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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 465

Papers of Ida Pruitt, 1850s-1992


Correspondence, writings, photographs, and papers of Ida Pruitt documenting her life and family in China and United States.


  • Creation: 1850s-1992


Language of Materials

Materials in English.


Access. Unrestricted, with the following exceptions. In Series IV: case files (#701-703, 706-712, 953) are closed until January 1, 2011 - January 1, 2018; aptitude test for Tania Manooiloff (#727) is closed until January 1, 2019; adoption case records (#919) are closed until January 1, 2018. Folders #1326-1361 are extremely fragile and are closed, use digital images.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.


30.46 linear feet ((68 file boxes, 5 card file boxes) plus 10 folio folders, 8 folio+ folders, 8 oversize folders, 1 supersize folder, 307 photograph folders, 18 folio photograph folders, 2 photograph folio+ folders, 2 photograph volumes, 4 daguerreotypes, 2 ambrotypes, 1 tintype)

This collection consists primarily of the papers of Anna (Seward) Pruitt and Ida Pruitt, the correspondence and writings of Rewi Alley, and the papers of Talitha Gerlach. There are also photographs from Anna Seward Pruitt, Ida Pruitt, and Rewi Alley.

The original filing system was created by Pruitt and Marjorie King, a researcher who had written her dissertation on Pruitt and Anna Seward Pruitt and had the use of the collection for several years before it was given to the library, and her graduate assistants. The processor has created the series and folder arrangement, but folder headings and contents are as originally received, unless otherwise stated. Loose material was refoldered and incorporated into the arrangement. Folder headings created by the processor are in brackets. Also in brackets is the Pinyin form of Chinese terms that may appear in earlier romanization systems as well as alternate versions of names.

Notes by Marjorie King found on folders or individual items referring to Pruitt's previous organization or the identification of individuals or documents have been retained; a notation has been made in the folder heading: "note by researcher (Marjorie King)." Often the notes are unattributed and a question mark is used: "note by researcher (Marjorie King?)." One group of Pruitt's papers worth mention are those marked "from 'worthwhiles' envelope." Marjorie King and her assistants dispersed these papers based on their subject. The processor left them in their current physical locations and made a notation in the folder heading to signify Pruitt's original organization and importance of these materials.

There is some overlap in the collection. While Pruitt's correspondence is mainly in Series III, it can be found throughout the collection, with significant portions in Series IV, VII, and VIII. Where possible, correspondents are pointed out in the folder headings. Material regarding Chinese cooperatives can be found in Series IV, VII, and VIII. Photographs found filed together in separate cartons have been placed together in Series IX; there are photographs scattered throughout the collection as well. Items in Chinese were identified and/or dated by members of the Schlesinger's Chinese-American Oral History Project Chinese-American Oral History Project and by Yan Xu, a Harvard student working at the Library.

Series I, Early family records (#1-95), is divided into two main sections: the papers of C.W. Pruitt and those of Anna (Seward) Pruitt. C. W. Pruitt's papers include autobiographies, a diary, wills, obituaries, writings, etc. The bulk of this series contains Anna Seward Pruitt 's papers, including biographical sketches, scrapbooks of their life in China and family in Ohio, outgoing letters (1891-1949), diaries, writings, etc. The series also contains some miscellaneous files relating to genealogical material on the Pruitt and Seward families and papers of other family members.

Series II, Biographical and personal (#96-350), is divided into two sections. The Biographical section (#96-129) contains biographical sketches, an obituary, death mask, a biography about Pruitt by John Russell based on interviews (#108-120), Federal Bureau of Investigation files, etc. The Personal section (#130v-349) revolves mainly around Pruitt's notebooks and travels. Also in this section are a few diaries, booklists and orders, Pruitt's memberships, address and appointment books, her financial and medical records, a collection of Chinese papercuts, etc.

