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Research Notes Records Seized by U.S. Military Forces in Korea, 1921-1952 NORTH Korea recently published a pamphlet entitled Yesterday, Today : U.S. Imperialism, Mastermind of Aggression on Korea. It is the familiar propaganda booklet with the usual rhetoric, accusing the United States of crimes in the past and warning of the imminent danger of another American-provoked war in Korea. However, two things are notable about the pamphlet. One is that the North has reproduced in it a "restricted" memorandum written on August 26, 1949, by an officer of the American embassy in Seoul, Gregory Henderson. Then a young and eager Third Secretary, Henderson reported on a private conversation he had over dinner with Colonels Kim Paek-il, Min Ki-sik, and Song Yoch 'an and Lieutenant Colonel Chöng Chong-gün of the South Korean army. The conversation was about the morale and preparedness of the South Korean troops for an invasion of the North to unify Korea. A second thing to be noted is that the pamphlet, in English, was published not by the Foreign Languages Publishing House, as is usually the case, but by the Korean People's Army Publishing House. These facts indicate that the North Korean army that occupied Seoul twice during the Korean War (June 28, 1950, and January 4, 1951) seized material belonging not only to the Korean government but to the American embassy as well. Some of this material has been used in the past in unconvincing attempts to substantiate the claim that the United States and its South Korean "puppets" started the Korean War. In the winter of the first year of the war, United Nations troops also captured the North Korean capital, P'yöngyang, and seized material belonging to the party and government of the North. The existence of such captured documents and other material was known to some 178suh scholars for some time, but the documents were classified and their use restricted. Therefore, there has been no serious study based on this material . Only last year the records were declassified and made available for public use. For students of Korea, particularly those interested in the period from the liberation of Korea to the Korean War, it is rare and valuable material. It is not known how much or what sort of material the South Korean army seized when it occupied P'yöngyang. None of this material is available, and there is no study in Korea based on material captured by the South Korean army. This research note is a brief introduction to the material seized by the U.S. military forces in Korea and is offered in the hope that scholars will make use of the material in their research and study of the period prior to the Korean War. The material is held by the General Archives Division of the National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, Washington, D.C. 20409. It is physically housed in the Washington National Records Center, Suitland, Maryland, and is Usted among the holdings of Record Group 242, National Archives Collection of Foreign Records Seized, 1941—. The records are grouped and identified by Shipping Advice numbers (SA), for example, SA-2005. There are nine such Shipping Advice numbers, running consecutively from 2005 to 2013. Each Shipping Advice number, except the last, includes eight to ten boxes of records, and the material in each box is itemized and numbered. Each box is marked with place and date, at times approximate area and date of capture . All items are identified by SA number, box number (B), and item number (I). Most of the material is in Korean, but there are some books in Japanese and Russian. There is an annotated list of the material, in English, but it gives only SA, B, and I numbers and minimal information such as whether each item is a published book or a handwritten record, when and where it was published, number of copies and pages, and so on. There is no annotation of the contents of the documents. This list was prepared by the 8238th Army Unit, Translator and Interpreter Service , General Headquarters, Far East Command, shortly after the capture of the...


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