The Secretary of State to the British Ambassador (Howard)

Excellency: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt on the 26th instant of Your Excellency’s note No. 49 of January 24th, in which, referring to my note of December 4th last with reference to the appointment of the Honorable Vincent Massey as His Majesty’s Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to represent the interests of the Dominion of Canada in the United States, you inform me that Mr. Massey proposes to arrive in Washington at the end of the second week of February, and is desirous of presenting his letters of credence to the President on any day between the fifteenth and the nineteenth of February. You also inform me that the Government of Canada is desirous that you should accompany Mr. Massey to the White House upon this occasion.

In reply I have the honor to inform you that the President will be glad to receive the appointed Minister of Canada, accompanied by Your Excellency, at three-thirty o’clock on the afternoon of Friday, February eighteenth, at the White House.7

I shall of course expect to have the pleasure of Your Excellency’s presentation of Mr. Massey to me so soon as shall be mutually convenient after his arrival in Washington, and to receive from him at that time a copy of his letter of credence and a draft of the remarks which he purposes to make to the President—unless I shall have been sooner favored with the remarks through Your Excellency’s courtesy.

Pursuant to the understanding reached between you and Mr. Wright, Assistant Secretary of State, in conversation on the twenty-fifth instant, Mr. Wright will call for Mr. Massey a few moments before the appointed time, for the purpose of escorting him to the White House, together with such members of his staff as he may desire to present. In further accord with that understanding, it is expected that Your Excellency will join the Minister and Mr. Wright at the White House; [Page 484] that the presentation to the President of the Minister, accompanied by Your Excellency, will be made by Mr. Wright, and that no member of Your Excellency’s staff will be present.

In view of the fact that the procedure set forth differs from that followed in the presentation of the present Minister Plenipotentiary of the Irish Free State, in that Mr. Smiddy was not accompanied by Your Excellency, it is understood that neither Mr. Smiddy’s case nor that of Mr. Massey shall be deemed to establish a precedent, but that the determination of whether or not the Ambassador shall accompany future Ministers of Dominions of the British Empire when presenting to the President letters of credence from His Britannic Majesty in a Plenipotentiary capacity shall be governed by the desire of the respective Dominion or its representative, which shall be communicated to the Department of State by the British Embassy.

Accept [etc.]

Frank B. Kellogg
  1. Mr. Massey presented his letter of credence on Feb. 18, 1927.