Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Princeton University. Library. Special Collections
World War II Collection
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1 box and 0.2 linear feet
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Box 1


Consists of selected correspondence, manuscripts, and other material related to World War II.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

Consists of selected correspondence, manuscripts, and other material related to World War II. There are six items (1940-1942) from German General Erwin Rommel's correspondence file, including letters to Rommel from the chief adjutant in Berlin, a letter from Adolf Hitler, a letter from the Supreme Commander of the Fourth Army, and a certificate to Rommel from the Prussian Mining Academy, dated June 23, 1942. There is a group of papers and press releases related to "Operation Crossroads" and the Atom Bomb Tests at Bikini Lagoon on July 25, 1946. Thre is also material related to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), some labeled "Restricted," and its director William J. Donovan; there are communiqués from Donovan to the members of his group, directives, executive orders, and remarks at the farewell gathering of the OSS employees. Also included are photographs of Donovan, a map of Paris, and a printed booklet titled "Overseas Orders," the handbook for OSS Armed Forces personnel going overseas.

Collection Creator Biography:

World War II, or the Second World War was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including all of the great powers, organized into two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. The war involved the mobilization of over 100 million military personnel, making it the most widespread war in history. The start of the war is generally held to be September 1, 1939, with the German invasion of Poland and subsequent declarations of war on Germany by most of the countries in the British Empire and by France, and ending in 1945 in a victory for the Allies.

Collection History


Material of Erwin Rommel: Gift of Goerge A. Vondermhll in 1947 .

Material related to the Atomic Bomb: Gift of Allen Hartley on June 26, 1975 .

Material of William J. Donovan and the OSS: Gift of Mrs. John Bennett on August 24, 1926 .

Custodial History

The collection was formed as a result of a departmental practice of combining into one collection manuscript material of various accessions relating to a particular author.


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

Folder inventory added by Nicholas Williams '2015 in 2012.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

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:

World War II Collection; 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