NLRB Oral History Project Miscellaneous
Collection Number: 5435 OH
Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library
NLRB Oral History Project Miscellaneous,
National Labor Relations Board (NLRB);
1 linear ft.
Forms of Material:
Oral histories (document genres) .
Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library
Transcripts of interviews with forty-eight individuals who participated in the founding and administration of the National Labor Relations Board and its predecessor, the National Labor Board (1933-1947).
Collection material in English
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) was created in 1935 under the authority of the National Labor Relations Act (popularly known as the Wagner Act). Its purpose was to implement and administer the Wagner Act which affirmed the right of employees to organize and designate representatives for collective bargaining. Beyond the Board's Wagner Act powers, the War Labor Disputes Act of 1943 authorized the NLRB to intervene to settle wartime labor disputes which threatened to impede war production. The Labor Management Relations Act of 1947 (popularly known as the Taft-Hartley Act), as amended, defined additional practices forbidden to organized labor and limited NLRB generally to judicial and policy-making functions.
The NLRB created under the Wagner Act was preceded by two earlier Boards created by President Roosevelt. The National Labor Board was established in 1933 for the purpose of adjusting industrial disputes resulting from the president's Reemployment Agreement or approved code of fair competition under the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA). The Labor Board was replaced less than a year later by the first National Labor Relations Board. Both early Boards functioned through regional offices to deal with labor controversies in the field. The first NLRB ceased to function after the NIRA was declared unconstitutional in May of 1935.
This collection consists of transcripts of interviews with forty-eight individuals who participated in the founding and administration of the National Labor Relations Board and its predecessor, the National Labor Board (1933-1947). The interviews were directed and designed by James A. Gross (NYSSILR, professor of labor history, law and collective bargaining) in conjunction with the research and production of his books, THE MAKING OF THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS BOARD, 1937-1947 (SUNY, 1974); and THE RESHAPING OF THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS BOARD, 1937-1947 (SUNY, 1981).
Topics discussed in these interviews include the following: 1. General issues relating to the NLRB; 2. The National Labor Board (1933-1934); 3. The "old" NLRB (pre-Wagner Act); 4. The NLRB in the Wagner Act era (1935-1947); 5. The NLRB after Taft-Hartley (post-1947); 6. Regional offices; 7. The Division of Economic Research; 8. Review, appeals and enforcement of decisions; 9. Organizations and individuals exerting external influence on the NLRB; 10. CIO-NLRB relations; 11. A.F. of L.-NLRB relations; 12. Congress and the NLRB; and 13. Smith Committee investigation of the NLRB.
Respondents who participated in this project include the following NLRB staff members: David J. Saposs (Economics Division, director); Charles Fahy (general counsel); Edwin S. Smith (Board member); J. Warren Madden (chairman); Nathan Witt (executive secretary); William J. Avrutis (attorney); Meta P. Barghausen (secretary to Board chairmen); Wallace M. Cohen (review attorney); Herbert Fuchs (review attorney supervisor); Howard Lichtenstein (review attorney); Marcel Mallet-Prevost (assistant general counsel); Benedict Wolf (administrative organizer); George Bott (trial examiner and attorney); Fannie M. Boyls (trial examiner, review attorney); Owsley Vose (appeals brief supervisor); and Ogden W. Fields (executive secretary, permanent under-secretary).
Other respondents include Ernest A. Gross (Legal Division, associate general counsel); Philip Levy (legislative assistant to Senator Robert Wagner, and legal staff); George O. Pratt (regional secretary, and chief trial examiner); A. Norman Somers (attorney); Lloyd Garrison (chairman); Milton Handler (member, and general counsel); Will Maslow (trial examiner and regional attorney); Stanley S. Surrey (Legal Division); Gerhard P. Van Arkel (general counsel, member); Ida Klaus (review attorney); Louis G. Silverberg (Division of Information, director); Ruth Weyand (Enforcement Section, staff attorney); Thomas I. Emerson (staff attorney); Estelle Frankfurter (administrative aide); George Bokat (chief counsel); Paul Herzog (chairman); Ben Golden (NY Regional Office, executive secretary); Isador Polier (review attorney); James J. Reynolds (member); and Howard W. Kleeb (field examiner). Other respondents include Howard W. Smith (congressman); Leon H. Keyserlin (legal assistant to Senator Robert Wagner); Ray R. Murdock (aide to Congressman Abe Murdock); Roger Robb (Smith Committee, associate counsel); Frank M. Kleiler (secretary to William Leiserson); Charles A. Halleck (congressman); and Lee Pressman (CIO, general counsel).