Her extensive run of notebooks (1932-1973) contain lectures, appointments, reflections, notes on family, and readings, etc. Most of the notebooks in the collection were written front to back and then turned over and completed from back to front. Most of the notebooks have been dismantled. Pruitt's travels cover two trips she took to China (1959, 1972). Her 1959 trip was made primarily to see what was happening with the development of the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives and the changes in Chinese society under communism. She visited and took extensive notes of her observations of kindergartens, hospitals, schools, prisons, collectives, factories, museums, opera, theatre, tombs, temples, archeological sites, housing projects, etc.

Series III, Correspondence (#351-697), is divided into two sections: Personal correspondence and "ICO" correspondence. The Personal correspondence section (#351-432) was created by the processor from folders and letters found loose throughout the collection and has been arranged chronologically. It contains correspondence primarily with family and friends, a series of "special letters" (Pruitt's designation), and Christmas and birthday cards. The "ICO" correspondence (#433-689) is a group that was found together in one alphabetical arrangement. Most of the folders in this alphabetical group were identified as "ICO" - possibly for the International Committee Office. This section contains both personal and business correspondence. The largest family series in the ICO section belongs to Pruitt's adopted daughter, Kueiching Ho, and includes a letter discussing Kueiching's view of her childhood as depicted in A China Childhood (#537).

Series IV, Professional work, activities, etc. (#698-1027), is divided into six main sections: Peking Union Medical College (PUMC); Indusco years; Shanghai Refugee Research Association (SRR); Speeches and talks; Teaching and classes; and Politics, activities, etc. Most of the material in this series is arranged chronologically. Peking Union Medical material (#669-746) includes articles, case notes and files, correspondence, notes for later writings, stories re: refugees, etc.

The Indusco years section (#747-913) contains large clumps that relate to the Shandan Bailie School and the Gung Ho movement. Included are correspondence (some re: personnel difficulties within the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives), memos, minutes, reports, printed matter, Federal Bureau of Investigation files re: Indusco, etc. Most folders include notes by a researcher (Marjorie King?)

Shanghai Refugee Research papers (#914-922) contain abstracts of documents, articles, correspondence, notes, reports, and include letters requesting Tania Cosman's removal to the United States for safety and lists of Pruitt's belongings. Speeches and talks (#923-953) are primarily about Indusco, China, women in China, etc. This section includes correspondence, clippings, flyers, etc. The largest group is about the difference in definitions of "sin" and "guilt" in China and the United States. Teaching and classes (#955-964) is a small section primarily about anthropology and archaeology courses, but also about writing and women in China. It contains correspondence, notes, course descriptions, syllabi, etc. The last section, Politics, activities, etc. (#965-1026) mainly covers Pruitt's activities after her retirement from Indusco, and contains correspondence, flyers, mailings, papers, etc.

Series V, Writings by Pruitt (#1028-1325), is divided roughly in half between Autobiographical writings and Biographical writings, with two smaller sections, Fiction and Essays, at the end. Most of Pruitt's writing took place either in the 1920s and 1930s while she was living in Beijing, or in the 1960s and 1970s after she retired. During this second period, Pruitt often wrote on the back of mailings, old letters and memos, flyers, etc. Not all of her works were identified by Pruitt; unidentified works have been put with like material by the processor. Pruitt also used several working titles for some projects.

In Autobiographical writings (#1028-1223), the works are arranged chronologically by time of events covered, although there is some overlap between them. This section contains various drafts of her memoirs, notes by Pruitt, correspondence with publishers and friends, and publicity. The first work, A China Childhood (San Francisco: Chinese Materials Center, Inc., with foreword by John K. Fairbank, 1978), covers Pruitt's life from 1888 to about 1900 when the family left China during the Boxer Rebellion; Years Between spans from 1900 to the early 1920s; and Days in Old Peking: May 1921 to October 1938 chronicles Pruitt's experiences and observations living in Beijing and working at Peking Union Medical, and ends with her introduction to Rewi Alley and the Chinese Industrial Cooperative movement.

