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Eduard R. Murrow – Voice of America during World War II


To be persuasive we must be believable; to be believable we must be credible; to be credible we must be truthful.

                                                                                                                                                Eduard R. Murrow


Eduard R. Murrow was one of the most highly respected and famous TV and radio journalists of the 20th century. He was a reporter during the World War II in Europe. He worked for CBS and reporter about the bombings. He became a well-known journalist in USA, though he didn’t know about his popularity until he came back to the US.


Edward R. Murrow (Egbert Roscoe Murrow) was born on April 25, 1908, in Polecat Creek, North Carolina. Edward R. Murrow grew up in Washington. Murrow spent some of his summer breaks working on a surveying crew in the region. He started broadcasting news in 1928 and became director of the talk show for CBS in 1935. In 1951 he launched a TV program See it Now”, which created controversy with an expose of Joe McCarthy.

 At Washington State University, Murrow studied political science, speech and international relations. There, he changed his first name to Edward. After graduating from the university in 1930, Murrow headed up the National Student Federation for two years. He changed jobs in 1930, going to work for the International Institute of Education. As an assistant director, he set up seminars and lectures there and abroad. The organization also helped bring Jewish academics from Germany to the United States.

In 1935 Murrow was hired by CBS to serve as a director of talks. He moved to London, England, two years later to become the head of CBS operations in Europe. In 1938 Germany invaded Austria and he charted a plane to Vienna, Austria, where he covered the conflict for CBC. He developed a network of journalists, especially correspondents to help him report about growing conflict in Europe. His team was called “Murrow’s boys”.

He was the voice of American Radio during World War II. From late 1939 to early 1940 he risked his life and did live stream under the bombing in London. Reporter transmitted his reports from a rooftop instead of an underground shelter.

Then poet Archibald MacLeish illustrated literary his reporting: Murrow burned London city in our houses and we felt the flames that burned it.

After the World War II he began to serve as a vise-president of CBS.

Around this time the hard-hitting E.R.Murrow showed a softer side with his interwiew show “Person to Person”. He met with such celebrities as Marilyn Monroe and talked to them in their home.

After “See it Now” was canceled in 1958, he launched a short live news duscussion show “Small World.”Later worked on documentaries for the network CBS Reports program.

And just in 1961 he left his job at CBS. Instead he began to work with president JohnF. Kennedy and served as director of U.S. Information Agency until 1964. In 1964 he had to leave his job because of his illness. A heavy smoker Murrow discovered that he is a lung cancer. He died on April 23, 1965, in Pawling, New York.

In his 25 years career he got numerous honors. President Johnson awarded him the Medal of Freedom in 1964. In the same year, Queen Elizabeth II named Murrow an honorary knight commander of the Order of the British Empire. 

Today, a new generation was introduced to Eduard R. Murrow’s in the film “Good Night and Good Luck” (2005) directed by George Clooney. The film explores his efforts to end Senator McCarthy’s reign of intimidation.


Since 1971 the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) has annually awarded the Eduard R. Murrow Award to individuals who make outstanding achievement in electronic journalism. 


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