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James William Fesler papers

Call Number: MS 207

Scope and Contents

The original 1965 accession covers the period from 1941 to 1956, and is related mainly to the work of James William Fesler while he served on the War Production Board as Assistant to the Executive Secretary from 1941 to 1943, Chief of the Policy Analysis and Records Branch from 1943 to 1945, and War Production Board Historian from 1945 to 1946. During this period, James Fesler was in close contact with the United States War Production Program. His papers are contained in five manuscript boxes, three of which are correspondence. In addition to correspondence between various War Production officials and other government officials, these three boxes contain memoranda, press releases, and the minutes of War Production Board meetings. The two remaining boxes pertain to the War Production Board and include confidential reports, miscellaneous material, reports from other government agencies, miscellaneous notes of James Fesler, writings of Fesler and others concerning war production, charts, photographs, printed material on war production, and the War Production Board History Project.

Later additions to the papers document Fesler's participation on the committees of various academic organizations, particularly the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) and the American Political Science Association, his activities as a professor of political science at Yale University and his service on commissions appointed by the state of Connecticut, the United States government and the United Nations. Included are the papers of the Committee on Europe of the Comparative Administration Group of the ASPA, correspondence of the Connecticut Committee on the Structure of State Government (Files Committee), files on various Yale administrative and faculty committees and the United Nations group on Administrative Decentralization for Development (1961). Also papers relating to various United States government commissions (1936-1967) working on administrative reorganization of the federal government.


  • 1918-1991


Conditions Governing Access

Accession 1988-M-041, Box 5 (letters of recommendation) is restricted until January 1, 2055 as established by Yale Corporation regulations.

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 James W. Fesler, 1965-1995, 2004.


24.75 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

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

Persistent URL


The papers consist of correspondence, writings, reports, memoranda, research material, clippings and photographs documenting the activities of James W. Fesler, as professor of political science at Yale University, as a participant in professional associations, and as a consultant on commissions appointed by the state of Connecticut, the United States government and the United Nations. His papers on the activities of the War Production Board (1941-1946) are particularly full and include correspondence, reports, charts and photographs.

Biographical / Historical

James W. Fesler was assistant to the executive secretary, War Production Board from 1941-1943, and chief of the Policy Analysis and Records Branch from 1943-1945. He served as historian of the War Production Board from 1945-1946. From 1935-1951, Fesler taught political science at the University of North Carolina, and from 1951-1979 he was a member of the department of political science at Yale University. He was also a visiting professor at the University of Minnesota and the University of California at Berkeley.

Guide to the James William Fesler Papers
Under Revision
compiled by Staff of Manuscripts and Archives
September 1982
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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