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Seattle Women Act for Peace photograph collection, 1945-1998

Overview of the Collection

Seattle Women Act for Peace
Seattle Women Act for Peace photograph collection
1945-1998 (inclusive)
265 photographs, 113 negatives, 20 color slides (1 box)
Collection Number
Visual Materials Collections
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 206-543-1929
Fax: 206-543-1931
Access Restrictions

The collection is open to the public.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Anci Koppel cofounded Seattle Women Act for Peace, and remained a vital part of the organization until her death in July of 2000. She was born Anci Rosenfeld in Austria in 1907 and emigrated to the United States in 1931 with her husband Charles Koppel. The Koppels ran a small tobacco and pipe wholesale business, which Anci continued after her husband died in 1954. Koppel's career as a peace activist began in 1938, when she protested against the sale of scrap metal to Japan for fear that it could be used for weaponry. She was arrested in 1978 for climbing the fence at the Bangor Naval Base in protest against Trident submarines. Koppel attended many conferences dedicated to world peace, including the 1962 World Conference Against A and H Bombs in Tokyo, Japan, the 1966 World Conference for Children in Stockholm, Sweden, and the 1977 World Peace Council in Warsaw, Poland. She also traveled to Cuba and Nicaragua. Not only did Koppel travel and protest, she also wrote many letters to elected local and national officials and to local newspaper editors. In 1981, the YMCA of Greater Seattle gave her its Milnor Roberts International Understanding Award. In the 1990s, Koppel became involved in the global movements to support Mumia Abu Jamal, a Pennsylvania journalist convicted of murder, and to oppose the World Trade Organization. On the topic of the WTO protests, Koppel said, "We built a grand coalition that spans the movement for peace, equality and economic justice, one that is powerful enough to make our voices heard by the WTO officials. Now we have to keep things together and make our elected officials stop and listen. They are the ones that have to make the changes. Our work isn't finished." She was a tireless activist until the end of her life, working during her last week to oppose the inclusion of the Trident nuclear submarine in the Seattle Seafair celebration.

Historical BackgroundReturn to Top

Seattle Women Act for Peace (SWAP) is an affiliate group of Women Strike for Peace (WSP). WSP was founded by Bella Abzug and Dagmar Wilson after an international protest against the arms race and atmospheric nuclear testing conducted by the United States and the USSR. On November 1, 1961, women around the world, including 1500 in Washington D.C., were roused to protest out of concern for children's health, which was at great risk due to radiation's effect on milk. SWAP was formed shortly after WSP by a group of peace activists in Seattle, including Rosemary Brodie, Anci Koppel, and Thorun Robel. The slogan often used on SWAP stationery declared "End the Arms Race - Not the Human Race." In their first year, they held a demonstration against nuclear testing during President John F. Kennedy's visit to commemorate the University of Washington's centennial anniversary. After Kennedy signed the 1963 Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty, his motivation to sign was credited partly to WSP and other women's peace organizations. In 1969, SWAP lobbied in Olympia against the proposed antiballistic missile system. Over the decades, SWAP was involved in many areas of peace and justice work, including the campaign for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, the 1978 protests at the Trident submarine base, the celebration of the 1989 International Year of the Child, and the 1999 protests against the World Trade Organization meetings in Seattle. SWAP produced a monthly newsletter, edited by Thorun Robel, and launched letter writing campaigns to urge government officials to work for peace. SWAP has also participated in world peace conferences such as the 1973 World Congress for Peace in Moscow.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Images document SWAP's history through local and national pacifist protests and conferences. These include the World Conference Against A and H Bombs in Tokyo (1962), Hiroshima Day at the Peace Arch at the border between Washington State and British Columbia, Canada (1968), the American Peace Delegation to the Soviet Union (1968), the San Francisco Peace March (1969), an anti-nuclear protest by the Stroller Brigade at Green Lake, Seattle (1986), SWAP's 31st Anniversary celebration (1992), a President Clinton protest rally (1993), and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Celebration (1996). Also includes images of Anci Koppel, Thorun Robel, friends, and other SWAP members. Photographs of other individuals include Barbara and Lyle Mercer, Vietnam draft resistor Rick Best, Claire Shallit, and Trudy Holzinger. A few photographs document the Vietnam conflict, the Guatemala earthquake of 1976, and Dr. Spock's visit to Seattle in 1969. Slides capture an historical overview of SWAP history through marches and conferences. Several slides depict the Women Strike for Peace's Star Wars campaign.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Restrictions might exist on reproduction, quotation, or publication. Contact the repository for details.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top


