Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary
 

Miner Searle Bates papers, 1927 -- 1984

Summary Information

Abstract

Miner Searle Bates taught history at Nanking University 南京大學, was a member of the International Committee for Nanking Safety Zone in the Second Sino-Japanese War, and Professor of Missions at Union Theological Seminary, New York, 1950-1965. The collection contains papers, meeting minutes, articles, reports, and other publications collected or created by Bates regarding missions in 20th century China.

At a Glance

Bib ID 8634469 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Bates, M. Searle (Miner Searle), 1897-1978
Title Miner Searle Bates papers, 1927 -- 1984
Physical Description 0.25 linear feet (0.25 linear feet; 1 box)
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection is open for research.

Onsite storage.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in one series organized in rough chronological order.

Description

Scope and Contents

This collection contains papers, meeting minutes, articles, reports, and other publications collected or created by Bates regarding missions in 20th century China, most of which are connected to the research project on which he was working after his retirement (and which remained incomplete at the time of his death). The publication in folder 7 was an attempt to collect his notes and drafts from this project. The Hunan 湖南 Synod of the Church of Christ in China is well represented in the collection, as is Bates' experience in Nanjing 南京 in the late 1930s, dealing with the Japanese occupation. This collection also contains some provenance information and signature cards.

  • Miner Searle Bates papers, 1927 -- 1984

    This series contains papers, meeting minutes, articles, reports, and other publications collected or created by Bates regarding missions in 20th century China, most of which are connected to the research project on which he was working after his retirement (and which remained incomplete at the time of his death). The publication in folder 7 was an attempt to collect his notes and drafts from this project. The Hunan 湖南 Synod of the Church of Christ in China is well represented in the collection, as is Bates' experience in Nanjing 南京 in the late 1930s, dealing with the Japanese occupation. This series also contains some provenance information and signature cards.

General

Missionary Research Library Archives: MRL6, China

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, MRL6: Miner Searle Bates papers, 1927-1984, box #, folder #, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University in the City of New York.

Related Materials

MRL 6: National Christian Council of China records, 1919-1950, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University in the City of New York.

Miner Searle Bates Papers (RG 10), Special Collections, Yale Divinity School Library.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Processing Information

Metal clips and staples were removed from materials and folded items were flattened. 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. The finding aid was created by Gregory Adam Scott in 2010, reviewed and updated with unprocessed material by Brigette C. Kamsler in 2014 with the support of the Henry Luce Foundation, and edited by Leah Edelman in 2020.

Revision Description

2020-08-17 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"
Bates, M. Searle (Miner Searle), 1897-1978 -- : Archives Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
China -- Religious life and customs Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Missionaries -- China Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Missions -- China Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

Miner Searle Bates was born on May 28, 1897 in Newark, Ohio, and was the son of Miner Lee Bates, a Disciples of Christ minister who later became president of Hiram College. M.S. Bates received a Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford University, where he earned his A.B. and M.A. degrees. When the United States entered World War I, he volunteered with the YMCA and served in Mesopotamia. In 1920 he was commissioned by the United Christian Missionary Society to teach history at the University of Nanking in China. He married Lilliath Robbins, a teacher at Ginling College, in 1923, and received a Ph.D. in Chinese history from Yale University in 1935. At some point he began to use the Chinese name Bei Deshi 貝德士.

Bates was one of the key figures in the International Committee for the Nanking Safety Zone, which sought to protect Chinese from the Japanese soldiers who invaded and occupied the capital city in late 1937. He was appointed Vice President of Nanking University in January 1938 in order to enhance his standing with the Japanese and help his efforts to protect the Chinese. Bates remained in the city from 1937 to 1941, and after the war was summoned as a witness to the Tokyo War Crimes trials.

Bates was active in many missionary organizations, including the International Missionary Council, the China Council of Higher Education, the Nanking International Relief Committee, and the executive committee of the National Christian Council of China. From 1950 to 1965, Bates was Professor of Missions at Union Theological Seminary, New York, and after his retirement worked on a research project devoted to the history of Protestant missions in twentieth-century China. He died in 1978 in New York City.