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Society for Military History (1933-) | Morse Department of Special Collections

Name: Society for Military History (1933-)


Historical Note:

1933      June 1: The American Military History Foundation (AMHF) is established in the Washington, D.C. metro area.     

1935      Army Ordinance runs three AMHF articles.

1935      Dec., AMHF holds a joint session with the American Historical Association (AHA) in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

1937      April 01, The Journal of the American Military History Foundation begins publication.

1938      The Order of the Indian Wars (OIW) grants AMHF access to OIW membership lists, but also requires the organization to both publish thirty-two pages of Indian War-related material annually and to sit one member of OIW on the Board of Trustees.

1939      The American Military History Foundation is officially renamed the American Military Institute (AMI). The Journal of the American Military History Foundation is renamed The Journal of the American Military Institute.

1941      The Journal of the American Military Institute is renamed Military Affairs (MA).

1941      AMI sponsors a "seminar-conference" on "The Total Science of War", revolving around issues concerning the preceding two years of European warfare.

1943      MA receives a query from the Soviet Information Bureau, asking if it would accept submissions on Soviet military history.

1945      "The Atomic Bomb and Its Implications," an AMI lecture and panel discussion is given at the National Archives; panelists included General Leslie Groves.

1946      Lt. General J. Lawton Collins, a World War II VII Corp Commander, presents a lecture on "The Battle for Cherbourg" to AMI members.

1948      OIW formally merges with AMHF/AMI.

1948      Hilario Moncado contributes a revolving book fund of $5,000 to the organization, which would bear his name, for the purpose of publishing a series of significant military books through the AMI. The Book Award is later changed to a journal-based criteria, awarding authors of the four best articles published during the year in the organization's journal, Military  Affairs, $200.

1948      Military Affairs is run by paid editors through the Office of the Chief of Military History (Major Robert De T. Lawrence and Captain William Ross).  After one year, the operation is ordered discontinued from DoD operations by Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson.

1949      Without an editor, Military Affairs goes on a one-year hiatus.

1950      November 3, An emergency meeting of members is called in the Pentagon auditorium. When Colonel Milton Skelly agrees to serve as the new  interim editor, Military Affairs resumes publication, simultaneously printing the lost year and concurrent issues.

1956      The AMI and AHA hold a joint conference discussing "The Teaching of Military History: Pro and Con," held in St. Louis, Missouri.

1957      AMI and MA nears collapse due to a lack of office space, an all-volunteer staff, lack of time, quality and manpower to produce a "superlative" journal, and sorely limited membership.

1959      A temporary office for AMI is set up in a corner of the Army Library at the Pentagon.

1968      Kansas State University begins publishing Military Affairs, edited by Robin Higham.

1971      AMI holds three joint conferences with other scholarly bodies to increase participation by members outside the Washington, D.C. area, including the Southern Historical Association at Houston.

1973      AMI is represented at the International Commission of Military History in Stockholm, Sweden.

1975      AMI is represented at the International Congress of Historical Sciences in San Francisco.

1984      AMI creates the position of Executive Director. Officers, such as Archivist, Secretary, Treasurer, and Institute Newsletter Editor, who now receive some form of remuneration for their services.

1985      AMI retains a headquarters in Washington, D.C. with Executive Directors and Treasurers receiving stipends. 1987      AMI expands their traditional conference methodology to encompass a wider scope of subject matter and national level participation at the Annual Meeting in Richmond, Virginia.

1988      The Virginia Military Institute (VMI) assumes publication of Military Affairs.

1989      Military Affairs is renamed The Journal of Military History.

1989      AMI enters into a joint book project with the U.S. Commission on Military History (USCMH) to publish the first American-produced issue of Revue Internationale D'Histoire Militair on the U.S. Constitution and the armed forces.

1989      AMI establishes a system of regional coordinators to promote nationwide membership.

1990      AMI is renamed the Society for Military History (SMH).

1999      SMH and the George C. Marshall foundation co-sponsor the George C. Marshall Lecture Program.

2003      SMH organizes to oppose the shuttering of historical operations at the Center for  Military History (CMH).

2007-2008 AMHF/AMI/SMH papers are formally transmitted to Kansas State University for processing, permanent retention, and access by members and researchers.






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