The University of Massachusetts Amherst
Robert S. Cox Special Collections & University Archives Research Center
CredoResearch digital collections in Credo

Collecting area: Massachusetts (East)

Service Employees International Union, Local 925 (Tufts University)

SEIU Local 925 (Tufts University) Records

1978-1980
2 boxes 1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 589
Depiction of SEIU Local 925
SEIU Local 925

In October 1978 a group of clerical workers at Tufts united in an effort to organize their coworkers with Local 925, S.E.I.U. Isolated and scattered across campus, the clerical employees at the university greeted this call to unionize with support, hoping it would mean an improvement in salaries and in grievance procedures. By the summer of the following year, 60% of eligible employees signed authorization cards, more than required to vote on the issue, and an election early that fall was expected. Tufts administration, however, delayed the election by disputing the composition of the bargaining unit. Formal hearings took place from September through the end of the year, but instead of resolving the case, the Boston Labor Board referred it to Washington on January 25, 1980. Nine months later the election was finally held, but the results were not what were anticipated more than a year earlier. Rather than an easy victory to unionize, the majority of clerical staff at Tufts voted not to make Local 925 their exclusive bargaining representative. The administration’s anti-union campaign waged throughout 1979 and 1980 had a tremendous impact on the employees at the university, and a number of concessions made on wages, health insurance, and vacations further eroded support for organizing with Local 925.

The collection documents the efforts of Tufts clerical workers to unionize during 1978-1980. The group’s biweekly newsletter, Inside Tufts, written by the university’s employees and published by Local 925, offers an important behind-the-scenes look on two fronts: the issues and grievances of the clerical staff at Tufts and the reasons behind their decision to unionize. Materials relating to the efforts of other Boston-area institutions, in particular colleges and universities, are also included.

Subjects

Labor unions--MassachusettsLabor unions--Organizing

Contributors

Service Employees International Union. Local 925
Siggins, Betsy, 1939-

Betsy Siggins Papers

1958-2018
6 boxes 6 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1022
Depiction of Betsy Siggins, ca.1959. Photo by Alan Klein
Betsy Siggins, ca.1959. Photo by Alan Klein

A key figure in the New England folk revival of the 1960s, Betsy Siggins (nee Minot) entered Boston University in the fall 1958 just at the music was taking off. Along with her college friend Joan Baez, she soon left school for the lure of the bohemian musical scene in Cambridge. At the age of 20, Betsy married the banjo player for the Charles River Valley Boys, Bob Siggins, who was also a founding member of Club 47, the most important venue for folk music in the region. For musicians from Baez and Bob Dylan to Jim Kweskin, Eric Von Schmidt, and Jim Rooney Club 47 was a career launching pad and despite the segregation of the era, it was a place where white northern audiences first encountered African American and blues musicians. Siggins worked full time at Club 47, filling a variety of jobs from office work to waitress to art gallery manager, eventually becoming program officer, arranging the schedules for musicians booked by Rooney or Byron Linardos. After Club 47 closed in 1968, Siggins went on to work for a succession of not for profit organizations, including the Smithsonian Festival of American Folklife and for programs for the homeless and poor.
The Siggins Collection contains important materials on Club 47 and its successor, Club Passim, including business records, ephemera, clippings, and some remarkable scrapbooks featuring performers such Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, and Richard Farina. The collection contains dozens of photographs (many taken by Charlie Frizzell), showing Siggins, her friends, and musicians at home, at Club 47, and at folk festivals in Newport, Brandeis, and Monterey. Of particular note in the collection is a remarkable series of 27 reel to reel tapes of performances at Club 47 featuring John Hammond, Doc Watson, Bill Monroe, Eric Von Schmidt, Jim Rooney, Jeff and Maria Muldaur, Jackie Washington, the Charles River Valley Boys, Joan Baez, and others. Additional material on Siggins and the Minot family was retained by the Cambridge Historical Society.

Transferred from Cambridge Historical Society, April 2018

Subjects

Club 47 (Cambridge, Mass.)Dylan, Bob, 1941-Folk music--New England
Slade Family

Slade Family Papers

1776-1892 Bulk: 1838-1845
1 box 0.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 934
Depiction of Caroline Talbert
Caroline Talbert

The children of a textile investor, Mary and David Slade were students at the Friends’ Boarding School in Providence, R.I., during the late 1830s. Both died tragically of consumption at a young age, David at 24 and Mary at 28.

