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Robert W. Searle Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: DW
Date: 15 Feb 1980

Biographical History

Robert Searle (1894-1967) was an American clergyman and minister in the Reformed Church in America. He was also an author of several books and collections of sermons, and the editor of Protestant World.

Robert Wyckoff Searle was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey in 1894. He graduated from Rutgers College in 1915, then went to the New Brunswick Theological Seminary of the Reformed Church of America, later receiving his doctorate from Rutgers in 1929. Mr. Searle was a pastor for thirteen years in three different churches: the Fort Washington Collegiate Church, New York City, the First Reformed Church, Albany, and finally the Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, New York City.

Searle became General Secretary of the Greater New York Federation of Churches in 1934 and Director of Community Relations for the Protestant Council of New York City in 1941. Later he was appointed editor of the Protestant World newspaper. Searle was active in many civic and religious organizations that promoted social, legal, and political reforms.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Robert Searle Papers consist of seven series. The Biographical series gives an account of Dr. Searle's life from 1894 to 1945. Correspondence covers the years 1918 to 1965 and includes business letters as well as those of gratitude for his sermons and radio broadcasts. There are items in Professional career that cover practically every area Dr. Searle worked on, including bulletins and programs for speaking engagements. Writings consist of assorted forms: articles, speeches, sermons, editorials, and books, essentially on religious topics. In addition, Printed material has some addresses, etc. while Published material has newsclippings, pamphlets, and volumes-both series having assorted subjects, Finally the last section, Memorabilia, contains photographs, datebooks, and other personal items.

Arrangement of the Collection

Material is arranged alphabetically.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Subject Headings


Searle, Robert Wyckoff, 1894-

Corporate Bodies

Protestant Council of the City of New York.
Reformed Church in America.


Christian sociology.
Christianity -- 20th century.
Christianity -- United States.
Christianity and politics.
Clergy -- United States.
Clergy as authors.
Sermons, American.

Genres and Forms

Clippings (information artifacts)
Speeches (documents)



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Robert W. Searle Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Mrs. Helen Searle, 1968.

Table of Contents



Professional career


Printed material

Published material