An Inventory of the Mary Bye Papers, 1966-[ongoing]

(3 boxes; 1.5 linear ft.)

RG 5/024

© Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College.  
Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081-1399 U.S.A.  

Seal of Swarthmore College
Table of contents
Mary (Du Bois) Bye, Quaker peace and social activist and member of Doylestown Monthly Meeting of Friends in Pennsylvania, was born in 1913 and died in 2002. This collection consists of the papers relating to Mary Bye's political activity. It includes correspondence, notes, clippings, and other files concerning peace and justice issues.

Background note:
BIOGRAPHICAL AND HISTORICAL NOTE Mary Du Bois was born on April 25, 1913. She graduated from Swarthmore College in 1936 and married Ranulph de Bayeux. They had five children, Dennis Latham (b. May 31, 1942), Barbara Downman (b. April 7, 1944), Richard Edwin (b. March 12, 1951; d. May 10, 1951), Stephen Gerard (b. June 18, 1952), and Catherine Maitland (b. 1955).

She is an active member of Doylestown Monthly Meeting and Bucks Quarterly Meeting, serving on several committees, including the Quarterly Meeting's Peace and Service Committee. In addition to her political involvement through the Meeting, she individually was active in the peace movement and other social causes. She protested several issues, leading to her arrest at the Pentagon in 1969 and at Harrisburg in 1972. She also protested by not paying her taxes.

One of the most important things she did as a political activist was to open her home as a forum where people such as Father Daniel Berrigan could speak to the community and peace walkers could spend the night.

Mary Bye died on November 1, 2002.

Scope and content
SCOPE AND CONTENT OF THE RECORDS This collection consists of the papers relating to Mary Bye's political activity. It includes correspondence, notes, clippings, and other files concerning peace and justice issues. Includes material on Daniel Berrigan, Robert Whittington Eaton, the Plowshares Eight, Vietnamese conflict, Continental Walk for Disarmament, corporate divestiture, Central American refugees, and many other issues. Correspondents include Noam Chomsky, Alexander Calder, Theodore Friend, Kai Yutah Clouds, Fr. Paul Kabat, and others.

Arrangement The collection is divided into two series:

Added entries

  • Continental Walk for Disarmament and Social Justice
  • Disarmament
  • Disinvestment -- South Africa
  • Peace -- Societies, etc.
  • Plowshares Eight (Group)
  • Quaker social reformers
  • Quaker women
  • Quakers - Controversy
  • Quakers - Peace
  • Quakers -- Pennsylvania
  • Refugees -- Central America
  • Social justice
  • Vietnamese conflict, 1961-1975
Additional Authors and Contributors
  • Berrigan, Daniel
  • Bye, Mary, b. 1913
  • Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976
  • Chomsky, Noam
  • Clouds, Kai Yutah, 1948-1980
  • Eaton, Robert Whittington
  • Friend, Theodore
  • Kabat, Paul
Processed by: Finding Aid Prepared by FHL staff
Date: 1991
Restrictions: Use Restrictions Copyright has not been assigned to Friends Historical Library All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in to the Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Friends Historical Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by reader.
Sponsor: Encoding made possible by a grant by the Gladys Kriebel Delmas Foundation to the Philadelphia Consortium of Special Collections Libraries


Note to Researchers: To request materials, please note both the location and box numbers shown below:

Ser. 1. Correspondence, 1968-1994
Folders arranged alphabetically according to Mary Bye's subject designations. Although this series is largely comprised of Correspondence, the folders also contain many notes in Mary Bye's hand, rough drafts of letters and proclamations, newspaper clippings by or about Mary Bye, bills, receipts, photographs and slides. In some folders general background information is included to allow for a fuller understanding of Mary Bye's involvement with the issue.

AIDS 1989 Box 1

Background material and rough draft of article

Alaska Wildlife preservation 1993 Box 1

Correspondence, including talk of the Federal Airborne Hunting Act

Amnesty 1976-1977 Box 1

Correspondence and letters to the editor as a member of the Peace and Service Committee of Bucks Quarterly Meeting

Animal rights n.d.. Box 1


Daniel Berrigan's Public Appearance at the Byes' Home

1972 Box 1

Correspondence; includes letters to the editor and newspaper clippings about Father Daniel Berrigan's speech to 700 people about war policies. A Jesuit priest and peace advocate, he had visited North Vietnam and had gone to jail when convicted with eight other activists of destroying Selective Service records in Catonsville, MD

Billboard 1969-1970 Box 1

Mary Bye came up with the idea of using billboards as part of Doylestown Monthly Meeting's anti-“Safeguard” the anti-ballistic missile system campaign

Biodiversity Legal Foundation 1994 Box 1

Correspondence, advertisement clipping

Bosnia-Serbia war, U.S. involvement 1993 Box 1


California Gnatcatcher (endangered bird) 1993 Box 1


Central America

1985-1989 Box 1

Correspondence exclusively with Senator John Heinz about Nicaragua and El Salvador; also about the federal budget and acid rain legislation.

