Stella Douglas papers, 1927-2014  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Douglas, Stella (Estella Jean), 1927-1993
Title
Stella Douglas papers
Dates
1927-2014 (inclusive)
1927-1993 (bulk)
Quantity
4 linear feet, (11 boxes)
Collection Number
WUA111
Summary
The Stella Douglas papers document the personal life and career of artist Stella Douglas from 1927 to 1993. This collection includes substantial documentation of Douglas's involvement in the Moral Re-Armament Movement as well as personal writings and materials related to her work in community activism including the anti-war movement, black rights activism, psychedelia, and the neo-feminist movement. This collection also includes correspondence between Douglas and artist Helen Blumenstiel as well as Douglas family records from 1927 to 2014.
Repository
Willamette University Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Mark O. Hatfield Library
900 State Street
Salem, OR
97301
Telephone: 503-370-6866
Fax: 503-370-6141
archives@willamette.edu
Access Restrictions

This collection is open to researchers.

Languages
English
Sponsor
Processed with funds provided by the National Historical Publications & Records Commission's (NHPRC) Access to Historical Records grant. Processing of the series Moral Re-Armament was sponsored by the Willamette University History Department.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

Estella Jean Douglas was born in Salem, Oregon on January 21, 1927. At age eleven, Douglas was inspired by what she described as "a flood of creative energy" to begin her lifelong calling to be an artist. In 1944 Douglas planned to enter a five-year degree program offered by Reed College with the Portland Art Museum School, but instead took the opportunity to join the Moral Re-Armament program. Douglas participated as a full time volunteer in MRA from 1945 to 1957, during which time she lived at MRA's two main headquarters in Los Angeles and Mackinac Island, Michigan. She also lived London, England and Paris and Caux, France while in the program. Douglas described her experience with MRA as a "multi-cultural learning experience" in which her "global view of life in the world and the nature of humanness took form." Both during and after her time with MRA, Douglas wrote many personal reflections and letters pertaining to her experience as a participant in MRA and her subsequent reflections on morality, religion, and human nature.

During the 1960s Douglas returned to the United States. She attended San Francisco Art Institute and graduated with a Bachelor's of Fine Arts in 1969. At the same time, Douglas also attained a degree in Educational Psychology from San Francisco State College. Douglas then went on to pursue a Master's of Fine Arts in printmaking from the San Francisco Art Institute, graduating in 1971. During her time in school in San Francisco, Douglas describes her participation in the anti-war movement, black rights activism, psychedelia, and the neo-feminist movement. Upon graduating with her Master's of Fine Arts, Douglas was offered a position in the art department of a midwest university, but upon learning of her father's illness, returned to Salem, Oregon to care for him until his death.

From 1971 through 1984, Douglas dedicated her time to the care of sick family members, caring for her father, mother, and sister until their deaths. During this time Douglas worked various jobs, including work as a freelance writer and photographer for which she was published in several magazines including the Oregonian. Douglas was actively engaged in areas of the arts, community volunteerism, political, and social and environmental work, on which her freelance writing was focused. Among the specific causes that Douglas was involved with during this time, was the protection of the Oregon coastal environment, feminist and aging issues, and the nuclear weapons freeze movement. Realizing her passion and talent for both art and therapy, in 1986 Douglas applied for and was accepted to the Master's in Art Therapy program at Marylhurst College. After graduation she applied for and got a job with Mental Health Services West in Portland, where she was working as an Art Therapist at the time of her death. Douglas died in 1993 and is buried in Clackamas County, Oregon.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Stella Douglas papers include materials that document Douglas's personal life and careers as an art therapist and social activist from 1927-1993. Series I (Education and careers) contains class notes, Blue Book exams, papers, correspondence, and personal writings by Douglas from her time as a student at the San Francisco Art Institute and Marylhurst College. This series also includes patient notes, personal writings, and correspondence related to Douglas's career as an art therapist. Series II (Correspondence) contains letters between Douglas and her family and friends. Series III (Moral Re-Armament) includes correspondence, personal writings, photographs, scrapbooks, Moral Re-Armament publications, address books, and newspaper clippings concerning Douglas's involvement in this movement. Series IV (Community activism) contains newsletters, correspondence, and news articles written by Douglas concerning various community programs and volunteer organizations that she supported, including several LGBTQ organizations. Series V (Personal writings) contains personal reflections and a diary concerning politics, social activism, Moral Re-Armament, and other areas of interest to Douglas. Series VI (Family records) includes birth records for Douglas, a scrapbook of family photographs, and a copy of artist Helen Blumenstiel's journal, who was a family friend.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

For further information, see the section on copyright in the Regulations and Procedures of the Willamette University Archives and Special Collections.

