5. Philanthropy, Social Services, Human Rights
Memorial to the Columbia College Board of Trustees. Printed document, with signatures in ink, on paper, 26 sections,. New York, 1882-1883. Barnard College, Barnard College Archives
On April 22, 1882, a large public meeting was held to discuss the reform of
women's higher education in the City of New York. The venue was the Union League
Club on East 39th Street, which had been formed in 1863 to support
the Union during the Civil War. Prominent speakers at this meeting included
Joseph H. Choate, the Reverend Henry C. Potter, and Sidney Smith, who drew
attention to the "empty minds and nimble fingers of women" in arguing that there
was a need for reform in women's education. When it was Choate's turn to speak,
he stressed that women were entitled to an equal education and called for an end
to the "educational privileging" of the male sex. At the conclusion of the
event, attendees began signing a petition calling on the Trustees of Columbia
College, the leading institution of higher learning in New York, "to extend with
as little delay as possible to such properly qualified women as might desire it,
the benefit of education at Columbia College by admitting them to lectures and
examinations." As more persons signed in the subsequent weeks and months,
section after section was glued on to extend the document, until it was 75 feet
long and held the signatures of 1,410 persons, including those of then United
States President Chester A. Arthur, Samuel P. Avery, Theodore Roosevelt, and
Susan B. Anthony.
Presented to the Columbia College Board of Trustees in February of 1883,
the giant Memorial served as proof that many progressive citizens of New York
favored the idea of post-secondary co-education, a trend that was already
well-established elsewhere in the United States. Although the Trustees (with the
lone exception of President Frederick A. P. Barnard) voted to reject the
Memorial's substance, it did persuade them to immediately form the Select
Committee on the Education of Women. In the fall of 1883, the Committee issued a
report advocating the improvement of higher education for women. Although still
not allowed to attend the lectures that were so essential to a genuine college
education, qualified women were offered the Collegiate Course for Women, which
permitted them to receive syllabi and to take examinations. When Annie Nathan
Meyer enrolled in the Collegiate Course, she found its shortcomings so great
that she made it her personal mission to help found an independent, four-year
women's college in the City of New York annexed to Columbia, and with precisely
the same academic standards. That vision finally was realized in the fall of
1889, when Barnard College opened with the provisional blessing of the Columbia
College Board of Trustees.
In the spring of 2003, one hundred twenty years after it was presented to
the Columbia College Board of Trustees, the Giant Memorial was returned to the
Barnard College Archives by the Northeast Document Conservation Center,
following a process of manual restoration that took the better part of a year,
and was made possible by a generous gift from the Class of 1942. Originally
rolled on a wooden dowel, too fragile to be examined for many years, the 75-foot
document was meticulously repaired, flattened, photographed, and cut into
twenty-six sections which were individually encapsulated in Mylar.
Eastman Johnson (1824-1906).
Portrait of Fredrick A. P. Barnard, 1886. Black and white chalk on prepared gray paper, mounted on linen, signed, (61
x 45.1) Office of Art Properties
Frederick Augustus Porter Barnard (1809-1889) succeeded Charles King as
president of Columbia College, now Columbia University. During his long
administration (1864-89), Columbia grew from a small undergraduate college of
150 students into one of the nation's great universities, with an enrollment of
1,500. He was instrumental in expanding the curriculum, adding departments, and
fostering the development of the School of Mines (founded 1864; now part of the
Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science). He extended the
elective system and advocated equal educational privileges for men and women.
Barnard College, the woman's undergraduate unit of Columbia, was named for him,
a staunch advocate of higher education for women. Renowned for his sophisticated
portrayals of American rural life, Eastman Johnson was also one of the most
cosmopolitan painters of his era. During the 1880s, he turned almost exclusively
to portraiture. This chalk drawing is probably a study for the large oil
portrait that hangs in Low Memorial Library.
Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919) Carnegie Corporation of New York.
Records of College Donations, New York. Bound manuscript volume, 1901-30, 1886. RBML, Carnegie Corporation of New York Archives
This volume contains the records of donations made by Andrew Carnegie and
subsequently the Carnegie Corporation of New York to colleges and universities
for their endowments, libraries, scholarships, new buildings, programs and research.
Gift of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, 1990
Carnegie Family Convention, Pittsburgh. Black and white photograph (25.4 x 30.5 cm.) Pittsburgh Gazette Times, April 1910. RBML, Carnegie Corporation of New York Archives
This photograph shows the Carnegie family in Pittsburgh on the return of
Mr. Andrew Carnegie (front row, third from the left) and Mrs. Whitfield Carnegie
(front row, second from the left) from California en route to New York.
