In his daily column of Dec. 16, 1930 Calvin Coolidge offered a rare tribute to a South American revolutionary and statesman, Simon Bolivar:
On December 17 Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Bolivia will commemorate the one hundredth anniversary of the death of Simon Bolivar. Nearly twenty million people in those four countries honor him for changing the course of their history.
In a few years his military skill and leadership drove Spain from a territory two-thirds the area of the United States which she had held from the days of Columbus. He ranks as one of the great and true patriots.
Born in Venezuela, trained in Europe, he returned home and dedicated himself and his great possessions to the freedom of his countrymen. Having seen revolution in France and free government in the United States, he adapted them to his own country with the result that his efforts in the north, and those of San Martin in the south, finallymade all of Spanish South America independent.
To the action of a soldier he added the vision of a statesman. He founded governments. Recognizing the unity of interests of the Western Hemisphere, he called the first Pan-American conference at Panama in 1825. His public service and unselfish character entitle him to be named as one of the great figures of the New World.