The records include correspondence, memoranda, minutes, program files, newsclippings, brochures, administrative records, reports, funding proposals, executive director files, and photographs. They document the agency from its founding and provide evidence of economic and social conditions, political activity, philanthropy and social work in East Harlem over a forty year period, with a strong emphasis on the 1950s and 1960s.
Biographical/historical: James Weldon Johnson Community Centers, Inc. was established in 1948 by a coalition of community service organizations and settlement houses, including Community Service Society and Union Settlement Association, to provide social services to residents of James Weldon Johnson Houses, a New York City Housing Authority project in the East Harlem area of Manhattan. In 1952 the agency became a member of United Neighborhood Houses of New York, Inc., an umbrella organization of settlement houses. By the late 1950s the agency offered programs for all East Harlem residents, including day care, english classes, athletics, theater arts, and a mental health clinic. The expansion of cultural programs was a major focus of the agency's work during the 1960s. Mildred Zucker worked as Executive Director of the settlement from its founding until 1970. During the 1970s and '80s several programs were discontinued or were taken over by other agencies. In the mid-1990s the agency offered day care, Head Start, referral services and a small library.
Content: Organized into five series: Administration, Board of Directors, Fundraising, Programs, Mildred Zucker Files.