Elsa Shelton Miller was born in 1916, and
lived in China and Japan until the early 1950s. She worked as a stenographer for a
variety of employers, including the U.S. forces in Peiping after World War II, and Time
Life International in Tokyo. The collection contains documents from Miller’s life in
Asia, including identification and citizenship documents, a travel visa, Chinese Yuan
from the late 1940s, postcards with pictures of Shanghai, and documents regarding
Miller’s attempts to gain a visa to the United States in 1950.
Elsa Shelton Miller was born Elsa Fischer in 1916. She married Jim Shelton, a bar owner
in Shanghai, at around the age of 17, but the marriage was short lived. She worked as a
stenographer for a variety of employers, including the United States Armed Forces in
Peiping, China, and Time Life International in Tokyo. Her brother-in-law, Bob Miller,
also worked for Time Life as a reporter, and in 1950 he tried to help her obtain a visa
to the United States. As the waiting list for U.S. immigration was prohibitively long,
they tried appealing to various contacts, including Senator William F. Knowland, but
were unsuccessful. Ultimately, they decided to marry in order to get Elsa a visa. While
the marriage was only for convenience and therefore did not last long, it did get Elsa
into the United States where she eventually became an American citizen. She passed away
in June of 1998.
Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s)
of this collection has not been transferred to California State University,
Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or
reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond
that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners.
Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of
the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
The collection is open for research use.