The Secretary of State to the Chairman of the Federal Radio Commission (Robinson)

Sir: I beg to refer to the informal conversation of June 26 between Mr. Butman43 and Mr. Carter of this Department, regarding the situation created by the action of the Federal Radio Commission in granting to Mr. Harvey S. Firestone of Akron, Ohio, a license for general radio communication with Liberia, and denying a similar license to the Radio Corporation of America.

As Mr. Carter pointed out, this action on the part of the Federal Radio Commission would appear to interrupt the operation of the traffic agreement entered upon by the Liberian government and the Radio Corporation in the autumn of 1927, and the Department’s information would indicate that in such an event the Liberian government would be at liberty to turn to a foreign radio concern for its wireless communications with the United States and with the outside world.

In order that this eventuality may be obviated, it seems highly important that Mr. Firestone and the Radio Corporation of America should be given opportunity to discuss the situation with the Federal Radio Commission, with a view to effecting some arrangement that will assure an efficient American-controlled radio service between the United States and Liberia. I have written both Mr. Firestone and the Radio Corporation to this effect and have suggested that they present their views to you at the earliest opportunity. Pending the results of their discussions with you and the outcome of any hearings you may hold upon the subject, I greatly hope that you will find it possible to permit both Mr. Firestone’s and the Radio Corporation’s Liberian circuits to continue to operate, without thereby exposing themselves to adverse action on the part of the Federal Radio Commission under the provisions of the Radio Act of 1927.44

I am [etc.]

Frank B. Kellogg
  1. Carl H. Butman, secretary of the Federal Radio Commission.
  2. 44 Stat. 1162.