March 7, 1966. In a rare handwritten letter to President Johnson, General de Gaulle states the reasons for his decision to withdraw France from the military aspects of NATO.
“…France considers that the changes that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, since 1949, in Europe, Asia, and elsewhere, as well as the evolution of her own situation and her own forces, no longer justify, in so far as she is concerned, the arrangements of a military nature made after the conclusion of the Alliance, either jointly in the form of multilateral agreements, or by special agreements between the French Government and the American Government.”
This decision led to the withdrawal of American bases from France and the relocation of NATO headquarters from Paris to Brussels. To read the full translation, see the Foreign Relations of the United States Series.
As January 23 is the birthday of founding father and owner of the penultimate signature, John Hancock, and National Handwriting Day, it seems the perfect time to share the National Archives’ latest signature crowdsourcing project:
One of our curators is working on an exhibit and would love your suggestions for signatures from National Archives records.
At the National Archives, we have a range of signatures from the infamous (Lizzie Borden), to signatures of individuals before they were famous (Julia Child’s OSS paperwork), as well signatures that had the power to change someone’s life or to change history, such as a Presidential pardon.
We would like your help to tag records with “signature” in our online catalog. Don’t be restricted to any categories of records. Tag records that you think are interesting or surprising.
To get started tagging, you’ll need to: