5-261 To Francis J. Spellman, October 30, 1945

Publisher: The Johns Hopkins University Press
Date: October 30, 1945

Subject: Postwar

To Francis J. Spellman

October 30, 1945 [Washington, D.C.]

My dear Archbishop:

I wish to express more formally my appreciation of your hospitality yesterday and the opportunity you gave me to discuss the Army point of view regarding our future military policy. I genuinely enjoyed my visit with you and I felt that I personally derived great benefit as well as reassurance from hearing an expression of your views. Thank you very much for your kindness.

Apropos of our conversation I was sorry this morning to note in the Congressional Record that Cardinal Dougherty had chosen to telegraph Congressman Graham of Pennsylvania to oppose peacetime military training and make known to the conferees his, Cardinal Dougherty’s, objection to it.1

I hope you will let me know when you are next in Washington so that I may have the opportunity of entertaining you here in the Pentagon and continuing our conversations.2

With great respect and warm regard,

Faithfully yours,

P.S. I am taking the liberty of sending you a photograph.

Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, General Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.

Document Format: Typed letter.

1. Louis E. Graham, Republican from the Twenty-fifth District of Pennsylvania, read the following telegram into the Congressional Record (79th Congress, 1st sess., vol. 91, pt. 8, p. 10134) from Dennis Cardinal Dougherty of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia: “Please oppose President Truman’s project for peacetime military training and make it known to your conferees my objection to it.”

2. Spellman replied that he understood that there was opposition from “very many others” in the church to universal military training. As for himself, “I have the personal policy of not making any statements except on matters involving support of religious, humanitarian and general patriotic causes.” (Spellman to Marshall, November 8, 1945, GCMRL/G. C. Marshall Papers [Pentagon Office, General].)

A few days later, he sent Marshall a statement the church’s Administrative Board proposed to make advocating the stimulation of voluntary enlistments, the integration of “enforced training” with “normal school life,” and the services’ correction of “certain policies and attitudes which have wrought grave moral damage to great numbers of young people in the armed services during the past five years.” Marshall responded that: “national security can never be fully provided for by standing armies”; U.M.T. would not interfere with the completion of high school; and Secretary of War Patterson had recently recommended that in the U.M.T. legislation Congress provide for a civilian commission (including representatives of major religious faiths) to determine policies for “the conduct, recreation, and moral and spiritual welfare of the trainees while enrolled” in the system. (Spellman to Marshall, November 13, 1945, and Marshall to Spellman, November 19, 1945, ibid.) On this civilian commission, see Marshall Memorandum for General Lutes, November 6, 1945, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #5-269 [5: 352-53].

Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland and Sharon Ritenour Stevens(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 5, “The Finest Soldier,” January 1, 1945-January 7, 1947 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), pp. 344-345.

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