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Constance Baker Motley papers, 1948-1988
16 boxes (6 linear ft.)
Collection number: MS 110

Judge, lawyer, civil rights advocate, and state senator. The bulk of the Motley papers document her professional life; material includes speeches, interviews, photographs, and memorabilia. The collection sheds light on the successes and failures of programs that emerged from the public policy applications of civil rights in such areas as the war on poverty and race discrimination; urban renewal; and in the New York State courts and political systems. Notable correspondents include: Bella Abzug, Brooke Astor, Shirley Chisholm, Hubert Humphrey, Lyndon B. Johnson, Florynce Kennedy, Dorothy Kenyon, Martin Luther King, Jr., John V. Lindsay, George McGovern, Floyd B. McKissick, James Meredith, Pauli Murray, A. Philip Randolph, and Robert F. Wagner. Individuals represented in speeches and published sources include Jack Greenburg, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Thurgood Marshall.

Terms of Access and Use:

Restrictions on access:

The papers are open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection.

Restrictions on use:

The family of Constance Baker Motley retains copyright ownership of her unpublished works. Permission must be obtained to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use." Copyright to materials created by others may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission to publish must also be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection as owners of the physical property.

Sophia Smith Collection
Smith College
Northampton, MA

Biographical Note

Constance Juanita Baker was born on September 14th, 1921 in New Haven, Connecticut. She was the ninth of twelve children of Rachel Huggins and Willoughby Alva Baker, both emigrants from Nevis, British West Indies. Her childhood neighborhood, although ethnically diverse (comprised of West Indian, Irish, Italian, Jewish, and Polish families) was relatively free from racial rancor. Rachel Baker was a founder of the New Haven NAACP and Motley was exposed to African American history, especially the writings of W.E.B. DuBois, in her Sunday School. While in high school, Motley became president of the New Haven Youth Council and was secretary of the New Haven Adult Community Council. In 1939, she graduated with honors from Hillhouse High School. Though she had already formed a desire to practice law, Motley lacked the means to attend college, and instead went to work for the National Youth Administration. She also continued her involvement in community activities and it was through this work that she encountered local businessman and philanthropist Clarence Blakeslee, who, after hearing Motley speak at a New Haven community center, offered to pay for her education. She spent a year at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, then transferred to New York University in 1942, earning her A.B. in economics from its Washington Square College in 1943. In February 1944 she began her legal studies at Columbia Law School. She graduated in 1946, the same year she married Joel Wilson Motley, Jr., a real estate and insurance broker. Their son, Joel Motley III, was born in 1952.

In 1945 Constance Motley took a job as law clerk to Thurgood Marshall, chief counsel of the NAACP's Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDEF), and accompanied Marshall to court for most of his cases. After earning her law degree, Motley continued to work for the LDEF. In 1950 she was named assistant counsel and in 1961 she became associate counsel when Jack Greenberg succeeded Thurgood Marshall as head of the LDEF. As counsel Motley was involved in almost every important civil rights case of the era. She worked on litigation for the 1954 school desegregation case, Brown v. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas and subsequently fought for and won several other successful public school and university desegregation cases, including James Meredith's entry into the University of Mississippi in 1962. The LDEF also represented Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his followers in civil rights campaigns for desegregation of public transportation and accommodations throughout the South from 1961 to 1963. Motley brought many of these civil rights cases to higher courts. Between 1961 and 1964, she argued ten civil rights cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, winning nine. [For a complete list and summaries of Motley's NAACP cases see the Columbia University project database, described in the Scope and Contents note]. In his book, Crusaders in the Courts (1994), Jack Greenberg said of Motley's work with the NAACP: "[She] was a dogged opponent of Southern segregationists, who found her tougher than Grant at Vicksburg. She dug in to a position and wouldn't let go in the face of all kinds of threats, evasion, obfuscation, and delay."

In the late 1950s Motley had begun to be active in New York State politics. She served as a member of the New York State Advisory Council on Employment and Unemployment Insurance from 1958 to 1964, and in February 1964, she left the NAACP, having won a special election to the New York State Senate, becoming the first African American woman to serve in that body. As State Senator for the 21st Congressional District in Manhattan (roughly from 96th street on the upper west side to 161st street in Harlem), Motley launched a campaign during her first seven weeks in office to extend civil rights legislation in employment, education, and housing. She was re-elected to the Senate in November 1964 and served until February 1965, when New York City Council elected her the first woman to serve as President of the Borough of Manhattan. She was re-elected in the city-wide elections of November 1965 for a full four-year term and was the first candidate for the Manhattan Presidency to win the endorsement of the Republican, Democratic, and Liberal Parties. As Borough President, Motley drew up a seven-point program for the revitalization of Harlem and East Harlem, and won a pioneering fight for $700,000 to plan renewal projects for those and other underprivileged areas of the city. The plan included a design to decrease racial segregation in the public schools serving the housing projects.

