New Exhibit- Partners in Discovery: Student Research Employing University of Washington Special Collections

 February 6-April 21, 2017
 University of Washington Libraries Research Commons,
Allen Library South

This exhibit, co-sponsored by the Research Commons and the Labor Archives of Washington, focuses on recent University of Washington graduate student research projects using primary source materials from the University of Washington Libraries Special Collections. Primary sources are materials directly related to a topic by time or participation. These materials include letters, speeches, diaries, newspaper articles from the time, oral history interviews, documents, photographs, artifacts, or other sources that provide firsthand accounts about a person or event.exhibit-research-commons

The innovative research of three graduate students from the departments of History and Geography are highlighted, hinting at the broad topical range of the type of scholarly disciplines that employ the unique materials housed in the UW Libraries Special Collections (located below the Research Commons in the Allen Library South Basement).

Similarly, the Research Commons is a central hub of presenting and supporting student research, offering an array of consulting services for UW students and organizing regular forums for presenting research in the quarterly Scholar’s Studio: an informal forum featuring 10 rapid-fire ignite-style presentations given by graduate students and postdocs doing research on topics related to an interdisciplinary theme.

Student Research Projects Featured:

megan-brownMegan Brown is a Ph.D. Candidate in Geography. Megan’s research interests include the modern labor movement and social movements. Brown’s research “investigates the strategic and practical mechanisms through which labor unions, progressive worker and community organizations, and policy makers are spreading $15/hour minimum wages throughout the U.S.” Labor collections used by Brown for her research and featured in the exhibit include the Guillermo “Memo Rivera” Collection of SEIU 775 and Working Washington records as well as oral histories from the SeaTac Seattle Minimum Wage History Project.

andrewAndrew Hedden is Associate Director of the Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies and a graduate student in the UW Department of History’s Ph.D. program. His “research explores alternative histories of Seattle that center the experiences of people on the margins of power, documenting the activities and organizations of working-class people and communities of color.” Collections used by Hedden for his research and featured in this exhibit include the Carlos Bulosan papers, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Lodge 751E records, and the Harold J. Gibson Papers.

mahoneyEleanor Mahoney is a Ph.D. Candidate in United States History. Her dissertation examines the connections between economic change and environmental policy in the period after World War II. She has also researched Depression-era art and politics in Washington State. In the exhibit, Mahoney discusses her use of the Richard Correll prints and papers, for her research. Featured in the exhibit are two prints from the famous artist’s Paul Bunyan series, “Clearing Tacoma Flats, 1938” and “Creation of San Juan Islands, 1938” which Mahoney feels “vividly capture not only Correll’s unique style, but also the ethos of much public art created in the 1930s.”

We hope you’ll come by and take some time to peruse the exhibit, perhaps leaving inspired about how you can use the UW Libraries Special Collections and Research Commons for your own scholarly pursuits!


Labor Archives’ Latest Exhibit Features The Art of Richard V. Correll

Images of Labor and Social Justice: The Art of Richard V. Correll
February 1, 2017 – March 31, 2017
Odegaard Undergraduate Library, Second Floor Gallery Display Wall

Back by popular demand as a teaser for an upcoming online exhibit and web archives of the newly-digitized Richard Correll Prints and Papers, the Labor Archives of Washington presents this traveling exhibit in the Odegaard Undergraduate Library. The original exhibit ran in the UW Libraries Special Collections in 2012-2013, and this version was at the Northwest Folklife Festival in May of 2013.

Richard V. (Dick) Correll (1904-1990), was “one of the leading masters of printmaking in the West.” Best known for his powerful black and white linoleum cuts, etchings and woodblock prints, for most of his life he earned a living as a commercial artist in the book publishing and advertising fields while producing a large body of fine art in his own time. Correll’s themes ranged from landscapes, animals and agricultural scenes, harbors and ships, and music and dance to those which reflected his lifelong concern with political and social issues. This exhibit features selections from several core areas of Correll’s collection at the Labor Archives of Washington, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections: Images of labor, social justice, civil rights, anti-war themes, work for the Great Depression-era Federal Art Project of the Works Projects Administration, and his work for the progressive Depression-era newspaper the Voice of Action.

Untitled, [Mother and Two Children], c. 1930s
See the YouTube teaser (Created by the UW Libraries’ own AC Peterson) for the original exhibit here:
Listen to Labor Archivist Conor Casey talk about the exhibit here:

[Work featured at the top is the linocut print, “Cargo Handling in the 1950s”, 1954.]

Final Installment of Everett Massacre Exhibit

Check out the new (and final) addition to the Labor Archives of Washington’s exhibit, “An Injury to One Is an Injury to All”: The Legacy of the 1916 Everett Massacre and the Industrial Workers of the World in the Pacific Northwest, in the Allen Library North Lobby this week to see the additional resources that have been added to this dynamic, rotating, pop-up exhibit!

On Thursday, January 26, the final wave of additional images, interpretive text, and captions highlighting the leaders and members of the Industrial Workers of the World will be installed. The exhibit runs through the end of January.

