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Archives & Manuscripts

American Union Against Militarism Records

 Collection
Identifier: SCPC-DG-004

Scope and Contents

All of the known surviving records are deposited in the Peace Collection. The records include minutes, secretary's letters to the Executive Committee, fragmentary records of financial pledges, form letters, press releases, bulletins, printed publications, and some correspondence.

Dates

  • 1915 - 1922

Creator

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Limitations on Accessing the Collection

Access to this collection is provided through microfilm. Please contact Peace Collection Curator at peacecollection@swarthmore.edu to discuss special need to examine original documents. Orders must be made at least two weeks in advance of a visit to retrieve off-site materials.

Copyright and Rights Information

None.

Historical note

In 1915 a group of New York pacifists and near-pacifists organized the "Anti-militarism Committee" to combat the war spirit of the time. About January 1916 the name was changed to the "Anti-preparedness Committee" and a program of lobbying in Washington was set up. Later in the year the names was changed again, this time to the American Union Against Militarism. The group was also known for a time as the American Union for a Democratic Peace and the League for an American Peace.

Activities included lobbying, publishing, a lecture campaign, and the establishment of a Civil Liberties Bureau. Out of this latter grew the National Civil Liberties Bureau which later became the American Civil Liberties Union (at the Peace Collection). (See the finding aid for the ACLU Papers at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library, Princeton University.)

Most notable achievements were the work in the successful effort to avert war with Mexico in 1916 and the encouragement of opposition to peacetime conscription following World War I. The office was raided by the government and AUAM publications were sometimes stopped by the postal authorities but the organization continued unintimidated. Among the ost active members were Emily Greene Balch, Crystal Eastman, Oswald Garrison Villard, Charles Hallinan, Paul Kellogg, Amos Pinchot, Henry R. Mussey, Alice Lewisohn, Zona Gale, and Florence Kelley.

Extent

1.75 Linear Feet

Overview

In 1915 a group of New York pacifists and near-pacifists organized the "Anti-militarism Committee" to combat the war spirit of the time. Activities included lobbying, publishing, a lecture campaign, and the establishment of a Civil Liberties Bureau. The most notable achievements were the work in the successful effort to avert war with Mexico in 1916 and the encouragement of opposition to peacetime conscription following World War I. The office was raided by the government and American Union Against Militarism publications were sometimes stopped by the postal authorities but the organization continued unintimidated.

Arrangement

American Union Against Militarism materials are arranged in four boxes. The first three boxes contain administrative records and correspondence. The fourth box contains printed literature and press releases issued by the organization. The fourth box also contains a folder of material that arrived at the Peace Collection after the rest of the records were microfilmed. Posters are stored separately in the SCPC Poster Collection. They are not microfilmed. The arrangement of the microfilmed records is in a different order than the original documents.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Donated by Oswald Garrison Villard and James Warbasse, 1940, 1941.

Existence and Location of Copies

The microfilm consists of two reels (10.1 and 10.2). The material on the film is in slightly different order than the original documents. There are two folder listings, one for the original documents and one for the microfilm.

Separated Materials

Twenty-one very large, linen-mounted American Union Against Militarism posters

Bibliography

Guide to the Swarthmore College Peace Collection, 2nd ed., p.9

Legal Status

Copyright to the American Union Against Militarism 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.

Processing Information

Processed by Peace Collection staff; finding aid revised by Wendy E. Chmielewski (April 1997); Anne Yoder (March 2001); Wendy E. Chmielewski (June 2009)

Creator

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting Swarthmore College Peace Collection Library

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