In January 1966 Motley was nominated by President Lyndon B. Johnson for a judgeship in the Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York--the nation's largest federal court covering Manhattan, the Bronx, and six New York counties. Over tremendous opposition from southern senators (led by Senator James Eastland of Mississippi) and other federal judges, Motley was confirmed in August 1966, becoming the first woman to occupy that post, and the first African American woman ever named to the federal bench. Judge Motley continued to be a strong supporter of civil rights for minorities and the poor, as well as for women's rights. Among her many controversial decisions was the infamous "locker room case," Ludtke v. Kuhn (1978), in which she ruled that a woman reporter be admitted to the New York Yankees' locker room. In another highly publicized case Judge Motley admonished the New York City police for not providing Vietnam war protesters with adequate protection against violence in the streets (Belknap et al v. Leary, 1970). [These and other notable cases presided over by Judge Motley are summarized in the Columbia University project which is described in the Scope and Content note below.] In 1982, Judge Motley was appointed Chief Judge of the Southern District of New York and held senior status since 1986. Constance Baker Motley died in New York City in September 2005.

For additional biographical information, see Equal Justice-Under Law: An Autobiography by Constance Baker Motley (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1998).

Scope and contents of the collection

The Constance Baker Motley Papers are primarily related to her professional and public life from 1948 to 1988. Types of material include correspondence; speeches; legal documents; photographs; press releases; reports; journal and newspaper articles; transcripts of interviews; and memorabilia.

The bulk of the papers date from 1964 to 1966 and focus on Motley's tenures as New York State Senator, President of the Borough of Manhattan, and her early years as a Judge in one of the busiest federal district courts in the country. Major topics found throughout these papers include the civil rights movement in the South; racism and discrimination in the U.S; equal opportunities for African Americans in employment, housing, and education; urban renewal in New York City, particularly Harlem; community activism and neighborhood development; New York (State and City) politics; women in the legal profession and politics; and modern judicial history. The papers are equally rich as a record of the public life and career of a pioneering African American woman in her ascent to national prominence often in the face of strong prejudice.

Correspondence comprises roughly half of the collection. Included are exchanges with constituents and other concerned citizens relating to legislation before Motley as State Senator; a myriad of political and social issues she faced as Manhattan Borough President; and cases she presided over as Justice in the Southern District Court of New York. These letters, both supportive and negative, illustrate the turbulent social and political atmosphere of New York City in the mid-1960s. Certain letters from detractors offer evidence of the sometimes quite virulent public sentiment Motley faced in challenging racism and discrimination.

Notable correspondents include: Bella Abzug, Brooke Astor, Shirley Chisholm, Hubert Humphrey, Lyndon B. Johnson, Florynce Kennedy, Dorothy Kenyon, Martin Luther King, Jr., John V. Lindsay, George McGovern, Floyd B. McKissick, James and Mary June Meredith, Pauli Murray, A. Philip Randolph, and Robert F. Wagner. Cross-references in the folder list and the Name Index at the end of this document refer researchers to material on individuals found in series other than Correspondence.

Researchers may also wish to consult two databases which were created through a project at Columbia University Law School in 1995. The first is a database of the Constance Baker Motley papers available in the Sophia Smith Collection and elsewhere. The other is a database of summaries of important NAACP cases in which Motley was counsel. In addition there are text files consisting of a list and case summaries of significant NAACP cases as well as cases Motley tried as a Federal judge. Copies of the databases and text files are all available in electronic form on the SSC computer network. A complete description of the project, the databases, and printouts of some of the text files are filed in the last box of this collection. Consult the Reference Archivist for more information on how to access the electronic resources.

Organization of the collection

This collection is organized into four series:

  • I. Biographical Material
  • II. Correspondence
  • III. Professional Activities
  • IV. Speeches

Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The papers are open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection.

Restrictions on use:

The family of Constance Baker Motley retains copyright ownership of her unpublished works. Permission must be obtained to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use." Copyright to materials created by others may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission to publish must also be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection as owners of the physical property.

Preferred Citation

Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:

Constance Baker Motley Papers, Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College, Northampton, Mass.

Additional Formats

Selections from the Constance Baker Motley Papers can be viewed in the Web exhibit Agents of Social Change: New Resources on 20th-century Women's Activism .

History of the Collection

Constance Baker Motley donated her papers to the Sophia Smith Collection from 1971 to 1992.

Processing Information

Processed by Marla Miller, Margaret Jessup, and Monique Daviau (intern), 1998.

Additional Information
Contact Information
Smith College Special Collections
Young Library
4 Tyler Drive
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: (413) 585-2970
Fax: (413) 585-2886

Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Series Descriptions
1 linear ft.

This series provides an overview of Constance Baker Motley's career and public life. Magazine and newspaper articles, dated from 1956 to 1986, document Motley's many achievements. Also included are a brief chronology of her career and tributes to Motley from New York City Mayor Robert F. Wagner and Chief Justice Earl Warren. The file pertaining to honorary degrees and awards received by Motley include letters from Thomas Mendenhall, President of Smith College, and from Jack Greenberg concerning her honorary degree from Columbia Law School. Other material in this series includes photographs, an article written by Motley honoring Thurgood Marshall, her application for admission to the New York State Bar in 1948, and a "miscellaneous" file with printed material and notes. There is also a scrapbook of clippings, dated 1965-66, relating to Motley's Borough Presidency, numerous public appearances, and her appointment as Federal Judge in January 1966 [see OVERSIZE MATERIALS].

