Autobiography of Andrew Carnegie

By Andrew Carnegie | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XXVII
WASHINGTON DIPLOMACY

PRESIDENT HARRISON had been a soldier and as President was a little disposed to fight. His attitude gave some of his friends concern. He was opposed to arbitrating the Behring Sea question when Lord Salisbury, at the dictation of Canada, had to repudiate the Blaine agreement for its settlement, and was disposed to proceed to extreme measures. But calmer counsels prevailed. He was determined also to uphold the Force Bill against the South.

When the quarrel arose with Chili, there was a time when it seemed almost impossible to keep the President from taking action which would have resulted in war. He had great personal provocation because the Chilian authorities had been most indiscreet in their statements in regard to his action. I went to Washington to see whether I could not do something toward reconciling the belligerents, because, having been a member of the first Pan-American Conference, I had become acquainted with the representatives from our southern sisterrepublics and was on good terms with them.

As luck would have it, I was just entering the Shoreham Hotel when I saw Senator Henderson of Missouri, who had been my fellow-delegate to the Conference. He stopped and greeted me, and looking across the street he said:

"There's the President beckoning to you."

I crossed the street.

"Hello, Carnegie, when did you arrive?"

-350-

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