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Guide to the Rand School of Social Science: Publications TAM.007.005

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
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(212) 998-2630
tamiment.wagner@nyu.edu


Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Gwen Gethner

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on April 19, 2018

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Rand School of Social Science
Source: People's Educational Camp Society
Title: Rand School of Social Science: Publications
Dates [inclusive]: 1914-1955
Abstract: The Rand School of Social Science (1906-1956), a New York City school for workers and socialists offered a variety of courses on contemporary topics, traditional subjects, and socialist theory taught by intellectuals within the socialist movement, distinguished academicians, and trade union leaders. In 1917 the Rand School purchased a building which was used by several socialist organizations. In a climate of anti-radical feeling after World War I, the Rand School came under attack. After a series of court cases the Rand School retained control of its operations, and programs and enrollment increased. Shortly after World War II, courses and enrollment decreased sharply. In January 1956 the Board of Directors of the American Socialist Society closed the Rand School and transferred the title of the school and its building to the People's Educational Camp Society. This part of the collection, the Rand School of Social Science Publications contains pamphlets that the Rand School Press published between 1914 and 1955 on a variety of topics relating to radical politics, especially socialist stances on labor and war. The pamphlets as part of the entire Rand School of Social Science donation was transferred to NYU in 1963.
Quantity: 3 Linear Feet (3 boxes)
Language: Materials are in English
Call Phrase: TAM.007.005

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Historical/Biographical Note

The Rand School of Social Science was undoubtedly one of the most important schools for workers and socialists in modern American history. Established in 1906 with funds from the will of Mrs. Carrie Rand and with the able leadership of George D. Herron, the Rand School provided working men and women with an opportunity to continue their education. Its governing body was the American Socialist Society (ASS), incorporated in 1901, whose purposes were "to...study and discuss social and political science and to expound the theories of modern socialism by lectures and publication." Board members of the ASS included Charles Beard, Morris Hillquit, Harry Laidler, Algernon Lee, John Spargo, and secretary W.J. Ghent. Over the next 50 years, a variety of Rand School courses on many contemporary topics, traditional subjects, and socialist theory were taught by intellectual leaders of the socialist movement, distinguished academicians, and trade union leaders.

During its early years from 1906 to 1922, the Rand School was supported by funds from the Socialist Party, the People's Educational Camp Society (Camp Tamiment), trade unions, the Workmen's Circle, the Jewish Forward Association, and the Rand School Bookstore. Most of the courses offered during this period pertained to socialist theory, economics, economic history, American history, literature, and other traditional subjects. Among the members of the Rand School faculty at this time were such luminaries as Scott Nearing, Charles Beard, James Harvey Robinson, Algernon Lee, and Bertha Howell Mailly.

By 1917 the Rand School had outgrown its original offices and classrooms in New York City's Greenwich Village and, in the fall of that year, purchased a six story building at 7 East 15th Street that had been vacated by the Young Women's Christian Association. This new building, named the "People's House" after a socialist center in Brussels, Belgium, had an auditorium, a library, spacious classrooms, and office space which was utilized by several socialist organizations as well as the Rand School staff. This building served as the headquarters of the Rand School until it closed in 1956.

The growth of the Rand School and the increased strength of the socialist movement contributed to the climate of anti radical hysteria that prevailed in New York and other parts of the country following World War I. In 1919, the New York State Assembly appointed a special Committee investigate radical activities in the state, including the Rand School. Under the chairmanship of State Senator Clayton R. Lusk, this committee engaged in a campaign of harassment against the Rand School and its administrative board, the American Socialist Society. During the course of three years, the Lusk Committee conducted a raid on the Rand School offices, confiscated Rand School property, and attempted to close the school by court ordered injunction. Through a series of court cases in 1920 and 1922 ( United States of America vs. American Socialist Society and Scott Nearing; The People of the State of New York vs. American Socialist Society), the Rand School was able to successfully counteract the Lusk Committee and retain control over its operations.

