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Letter Accepting Resignation of Christian A. Hefteras Secretary of State.

January 12, 1961

Dear Chris:

As Secretary of State for nearly two years, and for the two years just preceding as Under Secretary, you have made a distinguished contribution, for which the people of our country have cause for deep. gratitude. As I accept your resignation, concluding your official service in this vital and important field as of January twentieth, I pay tribute to both your ability and devotion.

Never have you lost sight of our main goals. First, of course, we have sought to stay at peace, and this we have done. I know you find deep satisfaction in this, just as I do.

Notwithstanding the periods of crisis and peril the years have brought and will continue to bring--we have demonstrated our will for peace, while safeguarding security and furthering justice and freedom. Collective security arrangements have been maintained and strengthened, preserving free peoples against Communist encroachment and oppression. We have worked hard and long to bring under control the threat of nuclear war, through proposals for safeguarded international control measures, and patient and persistent negotiation to this end. We have sought to advance the use of the atom for peace. We have ranged our influence on the side of human dignity, and national and individual freedom and sought to achieve greater mutual understanding between the United States and other nations. We have helped other countries in the course of self-development through our mutual security programs and efforts. Despite all provocation and hostility, we have avoided being drawn away from our constructive efforts into a mere sterile struggle with the Communist bloc.

For the years that lie ahead, bound to be marked by grave and complex problems but bearing bright promise of progress, I know we both believe that the nation's best hope lies in continued pursuit of these objectives, and we both pray that our country may continue to march successfully toward them.

For your steady hand and wise counsel throughout our service together, and for the privilege I have had of working with you in close association, I am deeply grateful.

You have my best wishes for happy years ahead for yourself and your family.

With warm regard,



Note: Mr. Herter served as Under Secretary from February 21, 1957, to April 22, 1959, and as Secretary to January 20, 1961. His letter of resignation and his report were released with the President's reply.

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Letter Accepting Resignation of Christian A. Hefteras Secretary of State. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/234804

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