Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Charlotte Salisbury papers, 1925-2001, bulk 1965-1993

Summary Information


This collection is made up of the writings and personal files of Charlotte Salisbury, the wife of Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist Harrison Evans Salisbury (1908-1993).

At a Glance

Call No.: MS#1626
Bib ID 6913725 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Salisbury, Charlotte Y
Title Charlotte Salisbury papers, 1925-2001, bulk 1965-1993
Physical Description 14 linear feet (28 document boxes)
Language(s) English , Chinese , Russian .

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

This collection has no restrictions.



This collection is arranged in 12 series.



This collection is made up of the writings and personal files of Charlotte Salisbury. About half of the material relates to Salisbury's published travel diaries. This material includes manuscripts as well as correspondence and clippings related to the books. Another large portion of the collection is made up of Charlotte Salisbury's personal papers, including correspondence between herself and Harrison Salisbury and approximately thirty years of diaries and datebooks recording her everyday activities. Finally, there is some material documenting the career and commemoration of Harrison Salisbury. With a few exceptions, the majority of the material in the collection dates to after the couple was married in 1964.

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Restrictions on Access

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

This collection has no restrictions.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Name of Collection; Box and Folder (if known); Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

Ownership and Custodial History

Gift of Charlotte Young Salisbury.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

Papers processed Mary Freeman 08/--/2012.

Finding aid written Mary Freeman 08/--/2012.

Revision Description

2012-11-20 File created.

2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.


Heading "CUL Archives:"
"CUL Collections:"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
New York Times Company Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Newspaper publishing Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Salisbury, Charlotte Y Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Salisbury, Harrison E (Harrison Evans), 1908-1993 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Soviet Union -- Description and travel Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

Charlotte Young Salisbury was born in Weston, Massachusetts in 1914. The daughter of prominent Massachusetts politician Benjamin Loring Young, she attended the Winsor School in Boston and the Dobbs School in Dobbs Ferry, New York. Salisbury went on to pursue a modeling career as a "Powers Girl" in the early 1930s. In 1934 she married Allston Boyer, with whom she had her first daughter, Charlotte Boyer Parkinson. Following a divorce five years later, she married her second husband John A. Rand and had three more children: Ellen Rand, Rosina Rand, and Curtis Rand. During World War II she moved around the country following her husband to various army camps.

Charlotte met Harrison Salisbury in 1955 at a talk he gave in Salisbury, Connecticut on his time spent as a New York Times correspondent in Moscow. The two developed a friendship, and they married in 1964 following Charlotte's divorce from John Rand in 1959. Throughout their marriage they kept homes in New York City and in Taconic, Connecticut.

Shortly after their wedding, Charlotte began accompanying Harrison on many of his foreign travel assignments. Although she was not formally trained as a writer, she kept detailed diaries throughout her life, and she was able to use her talents for close observation and description to begin her career as an author. Her first book, Asian Diary (1967) documents her travels with Harrison to the areas surrounding China. The book reflects her strong anti-Vietnam War sentiments as she describes the negative impact the war has had on neighboring countries. Charlotte Salisbury followed up Asian Diary with a series of travel diaries describing subsequent journeys with her husband in the Soviet Union, China, and other parts of Asia. China Diary was particularly notable as one of the first accounts of everyday life and social conditions in Communist China after President Nixon's visit in 1972. The Salisburys' books reached a broad American audience eager to learn about Communist countries. Whereas Harrison's work focused on political and historical intricacies, Charlotte's sensitive but frank impressions captured both her own experiences as a foreign traveler and the character of the daily lives of the people she encountered. In addition to China Diary (1972), she published Russian Diary (1974), China Diary: After Mao (1977), and Tibetan Diary (1980). Charlotte also wrote the text for Sikkim: Mountaintop Kingdom in 1972, collaborating with the photographer Alice Kendall. This book differs from her others as a description of the history, culture, and politics of the tiny country of Sikkim rather than a personal travel account.

Salisbury's writing career culminated in her final book Long March Diary: China Epic, which describes her and Harrison Salisbury's successful attempt to retrace the route of Mao's Long March of 1934 to 1935. This was a remarkable achievement for the aging couple. It was their longest journey yet, and they traveled to areas of interior China that had previously been inaccessible to Americans.

