University of Chicago Library

Guide to the University of Chicago Politics and Protest Collection 1935-1991

© 2021 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


University of Chicago. Politics and Protest. Collection




4 linear feet (5 boxes)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


This collection documents political and protest movements at the University of Chicago throughout the in the mid and late-twentieth century. It contains articles, correspondence, event flyers, newspaper clippings, meeting agendas, reports, official statements, position papers, and unofficial student literature. Materials date from 1935 to 1991, with the bulk of the material dating between 1966 and 1970.

Information on Use


This collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: University of Chicago. Politics and Protest. Collection, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Scope Note

The collection, has been organized into four series: Series I: Political and Protest Groups, Series II: Political and Protest Events, Series III: Marlene Dixon and the Sit-In of 1969, and Series IV: Oversized Newspapers.

Series I: Political and Protest Groups, organizes material as it relates to the specific groups operating at the University. The series is arranged alphabetically by organization name, with the one exception of groups backing specific political candidates which have been arranged in Subseries 2 alphabetically by candidate last names. Organizations of interest may include Chicago Area Draft Resisters (C.A.D.R.E), Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and Students for a Democratic Society. Materials date from 1939-1991.

Series II: Political and Protest Events, presents material relating to specific controversies, both global and local, and the events they inspired on campus. Subseries 1 is arranged chronologically by year of the material related to the event (e.g. “German Refugees, 1947-1949,” “Vietnam, 1969-1970,” “Fred Hampton and the Black Panthers, 1970”…). Subseries 2 details to the extended effort to abolish the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). It should be noted that the “Vietnam” in Box 2 Folder 13 includes materials relating the Kent State shooting and the reactions on UofC campus. Box 2 Folder 18 details protest efforts against systemic racism in University policies, specifically in the “urban renewal” efforts c.1969. Materials date from 1935 to 1970.

Series III: Marlene Dixon and the Sit-In of 1969, presents material related to the firing of Marlene Dixon, the subsequent sixteen day sit-in and the controversies from the wake of the demonstration involving The University Disciplinary Committee, political suppression, and the right to protest. The series is arranged chronologically. Materials date from 1969 and 1970.

Series IV: Oversized Newspapers, contains newspaper clippings from the 1950’s and 1960’s related to events found elsewhere in the collection.

Related Resources

Browse finding aids by topic.American Civil Liberties Union. Illinois Division. Records Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference. Records Political Pamphlets. Collection University of Chicago. Office of the President. Levi Administration. Records University of Chicago. Office of Student Activities. Records University of Chicago. Women and Women’s Organizations. Collection Vogel, Virgil J. Collection

Subject Headings


Series I: Political and Protest Groups, 1939-1991

This series has arranged material from a variety of political and protest groups on campus alphabetically by organization name. It includes primary source material-- event posters, pamphlets, and the like published and distributed by the organizations. Subseries 2 includes groups affiliated with particular political candidates and is organized alphabetically by candidate last name. Subseries 1 contains all other organizations.