Pittsburgh was the first place of residence in the United States for the
12-year-old Andrew, when he arrived from Scotland along with his parents
Margaret and William, and his younger brother Tom. The family chose Pittsburgh,
since Margaret Carnegie's sisters were already living in the area. Pittsburgh
witnessed Carnegie's meteoric rise from bobbin boy on a cotton mill to a
telegraph operator, then to a railroad manager, then to a steel industry titan.
Over the years many other members of the extended family settled there as well.
Andrew Carnegie moved to New York City in 1867, but Pittsburgh has always
remained the site of his steel factories, and the recipient of many Carnegie benefactions.
Gift of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, 1990
Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919).
Typed letter, signed, to Robert A. Franks. Skibo Castle, Scotland, September 1, 1910. RBML, Carnegie Corporation of New York Archives
One of several hundred letters from Andrew Carnegie to his close friend and
financial agent, Robert A. Franks authorizing payments for various charity
causes. Franks was the president and director of the Carnegie Home Trust Company
(the trust to invest, keep, and distribute the money for Carnegie's pensions and
philanthropic activities) and served as a trustee, an executive committee member
and a treasurer for both the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching and
the Carnegie Corporation of New York until his death in 1935; for some years he
was also treasurer of the Teachers Insurance Annuity Association of America. The
letter uses simplified spelling, championed by the New York State Librarian
Melvil Dewey and much favored by Carnegie. This spelling was used for all
official documents in early days of the Carnegie philanthropic foundations.
Gift of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, 1990
Sigmund Freud (1859-1939).
Contract for "The Psycho-Analytic Problem of the War". Typescript, signed. Vienna, October 10, 1921. RBML, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Records
This contract between Sigmund Freud and the Carnegie Endowment for
International Peace, is signed by Freud and James S. Shotwell, the General
Editor of the CEIP's seminal 150-volume series Economic and Social History of
the World War. In December 1921, Freud, informing Shotwell that he
"can't make any headway," asked to be released from the contract. In 1924, as
the series was brought to a conclusion, Shotwell became director of the CEIP
Division of Economics and History.
Gift of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1953-54
Lillian D. Wald (1867-1940).
The House on Henry Street. Autograph manuscript, ca. 1915. RBML, Lillian Wald Papers
One of the most influential and respected social reformers of the
20th century, Lillian D. Wald (1867-1940) founded the Henry Street
Settlement in 1893. She focused her energy on improving the health and hygiene
of immigrant women on the impoverished Lower East Side. Wald devoted herself to
the community full-time and within a decade the Settlement included a team of
twenty nurses offering an astonishing array of innovative and effective social,
recreational and educational services.
Wald pioneered public health nursing by placing nurses in public schools
and with corporations. She founded the National Organization for Public Health
Nursing and Columbia University's School of Nursing, becoming an international
crusader for human rights and a labor activist. The Lillian Wald Papers focus on
the administration of the Henry Street Settlement that she directed until 1932,
and her involvement in numerous philanthropic and progressive causes. Her office
files trace the founding and growth of the Settlement from 1895-1933. Other
papers detail her activities on behalf of child welfare, civil liberties,
immigration, public health, unemployment, the peace movement during World War I.
The House on Henry Street with Illustrations from Etchings and Drawings
by Abraham Phillips and from Photographs was published by Henry Holt and
Company in 1915. The book became a classic, influencing generations of nursing,
sociology, and social welfare students.
Gift of the Visiting Nurse Service, through Mrs. Eva M. Reese, 1967
Jessie Tarbox Beals (1870-1942).
Photograph of slum children, ca. 1918-19. Photograph #1900. RBML, Community Service Society Papers
Jessie Tarbox was born in 1870 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Her family's
comfortable lifestyle allowed her, at the age of 14, to attend the prestigious
Collegiate Institute of Ontario. Her first photographs were of the children in
her classroom in 1888. By 1900 The County Reformer newspaper published
Jessie's photographs of a carnival, making her the world's first female
photojournalist. Her superb work led her to become one of the official
photographers of the St. Louis World's Fair. In 1905 she moved to New York City
where with her husband, Alfred Beals, she ran a successful studio until her
death in 1942.
During this time, she took many photographs for the Community Service
Society, an organization that, through its predecessor organizations, the
Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor and the Charity Organization
Society, has tackled the problem of urban poverty for 150 years. They were
responsible for the first public baths in New York City in 1852, the first model
tenement in 1855, the first shelter for homeless men in 1893, a prototype of the
free lunch program in 1913, and the ground-work for New York State's Old Age
Assistance Act of 1930. The Rare Book and Manuscript Library was designated as
the repository of the CSS papers in 1979, comprising to date some 300 linear
feet of material, including hundreds of photographs.