While Harrison Salisbury continued to travel and write up until his death in 1993, Charlotte claimed to prefer a quiet life tending to their house and gardens in Taconic. She continued to keep detailed personal diaries, but she did no more extensive traveling. Charlotte Salisbury died at age ninety-eight on April 25, 2012 in Salisbury, Connecticut.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only CU affiliates may view materials on-site. YOU MUST REQUEST AN APPOINTMENT BEFORE PLACING REQUESTS. Email rbml@library.columbia.edu to request an appointment. You may submit a request for materials once your appointment is confirmed. Affiliates will login with their uni and password, and need to register the first time they make a request.

Series I: Asian Diary

Box 1 Original notebooks, 1966


Box 1 Personal Copy, 1966

Box 1 Carbon copy, 1966

Box 1 Second Carbon copy, 1966

Box 1 1966

Box 1 Manuscript fragments, 1966

Box 2 Galleys, 1966

Box 2 Photographs, 1966

Box 2 Photograph captions and descriptions, 1967

Box 2 Contract and royalties, 1967-1968

Box 2 Sikkim article-Mademoiselle, 1967 (excerpt fromAsian Diary ), 1967

Box 2 Clippings and reviews, 1968-1970

Box 2 Publicity, 1967-1968

Box 2 Correspondence, 1966-1982

Series II: Russian Diary

Box 3 Manuscripts

Box 3 First Draft, 1967-1971

Box 3 1967

Box 3 Working Copy, 1967

Box 3 Personal Copy, 1967

Box 3 1967-1972

Box 4 Fragments and edits, 1967-1972

Box 4 Cover and galleys, 1974

Box 4 Replaced chapter one, 1967-1972

Box 4 Notes and clippings, 1973

Box 4 Publicity, 1974

Box 4 Clippings and reviews, 1974

Box 4 Correspondence, 1972-1978

Series III: Sikkim: Mountaintop Kingdom

Box 5 Notebooks, 1970


Box 5 Draft, 1970

Box 5 With notes and corrections, 1970

Box 5 With introduction by Harrison Salisbury, 1970 (duplicate), 1970

Box 5 Corrected, 1970

Box 5 Contracts and royalties, 1969-1972

Box 5 Clippings regarding Sikkim and Hope Cooke, 1961-1974

Box 5 Notes and research materials, 1968-1970

Box 6 Research materials, 1950-1969


Box 6 Sikkim Coronation , ca. 1965

Box 6 Namgyal Institute of Technology, 1962 (in Sikkimese), 1962

Box 6 Clippings and reviews, 1971-1972

Box 6 Publicity and Vogue article, 1971-1972

Box 6 Correspondence, 1970-1979

Box 6 Correspondence with Hope Cooke, 1969-1971

Series IV: China Diary

Box 7 Original notebooks, 1972

Box 7 First typing from notebooks, 1972


Box 7 Revised-out of order, 1972

Box 7 Xerox, 1972

Box 7 Edits, 1972

Box 7 1972

Box 8 Galleys, 1972

Box 8 Notes and articles by Charlotte Salisbury regarding China Diary, 1973-1975

Box 8 Notes for chapter or article, 1972

Box 8 Travel materials, 1972

Box 8 Clippings related to China Diary- many New York Times articles by Harrison Salisbury,, 1972

