The Pan American Union was founded in 1910 and was the successor to the
International Union of American Republics, itself founded in 1889-1890.
The union was a system for the exchange of information and consultation on
matters of common interest to its members: the United States and the countries
of Latin America.
In 1948, as the scope of the organization had widened, it grew into its current
operation, known as the Organization of American States (OAS).
OAS is made up a general assembly, a Permanent Council, the Inter-American
Economic and Social Council, and the Inter-American Council for Education,
Science, and Culture.
What had been the Pan American Union now is the secretariat, with a secretary
-general elected by the assembly for a five-year term.