Guide to the Dwight W. Tuttle Oral History Interviews 1977-1979
CT 1

Summary Information

Repository
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries
Creator
Tuttle, Dwight W.
Title
Dwight W. Tuttle Oral History Interviews
ID
CT 1
Date [inclusive]
1977-1979
Extent
1.0 box
General Physical Description note
.2 Linear feet of shelf space
Language
English
Abstract
Oral history interviews (audiocassettes) conducted by Dwight Tuttle, 1977-1979. The interviewees are Elliot Roosevelt and two of Harry L. Hopkins's children, Robert Hopkins and Diana Hopkins Halsted.

Preferred Citation note

[Item Description] Dwight W. Tuttle Oral History Interviews, 1977-1979

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries, Pullman, WA.

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Biographical/Historical note

Dwight W. Tuttle began his Ph.D. research in 1976 on Harry Hopkins. In 1977 and 1979 he conducted interviews with Elliot Roosevelt and two of Harry L. Hopkins's children, Robert Hopkins and Diana Hopkins Halsted. He completed his dissertation entitled, "Harry L. Hopkins and Anglo-American-Soviet relations, 1941-1945," in 1980 (WSU H3 1980 T8).

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Scope and Contents note

This collection consists of six audiocassettes of oral history interviews conducted by Dwight Tuttle, 1977-1979, and his commentary. The interviewees are Elliot Roosevelt, Robert Hopkins, and Diana Hopkins Halsted. Topics include Harry Hopkins and his relationship with Franklin D. Roosevelt, Hopkins' activities in the White House, foreign policy decisions made by the United States during World War II, and information about Hopkins' life. The interviews follow no set pattern. Mechanical difficulties make some sections of the tapes very difficult to understand.

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Arrangement note

The tapes are arranged chronologically with the most recent interview first.

(MASC STAFF USE): range 3-4.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries © 2016

http://www.libraries.wsu.edu/masc
Terrell Library
P.O. Box 645610
Pullman, WA, 99164-5610
509-335-6691
mascref@wsu.edu

Conditions Governing Access note

This collection is open and available for research use.

Conditions Governing Use note

Copyright restrictions apply.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Dwight W. Tuttle donated this collection to the Washington State University Libraries in 1978.

Processing Information note

Margot H. Knight abstracted these oral history interviews in May, 1979.

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Controlled Access Headings

Personal Name(s)

  • Halsted, Diana Hopkins.
  • Hopkins, Harry L. (Harry Lloyd), 1890-1946
  • Hopkins, Robert, 1921-
  • Roosevelt, Elliott, 1910-1990
  • Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945.

Subject(s)

  • Oral Histories
  • Oral history -- United States.

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Collection Inventory

Series 1/1-2: Elliot Roosevelt, author, son of Franklin D. Roosevelt; U.S. Army, 1979 

Scope and Contents note

Birthdate of Interviewee: Sept. 23, 1910

Interviewer: Dwight W. Tuttle

Location of Interview: Redmond, WA

Date of Interview: February 26, 1979

Length of Interview: 110 minutes

Abstractor: Margot H. Knight

Date of Abstraction: May 18-20, 1979

Release: Yes

Restrictions: No

tape time

Harry Hopkins' role as messenger for FDR; he feels that Hopkins' role was valuable because he did not interject his own opinions when dealing with foreign policy; he merely implemented FDR's policies. Discussion of why Hopkins moved into the White House--he feels it was for personal rather than political reasons. Talks about relationship between Eleanor Roosevelt and Hopkins. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 0-5

Hopkins influence on the rise of Averell Harriman as a policymaker. He feels that Hopkins was used by Harriman. Harriman's relationship with John ? , the U.S. ambassador to England. Hopkins ability to deal with Stalin and Churchill. The difficulty of knowing what Stalin was thinking. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 5-10

The relationship between Stalin and Churchill. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 10-12

Hopkins' perception of Churchill. Memories of a conference with Hopkins when he had just become a general in 1945. FDR's reaction to Hopkins making foreign policy statements while on tour in Europe in 1945. Discussion as to whether Hopkins did much independent thinking or not. He was not at the conference at Yalta and thinks it possible that Hopkins influenced FDR. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 12-19

