D. MICHAEL RYAN WEST POINT AND BERLIN PAPERS, 1961-1994(BULK 1962-1969)

Vault A45, Ryan, Unit 1


D. Michael RyanEXTENT: 1.1 linear ft. (2 containers), plus three oversize folders

ORGANIZATION: Organized into two series: I. West Point papers, 1962-1992 (bulk 1962-1963); II. Berlin papers, 1961-1994 (bulk 1968-1969). Sequences of letters arranged chronologically.

BIOGRAPHY: Resident of Concord, Mass., Associate Dean of Students at Boston College (Chestnut Hill, Mass.); veteran United States Army officer; company historian and drummer with Concord Minute Men, re-enactor and 18th century living history volunteer at Minute Man National Historic Park; lecturer and writer, particularly on topics related to the Concord Fight (April 19, 1775) and to 18th century American history.  Born Dennis Michael Ryan in Gloucester, Mass., March 31, 1944, to Leland G. Ryan and Gertrude Mary Boisvert Ryan.  Educated at Gloucester High School (Class of 1962), United States Military Academy at West Point (1962-1963), and Boston College (B.A. 1967, M.A. 1988).  Served in the U.S. Army 1967-1976, in West Berlin as Platoon Leader, Bn S-1, 1967-1968, and as Aide-de-Camp to Brigadier General Samuel McClure Goodwin, Berlin Brigade (4th Battalion, 18th Infantry), 1968-1969.  Promoted to Captain and received first Army Commendation Medal while in Berlin.  Decorated Vietnam combat veteran (served there 1969-1971).  From 1971-1976, served in the Army in various capacities, including (at Fort Knox, Kentucky) as Commander of Infantry Company, personnel recruiter, and Public Affairs Officer (responsible for editorial management of newspaper Inside the Turret and for media coverage).  Assistant Alumni Director at Boston College 1976-1979; Associate Dean from 1979.  Moved to Concord in 1993.

SCOPE AND CONTENT:  Papers, 1961-1994 (bulk 1962-1969), relating to D. Michael Ryan’s year at West Point, 1962-1963, and to his service in West Berlin, 1967-1969.  Papers include: memorandum, 12 Jan. 1962, John Hays for Gen. Clifton, regarding possible appointment to West Point for DMR; letters home from West Point to parents and sisters Marion and Diana, 1962-1963; form letter, 1 Dec. 1962, regarding Christmas holiday at West Point, Maj. Gen. W. C. Westmoreland to Mr. and Mrs. Leland G. Ryan; photographs of DMR as cadet, 1962-1963; West Point Class of 1966 publications (Beast Barracks; Howitzer [yearbook]); Esquire article (Dec. 1992) by James Salter on West Point experience; letters home from Berlin, 1968-1969; letters to DMR (primarily from Gen. S. M. Goodwin), 1968-1992 (bulk 1968-1969); letters from Gen. Goodwin to Mr. and Mrs. Leland G. Ryan, 1969; official orders and documents (including photocopied citation for Army Commendation Medal), 1967-1969; 4th Battalion, 18th Infantry (Berlin Brigade) certificate of appreciation to DMR, 2 Feb. 1969; guest list and seating plan for and photograph of luncheon at Spandau, Allied Prison Governors’ Mess, 1 Dec. 1968; “New Year’s Day Revisited” (DMR report, in form of play script, on 1969 New Year’s party), plus photograph; Allied Nations staff list, 2 Jan. 1969; photographs of and printed German/English keepsake book about President Richard Nixon’s visit to Berlin, Feb. 1969; conference notes (“BG Goodwin…with major unit commanders”), 8 July and 30 Aug. 1969 (the latter including “Instructions for Travel to Soviet Sector); political materials (DMR notes from American/German roundtable discussion at Free University, West Berlin, around time of Czech invasion, and miscellaneous  printed and typescript items, 1961-1968); photographs of DMR in uniform; miscellaneous Berlin photographs, including one of Checkpoint Charlie; invitations, programs, and photographs relating to ceremonial events (beating retreat ceremony and parades), 1966-1969; materials (invitations, Christmas cards, photographs) relating to DMR’s social life in Berlin, 1968-1969; periodical and newspaper pieces (1969, 1994) concerning the moon walk in July 1969; Berlin tourist publications; photographs of DMR on return home via S.S. United States, and (humorous) typescript “Notice of Return”; scrapbook containing photographs, ephemera, clippings, letters, etc., 1968-1969; Gen. Goodwin’s typescript reflections on trip to U.S.S.R. (1988) and on return to Berlin (1994); article from After the Battle (1987) on Rudolph Hess, by Denis C. Bateman.

SOURCES OF ACQUISITION:  Gift of D. Michael Ryan, December 31, 1998.

NOTES/COMMENTS:  Accessioned January 6, 1999; AMC 027.

PROCESSED BY: LPW; biographical sketch and identification of materials within collection based on information provided by D. Michael Ryan, January 2, 1999; finding aid prepared 010/8/99Prepared for the Internet by Peter K. Steinberg, 05/22/06.