Copyright Information: Before material from collections at Willamette University Archives and Special Collections may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permission. Persons wishing to quote from materials in any collections held by University Archives and Special Collections should consult the University Archivist. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Stella Douglas papers, Archives and Special Collections, Mark O. Hatfield Library, Willamette University.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series I:  Education and careers, 1933-1993Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
5 1
Primary and secondary school report cards and diplomas
1933-1944
5 2
State High School Basketball Tournament programs
1942-1943
5 3
Humanities (exams and papers from school)
1964-1966
5 4
Blue Book (English Composition exams)
1965 November 1 - 1966 April 11
5 5
San Francisco Art Institute: English Composition (class) notes and exams
circa 1965-1966
5 6
San Francisco Art Institute: class exams and notes
1965-1968
5 7
Papers from classes at the San Francisco Art Institute
1965-1968
5 8
San Francisco Art Institute (exams)
1965-1969
5 9
San Francisco Art Institute (exams)
1965-1969
5 10
San Francisco Art Institute (papers by Douglas)
1966-1968
10 2
Diploma for Bachelor of Arts degree from the San Francisco Art Institute
1969
8 1
San Francisco Art Institute (correspondence and forms)
1969-1986
5 11
Correspondence and materials related to art program at the San Francisco Art Institute and Douglas's art career
1970-1971
8 2
Graduation documents: College of the San Francisco Art Institute
1971
5 12
San Francisco Art Institute: transcripts, letters of recommendation, and correspondence
1971-1972
5 13
Salem Art Association - certificate of appreciation to Stella Douglas
1976
5 14
Marylhurst (Art Therapy program)
1968-1989
5 15
Marylhurst (Art Therapy program)
1982-1989
5 16
Art Therapy M.A. (Master of Arts) application portfolio (Marylhurst)
1986
5 17
Three assessments (Art Therapy program - Marylhurst)
1986-1987
5 18
Art Therapy with Adults (scenarios, evaluations, and papers)
1986-1989
5 19
Marylhurst (Art Therapy program patient assessments and assignments)
1987
5 20
Working with grieving children (Marylhurst Art Therapy program)
1987
5 21
Art Therapy group paper background material (Marylhurst)
1987
5 22
Art therapy observations: Marylhurst College
1987
5 23
Adult Art Therapy (class): assignments and notes
1987
5 24
M.A. (Master of Arts) application: Art Therapy program - Marylhurst
1987
8 3
Marylhurst Art Therapy program (records for Stella Douglas and notes)
circa 1987
5 25
Resume materials and business cards
circa 1987-1990
5 26
Observation of an art class: Adolescent Art Therapy (class)
1988
5 27
Internship I (Art Therapy patient notes)
1988
5 28
Application materials for scholarship from the American Business Women's Association
1988
5 29
In-Services: Ward 10, FRN. home HLTH (health) and pastoral care staff
circa 1988
5 30
Art therapy: clients and groups (correspondence and reports)
1989
5 31
Internship II, case studies, etc.
1989
5 32
Internship III, case studies, etc.
1989
5 33
Evaluations, supervisor summaries, and client notes
1989
5 34
Marylhurst: case study presentation
circa 1989
5 35
Mental Health Services West (personal reflections and reports by Douglas at Marylhurst)
circa 1990
5 36
Art Therapy Techniques class at Marylhurst
1990-1991
5 37
Mental Health Services West: Artworks III (exhibition of clients' art)
circa 1993
8 4
Mental Health Services West (Douglas's employer): correspondence, notes, and newsletter concerning Douglas's death
1993-1994
5 38
Wellness with Art class (workshop materials)
undated
5 39
Abnormal Psychology (class paper)
undated
5 40
Art Therapy Techniques (class) term paper: schizophrenia disorder
undated
5 41
Developmental Psychology (class): notes and assignments
undated

