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P. Adem Carroll papers

Call Number

MS 3212


1964-2018 (Bulk 2000-2010), inclusive


Carroll, P. Adem (Paul Adem)


11 Linear feet in 11 boxes (6 record cartons and 5 oversize cartons)
4.52 Gigabytes (10 files, including 8 WAV audio files that total approximately 2 hours in duration)

Language of Materials

The documents in the collection are primarily in English, but a sizable number of documents are also written or recorded in Arabic, French, or Urdu.


The collection consists of the professional and personal records of Paul Adem Carroll, a New York City-based Irish-American Muslim. Carroll's career tracks multiple decades of advocacy and activism on behalf of Muslims internationally and domestically, chief among which includes the detailed case files of some of the post-9/11 detainees and families for whom he provided legal and financial relief. Other subject areas include his founding and running of the Muslim Community Network (MCN), work with other New York City-area non-profits, various materials relating to Islam, and personal records.

Biographical / Historical

Paul Adem Carroll (often referred to as P. Adem Carroll) is a New York City-based Irish-American Muslim, who has performed extensive advocacy for other Muslims domestically and internationally. Carroll graduated from Fiorello LaGuardia High School in 1975, after which he attended Bard College. After graduating in 1979, Carroll joined the Peace Corps, living in Marrakesh, Morocco, between 1980 and 1982. After returning to the United States, Carroll received his Masters' degree in Near and Middle Eastern Studies from New York University in 1987.

Carroll's work has largely focused on human rights advocacy, largely through non-governmental organizations. In the 1990s, Carroll worked for both Amnesty International and the Church Avenue Merchants Block Association, a Brooklyn-based nonprofit through Americorps. In 2001, Carroll joined the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) Relief, a Muslim grassroots organization that "seeks to alleviate human suffering by providing caring and compassionate service to victims of adversities and survivors of disasters." In his role as 9/11 Disaster Response Coordinator, Carroll provided emergency legal and financial assistance to over 800 detainees and their families in the wake of the attacks of September 11, 2001. Additionally, Carroll secured funding from the Rockefeller Foundation, which enabled his work to encompass so many detainees from across the United States. He left ICNA Relief in 2006.

In 2003, Carroll founded the Muslim Consultative Network (MCN; today the Muslim Community Network), a nonprofit organization that provided community education and leadership development opportunities to Muslim and immigrant communities. As Executive Director, Carroll oversaw a series of programs to meet the needs of New York City's Muslim community, such as with the Nafis Salaam anti-smoking program.

Although he left MCN formally in 2010, Carroll continued to perform important advocacy work for immigrants, refugees, and Muslims worldwide in various forms. Between 2004 and 2015, Carroll produced the "War on Immigrants Report," a monthly program that investigated American immigration policy and its effect on immigrants. He also published editorials in various Muslim publications, such as Muslims Weekly, Weekly Mirror, The Tri-State Muslim, and Islamic Monthly. Since 2013, Carroll worked as the Director of the Burma Task Force, a non-profit that advocates in close collaboration with the United Nations for the rights of the Rohingya Muslims and the end to genocide in Myanmar.


The collection is organized into five series that reflects the work Carroll performed over his years as a community advocate and organizer:

Series I. Detainee Files, 1998-2011
Series II. Subject Files, 1964-2018
Series III. Publications, 1988-2010
Series IV. Audiovisual, 2002-2015
Series V. Artifacts, 2015

Scope and Contents

The P. Adem Carroll Papers includes documents from his work with post-9/11 detainees, as well as other files from his personal and professional life ranging from 1964 until 2018.

Series I. Detainee Files: The series consists of case files, arranged alphabetically by surname, of the post-9/11 detainees for whom Carroll provided legal and financial relief during his time at the ICNA Relief. These files include legal documents such as appeals, briefs, court stenographer's notes; correspondence, often with lawyers, politicians, judges, the detainees, or family members of the detainees; and financial documents, such as bills, invoices, checks, and other documents. Additionally, many of Carroll's professional documents that deal directly with detainees (detainee lists, handwritten notes, contact information, intake forms, among others) are included in the series.

Series II. Subject Files: The series consists of personal and professional documents of Carroll's, including: his work at other non-profit organizations, such as the Muslim Consultative Network (MCN), New York Disaster Interfaith Service (NYDIS), Turning Point, Burma Task Force, among others; various side projects and advocacy work that he or others performed; guides and reports; flyers and documents from various events; photographs; and items from his childhood and teenage years, such as personal education documents and performance programs.

Series III. Publications: The series consists of various newspapers, bulletins, newsletters, and magazines, mostly from the Islamic press. Of specific note is Muslims Weekly and the Weekly Mirror, two publications in which Carroll wrote a column and of which exist a large number of volumes in this collection.

Series IV. Audiovisual: The series consists of audiocassette, videocassette, and compact discs, mostly covering different topics pertaining to Islam or religion. Many of the videocassettes include reports and documentaries on the detainees and detention centers. The digital files include non-commercial recordings of a conference, reports on Hurricane Katrina, and some work on detainees.

Series V. Artifacts: The series includes a small amount of physical objects, including a patch from the Bosnian army, a tile with Arabic script, and a certificate.

Access Restrictions

Materials in this collection may be stored offsite. For more information on making arrangements to consult them, please visit

Use Restrictions

Taking images of documents from the library collections for reference purposes by using hand-held cameras and in accordance with the library's photography guidelines is encouraged. As an alternative, patrons may request up to 20 images per day from staff. Application to use images from this collection for publication should be made in writing to: Department of Rights and Reproductions, The New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024-5194, Phone: (212) 873-3400 ext. 282.

Copyrights and other proprietary rights may subsist in individuals and entities other than the New-York Historical Society, in which case the patron is responsible for securing permission from those parties. For fuller information about rights and reproductions from N-YHS visit:

Preferred Citation

The collection should be cited as: P. Adem Carroll Papers, MS 3212, New-York Historical Society.

Location of Materials

Materials in this collection may be stored offsite. For more information on making arrangements to consult them, please visit

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of P. Adem Carroll, 2021.

Collection processed by

Austin Davis

About this Guide

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on 2023-09-05 11:16:51 -0400.
Using Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language: Finding aid written in English

Processing Information

The collection was processed by Austin Davis, Princeton Internships in Civic Service (PICS) intern, in summer 2022. Digital files were processed by archivist Margo Padilla in July 2022.


New-York Historical Society
New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024