Her Biographical writings (#1224-1283) are arranged by title and include drafts of stories, notes by Pruitt, publisher correspondence, and publicity. They include: A Daughter of Han: The Autobiography of a Chinese Working Woman (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1945; Stanford University Press, 1967), Old Madame Yin: A Memoir of Peking Life, 1926-1938 (Stanford University Press, 1979; this material was originally conceived of as part of Tales of Old China, but was separately published), and Tales from Old China. Tales from Old China consists of stories that Pruitt recorded in China from about 1900 through 1938. The work consists of four sections: "Old Mother Wang," "Village Tales," "City Folk," and "Old Madam Yin and her Family," which was published separately. The Fiction section (#1285-1307) is arranged alphabetically by title. The designation "fiction" was taken from the original folder headings and based on notes by Marjorie King. The last section, Essays (#1308-1324), is also arranged alphabetically.

Series VI, Writings by others (#1326-1450), is divided into two sections: Pruitt as translator and Pruitt as editor or agent. The folders in this series contain drafts of translations, some originals (in Chinese), correspondence with authors, friends, and publishers, Pruitt's notes, etc. The first section, the translations (#1326-1431), is arranged alphabetically by author; works with unknown authors are placed at the end. These include Yellow Storm by Lao She (Harcourt Brace, 1951), Fifth Watch by I-mei "Amy" Ssutu [Yimei Feng], Little Bride by Wang Yung, Flight of an Empress by Wu Yung (Faber and Faber, 1936), etc. It also includes various works by Yuan Ssutu [Situ], in particular Yuan: From the Diary of Her Mother - I-Mai Ssu-tu, which consists of Yuan's mother's diary were paired with Yuan's childhood poems and letters to her parents while they traveled through China in 1946. The second, with Pruitt as editor or agent (#1432-1449), is arranged alphabetically by author as well, and includes George Hogg's Beyond China's City Walls, works by Feng Ching, George Leung, et al.

Series VII, Rewi Alley Papers (#1451-1572), is divided into three main sections: Biographical and personal, Correspondence, and Writings. Biographical and personal (#1451-1465) contains biographical sketches, a play re: Rewi Alley, clippings, diaries, etc. Correspondence (#1466-1516), arranged chronologically, is primarily with Pruitt and covers wide ranging topics including Chinese Industrial Cooperatives, writing, friends, memories, politics, archaeology, mythology, readings, health, and growing old. Most folders include poems written by Rewi Alley, lists of "printed matter received from Pruitt," and book subscriptions.

Rewi Alley's writings are further broken down into two sub-sections: Poems (#1517-1539) and Essays and books (#1540-1570). The poems describe Rewi Alley's travels, thoughts on events and people, his work, etc. His essays and books (Pruitt acted often as his editor and agent) include A Highway and the Old Chinese Doctor, One World Long Ago, and The Pig, the Fish, and the Boy: Three Fertility Symbols, etc.

Series VIII, Talitha A. Gerlach files (#1573-1645), was found organized in a separate series and identified as the "TAG files." They are divided into two main sections: Chinese Industrial Cooperatives and Correspondence. Chinese Industrial Cooperatives papers (#1573-1609) are arranged chronologically and contain reports, memos, minutes, correspondence, etc.; most are annotated by Talitha A. Gerlach. Correspondence (#1610-1639) contains letters to Pruitt, but also some with Gertrude Grimes, Rewi Alley, and various Gerlach family members. The series also contains book request files, financial papers, etc.

Series IX, Photographs (#1646-1965), is divided into three main sections: Early family photographs, Pruitt's photographs, and Rewi Alley's photographs. The Early family photographs (#1646-1709a) were collected primarily by Anna Seward Pruitt and range from c.1850 to c.1940. There are daguerreotypes and ambrotypes, a large range of family snapshots and portraits, group portraits of missionaries, school groups in China, and everyday scenes in China. There are numerous photographs of the Pruitt's extensive family, and groups of both Anglo and Chinese friends. Many of the pictures of Chinese life are in several family albums and include the family's Sung Kiatan home and the primary school in Hwanghsien. There are also pictures of grave sites, beggars, city scenes, and wedding processions. Also of note are several group photographs of Chinese Christian and bible students.