Series II:  Correspondence, 1942-1993Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
5 42
Helen Blumenstiel letters (written to Douglas while Blumenstiel was in the army and letters about Blumenstiel)
1943-1975
8 6
Helen Blumenstiel (photocopies of correspondence and newspaper articles)
1945-1976
5 43
Blumenstiel (Helen) letters
1956-1958
5 44
Blumenstiel (Helen) letters
1960-1965
5 45
Blumenstiel (Helen) letters
1961-1962
5 46
Blumenstiel (Helen) letters
1963
5 47
Blumenstiel (Helen) letters
1964-1971
5 48
Correspondence concerning Helen Blumenstiel
1975
5 49
Helen Blumenstiel: retrospective exhibition and correspondence
1975-1976
8 5
Correspondence to Stella Douglas
circa 1942-1955
6 1
Letters from Stella to Ruth and Vernon Douglas (her parents), family, and friends
1950 January 22 - 1951 November 22
6 2
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to family and friends
1951-1961
6 3
Letters from Stella to Ruth and Vernon Douglas (her parents), family, and friends
1952 January 16 - December 19
6 4
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to family and friends
1952 December 21 - 1966 April 30
6 5
Correspondence between Stella Douglas and family and friends
circa 1952-1973
6 6
Letters from Stella to Ruth and Vernon Douglas (her parents), family, and friends
1953 March 17 - 1958 October 20
6 7
Correspondence: Barbara Douglas (sister)
circa 1956-1969
6 8
Dr. Estella Ford Warner (Stella Douglas's namesake)
1959
8 7
Stewart Holbrook (author and historian) (correspondence and newspaper articles)
1959-1964
6 9
Correspondence: Stella Douglas to parents
1960-1961
6 10
Correspondence from Stella to Ruth and Vernon Douglas (her parents), family, and friends
1960 January 4 - 1968 August 4
6 11
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to family and friends
1964-1967
6 12
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to Mary Johnson
1966-1971
6 13
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to Mary Johnson
1966-1971
6 14
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to family and friends
1966 May 4 - 1978 April 26
6 15
Correspondence from Stella to Ruth and Vernon Douglas (her parents), family, and friends
circa 1968-1969
6 16
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to her parents, family, and friends
1968 January - 1969 June
6 17
Correspondence from Stella Douglas to her parents, family, and friends
1969 July - December
6 18
Correspondence between Stella Douglas and family and friends (includes letters concerning Helen Blumenstiel)
1969 July - 1993 March
8 8
Linda Quick (colleague at San Francisco Art Institute)
1972-1980
6 19
Correspondence concerning the death of Vernon A. Douglas (Stella Douglas's father)
1974
6 20
Correspondence concerning the death of Vernon A. Douglas (Stella Douglas's father)
1974-1975
6 21
Correspondence to Stella Douglas
circa 1974-1989
7 1
Correspondence to Stella Douglas
circa 1974-1989
8 9
"Annie" : Reid Shelton (Salem, Oregon native) as Daddy Warbucks (correspondence and news articles)
1977
8 10
Correspondence between Douglas and family and friends
1978-1990
7 2
Correspondence to Stella Douglas from friends (concerning Barbara Douglas, Stella's sister)
1984-1985
7 3
Correspondence to Stella Douglas from friends
circa 1985-1986
7 4
Correspondence from friends and family (letters and cards)
1989-1993
7 5
Correspondence from friends and family (letters and cards)
1989-1993
7 6
Correspondence: Geoffrey Workman
1992

Series III:  Moral Re-Armament, 1939-1978Return to Top

The Moral Re-Armament series consists of correspondence, personal writings, photographs, scrapbooks, Moral Re-Armament publications, address books, and newspaper clippings. The materials date from 1939 to 1978. Items of note include letters and writings that specifically address Douglas' participation in and ideas about the Moral Re-Armament program. These letters and writings include reflections on MRA leaders Frank Buchman and Peter Howard, but the majority include Douglas' ideas about MRA's ideology and practices.

Moral Re-Armament was an international and non-denominational spiritual movement founded by American minister Frank Buchman in 1938. Moral Re-Armament called for a moral reawakening of nations based on the conviction by Buchman and his followers that the root cause of international conflict was essentially a moral problem. Central to the program was a model of personal evangelism that sought to change the worst aspects human nature such as selfishness, pride, bad temper, dishonesty, fear, and greed through an emphasis on the need for absolute honesty, absolute purity, absolute unselfishness, and absolute love. Spreading its message at first through publications and booklets, MRA already had a large following in the United States by 1939 and gained increasing popularity over the next two decades with a number of travelling plays. Starting with You Can Defend America, the plays written and produced by MRA focused on fixing labor and management relations in order to create a strong and unified force behind America's armed forces.

