Robert Edsel's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Eisenhower’

THE FIELD REPORT: Week of June 6, 2014

January 12th, 2014 | 12:36 pm

Here are a few of our favorite articles from this past week:

1.) Some of the most famous pictures from D-Day were almost destroyed before they ever left the dark room (

2.) You might want to consider this the next time your boss tells you he made you a homemade gift (The Guardian).

3.) These shots from outer space will give you a whole new view of art looting (National Geographic).

4.) Headed Home! A return 75 years in the making demonstrates a “strong moral compass” for those involved with restitution (The Sydney Morning Herald)

5.) The more things change; the more they stay the same. The 70th anniversary of the liberation of Rome is remembered in these 10 incredible before and after shots (Corriere della Sera Roma).

6.) The art Hitler hated brings in the masses (The Washington Post).

*And a few things you may have missed!

7.) Real-life Monuments Man slated to get The Congressional Gold Medal (The Jersey Journal)

8.) Speaker of the House John Boehner puts pen to paper signing The Monuments Men Recognition Act (Official Flickr for the Speaker of the House)

9.) Its Missone Italia for Robert Edsel as he makes his way through Italy promoting his book Saving Italy (Repubblica TV)

10.) Happy Birthday to The Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art. Today marks seven years since we were founded! Take a look back a some of our proudest moments!

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April 1st, 2011 | 10:18 am

General Eisenhower Talking at Metropolitan Museum of Art on April 2, 1946 about the importance of saving art and culture during World War II.

An amazing discovery of historical significance was recently found, an audio recording from April 2, 1946 that has General Eisenhower specifically talking about his decision to safeguard the world’s cultural treasures during World War II. Eisenhower gave this speech at the Metropolitan Museum of Art when he was honored with a life fellowship. His words reiterate both his actions during the war and America’s actions after the war in dealing with cultural items, both domestically and internationally. It is a unique occurrence to hear Eisenhower speak only on the topic of art.

The Associate Press wrote an article that explaining the finding and its significance that is running on Yahoo! News. Click the link to read the article.

You can listen to Eisenhower’s entire speech on the newly redesigned Monuments Men Foundation website,

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May 26th, 2010 | 1:28 pm

On May 26, 1944, days before the D-Day invasions, General Eisenhower issued an order outlining his instructions for the protection of historic monuments in war areas. He had issued similar orders in Italy in December 1943, but within just a few months General Eisenhower had learned the importance of issuing protection orders before the battle had begun. There is no doubt that because of Ike’s support for the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives commission, countless buildings of cultural importance and works of art were saved from destruction.

Full Text of May 26, 1944 Order

1. Shortly we will be fighting our way across the Continent of Europe in battles designed to preserve our civilization. Inevitably, in the path of our advance will be found historical monuments and cultural centers which symbolize to the world all that we are fighting to preserve.

2. It is the responsibility of every commander to protect and respect these symbols whenever possible.

3. In some circumstances the success of the military operations may be prejudiced in our reluctance to destroy these revered objects. Then, as at Cassino, where the enemy relied on our emotional attachment to shield his defense, the lives of our men are paramount. So, where military necessity dictates, commanders may order the required action even though it involves destruction of some honored site.

4. But there are many circumstances in which damage and destruction are not necessary and cannot be justified. In such cases, through the exercise of restraint and discipline, commanders will preserve centers and objects of historical and cultural significance. Civil Affairs Staffs at higher echelons will advise commanders of the locations of historical monuments of this type, both in advance of the front lines and in occupied areas. This information, together with the necessary instructions, will be passed down through command channels to all echelons.


Dwight D. Eisenhower

General, U.S. Army.

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May 3rd, 2010 | 3:32 pm

As part of the 65th Anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE-Day) celebration at the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum in Abilene, Kansas, I will be discussing my new book, The Monuments Men and presenting a completely revised presentation that focuses on General Eisenhower’s role concerning protection of the arts during World War II. Ike’s policies were implemented by the Monuments Men. In conjunction with the presentation I will be bringing with me one of the “Hitler Albums” which will be on display during the weekend. The presentation starts at 7pm in the Visitors Center Auditorium, with audience Q&A to follow. On Saturday, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will be the other keynote speaker beginning at 1pm.

If you would like to attend the events, please click on the following link for more information: Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum: VE-Day 65th Anniversary

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