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Section VII: General Secretary's Papers

Part 2: Papers relating to Africa, 1873-1949

The Papers of the General Secretary's Department are very important as the General Committee was ultimately responsible for CMS policy. Here we focus on correspondence with overseas missions in Africa. There is material on:

  • Kenya (including papers on freed slaves, educational work, the gold question in the Kavirondo and the Mombassa diocese).
  • Uganda (including papers about the threatened withdrawal of the Imperial British East Africa Company, church organisation and the constitution of the church in Uganda, diocesan changes, the appointment of bishops and Mengo hospital).
  • Tanganyika (including correspondence about the constitution of the diocese of Central Tanganyika, the appointment of bishops, and relations with the International Missionary Council).
  • Northern Nigeria (including memoranda, letters and reports by
    Max Warren, A G Fraser and Handley Hooper on mission policy).
  • Upper Nile Mission (including letters regarding appointments of bishops, diocesan boundaries and the future of Buwalasi College, 1920-1949).
  • Rwanda (including minutes of the Rwanda Council and correspondence about CMS training colleges, 1926-1949).
  • Sudan (Correspondence and reports on the education of women and girls, medical papers, policy regarding missionary work amongst the Nuer and in the Nuba mountains, and material on the relationship between the Anglican and indigenous churches).

These records form a very important source for understanding the policy decisions underpinning CMS activities abroad as well as being a crucial record on the formation of churches and dioceses and the appointment of bishops overseas. Scholars can examine the influence of leading figures such as Henry Venn,
Frederick Wigram, Herbert Lankaster and William Cash and others who succeeded to the position of General Secretary.

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