Following the debacle with the Lusk Committee, the Rand School entered into a period of expanded course offerings, special educational programs, and increased student enrollment. One of the most prevalent areas of expansion in the Rand School from the early 1920s until the mid 1940s was course offerings. During this period, the Rand School curriculum shifted from its parochial attachment to socialist instruction to a wide range of courses in the areas of child development, trade union policies, education, home economics, music, art, Russian studies, juvenile delinquency, race relations, peace education, propaganda and public opinion, psychology, public speaking, social work, supervision, and youth leadership. Some of the more notable instructors for these courses were Charles Beard, Franz Boas, Marc Connolly, Stephen Vincent Benet, Bertrand Russell, and August Claessens.

In addition to these expanded course offerings, the Rand School also provided many special educational programs. one of the most popular programs implemented by the Rand School was the correspondence courses. First organized prior to World War I. the correspondence course program was refined and expanded during the 1920s. Most of the course offerings pertained to socialist theory, but there were also courses in trade unionism, economics, social problems, and government as well. Another well attended special program was the Trade Union Institute. This program was first offered in the mid 1920s as the Workers' Training Course and later revised at the Trade Union Institute during the 1936 1937 academic year. The Institute offered courses in union organizing, contemporary labor problems, labor management relations, labor history, parliamentary procedure, and public speaking. During the 1940s and early 1950s, the Trade Union Institute was one of the most vital components of the Rand School curriculum.

When the Rand School was re organized in the late 1930s, special education programs were offered for the first time in select professional areas of study. Some of these programs included review courses for the certified public accountant's examination, teacher in service credit courses and coaching courses, and courses for social workers and employment counselors. During this same period, the Rand School administration also established the following programs: (1) a Rand High School division which was designed to supplement the regular studies of high school students (1935-1936); (2) a political training course for members of the Social Democratic Federation and the American Labor Party (1937-1939); (3) the Newark School of Social Science which featured socialist, trade union, and contemporary issue courses and lectures for workers living in New Jersey (1937-1940); and (4) the Rand School in Northern New Jersey which superceded the Newark School and offered similar courses (1947-1949).

Besides its special education programs, the Rand School also sponsored numerous lectures, forums, and conferences on a variety of socialist and labor subjects. Some of the most interesting events of this nature were the 1931 forum on current events with Charles Edward Russell and Norman Thomas among the quest speakers; the 1932 United Youth Conference Against War; the 1941 symposium on America's role in World War II with Alfred Baker Lewis, August Claessens, and Gerhart Seger among the guest speakers; the 1941 conference on war aims and the postwar world with Alexander Kerensky, Matthew Woll, and Bertrand Russell among the guest speakers; the 1943 panel discussion on the validity of socialism with Sidney Hook, Max Eastman, and John Chamberlain among the guest speakers; and the 1944 lecture series on contemporary "prophets" with Max Ascoli, Mark Starr, Raphael Abramovitch, and Sidney Hook among the guest lecturers. As a means of helping to raise funds for the perpetually debt ridden institution, the Rand School staff also sponsored annual benefits at the metropolitan Opera House and produced occasional plays through the Rand Playhouse in the 1930s and the Labor Theatre in the early 1950s.

During its most active period, the Rand School operated a book store which contained many traditional and contemporary works on socialism, American and European labor, politics, sociology, and economics. The Rand School also maintained several research operations, including the Labor Research Department, the American Labor Archive and Research Institute, and the Institute of Social Studies. These research and information services published such works as The American Labor Year Book(1916-1932),  The American Labor Who's Who(1925), the  American Labor Press Directory(1925), and the  Index to Labor Articles(1926-1953) .

Another important adjunct of the activities of the Rand School was the library. Initially begun with gifts from students, teachers, alumni, and many socialist and labor supporters, the Meyer London Memorial Library (later known as the Tamiment Library), named after the famous New York City congressman, became well known for its manuscript collections, books, pamphlets, magazines, and newspapers pertaining to socialism, communism, and organized labor.

