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I understand that there is to be a hearing on the joint resolution next Monday, and it occurred to me that you might find some use for this material in that connection. With every good wish, Sincerely,
STEWART BEACH. Mr. Davis. He states:
We have been much interested in the progress of the joint resolution which has been introduced to make the rose the national flower of the United States. In our June 8 issue we carried a rose poll, showing photographs of five different colored roses and asking our readers to vote for the color they liked best. There has been quite a lively interest in voting, and I am enclosing two of Mr. Nichols' weekly editorial letters in which I have marked the results. I am also enclosing a copy of the issue in which our poll originally appeared. I understand that there is to be a hearing on the joint resolution next Monday, and it occurred to me that you might find some use for this material in that connection.
Attached to that letter are the two weekly editorial letters of Mr. Nichols, giving the results of that poll. I would ask permission of the committee to include those as a part of
my statement. Mr. Jones. You mean just the results of the poll or the two articles?
Mr. Davis. Yes, which is in brackets here on the last page of the letter of June 29.' That gives a tabulation of the various colors, showing a total of 13,922, and on page 3 of the letter, No. 24, dated July 6, a tabulation showing the total number of each color, and then the grand total, 29,811.
I ask permission to have that included in the record.
[Item 1] 5. Flashback-1. Here are two items about material from earlier issues. First is a report on the rose poll, which appeared June 8. After informing readers that there is now a joint resolution before Congress naming the rose as our national flower, but without designating any particular color, we showed 6 roses-pink, white, yellow, red, 2-tone, and lavender-inviting readers to vote for their favorite. At the end of the first week's balloting, the poll stood as follows: Pink.
1, 344 White.
2, 187 Yellow
1, 286 Red.
7, 686 2-tone..
1, 130 Total.--
13, 922 So far, red is the overwhelming favorite of This Week readers. It also won in two other polls. First was conducted by the Indianapolis Star, which set up voting booths and furnished ballots at the Indianapolis rose show and Hillsdale rose festival the week our story appeared. Red received 2,602 votes, with its nearest competitor, yellow, trailing far behind with 808. In Washington on Monday, June 9, the Sunday Star placed a copy of our June 8 issue at the place of every guest at the luncheon sponsored by All-America Rose Selections. Voting by the guests was a runaway for the red rose. It polled more than the other five combined.
(Item 2] 4. Rose poll.–Balloting in the rose poll which appeared in our June 8 issue continues to be heavy. The total through Friday, June 20 (sent to us on postcards and in letters), was 24,085, to which can be added the 5,717 bulk votes
certified by the Indianapolis Star which conducted balloting of its own for This Week's entries at 2 rose festivals in Indianapolis. The red rose, as you will see from the figures below, continues to be the runaway favorite. In Washington, June 12, speaking on the floor of the House, Congressman Kenneth B. Keating of New York, in the course of a speech on the history of the rose, mentioned our article:
“I have read with interest an article in the June 8, 1958, issue of This Week magazine which recorded the results of a poll as to what color readers would prefer, were the rose chosen to serve as our national flower. It came as no surprise to me that over half of those polled by This Week chose the red rose grown in Newark, N. Y.”
Here are the latest figures available on the voting: Pink
2, 572 White
3, 783 Yellow
2, 329 Red -
12, 932 2-tone..
1, 942 Total.-
24, 094 Plus Indianapolis votes.
5, 717 Grand total..
29, 811 Mr. CORBETT. What color did they favor?
Mr. Davis. Red seems to be the favorite color. The red is 12,932. The next color is white, 3,783, pink, 2,572, yellow, 2,329, and so on.
Our own United States Department of Agriculture has issued Home and Garden Bulletin No. 25 on roses for the home. It is a very popular bulletin, and I have many calls for it, as I am sure that the other members do. It is an indication of the fact that there is great interest in the cultivation of the rose.
Now, Mr. Chairman, I could go on and on, I think, giving very logical reasons why this resolution should be favorably considered, and why this beautiful flower should be designated as the national flower of our country.
