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Guide to the Louis Weinstock Papers and Photographs WAG.013

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.wagner@nyu.edu


Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by Keri A. Myers (2009); Edited by Erika Gottfried to reflect the incorporation of nonprint materials and for compliance with DACS and Tamiment Required Elements for Archival Description (2013)

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on May 11, 2018
Description is in English. using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Weinstock, Louis, 1903-1994
Source - dnr: Gould, Susan Weinstock
Source - dnr: Weinstock, John
Title: Louis Weinstock Papers and Photographs
Dates [inclusive]: circa 1910-1994, bulk 1930-1980
Dates [bulk]: 1930-1980
Abstract: Louis Weinstock was born in Hungary in 1903 and emigrated to the United States in 1923. He settled in New York City and in 1925 joined the Painters' Union, Local 499. Weinstock became one of the leaders of the "Rank and File" movement in District Council 9 of the International Painters and Paperhangers. He fought for Social Security and initiated the drive for unemployment insurance. Weinstock also led the Rank-and-File painters caucus in a fight against corruption in the union, defeating the corrupt leadership of the infamous Lepke-Gurrah racketeer gang and getting elected to the office of Secretary-Treasurer. In 1951, he was charged with conspiring to violate the Smith Act while teaching a trade union class; he was found guilty and sentenced to three years in jail. Weinstock retired from the union in 1963 and died in 1994 from heart failure.
Quantity: 5.25 Linear Feet in 3 record cartons, 2 manuscript boxes, 1 oversized flat box, and 2 oversized folders.
Language: Materials are in English and Hungarian.
Call Phrase: WAG.013

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Historical/Biographical Note

Louis Weinstock was born in Hungary in 1903 and emigrated to the United States in 1923. He settled in New York City and in 1925 joined the Painters' Union, Local 499. Weinstock became one of the leaders of the "Rank and File" movement in District Council 9 of the International Painters and Paperhangers. In 1926 Louis married Rose, also from Hungary and an activist in the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. During the Depression, Weinstock fought for Social Security and initiated the drive for unemployment insurance even though the American Federation of Labor (AFL) leadership was opposed to such policies. Weinstock, with the help of Harry Bridges of the West Coast Longshoremen (ILWU) and Elmer Brown of the Typographers Union (ITU) headed a committee to rally support from 3,000 AFL local unions and ultimately forced the reversal of the position of William Green, then head of the AFL Executive Council who was opposed to such reforms. During the struggle for the unemployed, Weinstock participated in hunger marches and led delegations to city councils, state capitols, and was part of the National Hunger March to Washington, DC in the early 1930s.

Weinstock also led the Rank-and-File painters caucus in a fight against corruption in the union. Weinstock defeated the corrupt leadership of the infamous Lepke-Gurrah racketeer gang and was elected to the office of Secretary-Treasurer, the highest office in District Council 9. He was elected Secretary-Treasurer in 1926 and for 11 years he served as either Secretary-Treasurer or President of District Council 9. Under the renewed democratic leadership the union initiation fee was reduced from $75 to $5 which increased membership, especially amongst minority and immigrant groups, and particularly among African Americans and Puerto Ricans. Additional benefits followed: increases in wages, better safety conditions, and shorter working hours.

Weinstock participated in numerous activities for both social change and for the Rank and File movement in District Council 9. His activism included attending the founding convention of the World Federation of Trade Unions in 1945. He was a delegate to the first World Peace Congress, held in Paris in 1949. He continued to work throughout his life on the important issues facing international trade unions. In 1950 Weinstock became the secretary of a May Day parade planning committee. In 1953 the permit for the parade was canceled because the U.S. Subversive Activities Control Board declared that the group must register under the McCarran Act for operating a "Communist front" organization. At this point in Weinstock's life he was defending himself against three separate federal prosecutions: the May Day charge of perjury for allegedly lying about the name of the organizing committee, a Smith Act charge of teaching anti-American labor history, and a McCarran Act charge branding him as a Communist.

