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Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon’s Visit to Dumbarton Oaks

Posted On September 21, 2017 | 15:09 pm | by jamesc | Permalink
James N. Carder (June 2015)


Selected Reading List on Dumbarton Oaks Proposals, Gift of United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Dumbarton Oaks Archives (AR.OB.Misc.066).

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and his wife paid an unofficial visit to Dumbarton Oaks on May 16. Their visit commemorated the seventieth anniversary of the United Nations and coincided with the seventy-fifth anniversary of Mildred and Robert Woods Bliss’s gift of Dumbarton Oaks to Harvard University and the founding of the research institute. The Bans toured the areas at D.O. where, in 1944, delegates from the United States, Great Britain, Russia, and China met to discuss the possible creation of an organization to maintain world peace and security. These conversations led directly to the creation of the United Nations and the signing of its charter in 1945. During their visit, the Bans looked at selected photographs and brochures from the Dumbarton Oaks Archives that pertain to the 1944 Dumbarton Oaks Conversations.

As gifts to Dumbarton Oaks, the Secretary-General brought a bound copy of the U.N. Charter, which was ratified in San Francisco seventy years ago this month, on June 26, 1945. Ban also gave Dumbarton Oaks a copy of the pamphlet Selected Reading List on Dumbarton Oaks Proposals, a bibliography that lists ninety-six publications and offers brief content descriptions. The pamphlet was prepared in May 1945, in advance of the San Francisco meeting, by the United Nations Information Organization, which was the precursor United Nations agency comprising representatives of the Second World War Allied powers.

Before leaving, the Secretary-General signed the Dumbarton Oaks public guest book, writing:

I am privileged to visit Dumbarton Oaks on your historic 75th anniversary, and 70th anniversary of the U.N.

There is a direct link between the momentous conversations that began here and the creation of the U.N.

Let up keep alive the Dumbarton Oaks’ spirit and vision for peace, development and human rights of the world’s people.

Ki Moon Ban

Secretary General

United Nations

May 16, 2015

The Secretary-General’s gifts as well as the signed guest book are now part of the Dumbarton Oaks Archives. A list of other pamphlets relating to the 1944 Dumbarton Oaks Conversations that are held by the Dumbarton Oaks Archives can be found here.