Scope and Contents
The papers of Homer A. Jack in the Swarthmore College Peace Collection include correspondence (1930-1988); speeches and sermons; published and unpublished writings by Homer Jack; correspondence about and reviews of several books edited by Homer Jack; diaries, journals, and field notes; peace and political campaign buttons; photographs; and memorabilia. The collection also contains material about numerous organizations by which Homer Jack was employed or with which he worked, about the many conferences which he attended as a delegate, observer, or journalist. There is also material about subjects in which he was interested and about which he frequently wrote or spoke, such as disarmament, race relations, human rights, communism and anti-communism, Mohandas K. Gandhi, and Albert Schweitzer.
Organizations by which Homer Jack was employed and about which material can be found in this collection are the Chicago Council Against Racial and Religious Discrimination, the American Committee on Africa, and the Department of Social Responsibility of the Unitarian Universalist Association. Materials on SANE and the World Conference on Religion and Peace are filed in document groups for those organizations elsewhere in SCPC, as are records of the NGO Committee on Disarmament (at United Nations Headquarters) which was chaired by Homer Jack for a number of years. Additional organizations about which information may be found in the Homer Jack collection are the Accra Assembly, the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, Amnesty International, Disarmament Working Group of the Coalition for a New Foreign and Military Policy, Committee for New China Policy, Committee for Nonviolent Action, Educational Committee to Halt Atomic Weapons Spread, the Freeze, International Confederation for Disarmament and Peace, International Affairs Inter-Unit Working Group of the National Council of Churches, Omaha Action, Peace, Inc. of Greater Chicago, and the World Peace Council. There is material about several coalitions of non-governmental organizations at the United Nations, namely the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Status with ECOSOC (CONGO), the NGO Committee on Human Rights, and Religious NGOs at the United Nations.
Conferences and meetings which Homer Jack attended and about which material can be found include the Asian-African Conference at Bandung, Indonesia (1955); Third World Conference Against A & H Bombs, Tokyo (1957); All-African People's Conference at Accra, Ghana (1958); Conference of Non-Aligned Countries at Belgrade, Yugoslavia (1961); Accra Assembly, Ghana (1962); World Congress for General Disarmament and Peace, Moscow (1962); Conference of Non-Aligned Countries at Cairo, Egypt (1964); a seminar on the Relevance of Gandhi to Our Time at New Delhi, India (1970); and numerous conferences on disarmament, including the Eighteen Nation Disarmament Conference (1962-1966), the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (1969-1979), the United Nations Special Sessions on Disarmament (1978, 1982, 1988), and the International Conference on the Relationship between Disarmament and Development (1987).
The collection also includes material relating to Homer Jack's ministries in several churches including the Unitarian Church of Lawrence, Kansas (1942-1943), the Unitarian Church of Evanston, Illinois (1948-1959), the Unitarian Fellowship of Northern Westchester, Mt. Kisco, NY (1973-1974), and the Lake Shore Unitarian Universalist Society, Winnetka, IL (1984-1987). There are some materials, primarily publications, relating to the Unitarian Universalist Association, for which Homer Jack worked as Director of the Division of Social Responsibility from 1964-1970.
Among the correspondents in the collection are James Luther Adams Amiya Chakravarty, Norman Cousins, R. R. Diwakar, Angelo Fernandes, Erich Fromm, Manilal Gandhi, Aron Gilmartin, Sanford Gottlieb, Dana McLean Greeley, Donald Harrington, Emma Haussknecht, Robert S. Hoagland, John Haynes Holmes, George M. Houser, F. C. Hunnius, Robert E. Jones, Marjorie Keenan, Donald F. Keys, Inamullah Khan, Martin Luther King, Jr., William Bross Lloyd, Jr., Bradford Lyttle, T. K. Mahadevan, George Marshall, Emmy Martin, A. J. Muste, Otto Nathan, Philip Noel-Baker, G. Ramachandran, Magnus Ratter, Douglas J. Roche, Miriam Rogers, Morris H. Rubin, Albert Schweitzer, Lawrence Scott, Adlai Stevenson, and Norman Thomas.
Biographical / Historical
Homer A. Jack (1916-1993) was a Unitarian Universalist clergyman and denominational official who sought to apply religious values to national and international affairs. Jack was executive secretary of the Chicago Council Against Racial and Religious Discrimination (1943-1948), executive director of SANE (1960-1964), and secretary general of the World Conference on Religion and Peace (1970-1983). He had been minister of churches in Lawrence, Kansas (1942-1943), Evanston, Illinois (1948-1959), and Winnetka, Illinois (1984-1987) and served as director of the Division of Social Responsibility of the Unitarian Universalist Association (1964-1970). Jack also chaired the NGO Committee on Disarmament (at UN Headquarters) from 1973-1984. Homer Jack "retired" to Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, in January 1987. He published a history of the World Conference on Religion and Peace in 1993, and continued to be active in various peace and human rights organizations, speaking and traveling frequently. Homer Jack died of cancer in 1993.