An 801-page transcript of an interview with Motley, conducted by Mrs. Walter Gellhorn of the Oral History Research Office at Columbia University Law Library, completes this series. In this interview Judge Motley recalls her childhood and family; her education; her work with the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund; and her political and judicial careers. The interview was conducted in 1976 and the transcript was completed in 1978. The original tapes are housed at the Columbia Law Library.

2.5 linear ft.

This series is organized into four subseries: Family, General, Individuals, and "Hate mail." The Family subseries consists of one folder of correspondence. Letters from friends and colleagues are scattered throughout the General correspondence.

The bulk of this series consists of the General correspondence which is arranged chronologically from 1964 to 1987, mostly dated between 1964 and 1967. There is no correspondence prior to1964 (the period of Motley's NAACP activities) in these papers. Constituent and public response letters form the largest part of this subseries, from Motley's election to the State Senate in 1964 through the early 1980s. Where there is a significant amount of correspondence pertaining to a particular issue, bill, or court case, it can be found in SERIES III. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES--Subjects. Many of the issues Motley dealt with as State Senator for the 21st Congressional District in Manhattan (February 1964 to February 1965), including bills she introduced to the legislature, are reflected in her constituents' letters. Topics include civil rights legislation, labor reform, and urban renewal. Motley also served on state senate committees for the Affairs of Cities, Internal Affairs, and Penal Institutions. Corresp

Correspondence Motley received as Borough of Manhattan President from February 1965 to August 1966 relates to a variety of issues, including racial discrimination in public education, employment, organizations, and housing; Harlem revitalization; and the controversy surrounding construction of the Lower Manhattan Expressway, which Motley opposed (see letter dated 8 September 1965 in the General subseries).

At each new appointment or election, Motley received floods of letters and telegrams of congratulations from friends and colleagues as well as from supportive constituents and citizens from around the country. These generally fall within the months of February to September of 1964; February to November of 1965; and January to August of 1966. There is also a steady stream of invitations seeking Motley's presence as a guest or a speaker at a wide variety of events. In most cases, her replies are attached.

The Individuals subseries consists of letters to or from several notable individuals, including Bella Abzug, Brooke Astor, Derrick Bell, Wiley Branton, Shirley Chisholm, Sammy Davis, Jr., Thomas Hoving, Jack Greenberg, Hubert Humphrey, Lyndon B. Johnson, Dorothy Kenyon, Martin Luther King, Jr., John Lindsay, George McGovern, Floyd B. McKissick; James Meredith; Pauli Murray, A. Philip Randolph, Nelson Rockefeller, Richard Rodgers, Roy Wilkins, and Whitney Young. In most cases, there are only one or two letters from or to each of the individuals in this subseries. There is pro forma correspondence from and to New York City Mayor Robert F. Wagner scattered throughout the General correspondence, from Motley's terms as State Senator and Manhattan Borough President. Cross-references in the folder list and the Name Index refer researchers to material on individuals found in series other than Correspondence.

The Hate mail subseries consists of one file of letters from the public with particularly hostile, often racist content. These illustrate the intense controversy which surrounded so much of Motley's career, as well as the path-breaking nature of some of her decisions. There are similar letters in SERIES III. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES-Federal District Court-Subjects, under Ludtke v. Kuhn, (the case in which Motley's decision allowed a woman reporter admittance to the Yankees' locker room), and Belknap et al. v. Leary (regarding police protection of Vietnam war demonstrators).

1.5 linear ft.

This series consists of five subseries: NAACP Legal and Educational Defense Fund; New York State Advisory Council on Unemployment and Employment Insurance; New York State Senate; Borough of Manhattan; and Federal District Court.

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. subseries includes brochures and magazine articles about the NAACP and LDEF activities; several folders of newspaper clippings related to civil rights cases in Alabama and Mississippi in which Motley was involved as counsel for the LDEF, including Lucy v. U. of Alabama, a 1956 desegregation case and the bus boycotts in Montgomery, Alabama in 1956 and 1961. Petitions Motley submitted to withdraw from her NAACP cases when she assumed the Manhattan Borough Presidency in 1965 are also included here. These documents provide an overview of the numerous civil rights cases that she and the LDEF staff were litigating at that time.

A small subseries related to Motley's term on the New York State Advisory Council on Unemployment and Employment Insurance contains printed material relating to land value taxation, an issue before the Council at that time. Her letter of resignation from the Council in 1964 is also filed here, with Governor Nelson Rockefeller's response.

