- Scope and Contents
The Donald and Elizabeth Hart Frazier Papers reflects the ways in which the Hart Fraziers engaged with the pressing questions of their time regarding ministry, population, and women: through writing, preaching, researching, and extensive organizational involvement—processes which amassed (as reflected in this collection) a corpus of writings from over a half century, correspondence, and varied materials from meeting minutes and conference notes to newspaper clippings.
Series I, Writings, dating from around 1938 to 2015, contains two main subseries: the gathered writings of Elizabeth Hart Frazier and of Donald Hart Frazier. Elizabeth’s writings begin with essays from her time at Yale Divinity School and thereafter jump into the 1970s, following her ordination in 1972. The sermons topically reflect her advocacy work regarding family planning and population concerns. The subseries of Elizabeth’s writings ends with published material, often creative, some autobiographical, in form.
Donald Hart Frazier’s writings begin with his notes from Yale Divinity courses and proceed into sermons and addresses from his ministerial life. Notable within the sermons and addresses is his “General Association of Connecticut Moderator’s address, ‘Women in Our Common Life,’” box 3, folder 11. The address led to the 1971 pronouncement, written with Elizabeth, presented the synod of the UCC. The published writings, some jointly authored with Elizabeth, include writings on financial stewardship and religious educational texts.
Series II, Materials related to Yale, dating from 1925 to 2017, contains materials from their days at the Divinity School and their continued financial and intellectual commitment to the school. The series begins with materials relating to the Divinity School, containing class booklets reflecting on their years at the Divinity School to materials relating to the Hart Fraziers’ work as class agents fundraising. The second subseries contains materials relating to the wider University. Notable within the series is “Correspondence related to women at YDS and curriculum development,” box 5, folder 6, containing materials related to Elizabeth’s involvement in assessing the YDS curriculum resulting in the 1971 lecture series, “Search for Livable Lifestyles.”
Series III, Family planning and reproductive rights, contains materials dating from 1962 to 2018. The series contains subseries relating to work with Planned Parenthood and other organizations, and topical files containing a variety of materials: clippings, pamphlets, and circulars that Elizabeth Hart Frazier gathered. Folders titled “Programmatic materials” include meeting minutes, member lists, conference schedules, and correspondence. The subseries Planned Parenthood is organized by branch of the organization: the wider national organization, World Population and the Religious Advisory Committee, Planned Parenthood League of Connecticut, and Planned Parenthood League of Greater New Haven. These files provide detailed insight into the strategy and functioning of Planned Parenthood from circa 1965-1975 and particularly considering a global boom in population.
Notable within the other organizations are the subseries “Clergy Counseling” and “The Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights.” Formed before the national legalization of abortion through Roe v. Wade in 1973, Clergy Counseling trained religious leaders to counsel and support women in family planning. The files in box 8, folder 11-14, contain training and informational materials and Elizabeth Hart Frazier’s counseling notes. In the aftermath Roe v. Wade in 1973 and the ensuing opposition from the Catholic Church, Jewish and Protestant members of Clergy Counseling formed the Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights.
Series IV, Church related materials, dating from 1959 to 1996, begins with a subseries related to the United Church of Christ, including substantial materials on women in the UCC, providing insight into the experiences of clergywomen and denominational attitudes towards the feminist and reproductive rights movements. Series IV proceeds to programmatic materials, publications, and correspondence from the CT Fellowship of Congregational Women (affiliated with the UCC) and Church Women United (affiliated with the National Council of Churches), women’s groups that Elizabeth was active in. The final subseries contains miscellaneous church-related materials, from a study by the World Council of Churches on women in ministry in 1963 (box 11, folder 11), to gathered materials from interim pastorates.
Series V, Other organizations, dating from 1964 to 2014, contains materials from organizations the Hart Fraziers were involved in and is arranged alphabetically by organization.
Series VI, Subject files, dates from around 1940 to the late 2010s. The materials vary in format, from magazines and circulars to newspaper clippings, and reflect broadly the collecting interests and research of Elizabeth Hart Frazier: women in ministry and the church, the nascent feminist movement and its evolution, the wellbeing of families and modern society. Similar material is in Series III, Family planning and reproductive rights, “Topical files,” including Elizabeth’s extensive research on global population.
Series VII, Biographical documentation, dating from 1945 to 2016, holds resumes, autobiographical writings and reflections, personal correspondence, and newspaper articles about Donald and Elizabeth Hart Frazier.
- Conditions Governing Access
The materials are open for research.
- Immediate Source of Acquisition
Gift of Robert Frazier, 2022.
- I. Writings, circa 1938-2015
- II. Materials related to Yale, 1925-2017
- III. Family planning and reproductive rights, 1962-2018
- IV. Church related materials, 1959-1996
- V. Other organizations, 1964-2016
- VI. Subject files, circa 1940-2010s
- VII. Biographical documentation, 1945-2016
Elizabeth Hart Frazier and Donald Hart Frazier Papers
Call Number: RG 331