UNRRA selected records AG-018-018 : Dodecanese Islands Mission
Document | Accession Number: 2019.36.1 | RG Number: RG-67.071
Consists of the UNRRA Central Registry Files and Subject Files relating to relief and rehabilitation, welfare inquires, and displaced persons and refugees on the Dodecanese and Rhodes area.
3,267 digital images : JPEG ; 2.36 GB .
- Document Creator
- United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA)
UNRRA. Dodecanese Islands Mission
The United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) was an international relief agency representing 44 nations, but largely dominated by the United States. Founded in 1943, it became part of the United Nations (UN) in 1945, and it largely shut down operations in 1947. Its purpose was to "plan, co-ordinate, administer or arrange for the administration of measures for the relief of victims of war in any area under the control of any of the United Nations through the provision of food, fuel, clothing, shelter and other basic necessities, medical and other essential services." Its staff of civil servants included 12,000 people, with headquarters in New York. Funding came from many nations, and totaled $3.7 billion, of which the United States contributed $2.7 billion; Britain $625 million and Canada $139 million. The Administration of UNRRA at the peak of operations in mid-1946 included five types of offices and missions with a staff totaling nearly 25,000: The Headquarters Office in Washington, The European Regional Office (London), the 29 servicing offices and missions (2 area offices in Cairo and Sydney; 10 liaison offices and missions in Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Trieste; 12 procurement offices in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and later Peru, Cuba, India, Mexico, South Africa, Southern Rhodesia, Turkey, Uruguay, Venezuela; 6 offices for procurement of surplus military supplies in Caserta and later Rome, Honolulu, Manila, New Delhi, Paris, Shanghai), the sixteen missions to receiving countries (Albania, Austria, Byelorussia, China, Czechoslovakia, the Dodecanese Islands, Ethiopia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Korea, the Philippines, Poland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia), and the Displaced Persons Operations in Germany.
UNRRA cooperated closely with dozens of volunteer charitable organizations, who sent hundreds of their own agencies to work alongside UNRRA. In operation only three years, the agency distributed about $4 billion worth of goods, food, medicine, tools, and farm implements at a time of severe global shortages and worldwide transportation difficulties. The recipient nations had been especially hard hit by starvation, dislocation, and political chaos. It played a major role in helping Displaced Persons return to their home countries in Europe in 1945-46. Its UN functions were transferred to several UN agencies, including the International Refugee Organization and the World Health Organization. As an American relief agency, it was largely replaced by the Marshall Plan, which began operations in 1948. [Source: UN Original finding aid of records of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA)]
After the liberation of the Dodecanese from the Germans, a British Military Administration took over the government of the Islands in May 1945. It established a rationing system for food, clothes and petrol, and submitted a programme of requirements to UNRRA Headquarters through the European Regional Office. This programme was not acted upon, however, until it had later been reviewed and resubmitted by the UNRRA Mission. An agreement with the Director of Civil Affairs, War Office, on behalf of the British Military Administration, Dodecanese, was signed on 1 August 1945. It provided for immediate shipment of relief supplies financed by UNRRA, but procured and shipped by the British Military Administration until UNRRA could assume these responsibilities.The Mission was established in Rhodes in October 1945, and its first supplies arrived in February 1946, some previous BMA shipments having been financed by UNRRA. Welfare Officers were stationed on all of the larger islands, in addition to the Chief Welfare Officer in Rhodes. Food supplies were generally sold, the proceeds of sale going in part to provide cash relief for those unable to pay the fixed prices of UNRRA supplies. This cash relief work was largely administered by the Mission's Welfare Officers, in co-operation with BMA and Relief Sub-Committees, these latter being branches of the Central Relief Committee in Rhodes and including representatives of all the communities in each area. In November 1946 the Dodecanese Welfare Association was formed for the purpose of administering the proceeds of sale of UNRRA supplies after the closure of the Mission in May 1947 until the transfer of the Islands to Greece in March 1948.
- System of Arrangement
- Selected records arranged in two sub-groups: 1. S-1345, Central Registry Files, 1945-1947; 2. Non-Registry Subject Files, 1945-1947.
- Topical Term
World War, 1939-1945--Refugees.
World War, 1939-1945--Civilian relief--Dodecanese Islands.
War relief--Dodecanese Islands--History--20th century.
Refugees--Legal status, laws, etc.
Humanitarian assistance, American--Political aspects.
Holocaust survivors--Europe--History--20th century.
- Corporate Name
United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
- Holder of Originals
United Nations Archives and Records Management Section
- Legal Status
- Permanent Collection
- Source of acquisition is the Archives and Records Management Section (UN-ARMS), UNRRA records AG-018-018. The collection was digitized through a cooperative agreement between the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Mémorial de la Shoah, France and the UN-ARMS. The USHMM Archives received copied collection via the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum International Archival Programs Division in February 2019.
- Conditions on Access
- This material can only be accessed in a Museum reading room or other on-campus viewing stations. No other access restrictions apply to this material.
- Conditions on Use
- The United Nations Archives is a holder of the copyrights of this collection.
- Copyright Holder
- United Nations Archives and Records Management Section
Record last modified: 2023-08-23 10:27:00
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