Armstrong, Hamilton Fish, 1893-1973

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Hamilton Fish Armstrong was born April 8, 1893, in the house on West 10th Street in New York City where he lived all his life. Following his Princeton graudation in 1916, he worked for the New Republic until he entered the army during World War I. At war's end, he served as a military attache to Serbia which kindled his lifelong interest in foreign affairs. After leaving the army, Armstrong became a foreign correspondence for the New York Evening Post.

In 1922 Armstrong returned to New York as executive director of the newly-formed Council on Foreign Relations and as managing editor of the Council's journal, Foreign Affairs. Upon the death of its first editor, Archibald Cary Coolidge, in 1928, Armstrong narrowed the scope of his labors, but broadened his influence, by assuming the single role of editor, a position he held until his retirement in 1972. Armstrong died on April 24, 1973. A frequent world traveller, Armstrong knew a broad spectrum of the world's leaders and sought to bring their opinions before the readers of Foreign Affairs. During World War II Armstrong held a seat on the State Department's Advisory Committee on Post-War Foreign Policies and served as special adviser to Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius on questions relating to the United Nations Charter.

From the description of Hamilton Fish Armstrong papers, 1893-1973 (bulk 1916-1973). (Princeton University Library). WorldCat record id: 80057758

Hamilton Fish Armstrong was born, the youngest of seven children, April 7, 1893, in the house on West 10th Street where he lived all his life. His parents, D. Maitland Armstrong (1836-1918) and Helen Neilson (1845-1927) named him for his great uncle, who was Grant's Secretary of State. His father was an artist, working especially with stained glass, and a one-time Consul General to Italy. Armstrong grew up in New York City and received his education at Gilman Country School in Baltimore, Maryland, and at Princeton University from which he received the A.B. in 1916.

Following his graduation Armstrong worked in the business department at The New Republic before entering the army in 1917. Commissioned a second lieutenant in October 1917, Armstrong advanced to first lieutenant and became Military Attache to the Serbian War Mission to the United States in December 1917. In November 1918, he received orders to Belgrade to become Assistant Military Attache to Serbia where in January 1919 he became Acting Military Attache.

Upon his military discharge in June 1919, Armstrong returned to New York to work on the editorial staff of the New York Evening Post, becoming the paper's special correspondent to Eastern Europe in 1921. His time in Serbia kindled in him a lifelong interest in foreign affairs, and in 1921 he became involved with the newly-formed Council on Foreign Relations, created to ensure that the United States' growing role in world affairs be informed and responsible. In 1922 Armstrong accepted a position as managing editor of the Council's magazine, Foreign Affairs, at the request of editor Archibald Cary Coolidge. Upon Coolidge's death in 1928, Armstrong became editor, a position he held until his retirement in 1972. Armstrong also served as the first Executive Director of the Council (1922-1928) and as a Council director from 1928 until 1972.

As editor, Armstrong travelled frequently, visiting with policymakers including King Alexander of Yugoslavia, Raymond Poincaré, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, and Neville Chamberlain. He was also well acquainted with many prominent Americans, such as Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Henry A. Kissinger. He belonged to many important committees and foundations: member of the President's Advisory Committee on Political Refugees; three times delegate to the International Studies Conference (1929, 1933, 1935); trustee and twice president of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation; trustee and once president of the New York Society Library; and trustee of the New York International House.

Armstrong held many prominent positions during the Second World War. From 1942-44, he served on the United States State Department's Advisory Committee on Post-War Foreign Policies, which produced the original plans for the United Nations. In 1944, he became the special assistant to the United States ambassador in London with the personal rank of minister, before serving in 1944 and 1945 as special adviser to Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius, working on the charter for the United Nations. At the San Francisco Conference in 1945, he was one of three senior advisers to the United States delegation.

Armstrong wrote prolifically, penning numerous magazine articles–forty-nine for Foreign Affairs alone–and thirteen books (he edited five others). His books include The New Balkans (1926), Where the East Begins (1929), Hitler's Reich: The First Phase (1933), Europe Between Wars? (1934), Can We Be Neutral? (1936) with Allen W. Dulles, “We or They:” Two Worlds in Conflict (1937), When There Is No Peace (1939), Can America Stay Neutral? (1939) with Allen W. Dulles, Chronology of Failure (1940), The Calculated Risk (1947), Tito and Goliath (1951), Those Days (1963), and Peace and Counterpeace: From Wilson to Hitler (1971). He edited The Book of New York Verse (1918), Foreign Affairs Bibliography (1933) with William L. Langer, The Foreign Policy of the Powers (1935), The Foreign Affairs Reader (1947), and The Foreign Affairs Fifty-Year Reader (1972).

