While processing the files of Murray Peters (Executive Director of Field Staff Operations at the Joint Campaign), I stumbled upon the letter pictured below. The letter, dated January 27, 1978, was in a folder that was part of Peters’ Joint Campaign (UJFC) 1978-1982 Subject Files. Indeed as I read the note card attached to the letter, titled “Fire Victim”, I learned that the letter and the envelope attached to it, had been caught in a fire. Fortunately the fire had not occurred at the UJA-Federation Joint Campaign Headquarters. The letter was discovered in a Leadership folder of Irving Schneider who corresponded with Murray Peters. The letter itself is in fairly good condition aside from the blackened, frayed and fragile edge and since not much can be done with materials such as this, it was placed in a plastic sleeve.
It appears that the original, charred letter was kept as a copy of the clean, retyped version that was sent to the recipient. On first glance it appeared to be a marketing tactic, but on closer reading it appears that routine outgoing mail had been affected.
Additionally, in the same series of files but in a different folder I found the keys to the Palm Beach office (pictured below). One can only hope that the locks have been changed in the years since 1978.