Chinese painting 1994 Box 1


Christic Institute 1993 Box 1


CIA 1975-1977 Box 1

Correspondence and notes, including Mary Bye's requests for access to files the FBI, CIA, and Dept. of the Navy may be maintaining on her.

Clinton, as new president 1993 Box 1


Community 1980-1981 Box 1

Correspondence, mainly notes considering the possibility of alternative living situations

Continental Walk for Disarmament and Social Justice

1976 Box 1

Correspondence, etc. Also includes clippings, photographs, slides and background information on the Continental Walk, which Mary Bye organized for the Bucks Co. area

Cruise and Pershing [missiles] 1983 Box 1

Letters to the editor and related notes

Cuba 1994 Box 1

Correspondence and news clippings

Desert Protection Act 1993 Box 1


Disarmament 1974-1978 Box 1

Correspondence. Includes typescript of a speech by the Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency

Downed Animal Protection Act 1993 Box 1


Doylestown Meeting Statement Regarding Conscription 1968-1969 Box 1

Correspondence and several drafts of the statement

Draft and Robert Eaton '65 1968-1969 Box 1

Correspondence about the position of Friends regarding the draft and clippings about Robert Eaton '65, who was sentenced to three years imprisonment for refusing to report for nonmilitary duty as a conscientious objector

Eco-Justice n.d. Box 1


El Salvador

1980-1985 Box 1

Correspondence, some on behalf of Southampton MM, and notes concerning U.S. policy. Related to folder on Sanctuary for Refugees

Environmental issues, including the spotted owl, logging industry, over fishing 1993-4 Box 1

Includes correspondence and news clipping. Some corresp. with Vice President Gore and President Clinton and news clippings, 1994

Environmental Protection Agency 1994 Box 1


Fellowship of Reconciliation n.d. Box 1

Draft of a letter to Mr. Wilson

Frankenthaler, Helen, her artwork 1993 Box 1


French Bomb Tests over Mururoa

1973-1974 Box 1

Some correspondence on behalf of Friends Peace Committee, notes and drafts of an “Elegy to Polynesia after the French atmospheric nuclear test on July 21”

Friends Committee on National Legislation 1988 Box 1

Drafts of two letters to Ed Snyder

Gay Concerns 1981 Box 1

Includes names and addresses of attenders at the F.L.G.C. Mid-Winter Gathering, which Mary Bye attended

Gentry, Alwyn Howard, Ph.D. and Theodore A. Parker III, their death 1993 Box 1

Correspondence, notes and memorial invitation

Greensboro 5

1983-1984 Box 1

Correspondence, particularly to the judge involved in the case. Includes drafts of a “Statement of Interest” on behalf of Southampton MM, background information on the killing of five labor organizers in 1979 and the acquittal of those accused of the deed, and notes

Guatemala and Kai Yutah Clouds: 1977-1981 Box 1

Correspondence. Kai Yutah Clouds was an American agriculturist who had been working for over a year in the village of San Jose Poaquil, Chimaltenango, Guatemala, when he was assassinated. Includes photographs, maps of the area, notes, and background information on Kai

Haitians 1974-1980, 1993 Box 2


Hiroshima Day 1974-1975 Box 2

Correspondence and notes

Holy Week in Harrisburg: 1972 Box 2

Correspondence. Includes criminal complaint form, clippings and background information. Mary Bye was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct. She chose to spend three days in jail rather than pay the $21 fine

House Bill 2212 1970 Box 2

Also known as the Berson Bill and the Vietnam War Bill. Includes correspondence, notes, signed petitions, copy of the Bill, drafts of a “Proclamation”

Human Rights 1977-1978, 1994 Box 2

Correspondence and notes

Human Services 1981 Box 2

Correspondence. Includes a check made out the Bucks Co. Commissioners and one to the City of Philadelphia, never cashed, drafts of a “Statement to the Commissioners” from residents of Bucks Co., and notes.

