediately following when Nixon was 
elected United States Senator; I'm not talking about the Eisenhower- 
Nixon campaign) how a senator could return to his own state only 
once a year at government expense. Any other trip made by the 
candidate to his home state beyond that one trip would have to be 
paid by the candidate himself. 

*In late 1950 Dana Smith, a Southern California attorney who had 
been finance chairman of Nixon's Senate campaign, helped establish 
for the Senator an on-going fund for mailing, travel, and other 
political expenses. In September, 1952 this was publicized and 
drew criticism. While pressure mounted for him to resign as the 
Republican nominee for vice-president, Nixon successfully defended 
his place on the ticket in a televised speech which has come to 
be called the "Checkers" speech. Copy in volume supporting 
documents in The Bancroft Library. 


Adams: Well now, Nixon's state of California was some three thousand 

miles or more from Washington. It was not like being a senator 
from Delaware or a senator from New Jersey, where you can go 
home in an afternoon without it costing you very much. Nixon's 
finances were such that he just couldn't afford more than one 
trip beyond that one trip out here to California. One of the 
reasons that prompted the meeting and the attempt to raise a 
little money was to provide funds to permit him to make these 
extra trips, the theory being that if you're going to be a good 
representative of your people, you have to be in touch with them 
once in a while. You can't keep in touch with them by being three 
thousand miles or more away in Washington, D.C. 

So that was one of the purposes that the money was to be used 
for. Other purposes were to permit him to use the money to frank 

literature that he could not frank under the government expense, 

and similar things of that kind, all for the purpose of keeping 

him in touch with his constituents here in the state of California 

and providing him with the funds to do what he couldn't otherwise 

As I remember, no contribution was to be more than $350. I 
read in the paper the other day, when they were rehashing this on 
television, that the contributions were limited to $500. I don't 
remember the $500 figure. My recollection is that it was $350. 
The money was to be turned over to Dana Smith, and the names of 
the contributors were not to be furnished at any time by Dana 
Smith to Richard Nixon. So he would not know who it was that was 
putting up this money, the theory being there to shut off any 
connection between contributor and the elected official so that 
contributors couldn't claim favoritism or ask for favors and things 
of that kind. 

Fry: Was that at Nixon's request, or was it Dana Smith's idea? 

Adams: As far as I'm concerned, it could have been at Nixon's request. 

He wasn't there. It was Dana Smith who was making the statement, 
and I imagine he was speaking for the Senator because Smith must 
have been in touch with Nixon on it. I can't even tell you whether 
or not this was done by Dana Smith on his own and without contact 
with Nixon. I don't know. 

But I can tell you that the contributions were limited to a 
very small, modest amount. Your names were not to be divulged to 
the Senator. He was not to use the money under any circumstance 
for his personal expenses. The money was only to defray these 
costs and expenses that were necessary to bring him in contact with 
the people out here in California which could not be expense to the 
government. It was an honest, decent, clean purpose, and the fund 
was a damned small one, only about $18,000 or thereabouts. 

Fry: It was so small by today's standards. 

Adams: That was the way the fund matter started, those were the purposes 
of the fund, and those were the purposes for which the money was 
to be used. 

Fry: Do you have a theory of why this was brought up as a controversial 


Adams: Oh, my theory would be — and it could be erroneous — that it's 

awfully good newspaper talk. It's lead information. It's something 
that attracts the public; it's good news; it makes headlines. 

Fry: I think both Earl Mazo and Leo Katcher suggest in their books that 
this story was fed to the press by the people who were disgruntled 
about Nixon's work for Eisenhower on the Earl Warren delegation 
[to the 1952 Republican convention]. In other words, the press 
was fed the story by pro-Warren people. 

Adams: That could be. 

Fry: I wondered if you knew anything about that. 

Adams: No, I don't. That could be a very reasonable surmise. I would 

have no information on that. However, I can assure you that it's 
something the press would grab very quickly, because it's good news. 

Fry: Sure, it's startling. But I wasn't sure it was startling news, 
because having funds for non-congressional expenses was not 
altogether unusual. 

Adams: Well, it made good news. It startled the whole country! 

Fry: What did you do then? Did you try to help Nixon in representing 

him here, or anything like that, in connection with that fund story? 

Adams: No, nothing other than the fact that I contacted him, only by 
telegram, when he and his wife, Pat, returned here to the 
Ambassador Hotel from which, I think, he televised his "Checkers 
talk." But, no, I didn't. 

I knew what he was up against. He had Murray Chotiner and a 
great group around him that were advising him — some of them 
advising him badly and some of them advising him in good fashion. 
I thought he got a lot of bad advice from a lot of big people at 

that time. 

Fry: What was some of the bad advice he got? 


Adams: I think some of the big political figures at that time that were 
around him were urging him to get off the ticket. 

Fry: Was Chotiner? 

Adams: No. Chotiner was giving him the best, most solid advice of any 
man that was around him, in my opinion. 

Fry: Was Bernie [Bernard] Brennan? 

Adams: Bernie was there, but I think that Chotiner had taken the lead on 
the whole thing. I think Chotiner had the best grasp of the 
situation. I think he gave Nixon the best advice. I think 
Chotiner was the most solid and sincere friend that Nixon had at 
that time. Now, there may be others that were sincere, but a 
good many of them, I think, were giving him bad advice, urging 
him to get off the ticket when he hadn't done anything that 
was wrong. I don't think that he did anything that was wrong. 
Why jump off the ticket when you did no more than permit your friends 
to raise a few dollars to be used for the purposes that I just 
outlined, under circumstances where those names were never to be 
revealed to him? He wouldn't know who gave up the money. Now, 
whether or not Dana turned over that list to him, I can't say. 

Fry: Who wanted him to get off the ticket? 

Adams: You can get that information out of the papers better than I can 
tell you. All I know about it is what I read in the papers. 
The only firsthand information I have about getting off the 
ticket is what Bill Knowland himself told me. Knowland was out 
in the Pacific someplace at that time, on vacation or otherwise, 
and he was told about this and came back. I know, from what Bill 
Knowland told me, that Knowland immediately located the 
Eisenhower train and got on the Eisenhower train. He stood up 
for Nixon and said, "It's no go. You leave him alone and he stays 
on the ticket." Knowland told that to General Eisenhower. That's 
the only firsthand information I have on that. 

Fry: Do you have any firsthand information about Nixon's vice-presidential 
nomination and Ike's selection of him? 

Adams: No, only what I've read. You mean the maneuvering that took place? 
Fry: Yes. And at what point this was offered as a strong possibility. 
Adams: No, I don't know. 

Fry: There again, a lot of the books place it pretty early — like April, 



Adams: I couldn't help you there. 
Fry: He's never mentioned it? 
Adams: No, and I've never asked him. 

Earl Adams and the Republican Party 
The Kuchel Campaigns 

Fry: Am I missing something here that you were doing in other political 
areas at this time? 

Adams: Lord, it's a long story. Yes, I was finance chairman for Tom 
Kuchel in 1954 when he ran for the short term for the United 
States Senate. 

[end tape 1, side 1; begin tape 1, side 2] 

Adams: I want to correct the above statement. In 1954 I was a member of 

Kuchel's finance committee. I was not chairman. And I think I 

was also a member of the lawyers' committee. Then in 1956 I was 

his Southern California campaign chairman when he ran for the 
long term. 

Fry: Were you able to get money from roughly the same sources for Kuchel 
as you did for Nixon? 

Adams: No, no. Oh, there was some overlapping. But no, there was a 
difference there in political philosophy between the two that 
would prompt you to go to different sources for your money. 

Fry: Which was that Kuchel was more — 

Adams: Kuchel was a little more liberal, I would say, than Nixon. 

Fry: So did you get more Democratic money for Kuchel? 

Adams: I would think so. 

Fry: Or am I dividing it up the wrong way? 

Adams: No, I would answer that question that I think so, without being 
able to give you what the impact was. But I would think so, yes. 

Fry: That's what 1 mean, because you probably didn't think in terms of 
party. You were thinking more in terms of people who would be 
interested in Kuchel. 


Adams: It was easier to get a Democratic committee for Kuchel than it 

was to get a Democratic ticket for Nixon at that time; let me put 
it that way. 

Fry: There was so much antagonism, as the majority of state support 

shifted from the Earl Warren era to what we'll call the Nixon era, 
between Warren and the oil companies — especially the independent 
oil companies — that I would expect you to have had a lot of good 
luck in getting funds from Keek's and all of those. 

Adams: I don't know. I can't remember. My recollection of getting money 
is that it was always hard, regardless who the candidate was. 
You were lucky if you got a large contribution, and they came in 
only occasionally and few and far between. So I couldn't say with 
regard to Kuchel that it was easier to get money from oil companies 
or harder to get money from them. 1 don't remember. I know it 
was hard — I can put it that way — at all times. 

Fry: It's really hard to tell from the records, because the records 
then were only those that contributed to groups formed for the 
candidate. It's hard to know what really went to the candidate. 
I think that what happens is that we got a distorted view of who 
was supporting the candidate, because the law only required reports 
to be made on just that one type of contribution. 

Adams: Nixon had widespread support. Kuchel had widespread support. 
Both of them were well liked. 

Fry: To get elected they both had to have some Democratic support. 

Adams: Well, you do in California. To be elected in California, because 
of the over-preponderance of Democrat registration as against 
Republican, I'd say a Republican should get at least 85 percent of 
the vote of his own party and not less than 25 percent of the 
Democratic party's vote to be elected. I don't see how you can 
get in otherwise. 

Now, with the Democrats it would work the other way because 
of their heavy registration. If a Democrat can get 65 or 67 percent 
of the vote of his own party and 10 percent of the Republican party, 
he's in. So you can see how it's much easier for the Democrats 
than it is for the Republicans. 

Fry: I'm about to move on. Did you want to say any more on that 

Adams: You asked me what intervened, and I was saying that in 1956 I was 
Tom Kuchel 's campaign chairman here, and he was re-elected. In 
1958, when Bill Knowland ran, I was his Southern California 
chairman also . 


The Big Switch: An Insider's View 

Fry: I'd just like to ask that one question that you must have been 

asked three hundred times. Why did Knowland choose not to go on 

in the Senate in 1958 and to run for governor of California instead? 

Adams: What I am going to say is based upon my surmise of the situation, 
which may not be correct. There were two men in this state — 
Ed Shattuck and Phil Davis — who were strong persons in the 
Republican structure here at that time. They were very close to 
and very fond of Knowland, and he was very fond of them. I think 
that they felt there was a chance, because of Knowland 's prestige 
in the United States Senate and the name he had made for himself, 
that they could bring him into California and elect him governor 
of the state of California. That was their feeling out here. 

From Knowland 1 s viewpoint, he had been back in Washington 
for some time and I think he wasn't adverse at all to the idea of 
coming back to California and being governor if he could. 

Fry: Why would Shattuck and Davis have wanted him governor instead of 
senator, when he was the leader in the Senate? 

Adams: Don't you think that two people that are politically ambitious 

for a position within the party feel that they are doing much more 
for themselves if they are close to the governor of a big state like 
the state of California, than they are close to a United States 
Senator who is 'way away in Washington? I'd say the governor of the 
state of California is more influential, and could be politically, 
maybe, a better stepping-stone to a higher position than going from 
the Senate. 

Fry: Do you think it would have been a better base for the presidency? 

Adams: Yes, I think so. But then of course, on the other hand, you can 
see how things work out. In my opinion if [Robert] Taft had 
been nominated and elected president of the United States instead 
of Eisenhower, Bill Knowland would have been his vice-president. 
With Taft dying, Bill Knowland would have ended up president of 
the United States! So you see how things work out. 

So Bill Knowland coming back here was a combination of those 
men intriguing him to do so, and maybe his and his wife and 
family's desire to have him back in California. 

Fry: Knight wasn't happy with this, was he? 


Adams : 


Adams : 


Adams : 

No, because to promote Knowland they had to shove Knight out, 
which was one of the things that helped bring about a defeat. 
In my opinion it would have been more astute from a political 
standpoint if, instead of bringing him back into the state of 
California the way they did — which in effect was having him fly 
out here and say, "Here, people, is Bill Knowland, and we want him 
to be governor of the state of California" — they had started an 
early program throughout the state to have meetings in San Diego 
of important groups, called for another purpose other than to 
talk about Knowland. Then they could have had important people 
suggest that maybe we ought to consider having Knowland come out 
here and survey the situation, and have a talk with Knight and 
see who was going to run for governor. Do the same thing in 
Los Angeles, Bakersfield, San Francisco, and throughout the state, 
where the movement would look as though it were a grass roots 
movement for a consultation between Knight and Knowland as to who 
was going to be the candidate, which would lead up then to a 
conclusion that nobody came in here and shoved Knight out abruptly — 
if you follow me on my line of thinking? 