The New York State Senate subseries includes campaign material for the special election and for Motley's re-election as State Senator in 1964; press releases from her office; bills introduced by Motley; and subject files. The bills are arranged alphabetically by topic and include drafts of bills, supporting documents and, in some cases, constituent correspondence. Many of the bills introduced by Senator Motley challenged discrimination and segregation in public schools and private clubs, housing, and labor and civil service organizations. Other bills pertain to amendments to legislation such as employment benefits for domestic and agricultural workers; the minimum wage law; animal experimentation laws; financing housing and schools; an alcoholic beverage control law; and legislation concerning police search warrants. The latter file contains letters from people opposed to Motley's position on what was popularly known as the "stop and search" bill intended to protect citizen's rights against police h

The Borough of Manhattan subseries includes campaign material, press releases, the 1965 Annual report of the Borough, and subject files. The campaign material relates to Motley's campaign for re-election as President of the Borough in November 1965. The subject files are arranged alphabetically and include material related to various projects, committees, and miscellaneous social and political issues that surfaced from February 1965 to August 1966. Topics include the revitalization of Harlem; housing discrimination and tenants' rights; and a White House conference on civil rights in which Motley participated. There is also a file containing articles and letters regarding city taxi drivers accused of discriminating against blacks, including a New York Post article by Langston Hughes. For more information on Motley's activities during her term as Borough President, see SERIES IV. SPEECHES, which focuses mainly on that time period.

The Federal District Court subseries includes subject files; clippings related to miscellaneous cases; applications for jobs received by Motley when she first assumed the judgeship; and congratulatory letters from other Southern District Judges upon her appointment to Senior status in 1986 (other congratulatory letters are filed in SERIES II. CORRESPONDENCE-General). The series includes legal documents, articles, and letters reflecting both positive and negative public reaction to Motley's controversial decision in Ludtke v. Kuhn, the 1978 case in which Judge Motley ruled that Melissa Ludtkea sports writer for Time, Inc., be admitted to the New York Yankees' locker room. Another file contains both positive and negative responses to her decision regarding police protection of Vietnam war protesters in Belknap et al v. Leary (1970).

.75 linear ft.

This series contains mostly typescripts of speeches written and delivered by Motley from 1963 to 1988. They are arranged chronologically and in some cases are accompanied by fliers, posters, or other printed material. Related correspondence, (invitations and responses, travel arrangements, etc.) can be found in SERIES II. CORRESPONDENCE-General. The bulk of the speeches are from Motley's term as Manhattan Borough President in 1965. Recurring topics include civil rights; urban development (especially in Harlem) and neighborhood programs (such as the Henry Street Settlement); equality in education; women in politics and the legal profession; and leadership in the black community. In addition there are tributes to prominent individuals; commencement speeches; fundraising for community organizations; civic events; and papers given at panels, conferences and lecture series.

Contents List


Box 1: folder 1
Biographical sketch,

Box 1: folder 2
Tributes by Mayor Robert Wagner and Chief Justice Earl Warren (n.d.)

Box 1: folder 3
Articles and newspaper clippings,



Box 1: folder 4-5
Admission to New York Bar: applications, correspondence, and references,

Box 1: folder 6
Honorary degrees: correspondence and publicity, (includes letters from Jack Greenberg and Thomas Mendenhall)



Box 1: folder 7
"Tribute to Thurgood Marshall" (article by C.B.M.),

Box 1: folder 8
1963, undated

Box 1: folder 9
Miscellaneous: printed material and notes,
1963-78, undated

Box 1: folder 10
Oral history transcript,

Box 2: folder 1-7


Box 3: folder 1

Jan - Mar 1964

Box 3: folder 2-9
Apr - Dec 1964

Box 4: folder 1-5
undated, ca. 1964

Box 4: folder 6
Mar-10 Apr 1965

Box 4: folder 7-8
11 Apr - Dec 1965

Box 5: folder 1-9
Jan - Mar 1966

Box 6: folder 1-6
Apr - Dec 1966

Box 7: folder 1-7

Box 7: folder 8-10

Box 8: folder 1-4
and unidentified

Box 8: folder 5

Abzug, Bella,
1964, 1966

Box 8: folder 6
Astor, Brooke,

Box 8: folder 7
Bell, Derrick,
1966, 1980

Box 8: folder 8
Branton, Wiley A.,

Box 8: folder 9
Chisholm, Shirley,
1965, 1966

Box 8: folder 10
Davis, Sammy, Jr.,

Box 8: folder 11
Greenberg, Jack,

Box 8: folder 12
Hoving, Thomas,

Box 8: folder 13
Humphrey, Hubert,

[see also SERIES III. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITES-Borough of Manhattan Subjects-White House Conference]


Box 8: folder 14
Johnson, Lyndon B.,

Box 8: folder 15
Kenyon, Dorothy,
1964, 1965, 1966

Box 8: folder 16
King, Martin Luther, Jr., (includes telegram from MLK, Ralph D. Abernathy, Fred L. Shuttesworth, and Wyatt T. Walker of the S.C.L.C.)

