Esther Mechler Papers 1974-2004

Creator
Mechler, Esther
Size
7.27 linear feet
Location

For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Special Collections Research Center Reference Staff.

Call number
MC 00322

The Esther Mechler Papers consists of papers and artifacts documenting Mechler's interest and participation in the animal rights/animal welfare movement. It includes writings by individuals and organizations, as well as published volumes and periodicals. Correspondence about animal or animal-rights related issues and the background work for two of Mechler's animal-rights projects are also present, as well as audio-visual materials and memorabilia from various animal rights/animal welfare groups and events.

Esther Mechler has been involved with the animal rights/animal welfare movement since the 1970s. An instrumental figure in several organizations, she was a founding member of both the Fairfield County, Connecticut branch of Friends of the Animals, and the national Animal Rights Network. Mechler worked to create and distribute animal protection related audio-visual materials and has also been particularly active in the area of preventing pet overpopulation. In 1990 she founded SPAY/USA, a national referral service for low-cost spay/neutering. Mechler is currently the co-editor of the magazine Paws to Think.

Biographical/historical note

Esther Rosenthal Mechler attended Bates College, where she spent her junior year abroad in Geneva studying with psychologist Jean Piaget. She received her Bachelor's Degree in 1964 and her Master's and Sixth Year degrees in education from The University of Rochester. She began her career in education, but has been involved with the animal rights/animal welfare movement since the 1970s. She started the Marian Rosenthal Koch fund with her parents. Named for Mechler's sister, the goal of the fund was to provide money for animal rights projects. Mechler was an instrumental figure in several organizations. Among her distinctions are serving as co-founder of Animal Rights Hawaii in the late 1970s and helping establish Animal Advocates in Massachusetts. A founding member of the Fairfield County, Connecticut branch of Friends of the Animals, she left that group and became a founding member of the Animal Rights Network in 1979. She served as an officer in that organization until her resignation in 1982. In the 1980s, Mechler worked to create newsletters for teachers and filmstrips for students. She started Focus on Animals to create, collect, and disseminate animal protection related audio-visual materials. Since this time, she has also co-produced two animal welfare videos.

Mechler has been particularly active in the prevention of pet overpopulation. In 1990 she founded SPAY/USA, a national referral service for low-cost spay/neutering. Originally a program of the Marion Rosenthal Koch Fund, SPAY/USA began with one vet. In 1993 the program was transferred to the direction of the North Shore Animal League International, now known as The Pet Savers Foundation. As of 2005, it is considered to be the largest spay/neuter advocacy and referral program in the world, with spay/neuter programs and clinics in 1000 locations nationwide and about 8,000 veterinarians in the network. Mechler also worked to spread her message on an international level. Several international organizations have been started based on her SPAY/USA model, including Spay/Israel, Spay/Costa Rica, and Spay/Panama, as well as various programs in Europe and Asia. For her work, Mechler won the first Geraldine R. Dodge Award for Humane Ethics in Action in 1995.

Esther Mechler is currently the co-editor of Paws to Think, the magazine of The Pet Savers Foundation. She regularly speaks at seminars and conferences around the world, and hosts a yearly SPAY/USA conference.

Scope/content

The Esther Mechler Papers contains papers, audio-visual materials, and artifacts documenting Mechler's interest and participation in the animal rights movement. The Writings include published volumes, periodical publications, and writings by organizations and individuals on animal rights related topics, as well as article clippings on a variety of subjects. The Correspondence series consists of letters and notes to and from publications, political figures, fellow activists, or friends. The majority are about animal or animal-rights related issues. Two of Mechler's projects, "Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Film Strip and the 1986-1987 Wildlife Calendars, are the subjects of the Projects series. The Audio-Visual Materials include photographs, slides, films, and a cassette tape. The Memorabilia series contains an assortment of artifacts from various animal rights/animal welfare groups and events. The Unprocessed Material include 1980-1984 issues of the "Unicorn" from the animal rights newspaper.

The collection includes materials dating from 1974 to 2004, but the bulk of the collection dates from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s. For this reason, the collection contains very few materials concerning Mechler's more recent work or the SPAY/USA organization.

