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Interracial, 1961-1970

 File — Box: 4, Reel: 295, microdex: 7
Interracial, 1961-1970
Interracial, 1961-1970

Scope and Contents

Documents concerning issues of race, civil rights and racism internal and external to the YWCA of the U.S.A. including black power, Apartheid in South Africa, a consultation on black leadership in the YWCA of the U.S.A., and integration and desegregation. In the 1960's the YWCA of the U.S.A. increases its push towards an integrated movement and public affairs platforms concerning civil rights through programming, education and activism. Though civil rights and racism have long been a part of their program, the sixties brings a renewed effort in part due to the social and political climate of the United States and from within the organization. One issue of global importance is the Apartheid in South Africa, an issue of particular concern to the National Student YWCA. Resolutions, letters of concern to organizations and leaders, clippings and correspondence from the National Student YWCA explain their concerns and goals, and seek to educate others about the issue. Domestically, the YWCA of the U.S.A. grapples with the Black Power movement and its role. The topic is explored here through papers, lectures, addresses and articles. Within the national movement and local associations the YWCA of the U.S.A. is focused on a fully integrated movement. This means representation in leadership, desegregated associations and understanding across all members. Minutes, reports and notes from the YWCA of the U.S.A. Consultation of Black Leadership document this gathering of leaders to explore the role and status of African American leadership in the organization, the need for further development and their role in the full integration of the national and local associations. In order to achieve local desegregation of associations, the YWCA of the U.S.A. issues a self audit guide, guiding principles and resolutions. Also included is the text of a speech by Dorothy Height titled, "Responsibility of YWCA for Desegregation, Integration and Civil Rights." To address interpersonal relationships during this time, dialogue groups are introduced to programs across the nation. These small group sessions encourage frank discussion in a safe space with the hope that intimate and real conversations will help ease racial divides and racism. The program is further explained in a handbook for leaders. Following these documents is a series of correspondence and reports concerning a situation with the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, New York and the company's ultimate agreement and plan to stimulate small business and economic growth in the town. 

Dates of Materials

  • Creation: 1961-1970

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

From the Record Group:

This collection is open for use without restriction beyond the standard terms and conditions of Smith College Special Collections.

However, by agreement with the YWCA of the U.S.A., microdexes known to contain financial records or personal health information (usually on job applications) were not digitized and/or not published in our online repository as part of the CLIR Digitizing Hidden Collections grant. These microdexes may still be accessed on the original microfilm, and digital files may be made available to individual researchers upon request.


369 frames (1 partial reel)