108. Editorial Note
Chairman Nikita S. Khrushchev made an official visit to the United States September 15–27, 1959. For documentation on the invitation and Khrushchev’s acceptance, see Documents 87- 89, 91, and 101- 102.
The President announced the agreement on the exchange of visits at a special press conference on August 3. For text of his announcement and ensuing questions from the press, see Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1959, pages 560–564. Throughout August and early September, Murphy and Soviet Ambassador Mikhail A. Menshikov held many conversations to discuss arrangements for Khrushchev’s forthcoming trip. Memoranda of these conversations are in Department of State, Central File 033.6111.
The most extensive documentation on the Khrushchev visit is ibid., Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1459–1475. Background documents are in CF 1459–1462; memoranda of conversation are in CF 1463–1464. Copies of cables on substantive and administrative matters are in CF 1465 and 1469. Briefing papers are in CF 1466–1468. Miscellaneous administrative and substantive matters are in CF 1470; White House memoranda on substantive and administrative matters are in CF 1471. A detailed chronology of Khrushchev’s visit for September 15 and 16 is in CF 1472. The chronology for September 17 and 18 is in CF 1473. The chronology for September 19 to 24 is in CF 1474 and for September 24 to 27 is in CF 1475.
Khrushchev arrived at Andrews Air Force Base on Tuesday, September 15 at 1 p.m. Members of his large party included his wife Nina Petrovna Khrushchev, his daughters Julia Nikitichna and Rada Nikitichna Adzhubei, his son Sergei Nikitich Khrushchev, and his son-in-law Alexei Ivanovich Adzhubei, editor of the Soviet newspaper Izvestia. For texts of Eisenhower’s welcoming remarks and Khrushchev’s arrival statement at the airport, see Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1959, pages 654–656. A memorandum of Khrushchev’s conversation with Eisenhower at 3:30 p.m. that afternoon is printed as Document 109. For text of their joint statement following this conversation, see Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1959, pages 656–657. Also at 3:30 p.m., William S.B. Lacy, Special Assistant to the Secretary of State for East-West Exchange, met with Georgi Zhukov, Chairman of the Soviet State Committee on Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries. A memorandum of their conversation on U.S.-Soviet exchange discussions is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1472.[Page 389]
At 4:30 p.m., John A. McCone, Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, met with Vasily Semenovich Yemelyanov, Chairman of the Soviet Chief Administration for Atomic Energy; see Document 110. A memorandum of President Eisenhower’s private conversation with Khrushchev at the White House at 5 p.m. is printed as Document 111. Following this conversation, Henry Cabot Lodge, Ambassador to the United Nations, whom Eisenhower had asked to serve as Khrushchev’s host during his visit, called on Khrushchev at Blair House where Khrushchev stayed while in Washington. A memorandum of their conversation is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1472. Eisenhower gave a dinner in honor of Chairman and Mrs. Khrushchev that evening. For texts of Eisenhower’s toast and Khrushchev’s response on this occasion, see the press release in Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1959, pages 657–659.
On Wednesday, September 16 at 9:40 a.m., Khrushchev left by car for a visit to the Agricultural Experiment Station in Beltsville, Maryland. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge in the car on the way to and from Beltsville is printed as Document 112. At 10 a.m., Secretary Herter met with Foreign Minister Andrei A. Gromyko to plan for the meeting between Eisenhower and Khrushchev at Camp David toward the end of Khrushchev’s visit. A memorandum of their conversation is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1472. After his return from Beltsville, Khrushchev attended a luncheon at the National Press Club. At 3:30 p.m., he made an automobile tour of points of interest in the Washington area. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge during this tour is printed as Document 113. Khrushchev ended his tour at the Capitol where he had tea with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Notes of this meeting are in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1472.
Khrushchev and his party left by car for Hyde Park, New York, the following morning, September 18, where he was met by Eleanor Roosevelt. Khrushchev laid a wreath on President Roosevelt’s grave and then had a tour of the Hyde Park Museum. Memoranda of Khrushchev’s conversations with Lodge in the car to and from Hyde Park are printed as Documents 115 and 116. At 3 p.m. the same afternoon, Khrushchev addressed the U.N. General Assembly. Following his speech, Nelson A. Rockefeller, Governor of New York, called on Khrushchev. Khrushchev then took a motor tour of points of interest in New York. Two memoranda of his conversations with Lodge during this tour, in which they discussed trade and the construction of city buildings, [Page 390]are in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1473. Khrushchev attended a dinner that evening given by Dag Hammarskjold, U.N. Secretary-General.
