Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding aid to the Louise Todd Lambert oral history, 1958-1976 (bulk 1976), MS 3520
MS 3520  
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Overview
Table of contents What's This?
Contains a transcript and sound recording of Lucille Kendall's 1976 interviews with Louise Todd Lambert; an interview history; and a few miscellaneous papers, including a photocopy of Lambert's 1958 letter of resignation from the Communist Party. The interviews document Lambert's early years as an official for the Communist Party in California, including her participation in major labor actions and strikes of the 1930s; her involvement in local and statewide elections as a Communist Party candidate and campaign manager; her arrest and imprisonment in the Tehachapi correctional institute for women (1935-1938); her experiences "underground" as a member of the national Communist Party's reserve leadership (1950-1955); and, finally, her resignation from the Party in 1958. The final portion of the interview is devoted to Lambert's memories of fellow activist Anita Whitney.
Communist activist Louise Todd Lambert was born in 1905 in San Francisco to German immigrant parents. Raised in a socialist family, the young Lambert was active in the suffrage movement, the Young Workers League, and Nature Friends. In 1929, Lambert joined the Communist Party in California, filling the sensitive role of organizational secretary until the mid-1940s. As a state official for the Communist Party, Lambert participated in a number of important labor actions and strikes, including the 1933 cotton strike in San Joaquin Valley and the 1934 San Francisco General Strike. She was also active in local and statewide elections, running for the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1931 and 1933, and working as a Communist Party campaign manager during the 1934 elections. These political efforts led to Lambert's arrest and imprisonment the following year.
Transcript and papers: 2 folders (0.2 linear feet); Tapes: 20 audiocassettes.
Copyright has been assigned to California Historical Society. Materials in these collections are protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) and may not be used without permission of California Historical Society. Use may be restricted by terms of CHS gift or purchase agreements, privacy and publicity rights, licensing terms, and trademarks. All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Director of Library and Archives, North Baker Research Library, California Historical Society, 678 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105. Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.
CHS is not taking appointments for research at this time. Please check the Library's website updates: https://californiahistoricalsociety.org/collections/north-baker-research-library/