Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary
 

Church World Service records, 1925 -- 1969

Summary Information

Abstract

The Church World Service (CWS) was founded in 1946, merging three pre-existing organizations, and continues to provide aid and support worldwide after merging with the National Council of Churches in 1965. The collection contains administrative material, including meeting minutes, by laws, reports, and financial papers; publications, including newsletters, published and unpublished articles, promotional materials, reports, and correspondence; as well as personal stories from those who worked for CWS.

At a Glance

Bib ID 4492691 View CLIO record
Creator(s) National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Church World Service
Title Church World Service records, 1925 -- 1969
Physical Description 1.75 linear feet (1.75 linear feet; 5 boxes)
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection is open for research.

Onsite storage.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in three series: Administrative records; Publications; and Personal accounts.

Description

Scope and Contents

This collection contains administrative material, including meeting minutes, by laws, reports, and financial papers; publications, including newsletters, published and unpublished articles, promotional materials, reports, and correspondence; as well as personal stories from those who worked for CWS.

  • Series 1: Administrative records, 1925 -- 1950

    This series contains administrative material of CWS, including meeting minutes, by laws, reports, and financial papers.

  • Series 2: Publications, 1937 -- 1969

    This series contains newsletters, articles before they were published along with their published counterparts, posters, flyers, brochures and pamphlets, and general materials that were used to help market the Organization's goals and programs. This series also contains information about the Displaced Persons Program and One Great Hour of Sharing. Also included are official letters that were sent by the CWS leaders along with some confidential reports that were to remain unpublished.

  • Series 3: Personal accounts, 1946 -- 1951

    This series contains personal stories from those who worked for CWS and their experiences of helping those who needed aid. Members of note include Abbe Livingston Warnshuis, who was Executive Vice President. The accounts originate from various locations in Europe and Asia.

Burke Library record group:

William Adams Brown Ecumenical Library Archives

Using the Collection

Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Onsite storage.

Conditions Governing Use

Some material in this collection may be protected by copyright and other rights. Information concerning copyright, fair use, and reproduction requests can be consulted at Columbia's Copyright Advisory Office.

Preferred Citation

Item description, WAB: Church World Service records, 1925-1969, series #, box #, folder #, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University in the City of New York.

Related Materials

Records of the Church World Service, 1946-1992 (inclusive). HR1128. Special Collections, Yale Divinity School Library.

Church World Service Records, RG 529, Presbyterian Historical Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Custodial History

The papers are part of the William Adams Brown Ecumenical Library Archives, which was founded in 1945 by the Union Theological Seminary Board of Directors.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The exact provenance of this collection is unknown.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Processing Information

Material was cataloged by Lynn A. Grove on 1988-08-05. Metal clips and staples were removed from materials and folded items were flattened. Metal staples were left in some items to prevent document(s) from tearing. Materials were placed in new acid-free folders and boxes. Acidic items were separated from one another by interleaving with acid-free paper as needed. Some articles were kept together with glue and/or tape; they were not separated to prevent damage(s) to the documents. The finding aid was created by Fatoma Rad and Brigette C. Kamsler in 2013 with the support of the Henry Luce Foundation, and edited by Leah Edelman in 2021.

Revision Description

2021-11-05 PDF converted to EAD and description updated by Leah Edelman.

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.

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Christian union -- Societies, etc Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

The Church World Service (CWS) was founded in 1946, with a mission of "Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, heal the sick, comfort the aged, shelter the homeless." It merged three preexisting groups: the Church Committee for China Relief, the Church Committee for Relief in Asia, and the Church Committee for Overseas Relief and Reconstruction. A total of seventeen denominations, both Catholic and Protestant, formed CWS in order to provide aid such as food, clothing and medical supplies to those affected by World War Two. Successful programs included the Immigration and Refugee Program, Christian Rural Overseas Program and One Great Hour of Sharing, which still exist today. In the 1950s and 1960s, CWS expanded from Europe and Asia to assistance in Africa and Latin America. It was also during the 1960s that the organization began to provide funds for development along with pre-existing emergency aid. In 1965, CWS merged with the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States: Division of Overseas Ministries. Aside from their help to overseas, in 1970 CWS began serving the United States during disaster. Much of CWS's success is due to partnerships, some of which have separated to create other organizations such as the Middle East Council of Churches, the Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh or CEPAD in Nicaragua. CWS is still active in over thirty countries. The National Council of Churches considers it a sister agency.

External users and Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at RBML. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at Avery, Starr, and Burke. After clicking 'Submit Request', users will login with their UNI and password (Columbia affiliates) or their special collections account (external users). Appointments are required and will be arranged according to each individual repository's policy.


Series 1: Administrative records, 1925 -- 1950

This series is open for research.

0.75 linear feet; 0.75 linear feet; 2 boxes

This series contains administrative material of CWS, including meeting minutes, by laws, reports, and financial papers.

This series is unarranged.



Box 1 Folder 1 By-Laws and Historical Information, 1946


Box 1 Folder 2-4 Minutes, 1945 -- 1950


Box 1 Folder 5 Japan, Korea, Okinawa Committee Meeting Minutes, 1947 -- 1948


Box 1 Folder 6 South East Asia Committee and India Sub-Committee Meeting Minutes, 1947 -- 1948


Box 1 Folder 7 Annual Meeting, 1949-02-16


Box 1 Folder 8-9 Monthly Reports, 1946 -- 1947


Box 1 Folder 10 Treasury Reports, 1946 -- 1947



Box 2 Folder 1 Summary of Aid Shipped and Received, 1945 -- 1947


Box 2 Folder 2 Committee Reports and Briefings, 1946 -- 1947


Box 2 Folder 3 Reports by Country, 1945 -- 1947


Box 2 Folder 4 Reports and Correspondence, 1925 -- 1949

Series 2: Publications, 1937 -- 1969

This series is open for research.

0.75 linear feet; 0.75 linear feet; 2 boxes

This series contains newsletters, articles before they were published along with their published counterparts, posters, flyers, brochures and pamphlets, and general materials that were used to help market the Organization's goals and programs. This series also contains information about the Displaced Persons Program and One Great Hour of Sharing. Also included are official letters that were sent by the CWS leaders along with some confidential reports that were to remain unpublished.

This series is unarranged.



Box 3 Folder 1-5 Material to be published, 1937 -- 1951


Box 3 Folder 6 News release, 1949


Box 3 Folder 7 Confidential reports, 1947


Box 3 Folder 8-9 Addresses, 1946 -- 1951


Box 3 Folder 10 Church World Service News, 1946 -- 1949



Box 4 Folder 1 Brochures, Pamphlets, Information Sheets, 1944 -- 1950


Box 4 Folder 2 Church World Service News and Other Newsletters, 1943 -- 1950


Box 4 Folder 3 Programs and Events, 1947 -- 1950


Box 4 Folder 4 Displaced Persons Program, 1946 -- 1950


Box 4 Folder 5 Collaborative Organization Publications: Interchurch Newsletter, 1969


Box 4 Folder 6 Posters, circa 1940 -- 1949

Series 3: Personal accounts, 1946 -- 1951

This series is open for research.

0.25 linear feet; 0.25 linear feet; 1 box

This series contains personal stories from those who worked for CWS and their experiences of helping those who needed aid. Members of note include Abbe Livingston Warnshuis, who was Executive Vice President. The accounts originate from various locations in Europe and Asia.

This series is arranged in rough chronological order.



Box 5 Folder 1-4 Personal stories, 1946 -- 1951


Box 5 Folder 5 Letters of gratitude, 1950


Box 5 Folder 6 Pleas from countries, 1946 -- 1948