Truman Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

David McCullough
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the number one recommendation from the S-1 Interim Committee to Truman?

2. For most of the people in Independence in the 1800's, who was their hero?

3. Who did Truman choose to accompany him to meet the train bearing Roosevelt's body?

4. How did Truman's men move their equipment around France?

5. President Roosevelt made a radio speech to America at the beginning of Germany's attack on England, and the speech was subsequently referred to as what?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do you think the land around Independence was called Blue River Country?

2. What experience does Truman bring to this Senate investigation? Outline specifically which jobs he held in the past that would contribute to his ability to lead this important committee.

3. In campaigning, Truman is not a skilled orator, but people remember him. Why?

4. Harry Truman left his home and his country to defend another country's border. He mentions that "we owe it to Lafayette" - what does this mean?

5. The author entitled Chapter 8 "Numbered Days." Whose days are being referred to here?

6. Tom Pendergast's advice to Harry Truman as he left for D.C. was "Work hard, keep your mouth shut, and answer your mail." Was this good advice for the new senator? Why?

7. Why did Roosevelt keep so many secrets from his Vice President? List your opinion regarding Roosevelt's 1) possession of power, 2) distrust of anyone other than his chosen circle, and 3) whether or not the president should keep some secrets from the rest of the world.

8. Re-read the account of the committee's hearings with Irwin Works, a steel producing plant. What is your opinion of Truman's tactics in determining the truth?

9. Although money was always a problem for Truman, when given the opportunity to make millions at the expense of the government, he chose not to. Why?

10. Some wives of politicians are active in their husband's campaigns and in D.C. social life to assist their reputations. Bess Truman was definitely not this type of political wife. Why do you think this is?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe in detail the significant events in Truman's first term as Senator from Missouri, and cover the following points, using the facts, and then your opinion as to how this event affected Truman's policy, reputation and personal feelings.

1. Treatment of him by fellow Senators, especially the one from his own state

2. Bess choosing to stay away from Washington most of the time

3. Truman's loyalty to Roosevelt

4. Truman's loyalty to Pendergast

5. The official investigation of Pendergast

6. The difficulty of getting re-elected without his traditional means of support

Essay Topic 2

Based upon what is reported in this novel regarding Japan's attitude towards surrender and the outcome of the war, would you have ordered the use of the atomic bomb?

Essay Topic 3

Why were Americans, and southern Democrats in particular, so opposed to the inclusion of minorities in the rights of other Americans?

(see the answer keys)

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