Papers of Elizabeth Holtzman, 1945-1981 (inclusive), 1972-1980 (bulk)
Congressional papers of Elizabeth Holtzman, who represented New York's 16th Congressional district from 1973 to 1980.
- Majority of material found within 1972-1980
- Holtzman, Elizabeth (Person)
Language of Materials
Materials in English.
Access. Written permission of Elizabeth Holtzman is required to use the collection. For five years after Holtzman's death, written permission is required from the executor of her estate. Researchers must also sign a special permission form to use the collection.
Executive session materials are closed for fifty years from date of creation, according to the rules of the House of Representatives:
Folders #267.1, 267.11, and 267.18 are executive session and closed until January 1, 2024.
Folders #276.6-276.9 are executive session and closed until January 1, 2025.
Folders #114.32, 149.50-149.51, and 244.1-257.32 are executive session and closed until January 1, 2027.
Certain other files are closed for at least fifty years as originally requested by Holtzman's office:
Folders #107.5 and 110.4 are closed until January 1, 2030.
Folders #128.24-128.26, FD.9, 130.5, and 239.24 are closed until January 1, 2031.
Folders #277.1-278.50 are closed until January 1, 2061.
Conditions Governing Use
Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Elizabeth Holtzman is held by Elizabeth Holtzman during her lifetime. Upon her death, copyright will be transferred to an heir, to be specified later. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.
Copying. Copies of documents in the collection may be made for researchers who have obtained permission for access, in accordance with the Library's usual procedures.
Extent270.62 linear feet ((255 cartons, 3 file boxes, 2 half file boxes, 18 card file boxes, 1 folio box) plus 9 folio folders, 9 folio+ folders, 3 oversize folders, 3 supersize folders, 298 photograph folders, 8 folio photo folders)
4.67 Megabytes (2 files)
The Elizabeth Holtzman papers cover primarily Holtzman's election to and membership in the United States House of Representatives and her campaign for election to the United States Senate in 1980. The collection documents her political life throughout the 1970s and her place in the legislative process of the House. The papers were shipped directly from her offices in New York and Washington, DC, following the end of her final term in office.
In 1982, archivists compiled a preliminary inventory of the Elizabeth Holtzman papers under a grant from the William Bingham Foundation of Cleveland, Ohio. The original inventory, which provided only a container list and brief description of contents, described papers that had received only minimal sorting and arrangement and was not intended to be as thorough or as specific as a final inventory. In 2014-2015, the collection was processed and described more fully and a folder-level inventory was added. Original folder titles created by Holtzman or her staff have been retained when possible; in most cases folder titles added by the archivist have been put in brackets. Some of the original folder titles contain terminology which was commonly used at the time of Holtzman's tenure but which are now considered objectionable or outdated. For instance, undocumented immigrants are identified as "illegal aliens" or "illegal migrants," and mainland Southeast Asia is referred to as "Indochina." The archivist chose to preserve this language in an effort to maintain historical context.
The first two series are divided into subseries, the arrangement adhering closely to the order in which the papers were received from the New York and Washington, DC, offices. The Elizabeth Holtzman papers contain a variety of material, including correspondence, notes, reports, background and research information, publicity, photographs, memorabilia, etc. The internal workings of her two offices can be seen in papers that pertain to the structure of her office staffs or to staff activities. Her interaction with constituents, community leaders, federal departments, etc., are equally well documented. There is duplication of formats and subject matter in Series I and Series II. The New York and Washington, DC, offices both maintained and filed subject files, press releases, speeches, statements, and constituent correspondence. Researchers are advised to check both series for material they need.
Most of the photographs in this collection are or will be digitized and available online. Audiovisual materials are shelved and described separately. Audio-tape #T-184.92 has been removed to the Elizabeth Holtzman audio collection, 1973-2006 (T-184; Phon-013).
Series I. CONGRESSIONAL PAPERS: NEW YORK OFFICE, 1965-1980 (#1.1-115.13, 277.1-278.50, 69CB-78CB, 101CB-106CB, FD.1-FD.3, F+D.1-F+D.2, OD.1-OD.3, SD.1-SD.2), contain files generated and retained by Holtzman's New York office. Materials include correspondence, speeches, press releases, publicity, and research materials. Included in this series are materials relating to Holtzman's political campaigns (Subseries A) which document her fundraising and campaigning for Congress, her constituent case files (Subseries E), which contain requests and responses from constituents in need of assistance or support, and her community work files (Subseries F), which contain case materials about community services in Holtzman's district.
