Blog - George C. Marshall Foundation

Marshall & Dunkirk

Today, Friday 26th May, marks the 77th anniversary of the beginning of ‘Operation Dynamo’ the code name for the evacuation of the remnants of the British Expeditionary Force (the BEF) from the beaches of Dunkirk, France. The evacuation, which saw more than 200,000 British troops together with another 100,000 troops, mainly French, from other Allied […]

Marshall & the 75th Anniversary of the WACs

This blog was originally published on March 13, 2015. When Massachusetts representative, Edith Nourse Rogers, introduced a bill in May 1941 to establish a Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps for Service with the Army of the United States she set into motion a series of events that transformed the role of women in military service. (HR […]

Marshall and the President

Last night’s presentation of “Marshall and the President, 1943” by Dr. Nigel Hamilton was the latest program in The World Wars sequence of the Marshall Legacy Series. Dr. Hamilton is currently writing the third volume and final volume of his FDR at War series, which explores President Roosevelt’s role as Commander-in-Chief during World War II. […]

Marshall and the Apple Blossom Festival

In Winchester, Virginia this week, the 90th annual Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival is in full swing. The festival that celebrates the arrival of spring and the pink-and-white apple blossoms started in 1924 as a one-day event and, except for the war years 1942-1945, has been held every year since then. It is one of the […]

Marshall and Myths

Last night at the Marshall Foundation we heard from three distinguished historians who explored some of the more popular myths of World War II. Dr. Mark Stoler, professor emeritus at the University of Vermont, Michael Adams, Professor Emeritus at the University of Northern Kentucky and Dr. Conrad C. Crane, Chief of Historical Services for the […]

Marshall and the Stars and Stripes

Seventy-five years ago this week, the Stars and Stripes newspaper had its second renaissance. The first paper with the name Stars and Stripes was started by a Union soldier during the Civil War in 1861. The Union army captured a newspaper plant in Missouri and produced only 4 papers. The newspaper was again revived during […]

Marshall & Easter

During the first Easter celebrated after the United States’ entrance into the second world war, Marshall found himself in Bermuda after engine failure delayed his flight to London. He recalls the event in a letter to Brigadier General Miller: I have a very vivid recollection of that Easter Service a year ago. It was most […]

Marshall and the Start of the Great War

One hundred years ago this week, President Woodrow Wilson delivered a speech in Congress calling for a declaration of war against Germany. On April 4th the Senate voted 82 to 6 to declare war against Germany. When the declaration passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 373 to 50 on April 6th, […]

March Marshall Legacy Series

One of the goals of the Marshall Legacy Series is to create events centered on key themes that are engaging for visitors of all ages. This past month, two such events brought many to the Foundation. On Saturday March 18th, 25 children, along with their family and friends, filled the lobby of the Marshall Museum […]

Marshall & Rockefeller

On Monday March 20th David Rockefeller, banking executive and philanthropist, died at his home at the age of 101. David Rockefeller was a generous supporter of the George C. Marshall Foundation, as was his father, John D. Rockefeller, Jr., who was one of the first major donors to the Marshall Foundation in 1955. David Rockefeller […]

Marshall Myth: Marshall and Vacation

The month of March often finds people dreaming of, or actually going on, vacation to take a break from cold winter weather. On March 7, 1943, Chief of Staff of the Army George C. Marshall traveled to Miami, Florida, with his wife Katherine for a week-long vacation, his first since the United States had entered […]

Marshall and Nurses

When the nurses in the South Pacific awoke on December 8, 1941, their commanders began issuing them steel helmets and gas masks. The once-coveted assignment to the Philippines became one of waiting and preparing for what they believed to be Japan’s next attack. They were right. The Japanese continued their advancements, and the nurses were […]

Marshall and the Civilian Conservation Corps

In March 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt proposed the establishment of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a large-scale public relief program that would provide employment for young men in the areas of conservation and natural resource development. Roosevelt ambitiously sought to have 250,000 men enlisted in the program by July, and it quickly became apparent that […]

Marshall and the Plan: The Princeton Speech

Seventy years ago, newly appointed Secretary of State George C. Marshall delivered remarks at Princeton University on the occasion of George Washington’s birthday. Marshall had been sworn in a little over a month earlier, yet his remarks revealed a thorough understanding of the world situation as well as his views on the more active role […]

Marshall & Poppies

In the photo to the left, Secretary of Defense Marshall is receiving a poppy from Mrs. Genevieve Frye, President of the Auxiliary of American Legion Post 109 in 1951. The remembrance poppy is an artificial flower that has been used since 1921 to commemorate military personnel who have died in war, and represents a common […]

Marshall & Mattis

When General James Mattis was sworn in as secretary of defense on January 20th, he became the second person in history to receive a congressionally approved exemption to serve in this post. The first was General George C. Marshall who served as secretary of defense under President Truman from September 1950 to September 1951. Although […]

Marshall & Pokemon

What do Pokemon, board games and wizards have to do with George C. Marshall? Come to the monthly Discovery Days at the Marshall Museum to find out. Each month has a new theme that combines Marshall, science, history, art, games and fun into a two hour time slot, one Saturday each month. Join us on […]

Marshall & International Holocaust Remembrance Day

International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27th commemorates the victims of the Holocaust during World War II. It was designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 2005 during a special session that marked the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau by Soviet troops. After liberation, displaced persons camps […]

Marshall and The World Wars

Noted World War I scholar Dr. Edward Lengel talked about American military entry into WWI last night to open the Marshall Legacy Series sequence called The World Wars. His talk, “Testing the American Way of War: Doughboys in Combat, 1917-1918,” can be viewed on our YouTube channel. Dr. Lengel discussed the first American military engagements […]

