Guide to Federal Records

Records of the National Youth Administration [NYA]


(Record Group 119)
1934-45
998 cu. ft.

Table of Contents

  • 119.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY
  • 119.2 RECORDS OF THE NATIONAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE 1935-43 27 lin. ft.
  • 119.3 RECORDS OF THE OFFICE OF THE ADMINISTRATOR 1935-45 322 lin. ft.
  • 119.3.1 Records of the Executive Director and Administrator
  • 119.3.2 Records of the Deputy Executive Director and Deputy Administrator
  • 119.4 RECORDS OF NYA DIVISIONS 1934-44 609 lin. ft.
  • 119.4.1 Records of the Division of Finance
  • 119.4.2 Records of the Division of Student Work
  • 119.4.3 Records of the Division of Youth Personnel
  • 119.4.4 Records of the Division of Operations
  • 119.4.5 Records of other divisions
  • 119.5 RECORDS OF OTHER OFFICES 1935-43 134 lin. ft.
  • 119.5.1 Records of the Personnel Office
  • 119.5.2 Records of the Office of Information
  • 119.5.3 Records of the Health Office
  • 119.5.4 Records of the Office of Negro Affairs
  • 119.5.5 Records of the National Advisory Committee on Educational Camps for Unemployed Young Women
  • 119.5.6 Other records
  • 119.6 RECORDS OF REGIONAL OFFICES 1935-43 21 lin. ft.
  • 119.6.1 Records of the "Old Regions"
  • 119.6.2 Records of the "New Regions"
  • 119.7 CARTOGRAPHIC RECORDS (GENERAL)
  • 119.8 MOTION PICTURES (GENERAL)
  • 119.9 SOUND RECORDINGS (GENERAL)
  • 119.10 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL) 1935-43 1,603 images

Top of Page

119.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY

Established: In the Works Progress Administration (WPA) by EO 7086, June 26, 1935, under authority of Emergency Relief Appropriation Act of 1935 (49 Stat. 115), April 8, 1935.

Transfers: To Federal Security Agency (FSA) by Reorganization Plan No. I of 1939, effective July 1, 1939; to Bureau of Training, War Manpower Commission, Office for Emergency Management, by EO 9247, September 17, 1942.

Functions: Provided work training for unemployed youth and part- time employment for needy students.

Abolished: By act of July 12, 1943 (57 Stat. 539), effective January 1, 1944.

Successor Agencies: Federal Security Agency as liquidator.

Finding Aids: Virgil E. Baugh, comp., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the National Youth Administration," NC 35 (1963).

Related Records: Record copies of publications of the National Youth Administration in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government. Records of the Work Projects Administration, RG 69.
Records of the War Manpower Commission, RG 211.
General Records of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, RG 235.

RECORDS
RECORD TYPES RECORD LOCATIONS QUANTITIES
Textual Records Washington Area 914 cu. ft.
  Atlanta 10 cu. ft.
  Boston 6 cu. ft.
  Kansas City 1 cu. ft.
  Philadelphia 4 cu. ft.
  San Francisco 8 cu. ft.
Arch/engrg Plans Washington Area 7,100 items
Motion Pictures College Park 56 reels
Sound Recordings College Park 19 items
Still Pictures Washington Area 200 images
  College Park 22,115 images
  Boston 233 images

Top of Page

119.2 RECORDS OF THE NATIONAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
1935-43
27 lin. ft.

History: Presidentially appointed National Advisory Committee, to recommend improvements and adjustments in the NYA program, established by EO 7086, June 26, 1935, with members drawn from labor, business, agriculture, education, and youth organizations. State advisory committees were appointed by state NYA administrators. Local committees consisted of interested individuals in rural and urban areas. State and local committees assisted with projects in their proper jurisdictions.

Textual Records: Proceedings, correspondence, and reference files, maintained by the chairman, 1935-42. Records of the office of the director, including a report and general correspondence file, 1935-42; correspondence with field representatives, 1941- 43; correspondence and reports of state and local advisory committees, 1937-42; and card lists of members of the national committee, and of members of state and local committees, n.d.

Related Records: Record copies of publications of the National Advisory Committee in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.