Subseries A, Political campaigns, 1965-1980 (#1.1-6.17, FD.1, F+D.1, OD.1-OD.2), relates to Holtzman's political campaigns, consisting of her successful run for district leader/state committeewoman in the 44th New York State Assembly district (1970), her election to the House of Representatives from the sixteenth congressional district in Brooklyn, New York (1972), her subsequent re-election campaigns (1974-1978), and her unsuccessful run for the Senate against Republican candidate Alfonse D'Amato (1980). The documents trace her political campaigns and transitions into office, as well as her growing support within the progressive political community throughout the 1970s, which culminated in her run for Senate. There is information throughout the files regarding her positions on national and local political issues, her efforts and accomplishments in office, and her relationships with constituents, other supporters, and political officials. Campaign files include correspondence; campaign literature and publicity; press releases and newsclippings; information regarding contributors; financial records; statements on key positions; scheduling; poll information (lists of volunteers, polling places, etc.); invitation lists for fundraising events; letters of congratulations; election results; staffing and volunteers; etc. Correspondence is often between Holtzman and her constituents, supporters, and other elected officials, as well as organizations and associations, many of whom wanted Holtzman's support. Correspondence topics relate to outreach and assistance; fundraising efforts; invitations for speaking engagements and other appearances; local and national issues; endorsements of Holtzman and of other public officials. There are additional files regarding Holtzman's role during the 1975 election, and these include information related to the vote in New York State regarding the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (#4.25). Also of note are court documents and evidence related to the incumbent Representative Emanuel Celler's lawsuit against Holtzman for voter fraud in the 1972 primary, and Holtzman's subsequent election run-off against Celler, as well as materials related to charges by Robert O'Donnell, another candidate in the 1972 primary, who claimed Holtzman engaged in unfair election practices. Files for the 1974 and 1976 House campaigns include primary and general election materials. Subseries is arranged chronologically by campaign and then alphabetically within each campaign with oversize materials listed at the end. For additional materials related to Holtzman's Senate run (1980), see also Series V in Elizabeth Holtzman Additional papers, 1977-1994 (MC 709).
Subseries B, Press releases, statements and speeches, 1972-1980 (#6.18-11.67), contains press releases, statements, and speeches documenting Holtzman's positions on issues and her activities in office. The press releases (which sometimes include supporting correspondence related to the press release topic), press advisories, and letters signed by multiple legislators and public officials, trace the initiatives and accomplishments of Holtzman's tenure in the House. The press releases in this subseries were generated from the New York district office, as well as the Washington, DC, office. Certain priority issues re-occur often, including fighting crime and improving conditions of New York City neighborhoods; suing the secretary of defense against illegal bombing in Cambodia, curbing domestic surveillance of the Central Intelligence Agency; securing safe public transit in New York City; investigating alleged Nazi war criminals; reforming Medicare; increasing supplemental security income; supporting freedom of Soviet Jews; supporting Israel; regulating nuclear energy; fighting corruption in New York City's summer food and jobs programs; fighting insurance redlining; revising refugee laws; fighting cigarette bootlegging; investigating Watergate; supporting the rights of women, families, and senior citizens; protecting Gateway national park (Staten Island, New York) from nearby airport construction; and being fiscally responsible. The press releases also announce Holtzman's awards and honors. Holtzman's statements printed in the Congressional Record are generally filed separately. Speech files includes speech notes and outlines, talking points, transcripts and drafts, statements or remarks, drafts, edited versions of speeches, notes, memoranda about speaking engagements, a few clippings and programs, etc. Speech topics mirror the press release content, including the plight of Jews and the Middle East, justice against Nazi war criminals in the United States, the trauma of Watergate and Vietnam, the value of good governance and fiscal responsibility, urban policy, education, and the status and rights of senior citizens and women. Sometimes speeches cover multiple topics, are general in nature, or the topic is discernable from the location or event. In these cases, the subject matter is not noted in the inventory. Multiple speeches covering the same topic may be edited slightly for each event. Statements, originally found with press releases, were retained in that section. Press releases include a partial index by subject (#6.19), and the speeches include a partial index by date (#11.67). For additional information on speeches, press releases, etc., see Series II, Subseries H. Corresponding speech files found in Series II, Subseries H, were added to the files in this subseries until January 19, 1975 (#7.67). This subseries is arranged with press releases first, followed by speeches, and then chronologically within each grouping.
