The documents contained in this and the following volume constitute an extensive selection from the large body of correspondence of Robert Lansing, former Secretary of State, which was secured for the files of the Department of State following Mr. Lansing’s death in 1928.
These papers were, therefore, not available at the time when the volumes of Foreign Relations for the years 1914 through 1919 and the supplementary volumes on the World War and on Russia were compiled. A large number of the papers, however, seemed to have such great public interest that it was deemed desirable to publish these additional supplemental volumes. Although these volumes consist largely of papers received from the collection of Mr. Lansing, a certain number of closely related documents from other official sources, whose publication seemed desirable, have been included.
The papers here published represent, therefore, an additional selection of documents from the period 1914 through 1920 bearing on subjects which have already been presented in the volumes of Foreign Relations hitherto published dealing with that period. Accordingly, it must not be expected that the papers published in these two volumes will present a complete or continuous account of the events with which they deal. Such a complete account may be secured by using these volumes in conjunction with the already published Foreign Relations volumes. To facilitate such cross-reference numerous footnotes to related documents in earlier volumes of the series have been supplied.
The principles followed with regard to selection of material and inclusion or exclusion of documents or parts of documents are the same as have governed in the preparation of earlier volumes of the Foreign Relations series as stated in the Departmental Order approved by Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg on March 26, 1925, given in full in the preface to Foreign Relations, 1914, supplement, pages iii–iv.
The volumes were compiled under the direction of the late Dr. Cyril Wynne, former Chief of the Division of Research and Publication, Department of State; Dr. E. Wilder Spaulding, present Chief of the Division; and Dr. E. R. Perkins, Chief of the Research Section of the Division. The selection and arrangement of the papers and the compilation [Page IV] of the notes were the work of Dr. J. S. Beddie of the Research Section.
The periods during which Mr. Lansing filled his different posts in the Department of State were as follows:
Counselor for the Department of State—March 27, 1914–June 9, 1915.
Secretary of State ad interim—June 9–23, 1915.
Secretary of State—June 23, 1915–February 13, 1920.