Contents and Arrangement

Series 6, Projects, 1939-1964

35 boxes

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

Series 6, Projects, 1939-1964 [bulk 1953-1959], is arranged by topic and alphabetically thereunder. The topics were devised by the Fund's officers and include: Academic Freedom, American Traditions, Blacklisting, Censorship, Civil Liberties, Distribution Project, Due Process, Educational Activities, Extremist Groups, Immigration, Inter-Group Relations, Internal Communist Menace, Loyalty-Security, Mass Media, and Trade Unions. The results of each project were produced in various forms including reports, handbooks, articles, print and television media, and books. The end product is usually included within the folders, as well as correspondence, memoranda, articles, clippings, proposals, project outlines, progress reports, scripts, press releases, invitations, and statistics.

In an effort to maximize the public's attention to civil rights and civil liberties, several of the Fund's projects relied on television and film. The Fund organized television script contests, the Robert E. Sherwood Awards, and produced several documentaries. The Sherwood Awards, organized by the Fund in memory of a former board member and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, Robert E. Sherwood, honored outstanding commercial television programs dealing with issues of freedom, justice, and civil liberties. The Fund awarded three major prizes in each year: Best Network Drama, Best Network Documentary, and Best Drama or Documentary by an Independent Station. The Fund also produced numerous films. A Fund film entitled A City Decides received an Academy Award nomination in the short subject documentary category in 1956. The film chronicled the desegregation of public schools in the city of St. Louis.

Another long-term project developed to foster public discussion was the distribution project. The purpose of the project was to make available to the interested public, books, pamphlets, periodicals, and articles already published elsewhere, which dealt with issues of civil rights and civil liberties. The Fund received materials for possible distribution from authors, editors and publishers, which were then evaluated by Edward Reed and W. H. Ferry. The Board of Directors then gave final approval to distribute the selected materials, which usually had not received wide circulation. The popularity of this project was tremendous as schools, universities, religious and ethnic organizations, politicians, and ordinary citizens sent letter after letter requesting publications.

Inter-Group relations education was another area in which the Fund excelled and financed numerous projects. It established two major commissions, one to study the housing of minority groups within the United States, and the other the plight of Native Americans. The Commission on Race and Housing studied the difficulties of all minority groups in obtaining adequate public or private housing. The Commission gave special attention to the problems of African Americans in large metropolitan areas. A final report issued in 1958 called upon President Eisenhower to establish a committee to eliminate discrimination in Federal housing and urban renewal programs. The report contended that the national housing policy adopted by Congress was "seriously hampered by racial segregation and discrimination in the distribution of housing facilities and benefits provided under federal laws."

In establishing the Commission on the Rights, Liberties, and Responsibilities of the American Indian, the Fund hoped the Commission would promote a better understanding of the special status of Native Americans as United States citizens, and what should be done by and for them to facilitate their entry into the mainstream of American life. The final report, issued in 1961, recommended fundamental revisions in U.S. policy towards the American Indian. Specifically, it examined and made recommendations on termination, Indian values and attitudes, economic development, tribal governments and law and order, education, health, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.


No arrangement action taken or arrangement information not recorded at the time of processing.

Collection History


No information about appraisal is available for this collection.


These papers were processed with the generous support of The National Historical Publications and Records Commission and The John Foster and Janet Avery Dulles Fund.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Kristine Marconi in 1998-1999, with the assistance of Chris Kitto, Atu Darko, Michael Gibney, Meghan Glass, Nate Holland, Sandra Kumahor, Adelia Reliford, Stan Ruda, Brian Schulz, Susan Stawicki, Jeremy Sturchio, Michael Sullivan, and Terun Weed. Finding aid written by Kristine Marconi in 1998-1999.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. For quotations that are fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For those few instances beyond fair use, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold the copyright and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from the Mudd Library to move forward with their use.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

Series 6, Projects; Fund for the Republic Records, MC059, Public Policy Papers, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library
65 Olden Street
Princeton, NJ 08540, USA
(609) 258-6345
Storage Note:
  • Mudd Manuscript Library (mudd): Box 82-116