Subseries 1: Campus Organizations - General, 1939-1991

Box 1    Folder 1

All Campus Peace Week - Committee, 1950

Box 1    Folder 2

American Youth for Democracy, 1940’s

Box 1    Folder 3

C.A.D.R.E, 1967-1969

Box 1    Folder 4

Campus Committee against Conscription, 1948

Box 1    Folder 5

Chicago Committee to Defend the Bill of Rights, 1958-1963

Box 1    Folder 6

Citizens Committee for Constitutional Liberties, 1962

Box 1    Folder 7

Civil Rights Congress, 1949

Box 1    Folder 8

Coalition against Racist Medical Care, 1970

Box 1    Folder 9

Committee against Militarization, 1950

Box 1    Folder 10

Committee against Military Intervention in the Middle East, 1991

Box 1    Folder 11

Committee for a Student Strike against the War, undated

Box 1    Folder 12

Committee for the “27”- Presidio Case, undated

Box 1    Folder 13

Communist Club, 1948

Box 1    Folder 14

Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), 1948-1962

Box 1    Folder 15

Faculty-Graduate Committee for Peace at UofC, 1951

Box 1    Folder 16

Hyde Park Anti-Draft Union, 1968

Box 1    Folder 17

Independent Coalition Party (IC), 1952

Box 1    Folder 18

International Socialists, undated

Box 1    Folder 19

Iranian Students’ Association, 1970’s

Box 1    Folder 20

Joint Campus Committee to Support the Ward Strike, 1945

Box 1    Folder 21

Keep out of War Congress, 1939-1940

Box 1    Folder 22

Labor Rights Society, 1944

Box 1    Folder 23

Labor Youth League, 1951-1954

Box 1    Folder 24

New University Conference, undated

Box 1    Folder 25

Non-Partisan Students League, 1950-1951

Box 1    Folder 26

NSO, undated

Box 1    Folder 27

People’s Action against Standard Oil, 1970’s

Box 1    Folder 28

Radical Libertine Alliance, 1964

Box 1    Folder 29

Religious Freedom Committee, 1962-1963

Box 1    Folder 30

Robin Hood Club, 1954

Box 1    Folder 31

ROTC, 1951

Box 1    Folder 32

Socialist Club, 1935-1948

Box 1    Folder 33

Socialist Youth League, 1952

Box 1    Folder 34

Students Assembly Reform Coalition, 1949

Box 1    Folder 35

Student Grievance Committee, 1950

Box 1    Folder 36

Student Federalists, 1940’s

Box 1    Folder 37

Students for a Democratic Society. I, 1968-1969

Box 1    Folder 38

Students for a Democratic Society. II, 1969-1973

Box 1    Folder 39

Student Mobilization Committee, undated

Box 1    Folder 40

Student Political Action Committee (SPAC), undated

Box 1    Folder 41

Students for a Political Alternative, 1968

Box 1    Folder 42

UC Science for Vietnam, undated

Box 1    Folder 43

United World Federalists, undated

Box 1    Folder 44

World Federalist Party, 1940’s

Box 1    Folder 45

Young Communist League, 1940’s

Box 1    Folder 46

Young People’s Socialist League, 1956

Box 1    Folder 47

Young Socialist Alliance, undated

Subseries 2: Political Endorsements, 1942-1952

Box 1    Folder 48

Horner, Henry - Independent Horner for Governor Organization, 1940’s

Box 1    Folder 49

Kefauver, Estes - Ad Hoc Committee, 1952

Box 1    Folder 50

Krueger, Maynard C - Krueger for Congress Committee, 1942

Box 1    Folder 51

Mills, George D - Faculty and Alumni Sponsoring Committee, 1942

Box 1    Folder 52

O’Hara, Barratt - Faculty and Student Committee, 1952

Box 1    Folder 53

Stevenson, Adlai E - Stevenson for President Committee, 1952

Series II: Political and Protest Events, 1935-1970

This series contains material related to specific controversies and events at the University. This includes strikes, sits-ins, and various conferences; as well as material related to more general controversies such as Korea, systemic racism, and the abolition of the House of Un-American Activities Committee.

Subseries 1 includes the majority of the political and protest events and is arranged chronologically by date. Subseries 2: HUAC contains materials specifically related to the collective nationwide effort to abolish the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). The correspondence found in Folders 25 and 26 of Series 2 primarily concerns the film “Operation Abolition” as well as MSCLC activities at the University of Chicago and other American Universities.

Series III: The Marlene Dixon Case and the 1969 Sit-In, contains an extensive amount of material relating to the Marlene Dixon firing. It should be noted that much of the material found therein can and should be read in conjunction with the other controversies of 1969 found in this series.

Related newspaper clippings can be found in Series IV.