On June 20, 1951 agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation showed up to take Weinstock to jail. He was charged with conspiring to violate the Smith Act while teaching a course on trade unionism in 1950. The Justice Department argued that some issues being taught could be viewed as advocating a violent overthrow of the U.S. government. In 1953 Weinstock was found guilty and sentenced to three years in jail and $6,000 fine. He was released from prison in May 1957 and continued to pay off the $6,000 fine in monthly installments for the next 19 years. After his release from prison in 1957, he was reinstated into the District Council 9 and continued his trade as a house painter until a massive heart attack in 1963 forced him to retire. In the 1960s he served as a business manager for The Worker, a newspaper published by the Communist Party of the United States.

After retirement, Louis and Rose moved to Los Angeles where they remained active by working with the Los Angeles Committee for Trade Union Action and Democracy (TUAD) and also coordinated a Senior Citizens Organization. During the 1980s he was active with senior citizens' organizations and was a delegate to the World Conference on Aging, organized by the United Nations, held in Vienna, Austria. Louis Weinstock died on November 26, 1994 at the age of 91 from heart failure.

Sources:

  • Gersh, Adolph B., Occupational Hazards and the Painter.New York: New York District Council No. 9, B. of P. D. & P. of A., 1937.
  • Hall, Burton H., editor. Autocracy and Insurgency in Organized Labor.New Brunswick: Transaction Books, 1972.
  • Montgomery, John Flournoy. Hungary: The Unwilling Satellite.New York: The Devin-Adair Company, 1947.
  • The Struggle of the New York Painters for Human Conditions.New York: District Council 9, Brotherhood of Painters, Decorators, and Paperhangers of America, No Date.
  • Zausner, Philip. Unvarnished: The Autobiography of a Labor Leader. New York: Brotherhood Publishers, 1941.

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Scope and Content Note

The papers and photographs of Louis Weinstock document his life from the 1920s to his death in 1994. The collection includes personal artifacts as well as an extensive amount of material from his involvement with the Brotherhood of Painters, Decorators, and Paperhangers. The collection is organized into seven separate series: personal, correspondence, writings, subject files, resource materials, ancillary materials, and photographs.

Arrangement

Most files are arranged chronologically within each series.

Organized into 7 series:

  1. I, Personal
  2. II, Correspondence
  3. III, Writings
  4. IV, Subject Files
  5. V, Resource Materials
  6. VI, Ancillary Materials
  7. VII, Photographs

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Access Points

Subject Names

  • Hall, Gus
  • Billings, Warren K., 1893-1972
  • O'Dwyer, William, 1890-1964.
  • Curran, Joseph Edwin, 1906-1981
  • Flynn, Elizabeth Gurley
  • Bloor, Ella Reeve, 1862-1951
  • Castro, Fidel, 1926-2016
  • La Guardia, Fiorello H. (Fiorello Henry), 1882-1947
  • Winn, Sam.
  • Weinstock, Louis, 1903-1994
  • Robeson, Paul, 1898-1976
  • French, Daniel, 1908-
  • Weinstock, Rose
  • Gellert, Hugo, 1892-1985
  • Lindelof, Lawrence P.
  • Healy, Dorothy, 1914-1990
  • Quill, Mike, 1905-1966
  • Gould, Susan Weinstock
  • Weinstock, John

Document Type

  • Color photographs.
  • Black-and-white photographs.
  • Articles.
  • Clippings (information artifacts)
  • Correspondence.

Subject Organizations

  • International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades. Painters District Council 9 of New York City
  • World Peace Congress
  • National Hunger March.

Subject Topics

  • Collective bargaining -- United States.
  • Insurance, Unemployment.
  • Unemployed.
  • Social security.
  • Korean War, 1950-1953 -- Protest movements.
  • Labor unions -- United States.
  • May Day (Labor holiday) -- United States -- History.

