500.C1/orig.: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Davis)7

31. Please hand to Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs on Tuesday, January 13th, as of that date, the following from the President:

“In compliance with Article 5 of the Covenant of the League of Nations which went into effect at the same time as the Treaty of Versailles of June 28, 1919, of which it is a part, the President of the United States, acting on behalf of those nations which have deposited their instruments of ratification in Paris, as certified in a procès verbal drawn up by the French Government dated January 10, 1920, has the honor to inform the Government of Great Britain that the first meeting of the Council of the League of Nations will be held in Paris at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs on Friday, January 16th at 10.30 A.M.

The President earnestly ventures the hope that the Government of Great Britain will be in a position to send a representative to this first meeting. He feels that it is unnecessary for him to point out the deep significance attached to this meeting or the importance [Page 10] which it must assume in the eyes of the world. It will mark the beginning of a new era in international cooperation and the first great step toward the ideal concert of nations. It will bring the League of Nations into being as a living force, devoted to the task of assisting the peoples of all countries in their desire for peace, prosperity and happiness. The President is convinced that its progress will accord with the noble purpose to which it is dedicated.”

  1. The same, mutatis mutandis, to the representatives in France (no. 82), Italy (no. 4), Japan (no. 11), Belgium (no. 3), Brazil (no. 3), and Spain (no. 2); also to the representative in Greece (no. 1), except that the first sentence reads: “If Greece has ratified Treaty of Versailles please hand to Minister for Foreign Affairs on Tuesday, January 13, as of that date, the following from the President, otherwise hold until further instructions from the Department or Am[erican] Embassy, Paris.”