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William C. Gausmann Papers

Identifier: LP000901

Scope and Content

The papers of William C. Gausmann reflect his role as a labor expert, news analyst, and policymaker with the ECA/MSA, the USIA, and the State Department in Europe, the United States, and Vietnam. They also contain material related to his interest in socialism and his involvement in Lutheran Church in America programs.

Important subjects covered in the collection are: British Labour Party Communism and the Labor Movement European Labor Unions International Socialism Lutheran Church in America North Vietnamese Leadership Vietnam War

Among the important correspondents are: Richard Niebanck Victor Reuther Walter Reuther Norman Thomas

Series Description Series I, Early Career, 1942-1953: Correspondence, articles, reports, and other materials relating to international socialism, European politics and trade unionism, and to Mr. Gausmann's work with the agency implementing the Marshall Plan.

Series II, United States Information Agency: Correspondence, clippings, pamphlets, and other materials reflecting Mr. Gausmann's responsibilities as a USIA information officer and policy advisor on labor and minority affairs in England and the United States.

Series III, USIA, North Vietnamese Affairs Division: Correspondence, reports, articles, translated documents, and other materials concerning conditions in North Vietnam and the evolution of the war in the South.

Series IV, State Department, 1973-1977: Articles, reports, research notes, and other materials relating to Mr. Gausmann's professional interests in Western European political and economic affairs.

Series V, Lutheran Church in America, 1973-1977: Correspondence, memos, newsletters, and other items regarding Lutheran Church activities in the areas of social justice, political accountability, and international cooperation.


  • 1942 - 1977


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.


William C. Gausmann was born in Washington, D. C. in 1918. During the 1930s, he was active in the Socialist Party, holding a position on its national executive committee. He received a bachelor's degree in history from George Washington University in 1940 and worked for the Office of War Information until he was drafted into the Army in 1943. After the war, he worked for a short time as a correspondent for The Socialist Call. In 1948 he became editor of Labor Press Associates, a news service for labor union papers. From 1949 to 1953 Mr. Gausmann served as a Labor Information Officer for the Economic Cooperation Administration in London, a Marshall Plan agency, and as a policy advisor to the Mutual Security Administration in Paris. His duties included the preparation of articles, newsletters, speeches, and research analyses on labor conditons and labor union activities in Europe with special reference to Communist influence in the European labor movement. In 1953 Mr. Gausmann joined the newly-created United States Information Agency (called the United States Information Service Overseas) as a Labor Infor¬mation Officer. Based in London, he was responsible for analyzing British labor conditions as well as for promoting the American point of view among British Labour Party and labor union leaders. In 1961 he was transferred to USIA headquarters in Washington, D. C. to take a positon first as Labor and Minorities Advisor and later as Deputy Chief of the Bibliographic Division. In 1969 Mr. Gausmann was assigned to the North Vietnamese Affairs Division of the USIA and spent the next four years as a policy advisor to the American mission in Saigon. From 1973 until his death in 1977 Mr. Gausmann served as senior specialist on British and Irish Affairs with the State Department's Office of Research and Analysis for Western Europe. During this period, he was also increasingly active in Lutheran Church in America social welfare and government affairs projects, serving on various committees and task forces concerned with the Church's role in the formation of public policy.


14.5 Linear Feet (29 MB)


William Gausmann held positions in Europe, the United States and Vietnam as a labor advisor, news analyst and policymaker with various European and United States government agencies. Mr. Gausmann’s papers relate his work concerning labor issues, Communism, and the Vietnam War and to a lesser degree, his associations with the Socialist Party and the Lutheran Church of America.


Arranged in 5 series – Series 1 (Boxes 1-3), Series 2 (Boxes 3-10), Series 3 (Boxes 10-24), Series 4 (Boxes 24-27) and Series 5 (Box 27-29). Files are arranged alphabetically by subject and then chronologically.


The papers of William C. Gausmann were placed in the Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs in December of 1978 by Mrs. William C. Gausmann and were opened for research in May of 1986.


A few photographs relating to the European labor movement and to Vietnam have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collection. Numerous pamphlets on labor subjects, especially as they relate to Great Britain, are available in the Archives Library.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in May, 1986.
Guide to the William C. Gausmann 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