Marshall & Time

Each year Time magazine publishes a celebratory first issue recognizing a person, movement, or organization that, for better or for worse, has done the most to influence the events of the previous year. Over the past two years we have written blogs about Marshall’s 1948 Man of the Year cover for his work on aiding […]

Marshall and The World Wars: Six Degrees of Marshall

The term “six degrees of separation” is the idea that everything in the world is six or fewer steps away from being connected to each other. The George C. Marshall Legacy Series exhibition Six Degrees of Marshall, opening January 19th, uses an infographic to connect Marshall to people and programs important to the course, conduct […]

Marshall and Membership

There’s still time before the end of the year to take advantage of a truly good deal, membership in the Marshall Foundation. Your membership for the next 12 months includes two issues of our magazine, MARSHALL, free admission to the Museum and to most Marshall Legacy Series programs, a 10% discount in the Museum Shop—either […]

Marshall & Katherine: Together

On March 21, 1947 Mrs. Marshall gladly discussed her book Together: Annal of an Army Wife with Odom Fanning of the Atlanta Journal. Mrs. Marshall stated that she wrote the book to give “a picture of General Marshall as a human being, not as a soldier or organizer.” Her press conference won over her listeners […]

Marshall and Pearl Harbor

Wednesday marked the 75th anniversary of the surprise attack on the US Navy’s Pacific Fleet by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor. The United States’ formal declaration of war on December 8, 1941, dramatically altered the lives of all Americans, particularly those of the men and women who served in the armed forces. As the number […]

Marshall and Churchill

This past Wednesday, 30 November, was Winston Churchill’s 142nd birthday (he was born in 1874). The occasion was accompanied, as often is, by various dinners around the world and myriad toasts offered to the great man’s memory-and appropriately so. Winston Churchill, bon viveur, is an easy man to commemorate in such a fashion. That fact, […]

Marshall & Thanksgiving

This post was originally published on: November 26, 2015 Happy Thanksgiving from the Marshall Foundation! Recent media attention has commended stores for staying closed on Thanksgiving and for promoting time with friends and family. Seventy years ago, economic activity was on the mind of President Franklin Roosevelt. In 1939 he wanted to spur spending and […]

Marshall and his submarine

This week on social media the Marshall Foundation’s trivia question and featured artifact had to do with the only ship named after General George C. Marshall, the USS George C. Marshall (SSBN-654). The USS George C. Marshall (GCM) was a nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) included in the “41 for Freedom,” the 41 Benjamin Franklin-class […]


For the past two years, the Marshall Foundation has participated in #VeteransArchives, a Twitter event that shares archival material from veterans as a way to honor their service. This event is happening today on various social media networks. Each hour a new collection will be shared. For those who do not have social media accounts, […]

Marshall and His Barber

The photo to the left titled “Private Gets in General’s Hair” ran in the The Montrose Herald, as well as many other American newspapers, in August of 1945. But the man in the photo cutting General Marshall’s hair was not his regular barber. Joseph Abbate, who had been Marshall’s barber since 1939, opened the barber […]

Marshall and the Distinguished Service Medal

After serving as chief of staff of the United States Army since World War II began in Europe on September 1, 1939, General George C. Marshall resigned from his position on November 18, 1945. Several days later Marshall agreed to attend a ceremony where he would receive an Oak Leaf Cluster for his Distinguished Service […]

Marshall and Frank McCarthy

Frank McCarthy was born in Richmond, Virginia in 1912. After graduating from VMI in 1933, McCarthy returned to his alma mater as an instructor and then remained as alumni secretary. In the late 1930s, when Brother Rat, a comedy based rather loosely on life at VMI, became a Broadway success and a popular road show, […]

The True Story of the Original Jeep

On October 12th, Bill Spear discussed the early days of the Jeep when the small, distressed American Bantam Car Company in Butler, PA, built a prototype in just 49 days. It caught the Army’s attention. Army Chief of Staff Gen. George C. Marshall told Major Walter Bedell Smith on his staff to have Bantam build […]

Marshall & PURPLE

PURPLE, the name given to the Japanese diplomatic cipher system used during World War II, is not as well-known as the ENIGMA system used by the Germans but was considered the most complex cipher system of its time. Despite its complexity, a team of U.S. codebreakers led by William F. Friedman produced their first deciphered […]

Marshall and War Bonds

Speaking during the Third War Loan Drive in September 1943, Marshall said, “The American people must give not only their full personal effort but the full use of their dollars invested in War Bonds, to back these attacks. There is no alternative. Total victory is in sight but it can only be won by concentrating […]

Marshall Legacy Series on the Road

On the evening of 8th September the Marshall Foundation was delighted to present its first “Marshall Legacy Series on the Road” event in Washington, DC. This public lecture delivered by retired USMC General John Allen and co-sponsored by PricewaterhouseCoopers and The Heritage Foundation, which hosted the occasion, was titled “Seizing the Future.” It examined the […]

Coca-Cola Goes to War

Ted Ryan, Director of Heritage Communications at Coca-Cola, has managed the historical collections of The Coca-Cola Company since June 1997. He oversees an extensive collection of physical and digital artifacts that showcase the rich history of The Coca-Cola Company. He serves as Project Manager for the program to restore, digitize, and catalog over 25,000 historical […]

Marshall & Coca-Cola

During World War II General George C. Marshall faced the challenge of keeping the spirits of his soldiers high despite the fact that they were fighting enemies thousands of miles away from their homes. “Fighting as [a] rule is a very monotonous thing,” Marshall noted, “And it’s the monotony that is very hard to endure, […]

