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Labor Archives and Research Center, J. Paul Leonard Library, San Francisco State University

Few regions can rival the rich, lively labor history of the San Francisco Bay Area. This history is preserved in primary source and vintage history materials at the Labor Archives and Research Center (LARC). Founded in 1985 by trade union leaders, historians, labor activists and university administrators, the Labor Archives is a unit of the J. Paul Leonard Library at San Francisco State University.

The Labor Archives collection includes materials from the counties surrounding San Francisco Bay, including Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara. More than 6,000 feet of primary source material is available for research. From the beginning of the twentieth century to the present, a wide scope of Bay Area labor activity is represented.

Many unions have made the Labor Archives the official repository for their historical records -- minutes, office correspondence, membership files, publications and contracts. Labor leaders, attorneys, arbitrators, and rank-and-file workers have donated their personal papers. Personal memorabilia, photographs, ephemera, and oral histories document the lives and stories of working men and women. Visual material, in addition to photographs, includes cartoons, banners, posters, prints, handbills, picket signs, and buttons.

Contact Information:

Labor Archives and Research Center
J. Paul Leonard Library, San Francisco State University
Room 460 - 4th floor
1630 Holloway Avenue

San Francisco, CA 94132
Telephone: (415) 405-5571

Hours and Directions

Monday - Friday, 1 - 5 PM, or by appointment.
Please call (415) 405-5571 at least two days in advance to arrange an appointment.

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Labor Archives and Research Center, J. Paul Leonard Library, San Francisco State University
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Call Number : Oral History Collection Description : Abraham Lincoln Brigade Veteran. Discusses growing up in a pioneer farming family in the Santa Clara Valley; agricultural and orchard work in the 1930s, including labor conditions for bindlestiffs and itinerant agricultural laborers; organizing cannery workers in Campbell. Discusses being recruited to go fight in the Spanish civil war as an Abraham Lincoln Brigade volunteer; attitudes toward "premature anti-fascists" when they...
Topics: californialightandsound, Agricultural laborers--California--Santa Clara Valley, Migrant...
Source: 5 Tapes of 5: 1/8 inch audio cassette
Call Number : Oral History Collection Description : Official, Bay Area Newspaper Guild, 1952-1981; grew up in San Francisco and Palo Alto; joined Pile Drivers Local 34, 1941; worked as a reporter for the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 1948-1958; worked as principal organizer of the Bay Area Newspaper Guild Local 52, 1949-1952; served as an officer for the Guild (including a stint as president), 1952-1981; elected at-large vice president of the California Labor Federation, 1963; gives his...
Topics: californialightandsound, Journalists--Labor unions--California, Labor...
Source: 15 Tapes of 15: 1/8 inch audio cassette