Precis Three Assignment – Needed in 6.5 hours

 400 words (200 for each prompt)

After  reading “Share Our Wealth” and “FDR’s First Inaugural Address,”  following the criteria posted on the “Pages” page  of Canvas, please upload your third precis here. 

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1/17/18, 12(38 PM”Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”: FDR’s First Inaugural Address

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“Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”: FDR’s First Inaugural
Franklin D. Roosevelt had campaigned against Herbert Hoover in the 1932 presidential election by saying as
little as possible about what he might do if elected. Through even the closest working relationships, none of
the president-elect’s most intimate associates felt they knew him well, with the exception perhaps of his wife,
Eleanor. The affable, witty Roosevelt used his great personal charm to keep most people at a distance. In
campaign speeches, he favored a buoyant, optimistic, gently paternal tone spiced with humor. But his first
inaugural address took on an unusually solemn, religious quality. And for good reason—by 1933 the
depression had reached its depth. Roosevelt’s first inaugural address outlined in broad terms how he hoped to
govern and reminded Americans that the nation’s “common difficulties” concerned “only material things.”

Please note that the audio is an excerpt from the full address.

Listen to Audio:

I am certain that my fellow Americans expect that on my induction into the Presidency I will address them
with a candor and a decision which the present situation of our people impel. This is preeminently the time to
speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in
our country today. This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So, first of all,
let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning,
unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. In every dark hour of our
national life a leadership of frankness and vigor has met with that understanding and support of the people
themselves which is essential to victory. I am convinced that you will again give that support to leadership in
these critical days.

In such a spirit on my part and on yours we face our common difficulties. They concern, thank God, only
material things. Values have shrunken to fantastic levels; taxes have risen; our ability to pay has fallen;
government of all kinds is faced by serious curtailment of income; the means of exchange are frozen in the
currents of trade; the withered leaves of industrial enterprise lie on every side; farmers find no markets for
their produce; the savings of many years in thousands of families are gone.

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1/17/18, 12(38 PM”Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”: FDR’s First Inaugural Address

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More important, a host of unemployed citizens face the grim problem of existence, and an equally great
number toil with little return. Only a foolish optimist can deny the dark realities of the moment.

Yet our distress comes from no failure of substance. We are stricken by no plague of locusts. Compared with
the perils which our forefathers conquered because they believed and were not afraid, we have still much to
be thankful for. Nature still offers her bounty and human efforts have multiplied it. Plenty is at our doorstep,
but a generous use of it languishes in the very sight of the supply. Primarily this is because the rulers of the
exchange of mankind’s goods have failed, through their own stubbornness and their own incompetence, have
admitted their failure, and abdicated. Practices of the unscrupulous money changers stand indicted in the
court of public opinion, rejected by the hearts and minds of men.

True they have tried, but their efforts have been cast in the pattern of an outworn tradition. Faced by failure of
credit they have proposed only the lending of more money. Stripped of the lure of profit by which to induce
our people to follow their false leadership, they have resorted to exhortations, pleading tearfully for restored
confidence. They know only the rules of a generation of self-seekers. They have no vision, and when there is
no vision the people perish.

The money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore
that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of the restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social
values more noble than mere monetary profit.

Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative
effort. The joy and moral stimulation of work no longer must be forgotten in the mad chase of evanescent
profits. These dark days will be worth all they cost us if they teach us that our true destiny is not to be
ministered unto but to minister to ourselves and to our fellow men.

Recognition of the falsity of material wealth as the standard of success goes hand in hand with the
abandonment of the false belief that public office and high political position are to be valued only by the
standards of pride of place and personal profit; and there must be an end to a conduct in banking and in
business which too often has given to a sacred trust the likeness of callous and selfish wrongdoing. Small
wonder that confidence languishes, for it thrives only on honesty, on honor, on the sacredness of obligations,
on faithful protection, on unselfish performance; without them it cannot live.

Restoration calls, however, not for changes in ethics alone. This Nation asks for action, and action now.

