Sunday, May 26, 2019

The slightly less mysterious Andrew J. Grajdanzev

When I was working on the previous post about Andrew Grad/Grajdanzev, I also wrote to Frank Joseph Shulman of the University of Maryland who (as I mentioned) had sent out an inquiry about Grad about 12 years ago. I also wrote an email to Mark Caprio of Rikkyo University, who had given a presentation on Grad at the University of Hawai'i' about 5 years ago. Both of them wrote back to me with some interesting information on this mysterious figure. I also talked with my brother, Chris Benda, who is a librarian at Vanderbilt University and master of figuring out ways to find information.

Chris and I talked about what I already knew and he gave me some ideas to find out what I didn't know. For instance, we found out a bit more about Grad's career (up to 1944) from the author bio in Korea Looks Ahead:
ANDREW J. GRAJDANZEV is on the international research staff of the Institute of Pacific Relations. Born in Siberia in 1899, he lived in the Far East for thirteen years, studying and teaching in Harbin, Manchuria, and in Tientsin, China. He has traveled in China, Mongolia, Korea, Japan, Australia and other countries. Dr. Grajdanzev received his Ph.D. from Columbia University and has taught economics at Oregon State College and Far Eastern politics at Hunter College. His published works include Formosa Today, Statistics of Japanese Agriculture, Modern Korea, and numerous magazine articles.
Alfred Christian Oppler's 2015 book, Legal Reform in Occupied Japan: A Participant Looks Back, includes brief information about Grad. Oppler and Grad both worked as part of SCAP, so they met when Oppler arrived in Tokyo. Oppler briefly describes Grad:
Grajdanzev turned out to be a fanatic of decentralization and home rule. As a human being, he was a pleasant combination of kindness and intellectual sophistication. (16)
Oppler also mentions a meeting with Grad and some other people on Jan. 24, 1947, regarding the division of farmland, which was being affected by land reform.

Chris and I also found a folder of correspondence from 1942-1947 between Grad and the Nation. Chris also found this information about Grad from the Library of Congress Authorities database. We found several news articles from the Washington Post and the New York Times that mention the "adverse reports" and accusations of Communist leanings about Gradjanzev. (I suppose someone would have to do a FOIA request to find out more about that.)

But we hadn't found a death date for him (no obituaries as far as I can tell), so I couldn't test my hypothesis (a very weak one, admittedly) about Grad's death.Then Chris suggested using Find a Grave, which I think he had used earlier. Lo and Behold, there was the grave stone for Andrew J. Grajdanzev Grad, 1899-1960. He's buried at the Flushing Cemetery in NY. On the grave stone inscriptions, he's described as a "scholar," "author," and "humanist."

So that appears to disprove my thought that Grad had died in 1952, halting the publication of his book on postwar Japan. It still leaves some questions, though, like what he did between losing his job at the UN and his death.

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