SWAP EventsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
1960s SWAP Meeting
3 color prints
Early SWAP meeting in house, featuring Dagmar Wilson and Anci Koppel.
circa 1960s
SWAP Conference
1 black and white print
Four women sitting together in room at SWAP conference.
circa 1960s-1970s
Informal SWAP Party
11 color prints
SWAP members at a home.
SWAP Members Advocating for Stockholm Peace Appeal
3 color prints, 7 color negatives
SWAP members wearing Sign Stockholm Peace Appeal tops.
Women Strike for Peace - Star Wars Campaign
6 color slides
SWAP presentation focusing on history of arms control agreements, Pentagon spending, ballistic missile systems, and defense systems.
SWAP 31st Anniversary at Bloedel Hall
17 color prints
SWAP's 31st Anniversary celebration at Bloedel Hall featuring organization members including Anci Koppel, Rosemary Brodie, and Thorun Robel.
Mother's Peace Group Event
8 color prints, 8 color negatives
Mother's Peace Group showing signs supporting their causes.
Seattle Progressive Coalition (SPC) Concert
14 color slides
1998 Seattle Progressive Coalition gathering, including images of participants, protest signs, and poster boards.

National and International ConferencesReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
World Conference Against A and H Bombs - Tokyo, Japan
5 black and white prints, 3 contact sheets
Anci Koppel's trip to Tokyo, Japan for the World Conference Against A and H Bombs in 1962.
Grassroots Assembly of Women
2 black and white prints
Women being interviewed in Vietnam. Photographs came from original folder titled Grassroots Assembly of Women 1967-1973, n.d.
American Peace Delegation to the Soviet Union
6 color prints
Photographs of the Moscow cityscape, including Kremlin, Saint Basil's Cathedral, and Smolensk, and one group photograph of delegation.
Montreal Conference - Marcie Hall
2 color prints
Men and women speaking at the 1968 Montreal Conference.
Vancouver Indochinese Women's Conference
11 color prints, 1 black and white print
Women from Southeast Asia conducting a radio interview and meeting with SWAP members in Vancouver, B.C. for the Vancouver Indochinese Women's Conference. Most of the photographs were taken in 1969, but the main event occurred in April of 1971.
1969, 1971
World Peace Council Meeting - Vancouver, BC
4 color prints
Participants of the 1970 Vancouver World Peace Council meeting, including WPC Secretary General Romesh Chandra, Indian diplomat V.K. Krishna Menon, and members of the Vietnamese delegation.
Women's International Strike for Peace Conference - Santa Barbara, California
1 color print
Hilda Schwartz sitting in a room at the Women's International Strike for Peace Conference in Santa Barbara, California.
World Congress of Peace Forces - Moscow, USSR
6 black and white prints
Speakers and delegates at the 1973 World Congress of Peace Forces in Moscow, including group of Russian Orthodox priests.
Washington State Conference for Women - Ellensburg, WA
4 color prints, 12 color negatives, 12 black and white negatives
SWAP Peace Booth and conference participants at 1977 Washington State Conference for Women in Ellensburg, inspired by the United Nations designation of 1975 as International Women's Year.
National Women's Conference - Houston, Texas
2 black and white prints
Women behind the Indian Health Services table, and women eating lunch.
Event, Possibly in Canada
5 color prints
Group photographs of SWAP members and supporters, including Anci Koppel, in Canada, possibly for a conference.
circa 1970s