Marshall & the Smithsonian

Smithsonian Museum Day Live! on Saturday, September 24, is an annual event that gives participating museums around the country the opportunity to open their doors free of charge. In a perfect world, all museums would be free, but non-profits such as the George C. Marshall Foundation receive no operational funding from the government and must […]

Marshall and the Jeep

It is often mentioned that General Marshall considered the jeep one of the best, if not the best, weapons of the war. More intriguing, but still lacking complete detail, have been suggestions that he had something specifically to do with the creation of the original jeep. The evidence today seems to suggest the conclusion that […]

Marshall Myth: West Point Football Plaque

Like many football teams, the United States Military Academy team has its own unique pregame ritual. Before taking the field, each player places his hands on a bronze plaque displaying a quote attributed to General George C. Marshall while he was serving as chief of staff of the army during World War II. The plaque […]

American Artist Month – Augustus Vincent Tack

Augustus Vincent Tack (1870 – 1949) was born in Pittsburgh and moved to New York City at the age of 13. By 19 his artwork had attracted the eye of painter John LeFarge, who mentored him and introduced him to other artists, such as Claude Monet. Later, he became very close to Duncan Phillips, whose […]

Staff Picks: Our Favorite Marshall Books

The staff at the Foundation would like to share some of their favorite books about Marshall with you: Cathy DeSilvey, Director of Museum Operations Selected Speeches and Statements of General of the Army George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff, United States Army – Edited by Major H. A. DeWeerd, 1945 Though there are several biographies […]

Marshall Legacy Series Doubleheader

Next Thursday and Saturday, August 4 and 6, we will have a Marshall Legacy Series doubleheader. Dr. Frank Settle will discuss “The Fast and Furious Race for the Atomic Bomb” on Thursday evening. Astronaut Patrick Forrester will talk about his adventures in space travel on Saturday afternoon. These presentations continue the Speed and Fury sequence […]

Marshall & LEGOs

The Marshall Museum buzzed with activity this past Saturday. Twenty-seven children, along with their family and friends, filled the lobby and library to take part of the second annual LEGO competition sponsored by the Marshall Foundation. At the start of the competition participants received a tour of the temporary museum exhibition “From Machine to Man.” […]

Marshall & the Poster Collection

The archives was the fortunate recipient of a recent donation of fifteen original World War II posters. Prior to being donated to the archives, the posters were mounted in archival frames and displayed in the donor’s home. This collection sheds light on the little-known history of wartime posters and their tremendous influence on the home […]

Marshall and Fire Island

According to the U.S. National Park Service, there are conflicting views as to the origin of the name Fire Island. The island may have been named after Fire Island Inlet, which appeared on a deed in 1789, and the inlet’s name may have started as a simple spelling error. Under another hypothesis, the name originates […]

Marshall & ROTC

The Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) prepares college students to be commissioned officers in the United States Armed Forces. The Army ROTC, as it exists today, began with President Wilson’s signing the National Defense Act of 1916. There are three types of ROTC programs. The first type includes programs at the six senior military colleges, […]

The Marshall Papers Project

In the fall of 1977 the George C. Marshall Foundation newsletter, Topics, reported that Director, Fred Hadsell, had secured support from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission to undertake a major documentary editing project; the Papers of George Catlett Marshall would complement the magisterial four-volume biography written by Forrest Pogue. The initial project scope […]

Marshall and the Soviet Aviators

June 20, 1937, may have been the most memorable Sunday morning that George C. Marshall experienced as commander of Vancouver Barracks, Washington. Three days earlier pilot Valeri P. Chkalov, co-pilot Georgi P. Baidukov, and navigator Alexander V. Beliakov departed from Moscow to attempt the first nonstop flight over the North Pole to the United States. […]

Marshall Plan Art

In December 2015 the Marshall Foundation acquired thirty-nine acrylic paintings from James Work of Katy, Texas, who painted scenes from his time in Germany during and after World War II. Using photos taken in 1946 and from a return visit in 1986, he painted “before and after” scenes of Germany, illustrating the results of Marshall […]

Marshall and the Fort Benning Revolution

Last evening, Dr. John Maass, a historian with the U.S. Army Center of Military History in Washington, D.C. talked about Marshall’s time at Fort Benning during the late 1920s. John R. Maass, Ph.D., received his doctorate in early American history from Ohio State University where he also studied military history and Native American history. A […]

Marshall and Brazil

Only two weeks after the public announcement that President Franklin D. Roosevelt had appointed General George C. Marshall as the next chief of staff of the U.S. Army, Marshall found himself aboard the cruiser U.S.S. Nashville en route to his first visit to a foreign country. His destination was not Great Britain, France, the Soviet […]

Marshall and the Red Cross

“By the summer of 1949, President Truman was mulling over means of bringing Marshall back into public service as head of the American Red Cross. There were signs that Basil O’Connor, head of the American Red Cross since 1944, might soon retire. Why not, thought the President, give Marshall that job? It would associate him […]

National Photography Month

May is National Photography Month. It was officially recognized by Congress in 1987 as a month-long event, and the American Photography Association is one of the primary organizations continuing the tradition. Throughout the country, this month is marked by photography contests, festivals, exhibits, and other activities. This month we are highlighting a special photography collection […]

From Machine To Man

But underlying all…is the realization that the primary instrument of warfare is the fighting man. All of the weapons with which we arm him are merely tools to enable him to carry out his mission. So we progress from the machine to the man… It is true that the war is fought with physical weapons […]

Marshall and the Knutsford Affair

General George S. Patton’s comments at the opening of a British Welcome Club for American soldiers in Knutsford, England, are one of many well-known and controversial episodes from Patton’s army career. U.S. Army Chief of Staff George C. Marshall’s response to Patton’s comments are less well known. They serve as an example of his leadership. […]

