Skip to Main Content

Cold War Research Guide

Tamiment's Cold War Archival Collections.

Hours & Location

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2630

Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

The Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives form a unique center for scholarly research on labor history and the history of socialist, anarchist, communist and other radical political movements.

To search other Cold War Collections in the Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, visit the search portal for Tamiment collections.​

For further information and tips on how to perform searches, please consult the Tamiment Research Guide.

Special Collections Research Account

All researchers wishing to use archival collections and researchers unaffiliated with NYU wishing to use the Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives must register to use the collections, which entails registering a Special Collections Research Account (SCRA) and showing a valid photo ID when they arrive at Tamiment. 

For more information consult the SCRA FAQ.

Alger Hiss Collections

Alger Hiss (1904-1996) Alger Hiss was a State Department official, who in 1948 was accused of transmitting government secrets to the Soviet Union. During the New Deal period he worked as an attorney at the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, in the Solicitor General's Office at the Justice Department, as Assistant Secretary of State and in other positions in the State Department, and as a member of the U.S. delegation to the Yalta conference in 1945. He served as Secretary General of the United Nations Conference in San Francisco in April 1945. In 1947 he left government service to become president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Hiss's public career ended abruptly in 1948 when Time managing editor Whittaker Chambers, a former underground Communist Party operative testifying before the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC), charged him with being both a Communist and a spy. Hiss voluntarily testified before HUAC, and, after a Grand Jury proceeding, was indicted on charges of perjury. Hiss's first trial ended in a hung jury on July 7, 1949. On January 21, 1950, he was convicted in a second trial. He was sentenced to five years in prison and served 44 months in Lewisberg Penitentiary.

The Tamiment Library’s Alger Hiss (1904-1996) collections include Hiss family papers, his legal defense files, as well as collections from long-time Hiss associates. The Debevoise & Plimpton Records on Alger Hiss (dated 1938-1980) contain files from the legal firm's representation of Alger Hiss in his 1949 perjury trials and his 1979 coram nobis petition to overturn his conviction. A select group of materials from the Debevoise & Plimpton Records are being digitized and will be available online in 2018.

In addition to the original archival materials that are housed at NYU, both the Alger Hiss Defense Collection for the Harvard Law School Library and the Hiss Papers are available through Microfilm.

Future projects will microfilm the Alger Hiss correspondence in the records of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Alger Hiss files in the United Nations Archives.

Alger Hiss Collections