Guide to Federal Records

Records of the U.S. Grain Corporation [USGC]


(Record Group 5)
1906-37 (bulk 1917-20)

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents

  • 5.1 Administrative History
  • 5.2 Records of the Headquarters Organization 1906-37 (bulk 1917-20)
    • 5.2.1 General records
    • 5.2.2 Records of USGC officers
    • 5.2.3 Records of operating units
  • 5.3 Records of Zone Agencies 1917-20
  • 5.4 Records of European Offices 1918-21
    • 5.4.1 Records of the London Office
    • 5.4.2 Records of USGC and American Relief Administration offices
    • 5.4.3 Records of food missions
  • 5.5 Records of the U.S. Wheat Director 1917-20
  • 5.6 Cartographic Records (General)
  • 5.7 Still Pictures (General)

5.1 Administrative History

Established: As an independent agency, effective July 1, 1919, pursuant to EO 3087, May 14, 1919.

Predecessor Agencies: Food Administration Grain Corporation (1917-19)

Functions: Regulated grain trade by purchasing, storing, and selling grain and grain products; and by controlling, in cooperation with the War Trade Board, grain imports and exports. Served as purchasing agent for the Commission for Relief in Belgium, 1918-19; fiscal and purchasing agent for the American Relief Administration, 1919; and fiscal agent for the Purchasing Commission for Russian Relief, 1921-22.

Abolished: By EO 4791, December 31, 1927.

Finding Aids: Philip R. Ward and Carolyn K. Fagen, comps., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the United States Grain Corporation," NC 143 (June 1966).

Related Records: Some materials of the Wheat Director and of Grain Corporation officials, and most of the papers of the American Relief Administration and the Commission for Relief in Belgium, are in the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University. Additional materials of the American Relief Administration and the Commission for Relief in Belgium are in Hoover Library.

Subject Access Terms: World War I agency.

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5.2 Records of the Headquarters Organization
1906-37 (bulk 1917-20)

History: Food Administration Grain Corporation established by Food Administrator Herbert Hoover under authority of EO 2681, August 14, 1917. Became U.S. Grain Corporation, 1919. Worked with U.S. Food Administration's Coordination of Purchase, Cereal, Milling, and Enforcement Divisions, the Food Administrator serving as Chairman of the USGC Board of Directors and the Chief of the Cereal Division as USGC President, 1917-18. Headquartered in New York, NY, with zone offices (SEE 5.3) located in cities with major wheat terminals. European headquarters (SEE 5.4.1) located in London, England. SEE 5.1.

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5.2.1 General records

Textual Records: General correspondence, 1917-18. Correspondence with zone agents, 1917-19, with index, 1917-18. Correspondence concerning the audit of USGC zone agencies by the firm of Leslie, Banks & Co., 1920. Records created by the Department of Commerce as archival agent for the USGC, including claims correspondence, 1928-32, and correspondence and other records relating to U.S. Food Administration personnel, 1930-37.

Maps (18 items):Famine areas in Europe; Allied Powers, Central Powers, areas controlled or captured by each, and neutral areas; and activities of the American Relief Administration, 1918-19.

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5.2.2 Records of USGC officers

Textual Records: Records of the Offices of President, First and Second Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Comptroller, and Office Manager, including correspondence, 1917-20; fiscal reports, 1917-27; zone agency issuances, 1917-20; transcripts of meetings and conferences with grain trade representatives, 1917- 20; and cablegrams, bulletins, reports, and other records of or relating to the American Relief Administration, 1919-23, and the Purchasing Commission for Russian Relief, 1921-23.

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5.2.3 Records of operating units

Textual Records: General correspondence; statistical, financial, commodity, export, and shipment reports; ledgers; and other records of the Statistical Department, 1906-20; Accounting Department, 1917-27; Cashier's Department, 1917-20; Offices of the Crop Experts, 1917-20; Grain Threshing Division, 1918-19; Transportation Department, 1918-19; Mill Schedule Department, 1918; Bureau of Information, 1917-20; Wheat Department, 1917-20; Flour Department, 1917-20; Expeditionary Flour Department, 1918- 19; Cereal Department, 1918; Coarse Grain Department, 1918-19; Bean Division, 1918-19; Miscellaneous Commodities Department, 1918-19; and European Department, 1918-20. Records of the USGC London Office (in New York), 1918-21. Records of the New York and Washington offices of the USGC in Dissolution, 1917-28.

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5.3 Records of Zone Agencies
1917-20

History: The United States was divided administratively into 14 grain zones, with a vice president in charge of each zone and offices in important grain terminals and seaboard markets.

Textual Records: General correspondence and subject file of the Baltimore Agency, 1917-19 (in Philadelphia). Records of the Minneapolis Agency, including records of the Inspection Department and Accounting and Cash Grain Department, 1918-20 (in Chicago). Issuances and other records of the Kansas City Agency, 1917-20 (in Kansas City). Letters sent and received by the Salt Lake City Office, Kansas City Agency, 1918-20 (in Denver). Correspondence of the New Orleans Agency, 1918-20. Correspondence of farmers' cooperatives, Omaha Agency, 1917-20 (in Kansas City).

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5.4 Records of European Offices
1918-21

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5.4.1 Records of the London Office

History: Organized January 1919 as USGC European headquarters to supervise movements of U.S. relief ships in European waters and to act as fiscal agent for the American Relief Administration. Closed September 1919, with personnel relocated to New York to conclude business.

Textual Records: Correspondence, 1918-19. Records of the Shipping and Insurance Department, Statistical Department, and Accounting Department, 1919.

Related Records: For records of the London Office in New York, SEE 5.2.3.

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5.4.2 Records of USGC and American Relief Administration offices

Textual Records: Ledgers, correspondence, telegrams, and accounting records of USGC and American Relief Administration offices at Copenhagen, Danzig, Gravosa (Gruz, port of Greater Dubrovnik), Hamburg, Rotterdam, and Paris, 1919.

Photographic Prints (20 images): Arrival and unloading of U.S. ships carrying grain and cotton, interiors of warehouses loaded with food, and USGC staff and offices in Hamburg and Berlin, 1919 (BH).

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5.4.3 Records of food missions

Textual Records: General correspondence, telegrams, ledgers, and accounting records of missions to Finland, the Baltic States, Poland, areas of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, Greece, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Turkey, and Armenia, 1919.

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5.5 Records of the U.S. Wheat Director
1917-20

History: Established by EO 3087, May 14, 1919, to implement price guarantees on the 1919 wheat crop. Position filled by USGC President. Abolished by EO 3320, August 21, 1920.

Textual Records: General correspondence and correspondence with zone agencies, 1919-20. Reference file on enforcement of price guarantees, 1917-20, and journal of enforcement proceedings, 1920.

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5.6 Cartographic Records (General)

SEE Maps UNDER 5.2.1.

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5.7 Still Pictures (General)

SEE Photographic Prints UNDER 5.4.2.


Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.

Ordering information

This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.


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