National Council of Negro Women Papers Bibliography

Query From Margaret Paton-Walsh 02 April 1998

I am working on a manuscript relating to women advocates of U.S. intervention in World War II and would like to incorporate the views of African-American women. For this purpose, I would like to spend some time looking at the papers of the National Council of Negro Women for the period 1934-1942. If any list members can provide me with information as to whether and where such papers are available, I would be most grateful.

Further, if anyone has any other suggestions as to possible sources for African-American women's views on the European and Pacific crises in this period, I would welcome such input. Thanks in advance.


From Nancy Marie Robertson 03 April 1998

National Council of Negro Women's papers are housed at the Bethune Museum and Archives National Historic Site in Washington, DC. You might also look for issues of the *Aframerican Woman's Journal* its publication that is available in several archives. The black press in general could be a good source--there was an African-American equivalent of the UPI/AP: the Associated Negro Press and its papers are at the Chicago Historical Society.

You might also find sources in Brenda Moore's *To Serve My country, to Serve my Race: The Story of the only African American WACS Stationed Overseas during WWII* (NYU: 1996)

For an earlier period, you might look for records of the International Council of Women of the Darker Records: see Hine et al, *Black Women in America: An Historical Encyclopedia*. While I think ICWDR was pretty much inactive by the 1930s, its membership may include women whose views are worth tracking in the 1930s and 1940s.

You might also cross-post this request to H-Afro-Am Studies.

From Rebecca Hartman 08 April 1998

The archivist at Bethune House, Susan McElrath is an absolute gem! She is one of the most accommodating archivists I have ever had the pleasure to work with. You can reach her by e-mail at I'm trying to track down Bethune correspondence relating to FDR's Tenancy Commission. In response to my request for finding aid, McElrath offered to search the archives for me (a list of nearly 30 people) and did so within the space of less than a week. Though the files didn't contain what I'm looking for, she sent me an article Bethune wrote on tenancy. In addition to the NCNW material (1935-1980) the Bethune House also holds a microfilm edition of the Bethune Papers at Amistad Research Center in New Orleans.

From Judith Weisenfeld 06 April 1998

The Bethune Museum-Archives in Washington, D.C. (202/332-1233) has 97 boxes of NCNW materials, dating from 1935-1978. It has been a few years since I've been there, so I don't know that the contact information is up to date.

From Carrie Lybecker 08 June 1998

Have you looked at the NCNW website at, choosing , then ? There is also an email address: