IO Files: SD/A/51 (Minutes 1)

Minutes of Meetings on General Assembly Preparations With Senator Warren R. Austin at the Department of State, September 1946

Present: Warren R. Austin
Dorothy Fosdick
John C. Ross
Durward V. Sandifer

A general discussion took place on plans for work in the Department prior to the convening of the full Assembly Delegation in New York.59

Schedule of Meetings in Department

In particular a schedule for meetings in the Department on preparations for the Assembly was discussed and Mr. Austin suggested that the meetings be scheduled on Friday, September 6, and Monday, September 9 through Thursday noon, September 12, giving him an opportunity to return to Vermont on Thursday afternoon. A schedule was worked out as follows:60

  • September 6—Friday
    • 11:00 United Nations Liaison Committee
    • 4:00 Economic and Financial
  • September 9—Monday
    • 11:00 Trusteeship
    • 4:00 Social, Humanitarian and Cultural
  • September 10—Tuesday
    • 11:00 Administrative and Budgetary
    • 4:00 Headquarters
  • September 11—Wednesday
    • 11:00 Political and Security
    • 4:00 Political and Security (veto)
  • September 12—Thursday
    • 11:00 Legal


Mr. Austin was given copies of the following two booklets prepared in SPA: Preliminary Papers on Agenda and Organization of United States Delegation, and Preliminary Position Papers, Committee 2, Economic and Financial. He was informed that he would be given similar books on each committee of the Assembly prior to the meetings with officers of the Department.61

  1. As of this date Senator Austin had scheduled a meeting in New York on September 17 for the members of the United States Delegation to the General Assembly in the United States at that time (Senators Connally and Vandenberg were at the Paris Peace Conference). This meeting was postponed in light of the postponement of the General Assembly session, and subsequently arrangements were made for the convening of a similar meeting on October 17.
  2. The schedule seems to have been closely adhered to except that there is no record of the meeting scheduled on the United Nations Liaison Committee and the two meetings planned for September 11 were reversed in order. Minutes of the September 11 meeting on the veto problem are printed p. 293; minutes of the other meetings, not printed, are found in the IO files as a collective document, document SD/A/51 (Minutes 1–9).
  3. Documentation provided Senator Austin at this exploratory and subsequently scheduled meetings and all other documentation relating to the Department’s preparation for the forthcoming session of the General Assembly may be found in the IO files. It may be noted parenthetically that this preparatory documentation is much more extensive and refined both in a general and specialized way than was that for the first General Assembly session at London. The two basic collections are the SD/A (General Assembly) series (1946) which is multisubject in character and the SD/A/Committees 1–6 series (1946) which contains background papers and position papers organized on a committee basis. Such documentation was supplied also to members of the Delegation to the General Assembly as appropriate (e.g., Mrs. Roosevelt would be given a “book” of background and position papers relating to issues concerning the General Assembly’s Third Committee, the committee on which she was to serve).

    Senator Austin was also furnished with “books” and collections of documents on issues of special interest to the General Assembly, such as the “Headquarters” or “Site” question, and on similarly important questions which were primarily Security Council matters jurisdictionally (such as the veto question and the membership question). These special books, frequently in the form of black binders, are cited in appropriate chapters that follow in this and other volumes.