John D. Clark Papers
The Papers of John D. Clark consist of economic reports by the Council of Economic Advisers to President Harry S. Truman, an unpublished manuscript written by Clark, letters, memoranda, and other items related to the work of the Council of Economic Advisers.
Size: Less than one linear foot (about 1600 pages).
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The John D. Clark Papers are comprised of quarterly, monthly, and annual reports of the Council of Economic Advisers to President Harry S. Truman, economic reports of the President, an unpublished manuscript about the Council of Economic Advisers written by John D. Clark, letters, memoranda, and other items related to the work of the Council of Economic Advisers. The collection is comprised of one series, a Subject File, arranged alphabetically by subject and thereunder chronologically.
The Council of Economic Advisers was established by the Employment Act of 1946 to provide the President with objective economic analysis and advice on the development and implementation of a wide range of domestic and international economic policy issues. Truman especially noted that “it is the function of the council to formulate and recommend national economic policies to promote employment, production, and purchasing power under free competitive enterprise. One of its primary functions is ‘fact-finding.’ It will piece together a complete and consistent picture of the economic state of the nation. The next function of the council will be to interpret all available facts and then to present the soundest possible diagnosis as to the state of the nation's economic health.” The council includes three members appointed by the President. Clark was a member of the first council along with Leon H. Keyserling and Edwin G. Nourse. The three held very disparate views on the functioning of the committee, but were able to provide Harry S. Truman with sound economic advice, found in the reports included in Clark’s collection, throughout his presidency.
The letters and memoranda included are mostly between the Council of Economic Advisers and President Truman. There is also correspondence between the members of the council, and between the council and other members of Truman’s staff such as Charles S. Murphy, Clark Clifford, and John R. Steelman. Included among this material are a press release and drafts of reports.
Also included in the collection is an unpublished manuscript titled “The President’s Economic Council,” written by Clark in 1948. The manuscript reports Truman’s efforts to stabilize prosperity, efforts initiated in the Employment Act of 1946, which created the Council of Economic Advisers. Arrangements had been made for the manuscript to be published by the University of Nebraska Press in early 1949, when it was generally believed there would be a change of administration. The publication was cancelled when Truman was unexpectedly reelected and retained the members of the council in office.
Related information can be found in the President’s Personal File 3190; the Papers of Leon H. Keyserling; the Papers of Edwin G. Nourse; the oral histories of Leon H. Keyserling, Edwin G. Nourse, and Charles S. Murphy; and the President’s Secretary’s Files, Agencies File.