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Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute Records

The Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute (MCLI) Collections document twentieth century American legal battles over civil liberties, human rights, labor rights, anti-war, peace law, nuclear proliferation and academic freedom. The collection is built around a core collection of legal case files assembled by the institute since 1965 for legal researchers.

The Meiklejohn Institute has documented over 9000 civil liberties cases in a series of published guides: Civil Liberties Docket, Human Rights Docket, Human Rights and Peace Law Docket, and Human Rights Casefinder, 1953-1969, the Warren Court Era. Over 3000 or these cases have corresponding files in the cores collection. Case files may include all or a selection of the following: legal briefs, memorandum, pleadings, court transcripts, case histories, research materials, correspondence, news clippings, pamphlets, and attorney's drafts.

Other papers within the collections include office files of attorneys and organizations in the fields of labor rights, social justice, and world peace. There are extensive files on the Vietnam War resistance, the Free Speech Movement trial, the Peoples Park mass arrests, and the trials of Angela Y. Davis, the Pentagon Papers, and Wounded Knee.
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National Lawyers Guild Records

The National Lawyers Guild Records, 1937-1999, consists of the organizational records of the National Office of the NLG, formerly in Detroit and now in New York City, and individual lawyers' files. Included in the files are the correspondence and resolutions generated by NLG governing boards and committees, legal documents, newsletters, books, NLG convention and conference materials, a complete set of the Guild Practitioner and the files of eighteen individual Guild attorneys, including Ann Fagan Ginger, Robert W. Kenny, Maurice Sugar, Rubin Tepper, and Doris Brin Walker.

The bulk of the National Office Files are described in the guide published by the Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute titled, The National Lawyers Guild: An Inventory of Records 1936-1976, An Index to Periodicals, 1937-1979. The inventory is an annotated and thoroughly indexed guide to the NLG's principle documents and is attached to the Bancroft's NLG temporary finding aid as Supplement #2. The National Lawyers Guild Records are incomplete after 1976. Many records and photographs remain in the National Office in New York City.

The Jeremiah Gutman and Robert Kenny files document the NLG's struggle to maintain the viability of the Guild and its lawyers during the McCarthy era. The Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute's inventory of this material is published in an annotated guide, The Legal Struggle to Abolish the House Committee on Un-American Activities and is attached to the Bancroft's NLG temporary finding aid as Supplement #1.
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