Gladys V. Swackhamer papers
Scope and Contents
There is also material pertaining to social and political activism in the 1980s, including Swackhamer's letters to editors of newspapers and to her elected representatives on such topics as nuclear disarmament, the environment, homelessness, the plight of migrant farm workers, and governmental waste and mismanagement.
Towards the end of her life Swackhamer began attending writing classes taught by a local author, Robert Downey, resulting in short, descriptive narratives that were autobiographical in nature. She also began recording and interpreting her dreams.
Dates of Materials
- Majority of material found within 1900-1988
- Swackhamer, Gladys (Person)
Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Use
Biographical / Historical
Early in her professional career, Swackhamer practiced social case work in hospitals and clinics in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. After obtaining a position as Secretary and Research Assistant to the editor of the Psychoanalytic Quarterly in 1927, her professional interests evolved in the direction of research and writing. From 1933 through 1945, she conducted "psychiatric, medical and industrial research for private and government agencies". Cigar Makers After the Lay-Off, 1937, a WPA project, evaluated the problem of workers' welfare following termination of employment due to industrial mechanization, and Choice and Change of Doctors, 1939, examined how low-income families and individuals exercised freedom of choice in selecting medical care. In 1945 Swackhamer resumed practicing social work, continuing until her retirement in 1957 (having moved to Santa Barbara, California in 1949). In addition to writing articles and abstracts for professional journals, she also translated into English the work of several German scholars.
Upon retirement, Swackhamer continued her life-long involvement in the Unitarian Church and also pursued a variety of community interests, including the League of Women Voters, the Sierra Club, and the Child Guidance Clinic of Santa Barbara. She was a committed pacifist and took great interest in the political issues of her day, frequently writing articulate, well-informed letters to her elected representatives and to the editors of local newspapers. In 1986, under the aegis of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, Swackhamer initiated the Austin H. and Florence A. Swackhamer Memorial Prizes, to be awarded annually to three college-bound high school seniors for the best essays on how to promote world peace in the nuclear age. The contest was open to international and United States students, and the essays were to focus on specific themes, determined each year by Swackhamer and the staff of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.
Swackhamer was listed in Who's Who of American Women (5th edition, 1969), and in 1970 was made a life fellow of the American Orthopsychiatric Association. She died in Santa Barbara, California on September 6, 1988.
4 boxes (1.5 linear feet)
- I. Biographical
- II. Photographs
- III. Correspondence
- IV. Professional Activities
- V. Writings
- VI. Subjects
- Oversize Materials
Immediate Source of Acquisition
- Antinuclear movement -- United States
- Environmental protection -- Citizen participation -- 20th century
- Industrial hygiene -- United States -- 20th century
- Jelliffe, Smith Ely, 1866-1945
- Migrant labor -- United States
- Peace movements
- Peace movements -- 20th century
- Psychiatric social work -- United States
- Smith College. School for Social Work
- Social service
- Social workers -- United States
- Swackhamer, Austin H
- Swackhamer, Gladys
- Unemployed -- United States -- Case Studies
- United States. Work Projects Administration
- Weissglass, Roberta
- Gladys V. Swackhamer papers
- Finding Aid
- Burd Schlessinger
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
- 07/26/2017: This resource was modified by the ArchivesSpace Preprocessor developed by the Harvard Library (https://github.com/harvard-library/archivesspace-preprocessor)
- 2005-09-23: mnsss67 converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02-5c.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
- 2017-07-26T17:48:23-04:00: This record was migrated from InMagic DB Textworks to ArchivesSpace.
Part of the Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History Repository
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