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Word H. Mills papers

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1903.1/1263

Abstract

Title:
Word H. Mills papers
Author/Creator:
Mills, Word H.
Collection number:
90-173
Size:
0.75 linear feet
Bulk dates:
1906-1933
Inclusive dates:
1906-1933
Collection Area:
State of Maryland and Historical Collections
Repository:
Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries, Hornbake Library, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9212, Fax: 301-314-2709, Email: askhornbake@umd.edu
Abstract:

Word H. Mills (1864-1933) was a journalist, businessman, and active member of the Socialist Labor Party. The papers of Word H. Mills cover the years 1906 to 1933, and consist of a large scrapbook of clippings of articles Mills wrote as a journalist for the Weekly People, the newspaper of the Socialist Labor Party, as well as other papers; a signed limited edition of Mills's book The Evolution of Society; two drafts of essays concerning socialist movements in Mexico and the economic situation in the United States in 1933; and one portrait photograph of Mills.

Important Information for Users of the Collection

Restrictions:

This collection is open for research.

Preferred citation:

Word H. Mills papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

Publication rights:

Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials policy for more information. Queries regarding publication rights and copyright status of materials within this collection should be directed to the appropriate curator.

Status:

This collection is PROCESSED.

Historical Note

Word H. (Worden Horst) Mills was born on February 18, 1864. Little is known of Mills' early life until 1900, when he first became identified with the socialist movement in Texas. Two years later, his political career began at the socialist convention in Grand Saline, when he was nominated as a candidate for lieutenant governor, but lost the election. Two years later, he ran as the socialist candidate for both governor of Texas and county clerk of Dallas and again was defeated. Later in life, as a member of the Section Baltimore of the Socialist Labor Party, he continued his political interests by both serving on the section's executive committee during the 1920s, and by running for attorney general of Maryland in 1930.

Word H. Mills worked primarily as a newspaper correspondent for the Socialist Labor Party's newspaper, the Weekly People, as well as other newspapers nationwide. His pieces focused on socialist issues, such as labor conditions, the Paris commune, and the socialist movements in Latin America. Mills also opposed the U. S. preparation for and involvement in World War I, as he urged the working class to abolish war.

Besides being a correspondent, Mills translated letters and articles for the Weekly People by individuals such as Lenin, Gorky, and Tolstoy. While reporting on Latin America, Mills provided both Spanish and English accounts on the events there.

Throughout his career, Mills lectured on behalf of the Socialist Labor Party across the country. In 1906, Mills tried to lecture against statehood for Oklahoma, claiming that only the rich and powerful would benefit, but celebrations of the admission to statehood caused the cancellation of his presentation.

Throughout his life, Mills was actively involved in many professional organizations and businesses. By 1923, Mills was the senior member of the Mills Realty Company. In addition, he was connected with a Baltimore survey for the Census Bureau that was credited with an increase in the number of businesses and prosperity, before assisting in a business survey in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1927. He was a member of the Modern Language Association of America, the American Association of Teachers of American, and the founder of the Spanish Section Maryland Academy of Sciences in 1919, as well as serving as the translator for the Baltimore Association of Commerce from 1921 to 1929, and the translator for the Mexican Consulate (Consul Garcia) from 1923 to 1929. Mills also was associated with the Baltimore American's Art Department in 1911, and belonged to the Baltimore Press Club, the Advance Guard of the Associated Boards of Trade of Maryland, the National Executive Committee of the Socialist Labor Party, and the Advertising Club of Baltimore.

Word H. Mills died on December 6, 1933 at the age of sixty-nine.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The papers of Word H. Mills cover the years 1906 to 1933, and consist of a large scrapbook of clippings of articles Mills wrote as a journalist for the Weekly People, the newspaper of the Socialist Labor Party, as well as other papers; a signed limited edition of Mills's book The Evolution of Society; two drafts of essays concerning socialist movements in Mexico and the economic situation in the United States in 1933; and one portrait photograph of Mills.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

James A. Knowles gave the papers of Word H. Mills to the University of Maryland Libraries in 1990.

Processing Information

Processed by:

Processed by Karen E. Eglinton, July 1990. Revised by Jennie A. Levine, January 2003

Processing note:

Loose newspaper clippings were copied on to archival bond paper and placed in a separate acid-free folder following the scrapbook. In 2003, the scrapbook was removed from its binding and divided into six acid-free folders. Acid-free paper was interleaved with the pages to prevent further deterioration. Paper clips were removed before placing the collection into acid-free folders and into acid-free boxes. The photograph was transferred to the photographic collection.

Encoded by:

EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Henry Allen, July 2004.

Arrangement of Collection

The collection is organized as four series:

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Newspaper Clippings, 1906-1933 (0.50 linear feet)

This series consists of one large scrapbook and one folder containing clippings of Mills' articles, which appeared in various newspapers. These materials reflect Mills' service as a member of the Section Baltimore of the Socialist Labor Party, primarily as a correspondent with Latin American countries; he also reported on socialist activities in the Soviet Union and China. In addition, the clippings record Mills' efforts to translate, for the press, works and letters of people such as Lenin, Gorky, and Tolstoy; his professional activities as a lecturer; and his political life. The scrapbook is arranged primarily by subject; loose clippings have been placed in a folder following the scrapbook.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 1folder 1
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 1folder 2
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 1folder 3
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 1folder 4
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 1folder 5
Scrapbook, 1906-1933 series 1box 2folder 1
Loose Clippings, 1911, 1932 series 1box 2folder 2

Series 2: Monograph, 1927 (1 item)

This series consists of Mills' book entitled The Evolution of Society: From Primitive Savagery to the Industrial Revolution, published by the New York Labor News Company in 1927. This edition is signed by Mills and is the third copy of a limited printing of 100. The series of chapters printed in the book were originally published in 1907 in the newspaper Daily People, under the title "Economic Determinism." Five years later, in 1912, Mills rewrote and amplified them to be republished by the Daily People as the series entitled "Evolution of Society." After further revision, Mills published the collected essays as the above-mentioned book.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Evolution of Society, 1927 series 2box 2folder 3

Series 3: Essays, 1933 (2 items)

This series consists of two handwritten drafts of essays. The first pertains to workers' difficulty in finding employment in the United States during the Depression. The second describes the Mexican Regional Confederation of Labor, whose constitution, though based on Marx's idea of class struggle, was not, according to Mills, based the emancipation of labor from the slavery of wages. These essays were written on the backs of letters from Arnold Petersen, National Secretary of the Socialist Labor Party; Martin Carr, of W. & J. Knox Net and Twine Company; and on the back of a bulletin from the Commission on Governmental Efficiency and Economy, located in Baltimore, Maryland.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Essays, 1933 series 3box 2folder 4

Series 4: Photograph, undated (1 item)

Undated portrait photograph of Word H. Mills.

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

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