Subseries C, Correspondence, 1973-1976, (#11.68-14.33), contains both chronologically and alphabetically arranged correspondence files. The bulk of letters are from 1973 to 1974. Because correspondence files were mostly kept in the Washington office after 1974, there are a smaller number of letters from 1975 and 1976. Files contain primarily carbon copies of outgoing letters to constituents, businesses, organizations, local officials, and supporters, regarding a range of topics. The content in this subseries reflects Holtzman's role working and advocating for her constituents and oftentimes intervening on their behalf, as well as illustrating to a certain extent her work fostering positive relationships with community and religious leaders in her district. Subject matter is consistent throughout the years. Topics include requests for Holtzman's mediation in apartment repairs, to fix traffic lights and street lamps, reduce traffic congestion, and increase police presence; to help secure immigration visas; to investigate health insurance claims and discrepancies with utility bills; to intervene regarding job applications or promotions in federal and municipal positions or military service; to help secure social security and veteran's benefits; to respond on local and national issues, ranging from the plight of Soviet Jews to the building of a commercial airport on Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, New York; and to investigate other complaints and perceived wrongdoings. Also included are lists of contributors and thank-you letters for speaking engagement invitations. This subseries contains some printed materials, clippings, and incoming correspondence, particularly in the alphabetical groupings, and letters signed by caseworkers in Holtzman's office. The bulk of case related files are located in Series I, Subseries E. Some duplication exists between the chronological and alphabetical groups. Subseries is arranged chronologically.
Subseries D, Office files, 1972-1980 (#15.1-17.4, OD.3), contains correspondence, invitations, scheduling books, information about interns and volunteers, and general office administration. The contents in this subseries overlap with other subseries, particularly correspondence located in series I, subseries C; however, the materials found in subseries D may have simply been filed together in the district office. Correspondence files (#15.1-15.15) include letters from friends, relatives, colleagues, organizations, constituents, and admirers, many of which contain sentiments of good wishes, as well as support for Holtzman. The internship files (#15.18-15.20) include applications from college students interested in working in the district office; many of whom were concentrating in social work, law, or political science. The work in the district office, which dealt more directly with constituents, required interns and volunteers who were interested in case work and community relations. This differed somewhat from the Washington office internship opportunities which emphasized more issue-oriented work and legislative research. Guest books (#15.16-15.17) include primarily names and addresses of individuals in Brooklyn who visited the district office, possibly seeking assistance. Folder #16.13 contains correspondence and notes with related clippings which were removed from Series III and added to this subseries by the archivist. This subseries is arranged alphabetically with oversize materials listed at the end.
Subseries E, Case files, 1972-1980, (#17.5-68.13, 69CB-78CB, FD.2, F+D.2, SD.1), comprise the largest set of records from the New York office. During Holtzman's tenure in the House, she, along with a group of case workers, would respond to constituents' request for assistance or support. They would try to resolve a broad range of problems and issues, many of which included requests for help to secure government benefits such as Social Security, disability insurance, Medicaid, welfare, and subsidized housing. There are also appeals to Holtzman to intervene on behalf of prisoners for compassionate release; to change veteran discharge status from dishonorable to honorable; to assist in securing employment in government jobs, and to help with obtaining services from the Veteran's Administration. Some constituents describe poor conditions in state-run psychiatric facilities; unfair practices of utility companies; and allege workplace discrimination based on race, age, sex, and/or religious status. Many of the files relating to discrimination include requests to investigate why the constituent was not hired or promoted despite excellent performance on the qualifying exams or on the job. Other files merely document the discriminatory behaviors of employers, such as failure to provide accommodations for a worker’s religious or disabled status. There are also numerous requests to help with the immigration process, often for a spouse or relative, from locations ranging from the Caribbean to Soviet bloc countries. Some specific examples include a report of the poor conditions at an immigration detention facility (#38.12); Jewish convicts seeking approval to grow a beard and secure Kosher food in prison (#38.188-38.189, #57.218); a disabled student requesting help for medical school admission (#51.194); a detailed complaint about a public school's discriminatory lay off practices (#52.6); corrupt medical practices at a Veteran's Administration hospital (#54.148); offer of Girl Scout uniforms to Vietnamese refugees (#62.221); and request from a prisoner to support the commutation of his prison sentence (#49.137). Types of materials consist primarily of correspondence and internal office notes. There are also newspaper clippings; pay stubs and bills; awards and certificates; copies of relevant laws, court rulings, and union rules; and other supporting materials. The archivist kept the majority of the records in their original folders, which the caseworker marked with the dates the cases were closed or re-opened, other related notes, and the subject area of the case, such as "V.A." or "immigration." The bulk of the files are arranged by case number (with gaps). The years listed for each carton cover the time period during Holtzman's time in office. Some supporting materials in the files, which were provided by the constituent, may contain earlier dates. There is an alphabetical card index arranged by individual's name, often noting type of case (#69CB-78CB). Filed at the end of the numbered cases are two sets of unnumbered cases, arranged alphabetically; and catch-all folders of miscellaneous cases which are arranged alphabetically either by subject (e.g. federal employment; immigration) or by status (e.g. pending, respectfully referred) (#67.31-68.13). Oversize materials are listed at the end of the inventory. See also Series I, Subseries C for additional case-related correspondence.