Box 8: folder 17
Lindsay, John V.,

Box 8: folder 18
McGovern, George,

Box 8: folder 19
McKissick, Floyd B.,

Box 8: folder 20
Meredith, James and Mary
June, 1965

Box 8: folder 21
Murray, Pauli,

Box 8: folder 22
Randolph, A. Philip,

[see also SERIES IV. SPEECHES, 19 Dec 1966; and SERIES III. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITES-Borough of Manhattan-Subjects-White House Conference]


Box 8: folder 23
Rockefeller, Nelson and Margaretta,

[see also SERIES III. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITES-New York State Advisory Council on Unemployment and Employment Insurance]


Box 8: folder 24
Rodgers, Richard,

Box 8: folder 25
Wilkins, Roy,
1964, 1966

Box 8: folder 26
Young, Whitney and Margaret,
1964, 1966

Box 8: folder 27
"Hate mail,"
1964-76, undated

Box 8: folder 28

NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.

Printed material, (includes articles about Motley, Thurgood Marshall, and Jack Greenberg)
1961-68, undated

Box 9: folder 1
Civil rights cases: clippings

University of Alabama (Autherine Lucy),

Box 9: folder 2
Montgomery Alabama bus boycotts,
1956, 1963

Box 9: folder 3
Mississippi (miscellaneous),

Box 9: folder 4
Civil Rights Act of 1964

Box 9: folder 5
Census of African American population by borough, New York City, circa

Box 9: folder 6
Petitions to withdraw from NAACP cases submitted by CBM when she assumed the Manhattan Borough Presidency,
February 1966

Box 9: folder 7
New York State Advisory Council on Unemployment and Employment Insurance

Taxation of land values: printed material, circa


1958-64, undated

Box 10: folder 1
Letter of resignation and reply from Governor Nelson Rockefeller,

Box 10: folder 2
New York State Senate

Special election and campaign for re-election: statement, questionnaires, and publicity,

Box 10: folder 3
Press releases, circa

Box 10: folder 4
Bills, circa

Alcoholic beverage control law (Moreland Commission)

Box 10: folder 5-6
Animal experimentation and humane slaughter

Box 10: folder 7
Domestic relations, re: religious affiliation in adoption (includes memorandum from Attorney Florynce R Kennedy)

Box 10: folder 8
Domestic workers (re: benefits for)

Box 10: folder 9
Fire departments (anti-discrimination law)

Box 10: folder 10
Labor organizations (anti-discrimination law)

Box 10: folder 11
Multiple dwelling

Box 10: folder 12
Police, search warrants (also known as "Stop & search bill")

Box 10: folder 13
Private housing finance

Box 10: folder 14
Scholar Incentive Program for High School Students

Box 10: folder 15
School finance

Box 10: folder 16
School desegregation

Box 10: folder 17
Unemployment insurance for non-profit organizations

Box 10: folder 18

Box 10: folder 19

Civil Rights Action proposal,

Box 10: folder 20
Morningside Heights neighborhood and Columbia land deal,

[see also SERIES IV. SPEECHES, 4/10/65]


Box 10: folder 21
Police brutality issue,

Box 10: folder 22
Borough of Manhattan

Campaign for re-election as President, Aug-Nov

General: correspondence, memoranda, notes, memorabilia

Box 11: folder 1
New York County Democratic Committee: correspondence

Box 11: folder 2
Mailing lists

Box 11: folder 3

Box 11: folder 4

Box 11: folder 5
Press Releases,

Box 11: folder 6
Annual Report, Borough of Manhattan,

Box 11: folder 7
Miscellaneous: notes and memoranda,

Box 11: folder 8

Board of Ethics,

Box 11: folder 9
Citizens to Keep New York City Clean,

Box 11: folder 10
Columbia University Center for Research and Education in Civil Liberties,

Box 11: folder 11
Commission on Human Rights,

Box 11: folder 12
Community Planning Board,

Box 11: folder 13
Harlem housing legislation,

Box 11: folder 14
Housing and urban development,

Box 11: folder 15
National Committee Against Discrimination in Housing,

Box 11: folder 16
94th Street Armory housing and Junior High School proposal,
April-May, 1965

Box 11: folder 17
Proportional representation,

Box 11: folder 18
Taxicabs and discrimination,

Box 11: folder 19
Tenants steering committee,

Box 11: folder 20
Udall, Stewart (report of the NYC Planning Commission on the Secretary of the Interior's visit to New York)

Box 11: folder 21
United Nations International School,

Box 11: folder 22
Urban America, Inc.,

Box 11: folder 23
White House Conference: "To Fulfill These Rights," (includes correspondence from Hubert Humphrey and A. Phillip Randolph)

Box 11: folder 24
Federal District Court

Congratulatory letters from Southern District Judges re: Senior status,

Box 12: folder 1
Job applications (requesting position with Judge Motley),

Box 12: folder 2
Clippings re: miscellaneous cases,

Box 12: folder 3

Belknap et al. v. Leary (police protection of war demonstrators),

Box 12: folder 4
Judicial Conference of Second Circuit, Whiteface Inn, Lake Placid, NY
June 30-July 2, 1966

