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Canadian Peace Congress

Canadian Peace Congress fonds. -- 1937-2001; predominant 1937-1994. -- 14.05 m of textual records and other material.

The Canadian Peace Congress (CPC) is an organized movement of people and groups in Canada working for peace and supporting the ideals of the United Nations. It is part of the movement led by the World Council of Peace, which itself was formally founded in 1950 after organizing conferences in 1949. The CPC was founded between December of 1948 and May of 1949, as a response to the beginning of the Cold War. The problem regarding the founding date stems from the fact that the original meeting in December 1948 established the Toronto Peace Council, known later as the Toronto Association for Peace, which appointed members to a provisional committee, which in turn organized the first national congress meeting in May 1949. The original meeting was attended by representatives of 47 different organizations and groups, including women's, youth and church groups, trade unions, and ethnic associations. At the subsequent meeting a National Council was set up which elected an executive to run the Congress. The CPC evolved over time to contain various peace councils across Canada as well as affiliated organizations such as the Trade Union Peace Committee, the Communist Party of Canada, the Federation of Russian Canadians and the United Jewish People's Order, to name but a few.

The work of the CPC has included organizing conferences to support peace, oppose the arms race, and keep peace issues at the forefront of public attention. Petitions, education, and government lobbying are some of the methods employed by the CPC. In addition, the CPC became closely involved with the Soviet Peace Committee with members of both groups frequently visiting each other's countries. The CPC also maintained a relationship with its Quebec counterpart, Conseil québécois de la paix. The Congress was directed by Chairman James G. Endicott until 1972. He was succeeded by John H. Morgan, who took the title of President and held it until 1986. The final leader of CPC was Lari Prokop. Jean Vantour was Executive Secretary until 1982; she was succeeded by Gordon Flowers who took the title of Executive Director. Although not formally dissolved, the CPC has been very inactive since 1992.

The fonds consists of four accruals. The first accrual (47-1992) measures12.8 m, and is arranged in the following series: administration; campaigns; research files; peace groups; financial records; photographs, posters, and circulars; films, filmstrips, videocassette, and audio cassettes; Toronto Association for Peace. Arrangement is chronological in the administration series with alphabetical ordering within each year, and alphabetical for the following series with some classification ranking. In the administration series some of the material was found in complete disarray. Undated material in a particular year may not belong to that year. The second accrual (07-1995) measures .9 m, and is arranged chronologically in one series, administration. The third accrual (20-2002) measures .2 m, and is arranged in one series, administration and contains constitution and minutes, financial records, correspondence, fund raising and campaigns and publications and affiliations. The fourth accrual (32-2003) measures 15 cm and is arranged in one series, John Hanly Morgan correspondence, and includes minutes, circulars, news clippings, and photographs collected by Morgan. Morgan's original chronological arrangement has been maintained. Researchers may also wish to consult the Toronto Association for Peace fonds.

Title based on content of fonds.
The first accrual was acquired in November 1992 from Gordon Flowers, Secretary-Treasurer of CPC; the second accrual was acquired in 1994 from Flowers and Mischa Korol, a former CPC executive member; the third accrual was acquired in 2002 from Gordon Flowers; the fourth accrual was acquired from John Hanly Morgan, former CPC President and President Emeritus.
Finding aid available in hard copy and electronically.
There are no access restrictions.
Further accruals are not expected.

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Last Reviewed: March 11, 2004
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