SWAP Demonstrations and CelebrationsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Hiroshima Day Vietnam War Protest at Peace Arch Park - Blaine, WA
6 color prints
1966 and 1968 Hiroshima Day protests at Peace Arch Park at the border between Canada and the United States, featuring SWAP members, including Anci Koppel, and woman playing a koto.
1966, 1968
Jeanette Rankin Brigade March - Washington, D.C.
2 color prints
Large group of women gathering outside the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.
Strike for Peace Event
2 color prints
Men and women gathering around Strike for Peace table at outdoor event.
San Francisco Peace March
6 color prints
Protestors gathering in park and demonstrating through the streets of San Francisco. Caption written on one photograph: 2 Buses were chartered.
Children Welcome Dr. Spock - Westlake Mall, Seattle, WA
7 color prints
Groups of children and parents greeting pediatrician and Vietnam War activist Dr. Spock at Westlake Mall in downtown Seattle, WA.
Peace Rally - Seattle, WA
1 color print
Woman with bag on her head with text: Mothers say Stop the War in Vietnam Women Strike for Peace.
Rick Best Trial - Spokane, WA
3 black and white prints, 1 letter
Anci Koppel and protestors demonstrating at the trial of draft resister Rick Best. Also includes letter written by Rick Best to the U.S. Selective Service Board in 1970 detailing his opposition to the draft and refusal to serve in the military.
Hiroshima Day Commemoration - Seattle Center, Seattle, WA
3 black and white prints
Women dancing and playing music on stage at Hiroshima Day Commemoration at Seattle Center in 1971.
Women Strike for Peace Gathering at Vietnam Memorial
1 black and white print
Women Strike for Peace (WSP) members gathering at Vietnam Memorial wall.
circa 1970s
Armistice Day Event - Portland, OR
7 color prints
Protesters demonstrating with signs and large puppets in front of U.S. Court House and through the streets of Portland, Oregon.
circa 1970s-1980s
Olympia Welfare Lobby
3 color prints
Two photographs of people gathering on outside in Olympia, WA, one photograph of Gene Robel holding sign.
Anti-Trident Protest of USS Ohio
1 color print
Protestors aboardPacific PeacemakerandSS Plowshares.
Anti-Nuclear Stroller Brigade Protest - Green Lake, Seattle, WA
2 black and white prints, 1 newspaper clipping (reproduction)
Protestors holding signs and pushing strollers through Green Lake in Seattle, WA to protest nuclear testing.
Peace Demonstration at Peace Arch State Park - Blaine, WA
4 black and white prints
SWAP and Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) members protesting at Peace Arch State Park in Blaine, WA.
International Women's Day Celebration
9 color prints, 36 negatives
SWAP members posing in front of International Women's Day banner, and women performing and speaking at podium..
SWAP Farmers Market Stand
5 color prints
SWAP members working at farmers market stand with signs, pamphlets, and donation forms.
75th Anniversary of Women's Suffrage Conference and March
7 color prints
League of Women Voters of Seattle and SWAP holding signs and banners celebrating 75 years of women's suffrage.
Nuclear Weapons Testing Protest
8 color prints
Anci Koppel and other SWAP members holding protest signs and large paper cranes in downtown Seattle.
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Celebration
32 color prints, 34 color negatives
SWAP members, Physicians for Social Responsibility members, Greenpeace supporters, and others gathering to celebrate the passage of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Photographs depict Anci Koppel and friends singing, women playing drums, and people holding activist signs.
Stop Nuclear Testing Protest
12 color prints, 1 black and white print, 4 color negatives
Anci Koppel, Thorun Robel, and other SWAP members anti-nuclear testing signs in residential neighborhood. Also includes photographs of SWAP members being interviewed.
circa 1990s
University Street Fair - Abolition of Nuclear Weapons Petition
1 color print
Young boy signing Abolition of Nuclear Weapons petition at University Street Fair in Seattle, WA.
circa 1990s
SWAP Military Spending Protest
6 color prints
SWAP members speaking and holding banners protesting military spending.
circa 1990s
Hortense Allende Reception
1 color print, 3 black and white prints, 1 contact sheet
Hortense Allende, wife of Salvador Allende, speaking at the Langston Hughes Center in Seattle, WA.
Nuclear Testing Protest, Possibly in Nevada
2 color prints
Large group of people walking across bridge holding signs, and one photograph of a desert tortoise habitat sign.
circa 1980s-1990s

Guatemala EarthquakeReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Guatemala Earthquake
2 black and white prints
Young woman walking through rubble and people standing in front of the ruins of a colonial church in Joyabaj, Guatemala.
Container(s) Description Dates
Trudy Holzinger
1 black and white print, 1 color print, biographical materials, correspondence
Portrait of Trudy Holzinger as a young woman and one group photograph, letter about Trudy Holzinger from Hazel Wolf to Trudy's friends, and biographical information.
circa 1930s, 1988
R. Lyle and Barbara Mercer
1 black and white print, 1 flyer
Photograph of R. Lyle and Barbara Mercer in Berlin in 1945, flyer invitation to a surprise celebration of Barbara in Seattle, 1985.
1945, 1985
Claire Shallit
1 color print, 1 newspaper clipping (reproduction)
Photograph of Claire Shallit at the piano in 1996, reproduction of Claire's obituary from the newspaper in 1998.
Anci Koppel and Friends
11 color prints, 1 black and white print
Photographs of Anci Koppel with friends, acquaintances, and fellow SWAP members.
Thorun Robel
2 colors prints
Group photographs with Thorun Robel.
circa 1970s-1990s

Various Demonstrations, circa 1960s-1990sReturn to Top

Container(s): Box-folder 1/50

10 color prints, 5 black and white prints

Photographs of various demonstrations in Seattle, Washington, D.C., and other locations.

Various Groups, circa 1960s-1990sReturn to Top

Container(s): Box-folder 1/51

1 color print, 2 black and white prints

Group photographs of unidentified individuals. One photograph has written on verso: Soviet delegation.