Henry Kraus Papers
Mr. Kraus was the first editor of the UAW's newspaper The United Auto Worker (later changed to Solidarity). He was active in the early attempts by the UAW (first under the AFL and later under the CIO) to organize the auto industry. Files for the late 1920s and early 1930s cover the attempts by groups, including the Auto Workers Union of the Trade Union Unity League, to organize auto workers, and discuss such events as the Murray Body Strike (1929); the Ford Hunger March (1932); and the Briggs Strike (1933). There are many items pertaining to the AFL's work in the auto industry, such as material on the threatened auto strike of March 1934, the Toledo Auto-Lite and Chevrolet strikes of 1934 and 1935, and conferences and conventions of the UAW-AFL. The collection also has many files of the AFL's Detroit office for the early 1930s. Particularly well covered are the activities of the UAW-CIO from 1936 to 1940, including the South Bend Convention, the sit-downs, early attempts to organize Ford, and the Homer Martin controversy (resulting in the split of 1939). The Flint Sit-Down Strike and factionalism in the UAW are particularly well documented. Correspondents include nearly every major AFL, CIO, and UAW leader of the period. Among them are John Brophy, F. J. Dillon, Adolph Germer, William Green, John L. Lewis, Homer Martin, Rose Pesotta, Walter Reuther, and R. J. Thomas. Public figures include Charles Coughlin and Frank Murphy. Nine reels of microfilm complement content in Part I and are described in a separate guide.
Part 3 contains manuscripts, notes and research materials from Kraus’s three major books, as well as materials from his other books and writings including those on medieval art. Also included are transcripts of oral histories from a variety of individuals involved in the labor movement, especially those from the 1937 Flint Sit-Down Strike.
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