Shortly after World War II, the Rand School suffered a sharp decrease in both enrollment and course offerings. Recurring financial problems, the decline of American socialism in general, and the haunting specter of McCarthyism contributed significantly to this predicament. By the late 1940s and early 1950s, the Rand School offered only a few courses in addition to its relatively successful labor management relations program. Finally, in January 1956, the Board of Directors of the American Socialist Society closed the Rand School and transferred the title of the "People's House" to the People's Educational Camp Society (aka PECS, the governing body of Camp Tamiment, which had provided the bulk of the funding for the Rand School for many years), which reopened the School's library in 1958 as the Tamiment Institute Library, under the auspices of the Tamiment Institute, the educational arm of Camp Tamiment. In 1963, Camp Tamiment, now a successful resort, lost its tax-exempt status as an educational institution, and the Library was donated to New York University as part of the settlement between PECS and the Internal Revenue Service.

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Scope and Content Note

The Rand School of Social Science Publications Collection contains pamphlets published by the Rand School Press between 1914 and 1955 dealing with issues including socialism in the United States and Russia, labor, and concerns about World War I and II. The pamphlets are by a number of authors, including David P. Berenberg, August Claessens, Morris Hillquit, Scott Nearing, James Oneal, and Upton Sinclair.

Arrangement

Folders are arranged chronologically.

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • Nearing, Scott, 1883-1983.
  • Oneal, James, 1875-1962
  • Hillquit, Morris, 1869-1933
  • Claessens, August, 1885-1954
  • Debs, Eugene V. (Eugene Victor), 1855-1926
  • Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968.
  • Eastman, Max, 1883-1969

Document Type

  • Pamphlets.

Subject Organizations

  • People's Educational Camp Society

Subject Topics

  • Labor unions -- United States.
  • Labor unions and socialism -- United States.
  • Socialism -- Europe.
  • Socialism -- United States.
  • Labor -- United States.

Subject Places

  • Russia |x Foreign relations |z United States.
  • Russia -- History -- 20th century.

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Administrative Information

Custodial History

The Rand School of Social Science Publications were transferred to New York University in 1963 by the People's Educational Camp Society (later renamed the Tamiment Institute), as part of a larger transfer of records of the Rand School of Social Science and of organizations associated with the founding and maintenance of the School (including the American Socialist Society, The Society of the Commonwealth Center, and the People's Educational Camp Society) as well as the contents of the School's library, the Meyer London Memorial Library. The materials from this transfer were then separated into several different collections, one of which is the Rand School of Social Science Publications.

Conditions Governing Access

Materials are open without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright (or related rights to publicity and privacy) for materials in this collection, created by the Rand School of Social Science was not transferred to New York University. Permission to use materials must be secured from the copyright holder.

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, New York University.

Related Archival Material

People's Educational Camp Society (007.3)

Rand School of Social Science Records (007) (R-7124)

Tamiment Institute Records (007.4)

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by the People's Educational Camp Society, 1963. The accession number associated with this gift is 1963.021.