Pruitt's photographs (#1710-1942) are divided into Portraits of Ida Pruitt; Family photographs (Kueiching Ho's family is the largest group); Friends (arranged in three main groups: alphabetical, Chinese friends, and unidentified arranged by subject; and include a few of Pruitt at school in Georgia); a group of subjects loosely paralleling her autobiography, Days in Old Peking: Pruitt's home in Beijing (family, friends, servants, etc.), Beijing (places and treks in and around Beijing, funerals, etc.), People (arranged by subject: beggars, children, working, etc.), Work (Peking Union Medical: patients, staff, building; Refugees: women, children; relief work; Chinese Industrial Cooperatives/Indusco: cooperatives, children, workers, buildings, etc.); Travel while in China (treks are divided into two groups: identified sites, arranged alphabetically; and unidentified, arranged by subject: city scenes, industrial sites, ruins, etc.); Return trips to China (1959-1960 and 1972 trips: schools, Chinese Industrial Cooperatives, friends, hospitals, etc.); and Events and people in the United States (post 1940; includes anti-war protests). Most of Pruitt's photographs were not identified and found arranged by size in a variety of enclosures (envelopes, 4-flap boxes, etc.); some attempt has been made to identify where possible and to organize by place or into broad topics.

The last section in this series, Rewi Alley's photographs (1943-1965), contains photographs, slides, films, negatives, etc., of cooperatives, children, Rewi Alley and friends (including George Hatem), Rewi Alley receiving acupuncture treatment, and illustrations for his books that were sent to Pruitt over a period of years.


Writer, educator, social worker, and fundraiser, Ida Pruitt was born in Tengchow, Shantung Province, China, on December 2, 1888, the daughter of Cicero Washington and Anna (Seward) Pruitt. Her father, C. W. Pruitt (CWP), was born in Barrettsville, Georgia, on January 31, 1857, the son of John Wesley and Hannah (Rodgers) Pruitt. He was ordained as a Southern Baptist minister at the age of 14 and began his evangelical work by preaching to Native Americans in Georgia. Later he attended the Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. In January 1882, he traveled to China as a missionary and was stationed in Hwanghsien where he met his first wife, Ida Tiffany; she died two years later.

Her mother, Anna (Seward) Pruitt (ASP), was born in Tallmadge, Ohio, on May 16, 1862, the daughter of John Woodhouse and Urania (Ashley) Seward. She traveled west in the early 1880s to teach school in Ojai, California; her letters about the trip were later published in the California Historical Quarterly (1937-1938). At the end of the decade, Anna Seward Pruitt decided to travel to China as a Presbyterian missionary and settled in Hwanghsien where she met C. W. Pruitt. They married on February 16, 1888, and had six children: Ida (1888-1985), John (1890-1912), Ashley (1892-1898), Virginia (died in infancy, 1894), Robert (1897-1961), and Dudley McConnell "Mac" (1902-1967). While stationed in Hwanghsien, the children attended school at the China Inland Mission in Chefoo. Anna Seward Pruitt began a missionary school, and by 1904 C. W. Pruitt had organized the Baptist Theological Seminary for Central China. Anna Seward Pruitt wrote two books about missionary life in China: The Day of Small Things (Foreign Mission Board, Southern Baptist Convention, 1929) and Up from Zero: In North China (Broadman Press, 1939). After C. W. Pruitt retired in 1936, they returned to the United States and settled in Atlanta where he became the dean of the Baptist Foreign Missions of North America. C. W. Pruitt died on December 27, 1946; Anna Seward Pruitt, on June 20, 1948.

After attending Cox College in College Park, Georgia (1906-1909), Ida Pruit (IP) received a B.S. from Columbia University Teachers' College in New York (1910). When her brother John died, Pruitt returned to China to be with her family and became a teacher and principal of Wai Ling School for Girls in Chefoo (1912-1918). In 1918, she came back to the United States and studied social work in Boston and Philadelphia until hired by the Rockefeller Foundation in New York as head of the Department of Social Services at the Peking Union Medical College (PUMC) where she remained until 1938.