The popularity of You Can Defend America inspired other similar productions in Canada and England, respectively called Pull Together Canada and Battle Together for Britain. By the late 1940s, MRA had established permanent headquarters in Los Angeles, California; Mackinac Island, Michigan; and Switzerland, which MRA used to train and house volunteers, as well as hold conferences with local and national businessmen and leaders. With the end of the war, by the late 1940s MRA had become an increasingly international presence and in the 1950s and early 1960s expanded its global outreach to countries in Africa and Asia. MRA's plays remained a significant part of the movement, and MRA continued to prioritize bringing their productions to labor workers, unions, and management. However, with the death of founder Frank Buchman in 1961, MRA fragmented into divergent factions, and before the end of decade MRA had sold its offices and training centers. The proceeds of these sales went to the men and women who had served as full time volunteers during the height of the movement.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1
Correspondence
Mostly letters from Douglas to family during her time at Mackinac, Michigan.
1945-1947
1 2
Correspondence
Some letters include details of M.R.A traveling across the country to perform musicals and plays.
1945-1947
1 3
Correspondence
Douglas at Mackinac, Michigan.
1945-1947
1 4
Correspondence
1945-1947
1 5
Correspondence
Mostly letters from Douglas to family.
1945-1948
1 6
Correspondence
Includes invitation to a luncheon associated with the M.R.A. production "Ideas Have Legs."
1945-1946
1 7
Contacts and Temporary Residence Card
Residence card presumably for Douglas' time living in France with other M.R.A members.
undated
1 8
Correspondence and Writings
One is labeled "personal history."
undated
1 9
Writings and Correspondence
Includes reflections on M.R.A leader Peter Howard as well as ponderings about human nature and "moral extremism."
1965
1 10
Writings and Correspondence
Aside from family there are letters to Peter and Doe.
1964
1 11
Writings and Correspondence
Letters exclusively to Doe.
1958-1962
1 12
Writings and Correspondence
Letter to the editor of "Time Magazine" about M.R.A.
1956-1961
1 13
Writings and Correspondence
Mostly reflections about M.R.A and Douglas' own ponderings/opinions/critiques of morality, God, etc.
1963-1964
1 14
Writings and Correspondence
More reflections on M.R.A, including one about Frank Buchman (founder).
1949-1975
1 15
Writings and Correspondence
Mostly reflections about M.R.A and Douglas' own ponderings/opinions/critiques of morality, God, etc.
1959-1963
1 16
Writings and Correspondence
Among reflections about M.R.A, includes booklet on Frank Buchman and information about endowment fund for the Frank Buchman Home.
1975
1 17
Writings, Correspondence, and Newspaper Clippings
Includes letters from Caux and a challenge pertaining to a lawsuit in regards to the naming rights of the "Oxford Group" and "M.R.A."
1971
1 18
Writing (drafts)
undated
2 1
Photographs - Moral Re-Armament
Local Salem Chapter.
1947-1954
2 2
Photographs - Moral Re-Armament
Local Salem Chapter.
undated
2 3
Scrapbook
Postcards from Europe.
1950s
2 4
Scrapbook
Moral Re-Armament Public Relations.
1950
2 5
The College of the Good Road
Moral Re-Armament Training Centers publication.
1950
2 6
Out of the Frying Pan
Moral Re-Armament publication.
1946
2 7
Correspondence
1960
2 8
Correspondence
Some photographs and postcards.
undated
2 9
Correspondence
1945-1947
2 10
Correspondence
1954
2 11
Correspondence
Douglas in Mackinac, Michigan with M.R.A., but not all of the correspondence is to or from her.
1947-1948
2 12
Correspondence
Douglas in Mackinac, Michigan.
1946
3 1
Handmade Greeting Cards
Also includes invitation to Coronation Procession (to whom is not specified).
undated
3 2
Correspondence
undated
3 3
Newspaper Clipping
100th Anniversary of Frank Buchman.
1978
3 4
Correspondence
undated
3 5
Photographs - Moral Re-Armament
Mackinac Island, Michigan Conference.
1944
3 6
Photographs - Moral Re-Armament
Mackinac Island, Michigan Conference.
1944
4
Stella Douglas' address books
undated
Folder
9 1
Moral Re-Armament (correspondence to Ruth and Vernon Douglas and informational materials)
1939-1948
9 2
Poems and notes: Moral Re-Armament
1946-1970
7 7
Writings on MRA (Moral Re-Armament)
1947-1951
7 8
Correspondence and personal writings concerning Moral Re-Armament
1948-1975
7 9
Correspondence from Peter and Dӧe Howard (Moral Re-Armament)
1958 January 27 - 1965 April 10