The Slade family papers consist largely of the personal correspondence of the ill-starred David and Mary Slade, dating from and just after their time as students at the Friends’ Boarding School in Providence, R.I. Written primarily by schoolmates and friends, with a few letters from David and Mary themselves, the letters include some fine examples of the intimacy of young people, with their sights set on their schooling or beginning to make their life.

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, 2016

Subjects

Friends' Boarding School (Providence, R.I.)Moses Brown SchoolQuakers--Massachusetts--19th centuryStudents--Rhode Island--19th centuryWomen--Education--19th century

Contributors

Fry, John E.Slade, David, 1819-1844Slade, Mary, 1821-1850Stevens, Emily D.Wing, Rebecca A.

Types of material

CorrespondenceDiariesExercise books
Smith, Daniel

Daniel Smith Account Book

1773-1801
1 vol. 0.1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1088 bd

A chair-maker and Revolutionary War veteran, Daniel Smith lived on High Street in Ipswich, Mass. As early as 1774, Smith was bottoming and repairing chairs, and for several decades, he produced chairs of various sorts, including waist chairs, four-back chairs, “green chairs,” great chairs, round chairs, and low chairs. Smith died in Jan. 1844.

This rough, but noteworthy volume records nearly two and half decades of production by a Massachusetts chair maker in the early National period. The volume begins as a cipher book, apparently kept by Smith in his late teens, but by the earliest accounts in 1774, Smith records “bottoming and mending” chairs and, by 1785, making “six four back chairs & a grat chair” for Thomas Smith.

Acquired from M&S Rare Books, May 2006 (2006-072).

Subjects

Chair-makers--Massachusetts--IpswichIpswich (Mass.)--Economic conditions--18th century

Types of material

Account books
Snow, Ephraim

Ephraim Snow Daybook

1822-1878
1 vol. 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 198 bd
Depiction of

The wheelwright Ephraim Snow was born in Rochester, Mass., on Sept. 9, 1821, the son of Samuel and Rhoda (Stewart) Snow. Apparently beginning as a general carpenter, he moved to neighboring Mattapoisett shortly after 1850, where he worked as a wheelwright for many years. He married Silvia A. Nickerson on July 1, 1858, who died after giving birth to their fourth child in 1874. Ephraim Snow appears to have died in Mattapoisett in either 1880 or 1881.

This unusual daybook offers an intimate glimpse into the lively shipbuilding and whaling village of Mattapoisett as these industries peaked and begin to decline. The earliest portions of the books include sparse accounts apparently kept by Samuel Snow, Ephraim’s father, with Ephraim’s day book covering the period 1842-1878. Most of his work involved repairing or manufacturing wagon wheels or shafts, but he applied his skills quite widely in repairing wheelbarrows, chairs, cradles, and boxes, hanging doors or doing general house carpentry, and taking boarders in his home. Interspersed in the volume are a large number of poems, a few nicely rendered pen and ink drawings, and a small handful of letters.

Acquired from Charles Apfelbaum, 1987

Subjects

Mattapoisett (Mass.)--HistoryMattapoisett (Mass.)--Social conditionsWheelwrights--Massachusetts--Mattapoisett

Contributors

Snow, Ephraim

Types of material

Pen drawingPoemsTintypes (Prints)
Solander, Arvo A.

Arvo A. Solander Papers

1930-1958
8 boxes 4 linear feet
Call no.: MS 587

Graduating from Harvard in the thick of the Great Depression, Arvo A. Solander worked as a civil and sanitary engineer for a variety of state and federal agencies, including the Civil Works Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps. During the 1930s, as opportunity arose, he filled positions as a road engineer, in the design and construction of water and sewage plants, in pollution control, as a safety engineer in the shellfish industry, and in mosquito control, taking jobs throughout Massachusetts and as far away as Tennessee. After using his talents as an officer in the Sanitary Corps during the Second World War, based primarily in Arkansas, Solander returned home to Massachusetts and opened a private engineering office in South Hadley. He worked as a civil engineer and surveyor until his death in January 1976.
The Arvo Solander Papers consists of twenty-four bound volumes documenting thirty years of varied work as an engineer, including his contributions to the construction of the Quabbin Reservoir. Within the bound volumes are a wide range of reports, typescripts, sketches and diagrams, graphs, contracts and design specifications, photographs, and postcards.

