These records were produced by the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) at Duke University in the course of their activities as a student religious organization. Materials are present from 1920 to 1969; however, the bulk of the material is from the late 1930s to the early 1960s and consists mainly of annual reports. The majority of the remaining material consists of reports from other student religious organizations. Physical types of materials present include reports, pamphlets, correspondence, minutes, student publications, programs, flyers, and officer lists. There is one artifact, a gavel that is engraved with presidents' initials and years of service, 1945-1955.
The majority of the records consist of reports of campus student religious organizations, and annual reports prepared by YMCA officers, which date from 1936-1967, although they are not inclusive. The annual reports summarize YMCA activities and projects from the past school year, and offer suggestions for the next year. See also catalogued and bound reports at call number 378.756 D887FA. There are two reports generated by the YMCA in the course of their campus activities: a proposal regarding the Freshman Advisory Council and a report on the success of the 1948 fund drive for the World Student Service Fund (WSSF). For more information on the incorporation of the Freshman Advisory Council (FAC) into the YMCA, see the annual report from 1957-1958. The remaining reports were created by other student religious organizations such as the Hillel Society (for Jewish students), the Baptist Student Union, and the YWCA. Correspondence is limited to one item. "Dads' Day" items consist of programs and schedules for the annual fathers' weekend. See also programs at call number 378.756 D887FD.
Publications are limited to examples of the student handbook and the "Dink," a daily publication for freshmen produced during Freshman Orientation Week. For other student handbooks see call number 378.756 D877S. For discussions of activities related to desegregation at Duke, see annual reports 1959-1960 and 1967-1968. Draft counseling materials are limited to announcements of seminars and conferences. For discussions of Vietnam and the selective service system, see annual reports of 1966-1967 and 1967-1968. For more information on Vietnam, the draft, and the counseling center, see YWCA and YM-YWCA Institute for Nonviolent Study and Action materials. Although there are no membership lists, there are quite inclusive lists of officers from 1888-1936 and 1956-1957.
The Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) at Duke University was established at Trinity College in 1887-1888. In its early years, it functioned primarily as a sort of Bible class. Although it never abandoned its emphasis on Christianity, in its later years the YMCA dedicated itself more to campus and social service projects than Bible study. It was one of the largest and most influential of the student organizations. Activities for the years 1947-1967 include the Edgemont Community Center, Wright's Refuge, Freshman Orientation Week, publication of the student handbook, Religious Emphasis Week, Dads' Day, discussion groups, vespers services, Bible study, and student ushers for Duke Chapel. A Board of Directors composed of faculty and administration members oversaw the YMCA.
In 1969, the YMCA merged with the Young Women's Christian Association to form the YM-YWCA. Post-merger activities include draft counseling, Vietnam seminars and discussions, sponsorship of speakers and activists, promotion of Black Days, and so on. The organization ceased functioning in 1980-1981. See also issues of the Chanticleer, the Chronicle, and student handbooks as well as The Front Line: Materials for a Study of Leadership in College and After by Ben M. Patrick (Duke University, 1938) for more historical details. See YM-YWCA Institute for Nonviolent Study and Action and YWCA materials for more detail on collaborative activities in the 1960s-1970s.