Physical description

14 archival boxes, 1 halfbox, and 1 oversized folder, 1 flatbox

Arrangement

The collection is arranged in five series: Correspondence, Writings, Projects, Audio-Visual Materials, and Memorabilia.

Use of these materials

The nature of the NCSU Libraries' Special Collections means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The NCSU Libraries claims only physical ownership of most Special Collections materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Esther Mechler Papers, MC 00322, Special Collections Research Center, North Carolina State University Libraries, Raleigh, NC

Related material

Source of acquisition

Received in a series of donations from Esther Mechler in June 2002, November 2003, February 2004, and April 2005; June 2011 (Accession 2011.0122)

Processing information

Processed by Jennifer McElroy, September 2005

Encoded by Jennifer McElroy, October 2005;Updated by Judy Allen Dodson, June 2011; Updated by Babi Hammond, September 2011

Correspondence 1974-1995
Size: 0.33 linear feet

This series contains two subseries: one consisting of Esther Mechler's letters to and from a few Major Correspondents and one of her more General Correspondence.

0.67 archival box

General Correspondence 1974-1995

This subseries includes individual letters and notes written to and from Esther Mechler, as well as several in which she is neither correspondent. The majority are about animal-related issues and written to publications, political figures, fellow activists, or friends. This subseries is arranged chronologically with undated letters at the end. The undated letters are further divided between outgoing and incoming correspondence, and then arranged alphabetically.

General Correspondence 1974-1980
Box 1, Folder 1
General Correspondence 1981
Box 1, Folder 2
General Correspondence 1982
Box 1, Folder 3
General Correspondence 1983
Box 1, Folder 4
General Correspondence 1984-1995
Box 1, Folder 5
Undated General Correspondence
Box 1, Folder 6
Major Correspondents 1979-1990

This subseries contains correspondence written between Esther Mechler and several individuals involved in the animal rights movement. This includes letters and notes, as well as clippings, more substantial writings and the drafts of to-be-published works which accompanied them. It is organized alphabetically by sender and then chronologically.

Dommer, Luke 1982-1990
Box 1, Folder 7
Grant, Maria 1980-1990
Box 1, Folder 9
Grant, Maria 1979
Box 1, Folder 8
Writings 1975-2004
Size: 4.37 linear feet

This series is divided into 5 subseries: Individuals, Organizations, Periodicals, Clippings, and Collected Works.

7.67 archival boxes, 1 halfbox.

Individuals

The Individuals subseries consists of animal-related writings authored by individual people which may or may not have been published. They are arranged alphabetically by the name of the author.

Cole, Susan and Dommer, Luke
Box 1, Folder 10
Giannelli, Michael and Robbins, John
Box 1, Folder 11
Unti, Bernard Oreste
Box 1, Folder 12
Organizations

The Organizations subseries contains written materials related to animals, animal protection, or animal rights which were published by or for various organizations. Pamphlets and brochures are included, as well as more substantial writings. They are organized alphabetically by name of the organization.

American Anti-Vivisection Society
Box 1, Folder 13
American Medical Association 1988
Box 1, Folder 14
American Medical Association 1989
Box 1, Folder 15
Animal Rights Network (ARN)
Box 1, Folder 16
Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting (CASH)
Box 1, Folder 17
Focus on Animals (1 of 2)
Box 1, Folder 18
Focus on Animals (2 of 2)
Box 1, Folder 19
Friends of Animals-General (1 of 2)
Box 2, Folder 1
Friends of Animals-General (2 of 2)
Box 2, Folder 2
Friends of Animals “Branch Organizers’ Manual"
Box 2, Folder 3
Friends of Animals “School Kit”
Box 2, Folder 4
Other Groups H through Z, and unknown
Box 2, Folder 5
SPAY/USA
Map folder 15
Periodicals 1975-2004

The Periodicals subseries consists of various periodical magazines and newsletters related to animals and animal rights. Many are the publications of animal rights organizations, but some are more general publications. Accompanying some of the publications are Mechler's handwritten notes about the content. These materials are arranged alphabetically by periodical title and then chronologically within each title category, with notes following the title to which they pertain.

