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Collection Overview

Henderson, F. P.
United Nations Mission to Palestine
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1 box and 0.2 linear feet
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Box 1


Consists of a memorandum and typed copies of the "Summaries of the Daily Operations" of the United Nations Mission Mediator to Palestine in 1948-1949, ordered and here compiled by F. P. Henderson, the head of the U.N. operations branch in Haifa, Israel.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of a memorandum and typed copies of the "Summaries of the Daily Operations" of the United Nations Mission Mediator to Palestine in 1948-1949. These daily operations summaries were initiated by Henderson who had arrived at the Mission Headquarters in Haifa, Palestine, one week after September 17, 1948, the day Count Folke Bernadotte, first U.N. Mediator, was assassinated in Jerusalem. Dr. Ralph Bunche was named Acting Mediator following Bernadotte during this "Truce" period. In his memorandum, Henderson explains that it was the lack of communication between the U.N. Headquarters and its field agencies, and the total absence of any kind of documentation with regards to the activities of all the parties involved in the conflict (including Jerusalem, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and Jordan), which prompted him to order the implementation of the daily procedure of record collecting. These records were meant to be a documentation of all the activities and violations of the Truce or Mediator's decisions as a basis for later armistice or peace negotiations, or for an historical record of the conflict and the U.N.'s first attempt to stop a conflict and re-store peace. There are 145 summaries, typed in both English and French, dating from September 29, 1948, to February 24, 1949 -- all sent from the U.N.'s Mediator's Headquarters Advance Command Post in Haifa, addressed to "All SUNMO's" (Senior United Nations Military Observers). Also included are two maps of North and South Palestine from 1946 and 1947 taped together, which are also autographed by Henderson, and clippings of several political cartoons.

Also included are two maps of North and South Palestine from 1946 and 1947 taped together and autographed by Henderson, and newspaper clippings of political cartoons, some from The New York Times from 1956 and 1959.


Folders arranged in chronological order, with the forlders for the map and the cartoons being in the end.

Collection Creator Biography:

Henderson, F. P.

The United Nations General Assembly convened its first special session from 28 April to 15 May 1947 to consider the problem of Palestine. The Assembly established the Special Committee on Palestine and asked it to prepare a report and propose a solution for the problem. The Committee recommended the partition of Palestine into two states with special international status for Jerusalem. The Security Council adopted the resolution and called for an immediate truce. On May 14,1948, the Assembly adopted a resolution which affirmed its support for the efforts of the Security Council to secure a truce, and appointed a U.N. Mediator in Palestine, Count Folke Bernadotte of Sweden. However, also on the same day, a Jewish state, Israel, was proclaimed, and war broke out, with several Arab armies becoming engaged. On May 22, 1948, the Security Council called for a stop to all military action and for all the parties to facilitate the task of the U.N. Mediator. The Council instructed the Mediator and the Truce Commission to supervise the observance of these provisions and decided to provide them with a sufficient number of military observers. The observers formed the basis of what later became the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization. The Security Council issued truce directives, ordering an immediate and unconditional cease-fire and the demilitarization of the city of Jerusalem. On September 17, 1948, the Security Council was shocked after learning of the assassination of the U.N. Mediator, Count Bernadotte. He was then replaced by Dr. Ralph J. Bunche.

Collection History


Gift of Brig. Gen. F. P. Henderson, on June 14, 1970 .

AM 20344.


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

Folder inventory added by Nicholas Williams '2015 in 2012.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

United Nations Mission to Palestine; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Box 1