Open Door Community records, 1982-2013

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322


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Descriptive Summary

Creator: Open Door Community.
Title: Open Door Community records, 1982-2013
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 1386
Extent: 8 linear feet (8 boxes)
Abstract:Records of the Open Door Community residential community, including photographic material and subject files.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Special restrictions apply: Researchers must contact the Rose Library in advance for access to unprocessed born digital materials in this collection. Collection restrictions, copyright limitations, or technical complications may hinder the Rose Library's ability to provide access to unprocessed born digital materials.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.

Related Materials in Other Repositories

Calvin and Nelia Kimbrough papers, Pitts Theology Library, Emory University


Transfer from Pitts Theology Library, Emory University, 2016

Custodial History

Curator of Archives and Manuscripts for Emory’s Pitts Theology Library, Brandon Wason, received the material as part of the Calvin and Nelia Kimbrough papers. Calvin and Nelia Kimbrough worked at Open Door Community. Calvin is the Photography and Layout Editor for Open Door Community’s newspaper, Hospitality, and the couple were Worship, Art, and Music Coordinators for the organization.


[after identification of item(s)], Open Door Community records, Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, Emory University.

Appraisal Note

Curator of Political, Cultural and Social Movements Collections, Randy Gue, acquired the collection as part of the Rose Library's holdings in Atlanta history and Georgia philanthropy. Archivists have retained all material received with the collection.


Arranged and described at the collection level by Meaghan O'Riordan, June 2020. O'Riordan kept material in folders and binders labeled and organized by the donors.

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Collection Description

Historical Note

The Open Door Community is a residential community in the Catholic Worker tradition that seeks to dismantle racism, sexism, and heterosexism; abolish the death penalty; and support marginalized communities, including the homeless and those in prison. The community advocates for the oppressed, homeless, and prisoners through non-violent protests, grassroots organizing, and the publication of their monthly newspaper, Hospitality. The community began in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1982 and moved to Baltimore, Maryland, in 2016. Beginning on June 18, 1990, eight activists from a group called People for Urban Justice, a subgroup of Open Door Community, began a 16-day occupation of the abandoned Imperial Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia, to protest the lack of affordable housing in the city. The building is now known as the National Church Residences Commons at Imperial Hotel and provides housing for 90 formerly homeless residents of Atlanta.

Biographical Source:

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of the records of Open Door Community residential community, including negatives, subject files, photographs, contact sheets, slides, artwork, newsletters, and worship programs from 1982-2013. Subject files include files on their newsletter, Hospitality, and marketing efforts by and for the community. They also include visitor lists and leadership team and worship team files. Binders of photographic material include digital copies on CDs.

Arrangement Note

Arranged alphabetically by record type.

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Container List

Box Folder Content
1 - Artwork and Hospitality newsletters in binder, 1982-2001
1 - Contact sheets, photographs, negatives, and slides in binders, 1992-2010
2 - Negatives in binders, 2004-2008
3 - Negatives in binders, 2005-2009
4 - Negatives in binders, 2010-2013
5 - Photographs, 1992-1995
5 - Subject files, "Doors of the Soul" and Hospitality, 1999-2015
6 - Subject files, Hospitality, marketing, and visitor lists, 2004-2013
7 - Subject files, leadership team and worship, 1989-2014
4 - Weekly schedules, undated
8 - Worship programs and artwork in binders, 2006-2014