7 Days, 1989 Oct. 4
Box 2, Folder 6
Agenda, Sept./Oct. 1984
Box 2, Folder 7
Animal People, 1994 Sept., Nov., Dec.
Box 2, Folder 8
Animal People, 1996 June, July, Nov.
Box 2, Folder 9
Animal People, 1996 Dec.; 1997 Jan./Feb., April
Box 2, Folder 10
Animal People, 1997 May, June, July/Aug.
Box 2, Folder 11
Animal People, 1997 Sept., Oct., Dec.
Box 2, Folder 12
Animal People, 1998 Jan./Feb., May, June
Box 2, Folder 13
Animal People, 1998 July/Aug., Sept., Oct.
Box 2, Folder 14
Animal People, 1998 Nov., Dec.; 1999 Jan./Feb.
Box 3, Folder 1
Animal People, 1999 March, April, May
Box 3, Folder 2
Animal People, 1999 June, July/Aug., Sept.
Box 3, Folder 3
Animal People, 1999 Oct., Nov.; 2000 Jan./Feb.
Box 3, Folder 4
Animal People, 2000 June, July/Aug., Sept.
Box 3, Folder 5
Animal People, 2000 Nov., Dec.; 2001 Jan./Feb.
Box 3, Folder 6
Animal People, 2001 March, April, May
Box 3, Folder 7
Animal People, 2001 July/Aug., Sept., Oct.
Box 3, Folder 8
Animal People, 2001 Nov., Dec.; Jan./Feb., 2002
Box 3, Folder 9
Animal People, 2002 April, May, June
Box 3, Folder 10
Animal People, 2003 April, May, Sept.
Box 4, Folder 1
Animal People, 2003 Nov., Dec.; 2004 Jan./Feb.
Box 4, Folder 2
Animal People, 2004 June, Dec.
Box 4, Folder 3
Animal Rights Network News, 1979-1981
Box 4, Folder 4
Animals, 1986 Sept./Oct.
Box 4, Folder 5
Animals' Agenda, 1987 July/Aug.; 1989 April, July/Aug.
Box 4, Folder 6
Animals' Agenda, 1998 May/June; 1999 Jan./Feb.; 2001 July/Aug.
Box 4, Folder 7
Animals' Agenda, 2001 Sept./Oct.; 2002 Jan./Feb., March/April
Box 4, Folder 8
The Animals' Voice, Premiere Issue; 1988 Sept./Oct.
Box 4, Folder 9
The Animals' Voice, 1989 Feb., April
Box 4, Folder 10
The Animals' Voice, 1989 June, Aug.
Box 4, Folder 11
The Animals' Voice, Vol. 2 Nos. 5 and 6
Box 4, Folder 12
The Animals' Voice, Vol. 3 No. 1; 1990 Aug.
Box 5, Folder 1
The Animals' Voice, 1990 Oct., Dec.
Box 5, Folder 2
The Animals' Voice, 1991 Feb/March, April/May
Box 5, Folder 3
The Animals' Voice, 1992 Jan./Feb./March, April/May/June
Box 5, Folder 4
The Animals' Voice: The California Connection, 1987 Sept.; 1988 Feb.
Box 5, Folder 5
ASPCA Quarterly Report, Winter 1988/Spring 1989
Box 5, Folder 6
AV Magazine, 1984 March, April; 1985 July, Nov., Dec.; 1986 May, June
Box 5, Folder 7
AV Magazine, 1988 July; 1989 Feb.; 1998 Spring, Winter
Box 5, Folder 8
The Beast, 1980 Spring, Summer
Box 5, Folder 9
The Beast, 1980 Autumn; 1980-1981 Winter
Box 5, Folder 10
The Beast, 1981 Spring, Summer
Box 5, Folder 11
Biotechnology, 1988 Oct.
Box 5, Folder 12
Children and Animals, 1988 Feb./March; The Connecticut Scholar, No. 3
Box 5, Folder 13
Discover, 1981 Feb.
Box 6, Folder 1
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1990 Jan./Feb., March/April
Box 6, Folder 2
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1990 May/June, July/Aug.
Box 6, Folder 3
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1990 Sept./Oct., Nov./Dec.
Box 6, Folder 4
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1992 Jan./Feb., March/April
