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Holt Labor Library Collections

Holt Labor Library Collections, Gerth Archives and Special Collections, California State University, Dominguez Hills

The Holt Labor Library was a library in San Francisco, California from 1992 to 2019 that collected and made accessible primary and secondary source material related to labor history and the history of the radical left, with an emphasis on the activities of American Trotskyist political organizations. The Library also collected materials related to various anti-war movements, the women's movement, gay liberation, and the African American Civil Rights Movement, among other social justice causes. The Holt Labor Library closed in 2019, thereafter donating its holdings to the Gerth Archives and Special Collections at California State University, Dominguez Hills.

Select Images from Holt Labor Library Collections

Black Panther Newspaper, Vol. 03, No. 2, May 4, 1969: Free Huey. Holt Labor Library periodical collection, HLL.2019.038

The Crusader, Vol. 5, No. 2, February 1964. Berta Green Langston papers, HLL.2019.002

"Why Do You Need a Union?" leaflet. Asher Harer papers, HLL.2019.011

"Jails Fill as Protests Rise” and other articles, The Student Voice, January 27, 1964. Nelson Blackstock papers, HLL.2019.016

"Guaranteed Wages for the Year Round." Washington, D.C. : Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), Department of Research and Education, 1947. Holt Labor Library pamphlet and subject file collection, HLL.2019.001

Letter to Asher Harer from Cesar Chavez, June 18, 1973. Asher Harer papers, HLL.2019.011

Trotskyist and Leftist Political Organization Collections

Bulletins, newsletters, correspondence, press releases, news articles, ephemera, and other materials that reflect the activities and statuses of various political organizations.