Marshall Legacy Series: One-year Anniversary

One year ago we began this odyssey known as the Marshall Legacy Series not knowing then where it would take us exactly. Determined to create something of significance, we were dedicated to the concept of exploring aspects of General Marshall’s legacy that would appeal to an audience with broad interests. We proceeded with care to […]

Marshall and Taxes

Recently museum and library staff came upon Marshall’s Officer’s Pay Data Card from 1945. It was a form (WD AGO 77) on which all information relative to the individual officer’s pay and allowance, length of service and deductions and allotments was kept. This is different from a pay voucher, and it was required to be […]

Marshall Matinee Film Series

Tomorrow we begin the Marshall Matinee Film Series. You are invited to see one, two or three award-winning, World War II-subject films to be shown in the Pogue Auditorium on consecutive Saturday afternoons. These films have been selected because they support the theme of the current All Who Want to Serve sequence of the Marshall […]

Marshall and the Foreign Assistance Act

On March 23, 2016, the Marshall Plan Speech was one of 25 recordings added to the National Recording Registry at the Library of Congress. Secretary of State George C. Marshall’s remarks at Harvard University were a crucial first step in the United States’ efforts to help rebuild Europe after World War II and certainly represent […]

General George C. Marshall Public and Youth Leadership Awards

Earlier this month, I had the distinct pleasure of speaking in Vancouver, Washington. This is this second year that I have attended the annual General George C. Marshall Public and Youth Leadership Awards conducted by the Fort Vancouver National Historic Trust. The Trust presents two leadership awards, in General Marshall’s name, to a senior and […]

General George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff, U.S. Army, addresses officers on his trip to Northern Ireland.

Marshall & Ireland

Ireland and Britain have had a very rocky past for the better part of their shared history. This did not change during World War II. Northern Ireland, as part of the United Kingdom, took up arms in its defense. While many of Ireland’s men crossed the border into Northern Ireland and volunteered to serve with […]

Marshall Myths: “The Most Unsordid Act in History”

The phrase “the most unsordid act in history” is correctly attributed to the ever eloquent Winston Churchill, but a great deal of confusion persists about what Churchill was referring to when he bestowed this title. Sadly, those who believe that Churchill used this phrase to describe the Marshall Plan are perpetuating another Marshall myth. Tracing […]

National Nutrition Month & Rationing

“I have said or pointed out on a number of occasions the tremendous importance of food. Because when hunger and illness invade the home men will accept almost any cure that is proposed at the moment. Anything is better than the existing circumstance and you have the ripest possible field for demagogic, audacious or calculated […]

Marshall and Tuskegee Part II

Tomorrow we will be honored to host Lt. Col. Robert Friend, who is one of the last surviving Tuskegee Airmen. It should be a remarkable afternoon. As Army Chief of Staff, General George C. Marshall was directly involved in establishing the military program for aviation at the Tuskegee Institute. Correspondence between Marshall and Frederick D. […]

Marshall and Minecraft

What do Minecraft, marshmallow catapults, zombies and wizards have to do with George C. Marshall? Come to the monthly Discovery Days at the Marshall Museum to find out. Each month has a new theme that combines Marshall, science, history, art, games and fun into a two hour time slot, one Saturday each month. Join us […]

Marshall & Valentine’s Day

Originally published on February 13, 2015 This weekend many people will celebrate the sentimental holiday of Valentine’s Day. Sentimental isn’t a word that is often used to describe George C. Marshall, but glimpses of his romantic side appear in correspondence with his first wife, Elizabeth “Lily” Carter Coles. According to Marshall’s sister, Marie Louise Singer, […]

All Who Want to Serve: Charity Adams Early

As a result of the influence of Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall, women of color joined the Women’s Army Corps’ 6888th Central Postal Battalion. During World War II, 850 African-American women served overseas, in Birmingham, England, to sort and deliver backed-up mail to millions of soldiers in Europe. Army Major Charity Adams, […]

Marshall and Pearl Harbor Hearings

On January 28, 1942, the Roberts Commission, which had been appointed by President Roosevelt to investigate and report the facts relating to the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor, presented its findings to Congress. Throughout its month-long investigation, the commission interviewed 127 witnesses including Army Chief of Staff George C. Marshall who testified before the commission […]

Marshall and the AHA

On Saturday January 9th, the George C. Marshall Foundation together with the Society for Military History (SMH) co-hosted the annual Marshall Lecture at the American Historical Society. Since the late 90s, the Marshall Foundation and SMH have sponsored this event aimed surely at both keeping Marshall’s memory alive and stimulating interest in the study of […]

For My Country, For Myself

George C. Marshall believed every American who wanted to serve should have the opportunity. The Marshall Museum’s exhibit “For My Country, For Myself”, takes a look at who some of those Americans were. Exhibit images and historical information have been provided with our Legacy Series partner, the United States Army Women’s Museum. During World War […]

Marshall and Merkel

Each year Time magazine publishes a celebratory first issue recognizing a person, movement, or organization that, for better or for worse, has done the most to influence the events of the previous year. In 2015 Time honored Angela Merkel, the first woman Chancellor of Germany. The refugee and migrant crisis of 2015 challenged Europe’s principle […]

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from the staff of the Marshall Foundation! 2015 was a wonderful year, full of new events and programming. 2016 is shaping up to be even better! Join us on January 20, 2016 for special presentation “A Debt to Democracy and a Date with Destiny: The Women’s Army Corps and Its Legacy” by […]

