Thursday, January 27, 2011

Quote: Harry S. Truman

“It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.”

- Harry S. Truman (1884 – 1972), US President 1945-1953

As a point of interest, the S in Truman’s name is not a shortening of a middle name, it is complete as S.

Truman wrote in his autobiography that his first name, Harry, is after an uncle, Harrison Young, and  that as regards the S:
"…so that I could have two initials in my given name, the letter S was added. My Grandfather Truman's name was Anderson Shippe Truman and my Grandfather Young's name was Solomon Young, so I received the S for both of them."
Although he once joked that the S was a name, not an initial, so that it should not have a period after it, official documents do use a period. There are also numerous examples of Truman signing his name with a period after the S. In the 1960’s Truman himself said that he had no preference. It has been common to use a period since then. 
As a further point of interest, the above photograph is an iconic image of Truman after his presidential win. The win was so unexpected that the Chicago Tribune had already printed its newspapers ready for distribution with the headline “Dewey defeats Truman”.

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