Box 6, Folder 5
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1992 Sept./Oct.; 1993 March/April
Box 6, Folder 6
E: The Environmental Magazine, 1993 Sept./Oct.
Box 6, Folder 7
Fund For Animals, Vol. 19 No. 1; Vol. 22 No.2
Box 6, Folder 8
Good Medicine, 2000 Spring/Summer; 2002 Winter; 2003 Winter
Box 6, Folder 9
The Greenpeace Examiner, 1983 Winter; Human Dimensions in Wildlife Newsletter, 1989 Fall
Box 6, Folder 10
Humane Education, 1977 Fall; 1979 June, Sept.
Box 6, Folder 11
Humane Education, 1980 June, Sept.
Box 6, Folder 12
Humane Society Close-Up Report, 1977 Feb. 10, June; 1979 Sept.; 1980 Aug.
Box 6, Folder 13
Humane Society News, 1976 Summer/Fall; 1977 Fall; 1978 Winter, Spring
Box 6, Folder 14
Humane Society News, 1979 Winter, Spring, Fall; 1980 Winter
Box 6, Folder 15
Humane Society News, 1980 Summer; 1981 Spring; 1982 Fall
Box 7, Folder 1
Humane Society News, 1984 Spring, Fall; 1985 Winter
Box 7, Folder 2
IPPL News, 2003 April; Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing Newsletter, 1994 Summer, Fall; KIND 1976 Dec.
Box 7, Folder 3
Lab Animal, 1988 March, Sept., Oct.
Box 7, Folder 4
Mainstream, 1979 Fall; 1985 Spring; 1989 Fall
Box 7, Folder 5
Modern Maturity, 1988 June/July; The Nature Conservancy News, 1985 May/June
Box 7, Folder 6
NAVS, 1987 no. 1; New Age Journal, 1989 March/April; Newsweek, 1975 Feb. 24
Box 7, Folder 7
NOAA News, 1978 Sept. 8; Paws to Think, 2003 Spring
Box 7, Folder 8
PETA's Animal Times, 1995 March/April, May/June
Box 7, Folder 9
PETA's Animal Times, 2001 Winter, Summer, Fall
Box 7, Folder 10
PETA's Animal Times, 2002 Spring, Fall, Winter, Holiday
Box 7, Folder 11
PETA News, no. 4; 1988 Spring, July/Aug., Nov./Dec.
Box 7, Folder 12
PETA News, 1989 Jan./Feb., March/April, May/June, July/Aug.
Box 7, Folder 13
PETA News, 1989 Sep./Oct., Nov./Dec.; 1990 March/April
Box 8, Folder 1
Report to Humanitarians 1975 June, Sept., Dec.; 1976 March, Dec.
Box 8, Folder 2
Report to Humanitarians 1977 March, June, Sept., Dec.; 1978 March, June, Sept.
Box 8, Folder 3
Report to Humanitarians, 1979-1980 Winter; 1981-1982 Winter, with handwritten notes and other information from Humane Society
Box 8, Folder 4
Reverence for Life, 1977 Jan.-April, June
Box 8, Folder 5
Reverence for Life, 1977 Sept.; 1978 Feb.; 1987 Jan./Feb., Sept/Oct.; 1988 March/April
Box 8, Folder 6
Sangre de Cristo, 1988 Fall; The Science Teacher, 1986 Dec.
Box 8, Folder 7
Social Research, 1995 Fall
Box 8, Folder 8
Unicorn, November 1980-December 1982
Half box 8A, Folder 1
Unicorn, 1983 Jan.-June/July
Box 8, Folder 9
Unicorn, January 1983-February/March 1984
Half box 8A, Folder 2
Unicorn, 1983 Aug., Sept./Oct., Dec.; 1984 Jan.-April
Box 8, Folder 10
Unicorn, 1984 May-Oct./Nov. and undated inserts
Box 8, Folder 11
University of Bridgeport Weekly Bulletin and Calendar, 1984 Aug. 27; U.S. News and World Report, 1989 March 20; Wraparound, 1976 March
Box 8, Folder 12
Vegetarian Times, Nov 1988
Box 8, Folder 13
The New York Times Magazine, 1978 Dec. 31
Map folder 15
Clippings 1977?-1991?

