Eisenhower and the American Crusades

By Herbert S. Parmet | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER 3
From Europe to Columbia

R EMINISCENT OF NAPOLEON BONAPARTE before his return to Paris, prior to the coup d'état of 18 Brumaire, Eisenhower's political emergence was achieved by those who appreciated his value, appraised his positions, then wooed and seduced him. While he was in Washington during those early postwar years, the Presidential talk was quiescent. All of that changed, however, in June of 1947 with his announcement that he would soon resign from the Army to succeed Nicholas Murray Butler as president of Columbia University.

The prospect of Ike's leaving the military to assume a prestigious civilian post rekindled the White House fervor of Ike admirers. In Connecticut, the co-founder of the advertising agency of Young and Rubicam, John Orr Young, who had worked for Wendell Willkie's candidacy in 1940, began a one-man advertising campaign to stimulate interest in Eisenhower. Young placed an advertisement for the General in the Westporter-Herald during December of 1947 and then had the satisfaction of seeing his idea spread to the formation of Eisenhower clubs in thirty-five cities and towns, creating a milder version of what Oren Root, Jr., had done for Willkie.1 In New York City, the Headquarters Restaurant, owned in part by Ike's former wartime mess sergeant, Marty Snyder, had a large sign over the entrance that urged DRAFT IKE FOR PRESIDENT. That these instances were merely indicators of what was happening nationally was confirmed by a Presidential "trial heat" conducted by Dr. George Gallup's Institute of Public Opinion, which reported in September that with Eisenhower as the Republican candidate opposed to President Truman, the GOP would have a nine percentage

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