Discussion as to whether Hopkins and Roosevelt had a smooth relationship especially in 1944 and 1945 due to different opinions on foreign policy. Tuttle outlines his thesis as to Hopkins and FDR's relationship. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 19-24

Discussion as to whether Hopkins knew FDR was dying. He feels there wasn't a strained relationship but that they always fought with one another. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 24-29

He doesn't remember Hopkins saying anything about Truman. Memories of an oil man who wanted to go to Russia about war reparations. He feels Truman selected naive people to go on many missions. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 0-2

FDR's perception of the Russians. The development of capitalism in the Soviet Union although there is still a monolithic form of government-- Tuttle talks about his impression of history. FDR never feared the Russians. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 2-8

Discussion as to what would have happened if the atomic bomb had been given over to the U.N. Tuttle feels that would have been impossible. Roosevelt feels his father would have internationalized atomics. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 8-10

Roosevelts ideas on whether or not his father would have dropped the bomb on Japan. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 10-13

Hopkins' role in the Tehran Conference--he was always scouting around talking to some of the lesser people. Hopkins would feel out resentments among the participants. He would fill FDR in about the various proposals of Churchill's people and Stalin's people. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 13-15

Elliot Roosevelt is now working as a realtor. Talks about some pictures on the wall of FDR and Eleanor Roosevelt done by a Hungarian refugee in a concentration camp. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 15-17

Tuttle's comments on the sessions with Roosevelt. Machine jammed during the first session. Elliot Roosevelt said that Tuttle's interpretation of the Yalta Conference was correct. Roosevelt also agreed that Hopkins influenced some of FDR's foreign policy decisions. Roosevelt also agreed with Tuttle's ideas on Hopkins trip to London in January and February of 1941. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 17-20

Tuttle talks about Hopkins and FDR and their influences on each other's foreign policy decisions. Tuttle feels,they were a team and Roosevelt agrees. Dis cussion on the need to give aid to Russia. More on Hopkins' trip to London in 1941 and 1942. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 0-4

Discussion of Sherwood's jealousy of Hopkins. Talks about others who resented Hopkins close relationship with FDR. Story of a plane trip with Sam Rosenman and Baruch. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 4-6

More about Harriman and others who used Hopkins to further their own careers. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 6-7

Hopkins role during WW II--Tuttle feels he gave meaning to FDR's policies. Tuttle feels FDR and Hopkins worked as a team and Roosevelt agrees. Hopkins' relations with others and how he used his analytical mind. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 7-14

Tuttle talks about FDR, Hopkins, and the State Department. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 14-16

Discussion of the Atlantic Conference and the ceremony involving Churchill and FDR. Frances Perkins has implied that Hopkins set this ceremony up. Roosevelt talks about the Sunday service and the visiting back and forth between Churchill and FDR. Hopkins impressed many at the Atlantic Conference. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 16-22

Tuttle talks about Forestal's dislike of Hopkins. More about Sherwood's book on Hopkins and their relationship. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 22-25

Roosevelt does not remember any specific conversations with Hopkins about foreign policy decisions. 

2, side A Minutes (approx.): 25-29

He talks about his assignments during WW II. He knew nothing of Hopkins' trips to London as he was in North Africa in 1942. Tuttle talks about his percep tions of these London missions of Hopkins'. He tells about his activities in North Africa and how they have been tied in with events in Europe. 

2, side B Minutes (approx.): 0-5

Hopkins and the Casablanca Conference. Roosevelt doesn't recall much of Hopkins' involvement. FDR's feelings about Britain and the British Empire--FDR felt colonialism had no place in the modern world. 

2, side B Minutes (approx.): 5-10

Truman's adoption of Churchill's "iron curtain" speech. Roosevelt tells why Truman was not made privy to FDR's policy making process. Roosevelt observes that if word on the Manhattan Project had gotten out, FDR would have been impeached because he had misappropriated about 2 billion dollars. 

