Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Screen Writers' Guild Records
Collection Number: WGF-WGA-VII
Screen Writers' Guild
Writers Guild of America, West
Extent: 16.4 linear feet
Online items available
Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Los Angeles, California 90048
Abstract: The Screen Writers’ Guild records detail the activities and development of members and the board. The collection contains
early guild documents including correspondence, membership records, awards materials, board meeting minutes and other items.
Language of Material: English
Available by appointment only.
The responsibility to secure copyright and publication permission rests with the patron.
Screen Writers' Guild Records. Writers Guild Foundation Archive
Transferred from the Guild Executive Office Transfiles in storage.
The Screen Writers’ Guild formed in 1920 as a professional club for film writers working in Hollywood, under the auspices
of the Authors' League of America. Membership included induction into the social group The Writers as well as membership
in the Authors' League. In 1933, members formalized the Screen Writers’ Guild as a labor union and it blossomed into the
central organization representing screenwriters. In 1938, the Guild was officially recognized by the federal government as
a labor union with collective bargaining rights. By 1941, writers began working under the first approved contracts and in
1942, the first long term contract was signed by writers and producers. In 1954, the Screen Writers’ Guild merged with the
television and radio guilds, and branched into two divisions, Writers Guild of America, West in Los Angeles and Writers Guild
of America, East in New York.
Scope and Content of Collection
The Screen Writers' Guild Records contains early guild documents including correspondence, membership records, awards materials,
board meeting minutes and other items. Series I is comprised of the WGAW Executive Director Transfiles, documents preserved
by the guild's executive offices in Los Angeles from the 1930s to the present. Highlights include member correspondence,
materials related to the Hollywood blacklist and code agreements. Members represented include Frances Goodrich, Lillian Hellman,
Ring Lardner Jr., Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Albert Maltz, Frances Marion, Dorothy Parker, Preston Sturges, Dalton Trumbo and Billy
Wilder. The records also reflect the business of the SWG Board, from meeting minutes to employment reports. Although most
of the collection is unprocessed, a selection has been rehoused and inventoried at the folder level. Material continues to
be processed and records will be updated when information becomes available. Linear footage measurement reflects processing
completed. Early guild publications Screen Guilds Magazine (1934-1936) and The Screen Writer (1945-1948) have been digitized
and are available at the Internet Archive.
Authors' League of America
Screen Writers' Guild--Archives
Writers Guild of America--Archives
Television writers--United States
Radio writers--United States
Wilder, Billy, 1906-2002.
Hellman, Lillian, 1905-1984.
McCall, Mary C., Jr., 1904-1986.
Hughes, Rupert, 1872-1956.
Lawson, John Howard, 1894-1977.
Mankiewicz, Joseph L., 1909-1993
Parker, Dorothy, 1893-1967.
Maltz, Albert, 1908-1985.
Marion, Frances, 1888-1973.
Lardner, Ring, 1885-1933.
Trumbo, Dalton, 1905-1976.