Harry C. Butcher

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Harry C. Butcher
Signature de la reddition le 7 mai 1945.jpg
Born (1901-11-01)November 1, 1901
Springville, Iowa
Died April 20, 1985(1985-04-20) (aged 83)
Santa Barbara, California
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch US-NavyReserve-Emblem.svg United States Navy Reserve
Years of service 1939-1945
Rank Captain
Battles/wars World War II
Other work Broadcaster
Radio & Television consultant

Harry C. Butcher (November 1, 1901 - April 20, 1985) was a radio broadcaster who served during World War II as the Naval Aide to General Dwight D. Eisenhower from 1942 to 1945.

Early life[edit]

Butcher was born in Springville, Iowa on November 1, 1901. Following his graduation from Iowa State College, in 1929 Butcher began a career in radio broadcasting.[1] He opened the Washington, D.C. office of CBS and served as its director until 1932. Beginning in 1932 he was the manager, and later vice-president, of the CBS Radio Network's station in Washington, D.C. station WJSV. While there, Butcher coined a term for President Franklin Roosevelt's radio speeches to the American public, referring to the May 7, 1933 address in a press release, as a "fireside chat".[2]

Military career[edit]

During his tenure at WJSV, Butcher was commissioned a Lieutenant Commander in the United States Navy Reserve (U.S.N.R.) on September 16, 1939. From 1942 to 1945, Butcher served as the Naval Aide to General Dwight D. Eisenhower.[3] On May 1, 1943, Butcher was promoted to the rank of Commander in the U.S.N.R. On November 1, 1944 he was promoted to the temporary rank of Captain. Following an order given to him by Eisenhower, Butcher kept a diary of his and Eisenhower's wartime activities. The diary would come to be published in 1946 under the title "My Three Years with Eisenhower." It also led to historian Max Hastings referring to him as "the embodiment of all gossip-ridden staff officers".[4]

It was Butcher who preserved the written statement that Eisenhower had prepared in the event that the D-Day invasions failed.[5]

Later life[edit]

Butcher returned to the broadcasting world following the end of the war. From 1946 to the 1970s, Butcher owned a radio station in Santa Barbara, California. He also served as president of Santa Barbara's cable TV corporation. He also served as a radio and television consultant.

On April 20, 1985, Butcher died in Santa Barbara, California.


  1. ^ "Backstage with Butcher" Time Magazine, May 6, 1946. (Retrieved April 28, 2009) http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,887051,00.html
  2. ^ Russell D. Buhite and David W. Levy, eds., FDR's Fireside Chats (University of Oklahoma Press, 1992) p xv; "Fireside chats", Encyclopedia of Political Communication SAGE, 2008) pp243-244
  3. ^ Butcher, Harry C. "My Three Years With Eisenhower." New York : Simon and Schuster. 1946. P. xiii.
  4. ^ Hastings, Max. "Overlord: D-Day and the Battle for Normandy 1944". London, Pan Books, 1985. p268
  5. ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2649562/Any-fault-How-General-Eisenhower-planned-blame-D-Day-FAILED-teach-todays-politicians-thing-two.html

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