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Bernard Firestone Papers

Identifier: LP001444

Scope and Content

The papers of Bernard Firestone consist of correspondence, newsletters, minutes, publications, and other material relating to his work in the labor movement and his involvement in community activities.

Important subjects in the collection: ACTWU. Collective Bargaining-Clothing Store Employees. Democratic Party Politics. Labor Mediation. Metro Detroit AFL-CIO. Important correspondents in the collection: Ossie Davis. David Hecker. Jack Scheinkman. Ed Scribner. Tom Turner.


  • 1950 - 1989


Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


Bernard J. (Bernie) Firestone (1935-1989) was secretary-treasurer of the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union’s Chicago and Central States Joint Board, the union’s eight-state Midwest region, when he was killed by a disgruntled ACTWU retiree at his office in September 1989.

A Detroit native, he received undergraduate and law degrees from Wayne State University and was a member of ACTWU, which represents workers at tailor shops, laundries, dry cleaners and clothing stores, for thirty years. A staunch labor activist, Firestone served as vice-president and on the Labor Crisis and Good Government Committees of the Metro Detroit AFL-CIO.

Firestone also served as a Central Michigan University trustee and was active in Democratic Party politics and community affairs generally, working with United Way, the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights and numerous other civic organizations.


17 Linear Feet (17 SB)


Bernard J. (Bernie) Firestone (1935-1989) served as secretary-treasurer of the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers (ACTWU) Chicago and Central States Joint Board, and as vice-president of the Metro Detroit American Federation of Labor-Council of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO). The papers of Mr. Firestone reflect his work as a labor activist and his involvement in community affairs.


Folders are listed in the order they appear.


A few audio tapes of memorial tributes to Bernard Firestone have been placed in the Reuther Archives Audiovisual Collection.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Guide to the Bernard Firestone Papers
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA