Series IV: Officers' Correspondence, 1919-1977, inclusive; 1929-1977, bulk
Scope and Contents
The Officers' Correspondence files document the work of the Union Label Council and Service Trades Department, in particular its efforts to publicize union labelled goods produced by organized shops (but only those produced by AFL craft unions until the 1955 merger). Because the New York City office functioned as a national information center, correspondents were rank and file unionists from around the country, as well as politicians (such as Mayor La Guardia and Governor F. D. Roosevelt) responding to the lobbying efforts of the Union Label Council. Other prominent correspondents are George Meany and William Green. Arranged chronologically with incoming and outgoing letters on the same subject filed together by the date of the last letter, the correspondence also highlights the key role played by the Secretary-Treasurer (Charles Sinnigen from 1919-March, 1949 and Harry Avrutin from Dec. 1949-1977). Major subject areas documented by the letters, reports, flyers, programs, telegrams, speeches, invitations and minutes are: investigation of "phoney" union labels, objection to registration of new union labels with the NYS Dept. of Labor (usually non-AFL labels), investigation of printed material without the Allied.
Printing Trades Council's label, involvement with the planning for the NY World's Fair (1937-1939), the War Bond and Stamp Committee (1943-1945), strike and boycott information, planning for publicity events and arranging speaking engagements at union meetings and conventions. The sub-series reflect some of the community work of the officers - Sinnigen: Advisory Board on Vocational Education for the NYC Board of Education (a rich body of material on the development of vocational education), Non Partisan Committee of Queens County and the Board of Directors for the Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor. Sinnegen's reports and correspondence to the Union Label Trades Department, 1939- 1946, give full intelligence on CIO activities and AFL response in New York City. Avrutin: Trade Union Campaign of Brooklyn Women's Hospital, Board for Camp Minimum Wage and the National Labor Council of the National Conference of Christians and Jews, Inc. Affiliation applications are located in Series VIII.