Pettis Perry papers,

Title
Pettis Perry papers, 1942-1967.
Author
Perry, Pettis.
Supplementary Content
Finding aid

Items in the Library & Offsite


About 4 Items.
Still Loading More items...

Vol/DateFormatAccessStatusCall NumberLocation
box 1Mixed materialRestricted useAvailableSc MG 354 box 1Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
box 3Mixed materialUse in libraryAvailableSc MG 354 box 3Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
box 4Mixed materialUse in libraryAvailableSc MG 354 box 4Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives
box2Mixed materialUse in libraryAvailableSc MG 354 box2Schomburg Center - Manuscripts & Archives

Details

Additional Authors
Families of the Smith Act Victims Committee.
Description
2 lin. ft. (4 boxes)
Source (note)
  • Rose Perry
Biography (note)
  • Pettis Perry, Communist Party official and Smith Act defendant, was born January 4, 1897 in Marion, Alabama, the son of tenant farmers. The discrimination and violence he witnessed in Alabama had a deep impact on him and he would work throughout the U.S. searching for a place "where Negroes were treated as men and women - as Americans with the full rights as other citizens." At age seventeen, he left home for a series of jobs at a plantation, lumber company, and pipe foundry. In February 1932, Perry met members of the International Labor Defense who introduced him to the Daily Worker and the Liberator and acquainted him with the Scottsboro case. In September of that year he joined the Communist Party because he had become convinced that they were the "best fighters ... for freedom." After serving as Executive Secretary of the ILD for Southern California and Arizona, Perry began work for the Communist Party, first as a section organizer and then, in 1948, as Secretary of the Party's Negro Commission in New York. There he had a voice in ideological questions and recommended policies and programs. After the imprisonment of eleven of the Party's front-rank leaders, Perry assumed a greater leadership role in Party affairs. On June 20, 1951 he was indicted with sixteen others for conspiracy. Perry represented himself during a nine-month trial and was convicted in February 1953. Sentenced to three years in prison, he was released in May 1957. Following his release, Perry returned to California and served on the Party's Southern California District Board. He died of heart disease in a Moscow hospital on July 24, 1965.
Call Number
Sc MG 354
OCLC
436872271
Author
Perry, Pettis.
Title
Pettis Perry papers, 1942-1967.
Summary
The bulk of the Pettis Perry Papers documents Perry's involvement in the Communist Party, especially his tenure in New York, from 1948 to 1955, as Secretary of the Negro Commission, Chairman of the Farm Commission, and Alternate Member of the Executive Commmittee, and his membership on the Southern California District Board upon his return to California in 1957. The papers comprise Perry's writings, assorted speeches, reports, memoranda, and letters from correspondents including Claude Lightfoot, Eugene Dennis, and Eslanda Robeson discussing various pertinent subjects such as party meetings, anti-colonial movements and the African-American community. Letters to his family during his incarceration in federal prison discussed current events such as the Emmett Till trial, colonialism, and the civil rights movement. Also included in the collection is biographical information as well as Perry's opening and closing statements and motions from his trial.
Biography
Pettis Perry, Communist Party official and Smith Act defendant, was born January 4, 1897 in Marion, Alabama, the son of tenant farmers. The discrimination and violence he witnessed in Alabama had a deep impact on him and he would work throughout the U.S. searching for a place "where Negroes were treated as men and women - as Americans with the full rights as other citizens." At age seventeen, he left home for a series of jobs at a plantation, lumber company, and pipe foundry. In February 1932, Perry met members of the International Labor Defense who introduced him to the Daily Worker and the Liberator and acquainted him with the Scottsboro case. In September of that year he joined the Communist Party because he had become convinced that they were the "best fighters ... for freedom." After serving as Executive Secretary of the ILD for Southern California and Arizona, Perry began work for the Communist Party, first as a section organizer and then, in 1948, as Secretary of the Party's Negro Commission in New York. There he had a voice in ideological questions and recommended policies and programs. After the imprisonment of eleven of the Party's front-rank leaders, Perry assumed a greater leadership role in Party affairs. On June 20, 1951 he was indicted with sixteen others for conspiracy. Perry represented himself during a nine-month trial and was convicted in February 1953. Sentenced to three years in prison, he was released in May 1957. Following his release, Perry returned to California and served on the Party's Southern California District Board. He died of heart disease in a Moscow hospital on July 24, 1965.
Connect to:
Local Subject
Black author.
Added Author
Families of the Smith Act Victims Committee.
Research Call Number
Sc MG 354
View in Legacy Catalog