President Truman 1949 Inauguration

The Chicago Daily Tribune, along with many Americans, did not expect Harry S. Truman to win the 1948 presidential election. Yet on January 20, 1949, he took the oath of office and addressed the nation as the 32nd president of the United States. Viewers watch the newsreel footage of President Truman's inaugural address as he outlines his vision for a post-war America.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Have learners watch the video at home and note the most effective phrases, rhetorical devices, specific historical references, or campaign promises
  • Point out the fortuitous presence of General Dwight D. Eisenhower in the procession at minute 13:00, as he will be sworn in as president in 1953
Classroom Considerations

  • Highlights of President Truman's inaugural address begins at 3:43 after newsreel footage of the oath of office, and ends at 11:30
  • Video quality is grainy and may not project well; consider having learners watch the speech on a smaller screen
  • At over 17 minutes long, the video may be too long for one sitting
  • The second video in a playlist of 10
Pros

  • Versatile for use in a lesson about presidential elections, inaugurations, or historic speeches
  • Newsreel reporter provides descriptions of various historical figures in the video
  • After the address, the newsreel provides several minutes of the 1949 festivities and procession
Cons

  • None