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Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven records

Call Number: MS 1268

Scope and Contents

The Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven, founded in 1904, was an organization whose goal it was to promote French-American relations. The Records consist of two boxes of correspondence, brochures, programs, bills and receipts, minutes of meetings, and other official records that document the life of the organization from 1904 to the mid-1930s. Folders 1-19 contain correspondence, arranged chronologically, and folders 20-38 contain other papers arranged alphabetically and then chronologically. The records were donated to Yale University by Mrs. Elizabeth Lyman in December 1982.

The Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven was a chapter of a national organization, Fédération de l'Alliance Françaiseaux États-Unis. Much of the correspondence is routine in nature and most of the letters were written by officers of the national Fédération, by possible speakers for the Alliance Française, and officials of war relief agencies to the secretaries of the New Haven Alliance, John I. H. Downes, Katharine W. Carmalt, Grace Brooks, and A. Eleanor Barnum. Major correspondents include officials of the national Federation, George Lamouret, Louis Delamare, Felix Weil, Abigail B Hagarty, Roger Sherman, and T. Tileston Wells; presidents of the local chapter, Robert L. Sanderson, George C. Clarke, and George Henry Nettleton; and lecturers such as Frances Wilson Huard, Paul Leyssac, Jean Gauthier, and P. Van den Ven. Mr. Van den Ven, for example, discussed "La Situation Actuelle en Belique occupée" at the Janaury 29, 1917 meeting of Alliance Française.

Much of the correspondence during and after World War I concerns French and Belgian war relief. The local Alliance Française chapter channelled and coordinated the relief work for the "Secours National" of France, the Fatherless Children of France, American Committee for Training in Suitable Trades the Maimed Soldiers of France, the Committee for Men Blinded in Battle, and the Commission for Relief in Belgium.

Following the correspondence are found nineteen folders of alphabetically arranged papers from bank statements and bills and receipts to printed material and stationery. Folder 30 contains copies of the 1904 constitution of Alliance Française; folder 31 copies of L'Echo de la Fédération, the official newsletter of the national Fédération; folder 32 contains membership lists; and folders 33-34 have reports of meetings, lists of members, plus annual secretary and treasurer's reports.

Over eighty percent of Alliance members were female and membership in the organization was largely confined to prestigious New Haven and Yale families. The Alliance Française seemed most vital and active in the World War I era, when France and Belgium were suffering under the onslaughts of the German war machine.


  • 1907-1944


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright status for collection materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Elizabeth Lyman, 1982.


0.75 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


Correspondence, records and printed material of Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven. Correspondents include local officers of Alliance Française, officials of the national Fédération de l'Alliance Française aux États-Unis, and potential lecturers.

Biographical / Historical

The Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven was a chapter of a national organization, Fédération de l'Alliance Française aux États-Unis, whose goal was to promote French-American relations.

Guide to the Alliance Française Groupe de New Haven Records
Under Revision
compiled by Bruce P. Stark
June 1983
Description rules
Finding Aid Created In Accordance With Manuscripts And Archives Processing Manual
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Manuscripts and Archives Repository

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