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Federal Poets

 Collection
Identifier: 200

Scope and Content Note

This collection includes issues of the publication “The Federal Poet” from 1968-1993”, flyers advertising the group’s activities, a program of one of their events, correspondence, and clips of the group’s history within the district.

Dates

  • Unknown

Restrictions

Some materials in the collection may be copyrighted.

Historical Note

The Federal Poets is the oldest active poet society in Washington DC. They gather once a month for the purpose of providing constructive criticism to its member’s original poetry in order to improve the work and increase the chance of publication. The Federal Poets achieved nonprofit status in 1944 and is open to any individual regardless of race, gender, religion, or ethnicity. The group published quarterly then semi-annually “The Federal Poet”, a pamphlet consisting of the best of its member’s works. When started in 1944 by Oliver C. Short the group was originally named “Bookfellows”, and their publication was “The Bookfellows”. However, after World War II ended there was an extreme change in membership due to the exodus of Washington DC at the time. The group therefore was renamed “The Federal Poets” and their publication became “The Federal Poet” being published bi-monthly. While originally meeting every two weeks, in the 1950s economic concerns forced the group to decrease the number of meetings to two a month and publish quarterly. After the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. the group felt there were security concerns and stopped all evening meetings only meeting once a month. The Federal Poets continue to meet in order to discuss and publish poetry to this day.

Extent

0.5 Linear feet

Language of Materials

English

Provenance

The Federal Poets of Washington D.C. records were donated to the Library by Freeman Walker who was the archivist for the Federal Poets on March 5, 1993

Related Collection

The Federal Poets records, MS2322, Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University

Processing Procedure

Collection was partially processed previously. General processing continued following regular procedures.

Title
Federal Poets Collection
Subtitle
A Guide to the Federal Poets Collection
Status
Completed
Author
Prepared by Hallie Oines
Date
2021-09
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the The People's Archive, MLK Library Repository

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