Subseries F, Community work files, 1971-1980 (#68.14-100.12, 101CB-106CB, SD.2), contain cases related specifically to community services in Holtzman's district, such as housing, neighborhood improvement, crime and safety, quality of life issues, and general advocacy for communities, businesses, and individual constituents. Contents of folders include letters from constituents and block associations contacting Holtzman for assistance or advice. Holtzman often intervened with officials or other parties on a constituent's behalf. Materials include mostly correspondence and notes; as well as community board meeting notes, neighborhood association and other reports, supporting materials for cases, such as legal documents and clippings; printed materials; etc. The files are arranged by an alpha-numeric code (with gaps) as defined and described below, followed by an alphabetical index by name of individual (#101CB-106CB). These index cards contain name of complainant, address, phone number, and code. In many cases, the time period listed for a case covers the years when Holtzman's office was addressing the problem; however, some supporting materials provided from the constituent may contain earlier dates. Many case numbers comprise their own files, although the archivist consolidated some files to save space. Subseries is arranged by alpha-numeric code, followed by a few named folders filed alphabetically, and the alphabetical index.
- AB (abandoned buildings): includes complaints about abandoned buildings, related physical deterioration of the neighborhood, and vandalism. Holtzman interceded with city officials to get abandoned buildings boarded up or to move along the demolition or rehabilitation of buildings.
- BA (block associations): includes regarding requests for assistance for block parties and street fairs (such as helping to waive regulations and coordinate logistics), to intercede on issues from disruptive tenants and neglectful landlords to supporting improvements in the neighborhood, including regarding safety, quality of life, and city services. Of note are complaints of racial steering by real estate brokers (#79.3, BA2982) and redlining issues (#79.9, BA3626).
- CA (consumer affairs): includes regarding constituent concerns of unfair and dishonest business practices and misleading advertisements, including complaints of not being compensated for lost personal property due to business closures.
- DA (drug abuse): includes concerns from constituents for their safety due to an increase in neighborhood drug selling and drug-related crimes. (#79.124, DA6001) contains a complaint regarding the open selling of marijuana in convenience stores and request to have the stores shut down.
- DC (day care): includes requests for support of early childhood education and after school programs; concerns related to the poor conditions or insufficient space of day care centers; and requests for additional funding for day care programs.
- E (elections): includes constituent concerns related to voting, including complaints that the polling place is too far from home making it challenging for elderly voters; requests for absentee ballots and complaints that the absentee ballot was never received, etc.
- FD (fire department): includes requests for fire trucks for block parties; concerns regarding fire hazards in their neighborhoods, fire code violations, and reports of broken hydrants.
- FHA (Federal Housing Administration): includes requests for help in applying for mortgage assistance, for repairs on Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-owned properties; complaints of unsatisfactory home maintenance, etc.
- G (grants): includes grant applications primarily from individuals and organizations endeavoring to secure an endorsement from Holtzman. Organizations include consumer protection agencies; hospitals; educational institutions; public transportation agencies; art organizations; etc. The grant applications often request renewed or expanded funding for programs. Areas for funding include expansions of medical facilities; art school programs in prisons; detention centers seeking funding for ongoing operations; job training facilities wanting to engage a wider client base; international education projects in Africa; increasing access to legal services for women; National Congress of Neighborhood Women's requests for neighborhood legal clinic; community programs for the elderly; increased financial support to local community colleges for low income families; reading programs in public libraries for children and adults, etc.
