Inventory of the Jesse M. Unruh Papers

Processed by David Snyder and California State Archives staff; Inventory prepared by Genevieve Troka
California State Archives
1020 "O" Street
Sacramento, California 95814
Phone: (916) 653-2246
Fax: (916) 653-7363
Email: archivesweb@sos.ca.gov
URL: http://www.sos.ca.gov/archives/
© 2009
California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Inventory of the Jesse M. Unruh Papers

Collection number: LP236

California State Archives

Office of the Secretary of State

Sacramento, California
Processed by:
David Snyder and the California State Archives staff; Inventory prepared by Genevieve Troka
Date Completed:
June 2009
Encoded by:
Genevieve Troka
© 2009 California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Jesse M. Unruh Papers
Dates: 1957-1987
Collection number: LP236
Creator: Jesse M. Unruh, California Legislator
Collection Size: 85 cubic feet
Repository: California State Archives
Sacramento, California
Abstract: Jesse M. Unruh was first elected to represent the 65th Assembly district in 1954, and served until 1970, when he left office to run for Governor of California. He was Assembly Speaker from 1961-1968, and Assembly Minority Floor Leader from 1969-1970. The Jesse M. Unruh Papers consist of 63 cubic feet of textual records and 22 boxes of audiovisual records reflecting Unruh's legislative activities during his 15-year career in the State Assembly, and his involvement in various political campaigns (his own and others').
Physical location: California State Archives
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Administrative Information

Access

Collection is open for research.
A small number of files are restricted per California Civil Code 1798 et seq.: Information Practices Act (IPA).

Publication Rights

For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the California State Archives. Permission for reproduction or publication is given on behalf of the California State Archives as the owner of the physical items. The researcher assumes all responsibility for possible infringement which may arise from reproduction or publication of materials from the California State Archives collections.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Jesse M. Unruh Papers, LP236:[Folder Number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.

Acquisition and Custodial History

The California State Archives acquired the Jesse M. Unruh Papers following his death.