Sure I do. 

In fact, Knowland and I had a series of interviews.* We were 
going through the history of the Republican party, year by year, 
when he died. We hadn't gotten up to 1958 yet. 

But that was generally what you would expect to have happen, a 
very careful laying of groundwork before you announce that the 
candidate's going to run. 

[interrupting] You're saying it better than I did. 
should have been done in my judgment. 

That's what 

My question is why was it done so precipitously and so maladroitly, 
when such matters had not been handled like that in the past by the 

I don't know. It could be overestimation of his prestige, of his 
power, of his political wallop. I don't know. 

Then, of course, he was interested intrinsically and 
constitutionally in the right- to-work law. He believed in it. 
He believed that in a country such as ours, where you're supposed 
to have the greatest expanse of liberty and freedom, that a man 
should not be compelled to join a labor union as a condition precedent 
to working, to making a living. 

*See interview with William F. Knowland in: Earl Warren's Campaigns, 
Volume II, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, 
University of California, Berkeley, 1977. 


Adams: I don't know how anyone who knows anything about freedom — freedom 
of choice, freedom of selection, and freedom under our 
constitution — can disagree with that as a legal proposition. Now, 
unionists and other people might disagree with it as a matter of 
economics, as a matter of survival, that you've got to have labor 
unions in order to protect the laboring man from the power of the 
employer. I can understand that, too. But I'm talking now about 
laws. I can see no justification, from the viewpoint of a lawyer, 
why a man should be compelled to join a labor union as a condition 
precedent to earning a livelihood. That to me is servitude. 

Fry: Nixon came out on behalf of Knowland on that. 
Adams: He supported Knowland. 

Fry: But I think on a national scale Nixon was not supporting right-to- 

Adams: No. He supported Knowland. Now, whether he supported Knowland by 
saying, "I'm in favor of right- to-work," I can't say. I don't 
remember. But I know he supported Knowland. Knowland liked Nixon 
and I think Nixon liked Knowland. 

Fry: At what point did you come into Knowland' s 1958 campaign? 

Adams: From the beginning. I was his Southern California chairman, under 
the state chairman. 

Fry: You mean when Knowland first decided to run for governor? 

Adams: When he made the decision to come in here, I played no part in 

that decision at all. That had been made before I came into it. 
He called me one day by telephone, after he had made the decision, 
and said he wanted to see me. I went to see him, or he came to 
see me, I can't remember which. I said yes, I would be glad to be 
his chairman, which I was. 

Adams's Political Philosophy 

Fry: This is a good place for you to explain for the record where you 
were in your political philosophy along the continuum of 

Adams: Oh, I'm a conservative. 

Fry: Among the conservatives, where are you? 


Adams: Oh, you're getting to a fine degree. I would say that on fiscal 
matters, on the matter of international relations — things of that 
kind — I'm ultra conservative. When it comes down to human rights 
and things of that kind, I would be considered more of a liberal 

Let me illustrate. If I were president of the United States, 
and a kingmaker in addition to being president, and could do the 
things that I wanted to do, one of the first things that I would 
want to do would be to clean up the living conditions of the coal 
miners of the East. I would want to see them have decent homes 
to live in. 

Fry: With federal funds? 

Adams: I don't care how it would be done. I think human beings are 

entitled to — a man that digs coal all day in a mine and comes up, 
I want him to go home to a respectable home with good sanitary 
conditions and good living conditions, and a chance to earn a 
little money, save a little money, and educate his family and 
improve the living conditions of himself and his family. Now, 
whether that's a liberal or a conservative, I don't know. I don't 
know what it is, but I'm trying to tell you how I would approach 

Fry: It's straight out of John L. Lewis. 

Adams: Now, on this business of labor unions calling strikes right before 
Christmas time or right before the holidays and paralyzing the 
transportation systems and paralyzing the economic system — no. I'm 
opposed to that sort of thing. So I don't know what I am. I mean 
I don't know what I am when I give you those examples. You 
decide for yourself what you think I am. 

To me, two times two makes four. Rhetoric won't change it. 
The New Deal, The Fair Deal, The New Frontier — all of that is just 
hogwash. It's a lot of rhetoric, builds pies in the sky for 
people, gets their hopes and ambitions way up, and they're never 
satisfied. I mean the goals are never met. I'd rather be like 
Mr. [Gerald R. ] Ford is acting today as president. Whether his 
programs are sound financially or not, I can't say. But he is at 
least trying to be frank, not using high-sounding phrases and 
promising the people everything, and salvation right away. I like 
that sort of thing. 

I'm convinced of the fact that this country can't survive — 
any more than this office can survive or any more than you can 
survive in your own home — if you continue, year after year, to 
spend more money than you take in. You're going to go bankrupt 


Adams: someday. So I'm against all of that, too. I have never been 

able to convince myself that all — I read someplace the other day 
that over $100 billion, not million, have been spent in the last 
thirty years to improve the poverty conditions and whatnot of the 
people of this country, and they're worse off today than when these 
started. I ask you, what have we gotten from all of these programs? 

Mr. Roosevelt was talking about there being seventeen million 
people going to bed every night ill housed, ill clothed, and 
ill fed. After the four terms that he was in there, with all the 
money that was spent, Kennedy came into office in 1960 saying there 
was twenty-one million people still ill clothed, illy fed, and 
ill housed. Now, you put all that together and tell me what have 
we got for what has been spent? 

Fry: I don't know, but if Bob Finch or Ronald Reagan don't run for 
president next year, I think you should consider it. [laughs] 

Adams: [laughs] I would probably get two votes, mine and my wife's. 
And I have some doubt about her! 

Richard Nixon: 1960-1968 

The Decision Not to Contest 1960 Election Results 




Adams : 



Now, getting back to Nixon. Nixon then ran for the presidency 
against Kennedy in 1960. I played no official part in that. I 
worked in a minor way in the Nixon-Kennedy campaign of 1960, but 
not in any important way that's worth mentioning at all. 

Was that just finance again? 

I think it was, yes. I didn't have any decision or strategy- 
making authority of any kind in that campaign. 

After 1961 Nixon came to work here at Adams, Duque & Hazeltine, 


Can you tell me how that came about? 

He ran in 1960. He was defeated by Kennedy. He didn't come here 
in 1960. In December of 1960, the month following the election, 
I got a telephone call from Bob Finch, who was then the 
administrative assistant for Nixon, and he said that Nixon wanted 


Adams: to talk to me, and would I come back to Washington. I said I 
would and I did. I went back there and met him, and when I 
walked into his office, he said to me, "How are you?"— which he 
generally says to you when he first sees you. 

I said, "It isn't important as to how I am. The important 
question is how are you?" 

He said, "What do you mean by that?" 

I said, "Well, I've been reading in the newspapers what 
happened in the election, and from what I can gain — what I hear — 
it looks to me like in two states, particularly Illinois and Texas, 
you were badly treated and the ballot boxes were stuffed, burned, 
and other things happened to the extent that I think that if you 
raised the question about the voting — had an investigation made — 
you might find that you were really, in effect, elected president 
instead of Kennedy." 

Nixon said, "I've been told that by other people. I've 
thought a great deal about it." 

I said, "What are you going to do?" 
He said, "I'm going to do nothing." 
I said, "Why?" 

He started out by saying, "If I contest the election, then 
everything President Kennedy does in the interim will be a de facto 
act," if you understand what I mean by de facto, as compared with 
de jure. It would be a questionable act. "And he will be a de 
facto president until this is determined. I have determined that 
it is by far more important that the people of the United States 
and the people of the world understand in America we have de jure 
government rather than de facto government, than it is that Richard 
Nixon be president of the United States." That's the statement he 
made to me. 

Fry: In other words, he was concerned about how this would look in other 

Adams: Not only that, but he was concerned about what effect it would 

have upon our administration. Because everything that the then- 
incumbent president was doing would be a questionable act until the 
matter was determined. And if, in the final determination of it, 
it was found that he had been elected instead of Kennedy, then 
everything Kennedy had done while in office would be a de facto 


Fry: Did you think that he could have asked for recounts and challenged 
these elections and have it all finished within a year, maybe? 

Adams: Oh, I don't know. You can't tell in this country, with all the 
appeals and everything that you can take in various matters, how 
long a thing of that kind would endure. But anyway, he wiped it 

Adams, Duque & Hazeltine 

Adams: Then he said, "I am thinking about coming out to California to 
practice law. Do you think I should settle in Los Angeles or 
should I settle in San Francisco?" 

I said, "By all means, I think it should be in Los Angeles. 
You were born in Southern California. You were reared in Southern 
California. You were elected a congressman from Southern California. 
Your base of voting strength and power in connection with your 
election to the United States Senate and so on arose out of 
Southern California. You're known there. You go to San Francisco 
and you're breaking into a new area. Sure, they know you, but it 
isn't your home town, in your home territory. It should be Southern 

He said, "I think maybe you're right. Well, I'm coming out, 
and I'd like to get from you your suggestion of a list of firms 
that you think I might be interested in, or who might be interested 
in me." I did that. I think I gave him a list of five or six 
firms, and I put ours on the list. 

So he came out. I was never with him at all when he visited 
or was interviewed by or interviewed any of the other firms . On 
one occasion when he was in Los Angeles and over at the Statler 
Hotel, I took my partner, Henry Duque, and my other partner, Herbert 
Hazeltine, with me over there. We met with him and talked about 
the various law firms and told him that we were interested in having 
him join us if he felt that he wanted to do so. Nothing more was 

Shortly after that the Republican State Central Committee met 
in Sacramento. I went up to that meeting. I was a member of its 
executive committee at that time. And of course he was there. 
On the last day of the state central committee meeting, late in 
the afternoon, Bob Finch called my hotel, asking when I was going 
back to Los Angeles. I told him and he said, "Do you mind if Dick 
Nixon rides back with you?" 


Adams: I said, "Of course not. It would be wonderful." 

We both got on the plane together, sat in a seat together, 
and on the way down he said, "I've decided to come into your firm." 
That was on a Saturday, and on the following Monday morning he 
was here. 

Fry: Was Nixon in a position at this time to be able to feel assured 

that he would be offered a position in any of these selected firms? 
Was it mainly just his job to make up his mind? 

Adams: Yes. I would say that anybody that had the national and international 
reputation that he had at that time could be reasonably certain in 
his own mind that he wouldn't have any trouble making a connection 
in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Philadelphia — any place 
in the United States. 

Fry: So he came here. 

Adams: When the office opened Monday morning he was here, with all the 
reporters in Los Angeles, and I thought from all over the world, 
out in the hall taking pictures and everything else. 

Fry: Someone — it might have been Mr. Lloyd Dinkelspiel in San Francisco — 
said he thought that here your firm was where Nixon got a lot of 
his "post-graduate schooling" in foreign affairs. Didn't he do a 
lot of representing of the firm in other countries? 

Adams: No, not a great deal when he was here. I think Lloyd was thinking 
more of when he went to New York.* That's where he began to get 
his big cases that involved international complexities and 
problems. No, I think Lloyd was thinking of New York, not Los 
Angeles, because I don't believe that anyone that has an international 
problem of some kind that requires the assistance of a lawyer is 
going to come to Los Angeles for it. He's going to go to New York 
or Washington. 

Fry: I thought maybe Los Angeles firms had a lot to do westward, toward 

*In the spring of 1963 Richard Nixon joined the New York firm 
Mudge, Stern, Baldwin, and Todd (later Nixon, Mudge, Rose, 
Guthrie & Alexander; later Nixon, Mudge, Rose, Guthrie, Alexander 
& Mitchell). — ed. 


Adams: I don't think so. There wasn't a great deal — at least while he 

was here there wasn't a great deal of that. He had some important 
pieces of business come here because of his presence in the office, 
but I don't recall any of it being international. I do know that 
after he went to New York and joined the Mudge firm, I think he 
increased their business by over $1 million the first year he was 

Fry: That's paying your own way, isn't it? 

Adams: Yes. Yes, because right then and there the international business 
began to come in to him, which he was ideally suited for. 

Fry: I'm sure he didn't have much trouble getting appointments in foreign 

Adams: None whatsoever. That was his big forte. Now, there are a lot 
of fine international lawyers and firms that could do a fine 
piece of business for you. But if you had a problem in France 
that you wanted to get solved as expeditiously as possible, it 
might take them three or four weeks or a month to make the proper 
connection. Nixon could pick up the telephone and get hold of 
President De Gaulle in probably an hour, and say, "I've got a 
problem. I'd like to meet with you. How soon can I see you? 
Can I see you tomorrow or can I see you the next day?" And he'd 
be in. 

Fry: Here in your office, what were his main cases? 