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Container List

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Hillquit, Morris. Socialism Summed Up.
1914
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Must We Arm? Hillquit-Gardner Debate.
1915
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Lilienthal, Meta Stern. From Fireside to Factory.
1916
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Must We Arm? Hillquit-Gardner Debate.
1916
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Lilienthal, Meta Stern. Women of the Future.
1916
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Should Socialism Prevail? Debate Between Nearing, Hillquit, Belford and Davenport.
1916
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Trachtenberg, Alexander (editor). The American Socialists and the War: A Documentary History of the Attitude of the Socialist Party Since the Outbreak of the Great War.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Berenberg, David P. The City for the Workers: The Case Against "Business Administration" in New York.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Nearing, Scott. The Great Madness: A Victory for the American Plutocracy.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Nearing, Scott. The Menace of Militarism.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 11 Hillquit, Morris. Socialism Summed Up.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Nearing, Scott. Work and Pay.
1917
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Nearing, Scott. The Coal Question: Some Reasons Why It Is Pressing and Some Suggestions for Solving It.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 14 Waldman, Louis. Food and the People: The Problem of the High Cost of Living in the New York Legislature.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 15 Laidler, Harry W. Public Ownership Throughout the World: A Survey of the Extent of Government Control and Operation.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 16 Berenberg, David P. Socialism.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 17 Feigenbaum, William Morris and August Claessens. The Socialists in the New York Assembly.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 18 Clark, Evans and Charles Solomon. The Socialists in the New York Board of Aldermen: A Record of Six Months' Activity.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 19 Lenin, Nikolai. The Soviets at Work: The International Position of the Russian Soviet Republic and the Fundamental Problems of the Socialist Revolution.
1918
Box: 1 Folder : 20 Marx, Karl and Friedrich Engles. Communist Manifesto.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 21 Nearing, Scott. The Debs Decision.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 22 Nearing, Scott. Labor and the League of Nations.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 23 Lomonossoff, George V. Memoirs of the Russian Revolution.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 24 Scott Nearing's Address to the Jury: The Speach [sic] Before the Jury When Charged With a Violation of the Espionage Act.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 25 Lenin, Nikolai. The Soviets at Work: The International Position of the Russian Soviet Republic and the Fundamental Problems of the Socialist Revolution.
1919
Box: 1 Folder : 26 Solomon, Charles. The Albany "Trial".
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 27 Nearing, Scott. Europe and the Next War.
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 28 Nearing, Scott. Europe in Revolution.
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 29 Clark, Evans. Facts and Fabrications about Soviet Russia.
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 30 Turner, John Kenneth. Hands Off Mexico The Case Against Intervention, The Intervention Conspiracy, Wilson and Intervention, A Solution for the Mexican "Problem".
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 31 Nearing, Scott. The One Big Union of Business.
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 32 Hillquit, Morris. Present Day Socialism. I
1920
Box: 1 Folder : 33 Hillquit, Morris. Present Day Socialism. II
1920
Box: 2 Folder : 1 The Salaried Man: The Story in Two Episodes of an Every Day Person.
1920
Box: 2 Folder : 2 Nearing, Scott. The American Empire. I
1921
Box: 2 Folder : 3 Nearing, Scott. The American Empire. II
1921
Box: 2 Folder : 4 Claessens, August. The Logic of Socialism.
1921
Box: 2 Folder : 5 Oneal, James. The Workers in American History.
1921
Box: 2 Folder : 6 Berenberg, David P. A Workers' World.
1931
Box: 2 Folder : 7 Fine, Nathan. The Collapse of the Seabury Investigation. (with inscriptions from author)
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 8 Claessens, August. Essentials of Socialism A Brief Exposition of the Principal Elements of Modern Socialism.
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 9 Should the Workers Form a Party of Their Own? Debate Hillquit and Well.
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 10 Berenberg, David P. Socialist Fundamentals. I
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 11 Berenberg, David P. Socialist Fundamentals. II