New sections include:

IWW Organizers in Everett

James P. Thompson and the Free Speech Fights
A founding member and organizer of the Industrial Workers of the World, Thompson spoke in Everett in defiance of a public assembly ban. He and James Rowan (previously arrested for speaking in July), delivered their speeches and were promptly removed from the platform and arrested.

Portrait of James P. Thompson, Industrial Workers of the World Photograph Collection

The Trial of Thomas H. Tracy
Of the 74 IWW members arrested during the Everett Massacre, only Teamster Thomas H. Tracy was tried for the murder of Snohomish County Deputy Jefferson Beard, one of two deputies killed by gunfire during the skirmish. The trial received national attention, covered by journalists from all sides of the political spectrum.

Jack Leonard Miller
Jack Miller, one of the 74 IWW members charged with killing Deputy Beard, was 27 at the time of the Everett tragedy. He was the oldest surviving passenger on the Verona and passed away in 1986. Also featured is a video of a television interview with Miller from the early 1980s recounting his experience of the event.

As a way to make the exhibit more dynamic and augment the existing materials with new content, Labor Archivist Conor Casey and Assistant Labor Archivist Crystal Rodgers have added materials in planned waves throughout the exhibit run. This unique approach to exhibit design creates an anticipatory experience, inviting viewers to frequent the exhibit to view new additions. By providing additional historical context, it also builds onto what viewers have learned from previous visits, enhancing the educational impact of exhibit content.

This exhibit was designed to use surrogates of photographs and documents, ensuring that the originals can be preserved and secured while sharing the information contained in them with a broader public. This enables the archives to host the exhibit at a variety of community venues. Portions of the exhibit have already been displayed at the Pacific Northwest Labor History Association Conference in May of 2016 in Portland, Oregon as well as the Everett Massacre Commemoration Centennial Boat Tour in November 12, 2016 on board the historic steamship the Virginia V. The exhibit is lightweight and portable and mounted on hardware of backdrop frames from a photographer’s studio to facilitate moving it and installing it in diverse venues.

For more information on pop up exhibits and museums, see: Simon, Nina. “A Radical, Simple Formula for Pop-Up Museums” Museum 2.0 blog. November 30, 2011.

Latest Installment of Labor Archives of Washington Exhibit

Check out the latest additions to the Labor Archives of Washington exhibit, “An Injury to One is an Injury to All”: The Legacy of the 1916 Everett Massacre and the Industrial Workers of the World in the Pacific Northwest, on display in the UW Allen Library North Lobby through January 29th! Containing additional ephemera and photographs and interpretive text, this new wave of material highlights the role of women in the Industrial Workers of the World. Selections include items from the IWW Photograph Collection, IWW Seattle Joint Branches Records, Anna Louise Strong Papers, and the Portraits Collection. Among the women featured are journalist and author Anna Louise Strong and skilled orator and radical activist Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, as well as lesser known figures such as “IWW Songbird” Katie Phar, who as a child corresponded with IWW martyr Joe Hill shortly before his execution.

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn addresses striking silk workers in Paterson, New Jersey, June 1913. 

As a way to make the exhibit more dynamic and augment the existing materials with new content, Labor Archivist Conor Casey and Assistant Labor Archivist Crystal Rodgers have added materials in planned waves throughout the exhibit run. This unique approach to exhibit design creates an anticipatory experience, inviting viewers to frequent the exhibit to view new additions. By providing additional historical context, it also builds onto what viewers have learned from previous visits, enhancing the educational impact of exhibit content. For more information on pop-up exhibits and museums, check out Nina Simon’s blog post, “A Radical, Simple Formula for Pop-Up Museums”.

Many of the items featured in this case are also available online within the UW Libraries Digital Collections as well as numerous other digitized items from collections at the Labor Archives of Washington. You can also research Labor Collections and find more information about visiting Special Collections on the UW Libraries website. The Labor Archives of Washington is also on social media, so be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. We hope you enjoy the exhibit!

New episode of the Labor Archives of Washington’s radio segment on the West Coast Maritime Strike of 1934 streams online this Tuesday

The latest episode of the Labor Archives of Washington’s regular segment, “Learn Yourself”, on the KSVR radio show We Do the Work will stream online this Tuesday December 13, 2016 at 6:30 PM PST. You can also tune in the old fashioned way on KSVR 91.7 FM!

This “Learn Yourself” segment will feature Labor Archivist Conor Casey speaking about the West Coast Maritime Strike of 1934. For more information, go to or email

The regular segment, called “Learn Yourself”, features Labor Archivist Conor Casey (Labor Archives of Washington, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections) being interviewed about a history topic by host Mike Dumovich with an emphasis on archival collections and secondary sources related to the topic in the hopes that it will inspire people to learn more about labor history on their own.