I am familiar with the fact, as the chairman has announced, that there have been other resolutions introduced, seeking to have other flowers, and some which I do not think could be designated as a flower, chosen as the national flower of our country. I would like to say this:
I have heard some talk about the resolution to have the corn tassel chosen as the national flower. I, of course, realize that corn is one of our great national products, but the corn tassel has never struck me as being a flower. You couldn't wear one of them in your lapel, you do not have a bouquet of them ever on the library table. No one has ever written a song about the corn tassel, and so far as I know no one has ever written a poem about it.
I asked the Library of Congress to advise me on that score, also, and in giving me the songs about the rose, wound up with this statement:
We have identified no songs about the corn tassel. There are approximately 80 poems about the rose. We have identified no poems about the corn tassel.
I would not, of course, say anything to detract from the corn tassel, but it is certainly not a flower, and I think most anyone would agree that it is not suitable to be designated as the national flower of the United States. If we were going into the vegetable kingdom, we could at least get a vegetable which has a flower. We might get the potato. It has a blossom, but I don't think that we could regard the
corn tassel, as much as I like it and as much as I like corn, as a flower which would be suitable for this purpose.
I think, Mr. Chairman, that it is worth a great deal to our country to have a national flower. I think that that is something which is inspiring. It would be a symbol which would give inspiration to Americans everywhere. The rose is a flower which has beauty, it has fragrance, it is famous in song and poem and story.
I earnestly urge this honorable subcommittee to give favorable consideration to this resolution.
Thank you very much for your kind attention.
Do either of the gentlemen have any questions you would like to ask?
Mr. Harrison. I have none.
Mr. Davis. Mr. Beckworth told me he has an engagement somewhere else, if the committee would hear him, if that is agreeable to the committee.
Mr. Jones. We will be glad to do it. We will be glad to hear from Congressman Beckworth, from Texas.
STATEMENT OF HON. LINDLEY BECKWORTH, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF TEXAS
Mr. BECKWORTH. As I assured Judge Davis, I certainly shall take a limited amount of time, Mr. Chairman.
I want to commend Judge Davis on the very wonderful study he has performed with reference to the subject being considered. The statistics which he has presented today have been very interesting to me. Our people at Tyler, Tex., are very interested in the resolution being favorably considered. We might concede the fact that it does have a commercial aspect with reference to our particular area because Tyler, in Smith County, Tex., which, incidentally, stages each year a splended rose festival, is regarded as the center of United States production of rose bushes. Counties other than Smith which produce roses in our area are Van Zandt, Wood, Upshur, Camp, Rusk, as well as several other east Texas counties. However, no commercial aspect can affect disadvantageously the rose nor detract from it. The rose in this Nation and around the world speaks for itself as Representative Davis has so ably pointed out.
Out of about 45 to 50 million rose plants produced annually in this country, the Tyler and Smith Counties, Tex., area produces about 18 to 20 million of them-perhaps nearer half than that figure.
We have statistics that verify this fact.
It is worth annually as a crop in the Tyler, east Texas, area about $4 million and it gives employment to thousands of people. It is seasonal employment in part.
I might say that even during the war the rose industry was recognized as a very important industry, so much so that Donald Nelson, as Chairman of the War Production Board, saw to it that rubber was given to that industry so that it could continue to do its part during the war. They used the rose and the nursery stock at many Army camps, on the basis that it was a morale lifter. It was one of the things that was done to cause defense installations to be more attractive. Also nursery stock was used for camouflage purposes in strategic areas of this country.
It was a most interesting experience to see how readily Mr. Nelson, a very practical former president of Sears, Roebuck, recognized that something should be done, to permit this important industry to perform its needed functions.
I have a letter from the president of the Tyler Chamber of Commerce, Mr. J. Patton. He says this, and I will read one paragraph:
You know of our great interest in the rose industry. It is important to east Texas to provide jobs and other economic advantages to thousands of people.
I would like to include that, Mr. Chairman, in the record.
TYLER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE,
Tyler, Tex., June 25, 1958. Hon. LINDLEY BECKWORTH,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. BECKWORTH: Our board of directors has asked me to request your support of the legislation now pending to make the rose our national flower.