Adams: His main work here was working in consultation with things that 
we wanted his help on, and also in supervising and consulting in 
connection with pieces of business that he brought in. He wasn't 
a detail lawyer that would sit down and take a probate file and 
spend a whole day and a half going through the thing, picking out 
little pieces of history here and a little fact over there so that 
he could get a composite idea of what was going on. He'd like to 
take the thing after somebody had done that and take the big, 
bold sweeps of the thing, be in on the ultimate decisions and the 
ultimate conclusions. 

Fry: Was he put in a position of negotiation, then, in some of these 

Adams: Oh, yes. And he turned a lot of very important cases down. I 

want to say that to his credit too. I can think of one case, one 
piece of business, that was offered us because of his being here. 
It was in early 1962. The fees would have been in the millions 
because the case would require a sizeable staff and would go on 


Adams: for years. Nixon talked to me one day and said he had decided 
not to take it — that somewhere along the way it might involve a 
government agency and he, as former vice-president, could not in 
good conscience be a part of anything that might remotely appear 
to be a conflict of interest. 

[end tape 1, side 2; begin tape 2, side 1] 

Defeat in 1962: An Anlysis 

Fry: What about in 1962, when he ran for governor? 

Adams: In 1962, when he ran for governor, I played no official part in it, 
because in that year I was again Tom Kuchel's campaign chairman 
for re-election. I talked with Mr. Nixon about it, and he said, 
"No, I'd rather have you stay. You can do me more good by staying 
there and working for Tom Kuchel's election than you can by getting 
into my campaign." 

Nixon was very late [September 27, 1961] in making a public 
announcement of his final decision. He had made statements earlier 
that were not definite as to whether he was or was not going to be 
a candidate, all of which led other people, such as Joe Shell and 
Butch [Harold J.] Powers, a former lieutenant governor, to believe 
that there was a possibility that Nixon would not be a candidate. 
Both those men, then, announced that they were going to be candidates 
for the Republican nomination, set up their own organizations — had 
their own campaign committees organized throughout the state and 
funds were raised and whatnot — and went into the primary campaign. 

Then Nixon announced that he was going to be a candidate. 
Now, that turned away from Nixon a lot of the Shell votes that he, 
Nixon, would otherwise have received in the runoff with Brown. 
Nixon did get the nomination in the primary. He was beaten by 
Brown by — I don't know — a couple of hundred thousand votes. Joe 
Shell polled over 700,000 votes in the primary.* 

*Results of the 1962 primary race for governor were: 

Democratic Republican 

Brown 1,739,792 5,236 (write-in) 

Nixon 35,883 (write-in) 1,285,151 

Shell 66,712 (write-in) 656,542 

General election results were: 

Brown 3,037,109 

Nixon 2,740,351 

— Handbook, California 
Legislature, 1963, 
Regular Session 


Fry: A pretty big hunk. 

Adams: So you see, he lost the Shell vote — or a large portion of the 
Shell vote — and thereby was defeated by Brown. If he'd have 
gotten the Shell vote, or two-thirds of the Shell vote, he would 
have beaten Brown. So I think his late announcement brought about 
his defeat. 

Fry: Why do you think he felt so ambivalent? Was he considering 
continuing working here? 

Adams: I don't know. This again is a surmise on my part. I'm not sure 
that his family, particularly his wife, Pat, wanted him to run 
for governor. I think he had a problem there at home, to satisfy 
her that it was a thing, maybe, that he should do. That 
persuasion didn't bring about a decision until late in the campaign. 
He hasn't told me that, but that's my guess. 

Fry: As a television watcher, I remember that Pat Nixon really took it 
hard when he lost. 

Adams: Oh, yes. So did he. 

Fry: I wondered if that had something to do with her attitude? 

Adams: I think he wanted to run for governor with her blessing, and I 
think it took some persuasion, and finally perhaps a reluctant 
"yes." It came late, and I think that hurt him immensely. Oh, 
I know that if he hadn't had the opposition of Shell in the primary, 
which always causes some bloodletting, that he would have gotten 
the Shell vote and he would have beaten Brown by two or three 
hundred thousand votes. 

Fry: In the general election. 

Adams: Why, sure, because there's bloodletting when you have that primary. 
He has to say things about Shell, and Shell has to say things 
about him. That results in a division. If he hadn't had that 
opposition, why, all of that Shell vote would have gone to him. 

Fry: I was just reading that in some book — it may have been Frank 

Mankiewitz's latest book, Perfectly Clear. The writer mentioned 
that some of the Shell vote actually went to Brown, and I couldn't 
understand this because the philosophies were so far apart. 

Adams: Well, it could have been. You see, you hurt peoples' feelings 
and they don't follow their party then. They're angry about 
something, and they're spiteful, and they're dissatisfied. So 
they'll do that. Oh, I don't think there's any question but what 
some of the Shell vote went to Brown. It had to, for Brown to be 
elected. Anyway, I think that's the reason that he didn't beat 


Fry: Was there a problem of lack of money because of Shell? 

Adams: No, I don't think so. A candidate will always tell you there's 

a lack of money, so — no, I don't think so. I think they all spend 
too much. 

Fry: Were there any differences in this campaign between your kind of 
conservatism, which you were explaining to me awhile ago, and 
some of Nixon's stands, so that you had to sort of keep your 
mouth closed? 

Adams: He came out and attacked the John Birch Society, which I would 
never have done. If he had asked me, I would have said no. 
Now, I'm not a John Birch Society man. I wouldn't belong to it. 
I don't believe in those kind of things. But I don't believe in 
attacking a society that stands for — if everything the John Birch 
Society wanted was put into play, it wouldn't harm this country 
any. They were condemned principally because a man by the name of 
Welch said something disparaging about General Eisenhower. I 
would have disagreed with Nixon on that. I would have said, 
"Leave the John Birch Society alone. You've got nothing to gain 
by doing that." 

My father used to tell me, "As you go through life, don't 
buy problems. You can get them for nothing." So why create a 
problem for yourself? 

Fry: This further alienated him from people following Shell? 
Adams: That's right, it did. It hurt him immensely. 

Nixon as Attorney: The Move to New York 

Fry: So instead of coming back here to your law firm then, he went to 
New York? 

Adams: No, he stayed in Los Angeles. He didn't go to New York until March 
or April of 1963. 

Fry: What at that point did he want his base to be New York? 

Adams: He talked about the thing several times, and I said to him on 

several occasions, selfishly, "I'd like to have you stay here." 

We liked him. He was an easy man to get along with. He was a good 

listener. For a man in the high positions that he had held, he 

was one of the best listeners that I have ever come in contact with. 


Adams: Most people in those high positions want to do all the talking. 
He likes to do all the listening. He would always cross his 
legs — he's in a great habit of crossing his legs — and he'd cup 
his chin in his hand like that [demonstrates] and listen. He was 
a very attentive listener and had a very retentive mind. He was 
a very amiable fellow to be with, and was never in your way, 
never threw his weight around to assume a position of importance 
at all. 

So all of us would have liked to have him stay here. But I 
said to him on several occasions, "Dick, I think that your strong 
forte is in international law. You've got a great international 
background. You've had a great deal of experience. You have 
access to all the capitols of the world. I think that's where you 
should be. I hate to say it, but I don't think that you can be 
an international lawyer and practice in Los Angeles. I think you 
have to go to New York or you have to go to Washington. That's 
where the clients will go for international lawyers, not out here." 
So he ultimately went to the Mudge firm in New York. As I said, 
I believe he increased the income of that firm by over $1 million 
the first year. 

Fry: How did he make contact there, or did he have to? 

Adams: He made it himself. One of his very dear friends was Mr. [Elmer H.] 
Bobst, who was the head of Warner-Lambert Pharmaceutical Company. 
He was an elderly gentleman, and a very close friend of Richard 
Nixon. I think it was through Bobst that he was introduced to the 
Mudge firm, because Bobst was using the Mudge firm as counsel for 
his pharmaceutical company. I think that was his introduction to 
the Mudge firm. 

Fry: When he left to go work for Mudge, did you feel that he did not see 
this as the way to spend the rest of his days, but that he still 
had this feeling that he wanted to be president? 

Adams: Yes, but I think it was an ambivalent feeling. He was feeling his 
way through. He wasn't sure that at that time he could demonstrate 
enough power between that time and the election in 1968 to put 
himself up so he could lead the Republican ticket. I would say 
that I think he had it in mind. But he also had in mind the 
necessity for him to establish a firm base as a practicing lawyer 
in New York and accumulate something for his family. I think he 
had that in mind too. But I don't think he had completely cast out 
of his mind the possibility of running for president. 

Fry: Was New York a better base than California for running for president 
if he ever wanted to? 


Adams: No. I think New York would be all right if you had the background 
and the foundation there, which he didn't have. His foundation 
and background was California. California is just as good as 
New York, with the great voting power that we have here, the 
electoral vote that we have. 

Fry: So it was mainly, then, that it would give him a better position 
in the practice of law? 

Adams: Yes, and a bigger exposure, a more important exposure. Instead of 
being a provincial lawyer in the city of Los Angeles, he'd be 
one of international repute. 

Fry: In summaries and evaluations of Nixon's presidential administration, 
he comes out very well in his foreign relations. 

Adams: Yes. Oh, I think he comes out excellently in his foreign relations. 
At least it looks that way now. You never can tell how these 
detentes and things are going to work out. I think he comes out 
very well there, and I think on the whole he comes out on domestic 
matters on as high a level as any of the other presidents we've ever 
had. Up until the time his Watergate thing came along I would say 
he had a record that was just as good as any of them. I think 
that's where the floundering took place. 

Fry: Can you make any specific connections between his experiences with 
Mudge and his later decisions and efforts in foreign policy? 
For instance, his efforts at detente — do you know a specific 

Adams: No. 

Fry: What about his overtures to mainland China? 

Adams: No, I can't help you on that. 

The 1968 Presidential Campaign 

Adams is Appointed Los Angeles County Chairman 

Fry: Didn't you tell me that you worked for him in 1968? 
Adams: I was Los Angeles County chairman for him in 1968. 
Fry: Were you in on his decision to run? 



Adams : 
Adams : 





Adams : 

Adams : 

No. I just ran the campaign for him In Los Angeles County, 
following the overall pattern that had been laid down by the 
strategy group in Washington. 

At what point did you enter, and how? 

Right at the beginning. 

What happened? Did he just call you from New York? 

Bob Finch called me or talked to me. I can't remember which. I 
said to Bob that what I wanted was more than Bob Finch's request 
that I be Nixon's chairman here. I wanted him to go back and 
talk to Nixon and have Nixon tell him that he did or did not want 
me to be the chairman. If he came back and reported that he talked 
to Nixon and Nixon said yes, I would take it. 

You weren't sure that this was Nixon's idea? 

No, I was not. You're never sure. 

This was to be chairman of Southern California? 

Chairman of Los Angeles County and then to branch out to Southern 
California. But I did still want to keep on as chairman of Los 
Angeles County, because that's really Southern California. You 
control the whole operation from there. 

Finch called me back and said that he had talked to Nixon, and 
Nixon had said that yes, by all means, that was what he wanted me 
to do. So I opened a headquarters immediately out there on 
Wilshire Boulevard. I also wrote to Tom Kuchel, who was up for 
re-election for the U.S. Senate, and told him that in the event he 
was planning for me to work for him, I would not be able to because 
I had agreed to work for Nixon. 

Murray Chotiner was in on this one, wasn't he? 

Not in California, 
never was here. 

He may have been back in Washington, but he 

Who were your main people out here? 

You mean that helped me in the campaign? It would be Jack Drown, 
who was the husband of Helene Drown, who is a very close friend of 
Mrs. Nixon. They were roommates in college, and I guess you've 
seen her name connected with Mrs. Nixon quite often. Ray Arbuthnot- 
he's an orange grower at La Verne and an old early Nixon supporter. 
He got in with Nixon in the senatorial campaign of 1950 and stayed 


Adams: with him all the way through the other campaigns. Waller Taylor 
here in the office also helped. Oh, and there was a scad of 
people that were put on the payroll. But I'm thinking of the main 
volunteers . Those people were all volunteers working with no 
compensation, as was my case. 

Financing the Campaign 

Adams: You asked me about the campaign and who was there, and I have told 

Fry: You've said Jack Drown and Ray Arbuthnot were working in the campaign. 
Adams: Yes, and Waller Taylor. 
Fry: Was there anyone else? 

Adams: They were the important ones. Jeb Magruder was there, but only for 
the early portion of the campaign. 

Fry: Who was in charge of finance? 

Adams: If I remember, Maurice Stans had worked out an overall program by 
which all the money that was collected went back to him. Then he 
reparcelled it out to the various states as he thought was necessary 
for a successful operation. So when we wanted money I had to get 
hold of him, or get hold of [Herbert] Kalmbach, who was working for 
Stans at that time, and tell him that I needed money. 

