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Overview

Biographical Note

Scope and Content

Arrangement

Preferred Citation

Restrictions on Access

Subject Terms

Container List [ + ]

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Guide to the Matthew Walker Clair, Jr. Papers

Prepared by Morris Davis, Manuscript Processor and Mark C. Shenise, Associate Archivist

United Methodist Archives and History Center
General Commission on Archives and History of The United Methodist Church

2/13/2002


Overview of Collection

Record Creator: Clair, Matthew Walker
Title: Matthew Walker Clair, Jr. Papers
Date Span: 1921-1965
Abstract: Matthew Walker Clair, Jr. was a Methodist Church bishop. The collection is made up of material relating to his ministry.
Extent: 1.98 cubic feet
Identification:



Biographical Note

Matthew Walker Clair, Jr. (1890-1968) was a Methodist Church bishop. He received his B.A. from Howard University in 1915, a bachelor of sacred theology from Boston University in 1918, and a doctor of divinity from Gammon Seminary in 1936.

Clair's first appointment was to Bedford, Virginia in 1918, and this was followed by appointments in Martinsburg, West Virginia, in 1919; Roanoke, Virginia, in 1920; Daytona Beach, Florida (1924-1925); and Denver, Colorado (1925-1928). In 1929 he was appointed to the Board of Home Missions. Clair was professor of Practical Theology at Gammon Theological Seminary from 1936 until 1940, when he became pastor at St. Mark Church in Chicago.

During World War I Clair served as a United States Army chaplain. Elected to the episcopacy by the Central Jurisdictional Conference in 1952, he was sent by the Council of Bishops to review and appraise Methodist work in several parts of the world. He visited Africa in 1954, Singapore in 1956, Central and South America in 1958, and Europe in 1961

Clair was a member of several church wide organizations. He also served as president of the Board of Trustees of Philander Smith College. In 1964, after eight years as the bishop in charge of the work of the Central Jurisdiction, Clair retired.


Scope Note

This collection pertains mostly to Clair's service as Bishop of the Central Jurisdiction. Most of the collection consists of correspondence, incoming and outgoing, pertaining to conferences and specific churches within the Central Jurisdiction, reports and minutes. Some of the outgoing correspondence was written by Clair's secretary while the Clairs were traveling in 1961. There also are many copies of correspondence neither to, nor from Clair.

While most of the materials were produced during Clair's his years as bishop, there are a few pieces that date form the 1920's, '30's, and '40's. There is material pertaining to the controversy over the realignment and desegregation of the Central Jurisdiction. The printed matter in the collection includes annual conferences bulletins, books and pamphlets on race issues, and communism in the Methodist Church.


Arrangement

Materials have been arranged in the following manner.

Series: Central West Conference
subseries: Correspondence
subseries: Minutes, Reports, Supporting Documents
Series: College of Bishops
Series: Correspondence to and from Individuals
Series: Council of Bishops
Series: General Files
Series: Lexington Conference
subseries: Correspondence
subseries: Minutes, Reports, Supporting Documents
Series: Local Churches
Series: Photographs
Series: Printed Matter
Series: Southwest Conference

Preferred Citation

When citing material from this collection please use the following format: Direct reference to the item or its file folder, Matthew Walker Clair, Jr., Papers, United Methodist Church Archives - GCAH, Madison, New Jersey. Do not make use of the item's call number as that is not a stable descriptor.


Access Restrictions

One personnel file in the collection is closed until 2035.