Marshall and his Birthday

On the last day of this year we celebrate George C. Marshall’s birthday 135 years ago. Determined to play the hand he was dealt, he probably did not feel sorry for himself because of the somewhat unfortunate timing of this birth. In fact it is his steely resolve to push on that is one of […]

Marshall Myths: Marshall’s “Little Black Book”

Occasionally visitors to the Marshall Foundation will ask staff to verify a story that they heard about George C. Marshall. As with any historic figure certain stories about Marshall have become widely accepted as true even though they do not have any factual basis. This post will be the first in an occasional series exploring […]

Evening in the Archives: The Things They Carried Home

Last night’s behind the scenes event “The Things They Carried Home” offered a rare glimpse at the many artifacts from collections that have never been displayed publicly. The theme focused on items that soldiers carried with them during war and then home. Six stations displayed items they used on the job, religious items, native artwork, […]

Marshall and Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from the Marshall Foundation! Recent media attention has commended stores for staying closed on Thanksgiving and for promoting time with friends and family. Seventy years ago, economic activity was on the mind of President Franklin Roosevelt. In 1939 he wanted to spur spending and moved the Thanksgiving celebration up a week to extend […]

Marshall and Robots

HDT Global got its start in robotics the hard way, by working for the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab on DARPA’s Revolutionizing Prosthetics program to develop a prosthetic arm with near-human capabilities. DARPA projects are often described as “DARPA hard”, and this nine year effort has been one of the toughest projects that HDT has […]

Somber Veterans Day

Recently I gave a brief history lesson about Veterans Day to Wesleyan School students, alumni, and family. This is an excerpt of that speech: As most know, Veterans Day grew out of the commemoration Armistice Day, the moment when the fighting of World War I ended. After World War I, President Wilson proclaimed that the […]

Marshall and his Magazine

Members will receive the new magazine, MARSHALL, in the mail next week. Produced as a benefit of membership in the Foundation, the magazine features guest-written features on Marshall and the Atomic Bomb, Marshall and the Europe-First strategy for winning World War II, and Marshall and his 40-year correspondence with Rose Page Wilson in addition to […]

Marshall Foundation Digital Lab

The Marshall Foundation is expanding access to its vast collections through digital technologies. As a part of the effort to bring Marshall’s legacy online, the Foundation has created the Digital Lab. Housed in the library, the Digital Lab is a dedicated space for digitization projects. The lab brings together both new and old technologies that […]

Marshall and Family History Month

October is Family History Month! George Catlett Marshall, Jr. was born on December 31, 1880 in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. He was the fourth child of George C. Marshall, Sr. and Laura Bradford Marshall. (Their third born had died as an infant.) His siblings were Stuart Bradford (b. 1875) and Marie Louise (b.1876). For researchers interested in […]

American Archives Month

October is American Archives Month. During this month archivists make a special effort to draw attention to the important work that archivists perform in arranging and preserving records as well as communicate the importance of making these records available to the public. In addition to housing the records of George C. Marshall, the Marshall Foundation […]

Marshall and Taking Care of the Troops

We began Taking Care of the Troops, the next sequence in the Marshall Legacy Series, with a talk by an Iraq war veteran and the opening of the new exhibition, “Give Them What They Need.” Disabled veteran Army SSG Luke Murphy (Ret) talked about “Blasted by Adversity,” his experiences as a squad leader of an […]

Marshall & Postage Stamps

Stamps, often considered miniature works of art, have been issued by world postal services since 1840. October is National Stamp Collecting month. It began in 1981 as a joint venture between the United States Postal Service and the Council of Philatelic Organizations. The Postal Service continues to promote National Stamp Collecting Month and stamp collecting […]

Marshall & the Smithsonian

Smithsonian Museum Day Live! on Saturday, September 26, is an annual event that gives participating museums around the country the opportunity to open their doors free of charge. In a perfect world, all museums would be free, but non-profits such as the George C. Marshall Foundation receive no operational funding from the government and must […]

Evening in the Archives

Last Saturday’s “Evening in the Archives” offered a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at many artifacts from our Collections that have never been displayed publicly. We intend to make this type of event a regular feature of the Marshall Legacy Series. If you joined us, you saw many interesting objects. The castings of Marshall’s hands were popular […]

Marshall and Tribute

Tomorrow evening we will hold an “Evening in the Archives” to provide a behind-the-scenes look at many artifacts from our collection that have never been displayed publicly. Thus we begin a journey of creating temporary displays as part of the Marshall Legacy Series. If you join us, you will see may objects, some controversial such […]

Marshall and DACOWITS

Recent headlines include “10th Mountain Division Gets First Female Brigadier,” “Two women graduate from Army Ranger Course,” and “Navy SEALs set to open to women, top admiral says.” What, if anything, does this have to do with George C. Marshall? Marshall’s concern for women in uniform was the impetus behind the federal organization that still […]

VJ Day and the Japanese Surrender

Earlier this month, on 6 August, the Marshall Foundation hosted a talk by Dr. Frank Settle that examined the role played by General Marshall in the Manhattan Project. Dr. Settle’s talk, as part of the Weapons of War sequence of the Marshall Legacy Series, built upon his forthcoming book that sheds new light on the […]

Marshall and Biographies

Reading a great biography allows a reader to stand on the shoulders of giants. George C. Marshall was one such giant. His character defined him as someone who could be trusted by colleagues, subordinates and superiors. It was one reason why Congress supported his many requests for funding and superiors listened to his thoughtful, yet strong, […]

American Artist Appreciation Month

Manuel Bromberg was born in 1917 in Centerville, Iowa. When he was two, he moved with his mother and older brother to Cleveland, Ohio. At age 10 he started taking morning art classes at the Cleveland Museum of Art. At age 16, Bromberg was the winner of the George Bellows Award, a national art competition […]