- H (health and hospitals): includes regarding constituent and neighborhood associations' fears that closures of local hospitals would result in inadequate medical care to community residents; complaints regarding unsatisfactory emergency response especially regarding wait time or number of available emergency vehicles; tenant health concerns related to unsanitary living conditions not addressed by landlords, etc.
- HS (housing): includes complaints regarding infestations; negligent landlords; requests re: rent increase exemptions and section 8 housing assistance; reports of building violations; requests for public housing; rent disputes, etc. (#84.83, HS2611) contains correspondence between Holtzman and the New York City Housing Authority regarding tenants at a housing project protesting the renting of apartments to recent Russian immigrants.
- L (landmarks): includes correspondence with landmarks preservation commission re: landmark and preservation status of Flatbush Town Hall; Elias Hubbard Ryder House; Brooklyn Botanic Gardens; and Ditmas Park.
- LT (lots): includes constituent complaints regarding the conditions of abandoned lots and open spaces, such as the accumulation of trash and debris.
- MT (mass transit): includes regarding the operation and maintenance of New York City's subways and buses, as well as Amtrak and Conrail, private bus lines, and taxis. Issues include poor passenger conduct; poor conditions of subway stations; requests to move bus stop locations; issues with high fares; requests for better accommodations for senior citizens; concerns regarding actions of bus drivers and general safety and security; complaints regarding service and crime; and transportation workers labor issues. For example, (#89.3, MT169) refers to the poor conditions of the Conrail tracks and grounds nearby including lack of fencing, security, overgrown trees, and inadequate lighting. (#89.20, MT6135) refers to the transit operators and constituents demand for protection from violent assaults and robberies and general improvement of unsafe conditions on mass transit. The file includes a petition signed by bus operators.
- M (miscellaneous): includes requests for assistance from constituents related to multiple issues and services, including help to rectify personal legal problems and claims of fraud; concerns regarding traffic and congestion (e.g. M2279), issues with the Internal Revenue Service (#90.5, M322); support for the disabled (#89.28, M975) and film production in New York City (#90.4, M2256). Additional examples include the Glenwood Houses and tenants association's concerns over the federal takeover of their complex and their fear that the federalization will bring in more poor and minority residents (#89.29, M1315); concern over the relocation of the Navy Resale System office from Brooklyn to Chicago (#91.49, M12768; #90.7, M2604); request that African American Revolutionary War soldier Salem Poor be awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously (#90.11, M2895); response to the summer food program, including reports from distribution sites (#90.14, M3015); concerns over changes in federal regulations regarding Affirmative Action (#90.20, M3481); Midwood Kings Highway Development Corporation support for community-based crime prevention (Law Enforcement Assistance Administration), expansion of a youth center, funding for educational programs, rehabilitation of Kolbert Park, (#90.31, M4043) and the corporation's proposal for a tenant-in-place rehabilitation project (#90.44, M4403); complaint of racism by an African American transit police officer against the transit police department (#90.34, M4121); and a request for help to restore a World War II mass grave in Pysznica, Poland, as well as concerns regarding desecration of a Jewish cemetery in Tarnow, Poland (#91.10, M4671).
- P (police): includes complaints regarding littering; noise; neighborhood crime, delinquency and vandalism; unresponsive police and inadequate police protection. Of note are complaints related to methadone clinic patients loitering on the street and related open drug use (#92.12, P81); concerns over tensions between Hasidic and African American communities in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, including flyers for a demonstration against Hasidic violence (#92.22, P2981); murder of Hasidic youth Abraham Goldman (#92.39, P4265); allegations of a prostitution ring (#92.45, P5015); and problems with subway noise, which includes a 1973 report to city council on the issue (#92.47-92.48, P5181).
- PL (pollution): includes complaints regarding noise and air pollution; and issues with sanitation and littering, malfunctioning incinerators, and broken hydrants.
- PR (parks, recreation, and cultural affairs): includes requests from constituents for dead tree removals in their neighborhoods, improved garbage pick-up to reduce litter in parks and playgrounds, etc.
