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Mark L. Kahn Papers

Identifier: LP000605

Scope and Content

Dr. Kahn’s papers reflect his enduring interest in the arbitration of labor disputes in a wide range of industries, especially air transportation.

Important subjects in the collection: Airline Industry Collective Bargaining Labor Arbitration Michigan Labor Mediation Act

Important correspondents in the collection: George Romney G. Mennen Williams

Series Description: Series I, Labor Arbitration Case Files, 1953-1970: Opinion and award statements, company and union briefs and exhibits, correspondence and other documents concerning Dr. Kahn’s arbitration activities in a wide range of labor disputes. The majority of Dr. Kahn’s arbitration cases were handled through the American Arbitration Association. He also served on system review boards for a number of airlines and on Special Commissions created by Governors Williams and Romney under the Michigan Labor Mediation Act.


  • 1952 - 1970


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.


Mark L. Kahn was born in 1921. A native of New York, he received a B.A. from Columbia University in 1942. After three years of military service Dr. Kahn entered Harvard University, where he earned an M.A. in 1948 and a Ph.D. in economics in 1950. The title of Dr. Kahn’s dissertation, “Industrial Relations in the Airlines: The Interaction of Unions, Management and Government in a Regulated and Subsidized Industry,” reflects his career-long involvement with the airline industry.

Dr. Kahn joined the faculty of Wayne State University in 1949. A professor of economics, he was the chairman of the Department of Economics from 1961 until 1968. He was the director of the Master of Arts in Industrial Relations (MAIR) program from its creation in 1978 until his retirement in 1985. Dr. Kahn began serving as an arbitrator for labor disputes in 1953 and was accepted as a member of the National Academy of Arbitrators in 1955. Following his retirement from Wayne State, Dr. Kahn became a full-time labor arbitrator. He has received Distinguished Service Awards from both the American Arbitration Association and the U.S. National Mediation Board.


21 Linear Feet (21 SB)


Mark Kahn was professor of economics at Wayne State University in the 1960s and the first Director of the Master of Arts in Industrial Relations. Throughout his academic career and into retirement, Mr. Kahn served as a labor arbitrator. His papers reflect his enduring interest in the arbitration of labor disputes in a wide range of industries, particularly air transportation.


Arranged in 1 series – Series 1 (Boxes 1-21). This series is arranged in numerical order by case file, which is roughly chronological.


The papers of Mark L. Kahn were placed in the Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs in 1977 by Dr. Kahn and opened for research in 2004.


Some photographs received with the papers have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collection.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in 2004.
Guide to the Mark L. Kahn 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