Gift of the Community Service Society, 1979 and ongoing
Varian Fry (1907-1967).
Surrender on Demand. Typed manuscript, with autograph corrections, ca. 1942-45. RBML, Varian Fry Papers
Surrender on Demand, published just before VE Day in 1945, describes the
dramatic story of the underground organizations set up by Americans in France to
rescue anti-Nazis from the Gestapo. Fry, a 32-year old Harvard-educated
classicist and editor from New York City, helped save 4,000 endangered refugees
who were caught in the Vichy French area during World War II, including Max
Ernst, Marc Chagall, Hannah Arendt, Andre Breton, Marcel Duchamp, Franz Werfel,
and Alma Mahler. In 1991, 24 years after his death in obscurity, Fry received
his first official recognition from a United States agency, the United States
Holocaust Memorial Council. In 1996, he was named as Righteous Among the Nations
by Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Heros and Martyrs Remembrance Authority in
Gift of Annette Riley Fry, 1969 and 1974
John Howard Griffin (1920-1980).
Journal. Typescript, with interspersed photographs, 1950 - 1980. RBML, John Howard Griffin Papers
This massive Journal runs to 2,762 pages of single-spaced typed pages and
covers the years 1950 - 1980. This page count does not include ten autograph
notebooks kept while traveling. Griffin kept a journal from the age of sixteen
until twenty-one. When France was about to fall to the Germans, he gave the
journals to a schoolmate for safe-keeping. "Years later when I returned to
France [in 1976], I retrieved the journal which had been buried on my friend's
father's farm during the war." As he read what he had written so long ago,
Griffin became saddened by the discovery that it was filled with petty
reflection on music, food, and literature and practically nothing on the World
War. Griffin burned this journal.
John Mason Brown, the theatre critic, encouraged Griffin to write. The
result was his first novel, The Devil Rides Outside, written in 1949.
Griffin began his mature Journal in December of 1950, the third year of
his blindness. He would regain his sight seven years later. When he was not
working on novels or short stories, he wrote his Journal, which became a
seedbed for most of the work he would publish later. Its pages are full of
fragments and drafts of stories and novels; essays and articles; meditations on
human rights, the Civil Rights Movement, and major events such as the murder of
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ethics, religion and philosophy; responses to the
music he listened to constantly; discussions of cooking, farming and family
relationships; insights into the realities of blindness and how the condition is
wrongly perceived by the sighted; speculations on psychology, sociology,
anthropology and the arts in relation to the diminishment of culture in America.
Purchased with the John Howard Griffin Papers, 1995
Hiroshima Project. Typescript, with photographs. RBML, Ivan Morris Papers
Ivan Ira Esme Morris was a member of the Columbia faculty from 1960 until
his death in 1976, serving as chairman of the East Asian Department from
1966-69. His field was Japanese literature and culture, but he was also very
active in the human rights organization Amnesty International. A member of the
group's executive committee in London, he co-founded an American section and
served as section chairman from 1973-76. Morris's "Hiroshima Project" recorded
the personal accounts of survivors of the Hiroshima nuclear bomb blast. Included
with each account is a photograph of the person, bringing to life their deeply
personal struggles to live with the pain of their experiences. These accounts
also contain anecdotal documentation of the medical problems suffered by each
interviewee as a result of the blast, as well as recording the exact distance
that each person was from its epicenter.
Gift of Annalita M. Alexander, 1979 and ongoing
John Fitzgerald Kennedy (1917-1963).
Executive Order, Equal Opportunity in Housing. Typescript, signed, with pen, November 27, 1962. RBML, Whitney M. Young, Jr. Papers
John F. Kennedy had criticized President Dwight Eisenhower during the
election campaign of 1960 for not eliminating discrimination in housing "by the
stroke of a pen." On November 27, 1962, President Kennedy issued this executive
order prohibiting racial and religious discrimination in housing built or
purchased with Federal aid, and set up the President's Committee on Equal
Opportunity in Housing. He then sent this copy, with a pen used in the signing
ceremony, to Whitney M. Young, Jr. (1921-1971), Executive Director of the
National Urban League from 1961 until his tragic death in 1971. Young's papers,
including correspondence, speeches, reports, testimony, press releases, and the
texts of his radio broadcasts "To Be Equal," document his leadership.
