Baha'i Library Online

Some letters of historical interest can also be found in Histories and Pilgrims Notes.

Personal letters

  1. Paul E. Haney and Horace Holley et al. Ahmad Sohrab and the New History Society (1958). Overview of the defection of Ahmad Sohrab and the formation of the "New History Society" and the "Caravan of East and West."
  2. Youli A. Ioannesyan. Baron Rosen's Archive Collection of Bábí and Bahá'í Materials (2007). Baron V. R. Rosen's unpublished materials relating to Bábí and Bahá'í studies, including his correspondence with A. G. Tumanski and E. G. Browne, and official reports of Russian diplomats.
  3. Thornton Chase. Before Abraham Was, I am (1902). Open letter to a new Bahá'í summarizing the Bahá'í revelation through a Christian perspective.
  4. Daya Ram Malviya. William Garlington, trans. Biographical letter from a Hindu villager (1974). A glimpse into the life of an Indian convert to the Faith.
  5. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Excerpts from a Letter from Ruhiyyih Khanum (1943). Passages from a letter distributed by the National Teaching Committee on the topic of steadfastness in light of living a busy life in times of chaos.
  6. George Hearst and Phoebe Hearst. George and Phoebe Apperson Hearst papers, 1849-1926 (1849). 448 pages of documents, provided by Includes only passing mentions of the Bahá'í Faith.
  7. William F. McCants. "I Never Understood Any of This from 'Abbás Effendi": Muhammad 'Abduh's Knowledge of the Bahá'í Teachings and His Friendship with 'Abdu'l-Bahá (2004). Muhammad Abduh (1849–1905) was a journalist, revolutionary, professor, and later Grand Mufti of Egypt, who befriended and corresponded with the Master; the role of Muhammad Rashíd Ridá; Abdu’l-Bahá's 1885 letter to Abduh.
  8. Bahiyyih Khanum. Letter from Bahiyyih Khanum, A: To the Friends of the Lord and the Handmaids of the Merciful throughout the West (1924). [needs abstract]
  9. Emogene Hoagg. Letter from Haifa in the Time of Mourning, 1922: from Emogene Hoagg to Nelly French (1971). The commemoration of 'Abdu'l-Baha's passing and the first pubic reading of his Will, including the appontment of Shoghi Effendi.
  10. Abu'l-Qasim Faizi. Letter from Mr. Faizi to Lineberger Family (n.d.). [needs abstract]
  11. Abdu'l-Bahá Shoghi Effendi, trans. Letter to Grace Holley (1919). Short message of greeting and praise.
  12. Edward C. Getsinger. Letter to Isabella Brittingham on Reincarnation and Return (1916). A letter written by Getsinger read before the Washington D.C., Baha’i Assembly, April 16, 1916, to "Mrs. B," presumably Isabella Brittingham.
  13. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Letter to John B. Cornell (1943). Short personal letter relating answers from Shoghi Effendi to various questions of Cornell, on voting age, the election of the House, the "Source of all knowledge," etc.
  14. Shoghi Effendi and Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Letter to the Bahá'ís of Macy Nebraska (1947). One-paragraph letter of greeting from the Guardian, with a short intro from Ruhiyyih Khanum, stating that the original population of the United States has a "great future" and will find "great blessings" in accepting Bahá'u'lláh.
  15. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Letter to the Ecole des Jeunes May Bolles Maxwell Conference (1997).
  16. Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Haifa. Letter to the Friends, Throughout the East and the West, through the Spiritual Assemblies (1938). 3-page report by Z. N. Zeine on questions directed at a Dr. 'Abdu'llah Jawid in Khorasan "as a result of recording himself as a Bahá'í on his military identity card" and his subsequent demotion after declining to stop promoting the Faith.
  17. Shidan Fat'he-Aazam. Letter to the Geyserville (California) Bahá'í Summer School (1953). Short letter from a famous travel-teacher (and later member of the NSA of South and West Africa, and Counsellor for Africa).
  18. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Letter to the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the United States, 1998 (1998).
  19. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Letter to the United States and Canada on racism, 1961 (1961).