- PS (postal service): includes complaints from constituents regarding lost, stolen, or mis-delivered mail. Also includes requests for the placement of more mailboxes.
- S (sanitation): includes constituent complains regarding unsanitary road conditions, such as excessive garbage, leaves, etc. and concerns regarding garbage and infestations in vacant lots.
- SC (schools): includes correspondence with the Board of Education regarding budget cuts, including as it affects reduced security in schools and more crime. Included are requests for increased security at playgrounds and letters from the Parent Teacher Associations regarding crime at local schools and requests for heightened cooperation with police. (#96.17, SC 2164) and (#96.24, SC4152) include content related to the New York City order for school integration and complaints by white parents who do not want their children sent to predominantly African American schools.
- SE (senior citizens): includes requests from constituents for help in fighting rent increases; complaints regarding lengthy waiting period for filing senior citizen exemption paperwork; requests to establish senior centers for recreation and social services, etc.
- ST (streets): includes constituent concern for neighborhood safety. Complaints relate to broken street lamps or insufficient street lighting, requests to repair broken sidewalks, clogged catch basins, etc.
- TR (traffic): includes requests from constituents for installation of traffic signals, stop signs, etc. to increase safety and improve traffic flow; requests that parking restrictions be altered to allow greater access to churches and residential areas, etc. (#99.7, TR26) contains drawings from students at Public School 152 related to the installation of a new traffic light and the corresponding ceremony which Holtzman attended.
- Z (zoning): includes complaints from constituents regarding private residences or abandoned buildings being used to conduct business; requests for Holtzman to support the stoppage of new construction of homes, bars, diners, fast food restaurants, etc. to help protect community character.
Subseries G, Subject files, 1972-1980 (#100.13-115.6, 277.1-278.50), contain information on programs, issues, current events, investigations, etc. that were of special interest to Holtzman and the New York office. Included are correspondence with constituents, organizations, community leaders, and government officials; press releases; notes; clippings; legal court documents; Holtzman's statements; House bills; flyers; speech notes; newsletters from local organizations; meeting minutes; reports; and other research materials. The materials reveal Holtzman's role, interest, or views on a number of issues and initiatives important to her constituents. The subjects include many of the issues that had media prominence in the 1970s, such as the energy crisis, the fiscal crisis in New York City, racial strife and integration in neighborhoods and schools, the plight of Soviet Jewry, and the social and political conflict in Northern Ireland. The issues include Holtzman's lawsuit in federal court to end the Cambodia bombing operations (#100.26-100.29). These files contain court documents for Holtzman vs. James R. Schlesinger, Secretary of Defense and Holtzman vs. Eliot Richardson, Secretary of Defense. Community development files (#100.38-100.43, 107.1-107.6) provide a good overview of the concerns and situations for Brooklyn communities, related to housing, neighborhood conditions, local businesses, functioning of community boards, infrastructure, and crime. Education files (#107.19-107.42) demonstrate Holtzman's role and level of involvement in the administration of local schools, and contents include notes from community school board meetings; materials related to programs, grants, and proposals; legislation, including regarding fund allocations; threats of school closures; the Emergency School Aid Act; integration issues; and condition of schools. Gateway National Recreation Area files (#110.15-110.26) concern the local controversy over airport construction at Floyd Bennett Field versus further development of the area for recreation use. The files, which include responses from constituents and local civic organizations, also refer to financial concerns and budget needs for the park, and unease about increased traffic and extension of the Gateway bus route. These files also reveal the racial and class tensions in Holtzman's district. Community members mention their concerns that the development of the park may bring to the neighborhood the "wrong element"; inner-city crowds that would ruin the park for local residents. Insurance files (#111.28-112.10) relate to Holtzman's fight against insurance redlining, her support of the Fair Access to Insurance Requirements (FAIR) plan, and amendments which Holtzman introduced and which required that New York State amend its FAIR plan statute so that rates would not climb higher than voluntary market rates and that a portion of the members on the FAIR plan board of directors would come from outside the insurance industry. Mass transportation files (#112.23-112.38) include information regarding the Holtzman amendment to the Federal Clean Air Act. The amendment gave New York State the option of abandoning the Harlem and East River bridge tolls if the state submitted comprehensive plans to improve mass transit. New York subsequently presented plans which were deemed inadequate. Rail freight - harbor tunnel files (#113.32-114.3) include rail freight tunnel studies and draft bills related to the building of a rail freight tunnel in New York's harbor, with the hopes that rail freight would play an important role in economic rejuvenation of New York City.