His activities received much recognition, both at home and abroad. His time in Serbia earned him the Order of the Serbian Red Cross (1918), the Order of St. Sava Fifth Class (1918), and the Chevalier of Order of the White Eagle with Swords (1919). He was awarded the Order of the Crown (Rumania) in 1924 and the Order of the White Lion of Czechoslovakia in 1937. In that year he was made an officer of the Legion of Honor of France and became a commander in 1947. He was appointed a Commander of the British Empire in 1972. He received honorary degrees from Brown (1942), Yale (1957), the University of Basel (1960), Princeton (1961), Columbia (1963), and Harvard (1963).

Armstrong married three times. Helen MacGregor Byrne became his wife in 1918, and they had one daughter, Helen MacGregor (later Mrs. Edwin Gamble) on September 3, 1923. Armstrong and Byrne divorced in 1938. Armstrong married Carman Barnes in 1945, a marriage which ended in a 1951 divorce. In that same year Armstrong married Christa von Tippelskirch. Armstrong retired from Foreign Affairs in 1972, the fiftieth year of its publication, and died after a long illness on April 24, 1973, at the age of 80.

From the guide to the Hamilton Fish Armstrong Papers, 1893-1973, 1916-1973, (Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Armstrong, Hamilton Fish, 1893-1973. Correspondence to Van Wyck Brooks, 1958. University of Pennsylvania Library
referencedIn Root, Elihu, 1845-1937. Papers of Elihu Root, 1863-1937 (bulk 1899-1937). Library of Congress
referencedIn Altschul, Frank, 1887-1981. Frank Altschul papers, 1900-1981. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Bliven, Bruce, 1889-1977. Bruce Bliven papers, 1906-1985. Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Ruth Fischer papers, 1925-1961 (inclusive) 1940-1961 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn Chester Bowles papers, 1924-1982 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
referencedIn Oswald Garrison Villard papers, 1872-1949. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Papers, 1876-1960 Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University.
referencedIn Joseph Barnes Papers, 1923-1970 Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library,
referencedIn Arthur H. Vandenberg papers, 1884-1974, 1915-1951 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Hamilton Fish Armstrong Papers, 1893-1973, 1916-1973 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn Vladimir Dedijer papers, 1881-1987, 1940-1980 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn Allen W. Dulles Papers, 1845-1971, 1918-1969 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
creatorOf Brand, Katharine Edith. Printed items in the Woodrow Wilson field, as collected by Katharine E. Brand. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Sara Teasdale Collection, 1888-1934 University of Virginia. Library. Special Collections Dept.
referencedIn Bowles, Chester, 1901-1986. Chester Bowles papers, 1924-1982 (inclusive). Yale University Library
referencedIn Bowman, Isaiah, 1878-1950. Isaiah Bowman papers, 1904-1951. Johns Hopkins University, Sheridan Libraries and the Milton S. Eisenhower Library
referencedIn Robert E. Sherwood papers, 1917-1968 (inclusive), 1934-1955 (bulk). Houghton Library.
creatorOf Danielson, Richard Ely, 1885-1957. Richard Ely Danielson papers, 1940-1948. New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Boris Souvarine papers, 1915-1984 (inclusive), 1940-1984 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn John Mason Brown papers, 1922-1967. Houghton Library.
creatorOf Armstrong, Hamilton Fish, 1893-1973. Hamilton Fish Armstrong papers, 1893-1973 (bulk 1916-1973). Princeton University Library
referencedIn Additional papers, 1917-1962 and undated. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Leon Trotsky exile papers, 1929-1940. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Papers, 1897-1930. Houghton Library.
creatorOf Armstrong, Hamilton Fish, 1893-1973. Letter, 1946, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Papers, 1878-1972. Andover-Harvard Theological Library, Harvard Divinity School
referencedIn Eastman mss., 1892-1968 Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
creatorOf Lebedev, Vladimir Ivanovich, 1884-1956. Vladimir Ivanovich Lebedev Papers, ca. 1900-1955. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Harvard University Archives Photograph Collection: Portraits, ca. 1852-ca. 2004 Harvard University Archives.
