Portsmouth New Hampshire’s Peace Conferences

On December 10, 2006, the Theodore Roosevelt Nobel Peace Prize Luncheon was held at Wentworth  By the Sea Hotel in New Castle, New Hampshire.  It is presented by the Japan-America Society of NH, and commemorated the 100th anniversary of the presentation of the Nobel Peace Prize.

In addition a Treaty of Portsmouth Memorial Fund has been launched, to raise funds to commission a memorial, to be located in Portsmouth NH, as a permanent reminder of the event, “and a celebration of the roles, Roosevelt, Japan, Russian the U.S. Navy, the State of New Hampshire, and the citizens of Portsmouth played in the treaty negotiations.” [The only question I have about this is, since the actual location of the meetings took place at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, located in Maine, where will the memorial be placed?]

Theodore Roosevelt was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 for his work in the negotiations that led to the Treaty of Portsmouth, which ended the Russo-Japanese War in 1905.  He was the first American to win this prize in any category. He actually didn’t pick up his prize money until 1910.

At the Japanese government’s request, President Theodore Roosevelt acted as an intermediary between Russia and Japan with their peace negotiations. The so-called “Portsmouth Peace Treaty,” was signed in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on September 5, 1905, “marked by an honor guard, the firing of a 19-gun salute and the ringing of area church bells.”

Almost 200 years earlier, another peace treaty had been signed?  Does this ring any bells?  It was on July 13, 1713, when representatives from Native Indian tribes, Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire met in Portsmouth.


P.S. Left to right in the photograph:  M. Witte, Baron Rosen, President Theodore Roosevelt, Baron Komura, K. Takahira.

*Additional Reading*

Photographs, Portsmouth Peace Conference

Portsmouth Peace Treaty, 1905-2005

Portsmouth Peace Treaty Videos

Postcard: Doorway and Tablet of Peace Conference Building

Speak Softly and Carry A Diplomatic Stick


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