Tag Archives: history

Wendy Chmielewski awarded honorable mention for historical research on women in politics

Dr. Wendy ChmielewskiDr. Wendy Chmielewski, a member of the Peace and Conflict Studies steering committee has been awarded a 2013 honorable mention award for the Carrie Chapman Catt Prize for Research on Women and Politics from Iowa State University for her ongoing project, Her Hat Was in the Ring:  U.S. Women Elected to Political Office Before 1920.

From all of us in the Peace and Conflict Studies program, congratulations Wendy!

Challenging the Cold War Warriors: Greenham Women Against Cruise Missiles, 1983-1988

Dr. Wendy ChmielewskiOn November 5th, 2013, Dr. Wendy Chmielewski, Curator of the Swarthmore College Peace Collection will present a paper at West Chester University during a conference on the Cold War.

Dr. Chmielewski’s paper is titled:  “Challenging the Cold War Warriors: Greenham Women Against Cruise Missiles, 1983-1988”  Greenham Women Against Cruise Missiles was a group of women from Britain, along with the Center for Constitutional Rights, Congressmen Ron Dellums and Ted Weiss who attempted to sue the Reagan administration in US federal court for human rights and US constitutional violations.

Conscientious Objectors Serving the Mentally Ill During World War II

Behind the Gates: Conscientious Objectors Serving the Mentally Ill During World War II

Friday, October 4, 2:30 pm

McCabe’s Popular Reading Room, Main Floor

Swarthmore College

Open to the Public.  Directions to campus.

Dr. Wendy ChmielewskiWendy Chmielewski, Curator of the Peace Collection, [and a member of the Peace and Conflict Studies Program steering committee] will talk about how WW II conscientious objectors were directly responsible for exposing shameful conditions in US mental hospitals , changing forever how the mentally ill were created. Original photographs, drawings, pamphlets, documents, and other resources will be available.

Hannah Karena JonesWith Hannah K. Jones, author of Byberry, from Arcadia Books, 2013. Jones will talk abut her experience in using resources from the Peace Collection to write her recent book on the Pennsylvania State Hospital (known as Byberry), located near Philadelphia.

Visit the online collection of resources on conscientious object in the Swarthmore College Peace Collection.

Thanks to Mary Walton for her lecture on Alice Paul ’05 and Mabel Vernon ’06

We would like to thank author Mary Walton for her lecture this afternoon on the courageous work of Swarthmore alums Alice Paul ’05 and Mabel Vernon ’06 in their organizing and nonviolent campaigns to secure the vote for women in the United States.

A standing-room only crowd of people from the Swarthmore community and the local community gathered in the Scheuer Room to celebrate the International Day of Peace, the College’s sesquicentennial, and 125 years since the first peace studies course in higher education was taught at Swarthmore. The audience expressed their appreciation for Ms. Walton’s presentation with extended applause.

We would like to thank all of our co-sponsors who made this event a success, including Peace Day Philly for including our event in the city-wide celebration of the International Day of Peace.

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Sponsors: Peace and Conflict Studies, the President’s Office, Swarthmore College Peace Collection, Friends Historical Library, History Department, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Women’s Resource Center, Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility, English Literature Department, and Political Science Department.

Mark your calendars: Alice Paul ’05, Mabel Vernon ’06, and the Battle for the Ballot

Mark your calendars for the College’s first sesquicentennial celebration event, a talk by author Mary Walton:

A Woman’s Crusade: Alice Paul ’05, Mabel Vernon ’06, and the Battle for the Ballot

Mary Walton

September 19, 2013; 4:15 p.m.

Scheuer Room, Kohlberg Hall, Swarthmore College

Maps and directions

Download a flyer

Mary Walton

On September 19th, Peace and Conflict Studies and co-sponsors will  celebrate the International Day of Peace, 125 years of peace and conflict studies at Swarthmore College, and the start of the College’s Sesquicentennial with a talk by Mary Walton, author of A Woman’s Crusade: Alice Paul and the Battle for the Ballot.  The focus of Walton’s talk will be Alice Paul (Class of 1905) and her friend and fellow Swarthmore alum, Mabel Vernon (Class of 1906).

A New Jersey Quaker, Alice Paul was the leader of the militant wing of the suffrage movement from 1913 to 1920. Hers was a David-and-Goliath struggle to convince a reluctant congress and a stubborn president to give women the vote. Paul and her followers were the first people to picket the White House. They were arrested, thrown in jail, brutalized and force fed when they went on hunger strikes. A pioneer in non-violent resistance, she was to suffrage what Gandhi was to Indian independence, what Martin Luther King Jr. was to civil rights.

In 1913, Mabel Vernon gladly gave up teaching to join her college friend, Alice Paul, in working full time for the Congressional Union. From that day on, she devoted her life to suffrage and other causes. Mabel Vernon was among the most militant suffragists. In 1916, she stood up in a full auditorium and heckled President Wilson as he spoke about democracy. Vernon picketed the White House and was among the first suffragists to go to jail.

