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Kath Buffington Papers

An inventory of her papers at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Buffington, Kath, 1951 or 1952.
Title: Kath Buffington Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1963-2000
Bulk Dates: 1981-2000
Quantity: 2.25 linear ft.
Abstract: Correspondence, printed material and posters/memorabilia relating to non-violent direct action and war/tax resistance.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

Biographical History

Kath Buffington (1951 or 1952) is an American environmental, peace, and social justice activist from Rochester, New York. A long-time member of the Syracuse Peace Council and the Syracuse Area Committee on Environmental Quality, Buffington has participated in and educated others on non-violent direct actions. Among her other activities, she participated in the March for a Non-Nuclear World in Washington, D.C. (1982), Griffiss Plowshares at Griffiss Air Force Base in Rome, New York, and Protest the Cruise/Stop the B-52s (1983). In the early 1980s she spent 18 months in England as a representative of the War Resisters League of New York City where she worked with the International War Resisters.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Kath Buffington Papers consists of correspondence-subject files, posters and memorabilia, and printed material.

The bulk of Correspondence-subject files is with the IRS and relates to Buffington's "redirection" of a portion of her taxes to peace and social justice organizations. A small amount is with the charitable organizations to which Buffington donated the peace tax or with her employers.

I was a "tax resister" (or a redirection tax payer or a peace tax payer) from 1981 until 1996. Each year, I claimed a "peace tax" deduction and withheld the money from the IRS. I then paid it to a person or organization who was doing the kind of thing I felt we should be supporting with our tax dollars. The oversized check was in year's redirection.

There is also material relating to protests surrounding Alexander Haig's commencement speech at Syracuse University and educational/training material on non-violent direction action in general.

Posters and memorabilia consists of a range of items -- posters, fliers, an oversize check, and so on -- relating to marches, protests, or other actions.

Printed material contains newsletters and brochures, the majority of which are issues of the Peace Newsletter published by the Syracuse Peace Council. Other organizations represented include the Rochester Peace and Justice Education Center, A. J. Muste Memorial Institute, and Syracuse University's Student Research Group.

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Arrangement of the Collection

Alphabetical by subject or title; within that, chronological.

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Access Restrictions

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Correspondence : Tax arguing (Box 2) is closed for the life of the donor.

Use Restrictions

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

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Related Material

Two books were donated with the collection and have been transferred to Rare Books for cataloging. They are Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkeywrenching, edited by Dave Foreman and Bill Haywood, and Fange Fr Fred, by Per Hengren. Please see the Classic Catalog to locate these items.

Special Collections Research Center has made a concerted effort over the years to ensure that its manuscript and rare books holdings complement each other. As a result, many of our manuscript collections are supported by books, pamphlets, serials and other items which are cataloged in the Rare Books Collection. Please be sure to search the Classic Catalog for these related materials.

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Subject Headings


Buffington, Kath, 1951 or 1952.
Haig, Alexander Meigs, 1924-2010.
Hengren, Per.

Corporate Bodies

Syracuse Peace Council.
Syracuse University.
United States. -- Internal Revenue Service.

Associated Titles

Nuclear times.
Peace newsletter.


Civil disobedience -- Moral and ethical aspects.
Civil disobedience -- New York (State)
Civil disobedience -- United States.
Direct action.
Government, Resistance to.
Nuclear disarmament.
Pacifists -- United States.
Passive resistance -- United States.
Peace -- Societies, etc.
War tax resistance.


Rome (N.Y.)
Syracuse (N.Y.)

Genres and Forms

Clippings (information artifacts)

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Kath Buffington Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Kath Buffington, 2013.

Finding Aid Information

Created by: MRC
Date: 29 Aug 2013
Revision history: 23 May 2017 - posters rehoused, new ones added (MRC)

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Correspondence-subject files
Box 1 Haig action 1981 - clippings, petitions, fliers, newspaper coverage, (2 folders)
Box 1 Non-violent direct action, conflict resolution, communication
Box 1 Non-violent direct action, organizing
Tax arguing
Box 2 IRS letters, tax forms, etc. 1981-2000
RESTRICTED: Closed for the life of the donor.
Box 1 Summaries - handwritten notes on taxes calculated, withheld, paid; tax liens; etc.
Box 1 Miscellanous 1983-1985, 1988, 1990, 1998, 2001 - correspondence with employers, charities
Posters and memorabilia
Box 3 Donor's notes - does not discuss every item, only selected items
Map-Case 127 "Barnum & Bailey / Greatest Show on Earth"
Oversize 1 "Disarmament Now"
Oversize 1 "Don't Waste New York" 1989
Map-Case 127 "La fille de l'ouvriére" (The worker's daughter) artist E. Clair-Guyot
Oversize 1 Griffiss Plowshares Thanksgiving 1983
Oversize 1 Human poster, "I represent these 263 U.S. Citizens who are part of the Web" 1982
Oversize 1 [Join the cavalry] ВСТУПАЙТЕ ДО ЧЁРВОНОЇ КІННОТИ
Oversize 1 "Life and love among the beatniks"
Oversize 1 "Like a Mountain" by Naomi Littlebear - poster includes text of poem
Oversize 1 "March for a Non-Nuclear World" 1982
Oversize 1 "March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom" August 28, 1963
Oversize 1 "No classified conversation in car pools" Industrial Security Poster #26
Oversize 1 Nagasaki commemorative banner
Oversize 1 "Protest the Cruise / Stop the B-52s" 1983 - in French and English
Oversize 1 "Rally for Peace and Justice, Washington, D.C." April 25, 1987
Oversize 1 "Reclaiming the legacy of American radicalism" - advertisement for Haymarket Series of titles from Verso Editions
Map-Case 127 "Refuse to Register"
Oversize 1 "Syracuse Peace Council Bleeding Heart Club Band"
Box 3 Syracuse Herald-Journal photograph Apr 1970 - reproduction of photo from the first Earth Day celebration
Oversize 1 War tax redirection check 10 Apr 1982
Oversize 1 Unidentified man - older man, bow tie, head and shoulders portrait, "M. Baer, 1920" in upper right corner
Printed material
Box 3 A. J. Muste Memorial Institute Discussion Series #1: Tactics and Strategies for the Peace Movement 1985
Box 3 "Brain Trust of the Empire" booklet 1974 - anti-war and anti-imperialism publication about Syracuse University, produced by Student Research Group
Box 3 Nuclear Times Jun 1983
Box 3 Peace Newsletter 1974, 1980-1986, 1993 - not a complete run, there are numerous gaps (9 folders)
Box 3 Rochester Peace and Justice Education Center Jun 1983

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