Eisenhower Presidency

1953-1961

Election of Eisenhower

1952 (1st Election)


  • Adali E. Stevenson (democrat) vs. Dwight D. Eisenhower (republican)
  • Running Mate- Richard M. Nixon
  • Popular during election for war experience
  • Debated dropping Nixon after "slush fund" scandal (but forgave him after the Checkers Speech he gave on television about his dog Checkers)
  • Eisenhower won in landslide due to television appearances and his Korea pledge (election was never very close but by the end it was very clear who was going to win)



1956 (2nd Election)



  • Adali E. Stevenson (democrat) vs. Dwight D. Eisenhower (republican)
  • Running Mate- Richard M. Nixon
  • Again was popular but was soon concerned for due to health issues that had surfaced during the time
  • Won in a landslide yet again with 457 electoral votes vs. Stevenson's 73

The Cold War

  • Tension between the United States and the Soviet Union from 1947 (around the end of WWII) to 1991 both militarily and politically
  • Signing of the Warsaw Pact (1952)
  • Suez Canal Crisis (1956 to 1957)
  • Vietnam War--> U.S. steps in to interfere the spread of North Korean Communism to South Korea
  • Eisenhower Doctrine--> provided Middle Eastern nations with financial aid and military aid
  • Cuban Revolution--> overthrowing of Cuban government by Fidel Castro (later acquainted himself with the Soviets)

Joseph McCarthy

  • Joseph McCarthy--> Senator from Wisconsin who grew in popularity for his claim that there were communists working in the State Department (founder of McCarthyism)
  • Wheeling Speech (1950)---> accused Dean Acheson (Secretary of State) of employing 205 communists with knowledge that they were so
  • 1952---> could spot a communist anywhere (known for his ruthless drive)
  • Eisenhower didn't like McCarthy but stayed out of his way (allowed him to control the personnel section of the State Department)
  • Deprived America of Asian experts who could have helped consult on the Vietnam War
  • Finally lost power after going after the U.S. Military (televised trials in 1954)
  • Condemned by Congress after trial and later died from overconsumption of alcohol.

Desegregation of South

  • Jim Crow Laws---> unofficial laws that segregated the whites from the blacks (still in place during the Eisenhower presidency)
  • An American Dilemma by Gunnar Myrdal pointed out the flaw that indeed all men WEREN'T created equal due to the racial segregation
  • Rosa Parks---> Montgomery Bus Boycott (refuse to give up her seat for a white person)
  • Brown vs. Board of Education --> Declared unconstitutional by Chief Justice Earl Warren
  • Resistance of desegregation of the 1956 Declaration of Constitutional Principles by Democrats in the South
  • Oral Faubus--> (Governor of Arkansas) ordered military to prevent 9 African American students from attending Central High School in Little Rock, Eisenhower responded with sending troops to protect the children
  • Civil Rights Act of 1957--> passed by Congress, set up a Civil Rights Commission that looked into violations of civil rights

Republicanism

  • Focused on undoing the Fair and New Deal policies that were in place
  • Allowed the free distribution of the Jonas Salk's polio vaccine
  • Sent close to 1 million Mexicans back to Mexico in Operation Wetback
  • Interstate Highway Act of 1956---> Plan that was worth 27 million dollars, boosted the travel and oil agencies, and created tons of new jobs for Americans
  • 1957-1958--> Eisenhower was blamed for America's minor recessions due to the fact that he only balanced his budget a total of 3 times in the 8 years that he was president.

Vietnam

  • Anti-Communist America grew angry at the fact that Vietnam was converting to Communism because they funded the Colonial War by 80% on the French side
  • The fall of Dienbienphu led to the Genevan Conference where it was decided that then nation would be divided/separated at the 17th parallel
  • Ho Chi Minh--> agreed to a series of elections in Vietnam in the next few years
  • Ngo Dinh Diem---> controlled the South with a Western-like style that supported the U.S.

The Beginning Of The Great Space Race

  • Sputnik- First satellite made by man that was launched in to space (USSR Oct. 9th 1957)
  • USSR promoted communism as their fueling behind their technological advancements
  • Rocket Fever---> panic that swept the nation which led to the creation of NASA by Eisenhower
  • U.S. manages to successfully launch a satellite into space (unlike the failed attempt of Vanguard in 1957)
  • Race helped improve the American education system---> led to National Defense Education Act of 1958 (loaned around 887 million dollars in grants and loans for students)