Juanita Craft was a member of NAACP leadership in the Dallas area from 1935 until her retirement, working as a state field organizer and the Dallas Youth Advisor. As leader of the Youth Council, Craft helped to end segregation of lunch counters and restaurants, the Texas State Fair and North Texas State University through non-violent protest. In 1967, she received an additional award for exposing fraudulent trade schools that preyed on young people around the state. Her persistent work on behalf of civil rights concerns has earned her repeated awards for civic leadership, including national recognition. Her collection includes materials dating back to her early work with the Dallas Youth Council, including a scrap book documenting the Council's work. Printed materials include copies of the NAACP publication, The Crisis, correspondence and documentation of NAACP work more generally, and pamphlets from related organizations.
Mexican American civil rights advocate, educator, sociologist and anthropologist Dr. Julian Samora is considered to be the first Mexican American to receive a Ph.D. in Sociology and Anthropology. His research interests included the delivery of health services, rural populations in urban settings and the rural poor, Mexican immigration and the movement of Mexican Americans along the U.S.-Mexico border, population studies, and the educational status of youth and adults. He was co-founder, along with Ernesto Galarza and Herman Gallegos, of the Southwest Council of La Raza, now the National Council of La Raza. He served on boards or as a consultant to many organizations including, among others, the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Commission, the Indiana Civil Rights Commission, the Mexican American Legal Defense ' Education Fund, the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the President's Commission on Rural Poverty, the President's Commission on Income Maintenance Programs, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, and the United Way. The collection is comprised of correspondence, written works, personal and biographical materials, organization records, photographs, audiovisual materials, and Samora’s personal library.
A former Texas bank president who spent 21 years in prison for armed robbery, Lawrence C. Pope assisted other inmates in filing lawsuits against state and federal prison systems. After his parole in 1982, he devoted his time to prison reform and rehabilitation of prisoners. The collection includes correspondence, newspaper clippings, legal documents, reports, financial records, and printed materials were gathered by Pope from 1961 to 1989. The materials focus primarily on the Texas Department of Corrections, and they provide information on most apsects of prison operations and conditions. In addition, materials on banks and banking in Texas are included. Nineteen audio cassettes of interviews with Pope recount his life's work.
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) was founded in Corpus Christi, Texas, in 1929 with the mission to advance the economic condition, educational attainment, political influence, housing, health and civil rights of the Hispanic population of the United States. Today, LULAC advocates powerfully for legislation that benefits the interests of all Latin Americans in the U.S. as individuals and members of larger Latin American communities. This three part collection stems from the "Presidential Papers Initiative" established to collect the papers of each LULAC president from 1929 to the present; however, actual preservation in this collection is limited to sixteen presidents over the 80 year history of the organization. Materials range from administrative documents to subject files on a wide range of civil, economic and social rights.
Political leader from La Joya, Texas, and advocate for the poor, Leo James Leo championed many Mexican American causes. He was involved in both local and statewide politics and served on the boards of directors of many Great Society poverty programs, such as the Associated City and County Economic Corporation, helping the poor with food, job assistance, housing, and medical aid. He was often involved in controversy because of his forthright defense of these programs. In 1960, Leo and other Mexican -American political leaders organized the Political Association of Spanish Speaking Organizations (PASSO). Leo chaired the 1,000 member Hidalgo chapter of PASSO, the largest in the state. He also formed the Hidalgo County Political League, an association of liberal Anglo American and Mexican American Democrats, in the late 1960s. In addition, he assisted with summer youth programs and helped file citizenship papers for many Mexican immigrants. The collection contains materials from La Joya political activities and statements; the Guillermo Flores Elementary School dedication; personal and family history; and posthumous dedications and tributes.
Nathan "Babe" Leopold (1904–1971) and Dickie Loeb (1905–1936) were convicted of murder in 1924. There are photographs, many unpublished, of these and other notorious homosexual murderers and victims in the photograph morgue of the New York Journal American. The correspondence between Leopold and Erle Stanley Gardner (1889–1970) in Gardner's "Court of Last Resort" archive provides more insight into the Leopold-Loeb case. Additional unpublished photographs of Leopold are scattered among the correspondence there, along with intriguing third-party correspondence, including a lengthy letter from one of Leopold's fellow prisoners that confirms the continuing homosexual practices and attitudes of both Leopold and Loeb after their imprisonment. There is no finding aid available for these materials.
Orlando Letelier, a former Chilean diplomat and opponent of the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, was assassinated by a car bomb in Washington, D.C. on September 21, 1976, together with Mrs. Ronni Moffitt. An investigation conducted by an international commission established by bilateral treaty concluded that Chilean secret police were responsible for the assassination and determined the settlement. The bulk of these materials consist of four bound volumes of briefs filed by the governments of the United States and the Republic of Chile before the international commission.
Photographer and civil rights activist Manuel (Chaca) Ramírez (1947-present) documented Mexican American barrios, civil rights activities, (including the Texas Farmworkers' march of 1977 and the East Austin Boat Race controversy), and Chicano arts and artists. In the 1980s, he recorded the work of Mexican American artists Amado Maurilio Peña, Jr. and Consuelo (Chelo) Gonzalez Amezcua. The collection consists of 875 images that document activities and environs of Mexican Americans in Texas. Photographs of Laredo, Texas, in the 1970's show people of Laredo in their surroundings and the contrasts between poverty and luxury in the city. Slides document the Texas Farmworkers' march of 1977 for reform of labor laws in Texas and the United States, protest marches against police brutality, neighborhood activism in Austin, Texas, and a mural project by the League of United Chicano Artists (LUChA) in East Austin.
María G. Flores was a photographer, teacher and social activist best known for her work with the Texas Farm Workers Union from 1975-1979. The collection is primarily composed of documents related to her work with farm workers and the Chicano rights movements. Materials include program files, speeches and photo-documentary work on the lives of farm workers and events in support of their rights.
Collection of materials, 1982-1986, mainly newsletters, from the Guatemala Human Rights Commission, the Guatemalan Church in Exile, NISGUA, and the Guatemala Scholars Network. Also information from the photograph exhibition "Guatemala: A Testimonial."
The collection is currently unprocessed but is open to researchers in the Benson Collection.