It was not a satisfactory arrangement at all, because there 
were long periods of time when we didn't have any money, although 
they raised $3 million or $4 million or more right out of Los 
Angeles County. We were out of money a lot of times — times when I 
didn't even have literature. One time I had to call Clem Stone 
in Chicago and ask him if he'd send out some of his literature 
because I didn't have any money to get any, or any money to function, 
so Stone did send out some of his literature. So it was a very 
unsatisfactory arrangement. 

I don't know whether Asa Call told you or not, but he was 
instrumental in raising a lot of money here. Finally we decided the 
hell with it; we are just going to raise the money and keep what 
we need to run our campaign, and if they don't like it it's just 
too bad, which we did. 


SEALED until January 1, 1990 

Adams: Then I had also the celebrated Jeb Magruder. I was away for two 
weeks on business, and when I came back he was on the staff. I 
think he was hired by Walter Taylor, but I'm not sure. But I 
didn't care who he was hired by. I canned him. He was no good, 
in my opinion. He wasn't satisfactory; let me put it that way. 

Fry: Did you know him beforehand? 

Adams: No. .• 

Fry: You mean just things he suggested? 

Adams: Oh, I asked him what his political experience was, and he said he 
had handled Governor [Richard Buell] Ogilvie's campaign back in 
Illinois. When I called back there to get a verification of that, 
they said they'd have to look it up, and they did. I didn't talk 
to the governor himself. I talked to somebody in his office. They 
looked it up and called back and said that no, he hadn't been in 
Governor Ogilvie's campaign at all. He'd been the chairman of an 
indistinct, unimportant precinct. So I didn't like that. 

Another thing I didn't like was that he was full of ideas, 
charts, programs. Everything was on a chart. He was going to 
chart everything. I'm not much on that, because I don't think 
that gets you any votes. The way to help a candidate is to get 
out and work. You've got to be a worker in the vineyard. You 
can't be sticking around an office doing a lot of chart-drawing. 
He was a well dressed, fine looking fellow, always having a bunch 
of women in there, lecturing to them on these charts, and that 
sort of thing. 

Then he was strong for a club organization. You organize a 
club of eleven people for Nixon, and then each one of those eleven 
organize a club, and then each one of those organize a club, and 
each one of those organize a club. It's like taking one pea and 
multiplying it thirteen times. I said, "Well, Jeb, that doesn't 
go. If that succeeds you'll have everybody in the United States 
voting for Nixon. There won't be any votes for Humphrey. Nixon* 11 
get them all, which I know isn't going to be the case. So let's 
forget it." Well, anyway, I guess I shouldn't be saying these 
things. But I let him go. 


SEALED until January 1, 1990 

Fry: That was pretty lucky for you that you did, though, don't you 

Adams: I didn't know anything about what was going to happen later on 

in Watergate, but he just wasn't producing. I've got a law office 
here with fifty or sixty lawyers, and you've got to produce or 
the thing won't go. What I'm trying to say is, you learn from 
running these sort of things that you've got to have workers and 
producers around you. ,. 

Oh, he's a nice boy, and I know his father-in-law very well. 
He married a very fine girl from a very fine family. But it's 
just one of those things. That's nothing unusual in a campaign, 
to let people go. I didn't know he was going to get into this 
trouble, of course, that he did. 


Adams: When the campaign was over we paid all of our debts, even those 

that came in late and were barred by the statute because they came 
in late [pounding table]. I filed a petition with the superior 
court up here to get permission to pay the bills. If I had paid 
them without that order, it would have been a misdemeanor! So we 
paid all of our legitimate bills and even those that came in after 
the statutory time for filing claims, and ended up with a surplus 
of $180,000 or $190,000. Most campaigns end up with deficits. 

Fry: What do you do when you end up with a surplus? 

Adams: Mr. Call kept it in an appropriate earmarked account for a good 
many years and earned interest on it. Then in the '72 campaign, 
when Ed Carter was heading up a big dinner here for Nixon to 
raise money, I think Call turned it over to him. Anyway, he can 
tell you that he got rid of it — turned it into the Nixon campaign 
of '72. 

The Issues 

Fry: What patterns of opposition did that '68 campaign take here in 
Los Angeles? 

Adams: The pattern was the usual one. Remember what [Hubert] Humphrey's 
campaign was as contrasted with Nixon's campaign. Nixon's 
campaign was one of law and order — get crime off the streets. 

Fry: That was during the anti-Vietnam riots, wasn't it? 

Adams: Yes, I think so. Also he was for getting rid of somebody back 
there in office that nobody seemed to like in the Democratic 
party. I can't remember who. 

Fry: A man? 

Adams: Yes. Don't you remember, he said, "If I'm elected..." Or am I 
thinking of '72, when he was going to get rid of Ramsey Clark? 

Well, there was nothing unusual about the campaign. There 
was Humphrey with his promises and philosophy, and Nixon with 
his. Humphrey, again, from the Democratic side, promising 
everything, and Nixon promising a lot, but a whole lot less than what 
Humphrey was promising. 

Fry: Do you know who helped Nixon formulate the issues? 


Adams: No. I would think it would be Finch and Chotiner, and I guess 
he had Haldeman with him at that time — that small group. There 
may have been others. 

Fry: Was the Republican party pretty solidly behind him then, at that 

Adams: Yes, I think so, in '68. 

Fry: Both candidates were defending the Vietnam war at that point. 

Adams: I know Nixon was. But Humphrey was too. I guess he had to be, 
because of Johnson. So that wasn't an issue, no. 

Fry: What about getting out the vote in Los Angeles on election day? 
Did you have a big push for that? 

Adams: Yes. There was an organization set up to do the best they could to 
get out the vote. 

Fry: Was that mostly the Republican women? 

Adams: Yes, the Republican women helped organize that. 

Comments on Earl Warren, Nixon and Republican Solidarity 

Fry: I have one other stock question, and that is can you give us any 
enlightenment on the relationship between Earl Warren and Nixon? 
Where did it first begin to chill, and why? 

Adams: There again, you see, I'm just an outsider looking in. I was 

never privy to any conversations between the two at all. Starting 
with Earl Warren, I think he was a whale of a good governor. He 
was a good administrator. I think he ran a clean, honest office. 
But he was a man who wanted everyone to support him when he was 
running for office, but never wanted to give anyone else any help 
when the other fellow was running for office. It was all for 

He also never wanted anyone to develop any political strength 
or power in the state of California while he had anything to do 
with California politics. As a consequence, if he saw anyone coming 
on up from the ranks and developing power, he would devise ways 
to cut the fellow down. That developed some friction between Nixon 
and Warren, because when Nixon became a congressman and then went 
from congressman to the United States Senate as a Senator from the 
state of California, Warren could see immediately a challenge to his 


Adams: political prestige and power in the state of California. I think 
caused some reactions and feelings between the two that, in my 
opinion, brought about a not-too-kindly feeling between the two. 
Warren never went out of his way to help Nixon in any of his 
campaigns . 

Fry: Nixon tried to get his support in the '50 race for Senator. 

Adams: He never would help anyone. As a matter of fact, when Warren was 
running for governor he would never permit any other Republican 
candidate to appear on the same platform with him. Or, putting 
it another way, he would never appear at a meeting or on a 
platform where there was another Republican candidate. All 
right now, you can draw your own conclusions from that situation. 

Fry: Yes, he always had his own Warren party. Was Nixon a pretty good 
party man? I read somewhere that one of the reasons that he 
decided to run at one point — it was in '62, because of the debacle 
in '58 — was to attempt to reunify the Republican party in 

Adams: Yes, to solidify the Republican party. That could have been. 

He was one of the best, I think, of the party regulars. He always 
supported a Republican candiate — always . And he went out of his 
way, at his own expense many a time, to put in a pitch for a 
fellow Republican candidate. 

The Decision to Run and the Building of a Staff 

Fry: What was his relationship then to Reagan as Reagan began to rise 
in the sixties? Did Nixon support him? 

Adams: Oh, I think so. But then, of course, Reagan didn't come along for 
governor until 1966, and then he ran again in 1970. By that time, 
1966, Nixon had been out of the state of California for three 
years or more, well established in New York, and was well on his 
way to setting up an organization to run for the presidency in 
1968. You know, he had that in mind. I know that, because he called 
me one Sunday and wanted me to meet with him, which I did. 

[end tape 2, side 1; begin tape 2, side 2] 

Adams: It was sometime after he had left the office, when he was living 
back in New York. He was visiting in California and I think he 
called me on a Sunday, and we met here Monday. He came into the 
office, and he said, "I want you to draw up my mother's will, and 
1 want you to be executor of her estate." Then he said something — 
I can't remember his exact words. "I'm doing this because I'm going 


Adams: to be involved in something where I don't want to be required to 
give up any more time than is possible for anything that may 
happen in the event of my mother's death." I think he had very 
definitely made up his mind then that that was what he was going 
to go for, and he was trying to get his house in order. So I 
did that, and when his mother died I did act as executor of the 

Fry: At what point did he gather together this campaign staff? 

Adams: I think he had probably gradually been getting that together, 

thninking about it. You see, it wasn't difficult for him to do, 
because he really just recruited people that had been with him 
since 1950. 

Fry: He had a lot of the old hands there. 

Adams: Oh, almost all of them. Nick Ruwe and all those fellow had all 
been with him — [H.R.] Haldeman and [John] Erlichman. Of course, 
they hadn't had important positions. They were just advance men 
in those early campaigns. Finch, and name after name, except 
Colson; I don't think Colson had been in on any of those early 
campaigns. Peter Flanigan, I guess, came in a little later. 
But they were mostly people who had been with him over the years, 
and they just continued with him. 

Fry: When he called you, do you remember what year that was? 

Adams: No, I don't. I'd have to get out the old files. It was sometime 
after he left here in 1963 and shortly before his mother died 
[1967]. It could be easily ascertained by looking at the date of 
death of his mother or the drafting of the will, which took place 
about that time. 

Fry: Was his mother in pretty ill health? 

Adams: No, she wasn't in ill health, but she was old and required 

attention. He made adequate provision for her. He was a very 
thoughtful child. He fixed the thing up so that, there again, 
automatically there would always be paid to his mother a monthly 
sum to keep her in the condition of comfort and good care. So if 
he were off in Europe someplace, or way off in Canada or in a 
remote portion of the United States, he didn't have to worry about 
seeing whether his mother was going to get taken care of. There 
was money to come to her every month. [telephone interruption] 
There's a lot of things that that boy doesn't get credit for. 


Richard Nixon in Retrospect; Power and Public Office 

Adams: I just don't understand what happened. But let me say to you 
that the Nixon I knew from the beginning, way back in 1946 and 
on through the years, and the Nixon that we all became intimately 
acquainted with while he was here— is not the Nixon that I read 
about on the Watergate tapes. 

If something happened I don't know what it is. What I have 
to say is not directed at President Nixon, but is a general 
reflection with respect to those who hold high public office. 
I've often wondered if one of the curses of public life is the 
fact that the adulation, the patting on the back, the flattery, 
destroys a man's perspective. It makes him think that he's 
bigger than he is. 

Fry: I guess that's a pretty heavy thing to go through. 

Adams: Yes, it's heady wine. There's no question about it. Those in 
high office are told how wonderful they are, and the power they 
have. They don't believe it at first, but they hear it day after 
day from those sycophants that are around them, and finally they 
think, "Maybe there's some truth to that. I am a big man!" 

That was one great attribute that Abraham Lincoln had. He 
never lost his sense of balance, his touch with people. He 
wanted to be considered — and was I think — a fellow who had the 
human touch about him, humility. I don't think at any time did 
he ever have a feeling of greatness or anything like that. 

Fry: Do you think also that Nixon suffered from a creeping insularity? 

Adams: If he did, that's bad. Anytime anyone pulls down the blinds so 
that he can't see what's going on outside, it's bad. And it's 
bad to let other people tell you what's going on, rather than 
ascertaining for yourself. You know full well that these sycophants 
who want to promote themselves are always going to give the boss 
the best end of the news, rather than the shocking portion of it. 
So it's not healthy. 

Fry: You think maybe the change occurred after he became president in 

Adams: I never saw anything like that in him. I'd see him occasionally 

when I'd go to New York, after he left here and was with the Mudge 
office. I'd call him up and on occasions he'd ask me over to 
dinner, or we'd go out to dinner. Sometimes my wife was with me 
and we all four would go to dinner. He was the same old Nixon I 


Adams: always knew, very human sort of a fellow. He'd walk down the 

street and look in shop windows with you. Quite a human being! 
He was the same when I visited him in the White House. 

Fry: How is he now? 

