Asia at war, World War 2 as described by USPG missionaries, 1914-1946

War Material in the USPG Archives, 1914-1946

War Material in the USPG Archives, 1914-1946

The senior of the four men read out to me in English, "You are arrested on suspicion under the provisions of the safety of the Realm Act"". I thought ""Oh
Bishop S. HeaslettBishop S. Heaslett's account of his war experiences, 1941-1942; img 6

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During World War Two, these missionaries were often in the wrong country

The United Society Partners in Gospel (USPG) is a UK-based Anglican missionary organisation that operates around the world. During the 18th, 19th, and early-20th centuries, the USPG went by the name of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (SPG). This collection includes letters and supplementary material compiled by its various South Asian branches during the first and second world wars, providing an invaluable insight into their social, political, and economic impact in Asia.


Asia at war, World War 2 as described by USPG missionaries, 1914-1946...

Containing 823 pages belonging to 9 documents housed in 7 volumes...

View the Volumes & Documents 


Burma - Missionary Accounts, 1942-1946

These papers contain a clear focus upon the fate of missionaries who were in Burma when the Second World War...

China - Prior to and during the Second World War, 1936-1946

These accounts of life in China cover both peacetime challenges between world wars and missionary life in China during the...

Japan - Collection of papers from H.P. Thompson, 1941-1945

These assorted accounts of internment provide details of what happened to missionaries from the moment of arrest until their release....

Malaysia - Labuan and Sarawak, 1941-1945

These papers from Malaysia were collected by H.P. Thompson. There are more accounts of escaping the Japanese invasion in these...


  • The USPG missionaries working in Asia often found themselves in the wrong place when World War Two broke-out. Their wartime reports are from Myanmar, China, Japan, Malaysia, and Singapore.
  • The Asian missionaries' reports reveal a range of experiences. Some describe evacuation and moving to escape military advances, others include experiences of capture and internment.
  • SPG - Staff and The War' covers two different periods. The <i>Wartime Committee Minute Book</i> describes how the SPG adapted to World War Two; the list of staff locations also covers 1918-1939.
  • World War Notes and Armistice Pamphlets' include a plane spotter's guide from World War Two. The recorded sightings within it include times, dates, directions, distances, and times of 'all clear'.
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