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Administrative Information

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 Louis Weinstock was not transferred to New York University. Permission to use materials must be secured from John Weinstock and Susan Weinstock Gould.

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date; Louis Weinstock Papers and Photographs; WAG 013; 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

Sam Winn Papers (WAG 203)

Carl Blum Papers (WAG 100)

Frank Schonfeld Papers (WAG 027)

Daniel French Papers (WAG 101)

Frank Schonfeld Papers (WAG 027)

Burton Hall Papers (WAG 087)

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Louis Weinstock's children, Dr. John Weinstock and Susan Gould, in 1995. The accession numbers associated with this collection are 1995.028, 1995.029 and NPA.1998.008.

Processing Information

Photographs from this collection were established as a separate collection in 1998, the Louis Weinstock Photographs (PHOTOS 077). In March 2013 PHOTOS 077 was reincorporated into the Louis Weinstock Papers and Photographs.

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Container List

Series I: Personal

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Biographical file
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Scrapbook
1930-1939
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Awards and Invitations
1942-1992
Box: MSOS003 Folder : 1 Awards (oversize)
1943
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Rose Weinstock file (wife)
1951-1959
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Attorneys' Records: Sacher, Abt, Forer, & Rein
1953-1956
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Birthday Celebrations
1973 , 1983 , 1988
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Financial Records/Receipts
1986-1991
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Causes & Issues
1989-1993
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Memorials, Obituaries
1994

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Series II: Correspondence

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Letters from Elizabeth Gurley Flynn
1961
Box: 1 Folder : 11 Correspondence
1932-1947
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Correspondence
1950-1969
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Correspondence
1970-1989
Box: 1 Folder : 14 Correspondence
1990-1993
Box: 1 Folder : 15 Correspondence (orphan)
undated

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Series III: Writings

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 16 Speeches
circa 1943
Box: 1 Folder : 17 Draft of Memoir
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 18 Notes for Memoir
1989
Box: 1 Folder : 19 Weinstock Memoirs Publishing Committee
1989-1992
Box: 1 Folder : 20 Margaret S. Mahler Institute, Grant for Memoir
1992