Adams: I haven't seen him since shortly before the Supreme Court decision 
came down. At that time he was happy and jovial. He didn't seem 
to be worried at all. I was worried, because I was afraid he was 
going to get slapped with the Supreme Court decision, which he did. 
I haven't seen him since then. 

He called me the Sunday before Christmas [1974] on the telephone 
to wish me a Merry Christmas and all of that. We had a nice talk. 
His voice sounded good then and strong, and I said so. I asked 
him how he felt, and he said, "I'm weak, but I think I'm improving. 
After the first of the year Pat and I are going to begin seeing 
people. If you're down this way, drop in to see us." So I think 
he's improving, but I still think he hasn't regained all of his 

Fry: I certainly do thank you. 

Adams: Not at all. 

Transcriber: Judy Johnson 
Final Typist: Keiko Sugimoto 


INDEX — Earl Adams 

Arbuthnot, Ray, 27 

Call, Asa, 28-29 

Chotiner, Murray, 4-5, 9-10 

Davis, Phil, 13 
Day, Roy, 5 
Drown, Jack, 27 

election campaigns 

1946 Congressional Twelfth District, California, 3-6 

1960 presidential, 17-19 

1962 California gubernatorial, 22-24 

1968 presidential, 26-32 

Finch, Robert, 17-19, 27 

John Birch Society, 24 
Jorgensen, Frank, 6 

Knight, Goodwin, 13-14 
Knowland, William, 10 

1958 gubernatorial campaign, 12-15 
Kuchel, Thomas, 27 

1954 Senate campaign, 11-12 

McCall, Harrison, 5-6 
Mag ruder, Jeb , 28 

Nixon, Hannah, 31-33 
Nixon, Patricia Ryan, 23 


Nixon, Richard Milhous 
character, 32-34 

law practice (1961-63), 19-22; (1963-68), 24-26 
1946 Congressional campaign, 3-6 
1952 presidential campaign, 7-11 
1958 California gubernatorial campaign, 15 
1960 presidential campaign, 17-19 
1962 California gubernatorial campaign, 22-24 
1968 presidential campaign, 26-32 

Shattuck, Edward, 13 
Shell, Joseph, 22-24 
Smith, Dana, 7-8 

Taylor, Waller, 28 
Voorhis, Jerry, 3 

Warren, Earl 

and Richard Nixon, 30-31 

Roy P. Crocker 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

Llorar y Berkeley, California 

Earl Warren Oral History Project 

Roy P. Crocker 


An Interview Conducted by 

Amelia R. Fry 

in 1975 

Copyright (c) 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 




Nixon's Campaign Style 1 

Press Support 4 

Fundraising 5 

Crocker Heads an Agricultural Committee for Nixon 7 

Tidelands Oil 9 

More on Campaign Finance 10 

Campaign Strategies 12 


The California Delegation and the Convention 17 

Comparisons Between the 1946 Campaign and 1950, 1952 23 

APPENDIX - Roy P. Crocker's Relationship with President 

Nixon, September 22, 1969 26 



Date of Interview: February 20, 1975 

Place of Interview: Mr. Crocker's Lincoln Savings and Loan, 630 West Sixth 

Street, Los Angeles 

Those Present: Mr. Crocker and interviewer Amelia Fry 

Roy P. Crocker was probably the most venerable of the interviewees 
whose recollections of Richard Nixon were recorded in this subseries. 
He moved slowly, he was hard of hearing, and he tired easily, but he had 
been one of the earliest discoverers of Nixon for the 1946 election, and 
before that, in 1943, he had been president of the Los Angeles County 
Republican Assembly. His role in the congressional and senate races of 
the young Whittier attorney was a crucial one that provided public and 
financial support initially from the banking and savings and loan community 
in California and later from agricultural interests. 

This short interview provides the viewpoint of one who was close to and 
devoted to Richard Nixon in his years of rising power. In spite of the 
difficulties of interviewing, Crocker managed to record an affirmation of 
bits of other campaign narrations in the series and to fill in where "facts" 
are otherwise only implied. He showed the grit and determination in plowing 
through the interview session that he still showed in his daily life: every 
morning he continued to take his place at the helm of his large savings and 
loan enterprise. Such perserverance undoubtedly would have been an asset 
in his leadership in Nixon's campaigns, too. 

On the morning of the interview, he provided the interviewer beforehand 
with an unaccustomed luxurious study table in the panelled and carpeted 
conference room of his building and had his scrapbooks of pictures and letters 
brought in. These suggested specific questions to be added to those from 
the campaign research and chronologies which the interviewer had brought 
along. We had agreed that we would not spend his energy and time in rehashing 
the 1946 campaign in which he was chairman of the executive committee and, 
informally, the finance chairman for the primary. Paul Bullock of UCLA had 
taped and transcribed a lengthy interview with him several years before on 
that first Nixon race. Crocker had also produced a concise three-page state 
ment, "Roy P. Crocker's Relationship with President Nixon," on September 22, 
1969, which is in the appendix of our interview. Crocker also permitted the 
photocopying and deposit of other letters from his scrapbook. 


The session focussed on the 1950 senatorial campaign in which Richard 
Nixon defeated Los Angeles Congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas and thereby 
became a force in California to be reckoned with by the Earl Warren Republi 
cans. Crocker, as valley organizer, helped provide Nixon with some of the 
most powerful support then available in California, that of the large land 
owners and agricultural interests, whose senators from Marysville to 
El Centre and the Imperial Valley controlled state finances and the legisla 
ture. Helen Douglas had chosen as the core of her campaign support of the 
160-acre ownership limitation on farmlands fed with water from federal 
reclamation projects — a position that made Crocker's job even easier. The 
resulting drought in funds for Douglas's campaign may well have been a 
significant factor in her loss of votes to Nixon. In that case, Roy P. 
Crocker's role was probably more crucial than appears in campaign letterheads. 

For the 1952 Republican convention, where Nixon's role in pushing Earl 
Warren's delegation into the Eisenhower camp needs careful documentation, 
the stock questions regarding Nixon and Warren were approached but soon 
followed a path into a comparative view of the 1946, '50, and '52 campaigns. 

The session ended with lunch in the company cafeteria — where employees 
eat free of charge — then a short tour of Mr. Crocker's collection of histor 
ical documents, framed and hung in his office and spilling over into other 
offices. His small museum- archive was impressive: A George Washington 
letter and a rare picture; an unusual engraving of his organization's name 
sake, Abraham Lincoln; a signed original draft of an excerpt by Ralph Waldo 
Emerson, and another by Longfellow; and a letter from Thomas A. Edison. For 
sheer visual impact, the piece de resistance is an enormous government 
document with incredibly beautiful calligraphy signed by Napoleon Bonaparte. 
This was not all. In 1972, Crocker had presented a collection of pictures 
and letters of each U.S. president to Claremont's men's college, of which he 
was a trustee. 

Almost two years after our interview, on New Year's Day of 1977, Mr. 
Crocker died at age 83 at his Palos Verde home. He had lived in Los Angeles 
since 1901, he had attended five Republican national conventions, and as far 
as this interviewer could judge, he still felt as he had after Nixon's first 
four years in the White House: that Nixon was a good president, and that he, 
like Crocker, was still basically a conservative. 

Amelia R. Fry 

13 August 1980 
Washington, D.C. 


[Interview 1: February 20, 1975] 
[begin tape 1, side 1] 

Nixon's Campaign Style 

Fry: I thought we might just warm up with your explaining to me 
what your previous experience in politics was, before your 
1946 work for Nixon. 

Crocker: I was active in the Los Angeles County Republican Assembly and 
became president of it. Then, I have been a delegate to four 
Republican national conventions starting with the one in 1952 
when President Eisenhower was the candidate. At one time I was 
an alternate delegate, but four times I was full delegate. 

Fry: I wonder if we could, at least for the moment, skip the 1946 
work in that initial committee that launched Richard Nixon 
because we may be able to get, with your permission, the 
transcript of the interview that you did with Professor Paul 
Bullock at UCLA and use that; we wouldn't have to go over that 
ground again this morning. 

Crocker: Yes, okay, fine. 

Fry: And then we have that marvelous material that's in your 
scrapbook and we can include that. 

We'll just jump right in, then, to Nixon's decision to run 
for the Senate in 1950. Then if we have any time left, we will 
go back and pick up earlier campaigns. 

Nixon had won both the Democratic and Republican primaries 
in '48. I wondered who was wanting to oppose him in the 
primaries in '50. I have some names down here like Edward Arnold 
who was an actor, I think, and was considering running for the 
Senate. Do you remember that? 

Crocker: I know of him, yes. 

Fry: Frederick F. House r and Los Angeles Councilman Raymond Darby. 
Those men were all interested in running. 

Crocker: They were interested in running, but I don't think — when they 
realized what they would be up against if they ran against 
Richard Nixon, in my opinion they all reluctantly backed off. 

Fry: They reluctantly did? 

Crocker: Yes. I mean, they would have liked to, I think, run if he hadn't 
been the candidate. 

Fry: Did they just automatically back off, or did somebody have 
to talk to them? 

Crocker: I think they probably talked to some prominent Republicans in 

the district and got their advice — I'm quite certain they did — 
to confirm what they should or should not do. 

Fry: Who were the prominent Republicans who were trying to get this 

Crocker: [Do you mean] from the standpoint of just lay Republicans or 
elected — I mean those that were in politics and holding 
political office? 

Fry: Those holding political office. We'll take them first; those 
who wanted Nixon to run and wanted to clear the way for him. 

Crocker: I think that the ones that were — like Roy Day who, while he 
only held a non-elective office, he and — and then there were 
men like Norris Poulson and others like myself that were hunting 
around trying to get some good candidate. 

Fry: Presumably to run against Senator Sheridan Downey, right? 
Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: Did you talk to any political writers in the newspapers, like 
Kyle Palmer of the Los Angeles Times? 

Crocker: I know some of the men involved, in trying to get a good candidate, 
did talk to Kyle Palmer. I can't remember whether I personally 
did, though I may have. 

Fry: Kyle Palmer was favorable toward Nixon when Nixon was a 

congressman. Al least Nixon had the support of the Los Angeles 
Times. So I wondered if Palmer would have advised Nixon to 
tackle Downey at this point. Do you know? 

Crocker: I think he would have been somewhat hesitant because, frankly, 
Downey — I think it was a general opinion that he wasn't 
way out to the left. He wasn't radical, in other words, a 
real radical candidate or politician. That was my memory. 

Fry: So Palmer was a little cool toward the idea of Nixon going 
after Downey, then. Is that what you mean? 

Crocker: That would be my impression. 

Fry: If he was hesitant, were there other people who felt that 

running for the Senate might have been not a good idea, since 
Downey was already doing some things that the conservatives 

Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: Who were the others who were pretty cool about this at the time? 
Do you know? 

Crocker: I think Fred Houser — if it hadn't been for Nixon — I think 
he would have liked to run. 

Fry: That's the judge, and former lieutenant governor, right? 
Crocker: Yes — Judge Fred [F.] Houser. 
Fry: So he naturally was cool. 

Crocker: I don't think Mclntyre Faries was at all interested [in running] 
because he had, prior to his judgeship, a very fine law business, 
and also he became a judge. He didn't like the idea, I think, of 
going back to Washington. That's my impression. 

Fry: He was the Republican state chairman and he had headed the 
California Republican Assembly. 

Crocker: But whenever you get that high up as a layman, then you have a 

lot of pressure to try to get you to run for public office, like 
governor or senator or something like that, [or] congressman. 

Fry: Who talked this over with Nixon, to ask him to run? Or did 
he come to you? 

Crocker: When he first ran for congress? 
Fry: No, I'm still talking about 1950. 




In '50; still talking about then. Well, I think many of the 
leaders in the district, such as Roy Day and Mclntyre Paries 
and even Kyle Palmer and so forth, and myself, wanted him to 
continue in public life and run for office, because we were 
pleased with the way he'd been handling himself in Congress, 
yes. We thought that he'd done such a good job that if the 
opportunity arose, we'd like to see him run for the Senate. 

How did you feel about his manner of campaigning? 
that was successful? 

Did you feel 

Yes, I did. I thought it was very successful. He believed 
in these public meetings where they could ask questions and he 
could answer, though I think some of the questions were planted. 
He knew ahead of time probably what they would be. But he liked 
that approach. He was advised, and he did go over good in 
public, and he made a nice impression; whereas, if he just 
wrote an article and the people couldn't see him, no matter how 
well the article was prepared, it wasn't as impressive as seeing 
the man and hearing him. We felt that in any campaign that he 
ran, he needed to be exposed in person, because he did have sort 
of a dynamic way of speaking that was rather emphatic, and 
people liked that approach. 

Press Support 





You mentioned that Kyle Palmer probably talked to Nixon too. 
Later on, then, Kyle Palmer did come around. Did he come to 
support the idea of Nixon for Senate? 

