NEBRASKA STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY MANUSCRIPT FINDING AID
RG1583.AM: Citizens Against Racism and Prejudice (Lincoln, Neb.)
Lincoln, Lancaster County, Neb.:
Size: 1 cu. ft.
Around 1987, the Board of Directors of the Lincoln, Nebraska YMCA decided to create a Committee Against Racism (C.A.R.), to eliminate racial discrimination within the Lincoln community. In reality, the formation of this organization came about more as a constructive response to the disturbing actions of Lincoln resident Larry Trapp: he attempted to launch a new chapter of the Klu Klux Klan in Lincoln. The K.K.K. is known nationwide for sponsoring hate crime activities against minorities. As a result, C.A.R invited concerned local citizens to join forces and oppose the group.
The organization took off, and by 1990, Citizens Against Racism and Prejudice (C.A.R.P.) was born. Its mission was to fight "hate crimes and discrimination caused by bigotry, prejudice, and racism." It was a Lincoln-based, non-profit organization, staffed in majority with volunteer Lincoln residents. Membership was generally free and open to both individuals and organizations. However, an optional donation of five dollars was suggested. Meetings were held throughout Lincoln at different locations in an effort to convey to the general public that C.A.R.P was a "city-wide, county-wide coalition."
The organization was structured around a system of committees responsible to collect and distribute information, propose solutions and become a forum for earnest debate. During their five years of existence, the standing committees were: Education, Advocacy, Celebrations and Observances, Communication and Coordination, Media and Marketing, and Youth. Around 1992, the Lincoln Police Monitoring committee and the Nominating committee appeared on the scene. Some committees seemed to have been more active than others, and by 1995, Citizens Against Racism and Prejudiced merged with the Lincoln Interfaith Council.
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE
This collection consists of the records of the Citizens Against Racism and Prejudice in Lincoln, Nebraska. The records are arranged in four series: 1) Administrative Materials, 1987-1995; 2) Committee Materials, 1990-1994; 3) Activities and Publicity, 1989-1994; and 4) Miscellaneous.
Series 1, Administrative Materials, is further divided into four Subseries: 1) General Administrative Materials, 1990-1994; 2) Departmental Communications, 1987-1994; 3) Financial Records, 1993-1995; and 4) Correspondence, 1987-1993.
Series 1, Subseries 1, General Administrative Materials, describes mainly the organization's structure, its mission statement, and the responsibilities of each committee. It also contains exhaustive membership listings with names, addresses and phone numbers, as well as recruitment sample letters. Additionally, materials pertaining to the board meetings are included. These contain notes, memos, meetings agendas and minutes, lists of board members, minutes, manuscripts, and other administrative materials. Finally, there are reports on C.A.R.P structure changes, the general membership count, the treasurer's financial report and a brief description of legislative bill 396 (LB 396). More about this bill can be found in the section on Special Projects, and Minutes, Memos, Agendas and Notices between 1987 and 1990.
Series 1, Subseries 2, Departmental Communication, is a collection of quarterly and general membership meetings minutes, notes, agendas and notices. This subseries is a comprehensive guide for understanding how C.A.R.P conducted its daily business and its evolution throughout the years of its existence. Of special interest are the writings, suggestions and proposals of Rev. Carl M. Schmitthausler (1993). He wrote an insightful proposal for the board of the Lincoln Interfaith Council: "A Memorial to the Legalized Institution of the Enslavement of Africans in the United States." This specific proposal is included in the subseries as it reflects the broad spirit of the organization.
Series 1, Subseries 3, Financial Records, mostly consists of an account book with entries from March 1st, 1993 through November 1st, 1993, and the financial transactions and statements pertaining to C.A.R.P's bank account at Lincoln Federal Savings Bank of Nebraska. Receipts for bulk mailing, copies, printing services, and office supplies are part of the grouping.
Series 1, Subseries 4, Correspondence, is a compilation of the letters of one of the founding members of the organization, Gerald Henderson, and the correspondence of Rev. Carl M. Schmitthausler, who distinguishes himself later as an influential and active figure within the coalition.
Series 2, Committee Materials, consists of the records generated by specific committees. These encompass notes, minutes and agendas, and lists of members. The records are most abundant for the Education/Advocacy and the Lincoln Police Monitoring committees. Of particular interest are the letters and writings of Carolyn A Goodman to Senator Brad Ashford, Senator. Jerry Chizek, and Senator Chris Beutler concerning legislative bill 396 (LB 396), commonly known as the "Hate Crime Bill."
Series 3, Activities and Publicity, mostly contains a variety of materials from magazine articles to newspaper clippings. The bulk of the topics discuss multicultural issues in one form or another. The rest is an amalgam of information on Legislative Bill 396 and the final merger between C.A.R.P and the Interfaith Council of Lincoln in 1995.
Series 4, Miscellaneous, contains mostly the Bylaws and Rules of governing of the Access Channels Cable-Vision in Lincoln, Nebraska, and a list of names with contact information.
Series 1 - Administrative Materials, 1987-1995
Subseries 1: General Administrative Materials, 1990-1994
- Organization Structure, 1990-1992
- Membership, 1991-1993
- Recruitment, 1991
- Board Meetings, 1992
- Reports, 1992-1994
Subseries 2: Departmental Communication,1987-1994
- Meeting Minutes, Memos, Agendas & Notices, 1987-1991
- Meeting Minutes, Memos, Agendas & Notices, 1991-1992
- Meeting Minutes, Memos, Agendas & Notices, 1993
- Meeting Minutes, Memos, Agendas & Notices, 1994
Subseries 3: Financial Records, 1993-1995
- Account Book, 1993
- Lincoln Federal Savings Bank Statements, 1993-1995
- Receipts and Reports, 1993-1995
Subseries 4: Correspondence, 1987-1992
- Gerald Henderson, 1987-1992
- General Correspondence, 1988-1993
- (Rev.) Carl M. Schmitthausler, 1992-1994
Series 2 - Committee Materials, 1990-1994
- Advocacy Committee, 1990-1991
- Education Committee, 1990-1993
- Media and Marketing Committee, 1991
- Youth Committee, 1991
- Celebration an Observance Committee, 1991
- Education/Advocacy Committee, 1991
- Executive Committee, 1991-1993
- Nominating Committee, 1992
- Lincoln Police Monitoring Committee, 1992-1994
- Employment Advocacy Committee, no dates
- Communication and Coordination Committee, no dates
Series 3 - Activities and Publicity, 1989-1993
- Essays, News Clippings and Articles, 1989-1993
- Fliers and Brochures, 1991-1993
- Press Release, 1992-1994
- Special Projects
- Interfaith Council Merger
Series 4 - Miscellaneous
Citizens Against Racism and Prejudice (Lincoln, Neb.)
Lincoln Interfaith Council (Lincoln, Neb.)
Lincoln (Neb.) -- Race relations
Prejudices -- Nebraska -- Lincoln
Racism -- Nebraska -- Lincoln