Press Conference, January 22, 1926

Date: January 22, 1926

Location: Washington, D.C.

(Original document available here)

Here is a very long question about Americans that are making speeches in Germany relative to the German finances. I doubt very much if there is any comment I can make about that. f the nature of the speeches is not relished or is opposed by the press of the country, I think very likely that will afford its own remedy.

Here is another very long question about the sesquicentennial at Philadelphia. There isn’t anything new that I know of that I can add to what I have already given out at one or two previous conferences. I can only reiterate that the National Government through Mr. Hoover has made some survey here as to what the different departments would do in the way of exhibits, as to estimates on the amount of space that would be required, and I think he is negotiating to secure such space and making such compensation for it and getting such an appropriation here as will enable such an exhibition to be made. I have been very much helped in this by the Mayor of Philadelphia and by Senator Pepper, also some of the Congressmen from Philadelphia. Congressman Vare, I think, came in to speak to me about an appropriation. The amount of the appropriation I should think would be determined by those elements, the cost of space and the cost of the exhibition.

No report has been made to me by the Department of Justice on any petition for the pardon of Marcus Garvey. He is the colored man that was convicted on some financial irregularities, as I recall, in relation to a steamship company known as the Black Star Line. It had something to do with Liberia. I think I have had some telegrams relative to his case, so I have assumed that a petition was pending and the telegrams have been referred to the Department of Justice where a careful investigation is made of any petitions for pardon. But no report has yet been made to me.

I haven’t seen the bill that was introduced by Representative Bacon for the reorganization of the Shipping Board and the Emergency Fleet Corporation, so I don’t know just what its provisions are nor what method is suggested in it for regional representation. I had thought that if some method of regional representation was wise it ought to be embodied in legislation if it could be worked out in such a way that it wouldn’t seem to be in conflict with sound management. If the Fleet Corporation and the Shipping Board are very substantially separated, then I should think there would be very little difficulty about securing the desired regional representation.

The visit of John S. Lawrence, of Boston, who lunched with me yesterday, had no particular significance. He is an old acquaintance of mine. I know him as a prominent business man. I was interested to confer with him on the situation in the business he represents, some textile lines and some hosiery lines, and he reported that his business was in very good condition, though that of some of his neighbors wasn’t very good.

I don’t recall that I have seen any telegrams from Tacna-Arica since the arrival of General Lassiter, but the last telegram that I did know about came two or three days ago and was a request for the necessary clerical assistance to carry on the registration and provide for the plebiscite. I think that can be provided by some of the Government clerks that are now located in the Canal Zone. I believe also that some investigations were made here in some of the universities, or something of that kind, for young men who speak Spanish and would be qualified to engage in that kind of clerical work.

Here i s another inquiry about loans to finance foreign government monopolies, such as rubber, coffee, etc. Now, you always want to keep in mind that every application made for a loan is decided on its own merits. It is impossible to lay down any general rule that would be applicable to all cases and which would fit all circumstances. It has been the policy of the administration to refuse to approve loans that were contemplated being made to foreign governments for the purpose of supporting a trade monopoly. Now it may be that some application might be made for a loan of that kind that would appear not to be inappropriate for our banking concerns to make. We haven’t had any such applications up to the present time and as near as I have come to laying down a general rule, borne out by past experience, it is that so far as we know the Government does not look with favor on loans made for the purpose of supporting government monopolies maintained in foreign countries on materials that enter into the general consumption of our own people.

No information has come to me about any report from the Methodist Missionary Board in China that American Gunboats are not helpful there and ought to be withdrawn. Such information as I have has rather been in the other direction. I think that the last session of the Congress made a specific appropriation for the purpose of building a special gunboat, or gunboats, to run on the rivers in China, some of them. These have to be of light draft and of special construction, and I think the building of those boats is now going on in China. I know of no such recommendation as this. There may be something of that kind in the State Department that hasn’t come to my attention.

There was a report that came into the office that the anthracite strike had been settled, but I think the report has not been verified, and so far as it has been verified it doesn’t appear to be correct.

I am not familiar enough with the technical situation in the Senate to express any opinion as to what method ought to be adopted for the conduct of their business in relation to the tax bill and the world court proposal. That would have to depend on what was revealed when a canvass of the members of the Senate was taken and what they would be willing to support.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge: Remarks by the President to Newspaper Correspondents 

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Chip Ross who prepared this document for digital publication.

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