Our greatest primary task is to put people to work. This is no unsolvable problem if we face it wisely and
courageously. It can be accomplished in part by direct recruiting by the Government itself, treating the task as
we would treat the emergency of a war, but at the same time, through this employment, accomplishing greatly
needed projects to stimulate and reorganize the use of our natural resources.

Hand in hand with this we must frankly recognize the overbalance of population in our industrial centers and,
by engaging on a national scale in a redistribution, endeavor to provide a better use of the land for those best
fitted for the land. The task can be helped by definite efforts to raise the values of agricultural products and
with this the power to purchase the output of our cities. It can be helped by preventing realistically the
tragedy of the growing loss through foreclosure of our small homes and our farms. It can be helped by
insistence that the Federal, State, and local governments act forthwith on the demand that their cost be
drastically reduced. It can be helped by the unifying of relief activities which today are often scattered,
uneconomical, and unequal. It can be helped by national planning for and supervision of all forms of

1/17/18, 12(38 PM”Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”: FDR’s First Inaugural Address

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transportation and of communications and other utilities which have a definitely public character. There are
many ways in which it can be helped, but it can never be helped merely by talking about it. We must act and
act quickly.

Finally, in our progress toward a resumption of work we require two safeguards against a return of the evils
of the old order; there must be a strict supervision of all banking and credits and investments; there must be
an end to speculation with other people’s money, and there must be provision for an adequate but sound

There are the lines of attack. I shall presently urge upon a new Congress in special session detailed measures
for their fulfillment, and I shall seek the immediate assistance of the several States.

Through this program of action we address ourselves to putting our own national house in order and making
income balance outgo. Our international trade relations, though vastly important, are in point of time and
necessity secondary to the establishment of a sound national economy. I favor as a practical policy the putting
of first things first. I shall spare no effort to restore world trade by international economic readjustment, but
the emergency at home cannot wait on that accomplishment.

The basic thought that guides these specific means of national recovery is not narrowly nationalistic. It is the
insistence, as a first consideration, upon the interdependence of the various elements in all parts of the United
States—a recognition of the old and permanently important manifestation of the American spirit of the
pioneer. It is the way to recovery. It is the immediate way. It is the strongest assurance that the recovery will

In the field of world policy I would dedicate this Nation to the policy of the good neighbor—the neighbor
who resolutely respects himself and, because he does so, respects the rights of others—the neighbor who
respects his obligations and respects the sanctity of his agreements in and with a world of neighbors.

If I read the temper of our people correctly, we now realize as we have never realized before our
interdependence on each other; that we can not merely take but we must give as well; that if we are to go
forward, we must move as a trained and loyal army willing to sacrifice for the good of a common discipline,
because without such discipline no progress is made, no leadership becomes effective. We are, I know, ready
and willing to submit our lives and property to such discipline, because it makes possible a leadership which
aims at a larger good. This I propose to offer, pledging that the larger purposes will bind upon us all as a
sacred obligation with a unity of duty hitherto evoked only in time of armed strife.

With this pledge taken, I assume unhesitatingly the leadership of this great army of our people dedicated to a
disciplined attack upon our common problems.

Action in this image and to this end is feasible under the form of government which we have inherited from
our ancestors. Our Constitution is so simple and practical that it is possible always to meet extraordinary
needs by changes in emphasis and arrangement without loss of essential form. That is why our constitutional
system has proved itself the most superbly enduring political mechanism the modern world has produced. It
has met every stress of vast expansion of territory, of foreign wars, of bitter internal strife, of world relations.

It is to be hoped that the normal balance of executive and legislative authority may be wholly adequate to
meet the unprecedented task before us. But it may be that an unprecedented demand and need for undelayed
action may call for temporary departure from that normal balance of public procedure.

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I am prepared under my constitutional duty to recommend the measures that a stricken nation in the midst of
a stricken world may require. These measures, or such other measures as the Congress may build out of its
experience and wisdom, I shall seek, within my constitutional authority, to bring to speedy adoption.