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Series IV: Subject Files

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 21 C.P.U.S.A.
1920-1939
Box: 1 Folder : 22 Communist Party USA: "The Economic Crisis
1930
Box: 1 Folder : 23 C.P.U.S. A. articles
1980
Box: 1 Folder : 24 C.P.U.S.A.
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 25 Hunger March Materials-news clips, press releases
1931
Box: 1 Folder : 26 Hunger March-originals
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 27 National Hunger March to Washington-Analysis
1932
Box: 1 Folder : 28 Cincinnati Rank & File Conference-Proceedings
1932
Box: 1 Folder : 29 Unemployed Organizer Newsletters
1933
Box: 1 Folder : 30 AF of L Trade Union Committee for Unemployment Insurance and Relief
1932-1933 , 1935
Box: 1 Folder : 31 Tom Mooney articles
1932
Box: 1 Folder : 32 Workers Alliance of America
1930-1949
Box: 1 Folder : 33 American Labor Party
1944-1946
Box: 1 Folder : 34 US Dept. of Labor-Painters Vacation Hearing
1945
Box: 1 Folder : 35 Painters Vacation Hearing, Local 186 New Haven, Connecticut
1945
Box: 1 Folder : 36 May Day materials
1950-1989
Box: 1 Folder : 37 Supreme Court Opinions-Smith Act
1951
Box: 1 Folder : 38 Smith Act-Defense Committee
1951-1954
Box: 2 Folder : 1 Smith Act Support for Weinstock-Correspondence
1952
Box: 2 Folder : 2 Smith Act Trial Report
1952-1953
Box: 2 Folder : 3 Smith Act-Court Proceedings
1953
Box: 2 Folder : 4 Federal Correctional Institution-Danbury, Rand Connecticut
1955-1957
Box: 2 Folder : 5 Correspondence in Prison-Danbury, Connecticut
1955-1957
Box: 2 Folder : 6 Record of Smith Act Cases
1956
Box: 2 Folder : 7 Receipts of Payment to the Dept. of Justice
1950-1959
Box: 2 Folder : 8 Smith Act Materials
1951-1976
Box: 2 Folder : 9 U.S. Court of Appeals Re: Smith Act
undated
Box: 2 Folder : 10 Walter- McCarran Law
1954
Box: 2 Folder : 11 American Committee for Protection of Foreign Born
1956-1957
Box: 2 Folder : 12 District Council #9
1932-1988
Box: 2 Folder : 13 Examination of DC #9's Accounts, Stuart Chase, CPA
1925-1927
Box: 2 Folder : 14 Local Union 499, Brotherhood of Painters, Decorators, & Paperhangers
1934
Box: 2 Folder : 15 New York District Council
1936 , 1946 , 1947
Box: 2 Folder : 16 NYS Conference Buffalo, New York
1938
Box: 2 Folder : 17 Rank & File" Program
1938-1940
Box: 2 Folder : 18 Local Union 848, (Weinstock's Home Local)
1940-1949
Box: 2 Folder : 19 CIO-PAC
1944
Box: 2 Folder : 20 NC-PAC
undated
Box: 2 Folder : 21 Union Insurance Policies
1944-1946
Box: 2 Folder : 22 Lemkin v Weinstock, Rarback v Weinstock
1945-1946
Box: 2 Folder : 23 Expulsion from the Painters' Union
1945-1950 , 1967
Box: 2 Folder : 24 Local Union 442, Brotherhood of Painters, Decorators, & Paperhangers
1946
Box: 2 Folder : 25 DC #9, Re: Dan French
1978 , 1990-1991
Box: 2 Folder : 26 IBPAT Pension Plan
1988
Box: 2 Folder : 27 4th District Western Conference of Painters & Tapers
1988-1991
Box: 2 Folder : 28 26th General Convention Reporter
1989
Box: 2 Folder : 29 News Clips- Corruption DC #9
1990-1991
Box: 2 Folder : 30 Painters Local Union 913 v Monroe, etc.
1991
Box: 2 Folder : 31 William Duva, Int.'l Rep-personal papers
1992
Box: 2 Folder : 32 Social Security, Medicare, & Healthcare
1980-1999
Box: 2 Folder : 33 Senior Citizens-materials
1986-1991
Box: 2 Folder : 34 Health Care Reform
1990

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Series V: Resource Materials

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 2 Folder : 35 Articles and Journals
1930-1955
Box: 2 Folder : 36 Corruption Sources
1930-1991
Box: 2 Folder : 37 National Committee Minutes
1932 , 1934
Box: 2 Folder : 38 Unemployment Sources
1932-1945
Box: 2 Folder : 39 Flyers
1933-1981
Box: 2 Folder : 40 News and Opinion: NYC Building Trades
1944 , 1946
Box: 2 Folder : 41 International Sources
1945-1990
Box: 2 Folder : 42 Rank and File Painter, Painters' Rank and File, The Voice etc…
1946-1970
Box: 2 Folder : 43 UAW-CIO Report on Racketeering and Gangsteriism
1949
Box: 2 Folder : 44 NY Law Journal, Labor Union Expulsion of Communist Party Member
1950
Box: 2 Folder : 45 Daily News
1951
Box: 2 Folder : 46 10th World Trade Union Congress, Havana, Cuba
1982
Box: 2 Folder : 47 Retirement Sources
1983-1989
Box: 2 Folder : 48 Joe Hill News
1989
Box: 2 Folder : 49 Issues of Boomerang, United Electrical Workers of Chicago
undated
Box: 2 Folder : 50 Programme of Economic and Social Demands, WFTU-Draft
undated
Box: 2 Folder : 51 Fact Sheet on Senator McCarthy
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 1 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 2 MyersonNotes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 3 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 4 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 5 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 6 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 7 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 8 Myerson Notes
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 9 Myerson Notes-Cold War
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 10 Myerson printed material- Research
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 11 Myerson bibliography
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 12 Myerson correspondence Re: Abt
1977-1990
Box: 3 Folder : 13 ACTWU Archives
1986 , 1987 , 1990
Box: 3 Folder : 14 Myerson Contacts for Interviews
1990
Box: 3 Folder : 15 Myerson Correspondence with Weinstock
1991-1992
Box: 3 Folder : 16 Orphan Documents
1932-1991
Box: 3 Folder : 17 Articles/News Clips, Communist Pary
1929-1990
Box: 3 Folder : 18 Press Releases, Hunger March & Work Sharing
1931-1970
Box: 3 Folder : 19 Clips and Newspaper Articles, Hunger March & Work Sharing
1931-1970
Box: 3 Folder : 20 Articles on Painters, News Clips, & Press Releases
1931-1966
Box: 3 Folder : 21 Articles on Racketeering, News Clips, & Press Releases
1937-1947
Box: 3 Folder : 22 Articles on Hungary-News Clips
1946-1994
Box: 3 Folder : 23 News Clips/Articles
1981-1992
Box: 3 Folder : 24 News Clips (Orphan)
undated

