Posts Tagged ‘Beveridge’

The S H Bailey collection

October 1st, 2013 by Kate Higgins, Assistant Archivist

I have recently finished cataloguing the papers of Stanley Hartnoll Bailey, an Assistant Lecturer in International Relations at the LSE 1928-1938. Tragically he died prematurely in his mid 30s, leaving a widow and young children, yet in his relatively short career he achieved a good deal. Many of his various activities are documented in the records that form his archive. In addition to his academic post at the LSE and his position as an Advisor of Studies, Bailey was also a member of several committees. Most notably he was Honorary Secretary of the British Co-ordinating Committee for International Studies 1932-1938, and the collection contains much correspondence and other documents that he created or handled in the course of his work for the committee. Bailey was also a member of the International Student Service’s Co-operating Committee for England and Wales and of the Executive Committee of the International People’s College. The majority of Bailey’s papers consist of copy minutes, agendas, correspondence, memoranda and other papers of various committees, including many records relating to International Studies Conferences and a file of papers of the Labour Party Advisory Committee on International Questions, 1934-1938. The collection also contains Bailey’s research notes and and records collected in the course of his research, papers relating to his teaching role, and copy documents of the United Nations 1927-1932. It is now available to access in the LSE Archives reading room.

70th anniversary of the Beveridge Report: more documents online

November 29th, 2012 by Nick White, Assistant Archivist

The report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Social Insurance and Allied Services (Cmd 6404), commonly known as the Beveridge Report, was published on 1 December 1942. To mark this event more documents from the Beveridge papers held here at LSE have been digitised and are available online via the Archives catalogue:

  • First draft of the Beveridge Report, c.July 1941 (BEVERIDGE/9A/41/1)
  • BBC Postscript, script for talk on the Beveridge Report, 2 December 1942 (BEVERIDGE/9B/55/1)
  • “Social security and the state”, script of talk with Maurice Webb for Westminster and Beyond, 7 December 1942 (BEVERIDGE/9B/55/1)
  • Diary of visit to the USA and Canada, 2 May – 15 July 1943 (BEVERIDGE/11/36)
  • “The health aspects of social security in Britain”, summary of address by Beveridge at the Hotel Waldorf Astoria, 3 June 1943 (BEVERIDGE/11/31/1)
  • “Security with freedom”, summary of address to the English Speaking Union, 4 June 1943 (BEVERIDGE/11/35)
  • “Some questions on the Beveridge Report”, points from address at United Nations lecture at Washington, 5 July 1943 (BEVERIDGE/11/35)
  • “Can unemployment be prevented?”, script of talk by Beveridge, BBC broadcast on 11 October 1943 (BEVERIDGE/9B/56)
  • “Beveridge on Beveridge: recent speeches of Sir William Beveridge”, pamphlet published by the Social Security League, c.1943 (BEVERIDGE/9A/79)
  • “Full employment in a free society: a summary”, pamphlet by Beveridge, November 1944 (BEVERIDGE/9A/79)
  • “The Beveridge Plan ten years after”, summary of two lectures at Rodding, Jutland, 3-4 August 1953 (BEVERIDGE/9B/40/2).
  • “]Illustration from the pamphlet, "Beveridge on Beveridge: recent speeches of Sir William Beveridge", published by the Social Security League, [1944]

    Illustration from the pamphlet, "Beveridge on Beveridge: recent speeches of Sir William Beveridge", published by the Social Security League, [1944

    Beveridge’s philosophy is particularly outlined when he was interviewed by Maurice Webb on “Westminster and Beyond” on 7 December 1942:

    • “Government”, Beveridge says, “is a means not an end and the object of government is, or should be, the happiness of citizens. They can’t be happy if they are in need”
    • He defines social security in a very narrow sense: “security of income up to a minimum”, but that “social security in my sense cannot be satisfactory unless you also maintain employment and avoid mass unemployment and also do many other things that are part of a full social policy”
    • He is asked, “What part is the State to play in social security?”. He replies, “… social security must be achieved by co-operation between the State and the individual, that the State’s function is to establish a national minimum, but to leave room and encouragement for voluntary action by each individual to provide more than that minimum for himself and his family”
    • The interviewer says, “I suppose you’d say that most men’s wages now are enough for themselves and a wife and at least one child”. Beveridge replies, “I believe that in fact they are and I’m certain that they ought to be – by minimum wage legislation if necessary”
    • Beveridge is also asked about what the national minimum, or subsistence level actually meant: “The rate of subsistence benefit of £2 a week for man and wife as I’ve worked it out in my Report is meant to cover food, clothing, fuel and rent. The State might say that everyone at all times ought to be able as well to have a radio or a paper or tobacco, or might raise its ideas as to what was needed for clothing or fuel… It can change and improve like everything else in a progressive society”

    William Beveridge welcomes new LSE students… in 1921-36

    October 11th, 2012 by Nick White, Assistant Archivist

    A file of addresses to new students by former LSE Director William Beveridge has recently been digitised and is now available online via the Archives catalogue.

