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Robert E. and Gladys Wilson Bundy Papers

Call Number: RG 141

Scope and Contents

Early correspondence of Gladys Bundy (approximately 100 letters) consists mostly of letters to "family" (actually a courtesy family, the Pinkhams, with whom she had resided). These letters discuss political conditions around Wuchang as well as their daily life at Boone University, which was part of a four-way merger of mission schools forming Central China University in 1924. Riots in Wuchang forced the closing of Boone Middle School in June of 1925.

Upon their return to China in September of 1926, after a furlough, Gladys and Dorris went to Guling (Kuling) and Robert headed for Wuchang but was prevented from getting beyond Hankou (Hankow) because the siege of Wuchang by southern troops had begun on September 1. His letters to Gladys (Sep 3-Oct 7) describe the siege, discussing the role of missionaries like Dr. Wakefield, Bishop Gilman, and Mr. Kean in negotiations and Bundy's own involvement in getting supplies to the city and evacuating the inhabitants. Newspaper accounts, reports by other missionaries, and photographs also provide day by day documentation of this episode.

The Bundys were reunited in Wuchang on October 10th, 1926 and Gladys' letters describe the student attitudes, damage to the city, and new rules and regulations under southern rule. Included in Robert's correspondence is his statement supporting neutrality on the part of foreign missionaires in China's civil wars. (1926 Dec 23)

The remainder of the papers consists of scrapbooks of newspaper clippings, station reports, and other printed material about the political, economic, and social conditions in China from 1923-1937, and other miscellaneous items. A good portion of the material in the collection is directly related to the siege of Wuchang. There is only one letter from the Bundys' years in Tokyo, 1927-1929 in the original Correspondence series, but more in the Addendum that was added in 2001. The Addendum also includes writings and notes of Robert Bundy, journals, and personal items and memorabilia.


  • 1890-1983


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Paul and Catharine Ward.


  1. I. Correspondence, 1922-1983
  2. II. Writings, 1925, 1927, 1960
  3. III. Collected Material, 1909-1931
  4. IV. Addendum, 1924-1981


3 Linear Feet (6 boxes)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

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

Persistent URL


Letters, writings, and printed material document the missionary work of the Bundys as well as social and political events in China from 1923 to 1927. The 1926 siege of Wuchang is particularly well documented. Robert and Gladys Bundy were American Episcopal missionaries at Boone University, Wuchang, China from 1923 to 1927, and at St. Paul's University, Tokyo, Japan from 1927 to 1929.

Biographical / Historical

Robert Bundy was born in Bethel, Vermont. Robert and Gladys, both graduates of Middlebury College, were married in 1917. Prior to their misisonary work, Gladys taught in Barre, VT and in Puerto Rico and Robert was in business in Rochester, Vermont. Their daughter, Dorris, was adopted during their 1925-1926 furlough. Following their service in China and Japan, they returned to live in Bethel.

The Bundys served under the American Church Mission (Episcopal) at Boone University, Wuchang, China from 1923 to 1927 and at St. Paul's University, Ikebukuro, Tokyo, Japan from October 1927 to 1929.

Processing Information

Place names were modernized in the description, with the name originally used in the collection material or in an older version of the finding aid in parenthesis: e.g. “Beijing (Peking)” or “Benin (Dahomey)”.

Guide to the Robert E. and Gladys Wilson Bundy Papers
Compiled by Shari Laist and Martha Lund Smalley
1998 - 2001
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared According To Local Divinity Library Descriptive Practices
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Yale Divinity Library Repository

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