Biography

Jesse Marvin Unruh, Democrat, was a State Assembly Member from 1955-1970, representing the 65th Assembly District in Los Angeles County until 1970. The 65th Assembly District included the cities of Inglewood and Hawthorne. He served as Assembly Speaker from 1961-1969, and Assembly Minority Floor Leader from 1969-1970.
Unruh was born in Newton, Kansas on September 30, 1922, the youngest of five children. His parents were impoverished German-Mennonite sharecroppers who moved to Texas when Unruh was seven. Although his parents were illiterate, he did well in school graduating at the top of his high school class in 1939 and securing a scholarship to Wayland Baptist College in Plainview, Texas. He attended for a year before joining his older brother and sister in California. Unruh got a job as a sheet metal worker at the Douglas Aircraft plant in Santa Monica for several years before enlisting in the Navy in 1942. He spent most of his tour of duty in the Aleutian Islands and was honorably discharged in 1945.
Returning to the Los Angeles area after the end of World War II, Unruh used the educational benefits of the GI Bill of Rights to attend the University of Southern California majoring in journalism and political science. He graduated in 1948 and then completed one year of graduate school towards a master's degree in economics. While still a college student, Unruh made his first attempt to win a seat in the State Assembly but lost. He lost again in his second bid in 1952, but ran a third time in 1954 and finally won.
As a freshman legislator in 1955, Unruh quickly learned the inner workings of the Legislature allying himself with the new speaker and other powerful members, and securing a committee vice-chairmanship. By 1957, he was chairman of the Assembly Finance and Insurance Committee, and by 1959, he was named chairman of the most powerful Assembly committee - Ways and Means - the committee that hears all bills affecting the budget.
Jesse Unruh was elected Speaker of the Assembly on his 39th birthday, Sept. 30, 1961. Unruh's autocratic style as Speaker and his physical size earned him the nickname "Big Daddy". In 1963, he famously locked uncooperative Republicans in the Assembly chambers overnight to force a vote on a school finance bill. After this unfortunate episode, Unruh literally transformed himself losing 90 lbs over a four-month period and adopting a more conciliatory style.
While Unruh will probably be remembered best as a skilled and powerful politician, he authored several significant pieces of legislation. These include the Unruh Civil Rights Act (Stats 1959, c.1866), which banned discrimination on the basis of race, religion, ancestry, or national origin by all business establishments many years ahead of federal civil rights legislation and the Unruh Credit Regulation Act (Stats 1959, c.201) protecting consumers against unscrupulous credit practices. Other major bills include the Miller-Unruh Basic Reading Act (Stats 1965, c.1233) to address reading problems in elementary schools, and legislation which created the California Arts Commission (Stats 1963, c.1742). Unruh also authored a number of major school finance bills and played a key role in ensuring the passage of the Rumford Fair Housing Act (Stats 1963, c.1853) which prohibited discrimination in housing, and the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (Stats 1967, c.1667) which radically changed the delivery of mental health care in California.
Unruh was also responsible for professionalizing the Legislature. Concerned that the legislative agenda was largely dictated by the Governor, and that legislators were underpaid and their offices understaffed, he actively campaigned for the passage of Proposition 1A in 1966, which allowed the Legislature to meet full-time, set its own salaries, and hire expert staff.
Recognized nationally as a major figure in California politics, Unruh headed the state level presidential campaigns for John F. Kennedy (Southern California chair), Lyndon B. Johnson, Hubert Humphrey, and Robert F. Kennedy. Unruh was with Senator Kennedy the night he was assassinated, standing next to him in the Ambassador Hotel ballroom as he spoke to supporters upon winning the California presidential primary. When Kennedy exited the ballroom through the hotel kitchen where he was shot, Unruh was not far behind. He helped subdue the assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, and rode with him in the squad car to police headquarters.
Unruh lost the speakership when the Democrats lost their majority in the Legislature in the 1968 elections. Only Willie Brown has held the office longer (1981-1995). Unruh was elected Assembly Minority Floor Leader at the beginning of the 1969 session. In 1970, Unruh, who had been eyeing the office of Governor for years, finally decided to run. He faced a formidable opponent in popular incumbent Ronald Reagan. Unruh's campaign got off to a slow start lacking in both focus and campaign contributions. While he lost to Reagan by 8 points, his campaign's get-out-the-vote efforts helped Democrats regain control of the Assembly.
Out of political office, Unruh tried teaching and reporting but ultimately returned to public life making an ill-fated decision to run for Mayor of Los Angeles in 1973. He finished third behind City Councilman Tom Bradley and incumbent Mayor Sam Yorty in the primary. Bradley went on to win the run-off. When State Treasurer Ivy Baker Priest announced that she would not seek a third term, Unruh decided to run for this relatively low-profile statewide office and won easily. As State Treasurer, Unruh made his mark playing a role in the establishment of the California Housing Finance Agency which used revenue bonds to finance the construction of low-income housing. As an ex-officio member of the Public Employees Retirement System and the State Teachers Retirement System, California's two largest public pension funds, Unruh became concerned about the effect of corporate takeovers on the funds' investments. Together with pension fund managers from several other states, he founded the Council of Institutional Investors marking the beginning of the modern shareholder rights movement. The Council continues to influence corporate policy today and now includes more than 140 public, union and corporate pension funds.
Unruh was married to Virginia June Lemon in 1943, and had five children: Bruce, Bradley, Robert, Randall, and Linda Lu. They divorced in 1975 and he married Chris Edwards in 1986. Unruh was a member of the American Legion, Crenshaw, Southside and Inglewood Chambers of Commerce, National Urban League, and Navy League. He was a recipient of a Chubb Fellowship from Yale University in 1962, a consultant to the Eagleton Institute at Rutgers University for many years, and received an honorary doctor of law degree from the University of Southern California in 1967. Unruh died of cancer, August 4, 1987, and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in Santa Monica.
According to the California Legislature at Sacramento (Handbooks), the Final Calendar of Legislative Business, Assembly Final History, and the California Bluebook, Unruh served on the following committees (see note below):

