Bodleian Library logo

Department of Special Collections
Contact Information
Search All Online Catalogues

Consulting material: To consult archives and manuscripts, a full and unrestricted Bodleian reader's card (Group A) is required. You should apply for your card at the Admissions Office.

Pre-ordering: Before your visit you may order up to ten items by emailing Please be advised that some collection material is held offsite; we advise pre-ordering at least two working days before your visit to ensure material is available on your arrival.

Collection Level Description: Papers of Sydney and Flora Moody

Reference: GB 0162 MSS.Brit.Emp.s.382
Title: Papers of Sydney and Flora Moody
Dates of Creation: 1916-1966
Extent: 14 boxes
Name of Creator: Sydney and Flora Moody

Language of Material: English

Administrative/Biographical History

Sydney Moody, OBE (1932), CMG (1942), was born on the 18 November 1889 in Goole, Yorkshire, England. From 1914 to 1920 he served in the 7th Battalion of the East Yorkshire Regiment and the King's (Liverpool) Regiment. In 1918 he was appointed to the Palestine Military Administration as Deputy Assistant Administrator of Safed sub-district; he later became Deputy Military Governor. With the establishment of the Civil Administration, in 1920, Moody became a District Officer. During 1923 he was attached to the Colonial Office. Moody returned to Palestine in 1924 where he held the posts of Assistant Secretary (1924-1934), Assistant Chief Secretary (1934-ca.1935) and Deputy Chief Secretary (ca. 1935-1939). During this time he was also Clerk of the Executive and Administrative Councils (1929-1931) and for periods during 1932, 1935, 1938 and 1939 was the accredited representative of His Majesty's Government to the Permanent Mandates Commission.

Moody left Palestine at the end of 1939 when he was appointed Colonial Secretary in Mauritius. He remained in Mauritius throughout World War II, acting as Governor during the absence of Sir Donald Mackenzie-Kennedy. Moody retired from the Colonial Service in March 1948.

While on leave in the spring of 1921, Moody had visited an ex-Palestinian missionary, Rev. Dr. William Ewing. In May he married the Ewings' daughter, Flora Marion, then a student at St. Andrew's University in Scotland, and returned with her to Safed. Flora Marion Ewing was born on the 19 March 1897. In Mauritius she was First Captain of the Girl Guides and, with VAD (Voluntary Aid Detachment) experience gained during World War I, an organiser of the Red Cross. She also played a large part in the care of illegal Jewish immigrants to Palestine who were detained in Mauritius throughout World War II. After her husband's retirement, Flora Moody was involved in broadcasting and lecturing in Scotland.

Sydney Moody died in 1979.

Scope and Content

The collection largely consists of Flora Moody's papers (diaries, notebooks, correspondence etc.) and mainly covers the years spent in Palestine and Mauritius.

A small part of the collection consists of letters from the Moody's three daughters; Dr. Ewing's Palestine diaries (1888-1892); and letters from the Ewings to the Moodys.

Administrative Information

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Deposited with the library via the Oxford Colonial Records Project.

Access Conditions

Bodleian reader's ticket required.

Reproduction Restrictions

No reproduction or publication of personal papers without permission. Contact the library in the first instance.

Further Information

Finding Aids

The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room and a handlist is also available for this collection.

Listed as no. 127 and 153 in Manuscript Collections (Africana and non-Africana) in Rhodes House Library, Oxford, Supplementary accessions to the end of 1977 and Cumulative Index, compiled by Wendy S. Byrne (Oxford, Bodleian Library, 1978).

Access Points

Moody | Sydney | 1889-1979 | Colonial Administrator

Moody | Flora Marion | b 1897 | wife of Colonial Administrator

Ewing | William | 1857-1932 | Free Church of Scotland Minister Historian

Colonial administrators

Colonial administrators' spouses

Great Britain | Colonial Administrative Service



Transformation from XML to HTML by Lawrence Mielniczuk
03 January 2012