The Tugwell Room is located at the Greenbelt Branch and is accessible whenever the library is open.
Please ask a librarian at the information desk to open the room for you if the door is closed. The Tugwell Room is reserved for users of of the room's materials only.
Greenbelt Branch Library
11 Crescent Road
Greenbelt, MD 20770
Tel: (301) 345-5800
TTY: (301) 808-2061
Born on June 10, 1891, Rexford G. Tugwell grew up in Sinclairville and Wilson, NY. Tugwell’s father was a farmer and a cannery owner. Tugwell attended the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania, where he received his Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral degrees. After completing his studies at UPenn, Tugwell taught economics at UPenn, the University of Washington, and Columbia University.
While at Columbia University, Tugwell became a member of the “brain trust” - a group known as Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s inner circle of advisors. Roosevelt was then governor of NY. This group initially helped Roosevelt plan his campaign to become the president of the United States and later advised him on issues during his presidency.
In 1933, Tugwell moved to Washington, DC, where he began working for the United States Department of Agriculture. After serving as the assistant secretary of Agriculture, Tugwell became the head of the Resettlement Administration.
Tugwell strongly believed in government economic planning. While at the Resettlement Administration, he worked on many New Deal programs, such as tax reform, relief public works, and federally planned communities. Tugwell is connected to Greenbelt, MD through his instrumental work with the Greenbelt Towns program. While he was head of the Resettlement Administration, he dedicated much of his time in the creation and development of the Greenbelt Towns project.
The Tugwell Special Collection serves as a resource for researchers who are interested in studying city and urban planning, sociology, architecture, American history of the New Deal era, consumer cooperatives and the city of Greenbelt, MD.
The mission of the collection is to provide reference materials on those subjects to any interested researcher, whether it be an elementary student studying their hometown or a doctoral student collecting primary sources for a dissertation.
The hours of operation for the Tugwell Special Collection are the same as the Greenbelt Branch hours. Everyone is welcome to use the Tugwell Special Collection for studying, researching or browsing. All visitors are asked to sign the guest book. If any assistance is needed, please ask the librarian at the information desk at (301) 345-5800.
The Greenbelt Branch is wheelchair accessible from the lower level entrance of the library, where there is ample parking. Follow the signs for the elevator to the second floor.
The Tugwell Special Collection is a reference collection, and the materials must be used within the library. Whenever possible, materials should be photocopied.
The books in the Tugwell Special Collection are cataloged in the library books catalog. Books may be identified as being a part of the Tugwell Special Collection by the call number which will include a C before the Dewey Decimal classification number. Example: C 711.4
The Newspaper Clippings Index is an online database that provides bibliographic information, and brief summaries about newspaper clippings within the Tugwell Special Collection.
National and local newspaper articles since 1935 on Greenbelt have been collected. Articles may be searched by keyword, publication, year, author, or subject heading. Articles are still in the process of being indexed into this database.
Tugwell Room Pamphlets about Greenbelt
Public Affairs Pamphlet No. 32
Public Affairs Pamphlet No. 32, The Cooperatives Look Ahead, by Jerry Voorhis (formerly a Congressman from California, then Executive Secretary of The Cooperative League of the U.S.A.)
First edition, Copyright, 1952, by the Public Affairs Committee, Inc., NY
Pamphlet, property of PGCMLS-Greenbelt Branch, Tugwell Room collection
Cooperation and Nationality
Cooperation and Nationality: A Guide For Rural Reformers From This To The Next Generation, by George W. Russell (AE)
First printed in 1912, reprinted in 1940 by the Cooperative League, Chicago, IL
Pamphlet, property of PGCMLS - Greenbelt Branch, Tugwell Room collection.
Greenbelt: by Subject and Place
Greenbelt biographies: by Person
Use the Newsclippings Database to search for articles about these individuals.
Planned Communities Files (as of November 14, 2000)
Greenbelt Towns: by Subject and Place
Greendale, WI --
Greenhills, OH --
Map of Greenbelt, January 1, 1938
Aerial Photo of Greenbelt, MD,ca. 1941
Greenbelt, MD. Aerial view, probably early Fall, 1941.
Photo credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture. Farm Security Administration, Neg. #7789-ZB
Copy Photo, property of the PGCMLS-Greenbelt Branch,
Tugwell Room Collection
Zoning District Map, City Greenhills