Project Director:
   Dr. Gerald Zahavi

Contents
   Introduction
   Interviews/Transcripts
   Life History
   Correspondence
   Other Documents
   Credits

 

Nat Spero as a young man and more recently.
A Talking History Project


Nathan Spero ~ A Life in the UE


Other Documents (and Photographs)

Record of promotions while with the WPA Adobe.pdf - 161 kb
Professional references Adobe.pdf - 181 kb
Educational background Adobe.pdf - 170 kb
List of union functions held Adobe.pdf - 166 kb
Record of research experience while in government service Adobe.pdf - 820 kb
Note: The above five items were part of a packet (included with a resume?)
 
Log of a salery discrepancy Adobe.pdf - 35 kb
Civil Service Efficiency Rating, 1943 Adobe.pdf - 49 kb
Employment application for the civil service, 1943 Adobe.pdf - 356 kb
Reclassification Rag. Words for the song "Reclassification Rag." Song dates back to when Spero was working for the government at the National Research Project (1937-1944). One of the workers wrote the words to promote a campaign to get government employees upgraded (without taking more serious job actions during World War II). The song helped unify workers. Spero was instrumental in organizing government employees into the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE).
Adobe.pdf - 268 kb
A Fred Wright card to Nat Spero. Fred Wright was a well-known UE and labor cartoonist. Back in the 1940s, during one of many negotiations between General Electric and the UE, GE made an offer on a new contract to the union. Unfortunately, Spero was on vacation at the time that the offer was made. The union was very dependent on Nat and his staff to analyze the real costs of the contract and what it would mean for members. Wright made this card on that occasion. Adobe.pdf - 370 kb
Photograph [1944-1945?]. Spero and his assistant, Lillian Rosenberg [Lillienthal].
Photograph, 1944. Nathan Spero with Frances Perkins giving testimony on comparable pay and discrimination against women before the War Labor Board. Spero--utilizing research that went into his testimony--later wrote a UE booklet on women's work (a copy of the booklet is available at the Wagne Labor Archives in the UE Verticle Files).
Information for appointees to Government service Adobe.pdf - 183 kb
Notice of termination from the Federal Works Administration Adobe.pdf - 22 kb
UE News, 30 April, 1954. Cover and page 2 with election results. Adobe.pdf - 229 kb
Photograph, 1961. NY UE Headquarters. Julius Emspak (left), Sect. Treasurer; Nathan Spero (standing); A. J. Fitzgerald, Pres. of UE, and Paul Seymour (right), Pres. of UE District 2, New England.
Photograph, 1963. Spero and Bob Kirkwood, Director of Organizing for the UE, testifying before Senate Labor Committee for the shorter work week. [Sen. Jacob Javits].
Photograph. 1972. Medical Committee for Human Rights lunch meeting, Chicago, April 29, 1972. The Medical Committee worked with other progressive organizations to fight for national heatlh care.
Photograph [1970s]. Nat Spero is 3rd from the end of table on left side. This is a photograph of a meeting with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) concerning a contract for turbines given to Parsons, a British firm. Negotiations were carried out with various electrical unions; the unions were able to exercise some restraint on the TVA to achieve a more equitable parceling out of contracts.
Photograph, 1973. The opening of the GE-UE negotiations on March 22, 1973. On the right sits labor; on the left is management. Spero is standing on the right side, 2nd from the end.
A get-well card from Fred Wright and friends. Spero was operated on for cancer in the 1970s. Adobe.pdf - 319 kb
Photograph [1977-1978?]. Nathan Spero and "Red" [Borris] Block, Sec.-Treasurer of the UE, testifying before Senator Harrison's [NJ-Dem.] Labor Committee about disability plans and the exclusion of coverage for pregnancy. This was after Gilbert v. GE (1976), wherein the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of GE, that even if a company had a disability plan for its workers, it was not compelled to include coverage for prgnancy. Widespread outrage over the ruling resulted in a nationwide movement of protest and Congress shortly thereafter enacted a bill to ensure coverage for pregagncy.
Photograph [nd]. First union educational organized by Dr. Irving J. Selikoff. Spero and Selikoff conducted an intensive week-long training class for the union about health and safety. Spero on left, Dr. Selikoff in center.
Photograph [nd]. Spero conducting educational meetings for Executive Board and Districts. The meetings were held across the country. According to Spero: "It was a big hit. Even the normally reticent Fitz[gerald] had something good to say about it." The presentation was to answer the ten myths about GE--for example, that GE was solicitous about its workers.
Photograph [nd]. Spero with his staff, Barbara Streisand and David Kotelchuck.
Photograph [nd]. Nat Spero in his office at UE headquarters (11 East 51st Street, NYC).
Retirement card from Fred Wright card presented to Mr. Spero in early March, March 3, 1983. Adobe.pdf - 358 kb
Retirement card. Presented to Mr. Spero from "The Crew" on the occasion of his retirement in March, 1983. Mentioned in Interview "1970s and 80s, Pt. 3." Adobe.pdf - 139 kb
Another Fred Wright card, "Getting Back to Basics." Spero's staff, Barbara Streisand and Dave Kotelchuck, got Nat a subscription to a computer class at the time of his retirement. Adobe.pdf - 273 kb
Resume, 1992 (?) Adobe.pdf - 139 kb
Anouncement from Queens College pertaining to Mr. Spero's work there. Includes brief bio. Nov. 1992. Adobe.pdf - 158 kb
Center for Worker Education (CCNY) 1996 Summer Session program. Adobe.pdf - 59 kb
Queens College Extension Center 2001 Annual Sydney Spero Awards. Sponsored by Nat in memory of his wife, Sydney. Adobe.pdf - 371 kb
Publications
 
Basic Principles (a UE booklet) [1980s?] Adobe.pdf - 1,162 kb
Monthly Review article. August, 1965. (Spanish) Adobe.pdf - 516 kb
Facts and Figures on Unemployment and the Shorter Work Week 1977 Adobe.pdf - 1,046 kb

 

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Introduction | Interviews/Transcripts | Life History | Correspondence | Other Documents | Credits

Copyright 2001 Jane Latour, Gerald Zahavi & Talking History