Overview of the Collection
Arrangement of Materials:
Scope and Contents
Overview of the Collection
Collection Title: Gilbert G. Benjamin, Jr.
Subversive Activities Collection
Benjamin, Gilbert G., Jr., 1918-
8.50 linear feet
Language of Materials:
Abstract: Gilbert G. Benjamin, Jr. became a Special
Agent in the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1946, after serving in the US Navy
during the Second World War. He worked in Virginia and the District of Columbia before
being transferred to the Los Angeles Field Office in 1957. The collection documents
"subversive" and "communist" activities in the United States through
printed reports, statements, and testimony before the House Committee on Internal
Security (formerly the House Un-American Activities Committee), as well as the Senate
Committee on the Judiciary's Sub-Committee to Investigate the Administration of the
Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws.
Processing staff for this collection were supported by a generous gift from the J.
Paul Getty Trust.
Mr. Gilbert G. Benjamin was born in Iowa City, Iowa on 17 October 1918. His family moved
to Los Angeles in 1926, when his father became a member of the History Department at the
University of Southern California (USC). Gilbert Benjamin attended 24th Street
Elementary School, Mt. Vernon Junior High and Los Angeles High School. Upon completion
of his secondary education he entered the University of Southern California.
After graduating from USC, he became employed by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation as an
investigator in their Personnel Department. During World War II, Mr. Benjamin served in
the United States Navy from 1944 until the end of the war. After returning from military
service, Mr. Benjamin applied to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and became a
Special Agent in 1946. Between 1946 and 1956 he served in Virginia and the District of
Columbia. During his tour in the District of Columbia office, he was assigned duties in
the Domestic Intelligence Division.
In 1957, Mr. Benjamin was transferred to the Los Angeles field office. The majority of
his service while in Los Angeles was in the area of Domestic Intelligence. The material
on subversive activities contained in the Gilbert G. Benjamin Collection was collected
while on duty in Los Angeles “either by personal contact or through informants.” The
McCarthy Hearings material and related HUAC printed government documents were mailed to
Mr. Benjamin periodically by associates in the FBI during the time of the hearings.
This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Genre/Form of Material:
Communism -- California
Communism -- California -- Los
Riots -- United States
Vietnam War, 1961-1975
Robert G. Marshall, Carol Gallegos, and Jackie Rojas, August 1995
Conditions Governing Use:
Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s)
of this collection has not been transferred to California State University,
Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or
reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond
that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners.
Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of
the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Conditions Governing Access:
The collection is open for research use.
For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style
manual, or see the
Citing Archival Materials
Arrangement of Materials:
Series I: Subversive Activities – California Legislature, 1943-1975
Series II: Subversive Activities – Federal Government Investigations, 1947-1974
Subseries A: House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), 1946-1967
Subseries 1: California, 1951-1963
Subseries 2: United States, 1946-1967
Subseries B: House Committee on Internal Security, 1970-1974
Subseries C: Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee to Investigate the
Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws,
Subseries D: Senate Committee on Labor & Public Welfare, 1951
Subseries E: Congressional Record, 1947-1965
Subseries F: Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1960-1968
Series III: Political and Social Movements, 1918-1973
Scope and Contents
This collection documents "subversive" and "communist" activities in
the United States through printed reports, statements, and testimony before the House
Committee on Internal Security (formerly the House Un-American Activities Committee), as
well as the Senate Committee on the Judiciary's Sub-committee to Investigate the
Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws. Also
included are Congressional Record statements made by Senator Thomas J. Dodd on the
Vietnam War, and reports and statements given by J. Edgar Hoover, Director of the
Federal Bureau of Investigation to the House Un-American Activities Committee. The
collection has been arranged into three series: Subversive Activities – California
Legislature (1943-1975), Subversive Activities – Federal Government Investigations
(1947-1974), and Political and Social Movements Literature (1918-1973).
Series I, Subversive Activities – California, consists of materials documenting
communist activities, criminal justice and related "subversive" activities in
California written by the Assembly Committee on Criminal Justice, Assembly Interim
Committee on Elections and Reappointment, Joint Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American
Activities and the Senate Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities. The reports
are arranged by committee and chronologically therein.
Series II, Subversive Activities – Federal Government, consists of documentation of
various topics such as the Black Panther Party, college and university civil disorder,
Senator Thomas J. Dodd, Emergency Civil Liberties Committee, J. Edgar Hoover, National
Lawyers Guild, "New Left" movements, Linus Pauling, riots, Ethel and Julius
Rosenberg, Soviet propaganda, student/youth movements, and Vietnam. This series has been
divided into six subseries: Subseries A, House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC)
(1946-1967), consists of documentation from the state of California and the Federal
Government and is arranged alphabetically. Subseries B, House Committee on Internal
Security (1970-1974), consists of documentation of subversive activities after the scope
of investigations moved into areas beyond the traditional focus on communism. The
documents are arranged alphabetically. Subseries C, Senate Committee on the Judiciary,
Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other
Internal Security Laws (1951-1975), consists of documentation of investigations and
hearings before this senate body. The material is arranged alphabetically. Subseries D,
Senate Committee on Labor & Public Welfare (1951), contains one report on communist
domination of labor unions. Subseries E, Congressional Record (1947-1965), consists of
several speeches of Senator Thomas Dodd on the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the Vietnam
War. Speeches are arranged alphabetically. Subseries F, Federal Bureau of Investigation
(1960-1968), consists of agent field notes giving background history of communist
activities in the United States as well as reports, statements and testimony by FBI
Director J. Edgar Hoover.
Series III, Political and Social movements – Literature, contains booklets, flyers,
pamphlets, political postcards and related printed items documenting the political
ideologies and activities of a large variety of home grown progressive and right wing
organizations. The items were collected by Mr. Benjamin both in the line of duty and as
a personal collection of memorabilia. Groups represented include: the American Civil
Liberties Union, Citizens Committee to Preserve American Freedoms, Communist Party of
California, Constitutional Educational League, Inc., Industrial Workers of the World
(I.W.W.), Labor Research Association, The Trade Union Unity League and Young Communist
League, and others. Examples of Mr. Benjamin's interests include material on the
Industrial Workers of the World (I.W.W.) "New Left" Movements, Julius and
Ethel Rosenberg, Student/ Youth Movements, Trade Union Unity League and the Young
Communist League. The files are arranged alphabetically by name of organization if
known, or by author and publisher.