NBC-Red produced Heirs of Liberty in cooperation with The Department of Justice and The Patriot's Committee of American Revolutionary Societies from its flagship station WEAF, New York City
The United States Department of Justice was a major co-sponsor of Heirs of Liberty
The Daughters of the American Revolution was one of Heirs of Liberty's more active co-sponsors
The Sons of the American Revolution was one of Heirs of Liberty's co-sponsors
The United States Daughters of 1812 was another of Heirs of Liberty's co-sponsors
The Children of the American Revolution was yet another Heirs of Liberty's co-sponsor
Throughout the 1920s and 1930s battles between America's isolationists and America's "One-World" proponents raged throughout the Administrations of Republican Presidents Harding, Coolidge and Hoover, with isolationist rhetoric growing increasingly strident with each new administration. By the time that Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt assumed the Presidency, America had become virtually split between isolationists and proponents of intervention against growing fascist hegemony throughout the Far East and Europe.
World War I itself had understandably spurred ever greater patriotism throughout America. On the heels of the Allied victory over Germany's Weimar Republic, the previous Allied Forces began working in earnest on developing international treaties and international bodies in an attempt to prevent another World War ever again. But in the wake of the Wall Street Crash of 1929 and the Great Depression that followed, America and its previous Allies found it increasingly difficult to obtain a consensus among its respective citizens for a truly international effort to ensure continued peace throughout the world.
But the resulting first effort--The League of Nations--only served to divide America even further along political and ideological lines. Many of America's industrialists and manufacturers, desperate for expanding markets in the wake of The Great Depression, reached even further out to nations that had weathered both the Stock Market Crash and the international consequences of The Great Depression. Three of those nations were Germany, Russia and Japan. Germany, in particular, was most greatly contrained by the terms of The Treaty of Versailles (1919), by which:
- German armed forces would no longer number more than 100,000 troops, and conscription would be abolished.
- German naval forces would be limited to 15,000 men, six battleships, six cruisers, 12 destroyers and 12 torpedo boats. The Treaty also excluded the production of submarines.
- The import and export of weapons is prohibited.
- Poison gas, armed aircraft, tanks and armoured cars are prohibited.
- Restrictions on the manufacture of machine guns and rifles (and restrictions on gun ownership).
- German armed forces were prohibited from entering or fortifying any part of German territory west of the Rhine or within 50 kilometres east of the Rhine.
- Germany was assessed reparations totalling over $132 Billion gold marks.
As many of the era predicted--and as was borne out by history--The Versailles Treaty only served to further inflame the rise of nationalism throughout Post-War Germany. Germany's nationalist movement soon morphed into a fascist movement. Germany systematically violated virtually every proscription of The Treaty of Vesailles, formed non-aggression and trade pacts with Russia, and continued to develop its Army, Air Forces and Navy in secret.
At the same time, back in the U.S., support for England and France continued to wither after The Treaty of Versailles. Indeed, the growing isolationist movement continued to spread throughout the U.S., eventually polarizing America virtually down the middle between isolationists/nationalists and supporters of both domestic and international democracy. As a result, just over half of America wanted nothing whatsoever to do with international diplomacy and the other half hoped to further expand Democracy internationally through trade, treaties and international diplomacy.
From the September 17th 1941 edition of the Ames Daily Tribune:
The United States department of justice, in co-operation with the Patriots' committee of American Revolutionary Societies and the National Broadcasting company, is sponsoring a new patriotic series entitled "Heirs of Liberty," which will be presented weekly every Thursday from 9:45 to 10 p.m. over WHO, Des Moines.
The purpose of this program is to recall to all Americans the patriotic words and devotion of this nation's founders and to attempt to inspire a new zeal for freedom and democratic principles of justice, liberty, and equality. Dramatic incidents in the lives of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton and Edmund Randolph are being presented in the first six broadcasts.
Preeiminent actors of the American stage and screen are co-opperating with the governmnt in presenting portrayals of these American patriots. At the close of each program an actual descendant of the forefather appears to remind all Americans that at this time of national emergency the country should be guided by the spirit of the Revolutionary patriots who fought for American independence and liberty.
Organizations co-operating in forming the Patriots' committee of American Revolutionary Societies are: Sons of the American Revolution, National Society of the Daughters of the Revolution, Children of the American Revolution, Daughters of the Revolution, Children of the American Revolution, and the Daughters of 1812.
From the December 18th 1941 edition of the Charleston Gazette:
"Heirs of Liberty," radio series sponsored by patriotic organizations and the department of justice, will resume its place on the air today, Mrs. M. K. Malloy, state radio chairman for Daughters of the American Revolution, announced yesterday.
Dramatization of an incident in James Monroe's life will open the new series of six from 6:30 to 6:45 p.m. today over the NBC Red network. Alexander Kirkland, who is currently appearing in the Broadway success, "Junior Miss," will play Monroe. Laurence Hoes, a great-great-grandson of Monroe, also will be on the program.
The second program, Jan 2, will dramatize an incident in the life of Edmund Randolph, the first attorney-general of the U.S. , who will be played by Henry Hull. Edmund Randolph Biddle, son of the present attorney-general, will speak.
Beginning Jan. 8, the series will be between 6:30 and 6:45 p.m. Thursday afternoons for five weeks. Sponsoring organizations are DAR, Daughters of the Revolution, Daughters of 1812, Sons of the American Revolution, General Society of the War of 1812, Sons of the Revolution and Children of the American Revolution.
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