TRANSITION: Washington War

When WPBoss Donald Nelson gets back to his desk, perhaps this week, he faces a tougher fight than his successful bout with pneumonia. While he was abed his balky WPB co-workers had shelved what is probably the most important order Nelson had ever issued: an order that would begin the reconversion of U.S. war plants in an orderly way.

This was a big fight—one of the biggest of all the Washington battles of the war—and one which it was important that U.S. citizens should understand.

Nelson's sidetracked directive would per mit manufacturers to...