French horticulturist Francis Meilland developed the Peace rose between 1935 and 1939. When Meilland foresaw the German invasion of France to protect the new rose, he sent cutting to his friends in Italy, Turkey, Germany, and the United States. It is believed these cuttings were sent to the United States on the last plane available before the German invasion.
Each country that received a cutting gave the rose a different name. It was called “Madame A. Meilland” in honor of the breeder’s mother in France. Italy named the rose Gioia, meaning Joy. In Germany, the name of the rose was Gloria Dei, for glory to God. The United States named the rose “Peace,” and the national flower of the United States is the rose.
As the Second World War came to a close in Europe, the trade name “Peace” was publicly announced on April 29, 1945, by the Conrad Pyle Co. in the United States.
Later in 1945, Peace roses were given to each delegate at the inaugural meeting of the United Nations, in San Francisco, with a note that read: “We hope the Peace rose will influence men’s thoughts for everlasting world peace.”
18" X 24"
acrylic on cardboard