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“The Journey” of Reverend Jeanne Audrey Powers’ Papers at Duke

Rubenstein Technical Services - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 14:25

Since August, I’ve had the pleasure of arranging and describing the papers of Reverend Jeanne Audrey Powers. In 1958, Rev. Powers became one of the first women to be ordained in the United Methodist Church, and in 1995, she publicly came out as a lesbian in her most famous sermon, “The Journey.” The reactions she faced as a result of coming out were mixed. Many, like the GCCUIC (General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns) supported her unswervingly, while others, most notably the Institute on Religion & Democracy, campaigned against her, hoping to force Powers into an early retirement.

1980Interchurch Center Chapel in New York City, 1980

Reverend Powers was heavily involved in the “Goddess” Movement and the Re-Imagining Conference, which took place in Minnesota in November of 1993. Re-Imagining was a Christian feminist conference held in 1993 in Minnesota.  The “Goddess” movement surrounding the conference pictured God as a female entity called “Sophia.”  The movement had participants from both Methodist and Presbyterian churches.  (For more information about the Goddess Movement, check out this 1994 article in the New York Times about the conference and the controversy that erupted afterward.  )

JAP1989From a card distributed by OLOC, Old Lesbians Organizing for Change. Taken by Lynn Carpenter Schelitzhe in 2001 when Powers was 69. There is a quote on the back of the card by Gloria Steinem that reads, “One day, an army of grey haired women may quietly take over earth.”

The collection contains planning materials, conference recordings (on cassette tapes, which I hadn’t seen for years!), and material regarding the backlash from the conference by opposing groups. These materials are set aside as their own series within the collection because we already know of researchers who will want to use them.

JAP19802Riverside Church, from part of a “pre-article” for People Magazine, 1980

The collection documents Rev. Powers’ extensive professional accomplishments as well as personal materials. Photographs from her childhood, stories about her family, and even two locks of hair can be found within the 98 boxes of material. The materials about Rev. Powers’ activism, including her support for equal treatment for all persons in the church are my favorite feature of the collection.

In 1984, in response to “unwelcoming policies toward lesbian, gay, and bisexual persons,” a group called Affirmation: United Methodists for Lesbian/Gay Concerns “issued a call to local churches to reaffirm that their ministry was open to all persons, including gays and lesbians.”  The “Open the Doors” campaign was sponsored by the Reconciling Congregation group. The idea was to go to the United Methodist Church’s 1996 General Conference in Denver, Colorado and foster discussion to create a more welcoming atmosphere in the church for lesbian and gay members. The campaign had a moderate level of success, with several hundred people attending “Open the Doors” events at the General Conference.  However, the UMC policies discriminating against gays and lesbians were not changed.

untied methodists

Overall, the Powers Collection is a treasure of materials that I have greatly enjoyed processing.  It’s hard to believe that they will be ready for researchers to use quite soon—an exciting prospect!

2007Rev. Powers in 2007, age 75

Post contributed by Rachel Sanders, Technical Services Intern for the Sallie Bingham Center.

The post “The Journey” of Reverend Jeanne Audrey Powers’ Papers at Duke appeared first on The Devil's Tale.

CIT Office Hours

Library News - Wed, 04/08/2015 - 14:00
Wed, Apr 8, 2015: 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Bostock Library Room 024 (CIT Instructional Technology Lab) CIT consultants will be avail

"Ivory Tower" screening and discussion

Library News - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 22:00
Join us on on Tuesday for a screening and discussion of the 2014 documentary ¿Ivory Tower". This acclaimed documentary from last year is about the reasons behind the current state of higher education, from fast-increasing tuitions to the tension between on-campus and online learning. Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-Fj5wivD8M 6:00pm on Tuesday, April 7 Edge Workshop Room, Bostock Library, Duke University Bring your friends! With Free Pizza and T-shirt giveaway!

Student Data Visualization Contest Reception – Friday, April 10

Bogs Featured (for Marine) - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 21:10
2015 Student Data Visualization Contest Winners

2:00-3:00pm in the Data and Visualization Lab

Student Data Visualization Contest Reception – Friday, April 10

Blogs Featured Posts - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 21:10
2015 Student Data Visualization Contest Winners

2:00-3:00pm in the Data and Visualization Lab

SSRI~ Workshop: SAS for Data Management Session 4

Library News - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 18:00
This workshop offers an overview of the SAS programming language, focusing on data management activities. Session 1 is a general overview of SAS with a focus on major SAS components (Program Editor, Log and Output), core concepts of SAS programming (DATA and PROC), and issues of importing/exporting, reading, and writing SAS datasets. Session 2 focuses on data modification, including variable creation and variable recoding, as well as adding to and subsettting from particular datasets. Key SAS

Palette Play with Jennie Chambers

Rubenstein Technical Services - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 13:20
cropped page mahogany

Are you interested in painting but aren’t sure how to mix your colors? The Jennie Chambers Papers might be able to help. The Chambers family lived in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, in the mid-nineteenth century. Jennie Chambers was an author and amateur artist who went on to write for Harper’s Magazine, publishing “What a School-Girl Saw of John Brown’s Raid” in 1902 (still available online today). Duke has held the Jennie Chambers Papers for several decades, but I recently revisited the collection to enhance its online description and update its housing to our current standards. Most of the papers are letters between Jennie and her family or drafts of Jennie’s writings. But I most enjoyed finding this kind-of-grimy paper that includes all of her notes about mixing paint colors. It looks like she frequently used these notes for her paintings. I love the spots of paint and the smears of oil that stain the page, and it was really fun to see what sorts of things she painted. For foliage, mix deep green, Prussian blue, and yellow ochre. Do you want to paint mahogany? Mix Indian red, vermillion, and Vandyke brown.

cropped page mahogany

My archivist’s heart also loves that she signed and dated the page. The only thing missing from the collection are her actual paintings.


Post contributed by Meghan Lyon, Technical Services Archivist.

The post Palette Play with Jennie Chambers appeared first on The Devil's Tale.


Endeca Duke Authors 3 Months - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Janiak, Andrew, author.
Published: Chichester, West Sussex, UK ; Malden, MA : Wiley Blackwell, 2015.

Currently held at: DUKE

Head of state : a political entertainment

Endeca Lilly Current Lit 3 Months - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Marr, Andrew, author.
Published: New York, NY : The Overlook Press, 2015.

Currently held at: DUKE

Africa uprising : popular protest and political change

Endeca eBooks Last Week - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Branch, Adam, 1975- author.
Published: London : Zed Books, in association with International African Institute, Royal African Society, World Peace Foundation, [2015]

Currently held at: DUKE

Analysis and design of multicell DC/DC converters using vectorized models

Endeca eBooks Last Week - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Meynard, Thierry, author.
Published: London, UK : ISTE Ltd ; Hoboken, NJ : John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 2015.

Currently held at: DUKE

Attosecond nanophysics : from basic science to applications

Endeca eBooks Last Week - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Published: Weinheim : Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, [2015]

Currently held at: DUKE

Audience feedback in the news media

Endeca eBooks Last Week - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Reader, Bill, 1970- author.
Published: New York : Routledge, 2015.

Currently held at: DUKE

Bringing race back in : Black politicians, deracialization, and voting behavior in the age of Obama

Endeca eBooks Last Week - Tue, 04/07/2015 - 00:00

Author: Stout, Christopher T., 1982- author.
Published: Charlottesville [Virginia] : University of Virginia Press, 2015.

Currently held at: DUKE


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