Table of Contents

Highlight Text:

Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents Note

Arrangement

Restrictions

Controlled Access

Related Material

Administrative Information

Series Descriptions and Container List

Series I: Student Help Project, south Jamaica, Queens, NY

Series II: Student Help Project, Prince Edward County, Virginia

Subseries A: Background and Preparation

Subseries B: Correspondence

Subseries C: Curriculum

Subseries D: Fundraising

Subseries E: Reunion 2009

Series III: Prince Edward County

Series IV: Correspondence

Series V: Printed Materials

Subseries A: Student Help Project

Subseries B: Queens College

Subseries C: Prince Edward County

Subseries D: General

Series VI: Additional Organizations and Events

Series VII: Queens College Education Department

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Michael Wenger Collection


Finding aid prepared by LuAnn Lupia, Fall 2009; edited by Alexandra Dolan-Mescal, Fall 2013. Machine-readable finding aid created by Deborah Marks, Fall 2013.

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Queens College (New York, N.Y.) Department of Special Collections and Archives
Creator: Wenger, Michael
Title: Michael Wenger Collection
Dates: 1963-2009, bulk 1963-1965
Quantity: 2.0 Linear feet
Abstract The Michael Wenger Collection documents the Student Help Project and other activism on the Queens College campus during the 1960s. The Student Help Project was initiated by Queens College students, including Michael Wenger, and Queens College Education Department professors Dr. Rachel Weddington and Dr. Sidney Simon. This project brought tutoring services to under-served children in South Jamaica, Queens and Prince Edward County, Virginia. Wenger chaired the organization in 1964, but the Student Help Project was a collaborative effort, and initiative and authority were exercised all its members. The collection contains correspondence, newspaper and magazine articles, reports, press releases and other miscellanea.
Identification: CR.2009.006
Languages: English

Biographical Note

Michael Wenger was born to Emanuel and Rose Wenger on March 4, 1942 in Brooklyn, New York. He studied at Queens College, City University of New York and received his B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Education in 1965. At Queens College, Wenger served as the Congress of Racial Equality (C.O.R.E.) president circa 1963-1964 and as chairman of the Student Help Project during the 1964 calendar year. Wenger tutored under-served school children in South Jamaica, Queens from 1962-1963. In 1963, he and a group of 16 Queens College students traveled to Prince Edward County, Virginia to tutor black students who had been denied a public education since 1959 when the county closed its public schools rather than comply with court-mandated integration.

When Wenger returned from Prince Edward County, Virginia, he was awarded, along with Stan Shaw (a fellow student participant in the Virginia Student Help Project), the B’nai B’rith Human Relations Award on April 23, 1964. Wenger was involved in several other activist activities, including the organization of Freedom Week, an event sponsored by C.O.R.E. in 1964.

After his graduation from Queens College in 1965, Wenger taught special education in New York from 1965-1967. In 1967, he moved to Berkeley, West Virginia where he became the director of the Community Education Project, an anti-poverty program. Over the next several years, Wenger worked for the state of West Virginia in various community action positions; including Director of Federal/State programs for Charleston, West Virginia, Chief of the Division of Community Development for the Office of the Governor of West Virginia, and Deputy Commissioner for Operations for the West Virginia Department of Welfare.

In 1981, Wenger moved to Maryland where he became the state’s Washington Representative for the Appalachian Regional Commission. At the same time, he wrote a biweekly column on race relations for the Prince George’s Journal. In September 1997, Wenger became Deputy Director of Outreach and Program Development for President Clinton’s Initiative on Race. In 1998, he began his affiliation with the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies in Washington, D.C.

Wenger is currently a Senior Fellow with the Center and serves as the Editorial Consultant to FOCUS magazine, the Center’s bi-monthly magazine, and provides advice and guidance regarding strategic alliances, especially those involving organizations representing black elected officials. He is also an Adjunct Faculty Member of the Department of Sociology at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., teaching courses on race and minority relations and institutional racism as well as graduate seminars on issues of race. He has also served as Deputy Director for Outreach and Program Development for President Clinton’s Initiative on Race.