Iraq, non-military sanctions 1992 Box 2

Correspondence, pamphlets

Israeli-Palestinian conflict 1993 Box 2


Justice/Peace 1978-1983 Box 2

Miscellaneous correspondence. Includes material relating to the showing of the film “War Without Winners,” initiated by the Peace and Service Committee of Bucks QM. Mary Bye was convener of that committee

Father Paul Kabat 1985-1986 Box 2

Correspondence and newsletters from Father Paul Kabat, a Catholic peace activist convicted for damaging missile silos in Missouri

Free Exercise of Religion 1993 Box 2

Correspondence with Sen. Wofford and Sen. Specter

Korea 1973-1984 Box 2

Correspondence and notes, some on behalf of the Friends Peace Committee

Lawyers Military Defense Committee 1972-1974 Box 2

Correspondence and miscellaneous financial papers relating to the LMDC's sale of donated artworks in order to raise necessary funds. Folder contains photos of a work by Alexander Calder and several handwritten letters from him to Mary Bye.

Libya 1986 Box 2

Correspondence and notes

Macroanalysis n.d. Box 2

Explanatory pamphlet and notes

Mexico, Chiapas 1994 Box 2


Military spending 1993 Box 2


Meat industry and health issues 1993 Box 2


Military Justice 1974-1979 Box 2

Correspondence and Friends Military Counseling Service Minutes

Movement for a New Society 1971-1984 Box 2


Native Americans 1992-3 Box 2


Nicaragua 1988 Box 2

One form letter from Arlen Specter

Northern Ireland 1976-1977 Box 2

Materials concerning the Journey of Reconciliation, organized by the National Council of the Churches of Christ. Mary Bye participated in the Journey

Non-violence, U.S. 1993 Box 2

Correspondence (2 versions)

Parker, Theodore III, his death Box 2

See Gentry, Alwyn (Mary Bye Papers)

Peace Award 1989 Box 2

News clipping

Pentagon 1980 Box 2

Mostly notes

Philadelphia Yearly Meeting funds 1993 Box 2

Correspondence received

Plowshares 8 1981 Box 2

Correspondence, background information, notes and clippings about the Plowshares 8 - the name given to the 8 persons who entered the GE plant in King of Prussia and destroyed nuclear warhead cones - and about the celebration Mary Bye coordinated in their honor.

Population issues 1993-4 Box 2


Prisoner Visitation and Support 1971-1980 Box 2

Correspondence, some with prisoners, PVS Committee information, notes and a photograph

SALT n.d. Box 3

Draft of a letter

Sanctuary for Refugees 1982-1984 Box 3

Correspondence and notes, including Southampton MM's Declaration of Sanctuary

SANE n.d. Box 3

Miscellaneous notes

SEIS team 1993 and n.d. Box 3


Selective Service spending n.d. Box 3


Sheehan, Dan 1993 Box 3


Sierra Club 1985 Box 3


“Songs of Protest,” 1993 Box 3


South Africa 1978-1983 Box 3

Correspondence, notes and clippings

Swarthier College Divestment from South Africa 1978-1984 Box 3

Correspondence, including some with Noam Chomsky, an interview with College President Theodore Friend, and related materials

Talks to Westtown School 1981, n.d. Box 3

Typescript of “Inner Direction and Outer Action,” notes about “Living the Peace Testimony”

Thailand n.d. Box 3


USSR 1983 Box 3

One form letter from Arlen Specter

Vietnam Protests 1966-1969, 1992 Box 3

Correspondence, notes, clippings, armband, photograph, and official papers relating to the arrest of Mary Bye on June 18, 1969

Violence 1993 Box 3


Walk for Peace and Kent Lalrabee 1982 Box 3

Kent Larrabee's newsletter while on his walk from the U.S. to Moscow

Walking Gently on the Earth n.d. Box 3

Original and revised writing, correspondence 1993

War Resisters League 1974-1981 Box 3

Correspondence and minutes from WRL meeting

War Tax Resistance 1972-1982, 1994 Box 3

Correspondence, particularly with the IRS, Mary Bye's tax returns, War Tax Concerns Support Committee minutes and notes; correspondence, 1994

Whale population preservation 1993-4 Box 3


World Bank 1985 Box 3

Correspondence and notes

World Peace Walk by C.B. Hall 1983-1984 Box 3

Correspondence, including some with C.B. Hall notes, clippings, and background information on Hall, who led a walk from Seattle to Moscow that stopped at Mary Bye's home, and a photograph

Yugoslavia conflict 1993 Box 3


Ser. 2. Miscellaneous, 1978, n.d.

Cancelled personal checks
The checks show the variety of organizations Mary Bye supported.

Biography of Mary Bye, “Quaker Activist” by Donna Dvorak-Knieriem
Published in the Bucks County Town and Country Living.
Box 3