Gift of Mrs. Margaret Young in memory of Whitney M. Young, Jr. (LL.D 1971), 1975
Presidential Medal of Freedom and Certificate signed by the President,
Awarded to Herbert H. Lehman (posthumously) by President Lyndon B. Johnson,
December 6, 1963. Silver miniature medal, ribbon bar, and silver lapel emblem, in walnut
presentation case lined with silver gray plush and white satin, with silver disk
containing the arms of the President of the United States inset in the cover of
the case. Certificate signed by the President, with citation formally detailing
the achievements for which the President is recognizing the individual. RBML, Lehman Papers
Photograph of President Johnson presenting the Medal of Freedom to Edith
Altschul Lehman (Mrs. Herbert H. Lehman). Washington, D.C., December 6, 1963. RBML, Lehman Papers
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the nation's highest civilian award,
which recognizes exceptional contributions to the security or national interests
of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public
or private endeavors. Among all American honors, it ranks second to only the
Congressional Medal of Honor, the nation's highest military award. The medal was
established by President Truman in 1945 to recognize notable service in the war.
In 1963, President John F. Kennedy reintroduced it as an honor for distinguished
civilian service in peacetime. While the medal may be awarded for singular acts
of importance, it is customarily given only for a lifetime of service or at the
conclusion of a distinguished career. With this criterion, it was altogether
fitting that the Medal of Freedom was presented to Herbert H. Lehman in 1964 for
35 years of service as both Lieutenant Governor (1928-1932) and Governor of New
York (1933-1942), Director-General of the United Nations Rehabilitation and
Relief Administration (1943-1946), and U.S. Senator from New York (1949-1956).
This particular award ceremony was significant in that it marked the
reintroduction of the medal as a civil honor, but the occasion was also saddened
by the absence of two men: John F. Kennedy, who had been assassinated during the
previous November and Herbert Lehman himself, whose death in New York occurred
just minutes before his departure to Washington to receive the award. Lehman's
wife of over fifty years, Edith Altschul Lehman, journeyed to the White House
and accepted the medal on her late husband's behalf.
As the medal was presented to Mrs. Lehman, President Johnson read, "The
President of the United States of America awards this Presidential Medal of
Freedom to Herbert H. Lehman, citizen and statesman. He has used wisdom and
compassion as the tools of government and he has made politics the highest form
of public service." Mrs. Lehman accepted the award and replied, "I can't tell
you how honored I feel to accept this medal. I want to also say that the
knowledge that this medal was coming to him added a great deal to his last hours
of life." Among Lehman's fellow award recipients that year were: Thornton
Wilder, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, E. B. White, George Meany, Marian Anderson,
Edward Steichen, Felix Frankfurter and the late President John F. Kennedy.
Gift of the Estate of Edith Altschul Lehman, 1976
Archdiocese of Sao Paulo.
Projeto A "Brasil: Nunca Mais". Sao Paulo: Arquidiocese de Sao Paulo, 1985. Arthur W. Diamond Law Library, Special Collections
"Nunca mais Never again." On April 1, 1964 a military coup in Brazil
established a regime which made political prisoners of dissenting citizens and
people who belonged to "clandestine organizations." During the time Brazil
remained under military control, from 1964 until March 1985, political prisoners
were detained by government security agents. Transcripts from 707 trials
conducted by the military indicate that physical and psychological torture was
practiced on prisoners in order to coerce confession. Lawyers for the
defendants, working with the Roman Catholic Church, photocopied over 1,000,000
pages of these records to analyze the trials and to discover the fate of persons
who had disappeared. The results of their investigations were published in
"Projeto A" of which this is the volume documenting torture.
Antonio Hernandez Palacios (1921-2000) and Will Eisner (b. 1917).
Les Droits de l'homme. Brussels: Magic Strip, 1989. Arthur W. Diamond Law Library, Special Collections
From Spain, France, Italy, Uruguay, Argentina and the U.S., six artists
contributed stories to illustrate what can happen in a world that disregards
fundamental human rights embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Scenes of these sophisticated cartoons are situated in first-century Jerusalem,
twentieth-century Paris, and sixteenth-century Italy. Of the 22 articles in the
Declaration, the artists chose to portray the right to life, liberty and
security of person; freedom from torture or cruel, inhuman treatment; the right
to a hearing by an impartial tribunal; freedom of movement within one's country
and the right to return to one's country; freedom of opinion and expression; the
right of participation in government and the right of access to public services.
This episode by Will Eisner takes place in an imaginary country where citizens
learn the results of failure to participate in elections.
The United Nations General Assembly adopted and proclaimed the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948. At their website, www.unhchr.ch/udhr/index.htm, the
Declaration is available in 300 languages.
Gift of Kent McKeever, 1989