Mary Walton is the author of four previous works of nonfiction. She was a reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer for many years where she wrote more than a hundred magazine stories as a staff writer for the Sunday Inquirer Magazine. She has also written for the New York Times, Washingtonian, theWashington Monthly, and the American Journalism Review. After graduation from Harvard University, and a turn at social work and community organizing, Walton began her journalism career in 1969 as a reporter for the Charleston (WV) Gazette.

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PCS 125 year logo

Peace Day Philly

International Day of Peace 2013

Sponsors: Peace and Conflict Studies, the President’s Office, Swarthmore College Peace Collection, Friends Historical Library, History Department, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Women’s Resource Center, Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility, English Literature Department, and Political Science Department.

 

 Bibliographic links for photographs.

 

150 years ago: A College Founded in Wartime

Cleaning one’s office can be a chore, but it also encourages one to stumble across gems that were set aside in the rush of an academic year.  In my cleaning today, I came across one of Chris Densmore’s sesquicentennial historical pieces from the July 2012 Swarthmore College Bulletin.

150 years ago: A College Founded in Wartime

Christopher Densmore

Curator, Friends Historical Library

By 1862, the Civil War was in its second year. The campaign to raise money for what was to become Swarthmore, which had been temporarily suspended at the beginning of the war, was resumed in earnest. The founders had originally anticipated that the school could be funded by large donations from wealthy individuals, but they now turned their efforts to a grassroots campaign to visit and solicit support from Quaker meetings across the Mid-Atlantic. Later perhaps, the “stewards of a superabundance of this world’s goods” might be persuaded to contribute larger sums.

The war became an impetus for establishing a Quaker school. An editorial in the Friends Intelligencer in September 1862 commented: “The war spirit has penetrated almost every institution in the land; the Public Schools are used as means of promoting the love of military glory, and are increasingly engaged in teaching military drill to their pupils. We should be especially concerned to guard our children against this snare, and to build them up in those principles which will not only preserve them in the practice of peace and good-will towards all men, but will make them fit successors to those who have gone before them as lights in the world, and exemplars of the peaceable spirit of Christianity. To this end Friends should educate all their children under their own care. …”

Today, Swarthmore College seeks diversity among its students, faculty, staff, and administrators and strives to make the campus a safe place for that diversity. Likewise, the College founders sought to create a safe place for diversity, though in the form of a “guarded education” for the children of Friends.

Other sesquicentennial pieces by Chris Densmore include:

150 Years Ago: The Dream of a College (April 2011)

150 Years Ago: “Honest, Useful Men and Women” (July 2011)

150 Years Ago: Friends, We Have a Problem (October 2011)

150 Years Ago: Martha Ellicott Tyson proposes a new school (January 2012)

 150 years ago: Benjamin Hallowell, man of peace (April 2012)

150 Years Ago: The Meaning of Swarthmore (July 2013)

First Monday Series: William Kashatus speaks August 5 on Abraham Lincoln, the Quakers, and the Civil War

Monday, August 5, 2013, 7:30-9:00 pm in the Barn at Pendle Hill. All are welcome to a free public lecture by William Kashatus,”A Trial of Principle and Faith: Abraham Lincoln, the Quakers, and the Civil War.” This program is part of Pendle Hill’s First Monday Series of free lectures, films, and events held the first Monday of every month, year round.

Sharing insights from his forthcoming book, historian William Kashatus explores Abraham Lincoln’s relationship with the Religious Society of Friends during his presidency. Lincoln and Quakers faced a similar dilemma during the Civil War – how to achieve the desired goal of emancipation without extending the bloodshed and hardships of war. Quakers pressed the president for emancipation, urged amnesty for conscientous objectors, and provided spiritual support and counsel to Lincoln throughout the war.

William C. Kashatus is an historian, educator, and author. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Earlham College, he earned an MA in history at Brown University and a PhD in history education at the University of Pennsylvania. He currently teaches history at Luzerne County Community College in northeastern Pennsylvania. He has also taught at Penn’s Graduate School of Education and in the History Department of West Chester University.

A prolific writer, Kashatus is the author of more than a dozen books. He is a regular contributor to the History News Service, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Pennsylvania Heritage. Kashatus has also written and published more than 200 essays in such periodicals as:American History MagazineChristian Science MonitorIndependent Schools Magazine,New York TimesPennsylvania Magazine of History and BiographyPhiladelphia Daily News, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and Quaker History.

For more information, contact John Meyer or call 610-566-4507 ext. 129.

Travel directions to Pendle Hill.

125 Years of Peace and Conflict Studies in Higher Education at Swarthmore College

PCS 125 year logoIn recent months, a document was discovered in the Swarthmore College Archives revealing that the first known Peace and Conflict Studies course in higher education, “Elements of International Law with special attention to the important subjects of Peace and Arbitration” was offered by Professor William Penn Holcomb in 1888 at Swarthmore College. Thus, this year, we are celebrating 125 of the origins of peace and conflict studies in higher education!

