Dwight D. Eisenhower photo

Letter Accepting the Resignation of Secretary Dulles.

April 16, 1959

Dear Foster:

I accept, with deepest personal regret and only because I have no alternative, your resignation as Secretary of State, effective upon the qualification of your successor.

In so doing, I can but repeat what the vast outpouring of affection and admiration from the entire free world has told you. You have, with the talents you so abundantly possess and with your exemplary integrity of character, employed your rich heritage as well as your unique experience in handling our relations with other countries. You have been a staunch bulwark of our nation against the machinations of Imperialistic Communism. You have won to the side of the free world countless peoples, and inspired in them renewed courage and determination to fight for freedom and principle. As a statesman of world stature you have set a record in the stewardship of our foreign relations that stands dear and strong for all to see.

By this letter I request you to serve in the future, to whatever extent your health will permit, as a consultant to me and the State Department in international affairs. I know that all Americans join me in the fervent hope that you will thus be able to continue the important contributions that only you can make toward a just peace in the world.

With affectionate regard,

As ever,


Note: Secretary Dulles served as Secretary of State from January 21, 1953, through April 21, 1959. His letter of April 15, released with the President's reply at Augusta, Ca., follows:

Dear Mr. President:

It is apparent to me that I shall not be well enough soon enough to continue to serve as Secretary of State. Accordingly, I tender my resignation to be effective at your convenience.

I am deeply grateful for the opportunities and responsibilities you have given me.

I was brought up in the belief that this nation of ours was not merely a self-serving society 'but was founded with a mission to help build a world where liberty and justice would prevail. Today that concept faces a formidable and ruthless challenge from International Communism. This has made it manifestly difficult to adhere steadfastly to our national idealism and national mission and at the same time avoid the awful catastrophe of war. You have given inspiring leadership in this essential task and it has been a deep satisfaction to me to have been intimately associated with you in these matters.

If I can, in a more limited capacity, continue to serve, I shall be happy to do so.
Faithfully yours,

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Letter Accepting the Resignation of Secretary Dulles. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/235449

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