You know of our great interest in the rose industry. It is important to east Texas to provide jobs and other economic advantages to thousands of people. Any support you may give this legislation will be greatly appreciated. Sincerely yours,
JAKE L. PATTON, President Mr. BECKWORTH. I would also like to include another letter and a resolution. The letter is from Mr. Robert A. Fry, the president of the Texas Rose Festival, and the resolution is signed by him as president of the Texas Rose Festival Association. The resolution states:
Therefore, be it resolved that the Texas Rose Festival Association respectfully urges the Congress of the United States to officially adopt the rose as the national flower.
Mr. Jones. That will be included in the record. (The letter and resolution referred to follow:)
TEXAS ROSE FESTIVAL,
Tyler, Tex., June 25, 1958. Hon. LINDLEY BECKWORTH, House of Representatives,
Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. BECKWORTH: Enclosed is a copy of a resolution passed by the Texas Rose Festival Association in support of the legislation now pending in the Congress to make the rose our national flower.
Your help in getting this legislation passed by the Congress will be greatly appreciated Sincerely,
ROBERT A. FRY, President. RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF THE ROSE AS THE NATIONAL FLOWER Whereas the rose is produced in every State of the Nation and enjoyed by all Americans; and
Whereas the rose is generally recognized as one of our most beautiful flowers: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Texas Rose Festival Association respectfully urges the Congress of the United States to officially adopt the rose as the national flower.
ROBERT A. FRY,
President, Texas Rose Festival Association. Passed unanimously by the board of directors of the Texas Rose Festival Association this 25th day of June 1958.
FRANK BRONAUGH, Executive Secretary, Texas Rose Festival Association.
Mr. BECKWORTH. I do want to request that the committee give serious consideration to passing this resolution. I am in favor of it and feel it should pass. I think it is not necessary for me to review the very excellent reasons given by my colleague, Judge Davis.
At this point, incidentally, I wish to state that Tyler, Tex., is my wife's home. My father moved from Georgia to Smith County nearly 60 years ago. We've been interested in the rose and the Tyler area many decades. We have participated in the beautiful Texas and Tyler Rose festival. I take pleasure in inviting each of you to this annual show of shows. The show will please and inspire you and we shall receive you with true hospitality.
I want to thank you sincerely for this privilege of appearing before you.
Mr. Jones. Thank you, Congressman Beckworth.
I have just one question, Mr. Beckworth: In your consideration of this as a symbol Judge Davis mentioned this also-if you were using the rose as a symbol would you have any suggestion as to the type of rose, the color of rose, the variety or anything like that to be used as a symbol?
Mr. BECKWORTH. Mr. Chairman, I have given little thought to that particular question. I shall be pleased to and shall do so, but I would be willing for the judgment of you and your committee members to decide this question based on what the facts support.
Mr. Jones. We would be glad to have you do that.
Mr. BECKWORTH. I think the figures Judge Davis has given, as reflected in polls taken, constitute some good reasoning on the subject.
Mr. JONES. I notice we have another Member of Congress here. Congressman Judd, would you like to appear at this time? I know Members of Congress are busy, and if you ladies will pardon us for taking these gentlemen to permit them to proceed with their other business. Would you care to appear, Congressman Judd?
STATEMENT OF HON. WALTER H. JUDD, A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF MINNESOTA
Mr. Judd. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Jones. Incidentally, Congressman Judd has introduced a resolution which would make the corn tassel the official flower.
(The resolution follows:)
(H. J. Res. 360, 85th, 1st sess.) JOINT RESOLUTION Designating the corn tassel as the national floral emblem of the United States
Whereas practically all nations of the world number among their national symbols a floral emblem; and
Whereas the United States, a land of flowers, has never made such a choice; and
Whereas the United States is endowed with a rare gift which has its roots deep in the history, legends, and lore of the Western Hemisphere; and
Whereas this rare gift was anciently revered by calling it maize, a name meaning "mother,” that which sustains us, and it did sustain countless generations of original Americans through more than ten thousand years; and
Whereas this “mother” was waiting on the shores of the New World to sustain the freedom-seeking Pilgrims, who came empty handed into the wilderness; and
Whereas it was Massasoit's gifts of maize, Indian corn, which mothered the Pilgrims through their first agonizing winter; and