Box 12: folder 5
Ludtke v. Kuhn: legal documents and correspondence,

Box 12: folder 6

Women's City Club of New York, Inc.,
November 19, 1963

Box 13: folder 1
New York Ethical Culture Society,
March 15, 1964

Box 13
"The Civil Rights Crisis," statement prepared for State Democratic Committee Campaign Schools by Senator Motley,
circa 1964

Box 13
(untitled) "The increased pressures of the times...,"
circa 1963

Box 13
Opening of International Flower Show, New York City,
March 6, 1965

Box 13: folder 2
JOIN (Job Orientation in Neighborhoods) graduation,
March 9, 1965

Box 13
National Newspaper Publishers, honoring John B. Russworm,
March 12, 1965

Box 13
Ribbon-cutting ceremony, May's Department Store,
March 18, 1965

Box 13
Harlem-Brooklyn Committee for Big Sisters (5th Annual Program),
March 20, 1965

Box 13
Reunion of 369th Veterans Association,
March 21, 1965

Box 13: folder 2
Multiple Sclerosis luncheon,
March 31, 1965

Box 13
New Era Club,
April 9, 1965

Box 13
Morningside Community Center,
April 10, 1965

Box 13
Reform Independent Democrats,
April 21, 1965

Box 13
United Democrats Club/Wilheminia Adams,
April 22, 1965

Box 13
UAW-AFL/CIO luncheon,
April 24, 1965

Box 13
Society for the Advancement of Judaism,
April 25, 1965

Box 13
Lexington Democratic Club,
May 1, 1965

Box 13
Day Care Week program,
May 3, 1965

Box 13
Opening of exhibit on the accomplishments of minorities in American history, at P.S. 144,
May 4, 1965

Box 13
Manhattan Boro-wide Salute to Music, Hunter College,
May 5, 1965

Box 13
Day Care Council of New York,
May 5, 1965

Box 13
Sojourner Truth Awards luncheon, National Association of Negro Business Professional Women,
May 9, 1965

Box 13
National Council of Jewish Women,
May 11, 1965

Box 13
District Youth-Adult Citizenship Conference,
May 17, 1965

Box 13
Women's Division of American Jewish Congress,
May 17, 1965

Box 13
Puerto Rican Association of Women Voters,
May 19, 1965

Box 13
League of Women Voters,
May 24, 1965

Box 13
Encampment for Citizenship,
May 2, 1965

Box 13: folder 2
Vest Pocket Development (West Side Urban Renewal),
May 27, 1965

Box 13
Riverside Country School,
May 27, 1965

Box 13
Public Personnel Association Convention,
June 3, 1965

Box 13: folder 3
Community Planning Board (Rebuilding of Harlem) Columbia University,
June 5, 1965

Box 13
Greenwich Village Association,
June 8, 1965

Box 13
55th Annual Meeting of the Urban League,
June 9, 1965

Box 13
Proposed construction of a cement plant on the Harlem River,
June 11, 1965

Box 13
Proposed demolition of the High School of Commerce
June 11, 1965

Box 13
P.S. 161 (International Fiesta)
June 12, 1965

Box 13
East Midtown Reform Democrats Club,
June 14, 1965

Box 13
East Side Chamber of Commerce,
June 16, 1965

Box 13
P.S. 125 (Children's Organization for Civil Rights),
June 18, 1965

Box 13
New Chelsea Reform Democrats Club,
June 18, 1965

Box 13
J.H.S. 43 Graduation,
June 23, 1965

Box 13
Delacorte Animated Clock dedication,
June 24, 1965

Box 13
Benjamin Franklin High School graduation,
June 25, 1965

Box 13
Charles Evans Hughes High School graduation,
June 29, 1965

Box 13
Community Planning Board (park safety),
July 13, 1965

Box 13
Opening of First Neighborhood Information and Service Center,
July 20, 1965

Box 13: folder 3
National Insurance Convention,
July 20, 1965

Box 13
WNYC radio broadcast, "Rebuilding Harlem,"
August 9, 1965

Box 13
Convention of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Birmingham, AL,
August 9, 1965

Box 13
Proportional Representation Campaign Committee
August 11, 1965

Box 13
Site Selection Board meeting, after vote on use of 94th St. Armory Site,
August 23, 1965

Box 13
Proposal before the Board of Estimates for an Industrial Park on the Brooklyn Flatlands Site,
September 24, 1965

Box 13
WLIB radio statement against industrial park in Brooklyn Flatlands,
September 27, 1965

Box 13
25th Anniversary Dinner Dance of the Vulcan Society honoring Chief Wesley Williams, Baldwin, L.I., NY,
September 29, 1965

Box 13
First Borough President's Conference of Community Leaders,
September 29, 1965

Box 13
WWRL radio, Harlem development,
October 1, 1965

Box 13: folder 4
West Indian Veterans dance,
October 2, 1965

Box 13
Acceptance of AAUW Woman of the Year, Columbia University,
October 8, 1965

