1 Reply Latest reply on Mar 18, 2019 8:09 AM by Jason Atkinson

    Seeking USIS records & correspondence of Lester Knox Little


      For a biographical timeline of Lester Knox Little I am seeking his records and correspondence from his time in the United States Information Service (USIS), whose archives are now held by the State Department. Lester Knox Little was previously Inspector General. The USIS was discontinued in the 1960s and its archives are held by the Department of State. Their records are very hard to search on line.


      Lester Little was a US citizen who was recruited to join the Chinese Customs Services our of Dartmouth College. He served in China for decades, was imprisoned and then repatriated by the Japanese during WW2; then returned to China in 1943 and became the only American to serve as Inspector General of Chinese Maritime Customs. He continued with the China Nationalist government when it moved to Formosa ( Taiwan) and returned to the US around 1950. He consulted with several foreign governments and later joined the USIS in Washington, DC around 1953. His service in China is well documented in books and his diaries, but his efforts at the USIS are less known hence this effort to complete a biographical timeline.

        • Re: Seeking USIS records & correspondence of Lester Knox Little
          Jason Atkinson Guide

          Dear Mr. Richard Shippee,

          Thank you for posting your request to History Hub.

          Starting in 1953, United States Information Service (USIS) posts became the field operations offices of the United States Information Agency (USIA).  Lester K. Little served in the USIA from 1955 to 1960.  According to the Department of State’s Biographic Register for 1960, he was appointed Deputy Assistant Director of Personnel on February 16, 1955.  In this position he held the paygrade of GS-15. His title became Director of Personnel on November 14, 1955.  On October 16, 1956 he was promoted to GS-16. His name is also listed in the Official Registers of the United States for 1955 through 1959.  For example, the 1959 edition lists him as the director of the Personnel Division of the Office Administration within the United States Information Agency.

          Records of the U.S. Information Agency are in Record Group 306 (RG 306). We searched the National Archives Catalog and were unable to locate any RG 306 record series or file units which mentioned his name in the Catalog description. We were also unable to locate any records of the Personnel division.  It is possible that some of the records of other headquarters offices of the USIA from this time period that were retained may have some incidental references to him. For questions about researching these records, contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov


          An additional option is to request a copy of his Official Personnel Folder from the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC). This page gives information about how to make that request.

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

          2 people found this helpful