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Prison Birth Project records

 Collection
Identifier: SSC-MS-00728

Scope and Contents

The records of the Prison Birth Project are comprised of administrative files such as correspondence, meeting minutes, organizational planning, financial records, grant and fundraising materials, annual reports; as well as materials documenting the organization's events and program planning; worshops and advocacy work for incarcerated women and their families; publicity; publications and ephemera related to midwifery and the Prison Birth Project; as well as website and social media content. Of particular interest are materials related to doula training, breastfeeding and childbirth education, and support groups for incarcerated women and their families; and the records related to the organization's work on anti-shackling legislation. There are also a large number of digital photos and video of PBP events. Photos and videos include Doula training, Anti-Shackling training, the annual Mother's Day/Mama's Day, and Solidarity Supper.

Dates

  • 1993 - 2018

Creator

Language of Materials

English, Spanish

Conditions Governing Access

The papers are open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection with the following caveat: Records that identify the names and contact information of Prison Birth Project clients shall be restricted from research use until the year 2033. After that time and until the year 2068, researchers must sign an access agreement, stating they will not reveal the names and personal information of Prison Birth Project clients. Donor files are closed until 2033. Marianne Bullock, Lisa Andrews, and Marisa Pizii, as former Prison Birth Project leaders, may be permitted to access restricted records before they are available for general research.

Conditions Governing Access

Until we move into New Neilson in early 2021, collections are stored in multiple locations and may take up to 48 hours to retrieve. Researchers are strongly encouraged to contact Special Collections (specialcollections@smith.edu) at least a week in advance of any planned visits so that boxes may be retrieved for them in a timely manner.

Conditions Governing Use

To the extent that they own copyright, the donors have assigned the copyright in their organization's works to Smith College; however, copyright in other items in this collection may be held by their respective creators. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U.S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For instances which may regard materials in the collection not created by the Prison Birth Project, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.

Biographical / Historical

The Prison Birth Project was founded in 2008 by Lisa Andrews and Marianne Bullock (Smith College Class of 2014), with the goal of bringing bring doula care to incarcerated women. Lisa was a social justice educator who had supported incarcerated loved ones, and Marianne was a doula who had been incarcerated. In 2011, the Western Massachusetts-based organization transformed itself into a collective, adopting a leadership circle that operated by consensus. Their services included doula and breastfeeding support, childbirth education, and advocacy for incarcerated women and their families.

The organization closed its doors in 2017, citing "large systems of power" and the lack of "the kind of support we need to become the sustainable organization we envision." Among their successes, the Prison Birth Project states that they, "supported over 300 incarcerated people during pregnancy and postpartum and built leadership with over 225 incarcerated parents. Our doulas have attended over 60 births. We helped to pass the landmark Massachusetts legislation ending shackling of pregnant and laboring incarcerated people and monitored successful implementation of new standards." Their projects were distributed to other organizations and practices documented for future use and education.

[sources: PBP Website ]

Extent

10 linear feet (5 record cartons, 2 full letter document boxes, 1 half document box, 1 flat box, 4 boxes, 4 flat files)

16 items (10 DVDs, 3 CDs)

136.25 Gigabytes (11,543 digital files)

Overview

The Prison Birth Project (2008-2017) worked to "support, encourage, and train currently and formerly incarcerated mothers and trans* parents to become community leaders within a reproductive justice framework." The records include administrative files, program and event planning materials, forms, newsletters and other publications related to midwifery and the Prison Birth Project. Of particular interest are photos and videos of various events, curriculum materials related to Doula training; and records related to the organization's work on anti-shackling legislation.

Arrangement

This collection has been added to over time in multiple "accessions." An accession is a group of materials received from the same source at approximately the same time. Note that in most cases, container numbers start over at 1 with each new accession.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

As a preservation measure, researchers must use digital copies of audiovisual materials in this collection. Please consult with Special Collections staff to request the creation of and access to digital copies.

This collection contains materials received from the donor in digital form that are not currently available online. Please consult with Special Collections staff to request access to this digital content.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection is comprised of the following accessions, some of which may not have accession records. Accession numbers: 14S-49, 15S-78, 16S-19, 2018-S-0005, 2018-S-0048, 2018-S-0049, 2018-S-0059. Accessions were received on the following dates: 2014-07-24, 2015-09-22, 2016-03-03, 2018-02-09, 2018-07-30.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The first accession in the Prison Birth Project Records was donated to the Sophia Smith Collection in 2014.

Related Materials

Related materials may also be found in the following collection:

Processing Information

Originally accessioned by Kathleen Banks Nutter, 2015.

The Prison Birth Project Records addition from Accession #2018-S-0005 was kept in original folders and order when possible. Similar subjects were organized and boxed together. Potentially sensitive materials (donor names and contact information, client names and contact information, tax forms and other financial documents) have been set aside for further assessment.

Materials from Accession #2018-S-0049 were kept in original order when possible and added to folders with similar materials. Oversize items were added to Box 6 of #2018-S-0005.

Digital accessions received via a file sharing service (Google Drive), have been backed up to networked storage for preservation. Additional digital content was copied from the donors' computers and discs in the collection. All digital records have been retained in their original order and detailed file lists were created and attached to the contents listing.

Creator

Source

Title
Finding aid to the Prison Birth Project records
Status
Legacy Finding Aid (Updated)
Author
Finding aid prepared by Kathleen Nutter Banks.
Date
2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Revision Statements

  • 07/26/2017: This resource was modified by the ArchivesSpace Preprocessor developed by the Harvard Library (https://github.com/harvard-library/archivesspace-preprocessor)
  • 2017-07-26T17:48:23-04:00: This record was migrated from InMagic DB Textworks to ArchivesSpace.
  • 2018-08-14 and 2018-10-12: This record was revised to reflect the addition of new materials.
  • 2020-04-09: Added accessions 14S-49, 15S-78, and 16S-19

Repository Details

Part of the Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History Repository

Contact:
Young Library
4 Tyler Drive
Northampton MA 01063