Box 13
Woman's day at the Church of the Master,
October 10, 1965

Box 13
Transport Workers Union,
October 11, 1965

Box 13
Delacorte Fountain dedication,
October 11, 1965

Box 13
Liberal Party 21st Annual Dinner,
October 13, 1965

Box 13: folder 4
Opening of the 114th St Rehabilitation Project,
October 14, 1965

Box 13
Testimonial Dinner in honor of Rev. Dr. Allen E. Claxton, Broadway

Box 13
Temple Methodist Church,
October 20, 1965

Box 13
Opening of the Hudson Guild Center for the Aged,
October 21, 1965

Box 13
Women's Day, Victory Tabernacle Seventh-Day Christian Church,
October 23, 1965

Box 13
Emmanuel AME Church fundraising banquet,
October 23, 1965

Box 13
St. Phillips Church Annual Fellowship Luncheon,
October 23, 1965

Box 13
Testimonial dinner for Abraham E. Kazan,
24 October 1965

Box 13
Jamaica Industrial Development Corp.,
October 26, 1965

Box 13
Address to City Planning Commission (revitalization between 110th and 155th Streets),
October 26, 1965

Box 13
Congress of Senior Citizens Rally (advent of Medicare, etc),
October 27, 1965

Box 13
WWRL radio (revitalization of Harlem)
October 27, 1965

Box 13
East Side Chamber of Commerce Dinner,
October 30, 1965

Box 13
Metropolitan Community Methodist Church,
November 14, 1965

Box 13
National Committee For Rural Schools,
November 20, 1965

Box 13
Educational Parks Conference (segregated schools)
November 30, 1965

Box 13
YMCA conference, "New Horizons for Women in the Political and Social Life of the Nation,"
December 2, 1965

Box 13
National Conference of Christians and Jews in Philadelphia,
December 2, 1965

Box 13: folder 4
Orin Lehman Beth Jacob Schools Awards Presentation,
December 5, 1965

Box 13
WWRL and WLIB radio (revitalization of Harlem) Committee on Civil Rights in Manhattan, circa 1965
December 7, 1965

Box 13
Dinner for Councilman J. Raymond Jones, given by the Cerberean Society, circa

Box 13
City Planning Commission at the Capital Budget Hearing, City Hall,
December 15, 1965

Box 13
Christmas message at the Christmas tree lighting ceremony at City Hall,
December 16, 1965

Box 13
Riker's Island,
December 21, 1965

Box 13
Mayor Lindsay's inauguration (not delivered),
January 1, 1966

Box 13: folder 5
New York Shakespeare Festival acquisition of "Landmark Building," the former Astor Library,
January 5, 1966

Box 13
The Second Borough President's Conference of Community Leaders, YWCA,
January 21, 1966

Box 13
Basic Education Classes of the Free-Employment Training Program,
February 11, 1966

Box 13
Friendly Towns, affiliated with the Herald Tribune Fresh Air Fund: speech and draft,
February 17, 1966

Box 13
P.S. 90 (228 West 148th St, NYC): speech and draft,
February 24, 1966

Box 13
"Humanitarian of the Community Award" to Miss Lorraine D. Miller, Stuyvesant Chapter of Cancer Care at the Hotel Pierre): speech and draft,
February 26, 1966

Box 13
Sisterhood of Temple Rodeph Sholom): speech and draft,
February 28, 1966

Box 13: folder 5
Manhattan Community Planning Boards,
March 2, 1966

Box 13
Introduction of Frances Levenson (housing and inter-group relations): speech and draft,
March 5, 1966

Box 13
"Education is too important to be left solely to educators....": speech and draft,
March 8, 1966

Box 13
Women's Day of the Abyssinian Baptist Church: speech, draft and program,
March 13, 1966

Box 13
Introduction of Corporation Counsel J. Lee Rankin, at the annual dinner of the Men's Class of the Riverside Church: speech and draft,
March 15, 1966.

Box 13
Speech honoring Helen Hall, Executive Director of the Henry Street Settlement,
March 1966

Box 13
Remarks on receiving a Spirit of Achievement Award presented by Greater New York Chapter National Women's Division, Albert Einstein College of Medicine: speech and draft,
April 20, 1966

Box 13
Plaque presentation to the Rev. Dr. Allen E. Claxton, Community Planning Board
12, April 26, 1966

Box 13
Women's Bar Association,
December 8, 1966

Box 13
Hadassah-Myrtle Wreath Award,
December 14, 1966

Box 13
Presentation of the Mary McLeod Bethune Award to A. Philip Randolph,
December 19, 1966

Box 13
Untitled draft (planning board meeting), circa

Box 13
Address before Columbia Law School Alumni Association,
January 27, 1967

Box 14: folder 1
"The Quest for a New Equality," United Church Women of Lower Middlesex County, CT,
April 29, 1967

Box 14
Edward Waters College Alumni Testimonial Banquet honoring Dr. William B. Stewart,
May 10, 1968

Box 14: folder 1
Bennett College Symposium "The College Woman in Today's World,"
October 11, 1968

Box 14
"On Meeting Our Responsibility for Providing Legal Assistance to the Poor in Civil Cases," AAUW Forum,
February 22, 69

