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Henry Lewis Stimson papers

Call Number: MS 465
Scope and Contents

The papers consist of correspondence, letter books, speeches, articles, letters to the editor, statements prepared for presentation to Congress and substantial subject files with clippings, printed matter, reports, memoranda and photographs related to Henry Stimson's various public offices. While the official records of Stimson's service (as Secretary of War under President Taft, Secretary of State under Herbert Hoover and as Secretary of War in the cabinets of Presidents Roosevelt and Truman) are all in the National Archives, the substantial correspondence, as well as other papers, in this collection provide important records of his activities as a private citizen and in office and on special missions. His work in Latin America in helping to settle a dispute between Chile and Peru in 1926, and as the United States representative seeking to bring an end to a civil war in Nicaragua in 1927 is shown in the papers with first-hand reports and background material.

His service as Secretary of State under Hoover (1929-1933) is particularly well documented with memoranda of conversations with foreign diplomatic representatives, and briefing books presenting background information on foreign affairs for the period. Of major importance are Stimson's diaries which span the years 1904-1945, covering the entire period of his public career and including references to the early stages of the development of the atom bomb.

Extensive family papers include the correspondence (1846-1966) of Stimson's parents, sister, and other relatives. In his father's papers are a series of diaries (1864-1916). There is also a collection of letters by Stimson to his wife and to other family members.

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Series I-IX and Series XIV are available on microfilm. Patrons must use FILM HM 51 instead of Series XIV and FILM HM 52 instead of Series I-IX.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by Henry Lewis Stimson has been transferred to Yale University. These materials may be used for non-commercial purposes without seeking permission from Yale University as the copyright holder. For other uses of these materials, please contact

Copyright status for other 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 Henry L. Stimson, 1948. Gift of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, 2009. Gift of Marcia Lahner-Lafemina, 2019.


Arranged in fourteen series and two additions: I. Correspondence. II. Memoranda, Minutes of Meetings. III. Speeches, Writings, Statements. IV. Special Subjects. V. Family Papers. VI. Selected Documents of the State Department. VII. Trips to Europe. VIII. Correspondence, Speeches, and Writings of Others. IX. Office of the Secretary of War. X. Printed Matter. XI. Newspaper Clippings. XII. Business, Financial, and Legal Papers. XIII. Photographs. XIV. Diaries.

148.75 Linear Feet (368 boxes)
Related Names
Stimson, Henry L. (Henry Lewis), 1867-1950
Language of Materials