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Alice Niles Lynd and Staughton Lynd Papers

Identifier: SCPC-DG-099

Scope and Contents

This collection includes many letters, statements and other writings that tell the story of the resistance movement to the draft that was instituted during the Vietnamese Conflict in the 1960s and 1970s. It is possible to see how draft resistance developed on a local level in the Chicago area where the Lynds were living and working, but also on a national scale as Alice Lynd corresponded with and interviewed men and women opposed to the draft from around the country. Valuable material about the development and publishing of books by Alice and Staughton are included in the collection, as well as much reference material. In addition, personal files relate the Lynds' interests, work and involvements through the thirty years that their papers cover.

Michael Ferber sent packets of material re: draft resistance to Staughton along with his correspondence while they were in the process of editing The Resistance; most of this is now in the Lynds' reference/subject files.

Because it is hoped that the Lynds will donate more of their files to the Peace Collection, the material in these boxes was foldered but no folder labels have yet been made.

The Lynds gave many books about the peace movement to the Peace Collection; these have been placed in the Book Collection. The reel-to-reel tapes that they gave have been placed in the Audiovisual Collection.


  • Creation: 1965-1995


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research use.

Physical Access Note

All or part of this collection is stored off-site. Contact Swarthmore College Peace Collection staff at at least two weeks in advance of visit to request boxes.

Conditions Governing Use


Biographical Note

Alice Niles Lynd and Staughton Lynd are Quaker activists who have been involved in the civil rights, labor, Vietnam anti-war, and peace movements for many years. Married in 1951, they were members of the Macedonia Cooperative Community in Clarkesville, Georgia in 1954-1957. They used their vacations in 1985-1988 and in 1990 to visit Nicaragua. In February 1991 they stayed at Jubilee Partners in Georgia. In July-August 1991 they traveled to Israel and the Occupied Territories. Together they edited Rank and File: Personal Histories by Working Class Organizers and two editions of Nonviolence in America: A Documentary History. The Lynd's children are Barbara, Lee and Martha.

Alice (b. 1930) received professional training in early childhood education, and worked at the Gesell Institute of Child Development and in various day care centers. She directed day care and health center projects in Chicago (Illinois) for the AFSC; served as a draft counselor in the 1960s (when she was deeply involved with the Midwest Committee for Draft Counseling), and again in 1980; became Associate Director of Peace/War Issues for the AFSC in 1970; worked as a paralegal; earned her law degree in 1985 and became senior attorney for Northeast Ohio Legal Services; and, edited We Won't Go: Personal Accounts of War Objectors.

Staughton Lynd (b. 1929), son of Robert S. Lynd and Helen Merrel Lynd (writers of the famed Middletown: a Study in Contemporary American Culture), earned his doctorate at Columbia University in 1961, and taught history at Spelman College (Atlanta, Georgia) and Yale University. Shortly after his marriage, he declared himself a conscientious objector, and was inducted into the army as a noncombatant, from which he was given an "undesirable discharge" in 1954. Staughton worked as a tenant organizer for the University Settlement House in New York City (New York) in 1958. He won the William P. Lyons Essay Contest in 1960 for his writing of "Anti-Federalism in Duchess County, New York." Staughton was the director of freedom schools for the Mississippi Summer Project in 1964, and organized the first march against the Vietnam War in Washington (DC), held on April 17, 1965, and, he organized the Assembly of Unrepresented People in August 1965. In 1965 he made a Christmas trip to Hanoi with Herbert Aptheker and Tom Hayden, defying U.S. passport regulations; as a result, his academic career went into decline, suggesting that he was blacklisted for his political leanings. He graduated from the University of Chicago Law School in 1976, after which he devoted much of his energy to labor law, becoming Associate Director and Litigation Director of Northeast Ohio Legal Services. He wrote or co-wrote many books, including The Resistance (with Michael Ferber), Intellectual Origins of American Radicalism, and Solidarity Unionism.


8.33 linear ft. (8.33 linear feet.)


