Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Edward Geary Lansdale papers
Date (inclusive): 1910-1987
Collection Number: 80116
Hoover Institution Archives
Language of Material:
93 manuscript boxes, 5 oversize boxes, 244 envelopes, 1 oversize folder, 5 album boxes, 2 slide boxes
(65.0 linear feet)
Writings, memoranda, reports, studies, correspondence, printed matter, sound recordings, and photographs relating to the Vietnam
War and to counter-guerrilla operations, especially in Vietnam and the Philippines.
Hoover Institution Archives
Lansdale, Edward Geary, 1908-1987
Collection is open for research.
Use copies of some sound recordings, video recordings, or motion picture material in this collection are available for immediate
access. To access other sound recordings, video recordings, or motion picture material, please contact the Archives at least
two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear.
Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.
For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.
[Identification of item], Edward Geary Lansdale papers, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.
Acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1980.
Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find
the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at
. Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number
of boxes listed in this finding aid.
|1908 February 6
||Born, Detroit, Michigan.
||Served with the O.S.S.
||Promoted to Lieutenant, U.S. Army. Served in military intelligence for duration of war.
||Promoted to Major. Transferred to Philippines, AFWESPAC.
||Appointed Chief of Intelligence Division. Extended stay in Philippines at AFWESPAC and PHILRYCOM; helped Philippine Army rebuild
its Intelligence Services.
||Commissioned as a Captain in the Air Force, temporary rank of Major.
||Instructor, Strategic Intelligence School, Lowry Air Force Base, Colorado.
||Temporary promotion to Lieutenant Colonel.
||At the request of President Elpidio Quirino, transferred to Joint U.S. Military Advisory Group in the Philippines to advise
Philippine Army Intelligence Services in fight against the Huks (Communists). Met Ramon Magsaysay, Philippine Secretary of
National Defense; became close friends. Assisted in development of psychological operations, civic actions, rehabilitation
of Huk prisoners, and other programs.
||Temporary promotion to Colonel.
||Member of General J. W. "Iron Mike" O'Daniel's mission to the French forces in Indochina; acted as an advisor on special counter-guerrilla
||Transferred to Saigon, served with MAAG-Vietnam. Helped advise Vietnamese government and armed forces on problems of internal
security, including pacification program (1954-55), psychological operations, intelligence, and integration of sect armies.
Became close associate of President Ngo Dinh Diem.
||Went to office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington, D.C.; became Deputy Assistant Secretary for special operations.
||Staff member of President's Committee on Military Assistance (Draper Committee).
||Temporary promotion to Brigadier General.
||Became Assistant Secretary of Defense for special operations.
||Temporary promotion to Major General.
|1963 October 31
||Retired; awarded Distinguished Service Medal (second time) for counter-insurgency work. Became consultant to director of Food
for Peace, White House.
||Returned to South Vietnam as Senior Liaison Officer of the U.S. Mission to South Vietnam, appointed by Ambassador Henry Cabot
Lodge. Also appointed Minister by President Johnson. Staff became the "Senior Liaison Office" (SLO). Work involved winning
support in Vietnamese countryside.
||Assistant to Ambassador Ellsworth Bunker, U.S. Mission to South Vietnam.
In the Midst of Wars.
|1987 February 23
||Died, McLean, Virginia.
Scope and Content of Collection
The Lansdale papers are drawn almost entirely from the post-World War II period and consist of writings, memoranda, reports,
studies, correspondence, printed matter, sound recordings, and photographs relating to the Vietnam War and to counter-guerrilla
operations, especially in Vietnam and the Philippines..
The first five series (Biographical File, Correspondence, Diaries and Notebooks, Speeches and Writings, and Subject File)
consist of materials drawn from 1945-1987. The diaries record some of Lansdale's impressions and experiences during his first
period in the Philippines. Within the Speeches and Writings series are the notes and drafts for Lansdale's memoirs
(In the Midst of Wars), containing material not published in the final version. The Subject File series is very broad, but of special interest under
"Vietnam" are the sub-headings "politics and government" and "Republic of Vietnam." The latter is a sampling of memoranda
and other papers from the government of Ngo Dinh Diem and his successors. Finally, several pamphlets outlining "operational
guidelines" for cadre working within the rural construction (revolutionary development) program are found under "Vietnamese
conflict" (sub-heading "pacification").
The next five series follow Lansdale's career paths from his first years in the Philippines to his last stay in Vietnam. There
are three very compact series of material from his two periods in the Philippines and his first period in Vietnam. The bulk
of the collection is found in the other two career series: the files from the Department of Defense, Office of the Secretary
of Defense, and from the United States Embassy-Saigon, Senior Liaison Office.
In the Department of Defense series are found memoranda, reports, and other items from the Draper Committee, including schedules
from that committee's 1959 tour of some Southeast Asia countries. Notes, correspondence, and comments from Lansdale's 1961
trip to Vietnam (with General Maxwell Taylor's party) are also of interest and are found in this series under "subject file"
Within the Senior Liaison Office series, the "day files" are especially complete (except for the security withdrawals--see
below). These files comprise a record of each outgoing letter, memo, and report. Because of the sensitive nature of many of
the Lansdale papers, there have been many documents withdrawn for security reasons. In the place of these documents the researcher
will find numbered out cards. These documents are reviewed for declassification consideration at five-year intervals, and
those that have been returned to the collection can be found in the Declassified Documents series.
Other series include oversize materials, printed matter, audiovisual material, maps and charts, and memorabilia. The various
sound recordings collected by Lansdale may be of especial interest to researchers.
Subjects and Indexing Terms
United States--Armed Forces.
United States. Air Force--Officers.
Vietnam War, 1961-1975.