2, side B Minutes (approx.): 10-14

Hopkins' last mission in May and June of 1945. The Potsdam Conference. Roosevelt remembers that many old-guard FDR people were very unhappy with Jimmy Burns' appointment as Secretary of State. Stories of problems at Potsdam. 

2, side B Minutes (approx.): 14-22

Truman and the advent of the Cold War and his dealings with Stalin. Roosevelt feels Churchill's anti-Soviet stance influenced Truman. He feels that Stalin eventually wanted to liberalize the government in the Societ Union. 

2, side B Minutes (approx.): 22-30

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Series 1/3-4: Robert Hopkins, 1977-1979 

Scope and Contents note

Interviewer: Dwight W. Tuttle

Location of Interview: Washington, D.C.

Date of Interview: July 21, 1977

Length of Interview: 92 minutes

Abstractor: Margot H. Knight

Date of Abstraction: May, 1979

Release: Yes

Restrictions: No

tape

The general subject of the tape is Harry Hopkins and his relationship to and involvement in foreign policy decisions made during World War II under FDR and Harry Truman. There is considerable background buzzing. 

1

The general subject of the tape is Harry Hopkins and his relationship to and invovement in foreign policy decisions made during World War II under FDR and Harry Truman. There is considerable background buzzing. Near the end of Side A it becomes almost totally inaudible. 

2

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Series 1/5: Diana Hopkins Halsted, 1977-1979 

Scope and Contents note

Interviewer: Dwight W. Tuttle

Location of Interview: Hillsdale

Date of Interview: July 11, 1977

Length of Interview: 57 minutes

Abstractor: Margot H. Knight

Date of Abstraction: May, 1979

Release: Yes

Restrictions: No

tape time

Similarities between Adams' and Sherwood's biographies of Harry Hopkins. She thinks Sherwood's account of Hopkins was fair and honest. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 0-4

Discussion about Hopkins as a "man of action." He knew how to present things to FDR. Tuttle talks about his thesis that Hopkins had definite ideas about foreign policy and was not simply FDR's errand boy. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 4-9

She has no clear recollections of her father's illness, 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 9-13

Reasons for FDR's and Hopkins' deep friendship. She doesn't think it was because they were both ill. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 13-16

Hopkins' relationship with his mother. His life growing up in Grinnel. Tuttle discusses Hopkins' idealism. Hopkins' thought about working for the Red Cross. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 17-23

Her husband talks of his research on Hopkins, his illness, and how it affected him. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 24-30

Dr. Halsted talks more about Hopkins' illness. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 0-9

Discussion as to whether FDR was serious in considering Hopkins' for the presidency. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 9-11

Halsted talks about whether Hopkins' illness affected his relationship with FDR. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 12-13

Hopkins' third wife was lovely, gracious, and apolitical according to Diana Hopkins. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 13-15

Discussion as to why Hopkins divorced his first wife. She talks about the differences between his three wives. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 15-17

Hopkins' optimism and how it affected his life and policy decisions during WW II. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 17-19

Hopkins' role in policy making and negotiations during World War II. Stories she recalls about Churchill when he visited the White House. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 19-24

Hopkins feelings about the importance of the war. Son Stephen's death while Hopkins' was in the hospital. 

1, side B Minutes (approx.): 25-27

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Series 1/6: Dwight W. Tuttle: Commentary about Diana Hopkins Halsted, 1977-1979 

Scope and Contents note

Interviewer: Dwight W. Tuttle

Location of Interview: Hillsdale

Date of Interview: July 11, 1977

Length of Interview: 5 minutes

Abstractor: Margot H. Knight

Date of Abstraction: May, 1979

Release: Yes

Restrictions: No

tape time

Tuttle makes some comments on the interview on CT 1/5. He inadvertantly forgot to push the record button, losing some 20-30 minutes of the interview. He talks about Eleanor Roosevelt and Harry Hopkins. He also discusses Hopkins' relation with the press and Bernard Baruch's dinner for Hopkins' third marriage. The incident of the diamond brocade allegedly given to Hopkins from Beaverbrook. How Hopkins used his power. He talks about other things he and Diana Hopkins Halsted talked about. 

1, side A Minutes (approx.): 0-5

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