In earlier posts, we have had the opportunity to discuss to some of our findings related to the coordination of fund-raising efforts within the Trades and Professions Divisions of the Federation. While processing several boxes of archival material initially put into storage by Margot Auerbach, I have uncovered a series of folders dedicated to the Federation’s 1960-1961 Campaign from the perspective of the Trades and Professions Divisions, most every division from the Iron and Steel Division to the Pleaters and Stitchers Division to the Women’s Woolen Division.
The division folders, as an aggregate, provide some interesting details about the activities and even the prominence of the certain divisions. The thickness of the folder for the Radio, Television, Electronic and Allied Industries Division offers some insight into the rising popularity of televisions (as well as the continuing popularity of radio) with a dinner-dance at what the event-related correspondence describes at the “plushiest hotel in the city” with the leaders in the industry and “top-flight stars in the business.”
Another thick folder, Iron and Steel Division offered a more utilitarian tone in the invitations and fliers advertising their annual dinner, including a flier that highlights the brotherhood and friendship within the division. With a drawing of a construction worker holding a pair of scissors on an suspended iron beam, the flier reads, “Don’t cut yourself off…from meeting all your good friends at the Annual Dinner…”
The Trade and Professions Divisions folders help draw out some of the the similarities and differences of the divisions at the time. In September 1960, among other fund-raising events that the respective divisions may have held as part of the Federation Campaign, the Iron and Steel Division, the Plumbing and Heating Division, and the Real Estate Division held golf parties to raise funds for the Federation. Also, several divisions shared a similar template for their annual dinner invitations.
Alongside the Real Estate Division, the Iron and Steel Division and the Lumber, Millwork, Woodwork and Allied Industries Division used a very similar template to honor a member of their division. In addition to likely sharing the same printers, the similar division dinner invitations give the 1960-1961 Campaign, within the Trades and Professions Division, a unified feel and tone. With the assistance and coordination of the Federation, many of the divisions would have shared a similar template for their testimonial luncheons or dinners as well.
Just a few observations about the archival material found in the early 1960s Trades and Professions Divisions, much more could (and hopefully will) be discovered about the various divisions from this time period and earlier. Currently, a majority of the Trades related material we have processed so far has been from the 1970s, primarily from Edward Vajda’s tenure as Director for Community Support.