Polish Army Veterans Association of America
invite you to
the opening ceremony of the exhibition
THE SPIRIT OF COMPASSION:
HERBERT HOOVER IN POLAND
Tuesday, March 13, 2007 - Sunday, September 30, 2007
Opening: Tue., March 13, 7PM
Exhibition: Mar. - Sept. 2007, Mon.-Sat., 11AM - 7PM
Polish Veterans Home
119 East 15th Street, New York, NY
Admission: Free. Subway: Union Square / 14th Street
Herbert Clark Hoover (1874 -1964): a Preeminent Humanitarian of the Twentieth Century
Herbert Hoover's tragic early life experiences had profound but positive influences on his career as a statesman and philanthropist. Orphaned at the age of ten, as an adult he founded orphanages and worldwide organizations dedicated to protecting the lives of children. His father died from malnutrition, but the relief organizations that he founded during and after World War I fed 200 million people. His mother died of typhus, but in the words of a co-worker, "He eradicated the worst typhus epidemic in the history of the world." Born poor, Hoover became a millionaire early in his adult life, and later gave away much of his wealth.
During and following World War One, he organized a charitable industry that some called "a peace army," consisting of tens of thousands of volunteers. Till this day no one person has surpassed the scale of these operations. A significant portion of the population of Europe, amounting to tens of millions of people, might have perished in one of the greatest famines of the millennium, had not Hoover come to their rescue. After the conflict was over, this was especially true for Central Europe, where President Woodrow Wilson and his principal adviser Herbert Hoover focused the majority of their efforts. Hoover rapidly mobilized his forces in Poland in 1918, following his creation of the American Relief Administration (ARA). In 1919 alone, this program fed more than 1.5 million children for several years on a regular basis. After 1920, Hoover increased that number to 2 million and expanded the number of kitchens in Poland to ten thousand. For almost four years following the war, half a billion meals were fed to the hungry and starving of Poland, especially to children.
It is an understandable irony that Herbert Hoover, who again as a former U.S. president led comparable efforts during and after World War Two, is associated in the minds of most Americans almost exclusively with the Great Depression.
The exhibition financed by: the Hoover Institution, Polish Army Veterans Association of America, the Taube Family Fund, and the Michael Mortkowitz Family Fund
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