referencedIn Barnes, Joseph, 1907-1970. Joseph Barnes papers, 1907-1970, 1923-1970. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Richard Ely Danielson papers, 1940-1948 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Century Company records, 1870-1924 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Dulles, Allen, 1893-1969. Allen W. Dulles papers, 1845-1971 (bulk 1918-1969) Princeton University Library
creatorOf Vandenberg, Arthur H. (Arthur Hendrick), 1884-1951. Arthur Hendrick Vandenberg papers, 1884-1974. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn John Mason Brown papers, 1922-1967. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Vera Zorina papers, 1910-2001 (inclusive), 1933-2001 (bulk). Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University.
referencedIn George S. Messersmith papers, 1907-1955 University of Delaware Library - Special Collections
referencedIn Papers, 1840-1961. Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University.
referencedIn Lindbergh, Anne Morrow, 1906-2001. Anne Morrow Lindbergh papers, 1906-1997 (inclusive). Yale University Library
creatorOf Hamilton Fish Armstrong letter, undated New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn The Nation, records, 1879-1974 (inclusive), 1920-1955 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn Delano, William Adams, 1874-1960. William Adams Delano papers, 1902-1960 (inclusive), 1939-1960 (bulk). Yale University Library
creatorOf Teasdale, Sara, 1884-1933. Papers of Sara Teasdale [manuscript], 1888-1934 (bulk 1905-1933). University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Lewis Gannett papers, 1681-1966 (inclusive) 1900-1960 (bulk). Houghton Library.
creatorOf Hammond, Thomas Taylor. Papers of Thomas Taylor Hammond, 1929-1992. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn New York Times Company records. Arthur Hays Sulzberger papers, 1823-1999 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Elihu Root Papers, 1863-1937, (bulk 1899-1937) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Stimson, Henry L. (Henry Lewis), 1867-1950. Henry Lewis Stimson papers, 1846-1966 (inclusive). Yale University Library
referencedIn Dedijer, Vladimir. Vladimir Dedijer papers, 1881-1987 (bulk 1940-1980). University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
correspondedWith Acheson, Dean, 1893-1971 person
correspondedWith Allen, Jay, 1900- person
associatedWith Altschul, Frank, 1887-1981. person
associatedWith American Home for Jugoslav Children (Selce, Croatia) corporateBody
correspondedWith Baker, Newton D. (Newton Diehl), 1871-1937 person
correspondedWith Baldwin, Hanson Weightman, 1903-1991 person
associatedWith Barnes, Joseph, 1907-1970. person
correspondedWith Beneš, Edvard, 1884-1948 person
correspondedWith Berlin, Isaiah, Sir, 1909 - person
correspondedWith Berlin, Isaiah, Sir, 1909- person
correspondedWith Bliss, Tasker H. (Tasker Howard), 1853-1930 person
associatedWith Bliven, Bruce, 1889-1977. person
associatedWith Bowles, Chester, 1901-1986. person
associatedWith Bowman, Isaiah, 1878-1950. person
correspondedWith Braithwaite, William Stanley, 1878-1962 person
correspondedWith Brandt, Karl, 1899-1975 person
associatedWith Brown, John Mason, 1900-1969 person
correspondedWith Bundy, McGeorge, 1919 - person
correspondedWith Bundy, McGeorge, 1919- person
correspondedWith Bundy, William P., 1917-2000. person
correspondedWith Burlingham, Charles Culp, 1858-1959 person
correspondedWith Canfield, Cass, 1897-1986 person
associatedWith Century Club (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
correspondedWith Century Company corporateBody
associatedWith Conference of Heads of State or Government of Non-Aligned Nations (1961 : Belgrade, Serbia) corporateBody
associatedWith Conference of Heads of State or Government of Non-Aligned Nations (1st: 1961: Belgrade, Serbia). corporateBody
associatedWith Coolidge, Archibald Cary, 1866-1928. person
associatedWith Council on Foreign Relations corporateBody
associatedWith Cummings, E. E. (Edward Estlin), 1894-1962 person
associatedWith Danielson, Richard Ely, 1885-1957. person
associatedWith Dedijer, Vladimir. person
correspondedWith Dedijer, Vladimir, 1914- person
associatedWith Delano, William Adams, 1874-1960. person
correspondedWith Dellenbaugh, Frederick Samuel, 1853-1935 person
correspondedWith Dexter, Byron, 1900-1973 person
correspondedWith Dulles, Allen, 1893-1969. person
correspondedWith Dulles, John Foster, 1888-1959 person
associatedWith Eastman, Max, 1883-1969 person
correspondedWith Eden, Anthony, Earl of Avon, 1897-1977 person
