Are There Too Many New Deal Diaries?

A few years ago Bill Mauldin drew a cartoon to commemorate an unsung hero: a gardener at Hyde Park who had firmly resisted the temptation to write his memoirs of President Roosevelt. Undoubtedly Mauldin’s gardener was indeed a hero to a reading public wearied and bewildered by the apparently endless outpouring of memoirs and diaries about Roosevelt and the New Deal. In the ten years since Roosevelt’s death, the number that have appeared is so large that it bids fair to rival the quantity on Lincoln and his administration. Read more »

Sorry No Gas

How Americans Met the First Great Gasoline Crisis—Nearly Forty Years Ago

According to the members of the blueribbon committee, the situation was desperate. Their report, released to the Washington press corps, had been blunt, unsparing, and apocalyptic. “We find the existing situation to be so dangerous,” it warned, “that unless corrective measures are taken immediately this country will face both a military and civilian collapse.” The committee proposed to counter the dire threat by the imposition of nationwide gasoline rationing. Read more »