The Clippings subseries includes clipped and copied articles and columns collected by Esther Mechler. They are divided into general subject categories and these larger subjects are then arranged alphabetically. Clippings of articles by or about Mechler are included.

Mechler, Esther, 1978-1986
Box 9, Folder 1
Animals and Animal Welfare (1 of 3)
Box 9, Folder 2
Animals and Animal Welfare (2 of 3)
Box 9, Folder 3
Animals and Animal Welfare (3 of 3)
Box 9, Folder 4
Children and Families
Box 9, Folder 5
Food and Health
Box 9, Folder 6
Trutt, Fran
Box 9, Folder 7
Other Topics
Box 9, Folder 8
Collected Works 1978-1996

This subseries contains books about animal rights collected by Esther Mechler. The volumes have been integrated into the library's collection. Please check the NCSU library catalog for call number and availability.

Fadali, Moneim A.
Great Britain: The Labour Party, 1978.
National Institutes of Health, Division of Research Grants, Statistics and Analysis Branch.
Rupke, Nicolaas A., ed.
Ryder, Richard D.
Vyvyan, John.
Whittall, J.D.
Stephens, Martin L.
Cohen, Murry and Young, Constance
Projects Projects, 1980-1987
Size: 1.38 linear feet

Esther Mechler's two projects represented in the collection are the "Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Film Strip and the 1986-1987 Wildlife Calendars. Each subseries contains background information, correspondence, and drafting related to its respective project, as well as examples of the final product.

2.77 archival boxes

"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Filmstrip, 1980-1985

This subseries contains papers documenting the process of creating the filmstrip "Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement." This includes background information, drafts of the script and teacher's guide, correspondence about obtaining slides and reviewing/editing drafts, artwork (including artwork created by the filmstrip's artist not used in this project), financial records, and the final product-a filmstrip with an audio-cassette and teacher's guide-in several different packagings. (Due to space and size constraints, the filmstrip from the third set is has been separated and is located in Box 14.) Also included in this subseries are correspondence and legal paperwork connected to Esther Mechler's copyright dispute with The Animal Rights Network (ARN) about the filmstrip.

Visuals
Box 9, Folder 9
Script (1 of 5)
Box 9, Folder 10
Script (2 of 5)
Box 9, Folder 11
Script (3 of 5)
Box 9, Folder 12
Script (4 of 5)
Box 9, Folder 13
Script (5 of 5)
Box 9, Folder 14
Teacher’s Guide (1 of 2)
Box 10, Folder 1
Teacher’s Guide (2 of 2)
Box 10, Folder 2
Copyright/ARN Dispute (1 of 2)
Box 10, Folder 3
Copyright/ARN Dispute (2 of 2)
Box 10, Folder 4
Copyright/ARN Dispute-Copy of packet sent to Alan Neigher with correspondence
Box 10, Folder 5
Artwork by Andrew Dagilis (not created for this project)
Box 10, Folder 6
Other Filmstrip Documents
Box 10, Folder 7
"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Boxed Filmstrip set (filmstrips, cassette tape, teachers' guide, notes)
Box 11, Item 1
"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Boxed Filmstrip set (filmstrip, cassette tape, teachers' guide)
Box 11, Item 2
"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Filmstrip set (filmstrip, cassette tape, teachers' guide)
Box 11, Folder 1
"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Filmstrip
Box 14, Folder 2
"Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement" Filmstrip (2 copies)
Box 14, Folder 3
Wildlife Calendar, 1985-1987

This subseries consists of documents concerning the production of Wildlife Calendars for 1986 and 1987. Coordinated by Esther Mechler, this project was a collaborative effort between Esther Mechler's Animal Rights Associates and Luke Dommer's Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting (CASH) in 1986, and an Animal Rights Associates project in 1987. Included are chronologically arranged correspondence, some of which contains drafts of text or artwork, as well as a variety of other materials, including other text and art drafts, contracts, and the final 1986 calendar.

