Request Material





Clarence L. Jordan papers

Clarence L. Jordan papers

Descriptive Summary

Title: Clarence L. Jordan papers
Creator: Jordan, Clarence
Inclusive Dates: 1920-1970
Language: English
Extent: 13.6 Linear Feet (32 document boxes, 1 half box, 3 oversized folders A, 3 oversized folders B)
Collection Number: ms756
Repository: Hargrett Library

Collection Description

Historical Note

Clarence Jordan (1912-1969), a white Southern Baptist minister, cofounded Koinonia Farm in Sumter County and translated many New Testament books into the "Cotton Patch" versions, colloquial interpretations set in the American South. Jordan committed his ministry to racial reconciliation and economic justice. A gifted preacher and teacher, he was a popular and frequent speaker at progressive religious gatherings across the United States from the 1940s through the 1960s.

Koinonia was the Christian farm community that Jordan and his wife Florence co-founded in 1942. It is considered to be the birthplace of Habitat for Humanity, among other charities.

For more information, see the article "Clarence Jordan (1912-1969)" in the New Georgia Encyclopedia.

Scope and Content

The collection consists of letters, pictures, clippings, manuscripts, programs, printed materials, notes, file cards, and other materials concerning the life, career, and writings of the late Dr. Clarence Leonard Jordan, founder of Koinonia Farms, an agricultural missionary enterprise, and inter-racial community. The early letters, largely from Clarence Jordan to his mother, are most revealing as to the character of the man. The many clippings and printed materials about Clarence Jordan and Koinonia also give insight into the community life, and the programs indicate the wide demand for Dr. Jordan as a speaker. The collection also includes the manuscripts, both written and typed, with annotations and/or corrections and revisions of many of Dr. Jordan's writings, particularly the Cotton Patch versions of the Gospels.

The collection is arranged into folders but for the most part it has been described at container level.

Organization and Arrangement

Arranged into five series: Series 1. Correspondence; Series 2. Personal papers and manuscripts; Series 3. Koinonia; Series 4. General; and Series 5. Oversized material.


Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Clarence L. Jordan papers, ms756, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared on: 2010 June 17.


Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Apocryphal Gospels.
Clippings (information artifacts)
Correspondence.
Jordan, Clarence -- Correspondence
Koinonia Farm -- History
Manuscripts (documents)
Missionaries -- Georgia -- Americus.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

 

