The Monuments Men

Back to The Monuments Men | Boruch, T/5 Edward J.

Edward J. Boruch ( 1922-1986 )

Edward J. Boruch was born in Cicero, Illinois on February 13, 1922, the first son of Polish immigrants who settled in Chicago. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in November 1942. Although poor eyesight prevented him from serving at the front, his impressive exam scores qualified him for the Army Specialized Training Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. There, he took courses on French culture and language and met Martha Jeannette Taylor, a clerk at the university. They married in Chicago in August 1944.

Boruch’s growing knowledge of French qualified him for service with the MFAA.

He joined the MFAA Branch of the U.S. Group Control Council for Germany in late February 1945, serving as a clerk-typist at headquarters in Berlin alongside Monuments Men Lt. Col. Mason Hammond and T/4 Charles J. DiRaimondo. His duties included compiling reports from Monuments Men in the field, transcribing notes and memos, and assisting the office’s chief clerk, Monuments Man S/Sgt. James O. Cook. Most notably, Boruch served as the assistant to Monuments Man John Nicholas Brown, the official Advisor on Cultural Matters to the Commanding General, Lt. Gen. Lucius D. Clay. Boruch accompanied Brown on trips to the various collecting points for looted art as well as inter-zonal conferences regarding restitution policies.

Boruch was highly valued by Brown, who urged him to stay on as his assistant. However, Boruch declined in order to rejoin his family in Chicago. He worked as a successful Chicago real estate broker for over thirty years, including the founding of his own office, Century Realty Co. He retired in 1984.

Edward Boruch died in Chicago on October 14, 1986.