Marshall and the Atomic Bomb

The book, General George C. Marshall and the Atomic Bomb, looks at events of the first nuclear decade from General Marshall’s perspective. Marshall had the unique position of being the only high-level government official who participated in or witnessed the decisions regarding the production, use, and post-war management of the atomic bomb from 1942 to […]

Greece and the Marshall Plan

Few today doubt the wisdom of the European Recovery Program, known, colloquially of course as the ‘Marshall Plan’ in honor of of the man who conceived of it and even fewer doubt the vastly positive impact it had. From re-building the war-torn economies of western Europe, both friend and foe, and tilling the soil of […]

Marshall and Teachers

The young George C. Marshall was not a very good student. He said that his “school teachers bored him to death with dates and dry facts, even regarding as fascinating and unique a character as Benjamin Franklin.” Later he said he “came to realize the tremendous importance of a knowledge of world history to the […]

The Art of War: Editorial Cartooning

Never having served in the military, I at first thought it odd when I received an invitation to speak on the “Weapons” of War as part of the George C. Marshall Legacy Series. After it was explained to me that my specific topic would be “Paper Bullets”–editorial cartooning as it relates to conflict and public […]

Marshall and “Weapons” of War

Always the innovator, Marshall sought ways to fight more effectively and efficiently. As assistant commandant of the Army Infantry School at Fort Benning in 1927, Marshall revamped the curriculum in anticipation of the next large-scale conflict that he believed would be fought differently from World War I. Curiously, he is oft quoted as saying “study […]

Marshall and the Friedman Exhibition

As the Codebreaking sequence draws to a close, you will have one last opportunity to see the exhibition, “Partners in Code: William and Elizebeth Friedman,” that will be on display in the Marshall Museum through July 4. After that, it goes away. This is your last chance to see the German Enigma machine, the Beale […]

Marshall and the Space Flight Center

Fifty-five years ago next week during a quiet ceremony that formally transferred a facility from the military to a civilian agency, the United States Army Ballistic Missile Agency began operating as the George C. Marshall Space Flight Center. What caused this transfer and why name it after an Army general if it was no longer […]

Marshall and His Advice to the Young

June graduations and commencement addresses are great collegiate traditions and the last opportunity to influence students. General Marshall said he tried his “best to influence young people whenever I came in contact with them in public talks.” In this digital era, when there is so much information available, General Marshall’s reply to Edward R. Morrow’s question, “I […]

Marshall and the Kappa Alpha Order

As we all know, George C. Marshall is a man of many parts: soldier and statesman; father and husband; diplomat. One of the less well known facts about this fascinating individual, however, is that he was also part of a fraternity, a member of the Kappa Alpha Order (KA). KA was founded at the then […]

Marshall and His Speech

Sixty-eight years ago today, Secretary of State George C. Marshall delivered remarks at Harvard University that would become known as the Marshall Plan Speech. Henry Kissinger, who, like Marshall, served as Secretary of State and was the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, recently wrote about the significance of the Marshall Plan and its continuing […]

Marshall and Allen Tupper Brown

This past Monday our nation celebrated Memorial Day, a national holiday that honors those men and women who have died while in service of our country. One such serviceman was Allen Tupper Brown, the stepson of General George C. Marshall. When Allen was twelve, his mother, Katherine had invited Colonel Marshall to visit them at […]

Marshall and Mexico

Can you name all of the countries that were part of the Allied Nations during World War II? Did you include Mexico on your list? Many people, myself included, may be surprised to learn that Mexico participated in World War II. In response to the sinking of several oil ships by German U-boats, Mexico declared […]

Marshall & Oveta Culp Hobby

Oveta Culp Hobby learned about service to community and government from her family. She watched her mother collect food and clothing for the poor and was often sent to deliver baskets of goods to neighbors. From her father she acquired a love of the law and the workings of government. As a child she would […]

Marshall and the 70th Anniversary of V-E Day

Today is the 70th Anniversary of V-E (Victory in Europe) Day , which marked the end of six long years of fighting in Europe. As news of Germany’s surrender spread, people throughout Europe and around the world poured out into the streets to celebrate the end of the war. Although the war would not be […]

Marshall and Richard Wing

May is Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month. During the month many institutions pay tribute to the generations of Asians and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America’s history. One such American was Richard C. Wing. Wing was a sergeant in the United States Army and became General George C. Marshall’s cook and orderly at Fort Myer, Virginia […]

Marshall and Live Streaming

It’s the beginning of a new era at the Marshall Foundation. In the past decade, the staff at the library and archives has digitized many of the collections housed here in Lexington to perpetuate the legacy of George C. Marshall by offering our resources to the world. Yesterday, for the first time, we broadcast live […]

Marshall and Secretary’s Day

Administrative Professionals’ Day, also known as Secretary’s Day, will be celebrated on April 22nd this year. It’s observed to recognize the work of secretaries, administrative assistants, receptionist and other administrative support professionals. Shortly before the first celebration of this non-official holiday in 1952, Mildred K. Carlson was George C. Marshall’s secretary. She served as his […]

Marshall Plan in Pictures

President Truman signed the Economic Assistance Act on April 3, 1948 to help the nations of Europe recover after the devastation of World War II. A quick Google search for “Marshall Plan” will result in the facts and figures relating to the legislation surrounding the European Recovery Program. Mentioned frequently are the Marshall Plan speech […]