Subjects

Civil engineersCivilian Conservation Corps (U.S.)Depressions--1929Fisheries--MassachusettsMosquitoes--ControlQuabbin Reservoir (Mass.)Roads--Design and constructionSanitary engineersSewage disposal plants--Design and constructionUnited States. Federal Civil Works AdministrationWater--Pollution--TennesseeWater-supply--MassachusettsWestfield State SanatoriumWorld War, 1939-1945Wrentham State School

Contributors

Solander, Arvo A

Types of material

PhotographsScrapbooks
Stone, John

John Stone Ledger

1836-1842
1 vol. 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 247 bd

A native of Barnstable County, Mass., John Stone was born on July 18, 1809, and spent the entirety of his brief life in the town of North Dennis. A general storekeeper and merchant who dealt in lumber and building materials, Stone married Elizabeth Downes on Dec. 8, 1832, only to see her die barely a year later. He married a second time to Isabella Nickerson Thomas (ca.1838?), with whom he had one son, John M. Stone, in 1839. Just 34 when he passed, John Stone died on May 18, 1843.

This volume is comprised of a number of miscellaneous accounts kept by Stone, and because there are no page numbers, the exact nature of the book is difficult to discern, however these include inventories of goods (apparently at Stone’s store) and some records of expenditures.

Subjects

General stores--Massachusetts--North DennisLumber trade--Massachusetts--North DennisMerchants--Massachusetts--North DennisNorth Dennis (Mass.)--History

Types of material

Ledgers (Account books)
Swansea Monthly Meeting (Society of Friends)

Swansea Monthly Meeting (Society of Friends) Records

1708-1953
29 vols., 2 boxes 5.75 linear feet
Call no.: MS 902 S936

Quaker worship began at Swansea, Mass., by 1701, under the care of Rhode Island Monthly Meeting, with the Swansea Monthly Meeting being set off in 1732. Situated in an area with a relatively large Quaker population, Swansea oversaw worship groups and preparative meetings in nearby Fall River, Freetown, Somerset, Taunton, and Troy. Swansea was divided by the separation of 1845, with the Wilburite meeting persisting for about twenty years.

The records of Swansea Monthly Meeting are a rich assemblage of meeting minutes, vital records, and other materials, covering nearly two and a half centuries of Quaker activity on Cape Cod. The collection also includes records of the Fall River and Swansea Preparative Meetings.

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, April 2016

Subjects

Quakers--MassachusettsSociety of Friends--MassachusettsSwansea (Mass.)--Religious life and customs

Contributors

Fall River Preparative Meeting (Society of Friends)New England Yearly Meeting of FriendsSwansea Preparative Meeting (Society of Friends)

Types of material

Minutes (Administrative records)Vital records (Document genre)
Swansea Monthly Meeting of Friends (Wilburite : 1844-1865)

Swansea Monthly Meeting of Friends (Wilburite) Records

1844-1865
5 vols. 1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 902 W553 S936

The Separation of 1845 that affected the New England Yearly Meeting of Friends was profoundly felt throughout Rhode Island and Cape Cod. The meeting at Swansea, Mass., split in 1844, with the Wilburite Monthly of that name becoming part of the Rhode Island Quarterly Meeting. In 1863, Swansea Monthly was laid down, with the Fall River Preparative Meeting transferring to Providence Monthly Meeting (Wilburite). A small number of Friends in Swansea rejected the decision to lay down the meeting and continued to meet as an independent body until 1865.

The short history of the Wilburite Swansea Monthly Meeting in four slender volumes of meeting minutes (one from the women’s meeting) and a thin records of marriages.

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, April 2016

Subjects

Quakers--MassachusettsSociety of Friends--MassachusettsSwansea (Mass.)--Religious life and customsWilburites

Contributors

New England Yearly Meeting of Friends

Types of material

Minutes (Administrative records)Vital records (Document genre)
Textile Workers Union of America. New Bedford Joint Board

TWUA New Bedford Joint Board Records

1942-1981
19 boxes 9 linear feet
Call no.: MS 134

Four local unions located in New Bedford, Massachusetts, that joined in 1939 and became the first affiliates of the New Bedford Joint Board of the Textile Workers Union of America. Includes by-laws, minutes of board of directors and local meetings, correspondence, subject files, photographs, and scrapbooks relating to the administration of the New Bedford Joint Board, documenting its role in addressing grievances filed against individual companies, in facilitating arbitration, and hearing wage stabilization Board cases.

Subjects

Labor unions--MassachusettsTextile workers--Labor unions--Massachusetts

Contributors

Textile Workers Union of America