Over the course of his career Wenger has written several publications, and frequently gives presentations that discuss the issue of race and race relations in the United States.

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Scope and Contents Note

The Michael Wenger Collection (1963-2009) comprises the papers of Queens College alumnus Michael Wenger. Correspondence, printed materials, and administrative records document the operation of the Student Help Project in South Jamaica, Queens and Prince Edward County, Virginia as well as activism on the Queens College campus during the 1960s, including Freedom Week and the Carnegie Hall Benefit Concert sponsored by Queens College C.O.R.E.

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Arrangement

Series I: Student Help Project, South Jamaica, Queens NY
Series II: Student Help Project, Prince Edward County, Virginia
Subseries A: Preparation
Subseries B: Correspondence
Subseries C: Curriculum—PEC Summer 1963
Subseries D: Fundraising
Subseries E: Reunion 2009
Series III: Prince Edward County, VA
Series IV: Correspondence
Series V: Printed Materials
Subseries A: Student Help Project
Subseries B: Queens College
Subseries C: Prince Edward County
Subseries D: General Series
VI: Additional Civil Rights Organizations and Events Series
VII: Queens College Education Department

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Restrictions

Access

Collection is open for research. Staff may restrict access at its discretion on the basis of physical condition.

Copyright

The Mike Wenger Collection is physically owned by the Queens College Libraries. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assignees. The collection is subject to all copyright laws. Queens College assumes no responsibility for the infringement of copyrights held by the original authors, creators, or producers of materials.

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Controlled Access

Civil rights movements -- Virginia -- Prince Edward County
Prince Edward County (V.A.) -- History
Segregation in education -- Virginia -- Prince Edward County
Wenger, Michael

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Related Material

Rosalind (Silverman) Andrews Collection, Queens College

Phyllis Padow-Sederbaum Collection, Queens College

Stan Shaw Collection, Queens College

Debby Yaffe Collection, Queens College

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

item, date (if known), box, folder, Michael Wenger Collection, Department of Special Collections and Archives, Queens College, City University of New York

Source

Donated by Michael Wenger in 2009.

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Series Descriptions and Container List

