Philander C. Knox, Wilbur J. Carr, George Ade, Assistant Secretary of State, Vice Secretary of State
The document is a carbon copy of a typed letter from Huntington Wilson to the Secretary of State regarding Knox's letter to the Secretary of the Treasury on the change in name and salary of the Assistant Secretary position.
Francis Mairs Huntington-Wilson
Philander C. Knox
Folder 1-15, Document 17a
Washington, D. C.
January 7, 1912.
Dear Mr. Secretary:
Since you told me you were entirely willing to recommend the change in designation and salary I have been told by Carr, who is watching these matters, that hearings on the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Bill may come any day now, possibly early in this week. Hence it has seemed necessary to lose no time. Having drafted the arguments on the same question three years ago and on account of my familiarity with the reorganization, I have prepared and submit herewith a tentative draft. I got Mr. Carr, as the official in charge of financial affairs, to help me and have embodied many of his suggestions. Of course the draft is based upon sound administrative considerations, and my similar recommendations of 1906 should perhaps spare me any feeling of embarrassment in preparing such a letter, although I feel personally very much like the lady in one of George Ade's Fables in Slang who used to go into a racquet court and throw bouquets against the wall and let them bounce back and hit her.
Some of the statements and comparisons in the draft which might seem somewhat sordid are put in because they are thought to be the sort of arguments most likely to carry weight in the view of Congress. It seems evident that the suggested reduction in the appropriation of the surplus of the $100,000. will not interfere with anything in sight. It seemed important to answer in this way objection on grounds of economy, and you will see that attempt is made to answer also the probable objection on grounds of creating a general precedent.
Understanding that you saw your way clear to having the President make authentic the offer of the Petersburg Embassy, as I had asked him to do, you will see, this draft presupposes that in speaking to the President about these matters you might have arranged the point with him. Now that Dawson is no longer a candidate for Brazil I take
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it that if I did want an embassy now the present vacancy could be availed of in pursuance of your kind offers to help me get one if I really wanted it. Thinking of the good effect in connection with the proposed recommendations (and not to be as grasping as possible!) I have thought that perhaps there would be no objection on the part of the President to a second offer, purely formal, at this time, in order [by the allusion] to strengthen by just so much the arguments.
In view of the reasons for haste, because the bill may come up any day, I hope I do not seem to be importunate or to assume too much in submitting this draft with these explanations.
In again thanking you for all your kindnesses I want to say that I desire, in any case, to be governed by your wishes and that if you see your way to try to get these recommendations adopted, whether Congress acts or not, I shall dismiss from my mind any further idea of an embassy during this administration so long as you remain Secretary of State and my services are acceptable [in a post which I prize above all because of its association with you.]
[Yours very sincerely,]
The Secretary of State.
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Huntington-Wilson, Francis Mairs, "Letter From Francis Mairs Huntington-Wilson to Philander C. Knox, January 7, 1912" (1912). Organization of the State Department. 14.