State Assembly, 1955-1970

  • Standing and Interim Committees
  • Industrial Relations, 1955-1958
  • *Vice Chair, 1955-1956
  • Education, 1955-1956
  • Finance and Insurance, 1955-1961
  • *Chair, 1957-1958
  • Conservation, Planning and Public Works, 1955-1958
  • Manufacturing, Oil and Mining Industry, 1957-1961
  • Judiciary, 1958
  • Ways and Means, 1959-1961
  • *Chair, 1959-1961
  • Revenue and Taxation, 1959-1960
  • Elections and Reapportionment, 1961
  • Engrossment and Enrollment, 1963-1968
  • General Research, 1963-1966
  • Interstate Co-operation, 1962-1970
  • Legislative Representation, 1967-1968
  • Agriculture, 1969
  • Natural Resources and Conservation, 1969
  • Intergovernmental Relations, 1969-1970
  • Subcommittees Committees
  • Subcommittee on Beaches and Parks, 1958
  • Subcommittee on Lending and Fiscal Agencies, 1958
  • Subcommittee on Destruction or Other Distribution of Surplus State Textbooks, 1961
  • *Chair, 1961
  • Joint Committees
  • Joint Interim Legislative Tax Committee, 1957-1958
  • Joint Interim Legislative Audit Committee, 1959-1960
  • Joint Interim Legislative Budget Committee, 1959-1961
  • Joint Interim Tidelands Committee, 1964-1966
  • *Chair, 1964-1966
  • Joint Interim Higher Education Committee, 1965-1970
  • *Chair, 1965-1968
  • Joint Interim Public Domain Committee, 1967-1968
  • Additional Committees
  • Senate Apportionment Study Commission, 1961-1962
  • California State Colleges, Board of Trustees, 1961-1968
  • California Commission on Interstate Co-operation, 1962-1964
  • National Conference of State Legislative Leaders, 1965-1970
  • *President, 1965-1966
  • Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, 1969-1970
  • National Advisory Committee on Highway Safety, 1967
  • Citizens Conference on State Legislatures, Trustee, 1967
Note: Unruh served as Assembly Speaker, 1961-1969 and Assembly Minority Leader, 1969-1970. As Speaker of the Assembly, Unruh was an ex-officio member of all Assembly Standing, Joint, and Interim Committees.

Scope and Content

The Jesse M. Unruh Papers consist of 85 cubic feet of records documenting Unruh's activities during his 15-year Assembly career, and his involvement in various political campaigns (his own and others'). The records are divided into five sub-groups: Legislative Files, 1959-1970; Speaker's Office Files, 1957-1970; Political Files, 1958-1973; Los Angeles Office Files, 1959-1987; and, Audiovisual Materials, 1955-1987. The bulk of the materials are textual (63 cubic feet) and the remaining 22 cubic feet are various audiovisual materials including photographs, audiotapes, videotapes, and motion picture film. Although these records overlap with the time period during which Unruh served as State Treasurer (1975-1987), they include only a few records originating from that office. (For records of the State Treasurer's office during Unruh's administration, see Accession 94-07-32, State Treasurer-Executive, Jesse M. Unruh Papers and Artifacts.)
Unruh's legislative bill files reflect his interest in consumer protection, civil rights, the oil industry, education and school finance. Unfortunately, some early legislative files were destroyed by a district office fire and records concerning the Unruh Civil Rights Act are minimal. Records from his terms as Assembly Speaker are quite detailed with files created for individual legislative committees, legislators, and boards and commissions upon which legislators served. An almost complete run of speeches and press conferences exist including both recordings and transcripts. The papers of Chief of Staff Larry Margolis, which are part of this collection, demonstrate his key role in the Speaker's Office.
Probably the most significant portion of the collection concerns Unruh's political activities. His campaigns for Governor in 1970 and for Mayor of Los Angeles in 1973 are extensively documented. For the gubernatorial campaign, his staff thoroughly researched and developed "issue files" for Unruh and his opponents, incumbent Governor Ronald Reagan and San Francisco Mayor Joseph Alioto, creating political biographies, and collecting and organizing by topic newspapers clippings and other documents. Unruh's involvement in local, state, and national politics - particularly, the 1968 presidential campaign of Senator Robert F. Kennedy - is also emphasized.
Files from his Los Angeles office, span almost his entire political career up until his death in 1987 while he still held the office of State Treasurer. Letters and memorials from his friends and colleagues after his death make up a large part of these records. Of the audiovisual materials in the collection, the photographs are the most significant. The majority concern political activities and depict Unruh with well-known state and national political figures of the 1960's.

