Second Assistant Secretaries of State

The Consular and Diplomatic Appropriations Act for the year ending Jun 30, 1867 (Jul 25, 1866; 14 Stat. 226), authorized the President to appoint a Second Assistant Secretary of State. Duties of incumbents varied less over the years than did those of the other Assistant Secretary positions. Responsibilities included: supervision of correspondence with diplomatic officers; preparation of drafts of treaties, conventions, diplomatic notes, and instructions; detailed treatment of current diplomatic and political questions; approval of correspondence for the signature of the Secretary of Acting Secretary; and consultation on matters of diplomatic procedure, international law and policy, and traditional practices of the Department. The Foreign Service Act of 1924 (May 24, 1924; 43 Stat 146) abolished numerical titles for Assistant Secretaries of State.