Of additional interest are the food and/or employment program files (#108.25-110.11). Holtzman had worked to eliminate waste and abuse from federally funded food programs and youth employment programs. The food or lunch programs for children were fraught with fraud and corruption. Holtzman's investigation and subsequent legislation attempted to remedy the abuses, and by 1978 the programs had improved. Related to this was her investigative work involving a job program for underprivileged young people, known as Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP), or Summer Program for Economically Disadvantaged Youth (SPEDY), which was funded by the United States Department of Labor under the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act of 1973 (CETA). Community organizations or sponsors which administered the program failed to provide work for disadvantaged youngsters, although they were paid by the government to do so. Holtzman's investigation revealed that city and federal administrators had mismanaged the programs and failed to act to curb abuse. The food and jobs program scandals were closely related, as many of the same organizations were involved in both. Holtzman also started the first summer food program in New York City for poor, elderly residents (#109.1-109.6). This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries H, Awards and certificates, 1972-1980 (#115.7-115.13, FD.3), contain awards and certificates that Holtzman received from various social, political, and humanitarian organizations, including civic, community, and political groups; national and local Jewish organizations; and educational institutions. Holtzman was primarily recognized for her service to her community in Brooklyn and her support for Israel, as well as her advocacy for civil liberties; rights of the disenfranchised, ethnic minorities, senior citizens, and women; public education; environmental causes; etc. The inventories (#115.13) provide a list of her awards, certificates, and plaques, including the names of the granting organizations and dates. Since plaques were not retained in this subseries, the archivist added an additional inventory which further describes the content of those plaques. This subseries is arranged chronologically followed by the award inventories and oversized materials.
Series II. CONGRESSIONAL PAPERS: WASHINGTON OFFICE, 1945-1981 (#115.14-274.33, 137CB, 217CB, FD.4-FD.9, F+D.3-F+D.9, SD.3, E.317), contain files generated and retained by Holtzman's Washington, DC, office. Materials include correspondence, speeches, press releases, publicity, and research materials. Of note in this series are files related to Holtzman's government committee work, especially her role on the Judiciary Committee during the Watergate hearings and her work on post-impeachment and impeachment-related events, including Gerald Ford's and Nelson Rockefeller's confirmations.
Subseries A, Scheduling, 1973-1980 (#115.14-127.15), primarily contains invitations sent to Holtzman and replies from Holtzman or her staff. Holtzman was invited to attend, speak, be a guest of honor, or receive awards at group events, including meetings, conferences, receptions, celebrations, dinners, etc., or one-on-one meetings in Washington, DC, or New York. Requests appear as general invitations, personal letters, and completed event request forms. In memos and in annotations on invitations, Holtzman and her staff comment on the suitability of events and groups, and they note decisions to accept or decline invitations. Also included are materials related to the events, including travel itineraries, programs and agendas, receipts, follow-up letters, thank-you notes, news clippings, etc. Congressional invitations and announcements were sent from the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, the Senate Budget Committee, other members of Congress, the Democratic Caucus, and the New York delegation. Also included are invitations from other government groups, including the Justice Department, State Department, armed forces, New York State officials, and New York City officials. Other groups that invited Holtzman include community organizations; religious organizations, including New York City congregations, B'nai B'rith, and the American Jewish Congress; advocacy groups; businesses, trade associations; academic groups, unions; and the media. Holtzman was also invited to attend several events with Simcha Dinitz, the Israeli Ambassador to the United States,. Topics of events include Israel; Judaism; Soviet Jewry; women's issues, including the Equal Rights Amendment; immigration; Nazis living in the United States; and Harvard-Radcliffe-related. In general, papers are filed by month of event (not of invitation), with separate folders for invitations accepted and regretted. Daily and weekly schedules were either in separate folders or interfiled with invitations. Some miscellaneous correspondence is interfiled.
This subseries also includes monthly and yearly appointment books, which generally contain titles, dates, times, and locations for meetings and events. Appointment books also include some loose correspondence and notes, including invitations; memos regarding meetings and appointments; schedules; agendas; etc. These loose materials were removed and filed separately. Telephone message books provide a log of incoming calls taken by members of Holtzman's staff. Messages may include dates, times, and the names, phone numbers, and concerns of callers. Telephone lists (#126.1-126.2) contains lists of names called, names of people Holtzman wants to call; and related content and tasks. This subseries is arranged chronologically by type, starting with invitations and followed by appointment books and telephone messages.