Avrutis, William J.
Barghausen, Meta P.
Biddle, Francis, 1886-1968
Bokat, George, 1904-1973
Boyls, Fannie M.
Brickman, Harry, d. 1956
Carmody, John M. q (John Michael), d 1881-1962.
Cohen, Wallace M.
Consedine, William R.
Denham, Robert N. (Robert Newton), 1885-1954.
Emerson, Thomas I. (Thomas Irwin), 1907-1991
Fahy, Charles, 1892-1979
Fields, Ogden W.
Frankfurter, Estelle S.
Frey, John P. (John Philip), 1871-1957
Fuchs, Herbert, 1905-1988
Glaser, Herbert R.
Gross, Ernest A. (Ernest Arnold), 1906-1999
Halleck, Charles A. (Charles Abraham), 1900-1986
Handler, Milton, 1903-1998
Herzog, Paul M., 1906-1986
Hillman, Sidney, 1887-1946
Hunt, A. Bruce
Keyserling, Leon H. (Leon Hirsch), 1908-1987
Kleeb, Howard W.
Kleiler, Frank M., 1914-
Lippmann, Walter, 1889-1974
Madden, J. Warren (Joseph Warren), 1890-1972
Magruder, Calvert, 1893-1968
Miller, Jesse I. (Jesse Isidor), 1891-1949
Millis, Harry Alvin, 1873-1948
Moore, John D. (John Denis Joseph), 1874-1940
Murdock, Ray R.
Murray, Philip, 1886-1952
Perkins, Frances, 1880-1965
Pratt, George O., 1903-1979
Pressman, Lee, 1906-1969
Reynolds, James J., Jr.
Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945
Rosenfarb, Joseph, d. 1955
Saposs, David J. (David Joseph), 1886-1968
Silverberg, Louis G., d. 1975
Smith, Edwin Seymour, 1891-1976
Smith, Howard Worth, 1883-1976
Somers, A. Norman
Surrey, Stanley S. (Stanley Sterling), 1910-
Taft, Robert A. (Robert Alphonso), 1889-1953
Toland, Edmund M., 1898-1942
Truman, Harry S., 1884-1972
Van Arkel, Gerhard P.
Wagner, Robert F. (Robert Ferdinand), 1877-1953
American Federation of Labor
American Medical Association
Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America
Eagle-Picher Mining and Smelting Company
International Longshoremen's Association. Pacific Coast District.
National Association of Manufacturers (U.S.)
National Lawyers' Committee
United States. Congress. House. Committee on Education and Labor.
United States. Congress. House. Committee on Un-American Activities.
United States. Congress. House. Special Committee on Un-American Activities (1938-1944)
United States. Congress. House. Special Committee to Investigate the National Labor Relations Board.
United States. Congress. Joint Committee on Reduction of Nonessential Federal Expenditures.
United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Education and Labor. Subcommittee on Civil Liberties.
United States. Interstate Commerce Commission.
United States. National Labor Board.
United States. National Labor Relations Board. Division of Economic Research.
United States. National Labor Relations Board. Office of the General Counsel.
United States. National Labor Relations Board. Review Section.
United States. National Labor Relations Board. Trial Examiners' Division.
United States. National Recovery Administration.
United States. Subversive Activities Control Board.
United States. Supreme Court.
Collective bargaining. Law and legislation. United States.
Collective bargaining. United States. State supervision.
Employee rights. Law and legislation. United States.
Employees, Surveillance of. United States.
Industrial relations. United States. State supervision.
Secondary boycott. Law and legislation. United States.
Strikes and lockouts. Law and legislation. United States.
Strikes and lockouts. United States. State supervision.
Trade-unions. United States. Corrupt practices.
Trade- unions. United States. Recognition.
Trade-unions. United States. State supervision.
Unfair labor practices. United States. State supervision.
Form and Genre Terms:
Oral histories (document genres)
Access to the collections in the Kheel Center is restricted. Please contact a reference archivist for access to these materials.
Restrictions on Use:
This collection must be used in keeping with the Kheel Center Information Sheet and Procedures for Document Use.
NLRB Oral History Project Miscellaneous #5435 OH. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library.
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