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J. Edward Day


John Dolva
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I have spent about a year now trying to find out about J. Edward Day. What is of particular interest is the reasons for his resignation. An evaluation of whether it's a dead end research street partly hinges on an answer.

The reasons I have come across are

he had differences with JFK

JFK was critical of him

his finances were questionable

I find him an interesting person because of this and because of him being situated close to various individuals of interest in the assassination of Kennedy.

Namely: Helms, Dulles, Holmes and Kennedy himself.

This interest has been awakened by finding an index card for him in the Mississippi Sovereignty files. However the relevant documents the index card is derived from is not there.

Day testified in hearings on the illegal opening of mail (which Holmes as inspector of post in Dealey Plaza Post office was involved in. Holmes helped build the case against Lee, and in fact a number of important items can be traced directly to him, such as the Kleins ad, Post box info, witness statements (he observed the assassination through ocular.) personal interview of Lee etc.)

Day was approached by Helms and Dulles a week after his appointment in what he later described as a disturbing confrontation he wanted nothing to do with. Helms on the other hand testified that Day was compliant.

http://www.aarclibrary.org/publib/church/r...rchV4_3_Day.pdf

_____________________________

WIKIPEDIA

"James Edward Day (October 11, 1914–October 29, 1996) was an American businessman and political office-holder.

Day was born in Jacksonville, Illinois, he studied at University of Chicago and Harvard Law School and got high grades from university.

In 1942 to 1945 he went in to military service, after the war he became a businessman also serving as a political office-holder under Illinois Governor Adlai Stevenson as State Insurance Commissioner. In 1961 he became U.S. Postmaster General in the administration of John F. Kennedy. There, he was responsible for reducing the postal deficit through rate increases and for introducing zip codes. In August 1963, he resigned as Postmaster General..."

POLITICAL GRAVEYARD http://politicalgraveyard.com/bio/dawyn-day.html

"Day, James Edward (1914-1996) — also known as J. Edward Day — of Chicago, Cook County, Ill.; Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, Calif. Born in Jacksonville, Morgan County, Ill., October 11, 1914. Democrat. Lawyer; served in the U.S. Navy during World War II; alternate delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1952; delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 1960; U.S. Postmaster General, 1961-63. Methodist. Member, American Bar Association. Implemented the ZIP code. Died, of a heart attack, in Hunt Valley, Prince George's County, Md., October 29, 1996. Burial location unknown"

Mentioned in:

FLEMING IAN

Riebling,M. Wedge. 1994 (161)

HOUSTON LAWRENCE REID

Halperin,M... The Lawless State. 1976 (230)

KENNEDY ROBERT FRANCIS

Riebling,M. Wedge. 1994 (161)

Sovereignty File index : 3-18A-52

famous quote : "We cannot put the face of a person on a stamp unless said person is deceased. My suggestion, therefore, is that you drop dead." – Day, during his tenure as Postmaster General, replying to a request from an individual to be honored with a stamp. The letter was never mailed.

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Very interesting question. There is very little about Day on the web. The best is probably this one:

James Edward Day was born on October 11, 1914, in Jacksonville, Illinois. He attended public schools in Springfield, Illinois, received his B.A. from the University of Chicago in 1935, and then attended Harvard Law School. While at Harvard, he served as the treasurer of the Lincoln's Inn Society from 1936-1937 and was the legislative editor of Harvard Law Review. He graduated from Harvard Law in 1938.

Day went to work for the firm of Sidney, Austin, Burgess and Harper in Chicago. During World War II, he trained as an officer in the Naval Reserve (1940-1942) and was called to active duty as an ensign in 1942. He was discharged as a lieutenant in 1945, returning to work for Sidney, Austin, Burgess, and Harper.

In 1948, after Adlai Stevenson was elected governor of Illinois, Day worked for Stevenson as legislative assistant and later as state insurance commissioner. He next signed on with the Prudential Insurance Company in 1953 and took charge of Prudential's western operations in 1957.

President John F. Kennedy, in order to strike a greater geographic balance within his cabinet, named Day postmaster general. In that capacity, Day is most noted for stabilizing the postal deficit through rate increases. He did not have great relations with the Kennedy administration, however, and resigned in August 1963 in order to practice law. James Edward Day died on October 29, 1996.

http://www.americanpresident.org/history/j...y/h_index.shtml

His name does not appear in many books. This is what Namebase has on him:

http://www.namebase.org/xdaw/James-Edward-Day.html

Halperin,M... The Lawless State. 1976 (230)

Riebling,M. Wedge. 1994 (161)

Who's Who in America. 1962-1963

I have the Riebling book. It says that when he was Postmaster General he "okayed CIA mail-opening". I do not have The Lawless State but it might be worth having as Halperin, a former CIA officer, has in the past been willing to talk about covert activities. According to Daniel Brandt, the book includes information about CIA involvement in Watergate.