CONTAINER LIST


SERIES I: WEST POINT PAPERS, 1962-1992 (BULK 1962-1963):

Box 1, Folder 1:
Memorandum, 12 Jan. 1962, John Hays for Gen. Clifton, regarding possible appointment to West Point for DMR

Box 1, Folder 2:
Letters home to parents and sisters Marion and Diana, 5 July-31 July 1962

Box 1, Folder 3:
Letters home, 11 Aug. 1962-10 Mar. 1963

Box 1, Folder 4:
Form letter, 1 Dec. 1962, regarding Christmas holiday at West Point, Maj. Gen. W.C. Westmoreland to Mr. and Mrs. Leland G. Ryan

Box 1, Folder 5:
Photographs of DMR as cadet, 1962-1963 (including one with sisters)

 

Box 1, Folder 6:
Beast Barracks for the Class of 1966 (printed “pictorial account of those … two months of training known as Beast Barracks”)

 

Box 1, unfoldered:
Howizter (yearbook, USMA Class of 1966)

Box 1, Folder 7:
“You Must: West Point, a Soldier’s Memories,” article by James Salter, from Esquire, Dec. 1992


SERIES II: BERLIN PAPERS, 1961-1994 (BULK 1968-1969):

Box 2, Folder 1:
Letters home, 4 Sept. 1968-27 July 1969

Box 2, Folder 2:

Letters to DMR (primarily from Gen. S.M. Goodwin), 1968-1992 (bulk 1968-1969)

Box 2, Folder 3:
Letters from Gen. S.M. Goodwin to Mr. and Mrs. Leland G. Ryan, 7 Apr. 1969 (with enclosed photographs) and 4 Oct. 1969 (with enclosed photocopied citation for Army Commendation Medal)

Box 2, Folder 4:
Official orders and documents (also including photocopied citation for Army Commendation Medal), 1967-1969

Box 2, Folder 5 (oversize, outside box):
4th Battalion, 18th Infantry (Berlin Brigade) certificate of appreciation to DMR, 2 Feb. 1969

Box 2, Folder 6:
Luncheon at Spandau, Allied Prison Governors’ Mess, Sunday, 1 Dec. 1968 (guest list, seating plan, and photograph)

Box 2, Folder 7:
“New Year’s Day Revisited”: DMR report (in form of play script) on 1969 New Year’s party, with photograph

Box 2, Folder 8:
Allied Nations staff list, 2 Jan. 1969

Box 2, Folder 9:
President Richard Nixon’s visit to Berlin, Feb. 1969 (photographs; printed German/English keepsake book)

Box 2, Folder 10:
Conference notes (“BG Goodwin … with major unit commanders”), 8 July and 30 Aug. 1969 (the latter including “Instructions for Travel to Soviet Sector)

Box 2, Folder 11:
Political materials: DMR notes from American/German roundtable discussion held at Free University, West Berlin, around time of Czech invasion

Box 2, Folder 12:
Political materials—miscellaneous printed and typescript items:

Legien, R. The Four Power Agreement on Berlin: Alternative Solutions to the Status Quo? 2nd ed., enlarged. Berlin: Carl Heymanns Verlag, 1961

The Wall in Berlin: Foreign Students Take a Look at Divided Germany. Kassel: Printed by Druck- und Verleghaus Hans Meister, 1964

In the Heart of Germany in the Twentieth Century: The Zonal Border.  Bonn and Berlin: Published by the Federal Ministry for All-German Affairs, 1965

Photocopy of TLS, Walter Steinweg to Gen. Goodwin, 24 Dec. 1968, regarding freedom of village of Steinstücken

Why? Have you Ever Wondered … [anti-wall printed handbill/notice; undated]

Where It’s At [Students for a Democratic Society newspaper], v. 2,     no. 1 (undated)

Box 2, Folder 13:
DMR photographs, in uniform (including photographs of promotion and award of medal)

Box 2, Folder 14:
Miscellaneous photographs (Checkpoint Charlie; Col. Borman, Maj. Gen. Fergusson, and Brig. Gen. Goodwin; Gen. Almquist arriving by helicopter for inspection; Russian war memorial; Brandenburg Gate; Russian guard exiting Spandau)

Box 2, Folder 15:
Ceremonial events: beating retreat ceremony and parades (invitations, programs, photographs), 1966-1969

Box 2, Folders 16 and 17 (oversize, outside box):
Ceremonial events: large parade photographs (color)

Box 2, Folder 18:
Social life: invitations, Christmas cards, photographs, 1968-1969

Box 2, Folder 19:
Moon walk materials (1969; 1994):

“To the Moon” (special supplement, Time, 18 July 1969)

“On the Moon!” (The Stars and Stripes, v. 28, no. 95, 22 July 1969)

“Men on the Moon – 25 Years Later – Remembering the Apollo Missions” (U.S. News and World Report, v. 117, no. 2, 11 July 1994)

Box 2, Folder 20:
Berlin tourist publications and map

Box 2, Folder 21:
Return home, via S.S. United States (photographs aboard ship; humorous typescript “Notice of Return”)

Box 2, unfoldered:
DMR Berlin scrapbook (photographs, ephemera, clippings, letters, basketball scores), 1968-1969

Box 2, Folder 22:
Gen. Goodwin’s typescript reflections on trips to U.S.S.R. and to Berlin, Warsaw, Krakow, and Stockholm (2 items; 1988, 1994)

Box 2, Folder 23:
“Rudolph Hess,” article by Denis C. Bateman, After the Battle, no. 58, 1987

2006 Concord Free Public Library, Concord, Mass.
Not to be reproduced in any form without permission of the Curator of Special Collections, Concord Free Public Library.

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Finding aid mounted 12th July 2006.    rcwh.