Inheritance of War

Rebuilding Europe with the Marshall Plan

By The George C. Marshall Foundation

The George C. Marshall Foundation

Therese Bonney (1943)The George C. Marshall Foundation

Therese Bonney, a photojournalist, documented the war to show what fascism does to children. She was often quoted saying that her book, Europe's Children, was a book written with a lens.

Spanish Children by Therese BonneyThe George C. Marshall Foundation

Spanish children searching for food.
Their bags are filled with rotten oranges.

Child in Spain by Therese BonneyThe George C. Marshall Foundation

Children faced a strange life.

French Child Salvages Toys From Shell-Ruined Home (1945/1947) by U.S. Signal CorpsThe George C. Marshall Foundation

Trying to salvage some sense of normalcy by digging through the rubble for toys.

Carrying Water, Ernst Haas, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Carrying water was the daily chore of this child in an Italian town with no plumbing.

Battle of the Land, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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These children play near salt flats near Anthele, Greece.

German Refugee Camp, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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A father and child In the refugee camp — without possessions, without work, the future seemed hopeless.

Housing the Homeless, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Corrugated iron barracks act as emergency housing for the homeless, many of whom are children.

Marshall Plan and YouThe George C. Marshall Foundation

Help Came

Help for newly liberated Europe came from the Allied armies, private organizations, churches and the newly formed United Nations.

Stars and Stripes, Germany Edition, 1946-02-27, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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CARE Gift Acknowledgement and Delivery Order, 1947-03-14, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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CARE, or Cooperative For American Remittances to Europe, was formed Nov 2, 1945. It facilitated personalized giving for both the giver and the recipient.

United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund Stamp, 1949, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Organized in December 1946 to provide relief to children in countries devastated by war. Funds were obtained by government and private contributions outside the UN budget.

Eleventh Hour (1948-03-08)The George C. Marshall Foundation

The Marshall Plan

From 1945 through 1947, the United States was already assisting European economic recovery with direct financial aid.  Military assistance to Greece and Turkey was being given.  The newly formed United Nations was providing humanitarian assistance.  In January 1947, U. S. President Harry Truman appointed George Marshall, the architect of victory during WWII, to be Secretary of State.  In just a few months the State Department, under his leadership, with expertise provided by George Kennan, William Clayton and others crafted the Marshall Plan concept.

Marshall Plan Slide Presentation, Marshall Foundation, 1947-06-05/1947-06-05, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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On June 5, 1947 George C. Marshall delivered a speech at Harvard, laying out the ideas of the Marshall Plan.

Cub Scouts Do Their Part, 1948-02, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Cub Scouts wrote a Junior Marshall Plan to help children in Western Europe.

See Any Shortcut? (1947-11)The George C. Marshall Foundation

No Shortcuts

The idea was simple, the details were a bit more complicated.  The facts and issues surrounding the Marshall Plan were discussed in various media outlets and through educational pamphlets, many written in the languages of Marshall Plan countries.

This Generation's Chance For Peace, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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A presentation of the issues by the Foreign Policy Association and The Washington Post about the European Recovery Program.

Current Events, 1947-11, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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The national school newspaper discusses the Marshall Plan, American resources, the five keys to freedom, free trade and more.

Marshall Plan and You, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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The Marshall Plan and You: The Dutch version of this booklet was distributed among employers and employees, professional groups, teachers, students, etc. in the Netherlands.

Does it have to be repaid?, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Italian series of books explaining the Marshall Plan
"Must aid be repaid?"

Counterpart Funds, 1950-08, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Booklet produced by the Economic Cooperation Administration. Europe’s contribution to the Marshall Plan. Partnership for Recovery.

German YouthThe George C. Marshall Foundation

Renewed Hope

Maintaining peace, rebuilding lives and promoting prosperity were all the results of the Marshall Plan.

Preemies and Plexiglass, 1947, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Marshall Plan aid helped even the youngest Europeans with modern medical equipment.

Taking A Milk Break, Rossignol & Boubat, 1950, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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This dairy was part of a French nationwide milk modernization program which was aided with Marshall Plan counterpart funds. The renewed industry helped lower the infant mortality rate in Paris.

Marshall Plan Bebe, 1950, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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This "Marshall Plan Bebe" is alive thanks to Marshall Plan streptomycin.

Optimism, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Children run through what will become streets near a new housing development.

Children and Toys, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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With peace, fun returns to Sardinia. Here, children are eyeing the newest toys available.

Playing Board Games, Ira Hinsdale Latour and Walter Jacobus, 1950-08, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Monopoly, an American craze, is new to France. The people of the village of Leirs are enjoying the game outside.

Homework Returns, 1951, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Not all fun and games. Blanche, a 20-year old seamstress in a Paris fashion house, is helping her younger brother, Claude, with his lessons in the evening.

Marshall Plan Parade Float, From the collection of: The George C. Marshall Foundation
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Europe's children are grateful.

Credits: Story

Exhibit Curator -
Cara Cook Sonnier, Digital Communications Librarian

This exhibit contains primary sources from five archival collections at the George C. Marshall Foundation.

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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