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Common Ground Records

Identifier: UR002703

Scope and Content

This collection contains materials relating to the history, administation, and work of Common Ground. Some topics covered are the Board of Directors, committees, staff meetings, funding, Birmingham-Bloomfield Community Action Council, Community Mental Health, Alternatives Outreach Program, and FRIENDS of Common Ground. There are a variety of types of materials including: correspondence, financial records, minutes and related materials, newspaper clippings, reports, and statistics.


  • 1970 - 1987
  • Majority of material found within 1973 - 1985


Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


The movement that would become the organization of Common Ground was started by some young adults c. 1969-1970 who wanted to help other young people in their community with problems like drug abuse. They wanted to create a place where young people could stop by and get assistance. These young adults did some fundraising on their own and also received money from the Birmingham-Bloomfield Community Action Council to start the center and get a helpline going. Later they received funding from other organizations as well. Though it started as a volunteer effort, gradually a small paid staff became part of Common Ground. Through Common Ground, counseling and free legal and medical assistance became available to the community. Along with dealing with current issues, Common Ground worked to keep such problems from occurring by educating the community; an example of this was their Alternatives Outreach Program. They also put on and provided information about social events and activities in the area.


3.5 Linear Feet (1 MB, 3 SB)


Common Ground is an organization designed to help those in crisis and to try and prevent them from occurring in the first place. Started by some young adults, it has become an organization with a large volunteer base and a paid staff. Along with counseling, free legal and medical assistance, education, and social activities were made available to the community through Common Ground. This collection documents Common Ground from its inception in 1970 to 1987 and covers the administration, history, and work of the organization.


Folders are listed by their location within each box. They are not necessarily arranged, so any given subject may be dispersed throughout the entire collection.


The Common Ground Records were deposited at the Walter P. Reuther Library in 2016.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Danielle Golling on January 23, 2018.


Guide to the Common Ground Records
Processed by Danielle Golling.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA