President Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight David Eisenhower (1890-1969), American soldier and 34th President of the Untied States, born in Denison, Texas, and educated at the U.S. Military Academy. His baptismal names were "David Dwight"; his mother called him "Dwight", however, and thus the names were transposed.
When Dwight D. Eisenhower was two years old his parents, of Swiss descent, settled in Abilene, Kansas, where he attended the public schools. On his graduation (June, 1915) from military academy Dwight Eisenhower was assigned to the infantry. He married Mamie Doud, the daughter of a prosperous Denver, Colorado, family, on July 1, 1916. On the same day he was promoted to the rank of 1st lieutenant. After the United States entered World War one, he specialized in the newly developed science of tank warfare made commander of Camp Colt, Pennsylvania, a tank training center. There he won a temporary lieutenant colonelcy, which he held until 1920. In that year he received his permanent majority.
In 1922 Dwight D. Eisenhower went to Camp Gaillard, Canal Zone, as executive officer. During the decade following his return (1924), Dwight Eisenhower filled various routine posts, attended the command and general staff school (1925-1926), from which he graduated at head of his class, graduated from the Army War College (1928), and served as an aide in the office of the assistant secretary of war (1929-1933). Dwight Eisenhower was special assistant to General Douglas Macarthur, United States Chief of Staff, from February, 1933, to September, 1935. Thereafter until late in 1939 he served in the Philippine Commonwealth as a member of the American Military Mission headed by General Douglas Macarthur. Dwight Eisenhower rose again to the temporary rank of lieutenant colonel in 1936. In 1940-1941 he was successively chief of staff of the third Infantry Division, the 9th Army Corps, and the Third Army. He advanced to the temporary rank of brigadier general during this time, and his outstanding staff work for the Third Army in the Louisiana maneuvers in 1941 greatly impressed General George Marshall, United States chief of Staff.
Dwight D. Eisenhower was advanced with extraordinary speed following the entry of the United States into World War Two. The months after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor he was promoted chief of the War Plans Division of the War Department. In April, 1942he became head of the Operations Division with the temporary rank of major general. Dwight D. Eisenhower was designated commanding general of United States Forces in the European Theater of Operations in June. Dwight Eisenhower's first campaign, initiated on November 7, 1942, with the invasion of North Africa, was marked by repeated successes over the German armed forces, and in January, 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill selected him to lead the projected invasion of Sicily and Italy, He attained the temporary rank of general the same month.
Dwight D. Eisenhower's genius for planning and organization and his ability to win the co-operation of other allied commanders were particularly apparent in his leadership of the early phases of the Sicilian- Italian campaign, which started on May 12, 1943. On December 24, 1943, the Roosevelt and Churchill named him commanding general of the Allied forces in the European Theater of Operations, with the responsibility of organizing the invasion of Western Europe. This operation, named Overlord, was the greatest amphibious undertaking in military history, and began on June 5, 1944, with Dwight Eisenhower as supreme commander. He retained supreme command until the surrender of Germany on May 8, 1945. In the meantime he had been promoted to the temporary rank of General of the Army (Dec. 20, 1944). His five-star status was made permanent in April 1946.
After serving as supreme commander of the United States occupation zone in Germany and on the Allied Control Commission, Dwight D. Eisenhower was recalled to Washington, D.C., in November, 1945, to succeed General of the Army Marshall as chief of staff. In this post he was an outspoken advocate of universal military training and of unification of the armed forces. Having accepted an invitation to head Columbia University, he retired from the army on May 2, 1948, and on June 7 became the 13th President of Columbia University. At the request of President Harry S. Truman he obtained an informal leave of absence from Columbia in February, 1949, in order to serve as temporary chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. This assignment, essentially to help accelerate unification of the armed services, terminated in August, 1949.
Dwight D. Eisenhower was recalled again to military service on December 19, 1950, by President Truman at the request of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Council, a body consisting of the foreign and defense ministers of the signatories of the North Atlantic Treaty. Early in January, 1951, in Paris, he assumed his new duties as supreme commander of the integrated European Defense Force, which the council authorized for the purpose of meeting the threat of Soviet aggression in Europe. Three months later he completed organization of Supreme Headquarters, Allied powers of Europe (S.H.A.P.E). By the close of 1951 forces of the multinational army under his command included about twenty combat ready divisions.
Meanwhile, beginning in the autumn of 1951, Governor Thomas Edmund Dewey, Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, and other leaders of the Republican Party had engendered a vigorous Eisenhower for President Boom. Dwight Eisenhower, who had rebuffed attempts by Republicans and Democrats to make him a candidate in 1948, tacitly approved the movement in a statement (January 7, 1952) indicating his willingness to become the Republican nominee if he received a "clear cut call to political duty". The pro-Eisenhower Republicans thereupon intensified their activities, entering a long series of State-primary and State-convention contests for delegates to the Republican National Convention. In April Dwight Eisenhower requested relief from his duties in Europe. He arrived in Washington, D.C., on June 1, resigned from the army on June 2, and on June 4, in a speech at Abilene, launched his campaign for the nomination. Spurred by his participation, the pro-Eisenhower movement gained irresistible momentum in subsequent weeks. He won the nomination of the first ballot of the Convention, receiving 845 votes to 280 for Senator Robert Alphonso Taft, the other leading candidate.
In the election held on November 4, Dwight D. Eisenhower carried 39 States, including 4 States in the South, winning 442 electoral votes to 89 for his Democratic opponent, Governor Adlai Ewing Stevenson of Illinois. The Republican candidate's popular vote totaled almost 34,000,000, more than 6,500,000 greater than Stevenson's and the largest ever received by a Presidential nominee.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower visited Korea in December, and during the first half of 1953 the problem of securing a cessation of hostilities was his primary concern. Korean armistice negotiations, which had been suspended late in April, 1953. A truce agreement was signed in July. Concurrently President Eisenhower carried through a basic reappraisal of the international situation. On the basis of indications that the Soviet Union was not likely to start a major war in the foreseeable future, he cut the defense budget prepared by President Truman's administration by $5.2 billion.
In a dramatic move to halt the growing atomic armaments race President Dwight D. Eisenhower proposed that the Soviet Union and other nations participate with the Unites States in the creation of an international bank of fissionable materials for peacetime uses.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower suffered an attack of coronary thrombosis on September 24, 1955. His response to treatment was rapid and satisfactory and by January, 1956, he was able to resume most of his duties. On February 27, he announced his availability for a second term.
The Republican National Convention, held in San Francisco in August, unanimously re-nominated President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Re-elected President in the national election, of November 6, he received about 58 percent of the popular vote and carried 41 States with a total electoral vote of 457 against 73 electoral votes for the Democratic opponent Adlai E. Stevenson. However, the Republican Party failed to win a majority in either house of Congress.
On January 17, 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower made his farewell address to the nation. In March Congress restored to Dwight D. Eisenhower his rank of General of the Army.