Georges Clemenceau: A Political Biography

By David Robin Watson | Go to book overview

Sources and Bibliography

Unpublished sources

I CLEMENCEAU'S PAPERS
There is no extensive collection of private papers and correspondence. In this Clemenceau is comparable to other French politicians, few of whom left behind anything comparable to the private papers of British statesmen. General Mordacq reports (Clemenceau Au Soir de la Vie, II, pp, 179-81) that in 1928 he helped Clemenceau to classify his papers. They were divided into five groups, and the following decisions were taken about their disposal;
(I) nearly all the letters that Clemenceau had received in the course of his life were burnt
(2) letters from Poincaré, 1918-19, were given to 'a safe friend'
(3) official documents were returned to the Quai d'Orsay
(4) 'certain documents which referred to some of the most agitated periods of his life' were given to Piétri, together with drafts of his speeches
(5) copies of telegrams which he sent, in 1918-19, to foreign governments, were given to 'a discreet person', who was presumably different from the one who received Poincaré's letters, and who was to give them to the French government at the end of twenty years.

Mordacq's account shows that the greater part of the papers Clemenceau had amassed were simply destroyed. In any case, he had not kept copies of his outgoing letters, so they would consist of letters received, not his own letters, which have to be sought among the papers of the recipients. It is difficult to say what happened to the documents that Mordacq says were preserved. J. Chastenet reported (Raymond Poincaré (1948), p. 302) that Poincaré's letters to Clemenceau were held by the Association des Amis de Georges Mandel: I suspect that these are the letters from Poincaré now at the Musée Clemenceau, which cannot be consulted; drafts of some of them are available in the Poincaré Papers (see below). The other documents listed by Mordacq seem to have disappeared without trace. The Quai d'Orsay states that it has no special Clemenceau collection; presumably the documents returned to it were reintegrated in the ordinary files; nor is there any indication of what happened to the copies of telegrams to foreign governments which were to be returned to the government after twenty years; they are not at the Archives Nationales, nor at the Quai d'Orsay as a special collection. As for the intriguing documents which Mordacq states were handed to Piétri. Piétri's executor did not reply to my letter requesting information about their whereabouts: Piétri died in 1966. However, there are other documents, not mentioned by Mordacq, which have survived.

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Georges Clemenceau: A Political Biography
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Georges Clemenceau - A Political Biography *
  • Contents 5
  • Illustrations *
  • Acknowledgements 11
  • Part One - Childhood, Youth and the Commune I84i-1871 *
  • 1 - Childhood and Youth 15
  • 2 - The Commune 34
  • Part Two - The Radical Attack I87i-1889 *
  • 3 - Challenger from the Left 59
  • 4 - Clemenceau versus Ferry 81
  • 5 - Boulangism 101
  • Part Three - Defeat and Resurgence I889-1906 *
  • 6 - Panama 117
  • 7 - The Dreyfus Affair 138
  • Part Four - The First Ministry I906-1909 *
  • 8 - Minister of the Interior 167
  • 9 - Clemenceau as Premier 183
  • 10 - Clemenceau as Strike-Breaker 200
  • 11 - Foreign Policy 215
  • Part Five - Opposition I909-1917 *
  • 12 - In Opposition before the War 237
  • 13 - Opposition in Wartime 249
  • Part Six - Pere-La-Victoire I9i7-1918 *
  • 14 - Second Ministry: Domestic Politics 275
  • 15 - Military Strategy 293
  • 16 - Russian Intervention and Victory 315
  • Part Seven - The Peace Settlement and after I9i8-1929 *
  • 17 - The Versailles Treaty 331
  • 18 - The Middle East and Russia 366
  • 19 - Domestic Politics and Last Years 380
  • Part Eight - Conclusion *
  • 20 - Conclusion 397
  • Appendices Sources and Bibliography Index *
  • Appendix I 411
  • Appendix II 414
  • Appendix III 416
  • Appendix IV 417
  • Appendix V 424
  • Appendix VI 428
  • Appendix VII 434
  • Sources and Bibliography 438
  • Index 455
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