Skip to main content

UAW Technical, Office, Professional (TOP) Department Records

Identifier: LR000704

Scope and Content

The UAW TOP Department Collection contains correspondence; organizing and negotiations files (arranged both by company name and subject); TOP Department chron files; TOP advisory council and conference files; National War Labor Board and NLRB cases (arranged by company name); Management-Shop Committee minutes; and other material related to the organizing and servicing of UAW white collar members.

Important subjects in the collection : Automobile industry and trade Automobile industry workers Collective bargaining-- White collar workers Grievance arbitration-- United States National War Labor Board & NLRB cases Trade-unions-- Clerks Trade-unions-- Industrial technicians Trade-unions-- Nurses Trade-unions-- Organizing UAW TOP Advisory Councils White collar workers-- Canada White collar workers-- United States Women white collar workers

Important correspondents: George Addes, Owen Bieber, Irving Bluestone, Omer Dillingham, Hubert Emerick, Richard Frankensteen, Douglas Fraser, Martin Gerber, Dave Gordon, Dick Hug, Olga Madar, Norman Matthews, Emil Mazey, Art Miller, Audrey Parman, Victor Reuther, Walter Reuther, Marc Stepp, Leonard Woodcock

Series Description: Series 1: Company Files, 1937-1982 Series 2: Subject and Correspondence Files, 1940-1985


  • 1937 - 1985
  • Majority of material found within 1960 - 1985


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.


The UAW TOP Department (then called the Office Workers Department) was set up at the 1953 convention under the direction of Walter Reuther to coordinate the organizing of auto industry workers not involved in shopfloor production-- clerical workers, engineers, designers and technicians. Later, the TOP Department extended its organizing activities to white collar workers outside the auto industry, including health care professionals. In 1964, advisory councils were set up in selected geographic areas throughout Canada and the United States, the first one in Region 9, to provide a forum for white collar workers and engineers to discuss common needs.


74 Linear Feet (74 SB)


Subjects include: white collar workers; organizing Packard, Hudson, General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and auto suppliers’ clerical employees, technicians and designers; organizing hospital workers and college and university employees; War Labor Board and NLRB cases; contract negotiations; benefits; TOP international, regional, Michigan and Canadian conferences


Arranged into 2 series - Series 1 (Boxes 1-59), and Series 2 (Boxes 59-74). Folders in each series are simply listed by their location within each box. They are not arranged, so any given subject may be dispersed throughout several boxes within each series.


The records of the UAW Technical, Office and Professional (TOP) Department were placed in the Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs in multiple shipments beginning in 1975 and ending in 1992.

Related Materials

UAW collections


A few photographs have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collection, and a few issues of TOP Reporter and White Collar News and a large number of contracts have been transferred to the Archives Library.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by C. Hansen on March 8, 1995.
Guide to the UAW Technical, Office, Professional (TOP) Department Records
Processed by C. Hansen.
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