As I remember, he did. A newspaperman like that always looks 
over who might be available and how good they would be, whether 
they're Republicans or Democrats. They're not always out just 
for one party. It depends on the philosophy of the man more 
than anything, I think, though at that time they [L.A. Times] 
would have preferred to have him a Republican. 

What about the other newspapers around? 
be supporting? 

Did they all seem to 

To get back to the Times first, I think Norman Chandler and his 
father before him were very dedicated and strong Republicans 
and conservative in philosophy. 

Crocker: Now, as to the other newspapers, the Exani-iner, being a Hearst 

paper, they weren't radical. They were moderately conservative. 
They weren't strongly, I would say, conservative. They were 
more moderate in their approach to politics and in the candidates 
they were willing to back, in my opinion. 

Fry: I haven't read the files in the Examiner in Los Angeles, but 

the Examiner up north seemed to be pro-Nixon in its stories and 
editorials . 

Crocker: I think the impression I got was the more they read his articles, 
they got to like his approach better and were willing to try 
to help him. 

Fry: Did anybody go and talk to the Examiner to be sure Nixon would 

have Examiner support if he ran? 

Crocker: There's another factor too that you've answered indirectly. 

Papers, if they know they're going to get enough advertising — 
political advertising that's paid for — they'll kind of lean 
your way, and that's just as they should. While they like to 
see someone who's friendly with the philosophy of the editors of 
the paper, still their main purpose is to make money for their 
publication, and they like to get political ads. In fact, 
they're soliciting political ads, naturally. 

Fry: There were quite a few political ads in the San Francisco 

Examiner. Were you able to have enough money to supply these 
papers with the political ads for Nixon? 

Crocker: At times we did have, and sometimes we didn't have so much. 





When he was running for the Senate, were you pretty well-off 
financially in your funding? 

That was sort of nip and tuck as I remember. We didn't have 
a surplus of funds. We sort of lived hand-to-mouth because 
the higher the office you're running for, the more money it 
takes. When you run for the Senate, it takes much more money 
than for congress. 

In terms of the newspapers, Manchester Boddy had a newspaper 
in Southern California. Was his newspaper at that time 
considered Democratic? 

Crocker: I think he had some political ads in the paper from Democrats. 
I can't remember, very frankly. 

Fry: This was the campaign where he entered the primary as a Democratic 

candidate against Helen Gahagan Douglas. 

Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: The interesting thing was that in the primary campaign, Downey 
used the same charges and the same issues against Helen 
Douglas that Nixon did in the general election campaign. 

Crocker: As I remember, yes. 

Fry: Was the primary kind of a dry run for the general election? 
Even though he was supposed to be a Democrat — you know, in 
California that wasn't too important then. So I'm trying to 
pin down whether Boddy was really a Democrat running against 
Helen Douglas or whether he was actually a Republican running 
against Helen Douglas. [interruption; tape off briefly] 
Boddy did seem to have some conservative connections and 
some conservative leanings in some of the issues. 

Crocker: You mean as a supporter of Nixon, or as a possible candidate 
instead of Nixon? 

Fry: No — well, maybe. He and Helen Douglas had a very bitter fight 
in the Democratic primary, and I wondered if at any time he 
had been considered as a possibility on the Nixon side. 

Crocker: I think as long as Nixon had a hat in the ring, so to speak, 
and in other words is interested in running, that he would 
have had the preference of most of the Republicans in the 

Fry: The other question about that would be, do you think some of 
the people who were supporting Nixon also supported Boddy in 
the primary, either with money or by working? 

Crocker: A few may have. As you well know, some [Democratic] candidates 
can get money from different Republicans, even — some Republicans 
figure, "Well, if such-and-such a candidate doesn't win, maybe 
the other one will." 

Fry: So they give money to both? 

Crocker: They hedge their bets that way. [laughter] 

Fry: The other interesting thing about Boddy came out about three 

years after the election was all over. That was that his paper 
was getting $250,000 a year from the Hearst Corporation because 
they were about to buy his paper and they wanted an option. 
Then Boddy also had a $2 million loan from a number of oil 
companies that were supposedly supporting Nixon too. So that 
was why Tasked you that. It really fuzzes the lines. 

Crocker: Yes. I didn't know much about that. 

Fry: I don't think many people knew at the time. One of our questions 
is, what was Boddy 's real role in this. [laughter] It's a 
little hard to distinguish. 

Corcker: It is. From my standpoint, I can't help you. 

Crocker Heads An Agricultural Committee for Nixon 






One of the main issues in this campaign was a 160-acre limitation 
issue — federal water for agricultural land. I noticed that in 
your scrapbook, there's a mention in a letter from Nixon on 
December 29, 1949, that you were on the agriculture committee 
for Nixon, and he said you organized it. Was water one of the 
issues that you saw? 

I might put it this way: there are a lot of big ranches in 
California here. It would be uneconomical to break some of them 
up [to comply with the federal statute of a 160-acre limitation] 
because they specialize in certain activities. They need a lot 
of equipment for that, and the average small farmer can't 
afford that equipment. From that standpoint, it would be 
unscientific. I can tell you mote if you want to get me off 
the record. 

Why don't we go ahead and just let this take it down, 
want me to make a note to put it under seal? 

Do you 

No. But I was going to say, I graudated from Cornell University 
College of Agriculture. I was a farm adviser down in Imperial 
Valley, and I have a ranch. I was always regarded as an expert 
on ranching or farming. That was one reason why I handled the 
agricultural committee for Nixon. 

Because you knew all of these big ranchers and everybody? 
Yes, I knew a lot of them. 


Fry: There was a Democrat in Imperial Valley— who was that? — who, 
I think, crossed over and supported Nixon. 

Crocker: Let's see. I had quite a few of them down here. I'd have to 
look at my files, in fact. 

Fry: Yes, I'd have to review my notes on that, too. Did you talk to 
quite a few of them? 

Crocker: You mean personally? 

Fry: Personally, or what did you do to organize? 

Crocker: I found out who was active down there and I generally phoned 
to them and talked to them on the phone. 

Fry: On October 28, just before the election, a Mr. Vincent Spooner 
in Oakland announced that the Valley Farm News in Tulare, which 
was published by Alfred J. Elliott, a Democrat, had come out 
for Nixon. I wondered if that was something else that you had 


Crocker: Probably, yes. 

Fry: Did a lot of his support come because of the 160-acre limitation, 

or was it really not that big of an issue? 

Crocker: I don't think it was that big of an issue. It wasn't an important 

Fry: Was the Brannan Farm Plan important at that time? 

Crocker: I can't remember whether it was so important then. I think most 
of the ranchers in California just wanted to be left alone by 
the government [laughter] and not be told what they could raise 
and how much they could raise and so forth. 

Fry: And how much water they could get. 

Crocker: Yes, yes. 

Tidelands Oil 

Fry: Another issue in the campaign was tidelands ownership. The 
question was, would the leasing of these tidelands to oil 
companies be controlled by the state or by the federal 
government. There seemed to be a desire to have the tidelands 
controlled by the state so that oil companies would lease from 
the state rather than the federal government. 

Crocker: I think that was true, yes. Another reason too is that it's 
easier to get along with the state officials generally, from 
the standpoint — you don't have to run back from Washington. 
From the standpoint of your own personal contacts and friendships 
and all, it's more satisfactory, I think, to deal with state 
officials on the oil situation than to go back to Washington. 
Oftentimes they're not familiar with the problems out here. 

Fry: On the campaign as a whole, there appears to be a fairly 

consistent pattern of support from Nixon among conservatives. 
But then also along about this time, there was a defection of 
some Republicans away from Earl Warren. 

Crocker: Yes. That's right. 
Fry: Do you remember that? 

Crocker: Any man who's governor and has been in as long as Earl Warren 
had been in, he turns some applicants down for various jobs or 
various projects. You make enemies that you don't have when 
you go into an office fresh, before you've had a chance to 
offend a lot of people. 

Fry: Warren had offended the doctors by putting in his state health 
insurance bills. Do you remember that? 

Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: Were you able to use some of these defected persons? 

Crocker: As I remember, we had like a doctors-for-Nixon committee, although 
it may not show in my records. Oftentimes, like Roy Day or 
somebody like that would handle those kinds of things. I don't 
remember my handling it. I don't say I didn't work on it, but — 

Fry: There were some attempts also to get Warren's endorsement of 
Nixon for this senatorial race. Warren refused to give it, 
I think. 

Crocker: As I remember it. I'm not positive, but as I remember it. 


More on Campaign Finance 












I think before we go any further, we'd better explain exactly 
what your role was in the campaign so I'll know what kind of 
questions to ask. 

In his first campaign — 
In 1950. 

I tried to raise money for the campaign — 
[end tape 1, side 1; begin tape 1, side 2] 

[I tried] to get various types of organizations to endorse him, 
especially by getting the president or head of that organization- 
like the savings and loan industry. I was very well known in 
that and I tried to get various leaders in the industry here 
in California to support Nixon, and tried to set up a committee 
that would work for him, and also like for the ranchers and for 
the bankers and various other groups. Whereas, I think Roy Day 
tried to work with the news media — newspapers, magazines and 
various periodicals and publicity. That was the difference. 

So where did you get your best campaign donations from? 
You mean from individuals or organizations? 

I thought probably the larger donations would come from 

They mostly did, yes. To a large extent that's true. But then 
there was some individuals that put in fair sized amounts. I 
had a list of those who had contributed to other campaigns and 
I solicited frunds from them. 

Was your list anything like Asa Call's list, or how did you and 
Asa Call fit in? 

Very much so. Very much like Asa Call's, yes. 

He said he could raise enough money for a campaign in an hour 
and a half just by going down the list. 

Well, yes. My list was of the more moderate, modest givers, 
I think. He, as head of the Pacific Mutual Life Insurance 
Company, could call up certain friends of his and get very 
subsrantial sums from them, I think, whereas mine were more 
modest . 


Fry: You were what, then, in your professional life? 

Crocker: I was president of this savings and loan association at the 
time, and then I was active in the Republican party. 

Fry: Why was Call's position in an insurance company something that 
afforded him contact with larger donors than your position? 

Crocker: Socially, he went and had a lot of contacts with men of 

considerable means because he was head of the Pacific Mutual Life 
Insurance Company. He knew the large men who had very big 
financial interests, that had large amounts of life insurance. 
He knew them personally and could contact them for funds, for 
campaign funds, on a more personal basis than I could. And then 
he was very active, I think, out at the University of Southern 
California and knew a lot of well-to-do men that were supporting 
universities and colleges and so forth. 

Fry: I gathered yesterday when I talked with him that he's still very 
involved with USC. I guess it's not clear to me whether Asa 
Call was able to pitch in helping with funding on this 1950 
campaign or not. 

Crocker: I would guess that he did. 

Fry: Who were the individuals then who could give really big 

contributions? There are not many of those left, you know. 

Crocker: No. He could tell you better than I can. 

Fry: Would Preston Hotchkis be one? 

Crocker: Yes, Pres Hotchkis. He was a pretty good money-raiser. 

Fry: Was he a money- raiser for Nixon? 

Crocker: My impression is, he helped. 

Fry: He helped for Warren too. 

Crocker: Yes, oh yes, yes. He'd be a good one to see, in fact. 

Fry: There may be some other names that I can come up with to suggest. 
In Northern California there were certain members, certain 
people, that you could always count on to round up the basic 
funds to give you a base for campaign financing. I don't know 
who their equivalents are in Southern California. 


Crocker: Now, as a rule, in most statewide political campaigns, they have 
a Northern California finance chairman and a Southern California 
finance chairman. The man up there would be some prominent 
citizen who had the contacts and could raise substantial sums up 
there in Northern California. 

Fry: Was it done any differently in Northern California from Southern 


Crocker: We all coordinated. The chairman of the state finance committee 
would have a Northern California chairman and maybe one for the 
San Joaquin Valley and maybe one in Los Angeles County or this 
area and one down maybe in San Diego. 

Fry: Who was the coordinator in 1950. 

Crocker: You mean from the finance standpoint? 

Fry: From the finance standpoint for Nixon, yes. 

Crocker: I don't know. I know I worked on it. 

Campaign Strategies 

Fry: [looking through file] Your scrapbook didn't have very much 

in it on 1950. What about Harold Morton and Mr. Keck and John 
Smith and Arnholdt Smith and that bunch? They were very 
prominent in '52 in the anti-Warren movement, so I wonder what 
they were doing in 1950. 

Crocker: Arnholdt Smith — I never had any contacts with him, so I don't 
know how active he was. I couldn't help you on that. 

Fry: They all worked together in '52 to form the rival anti-Warren 


Crocker: Yes, that's right. 

I wondered if they were important in backing Nixon in 1950. 
I suppose Arnholdt Smith was, because they were awfully close. 