Related Material

Larry Margolis*, Oral History Interview, conducted 1989 by Carole Hicke, Regional Oral History Office, University of California, Berkeley. State Government Oral History Program, California State Archives, OH 90-35.
Phillip H. Schott*, Oral History Interview, conducted 1989 by Carole Hicke, Regional Oral History Office, University of California, Berkeley. State Government Oral History Program, California State Archives, OH 92-2.
Phillip H. Schott*, Oral History Interview, conducted 1989 by Carole Hicke, Regional Oral History Office, University of California, Berkeley. State Government Oral History Program, California State Archives, OH 92-2.
Various oral histories of former state legislators such as John L. Burton, Jerome R. Waldie, Kenneth Cory, Nicholas C. Petris, and Victor Veysey include discussions of Jesse Unruh and legislative politics during the 1950's and 1960's. See California State Archives online catalog MINERVA http://minerva.sos.ca.gov for additional information.
Boyarsky, Bill. Big Daddy: Jesse Unruh and the Art of Power Politics. Berkeley: University of California Press. 2008.
Cannon, Lou. Ronnie and Jessie: A Political Odyssey. Garden City, NY: Doubleday. 1969.
Cannon, Lou. Governor Reagan: His Rise to Power. New York: Public Affairs. 2003.
*Margolis and Schott were on Unruh's staff.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Unruh, Jesse M.
Unruh, Jesse, 1922-1987
Kennedy, Robert F., 1925-1968
Reagan, Ronald
Brown, Edmund G. (Edmund Gerald), 1905-1996
Legislative bodies--Reform
Discrimination--Law and legislation


Series Descriptions

 

Legislative Files

LP236:1-81

Series 1 Bill Files 1959-1970

Physical Description: 84 file folders

Arrangement

Bill files are arranged chronologically by legislative session and numerically by bill number.

