Dwight D. Eisenhower photo

Toasts of the President and President Lopez Mateos at the Mexican Embassy.

October 11, 1959

Mr. President, Senora Lopez Mateos, ladies and gentlemen:

It is indeed a great honor for me to be able to respond this evening to the gracious words and greetings of the President of Mexico.

While we stand here, may I ask all of you to turn to look at this wall, to see a picture from one of the most distinguished artists that is being placed in one of our art galleries. If you need any other evidence than a mere sight, to know that it is a work of art, I must tell you that the artist is a true one, because he is 84 years old, has one leg, and likes to go to night clubs.

I assure you, sir, that the American people will appreciate your very great kindness in making this work of art from this extraordinary individual-whose name, by the way, is Atl, which means "water"--in making it available to them in this way.

In the last few days, the friendship of the President and me has ripened. I am quite sure it is going to be, possibly, even a little bit closer, after tomorrow. He is experiencing one of the incidents of public life in Washington that I go through regularly--he is going to meet the press. I am quite sure that there will be even a warmer feeling of sympathy between us.

In any event, I join in his Toast to friendship--to friendship that makes both countries stronger, better, and happier, and will do that through the years.

So, will you please join now in a Toast to the President of Mexico.

Note: This toast was proposed in response to a toast by President Lopez Mateos at a dinner which he gave in honor of President Eisenhower.

The painting "Volcanoes and Clouds" by the Mexican artist "Dr. Atl" (Gerardo Murillo) was presented to the Smithsonian Institution's National Collection of Fine Arts.

The toast proposed by President Lopez Mateos (as translated) follows:

I wish to add very few words to the words that have already been spoken during our sojourn in the United States.

In the United States, every hour, and at every place, and with every person that we have met, we have heard repeated the word that you spoke at Acapulco: Friendship.

Due to the meaning that we Mexicans attach to this word, I invite you ladies and gentlemen to join in lifting your glasses to drink to the health and prosperity of the President of the United States, and to the people of his country.

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Toasts of the President and President Lopez Mateos at the Mexican Embassy. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/234473

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