Presidential Speeches

September 11, 1919: Safeguarding America

About this speech

Warren G. Harding

September 11, 1919

Source Miller Center

Nation's Forum (NF 3) 49660 (5:02)

Address on the League of Nations in the United States Senate

On September 11, 1919, Senator Harding spoke against the recently signed (June 28, 1919) Treaty of Versailles with its provision for establishing the League of Nations. He wanted the Covenant--which President Wilson considered "the heart of the world"--to be modified to free it of portions that could endanger American independence. The Senate rejected the treaty in November 1919, and again in March 1920.

Of interest is the senator's use of "Sirs" in addressing the upper chamber of Congress, showing a lack of women. Some states allowed women to vote in 1919, and women had been elected to the House of Representatives, but the 19th Amendment providing woman's suffrage did not become law until 1920.

(Transcription by Warren G. Harding, III)

Presidential Speeches |

September 11, 1919: Safeguarding America

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