Eugen Millington-Drake was born 26 February 1889, the son of Henry Millington-Drake. In 1920 he married Lady Effie Mackay, daughter of the 1st Earl of Inchcape, and they had four children. He died 12 December 1972.
In 1912 he entered the Diplomatic Service and his posts included St. Petersburg (1913); Buenos Aires (1915); at the Paris Peace Delegation and Embassy (1919-1920); First Secretary and Charge d'Affaires at Bucharest (1921-1924); Brussels (1924-1927); Copenhagen (1927-1928); Counsellor of Embassy, Buenos Aires (1929-1933); Minister to Uruguay (1934-1941).
In 1936 he was the Honorary President of Uruguayan Delegation to the Olympic Games. He was seconded from the Foreign Office as Chief Representative of the British Council in Spanish America, 1942-1946. In 1948 he was Chairman of the Reception Committee of XIV 0lympiad in London. He was Vice-President of the Council of the Royal India, Pakistan and Ceylon Society, visiting the East on Cultural Missions, 1949-1950. In 1952 and 1953 he undertook lecture tours of Africa, Madagascar, Mauritius and Reunion.
The collection comprises letters and papers covering Sir Eugen's career in the Foreign Office and the British Council, mainly in South America, and his subsequent world-wide lecture tours. Along with personal correspondence, there are photographs illustrating the daily life of a diplomat during and just before World War II. There is a section relating to the establishment of the Inchcape Memorial Educational Trust. Another section concerns sport, including the Olympic Games of 1936 and of 1948. There are a few files relating to the Graf Spee.There are also papers concerning Britain's standing in Uruguay immediately before and during the Second World War.
The majority of these papers were sent to Churchill Archives Centre from Rome by his widow, Lady Effie Millington-Drake, in December 1975. The diaries and letter books were sent later.
When the papers arrived, they were in disarray and there was a lot of duplication. The material has now been tidied into sections which follow the main divisions of Sir Eugen's career and his principle interests.