The Committee on Public Information (CPI) had both a foreign and domestic function. Records on the foreign function of the CPI are not extensive, but the National Archives and Records Administration has two record groups of primary interest. Record Group 63 contains the records of the CPI, which include director George Creel’s correspondence. The 1910–1929 Central Decimal File in Record Group 59, the General Records of the Department of State, also includes CPI information in decimal files 103.93 and 103.9302.

At the Library of Congress, the private papers of George Creel do not offer extensive discussion of the foreign work of the CPI, although there is some material on the CPI’s founding. The Papers of Woodrow Wilson offer key insights into the founding of the CPI and Wilson’s stance on its work. Many of these documents have been reprinted in the comprehensive Papers of Woodrow Wilson published by Princeton University Press. Another key printed work is the Complete Report of the Chairman of the Committee on Public Information, which gives a thorough summation of the CPI’s work.

Unpublished Sources

  • Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
    • Papers of George Creel
    • Papers of Woodrow Wilson
  • National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
    • RG 59 (General Records of the Department of State)
      • Central Decimal File 1910–1929
    • RG 63 (Records of the Committee on Public Information)
      • Correspondence of Arthur Wood
      • Correspondence, Cables, Reports, and Newspapers Received from Employees of the Committee Abroad, Nov. 1917–Apr. 1919
      • Director’s Office of the Foreign Section
      • General Correspondence of George Creel
      • Manuals Giving Psychological Estimates of Foreign Countries, Prepared by the Military Intelligence Branch of the General Staff
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Published Sources

  • Creel, George. Complete Report of the Chairman of the Committee on Public Information, 1917, 1918, 1919. 1920. Reprint, New York: Da Capo, 1972.
  • Culbert, David Holbrook, and Richard E. Wood, eds. Film and Propaganda in America: A Documentary History, volume 1, World War I. New York: Greenwood Press, 1990.
  • Link, Arthur, ed. The Papers of Woodrow Wilson. 69 vols. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966–1994.
  • Whitehouse, Vira Boarman. A Year as a Government Agent. New York: Harper, 1920.