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Diary: September 1938 - March 1939

Handwritten and typed diary entries relating to Lester' time as Deputy Secretary General of the League of Nations in Geneva. Includes copy letters from Lester to: Joseph Avenol, Secretary General of the League of Nations, and RM Smyllie, editor of the Irish Times. Includes letters to Lester from: Daniel Anthony Binchy, University College Dublin lecturer and former Irish diplomat; John Marcus O' Sullivan, TD, academic and former member of the Irish delegation to the League of Nations; Alfred O’Rahilly, professor of mathematical physics at University College Cork, mainly concerning the potential promotion of O’Rahilly's new book Electromagnetics: A Discussion of Fundamentals in Switzerland; James Cousins, Irish writer and lecturer at the University of Travancore, India. Includes copy letters from: Arthur Sweetser to [?Lewis Lerwin] in the USA;, and HR Cummings, London representative of the League of Nations Secretary General, to Joseph Avenol. Also includes a list of names and occupations of individuals in the museum sector who attended at luncheon on 8 March [?1939].

Diary: August 1939 - April 1940

Handwritten and typed diary entries relating to Lester's time as Deputy Secretary General of the League of 12 Nations in Geneva, the outbreak of the Second World War, and the evacuation of his wife and three daughters from Geneva to Ireland.

Includes letters and cards to Lester from: Jack T Mayo ['an English fishing companion']; Ambrose B Wareing, the Danzig correspondent for the Daily Telegraph newspaper (letter dated 16 June 1937); Isidro Fabela, Mexican diplomat; Pierre Stoppani, League of Nations Economic Relations Section; Eóin MacNeill, Professor, National University of Ireland; Vladimir Sokoline, Under Secretary General's Office, League of Nations; Stephen Gwynn, former MP for Galway city, academic and journalist; S Pelychuoniades, Hellenic Delegation to the League of Nations; Joseph MN Jeffries, author and journalist; Phyllis Manning, a friend who it seems, also holidayed in Connemara and who worked at the Agricultural Economics Research Institute in Oxford, and GC Greene, 'British Sporting Agency Ltd, Digswell Vale, Welwyn, Hertfordshire, UK.

Includes extract from letter written by Raymond Fosdick, Rockefeller Foundation, to Arthur Sweetser, League of Nations' Public Information Section.

Also includes a handwritten 'note for talk with S.G.' [?Secretary General, Joseph Avenol], dated September 1938, newspaper cuttings, poems by Patricia E Lester [Seán Lester's daughter], and black and white photographs. First photograph features the following individuals chatting beside a bench in a garden or park 'at luncheon to [?Iroguiera' Luis Podestá Costa, League of Nations Under Secretary General; Frank P Walters, League of Nations Under Secretaries-Generals in charge of Political Section Office; Lester, and Isidro Fabela, Mexican diplomat. Second photograph features Lester, Alberto Guani, Uruguayan Foreign Minister, and [?Iroguiera] in Lester's office.

There are two gaps in the diary when Lester did not record entries for months at a time. This diary opens with '[n]ot a line written in a notebook for months', and an entry on 31 January 1940 notes that '[n]othing written for 2 months'.

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