While living in Beijing Pruitt adopted two girls, one Chinese, Kueiching [Kwei-ching], the other a Russian refugee, Tania Manooiloff. They were educated in English schools in China, then sent to the United States. Kueiching married Tommy Ho, a radiologist from Canada, in 1940; they settled in Saskatchewan, Canada, and had two children: Timmy and Nancy. Her other daughter, Tania Manooiloff, taught Russian at Swarthmore College. She married Cornelius "Cornie" Cosman, a meteorologist who worked for the United States Department of Commerce and served on the Indusco Technical Committee; they had two children: Katia and Hugh. After Cosman's death, she married Mr. Wahl.

During the Japanese occupation of China (1937-1945), Pruitt assisted Rewi Alley (RA) as he organized the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives (CIC; for more information about Alley see section on Rewi Alley following). The Chinese Industrial Cooperatives was formed to organize cooperative factories throughout the countryside to support China's industry. Schools were built to train the Chinese (often crippled or orphaned) to work in and manage the factories. Indusco, the fundraising arm of the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives in the United States, was formed, and Pruitt served as its executive secretary from 1939 to 1951. In 1946 Pruitt rented an apartment with Maud Russell on West 93rd Street in New York City and remained there until 1951 when she retired and moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to be closer to Alan and Adele Rickett, friends from China.

A keen observer and student of Chinese history, society, and paleo-anthropology, Pruitt was a prolific writer and the author of a number of books, stories, and articles, including several autobiographies (A China Childhood (1978), The Years Between, and Days in Old Peking: May 1921-October 1938) and several biographies (Daughter of Han: The Autobiography of a Chinese Working Woman (1945, 1967), Old Madame Yin: A Memoir of Peking Life, 1926-1938 (1979), and Tales of Old China). She also translated and edited many works, including Yellow Storm by Lao She (1951), The Flight of an Empress by Wu Yung (1936), Little Bride by Wang Yung, and Beyond China's City Walls by George A. Hogg, et al.

In addition to her writing, Pruitt filled her retirement years with travel, talks, and political activism. She returned to China twice (1959, 1972) despite a State Department ban and remained a strong proponent for United States-China relations throughout her life. Pruitt died on July 24, 1985, in Philadelphia.

Brief chronology of the life of Ida Pruitt:

  1. December 23, 1888: born Tengchow, Shantung, China (Hwanghsien, where the family lived, did not have a doctor)
  2. c.1891: family traveled in the United States on furlough; Ashley born in Ohio
  3. c.1897: began attending school in Chefoo until 1906
  4. 1900: during the Boxer Rebellion the Pruitts took early furlough in the United States for one year
  5. 1901-1902: attended school at British China Inland Mission School in Chefoo but removed from school when John got pneumonia
  6. 1902: missionaries built new training schools in Penglai, Tengchow District; Pruitts moved to Penglai [Dengzhou]
  7. 1906-1909: Ida traveled to United States to attend Cox College, Georgia; studied literature.
  8. 1909-1910: graduate school at Teachers' College, Columbia University; studied 19th century literature and philanthropy.
  9. 1910-1911: taught at St. Christopher's Orphanage in Dobbs Ferry, New York
  10. 1912: John died of typhoid; Ida returned to China.
  11. 1912-1918: studied Chinese with her father's teacher; began working at Wai Ling School for Girls in Chefoo
  12. 1918: returned to the United States, settled in Philadelphia with friend Edna to care for Pruitt's two brothers who were in school there; began social work.
  13. c.1920: spent six months at Massachusetts General Hospital studying social work under Ida Cannon
  14. 1921-1938: head of Department of Social Services at Peking Union Medical College
  15. 1938: while on way back to the United States to visit family, met Rewi Alley and remained in China till 1939 to help set up Chinese Industrial Cooperatives
  16. 1939: returned to the United States; settled in New York to set up Indusco.
  17. 1939-1951: held positions as Executive Secretary, International Field Secretary, and China Representative of Indusco, Inc.
  18. 1951: retired from Indusco; moved to Philadelphia to be closer to family.
  19. 1951-1968: Federal Bureau of Investigation file active; approached twice by Federal Bureau of Investigation for enlistment (September 2, 1954, November 19, 1957), Pruitt refused both times.
  20. 1952-1954: board of directors of China Welfare Appeal
  21. 1955: moved to Powelton Village, Philadelphia, where she lived the remainder of her life
  22. 1959-1960: traveled to China and England
  23. 1962- : chair of Powelton Village branch of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)
  24. 1972: traveled to China
  25. 1985: died in Philadelphia