  • Spartacist League of the U.S. collection, 1961-2013, HLL.2019.007
    • This collection contains bulletins, pamphlets, articles, and one conference transcript that reflect the theoretical sentiments and organizational activities of the Spartacist League of the U.S. The League was officially formed in 1966 by expelled members of the Revolutionary Tendency within the Socialist Workers Party. It is the United States section of the International Communist League (Fourth International).
  • Socialist Action collection, 1963-2001, undated, bulk 1983-2001, HLL.2019.008
    • The collection contains correspondence, reports, draft resolutions, bulletins, minutes, plenum and convention documents, and subject files related to Socialist Action, a Trotskyist political organization.
  • Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee collection, 1977-1994, undated, HLL.2019.013
    • This collection reflects the activities and political sentiments of the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee, which began in 1973 and merged with the New American Movement in 1982 to form the Democratic Socialists of America. It comprises periodicals, pamphlets, and one Convention Journal from the Committee's Fifth National Convention, in addition to pamphlets published by the Democratic Socialists of America.
  • Democratic Socialist Party collection, 1995-2002, undated, HLL.2019.014
    • This collection contains discussion and information bulletins and various education materials that reflect the political sentiments and educational activities of the Democratic Socialist Party (DSP). The DSP began as the Socialist Workers Party of Australia in 1972, changed its name to the Democratic Socialist Party in the 1990s and then to the Democratic Socialist Perspective in 2001, and merged with the Socialist Alliance in 2010.
  • New American Movement collection, 1971-1982, undated, HLL.2019.015
    • The collection contains pamphlets, newsletters, bulletins and foundational documents that reflect the New American Movement's (NAM) activities and political platforms. The NAM was active from 1972-1982 and advocated for workplace equality and a democratic socialist society founded on socialist feminist ideas.
  • Line of March collection, 1977-1987, undated, HLL.2019.019
    • The collection contains reports, study materials, and publications regarding Line of March, a trend within the Marxist-Leninist anti-revisionist rectification movement that was centered around the Line of March journal.
  • Johnson-Forest Tendency Internal Bulletin, July-September 1947, HLL.2019.020
    • The collection comprises issues of the internal bulletin of the Johnson-Forest Tendency, a Marxist-Humanist tendency within the Workers Party and the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) led by C.L.R. James, Raya Dunayevskaya, and Grace Lee Boggs.
  • Revolutionary Marxist Committee collection, 1975-1977, HLL.2019.021
    • The collection contains the internal bulletin of the Revolutionary Marxist Committee and Revolutionary Marxist Papers, the organization's journal. It also contains a newsletter of the Revolutionary Marxist Organizing Committee.
  • International Bolshevik Tendency collection, 1982-2003, undated, HLL.2019.022
    • The collection contains pamphlets and bulletins published by the International Bolshevik Tendency (IBT), a Trotskyist organization.
  • International Socialists collection, 1972-1975, HLL.2019.023
    • The collection contains bulletins and reports by International Socialists, a Third Camp Trotskyist organization in the United States.
  • League for Socialist Action/ Ligue Socialiste Ouvrière collection, 1970-1973, HLL.2019.024
    • The collection contains convention documents and discussion bulletins regarding the League for Socialist Action/ Ligue Socialiste Ouvrière (LSA/LSO), a Canadian Trotskyist organization.
  • Solidarity collection, 1986-2000, undated, HLL.2019.025
    • The collection contains minutes, bulletins, working papers, and founding documents of Solidarity, a revolutionary socialist organization.
  • Socialist Workers Organization collection, 1985, 2001-2004, undated, HLL.2019.027
    • The collection contains minutes, discussion bulletins, agendas, notes, audiocassettes, subject files, a draft resolution, and one commercial lease document that reflect the founding and administration of the Socialist Workers Organization (SWO) from 2001-2004. The SWO is a Trotskyist political organization that was founded by expelled members of Socialist Action in 1999.
  • Marxist Leadership School course materials, ca. 1983, HLL.2019.028
    • Syllabi, class readings, and notes from a Marxist Leadership School course about Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, and Marxist history.
  • Socialist Workers Party collection, 1934-2003, undated, HLL.2019.031
    • The collection comprises bulletins, convention and forum constitutions, programs, and leaflets, correspondence, reports, flyers, and subject files relating to the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), which was a Trotskyist political organization founded in 1928 by James P. Cannon.
  • Young Socialist League and Young Socialist Club of Wayne County collection, 1954-1961, undated, HLL.2019.032
    • The collection contains bulletins, newsletters, pamphlets, programs, constitutions, press clippings, and flyers published by or relating to the Young Socialist League and the Young Socialist Club of Wayne County.
  • Communist and Workers Parties collection, 1930-1991, HLL.2019.035
    • The collection reflects the activities and political sentiments of the Communist League of America (Opposition), the International Communist League, the League of Communist Internationalists, and the Workers Party of the United States. It comprises internal, information, and international bulletins.
  • Revolutionary Socialist League collection, 1973-1982, undated, HLL.2019.036
    • The collection reflects the activities, statuses, and principles of the Revolutionary Socialist League, a Trotskyist organization that advocated for the unification of the working class, the rebuilding of the Fourth International, and for championing various social causes. It contains Internal Discussion Bulletins, reports, newsletters, position papers, and one Political Resolution from the organization's Founding Convention.
  • Socialist Labor Party collection, 1976-1994, undated, HLL.2019.037
    • The collection reflects the activities, statuses, and guiding principles of the Socialist Labor Party (SLP) from 1976-1994. It comprises documents from National Conventions from 1976 to 1993, pamphlets, leaflets, one Constitution, and one catalogue from New York Labor News, the Party's publisher.
  • Revolutionary Communist Youth and Spartacus Youth Bulletins, 1972-1983, undated, HLL.2019.039
    • The collection contains Internal Discussion Bulletins and Pre-Conference Discussion Bulletins published by Revolutionary Communist Youth (RCY), and Internal Discussion Bulletins and one Young Communist League Bulletin published by the Spartacus Youth League (SYL). Both organizations served as the national youth group for the Spartacist League of the U.S., a Trotskyist political organization, from 1971-1986.
  • Communist Party USA collection, 1961-1991, undated, HLL.2019.040
    • The collection documents the history, activities, and beliefs of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA), a communist political party in the United States between the years 1961-1991. It includes pamphlets published by Gus Hall, National Secretary of the CPUSA; National Convention reports, political resolutions, and discussion bulletins; "Party Builder" newsletters; "Dialog" newsletters and Pre-Convention Discussion Bulletins; "People's World" newspaper;  Party programs, election guides, and one Party handbook. 
  • Socialist and Communist Youth Organizations Collection, 1920-1959, 1970, undated, HLL.2019.041
    • The collection comprises subject files related to or published by socialist and communist youth organizations including Young People's Socialist League; Internationalist Socialist Youth; Young Communist International; Young Communist League; and American Student Union. It includes leaflets; resolutions; bulletins; pamphlets; reports; bulletins; and one song book.

