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Series I: Charles Richard Crane and John O. Crane Documents
Series VI: Directors' Files
At a Glance
The collection is arranged into 8 series.
Scope and Content
The Institute of Current World Affairs records document the history of the ICWA, its sister organization, the American Universities Field Staff, and its founders, Charles and John Crane. Documents include first-hand reports authored by Fellows and field staff, correspondence, minutes, planning documents, subject files, financial records, publications, and photographs.
Spanning almost a century, the ICWA archive tells the story ofboth the ever-evolving history ofthe organization itself, with its unique philanthropic mission and the important story of its founders, and international affairs and culture as witnessed and described by hundreds of journalists, scholars, artists, and policy makers, many ofwhom emerged as leaders in their chosen fields. The collection should be of tremendous value to researchers, whether they be interested in the organization itself, the history of the international affairs community and foreign policy, or the history and culture of a specific region.
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.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Name of Collection; Box and Folder; Institute of Current World Affairs Records, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Papers processed 2013.
2014-12-05 xml document instance created by Carrie Hintz and updated by Adrien Hilton
2017-03-30 Archived Website series added by Jane Gorjevsky
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
The Institute of Current World Affairs is a Washington, D.C-based 501(c)3 which provides fellowships, allowing Americans under age 36 to live in a foreign country for two years. Their observations and research are published in monthly newsletters that are distributed to members.
Three men were instrumental in founding the Institute ofCurrent World Affairs (ICWA) -Charles and John Crane and Walter S. Rogers.
Charles Crane (1858-1939) was one of the heirs to the Crane Co. ofChicago, created by his father Richard Teller Crane in 1855. A world traveler and Woodrow Wilson supporter, Crane served as a member of Wilson's Special Diplomatic Commission to Russia (1917), a member ofthe American Section ofthe Peace Conference Inter-Allied Commission on Mandate in Turkey (1919), as co-director (with Oberlin College President Henry C. King) ofthe KingCrane Commission to study the Middle East following World War I (1919), and as American Ambassador to China (May 1920-June 1921). In later years Crane developed a friendship with King Abdul-Azziz ibn Saud, the founder of Saudi Arabia, and assisted with oil exploration in the region. Charles married Cornelia W. Smith. One of his sons, Richard T. Crane was the private secretary to Secretary of State Robert Lansing.
His other son, John O. Crane traveled extensively with his father and Walter Rogers, and, with Rogers, established the Mutual News Exchange, an independent press service run out of Prague. The news service's need for well-trained, worldly scholar-journalists, led to the establishment of the Institute ofCurrent World Affairs, with a $1 million trust fund from Charles Crane. The ICWA was created to support fellowships abroad. John Cranewas one of the earliest Fellows.
Walter Rogers was a Chicago journalist who had worked his way through law school in the evenings. At the turn ofthe century he was working for the Crane Company. After traveling with Charles and John Crane, Rogers became the Executive Director of the ICW A when it was established in 1925, a position he occupied until his retirement in 1959. Rogers was known for his active recruitment of Fellows.
The American Universities Field Staff (AUFS) program was established by Walter Rogers in 1951, as a partner organization ofthe ICW A. The AUFS was a membership organization, supported by fees from as many as 20 American universities and grants from the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations, and governed by top representatives ofthe member schools. The main purpose of the AUFS was to supply teaching pC(sonnel in international affairs at the member colleges from its pool of "Associates" --scholars living and studying abroad in their regions ofspecialization. Many ofthe original Associates w~re former ICW A Fellows and subsequent Fellows were often placed with an eye to their becoming Associates. Although Rogers' efforts to merge the ICWA and the AUFS proved unsuccessful, the two continued to be closely linked, sharing offices in New York. Former Fellow Phillips Talbot served as the first executive director of the AUFS.
Following Rogers' retirement in 1959, former Fellow Richard Nolte served as Executive Director until his retirement in 1978. Nolte briefly served as the U. S. Ambassador to Egypt in 1967.
His successor, Peter Martin, also a former Fellow, retired in 2005. Martin was a writer and senior editor at TIME magazine (1955-1970) and a founding editor of MONEY magazine (1970-l978), and the creator of the South North News Service.
Steven Butler the current Executive Director moved the offices ofthe Institute of Current World Affairs to Washington, DC in 2007. In addition to Butler, the ICWA currently employs Ellen Kozak (Publications Director) and Jim Guy (Bookkeeper and Program Assistant).