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As the war-torn nations of Europe faced famine and economic crisis in the wake of World War II, the United States proposed to rebuild the continent in the interest of political stability and a healthy world economy. On June 5, 1947, in a commencement address at Harvard University, Secretary of State George C. Marshall first called for American assistance in restoring the economic infrastructure of Europe. Western Europe responded favorably, and the Truman administration proposed legislation. The resulting Economic Cooperation Act of 1948 restored European agricultural and industrial productivity. Credited with preventing famine and political chaos, the plan later earned General Marshall a Nobel Peace Prize.
The Economic Cooperation Act of 1948, April 3, 1948, page 1, General Records of the United States Government, National Archives and Records Administration [S.2202, 80th Congress, 2nd Session, Public Law 472, Chapter 169].
You can read 2 complete pages of the Act:
|Title||Act of April 3, 1948 [European Recovery Act [Marshall Plan]]|
|Sample Record(s)||Thumbnails of online copies (with links to larger access files)|
|Creating Org.||United States Government.|
|Scope & Content||The European Recovery Act, called the Marshall Plan after Secretary of State George C. Marshall who proposed it the previous year, channeled $12 billion in aid to Western Europe. This investment spurred a lasting industrial revival in Western Europe.|
|General Note||The text of all federal laws is published in the U.S. Statutes at Large, a multivolume publication at libraries nationwide. The European Recovery Act is found in volume 62 of Statutes at Large, pp. 137-159 (62 Stat. 137). Exhibit History: Featured Document: "Marshall Plan," June 5, 1997 - July 1, 1997, National Archives Rotunda, Washington, DC, Exhibit No. 734.0001. "The Written Word Endures," April 1976 - August 1979, National Archives Circular Gallery, Washington, DC, Exhibit No. General Note 477.0071.|
|See Also||Series Description|
|Corp Added Entry||Congress|
|Contact||Old Military and Civil Records (NWCTB), National Archives Building, 7th and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20408 PHONE: 202-501-5395 FAX: 202-208-1903|
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