Milton S. Eisenhower

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Milton S. Eisenhower
President of
Kansas State University
In office
11th President of the
Pennsylvania State University
In office
Preceded by James Milholland (acting)
Succeeded by Eric A. Walker
President of
Johns Hopkins University
In office
In office
Director of
War Relocation Authority
In office
Preceded by Position Created
Personal details
Born Milton Stover Eisenhower
September 15, 1899
Abilene, Kansas, U.S.
Died May 2, 1985(1985-05-02) (aged 85)
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
Nationality American
Spouse(s) Helen Elsie Eakin
Alma mater Kansas State University

Milton Stover Eisenhower (September 15, 1899 – May 2, 1985) was an American educational administrator. He served as president of three major American universities: Kansas State University, the Pennsylvania State University, and the Johns Hopkins University. He was the younger brother of U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower.


He was born in Abilene, Kansas to Ida Elizabeth Stover (1862–1946) and David Jacob Eisenhower (1863–1942); the family was poor. Eisenhower attended public schools and graduated from Kansas State University in 1923 with a Bachelor of Science degree in industrial journalism. Eisenhower served as Director of Information for the U.S. Department of Agriculture from 1928 to 1941, where he was a spokesman for the New Deal.

Early in 1942, he was appointed director of the War Relocation Authority, the U.S. government agency responsible for the relocation and internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Eisenhower was opposed to the mass incarceration, and at initial meetings with pro-exclusion officials he suggested allowing women and children to remain on the West Coast. (The proposal was rejected.) In his position as WRA director, he attempted to mitigate the consequences of the "evacuation," establishing a Japanese American advisory council with Mike Masaoka, a work program that allowed some Japanese Americans to leave camp for employment on labor-starved farms, and a student leave program that allowed Nisei who had been enrolled in college to continue their education. He also tried to get the Federal Reserve Bank to protect the property Japanese Americans were forced to leave behind, and to convince governors of states outside the exclusion zone to allow Japanese Americans to resettle there, but these efforts were largely unsuccessful. Eisenhower resigned after only ninety days, and from June 1942 to mid-1943 he was associate director of the Office of War Information.[1]

In May 1943, Eisenhower became President of Kansas State University (his alma mater), a position he held until 1950.[2] During this time, he also served as the first Chairman of the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO. In this role, Eisenhower sought to also establish UNESCO commissions for each state. He personally organized the first such commission, in Kansas.[3]

Eisenhower was often referred to as "Doctor." However, he did not hold an earned doctoral degree; instead, he had received an honorary doctorate of humane letters (D.H.L.) from the University of Nebraska in 1949.[4] After leaving Kansas State University in 1950, Eisenhower served as President at two other universities:

Eisenhower was President Emeritus of Johns Hopkins University from 1967 to 1971, and in 1972.

He served as a presidential adviser in the administrations of his brother Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961), John F. Kennedy (1961-1963) and Lyndon B. Johnson (1963-1969). In 1968, he was appointed Chairman of the National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence by President Johnson.[1]

In 1980, Eisenhower appeared on the ballot in Texas as the running mate of Congressman John B. Anderson, Independent candidate for President of the United States.

Personal life

On October 12, 1927 Eisenhower married Helen Elsie Eakin (1904–1954), with whom he had a son, Milton Stover Eisenhower, Jr., in 1930 and a daughter, Ruth Eakin Eisenhower, in 1938.

Eisenhower died of cancer in Baltimore, Maryland on May 2, 1985.


  • The Milton S. Eisenhower Library of Johns Hopkins University, opened in 1964 and containing 2.5 million volumes, is named after him. It has the unusual feature of being almost entirely underground.
  • The primary research facility at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab was previously named the Milton S. Eisenhower Research Center (now the Research and Exploratory Development Department).
  • The Milton S. Eisenhower Auditorium, a 2,595 seat center for the performing arts on the University Park campus of Penn State, opened in 1974. Eisenhower Chapel, on the same campus, is named for his wife, Helen Eakin Eisenhower.
  • Eisenhower Hall, opened in 1951 on the Kansas State campus, is also named in his honor. It is home to the College of Arts and Sciences dean's office and the departments of History and Modern Languages. (Not to be confused with the Eisenhower Hall at West Point.)

The Milton S. Eisenhower Symposium is an acclaimed, student-organized lecture series founded in 1967 at Johns Hopkins University. All events take place on the Homewood campus in Shriver Hall and are free and open to the public.

Further reading

  • Ambrose, Stephen E., and Richard H. Immerman, Milton S. Eisenhower, Educational Statesman. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1983) 331 pp. ISBN 978-0-8018-9267-7
  • Virginia M. Quiring, Milton s Eisenhower Years at Kansas State University (Friends of the Libraries of Kansas State Univ., 1986) 120 pages ISBN 0-9616658-0-7 ISBN 978-0961665807


  1. 1.0 1.1 Niiya, Brian. "Milton Eisenhower" Densho Encyclopedia. Retrieved 2014-08-26.
  2. "University Archives: K.S.U. Presidents and First Ladies". Retrieved 2006-08-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Parker, Richard (Spring–Summer 2004). "A State Commission for UNESCO in Kansas, 1948" (PDF). Prospects & Retrospects. Americans for Unesco: 24–25. Retrieved 2009-01-19.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4., Accessed 8-19-09

External links