1 Reply Latest reply on Jul 17, 2019 11:49 AM by Jason Atkinson

    Letters of Inquiry/Appeal to DOS, 1914



      An ancestor of mine traveled to Lithuania (then part of Russia) in 1914 to visit relatives with her son. During their visit, WWI broke out and her relatives here in the US couldn't reach her. In September of 1914, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that her relatives here in Cleveland appealed to Secretary of State William J. Bryan as the article states "It is believed she may have been detained as a spy." According to her obituary in 1942, she and her son were 'stuck' in Russia/Lithuania for 18 months. I'm wondering if the Department of State would have kept any records on this situation--perhaps even the letter her relatives wrote to DOS about the situation. Where would I begin to search, and is any of this available for search online?

      Many thanks!


        • Re: Letters of Inquiry/Appeal to DOS, 1914
          Jason Atkinson Ranger

          Dear Mr. McCafferty,

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the Central Decimal Files, 1910-1963 in the General Records of the Department of State (Record Group 59) that may contain the letter you see. There is a name index to this series. To request a search of the index, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov. Please include as much information as possible in your email such as the full name of your ancestor and (if applicable) any variant spellings of her name.


          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!

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