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The President wanted a change from the confining White House grind. He took a week’s cruise aboard the yacht Williamsburg.

First morning out he was up at 6 a.m. to look over Hampton Roads and an eye-filling spectacle: three aircraft carriers, three cruisers and nine destroyers of Task Group 801 of the U.S. Eighth Fleet. Two hours later, the President was piped aboard the new 45,000-ton carrier Franklin D. Roosevelt. Thereafter, anyone who followed energetic Harry Truman around the big ship got anything but rest.

Wearing a long-billed flight cap, the President toured the hangar deck, put-putted around on a tractor, climbed up to the island, then went below on another tour to sick bay, engine room, bakery, and finally to a brief stop at the soda fountain.. By mid-afternoon Press Secretary Charley Ross had developed a bad case of foot blisters. Harry Truman was still fresh and going more places.

Next day, he was up at 4 a.m., in time to watch the dawn patrol take off. Through the long morning and most of the afternoon he missed no part of the show. That evening the President was back aboard the Williamsburg, poring over a batch of administrative work.

He took time off to go back to Washington for Chief Justice Stone’s funeral, was soon back on the yacht, anchored off the Quantico Marine Base. Some visitors came aboard on official business: General Dwight Eisenhower (the draft); Reconversion Boss John Snyder (coal strike).

But the top business now was appointment of a new Chief Justice. Who would it be? Newsmen learned this much: the job would go to a man on the Court. Speculation narrowed to Robert H. Jackson and William 0. Douglas, with a few wiseacres betting on Hugo Black. To fill the vacancy left on the Court, Secretary of War Robert Patterson appeared the likeliest choice. Early this week the President invited venerable Charles Evans Hughes, former Chief Justice, to help him decide.

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