Scope and Contents
Title: Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Collection
Collection number: ARS.0056
: 232 audiocassettes ; 38 7" open reel tapes
Archive of Recorded Sound
The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) Collection contains oral history interviews on audiocassettes,
transcripts, and other supplemental materials on active members of WILPF and Women's Strike for Peace (WSP).
Language of Material: English
Archive of Recorded Sound, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, California 94305-3076
Collection is open for research. Listening appointments may require 24 hours notice. Contact the Archive Operations Manager.
Property rights reside with the repository. Publication and reproduction rights reside with the creators or their heirs. To
obtain permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Head Librarian of the Archive of Recorded Sound.
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Collection, ARS.0056. Courtesy of the Stanford Archive of Recorded Sound,
Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, CA.
The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom was founded in 1915 in Washington D.C., and was originally called the
Women's Peace Party. In 1931 WILPF's president, Jane Addams, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. She was the first American
woman to ever win the prize. The U.S. section of WILPF opposed U.S. participation in WWII even though they lost members and
the government's participation had widespread popular support. In the 1950s, WILPF refused to ban communists from their membership.
In the 1960s, WILPF was a critical force in the anti-war movement, pushing to end the war in Vietnam. Today, WILPF continues
to take strong stances on issues related to peace and women's equality. The Women's Peace Oral History project was organized
by Judith Porter Adams, who began the project in 1979 with, "an old tape recorder held on my lap in a noisy Peace Center office,
constantly interrupted by the phone." The project identified women over sixty to interview who had been active in WILPF or
other peace organizations a significant portion of their lives. The project thus sought to preserve the stories of those with
the greatest amount of historical experience in peace work.
Scope and Contents
The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Collection consists of 232 audiocassettes housed in 7 boxes and 38
7" open reel tapes housed in 2 boxes. The collection also contains supplemental print and manuscript materials housed in 4
boxes. The oral history interviews that comprise the collection were recorded between roughly 1979 and 1989. Some of the 7"
open reel tapes contain recordings of the 1967 National Conference at Asilomar. The print and manuscript material have varied
date ranges. The interviews are the product of the Women's Peace Oral History project, which began in 1979. As the director
of the Women's Peace Oral History project, Judith Porter Adams was instrumental to the creation of these interviews, as well
as their collection and arrangement at the Archive of Recorded Sound. Adams' book, "Peacework: Oral Histories of Women Peace
Activists," is also a part of the collection. The interviewees represent both "rank-in-file" and prominent members who have
held national and international leadership positions in WILPF and WSP (most of the women were active in both organizations),
with a few exceptions: for example, Linus Pauling, who was interviewed about his wife, Ava Helen Pauling, an active member
of both WILPF and WSP; and WILPF member Alice Cox's mother, Helen Perrin. Many are Quakers. Older women were frequently chosen
by the project because of their years of experience; many of these women are now deceased. Interviewees discuss their involvement
in the peace movement and peace activities, as well as their personal histories. Transcripts of some of the interviews are
included with the paper materials.
1. San Jose Chapter 2. San Francisco East Bay Chapter 3. Palo Alto Chapter 4. Santa Cruz Chapter 5. Outside of California
6. Class Presentations 7. WILPF 1967 National Conference at Asilomar, CA 8. Supplemental Materials 9. Monographs
This finding aid was produced with generous financial support from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.