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Lindsay, Sgt. Kenneth C. | Lovegrove, Lt. William A. | Moore, Lt. Lamont

Lovegrove, Lt. William A.  

Lieutenant, Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (MFAA) Officer

William Lovegrove, a sculptor and United States diplomat, was born in New York in 1902. He moved to Paris to study at an early age, and was graduated from the Ecole des Beaux Arts with an MFA in 1928. He also attended the Sorbonne and the Ecole du Louvre. Lovegrove remained in Paris until World War II, and from 1942 to 1947 served as a lieutenant (retired as captain) in the U.S. Army. In 1945 he began working with the MFAA and was stationed in Paris with the SHAEF Mission to France. However he was a signatory of the Wiesbaden Manifesto in November of 1945, which protested against the removal of German owned works of art to the United States. Following the Allied victory, there were few Monuments officers in France, but Lovegrove was a representative of the commission charged with assisting the French in their restitution efforts. There he worked with the Commission de Récuperation and arranged an exhibit of French works of art which had been stolen by the Nazis and recently returned by the Monuments Men. The exhibit, “Les Chefs-D’Ouvres des Collections Privées Françaises Retrouves en Allemagne” was placed on display at the Jeu de Paume museum in Paris from June to August 1946. For his contributions to the restitution process, Lovegrove received the French Legion of Honor medal in 1946. The same year he married Isolde Oden, a German of Jewish descent, whose family was lucky enough to escape persecution by the Nazis.

Following his MFAA service, Lovegrove remained in Europe as Chief of Museums and Libraries, Military Government for Stuttgart, from 1948 to 1949. He then was a cultural officer for the United States Information Service (or “Agency” as it was known in the States) in Stuttgart until 1954, and in Dusseldorf until 1955. Lovegrove became a cultural attaché for the United States government and was based in Cairo from 1955 to 1960, Athens until 1961, Washington, D.C. until 1963, and Vienna from 1963 to 1966. He retired from the United States Information Agency in 1966 and remained in Vienna where he served as secretary for the American International School from 1967 to 1968, and also as a consultant to the Festival of Vienna in 1969. The following year he was executive secretary for the European Council of International Schools.

As a cultural attaché, Lovegrove and his wife kept an elite circle of friends. Among them were George Balanchine, John Steinbeck, and Paul and Julia Child. It is possible he was also involved in intelligence work under the guise of a United States diplomat. Lovegrove also continued to sculpt throughout his career, focusing the majority of his works on busts and animals. He died in 1970 of a heart attack in Lausanne, Switzerland.


Copyrighted by Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art