Harry S. Truman (1884 – 1972) [cite this] More images » Life in Brief: Harry S. Truman became President of the United States with the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 12, 1945. During his nearly eight years in office, Truman confronted enormous challenges in both foreign and domestic affairs. Truman's policie… more life in brief » Essays about Harry S. Truman Life in Brief Life in Brief: Harry S. Truman became President of the United States with the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 12, 1945. During his nearly eight years in office, Truman confronted enormous challenges in both foreign and domestic affairs. Truman's policies abroad, and especially toward the Soviet Union i… Life Before the Presidency Life Before the Presidency: Harry S. Truman was born in the small town of Lamar, Missouri, on May 8, 1884. In 1890, Harry's parents, John and Martha, moved the family (which included Harry's brother Vivian and sister Mary Jane) to Independence, Missouri, a county-seat town of just 6,000 people. Located ten miles ea… Campaigns and Elections Campaigns and Elections: The Campaign and Election of 1948: The Democratic Party’s poor showing in the 1946 mid-term congressional elections—in which the Republican Party took control of both the Senate and the House of Representatives for the first time since 1928—considerably dimmed Truman’s prospects for re&…Domestic Affairs Domestic Affairs: With the death of President Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 12, 1945, Vice President Harry S. Truman assumed the Oval Office. He surely knew he faced a difficult set of challenges in the immediate future: overseeing the final defeats of Germany and Japan; managing the U.S. role in post-war intern…Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs: President Harry S. Truman confronted unprecedented challenges in international affairs during his nearly eight years in office. Truman guided the United States through the end of World War II, the beginning of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union, and the dawning of the atomic…Life After the Presidency Life After the Presidency: Harry Truman lived for nineteen years after leaving the White House in 1953. He and his wife Bess returned to Truman's hometown of Independence, Missouri, where Truman spent his post-presidential years guarding and constructing his legacy and place in history. He also continued to comment on…Family Life Family Life: Few Presidents were as dedicated to their family as Harry S. Truman. Although his father died in 1914, Truman’s mother, Martha Ellen, lived into her nineties—long enough to see him succeed President Franklin D. Roosevelt. “Mama,” as Truman called his mother, passed away in 1947. She and her …The American Franchise The American Franchise: In 1950, just over 150.7 million people were living in the United States. Nearly two-thirds resided in urban or suburban areas. The average American white male could expect to live to age sixty-six, while white women usually lived to age seventy-two. African-American life expectancy,…Impact and Legacy Impact and Legacy: When Harry S. Truman left the presidency in January 1953, he was one of the most unpopular politicians in the United States. The Korean War, accusations of corruption in his administration, and the anticommunist red-baiting of McCarthy and his allies had all contributed to the President's po… About His Administration First Lady Bess Truman Vice President Alben W. Barkley Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius Jr. (1944–1945) James Byrnes (1945–1947) George C. Marshall (1947–1949) Dean G. Acheson (1949–1953) Secretary of Defense James V. Forrestal (1947–1949) Louis Johnson (1949–1950) George C. Marshall (1950–1951) Robert Lovett (1951–1953) Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes (1945–1946) Julius A. Krug (1946–1949) Oscar L. Chapman (1949–1953) Attorney General Francis B. Biddle (1945–1945) Thomas C. Clark (1945–1949) J. Howard McGrath (1949–1952) James P. McGranery (1952–1953) Postmaster General Frank C. Walker (1945–1945) Robert E. Hannegan (1945–1947) Jesse M. Donaldson (1947–1953) Secretary of the Treasury John W. Snyder (1946–1953) Henry Morgenthau, Jr. (1945–1945) Frederick M. Vinson (1945–1946) Secretary of Labor Lewis B. Schwellenbach (1945-1948) Maurice J. Tobin (1948–1953) Frances Perkins (1945–1945) Secretary of Commerce Henry A. Wallace (1945–1946) William Averell Harriman (1946–1948) Charles Sawyer (1948–1953) Secretary of Agriculture Charles F. Brannan (1948–1953) Clinton P. Anderson (1945–1948) Claude R. Wickard (1945–1945) Secretary of the Navy James V. Forrestal (1945–1947) Secretary of War Kenneth C. Royall (1947–1947) Henry L. Stimson (1945–1945) Robert P. Patterson (1945–1947) Harry S. Truman Presidential Recordings view all recordings » Facts about Harry S. Truman Term: 33rd President of the United States (1945 – 1953) Born: May 8, 1884, Lamar, MO Political Party: Democrat Died: December 26, 1972 Nickname: "Give ’Em Hell Harry" Religion: Baptist Marriage: June 28, 1919, to Elizabeth “Bess” Virginia Wallace (1885–1982) Children: Mary Margaret (1924–2008) Career: Farmer, Businessman, Public Official Buried: Independence, MO WritingsMemoirs (2 vols., 1955-56) Harry S. Truman Image Gallery More images » Harry S. Truman Exhibits ‘The Marshall Plan’ The Marshall Plan was an extensive program that provided economic relief to Europe from 1947 to 1951 in the aftermath of World War II. The United States offered monetary aid to the infrastructure of European nations to help prevent the spread of Soviet-sponsored Communism. Secretary of State George C. Marshall first backed restoring the war-torn countries of Europe during a commencement address at Harvard University on June 5, 1947. President Harry Truman and other Western European political leaders responded favorably, and the Economic Cooperation Act, or Marshall Plan, became law on April 3, 1948. more exhibits » No government is perfect. One of the chief virtues of a democracy, however, is that its defects are always visible and under democratic processes can be pointed out and corrected. March 12, 1947 As Americans, we believe that every man should be free to live his life as he wishes. He should be limited only by his responsibility to his fellow countrymen. June 29, 1947 Citation Information Consulting Editor Alonzo L. Hamby Professor Hamby is a Distinguished Professor of History at Ohio University. His writings include: For the Survival of Democracy: Franklin Roosevelt and the World Crisis of the 1930s (Free Press, 2004) Man of the People: A Life of Harry S. Truman (Oxford University Press, 1998) Beyond the New Deal: Harry S. Truman and American Liberalism (Columbia University Press, 1973) Dwight D. Eisenhower » « Franklin D. Roosevelt American President has changed! Click here to take a short survey and tell us what you think!