Mildred Hatchell Papers


Dates: 1941-2002
Size: .5 linear foot
Repository: Chicago Public Library, Woodson Regional Library, Vivian G. Harsh Research Collection of Afro-American History and Literature, 9525 S. Halsted Street, Chicago, Illinois 60628



Provenance: Donated by Mildred M. Hatchell in October 1993
Access: No restrictions

When quoting material from this collection the preferred citation is:

Mildred Hatchell Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Chicago Public Library, Woodson Regional Library, Vivian G. Harsh Research Collection of Afro-American History and Literature

Processed by: Elizabeth Loch, Archival Specialist, May 2021

Biographical Note

Mildred McArthur Hatchell was a Chicagoan and educator. She taught in the Chicago Public School system for over thirty years. Hatchell led an effort to recognize Reverend Charles Albert Tindley, D.D. as the author of/contributor to the hymn “We Shall Overcome.” Dr. Charles Tindley wrote the song “I Shall Overcome” in 1903. In the early 1960s, the civil rights movement sang the words as “We Shall Overcome.”

Scope and Content

Former Chicagoan Mildred Hatchell conducted extensive research on the hymns of Rev. Charles Albert Tindley. Hatchell wished to see Reverend Tindley recognized, especially by the United Methodist Church, as the author of the song, “We Shall Overcome.” Her papers consist of research materials (newspaper clippings and articles) about Tindley and gospel music, correspondence, handwritten notes, event materials, and a cassette tape featuring Reverend Andrew L. Foster, Jr.


This small collection is arranged into two series; Series 1: Manuscripts, 1941-2002, undated and Series 2: Cassette Tape, undated. Materials are listed alphabetically by title within each series.

Related Materials

Related materials at the Chicago Public Library include:

Container List

Series 1: Manuscripts, 1941-2002, undated

Box 1 Folder 1 “A Historical Account of the Hymn in the Black Worship Experience,” Songs of Zion: Supplemental Worship Resources 12 [photocopy], 1981
Box 1 Folder 2 Articles on Charles Albert Tindley and gospel music, 1946-1986, undated
Box 1 Folder 3 Correspondence and catalogue from The Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Chang, Inc., 1992-1993
Box 1 Folder 4 Correspondence from Helen Washington, written on a Highlander Researcher and Education Center mailing about “We Shall Overcome,” 1992 and circa 1995
Box 1 Folder 5 Correspondence from Pastor H. Bernard King, 1992-1993
Box 1 Folder 6 Correspondence from Reverend Herbert E. Palmer [pastor, Tindley Temple United Methodist Church] with church pamphlet, 1992 September, undated
Box 1 Folder 7 Correspondence to Dr. Hoy, 1992 April 1
Box 1 Folder 8 Correspondence to Maine [?], 1991 September 26
Box 1 Folder 9 Correspondence to unknown, 1992 September 29
Box 1 Folder 10 Correspondence with A.B. Robinson, 1991
Box 1 Folder 11 Correspondence with Carlton R. Young [The United Methodist Hymnal Companion], 1992-1993
Box 1 Folder 12 Correspondence with John A. Lovelace [The United Methodist Reporter, Managing Editor], 1991-1992
Box 1 Folder 13 Correspondence with Reverend James Luther Bevel, 1995 June 14
Box 1 Folder 14 Correspondence with Thomas A. Langford, III [The General Board of Discipleship, The United Methodist Church], 1991 February 19
Box 1 Folder 15 Handwritten notes on “We Shall Overcome,” 1992, undated
Box 1 Folder 16 Hatchell’s letters regarding her petition to recognize Dr. Tindley for his hymn, “We Shall Overcome,” 1992-1993, undated
Box 1 Folder 17 New Songs of Paradise No. 6 by Rev. Chas. A. Tindley, D.D., and Songs of Paradise [photocopies], 1941, undated
Box 1 Folder 18 Newspaper articles on Charles Albert Tindley and gospel music, 1961-2002
Box 1 Folder 19 Newspaper articles on Mildred Hatchell, 1992-1995
Box 1 Folder 20 Petition [with signatures] to have Dr. Charles A. Tindley credited for “We Shall Overcome” in United Methodist Hymnals, 1993, undated
Box 1 Folder 21 “Service of Celebration and Dedication for Rev. Charles Albert Tindley” program at Tindley Temple United Methodist Church, 2002 September 14
Box 1 Folder 22 Sheet music composed by Revered Charles Albert Tindley [photocopies], undated
Box 1 Folder 23 The Genesis Songbook: Songs for Getting It All Together compiled by Carlton R. Young, 1973
Box 1 Folder 24 The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert [featuring a performance of “We Shall Overcome”] event materials, 1992-1993

Series 2: Cassette Tape, undated

Box 1 Folder 25 Recital in Black Productions: “Songs of Paradise” featuring Reverend Andrew L. Foster, Jr., undated
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