  20. Anne Lynch. Thomas Linard, comp. Letters from Lynch to Laura Dreyfus-Barney: Materials for the Geneva Bahá'í Bureau's History (2002). Four letters from the Laura Dreyfus-Barney Collection at the French Baha’i National Archives (Paris), from 1946 and 1962, capturing a small slice of contemporary European history.
  21. Shoghi Effendi and John E. Esslemont. Larry Gates, comp. Letters to Grace Holley and Visalia LSA (1925). Small collection of correspondence between Shoghi Effendi and the LSA of Visalia, California.
  22. Abu'l-Qasim Faizi. Shirley Macias, comp. Letters to Various Individuals (1965).
  23. Jack McLean. Making the Crooked Straight: Foreword, and letter to World Order (2000). Foreword to the published book, followed by a letter to the editor for World Order regarding their issue devoted to Francesco Ficicchia and Bahá'í apologetics.
  24. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Message to First Canadian National Convention (1948). Message to the delegates and friends attending the First Canadian National Bahá'í Convention, Montreal, 1948; also published in Baha’i News Sept/Oct 1948. It is not clear if this hand-typed document preceded, or followed, the published version.
  25. Shirley Macias. My Memories of Hand of the Cause of God, A. Q. Faizí (2002). Personal letters from Faizi to Macias, and her recollections of him.
  26. Daniel Orey and et al.. Open Letter to the National Spiritual Assembly re Gays in the Baha'i Faith (1993).
  27. Robert P. Richardson. Persian Rival to Jesus, and His American Disciples, The (1915). History and teachings of the Bábi and Bahá'í religions and contemporary American disagreements, from an unsympathetic outsider's perspective. Followed by three letters-to-the-editor from three subsequent issues.
  28. Ida A. Finch. Personal Letter to Isabelle M. Campbell (1920). Short letter from Finch in Tokyo to Isabelle M. Campbell in Spokane WA, describing some Baha'i activities in Japan, referencing Ahmad [Sohrab] in the U.S. and some translations into Japanese, and a pilgrim's note about Abdu'l-Bahá being sleepless.
  29. Bahá'í International Community. Raising Children of Light: editorial (2008). In seeking to end the world's suffering, we need to acknowledge that we are all one human race in an increasingly interconnected world, educate children and mothers, and end the oppression of girls and women.
  30. Edward C. Getsinger. Reincarnation, The Return, and the "Cycle of Life" Chart (1916). The concepts Reincarnation and Return in the context of pilgrims' recollections of the words of 'Abdul-Baha, with tablets translated by Ali Kuli Khan, and on Lua Getsinger's "Spiritual Evolution" chart.
  31. David Langness. Report from the 1995 National Convention (1995). A short series of daily reports from the U.S. National Bahá'í Convention, from a personal perspective.
  32. Bill Washington. Sacred Pilgrimage: Visits with The Guardian (1957). Letter to the Australian newsletter, summarizing of nine days in the Holy Land and talks with Shoghi Effendi.
  33. Steven Kolins, ed. Select Clevenger Archives, 1926-1936 (2021). Personal letters to Ella Robarts, the National Spiritual Assembly, Horace Holley, and others; article "The Riddle of the Slain Co-ed" from Insider Detective.
  34. National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Ireland and Adib Taherzadeh. Spiritualization of the Bahá'í Community: A Plan for Teaching (1982). A three-part collection consisting of a letter from the NSA of Ireland, a letter from Taherzadeh to the Bahá'ís of Ireland regarding the spiritualization of the Bahá'í community, and the preamble for a plan of action for teaching.
  35. Corinne True and Hermann Grossmann et al. Statement on Mason Remey from the Western Hands of the Faith (1960). Background information on the claims of Remey, compiled by the Hands of the Cause of God in the Western hemisphere.
  36. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. Teaching Problems / Success in Teaching (1949). Three versions of an article: first published as "Teaching Problems" in March 1949, then as "Success in Teaching" in June 1949, and a Persian translation.
  37. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. To the Bahá'í Youth (n.d.). [needs abstract]
  38. Ruhiyyih (Mary Maxwell) Khanum. What It Is to Be a Bahá'í?: A Letter to the Bahá'í Youth from Ruhiyyih Khanum (1948). The object of life to a Bahá'í is to promote the oneness of mankind.
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