    The documents (in BEVERIDGE/5/10) vary in detail from sketchy notes to detailed transcriptions of what he was due to say, and many of them are annotated by Beveridge himself. Below are a few extracts from the addresses:

    • On the spirit of adventure and the tradition of tolerance (speech made on 13 October 1930, BEVERIDGE/5/10/15):

    “The life of the School has always been a life of adventure, the breaking into new fields of study and the attacking of old problems by new methods…

    The tradition of the School is and always has been one of tolerance and one of free thought and speech. Its Constitution lays down that none of the teachers here may suffer any dishonour for the expression of any opinion; with this privilege comes an obligation of honour applying to all the School, whether teachers or taught, to make it clear that the School itself has no colour, political or economic, but is an impartial ground where all may meet. Tolerance indeed is forced upon us by the infinite variety of those who form our body; men and women of other races, creeds and backgrounds, and of other political and economic preconceptions”.

    He adds that there is still plenty of room left for the spirit of adventure as, “It is in the fields of economic and political statesmanship, even more than in those of natural science, that the great discoveries are most needed and waiting to be made”.

    William Beveridge playing tennis at Banstead, c1919

    William Beveridge playing tennis at Banstead, c1919

    • On the conflict between two unselfish motives, the “reforming spirit” and the “scientific spirit” (5 October 1932, BEVERIDGE/5/10/19)

    “No one will deny that for the reforming spirit there is ample scope in the world to-day. These are not easy times for anyone. Man seems to be making a mess of his planet; to be wasting his own powers and Nature’s bounty. Because of this it is natural that many old constitutions and cherished institutions, many doctrines that once seemed unassailable, are now on trial…”.

    “Your main business here is to acquire the scientific spirit in economic and political studies. You will not find that either inhuman or unprofitable.
    In the first place, the pursuit of knowledge is itself an absorbing passion…
    In the second place, knowledge is the indispensable preliminary to effective reform…”.

    “You are here for the most part to learn to do better in practical life. For the reasons I have given, I want to suggest that in spite of the urgent call, or indeed because of the urgent recurring calls, of the world to the service of the reforming spirit, there is need for you at the moment to be slightly deaf to that call. Your first business is to serve the scientific spirit, to get as the basis of all that you may do in the world hereafter as much knowledge as possible for its own sake, as much understanding as possible of the economic and political institutions, without considering all the time as yet how you would like to change them, what judgment you would pass upon them.

    I hope for the sake of the world that there is plenty in you of reforming spirit. For there is much to be done. In following that spirit, as in carving out your own careers, you will constantly in after life find yourselves taking sides, joining parties, attacking opponents, making public speeches, pretending to know more than you do, taking decisions without knowing, taking risks. If when you go out into the practical world you do not take some risks and at need make mistakes, you will not make anything.

    But with the scientific spirit none of these things fit. To know, to know the limits of your knowledge, to place truth above parties and sides, to speak only when sure. These are its first principles. It is the scientific spirit that you must seek here; service to the reforming spirit if that conflicts with it you should postpone.

    If you miss other things here, you miss what may be valuable. If you miss that, you miss what is vital”.

    School Photograph, June 1929

    School Photograph, June 1929

    • Beveridge on the need for the application of reason to human affairs (10 October 1934, BEVERIDGE/5/10/24)

    “In one sense the School is based on tremendous optimism, on the belief that by taking thought one can master the complex workings of society, and make society work better in the future than it has worked in the past. But as we are optimistic about the possibility of man mastering his fate in this way, so we must realise the conditions of his doing so – patience, detachment, industry, suspension of judgment until one is sure, readiness to face facts, readiness to learn and change your views – everything for which the word “science” stands. To come here with a ready made set of fixed opinions on the nature of society, to acquire such opinions in the first few months is to waste the rest of your time in this place. We believe in the application of reason to human affairs, but it must be reason, not prejudice, not emotion – whether of hatred or of love. That is the common element of the School: belief in the application of reason to human affairs, belief that it is a difficult and interesting, but not an impossible task”.

