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Guide to the Max Shachtman Photographs PHOTOS.087

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 Erika Gottfried, 2009.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on September 20, 2018

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of fourteen color and 206 black and white photographic prints in sizes from 2" x 3" to 8" x 10" and 11" x 14", that range from formal studio portraits to passport photographs and snapshots. Many individuals are identified, but dates of series and in folder titles are mostly approximate, as only a few of the photographs have definite dates, and even these dates, handwritten on the back -- probably by Max Shachtman or Yetta Barsh Shachtman -- may not be completely accurate, as they appear to have been assigned years after the photographs were shot. Notable are photographs of Leon Trotsky and his second wife, Natalia Sedova, and Shachtman with them, including a photograph showing Shachtman and Frida Kahlo greeting the Trotskys on shipboard on their arrival in Mexico, and color snapshots of some of Trotsky's descendants (a grandson and some great-grandchildren), dating from after Max Shachtman's death. Also of note are several images from the 1920s, including group photographs of the younger leaders of the fledgling U.S. Communist Party, as well as photographs of two Central European communists accompanied by dossier-type documents (possibly collected by Shachtman on his first trip to the Soviet Union) with information on their political biographies and affiliations, and a snapshot showing Vladimir Lenin, Nicolai Bukharin, and Gregory Zinoviev conferring. Of particular interest from Shachtman's later years is a snapshot of him with Socialist Party leader Norman Thomas.


Folders are arranged chronologically within each series.

Organized into six series:

Missing Title

  1. Series I: Portraits, circa 1906-1960s
  2. Series II: Speaking, 1930s-circa 1950s
  3. Series III: Family, circa 1910s-circa 1960s
  4. Series IV: Max and Yetta Shachtman, Friends and Associates, 1920s-1960s
  5. Series V: Leon Trotsky and Family, Friends, and Associates, 1930-1937; circa 1950s
  6. Series VI: Miscellaneous Historical, 1920s-circa 1950s