THE PRESIDENCY: The Republic in a Top Hat

As the last days of the old Administration ticked away, Washington got set for a costly carnival to welcome in the new. Bunting curled around Pennsylvania Avenue lampposts from the White House to Capitol Hill. From nearly every store window beamed the twin pictures of Alben Barkley and Harry Truman. Expecting nearly a million elbowing visitors this week, a 1,300-member committee toiled feverishly to make the four-day show the biggest, most expensive Presidential Inauguration in history. After all, it was the nearest thing the U.S. had to a coronation, a rare chance for...

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