Crocker: Yes, I would imagine so, but I'm not positive. You'd have to 
ask some other source. 

Fry: Do you know anything about the attempts to get Warren's 

endorsement of Nixon? 











Not very much, no. I didn't get in on that. 

Murray Chotiner tells a story about sending young Republicans 
around in Helen Gahagan Douglas's campaign and having them ask 
her from the audience if she would endorse Jimmy Roosevelt, the 
idea being that once she would come out publicly for Roosevelt 
this would force Warren's hand to come out publicly for Nixon.* 
How does that sound to you? 

It might have been a strategy that Murray Chotiner tried to 
work out. 

What was Murray Chotiner's role in this campaign? He's dead 
now, so we can't ask him. 

Yes. His strategy, I think, in nearly every political campaign 
that he was involved in, was just strategy, and also contact 
with the newspapers. Then he helped to write articles for 
publicity. He handled strategy and publicity — not exclusive, 
you know. He had to work with others, the campaign chairman or 
vice-chairman and things like that. But he worked more on 
contact with the papers and publicity and some strategy. 

I see. Who did you coordinate your efforts with in the 
campaign structure? 

Whoever was the campaign manager, 
was handling the publicity on the 
with them that way. In a general 
worked more on trying to get men 
the campaign and get them working 
that we had the proper publicity 
women whose names meant a lot to 
lived, on the campaign committee, 

like with Roy Day or whoever 

various campaigns. I worked 
, overall, broad statement, I 
and women who could help on 

in the campaign and seeing 
and that we had the men and 
the communities in which they 

and to see that we were well 

Did you have anything to do with the "flying squadron," I think 
it was called. 

I didn't get into that, no. I didn't have much to do with that. 

What was it? I believe there were several committees of women 
primarily, right? There seemed to be several of these committees, 
and I wondered what they did. Nixon's Flying Squadrons. 

*Katcher, Leo, Earl Warren: 
McGraw Hill, 1967). 

A Political Biography (New York: 


Crocker: I think it was this way: that, for example, if Jerry Voorhis 
or somebody else was going to speak, or anybody — any other 
candidate — and the committee thought it was important to have 
somebody there, they'd send somebody out to the meeting. They'd 
get up and ask some embarrassing questions of the candidate 
when the quest ion-and-answer period came after the speech, and 
try to embarrass Jerry Voorhis or — 

Fry: Or Helen Douglas in 1950? 

Crocker: Or Helen Douglas, yes. And they were planted there just to 
embarrass the candidate. 

Fry: And kind of throw them off guard? 

Crocker: Yes, after, when the question and answer period [came] after 
the speech. 

Fry: Did you get to take part any in any strategy sessions? 

Crocker: When it came to agriculture or when it came to some savings and 
loan industry and so forth, yes. 

Fry: By the way, was the Flying Squadron all women or men and women? 

Crocker: They had both. 

Fry: Your strategy sessions, then, were mostly where agriculture 

was concerned. Did you ever go with Nixon to speak in 
agricultural communities? 

Crocker: No, but I would arrange ahead of time to see that there was 
somebody there to take care of it. 

Fry: Were you able to work with the Associated Farmers or to get 

quite good campaign financing through Associated Farmers? 

Crocker: No. I worked more with the farm bureaus. Some of the 

Associated Farmers were a little more liberal. The farm bureaus 
were — and the leading farmers in certain areas. I had a pretty 
good list of them at the time. 

Fry: Did you do anything in publicity, in drawing up any of the 

campaign literature? 

Crocker: Yes, I helped handle it, but I wasn't the chairman of it. They'd 
ask my suggestions on certain things. 


Who was chairman of that? 


Crocker: It started with Roy Day. He handled those things. 
Fry: Yes. He was the printer. 

Crocker: And he was in newspaper work. 

Fry: Who invented or discovered Congressman Vito Marcantonio in this 

campaign? That was the congressman to whose voting record Helen 
Gahagan Douglas's was compared. 

Crocker: Yes. I don't know. 

Fry: I wondered how aware everyone in the campaign was of these basic 

strategies. As speakers went out, could they all pretty much 
hit the same types of issues and make the same types of charges? 
Was there coordination for that? 

Crocker: Yes. Generally there was, yes. 

Fry: This was in the days just as the Korean War was breaking out and 

Dick Nixon had just finished with the Hiss case. There was 
quite a bit of an ti- Communism feeling. 

Crocker: Very strong, in fact, yes. 

Fry: So this was a very important part of the campaign too. 

Crocker: Yes, yes it was. 

Fry: You have to tell me how the "pink sheet" got started. It's 

become the most famous document from the whole campaign. 

Crocker: [straining to hear] Which one? 

Fry: The pink sheet. [pause] You don't know what that means? 

Crocker: No, I don't. 

Fry: I don't have a copy of it, but it was an election sheet about 

Helen Gahagan Douglas's record of voting with Vito Marcantonio. 
Somebody, it may have been Murray Chotiner — 

Crocker: Roy Day ought to know about that. 

Fry: Somebody had the great idea of using pink paper. 

Crocker: Yes. I think Roy Day probably. 

Fry: Did you have anything to do with running the speakers' bureau? 


Crocker: Only as it pertained to agriculture, as a rule, and the savings 
and loan business. 

Fry: After the campaign was over, there had been several reports 

about telephone calls that were made. Are you familiar with 

Crocker: [straining to hear] About what? 

Fry: Accusations about the Nixon forces making anonymous phone calls 

saying that Helen Douglas was a Communist and then hanging up. 

Crocker: I don't know who. I didn't have anything to do with that, no. 
I don ' t know who . 

Fry: Do you think it occurred? 

Crocker: I think it hurt, yes. It hurt Helen Gahagan Douglas, yes. 

Fry: Do you know anybody who would know about that whom I could 

ask? There are no documentary records of telephone calls. You 
just have to talk to people. 

Crocker: I think Roy Day might know more about that than I would. 

Fry: I'll ask him tomorrow. [laughter] That's always the sixty-four 

dollar question, I guess. 

Crocker: Yes. 



The California Delegation and the Convention 

Fry: Maybe we'd better move on to 1952. Earl Warren wanted to run 
for president and he had his own delegation. But also there 
was a Republican delegation started by, I think, Harold Morton 
and William Keck, and Keith McCormac in Bakersfield, who got 
together another rival delegation. McCormac said at one point 
they approached Nixon to be their candidate. Were you familiar 
with that? 

Crocker: I heard of it, but I wasn't involved. 

Fry: Did any of them ever approach you to be on that delegation? 

Crocker: No. 

Fry: As Warren was gathering the names for his delegation, who asked 
you to be on it? It might have been Bernie Brennan. It might 
have been Bill Knowland. It could have been Mac Paries. 

Crocker: I can't remember. I'm a little suspicious of Mac Faries, but 
I'm not absolutely positive. 

Fry: In what way? 

Crocker: As a delegate. 

Fry: That he wasn't loyal? To whom? 

Crocker: [straining to hear] That he wasn't what? 

Fry: You said you were suspicious of him. What did you mean? 

Crocker: You mean of Warren? 


Fry: I thought you said you were suspicious of Mac Paries. 

Crocker: No, no. Mac Paries was always a very high type, very honorable, 
very straightforward. He's a very high caliber man. 

Fry: Did Bernie Brennan work for Nixon in 1950? I think he did 
[choosing delegates possibly]. 

Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: What did he do? 

Crocker: As I remember, he handled some of the publicity and some of the 
public relations. 

Fry: Could you tell me about this delegation for Warren? Was this 
supposed to be a coalition of the pro-Taft and pro-Eisenhower 
and the pro-Warren people, or was it supposed to be really all 
Warren? How did you perceive that at the time? 

Crocker: I think it was sort of a coalition, but I'm not positive. 

Many of the people on that delegation were independent thinkers, 
and they had supported Governor Warren the same as I had when 
he ran for governor. But then when he wanted to run for the 
senate or some other position, that was something else. So, that 
was the situation there. 

Fry: With Eisenhower and Taft running, those were two pretty powerful 
people, attractive to voters. Which one did you tend toward, 
Taft or Eisenhower? 

Crocker: President Eisenhower, because he — I was just a little afraid — 
I admired Senator Taft very much, but he didn't have the 
glamour nor the — and President Eisenhower was more moderate. 
I thought Senator Taft was very conservative, maybe more so 
than — and he might have trouble getting elected. 

Fry: On the train going to Chicago, when Nixon boarded at Denver, 
he felt that it would be wiser for the delegation to let it 
be known then that they would support Eisenhower, because he 
was trying to avoid a deadlock. Did Nixon talk to you about 
it at that time? 

Crocker: I don't know if he personally talked to me about it at that 
time, but I knew from all the rumors, and all that I had 
understood, that that was his feeling. 

Fry: Apparently quite a few other people on the train too felt that 














I'm not sure that I've got the delegation divided up right in 
my mind, but I think Pat Hillings was one that felt that it 
would be better to go ahead and come out for Eisenhower early. 

You mean come out early for President Eisenhower? 
For Eisenhower, yes. 

I would imagine so, that Pat Hillings felt that way. 
Do you remember who some of the others were? 

No. I would guess Mclntyre Faries probably was that way, but 
I can't remember. 

He said not, or at least not for the first ballot. 

You have to explain (this is off the record) that oftentimes 
men who are on delegations, especially if they're chairmen or 
vice chairmen, it's their duty to be kind of neutral and not to 
come out ahead of the convention for anyone, because it's not 
considered very ethical. You're supposed to have an open mind. 

Now, it is true that if you're just a delegate, that's one 
thing. But if you're a chairman of a delegation — 

He was about to become national commit teeman. 

Well, if you're national committeeman or if you're chairman 
of the delegation or something like that, you're theoretically, 
and should be, neutral. Maybe your own feeling is different, 
or you'd vote differently, but openly, and [in] publicity and 
all, you're supposed to be neutral. 

It wasn't an open delegation, 
of support for Earl Warren. 

Everybody had signed the affidavit 

Yes. But I think it was generally known or recognized that if 
Eisenhower would throw his hat in the ring then they might 
switch, but on the first vote they would honor Governor Warren 
by a vote for him, knowing that the other states wouldn't be 
voting for him and knowing that — that is, most of them wouldn't— 
and knowing that maybe in the end he didn't have too much chance. 

Yes. I guess the Warren forces strategy lay in case of a draw 
between Taft and Eisenhower; then Warren could ride right 
through the middle and get the nomination. 


Crocker: Yes. 

Fry: Do you remember that "fair play resolution," on the seating of 
the contested delegates from Georgia and Texas and Louisiana? 

Crocker: I never got in on that especially. 

Fry: You didn't? Because the delegation had to vote for that. 

Crocker: Yes, I realize. But I don't remember, except that I knew they 
were having difficulties. But I wasn't personally involved. 

Fry: That's what pretty much put it over the top for Eisenhower, 

because his delegates were the ones that were finally seated. 
If that hadn't happened, then it might have been a tie between 
Eisenhower and Taft. 

[end tape 1, side 2; begin tape 2, side 1] 

Crocker: I've been a delegate to four national conventions and an 

alternate to one. Sometimes you're apt to get confused a little 


Fry: I'm sure you can, because there's so much that gones on in each 

convention. The reason lasked you about that fair play amendment 
was because — 

Crocker: I remember hearing about it, but I wasn't one of the leaders or 
was directly involved. 

Fry: I think it played a big part in Nixon becoming vice-president, 
but I don't know. Nixon, in one of his books, says that he 
supported Eisenhower from way back — like March or April or 
sometime. Was that your impression? 

Crocker: I think so, yes. 

Fry: So Nixon was really on the Eisenhower bandwagon for quite a 
while. Some of his biographers state that Dewey had early 
conferences with Nixon back in the early spring about being a 
vice-presidential candidate. So I thought maybe you could tell 
me what you had perceived at the time about Nixon's chances for 
the vice-president and about when they occurred. 

Crocker: It was rumored on the delegation that he had a chance. 
Fry: When? Before you got to Chicago? 


Crocker: Mostly when we got to Chicago, but out here it was also rumored 
around. We [delegates] didn't get to talk to one another until 
we were on the train, and back there, but it was kind of rumored 
around that Nixon had a fair chance. 

Fry: Did he know about it on the train? 

Crocker: Oh, I think so. You mean, that he would be chosen? 

Fry: Yes. 

Crocker: I don't know. I think he knew that he might have a fairly good 
chance, but I don't think it was confirmed at that time. That 
would be my impression. 

Fry: Yes, I guess you could never really be sure until it actually 

happens. The other thing was, what rumors were you hearing 
about Earl Warren and an appointment he might get? 

Crocker: There was talk about the Supreme Court justice. 

Fry: Yes, but when? We're trying to figure out at what point this 

offer was made. 