Activist Papers

Personal papers collected by labor, political, and civil rights activists.

  •  Berta Green Langston papers, 1958-2005, HLL.2019.002 
    • This collection includes the personal and professional papers of Berta Green Langston, an active member of the Socialist Workers Party and Socialist Action who was involved in various protest movements during the 20th century. It includes newsletters, newspaper articles, miscellaneous writings, and correspondence with James Baldwin, Robert F. Williams, Albert Perry, Dave Dellinger, William Worthy, Pete Seeger, and Noam Chomsky, among others.
  • Marjorie and Paul Colvin papers, 1957-1991, HLL.2019.003 
    • This collection contains the personal and professional papers of Marjorie and Paul Colvin, members of the Socialist Workers Party and political activists who protested against the Vietnam war and other U.S. interventions during the 1960's and 1970's. It includes meeting notes, flyers, correspondence, and newspaper clippings related to the various organizations and movements they were involved with.
  • William and Beatrice Eisman papers, 1964-2005, HLL.2019.004
    • The collection contains the personal and professional papers of William and Beatrice Eisman, political activists who founded the U.S. / Vietnam Friendship Committee in 1979, which aimed to normalize relations between the U.S. and Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos. It includes correspondence, newsletters, press releases, articles, publications, and videocassettes.
  • Thomas F. Barton papers, 1964-2015, bulk 2003-2005, HLL.2019.005
    • This collection includes the personal and professional papers of Thomas F. Barton, an anti-war activist and socialist who organized soldiers against the Vietnam and Iraq wars. It includes newsletters, articles, correspondence, meeting minutes and agendas that document Barton's involvement with various anti-war and socialist organizations, and the distribution, founding, and publishing of various anti-war newsletters.
  • Jim Hamilton papers, 1962-2012, HLL.2019.006
    • This collection comprises the papers of Jim Hamilton, an active member of the Teamsters for a Democratic Union (TDU), Local 688 in St. Louis, Missouri, who held various administrative roles in the union and advocated for rank-and-file reform. It includes correspondence, convention reports and publications, flyers, newsletters, meeting notes, constitution proposals, newspaper articles, contracts, and color photographs.
  • Asher Harer papers, [1927], 1932-2000, undated, HLL.2019.011
    • The collection comprises the papers of Asher Harer, a member of the Socialist Workers Party and Socialist Action, as well as a trade unionist and anti-Vietnam War activist. It includes correspondence, photographs, reports, resolutions, minutes, notes, study guides, flyers, newsletters, leaflets, newspapers and newspaper clippings, and scrapbooks.
  • Nelson Blackstock papers, 1963-2006, undated, HLL.2019.016
    • This collection comprises the papers of Nelson Blackstock, a former Civil Rights activist who as involved with the Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC), the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and various other student-led political organizations in Atlanta, Georgia during the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. He was also a journalist and editor who was at one time a managing editor of The Militant. The collection includes newspaper clippings, conference agendas, minutes, reports and resolutions, newsletters, flyers, and notes and manuscripts for political lectures.
  • Nat and Sylvia Weinstein papers, 1940-2001, undated, HLL.2019.017
    • The collection comprises the papers of Nat and Sylvia Weinstein, members of the Socialist Workers Party and founding members of Socialist Action, as well as labor and women's rights activists. It includes reports, resolutions, article drafts, minutes, convention and plenum notebooks and reports, correspondence, speeches, statements, flyers, bulletins, announcements, pamphlets, and newspaper clippings.
  • Rod Holt subject file collection, 1959-1997, undated, HLL.2019.018
    • The Rod Holt subject file collection, 1959-1997, bulk 1987-1998, contains files on various political and scientific subjects that were created and maintained by Rod Holt, who was Apple employee #5 as well as a socialist, political activist, and the founder of the Holt Labor Library in San Francisco, California. It contains newspaper clippings and photocopies, correspondence, notes, flyers, leaflets, notices, one audiocassette, one floppy disk, and other materials.
  • Meryl and Manny Sunshine papers, 1950-2002, bulk ca. 1980-1995, HLL.2019.026
    • The collection contains the papers of Meryl and Manny Sunshine, socialist activists who were members of the Freedom Socialist Party, Radical Women, the Committee for a Revolutionary Socialist Party, the Peace and Freedom Party, and other organizations. It includes subject files, convention and conference materials, leaflets, photographs, bulletins, reports, memoranda, press releases, minutes, publications, election materials, and draft proposals.
  • Christopher F. Cornford papers, 1968-1978, undated, HLL.2019.029
    • The collection contains papers and materials compiled and created by Christopher F. Cornford, a British artist, writer, and activist who taught at the Royal College of Art in London, where he was head of the Department of Humanities from 1962-1979, and the University of the Third Age in Cambridge. It contains student-published newspapers and newsletters, academic senate resolutions, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, pamphlets, strike documents, statements, leaflets, press releases, notes, and letters.
  • Peter Tiernan papers, 1966-2000, bulk 1985-1999, HLL.2019.030
    • The collection comprises the papers of Peter Tiernan, a painter who was involved with San Francisco District Council of Painters No. 8, Painters Union Local 83, and Bay Area Painters and Taper Trust Funds. It includes election flyers and leaflets, articles, letters, drawings, legal exhibits, publications, and one pen.
  • Bob Mattingly papers, 1937-2004, undated, bulk 1971-2004, HLL.2019.033
    • This collection comprises the papers of Bob Mattingly, a member and leader of Brewery, Soda and Mineral Water Bottlers of California Local Union No. 896, Affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America. It also includes records of the activities and statuses of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) and Teamsters for a Democratic Union (TDU). It includes correspondence, convention reports and publications, flyers, newsletters, meeting notes, constitution proposals, ephemera, news articles, contracts, video recordings, and black-and-white and color photographs and negatives. 

