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Leo Pfeffer Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Pfeffer, Leo, 1910-1993.
Title: Leo Pfeffer Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1942-1974
Quantity: 22.5 linear ft.
Abstract: The papers of the American lawyer, activist for separation of church and state, legal counsel for the American Jewish Congress, and director of its Commission on Law and Social Action consist of correspondence, legal briefs, dockets, court transcripts, essays, speeches, and printed material, including articles, clippings, pamphlets, periodical issues, and general files relating to civil rights, federal aid to education, prayer in public schools, and other church-state issues.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010
http://scrc.syr.edu

Biographical History

Leo Pfeffer (1910-1993) was among the most prolific constitutional scholars of the late twentieth century. Pfeffer analyzed the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment from a "separationist" standpoint, arguing that this constitutional provision requires strict separation between church and state. From this perspective, government may offer no assistance to specific religions or religion in general. [From Encyclopedia of Religion in American Politics (1999)]

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Leo Pfeffer Papers comprise 7 series: Conference transcripts, Published material, Legal material, Notes, Writings, General files, and Miscellaneous.

Conference transcripts include documents addressing subjects such as religious instruction and holidays in the public schools, church-state separation, and the Bill of Rights. The Published material is made up of pamphlets addressing civil rights and the separation of church and state. The Legal material series mainly comprises Litigation dockets, Court transcripts, and briefs. Notes include Index cards and a Notebook kept by Pfeffer. The Writings series comprises Essays, Magazine articles, Pamphlets, Journals, and Books. The General files series, making up more than half the collection, contains mostly Correspondence, plus some News clippings. Miscellaneous items include materials from a Bill of Rights conference and designs and proofs from Pfeffer's book, Church, State, and Freedom.

An expert on the United States Constitution, Pfeffer spent his career battling to preserve the fundamental American principle of Church-State separation. As a lawyer representing the American Jewish Congress, he authored Friend of the Court briefs for trials around the country. Most of the Legal material and General files therefore concern such issues as prayer in public schools, federal aid to parochial schools, and Sunday labor laws.

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Restrictions

Access Restrictions

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

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Subject Headings

Persons

Pfeffer, Leo, 1910-1933.

Corporate Bodies

American Jewish Congress. -- Commission on Law and Social Action.

Subjects

Church and state -- United States.
Civil rights -- United States.
Constitutional law -- United States.
Federal aid to education.
Freedom of religion -- United States.
Hungarian Americans.
Jews, American.
Lawyers -- United States.
Prayer in the public schools.
Religion and state -- United States.
Religion in the public schools.

Genres and Forms

Briefs (legal documents)
Clippings (information artifacts)
Correspondence.
Dockets.
Essays.
Galley proofs.
Legal documents.
Legal instruments.
Manuscripts for publication.
Transcripts.

Occupations

Lawyers.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Leo Pfeffer Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Finding Aid Information

Created by: JMB
Date: Nov 1978
Revision history: 19 Mar 2007 - converted to EAD (AMCon)