Series I: Student Help Project, south Jamaica, Queens, NY
This series contains materials regarding the South Jamaica Student Help Project. Items include correspondence, curriculum, fundraising initiatives and reunion events documenting the organization and preparation of tutoring centers.
Student Help Project Coordination Committee ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-1
Press Releases ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-2
Budget ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-3
Urban League of Greater New York: Honors and Achievement Program ( May 23, 1964 ) Box-folder 1-4
Mass Communication Contact List ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-5
Education Professors Willing to Advise QC Students with Tutoring ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-6
List of Student Members ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-7
General Correspondence ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-8
B’nai B’rith Human Relations Award/Press Release ( April 23, 1964 ) Box-folder 1-9
Series II: Student Help Project, Prince Edward County, Virginia
This series contains materials regarding the Virginia Student Help Project. Items include correspondence, curriculum, fundraising initiatives and reunion events documenting the organization and preparation of tutoring centers in Prince Edward County, Virginia.
Subseries A: Background and Preparation
School Closing Background ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-10
Press Releases ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-11
Project Sign-Up ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-12
Project Work Conference ( June 16-17, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-13
Project Personnel ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-14
Overall Project Structure ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-15
Group Good and Welfare ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-16
Grievances and Discipline ( circa 1963 ) Box-folder 1-17
Report: Dr. Weddington Phone Conversation with Rev. L. Francis Griffin ( June 21, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-18
Subseries B: Correspondence
Professors Rachel Weddington and Sid Simon ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-19
David Rubenstein ( April 22, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-20
William Bennett ( July 4, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-21
Subseries C: Curriculum
Freedom School Summer Exercises ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-22
Student Information: Levi Baptist Church, Prospect, VA ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-23
Picnic Schedule ( August 23, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-24
“Special Milk Program” ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-25
Subseries D: Fundraising
Letters of Solicitation ( 1963 ) Box-folder 1-26
Press Releases ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 1-27
Carnegie Hall Benefit Concert Programs ( June 9, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-28
Queens College / University of Wisconsin Letter of Solicitation ( 1965 ) Box-folder 1-29
Subseries E: Reunion 2009
"Introduction of Honorable William Winter" ( October 3, 2009 ) Box-folder 1-30
Series III: Prince Edward County
This series contains materials from organizations in Prince Edward County, Virginia.
Prince Edward Christian Association ( undated ) Box-folder 1-31
Robert Moton High Memorial for Late President Kennedy ( December 13, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-32
“About Prince Edward Negro History Week” ( February 9-15, 1964 ) Box-folder 1-33
Prince Edward Free Schools ( September 23, 1963 ) Box-folder 1-34
Series IV: Correspondence
This series comprises letters to Dr. Rachel Weddington from Queens College students, letters to the editor of The Phoenix, a Queens College periodical, and a letter to Dr. Rachel Weddington from Queens College President, Joseph P. McMurray.
Letter to the Editor of The Phoenix ( undated ) Box-folder 1-35
Letter to Dr. Rachel Weddington from Queens College President, Joseph P. McMurray ( December 19, 1966 ) Box-folder 1-36
Personal Letters to Dr. Rachel Weddington ( 2000 ) Box-folder 1-37
Series V: Printed Materials
This series consists primarily of materials that document the Student Help Project, activism occurring on the Queens College campus, and civil rights events occurring in the United States. Included are materials that document Prince Edward County, Virginia after the summer of 1963.
Subseries A: Student Help Project
Student Help Project ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-1
Congressional Record ( August 2, 1963 ) Box-folder 2-2
Subseries B: Queens College
Queens College Student Newsletters ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-3
The Castle: Central Housing Plan ( 1964 ) Box-folder 2-4
The Phoenix ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-5
The Knight Beat ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-6
QC Senate Report: Public Relations Committee ( April 17, 1963 ) Box-folder 2-7
Subseries C: Prince Edward County
The Voice ( July 26, 1965 ) Box-folder 2-8
Free School Association ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-9
The Moton Eagle ( 1963-1964 ) Box-folder 2-10
Education Week ( March 24, 1999 ) Box-folder 2-11
Subseries D: General
Interracial Review: The Journal of Christian Democracy ( November 1963 ) Box-folder 2-12
The Insider’s Newsletter ( July 17, 1963 ) Box-folder 2-13
March on Washington ( August 29, 1963 ) Box-folder 2-14
Mississippi ( 1963-1966 ) Box-folder 2-15
Series VI: Additional Organizations and Events
This series consists primarily of press releases and near-print material documenting other civil rights activities that occurred on the Queens College campus and on Long Island.
Fast for Freedom ( July 2, 1964 ) Box-folder 2-16
Five Town Forum ( August 3, 1964 ) Box-folder 2-17
Freedom Week ( April 20-24, 1964 ) Box-folder 2-18
Mississippi Freedom Summer ( 1964 ) Box-folder 2-19
NAACP ( 1961-1963 ) Box-folder 2-20
Speaker Policy ( 1963 ) Box-folder 2-21
Queens College Chapter of Congress of Racial Equality (C.O.R.E.) ( undated ) Box-folder 2-22
Student Leadership Awareness Conference ( March 13-15, 1964 ) Box-folder 2-23
Series VII: Queens College Education Department
This series consists of classroom materials from the Queens College Education Department as well as other Queens College related activities and events.
Dr. Sidney Simon ( undated ) Box-folder 2-24
Dr. Rachel Weddington ( December 13, 1966 ) Box-folder 2-25
Education Clinic: Demonstration Request Form ( undated ) Box-folder 2-26
Class Registration Procedures ( undated ) Box-folder 2-27
New York State Association of Deans and Guidance Personnel ( November 8-10, 1964 ) Box-folder 2-28
“Schedule of Commencement Events” ( June 9, 1963 ) Box-folder 2-29