Marshall and His Legacy

On the eve of completing the Marshall Papers, we have begun a significant, new initiative, the George C. Marshall Legacy Series, to interpret General Marshall’s legacy for an audience of broad interests. The Series is expected to last two years or longer. Programs and activities will focus on key themes, events or episodes from General […]

Marshall and the American Red Cross

Ask anyone what the American Red Cross does and the answer will likely include supplying lifesaving blood or disaster relief efforts during significant natural disasters. In fact, the American Red Cross does much more. In the broadest sense, the American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the […]

Marshall and House of Cards

In the current season of the hit series House of Cards, President Francis Underwood and his wife, Claire, who was appointed US ambassador to the UN, dive into foreign policy. One of President Underwood’s primary goals is to form an international coalition, including Russia, that will commit to stationing troops in the Jordan River Valley […]

Marshall, WACs and Army Rangers

When Massachusetts representative, Edith Nourse Rogers, introduced a bill in 1941 to establish a Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps for Service with the Army of the United States she set into motion a series of events that transformed the role of women in military service. (HR 4906, 77th Congress, 1st session) Rogers had served in the […]

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Marshall and Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech before Congress earlier this week illustrates the special relationship that the United States has maintained with Israel. As is to be expected in any relationship lasting 66 years and counting, the United States and Israel have had their fair share of disagreements. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud Party recently released video […]

Marshall and the Oscars

In May of 1971, the Marshall Foundation received its own Academy Award. The movie Patton had swept the 43rd Academy Awards, winning seven awards in the categories of original screenplay, direction, sound, editing, art direction, actor, and best picture. George C. Scott famously rejected his best actor Oscar for Patton, stating at the time: “…it is […]

Marshall and Ashton Carter

When President Obama announced his nomination of Ashton Carter to replace Chuck Hagel as secretary of defense in December 2014, many news reports anticipated a quick confirmation process. This proved to be accurate, with the Senate easily confirming Carter on February 12 by a vote of 93–5. The same would not be true when President […]

Marshall & Romance

This weekend many people will celebrate the sentimental holiday of Valentine’s Day. Sentimental isn’t a word that is often used to describe George C. Marshall, but glimpses of his romantic side appear in correspondence with his first wife, Elizabeth “Lily” Carter Coles. According to Marshall’s sister, Marie Louise Singer, George didn’t have many girls before […]

Marshall and facing the realities of war

Every now and again there comes a war movie that transcends the genre and speaks to a far wider audience than just “history buffs” or “war movie fans.” These films both tell their story more adeptly but also speak to deeper issues about the nature of our society. All armies are, of course, a reflection […]

Marshall and Tuskegee

The death of two members of the Tuskegee Airmen in mid-January reminded the country of the significant contribution that African Americans made to World War II. As chief of staff of the United States Army, George C. Marshall was directly involved in the establishment of the military program for aviation at the Tuskegee Institute. Correspondence between […]

Marshall and the Benning Revolution

In a February 2014 Congressional Research Service Report, Army Drawdown and Restructuring: Background and Issues for Congress, noted that Army endstrength would go from 570,000 in 2010 to 490,000 by the end of 2017. The drawdown of American forces has been a cyclical part of the nation’s military experience and “the Army has historically focused […]

Marshall & a New World Order

A December 2014 Congressional Research Service Report (CRS) on the changing international security environment states that world events since late 2013 are creating a shift in the international environment is undergoing a shift from the familiar post-Cold War era of the last 20-25 years to a new and different strategic situation. The features of that environment are […]

Marshall & His Books

The new year often brings resolutions. Many resolve to exercise more, eat better and become better stewards of their finances. There are also a few, like Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg, who aim to read more in 2015. General Marshall would approve of that resolution. He was a student of history and recognized the vital importance of […]

Marshall & Time’s Man of the Year

Each year Time magazine publishes a celebratory first issue recognizing a person, movement, or organization that, for better or for worse, has done the most to influence the events of the previous year. In January 1948, Time gave the honor of “Man of Year” to George C. Marshall for giving “hope for those who needed […]

Marshall and His Birthday

Classmates in grade school who celebrated birthdays close to the holidays deserved our sympathy. The strong pull of gravity around Christmas and Hanukkah diminished their special days that traveled in minor orbits around these behemoths. Born on December 31, 1880, George C. Marshall may have felt the same way that some of my friends felt, […]

Friedmans’ Christmas Cards

William F. Friedman and his wife Elizebeth devoted their lives to developing and breaking codes for United States government agencies. The code work they were engaged in related to serious issues such as liquor smuggling and organized crime, national security, and war. One way the Friedmans found an outlet from the stress of their daily […]

Marshall and the Troops

“It is impossible for the Nation to compensate for the services of a fighting man. There is no pay scale that is high enough to buy the services of a single soldier during even a few minutes of the agony of combat, the physical miseries of the campaign, or of the extreme personal inconvenience of […]

Marshall, PURPLE and Pearl Harbor

As early as 1934 Army Signal Corps cryptanalysts were deciphering certain Japanese diplomatic codes—a process which was given the code name MAGIC.  These diplomatic codes were transmitted on a machine, known to U.S. cryptographers as PURPLE.  The PURPLE machine consisted of two electronic typewriters separated by a plugboard and a box that contained the encryption […]

Marshall, Frank Capra & Film

On May 27, 1942, the first of seven documentary films, Prelude to War, was released. This documentary series, Why We Fight, was commissioned by the United States Army. In a letter to President Roosevelt, General Marshall states the films would “replace the series of lectures given newly inducted soldiers as to why we are in the […]

Marshall & the Enigma Machine

Next week the movie Imitation Game will be released. British mathematician, logician and cryptanalyst Alan Turing was a key figure in cracking the code used by Nazi Germany that helped the Allies win World War II. The British-American movie stars Benedict Cumberbatch, as Turing and Keira Knightley, as Joan Clarke, Turing’s fiancé and fellow code […]

