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Guide to the Loren Miller Papers, 1876-2003 (bulk dates 1932-1966)
2440  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
This collection consists of the personal and professional papers ofjournalist, civil rights activist, attorney and judge Loren Miller (1903-1967).
Background
Loren Miller, journalist, civil rights activist, attorney and judge, was born in Pender, Nebraska in 1903 to former slave, John Miller, and Nora Herbaugh, a white Midwesterner of Dutch ancestry. Miller attended Kansas University and received his law degree from Washburn Law School in Topeka, Kansas in 1928. In 1929, Miller came to Los Angeles where he first worked as editor of the California Eagle, the oldest African American newspaper in Los Angeles, which he purchased in 1951. He also worked for The Los Angeles Sentinel with his cousin Leon H. Washington, Jr. In 1932, Miller and writer Langston Hughes went to the Soviet Union along with other African Americans to make a film on Negro life in Communist Russia. The film never got made. In 1933 Loren married Juanita Ellsworth, a social worker; they had two sons: Loren, Jr. and Edward Ellsworth. Loren passed the bar exam in California in 1933. Miller spent most of his legal career fighting discrimination (he assisted Thurgood Marshall with Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas), chiefly housing discrimination and real estate racial restrictive covenants. In 1945 he was the lawyer for African American actress Hattie McDaniel in the Los Angeles "Sugar Hill" housing case, which he won. In 1948 he successfully argued the US Supreme Court case Shelley v. Kraemer; the Supreme Court found that although real estate restrictive covenants were not unconstitutional in and of themselves, any enforcement of a restrictive covenant by a court would be unconstitutional under the 14th Amendment. He was a member of the Bars in Kansas and California. Miller was a member of and held offices in dozens of organizations including: the NAACP and its national legal committee; American Civil Liberties Union; National Urban League; Los Angeles Urban League; United States Commission on Civil Rights; League of American Writers; National Bar Association; National Conference of Christians and Jews; National Negro Congress; National Lawyers Guild; and the National Committee Against Discrimination in Housing. In 1964, Miller was appointed to the Los Angeles County Municipal Court. In 1966, Loren wrote The Petitioners: The Story of the Supreme Court of the United States and the Negro. He died in Los Angeles in July 1967.
Extent
10,454 items. 72 boxes.
Restrictions
All requests for permission to publish or quote from the collection must be submitted in writing to the appropriate curator. The Huntington's granting permission to publish does not transfer copyright it owns, and permission is granted only to the extent of Huntington ownership of the rights related to the request. Certain works requested which are physically owned by the Huntington may be protected by copyright, trademark, or related interests not owned by the Huntington. The responsibility for determining whether any such intangible rights exist, for obtaining all necessary permissions, and for guarding against the infringement of those rights that may be held elsewhere, remains with the requester.
Availability
Collection is open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, please contact the Huntington Library Reader Services Department at readerregistration@huntington.org.