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Environmental Response Records

Identifier: WUA-01-wua00271

This collection documents the activities of the Environmental Response organization. Material includes organizational correspondence, policy statements and activities, brochures and posters, and project information.

A small group of material in the collection unrelated to Environmental Response is a folder on the Association of Black Collegians. This significant material deals with a sit-in at Brookings Hall in 1968, and includes a copy of the protestors’ Manifesto.


  • Creation: 1970-1975


Conditions Governing Access

There are restricted materials in this collection. Consult the University Archivist at (314) 935-9730 for details.

Conditions Governing Use

Users of the collection must read and agree to abide by the rules and procedures set forth in the Materials Use Policies.

Providing access to materials does not constitute permission to publish or otherwise authorize use. All publication not covered by fair use or other exceptions is restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder, which may or may not be Washington University.

If you wish to publish or license Special Collections materials, please contact Special Collections to inquire about copyright status at (314) 935-5495 or (Publish means quotation in whole or in part in seminar or term papers, theses or dissertations, journal articles, monographs, books, digital forms, photographs, images, dramatic presentations, transcriptions, or any other form prepared for a limited or general public.)


23.00 linear feet

21 boxes

Historical Information

Environmental Response was formed in Spring 1970 as an outgrowth of Project Survival at Washington University during the first Earth Week. Founded by Stuart Leiderman and three others, it was intended to be a center for environmental projects. Prior to co-founding Environmental Response, Leiderman had received a degree in Sociology from Washington University, and returned a year later with a fellowship to the Center for the Biology of Natural Systems, headed by Barry Commoner.

Environmental Response conducted studies of such things as the Missouri River Bottoms and floodplain, plans for a second metropolitan airport, the expansion of the Innerbelt highway, and air pollution in the St. Louis area. Other Environmental Response projects sought to both educate and benefit St. Louis are residents. The Organic Gardening project, with King Louie’s Gardeners, provided, for a reasonable fee, garden tilling, seed planting, and tips on gardening organically. Paths of Least Resistance was an effort to increase, and encourage use of, bicycle paths. A $50,000 grant from the U.S. Office of Environmental Education within the Department of Health, Education and Welfare helped fund public education programs. In particular, it supported the development of library based ecology centers, which were to serve as information resources on environmental issues.

Another Environmental Response project was the bi-weekly magazine Dirt, which covered local environmental issues.  Environmental Response was a broadly based group, with participation by Washington University students and faculty, and local interested citizens.


The collection is divided into twenty-five series:

Series 1: Organizational Correspondence

Series 2: Policy Statements and Activities

Series 3: Brochures and Posters

Series 4: Projects

Series 5: Materials from Other Environmentally Concerned Agencies

Series 6: Projects and Miscellaneous Items

Series 7: Washington University Based Projects Other than Environmental Response

Series 8: Ecology Center Publications Outside Washington University

Series 9: State and National Government Environmental Agency Publications

Series 10: Organizational Correspondence and Phone Logs

Series 11: Policy Statements and Activities

Series 12: Projects

Series 13: Posters

Series 14: Organic Gardening Project, 1974

Series 15: Projects and Information

Series 16: Organization Correspondence, Phone Logs, and Activities

Series 17: Organizational Material, Projects, and Activities

Series 18: Correspondence, Projects, Phone Logs, Association of Black Collegians

Series 19: Organic Gardening Project, 1975

Series 20: Airport Studies

Series 21: Food Processing Lectures

Series 22: Down Home

Series 23: Gardening Assignment Sheets

Series 24: Mimeograph Stencils

Series 25: Dirt

Method of Acquisition

This material was donated to University Archives by Stuart Leiderman, Coordinator of Environmental Response in the 1970s.

Processing Information

Processed by Jay Kempen and Sarah Pabarcus in December 2005.

Environmental Response Records
Description rules
Language of description

Revision Statements

  • 2021 April 1: Resource record updated in ArchiveSpace by Sarah Schnuriger.

Collecting Area Details

Part of the University Archives Collecting Area

Sonya Rooney
Olin Library, 1 Brookings Drive
MSC 1061-141-B
St. Louis MO 63130 US
(314) 935-5495