John Pruitt studied at Mercer College in Georgia and then worked in Ohio, where he contracted typhoid and died. Robert Pruitt, who, at age ten, was accidentally blinded, attended the University of Pennsylvania (A.B., 1920) and Harvard University (M.A., 1921). He returned to China in 1921, and his fiancée Evelina Rometsch joined him in 1922. They married and remained in Chefoo where he taught in the North China Junior College until 1927; they had two children: William Rometsch (born 1923) and John (Jack) (born 1925).

Dudley McConnell (Mac) Pruitt graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Haverford College in 1923. He taught until 1926 and then became an actuary in the insurance industry (1942-1960). He was President of the Casualty Actuarial Society (1957-1958) and of the Insurance Accounting and Statistical Association (1953). A Quaker, he became the executive director of the American Friends Service Committee's, mid-Atlantic region, and head of their Japan unit in Tokyo. He married Grace Richards Garner, c.1926; they lived in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and had two boys: Dean Garner (born 1930) and John Dudley (born 1933). Dean Pruitt married France Juliard; they had three sons: Andre (born 1961), Paul (born 1962), and Charles (born 1964).


Named for a Maori chieftain, Rewi Alley (RA), Indusco's China representative, was born December 2, 1897, in Springfield, Canterbury, New Zealand. His parents were both activists; his father in the rural cooperative movement and his mother for women's suffrage. In 1916, he enlisted and fought with the New Zealand Expeditionary Force (ANZACS) in France. At the end of the war, he and a friend bought a farm together; when this failed, Rewi Alley sold out and headed for China.

Arriving in Shanghai in 1927, during the Kuomintang revolution, he was hired by the Shanghai Municipal Council as factory inspector of the Shanghai Fire Brigade (1927-1933), then as chief factory inspector of the council's Industrial Department (1933-1938). In 1929, and again in 1932, he took extended vacations in the Suiyuan Province helping the China International Famine Relief Commission. Many of his later vacations were also spent in various relief works in the countryside.

A year after the Japanese invasion in 1937, Helen Snow [Nym Wales] and Edgar Snow enlisted Rewi Alley's help in planning a nationwide movement to organize thousands of cooperative factories in the countryside. Rewi Alley became the field secretary for the Gung Ho movement as it was known in China, with Madame Song Quingling [Soong Ching-ling] its leader.

By 1942, Rewi Alley began setting up schools that were named after his friend Joseph Bailie (an American missionary) to train Chinese youth in the skills needed to manage and work in the new factories. The first one was established at Shuangshipu, Shaanxi Province. Rewi Alley appointed George Aylwin Hogg as an instructor. In 1944, with the Japanese advancing closer, Rewi Alley and Hogg moved the school to Shandan, Gansu Province, and renamed it the Shandan Bailie school. Hogg became the president of the school until his unexpected death in 1945; thereafter Rewi Alley ran the school.

During his time in China, Rewi Alley traveled extensively and was a prolific writer, capturing in poetry the events and the people. He never married but adopted two Chinese orphans, Alan and Michael, in 1929 and 1932 respectively. Rewi Alley died in Beijing on December 27, 1987.


Talitha A. Gerlach (TAG) was born in 1896. She met Ida Pruitt in China while working for Peking Union Medical. Talitha A. Gerlach worked for many years for the International Committee, which coordinated overseas fundraising for the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives movement in China, and headed the China Welfare Appeal. She remained in China for most of her life.


The collection is divided into nine series:

  1. I. Early family records
  2. II. Biographical and personal
  3. III. Correspondence
  4. IV. Professional work, activities, etc.
  5. V. Writings by Ida Pruitt
  6. VI. Writings by others
  7. VII. Rewi Alley papers
  8. VIII. Talitha A. Gerlach files
  9. IX. Photographs

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession numbers: 98-M158, 2001-M100

The papers of Ida Pruitt were given to the Schlesinger Library by her nephew, Dean Pruitt, in September 1998; two additional cartons of photographs, originally part of the collection and on loan to Steve and Liz Grumette, arrived in June 2001.

