Chiang Kai-shek Diaries

The Hoover Institution has been helping preserve the handwritten diaries of Chiang Kai-shek and his son Chiang Ching-kuo since Chiang family members deposited them at Hoover in 2005. 

By TOM BETHELL via HOOVER DIGEST

Those diaries of the former presidents of the Republic of China are on deposit at the Hoover Institution pending the creation of a suitable repository on Chinese territory. Members of the Chiang family screened the Chiang Kai-shek diaries at Hoover so that they could be made available for research.

To ensure their preservation, and to conform to the wishes of family members, use copies of the handwritten pages are available at the Hoover Archives. The copies reflect the fragility and poor condition of the originals, with some pages water damaged, stuck together, or missing entirely. In addition, some sentences were crossed out in ink on the originals.

Given the uninhibited nature of many personal comments in the diaries, family members have chosen to keep some passages private and have thus redacted these from the use copies. Although in most cases the individuals named are deceased, family members wish to protect the feelings of living descendants or other relatives. Recognizing the historical significance of the diaries in their entirety, however, family members have authorized that the redacted passages be released in 2035.

An inventory of the Chiang Kai-shek Diaries is available.

Current state of Diaries 2014 to the Present

The Hoover Institution at Stanford University, for almost nine years, has had on deposit extraordinary archival material, including diaries and other papers, from Chiang Kai-shek, and his son, Chiang Ching-kuo. The Hoover Institution has provided access to redacted copies of the Chiang Kai-shek diaries in our reading room, and the collection has become one of the most popular in the archives, being viewed by hundreds of people from around the world each year.  Hoover’s goal is to provide as much of the material as possible for scholarly study. 

Having received conflicting claims of ownership to the materials, on September 24th, 2013, the Hoover Institution announced that it was seeking clarity on the ownership of the Chiang family diaries and papers on deposit at the Hoover Institution. The Hoover Institution is looking for legal clarity so it can either return the materials to the proper owner(s) or continue to hold the materials for the proper owner(s), and is not advocating for one outcome over another.

Since then, the Institution learned that the Academia Historica (the Republic of China's highest-level organization concerned with affairs related to the nation's history in Taiwan) claims to have an interest in the deposit. Consequently, as we seek to discover the rightful owners and appropriate treatment of the deposit, the Academia Historica, as an agency or instrumentality of the Republic of China, has been added to the interpleader action, which enlists assistance from the court to determine ownership of the deposit. In its continuing efforts to work with those with any legitimate claim to the deposited materials, the Hoover Institution has reached out to all of the defendants, including the Republic of China, to let them know about the action before the filing.

It has been a privilege for the Hoover Institution to be a home to the deposited materials.  It is our hope that a resolution can be found soon. 

Chiang Kai-shek Diaries

Hoover Institution is seeking clarity on the ownership of the Chiang family diaries and papers

Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Stanford

The Hoover Institution of Stanford University is working diligently to seek clarity on the ownership of the Chiang family diaries and papers on deposit at the Hoover Institution. The Institution has filed an interpleader action (a process by which a party asks a court to determine the ownership interests of property with multiple claimants) to enlist assistance from the Court. The Hoover Institution is not adverse to any party but has determined this as the appropriate next step after being unable, for several years, to resolve competing ownership claims.

Press Releases

Earliest Diaries of Chiang Kai-shek Open for Research on March 31, 2006

Friday, March 31, 2006

The diaries of Chiang Kai-shek from 1917 to 1931 will be opened on March 31, 2006. The remainder of the diaries will be opened sequentially during the next few years.

News

World War II Diaries of Chiang Kai-shek Open for Research on April 2, 2007

Monday, March 26, 2007

The diaries of Chiang Kai-shek from 1932 to 1945 will become available to researchers in the Hoover Archives reading room on April 2, 2007. They join earlier Chiang diaries from 1917 to 1931, which were opened last year.

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Postwar Diaries of Chiang Kai-shek Open for Research on July 18, 2008

Thursday, July 17, 2008
Stanford

The diaries of Chiang Kai-shek from 1946 to 1955 are available to researchers at the Hoover Library and Archives as of July 18, 2008. They join earlier Chiang diaries from 1917 to 1945, which were opened in 2006 and 2007.

Press Releases
Chiang Kai-shek Diaries

Final Diaries of Chiang Kai-shek Open for Research on July 8, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The diaries of Chiang Kai-shek from 1956 to 1972 are available to researchers at the Hoover Archives as of Wednesday, July 8, 2009, when they will join earlier Chiang diaries from 1917 to 1955, which were opened between 2006 and 2008

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Undated photo of Chiang Kai-shek

Hoover Archives in Phoenix TV Documentary on the Chiang Kai-shek Diaries

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A Chinese-language television documentary about the Chiang Kai-shek diaries at the Hoover Archives can be viewed on YouTube. Released in February, the extensive footage from Hoover that appears in Part One was taped in August 2008.

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Chiang Kai-shek Diaries

Hoover-Oxford Workshop Examines Collections in the Hoover Institution’s Modern China Archives New Documents Reveal Insights on Reform Policies of Chiang Kai-shek and Kuomintang Party

Monday, September 27, 2010

Stanford—Scholars examining acquisitions in the Modern China Archives, held by the Hoover Institution Library and Archives, are reassessing important events and leaders of twentieth-century China. “The newly available historical materials open up a window to understanding China,” said Hoover research fellow Tai-chun Kuo, who is a workshop coordinator, along with Steve Tsang, of Oxford University.

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President Ma of Taiwan meets with Richard Sousa, director of the library and archives at the Hoover Institution

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The president of Taiwan, Ma Ying-jeou, met with Richard Sousa, director of the library and archives at the Hoover Institution, at the presidential palace in Taiwan.

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Taiwanese Foreign Ministry; John Hsiao-yen Chiang

John Hsiao-yen Chiang visited the Hoover Institution

Monday, February 6, 2012

John Hsiao-yen Chiang, vice chairman of Taiwan’s ruling party (the Kuomintang), visited the Hoover Institution on February 6, 2012. He was accompanied by Jack Chiang, director-general of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in San Francisco, Li-fang Huang, a director at TECO, Colin Kao, a senior official from the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry, and Wayne Chiang, son of John Hsiao-yen Chiang. A grandson of Chiang Kai-shek and a son of Chiang Ching-kuo (both top leaders of the Republic of China), John Hsiao-yen Chiang is an influential politician in Taiwan. Before becoming vice chairman of the Kuomintang Party, he was Taiwan’s foreign minister from 1996 to 1997, vice premier in 1997, secretary-general of the presidential office from 1999 to 2000. Since 2002, he has been a member of the Legislative Yuan.

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