Series IV:  Community activism, 1963-1993Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
7 10
Personal writings, correspondence, and Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition
circa 1963-1988
item
10 1
Film reel: Oregon Shore Coalition - Tom McCall
circa 1967
Folder
7 11
John Ullman (article written by Stella Douglas)
1976-1978
7 12
Folk arts (Oregon Folk Arts Program: notes and writings)
1977-1981
9 3
Susan Banyas: Moving Space, Inc.
circa 1978
7 13
Mary Beebe: PCVA (Portland Center for Visual Arts) (article by Douglas and photographs of Beebe)
1979
7 14
Portland Artists for Nuclear Disarmament (PAND) and nuclear freeze
1983
9 4
Tillamook County Nuclear Task Force (to be included with Nuclear play)
1983-1984
7 15
The Watkins Project (Peter Watkins 1965 film The War Game)
1984
7 16
Forward Motion: Move-A-Thon (includes sketch by Stella Douglas)
1984
9 5
Volunteer possibilities (Portland, Oregon organizations)
circa 1986-1988
7 17
Collage handouts (correspondence and fliers)
circa 1991
9 6
Love Makes a Family (LGBTQ organization)
1993
7 18
Play by Stella Douglas and Linda Janke "Nuclear War" (for PAND: Portland Artists for Nuclear Disarmament)
undated
7 19
Play by Stella Douglas and Linda Janke "Nuclear War" (for PAND: Portland Artists for Nuclear Disarmament)
undated

Series V:  Personal writings, 1939-1993Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
7 20
Stella Douglas diary
1939-1940
7 21
Personal writings about family and friends
1948-1970
7 22
SD (Stella Douglas) writings
1948-1987
7 23
Personal writings (includes observations about family, friends, and Moral Re-Armament)
circa 1949-1960
7 24
Miscellaneous writings
1957-1977
7 25
Personal writings
circa 1960
7 26
Christmas card lists
1970-1979
7 27
My articles (articles by Stella Douglas)
1976-1979
7 28
Sybil Emerson (photographs and articles)
1979
7 29
Miscellaneous (personal writings)
1982-1993
7 30
Personal writings (journal and letters to the editor by Douglas)
circa 1983-1993
7 31
Autobiography
1987 February 20
7 32
Day planners and calendars
1990-1992
7 33
General ideas: thoughts (personal writings by Stella Douglas)
undated
7 34
Scribbles and background material (personal writings and notes)
undated

Series VI:  Family records, 1934-2014Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
9 7
Stella - childhood (birth certificates, announcements, patches, and correspondence concerning Estella (Stella) and Barbara Douglas)
circa 1927-1937
7 35
Personal records and ephemera for Stella Douglas
1934-1991
7 36
Douglas family genealogy documents
2014
7 37
Lists - names (contacts for Stella Douglas)
undated
7 38
Photograph of a friend of Stella Douglas
undated
7 39
Copy of Helen Blumenstiel's journal
undated
item
11 1
Family scrapbook (photographs)
undated

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Art
  • Arts--Northwest, Pacific
  • Art--Study and teaching
  • Moral re-armament
  • Religious institutions
  • Women artists
  • Personal Names :
  • Blumenstiel, Helen
  • Douglas, Barbara
  • Douglas, Ruth
  • Douglas, Vernon A.
  • Corporate Names :
  • Marylhurst University
  • Moral Re-armament (Organization)
  • Oregon Arts Commission
  • Portland Art Association (Portland, Or.). Museum Art School
  • Salem Art Association (Salem, Or.)
  • San Francisco Art Institute
  • Geographical Names :
  • Portland (Or.)
  • Salem (Or.)
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • clippings (information artifacts)
  • correspondence
  • Diaries
  • Photographs