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Moral Re-Armament papers

 Collection — Box: 15-06-04
Identifier: MSS-310

Scope and Contents

This collection contains materials relating to the Moral Re-Armament movement from their Cedar Point, Mackinac Island headquarters, located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. These include production scripts and shooting scripts, handbills, and programs. Also included is the May 1979 issue of Theatre Journal, which contains an article about the MRA theater.

Series 1: Production Scripts "Play Scripts (and translations) filed at Mackinac" Inventory (January 1963) "The Vanishing Island" - A New Musical by Peter Howard and Cecil Broadhurst (Sript in English and Japanese) (3 copies) "HOFFNUNG (Hope)" - Film Script by Hans Hartung (May 3, 1961) "A Man to Match the Hour" (not dated) "Blackboard Bombshell" (not dated) "The Crowning Experience" (1957) "El Condor" in English (Post Production Script) (April 15, 1963) "The Ladder" (Shooting Script) (April 23, 1964) "The Crowning Experience-Japanese Translation" (1957) "Space is So Startling" (Broadhurst Annotated Script) (not dated) "Music at Midnight" - A Screenplay by Bill Entwistle and Dorothea Hagedorn Parfit (May 16, 1963)

Series 2: Handbills and Programs "How to Change" by Bremer Hofmeyr (includes donation envelope (not dated) "The New American: A Drama of Teen-Age America Presented by the Moral Re-Armament" (not dated) "The Vanishing Island" (includes insert printed in Japanese) (not dated) "The Man With the Key" (not dated) "The Dictator's Slippers" (not dated) "We Are Tomorrow" (not dated) "He Was Not There" (not dated) "Pickle Hill" (not dated) "Africa Presents 'The Next Phase' to the World" (not dated) "The Dictator's Slippers" (not dated) "The Crowning Experience-A New Musical Play" (not dated) "Theatre Journal" (May 1979)


  • 1957 - 1979


Language of Materials

The collection includes a Japanese translation of "The Crowning Experience" and the script and handbill for "The Vanishing Island" contain parallel English and Japanese text. All other materials in English.

Conditions Governing Access

No restrictions. Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from Moral Re-Armament papers, MSS-310, must be obtained from the University Archivist. The University Archivist may be reached by phone at 906-227-1225, or e-mail, The University Archivist may also be reached in Room 126 of the Learning Resource Center, Northern Michigan University, Marquette, MI.


Moral Re-Armament (MRA) was an international moral and spiritual movement that developed from American minister Frank Buchman's Oxford Group. It advocated moral and spiritual growth and development as a solution for societal ills. Extremely popular in its day, MRA used theatrical productions and movies to spread its message. In 1942, at the suggestion of Clara Bryant Ford (wife of Henry Ford), the MRA began holding conferences on Mackinac Island, Michigan. Initially meetings were held in a leased hotel and then were moved to the island's Grand Hotel. The MRA acquired considerable land holdings on the eastern end of the island during the early 1950s; between 1954 and 1960 the MRA constructed an extensive training center there, including a theatre and soundstage, all built with volunteer labor. The completed Mission Point Theater seated 575 and was dedicated on June 4, 1955. At the time it was built the 86,287 square-feet Film Studio-Fine Arts Building had the second largest sound stage in the world and the second largest television studio in America. The studio building contained two major sound stages, rooms for rehearsal, music, orchestra, costume designing, sewing, storage, set design, props, hairdressing, make-up, dressing, art, and sound mixing. In the 1960s, these rooms were augmented by a huge costume department, lighting switchboard, laboratories for film processing and editing, and construction shops. Many MRA plays were rehearsed, premiered, and performed at the Mission Point Theater, and the studio and soundstage were used for the production of several motion pictures, including The Crowning Experience, Voice of the Hurricane, and Decision at Midnight. The MRA deeded its property on Mackinac Island to Mackinac College in 1966. (Information in this note was taken from materials in the collection Wikipedia, from the Initiatives of Change website.)


0.5 Cubic Feet


The materials in this collection are arranged by type of publication.

Separated Materials

The collection originally included several books on the MRA, including works by Frank Buchman and Peter Howard, and published versions of MRA plays by Howard, Alan Thornhill, Phyllis Austin, and Cecil Broadhurst. These have been separated and cataloged as individual works for the Northern Michigan University Special Collections. List of works: Published Works -- Non-Fiction "Design for Dedication" by Peter Howard (1964) "Where Do We Go From Here?" by Hannon Foss and William Cameron Johnson (1959) "The Open Secret of the MRA: An examination of Mr. Driberg's 'critical examination' of Moral Re- Armament" by J.P. Thornton-Duesbery (1964) "Remaking Men" by Paul Campbell, M.D. and Peter Howard (1954) "Moral Re-Armament-What is it?" by Basil Entwistle and John McCook Roots (1967) "Innocent Men" by Peter Howard (1941) "Remaking the World" by Frank N.D. Buchman (1958) "Moral Re-Armament in Action: Fresh Hope for the World" edited by Gabriel Marcel (1960)

Published Works -- Plays "Mr. Wilberforce, MP" - A Play by Alan Thornhill (1965) (2 copies) "We Are Tomorrow" - A Play in Two Acts by Peter Howard (1954) (2 copies) "The Real News" - A Play in Three Acts by Peter Howard (1954) (2 copies) "Through the Garden Wall" - A Play by Peter Howard (1963) (2 copies) "He Was Not There" by Phyllis Austin (1958) (2 copies) "Mr. Brown Comes Down the Hill" - A Play by Peter Howard (1964) "Music at Midnight" - A Play by Peter Howard and Alan Thornhill (1962) "The Man with the Key"- A Play in Three Acts by Peter Howard (1954) "The Forgotten Factor" - A Play in Three Acts by Alan Thornhill (1954) "The Ladder" - A Play by Peter Howard (1960) "The Diplomats" - A Play by Peter Howard (1964) "The Hurricane" - A Play by Peter Howard and Alan Thornhill (1960) "The Boss" - A Play in Three Acts by Peter Howard (1954) "Pickle Hill" - A Play by Peter Howard (1960) "The Vanishing Island" - A Musical Play in Three Acts by Peter Howard and Cecil Broadhurst (1956) "Freedom" (1956)
Moral Re-Armament papers
Glenda K. Ward
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Repository Details

Part of the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives Repository

Harden Learning Resources Center 126
1401 Presque Isle Ave
Marquette 49855 United States
906-227-1333 (Fax)


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