The SCROLL of Phi Delta Theta for September,
he advanced to news editor and later to
the position of Chief of the Washington
In 1937, Price was called from his
Washington post to accept appointment
as executive news editor of Associated
Press with headquarters in New York
City. When his services were requested
by President Roosevelt soon after Pearl
Harbor, he was given a leave of absence
from his Associated Press responsibilities.
His newspaper service was interrupted
once before and that interruption, as this
present one, was caused by war. During
World War I, Price saw active duty in
France as a Captain of Infantry.
Newspaper and other information
agencies throughout the United States
agreed heartily with the President when,
in announcing the appointment of Byron
Price as Director of Censorship, he said:
"All Americans abhor censorship, just aS
they abhor war. But the experience of
this and of all other nations has demonstrated that some degree of censorship is
essential in war time, and we are at war.
"The important thing now is that such
forms of censorship as are necessary shall
be administered effectively and in harmony with the best interests of our free
The Washington Post perhaps represented all newspapers of the nation
when, in commenting editorially upon
the Price appointment, it called attention to its opposition to censorship except under the most urgent necessity but
declared that the "appointment of Byron
Price as public information czar assures
the country of capable, experienced administration."
Newspaper men trust Byron Price because they know that he appreciates the
problems of gathering, writing, and editing the news. His formula of censorship
is simple; the only news to be kept secret
is that which will aid our enemies.
"The people are entitled to all possible
facts," says Mr. Price. "That is the democratic method whose merit has been
proved time after time. If the people
were kept in ignorance, how could they
be expected to rally behind the war effort?"
One of the major problems that has
faced the President since Pearl Harbor
has been that of making certain that the
American people would be kept informed fully and accurately concerning
the state of the nation during these war
Four major agencies had been created
to supply information, in addition to a
large number of other persons in various
branches of the government who were
devoting their time to this phase of the
Realizing the difficulty of achieving
adequate results from divided responsibility the President in June established
an over-all Office of War Information to
consolidate the existing agencies consisting of the Office of Facts and Figures under the direction of Archibald MacLeish;
the Office of Government Reports,
headed by Lowell Mellett; the Division
of Information of the Office of Emergency Management directed by Robert
W. Horton; and the Foreign Information Service under the guidance of William J. Donovan.
In seeking a director for the new organization, the President again turned
to a man who had achieved conspicuous
success in the newspaper field, and also
as an author and as one of the nation's
most highly respected radio news commentators. Elmer Davis was his choice.
Davis is a graduate of Franklin College where he was initiated as a member
of Indiana Delta November 20, 1907.
He was selected as one of Indiana's
Rhodes Scholars. After his return from
study at Oxford, Mr. Davis entered the
newspaper profession and for many years
was a leading member of the editorial
staff of the New York Times.
During the past decade Mr. Davis has
devoted himself to writing and is the
author of a number of volumes of fiction
and essays. I'll Show You the Town and
Friends of Mr. Sweeney are among his
best-known novels. His articles on topics
of current interest have been carried by