Papers of Alfred Cecil Cooper

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Private letters from Alfred Cecil Cooper, Bishop in Korea (1931-1954), to his sister Rose, dated 1940-1955, diaries and ephemera including C.B.E. awarded to Bishop Cooper in 1956.

Administrative / Biographical History

Alfred Cecil Cooper was born in 1882. He was ordained into the Anglican priesthood in 1907, and went out as a missionary priest to the Diocese of Korea in 1908. He was consecrated as Bishop of the Diocese in 1931. Following the liberation of Korea from the Japanese at the end of the Second World War, he returned to Korea and laboured to rebuild the Church. In 1950 he refused to leave the Diocese when the Communist forces occupied the Capital (Seoul), and he was taken into captivity in North Korea. He was forced to undertake the "Death March", when all Communist prisoners were marched north as United Nations troops pushed towards the Yalu River. Bishop Cooper spent two and a half years as a prisoner in North Korea, and was finally repatriated in April 1953. He returned to Korea in October 1953. He retired in 1954. He died on 17 Dec 1964.

Reference: Compiled from records of the Korean Mission.

Conditions Governing Access

Open. Access to all bona fide researchers. All papers held at the Orchard Learning Resources Centre will be viewed at the Birmingham University Information Services, Special Collections Department. Please contact the University Archivist for further information.

Acquisition Information

The provenance of this collection is unknown.

Other Finding Aids

A catalogue is available in electronic format on the Birmingham University Information Services, Special Collections Department website: and in paper format within the Department. A paper catalogue available upon request

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the University Archivist, Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Custodial History

Following the merger of the Selly Oak Colleges and the University of Birmingham in 1999 the custodial ownership of collections belonging to the Selly Oak Colleges and held at the Orchard Learning and Resource Centre (OLRC) was transferred to the University. These collections now form part of the University's Special Collections Department and are available for consultation at the Main Library on the University's Edgbaston Campus.


Further deposits are not expected.

Related Material

The Orchard Learning Resources Centre and the University of Birmingham, Special Collections Department holds a rich collection of archives relating to missions, charities and other religious and ecclesiastical organisations and individuals. These include the records of the Korean Mission( GB 150 DA24).