Top of Page

119.3 RECORDS OF THE OFFICE OF THE ADMINISTRATOR
1935-45
322 lin. ft.

History: Aubrey Williams named Executive Director by EO 7086, June 26, 1935. Title changed to Administrator by EO 8028, December 24, 1938.

Top of Page

119.3.1 Records of the Executive Director and Administrator

Textual Records: Correspondence, reference files, and related records, maintained by the administrator and other officials, 1936-43. Information file on the "Campaign Against the NYA," 1942-43. Hourly and monthly wage rate forms and accompanying correspondence, 1938-39. Data file on NYA youth characteristics, 1936-43. Data summaries on NYA youth in defense work, 1941. Annual and other NYA reports, 1935-42.

Top of Page

119.3.2 Records of the Deputy Executive Director and Deputy
Administrator

Textual Records: Budget and personnel correspondence, 1935-38. Letters sent, 1935-40. Miscellaneous alphabetic-name correspondence, 1935-41. Correspondence with state directors and administrators, 1939-42. Correspondence concerning projects, 1935-38. Testimonial letters from student participants, 1936. Reference file of administrative, procedural, and historical materials, 1936-45. Administrative reports from state offices, 1935-38. Data file on youth movements, programs, and conditions abroad, 1935-39. Transcripts of conference proceedings, 1935-36. Project dossiers, 1936-37. Records relating to an NYA history project, 1935-43. State procedures file, 1940-42. Circular letters, memorandums, manuals, and regulations, ca. 1935-43.

Top of Page

119.4 RECORDS OF NYA DIVISIONS
1934-44
609 lin. ft.

Top of Page

119.4.1 Records of the Division of Finance

Textual Records: Correspondence and accounting records of the director, 1935-41. Numeric-subject file on NYA budgets and appropriations, 1939-42. Budget data file, 1934-44. Financial and statistical reports, 1939-43. Statistical records showing employment data, earnings, and assignments, 1937-43. Reports from regions and the field, 1939-43.

Top of Page

119.4.2 Records of the Division of Student Work

History: Established to administer the "in-school" Student Work Program, which had originated in the Federal Emergency Relief Administration as the Student Aid Program. Transferred to the NYA by EO 7164, August 29, 1935, with responsibility to provide part- time work to students in need of financial assistance.

Textual Records: General subject file, 1936-43. Letters and reports from state directors of student work, 1940-41. Correspondence with field advisers on industrial training, 1939- 41. Correspondence regarding continuation of the student work program, 1941-43. Data files on secondary school and college work councils, 1940-43. Affidavits of eligibility of colleges and graduate schools, 1935-39. Proposed work plans for high schools, colleges, and graduate schools, 1939-43. Descriptions of student- aid work projects, 1937-42. Reports and reference materials concerning education in the states and territories, 1935-41. Background material for a history of the student work program, 1935-43.

Top of Page

119.4.3 Records of the Division of Youth Personnel

History: Known until 1940 as the Division of Guidance and Personnel. Administered policies and regulations governing recruitment, assignment, transfer, separation, and other activities relating to the certification and employment of youths hired under the Out-of-School Work Program.

Textual Records: Director's administrative, reference, and correspondence files, 1935-42. Field inspection reports, 1939-43. Periodic and narrative reports concerning junior placement in the states, 1936-39. Divisional and other NYA correspondence concerning the work of youth personnel in the regions, 1941-43. Letters received by the NYA and other federal agencies on NYA training and trainees, 1941-42. Youth guidance and testing materials, 1936-41.

Subject Access Terms: American Vocational Association; American Youth Commission.

Top of Page

119.4.4 Records of the Division of Operations

History: Known until June 30, 1942, as the Division of Work Projects. Administered the work project program for out-of-school youths.

Textual Records: Letters sent to state youth directors concerning projects, 1937-38. Correspondence with state administrators on defense training activities, 1941-42. Reports of outstanding work projects in states, 1938. Miscellaneous correspondence of the director, 1940-43, and of the assistant director, 1934-39. Records of the Technical Information Section, 1938-40, including technical and scientific reference materials, 1938-40. Records of the Project Planning and Control Section, including project application case files, 1935-41; and card files describing NYA projects, 1938-43. Construction project files, 1941-43, maintained by the Construction Projects Section. General administrative correspondence of the Mechanical Shops Section, 1940-42. Subject file and correspondence of the Resident Center Section, 1939-43.

