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Arthur H. Vandenberg

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Arthur H. Vandenberg

Arthur Hendrick Vandenberg (March 22, 1884April 18, 1951) was a Republican Senator from the state of Michigan who participated in the creation of the United Nations.

Born and raised the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Vandenberg attended public schools there and studied law at the University of Michigan. He was a newpaper reporter, editor and publisher for the Grand Rapids Herald from 1906 to 1928. On March 31, 1928, he was appointed to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Senator Woodbridge Nathan Ferris. In November 1928, he was elected for a full term and was subsequently reelected three times, in 1934, 1940, and 1946. In total, he served 23 years in the Senate until his death in 1951.

On January 10, 1945, Vandenberg delivered a celebrated "speech heard round the world" in the Senate Chamber, announcing his conversion from isolationism to internationalism. In 1947, at the start of the Cold War, Vandenberg became chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In that position, he cooperated with the Truman administration in forging bipartisan support for the Truman Doctrine, the Marshall Plan, and NATO.

Married twice, he had three children. He is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery in Grand Rapids.

Missing image
Arthur_H_Vandenberg.jpg
Senate portrait of Arthur H. Vandenberg

On September 14, 2004, a portrait of Vandenberg, along with one of Senator Robert F. Wagner, was unveiled in the Senate Reception room. The new portraits joined a group of distinguished former Senators, including Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, John C. Calhoun, Robert M. La Follette, Sr., and Robert A. Taft. Portraits of this group of Senators, known as the "Famous Five", was unveiled on March 12, 1959.

Committee Assignments and Diplomatic Service

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