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Upton Sinclair's End Poverty in California (EPIC) campaign collection, 1934.
MANUSCRIPT Boxes 2330-2331
Collection Overview


Upton Sinclair's End Poverty in California (EPIC) campaign collection, 1934


Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968


The EPIC collection was a gift from the Shaw family. Ida Noble and W. Lawrence Shaw met while Ida was working at the Pomona College Library after her graduation in 1931 and Lawrence was pursuing a degree in library science. 1934 was the year they married but Ida spent much of that year recovering from tuberculosis. Late in the year Lawrence was offered a job at the United States Dept. of Agriculture Library in Washington D.C. and Ida joined him there as soon as her health permitted.
The Sinclair campaign for Governor of California was of interest to the young couple. The country was in the midst of the Depression and the socialist agenda put forth by Sinclair had great appeal to many who were young and struggling to begin careers in that uncertain economy. Ida was then aligned with the 'Norman Thomas' socialists, whereas Lawrence remained a more traditional Democrat. However, both recognized that the Sinclair campaign was an event of historical significance.
The materials in this collection were gathered during the 1934 campaign and kept over the years as the Shaws moved to Washington and then back to California. Lawrence continued his affiliation with the Dept. of Agriculture Library and was active in the American Library Association. Ida raised their three children and then returned to librarianship at the Contra Costa County Library. This collection of Sinclair campaign materials is their legacy to historical researchers.
The collection is organized as follows: CAMPAIGN CORRESPONDENCE: Primarily form letter mailings from the Democratic State Central Committee of California, the League of Loyal Democrats, EPIC and other political organizations; CAMPAIGN LITERATURE: Assorted materials from the End Poverty League, EPIC, United for California League (anti-Sinclair), and from various sources in support of Merrriam/Hatfield, Sinclair, and Jerry Voorhis.
ARTICLES ABOUT SINCLAIR: From Collier's, Liberty, the Literary Digest, the New Republic, Rob Wagner's Script, Time, Today, Vanity Fair, The Way Out, newspaper clippings. NEWSPAPERS: Single issues of: Creel news, Los Angeles examiner, Save our state, Weekly political opinion; multiple issues of: Upton Sinclair's End poverty paper, Upton Sinclair's EPIC news.
MISCELLANEOUS: Sample ballot from 12th Congressional, 38th Senatorial, 49th Assembly district. Newsprint publication: Thunder over California by Robert C. Emery. Los Angeles, Calif. : Democratic Workers League of California, c1934. [8] p. : col. ill. ; 43 cm.


1934 (issued)


Box 2330: Campaign correspondence, Campaign literature, Articles about Sinclair. -- Box 2331: Newspapers, Miscellaneous.


Sinclair, Upton -- 1878-1968 -- Political activity
End Poverty in California (EPIC)
Campaign literature, 1934
Governors -- California -- Election
California -- Politics and government -- 1850-1950


Upton Sinclair, Pulitzer-Prize winning author, became a committed socialist in the early 1900s. He ran several times for political office to support the socialist agenda, but it was his 1934 campaign for governor of California that became the focus of national attention. Running on the Democratic Party ticket, Sinclair found opposition from the entire California political establishment, including his own party. However, his proposal for economic and social reform, the End Poverty in California (EPIC) program, gained considerable support during the campaign. Sinclair lost the election but polled an impressive 37% of the vote, compared to the Republican candidate (Frank Merriam) with 48% and a third-party progressive candidate with 13%. (You can read Sinclair's pamphlet 'Immediate EPIC' with details of the program at http://www.ssa.gov/history/epic.html
Upton Sinclair's End Poverty in California (EPIC) campaign collection, 1934.
Unrestricted. Please credit California State Library.



Physical Description:

2 boxes (ca. 211 items) : ill., ports.




MANUSCRIPT Boxes 2330-2331



Copyright Note:

Unrestricted. Please credit California State Library.

Related Item:

Thunder over California : Emery, Robert C.