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United States Department of State, 230 Years of American Diplomacy, 1789-2019

The Department of State celebrated its 230th anniversary on July 27, 2019. This milestone presents a unique opportunity to highlight the Department’s storied history and heritage and the important role of U.S. diplomacy – past, present, and future. To commemorate this anniversary, on July 29, the Department marked this special occasion with a daylong celebration hosted by Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo. Under the theme of “One Team, One Mission, One Future,” the commemoration featured a live discussion between the Dean of American Secretaries of State, Dr. Henry Kissinger, and his official biographer, Dr. Niall Ferguson; a film featuring comments by Secretary George P. Shultz and Secretary Madeline Albright; a panel discussion with historians; and more.

Highlights from the Celebration

Check out this DipNote blog providing an overview of the day’s events and these photos from the event.

Secretary’s Remarks

Secretary Pompeo (July 29): “We at the State Department follow in the footsteps of our forefathers. We use diplomacy to defend that very set of unalienable rights – not just for Americans, but for people all across the world…It’s our turn to pave the way for those who will come after us…This was the vision behind the department-wide effort to create the Professional Ethos, which we rolled out this past April.  The Ethos simply lays out commitments that unite every single person who is working on behalf of the State Department.”

Deputy Secretary’s Remarks

Deputy Secretary Sullivan (July 29): “Our State Department team members shape the world, and your contributions will make history. The work that you do every day to advance our mission builds upon that strong foundation laid by our forbearers. As we reflect on 230 years of American diplomacy, we must continue to draw on and learn from our past, as we look forward to advance our values and priorities as one team, with one mission, and one future.”

230 Years of History


Want to learn more about our history?

Check out these resources:


U.S. Department of State

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