By Marlana Cook (West Point Museum, Curator of Art)February 18, 2016
WEST POINT, N.Y. (Feb. 18, 2016) - The West Point Museum unveiled its newest exhibition, Championing a Nation, which explores World War I propaganda in America, Feb. 15.
The exhibit features works by artists Lester Hornby, Norman Ritchie and Joseph Pennell as well as original World War I music and film.
When President Woodrow Wilson declared America's entrance into World War I, the public was primarily supportive of his decision. However, the question remained "How do we achieve universal solidarity and support for this endeavor?"
Enter the Committee on Public Information, a group that shaped the whole of American opinion about the war and America's role in it from 1917 until 1919. Formed by executive order on April 13, 1917, the Committee on Public Information consisted of the Secretaries of State, War and Navy.
Their messages permeated every form of media released to the American public about the war. This exhibition, curated by Marlana Cook, explores a few of the areas the committee directly affected and heavily influenced.
The West Point Museum is the Nation's oldest federal museum. Its origins can be traced to the American Revolution. Today, visitors can view the actual weapons, uniforms and memorabilia of American soldiers from the 17th century to the present as well as military artifacts from around the world. The diverse weapons collections date to ancient days and include historic pieces belonging to such figures as George Washington, Napoleon I, John Pershing, Dwight Eisenhower, George Patton and Ulysses S. Grant. The outstanding art collection includes works by noted artists including James Whistler, Robert Weir, Edouard Detaille and Frederic Remington.
The museum is free to the public and open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's day.)