Correspondence

boxfolder
11Correspondence , 1927
12Correspondence , 1928
13Correspondence , 1929
14Correspondence , 1930
15Correspondence , 1931
16Correspondence , 1932
17Correspondence , 1933
18Correspondence , 1934
19Correspondence , 1935
110Correspondence , 1936
111Correspondence , 1939 January -1940 December
Includes letters regarding the "Baptist Fellowship Center" for Negroes, an initiative to form relationships with black Christians in Lousiville, KY, through a collaborative training institute. Also includes correspondence to and from individuals involved in the Southern Baptist Convention.
112Correspondence , 1941 January - April
113Correspondence , 1941 May - August
114Correspondence , 1941 September - December
boxfolder
21Correspondence , 1942 January - February
correspondence includes mention of World War II or the "outbreak of the war"
22Correspondence , 1942 March - July
includes information about starting Koinonia Farm after WWII
23Correspondence , 1942 August - December
24Correspondence , 1943 January - April
25Correspondence , 1943 May - September
26Correspondence , 1943 October - December
27Correspondence , 1944
28Correspondence , 1945
29Correspondence , 1946
210Correspondence , 1947
211Correspondence , 1948
212Correspondence , 1949
213Correspondence , 1950
214Correspondence , 1951
215Correspondence , 1952
216Correspondence , 1953
boxfolder
31Correspondence , 1954
32Correspondence, 1955 January-February
33Correspondence , 1955 March - August
includes information within correspondence about desegregating churches and church related activities (Bible camps, VBS, etc.)
34Correspondence , 1955 September - December
35Correspondence , 1956 Janurary - February
36Correspondence , 1956 March - May
Includes Carol Smith letter concerning Fort Valley (HBCU) students visiting not yet integrated Mercer
Includes letter from John Swomley concerning the Montgomery Bus Boycott and how white religious leaders should lend their support to Black pastors facing jail time for organizing the boycott
37Correspondence , 1956 June - September
Includes letters concerning an integrated summer camp at Koinonia Farm
38Correspondence , 1956 October - November
39Correspondence , 1956 December
Includes letter to President Eisenhower from E.E. Opdyke regarding the financial situation at Koinonia Farm
boxfolder
41Correspondence , 1957 January
includes note from January 12th about Koinonia being mentioned in Philadelphia's African American newspapers
42Correspondence , 1957 February
43Correspondence , 1957 February II
44Correspondence , 1957 March
45Correspondence , 1957 March II
46Correspondence , 1957 April
47Correspondence , 1957 May
48Correspondence , 1957 June
49Correspondence , 1957 July
410Correspondence , 1957 August
411Correspondence , 1957 September
412Correspondence , 1957 October
413Correspondence , 1957 November
414Correspondence , 1957 December
boxfolder
51Correspondence , 1958 January - March
Includes correspondence from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Dexter Avenue Baptist Church letterhead
Includes correspondence from S. Ralph Harlow (NAACP)
52Correspondence , 1958 April - October
Includes correspondence from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Includes correspondence from S. Ralph Harlow (NAACP)
53Correspondence , 1958 November - December
54Correspondence , 1959 January - February
includes correspondence discussing abolishing the death penalty
55Correspondence , 1959 March - May
56Correspondence , 1959 June - July
includes correspondence discussing the role of segregation in the U.S. South
57Correspondence , 1959 August - December
boxfolder
61Correspondence , 1960 January - May
62Correspondence , 1960 June - December
63Correspondence , 1961 January - May
Includes letters mentioning correspondence with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Vincent Harding
Includes correspondence discussing local businesses and their discrimination against Koinonia Farms, mostly by banks and suppliers
Includes correspondence with Eleanor Roosevelt in regards to supplier discrimination against Koinonia Farm
64Correspondence , 1961 June - September
65Correspondence , 1961 October - December
66Correspondence , 1963
67Correspondence , 1963 January - July
Includes correspondence with William Porter, Thomas Murray, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)
68Correspondence , 1963 August - December
Includes correspondence with the Highlander Center (currently the Highlander Research and Education Center) in TN.
69Correspondence , 1964 January - May
Includes correspondence from John Papworth during his stay in Albanay Jail, with additional correspondence concerning civil rights unrest in Albany, GA, with support from related landmark cases such as Edwards v South Carolina.
610Correspondence , 1964 June - December
Includes correspondence with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)
611Correspondence , 1965 January - May
612Correspondence , 1965 June - December
boxfolder
71Correspondence , 1966 January - May
72Correspondence , 1966 June - December
73Correspondence , 1967 January - June
Includes correspondence from Koinonia Records regarding Clarence Jordan's narration of Biblical parables
74Correspondence , 1967 July - December
75Correspondence , 1968 January - May
76Correspondence , 1968 June - August
77Correspondence , 1968 September - December
boxfolder
81Correspondence , 1969 January - May
Includes correspondence from Vincent Harding of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library Project (an element of what would become known as the King Center in Atlanta).
Includes correspondence from the office of Coretta Scott King announcing the establishment of the King Center in Atlanta
82Correspondence , 1969 June - December
83Correspondence , 1970
84Correspondence , 1971
85Correspondence , 1972
86Correspondence , 1973
87Correspondence , no date
88Correspondence , no date
89Correspondence , no date
Includes correspondence from young men drafted to serve in the US military around the time of the Vietnam War
810Correspondence , no date
 

Personal Papers and Manuscripts

box
9Biographical Note ( 7 folder(s) )
box
10Speaking Engagements (programs, schedules, etc.), (1940-1963) ( 18 folder(s) )
box
11Cotton Patch Gospels ( 21 folder(s) )
box
12Cotton Patch Gospels ( 12 folder(s) )
box
13Lessons ( 31 folder(s) )
box
14Lessons ( 18 folder(s) )
box
15Printed material by and about Clarence Jordan ( 8 folder(s) )
15Printed material by Jan Jordan ( 8 folder(s) )
box
16Notes ( 6 folder(s) )
box
17School and camp notebook kept by Clarence Jordan, (1920's-1950's) ( 7 folder(s) )
box
18School Textbooks
18Diary, (1943)
18Report to the People Script, (1956)
18Speech by Dallas Lee
 

Koinonia

box
19General Information
19Newsletters
box
19BNew Jersey
19BCamp
19BPrinted Material
boxfolder
201Accounts
202Insurance
203Legal Documents
204Guest Lists
205Mailing Lists
box
21Pictures
21Scrapbooks
 

General

box
22Intentional Communities ( 21 folder(s) )
box
23Non-violence ( 7 folder(s) )
box
24Race Relations/Civil Rights
24Human Relations
24Economics
box
25Misc. Writings not by Clarence Jordan ( 8 folder(s) )
box
26Printed Material (misc.) ( 7 folder(s) )
box
27Printed Material (misc.) ( 7 folder(s) )
box
28Newspaper Clippings, (1929-1964) ( 25 folder(s) )
box
29Newspaper Clippings, (1965-1974) (n.d.) ( 13 folder(s) )
box
30Misc. ( 18 folder(s) )
box
31Duplicates (Printed) ( 5 folder(s) )
box
32Duplicates ( 7 folder(s) )
 

Oversized material

oversized_folder
1A2 sketches, 1 photograph of Jordan
oversized_folder
2A2 photographs with truck, train
oversized_folder
3BBlowup image of Jordan (1 of 2)
oversized_folder
4BBlowup image of Jordan (2 of 2)
oversized_folder
5BMisc. posters, district map
oversized_folder
6A2 vinyl records of Clarence Jordan lectures- The Great Banquet and Metamorphosis