Research Catalog

Jack Hunter O'Dell papers,

Title
Jack Hunter O'Dell papers, 1962-2004.
Author
O'Dell, Jack (Jack H.)
Supplementary Content
Finding aid

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StatusVol/DateFormatAccessCall NumberItem Location
Oversize folder 1Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Oversize folder 1Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 1Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 1Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 2Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 2Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 3Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 3Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 4Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 4Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 5Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 5Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 6Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 6Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 7Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 7Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 8Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 8Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 9Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 9Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 10Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 10Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 11Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 11Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 12Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 12Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 13Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 13Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
Box 14Mixed materialUse in library Sc MG 497 Box 14Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives

Details

Description
5.8 linear feet (14 archival boxes, 1 oversize folder)
Subjects
Source (note)
  • Jack O'Dell
Biography (note)
  • Born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1923, Jack Hunter O'Dell attended Xavier University in New Orleans in 1941, where he studied pharmacology. With the outbreak of World War II, he dropped out of college and joined the Merchant Marines, which introduced him to many leftist ideas, progressive political movements, and the fight against exploitation and racism. In 1946, O'Dell joined other freedom fighters at the Southern Negro Youth Congress summit in Columbia, South Carolina. In 1960, O'Dell became head of fund raising and voter registration in several Southern states for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), where he became associated with Martin Luther King, Jr; however, O'Dell's affiliation with the Communist party forced him to resign from SCLC and sever his relationship to Dr. King. It most likely did not completely end his contact with Dr. King, but forced him to keep his consultations free from public exposure. In 1963, O'Dell became the associate editor of "Freedomways" magazine, a Black intellectual and arts journal, and around 1970, he joined the faculty of Antioch College's Graduate School of Education in Washington, D.C. He joined People United to Save Humanity (Jesse Jackson's Operation PUSH) as a foreign policy adviser in 1976, and later became a consultant on international affairs for Reverend Jackson during his presidential bids in 1984 and 1988. In 1984, he became the director of international affairs at the National Rainbow Coalition, a position he held until the early 2000s. Additionally, O'Dell was a Board of Directors' member of various organizations, including SANE/Freeze Peace Organization, the Pacifica Foundation radio station group (where he served as the chair), and the Palestine Human Rights Campaign, among others. He also served as a consultant for the Southern Organizing Committee for Economic and Social Justice (SOC) and the Institute for Community Leadership. O'Dell died in October 2019.
Call Number
Sc MG 497
OCLC
144658322
Author
O'Dell, Jack (Jack H.)
Title
Jack Hunter O'Dell papers, 1962-2004.
Type of Content
text
Type of Medium
unmediated
Type of Carrier
sheet
volume
Summary
The Jack O'Dell papers mostly consist of professional papers related to his work with Operation PUSH, the National Rainbow Coalition, and various other civil rights organizations. There is a limited amount of personal matter, which mostly includes correspondence, some memorabilia (souvenir programs), and a transcript of an oral history interview done with James Early in 1997. The Professional papers consist of material related to his early career and activism efforts with the Committee to Defend Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), among others. These files contain correspondence, memos, reports, printed matter, and meeting minutes. The majority of the Professional papers documents O'Dell's role as policy adviser to Reverend Jesse Jackson and director of international affairs for Operation PUSH and the National Rainbow Coalition (NRC) in Washington, D.C. during the 1980s-1990s. Included in these files are correspondence (with such correspondents as Jesse Jackson and Manning Marable) and notes; conference packets and other materials related to civil rights; solidarity movements in Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America; materials related to O'Dell's role as an adviser to Jesse Jackson during his presidential runs; papers related to various Marches on Washington for different causes; speeches and statements written on behalf of Jackson; and printed matter. Additionally, there are materials related to O'Dell's work with other organizations as a Board member and consultatnt; materials related to appearances and engagements outside of his work with PUSH and the NRC (interview requests, conference materials, and printed matter); and writing samples (published and unpublished). Finally, the Subject files contain printed matter (newsletters, reports, speeches, meeting minutes and resolutions, articles, and clippings) on various subjects related to civil rights and international relations.
Biography
Born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1923, Jack Hunter O'Dell attended Xavier University in New Orleans in 1941, where he studied pharmacology. With the outbreak of World War II, he dropped out of college and joined the Merchant Marines, which introduced him to many leftist ideas, progressive political movements, and the fight against exploitation and racism. In 1946, O'Dell joined other freedom fighters at the Southern Negro Youth Congress summit in Columbia, South Carolina. In 1960, O'Dell became head of fund raising and voter registration in several Southern states for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), where he became associated with Martin Luther King, Jr; however, O'Dell's affiliation with the Communist party forced him to resign from SCLC and sever his relationship to Dr. King. It most likely did not completely end his contact with Dr. King, but forced him to keep his consultations free from public exposure. In 1963, O'Dell became the associate editor of "Freedomways" magazine, a Black intellectual and arts journal, and around 1970, he joined the faculty of Antioch College's Graduate School of Education in Washington, D.C. He joined People United to Save Humanity (Jesse Jackson's Operation PUSH) as a foreign policy adviser in 1976, and later became a consultant on international affairs for Reverend Jackson during his presidential bids in 1984 and 1988. In 1984, he became the director of international affairs at the National Rainbow Coalition, a position he held until the early 2000s. Additionally, O'Dell was a Board of Directors' member of various organizations, including SANE/Freeze Peace Organization, the Pacifica Foundation radio station group (where he served as the chair), and the Palestine Human Rights Campaign, among others. He also served as a consultant for the Southern Organizing Committee for Economic and Social Justice (SOC) and the Institute for Community Leadership. O'Dell died in October 2019.
Connect to:
Local Subject
Black author.
Research Call Number
Sc MG 497
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