But in the event that the Congress shall fail to take one of these two courses, and in the event that the national
emergency is still critical, I shall not evade the clear course of duty that will then confront me. I shall ask the
Congress for the one remaining instrument to meet the crisis—broad Executive power to wage a war against
the emergency, as great as the power that would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe.

For the trust reposed in me I will return the courage and the devotion that befit the time. I can do no less.

We face the arduous days that lie before us in the warm courage of the national unity; with the clear
consciousness of seeking old and precious moral values; with the clean satisfaction that comes from the stern
performance of duty by old and young alike. We aim at the assurance of a rounded and permanent national

We do not distrust the future of essential democracy. The people of the United States have not failed. In their
need they have registered a mandate that they want direct, vigorous action. They have asked for discipline
and direction under leadership. They have made me the present instrument of their wishes. In the spirit of the
gift I take it.

In this dedication of a Nation we humbly ask the blessing of God. May He protect each and every one of us.
May He guide me in the days to come.

Source: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Inaugural Address, March 4, 1933, as published in Samuel Rosenman, ed.,
The Public Papers of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Volume Two: The Year of Crisis, 1933 (New York: Random
House, 1938), 11–16.

HIST1302: Spring 2020

Précis Guidelines

Guidelines for Précis: For each reading assigned for a week, you should write approximately one to two paragraphs telling me some of the important aspects of each document, as well as the who, what, where, when, and perhaps most importantly, why the document is important and how it fits into the themes and ideas we have been learning in class. Do not summarize, though you should bring up key points. Each précis must be at least 400 words and include a word count. There will be a 10-point deduction for not including a word count. An example of a précis can be found on Canvas under “Pages.”

Please note: all of the information should come from your understanding of the documents themselves, NOT outside sources.

1/17/18, 12(37 PM”Share the Wealth”: Huey Long Talks to the Nation

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“Share the Wealth”: Huey Long Talks to the Nation
Huey Long first came to national attention as governor of Louisiana in 1928 and U.S. Senator in 1930. He
ruled Louisiana as a virtual dictator, but he also initiated massive public works programs, improved public
education and public health, and even established some restrictions on corporate power in the state. While
Long was an early supporter of Franklin Roosevelt, by the fall of 1933 the Long-Roosevelt alliance had
ruptured, in part over Long’s growing interest in running for president. In 1934 Long organized his own,
alternative political organization, the Share-Our-Wealth Society, through which he advocated a populist
program for redistributing wealth through sharply graduated income and inheritance taxes. As his national
recognition (and ambitions) grew, he spoke with increasing frequency to national radio audiences. No
politician in this era—except Roosevelt himself and Long’s sometime ally, Father Charles Coughlin—used
radio as frequently and effectively. In this April 1935 radio address, Long sharply criticized FDR and the
New Deal and then sketched out his alternative program.

Listen to Audio:

Huey Long: Now in the third year of his administration, we find more of our people unemployed than at any
other time. We find our houses empty and our people hungry, many of them half-clothed and many of them
not clothed at all.

Mr. Hopkins announced twenty-two millions on the dole, a new high-water mark in that particular sum, a few
weeks ago. We find not only the people going further into debt, but that the United States is going further into
debt. The states are going further into debt, and the cities and towns are even going into bankruptcy. The
condition has become deplorable. Instead of his promises, the only remedy that Mr. Roosevelt has prescribed
is to borrow more money if he can and to go further into debt. The last move was to borrow $5 billion more
on which we must pay interest for the balance of our lifetimes, and probably during the lifetime of our
children. And with it all, there stalks a slimy specter of want, hunger, destitution, and pestilence, all because
of the fact that in the land of too much and of too much to wear, our president has failed in his promise to
have these necessities of life distributed into the hands of the people who have need of them.

Now, my friends, you have heard me read how a great New York newspaper, after investigations, declared
that all I have said about the bad distribution of this nation’s wealth is true. But we have been about our work
to correct this situation. That is why the Share Our Wealth societies are forming in every nook and corner of

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1/17/18, 12(37 PM”Share the Wealth”: Huey Long Talks to the Nation

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America. They’re meeting tonight. Soon there will be Share Our Wealth societies for everyone to meet. They
have a great work to perform.