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Inventory

Conference transcripts
Box 1 Religious Instruction in the Public Schools 1946 (1 vol.)
Box 1 Sectarianism in the Public Schools 1947
Box 1 Religious Holiday Observance in the Public Schools 1949 (1 vol.)
Box 1 Church-State Separation in the Public Schools 1956
Box 1 Bill of Rights 1966 (3 folders)
Published material
Pamphlets
Box 1 General
Box 1 American Jewish Congress 1966-1968
Box 1 Civil Rights
Box 1 Separation of Church and State
Box 1 Religion in Public Schools 1959-1965
Legal material
Box 1 Commission on Law and Social Action, American Jewish Congress (2 folders)
Box 1 Opinion briefs (3 folders)
Box 1, 2 Litigation dockets (4 folders)
Box 2 Court cases (2 folders)
Box 2 Friend of court briefs (9 folders)
Box 2 Congressional testimony
Box 2 Supreme court decisions - summary and analysis (4 folders)
Box 3 Court transcripts (4 folders)
Box 4 Court transcripts (2 folders, 2 vols.)
Box 5 Court transcripts (63 vols., 6 folders)
Box 6 Court transcripts
Notes
Box 6 Index cards-bibliography, unidentified
Box 6 Notebook: Anti-Semitism in America 1950
Writings
Box 6 Essays and articles
Box 6 Religion, Education, and the Constitution
Box 7, 8, 9 Galley proofs
Box 10 Typed manuscript - unidentified (3 folders)
Box 10 Church, State and Freedom -Index
Box 10 Essays and articles (7 folders)
Box 10 Judaism Fall, 1974
Box 10 Magazine articles (4 folders)
Box 10 New Testament Study
Box 10 Pamphlets 1972
Books
Box 11 Church, State, and Freedom (2 vols.)
Box 11 Church and State in the United States (1 vol.)
Box 11 Creeds in Competition (2 vols.)
Box 11 The Liberties of an American (2 vols.)
Box 11 This Honorable Court (2 vols.)
Pamphlets
Box 11 "Assault upon Freedom of Association"
Box 11 "The Supreme Court and the Bill of Rights"
Journals
Box 11 Civil Rights in America
Box 11 A Journal of Church and State (2 issues)
Box 11 Current History
Box 11 Michigan Law Review
Box 11 United Synagogue Convention Proceedings 1965
General files
Box 12 1958
Box 12 1959 (2 folders)
Box 12 1963
Box 12 1964
Box 12 1972
Box 12 Adoption (2 folders)
Box 12 American Jewish Congress 1970
Box 12 Anti-Defamation League 1966
Box 12 Articles about Mr. Pfeffer
Box 12 Becker Amendment: Bible Reading in School
Box 12 Blue Laws, Sunday
Box 12 Calendar reform 1964
Box 12 Capital Punishment Case (2 folders)
Box 12 Chamberlain (3 folders)
Box 12 Chinese Language in Hawaiian Schools 1949
Box 12, 13 Church, State, and Freedom 1953
Church-State Relations
Box 13 1948-1962 (2 folders)
Box 13 1955
Box 13 1965
Box 13 Congress Weekly
Correspondence
American Jewish Congress
Box 13 1954-1957
Box 13 1955-1961
Box 13 Civil Rights 1946-1950
Box 13 Conscientious Objectors 1963
Box 13 Dover Zoning Law 1949-1951
Box 13 Integration 1957-1959
Box 13 Inter-Religious Adoption – Goldman Case 1955
Box 13 Job Oath of an Atheist – Torcaso 1959-1961
Box 13 Miscellaneous
Box 13 Prayer in School – Famous Professors Voice Protest 1962
Box 13 Religious Education in Public Schools 1949
Box 13 Rosenbluth Book 1968
Box 13 School Aid 1966-1968
Speaking Engagements
Box 13 1958
Box 13 1961
Box 13 1962
Box 13 1962-1963
Box 13 1969
Box 13, 14 Television debate 1961 (4 folders)
See also General files: Television debate (box 19)
Box 14 Zeller vs. Huff 1948
Box 14 1942
Box 14 1945 (2 folders)
Box 14 1945-1946
Box 14 1945-1949
Box 14 1945-1955
Box 14 1946 (3 folders)
Box 14 1946-1949 (2 folders)
Box 14 1946-1953
Box 14 1947
Box 14 1948
Box 14 1948-1970
Box 14 1949
Box 14 1949-1950
Box 14 1949-1955
Box 14 1950
Box 15 1950
Box 15 1950-1953
Box 15 1950-1955
Box 15 1951
Box 15 1951-1959
Box 15 1952 (2 folders)
Box 15 1953
Box 15 1953-1954
Box 15 1954 (2 folders)
Box 15 1954-1956
Box 15 1954-1957
Box 15 1955 (2 folders)
Box 15 1955-1957
Box 15 1956
Box 15 1956-1957
Box 15 1957 (3 folders)
Box 15 1957-1958
Box 15 1958
Box 16 1958 (2 folders)
Box 16 1958-1961
Box 16 1959
Box 16 1960
Box 16 1960-1965
Box 16 1961
Box 16 1961-1962
Box 16 1961-1967
Box 16 1962 (2 folders)
Box 16 1962-1965
Box 16 1962-1968
Box 16 1963
Box 16 1964
Box 16 1965 (2 folders)
Box 16 1966 (2 folders)
Box 16 1967
Box 17 1967 (2 folders)
Box 17 1967-1970
Box 17 1968 (2 folders)
Box 17 1969
Box 17 1969-1970
Box 17 1970
Box 17 1970-1972
Box 17 1974
Box 17 Creeds in Competition 1958
Box 17 Dade County Schools, Florida
Box 17 Di Censo