Related Materials

Papers of Ida Pruitt housed in other repositories include Pruitt's papers re: the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives at the Special Collections at Columbia University and three folders of Ida's correspondence (1938-1952, undated) in the Maud Russell collection at the New York Public Library. The latter contains correspondence that Pruitt left in the apartment when she moved to Philadelphia. They include letters of "introduction that Pruitt brought with her to the United States when she left Beijing in 1938, Indusco-related correspondence, and letters from her mother, Anna Seward Pruitt." Some related material can be found at the Rockefeller Archive Center in New York, which has records of the Peking Union Medical College and the China Medical Board (other records there relating to Pruitt are in the Foreign Mission Fund and the Department of Religious and Social Work).

Related Material:

There is related material at the Schlesinger Library; see Ida Pruitt and Marjorie King Papers, 1891-1994 (MC 701).


Donor: Dean Pruitt

Accession numbers: 98-M158, 2001-M100

Processed by: Glynn Edwards

The following items have been removed from the collection (all are available at Harvard and were returned to the donor):

  1. Evans F. Carlson on China at War, 1937-1941. Hugh Deane. New York: China and US Publ., 1993.
  2. The Races of Mankind. Ruth Benedict and Gene Weltfish. Public Affairs Pamphlet No. 85. New York: Public Affairs Committee, Inc., 1943? Ibid.
  3. Internationalism and Nationalism. Liu Shao-ch'i. New York: Committee for a Democratic Far Eastern Policy, n.d. Ibid.
  4. Far East Spotlight. Committee for a Democratic Far Eastern Policy, September 1948 (vol. IV, no. 3).
  5. The Voice of China. Shanghai: Easter Pub. Co., vol. 1, no. 8 (July 1, 1936).
  6. "Linguistic Study of Material Culture," Gene Weltfish (International Journal of American Linguistics XXIV, no. 4, October 1958).
  7. "On the Decoration of Modern Temples in Taiwan and Hong Kong," Schuyler Cammann (Journal of American Oriental Society, vol. 88, no. 4, October-December 1968).
  8. "A Picture of the Art of Face Painting and Make-up in the Classical Chinese Theater," Sophie Delza (Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, XXX, no. 1, Fall 1971).
  9. "Selected Bibliography of Chinese Autobiographies in English," Douglas Reynolds. New York: East Asian Institute of Columbia University, November 1969.
  10. "Letters on the Detroit Incident"
  11. A New China Policy: Some Quaker Proposals. Report for the American Friends Service Committee. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1965.
  12. Red China and the United Nations. Peter H. Dominick.New York: The Committee of One Million.
  13. Sane World: A Newsletter of Action on Disarmament and the Peace Race. New York (October 1, 1963).
  14. "Perspectives on the Aesthetics of Change: From the Classical Chinese Theatre to the Revolutionary Peking Opera, by Sophia Delza. Chinoperl Papers, New York: Cornell University (March 1978)
  15. Monumenta Serica. Peiping: Henri Vetch (Vol. II, 1937).
  16. The Canadian Far Eastern Newsletter. Toronto: James G. Endicott (various).
  17. Wu Sung Fights the Tiger. Supplement to China Reconstructs, May 1961.
  18. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society. Philadelphia: The American Philosophical Society (Vol. 110, No. 2, April 1966).
  19. Legacy, Helen Whittier Brim, 1963.
  20. Description of the Chinese Kitchen God: Letter from the Rev. James M. Shaw, 1875.


