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Guide to the Charles Solomon Photographs PHOTOS 008

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
10th Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2630

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Tamiment staff

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on August 30, 2018
Description is in English. using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Solomon, Charles
Title: Charles Solomon Photographs
Dates [inclusive]: 1935-1960
Abstract: Charles Solomon, a perennial Socialist Party candidate for public office, was elected to the New York State Assembly in 1919, on the Socialist Party ticket. He was also labor lawyer, and served as a New York City Magistrate for nearly twenty years. The collection contains images from Solomon's electoral campaigns and from his work as a judge, and group portraits with other labor, liberal and socialist leaders.
Quantity: 0.25 Linear Feet (1 box)
Call Phrase: PHOTOS 008

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Historical/Biographical Note

Charles Solomon (1889-1963) was born on New York City's Lower East Side of immigrant Jewish parents. He practiced labor law, and following his appointment, in 1936 by New York City Mayor Fiorello La Guardia, served for almost twenty years as a judge. Solomon joined the Socialist Party in 1910 and then ran repeatedly for public office. In 1919, he and four other Socialists were elected to the New York State Assembly, but because of the Red Scare, they were all denied their seats. Solomon finally took his seat in November of 1920. Although he ran for a range of positions including Governor, United States senator, and Mayor of New York City, Solomon never won another election. In 1936 he left the Socialist Party to help found the Social Democratic Federation and the American Labor Party (ALP). Later, in 1944, he led the exodus of Socialists and trade unionists from the ALP and helped to found the Liberal Party.

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Scope and Content Note

The collection documents Solomon's work as a Socialist candidate and orator as well as a judge. Portraits of Charles Solomon are amply represented (13) and are supplemented by two pen and ink cartoons, as well as by a portrait in his campaign literature. Highlights of the collection are four photographs from 1932, showing Solomon, the Socialist candidate, standing on a soapbox, speaking to office workers in the Wall Street area. In addition, six photographs document Solomon's swearing-in ceremony--performed by New York City Mayor Fiorello La Guardia--as a judge for the city's Magistrate's Court. Solomon is surrounded by family and supporters, including International Ladies Garment Workers Union president David Dubinsky. Various photographs show Solomon in the courtroom, sometimes posed formally with other judges, sometimes in action with courtroom participants. Two blow-ups (11x14) picture Solomon at the bench in an intense interaction with courtroom participants crowded around the bench. An early group portrait (undated) poses Solomon with socialist luminaries August Claessens, Louis Waldman, Sam Orr and S.A. De Witt. Another posed portrait shows Solomon with Algernon Lee, B. Charney Vladeck, John Dewey, Norman Thomas and Rabbi Stephen Wise. Other group portraits or two-shots include Solomon speaking at Meyer London's funeral, posed with the International Ladies Garment Workers Union's All-Star baseball team, Solomon's fellow Socialist Party/Social Democratic Federation/American Labor Party member Louis Goldberg, Harry Avrutin, Abraham Cahan, and New York City African-American politician Myles Paige. Finally, the collection also includes the official certificate of appointment to the office of city magistrate signed by Mayor La Guardia.


Files are arranged topically.

The files are grouped into one series.

Missing Title

  1. Inventory

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • De Witt, S. A. (Samuel Aaron), 1891- -- |v Portraits
  • Avrutin, Harry
  • La Guardia, Fiorello H. (Fiorello Henry), 1882-1947
  • Wise, Stephen S. (Stephen Samuel), 1874-1949
  • Vladeck, B. (Baruch), 1886-1938
  • Solomon, Charles -- |v Pictorial works
  • Dubinsky, David, 1892-1982. -- |v Portraits
  • Orr, Samuel, 1890- -- |v Portraits
  • Thomas, Norman, 1884-1968 -- |v Portraits
  • Waldman, Louis, b. 1892 -- |v Portraits
  • Paige, Myles--Portraits.
  • Cahan, Abraham, 1860-1951 -- |v Portraits
  • Claessens, August, 1885-1954 -- |v Portraits
  • Dewey, John, 1859-1952.
  • Goldberg, Louis P. (Louis Palatnik), b. 1888
  • Lee, Algernon

Document Type

  • Black-and-white photographs.
  • Certificates.

Subject Organizations

  • International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union

Subject Topics

  • Socialism -- United States -- History -- 20th century
  • Socialists -- United States -v Portraits.

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Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

Materials are open without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives has no information about copyright ownership for this collection and is not authorized to grant permission to publish or reproduce materials from it. Materials in this collection, which were created in 1935-1960, are expected to enter the public domain in year.

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date; Collection name; Collection number; box number; folder number;
Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012, New York University Libraries.

Related Material at the Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Charles Solomon Papers, Tamiment 041

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Most likely donated by Charles Solomon's daughters, Mildred Clinton and Isabel Moros, in 1965. The accession number associated with this gift is 1965.005.

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Container List


Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Folder: 1 Portraits (15 items)
1933 , 1938 , 1952
Folder: 2 Speaking (7 items)
1932 , 1936
Folder: 3 Swearing-in Ceremonies & Court-related (17 items)
1935 , 1936
Folder: 4 Solomon, et al (20 items)
Folder: 5 Miscellaneous (3 items)
Box: OS002 Folder : 1 (Mixed Materials) Oversize
circa 1930s
Flat-file: 7 (panoramic) Drawer : 14 (Photographs)

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