    Charlotte and George Bernard Shaw seated centre, the Webbs seated either side. Leaving for a trip to Russia. The School was founded by the Webbs, G B Shaw and Graham Wallas in 1895. The Shaw Library, in the Founders Room was named after Charlotte Shaw.

    Charlotte and George Bernard Shaw seated centre, the Webbs seated either side. Leaving for a trip to Russia in 1932. The School was founded by the Webbs, G B Shaw and Graham Wallas in 1895. The Shaw Library, in the Founders Room, was named after Charlotte Shaw.

    •   On Beatrice and Sidney Webb and their vision of LSE (9 October 1935, BEVERIDGE/5/10/26)

    This speech was made in the Founders Room which “commemorates the Webbs, whose portrait you see behind me – the Founders of the School of which you have just become members. The portrait was a present to the Webbs on their joint 70th birthday six years ago; they are not, I believe really the same age, but they keep their birthday and their age as the mean of their two real ages. The School is among the youngest of the great University institutions of this country – just forty years old this year, and its founders are still vigorous and working as hard as ever – in that room as you see it in the picture – complete with the dog”.

    Beveridge was not able to come to the School to undertake his first degree as in 1897, “when I was at the age to go to a University as an undergraduate, the School did exist indeed; but it was not part of the University of London; the School offered no regular course for University degrees; our first graduate dates from 1903. In 1897 I should have found the School, had I found it, filling half of one house in Adelphi Terrace, just rejoicing at having left the four rooms in which it began for that larger territory.

    All that you are going to get in this place in the next few years you will owe to the Webbs. I hope you will remember this whenever you come to this room, and treat it with the respect which is due to those great figures. I’d like you to feel always something of the romance of the beginning of this School”. He explains that the School was founded in October 1895 on a “small legacy and an idea in the mind of the Webbs”.

    “What was this idea? This idea of the Webbs? The idea was a belief in the application of reason to human relations. A belief that reason applied to human affairs might make it possible for us ultimately to manage them better, as reason applied to nature has enabled us to master so much of nature. Their general idea was belief in the possibility and the need for a Science of Society…”.

    “The great trees down at Malden gaze down upon our play…” – 90 Years of Sport at LSE

    August 1st, 2012 by Catherine McIntyre, Archives Assistant

    The Pavillion at Malden Sports Ground, c1955 (IMAGELIBRARY/364)

    We couldn’t let the London 2012 Olympics pass without a special sports-related blog entry, especially as we have some fantastic pictures of sports days gone by. In the academic year 1921-1922, William Beveridge, then Director of the School, procured the LSE’s sports ground at Malden, Surrey. Beveridge was keen on students undertaking sporting activities, and not just for fun – he took his sport seriously and the School’s first sports day was held that summer, with Beveridge as referee.


    Cover of the programme for the first LSE Sports Day, May 6th 1922 (LSE/Small LSE Deposits/47) - the Megaphone Steward is aptly named Mr E. F. Horn

    Four hundred spectators watched events including:

    • 120 yards hurdles
    • ladies 80 yards
    • putting the weight
    • three miles
    • long jump
    • tug-of-war
    • 100 yards
    • 440 yards
    • obstacle race

    Men Sprint Start at a Sports Day c1920s (IMAGELIBRARY/953)

    The programme for the day lists all the participants and The Clare Market Review for the summer term of 1922 records the winners, with B.Sc. (Econ) winning the inter-faculty competition, C. W. Reid the Victor Ludorum Cup and the students beating the teaching staff in the tug-of-war. Interestingly, the results also include statements on how close the races were, for example: C. W. Reid won the 220 yards “easily” in 25 2/5 seconds. The 120 yards hurdles, won by X. L. Messenesi, was, however, a “close finish all”.


    Tug-of-War at a Sports Day c1920s (IMAGELIBRARY/941)


    Ladies race at a Sports Day c1920s (IMAGELIBRARY/940)


    There was even time for apple-bobbing at one sports day c1920s (IMAGELIBRARY/904)


    The Clare Market Review for the Michaelmas term in 1926 includes the words and music for “The Malden Song”, presumably played at School sports events. The lyrics of the first verse and refrain are:


    The great trees down at Malden gaze down upon our play

    From hoist of flag at morning till darkness veils the day

    And when the game is bustling

    And strenuous the fray

    Comes a whisper with the rustling of the oak trees as they say:


    “Play up, play up, ye School men and keep your colours high!