Scope and Content Note

These bill files were created by Jesse Unruh while he served as Assembly Member, 1955-1970. Bill files from the 1955-1961 time period were destroyed by fire in his district office sometime in the early 1960's. The files may include amendments, analyses, letters, resolutions, telegrams, testimony, position statements in support and opposition, Legislative Counsel opinions and conflict letters, author's floor and committee statements, press releases, newspaper clippings, and background information. Unruh's bill files reflect his interests in consumer protection (particularly consumer credit and installment plans), oil industry regulation including off-shore drilling and protecting California's coast from oil spills, improving educational opportunities in disadvantaged communities, and school finance reform.
Microfilm copies of bill files are available for the years 1959-1970 as indicated by (mf) following the LP number. A list of individual bill files included and their subject matter is available in Appendix A in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
1959: AB500 - Unruh Retail Installment Sales Act, 1959-1969 (2ff) L236:1-2 (mf)
1959: AB594 - Unruh Civil Rights Act, 1961 (1ff-1 document) LP236:3 (mf)
1961: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:4
1962: ACA5, AB41X (1ff) LP236:5 (mf)
1963: AB1-AB3112, ACR12-ACR64, HR53-HR532 (5ff) LP236:6-10 (mf)
1964: HR16, AB46X, AB132X, AB145X, ACR68X, HR55X-HR349X (7ff) LP236:11-17 (mf)
1965: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:18
1965: AB18-AB3345, ACR79-ACR156, HR5-HR589, AJR1XX (15ff) LP236:19-33 (mf)
1966: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:33a
1966: AB23X-AB156X, ACR3X-ACR73X, AJR20X, HR33x-HR526X, HR3XX (6ff) LP236:34-39 (mf)
1967: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:40
1967: AB272-AB2457, ACA30, ACR16-ACR91, HR64-HR596, RCR177-RCR377, HR8XX-HR74XX (14ff) LP236:41-54 (mf)
1968: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:55
1968: AB265-AB1465, ACR62-ACR138, AJR12, AJR35, HR75-HR576, HR10X, HR28X (12ff) LP236:56-66 (mf)
1969: Proposed legislation and co-authored bills (1ff) LP236:67
1969: AB325-AB2116, ACR19, AJR3, AJR47, HR40-HR290, RCR529, RCR582 (9ff) LP236:68-75 (mf)
1970: Proposed legislation (1ff) LP236:76
1970: AB277-AB2354, AJR3-AJR69, RCR111-RCR626 (5ff) LP236:77-81 (mf)
 

Speaker's Office Files

LP236:82-378, 1860-1893

Series 2 Correspondence Files 1959-1970

Physical Description: 336 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject.

Scope and Content Note

Correspondence files may contain newspaper clippings, press releases, correspondence, reports, notes, memorandums, and other materials. These records reveal Unruh's involvement as Assembly Speaker in the day-to-day management of the Legislature and include files on each Assembly Committee (appointments, expenditures, studies), individual legislators, his efforts to professionalize the Legislature by hiring expert staff to research and analyze the issues, and contracting with outside firms to conduct numerous public opinion surveys. Also evident are Unruh's legislative priorities such as consumer protection, civil rights (including response to the Watts Riot), the Rumford Fair Housing Act, education, and school finance as well as his interest in state and local politics.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix B in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1764-1859

Series 3 Larry Margolis Subject Files 1957-1968

Physical Description: 97 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject.

Scope and Content Note

Larry Margolis served as Jesse M. Unruh's Chief of Staff in the Speaker's Office from 1961 until 1968. Prior to that, Margolis was Administrative Assistant to Unruh on the Assembly Ways and Means Committee.
The files consist of correspondence, memoranda, speeches, and reports and cover a wide range of subjects relating to Unruh's roles as Speaker, Assemblyman, and leading figure in the State Democratic Party. The materials are generally useful for understanding issues of the day and for the light they shed on the organization of Unruh's office, his use of staff, and the flow of work related to Unruh's activities. Some information may be found relating to Unruh's revitalization of the Assembly (see LP236:1813-1814-"Legislature, Organization"). Major subjects include education, elections, the Legislature, and the 1960 Olympic Games.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix C in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1894-1927

Series 4 Speeches 1959-1969

Physical Description: 34 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date.

Scope and Content Note

Contains copies of speeches given by Unruh including drafts and different versions in many cases. Most indicate when, where, and to whom the speech was given and some are marked with the alpha-numeric coding used in the Issues Files (see series 10-12 below). Topics range from the Legislature (ethics, need for strengthening, legislative issues), to education, taxes, health care, reapportionment, and politics. Also included are statements which pertain primarily to specific legislation. An index (1959-1969) is available in folder LP236:1894. For speeches on or after Dec. 4, 1969 (date Unruh officially announced his run for Governor), see 1970 Campaign for Governor below. Some speeches are available on audiotape; see series 23 below.
LP236:1928-1934

Series 5 Press Releases 1964-1969

Physical Description: 7 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date and/or number.