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 12 Berenberg, David P. The Workers' World.
1932
Box: 2 Folder : 13 Claessens, August. Essentials of Socialism.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 14 Claessens, August. A Manual for Socialist Speakers: A Brief Text Book on the Techniques of Public Speaking and Socialist Propoganda Meetings.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 15 DeWitt, S.A. Rhapsodies in Red: Songs for the Social Revolution.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 16 Panken, Jacob. Socialism for America.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 17 Lipschitz, Siegfried. Swastika Over Germany.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 18 Tyler, August. The United Front.
1933
Box: 2 Folder : 19 Berenberg, David P. America at the Crossroads. I
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 20 Berenberg, David P. America at the Crossroads. II
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 21 Oneal, James. The Austrian Civil War.
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 22 Adler, Friedrich. Democracy and Revolution.
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 23 Claessens, August. Social Attitudes Towards War and Peace.
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 24 Berenberg, David P. We the People.
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 25 Berenberg, David P. A Workers' World.
1934
Box: 3 Folder : 1 Oneal, James. Socialism versus Bolshevism.
1935
Box: 3 Folder : 2 Oneal, James. An American Labor Party: An Interpretation.
1936
Box: 3 Folder : 3 Claessens, August and Rebecca E. Jarvis. ABC of Parliamentary Law: A Brief Handbook on Rules of Order for Meetings Adapted to the Needs of Labor Groups. I
1936
Box: 3 Folder : 4 Claessens, August and Rebecca E. Jarvis. ABC of Parliamentary Law: A Brief Handbook on Rules of Order for Meetings Adapted to the Needs of Labor Groups. II
1936
Box: 3 Folder : 5 Morrison, Herbert. An Easy Outline of Modern Socialism.
1936
Box: 3 Folder : 6 Morrison, Herbert. A Labor Party Versus Fascism: Exposing the Bankruptcy of Fascism.
1936
Box: 3 Folder : 7 Letter of an Old Bolshevik: The Key to the Moscow Trials. I
1937
Box: 3 Folder : 8 Letter of an Old Bolshevik: The Key to the Moscow Trials. II
1937
Box: 3 Folder : 9 Claessens, August. What Organized Labor Wants: A Popular Description of Trade Union Philosophy, Economics and Ideals.
1937
Box: 3 Folder : 10 Sinclair, Upton and Eugene Lyons. Terror in Russia? Two Views. I
1938
Box: 3 Folder : 11 Sinclair, Upton and Eugene Lyons. Terror in Russia? Two Views. II
1938
Box: 3 Folder : 12 Naft, Stephen. One Hundred Questions to the Communists.
1939
Box: 3 Folder : 13 Claessens, August. The Democratic Way of Life.
1940
Box: 3 Folder : 14 Mornson, Herbert. An Easy Outline of Modern Socialism.
1940
Box: 3 Folder : 15 Schaffer, Louis. Stalin's Fifth Column on Broadway: A Cue To Theatre People.
1940
Box: 3 Folder : 16 Shulman, Frederick. An Appeal to Reason.
1941
Box: 3 Folder : 17 War Aims, Peace Terms, and the World After the War: A Joint Declaration by Democratic Socialists of Several Nationalities.
1941
Box: 3 Folder : 18 Eastman, Max. A Letter to Americans.
1941
Box: 3 Folder : 19 Claessens, August. Race Prejudice: a description of the various factors in racial animosities, discriminations, and conflicts, and the conditions under which these antagonisms are increased or eliminated. I
1943
Box: 3 Folder : 20 Claessens, August. Race Prejudice: a description of the various factors in racial animosities, discriminations, and conflicts, and the conditions under which these antagonisms are increased or eliminated. II
1943
Box: 3 Folder : 21 Claessens, August. Eugene Victor Debs: A Tribute.
1946
Box: 3 Folder : 22 Shaub, David and Robert Alexander. What Do You Know About British Labor? I
1946
Box: 3 Folder : 23 Shaub, David and Robert Alexander. What Do You Know About British Labor? II
1946
Box: 3 Folder : 24 Ashe, David I. and George Rifkin. The Taft-Hartley Law: How It Effects Unions and Workers.
1947
Box: 3 Folder : 25 Farrell, James T. Truth and Myth About America: A Statement Against Dictatorship of or Over the Proletariat, and Offering a Democratic Change for Social Progress.
1949
Box: 3 Folder : 26 Claessens, August. What Organized Labor Wants: A Popular Description of Trade Union Philosophy, Economics, and Ideals.
1950
Box: 3 Folder : 27 Schapiro, Theodore. The Challenge of Workers' Education.
1951
Box: 3 Folder : 28 Claessens, August. Understanding the Worker: Problems of Labor Organizations Analyzed in the Light of Social Psychology, Backgrounds in Trade Union History. I
1954
Box: 3 Folder : 29 Claessens, August. Understanding the Worker: Problems of Labor Organizations Analyzed in the Light of Social Psychology, Backgrounds in Trade Union History. II
1954
Box: 3 Folder : 30 Claessens, August and Rebecca Jarvis. The ABC of Parliamentary Law: A Brief Handbook on Rules of Order for Meetings, Adapted to the Needs of Labor and Other Groups. I
1955
Box: 3 Folder : 31 Claessens, August and Rebecca Jarvis. The ABC of Parliamentary Law: A Brief Handbook on Rules of Order for Meetings, Adapted to the Needs of Labor and Other Groups. II
1955

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