Release of "Views From the Embassy: The Role of U.S. Diplomats in France, 1914"

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
September 18, 2014


The Office of the Historian, U.S. Department of State, released today the preview edition of “Views From the Embassy: The Role of U.S. Diplomats in France, 1914.”

To mark the centenary of the First World War, the Office of the Historian and U.S. Embassy France investigated the role of the U.S. diplomatic corps stationed in France during 1914-1918. Much has been written about American involvement in the war once the U.S. became a belligerent power associated with the Allies in April 1917. Yet, until now the stories of U.S. diplomats, consuls, and their family members, particularly during the early months of crisis (August-December 1914), were long forgotten, overshadowed by subsequent events of the tumultuous twentieth century. Examination of U.S. Government and Government of France records, memoirs, personal papers, and newspaper archives revives a fascinating account of how actions spearheaded by U.S. diplomats—and ordinary American citizens—strengthened Franco-American relations in unique ways. The story complements U.S. Embassy France’s WW1 Centennial page, http://france.usembassy.gov/ww1centenary.html, where readers may view full copies of several documents referenced in the narrative.

The material in “Views From the Embassy” differs from documentation printed in the Foreign Relations of the United States, World War Supplement volumes, which focuses upon high policy decisions and matters of international law rather than on-the-ground operations. Readers may access the Foreign Relations of the United States, World War volumes through the Office of the Historian website. The 1914 volume is available, http://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1914Supp.

“Views From the Embassy” was compiled and written by Dr. Lindsay Sarah Krasnoff. It is available on the Office of the Historian website, history.state.gov. For further information, contact history@state.gov.