I have long believed that the Fred Korth resignation on 1st November, 1963, was connected to the assassination. Maybe, Day was also being investigated by Robert Kennedy in 1963?

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J. Edward Day authored a book titled, "My Appointed Round Of 939 Days As Postmaster General". I think this was published in 1965 but it can be purchased at the various on-line book sites.

JFK was unhappy with Day after an unpleasant episode where a black postal worker was sacked and then under political pressure re-hired.

Speaking of quotes, this one comes from political commentator and writer Wick Fowler.

"Postmaster Gen. J. Edward Day created such zippy mail service that his letter of resignation reached President Kennedy two days after the President's acceptance reached Day."

J. Edward Day below.

James

Edited by James Richards
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J. Edward Day authored a book titled, "My Appointed Round Of 939 Days As Postmaster General". I think this was published in 1965 but it can be purchased at the various on-line book sites.

JFK was unhappy with Day after an unpleasant episode where a black postal worker was sacked and then under political pressure re-hired.

Speaking of quotes, this one comes from political commentator and writer Wick Fowler.

"Postmaster Gen. J. Edward Day created such zippy mail service that his letter of resignation reached President Kennedy two days after the President's acceptance reached Day."

J. Edward Day below.

James

Richard, thank you for this. Could you let me know the source for this. Link etc? I would like to see if it's possible to find out exactly what that was about. No doubt Day had his own version, but given that the resons are varied there must be one that precicely describes what happened. There is one source that says it was because of Day's financial dealings, another that he didn't see eye to eye with Kennedy and this one that says it was over some kind of labor dispute.

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Richard, thank you for this. Could you let me know the source for this. Link etc? I would like to see if it's possible to find out exactly what that was about. No doubt Day had his own version, but given that the resons are varied there must be one that precicely describes what happened. There is one source that says it was because of Day's financial dealings, another that he didn't see eye to eye with Kennedy and this one that says it was over some kind of labor dispute. (John Dolva)

John,

The source for this is various news items of the day. I have a huge collection of these from a variety of print media.

J. Edward Day wrote in part in his letter of resignation to JFK, "because of an unusual opportunity that has been offered me, I can no longer postpone my return to private life and therefore with deep personal regret submit herewith my resignation as Postmaster General."

This opportunity he wrote about was in the form of becoming a partner in charge of the Washington law office of the Chicago firm of Sidley, Austin, Burgess and Smith.

As to the drama with the black guy, his name was W.W. Law. This guy was sacked due to several indescretions including mishandling of mail-forwarding forms, exaggerating the volume of mail he carried, leaving his route for unofficial activities and indecent exposure on the front lawn of a house on his route.

Law just happened to be the Georgia State President of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Law ended up being reinstated with a reprimand but Day was not amused as in his formal statement he said, "I would not want a person with Law's record of conduct delivering mail to my family's home." Day believed the administration was pandering to the pressure put on by this group.

After a request by JFK, that line was eventually dropped from his statement.

Day was also critical of the employment of 3 blacks to the Dallas postal service in early 1963. He felt these were political appointments rather than on merit. It was not long after this that he resigned.

FWIW.

James

Edited by James Richards
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John,

The source for this is various news items of the day. I have a huge collection of these from a variety of print media.

J. Edward Day wrote in part in his letter of resignation to JFK, "because of an unusual opportunity that has been offered me, I can no longer postpone my return to private life and therefore with deep personal regret submit herewith my resignation as Postmaster General."

This opportunity he wrote about was in the form of becoming a partner in charge of the Washington law office of the Chicago firm of Sidley, Austin, Burgess and Smith.

As to the drama with the black guy, his name was W.W. Law. This guy was sacked due to several indescretions including mishandling of mail-forwarding forms, exaggerating the volume of mail he carried, leaving his route for unofficial activities and indecent exposure on the front lawn of a house on his route.

Law just happened to be the Georga State President of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Law ended up being reinstated with a reprimand but Day was not amused as in his formal statement he said, "I would not want a person with Law's record of conduct delivering mail to my family's home." Day believed the administration was pandering to the pressure put on by this group.

After a request by JFK, that line was eventually dropped from his statement.

Day was also critical of the employment of 3 blacks to the Dallas postal service in early 1963. He felt these were political appointments rather than on merit. It was not long after this that he resigned.

FWIW.

James

Thank you.

This is very typical of the sort of campaigns the Sovereignty Commisssion engaged in in order to fight desegregation. They found individuals of interest (black and white) and did their best to get dirt on them and then they got them sacked, discredoted and often driven out of town. Sometimes I suspect murdered as well. There are some disturbing documents where information is with held from the out of state FBI while provided to citizens. Basically rampant bigotry and racism.

