Jake Friesen Papers, 1964-1967

Scope and Content Note

These ACLU records are composed of scattered Administrative Records, and a large Subject File. The span dates for the collection are somewhat misleading, as the majority of items date from 1953-1959 or 1960, and from the early 1970's. Little material is present from the 1930's, 1940's, and 1960's, and there are few original or typewritten documents. These records also illustrate the interests and holdings of the donors: The Progressive magazine and Morris Rubin, and the Wisconsin Civil Liberties Union and its attorney, William G. Rice, Jr.

ACLU ADMINISTRATIVE RECORDS primarily contain items printed for and distributed to chapter and affiliate officers. The files of printed correspondence and memos to and from the national officers, are revealing of ACLU actions and policy, and are fairly complete for the 1970's, as are minutes of meetings, especially 1953-1960. The arrangement of other, incomplete files, does not accurately depict the actual ACLU committee structure - records of most committees are fragmentary and were arranged by subject or issue instead. Other files include printed biographies of nominees for national ACLU positions, 1974-1975; printed financial and membership records, 1953-1958; a policy guide and statements; speeches and articles by ACLU officials, and a “Survey of National Office Organization and Procedures and its Relations with the Affiliates,” 1955.

The SUBJECT FILE is mainly composed of printed policy statements and proposed statements, working papers, reports, and memos (including some board of directors' memos). Materials have been arranged alphabetically by subject, and reflect the topics and issues of importance to the ACLU. The major subjects of interest in the 1950's pertained to censorship, the question of loyalty oaths and determining an individual's loyalty, national security, and the “threat” posed by Communism. By comparison, the important topics found in the records of the 1970's include questions of civil rights and equality, privacy, and general opposition to bureaucratic and governmental regulation and interference with individuals.