823.428/49: Airgram

The Ambassador in Peru ( Norweb ) to the Secretary of State

A–1255. Referring to Department’s telegram no. 869 of August 3, Messrs. Keyes Metcalf, Wilmarth Lewis and Lewis Hanke, representing the Committee in Aid of the National Library of Peru, arrived in Lima August 11 and left August 22.

They conferred with individuals and groups interested in the Library and the Geographical Society, interviewing President Prado, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Education;95 the new librarian Dr. Basadre, the librarians of the lesser libraries, Dr. Morales Macedo, the reorganizer of the Geographical Society, and others.

Their recommendations will take the following main trends: One Peruvian architect and three Peruvian librarians to go north for short orientation trips; three U.S. librarians and three U.S. assistants to come south to aid in library school in Lima; organization of books in the U.S. to be checked according to Dr. Basadre’s needs; amassing of U.S. Government publications, amassing of photostats and microfilms of Peruvian MS in U.S. collections; special gifts to be considered later.

The Committee were a great success technically, intellectually and socially, and the interest taken in their visit was broader than the immediate importance of their mission. Their tact and understanding seemed to increase cooperation among various groups that have experienced difficulty in pulling together. Immediate reaction indicated that aid to the Library is one of the most important moves the U.S. can make to strengthen our cultural relations with Peru. It will be concrete evidence of our good will in this field of cooperation.

  1. Alfredo Solf y Muro and Enrique Lareza, respectively.