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We are excited to share our new Library catalog and search tool! We hope that you will find it easy to search and explore our collections. If you need help, have questions, or want to share feedback, visit the Ask a Librarian page.

IST 182: The 21st Century Worldwide Refugee Crisis

This is a research guide for group projects related to IST 182: The 21st Century Worldwide Refugee Crisis.

Overview and General Sources

The Archives & Special Collections Library maintains a number of sources that could prove helpful in a study of Vassar's response to past refugee crises. In some cases, key documents are available in the records of campus organizations. In other cases, you'll need to work with a variety of sources to pull together a coherent understanding of the issues.

Regardless of your topic, an excellent first stop is the Vassar Newspaper Archive. Information about how to use this database is available here.

To use materials in Special Collections, you must make an appointment. For more information please contact us:


Henry McCracken Papers

Henry MacCracken, Vassar College President, 1915-1946, was involved in refugee affairs and internationalism on a state and national level, and pledged to “emphasize the international aspect of learning by increasing the number of teachers of foreign birth, the number of foreign students, and the number of courses on international subjects.”  Within his papers, see sections on the Intercollegiate Committee to Aid Student Refugees, the Committee on Refugee Scholars, and the International Committee to Secure Employment for Refugee Professional Workers.

Henry Noble MacCracken Papers, 1907-1968 

World War I and Armenian Genocide

Training Camp for Nurses

Vassar Relief Unit

War Services Committee (unprocessed collection, but is available for research)

World War II and Spanish Civil War

Post-World War II

Post-World War II topics need to be explored using a combination document searches and oral history. Because these topics are relatively recent, speaking to alumnae/i, faculty, and emeriti will likely provide the most information, and if done properly can result in the creation of an historical document. If you want to have your interview recorded and saved in the College Archives please look over this guide then contact the College Archivist. 


Palestine / Arab-Israeli crises

Cold War (Russian emigres, Eastern Europe exiles)