Architectural and Engineering Plans (7,000 items, in Washington Area): Construction Projects Section plans for NYA buildings, 1937-43 (3,700 items), and maps and plans relating to construction, installation, and repair of NYA training centers, 1941-43 (100 items). Training blueprints maintained by the Shop Operations Section, 1940-43 (3,200 items). SEE ALSO 119.7.

Photographs (200 images, in Washington Area): Construction, installation, and repair of NYA training centers, 1941-43. SEE ALSO 119.10.

Subject Access Terms: Cassidy Lake, MI, resident work project.

Top of Page

119.4.5 Records of other divisions

Textual Records: Records of the Division of Reports and Records, including statistical data on approved applicants for NYA student aid, 1937-38. Correspondence of the director of the Division of Community Organization with youth organizations, 1935-37.

Top of Page

119.5 RECORDS OF OTHER OFFICES
1935-43
134 lin. ft.

Top of Page

119.5.1 Records of the Personnel Office

Textual Records: NYA job vacancy notices, 1940-41. Notes of interviews with applicants, 1935-38. Job descriptions and classifications, 1939-41.

Top of Page

119.5.2 Records of the Office of Information

Textual Records: Correspondence of the director and other officials, 1938-42. Alphabetic subject-name files, 1936-42. NYA policy and procedural releases, 1939-42. General file on NYA motion picture activities, 1940-41. Case histories, mainly "success stories" and endorsements of NYA by beneficiaries of its services, 1937-42. Press releases, 1935-42. Radio scripts, 1936- 42.

Motion Pictures (56 reels): NYA activities, including work and student programs, recreational activities, programs for blacks, and resident centers, 1937-42 (52 reels). Dramatization of problems of unemployed youth and assistance given them by NYA, 1937-42 (2 reels). Visit of the King and Queen of England to Washington, DC, 1939 (1 reel). Inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1941 (1 reel).

Sound Recordings (19 items): Discussion by NYA personnel on the Passamaquoddy Tidal Power Development Project, ca. 1939 (1 item). Radio drama about young persons assisted by NYA, 1939 (6 items). Dedication ceremonies of NYA exhibit at the New York World's Fair, June 3, 1939 (12 items).

Photographs (20,500 images): NYA personnel, facilities, exhibits, programs, and projects, 1936-42 (G, S). SEE ALSO 119.10.

Lantern Slides (12 images): NYA personnel, facilities, exhibits, programs, and projects, 1936-42 (LS). SEE ALSO 119.10.

Top of Page

119.5.3 Records of the Health Office

Textual Records: Correspondence with regional and state officials, 1940-42. Reports concerning state health programs, 1941-42. Statistical reports concerning the health of NYA youth, 1940-42.

Top of Page

119.5.4 Records of the Office of Negro Affairs

History: Coordinated activities and developed projects to afford employment opportunities for black youths. Investigated complaints of discrimination. Mary McLeod Bethune was the office's only director; she was also a member of the National Advisory Committee (SEE 119.2).

Textual Records: General subject file, 1936-41. Correspondence and reports on black conferences, 1935-41. Reports of directors of state Offices of Negro Affairs, 1936-39. Miscellaneous file of research and publicity materials, 1935-41.

Top of Page

119.5.5 Records of the National Advisory Committee on Educational
Camps for Unemployed Young Women

History: In the summer of 1934, the Workers Education Section of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration established educational camps for unemployed young women. The National Advisory Committee, chaired by Hilda W. Smith, acted in an advisory capacity in this field. Mary McLeod Bethune, Director of Negro Affairs, and Richard R. Brown, Deputy Executive Director, represented the NYA on the committee.

Textual Records: Correspondence relating to educational camps for unemployed young women, 1935-37. Records relating to educational camps in Pennsylvania, 1936-37. Correspondence concerning meetings of the Educational Committee, January-May 1937.

Top of Page

119.5.6 Other records

Textual Records: NYA publications file, including processed and printed materials, 1935-42. Records of the music director, including correspondence concerning administration of the NYA music program, 1940-41. Records relating to liquidation of the NYA, including final reports of state offices, 1943.

Architectural and Engineering Plans (100 items, in Washington Area): Tracings and processed copies of plans for NYA buildings, maintained by the chief architect, 1937-41. SEE 119.7.

Top of Page

119.6 RECORDS OF REGIONAL OFFICES
1935-43
21 lin. ft.

Top of Page

119.6.1 Records of the "Old Regions"

History: Initial NYA regional structure, known informally as the "Old Regions," was organized in 1936 and corresponded to that of the WPA. It consisted of five regional offices: Region 1, with jurisdiction over CT, ME, MA, NH, NY, RI, VT; Region 2, DE, DC, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, NJ, OH, PA, WV, WI; Region 3, AL, AR, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA; Region 4, CO, IA, KS, MN, MO, MT, NE, NM, ND, OK, SD, WY; and Region 5, AZ, CA, ID, NV, OR, UT, WA.

Textual Records: Records of Region 1, consisting of administrative correspondence of the regional director with state directors, 1935-37; news clippings compiled at the regional level, 1941-42; and general records, 1939-43, and news clippings, 1939-42, of the Office of the State Administrator for Massachusetts (in Boston). Records of Region 2, consisting of correspondence of the state youth administrator for Pennsylvania, 1941-42; and copies of speeches by the state youth supervisor for Ohio, 1938-40 (in Philadelphia). Records of Region 3, consisting of general correspondence, 1936-38; correspondence and data file on regional defense production projects and workshops, 1940-42; and general subject file, 1940-42 (in Atlanta).

Photographic Prints (233 images, in Boston): NYA activities in each state included in Region 1, 1938-42. SEE ALSO 119.10.

Top of Page

119.6.2 Records of the "New Regions"

History: Transfer of NYA to the War Manpower Commission, 1942, resulted in modification of NYA regional structure to correspond with that of the commission: Region 1, with jurisdiction over CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT; Region 2, NY; Region 3, DE, NJ, PA; Region 4, DC, MD, NC, VA, WV; Region 5, KY, MI, OH; Region 6, IL, IN, WI; Region 7, AL, FL, GA, MS, SC, TN; Region 8, IA, MN, NE, ND, SD; Region 9, AR, KS, MO, OK; Region 10, LA, NM, TX; Region 11, CO, ID, MT, UT, WY; and Region 12, AZ, CA, NV, OR, WA. Regions 1 and 2 operated as a consolidated region.

Textual Records: Correspondence of the regional administrator, Region 3, 1942-43 (in Philadelphia). Correspondence of the regional administrator, Region 8, 1939-43 (in Kansas City). Records of Region 12, consisting of an intraregional correspondence file, 1941-43; copies of regional letters sent, 1941-43; subject and name file of the regional administrator, 1941-43; proceedings and correspondence of the California state and local advisory committees and of regional councils of administrators for national defense training, 1941-42; and construction and shopwork manuals, n.d. (in San Francisco).

Top of Page

119.7 CARTOGRAPHIC RECORDS (GENERAL)

SEE Architectural and Engineering Plans UNDER 119.4.4 and 119.5.6.

Top of Page

119.8 MOTION PICTURES (GENERAL)

SEE UNDER 119.5.2.

Top of Page

119.9 SOUND RECORDINGS (GENERAL)

SEE UNDER 119.5.2.

Top of Page

119.10 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL)
1935-43
1,603 images

Photographs: Activities of NYA resident training centers, educational camps, and work centers, in albums, 1935-43 (SCA, 420 images). Roads, weather, and agriculture; and high school projects and activities of the Bureau of Standards, 1936-42 (M, 1,000 images). Student antiwar activities, youth unemployment and idleness, and job training programs, taken by Ron Partridge, 1940 (CAL, 183 images).

SEE Photographs UNDER 119.4.4 and 119.5.2. SEE Photographic Prints UNDER 119.6.1. SEE Lantern Slides UNDER 119.5.2.


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.


Top of Page

Guide to Federal Records >

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

.