Links to Other Episodes in the Series:

  1. Labor Archives of Washington Overview
  2. Everett Massacre, also called Bloody Sunday, where a confrontation caused 7 to 12 people to be murdered on November 5, 1916.
  3. Filipino American Cannery Workers’ Unionism and the Murder of Domingo and Viernes
  4. Farmworkers’ History: The Chateau St. Michelle Grape Boycott and the Labor Archives of Washington’s second annual event Preserving Solidarity Forever: Washington State Farmworkers’ Struggles.
  5. Images of Labor and Social Justice: The Life and Art of Richard V. Correll
  6. Author, Poet, Worker: Carlos Bulosan’s Collections at the Labor Archives of Washington and Eva Urcia’s Quest to Uncover and Preserve Bulosan Family History
  7. The Everett Massacre Centennial Commemoration

Labor Archives Collection Highlights: The Joseph Clancy papers

An archival collection does not have to consist of countless boxes to be rich in historical information. Sometimes the smallest collections are the most interesting! The Joseph Clancy papers is a perfect example of this, consisting of 1.96 cubic feet of material maintained by Clancy during his time as Secretary of Seattle Local 104 of the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron Ship Builders, and Helpers of America. The materials span the years 1921-1972 and are records commonly kept by a union officer, including union constitutions and bylaws, correspondence, meeting minutes, reports, news clippings, publications, ephemera, and photographs.

When rehousing the collection in new acid free folders, a fascinating story began to emerge from the small assortment of materials, highlighting the tensions that can arise between international union and local union leadership. [1]  In 1946, International President of the boilermakers union, Charles J. MacGowan, demanded Local 104 turn over control of their records, newspaper, and funding to a governing board created by MacGowan. Unsurprisingly, the president was met with great resistance by Joseph Clancy and other members of Local 104 who did not like the idea of an external board controlling the activities of the local. Secretary Clancy and fellow officer Bill Miller refused MacGowan’s requests, resulting in the suspension of Clancy and Miller from the union


Telegram sent by President MacGowan suspending Clancy from the union on February 24, 1947. (Joseph Clancy papers, 2218-001)

MacGowan’s actions were initially upheld after the matter was taken to court by members of Local 104 in the late 1940s; however, the case was eventually brought to the Washington State Supreme Court in the early 1950s, ultimately reversing the decision. This enabled the local to take back control from the international and hold elections for local officers, resulting in the re-election of Clancy as secretary. He then served as Secretary of Local 104 until 1972, just a year before his passing. Local 104 was not the only regional chapter of the boilermakers union to experience interference from international leadership. Several news clippings talk about the efforts of Local 72 in Portland, Oregon, to maintain control of their own local activities.

The Joseph Clancy papers also highlight other issues relevant to union organizing during this time. For instance, one folder of public elections campaign and legislative initiatives material includes ephemera from the 1958 November election campaign urging voters to vote no to Right-to-Work Initiative 202 which would undermine the strength of union organizing in the state. The labor movement was able to effectively organize and counter this initiative, which is part of a long series of attempts to break the power of labor organizations by anti-union advocates.

1958 November election campaign ephemera. (Joseph Clancy papers, 2218-001)

To learn more about the Joseph Clancy papers, click here for the updated finding aid in Archives West. And of course, this collection, along with many others in the UW Libraries Special Collections, can be viewed in person during our open reading room hours! Come discover the “people’s history” at the Labor Archives of Washington, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections. Who knows what stories you might uncover?

[1] An International union is the parent labor organization of a union of workers in a particular trade or industry. Local unions are geographically distinct units of the parent organization, which sometimes represent groups of workers in different bargaining units within the same geographical area. “International” denotes that the umbrella organization represents workers in multiple countries—usually the United States and Canada in North America. Umbrella organizations that have a national scope are often called “American Association” or “National Association” or simply “Association” rather than containing the term “international” in their title.


New History Resource on LGBTQ Activism in Seattle

Advertisement for UW Gay Students Association dance, ca 1971-1974

This week marks the launch of a new UW online project: the LGBTQ Activism in Seattle History Project.   Part of the larger Seattle Civil Rights and Labor History Project, this effort “details and documents the history of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender activism in Seattle with a narrative history, photos, oral histories, a timeline and catalog of LGBTQ activist organizations.” The resource was compiled by UW History doctoral student Kevin McKenna and features many materials from the Libraries Pacific Northwest Collection.

The site is celebrated by the campus community and activists and members of the LGBTQA community.  Kevin McKenna, who is currently teaching at Lewis and Clark in Portland, talked about the project, the oral history interviews, and the work that still needs to be done to document and bring awareness of the history and legacy of LGBTQ activism to new generations.  Kevin stated “the launch of the online project as part of the Seattle Civil Rights and Labor History Project is just the beginning.”

Take time to read through the website, view the digitized materials from our many collections, and watch the oral history interviews.

The PNW Collection’s LGBTQ materials continue to grow.  Visit this PNW guide to explore the LGBTQ collections (archival collections, published works, websites, and photographs) in Special Collections.

Anne Jenner
Pacific Northwest Curator