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Series VI: Ancillary Materials

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 3 Folder : 25 Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, 80th Congress
1948
Box: 3 Folder : 26 Subversive Activities Control Board
1950-1959
Box: 3 Folder : 27 Legal Documents, US Court of Appeals
undated
Box: 3 Folder : 28 Legal Documents, US Supreme Court
1950-1959

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Series VII: Photographs, 1920s-1980s 1940-1949

Scope and Content Note

Three-hundred-twenty-six black and white prints and 59 color prints, including images of these individuals: Warren K. Billings, "Mother" Ella Reeve Bloor, Fidel Castro, Joseph R. Curran, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Hugo Gellert, Gus Hall, Dorothy Healy, Fiorello LaGuardia, William O'Dwyer, Mike Quill, and Paul Robeson. Notable subjects depicted include May Day parades in New York City, and demonstrations protesting against the Korean War. Photographers include Hungarian immigrant photographers John Albok and Gabriel Hackett, Alexander Archer, and one photograph credited to A.H. Greene of the Film and Photo League.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 4 Folder : 1 1920s?
circa 1920-1930
Box: 4 Folder : 2 1930s?
circa 1930-1940
Box: 4 Folder : 3 1940s - Restaurant souvenir photographs
circa 1940-1950
Box: 4 Folder : 4 1940s?
circa 1940-1950
Box: 4 Folder : 5 1950s?
circa 1950-1960
Box: 4 Folder : 6 1960s?
circa 1960-1970
Box: 4 Folder : 7 1970s?
circa 1970-1980
Box: 4 Folder : 8 1980s?
circa 1980-1990
Box: 4 Folder : 9 Congress Syndical Mondial, Berlin
1986
Box: 4 Folder : 10 1990s?
circa 1990-1994
Box: 4 Folder : 11 Reference photocopies of photographs of Louis and Rose Weinstock in passports and labor union membership books
1928-1980
Box: 4 Folder : 12 Photocopies of unidentified photographs (possibly family, friends, and political colleagues)
undated
Box: 5 Photograph album (disassembled) of the Fot, Hungary orphanage

General

This item was presented to Louis Weinstock in memory of his visit to the orphanage on November 4, 1966. Captions are handwritten in Hungarian. Nineteen pages long (with photographs on both sides of the pages), it is arranged in original page order (indicated by an assigned page number written in pencil in square brackets on both sides of the pages). The album also includes a dedicatory note that accompanied the album, and a sample page of the original interleaving papers in the album has been retained.

circa 1960-1970
Box: OS 001 Folder : 1 Oversized photographs - panoramic
circa 1930-1950
Box: OS 001 Folder : 2 Oversized photographs - miscellaneous
circa 1930-1950; 1959

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