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Finding Aid for the Dorothy Healey Papers, 1930-1978
1245  
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Description
Dorothy Healey (b.1914) was a member of the Young Communist League (1928-), and the Communist Party (1932-1973). She was appointed a deputy labor commissioner by Governor Culbert Olson (1940), and served as the Chairman of the Los Angeles Communist Party (1945). In 1952, she was arrested under the Smith Act. She appeared on college campuses in support of the antiwar movement in the 1960s, and in 1969, and openly opposed the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia (1969), effectively removing herself from the Party. Following her formal resignation in 1973, she became active in the New American Movement and the Democratic Socialists of America. The collection consists of photocopies of U.S. government documents obtained by Dorothy Healey under the Freedom of Information and Privacy Acts, and correspondence with Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, and government agencies regarding release of her files. Also contains materials released by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Department of Defense, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Background
Healey was born Dorothy Rosenblum in 1914 in Denver, Colorado; her mother was a founding member of the Communist Party of the United States; her parents moved to California in 1921, and Dorothy grew up in Oakland; joined Young Communist League in 1928, and was arrested during the May Day unemployment demonstrations there in 1930; left high school in 1931 to work in a cannery in San Jose; joined the Communist Party when she turned 18; became organizer of migrant farm workers, and in 1940 was appointed a deputy labor commissioner by Governor Culbert Olson; in 1945 she became the Chairman of the Los Angeles Communist Party; arrested under the Smith Act and jailed in 1952; appeared on college campuses in support of the antiwar movement in the 1960s; in 1969 she openly opposed the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, effectively removing herself from the Party; following her formal resignation in 1973, she became active in the New American Movement and the Democratic Socialists of America; Marxist commentator on KPFK radio (Santa Monica) for 20 years; wrote (with Maurice Isserman) Dorothy Healey remembers: a life in the American Communist Party (1990).Dorothy Healey was born in Colorado in 1914. Her family moved to California in 1291. At the age of 14, she joined the Young Communist League and was arrested in 1930 during May Day unemployment demonstrations in Oakland. In 1931, she left high school to work in a cannery in San jose. She joined the Communist Party at 18, the earliest she could do so constitutionally. During the years she organized cannery and migratory workers, hundreds of Communists were among those beaten, jailed, killed. For more than 20 years, she served as chairman of the Southern California party, and she was, as Jessica Mitford has written, “a name to conjure within California when the party was at its zenith.” Her life spans the era of House Un-American Activities Committee hearings and the McCarthy witch hunts. Dorothy Healey resigned from the party in 1969 because of its pro-Soviet stand over Czechoslovakia. She remains a dedicated Marxist.
Extent
4 boxes (2 linear ft.)
Restrictions
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
Availability
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.