Scope and Content Note

Press releases issued by Unruh mostly pertain to legislation and his schedule. A numbering system was imposed in Oct. 1968; before then, releases are filed by date issued. Indexes are available in LP236:1928. Some are marked with Issues Files codes (see series 10-12 below). For releases after Dec. 4, 1969, see 1970 Campaign for Governor below.
LP236:1935-1942

Series 6 Press Conferences, Transcripts 1965-1968

Physical Description: 8 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date of press conference.

Scope and Content Note

Transcripts of press conferences were primarily joint events held by Unruh and State Senate Pro Tempore Hugh M. Burns. Index to transcripts available in folder LP236:1935.
 

Political Files

LP236:379-439, 1943-1964

Series 7 Subject Files 1958-1972

Physical Description: 86 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject heading.

Scope and Content Note

Subject files containing correspondence, press releases, newsletters, campaign materials, newspaper clippings, and other materials reflect Unruh's activities in state, local, and national politics. Most prominently featured are records relating to his role in the 1968 presidential campaign of Robert F. Kennedy--from its early stages before Kennedy decided to run through Kennedy's California Primary victory--followed by his assassination and, finally, at the Democratic National Convention. Evidence of Unruh's behind-the-scenes involvement in Pierre Salinger's run for the US Senate, his conflicts with the California Democratic Council, and his own legislative campaigns is also represented.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix D in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
 

1970 Campaign for Governor

LP236:440-482, 1438-1446, 1965-2010a

Series 8 Subject Files 1965-1970

Physical Description: 98 file folders and 1 item

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject heading.

Scope and Content Note

Correspondence, campaign materials, newspaper clippings, and other materials document Unruh's unsuccessful campaign against Ronald Reagan for Governor in 1970. Of particular interest are Unruh's political biography covering his 16-year political career up to that point, the master file of campaign materials, and the county organization files documenting local campaign activities. Also includes a dart board with photo of Casper Weinberger.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix E in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:482a-863

Series 9 Issue Files - Unruh 1959-1970

Physical Description: 360 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject or subject coding system. Key to coding system filed in folder LP236:482a.

Scope and Content Note

Files pertaining to potential issues for the 1970 campaign appear to have been created by pulling out or photocopying materials from existing Unruh files. The Unruh issue files consist of two groups - one arranged alphabetically by subject and the other alphabetically by a subject code. Files may contain press releases, statements, speeches, newspaper clippings, correspondence, biographies, and other materials. Issues in both groups represent the most controversial of the period such as unrest on college campuses, education finance, the Vietnam War, crime, subversive activities, minority groups, the environment, political parties, welfare, abortion, taxes, and rapid transit.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix F in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:864-1282

Series 10 Issue Files - Reagan 1966-1970

Physical Description: 420 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject or subject coding system. Key to coding system filed in folder LP236:482a.

Scope and Content Note

The Reagan issue files are similar in subject content and arrangement to the Unruh issues files. Files may contain press conference transcripts, press releases (some with speech excerpts), newspaper clippings, correspondence, and other materials. The main focus is on Reagan's activities as Governor.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix F in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1283-1437

Series 11 Issue Files - Alioto 1963-1970

Physical Description: 155 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject or subject coding system. Key to coding system filed in folder LP236:482a.

Scope and Content Note

Joseph Alioto, then Mayor of San Francisco, was a potential Unruh rival in the June 1970 Democratic Primary. An unfavorable expose in Look, a national magazine, linking Alioto to the Mafia as well as a lawsuit relating to his legal practice derailed his candidacy. Alioto issue files primarily contain newspaper clippings relating to his activities as Mayor, and to the fallout from the Look article and the libel suit he filed in response to it.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix F in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:2011-2017

Series 12 Speeches 1969-1970

Physical Description: 7 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date.

Scope and Content Note

Includes speeches made during Unruh's campaign for Governor beginning with his Dec. 4, 1969, speech officially announcing his candidacy. Also included are drafts of speeches and speeches which were not used. Some speeches are available on audiotape; see series 23 below.
LP236:2018-2022

Series 13 Press Releases 1969-1970

Physical Description: 5 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date.

