The 41st Presidential


Harry S. Truman

January 20, 1949

Reverend Edward Hughes Pruden, minister, First Baptist Church, Washington, DC

National Anthem

Performed by Phil Regan of Brooklyn, NY accompanied by the United States Marine Band, led by Maj. William F. Santelmann

Vice Presidential Oath of Office

Administered to Alben W. Barkley by the Honorable Stanley F. Reed, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.


Rabbi Samuel Thurman of the United Hebrew Temple, St. Louis, MO

Presidential Oath of Office

Administered to Harry S. Truman by the Honorable Frederick Vinson, Chief Justice of the United States.



‘Mr. Vice President, Mr. Chief Justice, and fellow citizens, I accept with humility the honor which the American people have conferred upon me. I accept it with a deep resolve to do all that I can for the welfare of this Nation and for the peace of the world.’

The Most Reverend Patrick A. O'Boyle, Archbishop of Washington

Facts, Firsts &


  • First televised Inaugural ceremony

  • Truman reinstated the Inaugural Ball

East Portico, U.S. Capitol
Washington, DC
Mostly sunny and windy. Estimated noon temperature of 38°F.
Truman used two Bibles: the first was the same Bible he used in 1945 when he was sworn in upon the death of Franklin Roosevelt, open to Matthew 5 (Beatitudes). The second was a Gutenberg facsimilie given to him by the Independence, Missouri Chamber of Commerce, opened to Exodus 20 (the Ten Commandments).
Inaugural Committee