Peoples Mandate Committee Records
Held at: Swarthmore College Peace Collection [Contact Us]500 College Avenue, Swarthmore 19081-1399
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Swarthmore College Peace Collection. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
Peoples Mandate to Governments to End War was an international campaign begun on September 6, 1935, by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom to express such overwhelming opposition to war that governments would not dare resort to it as a means of solving disputes between nations. The project's goal was to secure fifty million signatures from the citizens of fifty countries. By 1937 the signatures from Europe alone numbered over 14 million.
In 1936 the U.S. section of the Peoples Mandate separated from the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom and became a distinct organization under the name of the Peoples Mandate to Governments to End War, Committee for the Western Hemisphere. The executive board included many well-known reformers and pacifists, such as Carrie Chapman Catt (honorary chairman), Mary E. Woolley (chairman), Grace Abbott, Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Lillian Wald, and Mabel Vernon (director).
Vernon, an energetic worker for the Mandate Committee and a member of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, was director from the organization's inception in 1935. Her first goal was to organize a "Peace Caravan" of women to drive across the United States, gathering signatures and support. Pleased with the success of this project, Vernon organized a "Flying Caravan" to establish contacts with feminists, pacifists, and other women in Latin America, the following year. By the end of the decade Women's International League for Peace and Freedom International had abandoned the Mandate as a strategy for peace. The American Committee was renamed the Peoples Mandate for Inter-American Peace and Cooperation. As the new name suggests, the goals of the organization emphasized an improvement of relations between inhabitants of the Americas. This was to be accomplished by further work through women's groups on both continents. Between September 1948 and September 1949 the group's name changed to the Peoples Mandate Committee (U.S.).
The organizational records in the Swarthmore College Peace Collection consist mainly of material for the U.S. section of the Peoples Mandate. Other material includes correspondence, reports, press releases, scrapbooks, telegrams, biographies, newspaper clippings, photographs, and Mandate literature. A large section of the correspondence in this collection came from Latin American women and contains information concerning the status of women and the work of women's organizations.
This collection also contains some of the personal correspondence of Mabel Vernon. She was a feminist who had been a member of the National Woman's Party. A part of Vernon's personal correspondence reflects the ties she had with some NWP members. It also records some of the tensions between factions within the NWP leadership in the 1940s.Another section of Vernon's personal correspondence concerns women's relationships with women companions. Vernon's own friendship with her companion Consuelo Reyes, correspondence from Jeannette Marks about her friendship with Mary Woolley, correspondence with Margaret Hamilton and Vita Milholland regarding their life together; letters from other friends are included. Correspondents (and other names found in the collection) include Jane Addams, Josefa T. de Aguerri, Katherine Anthony, Gertrude Baer, Emily Greene Balch, Mary Ritter Beard, Katherine Devereux Blake, Florence Brewer Boeckel, Heloise Brainerd, Sophonisba P. Breckinridge, Ana del Pulgar de Burke, Angela Acuña de Chacón, Hannah Clothier Hull, Alma Lutz, and Delia Rojas de White.
Series A was given a name in December 2011, when the material in it was reprocessed into five boxes. Note that pages of newsclippings from a scrapbook had formerly been photocopied and placed in the Oversize Scrapbook Collection; these were removed to Series A, Box 4 in 2011.
Gift of Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, United States Section; Mabel Vernon; Consuelo Reyes-Calderon
This collection was processed by various staffpersons; this checklist was revised by Alexander Addison (student assistant) in July, 1998; edited by Anne Yoder (Archivist) in March, 2005, and December, 2011.
- Welles, Sumner, 1892-1961
- Catt, Carrie Chapman, 1859-1947
- Woolley, Mary Emma, 1863-1947
- Abbott, Grace, 1878-1939
- Fisher, Dorothy Canfield, 1879-1958
- Hull, Hannah Clothier, 1872-1958
- Pendleton, Ellen F. (Ellen Fitz), 1864-1936
- Swope, Mary Hill
- Wald, Lillian D., 1867-1940
- Vernon, Mabel
- Peoples Mandate Committee (U.S.)
- Peoples Mandate Committee for Inter-American Peace and Cooperation (U.S.)
- Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. International Office
- Swarthmore College Peace Collection
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research use.
All or part of this collection is stored off-site. Contact Swarthmore College Peace Collection staff at firstname.lastname@example.org at least two weeks in advance of visit to request boxes.
- Copyright to the A Peoples Mandate records created by the organization has been transferred to the Swarthmore College Peace Collection. Copyright to all other materials is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
- Use Restrictions
[formerly scrapbook #0108; 2 folders]
[3 folders], (half box)
[see also India, China, Japan]