Box 8 Clippings and publicity, 1973

Box 8 Correspondence, 1973-1991

Series V: China Diary: After Mao

Box 9 Original notebooks, 1977


Box 9 Revised, 1977

Box 9 With notes, 1977

Box 9 Notes regarding Mongolia, 1977

Box 9 Maps, ca. 1977

Box 9 Notes and clippings, 1978

Box 9 Clippings and publicity, 1979-1980

Box 9 Correspondence, 1979-1980

Series VI: Tibetan Diary

Box 10 Manuscripts

Box 10 Copy of first copying, 1980 (includes newspaper clipping), 1980

Box 10 Not all corrections included, 1980

Box 10 Working copy, 1980-1981

Box 10 Setting copy, 1980-1982

Box 10 Galleys, 1981

Box 10 Notes and travel materials, 1980-1981

Box 10 Correspondence, photos, and publicity, 1980-1986

Series VII: Long March Diary: China Epic

Box 11 Original notebooks, 1984


Box 11 Original, 1984

Box 11 Second sheets of original, 1984

Box 11 Xerox with Harrison Salisbury foreword, 1984

Box 12 Carbon copy, 1984

Box 12 With corrections by Jack Service, 1984

Box 12 With corrections but not cuts, 1984

Box 13 Edited, 1984-1986

Box 13 Copy of book, 1992

Box 13 Map, ca. 1984

Box 13 Notes and photos, 1984-1985

Box 13 Notes for talks, ca. 1986

Box 13 Reviews and publicity, 1986


Box 13 Business, 1985-1986

Box 13 Personal, 1985-1993

Series VIII: Other Writings and Professional Activity

Box 14 Articles and writings, ca. 1931-1982

Box 14 Webetuck School commencement, 1977

Box 14 Public appearances-general, 1978-1980

Box 14 Writer's World radio program, 1969

Series IX: Personal Files

Box 14 Passports and international travel documents, 1959-1986

Box 14 Biographical files-general, ca. 1925-1982 (includes financial agreement with Harrison Salisbury), ca. 1925-1982

Box 14 Personal photographs and postcards, ca. 1970s-1994

Box 14 Files regarding Francis Sargent-governor of Massachusetts 1972-1974 1969-1974, 1972-1974, 1969-1974

Box 14 Saved publications, 1953-2001

Box 28 The American Society of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem-Pins and list of members,, 1975

Box 28 Scrapbook pages, 1977-1978

Series X: Personal Correspondence

Box 14 Letters and cards from wedding, 1964

Box 14 Christmas-mostly cards, 1967

Box 15 Harrison Salisbury to Charlotte Salisbury

Box 15 Notes and cards, ca. 1959-1986

Box 15 1961-1987

Box 16 1988-1993

Box 16 Charlotte Salisbury to Harrison Salisbury, 1959-1989


Box 16 Charlotte Salisbury, 1963-1998

Box 16 Harrison Salisbury, 1962-1990

Series XI: Diaries and Datebooks

Box 17 Datebooks, 1969-1993

Box 18 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Box 19 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Box 20 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Box 21 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Box 22 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Box 23 Diaries, 1965-June 1993 (June 1968-June 1973 include typed transcripts), 1965-June 1993, June 1968-June 1973

Series XII: Harrison Salisbury Files

Box 24 Notes-mainly regarding Charlotte Salisbury's biography, 1984-1988

Box 24 Lectures on QE2 voyages, 1978

Box 24 Vietnam tapes, ca. 1966-1967

Box 24 Personal papers-general, 1986-1991

Box 24 Litchfield County Writers' Forum-Tribute to Harrison Salisbury, 1995-1996

Box 24 Thank you from Chinese People's Revolutionary Museum for pacemaker donation,, 1996

Box 24 Photographs of reception of pacemaker in China, ca. 1996

Box 24 Commemoration of Harrison Salisbury, 1991-1999

Box 24 Correspondence regarding Harrison Salisbury tribute book, 2001

Box 25 American Academy of Arts and Letters-commemoration of Harrison Salisbury,, 1993

Box 25 Dutch Treat Club member book, 1993


Box 25 Essential Liberty by Francis Wilkinson-introduction by Harrison Salisbury

Box 25 Long March: An Untold Story by Harrison Salisbury-Chinese translation,, 1994

Box 25 Paper Soldiers by Lawrence R. Wyatt, 1992

Box 25 The Paper's Papers by Richard F. Shepard,, 1996

Box 26 A Journey for Our Times by Harrison Salisbury,, 1983

The 900 Days by Harrison Salisbury

Box 26 Galleys-set 1, 1969

Box 27 Galleys-set 2, 1969

Box 28 Photographs-professional activity (mostly oversized)

Box 28 Map-route of Mao's Long March, 1984 (framed), March, 1984

Box 28 Russian records, ca. 1981-1985 (2), ca. 1981-1985

Box 28 The New York Times Magazine-with article by Harrison Salisbury-"Now It's China's Cultural Thaw,", 1977