    For your battles down at Malden shall cheer you by and by

    When to make the scrum you’ve grown too old and dimness clouds the eye

    You shall think once more of the days of yore and the purple, black and gold

    You shall think once more of the days of yore and the purple, black and gold.”


    Maybe they should have included it in the opening ceremony? For more sporting pictures featuring LSE staff and students - including hockey, cricket, football, rugby and rowing - check out our Flickr set LSE Sports.

    Using the William Beveridge papers in class

    November 4th, 2011 by Nick White, Assistant Archivist

    Paul Horsler, Academic Support Librarian for Economic History writes on this week’s use of archival and printed primary sources in classes at LSE:

    The Beveridge Collection in LSE Archives has had a couple of outings recently. Last week it appeared on the BBC2 programme, The Future State of Welfare, presented by John Humphrys. This week it was employed in support of teaching for the EH237 Theories and Methods of Economic History class on archives. This class has become a regular slot in the calendar over the last four years.

    William Beveridge, c 1910: at the time he was a civil servant at the Board of Trade working on labour exchanges and national insurance

    William Beveridge, c 1910: at the time he was a civil servant at the Board of Trade working on labour exchanges and national insurance

    This year the documents selected from both the Archives and Government Publication collections were associated with the question: The role of Beveridge in the development of labour exchanges in Britain, 1905-1914. For many taking part in this class, it is the first time that they have seen or got their hands on archival documents. Listening to some of the discussion in the first two classes on Monday, there was a clear understanding of how the documents could be used. This included showing the emotional side of a person as outlined in several letters from Beveridge to his mother (BEVERIDGE/2A/39-73). The publications from the Government collections included a referral in Hansard to Beveridge’s 1909 book, Unemployment: a problem of industry

    One of the class teachers commented: This was a fascinating session that gave the students a taste of what it is like to handle and engage with archival material. It was a showcase for the wealth of resources available at LSE. The archive staff did an excellent job of selecting and arranging a variety of material – from parliamentary papers through to personal letters – that illuminated a particular historical event. This really helped participants to get a feel for how questions around historical truth and the use of sources work in practice.

    Sir William Beveridge also features quite heavily in the Flickr photostream that we have, some of which relate to his time as Director of the LSE from 1919 to 1937

    Beveridge on screen

    January 22nd, 2011 by Nick White, Assistant Archivist

    British Pathe have an excellent website containing newsreels from 1896 to 1976. Several of these feature William Beveridge:

    In, “Sir William Beveridge talks to Pathe Gazette”, he summarises the Beveridge report, which had been published just a few days earlier (on 1 December 1942). He states the three main themes of the report: social security in return for a weekly contribution towards an insurance stamp; children’s allowances; and, a national health service. He argues for a national minimum, below which no British citizen should fall. If implemented, the report would be the “first step to security with freedom and responsibility”. A more detailed summary (15 minutes) by Beveridge of the report is available on the BBC website.

    William Beveridge in 1910

    William Beveridge in 1910

    “Sir William Beveridge marries”, is a silent film featuring the happy couple walking about on their wedding day, 15 December 1942. The film also has footage of the bomb-damaged church near Caxton Hall, where the wedding took place.

    “International Women’s Day”, includes a clip of Lady Beveridge speaking in 1944 in support of her husband’s scheme to free Britain from the five giants of Idleness, Want, Squalor, Ignorance and Disease. She adds a sixth giant to the list: War.

    There are also several newsreels which show Beveridge at the ceremony to bestow an honorary doctorate from the University of London on Winston Churchill in 1948. Churchill states that he is honoured to receive a degree from the university of this “dear old battered London”. He goes on to say that the “duty of a university is to teach wisdom, not a trade”. Another newsreel relates to Princess Margaret receiving an honorary doctorate in 1957, but it doesn’t actually feature Beveridge. However, both events occurred in William Beveridge Hall, Senate House, London. The Hall was named after Beveridge, for his role in securing the site for the university in the 1920s. He also helped choose the architect of the building, Charles Holden.

    Finally, “50 years progress”, relates to an event in 1960 celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of labour exchanges. The newsreel features a speech by Beveridge, where he recalls that it was Sidney and Beatrice Webb who had urged Winston Churchill to enlist the help of the “boy Beveridge” to set up Labour Exchanges. Among those listening to the speech were Edward Heath, then Minister of Labour.