Armistice and the Homer Simpson Collection

At 5 a.m. on the morning of November 11, 1918, the Armistice, which ceased hostilities during World War I as a prelude to peace negotiations, was signed. In the trenches on the often quoted ‘eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month’ was Private Homer E. Simpson, a soldier from Covington, Virginia, who […]

Marshall and Veterans Day Remembered

November 11, Veterans Day, was originally called Armistice Day to commemorate the end of World War I, the “War to End All Wars” 100 years ago. Armistice Day underwent a name change in 1954 to Veterans Day to include our veterans of all wars. It is fitting to pay tribute to all who have served […]

Friedman Collection at Folger Library

William F. Friedman, considered to be the greatest cryptologist of all time, is most well known for leading the team of cryptologists that broke the Japanese diplomatic code known as “PURPLE” prior to U.S. entry into World War II. In addition to the official code work that Freidman performed for the government, he devoted much […]

Marshall Plan and the Poster Contest

In the fall of 1950, the Intra-European Cooperation for a Better Standard of Living Poster Contest was held throughout Europe whereby artists were encouraged to submit posters that represented the theme of cooperation and economic recovery. Over 10,000 pieces were submitted from various countries. A panel of twelve graphic artists, each representing a different Marshall […]

Marshall and the Nobel Peace Prize

The Nobel Prize season has just concluded. As always, the announcement of the winners in five disciplines, Chemistry, Physics, Medicine, Economics and Literature, are eagerly awaited. The winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, however, holds special significance. Unlike the other prizes, the Peace Prize is distinctly different because it represents a recognition of something less […]

Marshall and Family History

In 2001, Senator Orrin Hatch (Utah) introduced a resolution to Congress that designated October as Family History Month. He stated “by searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family.” The Foundation holds quite a few collections that relate to the Marshall family and its history. A few are highlighted below: Stuart B. Marshall […]

Behind the Scenes: Archives

October is American Archives Month. Celebrations this month at archival institutions across the country serve as reminders that archives are important because they are the memory banks of reliable information.View the video for a behind-the-scenes look at the Foundation’s archives. What is an archive? An archive is a place where people find information, usually primary […]

Marshall and His Museum

  Smithsonian Museum Day Live! on Saturday, September 27, is an annual event that gives participating museums around the country the opportunity to open their doors free of charge. In a perfect world, all museums would be free, but non-profits such as the George C. Marshall Foundation receives no operational funding from the government and […]

Marshall and Comic Books

Despite having no congressional resolutions or presidential proclamations, September 25th is considered National Comic Book Day. Comic books have been enjoyed as far back as the late 18th century. These early comics featured Japanese Toba-e style prints that were bound in an accordion-style book. Comic books have remained popular because they tell an ongoing story, provide […]

Marshall and September 11th

Thirteen years ago the world watched in disbelief as terrorists attacked New York City, Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania. Our sense of shock was due in part to the fact that the United States has rarely experienced attacks from foreign enemies within its own borders. As the country pauses to reflect on the tragic events of […]

Marshall Plan and Mad Men

While the world prepares for the conclusion of the television program Mad Men next year, we ought to stop and think about what prepared the world for Mad Men. In a recent interview (relevant quote begins around 4:15), Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner said that he first became interested in the late 1950s and early […]

Marshall and the Invasion of Poland

September 1, 2014 marks the 75th anniversary of the German invasion of Poland, the act responsible for starting World War II. That same day George C. Marshall became the chief of staff of the United States Army; a position he would hold for the duration of the war and which earned him the accolade “Organizer of Victory” […]

1900 VMI Football Team

Marshall and Football

At the Virginia Military Institute, as well as colleges and universities across the country, football teams are busy preparing for the upcoming season. Many of today’s VMI football players may not realize that, through football, they share a connection with VMI’s most famous graduate. George C. Marshall, having fulfilled a promise to his mother to […]

George Withers - Soldier and Girlfriend

Marshall, Paris & Art

Paris has acquired a reputation as the “City of Art.”  But as war was declared on September 3, 1939, the Louvre evacuated its collections, sandbagged the larger pieces it couldn’t move and closed for business. In 1940, the invading German forces reopened the museum, but visitors found a mostly empty building. With hope brought by the Allied […]

George C. Marshall testifying for the Marshall Plan

Marshall Plan and Afghanistan Aid

SIGAR (Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction) may have been throwing up his hands in disbelief when he announced last week the total aid given to Afghanistan since our recent involvement will soon exceed total Marshall Plan assistance following World War II. “SIGAR calculates that by the end of 2014, the United States will have […]

General Leslie R. Grove and J. Robert Oppenheimer

Marshall and the Atomic Bomb

The recent death of Theodore VanKirk, the navigator of the Enola Gay, which dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, as well as a new television series about the building of the bomb, has put the August 6th and 9th anniversaries of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki back into the spotlight. Key documents relating to […]

Marshall and Transformational Leadership

At our recent leadership seminar for the National Association of Counties, we communicated Secretary of State Marshall’s powerful example of transformational leadership to secure European economic recovery following World War II. Known as the Marshall Plan, the European Recovery Program represents the power of a person to transform. It was not easy, however. Marshall met […]

Marshall and The Great War

Welcome to the first of what will be a regular series of blogs from the GCMF.  These blogs will pertain to General Marshall, his life, times and legacy and the vitally important role of the foundation in ensuring that those considerations find expression both today and tomorrow. Here at the Marshall Foundation we are preparing […]