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End Of A Friendship
“Mr. House is my second personality,” said Woodrow Wilson early in his Presidency. Then, as the Paris Peace Conference proceeded, the friendship dissolved —for reasons that have never been fully understood. As he lay dying in 1938, Colonel House gave his explanation to President Charles Seymour of Yale, editor of his Intimate Papers , with the understanding that it remain secret for 25 years after his death. Here, for the first time, it is revealed.
August 1963 | Volume 14, Issue 5
Over the years from 1920 on, House granted to the present writer the privilege of intimate conversations dealing with his career. They took place in the small study of the Colonel’s New York apartment; the final conversation of any length was held on January 5, 1938, some two and a half months before his death. Seventy-nine years old, he was failing rapidly, but his thoughts returned constantly to the break with Wilson. Although the memorandum which incorporated his remarks of that afternoon was drafted on the spot, House approved its publication—but not until twentyfive years after his death. Those years now have passed. The memorandum can be opened to historians’ scrutiny. It forms the occasion and the core of what follows.