American Soldier in World War II Surveys, compiled 1942 - 1945
ARC Identifier 620483
Series from Record Group 330: Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, 1921 - 2008
|Creator(s):||War Department. Army Service Forces. Office of the Director of Personnel. Information and Education Division. Research Branch. (1943 - ca. 06/1946)|
|Type(s) of Archival Materials:||Data Files
National Archives at College Park - Electronic Records (RD-DC-E), National Archives at College Park, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD, 20740-6001. PHONE: 301-837-0470; FAX: 301-837-3681; EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Inclusive Dates:||1942 - 1945|
|Part Of:||Record Group 330: Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, 1921 - 2008|
|Includes:||84 file units described in ARCSearch within this Series|
|Function and Use:||The agency conducted these surveys to provide factual information on the attitudes of American armed forces personnel on various subjects. The agency used this data to assist in policy making decisions.|
|Finding Aid Type:||Doc. Package|
|Finding Aid Source:||NARA AND THE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE|
|Lifecycle Tracking Information|
|Disposition Authority Number(s):||NC3-330-80-001|
|Custodial History Note:||The raw data from the surveys initially were stored on the dominant medium for automation in the 1940's, computer punch cards. Although the case files associated with these cards were accessioned by the National Archives and Records Service (NARS) in 1962, the original punch cards were not retained. Much of the microdata survived, however, in the form of a copy that was transferred to NARS in 1978 by the Army Research Institute (ARI).
The copy originated in the work of Samuel Stouffer, one of the civilian employees of the Army Research Branch (ARB) who left the bureau in 1946 for a position at Harvard University. Upon leaving, he made a duplicate set of cards for the 84 unclassified studies (138 data sets) and took the set with him. Because Stouffer served as a member of the Special Committee of the Social Science Research Council, the data he copied and took with him formed the basis for Studies in Social Psychology in World War II. The studies he did not copy dealt with experimental research, in-house operations and special problems, psychoneurotic and medical problems, and attitudes toward allies and subgroups within the military forces and American society.
After Stouffer's death in 1960, Harvard University transferred the duplicate set of unclassified data to the Roper Center, then associated with Williams College. In 1978, the ARI contracted with the Roper Center to read the cards to computer tape and to produce machine-readable frequencies and documentation. At ARI's request, the Roper Center provided the NARS with a copy of the data. The data, along with the related case files and other records, were allocated to Record Group 330 (Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense).