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Appeal and Vigil at Fort Detrick Collected Records

 Collection — othertype: CDG-A
Identifier: SCPC-CDG-A-Appeal and Vigil at Fort Detrick

Scope and Contents

Includes materials on the history of Fort Detrick and the site's conversion from an army biological warfare center into a cancer research center.


  • Creation: 1959-1961; 1971-1973


Language of Material

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research use.

Historical Note

Appeal and Vigil at Fort Detrick formed to provide ongoing silent witness against testing and development of biological agents for use in warfare at the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases located at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland. It was initiated by the Mid-Atlantic Region of the Fellowship of Reconciliation on July 1, 1959 and planned for five days. It lasted until March 30, 1961. Many members of the Appeal and Vigil were Quakers. The name changed in 1960 to Vigil at Fort Detrick. After the Vigil, the Appeal closed on March 30, 1961 and members formed the Peace Action Center in Washington, DC, which later became the Washington Peace Center.

Members included Albert Bigelow, George and Lillian Willoughby, David Gale, Charles C. Walker, Theodore Olso, Lawrence Scott, and Stewart Meacham as acting chair.

In 1971, Richard Nixon, then-president, announced the conversion of the army biological warfare research center at Fort Detrick into a cancer research center. Information on this and on the history of Fort Detrick is also included in this collection.

Syracuse Peace Council was one of the original co-sponsors of the project.


0.08 linear ft. (3 folders)


Collection includes brochures and flyers, printed correspondence, and pamphlets about the Appeal and Vigil; also includes two short unpublished histories of Fort Detrick, and news clippings about Fort Detrick's conversion in 1969 from offensive biological warfare to cancer research.

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

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 or requesting repoductions from Swarthmore College Peace Collection Library

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