Holocaust-Era Assets

Civilian Agency Records

Other Agency Records

Records of the Office of War Information
(RG 208)

The Office of War Information (OWI) was established by an Executive order of June 13, 1942, "in recognition of the right of the American people and of all other peoples opposing the Axis oppressors to be truthfully informed about the common war effort."  To achieve a coordinated governmental war information program, both foreign and domestic, the functions and records of the Office of Facts and Figures and of the Office of Government Reports and the coordinating functions of the Division of Information in the Office for Emergency Management were transferred to the OWI. The Foreign Intelligence Service, Outpost, Publication, and Pictorial Branches of the Office of the Coordinator of Information were also transferred to the OWI. The Executive order provided, however, that dissemination of information to the Latin American countries should be continued by the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs. The OWI was terminated, effective September 15, 1945, by an Executive order of August 31, 1945. (Note 29)

Records of the Overseas Operations Branch

The Overseas Operations Branch, established June 1942, succeeded to the functions of the Foreign Information Service of the Office of the Coordination of Information. It planned and carried out the wartime propaganda activities of the Federal Government in all countries except those of Latin America. The Branch established Outposts in more than 20 neutral and Allied Nations, and in areas where it had no representatives it provided State Department missions with informational materials for distribution.

Records of the Office of Policy Coordination

The Office of Policy Coordination, established September 16, 1944, succeeded to the functions of the former Chief of Liaison. It was responsible for all liaison with Government agencies and other governments on matters of propaganda policy and intelligence. On behalf of the Deputy Directors, it drafted the weekly Overseas Central Directive and performed related functions such as the coordination, clearance, interpretation, and issuance of directives for the deputies, the Review Board, and the San Francisco and New York Offices.

Area Policy File 1943-January 1946 (Entry 358)

Interoffice correspondence, cables, memoranda, and reports pertaining to the OWI's information policy for various foreign countries.
Boxes 106-112

Box # Company
3 Adam Opel
4 Carl Zeiss
  Degussa
  Deutsch Sudamerikanische Bank
  E. Merck
  The Flick Co.
5 Ford-Werke
6 Hermann Goering (2 folders)
7-8 I.G. Farben
9 I.G. Farben-Latin America
10 I.G. Farben
11-12 I.G. Farben-Swiss and American Assets
12 I.G. Farben
13 International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation (German Holdings)
  Inter Tube Cartel
  Krupp Complex
14 Mannesmann (3 folders)
  Mettalgesellschaft AG (4 folders)
15 Schering AG (2 folders)
  Siemmens
  Reichsbank [interrogation of Hjalmar Schacht]
  Hugo Stinnes
16-17 Vereinigte Stahlwerk

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Policy Subject File 1942-January 1946 (Entry 359)

Cables and memoranda exchanged by the Policy Coordinator with the New York and San Francisco Control Offices, Outposts, and other units regarding policy guidance. Also included are directives concerning the release or treatment of such news subjects as neutrals. In addition the series includes reports from Outposts on their operations, and intelligence materials. Boxes 113-117 and 817-833

Box # Subject
115 Neutrals, 1944
827 Austria, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, 1944-1945

Records of the Bureau of Overseas Intelligence

The Bureau of Overseas Intelligence was established in August 1943 to replace the Bureau of Research and Analysis. The Bureau was responsible for the collection of intelligence materials, liaison with other Government agencies having intelligence materials, and the furnishing of offices of the OWI with intelligence materials from its central intelligence files. It maintain current summaries of conditions in various regions of the world, furnished background material for use in operations, and maintained a running audit on the reliability of its intelligence sources.

Records of the Central Intelligence Division

The Central Intelligence Division, among its other functions, was to maintain a central repository of intelligence material and a central repository for all foreign operational information in Washington.

Central Intelligence Records 1942-1945 (Entry 365)

Intelligence materials consisting of OWI and non-OWI publications and documents.

Records of the Bureau of Overseas Intelligence

The Bureau of Overseas Intelligence was established in August 1943 to replace the Bureau of Research and Analysis. The Bureau was responsible for the collection of intelligence materials, liaison with other Government agencies having intelligence materials, and the furnishing of offices of the OWI with intelligence materials from its central intelligence files. It maintain current summaries of conditions in various regions of the world, furnished background material for use in operations, and maintained a running audit on the reliability of its intelligence sources.

Records of the Central Intelligence Division

The Central Intelligence Division, among its other functions, was to maintain a central repository of intelligence material and a central repository for all foreign operational information in Washington.

Central Intelligence Records 1942-1945 (Entry 365)

Intelligence materials consisting of OWI and non-OWI publications and documents.

Box # File Title or Subject
152-153 Dealings with the Ministry of Economic Warfare
179-184 OWI Intelligence Digests
185 "Inside the Axis" publications produced by the OWI
193-206 General Intelligence Notes
  Box 205 Switzerland 1942-1943
216 Directives and Guidance: Switzerland 1943-1945

Records of the Regional Analysis Division

The Regional Analysis Division was established in August 1943. It classified intelligence materials according to the geographic area concerned and analyzed intelligence from the foreign media; prepared intelligence reports for policy and background; and made its intelligence reports and materials available to other parts of the OWI.

Informational File on Europe 1941-1946 (Entry 367)

Correspondence, memoranda, reports, and processed material concerning intelligence data on various European countries. These records were collected from private sources, apparently as background material.

Box # File Title or Subject
254 BBC Intelligence Report-Switzerland
344-346 Scandinavia
347 Spain
Spain and Portugal
348 Mostly European Intelligence Papers prepared by the B.B.C. regarding European neutrals (1941-1943); the Netherlands, Belgium, and Switzerland (1942-1943); and, the Scandinavian countries (1943-1944). In the Switzerland section are a copy of a Department of Justice/Economic Warfare Section "Report on Swiss Railways as Axis Connections," dated July 3, 1943; a British-produced "Report on Swiss opinion March 1941-March 1942;" an OWI report "Currence Swiss comment on the War," dated August 24, 1944; an OWI report "Swiss Nazis," dated July 27, 1943; a memo dated March 23, 1944 titled "Swiss Foreign Policy;" and an OWI report "Swiss Trade with United States," dated March 7, 1945; an undated OWI paper entitled "Switzerland's Economic Contributions to Germany;" and, an OWI memo dated November 22, 1944, titled "Switzerland's War Time Economy."

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