Here is what we stand for in a nutshell:

Number one, we propose that every family in America should at least own a homestead equal in value to not
less than one third the average family wealth. The average family wealth of America, at normal values, is
approximately $16,000. So our first proposition means that every family will have a home and the comforts
of a home up to a value of not less than around $5,000 or a little more than that.

Number two, we propose that no family shall own more than three hundred times the average family wealth,
which means that no family shall possess more than a wealth of approximately $5 million—none to own less
than $5,000, none to own more than $5 million. We think that’s too much to allow them to own, but at least
it’s extremely conservative.

Number three, we propose that every family shall have an income equal to at least one third of the average
family income in America. If all were allowed to work, there’d be an income of from $5,000 to $10,000 per
family. We propose that one third would be the minimum. We propose that no family will have an earning of
less than around $2,000 to $2,500 and that none will have more than three hundred times the average less the
ordinary income taxes, which means that a million dollars would be the limit on the highest income.

We also propose to give the old-age pensions to the old people, not by taxing them or their children, but by
levying the taxes upon the excess fortunes to whittle them down, and on the excess incomes and excess
inheritances, so that the people who reach the age of sixty can be retired from the active labor of life and
given an opportunity to have surcease and ease for the balance of the life that they have on earth.

We also propose the care for the veterans, including the cash payment of the soldiers’ bonus. We likewise
propose that there should be an education for every youth in this land and that no youth would be dependent
upon the financial means of his parents in order to have a college education.

Source: Courtesy of Andy Lanset.

See Also:”Huey Long Is a Superman”: Gerald L. K. Smith Defends the Kingfish
“He’s a Demagogue, That’s What He Is”: Hodding Carter on Huey Long



The Atlanta Compromise Speech

The Atlanta Compromise speech was given by Booker T. Washington in 1895. In this speech, which Washington gave at the Cotton States and International Exposition in Atlanta, Georgia, Washington asks for blacks to be given equal opportunities in terms of gaining economic rights. Washington, however, does not ask for any civil rights for blacks, and does not push the audience to accept blacks as their equals. Instead, Washington says blacks and whites “can be as separate as the fingers, yet one as the hand in all things essential to mutual progress.” Washington acknowledges that blacks had initially gotten rights after slavery but says that blacks did not know how to handle these rights. This speech is important because it shows Washington’s attitudes towards civil rights in the turn-of-the-century. It proves that Washington believed that economic progress was the best way for blacks to prove themselves to whites, and it also is important because it shows that Washington was concerned that the new immigrants, which we discussed in class, would be taking jobs away from blacks. This speech shows how bad conditions were for blacks during the Jim Crow era and how the black leadership was trying to make things better.

Of Mr. Booker T. Washington and Others

“Of Mr. Booker T. Washington and Others” was published as part of W.E.B. Du Bois’s 1903 book The Souls of Black Folk. In this essay, Du Bois comes out as extremely critical of Booker T. Washington, especially Washington’s Atlanta Compromise Speech. Instead of pushing only for economic rights, like Washington suggests, Du Bois argues that American blacks needed to have full citizenship. Du Bois suggests that Washington is no different than black leaders during the time of slavery and was willing to settle for less than what blacks deserved. Du Bois was against Washington’s program of industrial education and said “it startled the nation to hear a Negro advocating such a programme after many decades of bitter complaint; it startled and won the applause of the South, it interested and won the admiration of the North; and after a confused murmur of protest, it silenced if it did not convert the Negroes themselves.” This highlights a key difference between Washington and Du Bois because Du Bois did not believe blacks needed to be limited to industrial education. Throughout this document, Du Bois states why he thinks that Washington’s ideas were so dangerous for blacks. This document is important because it shows that not all blacks believed in Washington’s ideas, and that there were different methods put forth for helping blacks achieve their rights during the era of Jim Crow. Du Bois’s background and education led him to believe that blacks could- and should- do more than what Washington expected.

Word Count: 465

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