Subject Terms

Additional Creators - Personal
Sonnenday, Margaret.
Additional Creators - Corporate
United Women of Missouri.
Subject Names - Corporate
Methodist Church (U.S.). Central Jurisdiction
Methodist Church (U.S.). General Conference
Subject Topics
African American Methodists
African Americans
Race relations-Religious aspects.
Genre
Clippings
Correspondence
Financial records
Minutes
Pamphlets.
Photographs
Publications
Reports
Occupations
Bishop.
Minister


Container List


Series: Central West Conference
Sub-series: Correspondence
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 6 From Clair 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 7 From Clair 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 8 To Clair 1961-1962
1585-5-1: 9 To Clair 1962-1964
1585-5-1: 10 General 1961-1964
Sub-series: Minutes, Reports, Supporting Documents
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 1 Board of Trustees 1955-1960
1585-5-1: 2 Cabinet
1585-5-1: 3 Cabinet 1958-1962
1585-5-1: 4 Cabinet 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 5 Cabinet 1963-1964
1585-5-3: 6 Reports, minutes 1956-1963
1585-5-3: 7 Reports, minutes 1963-1964
1585-5-3: 8 Reports, minutes 1957-1964

Series: College of Bishops
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 39 Mexico City Meeting 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 40 Correspondence, supporting documents 1961-1963

Series: Correspondence to and from Individuals
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 32 A. W. Davis 1963
1585-5-1: 33 D. R. Fletcher 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 34 Thomas Hancock 1949-1961
1585-5-1: 35 P. D. Pembroke 1958-1962
1585-5-1: 36 General Correspondence 1962-1963

Series: Council of Bishops
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 37 Correspondence 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 38 Reports, minutes, supporting documents 1960-1964

Series: General Files
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-2: 1 World Service Fund Reports 1960-1964
1585-5-2: 2 Committee of Five 1961-1963
1585-5-2: 3 Invitations: includes correspondence 1957-1964
1585-5-2: 4 Travel 1961-1963
1585-5-2: 5 Long Range Planning Committee; reports, printed matter 1957-1965
1585-5-2: 6 Missouri Council of Churches: Correspondence, reports, minutes 1962-1965
1585-5-2: 7 Ministerial transfers 1962-1964
1585-5-2: 8 Correspondence from abroad; includes letters from Clair's wife, Ethel, and Clair's secretary 1961
1585-5-2: 9 Pastor's School: minutes, correspondence, brochure 1962-1963
1585-5-2: 10 Miscellaneous sermons 1944-1964
1585-5-2: 12 Miscellaneous reports 1962-1964

Series: Lexington Conference
Sub-series: Correspondence
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 11 General 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 12 From Clair 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 13 From Clair 1961-1964
1585-5-1: 14 To Clair 1961-1963
1585-5-1: 15 To Clair 1963-1964
Sub-series: Minutes, Reports, Supporting Documents
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 16 Cabinet 1953-1964
1585-5-1: 17 Cabinet 1961-1962
1585-5-1: 18 Cabinet 1961-1962
1585-5-1: 19 Cabinet 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 20 Cabinet 1963-1964

Series: Local Churches
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 23 Fort Wayne, Indiana 1952-1962
1585-5-1: 24 Bethel Church 1956-1965
1585-5-1: 25 St. Louis Churches 1963
1585-5-1: 26 Calvary Church, Cincinnati, Ohio 1961-1962
1585-5-1: 27 Grace Church, Springfield, Illinois 1958-1964
1585-5-1: 28 Saulters Church, Terre Haute, Indiana 1958-1964
1585-5-1: 29 Wesley Chapel, St. Louis, Missouri 1963-1964
1585-5-1: 30 Whitely Church, Muncie, Indiana 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 31 York Street Church, Cincinnati, Ohio 1962-1963

Series: Photographs
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-3: 9 Various; Pastor's School, Pembroke, and Philander Smith; others unidentified 1935-1936

Series: Printed Matter
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-2: 13 Publications 1921-1934
1585-5-3: 1 Publications 1939-1944
1585-5-3: 2 Publications 1945-1947
1585-5-3: 3 Publications 1948-1950
1585-5-3: 4 Publications 1952-1964
1585-5-3: 5 Publications

Series: Southwest Conference
Call Number Folder Title Date(s)
1585-5-1: 21 Correspondence 1962-1963
1585-5-1: 22 Minutes, reports, supporting documents, and some printed material 1962-1963