Preliminary Inventory to the Motion Picture Research Council Records, 1927-1949

Processed by Hoover Institution Archives staff; machine-readable finding aid created by James Lake
Hoover Institution Archives
Stanford University
Stanford, California 94305-6010
Phone: (650) 723-3563
Fax: (650) 725-3445
© 1998
Hoover Institution Archives. All rights reserved.

Preliminary Inventory to the Motion Picture Research Council Records, 1927-1949

Hoover Institution Archives

Stanford University

Stanford, California

Contact Information

  • Hoover Institution Archives
  • Stanford University
  • Stanford, California 94305-6010
  • Phone: (650) 723-3563
  • Fax: (650) 725-3445
  • Email:
Processed by:
Hoover Institution Archives staff
Encoded by:
James Lake
© 1998 Hoover Institution Archives. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Motion Picture Research Council Records,
Date (inclusive): 1927-1949
Collection number: XX089
Creator: Motion Picture Research Council
Collection Size: 80 manuscript boxes, 8 volumes (33.8 linear feet)
Repository: Hoover Institution Archives
Stanford, California 94305-6010
Abstract: Correspondence, by-laws, minutes, administrative reports, records, and research and reference materials, relating to the film industry and the effects of films on the community.
Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
Language: English.

Administrative Information


Collection open for research.
The Hoover Institution Archives only allows access to copies of audiovisual items. To listen to sound recordings or to view videos or films during your visit, please contact the Archives at least two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear. Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.

Publication Rights

For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Motion Picture Research Council records, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

Access Points

Moving-picture industry--United States.
United States.

Container List

Box 1

History of Motion Picture Research Council, 1928-1940 [Series 1]. Historical sketches of the Council to 1932; by-laws of the MPRC in 1934; certificates of incorporation and dissolution of the MPRC in New York State in 1935; list of activities of the MPRC during the years 1938-40; record of transfer of the central office from New York City to San Francisco, including an inventory of materials (arranged chronologically). For statements of the purposes and plans of the MPRC, see also the folders "Carnegie Corporation" (Box 5), "Payne Fund" (Box 12), and "List of Studies (Box 57)

Box 2

Financial Records, 1927-1941 [Series 2]. Annual financial statements and budgets, 1928-40; audits and reports; correspondence relative to income tax status; records dealing with indebtedness; a defense of a director of MPRC in a case involving the salary of an employee (arranged as listed). Includes the following six ledgers (shelved at the end of the collection):

Folder 1

Receipts and disbursements


1927 October-1933 August

Folder 2

1933 September-1935 January

Folder 3

1935 January-1941 December

Folder 4-5

Receipts of donations from members


1934 March-1937 January

Folder 6

Account book of accounts payable and receivable, includes monthly statements, 1935 February-April

Box 3-25

Central File of Correspondence, Minutes, Administrative Reports, and Records, 1927-1941 [Series 3]. This series represent the bulk of the files of the MPRC: correspondence, administrative records, minutes, reports (other than research reports), and publicity and fund raising campaign records. Between 1927 and 1935, correspondence was filed separately from the administrative records, minutes, reports, etc. and kept in annual alphabetical files. From the time the central office was reestablished in San Francisco in 1935 until 1941, all records of this series were interfiled in annual alphabetical arrangements. With some modifications, the three subseries of this series represent these original filing patterns


Correspondence, 1927-1935 [Subseries 3A]. Communications of the central office with directors of MPRC research projects, active MPRC members, legislators, interested persons and organizations, and donors. Includes some supportive or administrative material. Originally this correspondence was kept in annual alphabetical arrangements. However, since many folders of a preceding year had been moved ahead into the next year's file during the years 1927 and 1933, the folders for those years were merged into one alphabetical arrangement. The correspondence for 1934 and 1935 is in its original order

Box 26-32

Administrative Records, Minutes, Reports, Campaign Records, 1927-1935 [Subseries 3B]. Membership lists, employment records, and press releases. Includes minutes of conferences, executive meetings, board of director's meetings, reports from conferences and committees, director's reports, publicity and fund raising campaign records

Box 33-56

Correspondence, Minutes, Administrative Reports and Records, 1935-1940 [Subseries 3C]. Correspondence, administrative records such as social security tax records, form letters, inquiries, and press releases. Includes minutes of conferences, committees, board of directors' meetings, plans for conferences, reports from conferences, director's reports, and fund raising campaign plans and records

Box 57-62

MPRC Research Projects, 1928-1940 [Series 4]. Lists, reports, findings, transactions, and correspondence relating to the research projects undertaken by the MPRC. Includes lists of research projects and proposals; documentation on a symposium of MPRC researchers on the direction of research, 1930, and on the Columbus Day Conference of MPRC researchers, 1931; notes on the revision of a book published by MPRC, A Generation of Motion Pictures, 1928, plus a copy of the book; and the findings of many of the research projects of MPRC. Some of the projects represented are studies of the American film industry, the international film industry, the legal control of the industry, the effect on national character, the effect on health, the effect on children, and the moral content of individual films

Box 63-78

Reference, 1928-1940 [Series 5]. The records of this series apparently served the purpose of a reference and/or subject collection of materials relating to the motion picture industry and to the MPRC. Included are an index to a MPRC reference library; a 659-page digest of information collected from many sources (with index); a collection of notes relating to the film industry, entitled "Annals"; one folder of miscellaneous data on the film industry; a subject file (with inventory) including information on censorship, block booking and blind selling, motion picture appreciation, film influences on children, and bibliography; a newspaper clippings file with one oversize album of clippings; a typewritten transcript of Congressional hearings and printed matter form the U.S. Department of Commerce; a collection of manuscripts and theses; and a pamphlet collection. Includes two oversize volumes shelved at the end of the collection