[Leslie Groves]

Rivero, Rear Admiral, Thanks Leslie Groves for Congratulations on Promotion

 

 

 



Rivero, Rear Admiral, Thanks Leslie Groves for Congratulations on Promotion

 

HORACIO RIVERO, Typed Letter Signed, to Leslie R. Groves Jr., October 26, 1955. 1 p., 6.75" x 9.75".  Includes copy of Groves’s Typed Letter to Rivero, October 3, 1955. Staple marks in upper margin; very good.

 

Excerpts

Rivero to Groves:

“It was very kind of you to remember me and congratulate me on my selection. I feel very humble about entering into a status where so many of my predecessors have established such high standards.... I shall always be very grateful to you for the many kindnesses you showed me when I was associated with you in the atomic program. To me that association is one that I shall always remember with pride and satisfaction.”

 

Groves to Rivero:

“I have just learned of your selection to Rear Admiral. May I offer you my congratulations and add that I was not a bit surprised as I was always greatly impressed by your competency and ability during my association with you in the early days of the AFSWP.”

 

Historical Background

General Groves and Commander Rivero worked together on the Armed Forces Special Weapons Project (AFSWP) in 1945 and 1946.

 

 

Horacio Rivero Jr. (1910-2000) was born and grew up in Puerto Rico. He graduated third in his class of more than 400 from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1931. During World War II, he served in the Pacific theater as a gunnery officer, for which he received the Bronze Star. From 1946 to 1948, he served as a technical assistant in joint task forces conducting atomic weapons tests. During the Korean War, he commanded an attack transport that participated in the Inchon assault and in transporting troops and equipment to and from the Korean combat zone. Rivero later studied nuclear weaponry at the National War College and in 1954 became Assistant Chief of Staff for Naval Operations. He received promotion to the rank of rear admiral in 1955. From 1961 to 1968, Rivero was Vice Chief of Naval Operations and commanded the fleet sent by President John F. Kennedy to blockade Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis. In 1964, Rivero became the first Puerto Rican and second Hispanic to become a four-star admiral in the U.S. Navy. From 1968 to his retirement from the Navy in 1972, he was the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s commander of Allied Forces in Southern Europe. From 1972 to 1975, he served as U.S. ambassador to Spain.

 

Leslie R. Groves Jr. (1896-1970) was a United States Army General with the Corps of Engineers who oversaw the construction of the Pentagon and directed the Manhattan Project that developed the atomic bomb during World War II. Born in New York to a Protestant pastor who became an army chaplain, Groves graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1918 in a course shortened because of World War I. He entered the Corps of Engineers and gained promotions to major by 1940. In 1941, he was charged with overseeing the construction of the Pentagon, the largest office building in the world, with more than five million square feet. Disappointed that he had not received a combat assignment, Groves instead took charge of the Manhattan Project, designed to develop an atomic bomb. He continued nominally to supervise the Pentagon project to avoid suspicion, gained promotion to brigadier general, and began his work in September 1942. The project headquarters was initially in the War Department building in Washington, but in August 1943, moved to Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He and physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer selected the site in Los Alamos, New Mexico, for a laboratory, and Groves pushed successfully for Oppenheimer to be placed in charge. Groves was in charge of obtaining critical uranium ores internationally and collecting military intelligence on Axis atomic research. Promoted to major general in March 1944, Groves received the Distinguished Service Medal for his work on the Manhattan Project after the war. In 1947, Groves became chief of the Armed Forces Special Weapons Project. He received a promotion to lieutenant general in January 1948, just days before meeting with Army Chief of Staff Dwight D. Eisenhower, who reviewed a long list of complaints against Groves. Assured that he would not become Chief of Engineers, Groves retired in February 1948. From 1948 to 1961, he was a vice president of Sperry Rand, an equipment and electronics firm. After retirement, he served as president of the West Point alumni association and wrote a book on the Manhattan Project, published in 1962.

 

 



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Item: 66147

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