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Mabel Vernon Papers

An inventory of her papers at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Vernon, Mabel.
Title: Mabel Vernon Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1933-1947
Quantity: 54 items (SC).
Abstract: Papers of the American suffragist, feminist, pacifist (1883-1975). Collection includes incoming correspondence to Mabel Vernon in her capacity as a member of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom and campaign director of its committee, the People's Mandate to Governments to End War (later re-named the People's Mandate Committee for Inter-American Peace and Cooperation. Notable correspondents include Grace Abbott, Jane Addams, Frank Aydelotte, Irene Bailey, Newton Baker, Pearl S. Buck, Rafael Calderón Guardia, Samuel P. Cadman, Arthur Capper, Carrie Catt, Raymond Clapper, Jacqueline Cochran, Josephus Daniels, Norman H. Davis, Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Abraham Flexner, Zona Gale, Virginia Gildersleeve, Meta Glass, Frank Graham, Inez Irwin, Alfred Landon, Sinclair Lewis, Clare Boothe Luce, Gabriela Mistral, Caroline O'Day, Ruth Owen, Galo Plaza Lasso, Nelson Rockefeller, Leo Rowe, Laurence Steinhardt, Lowell Thomas, M. Carey Thomas, Oswald Villard, Lillian Wald, Wendell Willkie, Mary Woolley, and William Ziff.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

Biographical History

Mabel Vernon (1883-1975) was an American Quaker suffragist, feminist, and pacifist. Born in Wilmington, Delaware, she graduated from Friends School in 1901 and from Swarthmore College in 1906. She took a position teaching German and Latin at Radnor High School in Wayne, Pennsylvania, and soon became active in women's rights.

After some time as a member of the American Woman Suffrage Association, Vernon joined with Alice Paul, Lucy Burns, Inez Milholland, Olympia Brown and Crystal Eastman to form the Congressional Union for Women Suffrage (CUWS) in 1913. She was among the more militant suffragists, publicly heckling President Wilson during a speech, organizing huge demonstrations, and coordinating the daily picketing of the White House. After women were granted the vote in 1920, Vernon continued to work for women's causes until the 1930s, when she joined the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom and shifted her focus to peace and disarmament.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Mabel Vernon Papers consists of correspondence and printed material.

Incoming Correspondence is addressed to Mabel Vernon in her capacity as member of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, and as campaign director of one of its committees, the People's Mandate to Governments to End War. (This was also known as the People's Mandate to End War and the People's Mandate Committee; it was later renamed the People's Mandate Committee for Inter-American Peace and Cooperation.) A few of the items are addressed to the secretaries or other officers of these organizations, including Hannah Clothier Hull, Mary Moss Wellborn, Emma Wold, and Mary E. Woolley.

The correspondence centers around the activities of various pacifist organizations, such as fund-raising, petition signature gathering, and despatching delegations concerned with securing world peace through disarmament. Among those correspondents in support of the Women's International League petition to the President were Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Zona Gale, Inez Haynes Irwin, and Samuel Parkes Cadman. Those who were invited but declined to sign the People's Mandate include Temple Bailey, Ruth Bryan Owen, and Martha Carey Thomas. Correspondents who discuss the work of the People's Mandate Committee include Carrie Chapman Catt, Gabriela Mistral, Galo Plaza Lasso, Nelson Rockefeller, and Leo Rowe.

Some of the correspondents write in general support, not specifying a particular cause or organization. In a letter of May 6, 1937, Clare Boothe Luce writes, "Enclosed is the check. May it, the history of human experience to the contrary, do some good." There are also a few personal letters, including those from Pearl Buck, Arthur Capper, and Lillian Wald.

Printed material includes samples of petitions which were mailed out by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, which collected names for the People's Mandate Committee. Two returned petitions are from Clarence Darrow and William Allen White. There is also an example of a petition which includes a list of "distinguished persons" who had signed the People's Mandate.

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Arrangement of the Collection

Both series are arranged alphabetically.

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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.

