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AFSCME Office of the Secretary-Treasurer: Gordon Chapman Records

 Collection
Identifier: LR001990
These papers consist mainly of materials relating to the founding and disbanding of thousands of locals and councils in all the states, Puerto Rico, Panama and Canada. There is also historical information on some councils and locals, and a small amount of documentation of the financial operations of the office, with data on salaries and payroll matters.

Important subjects covered in this collection are: AFL, 1927-1955 AFL-CIO, 1955-1961 Government and Civic Employees Organizing Committee, 1956-1958 Hospital employees, 1936-1961 Jurisdictional disputes, 1937-1961: Building Service Employees Union International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Operating Engineers Teamsters Law enforcement employees, 1936-1961 Local affiliation with councils or with the International, 1936-1961 School personnel and school board employees, 1936-1961 State council organizing, 1936-1961 Trusteeships, 1936-1961

Among the important correspondents are: Brewer, Gordon; McCormack, James; Caldwell, John P.; McEntee, William J.; Chapman, Gordon; Meany, George; Collier, H.Z.; Morgan, Thomas E.; Garey, Colonel A.E.; Murray, Milton; Goldberg, Arthur J.; Reuther, Walter P.; Gotbaum, Victor; Wilson, Henry; Kubista, Roy; Wurf, Jerry

Series Description: Series 1: Councils and Locals, 1926-1968, Boxes 1-165: Correspondence, charter applications, a few charters, notices of local renewal, suspension or disbandment, clippings, constitutions, telegrams and contract agreements which reflect the functioning of the office. Some of the council and a few local files detail their histories and provide information on disputes with other unions, councils or locals or with the International itself. Locals that were originally formed by the Government and Civic Employees Organizing Committee, the CIO public employee union which was assimilated by AFSCME at the AFL-CIO merger in 1955, are indicated.

Series 2: Financial Data, 1956-1965, Boxes 166-169: Memoranda for the auditors and on the Building Fund, general salary and payroll deduction matters, material on council operating costs, and salary information for councils and staff. Some payroll deduction materials on the Steel Strike of 1959-1960 are included.

Dates

  • 1926 - 1968
  • Majority of material found within 1936 - 1961

Creator

Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.

Access

Collection is open for research.

Use

Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials.

Extent

84.5 Linear Feet (169 MB)

Abstract

Gordon W. Chapman was elected secretary-treasurer of AFSCME in 1937. He served until 1944 when he became executive assistant to AFSCME president Arnold Zander. In 1948, he was reelected to the office of secretary-treasurer. Chapman resigned from AFSCME in 1961 to accept a State Department appointment as special assistant for the coordination of international labor affairs. In 1962, he was once again elected as secretary-treasurer of AFSMCE where he served until his retirement in 1966 due to poor health. During the 1950s, Chapman also worked actively with the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions.

Chapman placed his papers with the Reuther Library in 1979. His collection reflects almost exclusively his work in AFSCME.

History

Gordon W. Chapman was elected secretary-treasurer of AFSCME in 1937. He served until 1944 when he became executive assistant to AFSCME president Arnold Zander. In 1948, he was reelected to the office of secretary-treasurer. Chapman resigned from AFSCME in 1961 to accept a State Department appointment as special assistant for the coordination of international labor affairs. In 1962, he was once again elected as secretary-treasurer of AFSMCE where he served until his retirement in 1966 due to poor health. During the 1950s, Chapman also worked actively with the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions.

Arrangement

Arranged in 2 series – Series 1 (Boxes 1-165), and Series 2 (Boxes 166-169). In Series 1, council files are usually in numerical order, but in special situations are filed chronologically. Locals are arranged by local number. A few materials not generated by councils or locals are placed at the end of the states they concern. In series 2, materials are arranged alphabetically. Files of general information are placed first in each grouping.

Acquisition

Chapman placed his papers with the Reuther Library in 1979.

Related Materials

Gordon Chapman Papers; AFSCME Office of the President: Arnold S. Zander Records

Transfers

23 black and white photographs of AFSCME council organizers and 2 reel tapes from Michigan Local 201 have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collections. A copy of Michigan State Employee, October 1958, a constitution of the California State Council, August 1939 and a few flyers and handouts have been transferred to the Archives Library.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in November, 1984.

Creator

Title
Guide to the AFSCME Office of the Secretary-Treasurer: Gordon Chapman Records
Status
completed
Author
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Date
1984-11
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

Contact:
5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA