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Religion: Missions in Africa, Asia and Latin America

Religion Research Guide

Asia

Collectanea Commissionis Synodales, Peking, 1928-1947
Microfiche 1481
Printed guide: BX1665.C382
This collection reproduces a periodical for Catholic priest and missionaries in China, published by the Synodal Commission of the Catholic Church in Peking. The material is written in Latin, French and English. The originals are held in the Maryknoll Library.
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary.

Korean Mission Records
"The Korean Mission was set up in 1889 as an Anglican mission agency, funded by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel and various other donations. The records of this Anglican mission, covering 1889-1987, are an invaluable resource for the study of Korean history and life in the twentieth century." See http://www.adam-matthew-publications.co.uk/digital_guides/ korean_mission_records_parts_1_and_2/Contents.aspx

Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. Japan Mission Secretaries' Files
8 reels
Available at the Princeton Theological Seminary.
This collection documents the educational and evangelistic work of the Presbyterian church in Japan from 1879-1950. Included are annual personal, institutional and station reports which reflect the activities of the mission and the personnel associated with it.

The Chinese Recorder and the Protestant Missionary Community in China, 1867-1941 Archives Unbound
"In 1867, in an effort to keep their colleagues informed about their activities, the Protestant missionaries began the Missionary Recorder at the Methodist Press in Foochow. It would be issued continually for the next sixty-seven years. During its long run, somewhat remarkable for any publication begun in the nineteenth century-not to mention one published in English in China-the Chinese Recorder covered such diverse topics as the beginnings of mission schools; the Boxer Rebellion; the crusade against opium; the ecumenical missionary conferences of 1877, 1890, and 1907; the 1911 Revolution; the growth of the Chinese church; and the rise of communism in China."

Latin America

Early Printed Books on Religion from Colonial Spanish America 1543/44-c1800
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Printed works from colonial Spanish America, including doctrinal and devotional works, confessionals, hymnals and saints' lives. Based on the British Library collection. Most material is from Mexico and Peru. 1,038 microfiche.

FBI file on the American churchwomen killed in El Salvador, December 2, 1980 [microform]
Microfilm 06992
2 reels
Printed guide: Firestone Microforms HV6535.E48 F34
The file consists of information on the 1980 murder of four churchwomen in El Salvador and the subsequent investigations and meetings. There are meeting minutes, notes, newspaper clippings, memos and legal documents.

History of Religiosity in Latin America c1830-1970
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Based on the collection of CIDOC Library of Cuernavaca, Mexico, of material from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that "reflect local devotions and syncretist rituals, religious iconography and poetry, and the pastoral campaigns of the various churches and sects." 46,786 microfiche.

South American Missionary Society records, 1844-1919
"Includes most of the material held in the SAMS archives for the period up to 1919. When originally founded in 1844, this Church of England-affiliated organisation was called the Patagonian Mission. This collection reproduces the minute books, reports from the mission field, articles and photographs on the geography, anthropology, natural history and economic development for the society's magazine, launched in 1867, as well as the journals of its Anglican founder, Captain Allen Gardiner, and two others of its missionaries, Edward Bernau and Adolfo Henriksen."

Africa

Early colonial and missionary records from West Africa
British Online Archives

"This resource comprises selected documents from a number of different microfilm collections, including: early Gold Coast records from the archives of the USPG; the papers of Thomas Perronet Thompson, the first Governor of the Colony of Sierra Leone; An account of two missionary voyages by Rev. Thomas Thompson; the letters of Rev. Philip Quaque, etc."

Major organizations

Global Missions and Theology Archives Unbound
"This collection documents the broad range of Nineteenth Century religious missionary activities, practices and thought in the United States by reproducing pivotal personal narratives, organizational records, and biographies of the essential leaders, simple missionaries, and churches. This collection includes materials on missionary activities among Native Americans and African Americans, both slaves and freedmen. In addition, it highlights activities in far-flung regions and countries, such as Africa, Fiji and Sandwich Islands, India, China, Southeast Asia, Japan, and Hawaii."

Presbyterian Board of Foreign Missions, 1833-1911 [microform]
Microfilm 10566
87 reels
Printed guide: uncataloged (shelved at end of FilmB)
This collection comprises correspondence, reports and miscellanea to and from the Board of Foreign Missions of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S. A. Princeton University holds only selected reels from this collection, including the material on Africa, but Princeton Theological Seminary holds the entire collection. See http://gale.cengage.com/psm/guides.htm for an online guide.

