Arthur K. Watson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Arthur K. Watson
21st United States Ambassador to France
In office
May 6, 1970 – October 30, 1972
PresidentRichard Nixon
Preceded bySargent Shriver
Succeeded byJohn N. Irwin II
Personal details
Arthur Kittredge Watson

(1919-04-23)April 23, 1919
Summit, New Jersey, U.S.
DiedJuly 26, 1974(1974-07-26) (aged 55)
New Canaan, Connecticut, U.S.
RelativesThomas J. Watson (father)
Thomas J. Watson Jr. (brother)
EducationYale University

Arthur Kittredge "Dick" Watson (April 23, 1919 – July 26, 1974) was an American businessman and diplomat. He served as president of IBM World Trade Corporation and United States Ambassador to France. His father, Thomas J. Watson, was IBM's founder and oversaw that company's growth into an international force from the 1920s to the 1950s. His brother Thomas J. Watson Jr. was the president of IBM from 1952 to 1971 and United States Ambassador to the Soviet Union.

Early life[edit]

Arthur K. Watson—known as "Dick" by his friends and colleagues—was born in Summit, New Jersey.[1] He attended The Hotchkiss School and Yale University.

Watson was a benefactor of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, serving as a trustee of the Museum[2] and as a member of the Museum's Centennial committee.[3]

Watson was the Ambassador to France during the 1972 visit by Richard Nixon to China. Watson's meetings with his Chinese counterpart Huang Zhen in Paris helped to begin normalization of diplomatic relations before the countries had direct ambassadors.[4]

Arthur K. Watson died as a result of a fall on July 26, 1974, in New Canaan, Connecticut, at age 55.[5] Yale University's computer science building is named in his honor.



  1. ^ Staff. "Arthur K. Watson", The New York Times, March 14, 1972. Accessed February 19, 2011. "Arthur Kittredge Watson, the younger son of Thomas J. Watson, was born in Summit, N.J., on April 23, 1919."
  2. ^ Arthur K. Watson and Francis Day Rogers elected Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Press release, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, (Sept. 2 1969). Retrieved 5 August 2014
  3. ^ Finding aid for the George Trescher records related to The Metropolitan Museum of Art Centennial, 1949, 1960–1971 (bulk 1967–1970) Archived April 12, 2019, at the Wayback Machine. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  4. ^ McElvenny, Ralph; Marc, Wortman. The Greatest Capitalist Who Ever Lived. p. 429. ISBN 978-1-5417-6852-9.
  5. ^ "Arthur Watson dies", Computerworld August 7, 1974 p. 29
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by U.S. Ambassador to France
Succeeded by