PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT - TYPED LETTER SIGNED 06/29/1915 - HFSID 84778
Sale Price $1,912.50
To the Director General of the Pan American Union seeking the organization's advice.
Typed Letter Signed: "Theodore Roosevelt", 1p, 7¾x9½. Oyster Bay, Long Island, New York, 1915 June 29. To John Barrett, Preident, Pan-American Union, Washington, D.C. In full: "I do not understand Spanish enough to be sure I get the full sense of the enclosed proposition. Would it bother you to have a translation made and a copy sent me; and at the same time to give me your advice as to what I should do in the matter; and tell me also what, if anything, your Bureau can do? The purpose is certainly a worthy one." Two stamped receipts: "pan american union/received/jul 2 - 1915" and "received/director general/jul 2 1915/answered". Barrett, former U.S. Minister to Siam, Argentina, Panama and Colombia was Director General of the Pan American Union from 1907-1920. The Pan American Union was founded in 1890 as an international agency of Western Hemisphere countries. It received its name in 1910, setting its goal to collect and disseminate commercial information. It later sought to promote inter-American diplomatic relations and, in 1948, became the Secretariat of the Organization of American States. Roosevelt had many ties with South America, both during and after his presidency. In 1902, he intervened in a boundary dispute between Venezuela and Great Britain. In 1903, encouraged by President Roosevelt, Panamanian rebels declared their independence from Colombia and ceded a ten-mile wide strip of land to the United States. In 1904, the Panama Canal Zone was formally acquired by the United States. Later that year, President Roosevelt issued what has become known as the Roosevelt Corollary, in effect, making the United States the defender of the Western Hemisphere. From October 1913 to May 1914 former President Roosevelt explored the River of Doubt in the Brazilian wilderness. At the time of this letter, there was talk of recognizing Colombia as a world power. Three days after he wrote this letter, on July 2, 1915, Roosevelt wrote to William R. Thayer, editor of The Life and Letters of John Hay; Hay had been Roosevelt's Secretary of State and had negotiated the Hay-Paunceforte and Hay-Herran treaties regarding the canal and Colombia. In part: "The talk of Colombia as a responsible Power to be dealt with...is a mere absurdity...You could no more make an agreement with the Colombian rulers than you could nail currant jelly to a wall...." Thus the proposition referenced may have concerned Colombia. Lightly creased. Diagonal fold and staple holes at upper left corner. 2-inch vertical crease at upper blank area. Horizontal folds do not touch signature. Overall, fine condition.
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