On June 2, 1912, after speaking at the Church of the Ascension in New York City, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá traveled to Milford, PA, to the estate of Gifford Pinchot, where he spent the night. Pinchot was the first Chief of the United States Forest Service (1905–1910) and later was the 28th Governor of Pennsylvania.
Mr. Pinchot invited notables and national statesmen to meet ‘Abdu’l-Bahá on the following day, June 3. According to Mahmud’s Diary, one person asked about the possibility of international war, to which ‘Abdu’l-Bahá replied, “Tremendous changes will take place in Europe. The great centralized powers will break up into smaller independent states.” (Pinchot is referred to as Pinshoe in Mahmud’s Diary).