Box 14
"Separate but Equal-Reexamined," Cornell University,
April 12, 1969

Box 14
Comencement Address, Saint Augustine's College, Raleigh, NC,
May 25, 1969

Box 14: folder 2
Award Dinner, National Conference of Christians and Jews,
November 22, 1970

Box 14
"Twenty Years Later-My Personal Recollections of Brown and Some Personal Comments On Its Impact and Implementation" Third Annual Civil Rights Lectures, Center for Civil Rights, University of Notre Dame,
March 21, 1974

Box 14
"Securing the Rights of the Individual in an Organized Society" The Brattleboro Forum, Brattleboro, VT,
April 2, 1976

Box 14
"The Role of the Federal Courts in Establishing Justice" American Revolution Bicentennial Committee, Westport, CT,
October 21, 1976

Box 14
Gate City Bar Association "Law Day '77" Atlanta, GA
May 4, 1977

Box 14
Graduate and Professional School's Convocation, Rutgers University,
June 3, 1977

Box 14
Presentation of the Personal Papers of Ernest Nathan Morial to the Amistad Research Center, New Orleans, LA,
April 30, 1978

Box 14: folder 3
Dedication of the Shad Polier Library,
June 19, 1978

Box 14
Philadelphia Area Lawyers' Wives Judicial Luncheon (25th anniversary of Supreme Court decision voiding state-sanctioned racial segregation in public education)
March 24, 1979

Box 14
Women's Forum medal of achievement Yale University,
May 6, 1979

Box 14: folder 3
Commencement Address, Spelman College,
May 20, 1979

Box 14
"The Law as an Instrument of Social Change" U. of Montana Law School, Missoula, MT,
March 2, 1980

Box 14
"Prisoners' Rights-Rights of Mental Patients: Recent Developments in the Law" American Psychiatric Association Convention, San Francisco,
May 7, 1980

Box 14
One-Hundredth Anniversary, Episcopal Churchwomen of Connecticut,
November 9, 1980

Box 14
Women and Work Conference, Smith College,

[see also SERIES I. BIOGRAPHICAL MATERIAL-- Articles and newspaper clippings]

March 10, 1982

Box 14
"A Nation of Litigators-The Constitution Its Sword," New York County Lawyers Annual Bar Dinner,
December 9, 1982

Box 14
"The Federal Courts: The Next 100 Years," Symposium at South Carolina Law School,
September 1986

Box 14: folder 4
"Legal Defense Fund Award to Judge Robert L. Carter,"
March 25, 1988

Box 14
Chevene Bowers King Memorial, Albany, GA,
March 18-19, 1988

Box 14
Ford Foundation Grant Project, Columbia University Law School

Description of project, database files, and computer diskettes,

Box 15: folder 1
NAACP: index, list, and selected printouts of case summaries

Box 15: folder 2
Federal District Court: selected printouts of case summaries

Box 15: folder 3

Biographical materials: Scrapbook,

Box 16
Lyndon B. Johnson poster and congratulatory note from Frederick V. Seabrook,

Flat File
Allen Morrison, "Top Woman Civil Rights Lawyer: Constance Baker Motley Secures Rights for Millions," Ebony,
January 1963

Flat File
International Research Committee on Real Estate Taxation, "A Graphic Summary of Municipal Improvement and Finance as Affected by the Untaxing of Improvements and the Taxation of Land Values,"

Flat File

Search Terms
The following terms represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Use these headings to search for additional materials on this web site, in the Five College Library Catalog, or in other library catalogs and databases.

  • Abzug, Bella S., 1920- --Correspondence
  • African American women judges--History--Sources
  • African American women lawyers--History--Sources
  • African American women--Political activity--Sources
  • African Americans--Civil rights cases--Sources
  • African Americans--New York (N.Y.)--History--20th century--Sources
  • Astor, Brooke--Correspondence
  • Chisholm, Shirley, 1924- --Correspondence
  • Civil rights movements--United States--History--20th century--Sources
  • Community development, Urban--New York (N.Y.)--History--20th century--Sources
  • Greenberg, Jack, 1924-
  • Harlem (New York, N.Y.)--History--20th century--Sources
  • Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973
  • Kennedy, Florynce, 1916- --Correspondence
  • Kenyon, Dorothy, 1888-1972--Correspondence
  • King, Martin Luther, Jr., 1929-1968
  • Lindsay, John V. (John Vliet)
  • Marshall, Thurgood, 1908-1993
  • McGovern, George S. (George Stanley), 1922- --Correspondence
  • McKissick, Floyd B. (Floyd Baxter), 1922- --Correspondence
  • Meredith, James
  • Motley, Constance Baker, 1921-
  • NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.--History--Sources
  • New York (N.Y.)--Race relations--History--20th century--Sources
  • Race discrimination--Law and legislation--United States--History--Sources
  • Randolph, A. Philip (Asa Philip), 1889-
  • School integration--United States--History--Sources
  • Women judges--United States--History--Sources

Questions about this collection? Contact the archives
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