Center for Financial Stability

Subscribe to CFS Updates

Just Before Bretton Woods: The Atlantic City Conference, June 1944

Edited by by Kurt Schuler and Gabrielle Canning

The Bretton Woods, New Hampshire conference that established the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in 1944 was highly publicized then and remains well known today. The Atlantic City, New Jersey conference that occurred immediately before Bretton Woods has never received much attention, until now.

Atlantic City set the stage for Bretton Woods. In particular, it developed an internationally approved draft agreement for the World Bank, without which the organization might never have been established.

Just Before Bretton Woods makes the conference documents readily available for the first time and shows how the delegates, in particular British delegation leader John Maynard Keynes and his American counterpart Harry Dexter White, hammered out details that ultimately resulted in two enduringly influential international organizations: the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

Kurt Schuler is Senior Fellow in Financial History at the CFS. His previous books include The Bretton Woods Transcripts, edited with Andrew Rosenberg and published by the CFS. Gabrielle Canning is a graduate of the College of William and Mary, where she earned a B.A. in history and theatre.

Archival files to accompany Just Before Bretton Woods

Here is a detailed description of the contents of the archival files reproduced below, plus other material not reproduced because of copyright considerations.

United Kingdom National Archives, Kew (London)

FO 371/40589 Article VII, commercial policy, employment, September-December 1944
FO 371/40916 Bretton Woods July-August 1944
FO 371/40917 Bretton Woods July 1944
FO 371/40948 Article VII talks July-September 1944
FO 371/40949 Article VII and commercial policy, September-December 1944
FO 371/40950 Atlantic City business conference November 1944
T 230/40 American IMF proposal May 1943
Show More Documents

United States National Archives, College Park, Maryland

Finding aids Gabby
Finding aids Kurt
RG 42 Box 01 Arrangements Jacket No 1 Bretton Woods budget
RG 42 Box 01 Arrangements Jacket No 1 perhaps Bretton Woods conference thankyous sites offered and arrangements
RG 42 Box 01 Arrangements Jacket No 2 Atlantic City and Bretton Woods logistics
RG 42 Box 01 Bretton Woods box list
RG 43 Box 02 Mexican preconference silver promotion
Show More Documents

Leo Pasvolsky Papers, U.S. Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Box 1, Folder International Economic Relations, 1944
Box 7, Folder Post-War Progress Planning Report, Book II, tab Economic and Social

Hardcover from

Hardcover from Barnes & Noble

Hardcover from Amazon

Book Details
Hardcover: 552 pages
Publisher: Center for Financial Stability (October 15, 2019)
ISBN-10 : 1941801056
ISBN-13 : 978-1941801055
Price: $55.00

Read Excerpt

Excerpt includes table of contents and first chapter.