The year 1914 marked another turning-point in All Souls' history. It saw the end of Warden Anson's life and of his thirty-three years of active, generous, and fruitful wardenship. Within a few weeks of his death the First World War broke out and took its toll (two of the College's most brilliant members, Raymond Asquith and Patrick Shaw Stewart, were among its victims). Elections were halted for five years after 1914.
In November 1919 four Fellows were elected, and within a few days of their election the third Universities Commission was appointed. Among the Commissioners were three actual or past Fellows of the College and they were among those who signed a report (published in 1922) which recommended that All Souls should increase the number of its Research Fellows and contribute more especially to the supervision of graduate students. The report also commended the College's declared intention to invite 'distinguished senior students' to become associated with it. These recommendations were prophetic of the path that the College was to follow – though hardly precipitately (it was not until 1936 that T.E. Lawrence, Fellow from 1919 to 1926, and Lionel Curtis, elected in 1921, had a Research Fellow successor). The Distinguished and Fifty-pound Fellows continued to play their part in College life in spite of the fact that they were almost all non-resident, and a few of them were active in academic matters. It was among their number that the so-called All Souls 'appeasers' of the 1930s were to be found – Dawson (editing The Times), Simon, and Halifax – but a very wide spectrum of views was in fact represented in the College, especially among the younger Examination Fellows.