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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Subject Headings


Abbott, Grace, 1878-1939.
Addams, Jane, 1860-1935.
Aydelotte, Frank, 1880-1956.
Bailey, Irene Temple.
Baker, Newton Diehl, 1871-1937.
Buck, Pearl S. (Pearl Sydenstricker), 1892-1973.
Cadman, Samuel Parkes.
Calderón Guardia, Rafael Angel, 1900-1970.
Capper, Arthur, 1865-1951.
Catt, Carrie Chapman, 1859-1947.
Clapper, Raymond, 1892-1944.
Cochran, Jacqueline.
Daniels, Josephus, 1862-1948.
Davis, Norman H.
Fisher, Dorothy Canfield, 1879-1958.
Flexner, Abraham, 1866-1959.
Gale, Zona, 1874-1938.
Gildersleeve, Virginia Crocheron, 1877-
Glass, Meta.
Graham, Frank Porter, 1886-
Irwin, Inez Haynes, 1873-1970.
Landon, Alfred M. (Alfred Mossman), 1887-
Lewis, Sinclair, 1885-1951.
Luce, Clare Boothe, 1903-
Mistral, Gabriela, 1889-1957.
O'Day, Caroline.
Owen, Ruth Bryan.
Rockefeller, Nelson A. (Nelson Aldrich), 1908-1979.
Rowe, Leo S.
Steinhardt, Laurence A.
Thomas, Lowell, 1892-1981.
Thomas, M. Carey (Martha Carey), 1857-1935.
Vernon, Mabel.
Villard, Oswald Garrison, 1872-1949.
Wald, Lillian D., 1867-1940.
Willkie, Wendell L. (Wendell Lewis), 1892-1944.
Woolley, Mary Emma.
Ziff, William Bernard.

Corporate Bodies

People's Mandate Committee for Inter-American Peace and Cooperation (U.S.)
People's Mandate to Governments to End War.
Plaza Lasso, Galo, 1906-
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.


Feminists -- United States.
Pacif ists -- United States.
Pacifists -- Political activity.
Social reformers -- United States.

Genres and Forms



Social reformers.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Mabel Vernon Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Finding Aid Information

Created by: KM
Date: Sep 1987
Revision history: 7 Jul 2008 - converted to EAD (MRC)

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SC 40 Abbott, Grace 17 Aug 1937
SC 40 Addams, Jane 10 Dec 1934 - 1 letter, 1 signed donation card
SC 40 Aydelotte, Frank 11 Mar 1942
SC 40 Bailey, (Irene) Temple 17 Mar 1933
SC 40 Baker, Newton Diehl 9 Mar 1933
SC 40 Buck, Pearl S. 11 Jul 1935
SC 40 Cadman, Samuel Parkes 23 May 1936
SC 40 Calderón Guardia, Rafael Angel 31 Mar 1944
SC 40 Capper, Arthur 16 Apr 1937
SC 40 Catt, Carrie 20 Aug 1946
SC 40 Clapper, Raymond 7 Jan 1943
SC 40 Cochran, Jacqueline 24 Oct 1937
SC 40 Daniels, Josephus 10 Jan 1945
SC 40 Davis, Norman H. 3 Sep 1941
SC 40 Fisher, Dorothy Canfield 1937, 1943 - 2 letters
SC 40 Flexner, Abraham 20 Nov 1940
SC 40 Gale, Zona 31 Aug 1935
SC 40 Gildersleeve, Virginia Crocheron 27 Jan 1937
SC 40 Glass, Meta 27 Oct 1937
SC 40 Graham, Frank Porter 30 Jan 1940
SC 40 Irwin, Inez Haynes 18 Jan 1937
SC 40 Landon, Alf (Alfred Mossman) 10 Jul 1942
SC 40 Lewis, Sinclair 5 May 1933
SC 40 Luce, Clare Boothe 1937, 1939 - 2 letters
SC 40 Mistral, Gabriela 1946 - 2 letters
SC 40 O'Day, Caroline 21 Dec 1934
SC 40 Owen, Ruth Bryan 9 Mar 1933
SC 40 Plaza Lasso, Galo 22 Mar 1946
SC 40 Rockefeller, Nelson 8 Dec 1941
SC 40 Rowe, Leo S. 13 Apr 1942
SC 40 Steinhardt, Laurence A. 4 Nov 1937
SC 40 Thomas, Lowell 10 Nov 1941
SC 40 Thomas, Martha Carey 3 Mar 1933
SC 40 Villard, Oswald Garrison 4 Jan 1947
SC 40 Wald, Lillian D. 13 Jun 1938
SC 40 Whitney, Alexander Fell 25 Jan 1937
SC 40 Willkie, Wendell 10 Feb 1943
SC 40 Woolley, Mary Emma 1936, 1942 - 2 letters
SC 40 Ziff, William Bernard 29 Sep 1945
SC 40 Miscellaneous
Printed material
SC 40 Petition: People's Mandate to Governments 1955
Ballington Booth
Maud Booth
Clarence Darrow
William Allen White

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