David Ben Gurion - Prime Minister of Israel and Ambassador James Grover McDonald - 1951
James Grover McDonald 1886-1964
Diplomat James G. McDonald grew up in Albany and taught history at Indiana University by 1910. Representing the Foreign Policy Association, he met with Nazi officials in 1933, including Adolph Hitler who was quickly rising to power. McDonald warned U.S. leaders about “Impending tragedy” for European Jews and began advocating for refugees fleeing Nazi persecution.
James Grover McDonald (Continued from other side)
As the League of Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees (1933-35) and the chair of President Roosevelt’s refugee advisory committee (1938-45), McDonald battled xenophobia, antisemitism, and restrictive quota systems to find asylum for thousands of persecuted Jews. In 1949, President Truman appointed McDonald the first U.S. Ambassador to the new State of Israel.
Installed 2022 Indiana Historical Bureau, Indiana Jewish Historical Society, Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation and the Delaware County Historical Society