Art and Print Drafts, Contracts, etc.
Box 10, Folder 8
Correspondence, 1985
Box 10, Folder 9
Correspondence, 1986
Box 10, Folder 10
Calendar, 1986
Box 10, Folder 11
Audio/Visual Materials ca. 1980-ca. 1990
Size: 0.35 linear feet

This series consists of a number of audio-visual items related to animals and animal protection. It is arranged according to format. This includes slides grouped in their original order, some of which were used in the production of the filmstrip "Animal Rights: The Issues, the Movement," as well as color photographs. A few of these depict people and events, but the majority portray deer hunting and are accompanied by the protest flyers in which they were originally wrapped. A cassette tape and two 16 mm films are also in this series.

0.7 archival box

Photographs General
Box 10, Folder 12
Photographs "Hunt Sabotage” with flyers
Box 10, Folder 13
Slides “Additional zoo slides (see other box for 1st choices)”
Box 10, Folder 14
Slides “Dups Returned”
Box 10, Folder 15
Slides “Duplicates of D. Bell”
Box 10, Folder 16
Slides “Keith Krueger endangered species, dolphins, denuded forests, birds”
Box 10, Folder 17
Slides “Working with chimps”
Box 10, Folder 18
Slides Unlabeled (1 of 3)
Box 10, Folder 19
Slides Unlabeled (2 of 3)
Box 10, Folder 20
Slides Unlabeled (3 of 3)
Box 10, Folder 21
Cassette Tape
Box 14, Folder 1
16 mm film Friends of Animals 90 sec. P.S.A./ "Skins" (2 copies)
Box 14, Folder 4
Memorabilia ca. 1975-ca. 1990
Size: 0.84 linear feet

The Memorabilia series includes animal rights related memorabilia in a variety of forms, including buttons, t-shirts, bumper-stickers/labels, artwork, postcards, programs, and posters from various animal rights/animal welfare groups and events. It is arranged according to the items' formats.

1.67 archival boxes

Artwork and poster
Box 12, Folder 1
Postcards
Box 12, Folder 2
Programs/Event Packets
Box 12, Folder 3
Stickers and Labels
Box 12, Folder 4
T-Shirt, Albert Schweitzer “Until he extends the circle of his compassion…”
Box 12, Item 1
T-Shirt, “Save the Whaling Wail”
Box 12, Item 2
T-Shirt, Animal Rights Network, Inc.
Box 12, Item 3
T-Shirt, Stand up for Animals “Support a Cruelty Free Lifestyle”
Box 12, Item 4
T-Shirt, Save the Whales Hawaii and Greenpeace “Let Them Live”
Box 13, Item 1
T-Shirt, Mahatma Gandhi “The greatness of and nation and its moral progress…”
Box 13, Item 2
T-Shirt, Hunt Saboteurs Association
Box 13, Item 3
T-Shirt, Fund for Animals “Animals have rights too!”
Box 13, Item 4
Buttons
Box 14, Folder 5
Unprocessed Materials Undated
Unprocessed Records Undated
Flat box 16
Animal rights monograph and serial publications; T-shirts
Carton 17

Access to the collection

This collection is open for research; access requires at least 48 hours advance notice.

For more information contact us via mail, phone, or our web form.

Mailing address:
Special Collections Research Center
Box 7111
Raleigh, NC, 27695-7111

Phone: (919) 515-2273

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Esther Mechler Papers, MC 00322, Special Collections Research Center, North Carolina State University Libraries, Raleigh, NC

Use of these materials

The nature of the NCSU Libraries' Special Collections means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The NCSU Libraries claims only physical ownership of most Special Collections materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.