Box 17 Florida Presbyterian College 1960
Box 17 Hokkaido Law Review Reprint – Church and State 1966
Box 17 Housing Discrimination, Jones Case – St. Louis 1967
Humane Slaughtering Bill
Box 17 1956 (2 folders)
Box 17 1957
Box 17 1958
Box 17 1958-1959
Box 17 1958-1967
Box 18 1959
Box 18 1959-1961
Box 18 1961
Box 18 1961-1965
Box 18 1965-1967
Box 18 Japanese Language in Schools 1949
Box 18 Lecture bookings 1966-1967
News clippings
Box 18 1950
Box 18 1951
Box 18 1951-1955
Box 18 1955-1959
Box 18 1962-1964
Box 18 1975
Box 18 Bible-Reading in School – Doremus Case 1952
Box 18 Distributing Bibles in School 1953
Box 18 Funding Religious Schools 1968
Box 18 Job Oath of Atheist – Torcaso Case 1961
Box 18 Krieger Tribunal – Nazi Concentration Camp 1950
See also General files: Krieger vs. Mittelman (box 21) and Miscellaneous: Krieger-Mittelman Tribunal (box 25)
Box 18 New York State Textbooks 1968
Box 18 Miscellaneous
Box 18 Opposing Tuition Grants 1968
Box 18 Parochial School Aid 1951
Box 18 Prayer in Public Schools 1962
Box 18 Released Time 1948
Reviews
Box 18 Church, State, and Freedom 1953
Box 18 "Religion, Education, and the Constitution" 1948
Sabbath vs. Unemployment Compensation
Box 18 1948
Box 18 1951
School Aid
Box 18 1950-1951
Box 18 1961
Box 18 1966-1968
Box 18 Work on Sabbath 1949-1951
Box 19 Parochial School Busing 1946
Box 19 Political Science Teaching Appointment, Long Island University 1964
Released time
Box 19 1945
Box 19 1952
Box 19 "Religion in a Free Society" 1958
Box 19 Religion in Government
Box 19 "Religion and Public Education" 1947
Box 19 Reviews of Mr. Pfeffer's Books
Box 19 Senate Judiciary Subcommittee, Hennings 1955
Box 19 Sioux City Cemetary Restrictions 1954
Speaking invitations
Box 19 1951-1969
Box 19 1955-1969
Box 19 Speeches 1958-1961
Box 19 Sunday Laws (3 folders)
Box 19 Television debate – Parochial Schools 1961
See also General files: Correspondence: Television debate (boxes 13 and 14)
Unemployment benefits and Sabbath
Box 19 1948
Box 19 1954
Box 19 Yarmulka – in School, Court
Box 19 Zoning (2 folders)
Box 20 1960
Box 20 Becker Amendment: Prayer in School
Box 20 Bible in Public School, New Jersey 1952
Box 20 Bible Reading in School – Doremus Case 1952
Box 20 Brighton, New York – Zoning Laws Prohibiting Churches 1954
Box 20 Censorship of Film, "The Miracle" 1953-1957
Correspondence
Box 20 1948-1950
Box 20 1949
Box 20 1950
Box 20 1951
Box 20 1952-1954
Box 20 1957
Box 20 1962-1963
Box 20 1966
Box 20 Creeds in Competition Press Release
Box 20 Darwin in Arkansas School 1968
Box 20 Di Censo (3 folders)
Box 20 Flast vs. Gardner
Box 21 Flast vs. Gardner
Box 21 Fountain Street Church 1969
Box 21 Humane Slaughtering Bill (3 folders)
Box 21 Immigration (5 folders)
Box 21 Krieger vs. Mittelman 1950
See also General files: Krieger Tribunal (box 18) and Miscellaneous: Krieger-Mittelman Tribunal (box 25)
Box 21 Lemon vs. Sloan 1971
Box 22 Lincoln Square Project 1956
Box 22 Lynch Child's Religion Case
Miscellaneous
Box 22 General
Box 22 1947-1968
Box 22 1953-1960
Box 22 Missouri Civil Rights 1948
Box 22 Mitchel Field Give-Away 1962
News Clippings
Box 22 Adoption and Religion 1955
Box 22 Pfeffer
Prayer in Schools
Box 22 1962 (3 folders)
Box 22 Miami 1962 (2 folders)
Box 22 School Aid 1968
Box 22 Tilton 1969
Box 22 Oregon Textbook Suit 1957-1961
Box 22 Prayer in School
Box 23 General
Box 23 1961 (3 folders)
Box 23 Schempp vs. Abington, Pa. (2 folders)
Box 24 Released Time
Box 24 Religion in Schools 1951
Box 24 Separation of Church and State
Box 24 Sunday Labor Suit – Kuperschmid 1962
Box 24 Sunday Work Laws 1949
Box 24 Supreme Court – Aid to Public Schools
Box 24 Ten Commandments
Box 24 This Honorable Court Reviews
Tilton
Box 24 1969
Box 24 Correspondence
Box 24 Documents (2 folders)
Box 24 Unbound pages
Box 24 Unemployment benefits and Sabbath 1952
Box 24 Voting in Churches 1969
Box 24 Zoning – St. Louis vs. Temple Israel
Miscellaneous
Bill of Rights Conference, Long Island University 1966
Box 25 Guest register (1 vol.)
Box 25 Pamphlets
Box 25 Krieger-Mittelman Tribunal – Nazi Concentration Camp 1950
Box 25 Life Magazine Article, "You Are the Man Who Killed My Brother."
See also General files: Krieger Tribunal (box 18) and Krieger vs. Mittelman (box 21)
Church, State, and Freedom
Box 25 Cover design
Box 25 Computer-printed proofs

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