Subseries 1: Controversies by Event - General, 1935-2012

Box 2    Folder 1

Armed Forces Day (Anti-War G.I. Rally), undated

Box 2    Folder 2

All-Campus Anti-War Conference, 1935

Box 2    Folder 3

All-Campus Peace Conference, 1936

Box 2    Folder 4

Billings Hospital Discrimination, 1944-1948

Box 2    Folder 5

German Refugees, 1947-1949

Box 2    Folder 6

Korea, 1950

Box 2    Folder 7

Bus Boy Strike, 1951

Box 2    Folder 8

Kenwood Community Conference, 1955

Box 2    Folder 9

Chicago Hiroshima Day, 1961

Box 2    Folder 10

Midwest Student Civil Liberties Conference, 1961

Box 2    Folder 11

Clyde Kennard Case, 1962

Box 2    Folder 12

Wendell Phillips Case, 1962

Box 2    Folder 13

Voter Registration in Mississippi, 1962

Box 2    Folder 14

Vietnam, 1965-1969

Box 2    Folder 14

Sit In, 1966

Box 2    Folder 16

“Study-In” and the Ranking Controversy, 1967

Box 2    Folder 17

Billings Hospital Strike, 1969

Box 2    Folder 18

Childcare Controversy, 1969

Box 2    Folder 19

Urban Renewal and Systemic Racism, 1969

Box 2    Folder 20

Sex Discrimination, 1969-1970

Box 2    Folder 21

Fred Hampton and the Black Panthers, 1970

Box 2    Folder 22

Steve Kindred Material on UofC in 1960’s, 2012

Box 2    Folder 23

Miscellaneous, undated

Box 2    Folder 24

Miscellaneous Race Related, undated

Subseries 2: HUAC, 1953-1963

Box 2    Folder 25

Articles and Publications, 1953-1962

Box 2    Folder 26

Statements, Reports, and Case Summaries, 1958-1963

Box 2    Folder 27

Midwest Civil Student Liberties Committee, 1962-1963

Box 3    Folder 1

National Committee to Abolish HUAC, 1960-1963

Box 3    Folder 2

Students for Civil Liberties Organizations, 1960-1963

Box 3    Folder 3

“Operation Abolition Film,” c.1960

Box 3    Folder 4

Post Office and Propaganda Correspondence, 1960

Box 3    Folder 5

Correspondence. I, 1960-1961

Box 3    Folder 6

Correspondence. II, 1962-1963

Box 3    Folder 7

Miscellaneous, 1961

Series IV: Marlene Dixon and the Sit-In of 1969, 1969-1977

This series details the firing of Marlene Dixon, the subsequent student demonstrations and the year of internal turmoil within the University that followed.

On December 15, 1968, Dr. Marlene Dixon, Assistant Professor of Sociology, was notified that her three year appointment would not be renewed. The suspected reasons for this decision included both sex discrimination and Dixon’s radical political views. On January 9th, a student group known as “Committee of 85” demanded a more transparent process for reappointment, as well as the immediate rehire of, and a principle of student involvement in future hiring and firing decisions. Despite various efforts to avoid militant action, hundreds of students enacted a “sit-In” at the University Administrative Buildings on January 30th. The demonstration lasted sixteen days, ending on February 14th. In the months following, various smaller protests flared up under the leadership of “The Committee of the 500+,” Dixon was offered a one year extension which she denied, and the validity of the retributive actions of the University Disciplinary Committee were called into question. The series includes flyer and other protest material, daily summaries of unfolding events, official reports, and statements made by administration, faculty and academic departments.

Possible items of interest include “Spartacus, Vol 2” and “A Closer Look at Spartacus” in Box 4, Folder 8; the “Gray Report” on the Dixon Case in Box 4, Folder 4, as well as the official statements made by President Levi throughout the series.

For more on the Marlene Dixon Case, see “Women and Women’s Organizations. Collection” Box 3 Folder 1 and Box 5 Folder 6.

Related newspaper clippings can be found in Series IV, Box 5 Folder 3.

Subseries 1: General and Undated Material, 1969-1977

Box 3    Folder 8

Reports and Positions - Administration and Students, 1969

Box 3    Folder 9

Event Flyers, 1969

Box 3    Folder 10

Principles and Tactics: A Study of the 1969 Sit-In at the University of Chicago by John J. Vail, 1977

Subseries 2: Chronological Material, 1969-1970

Box 4    Folder 1

January, 1969

Box 4    Folder 2

February 1-4, 1969

Box 4    Folder 3

February 5-9, 1969

Box 4    Folder 4

February. 10-13, 1969

Box 4    Folder 5

February 14-28, 1969

Box 4    Folder 6

March, 1969

Box 4    Folder 7

April, 1969

Box 4    Folder 8

May-December, 1969

Box 4    Folder 9


Series IV: Oversized Newspapers, 1952-1969

This series contains oversized newspaper clippings from the 1950’s and 1960’s related to the events in both Series II and Series III.

Box 5 Oversize   Folder 1


Box 5 Oversize   Folder 2


Box 5 Oversize   Folder 3