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Guide to the Lini M. De Vries Papers ALBA.272

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
10th Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2630
tamiment.wagner@nyu.edu


Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Kelli Piotrowski

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on July 18, 2017
English

Descriptive Summary

Creator: De Vries, Lini M.
Title: Lini M. De Vries Papers
Dates [inclusive]: 1940s-2009 (bulk 1940s-1960s)
Abstract: Lini M. De Vries (1905-1982) was a nurse, public health administrator, author and educator who served as a nurse with the Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy (AMB) during the Spanish Civil War. The collection contains correspondence, clippings, a literary draft, and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) files obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Quantity: 0.5 Linear Feet  (1 box)
Language: Materials are in English and Spanish.
Call Phrase: ALBA.272

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Historical/Biographical Note

Lini M. De Vries (1905-1982) was born Lena Moerkerk on July 25, 1905, in Prospect Park, New Jersey, the eldest of two daughters of Elisabeth Moerkerk, a Dutch immigrant. Her biological father was Bernard Pollack, but she was raised by Leonard Moerkerk, her mother's husband. After completing grammar school, De Vries worked in the silk and cotton mills of Paterson, New Jersey.

De Vries, sometimes known as "Lee," graduated in 1928 from the New Rochelle Hospital Training School for Nurses. That same year she married Wilbur Fuhr, with whom she had a daughter, Mary Lee, in 1930. Fuhr died in January 1931. De Vries earned a high school diploma in 1932 while employed as a nurse and administrator with the Port Chester Visiting Nurse Association. in 1933, she enrolled at Teachers College, Columbia University, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in public health and graduating in 1943. In the early 1930s she worked as a social worker and nurse at the Hospital for Joint Diseases and the Margaret Sanger birth control clinic. In 1935, De Vries joined the Communist Party.

De Vries served as a volunteer nurse with the Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy, arriving in Spain in January 1937 with the first American Medical Unit, under the direction of Edward K. Barsky and Fredericka I. Martin. Upon her return to the United States several months later, she went on a national speaking tour to raise funds for the anti-fascist cause. Thereafter, she worked as a nurse and public health educator, holding positions with the San Miguel County Public Health Demonstration Unit in New Mexico, the Department of Public Health in Puerto Rico, and the Agricultural Workers Health and Medical Association of Southern California. In 1944, De Vries married Louis Clyde Stoumen with whom she had a daughter, Toby. They divorced in 1948.

Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, De Vries was monitored by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) due to her Communist affiliations. Unable to obtain employment due to blacklisting, she relocated to Mexico in 1949 where she lived for the remainder of her life working as a public health advocate and educator. De Vries was the director of health education for the Comisión del Papaloapan serving the indigenous communities in the Papaloapan River Valley in the states of Oaxaca and Veracruz. She taught public health at the Universidad Veracruzana in Jalepa, Veracruz, and established summer schools for foreign students there and at the Universidad de Morelos in Cuernavaca. In 1962, De Vries became a Mexican citizen by presidential decree (her American citizenship was withdrawn in 1963.)

De Vries wrote several autobiographical works including El Sótano (1959);  España 1937: Memoria (1965);  The People of the Mountains: Health Education among the Indian Communities in Oaxaca, Mexico (1969);  Please, God, Take Care of the Mule (1972); and  Up from the Cellar (1979).

Lini De Vries died on March 27, 1982, in Ridgewood, New Jersey.

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Scope and Content Note

The collection contains a draft of The People of the Mountains: Health Education among Indian Communities in Oaxaca, Mexico, published in 1969 by Centro Intercultural de Documentacion, Cuernavaca, Mexico. Also included are copies of Federal Bureau of Investigation files on De Vries and the related Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests submitted to the FBI by her daughter, Mary Lee Baranger, from 1997 to 1999. Other correspondence includes a letter written by Fredericka I. Martin to  The Volunteer regarding De Vries and her work with the American Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy (AMB), as well as several copyright permission requests addressed to Mary Lee Baranger regarding publications by De Vries. There are biographical files, largely compiled by Baranger; press clippings of book reviews and obituaries relating to De Vries, and an incomplete copy of a proposal for a BA honors thesis submitted by Paul Margolis to Bard College; a copy of the thesis, entitled "Dr. Pike's Spanish War," can be found the Tamiment Library's ALBA Vertical File, "Dr. William Pike."

Note to Researcher: An extensive collection of Lini De Vries' papers are held at the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University.

Arrangement

Folders are arranged alphabetically. The collection is organized into one series:

Missing Title

  1. Series I: Subject Files, 1940s-2009.

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • Martin, Fredericka I.

Document Type

  • Clippings (information artifacts)
  • Manuscripts (document genre)
  • Biography files.
  • Correspondence.
  • Federal government records.

Subject Organizations

  • Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy

Subject Topics

  • Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939.
  • Public health nursing -- Mexico.
  • Public health nurses.

Subject Places

  • Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939 -- Women.
  • Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939 -- Personal narratives.
  • Spain |x History |y Civil War, 1936-1939 |x Participation, Female.
  • Oaxaca de Juárez (Mexico)
  • Papaloapan River Valley (Mexico)
  • Mexico |x Rural conditions.
  • Mexico. Comisión del Papaloapan.
  • Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939 -- Participation, American.
  • Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939 -- Hospitals.

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Administrative Information

Provenance

Donated by Mary Lee Baranger, Lini De Vries' daughter, 2008.

Access Restrictions

Materials are open to researchers. Please contact the Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives for more information and to schedule an appointment, tamiment.wagner@nyu.edu or 212-998-2630.

Use Restrictions

Copyright (or related rights to publicity and privacy) for materials in this collection was not transferred to New York University. Permission to use materials must be secured from the copyright holder. For more information, please contact the Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, tamiment.wagner@nyu.edu or 212-998-2630.

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date; Collection name; Collection number; box number; folder number;
Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012, New York University Libraries.

Related Material at the Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

ALBA collections at the Tamiment Library

Fredericka Martin Papers (ALBA 001)

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Container List

Series I: Subject Files, 1940s-2009.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Biographical Files
1940s, 1960s, 2008-2009
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Book Reviews (clippings)
1959, 2007
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Certificate of Death
Mar 27, 1982
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Correspondence: Copyright Permission Requests
1987, 1995
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Correspondence: Fredericka I. Martin to The Volunteer
May 17, 1982
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Correspondence: Freedom of Information Act Requests
1997-1999
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Freedom of Information Act Files
1940s-1970s
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Literary Manuscript: Draft of The People of the Mountains: Health Education among Indian Communities in Oaxaca, Mexico
Oct 21, 1968
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Margolis, Paul: "Dr. Pike's Spanish War," Proposal Submitted to Bard College [incomplete]
Apr 1976
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Obituaries (clippings)
1982

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