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Dear Ms. Ingram,
Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!
We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Central Decimal Files, 1910-1963 in the General Records of the Department of State (Record Group 59). The primary Central Decimal File categories relating to World War II refugee matters are "840.48" and "840.48 REFUGEES." Those records have been reproduced in microfilm publication M1284, Records of the Department of State Relating to the Problems of Relief and Refugees in Europe Arising from World War II and Its Aftermath, 1938-49. Next, we located the series Alphabetical Subject Files, 1938-1942 created by the Intergovernmental Committee on Refugees in Record Group 59 that includes 12 files related to Jewish refugees in the 1930s that may contain some relevant information. We also located the series Agency Files and the series General Record Files created by the President's War Relief Control Board in the Records of Temporary Committees, Commissions, and Boards (Record Group 220) that contain telegrams, correspondence, and other records that date from 1939, including records of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, which was involved in negotiating for the passengers on the MS St. Louis and records that were formerly part of the Department of State’s Central Decimal Files. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) at firstname.lastname@example.org for information about these and similar records. More information about Records Relating to World War II Era Refugees is available on the National Archives website.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.
In addition, the Department of State provides some historical documents online through their publication Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS), including 1 reference to the MS St. Louis and 12 additional results related to Jewish refugees in May and June of 1939. You may wish to search the site for additional relevant records.
Finally, more information about The Tragedy of the SS St. Louis can be found online at the Jewish Virtual Library and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) offers several online resources related to the MS St. Louis, including a Telegram sent by the passengers of the MS St. Louis [...], an entry for the Voyage of the St. Louis in their Holocaust Encyclopedia, and an online exhibition related to the St. Louis. We suggest that you contact them directly for further assistance.
We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!
Much appreciation for this information! I will pass it on to my daughter. Shannon