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Archives & Manuscripts

Harold Barton Collected Papers

 Collection
Identifier: SCPC-CDG-A-Barton, Harold

Scope and Contents

The Harold Barton papers are divided into several sections: his papers regarding his service in CPS and work at Byberry State Hospital; his efforts to form and administer the Mental Hygiene Program of CPS; his involvement -- as a part of CPS and beyond -- with the National Mental Health Foundation; and, reference material about mental hospitals and treatment/care of patients.

Dates

  • Majority of material found within 1944-1949

Creator

Language of Material

Materials are in English.

Limitations on Accessing the Collection

None.

Copyright and Rights Information

There are usage restrictions on photographs in this collection.

Historical note

This collection helps to document the growth of interest in mental health (or mental hygiene as it was called in the middle of the twentieth century), among men and women involved with Civilian Public Service in World War II. The seeds of the National Mental Health Foundation were planted in 1944-1945 when Harold Barton and three associates, serving at Byberry State Hospital in Philadelphia (Pennsylvania), announced plans for a national campaign to improve the conditions in mental hospitals. This, in part, stemmed from their own anger and frustration at the appalling treatment of patients they found at Byberry, where the lack of trained personnel (due to the war effort), severely limited the ability of care for patients according to hospital administrators' standards. Barton's diary notes and other material found in this collection provide important eyewitness accounts of the struggle to treat patients as humanely as possible. The exposure of these conditions through the efforts of men serving in CPS, and their efforts to be a nonviolent presence in mental institutions, began a new movement in mental health care in the U.S. The National Mental Health Foundation still exists today as the National Mental Health Association.

Extent

1.2 Linear Feet (15 linear inches)

Abstract

In the early 1940s National Mental Health Foundation originated in 1944-1945 when Harold Barton and three associates, serving at Byberry State Hospital in Philadelphia (Pennsylvania), announced plans for a national campaign to improve the conditions in mental hospitals. The exposure of these conditions through the efforts of men serving in CPS, and their efforts to be a nonviolent presence in mental institutions, began a new movement in mental health care in the U.S. The National Mental Health Foundation still exists today as the National Mental Health Association.

Other Finding Aids

For the catalog record for this collection, and to find materials on similar topics, search the library's online catalog.

Custodial History

The Swarthmore College Peace Collection is the official repository for these papers.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Lois Barton, August 2006 [acc. 06A-042].

Related Materials

See other Civilian Public Service collections for photographs and papers/records of efforts by CPSers in mental hospitals: DG 002 and DG 025, etc.

Separated Materials

Photos of Barton and others, as well as photos of conditions at Byberry State Hospital, were removed to the SCPC Photograph Collection. Photographs by Charles Lord.

Legal Status

Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendents, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Processing Information

Processed by Anne M. Yoder, Archivist, October 2006.
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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