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Committee on Alcohol Problems, Committee on Alcohol and Other Drugs, and the Committees on Temperance of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Records

Identifier: QM-Phy-750

Scope and Contents

Records of the Committee on Alcohol Problems of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends and its predecessors, Friends Temperance Committee and the Friends Temperance Association of Philadelphia. Includes minutes, financial records, copies of literature, clippings, and other materials.


  • 1881-1968

Limitations on Accessing the Collection

Collection is open for research. Access may be provided via digital or microfilm copy, per repository policy.

Copyright and Rights Information

Copyright has not been assigned to the Repositories. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to the individual Committee or its successor. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Repositories as the holder(s) of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by reader.

Biographical / Historical

A request was made to the Hicksite Philadelphia Yearly Meeting in 1881 that a committee be formed to spread knowledge about the dangers of alcoholic stimulants. The first meeting of the joint committee of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting on Temperance took place 5th month 13th, 1881. The Joint Committee of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting On Temperance and Intoxicating Beverages was appointed 5th month 13th 1886. An Executive Committee was also appointed. 6th Month 6th, 1888, the Executive Committee was discontinued and the Four Standing Committees were directed to the General Committee. The Committee on Legislation was formed on that date. On 5th month 13th, 1892, the Joint Committee of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting On Temperance and Intoxicating Beverages was merged with the Committees on Indian Affairs and Education of the Colored People of the South into the Joint Committee on Philanthropic Labor appointed by the Yearly Meeting, where it became a subcommittee titled Committee on Temperance and Tobacco.

The Friends Temperance Association, affiliated with the Orthodox Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, began around 1880. The Orthodox and Hicksite temperance associations were merged in 1932 as the Friends Temperance Association. The name was changed to Friends Temperance Committee of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting in 1949, and to the Committee on Alcohol Problems in 1966. A Meeting on Social Concerns of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting was approved in 1969; although the Alcohol Problems Committee was originally slated to be merged into this new administrative structure, the merger was never completed. Its name was changed again in 1975 to the Committee on Alcohol and Other Drugs. It continued to operate on a reduced scale until it was finally laid down in 1978 by Representative Meeting.

Main activities of the associations throughout their histories included pamphlet distribution, political petitioning, and educational programs in elementary and high schools concerning the dangers of alcohol.


2 Linear Feet (3 boxes)



Physical Location

This collection is stored at the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College.

Immediate Source of Acquisition


Related Materials

Miscellaneous papers of the Addiction Conferences of the Committee on Health Care may be found in Series 20 of the records of the Meeting for Social Concerns.

Separated Materials

Minutes of the Committee on Alcohol Problems and its successor committee, the Committee on Alcohol and Other Drugs, from 1972-76 were deposited with the records of the Meeting for Social Concerns, and are shelved with RG2/Phy/758 in Friends Historical Library.

Processing Information

Contains records previously shelved under PYM/Phy/RG815 (Friends Temperance Committee).

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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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 Quaker Meeting Records at Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections and Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College Library