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Citizen, Soldier, Diplomat: An Exhibition on the Life & Career of Anthony J. Drexel Biddle, Jr.

Friday, December 18, 2020

9:00 AM-6:00 PM

The Drexel Collection galleries are closed until further notice. When the Collection reopens this exhibition will run through December 18. Supplementary materials for the exhibition are on view in the A.J. Drexel Picture Gallery. The gallery is open 9-5PM on January 7th, 9th, 14th, 21st, 28th & 30th; February 4th, 6th and March 2nd, 13th. Extended hours from 1pm-5pm on March 10th, 12th, 16th, 20th and April 17th, 23rd, 24th, and 30th. Outside of these dates the Picture Gallery has limited hours of Monday - Friday 3:30-5pm. 
Exhibition from December 6, 2019 through December 18, 2020. Anthony J. Drexel Biddle, Jr., the great-grandson of A.J. Drexel, was an impressive member of the Drexel family as a citizen, soldier and diplomat. He was a popular topic in society columns. Labeled best-dressed man on multiple occasions, he is well-known for his particular attire, with the most recent "best-dressed" nomination in 2017. He was an athlete and business man and played a major part in the founding of the Palm Beach Bath & Tennis Club.
As a soldier, he served in the U.S. Army during World War I and World War II rising to the rank of brigadier general. He was also an influential member of General Dwight D. Eisenhower's staff on both SHAEF and SHAPE.
An incredibly talented diplomat, Biddle started his career in the State Department as ambassador to Norway in 1935. He was then appointed ambassador to Poland in 1937 and through his handling of the German invasion of Poland in 1939 and the beginnings of World War II, he was appointed ambassador to not only the Polish government-in-exile, but also ambassador extraordinaire and minister plenipotentiary to all other countries in exile including Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Greece, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia and Luxembourg. His final appointment was as ambassador to Spain in 1961.
Through personal artifacts, diaries, photographs, contemporaneous magazines, daily planners, memos and letters, this exhibition explores the political, military and personal life of the Citizen, Soldier, Diplomat:Anthony J. Drexel Biddle, Jr.
All pieces in the exhibition are from the collection of Mr. and Mrs. Anthony J. Drexel Biddle III, unless otherwise stated.
The exhibition is free and open to the public.



Contact Information

Lynn Clouser

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Main Building, 3rd Floor, Rincliffe Gallery & A.J. Drexel Picture Gallery
3141 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104


  • Everyone