At 9:30 a.m. September 19, Khrushchev and his party flew from New York to Los Angeles. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge on the airplane is printed as Document 117. Following lunch at Twentieth-Century Fox Studios and a visit to a motion picture set there, Khrushchev went to his hotel in Los Angeles. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge during the car ride to the hotel is printed as Document 118. A message from Lodge to the Department of State, September 19, reporting on his conversation with Gromyko late that evening is printed as Document 119. A memorandum of Acting Secretary of State Dillon’s telephone conversation with Lodge, September 20, following up on Lodge’s message, is printed as Document 120.
On Sunday morning, September 20, Khrushchev left Los Angeles by train for San Francisco. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge during the trip is printed as Document 121. A memorandum of their brief conversation on signs protesting Khrushchev’s visit in Washington and a summary of a meeting that evening between Khrushchev and International Union presidents are in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1474.
The next morning, September 21, Khrushchev toured San Francisco by automobile and boat. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge during the tour is printed as Document 122. Lodge summarized the events of the previous 2 days in a cable to Herter; see footnote 2, Document 122.
On the morning of September 22, Khrushchev flew from San Francisco to Des Moines, Iowa. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge and George Christopher, Mayor of San Francisco, en route to the airport is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1474. A memorandum of Khrushchev’s conversation with Ambassador Llewellyn Thompson on the airplane in which they discussed the comments of former Ambassador Charles E. Bohlen on Khrushchev’s drinking habits is ibid. A memorandum of President Eisenhower’s conversation with Acting Secretary Dillon and McCone on the exchange of nuclear energy information with the Soviet Union is printed as Document 123.
On Wednesday morning, September 23, Khrushchev visited farms in the vicinity of Coon Rapids, Iowa. A memorandum of his conversation with Roswell Garst during his tour is printed as Document 124. He flew later that day to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, leaving there on September 24 for Washington. A memorandum of his conversation with Lodge on the way to the Pittsburgh airport is printed as Document 125. The President and Herter also met that day in preparation for the Camp [Page 391]David meetings; see Document 126. That evening, Khrushchev met with several American business leaders at a dinner; see Document 127.
For Lodge’s report to the President on his tour with Khrushchev, see Document 128. A memorandum of Pat Nixon’s conversation with Khrushchev’s daughter Julia at a luncheon on September 25 is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1475. Secretary Herter hosted a luncheon for Khrushchev; his toast, released as Department of State press release 675, is ibid. A memorandum of Under Secretary Dillon’s conversation with Pavel Alekseevich Satyukov, chief editor of Pravda, during the luncheon is ibid.
On Saturday, September 26, the President and Khrushchev breakfasted together; see Document 129. Later that morning, they discussed Germany and Berlin; that memorandum of conversation is printed in volume IX, Document 13. For other memoranda of their conversations, see Documents 130 and 131. The two then left by helicopter for a visit to the President’s farm in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Two memoranda of conversation between George Allen and Georgi Zhukov on jamming and the establishment of information centers are in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1475. Later that afternoon, Herter and Gromyko discussed bilateral issues; a memorandum of that conversation is in the East-West exchanges compilation in the Supplement. George Allen’s memorandum for the files detailing the continuation of these conversations when he and Zhukov joined the meeting between Herter and Gromyko is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1475.
On Sunday, September 27, Dillon met with Khrushchev at 9:35 a.m.; see Document 132. Khrushchev next met with President Eisenhower; see Document 133. The record of the private meeting between the two, at which they discussed the joint communique, and the President’s report on this meeting in a conversation with Herter are printed in volume IX, Documents 14 and 15. The discussion at lunch is printed as Document 134. After lunch, the conversation turned again to the joint communique; the memorandum is printed in volume IX, Document 16. For text of their joint statement following these Camp David discussions, see Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1959, pages 692–693. An unsigned and undated summary and analysis of the Camp David talks is in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1475.
At about 2 p.m., the President and Khrushchev left by car for Washington where Khrushchev held a press conference and gave a speech carried on the NBC television network. He and his party left late that evening for Moscow. For the President’s follow-up comments on the visit, see Document 135.[Page 392]
President Eisenhower’s recollections of the visit are in Waging Peace, pages 405–413 and 432–449. John Eisenhower’s account is in Strictly Personal, pages 254–264. Lodge’s impressions are in The Storm Has Many Eyes, pages 157–181, and As It Was, pages 111–113. Khrushchev’s reminiscences on his visit are in Khrushchev Remembers: The Last Testament, pages 368–416. The Soviet Union published two books in English on the visit: Face to Face: The Story of N.S. Khrushchev’s Visit to the U.S.A., September 15–27, 1959 (Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1960) and Khrushchev in America (New York: Crosscurrents Press, 1960). The latter publication contains the full texts of all Khrushchev’s speeches and press conferences during his visit. Transcripts of his speeches and press conferences are also in Department of State, Conference Files: Lot 64 D 560, CF 1475B. Almost all of his public statements were published in The New York Times.