Staughton Lynd and Alice Niles Lynd, Quakers, authors, and activists in the civil rights and peace movements, who worked individually and collaborated on many labor and pacifist projects.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Alice and Staughton Lynd in 1976 and 1998.

Related Materials

For related materials, search the library's online catalog

Separated Materials

Tapes Removed to the SCPC Audiovisual Collection.

Three and a Quarter Inch (One Hour) Reel Tapes:

  1. 01. National Lawyers Guild and Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO) Conference, New York (New York), February 9, 1967: speakers – Boudin [Bondin?], Standard, Frankel
  2. 02. National Lawyers Guild and Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO) Conference, New York (New York), February 9, 1967: speakers – Adlerstein, Jacks, Tatum, Karpatkin, Muste
  3. 03. National Lawyers Guild and Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO) Conference, New York (New York), February 9, 1967: speakers – Karpatkin, Karlin
  4. 04. We Won’t Go Conference [on draft resistance], Chicago (Illinois), December 4, 1966: speakers – Tom Goshurt, Staughton Lynd, R. Flacks, D. Alley, Jeff Segal, John O. Sumrall, ___ Bevel
  5. 05. We Won’t Go Conference [on draft resistance], Chicago (Illinois), December 4, 1966: speakers – ___ Bevel (cont.), David Mitchell, Arlo Tatum
  6. 06. Draft seminar by Bradford Lyttle, January 29, 1967 (subjects: prison; nonviolence in personal confrontations)
  7. 07. Private Luftig, December 26, 1966; Rosebud, May 1967 [side 2]
  8. 08. Interviews with Fred and Suzi Moore, July 6, 1967
  9. 09. [Paul?] Wilhelm, December 31, 1968; Rupert Skeist, January 1, 1969
  10. 10. Rupert Skeist, January 1, 1969 (cont.)
  11. 11. Joe Tuchinsky (re: new draft law), July 1967; Resistance and CADRE conference: speaker – Fred Moore [side 2]
  12. 12. Joe Tuchinsky (re: new draft law), July 1967 (cont.)
  13. 13. Presentation by Ann Fagan Ginger at Univ. of California, Berkeley (re: COs and Selective Service), November 1966
  14. 14-17. Unlabeled [but do have speaking on them]
  15. 18. David Nesmith, ca. 1967? [re: being a C.O. and joining International Voluntary Service, and then about joining the military and being sent to Vietnam; photo removed to Photograph Collection]

Seven Inch Reel Tapes:

  1. 01. David McReynolds, Ralph DiGia, Sam Coleman, Terry Sullivan, October 3, 1967
  2. 02. National Conference on [Draft] Resistance, March 1969: speaker – Bob Ross
  3. 03. Paul Booth, Jim Forrest, undated
  4. 04. Resistance groups in Boston (Massachusetts), Minneapolis (Minnesota), St. Louis (Montana), and Philadelphia (Pennsylvania)
  5. 05. Philadelphia Resistance: David Mitchell, undated; Paul Lauter and Florence Howe, undated
  6. 06.Chicago Area Draft Resistance [CADRE]: University of Chicago students, undated
  7. 07. Minneapolis (Minnesota), undated: Greg Calvert, David Harris
  8. 08. ___ Boykin, David Harris, undated
  9. 09. Resistance group in Ann Arbor (Michigan), undated [taped for use in Lynd’s book]
  10. 10. Speech by Sandy Wilkinson (Minnesota Resistance) at Civil Liberties Union, undated
  11. 11. National Conference on [Draft] Resistance, March 1969: speakers – Greg Calvert, David Harris

Legal Status

Copyright to the resources created by Alice Niles Lynd and Staughton Lynd have 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

This checklist was prepared by Anne M. Yoder in February, 2004, and this finding aid was prepared by Chloe Lucchesi-Malone in August, 2009.

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

Revision Statements

  • 2018: The file list was standardized in Summer 2017 by Mary Olesnavich in preparation for importing into ArchivesSpace. Elisabeth Miller added the notes in Fall 2017. This finding aid was updated by Wendy E. Chmielewski, March 2019.

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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