Held by The Filson Historical Society
Creator: Tafel, Olga Alma, 1896-1983
Title: Papers, 1926-1978
Rights: For information regarding literary and copyright interest for these papers, contact the Curator of Special Collections.
Size of Collection: .33 cu. ft.
Location Number: Mss. A T124
Scope and Content Note
The Olga Tafel papers were compiled and maintained by Olga Tafel, the creator of this collection. The bulk of the collection focuses on her work with anti-war and welfare organizations with branches in Louisville, Kentucky, and consists of letters, documents, and newspaper clippings on the organizations or those involved with them. The organizations include the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, the National Council for Prevention of War, the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, the Friends of Kentucky Libraries, and the Louisville League of Women Voters.
Folder 1 of the collection includes correspondence between Tafel and friends. Some of the correspondence was professional in nature and regarded some of the organizations she worked with, including Frederick J. Libby of the National Council for Prevention of War and Congresswoman Jeannette Rankin. However, the majority of the correspondence was between Tafel and friends.
Folder 2 contains documents and letters about the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, both the local Louisville branch and the national organization. It also contains a 1949 report about Spanish refugees in France.
Folder 3 contains information on various peace organizations with which Tafel was involved. It includes the minutes of a Marathon Round Table meeting from October 28, 1932, where the members discussed the peace movement in the United States at the time; letters regarding Tafel’s resignation from the board of the Louisville League of Women Voters; resolutions of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom from October 24, 1937 and an undated letter to an editor of an unknown newspaper explaining the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and their affiliations.
Folder 4 includes newspaper clippings and letters about the Friends of Kentucky Libraries and their bookmobiles during the 1960s.
Folder 5 contains documents about the National Council for Prevention of War. The documents include letters from Frederick J. Libby, the executive secretary of the organization, newspaper clippings, a report of editorials about the London Naval Conference of 1930, and monthly releases from April 1930 through June 1931. There are also letters from Jeannette Rankin, the first woman in Congress, and a copy of her remarks in Congress on December 8, 1942.
Folder 6 includes a selection of writing samples, some of which may be authored by Tafel, including a small book of published poetry “Words and Pictures” with poetry by Theodore Steele and sketches by Elaine Yates.
Folder 7 includes miscellaneous documents about Tafel, such as a copy of her college transcript from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
Olga Alma Tafel (1896-1983) was born in Louisville, Kentucky to Herman and Mary Tafel. She attended the University of Wisconsin at Madison and graduated in 1922. She dedicated much of her life to working with organizations involved in anti-war and peace movements. She worked with the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee out of her local church, the First Unitarian Church in Louisville, Kentucky. She was involved with the church throughout her life and acted as the chairman for her branch until she resigned in 1966.
Tafel was also involved in anti-war and peace organizations, such as the National Council of Prevention of War and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She worked with these organizations throughout the 1930s through at least 1950. She was also involved with the Louisville League of Women Voters, and acted as a member of the board until 1938.
Tafel was never married and lived most of her life with her mother in Louisville, Kentucky. She maintained correspondence with many friends, including the first woman elected to Congress, Jeannette Ranking of Montana, and Frederick J. Libby, a founder and executive secretary of the National Council for Prevention of War.
Photographs donated with this collection have been separated to the Filson’s photograph collection.
Folder 1: Correspondence, 1926-1978, undated
Folder 2: Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, 1949-1978, undated
Folder 3: Marathon Round Table, Louisville League of Women Voters, and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, 1932-1938, undated
Folder 4: Friends of Kentucky Libraries and bookmobiles, 1954-1963, undated
Folder 5: National Council for Prevention of War, 1930-1950, undated
Folder 6: Writings and poetry, undated
Folder 7: Miscellaneous, 1931-1957, undated
Bookmobiles – Kentucky.
Friends of the library – Kentucky.
League of Women Voters of Louisville and Jefferson County.
Libby, Frederick J. (Frederick Joseph), 1874-1970.
London Naval Conference.
National Council for Prevention of War (U.S.)
Peace movements – Kentucky.
Rankin, Jeannette, 1880-1973.
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee.
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom – U.S. Section.
Women and peace – Kentucky.
Women political activists – Kentucky.