Scope and Content Note

Campaign press releases are numbered from 1 to 263 and date from an Unruh biography released the day before his announcement through election night, November 3, 1970.
 

1973 Campaign for Mayor of Los Angeles

LP236:1447-1495

Series 14 Subject Files 1972-1973

Physical Description: 62 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject.

Scope and Content Note

A majority of the subject files concern organization and operation of the campaign, various strategies, and the candidate's relationship with particular groups such as blacks, Chicanos, young people, and labor unions. The files include correspondence, speeches, reports and studies, clippings, memoranda, and ephemera such as campaign stickers and brochures.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix G in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1496-1498

Series 15 News Releases 1972-1973

Physical Description: 3 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically by date of release.

Scope and Content Note

Press releases issued by Unruh campaign staff cover most issues and personalities associated with the campaign. The files date from November 15, 1972 to March 30, 1973.
LP236:1499-1550

Series 16 Newspaper Clippings 1972-1973

Physical Description: 52 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject.

Scope and Content Note

Clippings reflect the course of the campaign as well as relevant or controversial issues in Los Angeles upon which Unruh commented. Headings include black support, ecology, Jewish community, labor unions, law and order, and rapid transit.
 

Los Angeles Office Files

LP236:1551-1593

Series 17 Administrative Files 1965-1987

Physical Description: 45 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by type of document or subject.

Scope and Content Note

Files may contain correspondence, reports, press releases, and other materials spanning Unruh's activities while he was speaker, through his campaign for State Treasurer, until his death in 1987. Also included are files pertaining to his work at the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University.
A list of folders is available in Appendix H in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1594-1643

Series 18 Public Relations Files 1966-1987

Physical Description: 34 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by type of document or subject.

Scope and Content Note

Files may contain newspaper clippings, speeches, press releases, correspondence, and other materials. Includes drafts of a textbook on advocacy as well as a proposal for a book about politics and the legislative process - neither of which appear to have been completed. Also, a considerable portion of these files relate to Unruh's death in 1987 and the memorials that followed.
A list of folders is available in Appendix H in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1644-1675

Series 19 Subject Files 1959-1974

Physical Description: 34 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by subject heading.

Scope and Content Note

Files consist of background materials regarding legislative reform, revenue sharing, as well as information about no-fault auto insurance gathered by students in a class on legislative politics taught by Unruh. Also included are files relating to two Unruh legislative bills - Unruh Civil Rights Act-AB 594, 1959 and AB 1020, 1967, concerning the creation of a state government ombudsman. Files may contain reports, articles, newspaper clippings, correspondence and other materials.
A list of subject headings is available in Appendix H in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives.
LP236:1756-1763

Series 20 Personal Papers 1960-1980

Physical Description: 8 file folders

Scope and Content Note

Contains financial, legal, and personal documents. Some files are restricted under the Information Practices Act, Civil Code section 1798 et seq. because they contain personal information. Unrestricted materials include Unruh family genealogy, various Unruh certificates of election or nomination, and a few invitations.
 

Audiovisual Materials

LP236:1676-1725

Series 21 Photographs 1960-1987

Physical Description: 3,485 items

Arrangement

Arranged by date and/or subject.

Scope and Content Note

Photos document Unruh's major campaigns for Governor in 1970 and Mayor of Los Angeles in 1973, his activities as Speaker, and his involvement in other political campaigns. Unruh is depicted with Robert F. Kennedy, Edward Kennedy, Pat Brown, George McGovern, Edmund Muskie, Hubert Humphrey, Lyndon Johnson, Jimmy Carter, Richard Nixon, as well as many state and local government leaders. Also included are a few images related to his terms as State Treasurer (1975-1987).
Formats included are color and black and white photographic prints, negatives, contact sheets, slides, and film transparencies.
A list of folders is available in Appendix I in the Master Finding Aid at the California State Archives. Detailed item-level information is available in the California State Archives online catalog MINERVA http://minerva.sos.ca.gov
LP236:1726-1734

Series 22 Audiotapes 1963-1974

Physical Description: 291 items

Arrangement

Arranged by sub-series and then by date.

