Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)CMS/G/AC 4
TitleIncoming letters 1-10100 ('Ordinary letters' to letter 4400; thereafter Hon[orary] Sec's Department letters) dated 1872-1907
Extent86 files
DescriptionAn incomplete sequence of consecutively numbered, incoming letters, many with printed material and other enclosures. Predominantly dated 1872-April 1901 and 1907 and sent from within the UK or, in a few instances, from correspondents writing whilst on board ship but with a few letters from overseas. Concerning a great variety of subjects, including the preparation of translations, educational [mission] work, CMS policy, overseas bishoprics and the welfare and behaviour of missionaries, reports of difficulties overseas (including relationships with foreign dignitaries), requests for supply of CMS appeal literature and for financial assistance, letters of advice (for example, letter 229, suggesting aids for language study or presents that would be deemed suitable for taking on an expedition to Africa); letters in response to CMS appeals; letters giving news of CMS Associations; enquiries regarding the Society's work overseas including early letters from those considering making an offer of service; correspondence from new missionaries replying to letters advising of arrangements for their departure overseas; letters from missionaries in England and overseas, for example, concerning their change of station or in which they write to share news with the General Secretary, and letters on many other aspects of CMS work in the UK and overseas with a few signed memorials and memoranda. Includes a letter from P. O. Koyama written in Japanese (numbered 4766), notes of an interview with Lord Kitchener 23 November 1898 (numbered 4976a) and a pamphlet concerning translations of the Bible in various languages (with letter number 10088).

With [clerk's] notes giving the name of correspondent, and a brief note of subject matter and action taken.
ArrangementThe letters were arranged in bundles of 200 with each bundle marked 'see Letter Register' (unfound and possibly destroyed, see 'Some Reflections from the Strong Room' 1945 CMS/G/AS 8/1). The system was probably introduced retrospectively in 1910 when Bardsley became General Secretary and continued until 1921. Letters numbered 1-400 are arranged in miscellaneous order, the remainder broadly in chronological order but including many instances where related material of different dates has been filed (sometimes bundled) together, for example, there is a bundle of letters (4491A) concerning 'CMS Criticisms' dated 1898-1903 incorporating correspondence with Rev T. Davis and letters from J. N. Foley and others amongst the 1898 correspondence. Crossed through numbers on some of the letters suggest that they had previously formed part of an earlier number sequence. A sample of original file dividers have been retained and are held in the boxes with correspondingly numbered letters.
Access StatusOpen
Related MaterialThe letters have no original index. The CMS name card index can be used to identify letters of potential interest, but it should be noted that the entries on the index cards are by no means comprehensive and failure to find a reference to the CMS/G/AC 4 correspondence does not necessarily mean that this sequence holds nothing relevant to the person concerned.


    Some of our most significant collections