January 11, 2012

I spent Friday, January 6 and Saturday, January 7 doing research at the Library of Congress. I began Friday in the Madison building where I was able to access the finding aid for the Emanuel Celler Papers, which is a very extensive collection. 4 boxes either mentioned J.J. Singh or India, and so on Saturday I went back to view these items. Though there was significantly less correspondence between Celler and J.J. Singh during the war years, their correspondence as a whole was quite lengthly, and I was able to either copy or take notes on the documents I found the most significant. Their letters touched on topics including the U.N. Conference at San Francisco and the state of the India League of America, as well as really cementing their close relationship and J.J.’s status as an expert on India in the United States. I particularly enjoyed seeing J.J’s own handwriting (including his decisive signature), his business card (which only had the words “J.J. Singh” and “New York” on it), and a memorial magazine created for his 70th birthday. I’m very pleased with the amount of new material I obtained from the Celler Papers. 

On Friday I also submitted a request through the Recorded Sound Reference Center to digitize a NBC radio address given by Anup Singh entitled “China & India Speak to America, India Speaks.” Because of the length of the digitizing queue I won’t be able to access this recording until January 23, and I would need to return to the Library to listen to the program because of copyright laws. I decided to submit the request anyway, though I may decide it is not worth the time to follow through on this single item.

The other major item I viewed at the Library of Congress was the monthly periodical published by the National Committee for India’s Freedom, The Voice of India. The Library owned copies of the journal from its first issue published in September 1944 vol. 3 no. 6/7 (April/May 1947). I decided to copy the title page and table of contents for all of the issues published during my timeline, so through December 1945, as well as any articles I found significant. I think it will be interesting to contrast this publication with India Today, and discover if the two periodicals not only differed in presentation but if they also reported on the same events differently.

At the end of my two days at the Library of Congress I felt like I could spend another two months doing research there, but overall, very satisfied with the amount of work I accomplished in my limited time there.

I have also heard back from Professor Clymer, who responded in a very nice email that unfortunately he can’t help me because he is working at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington and doesn’t have access to his documents. I have get to get responses to any of the other emails I’ve sent out.

 

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