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UAW Local 45 Records

Identifier: LR000876

Scope and Content

The papers of UAW Local 45 reflect the daily functioning of the Local, including its negotiations with Fisher Body Corporation and the Prophet Company, and its organizing drive at the Euclid Station Wagon plant.

Important correspondents: Charles Beckman, Oliver Hardy, William Casstevens, Charles Kennedy, John DeVito, Emil Mazey, Leo Fenster, Patrick O'Malley, Bert Foster, Leonard Woodcock

Important subjects covered in this collection are: Blacks Seniority Civil Rights Skilled Trades Fair Employment Practices Taft-Hartley Law Health and Safety Unemployment Compensation Pension UAW Factionalism, 1940s-1950s Political Action Workmen's Compensation

Series Description: Series 1: General Office Files, 1939-1974 Correspondence, election material, minutes, financial reports, agreements, and other items from the office files of UAW Local 45. Subjects of interest include UAW factionalism in the 1940s and the 1950s, civil rights and fair employment practices, pension plans, seniority problems, and unemployment and workmen's compensation.

Series 2: Shop Committee and Plant Management Meetings, 1944-1969 Minutes of the meetings between UAW Local 45's Shop Committee and the management of Fisher Body Cleveland Division #1 at which workers' grievances, company policies, and contract issues were discussed. Subjects dealt with in the minutes include job classification, seniority, foremen working, worker safety, wages, and production standards.

Series 3: Grievances, 1944-1971 The grievances of UAW Local 45.


  • 1939 - 1974
  • Majority of material found within 1944 - 1971


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.


UAW Local 45 represents the workers at the Fisher Body Division #1 plant in Cleveland, Ohio, and the cafeteria workers at the same plant who are employed by the Fred Prophet Company. It was chartered in 1934 as AFL Federal Local 18614 and led two unsuccessful strikes in April of 1934 and May of 1935. After these defeats, the Local was reorganized and chartered as UAW Local 45 on 1 October 1935. The Local was active in both the 1936-1937 sitdown and the 1945-1946 strike against General Motors.

During the late 1940s and the 1950s Local 45 opposed Walter Reuther's leadership of the UAW and, in 1947, the recording secretary of the Local, John DeVito, ran for UAW president against Reuther. Throughout these years, Local 45 was active in the fight against the Taft-Hartley Law, and in support of political action by labor, civil rights, and unemployment compensation.

In September of 1948 Local 45 won an NLRB election which gave it the right to represent the workers at the Fisher Body Station Wagon plant in Euclid, Ohio. These workers remained in Local 45 until April of 1949 when they were granted their own charter from the UAW and became Local 1045.


28.25 Linear Feet (31 MB, 13 SB)


Subjects include: GM Fisher Body (Cleveland); UAW factionalism


Arranged in 3 series – Series 1 (Boxes 1-16), Series 2 (Boxes 17-31) and Series 3 (Boxes 32-44). Folders are arranged alphabetically.


The papers of UAW Local 45 were deposited in the Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs in April 1978.

Related Materials

UAW collections


Approximately one-half linear foot of photographs relating to the picnics of UAW Local 45 during the 1940s and the 1950s have been placed in the Archives Audio Visual Collections. Also, bound umpire decisions and numerous UAW convention proceedings, agreements, newspapers, and pamphlets concerning unemployment compensation, worker safety, and pension plans were received with this collection are available in the Archives Library.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in June 1983.
Guide to the UAW Local 45 Records
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