I think it was kind of rumored at the time at the convention. 
Of course, he'd have to wait until there was an opening and 
so forth. 

Yes. Were you aware of the goal of Henry Cabot Lodge? Some 
people say that he's the one that master-minded Nixon's move 
into the vice-presidency. Other people say that it was Herb 
Brownell, and other people say that it was Dewey. Do you 
have any knowledge? 

I think it was a combination of all of them, 
the most influential, I don't know. 

Which one was 

I wonder what Eisenhower's own preferences were, 
hear anything about that? 

Did you ever 

I don't know. I think he had an open mind. He had come out of 
the army. He was used to running things and that you [were] 
promoted on the way on up over the years, and you were awarded 
for your service and ability and so forth. In politics, all of 
a sudden you can go from an ordinary businessman to end with the 
vice-presidency or something like that. Eisenhower just wasn't, 
in my opinion, quite used to that system. But he was pretty 
careful, in my opinion, in his choice and selection. He 
listened to quite a few influential men. 


Fry: Do you remember the Nixon fund? Nixon had to give a speech 
on television to explain it. Dana Smith was one of the 
people who were holding it for him here in Los Angeles, and 
maybe you were too; I don't know. It was a relatively small 
fund, I think about $18,000. One of the theories on that is 
that this charge was initially made by those people in the 
Warren delegation who had been upset about Nixon's campaigning 
for Eisenhower on the Warren delegation. 

Crocker: Yes. I remember hearing about the fund, but I never got involved 
in it very much as I remember. 

Fry: You weren't one of the keepers of the funds or anything? 
Crocker: No, not that I remember, no. 

Fry: Were you aware at the time that this may have been made public 
because some of the members of the delegation were mad at Nixon 
because he — 

Crocker: It may have been for that reason, yes. 

Fry: Did you help Nixon campaign any after he became vice-president? 

For example, he had a campaign train that went through California 
and up through Bakersfield and the Valley. 

Crocker: You mean after he was nominated? 
Fry: After he was nominated. 

Crocker: I got out letters from friends and several people and got out 
letters and things like that, but I was just one of the many 
people that were trying to help. 

Fry: Well, I thought maybe you would have some stories to tell about 
the public reaction and so forth to Nixon at that point. 

Crocker: He was such a good speaker, and he had [not] made enough 
enemies prior to then so he didn't have much opposition. 
Because of his speaking ability and his knowledge of issues, 
he did very well, of course. 

Fry: To wind this up, could you help me assess the relationship between 
Earl Warren and Richard Nixon about this time? The information 
in books is that there was some disaffection between them, but 
it's not clear why. 





If I had to guess — and this is purely a guess — I think Earl 
Warren wanted to be president of the United States. He wanted 
the nomination. As head of the California delegation, he was 
trying to get it at the national convention, and he didn't 
want anybody to stand in his way, especially from California. 
While I don't think he had any personal dislike of Nixon as 
a man, he was naturally a rival and wanted ultimately to be 
president of the United States. 

Of course, people were also thinking about Nixon. 

A lot of people on the delegation wanted him to be president 
of the United States. So, that was the basic difference. 

Let me ask you about Loyd Wright, because he had fallen off 
Warren's bandwagon at this point. Was he an active supporter 
of Nixon? He's one of these people that was changing from — 

As I remember, he was. He was a very influential attorney, 
highly respected and well liked. As I remember, he was for 

Comparisons Between the 1946 Campaign and 1950. 1952 

Fry: I meant to ask you one question and forgot it. What did Nixon 
do in his own 1950 campaign from the standpoint of managing it? 
Can you kind of give me a feel there of how much he was able to 
be in contact? Helen Gahagan Douglas told me that she just 
could hardly find out what was going on in the campaign as a 
whole because she was so busy giving speeches and campaigning. 

Crocker: The way it started out, in his first congressional campaign, I 
became chairman of the committee. We used to have lunch with 
Nixon and a few others, like Roy Day and a few others that were 
active in the campaign, in other words, the campaign committee 
chairmen of the various divisions. We'd have lunch together — 
we tried to have lunch together — most every Saturday noon. We 
would review the mistakes we had made and how we could correct 
those mistakes, what strategy we would use and what we should do 
in the following week or weeks ahead. Most of the time, as I 
say, we would meet on Saturdays [at] noon and the committee would 
be there. If we were short of money — if that was our problem — or 
if we weren't getting enough exposure in the newspapers, we 
would work on that. And if we weren't getting enough prominent 
names on the committee for supporters that way, we'd work on 
that, or whatever. We'd discuss what we'd done in the previous 
week and what our objectives were and what our weaknesses were 
and how we could correct those. 


Fry: You had really close contact, then. 

Crocker: Oh, yes. We'd just sit down. We had small groups, and we'd 
have lunch together most Saturdays. Now, occasionally, when 
he was up in Northern California campaigning, we'd skip the 


Fry: Wait a minute — I'm back in '46. Are you talking about 1950? 
Crocker: I'm talking about his first campaign. 
Fry: Forty-six. 

Crocker: His other campaigns after his first campaign, he'd have a state 
chairman and so forth, and they didn't have all this personal 
contact. So I was on this committee and so forth [but] maybe 
I'd only see him once a month. But when he first ran for congress, 
the first time, his name was so little known and he'd had such 
little exposure that we thought we ought to meet every Saturday 

Fry: In a campaign like his first senatorial campaign — 

Crocker: Then that was different. As I remember it, maybe he'd occasionally 
meet with a group from Southern California here [in Los Angeles] 
or in [inaudible]. He'd go up to the San Joaquin Valley and meet 
with a group there. Maybe some other week he'd go up to San 
Francisco and meet up there, and some other time we'd be down in 
San Diego and meet down there. They worked the route that way. 

Fry: When you were working with the newspapers was he able to tell 

you what kind of stories he wanted submitted or to check on what 
the story was before you put it in? 

Crocker: Oh, yes. As a rule, he might write up an article, or he would 
send out somebody like Roy Day on his first campaign [1946] 
and they'd discuss the issues, and Roy would maybe write it up. 
Then he'd submit it to Nixon for accuracy and approval. 

Fry: How were the ads in the newspapers handled in the 1950 senatorial 
campaign against Helen Gahagan Douglas? 

Crocker: On the senatorial, while Roy Day had a lot to do with that, they 
also tried to get the newspapers all throughout the state to work 
with them. It's only when Nixon ran for Congress that Roy Day 
really took, you might say, complete charge. But when he ran 
for the Senate, then Roy Day tried to help him in Southern 
California here, but Nixon generally had somebody up in Northern 
California and down in San Diego handling the publicity down there. 











So these were professional men. 

But was Nixon still in charge and checking what went out and 
so forth? 

Oh, yes. He watched those things fairly carefully. 

Was there anything that ever came out that Nixon had retracted? 

Once or twice, but I don't think it was anything of any great 

I know that happened once in Earl Warren's first gubernatorial 
campaign, and he was really upset about it. [laughter] 
Usually one candidate has this happen at least once to them. 

I don't want to contribute to your malnutrition, [laughter] 
so I can close this off since it is lunchtime. Is there 
something else that you think of that you want to include in 
the early campaigns of Nixon? 

I think he was completely unsophisticated when he ran the first 
campaign. He'd never been active around politics and never been 
active in Washington. After he'd been there awhile, he had 
much more self assurance on his other campaigns. He knew the 
issues better and handled himself better. That's about all I 
could say. 

I sure do thank you for your time. 

Not at all. 

Final Typist: 

Lee Steinback 
Keiko Sugimoto 

September 22, 1969 

In 1946 several leading Republicans in the old 12th Congress 
ional District (now the 24th) were invited to a meeting in Alhambra 
by Roy 0. Day of Pomona. We had four meetings in the evening to try 
and get a suitable candidate to beat the liberal Democrat Jerry 


Voorhis who had been reelected five times in a district that was 
predorainately Republican. 

Herman L. Perry, Manager of the Bank of American branch 
in Whittier, knew about Richard M. Nixon's abaility as a debater 
when he was in VThittier College. He telephoned to Nixon, who was 
in Baltimore renegotiating airplane contracts for the U. S. Navy 
Group, and suggested that he return to California and appear as a 
prospective candidate before the Fact Finding Committee, consisting 
of leading Republicans in the 12th Congressional District. Nixon 
appeared at about the second meeting of the committee and made an 
instantaneous favorable impression and he was selected as the candidal 
over seven other aspirants. Nixon received all but eight votes on 
the final ballot and then the vote was made unanimous. 

There were three assembly districts in the 12th Congressional 
District and three members from each district were selected to 
manage the primary campaign. I was one of the nine members chosen 
and I was elected Chairman of the Campaign. Roy Day was chosen 
by the committee as the Campaign Manager. 

Most every Saturday noon the members of the Campaign Committee 
had lunch with Nixon at a restaurant in Alhambra where we discussed 
the events of the previous week and made plans for the next v;eek. 


The members of the Committee that handled the Primary 
Campaign were as follows: 


At first many people doubted that Nixon could beat Jerry 
Voorhis and thus were not willing to make financial contributions 
to the campaign. Because of the desperate need for campaign ex 
penses, I also became, unofficially, Finance Chairman as well as 
Chairman of the campaign and for the first few months of the campaign 
I put up several hundred dollars every month in order to meet expenses, 

Nixon challenged Voorhis to a debate. One of the first de 
bates was held in the auditorium of the Junior High School in South 
Pasadena. Nixon challenged Voorhis to deny that he had not been a 
member of various designated radical organizations. Voorhis did 
not deny the accusations and from then on the campaign started to 
attract attention and interest of the voters in the 12th District. 


Then contributions started coming in in larger amounts. As there 
was no Republican opponent Nixon naturally won the Republican 
nomination in the primaries. 

The big contest was in the final elected in November. 

Roy Day managed the primary campaign and Harrison McCall 
managed the final election. 

After the primary campaign there was a need to put a greater 
effort in the final campaign so the committee decided to employ 
the three Republican assemblymen in the district to campaign for 
Nixon. These were Ernest Geddes of Pomona, Tom Erwin of Whitter 

and Smith of Alhambra. Also Murray Chotiner, at my 

suggestion, was called in to help on the strategy. 

I believe there were three debates between Nixon and 


Nixon won thefinal election in November and he was re- 
elected to Congress again. I helped in this campaign also. 

In 1950 Senator Downey, a Democrat, was in poor health 


so he decided that he would not run for reelection. 

Democratic Congresswoman, Helen Gahagan Douglas, the 
wife of Melvin Douglas, the actor, ran for United States 
Senator against Nixon. A few of Nixon's friends, including 
myself, spent most of three days at the San Ysidro Ranch in 
Montecito. I managed the Statewide agricultural campaign for Nixon 
and also helped raise mcney. Mrs. Douglas was an outspoken New 
Deal Liberal. Murray Chotiner was a pragmatic campaign manager 
and the campaign was very bitter. Nixon won, but the California 
Liberal Democrats appeared never to forgive Nixon. 

Nixon won the Senate seat. 


INDEX — Roy P. Crocker 

Boddy, Manchester, 5-7 

Call, Asa, 10-11 
Chotiner, Murray, 13 

Day, Roy, 24 

Eisenhower, Dwight David, 21 

election campaigns 

1950 Senatorial, California, 1-16 
1952 presidential, 17-23 

Faires, Mclntyre, 17-19 

Hotchkis, Preston, 11 
Houser, Frederick, 3 

Nixon, Richard Milhous 

1950 Senatorial campaign, 1-16 

finance, 5-7, 10-12 

issues, 7-9, 13-16 

media support, 4-5 

organization, 23-25 

1952 Republican national convention, 17-23 
1952 presidential campaign, 22 

Palmer, Kyle, 2-4 

Republican national conventions 
1952, 17-23 

Warren, Earl, 9, 22-23 

Amelia R. Fry 

Graduated from the University of Oklahoma, B.A. in 
psychology and English, M.A. in educational psychology 
and English, University of Illinois; additional work, 
University of Chicago, California State University 
at Hayward. 

Instructor, freshman English at University of Illinois 
and at Hiram College. Reporter, suburban daily newspaper, 

Interviewer, Regional Oral History Office, 1959 — ; 
conducted interview series on University history, 
woman suffrage, the history of conservation and forestry, 
public administration and politics. Director, Earl 
Warren Era Oral History Project, documenting govern 
mental/political history of California 1925-1953; 
director, Goodwin Knight-Edmund G. Brown Era Project. 

Author of articles in professional and popular journals; 
instructor, summer Oral History Institute, University of 
Vermont, 1975, 1976, and oral history workshops for 
Oral History Association and historical agencies; 
consultant to other oral history projects; oral history 
editor, Journal of Library History, 1969-1974; secretary, 
the Oral History Association, 1970-1973.