Senators Hough & Ready Urge Creation of Whittaker Chambers Memorial – Anti-Communist Hero and Carroll Countian
Pursuant to President Trump’s Executive Order, the Interagency Task Force for Building and Rebuilding Monuments to American Heroes has asked state and local leaders to make recommendations on historical figures who should be honored with a monument, statue or featured in the proposed National Garden of American Heroes.
Senators Michael Hough and Justin Ready as representatives of Carroll County have nominated noted Anti-Communist Whittaker Chambers who called Westminster home.
Senator Hough said of the nomination, “Whittaker Chambers came to personally understand the horrors of the communist system and spent his life fighting communism and working to spread freedom. His work not only exposed Soviet spies working in our government, but inspired millions of Americans to fight against communism.”
“It’s hard for us to imagine now, but in the 1930’s and 40’s, there was a legitimate communist espionage ring in a number of U.S. Government institutions. Whittaker Chambers showed incredible courage in shrugging off what he correctly called the ‘absolute evil’ of Communism and became a beacon of moral clarity to our nation,” said Senator Ready.
Chambers was a Soviet spy until he became disillusioned with communism and helped expose a Soviet spy ring known as the Ware Group, which was operating within the U.S Government.
The evidence against Alger Hiss known as the “Pumpkin Papers” was kept hidden at Chambers’ Westminster farm until he turned them over to the HUAC. The Chambers Farm has been designated as a National Historic Landmark.
Following his testimony against Alger Hiss in what was known as the trial of the century, Chambers wrote Witness, which served as a powerful warning about the dangers of Communism. The highly influential book inspired Ronald Reagan’s political transformation from New Deal Democrat to a conservative Republican.
At the time of his death, Chambers had resumed academic studies at then-Western Maryland College (now McDaniel College) in Westminster. Chambers was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom posthumously by President Reagan in 1984.