Archive Record

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Collection Mildred Grossman papers
Call Number Coll006
Creator Grossman, Mildred, 1916-1988;
Finding Aids Finding aid available.
Digital Link Finding aid:
Digital collection:
Date 1929-1995
Description 7 boxes (5 linear feet)
Scope & Content Collection contains photographs, professional and personal correspondence, diaries, daybooks, financial, medical, and legal documents, and extensive paperwork regarding Mildred Grossman's political activism, such as involvement with the Teachers' Union of the City of New York and the New York Hotel Trades Council. Also contains evidence of her membership in the Photo League of NY and documentary photography endeavors. Other notable materials include legal papers and pamphlets written by her brother-in-law, Rafael Federman, and paperwork on a pension that her husband Mark Berkowitz, a Holocaust survivor, was receiving from Germany. Mildred Grossman’s professional photographs have been removed to the UMBC Photography Collection.
Language English (eng), Yiddish (yid), Polish (pol), German (ger)
Admin/Biographical History Mildred Grossman (1916-1988) was a New York City public school teacher, civil rights activist, unionist, and an award-winning photographer. Grossman is well-known for her documentary photography and association with the Photo League. Grossman was involved in many unions and activist organizations, whether through personal ties or for her photography. She led 32 other teachers in a civil case against the New York City Public Schools after they were fired for accusations of being Communist sympathizers. In 1958, Grossman married Motel "Mark" Berkowitz, a Polish Holocaust survivor.
Arrangement Organized into eight series: Series I. Union Activism, 1959-1974. Series II. Correspondence and Notes, 1939-1992. Series III. Financial, 1954-1995. Series IV. Medical/Legal, 1929-1991. Series V. Miscellaneous, 1937-1983. Series VI. Diaries and Daybooks, 1950-1981. Series VII. Personal Photographs. Series VIII. Ephemera.
Access Conditions No restrictions.
Copyrights Reproductions allowed for research purposes. Copyright maintained by the creator.
Citation Mildred Grossman papers, Collection 6, Special Collections, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (Baltimore, MD).
Provenance and Aquisition Information PHMS 2002-23, 2003-01; This collection was donated by Mark Berkowitz, and arrived in two accessions. The first, consisting of Mildred's photos, included two loose-leaf binders contained 120 photographs, as well as silver prints and negatives. This came from the house of Mark Berkowitz on 12/15/89. The second accession came from Minerva Contreras on 12/17/02, and included the Mildred Grossman Archive, as well as a total of 5810 items in a combination of photographs and negatives.
Processing Information The collection was processed by Michelle Margolis under the supervision of Marcia Frank Peri and completed in May 2006. The collection arrived in a generally good condition, in regular boxes, for both accessions. The contents were wrapped in brown paper in the first accession.

For the sake of preservation, acid-damaged papers were copied onto acid-free paper, and the original papers were retained. There were four folders in the collection that had been labeled by Mildred, but only one ("Press and Pressure") was retained with the original title, as the other folders did not seem to have any unifying factors, nor were the titles appropriate to the contents. Of the remaining folders, "Currin" was renamed "Insurance Papers," and "My Mistakes" and "Book Prints" were included with the Hotel Union Papers. Staples and paper clips were removed from the documents, and envelopes were generally discarded (except in one case, where the decoration, hand-drawn on the actual envelope was quite unique) unless it was needed for identification of a date of correspondence. One envelope, left unopened when the collection was received, has remained unopened. In the case of multiple copies of any documents, only two were retained.

A number of books not directly related to Mildred or the collection have been removed from the collection, to be placed in stacks. A list of those books follows the processing notes. Although there is a folder for Awards and Honors, the certificate from the National Urban League has been included in the Correspondence and Notes, as it is actually an enclosure to a letter. The professional photographs and negatives included in the collection have been removed to the UMBC Photography collection, and are unprocessed as of May 23, 2006. Due to the relatively small size of the collection, the correspondence and other dated documents have been arranged in simple date order.
Archivist Peri, Marcia
Associated Material Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union, Local 6 Photographs; PHOTOS 098; box number; folder number; Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, New York University.
Format personal papers
Other Creators Federman, Rafael;
Berkowitz, Motel;
People Grossman, Mildred, 1916-1988;
Federman, Rafael;
Berkowitz, Motel;
New York Hotel Trades Council;
Photo League;
Teachers' Union of the City of New York;
Subjects Grossman, Mildred, 1916-1988 -- Archives;
Teachers' Union of the City of New York;
New York Hotel Trades Council;
Photo League;
Documentary photography;
Labor unions -- New York (State) -- New York;
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- Reparations;
Political activists -- New York (State) -- New York;
Year Range from 1929
Year Range to 1995