November 1959 Eisenhower Meeting on Highways
This PDF file is a “memo for the record” of a meeting held on November 30, 1959 between President Eisenhower and his Special Assistant for Public Works Planning, John S. Bragdon. During the Highway Trust Fund revenue crisis earlier in that year, Eisenhower had directed Bragdon in July to conduct a study of the Interstate Highway program.
According to Bragdon, they discussed the scope of Bragdon’s first interim report (which wound up being delivered in April 1960), but also Eisenhower’s stated belief that Interstate “routing within cities is primarily the responsibility of the cities” and Bragdon’s belief that the Interstate system should have more toll segments.
Bragdon has been accused of being an unreliable narrator in some instances, but in this case, Eisenhower’s appointment book indicates that it was a one-on-one meeting, so no other narrative is available.
There is a also cover memo dated December 2, 1959 forwarding the memo to the President’s chief of staff.
Original located in Box 7 of the Administration Series of the Ann Whitman File in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Papers as President, 1953-1961 collection in the Eisenhower Library, Abilene, Kansas.