Collections Compiled by the Holt Labor Library

Materials accrued by the Holt Labor Library between 1992 and 2019 relating to labor union organizing, political activism, and various social justice and civil rights causes.

  • Holt Labor Library pamphlet and subject file collection, HLL.2019.001
    • Pamphlet and subject files collected by the Holt Labor Library concerning: anarchism; communism; Marxism; socialism; anti-war and peace movements; activities and topics within the arts and sciences, economics, education, and government; various civil rights and social justice movements; the history of various geographic areas; the history of the labor movement and labor union organizing; the Soviet Union and the Russian Revolution; Trotskyism.
  • Holt Labor Library audiovisual recordings collection, 1935-2009, undated, bulk 1960-2009, HLL.2019.009
    • Comprises audio recordings of interviews and speeches of various individuals affiliated with Socialism, Communism, Trotskyism, and the Civil Rights and Labor movements.
  • Holt Labor Library poster collection, HLL.2019.012
    • Posters collected by the Holt Labor Library reflecting the activities and statuses of various political, labor, and social justice organizations and their demonstrations.
  • Holt Labor Library ephemera collection, 1948-2000, undated, bulk 1970-2000, HLL.2019.034
    • The collection comprises items collected by the Holt Labor Library, including buttons, keychains, flags, banners, and black-and-white and color photographs, negatives and contact sheets. The materials are related to various labor strikes, commemorative events, political party and labor union election campaigns, women's rights causes, anti-war activism and demonstrations, and socialist political causes.
  • Holt Labor Library periodical collection, HLL.2019.038
    • Radical and political periodicals collected by the Holt Labor Library, including the Black Panther Newspaper.