From the New York Times, August 7 1945. First Atomic Bomb Dropped on Japan; Missile Is Equal to 20,000 Tons of TNT; Truman Warns Foe of a 'Rain of Ruin'

The first news came from President Truman's office. Newsmen were summoned and the historic statement from the Chief Executive, who still is on the high seas, was given to them.

Why was he on the high seas at this moment? Was he on an important trip or a mission?

  • 4
    He was on the USS Augusta returning from the Potsdam conference. – KillingTime Nov 23 '15 at 19:51
  • 6
    @CGCampbell There's not much more to say; this really is a bit of easy-to-look-up trivia, which I thought we were trying to avoid. – KillingTime Nov 23 '15 at 20:21
  • 1
    I suspect it will be closed quickly; if you get an answer in before closure, you could gain some rep. While most will say rep doesn't matter, with rep comes abilities that you may make use of. Just suggesting it. /shrug – CGCampbell Nov 23 '15 at 20:27
  • @KillingTime Possible expansion point: Was it normal for head of states at that time to travel by sea for such long journey? Why? – user69715 Nov 23 '15 at 22:26
  • 1
    @user69715 Well yes it was common for people to cross the Atlantic via ship up through the 50s. Planes were not as safe then, as they are today. – FiringSquadWitness Nov 23 '15 at 23:25

Putting together an answer based on comments from several users, before this gets closed. Hoping it might be useful as quick reference of future readers.

He was on the USS Augusta, which was occassionally used for transporting the President (both Roosevelt and Truman) during WW II. He was returning from the Potsdam conference, which ended on August 2 in Potsdam, Occupied Germany. (by KillingTime)

From the US Navy page for USS Augusta:

... until 7 July, when President Harry S. Truman, Secretary of State James F. Byrnes, and Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy boarded her, and she stood out for Antwerp, Belgium, to carry her distinguished passengers on the first leg of their voyage to the Potsdam Conference

On 2 August, she embarked her distinguished passengers again, and received another visit from King George VI. Harry Truman was on the ship when he got the news that Hiroshima had been bombed by an atomic bomb. The ship then sailed for the United States, arriving at Newport on 7 August to disembark the President.

Planes then were not as safe as today, so it was common for people to cross the Atlantic using ship. (by JustAnotherDotNetDev)

| improve this answer | |

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.