The Swarthmore College Bulletin has published an article on this exciting finding.

Pioneering Peace Studies

By Sherri Kimmel

Swarthmore College Bulletin, July 2013

That Swarthmore College was an early proponent of peace and conflict studies should come as no surprise to those familiar with the College’s dedication to Quaker values. However, the recent discovery of an article published 125 years ago indicates the College was the first college or university to offer an actual peace-studies course.

Lee Smithey, associate professor of sociology and peace and conflict studies coordinator, announced the distinction at a gathering this spring, reading from an 1888 article that was republished from The Peacemaker (the organ of the Universal Peace Union) in The Friends Intelligencer. Christopher Densmore, curator of the Friends Historical Library, discovered the article and shared it with Smithey.

Parrish Hall after fire 1890
[Parrish Hall in 1890 (photo courtesy of Friends’ Historical Library)]
The article praised the College’s new course in peace and arbitration as “an eventful era in the peace movement of the 19th century. To thus drill, as it were, for peace is to hasten the abolition of war and the military system. All credit to Swarthmore! This example will go round the world.”

Though Swarthmore launched the first course, peace and conflict studies as a discipline “didn’t take off for another 60 years,” says Smithey. Manchester College, founded in Indiana by another historic peace church, the Church of the Brethren, formed the first program in 1948.

According to Smithey, peace and conflict studies programs have gained momentum in waves—after the World Wars and the Vietnam War, and in the 1980s and ’90s, when concern over the proliferation of nuclear arms grew. Now, there are peace and conflict studies programs at about 400 institutions. Swarthmore’s program began in 1991–92 and has 30 students enrolled as minors, honors, or special majors, Smithey says.

Parrish BeachThe program draws courses from a range of social science and humanities departments at Swarthmore and the other campuses of the Tri-College consortium and explores the causes, practice, and consequences of collective violence as well as peaceful or nonviolent methods of dealing with conflict.

Says Smithey of the College’s new distinction, “Swarthmore College was ahead of its time, and 125 years later, we still hold these values as we seek to advance our knowledge about constructive conflict and just and peaceful relations.”

175th Anniversary of the Burning of Pennsylvania Hall

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Photo courtesy of the Friends Historical Library at Swarthmore College

By Chris Densmore, Curator of the Friends Historical Library at Swarthmore College

May 14 was the 175th Anniversary of the 1838 opening of Pennsylvania Hall in Philadelphia. Pennsylvania Hall was dedicated to “liberty and the rights of man.”

Over the next three days the Hall hosted meetings of the Anti-Slavery Convention of American Women, the Requited Labor Convention and the Pennsylvania Anti-Slavery Society. Stories, some true, that race mixing, abolition and women speaking were openly countenanced in Pennsylvania Hall attracted a hostile mob of reportedly 25,000 “respectable” citizens of Pennsylvania who surrounded the building yelling and throwing rocks through the windows.

On May 17, 1838, the mob burned Pennsylvania Hall to the ground while the police and firemen looked on. Those inside made a speedy exit. Lucretia Mott had been in the Hall and afterwards she and her husband James waited quietly at home for the mob that was coming to burn their house. Fortunately a friend of the Motts sent the mob off in the wrong direction thus sparing the Mott home.

Lucretia Mott confronted mobs several times. On a later occasion a mob broke up the annual meeting of the American Anti-Slavery Society in New York City. Mott sent the man who was escorting her through the mob to assist some of the more timid women and then approached one of the biggest and roughest leaders of the mob. Taking him by the arm, she declared, “This man… He will see me safe through.” Mott was less than five feet tall, less than ninety pounds in weight, and a grandmother. The man saw Mott safely though and the next day they had lunch together.

Other Swarthmore College related people associated with Pennsylvania Hall included Dr. Joseph Parrish, the father of Edward Parrish, Swarthmore’s first president and Caleb Clothier. One of the Vice Presidents of the Anti-Slavery Convention of American Women was Mary Magill, mother of Edward Magill, the second president of Swarthmore College. When Swarthmore College opened for instruction in 1869, the examples of Lucretia and James Mott were held up as examples for future Swarthmore students to emulate.

Wendy Chmielewski awarded fellowship at Gilder-Lehrman Institute for American History

chimielewski_wendy_110We are happy to announce that Dr. Wendy Chmielewski, Curator of the Swarthmore College Peace Collection and a member of the Peace and Conflict Studies steering committee, has been awarded a fellowship from the Gilder-Lehrman Institute for American History to conduct further research in support of the project: “Her Hat Was in the Ring:  U.S. Women Elected to Political Office Before 1920“.  Visit the project’s website.

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  The project website states:

This web site identifies women candidates for elective office in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, giving biographical information for each woman, information about her campaign, party affiliation, photographs, and lists of selected resources. We estimate that women ran in well over 3,500 campaigns by 1920. Currently, our database contains biographical records for 2,579 women, who ran in 3,633campaigns.

Again, congratulations!