Why WW Law?

well quite a reason:

seems there is more to Harrys boss than one might think... This could explain why there's an index card for J. Edward Day in the Mississippi Soveregnty files, but the documents related to him are not there.

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seems there is more to Harrys boss than one might think... This could explain why there's an index card for J. Edward Day in the Mississippi Soveregnty files, but the documents related to him are not there.

...there are index cards for both WW Law and JE Day:

The document referred on BOTH cards does not seem to be declassified. There are many internal documents that are not available. It would be good to have a look at this one.

________________________

Day was Harry Holmes'n boss. Harry was the Dallas Post office Postal Inspector who witnessed the assassination from his office overlooking Dealey Plaza. He monitored Lee's mail and provided information to the FBI (informant T7) and the DPD. He was a confidant of Fritz and he sat in on the last interview of Lee. His questioning drew the time of the interview out for about an hour. By the time the interview finished, Ruby was near.

Speculation: Through His boss, Harry also supplied information to people such as Dulles and Helms. Through Day, based on this discovery, it is possible that there is a direct channel to the radiacl right such as the Mississsippi Sovereignty Commission and so on. So one can speculate about a possibility that all these can have known in detail about Lee before the assassination.

________________________

Harry was perfectly positioned for a role in the assassination.

Intelligence Gathering, monitoring of Lee. His office was directly opposite the TSBD company building in Dealey Plaza

Witness statements and items to help 'convict' Lee.

_________________________

There is very little known about this person.

His boss, Day, appears to have been the sort of person who could lend a hand to a plot.

It also seems to be difficult to find out information about Day as well, apart from official and auto biographical stuff.

I suspect there are reasons why persons who perhaps should be better investigated, fall through the cracks...

Edited by John Dolva
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  • 1 year later...

topical bump

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"Everybody must admit that the Post Office, as a branch of Government, is an institution obviously and inevitably liable to the most prodigious abuses," wrote New York Plaindealer columnist William Leggett in 1837."

_________________________________________

In 1963 the USPS (United States Postal Service) was not yet in existence. The relevant government department was the USPO (United States Post Office).

Today: ....In the United States, postal service is under the direction of the U.S. Postal Service, having been reorganized in 1970 from the old Post Office Department. It is governed by an 11-member board, who choose a Postmaster General; since the reorganization, the Postmaster General is no longer a member of the cabinet. A separate five-member commission is charged with reviewing and approving rate changes proposed by the board. The U.S. Postal Service operates as an independent, self-supporting agency within the government.....

United States Postal Service, independent agency within the executive department of the United States government, responsible for nationwide postal regulation and delivery. The postal system, formerly known as the Post Office Department, was reorganized as the U.S. Postal Service under the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970, which became effective in July 1971. The chief functions of the Postal Service are the collection and delivery of letters, parcel post, and printed matter, such as books, magazines, and newspapers, and the issuance of domestic and foreign money orders. The Postal Service handles more than 160 billion pieces of mail a year.

The changes in the postal system stemmed from four basic provisions of the Postal Reorganization Act: elimination of politics from postal management; adequate financing authority; establishment of a postal career service, allowing collective bargaining between management and employees; and creation of an independent commission for setting of postal rates.

The Postal Service is directed by an 11-member board of governors, 9 of whom are appointed by the president on a bipartisan basis with the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate. The nine governors appoint a tenth to be postmaster general; they then appoint a deputy postmaster general. The independent Postal Rate Commission has five members, appointed by the president. Tenure* in these offices is decided on the basis of performance rather than political affiliation; one purpose of this stipulation is to avoid needless discontinuity of the postal system, which formerly occurred in presidential election years. The Postal Service is authorized to borrow up to $10 billion from the general public, that is, from the Department of the Treasury, and can propose to the Postal Rate Commission changes in rates or classification of mail.

*in 1963 this was different, the history of appointment is one of 'jobs for the boys'.

The PMG (JE Day) in 1963 was a cabinet member attending daily meetings with the President.

The old USPO Postal Inspection Service would have had a considerable store of internal documantation.

Harry retired in 1969. The USPO became the USPS in the 1970's. What happened to the USPU Postal Inspection Documentation?

Edited by John Dolva
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  • 3 years later...

Day's replacement refused to participate with the CIA according to his tetimony. Days somewhat 'mysterious' removal mis '63 may be an expression of two things at least. The civil rights speech intent (and the 63 JFK civil rights bill) and Kennedys stated intent to dismantle the CIA. Gronowski, appointed by Kennedy was then replaced prior to the disbanding of the USPO, ie. by LBJ.

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