Regions Beyond Missionary Union: Papers of the RBMU concerning the Congo, India, Nepal and Peru from the Centre for the Study of Christianity in the Non-Western World, New College, University of Edinburgh
Princeton Theological Seminary
"The Regions Beyond Missionary Union (RBMU) dates back to 1873 and Henry Grattan Guiness's pioneering missionary work in the East End of London. It was committed to working among the poor regions peripheral to and beyond the British Empire and established its own missions in the Congo (1878), Peru (1897), and in Bihar and Orissa, India (1899). Later missions were established in Kalimantan (Borneo) (1948), Nepal (1954), and Irian Jaya (1957)." Covers 1893-1990. See http://www.adam-matthew-publications.co.uk/digital_guides/regions_beyond_ missionary_union_parts_1_to_5/Contents.aspx

United Society for Christian Literature archives
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary
"Minutes, correspondence, annual reports, clippings, books, tracts, newsletters, leaflets, booklets, educational aids, periodicals, and printed matter relating to the activities of the Christian societies operating in Britain, the British colonies, and the continent of Europe (from 1799 to 1960) and which would later form the United Society for Christian Literature." 3,656 fiche

Church Missionary Society archive
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. Also available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
See http://www.adam-matthew-publications.co.uk/digital_guides/church_missionary_society_ archive_general/index.aspx. There are more detailed guides for the individual parts at http://www.adam-matthew-publications.co.uk/digital_guides/c.aspx

Methodist Missionary Society archives, 1791-1948
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries.
"Minutes, correspondence, reports, finance ledgers, journals, diaries, and papers relating chiefly to the activities of the Wesleyan Methodist Missionary Society (incorporating the Women's Work organization and the Primitive Methodist Missionary Society) in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, the Caribbean, and North America. The period covered is 1791-1948. Includes extensive material on Thomas Coke (1747-1814), founder of the Methodist missions and Wesley's right-hand man."

Paris Evangelical Missionary Society Archives 1822-1935
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
"Correspondence, minutes, reports, budgets, statistics, articles, documents, and notes relating to the activities of the SMEP (known in English as the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society) in Africa and Oceania during the period 1822-1947." 5,982 microfiche.

World Student Christian Federation Archives 1895-1925
Available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
"The WSCF was created in 1895 to encourage and coordinate the work of existing national student Christian movements and to stimulate the formation of unified student movements in countries where they did not yet exist. This collection represents the Correspondence and History sections of the Archive including letters from John R. Mott, William Temple and W.A. Visser 't Hooft." 2,138 microfiche

International Missionary Council and the Conference of British Missionary Societies archives: Africa and India, 1910-1945
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. The complete collection is also available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
"The International Missionary Council (IMC) emerged from the world missionary conference held at Edinburgh in 1910 and was officially established in 1921. It linked 14 interdenominational associations of missionary societies with some 16 field bodies."  2,336 fiche

Council for World Mission. Archives, 1775-1940
Available through interlibrary loan from the Center for Research Libraries. Also available at Princeton Theological Seminary.
"These are the records of the London Missionary Society and the Commonwealth Missionary Society (which later merged to become the Congregational Council for World Mission)." Arranged geographically; covers Southern and Central Africa, China, India, Madagascar and the Pacific. 23,398 fiche

Archives of the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel [microform]
At Princeton Theological Seminary.
Set includes SPG and East Asia, SPG and Southeast Asia, SPG and the West Indies and Latin America, SPG and the Middle East and North Africa, and SPG and Australasia. See also British Online Archives:

  • Journal, annual sermons and reports of the SPG, 1701-1870
  • American material in the archives of the USPG, 1635-1812
  • Australian records in the USPG archive
  • Early colonial and missionary records from West Africa
  • New Zealand & Polynesian records in the USPG archive
  • South African archives of the USPG
  • South Asian records of the USPG
  • West Indies material in the archives of the USPG, 1710-1950
  • Records of the Committee on Women's Work, 1861-1967

South American Missionary Society records, 1844-1919 British Online Archives "Includes most of the material held in the SAMS archives for the period up to 1919. When originally founded in 1844, this Church of England-affiliated organisation was called the Patagonian Mission. This collection reproduces the minute books, reports from the mission field, articles and photographs on the geography, anthropology, natural history and economic development for the society's magazine, launched in 1867, as well as the journals of its Anglican founder, Captain Allen Gardiner, and two others of its missionaries, Edward Bernau and Adolfo Henriksen."