A tribute by the President

June 1940: final adventure in an outstanding life. France had just surrendered, and Paderewski decided to travel to the United States to continue his combat. The voyage was dangerous, but destiny had not yet decided to claim him back. Welcomed as the renowned pianist he had once been, he was awarded a two-page feature article complete with pictures in the New York Times, and President Roosevelt himself offered his good wishes on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his first American concert. « Since, with the magic of your art, you captured the imagination of the American people in 1891, you have merited abundantly the accolade of Modern Immortal which an appreciative public has bestowed on you in recognition of gifts an talents which you have shared so generously with the music lovers of America. Through full fifty years you have held our imagination and commanded our respect. It is no small part of your reward that you are everywhere beloved, everywhere respected. To a superb artist, to a patriot and lover of freedom in whose cause you have worked with valour and gallantry, I offer heartfelt felicitations. »