  1. AACIC: Association for Advancement of Chinese Industrial Cooperatives (established 1938 to act as liaison between Chinese Industrial Cooperatives and Chinese government)
  2. ACC: A China Childhood
  3. ASP: Anna Seward Pruitt
  4. CIC: Chinese Industrial Cooperatives
  5. CNRRA: China National Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
  6. CWP: Cicero Washington Pruitt
  7. IC: International Committee (based in China, coordinated international funding for Chinese Industrial Cooperatives; established 1939 at the request of oversees committees to receive their funds)
  8. ICO: International Committee Office (re: Chinese Industrial Cooperatives/Indusco)
  9. Indusco: American Committee in Aid of the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives
  10. IP: Ida Pruitt
  11. MK: Marjorie King
  12. PUMC: Peking Union Medical College
  13. RA: Rewi Alley
  14. SRR: Shanghai Refugee Research
  15. TAG: Talitha A. Gerlach
  16. UCR: United China Relief
  17. UNRRA: United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Association
  18. USC: United Service to China
  19. WILPF: Women's International League for Peace and Freedom


  1. Box 1: 1-20m
  2. Box 2: 21-28
  3. Box 3: 29v-34
  4. Box 4: 36-44
  5. Box 5: 45v-54
  6. Box 6: 55-60, 62-79
  7. Box 7: 80-90, 92-94
  8. Box 8: 96-102, 104-126
  9. Box 9: 127-142, 144-147, 148a
  10. Box 10: 149-169
  11. Box 11: 170-205
  12. Box 12: 206-212, 214-239
  13. Box 13: 240-258v
  14. Box 14: 259-286
  15. Box 15: 287-288, 290-295, 297, 302-315
  16. Box 16: 316-341
  17. Box 17: 342-344, 346-347, 349, 351-359, 361-365, 367-374
  18. Box 18: 375-397
  19. Box 19: 398-431
  20. Box 20: 432-464
  21. Box 21: 465-497
  22. Box 22: 498-522
  23. Box 23: 523-546
  24. Box 24: 547-576
  25. Box 25: 577-612
  26. Box 26: 613-637
  27. Box 27: 638-662
  28. Box 28: 663-689, 698-703
  29. Box 29: 704-714, 716-723
  30. Box 30: 723-745, 747-753
  31. Box 31: 754-770, 772-787
  32. Box 32: 788-824
  33. Box 33: 826-841, 845-859
  34. Box 34: 860-883
  35. Box 35: 884-922
  36. Box 36: 923-945
  37. Box 37: 946-980
  38. Box 38: 981-1011
  39. Box 39: 1012, 1014-1026, 1028-1037
  40. Box 40: 1038-1056
  41. Box 41: 1057-1075
  42. Box 42: 1076-1092
  43. Box 43: 1093-1110
  44. Box 44: 1111-1124
  45. Box 45: 1125-1146
  46. Box 46: 1147-1172
  47. Box 47: 1173-1194
  48. Box 48: 1195-1218
  49. Box 49: 1219-1228
  50. Box 50: 1229-1238, 1240-1244, 1246-1255
  51. Box 51: 1256-1274
  52. Box 52: 1275-1289
  53. Box 53: 1290-1324
  54. Box 54: 1326-1341
  55. Box 55: 1342-1354
  56. Box 55A: 1355-1361
  57. Box 56: 1362-1372
  58. Box 57: 1373-1393, 1395-1401
  59. Box 58: 1402-1418
  60. Box 59: 1419-1446
  61. Box 60: 1447-1449, 1451-1452, 1454-1471
  62. Box 61: 1472-1482
  63. Box 62: 1483-1514
  64. Box 63: 1515-1543, 1545-1549
  65. Box 64: 1550-1560, 1562-1566
  66. Box 65: 1567-1568, 1573-1593
  67. Box 66: 1594-1608, 1610-1620
  68. Box 67: 1621-1644, 1862
  69. Box 68: 24v, 26v, 35v, 143v, 148v (CLOSED)
  70. Card file box 70: 103m
  71. Card file box 71
  72. Card file box 72
  73. Card file box 73
  74. Card file box 74

Processing Information

Processed: June 2002

By: Glynn Edwards; with assistance from Jessica Tanny on Series IX.

Pruitt, Ida. Papers of Ida Pruitt, 1850s-1992: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description
The collection was processed with help from the Marion Fleischer Wasserman Fund.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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