Records of the Department of State Relating to Political Relations between China and Japan 1930-1944

We are pleased to announce the release of our collection of archives from the Department of State on political relations between China and Japan from 1933 to 1944. The collection is accessible in searchable text format on Bibliothèque Numérique Asiatique [Asia Digital Library]. The original collection of microfilms was purchased from NARA in the mid-1990s and remained accessible only through in situ consultation at the Lyon Institute of East Asian Studies (IAO). In the past two years, we launched a program of digitization in collaboration with Prof. Jiang Jie at Shanghai Normal University. After the completion of the digitization process, the ENP-China team took up the task of turning the high-resolution TIFF images into searchable PDF documents. The curation of the digital collection was placed under the responsibility of Feng Yi (IrAsia, CNRS).

The collection is not complete due to selective purchase at the time for research purposes. While the full collection contains 96 rolls, the present collection includes 69 rolls (1-63, 89-94). The documents — one set of documents per roll — can be read on line or they can be downloaded for free. There is no restriction on the use of these materials. We provide a search engine for the online version that will list all the pages in a document that contains the queried string of characters. It is very handy to navigate through the documents. Each roll represents on average some 900-1,100 pages or more than 70,000 pages for the whole collection. To retrieve the collection, type “Records of the Department of State” in the search field.

The records are mostly instructions to and despatches from United States diplomatic and consular officials, and the despatches are often accompanied by enclosures. Also included are notes between the Department of State and foreign diplomatic representatives in the United States, memoranda prepared by officials of the State Department, and correspondence with other government officials, and with private firms and individuals.


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