|Description||From 1826 onwards one of the Secretaries at headquarters had the primary task of writing personal letters to individual missionaries [as distinct from the official letters to the mission secretary]. A series of volumes for these private and confidential letters were used by some of the Secretaries from 1852 to 1914. Most of the volumes are marked 'Individual Letter-books' and contain not only personal letters, such as those of condolence or censure, but (for some Secretaries) topics that the individual Secretary had a special interest in. |
Christopher Fenn was the last Secretary to be appointed specifically to write these personal letters and he continued the practice until his retirement in 1894. The Africa (Group 3) Secretaries stopped using the books in the 1880's, but the Asia (Group 1) Secretaries continued to use the volumes until 1914. Their letters, however, mainly comprise the acknowledgment of missionaries' annual letters.