Harry S. Truman photo

Citation Accompanying Medal for Merit Presented to Byron Price.

January 15, 1946



FOR EXCEPTIONALLY meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services as Director, Office of Censorship, from December 20, 1941, until August 15, 1945• Faced by a choice on one hand of instituting a system of voluntary censorship with the attendant danger to our military effort from careless publication or broadcast and, on the other hand, the only alternative of compulsory censorship which carried the potentiality of blacking-out the freedom of the press for the duration, Mr. Price chose to exercise his faith in the integrity of the personnel and organizations responsible for the communication of news to the public by Initiating an experiment in wartime censorship unique in its inception and execution, previously untried in any country. Throughout this period the total American war effort was shared in its individual parts by thousands and frequently by millions of people; ships, planes, troops, munitions and supplies were assembled and moved to war theaters in overwhelming force; submarines raided the enemy's far flung supply lines; German and Japanese submarines were hunted down and destroyed by a combination of tactics, weapons and devices that could similarly have been used against us; scientific laboratories developed and factories produced radar and the atomic bomb and they were put to devastating use; knowledge of these vast activities was in possession of press and radio media and was voluntarily withheld from publication or broadcast. By his distinctive and complete success in discharging his responsibilities as Director of Censorship, Mr. Price has demonstrated the strength of this country in its unity in time of stress and has contributed vitally to our hold upon one of the freedoms for which we were fighting and essential to our democratic way of life--the freedom of the press.


Note: The presentation was made by the President in a ceremony at the White House at 11:45 a.m.

Harry S Truman, Citation Accompanying Medal for Merit Presented to Byron Price. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231936

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