The US and Hungary under the Dual Monarchy

Throughout the last decades of the 19th century, American attention was increasingly drawn towards Hungary, especially due to increased Hungarian immigration to the US.

One of the results of the failed 1848 revolution was the gradual recognition by the Habsburg Government that it would have to grant Hungarians more power in order to preserve the Empire. The defeats of its forces by France in 1859 and by Prussia in 1866 helped convince Vienna to negotiate with the Hungarian Government.

The Ausgleich (Compromise) of 1867 created the Dual Monarchy and gave the Hungarian Government extensive control over Hungary’s internal affairs, and over many distinct non-Hungarian ethnic and religious minorities, such as Croats, Romanians, Serbs, Slovaks and Jews. (Many of these minoroties had hoped for greater rights under a federated empire). While Hungary had significant autonomy, it shared a foreign policy, and military under the common Austro-Hungarian sovereign.

Despite American interest in developments in Hungary during and after the failed revolution, it was not until the Compromise and the establishment of Hungarian autonomy that the first U.S. consular representative to Hungary, Adolph Klein, was appointed as Consular Agent in Pest in June 1868. In December 1874, Maurice Faber, a local resident, was appointed as the first U.S. Consul in Pest. From 1888 onward, U.S. consuls were accredited to the Hungarian Government in Budapest, which was legally unified into a single city in 1873.

Throughout the last decades of the 19th century, American attention was increasingly drawn towards Hungary, especially due to increased Hungarian immigration to the United States. In May 1904, President Theodore Roosevelt authorized the establishment of a Consulate General at Budapest and appointed Consul Frank Dyer Chester, who had served since 1897, as the first Consul General in Budapest.