The ‘Victorious Retreat’ Back to the Rhine
FES Title: Road Congested with Retreating Germans
Alternate Titles: The Victorious Retreat
[1919]; The “Victorious Retreat” back to the Rhine (1994, 2008)
Date: 10/11/1918
Size: 48″H x 38″W
Medium: oil-on-Students-canvas
Type: subject painting
Published: “Souvenir Pictures of the Great War.” The Ladies Home Journal, January 1919: 17.
caption: The ‘Victorious Retreat’ Back to the Rhine

Braithwaite, William Stanley. The Story of the Great War. New York: Frederick A. Stokes Company, 1919: frontispiece.
caption: The allied airplanes and artillery worked havoc in the ranks of retreating huns

Elzea, Rowland, and Iris Snyder. The American Illustration Collection of the Delaware Art Museum. Wilmington: Delaware Art Museum, 1991: 144. [not pictured]

Ianni, Francis A. World War One Remembered. Wilmington: Delaware Heritage Commission, 1993: 69.
caption: The “Victorious Retreat” Back to the Rhine

Harrington, Peter. “The Great War Paintings of Frank E. Schoonover.” Military Heritage, August 1999: 66.
caption: In The “Victorious Retreat” Back to the Rhine Schoonover depicts how overwhelming the German defeat was in 1918.

Divine, Robert A. et al. America Past & Present, 7th edition, brief ed. New York: Longman, 2006: 473.

______, 8th edition. New York: Longman, 2007: 706.

Inscription: lr: F.E. Schoonover / ’18
Annotations: en verso stamped on stretcher: From F. E. Schoonover / Bushkill Pike Co. Pennsylvania
en verso carved into frame: Frank Coll
Exhibitions: 1919 WSFS; 1977 FES; 1994 Nostalgic Journey; 2008 DAM
Comments: TP 4/14/03; form 4/14/03 (examined, not photographed); index; edit; DAM accession #89-69
Commentary: “At the end of September 1918 the Allies launched the final offensive that was to end the war. By late October and early November the German Army was in retreat across the entire front…Schoonover’s portrayal of roads choked with lumbering army transports and huge cannons and desperate men seeking relief from the scores of fighting and bombing planes”… “paints a grim picture of a defeated army being pummeled to death.” (Ianni, 68)
In 1919, Schoonover entered this work into the Wilmington Fine Arts Society Exhibition, a local juried show. Reporting on the results on February 4, 1919, the Evening Journal in Wilmington, Delaware, reported that: “Honorable mention was given to Frank E. Schoonover’s strikingly handled war subject, ‘The Victorious Retreat.’ Allied airplanes are shown dropping bombs upon the Germans. The coloring is especially good…” (archives)
For further commentary, see #886.
Provenance: Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington, Delaware. Gift of the Bank of Delaware [1989]
Current Owner: