TitleInternational Committee on Christian Literature for Africa Archive
Date(s) of Creation1920-1963
Level of DescriptionCollection
Extent45 boxes
Name of CreatorInternational Missionary Council; International Committee on Christian Literature for Africa
Administrative & Biographical HistoryThe development of missionary literature work in Africa was given impetus by the International Missionary Council conference on the Christian Mission in Africa, held at Le Zoute in 1926. The Christian Literature Bureau for Africa, which aimed to provide literature for education and evangelical work in Africa, was subsequently founded in 1929, with a full-time secretary and three sectional committees: British, Continental and American.

The Christian Literature Bureau for Africa had close relations with both the International Missionary Council and the Conference of Missionary Societies of Great Britain and Ireland (CBMS). It had its office in Edinburgh House (no 2 Eaton Gate, London, near Sloane Square station), the premises of the CBMS. The Christian Literature Bureau became part of the International Missionary Council as the International Committee on Christian Literature for Africa in 1953.

In 1957-1958 the majority of the International Committee on Christian Literature for Africa operations were transferred to Africa. However, some activities remained based in Britain and passed to the CBMS, including the production of the periodical: Books for Africa (1931-1963), which listed and reviewed publications of potential use in Africa.
Held at:SOAS University of London
Source of AcquisitionDeposited in 1979.
DescriptionRecords, 1920-1963, of the Christian Literature Bureau for Africa and its succession by the ICCLA (International Committee on Christian Literature for Africa, part of the International Missionary Council), comprising early papers, 1920-1929, including correspondence; minutes, 1929-1958; records of the American Section, 1924-1959; accounts and related papers, 1928-1958; finance papers, 1948-1959; policy papers, 1929-1959, including its winding-up; papers relating to personnel, 1947-1956; papers relating to Secretarial travel by Margaret Wrong and C de Mestral in Africa, Europe and north America, 1933-1959; photographs of West Africa, 1933, and Southern Africa [1936]; papers of Margaret Wrong (Secretary), 1935-1947, including notes for addresses, reviews, articles on subjects including colonial development, personal photographs, letters, and papers, 1949-1965, relating to her death (c1949) and memorial fund; reports, surveys, etc, 1923-1957; papers relating to Books for Africa series and to Listen, 1931-1963; papers relating to the publication Daystar, 1948-1957; lists of books received, especially vernacular, 1930-1957; African language publications, 1930-1951; papers relating to Christian literature for Muslims, 1932-1959; papers relating to school service book, 1938-1953; manuscripts received, 1933-1957; papers relating to hymns publication, 1957-1963; papers relating to literacy [1935]-1959; papers on territorial series, 1927-1959; complete set of Books for Africa series, 1931-1963; complete set of Listen, 1932-1957; series (some incomplete) of published works: Little Books for Africa, African Home Library (comprising texts on the Bible and Christian faith, biography, allegories and stories, family, health and land, government and industry, countries and customs, science and education), and the French edition Bibliotheque de la Famille Africaine, and African Features; specimen periodicals published in Africa, 1950s; card index to titles for Books for Africa books reviewed and card index to titles and authors in the ICCLA library.
Access StatusOpen
Language(s) of MaterialEnglish
Multiple languages
Other Finding AidsUnpublished handlist
Related MaterialThe School of Oriental and African Studies holds records of the Conference of British Missionary Societies (Ref: CBMS); joint archives of the International Missionary Council/Conference of British Missionary Societies relating to co-operative missionary endeavours in Africa (original files) and India (microfiche copy) (Ref: IMC/CBMS); and microfiche copy of the archives of the International Missionary Council (Ref: IMC).
Archivist's NoteCompiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project. Sources: J T Hardyman and R K Orchard, Two minutes from Sloane Square: a brief history of the Conference of Missionary Societies in Great Britain and Ireland 1912-1977 (London: CBMS, 1977), pp 28-9. Rosemary Seton, Guide to archives and manuscript collections (School of Oriental and African Studies, 1994), p 9. Revised by Caroline Brick on behalf of the Mundus Project, November 2002.
Access Points - SubjectAfrican languages
African literature
Book distribution
Missionary societies
Missionary work
Religious texts
Vernacular languages
Travel abroad
Protestant missionary societies
Access Points - Places
Place CodePlace Name
7729886Central Africa
7729889Eastern Africa
9406051Southern Africa
7729885Western Africa
    Powered by CalmView© 2008-2021