A mirror for the present

By Xing Yi | China Daily | Updated: 2017-07-21 07:06

A mirror for the present

Koo speaks on BBC in 1941 about China's War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression. [Photo provided to China Daily]

A digital archive of papers from Columbia University on famous diplomat V.K. Wellington Koo will be available later this year. Xing Yi reports.

A digitized archive of V.K. Wellington Koo's papers will be available online in November, offering researchers access to materials from the legendary 20th-century Chinese diplomat's collection of papers kept by Columbia University.

Columbia University has around 300 boxes of the famous diplomat's letters, notes and documents, among which 57 boxes were donated by his family after his death.

The online archive is a joint project by the university and the Institute of Modern History of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, and parts of the collection are being released for the first time.

Some replicas of Koo's papers are now on display at the Columbia Global Center in Beijing through Sept 15.

Wang Jianlang, director of the Institute of Modern History, said at the opening of the exhibition on July 14 that the cataloging of more than 200 boxes of the archive materials is complete, and they will be accessible on the institute's online database after a final check.

"When studying the history of China's modern diplomacy, one cannot ignore Koo," says Wang. "Koo is regarded as the No 1 diplomat of the Republic of China."

Sean Quimby, director of Columbia University's Rare Books and Manuscript Library, says: "The Koo archive consists of meticulously written notes of conversations with various figures, including at least three presidents of the United States."

The digital project now includes 60,000 items.

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