Scope and Content Note

Contains primarily audio recordings of press conferences held by Unruh himself or in tandem with State Senate Pro Tempore Hugh M. Burns. A portion of these are transcribed as indicated below (see series 6 Press Conferences, Transcripts). Also included are numerous speeches and interviews with the press. Most containers of tapes which have not been transcribed include more detailed content information.
a) Burns/Unruh Press Conferences, 1963-1968, undated. LP236:1726(1-43) not transcribed; (44-77) transcribed.
b) Unruh Press Conferences, 1965-1970, undated. LP236:1727(1-39) not transcribed; (40-58) transcribed.
c) Unruh Speeches, 1963-1971, undated. LP236:1728(1-44).
d) Unruh Interviews, 1963-1974, undated. LP236:1729(1-29).
e) Reagan Press Conferences, 1967-1970, undated. LP236:1730(1-18).
f) Assembly Floor Sessions, 1963-1970. LP236:1731(1-15).
g) State Democratic Conventions, 1964, 1968, 1972, undated. LP236:1732(1-6).
h) Miscellaneous, 1963-1970, undated. Includes Unruh trip to Asia, 1963; Vice President Humphrey remarks, 1967; interview with Senator Hugh Burns, 1968, Alan Cranston rally, 1968; Senator George Moscone press conference, 1968; and, Unruh dictating a book on influencing legislation, undated; LP236:1733(1-22).
i) Kirk/Hall and Jeffe Interviews, 1972, undated. Interviews for a planned book? LP236:1734(1-21).
LP236:1735-1737

Series 23 Motion Picture Film 1970 1973

Physical Description: 14 items

Arrangement

Arranged by date.

Scope and Content Note

Includes one film entitled "Jess Biography" by Lester M. Goldsmith, 1970 (16mm color film) and five films entitled "Jess Bio" and "Jess Unruh", 1-9-70, 5-5-70, 5-7-70, 10-9-70 (super 8mm color film cartridges) all likely a product of his 1970 campaign for Governor. Also contains film footage used to create Unruh television commercials for his 1973 campaign for Mayor of Los Angeles (16mm color film in 8-15" film cans).
LP236:1738-1739

Series 24 Videotapes 1968-1970

Physical Description: 25 items

Arrangement

Arranged by subject or date.

Scope and Content Note

Videotapes consist of two groups:
a) "JMU Kick-off Tour," 1970 campaign for Governor (17 - 1/2" black and white)
b) Miscellaneous: Unruh speeches, 1968 (2 - 1/2" black and white); "News conference, KNBC", 1969 (1 - 1/2" black and white); "Election '70", 10-10-1970 (1 - 2" color); "Jess Unruh Press Conference, KNTV-11, San Jose," 10-20-1970 (1 - 2" color); "Jess Unruh 30 sec," 10-28-1970 (1 - 2" color); "JMU, KRON-TV, practice," and "JMU, Alioto, Brown," undated (2 - 1/2" black and white).
LP236:1740

Series 25 Microfilm circa 1955-1970

Physical Description: 22 items

Arrangement

Arranged numerically by code number.

Scope and Content Note

Contains microfilm of newspaper clippings from the Sacramento Bee and San Francisco Chronicle pertaining to Joseph Alioto (rolls 1, 16-17), Ronald Reagan (rolls 2-15, 18, 20-22), and Unruh (rolls 1-2, 9, 19). These were probably used to create the "Issues Files" for each candidate as described in series 10-12.
LP236:1741

Series 26 Dictabelts 1970, undated

Physical Description: 48 items

Arrangement

Arranged by date.

Scope and Content Note

Includes dictabelt recordings of a few Unruh press conferences held in1970, and many unidentified recordings.