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Guide to the Communist Party of the United States of America Records TAM.132

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2596

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Jillian Cuellar, Peter Filardo, Stephanie Bennett, Margaret Fraser, Nancy Ng Tam, Hester Goodwin Stanley, Maggie Schreiner, Daniel Reisner, Michelle Dean, and Hanan Ohayon (March 2012). Edited to include accessioned materials, May 2014

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on July 08, 2021
English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

 Edited by Heather Mulliner to include Jim West files from 2014 accession Edited by Heather Mulliner to reflect incorporation of audio/visual and photographic materials Edited by Heather Mulliner to include 2018 accertion Edited by Rachel Searcy to reflect 2018 accretion Edited by Amy C. Vo to change legacy description about the forced removal and incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II Edited by Rachel Mahre to reflect that some films have been digitized and are accessible to patrons. Edited by Rachel Mahre to reflect that some audio materials have been digitized and are accessible to patrons.  , February 2017 , October 2017 , May 2018 , April 2019 , January 2021 , May 2021 , July 2021

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Communist Party of the United States of America
Title: Communist Party of the United States of America Records
Dates [inclusive]: 1892-2019
Dates [bulk]: 1950-1990
Abstract: The Communist Party of the United States of America (CPUSA) is a Marxist-Leninist political organization that was founded in Chicago in 1919. The CPUSA played a pivotal role in many significant political and social movements of the 20th century. Its Party platform focused largely on working class issues such as fair wages and unemployment, civil rights for racial and ethnic minorities, civil liberties for politically persecuted communities, economic justice for the poor, the unemployed and for immigrants, and international peace efforts. The Party's work left an indelible mark in the arena of progressive politics and made it an influential force in the labor movement, particularly from the 1920s to the 1940s. Its varied political, social, and cultural initiatives attracted the support of a number of prominent artists, intellectuals, and activists, including Woody Guthrie, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Angela Davis. Though the CPUSA's strength and size declined sharply following World War II and the advent of the Cold War and McCarthyism, it remains committed to socialism, peace, economic and social justice, and civil rights and liberties. The records of the Communist Party, USA provide vivid documentation of the organization's trajectory from its birth in 1919 to the early 2000s. The collection includes a diverse mix of correspondence, convention and conference materials, essays and manuscripts, internal discussion documents, reports, speech transcripts, research files, printed ephemera, clippings, legal documents, photographs, posters, audio tapes, films, videos, and a wealth of personal papers. Though materials from as early as 1892 can be found in the collection, the bulk of the records were created between 1950 and 1990. A more comprehensive record of the CPUSA's early 20th century activity can be found in the Files of the Communist Party of the USA in the Comintern Archives, 1919-1943 (Microfilm R-7548).
Quantity: 480.5 Linear Feet in 420 record cartons, 38 oversize flat boxes, 1 large custom box, 3 shoe boxes, 3 artifact boxes, 6 CD boxes, 4 manuscript boxes, 1 half manuscript box, 15 oversize folders, 23 flat file folders, and 2 oversize rolls.
Quantity: 3512 audiocassettes
Quantity: 825 sound tape reels
Quantity: 69 sound discs (cd)
Quantity: 612 videocassettes (vhs)
Quantity: 476 videocassettes (u-matic)
Quantity: 57 videocassettes (betacam)
Quantity: 62 videoreels (1/2 inch)
Quantity: 3 videoreels (1 inch)
Quantity: 7 videoreels (2 inch)
Quantity: 420 film reels
Quantity: 34.51 Gigabytes on 15 CD-Rs, 20 floppy disks, 5 DVD-Rs, 1 zip disk, and 1 commercial CD
Language: The bulk of this collection is in English. Some materials are in Spanish and Russian.
Call Phrase: TAM.132
Sponsor: Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Council on Library and Information Services via the Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives program.