Guide to Federal Records

Records of the Committee on Public Information


(Record Group 63)
1917-21
152 cu. ft.

Overview of Records Locations

Table of Contents

  • 63.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY
  • 63.2 RECORDS OF THE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC INFORMATION 1917-21 208 lin. ft.
  • 63.2.1 General records
  • 63.2.2 Records relating to domestic activities
  • 63.2.3 Records relating to foreign activities
  • 63.3 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL) 1917-18 34 images

63.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY

Established: As an independent agency by EO 2594, April 13, 1917. Consisted of George Creel (Chairman) and Secretaries of State, War, and the Navy as ex officio members.

Functions: Released government news during World War I. Sustained morale. Administered voluntary press censorship. Committee work curtailed after July 1, 1918. Domestic activities discontinued after the Armistice was signed, November 11, 1918. Foreign operations discontinued, June 30, 1919.

Abolished: By EO 3154, August 21, 1919.

Successor Agencies: Council of National Defense, as liquidator, pursuant to EO 3154.

Finding Aids: National Archives, Division of Classification, comp., "Classification Scheme: Records of the Committee on Public Information, 1917-19" (1938); Janet Weinert, comp., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Committee on Public Information, 1917-19," NC 7 (1962).

Related Records: Record copies of publications of the Committee on Public Information in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.

Subject Access Terms: World War I agency.

Top of Page

63.2 RECORDS OF THE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC INFORMATION
1917-21
208 lin. ft.

Top of Page

63.2.1 General records

Textual Records: General correspondence of Chairman George Creel and Associate Chairmen Carl Byoir and Harvey J. O'Higgins, 1917- 21. Correspondence with mayors relating to the Americanization Survey, 1918. Propaganda records, 1917-21.

Top of Page

63.2.2 Records relating to domestic activities

Textual Records: Reports and correspondence relating to the preparation and distribution of information, the use of motion picture film and photographs, the work of the "four minute men," and the war work of women, 1917-19. Copy prepared for inclusion in the War Cyclopedia and other publications, 1917-18. Bulletins, including the daily Official Bulletin, 1917-19; its weekly successor, United States Bulletin, 1919-21; and the Four Minute Men News, 1917-18. Copies of speeches, 1917-19. Photographs of shipbuilding activities, March 1918. News releases, 1917-18. Card lists of speakers, 1917-19.

Top of Page

63.2.3 Records relating to foreign activities

Textual Records: Records of the Director of the Foreign Section, consisting of general and foreign correspondence, 1918-19; reports concerning morale in Allied countries and the shipment of propaganda materials, 1918; information files, including publications and other records relating to censorship activities in the United States and Allied countries, 1918-19; newspaper clippings and press releases, 1918-19; and propaganda records, including manuals prepared by the War Department's Military Intelligence Division, and maps, posters, and newspapers collected for use in foreign propaganda, 1918-19. Records of Committee on Public Information commissioners at Paris, Rome, Madrid, The Hague, London, Santiago, Buenos Aires, and Lima, 1918-19. Records of Committee on Public Information representatives in Russia, primarily in Moscow and Vladivostok, 1918-19. Records of the New York offices of the Foreign Press- Wireless and Cable Service, 1918-19; the Foreign Press-Mail Service, 1918-19; and the Division of Foreign Picture Service, 1918-19. Records of the New York and Washington offices of the Division of Work with the Foreign Born, 1918-19.

Related Records: Documents relating to the German-Bolshevik conspiracy, procured by Edgar Sisson in Russia in 1918, in Records of the White House Office, RG 130.

Top of Page

63.3 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL)
1917-18
34 images

Photographic Prints: Used for propaganda purposes in World War I, including photographs of U.S. aviators, and German photographs received from the U.S. Naval Attache at The Hague, 1917-18.


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.


Top of Page

Guide to Federal Records >

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
1-86-NARA-NARA or 1-866-272-6272

.