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Claud D. Nelson Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: CMV
Date: 29 Aug 1979

Biographical History

Claud Dalton Nelson (1889-1967) was an American Methodist minister and ecumenical leader. Born July 13, 1889 in Jacksonville, Arkansas, to Charley Heston Nelson and Sandra See Nelson, he received his bachelor's degree (and later an honorary LLD.) from Hendrix College. He studied at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, receiving his M.A. from that institution. He was ordained a Methodist minister in the North Carolina Conference but never assumed a pastorate.

He worked for the YMCA from 1916-1951 and was Executive Director of the National Council of Churches' Department of Religious Liberty from 1953-1960, then worked as a reporter for the Religious News Service. He also served as editor of The Dialogue, a publication of the National Conference for Christians and Jews.

Nelson was married to the former Maud Sparks, with whom he had four sons.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Claud D. Nelson Papers contain correspondence, memorabilia, miscellanea, personal files, photographs, printed material, published material, and writings. Correspondence includes a letter from George Washington Carver (1932). Memorabilia contains a scrapbook of sermons by Nelson's father, as well as some he copied from other sources. The books in both published material and writings deal mainly with the Catholic Church and its concerns.

Arrangement of the Collection

Correspondence and printed material are arranged chronologically. The remaining series are arranged alphabetically by type, author, or topic as appropriate.


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.

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.

Related Material

Special Collections Research Center has numerous collections relating to church and clergy, and to the Methodist Church in particular. Please refer to the SCRC Subject Index for a complete listing.

Subject Headings


Nelson, Claud D. -- Archives.


Clergy -- United States.
Clergy as authors.
Ecumenical movement.
Ecumenists -- United States.
Methodist Church -- Clergy.
Methodists -- United States.
Sermons, American.

Genres and Forms

Book reviews.
Clippings (information artifacts)
Manuscripts for publication.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Claud D. Nelson Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Table of Contents




Personal files


Printed material

Published material