No. 421
Memorandum of Conversation, by the Special Assistant to the Secretary of State (Battle) 1



  • King Paul of Greece
  • Secretary Acheson
  • Ambassador Gifford

The Secretary called yesterday on King Paul of Greece at the King’s request. After the appointment, the Secretary told me among other matters, the King mentioned the question of a visit by him and the Queen to the United States. The King said he had talked to Ambassador Peurifoy about his desire to come,2 and Peurifoy had shown great interest in this.

The King said that he could see that with Queen Juliana 3 coming, the President might be into an election period in which a visit by the King and Queen might be embarrassing. He said he understood the situation perfectly and it would not make too much difference to him if the visit were not forthcoming.

The Secretary said that Mr. Peurifoy had spoken to him and that the Secretary was also very much interested in this possible visit. He said he hoped when the visit actually came about, it would be under the most favorable circumstances. He said it was true that Queen Juliana was coming and that we would probably have a visit from one of the Latin American countries also. He said that we would then be in the campaign period, and he was sure the King would not want any impression to get around that his visit had any political connotations. The Secretary said that we were still studying the matter, but he gave every indication that an invitation would not be extended.

The King repeated that he was not deeply concerned and that he understood perfectly.

  1. A copy was transmitted to Matthews. Acheson was in London for the Foreign Ministers meetings, Feb. 13–19; for documentation, see vol. v, Part 1, pp. 36 ff. King Paul was in London for the funeral of King George VI on Feb. 15, which Acheson attended as personal representative of the President. A briefing memorandum, Feb. 12, by Ruddock, on the meeting with King Paul is in file 781.11/2–1252.
  2. A report of Peurifoy’s audience with the King on Jan. 11, at which King Paul opened and closed on the same theme, his hope of visiting the United States in 1952, was transmitted in telegram 3122 from Athens, Jan. 11. (781.11/1–1152)
  3. Queen Juliana of the Netherlands.