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Subseries 1, Director-General's Papers, 1934-1991
Collection Description & Creator Information
- Scope and Contents
Series 1: International Labour Organisation Files, Subseries 1: Director-General's Papers (1934-1991) consists of a variety of material, including letters, memoranda, articles, booklets, and reports, relating to the ILO. Though this material both predates and postdates Morse's tenure as Director-General, illustrating his long association with the ILO, it is primarily concerned with his years in office. The material in this subseries represents only a fraction of the documentation which passed through Morse's hands in the course of his long sojourn in Geneva, but its selectiveness imbues it with a distinctly personal quality. Much of this material consists of items which were highly important to Morse, though in many cases, matters of policy were not involved. There are numerous messages of congratulation on the occasions of his multiple elections to the post of Director-General. Also Pope Paul VI's visit to the headquarters of the ILO and the conferral on the ILO of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969 are well-documented, for both were of great symbolic significance to Morse.
Also preserved, though not for celebratory purposes, are a number of revealing memoranda of meetings between Morse and prominent figures of his day. These include a discussion with Vincent Auriol in 1948 in which the President of France took exception to the American media's calls for "a strong man" in the Elysee Palace, a heated discussion with George Meany in 1963 in which the head of the AFL-CIO accused Morse of being soft on communism, and a discussion with Adlai Stevenson within a week of his death in 1965 in which the two-time Democratic presidential candidate voiced his dissatisfaction with the Johnson administration's policies in Vietnam and the Dominican Republic. Of particular interest, too, are a pair of memoranda recording Morse's discussions with representatives of the Soviet Union and the United States in 1970 on the contentious matter of the appointment of a Soviet Assistant Director-General. Morse's diplomatic skills are evident and, in particular, his ability to prolong a process whose resolution could (and ultimately did) have negative consequences for the ILO. Other insights offered by these documents relate to the international "jockeying and politicking" (to use Morse's words), which can precede the election of the head of an organization such as the ILO; the implications of domestic politics and, specifically, McCarthyism, for international civil servants of American nationality; and Morse's relationship with his staff as manifested in his correspondence with two pivotal subordinates: Jef Rens, his second in command in Geneva, and Thacher Winslow, head of the ILO's office in Washington, D.C.
Arranged alphabetically by correspondent or topic.
Duplicates were separated from the April 2008 accession. No information about appraisal is available for the other accessions associated with this collection.
These papers were processed with the generous support of Mildred H. Morse, wife of the late David A. Morse, and the John Foster and Janet Avery Dulles Fund.
- Processing Information
This collection was arranged and described by John S. Weeren with the able assistance of Fifi Chan and Tina Wang in 1995. Mildred Morse provided invaluable help in identifying photographs and contextualizing portions of this material. Additions received since 1995 were integrated into the collection by Adriane Hanson in 2008. Finding aid written by John S. Weeren in 1995. A subsequent accession in March 2011 was added to the collection as its own series, and the finding aid was updated at this time.
Access & Use
- Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open for research use.
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- Credit this material:
Subseries 1, Director-General's Papers; David A. Morse Papers, MC097, Public Policy Papers, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library
- Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library65 Olden StreetPrinceton, NJ 08540, USA
- Storage Note:
- Mudd Manuscript Library (mudd): Box 1-14
- Existence and Location of Copies
Portions of the Morse Papers are available on microfilm. These are Series 1 (Subseries 1), Series 2 (Subseries 1 to 5), and Series 3. Search for "Selections from the David A. Morse papers [microform]" in library catalog.
- United States. Freedom of Information Act.
Council on foreign relations
World Rehabilitation Fund.
United Nations association of the United States of America
United Nations. Development Programme.
United States. Army
United States. Department of Labor
United States. National Labor Relations Board
International Labour Organisation
Acheson, Dean, 1893-1971.
Brezhnev, Leonid Ilʹich, 1906-1982
Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969
Hammarskjøld, Dag 1905-1961
Harriman, W. Averell (William Averell), 1891-1986
Hoffman, Paul G. (Paul Gray), 1891-1974
Jenks, C. Wilfred (Clarence Wilfred), 1900-1973
Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973
Lilienthal, David Eli, 1899-1981
Marshall, George C. (George Catlett), 1880-1959
Meaney, George, 1894-1980
Morse, David A. (David Abner), 1907-1990
Paul VI, Pope, 1897-1978
Senghor, Léopold Sédar, 1906-2001
Stevenson, Adlai E. (Adlai Ewing), 1900-1965
Thant, U, 1909-1974.
Truman, Harry S., 1884-1972.