World Peace Foundation records, 1816-2011

This collection has:

155.80 cubic ft., 205 bound volumes, 6 audio-visual media, 50 digital objects

In 1910, Edwin Ginn founded the International School of Peace in Boston, renamed the World Peace Foundation shortly thereafter. The World Peace Foundation was founded with the express purpose of educating and mobilizing public opinion towards peace. Early trustees of the Foundation included Edwin Mead, founder of The New England Magazine; Sarah L. Arnold, dean of Simmons College; A. Lawrence Lowell, president of Harvard University; and Joseph Swain, president of Swarthmore College. The Foundation’s efforts ground to a virtual standstill at the beginning of World War I. With the refusal of the United States to ratify the Treaty of Versailles, the Foundation became the exclusive American distributors of literature for the League of Nations and the International Labor Organization, both of which the U.S. refused to join. The Foundation sponsored studies of the Soviet Union, Latin America, and China, and published pamphlets on Nazism and colonialism. In recent years the World Peace Foundation has sponsored studies of the Soviet Union, and of the Caribbean and Latin America. In the 1980s, the Foundation shifted its attention to Africa, focused particularly on how the United States should respond to Apartheid in South Africa. It also studied the effects of independence on various African countries, as well as Soviet interests in the region. Today, the World Peace Foundation concentrates its efforts on utilizing the media to influence and improve foreign policy.

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