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John G. Deedy, Jr. papers

Identifier: GTM-GAMMS262

Collection-level Scope and Content Note

The John G. Deedy, Jr. Papers consist of the correspondence, manuscripts, notes, and other items generated and collected by John G. Deedy, Jr. throughout the course of his career in journalism and freelance writing. Most of the papers come from his years as Managing Editor of "Commonweal" (1967-1978) and the following years when he worked as a freelance writer (1978-1999). These papers shed light on many major events affecting the Catholic-American scene for the years they span, and offer insight into many of Deedy's works during this time. Among the highlights of these papers is correspondence with Bishops, Cardinals, and Priests of the Catholic Church, political and literary figures; subject files on issues such as the Sacco-Vanzetti Trial, the Vatican II Counsel, the Leonard Feeney, S. J. controversy; and the author and peace activist Daniel Berrigan, S. and his brothers. These papers are also a valuable source of the correspondence of other Catholic journalists, editors, and publishers and the issues they covered in the 1960's through the 1990's. Researchers interested in his early years with "The Catholic Free Press" should see the collection of his papers held at the Dinand Library at the College of the Holy Cross, which contains extensive correspondence between John Deedy and Bishop John J. Wright.


  • 1407-1999
  • Majority of material found within 1960-1997

Collection-level Access Restrictions

Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Booth Family Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections in advance of any visit.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers are solely responsible for determining the copyright status of the materials being used, establishing who the copyright owner is, locating the copyright owner, and obtaining permission for intended use.

Biographical note

John G. Deedy, Jr. grew up in Worcester, Massachusetts. He attended Holy Cross College and later earned an M.A. at Trinity College Dublin. He began his career in journalism as a staff reporter for the "Worcester Telegram." In 1951 he became founding Editor of "The Catholic Free Press," under then Bishop John J. Wright. He went on to become Editor of "The Pittsburgh Catholic" in 1957 and then Managing Editor of "Commonweal" in 1967. In 1978 John Deedy retired from full-time journalism to become a freelance writer. He also wrote articles for "The New York Times," "The Boston Globe," "The Nation," "The New Republic," "The Tablet" and numerous other publications. John Deedy died on March 28, 2006.


10.5 Linear Feet (13 boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of John Deedy, Jr., 1991-1997.

John G. Deedy, Jr. papers
Jeremy W. March, Georgetown University Library Booth Family Center for Special Collections, Washington, D.C.
Description rules
Local Practice
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Repository Details

Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository

Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
37th and O Streets, N.W.
Washington DC 20057