Thursday, June 16, 2011
J Frank Norris' Friends in High Places
A STORY SIMILAR TO JOSEPH OF OLD
Attempts to taint the legacy of J. Frank Norris have been long and torrid, but like fine metal, tried in the fiery furnace, the latter part of Norris’ life has not been without praise from those in high places, notwithstanding the dismay of bewildered bystanders.
On his trip to England, just prior to the outbreak of WWII in 1941, Norris received the highest forms of recommendations from notables in high places. On one of my previous videos, I have noted the high praise upon Norris by one of his former critics. I refer to the laudable editorial in the Ft. Worth Star Telegram upon the death of J. Frank Norris. On an earlier occasion, in 1941, the editor of that same newspaper issued a letter of recommendation to the British press expressing confidence that Norris upon his return to America would do much to cultivate the kind of sentiment which would turn out to be invaluable to the British. He reminded them of Norris’ wide range of influence in Texas and beyond. I was an employee of the son of this newspaper editor. In my conversations with editor Jim North’s son, I can only recount nothing but amicable relationships. This, bearing in mind that my association with J. Frank Norris was common knowledge among my fellow employees. As a sideline tidbit…my fellow employees nicknamed me “Little J Frank”… and by the way, these 200 fellow employees voted me as President of the union three straight terms.
I am indebted by Mr. Barry Hankins for much of the detailed account of this video. In addition to several cabinet members, who urged the British to treat with utmost respect, was also secretary of state Cordell Hull, who attributed to J. Frank Norris the ability to help arouse the American public to the menacing situation concerning the threat of Nazism.
Under Secretary of State Sumner Welles and Secretary of the Navy, Frank Knox, likewise echoed the same sentiments concerning the persuasive ability of which Norris possessed and would be useful toward promoting a positive affect in America.
During his visit to England, Norris concluded his tour with an audience in the chambers of Winston Churchill.
While I may disagree with some of the assessments, in which Mr. Hankins has portrayed J. Frank Norris, I nevertheless attribute to him the highest of motives on his part.
While I have never considered myself a “Norrisite”, I knew the man over the longest period of time than any other living person. Looming large in my mind however, are the glory days in which I witnessed a perennial revival spirit.
By Roy Falls
June 16, 2011