1952 Presidential Campaign
The fight for the Republican nomination was largely between General Dwight D. Eisenhower and Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio. The primaries had been split fairly evenly between the two men, and the nomination came down to the wire, but ultimately Eisenhower won the nomination based largely on the perception that he was a sure winner. Eisenhower chose as his running mate Senator Richard Nixon of California, best known for his pursuit of Alger Hiss. Other Republican candidates in this year were Governor Earl Warren of California and former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen, who had both hoped to emerge as a compromise candidate in case of deadlock between Eisenhower and Taft. Eisenhower campaigned by attacking the failures of the outgoing Administration, and promising to go to Korea and resolve the war.
1953 Presidential Inauguration
Dwight David Eisenhower took the oath of office on Tuesday, January 20, 1953. The oath was administered by Chief justice Frederick Moore Vinson. Before delivering his inaugural address, the President offered a prayer, the text of which follows:
"My friends, before I begin the expression of those thoughts that I deem appropriate to this moment, would you permit me the privilege of uttering a little private prayer of my own. And I ask that you bow your heads. Almighty God, as we stand here at this moment my future associates in the Executive branch of Government join me in beseeching that Thou will make full and complete our dedication to the service of the people in this throng, and their fellow citizens everywhere. Give us, we pray, the power to discern clearly right from wrong, and allow all our words and actions to be governed thereby, and by the laws of this land. Especially we pray that our concern shall be for all the people regardless of station, race or calling. May cooperation be permitted and be the mutual aim of those who, under the concepts of our Constitution, hold to differing political faiths; so that all may work for the good of our beloved country and Thy glory. Amen."
The two and one-half hour inaugural parade was witnessed by an estimated 1 million persons, of whom 60,000 were in the grandstand in seats ranging in price from $3 to $15, according to location. About 22,000 service men and women and 5,000 civilians were in the parade, which included 50 state and organization floats costing $100,000. There were also 65 musical units, 350 horses, 3 elephants, an Alaskan dog team, and the 280-millimeter atomic cannon. It was the most elaborate inaugural pageant ever held.
In addition to a governors' reception for 3,000 invited guests, there were two inaugural festivals, one at the Uline Arena for 11,000 persons, and one at the Capitol Theater for 3,500 persons. Tickets ranged in price from $3 to $12. Forty stars of stage, screen, and TV participated in the celebration. In the evening two inaugural balls were held, one at the National Guard Armory and the other at the gymnasium of McDonough Hall at Georgetown University.
1953 Inaugural Ball
1956 Presidential Campaign