correspondedWith Feis, Herbert, 1893-1972 person
correspondedWith Fischer, Ruth, 1895- person
correspondedWith Fotitch, Konstantin, 1891-1959 person
correspondedWith Frankfurter, Felix, 1882-1965 person
correspondedWith Gannett, Lewis, 1891-1966 person
correspondedWith Gay, Edwin F. (Edwin Francis), 1867-1946 person
correspondedWith Grouitch, Mabel S., d. 1956 person
correspondedWith Gunther, John, 1901-1970 person
associatedWith Hammond, Thomas Taylor. person
correspondedWith Hand, Learned, 1872-1961 person
correspondedWith Hopper, Bruce C. (Bruce Campbell), 1892-1973 person
correspondedWith House, Edward Mandell, 1858-1938 person
associatedWith International House (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
correspondedWith Joesten, Joachim, 1907- person
correspondedWith Kennan, George F. (George Frost), 1904-2005 person
correspondedWith Kissinger, Henry, 1923 - person
correspondedWith Kissinger, Henry, 1923- person
correspondedWith Ladejinsky, Wolf, 1899-1975 person
correspondedWith Langer, William L. (William Leonard), 1896-1977 person
correspondedWith La Piana, George, 1879-1971 person
associatedWith Lebedev, Vladimir Ivanovich, 1884-1956. person
correspondedWith Leffingwell, R. C. (Russell Cornell), 1883-1960 person
associatedWith Lindbergh, Anne Morrow, 1906-2001. person
correspondedWith Lippman, Walter, 1889-1974 person
correspondedWith MacLeish, Archibald, 1892-1982 person
correspondedWith Mallory, Walter Hampton, 1892- person
correspondedWith Mann, Thomas, 1875-1955 person
correspondedWith McCloy, John J. (John Jay), 1895-1989 person
associatedWith Messersmith, George S., (George Strausser), 1883-1960 person
correspondedWith Miller, Francis Pickens, 1895-1978 person
correspondedWith Moffat, Jay Pierrepont, 1896-1943 person
correspondedWith Mosely, Philip E. (Philip Edward), 1905-1972 person
correspondedWith Nasser, Gamal Abdel, 1918-1970 person
associatedWith Nation (New York, N.Y. : 1865). corporateBody
associatedWith New York Society Library. corporateBody
associatedWith New York Times Company corporateBody
correspondedWith Petar II Karadordevic King of Yugoslavia, 1923-1970 person
correspondedWith Quigg, Philip W., 1920 - person
correspondedWith Quigg, Philip W., 1920- person
correspondedWith Reston, James, 1909 - person
correspondedWith Reston, James, 1909-1995. person
associatedWith Root, Elihu, 1845-1937. person
correspondedWith Salvemini, Gaetano, 1983-1957 person
correspondedWith Schlesinger, Arthur M. (Arthur Meier), 1917-2007 person
correspondedWith Schmitt, Bernadotte Everly, 1886-1969 person
associatedWith Serbian Aid Fund. corporateBody
associatedWith Serbian Aid Fund. corporateBody
associatedWith Serbian War Mission to the United States. corporateBody
correspondedWith Seymour, Charles, 1885-1963 person
correspondedWith Sforza, Carlo, conte, 1872-1952 person
correspondedWith Sheean, Vincent, 1899-1975 person
correspondedWith Sherwood, Robert E. (Robert Emmet), 1896-1955 person
correspondedWith Souvarine, Boris. person
correspondedWith Stassen, Harold Edward, 1907-2001 person
correspondedWith Stevens, Mary H. person
associatedWith Stimson, Henry L. (Henry Lewis), 1867-1950. person
associatedWith Teasdale, Sara, 1884-1933. person
associatedWith Tito, Josip Broz, 1892-1980 person
correspondedWith Trotsky, Leon, 1879-1940 person
associatedWith United Nations Conference on International Organization (1945 : San Francisco, Calif.) corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Dept. of State. Advisory Committee on Postwar Foreign Policies. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. President's Advisory Committee on Political Refugees. corporateBody
associatedWith Vandenberg, Arthur H. (Arthur Hendrick), 1884-1951. person
correspondedWith Villard, Oswald Garrison, 1872-1949 person
correspondedWith Viner, Jacob, 1892-1970 person
correspondedWith Willkie, Wendell L. (Wendell Lewis), 1892-1944 person
associatedWith Woodrow Wilson Foundation. corporateBody
associatedWith Zorina, Vera. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Yugoslavia
New York (State)--New York
United States
United States
Yugoslavia
Subject
Journalists--New York (N.Y.)--20th century
Public policy/20th century
World War II
Editors--New York (N.Y.)--20th century
Journalists--20th century
American politics and government
American history/20th century
Diplomacy
Editors--20th century
International relations--20th century
Cold War
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1893-04-07

Death 1973-04-24

Information

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