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Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.) Records

Collection ID

URB 44

Related Subject(s)

Collecting Area(s)


Collection Summary

Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.) Records


Collection ID
URB 44

Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.)

2 linear feet (5 boxes)

Special Collections Research Center, Temple University Libraries

Materials in English.       

Detailed Collection Information

Historical Note

The Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia began with a circular letter issued on December 4, 1903 by 22 manufacturers concerned with the “various problems which have recently arisen affecting the relations between employer and employee in all branches of trade.” The intent was to promote an anti-union open shop. For the next thirty-five years, the Metal Manufacturers' Association attracted a large proportion of the local companies in the trade for the purpose of keeping its members' plants free of trade unionism.

The employers pooled their resources in 1904 to prevent making concessions to the iron molders’ union after a request for an increase in wages, and then established a labor bureau which kept members of the Association supplied with non-union workers in times of difficulty. Later, the Metal Manufacturers even developed their own apprenticeship program to remove trade training from the control of the unions. By 1916, when the Association defeated a strike of the International Association of Machinists, the employers had proved largely successful in their open-shop goal.

For the next two decades, the members of the Association, led by Secretary Earl Sparks, were involved in legislative lobbying, vocational education, and insurance for Association members. With Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal administration, however, conditions changed. With government support, industrial unions organized most of the metal manufacturing companies and forced the Association to accept collective bargaining. Just prior to World War II, the Metal Manufacturers replaced their old anti-union employment bureau with a collective bargaining committee. Although the Association did not cease opposing unions, it channeled much of its activity in new directions. Responding to new conditions and new leadership in the organization, the Metal Manufacturers became the Manufacturers' Association of Greater Philadelphia in 1960, and later the Manufacturers' Association of the Delaware Valley.

Description of Collection

The Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia Records include secretary’s reports and meeting minutes, as well as contracts, correspondence, and wage surveys.

Organization and Arrangement

The collection is arranged into 3 series as follows:

Series 1: Administration, 1903-1956
Series 2: Subject File, 1902-1959
Series 3: Finances, 1905-1966

Series 1. Administration: The Administration series consists primarily of the reports of the President and the Secretary and the minutes of Association meetings. Both the reports and minutes are chronologically arranged.

Series 2. Subject File: The Subject File is alphabetically-arranged, and contains negotiation documents, vocational and apprenticeship program records, wage surveys, and membership materials concerning the various activities of the Association.

Series 3. Finances: Composed mainly of treasurer's reports, auditor's reports and a ledger book, the financial series documents the financial status and expenditures of the Association.

Patron Information

Research Access

Collection is open for research.

Collections Stored Off-Site

This collection may be housed off-site at the Library Depository, and require up to two business days to retrieve. Please review the finding aid and be prepared to identify specific materials to be retrieved. Contact the Special Collections Research Center in advance of your visit, so that materials may be relocated to the reading room for research.

Publication and Copyright Information

The Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.) Records are the physical property of the Special Collections Research Center, Temple University Libraries. Intellectual property rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. Researchers are responsible for determining the identity of rights holders and obtaining their permission for publication and for other purposes where stated.

Preferred Citation

[Description and date of item], [Box/folder number], Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.) Records, Special Collections Research Center, Temple University Libraries, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information

Acquired in approximately 1981.

Processing Information

Finding aid revised according to contemporary archival standards in May 2015.

Index Terms

The following headings have been used to index the description of this collection in Temple University’s electronic catalog:

Corporate Names:
Metal Manufacturers' Association of Philadelphia (Pa.)

Collective bargaining -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia
Labor movement -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia
Labor unions -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia
Metalworking industries -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia

Philadelphia (Pa.)

Material Types:
Administrative records
Articles of incorporation
Financial records
Ledgers (account books)


Series 1: Administration, 1903-1956

1          1          Constitution          1904

1          2-3          History          1903-1953

1          4          Organization Chart          circa 1950

1          5-11          President's Report          1904-1933

1          12-25          Secretary's Report          1904-1956

2          26-43          Minutes          1904-1927

3          44-56          Minutes          1928-1941

Series 2: Subject File, 1902-1959

4          1          Apprenticeship Program          1926

4          2-8          Banquet          1905-1911

4          9          Banquet Ephemera          1908-1912

4          10          Bill in Equity vs. Ralph M. Bashore          1937

4          11          Circular Letter          1903

4          12          City Tax Statement          undated

4          13          Contract Analysis--UE and MMA          1946

4          14-18          Contract Negotiations, IMIU and MMA          1913-1920

4          19          Co-operative Apprenticeship Plan          undated

4          20          Draft of Association History, ca.          1950s

4          21          Employer-Employee Relations          1937-1939

4          22          Executive Officers and Committees          1931-1938

4          23          Executive Officers          1903-1922

4          24          Inter-Company Conference on Collective Bargaining          1946

4          25          Iron Molders' Dispute          1916-1917

4          26          List of Presidents          1904-1958

4          27          Meetings Attendance          1924-1935

4          28          Membership Agreements          1903-1912

4          29          Membership Applications          1918, 1959

4          30-31          Membership Lists          1903-1958

4          32          National Founders' Association Correspondence          1905

4          33          National Industrial Council          1922

4          34          National Industrial Recovery Act          1935-1936

4          35          Notes for Order of Business          undated

4          36          Personnel Activities Committee          1925

4          37          President's Acceptance Speech          1944

4          38          Safety Committee          1931

4          39          Summary of Practice in the Metal Industry          1952

4          40          Vocational Education Committee          1925, 1937

4          41-43          Wage Survey          1902, 1918, 1928

4          44          Wage and Salary Survey          1947

4          45          War Manpower Commission          1944

4          46          "Your Future, What Next?"          undated

Series 3: Finances, 1905-1966

4         1-4          Treasurer's Reports          1905-1924

4          5-6          Auditor's Report          1923-1932

5          7-12          Auditor's Report          1933-1966

5          13-14          Budget Estimate          1927-1928, 1942

5          15          Finance Committee          1905

5          16          Ledger          1915-1937

5          17-20          Payroll Schedules          1945-1966