Subseries B, Administrative files: Rodney N. Smith, 1972-1980 (#128.1-132.79, FD.4-FD.9, F+D.3, SD.3), contain the office files of Holtzman's administrative assistant, Rodney N. Smith. Smith also worked as press secretary and, along with James Schweitzer and JoAnn Macbeth, was the newsletter editor. Materials in this subseries include correspondence, notes, printed materials, clippings, and lists. The bulk of the materials relate to Holtzman's political campaigns, particularly financial documentation and information regarding contributions from supporters, as well as solicitation and thank-you letters; also included are Washington DC office personnel files for regular staff, interns, and consultants. Personnel files include letters of inquiry, applications, notes by Holtzman or staff, recommendation letters by Holtzman, lists of work accomplished, and other related personnel matters. Subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries C, Administrative files: Andrea Zedalis, 1968-1980 (#132.80-136.32, 137CB), include correspondence, such as with community groups, constituents, and supporters; notes; speeches and statements; lists; clippings, printed materials; reports; etc. Andrea Zedalis was Holtzman's personal secretary and this subseries reflects the initiatives and projects that Zedalis would have been involved in or helped arrange, including appointments, memberships, and Holtzman's travel. Materials of note is an oral history transcript (1973) largely about Holtzman's early work experiences and political life, which was coordinated by the William E. Wiener Oral History Library of the American Jewish Committee (#135.14); meeting minutes, correspondence, and position papers related to her work as a member of the national commission on the observance of International Women's Year (#134.14-134.34), which includes the National Women's Conference in Houston in 1977; and correspondence regarding the new Congresswomen's Caucus, of which Holtzman was co-chair (#133.43). Subject files (#135.44-136.21) include correspondence, research materials, and notes regarding issues of importance to Holtzman, such as the summer food and jobs programs, the Equal Rights Amendment extension, pensions for postal service employees, etc. See also Series I, Subseries G for more substantive materials related to many of these and other subjects. Campaign for Senate issue files (#133.6-133.33) may have been used as support materials during the 1980 campaign. Contents include general information, press releases, position papers, statements, including from the Congressional Record, Holtzman's voting records, and testimonies. Also of interest are Holtzman's travel files (#136.23-136.31) which include itineraries, notes, correspondence, and reports. In 1975 Holtzman traveled to Russia as part of the Eilberg Congressional delegation, who were all members of the House Immigration Committee. She traveled to China (1976-1977) as part of a group of eleven Congresswomen, in response to an invitation from Chairman Mao Zedong. A film crew accompanied the delegation during its ten day trip. Their film footage turned into a one hour television documentary, Flowers from Horseback. During Holtzman's trip to the Middle East (1977), she met with participants in peace negotiations, as well as other officials. She traveled to Cambodia and Thailand (1979) as part of the Congresswomen's Caucus delegation. Holtzman led the delegation to Cambodia to call for food shipments and relief for Cambodian children. Files in this subseries are arranged alphabetically. Trips and meeting files (#136.23-136.31) are arranged chronologically.
Subseries D, Legislative files: staff, 1965-1980 (#136.33-147.49, F+D.4), contain the files of Holtzman's Washington, DC, staff: budget analysts Stanley Collender, Wendy Jordan, and Dean Sager, and legislative assistants Tony Freedman, John Jonas, JoAnn Macbeth, James Schweitzer, and Ann Stone. The materials in this subseries reveal the research and development of Holtzman's work on legislation and amendments to bills, as well as the issues, programs, and initiatives under consideration during the federal budget process. These files show Holtzman's priorities as a legislator and the results of her work on various committees, particularly through her role as chair of the House Budget Committee's Task Force on State and Local Governments, as a member of the Task Force on Budget Process, and as a member of the House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Crime. Files include background materials, drafts and final versions of legislation and amendments, articles, notes, reports, press releases, statements, speeches, testimonies, correspondence, briefings, court records, etc. Included are materials related to Holtzman's legislative work on issues that have appeared in other subseries in the collection, particularly in Subject files (Series I, Subseries G). These include her work related to mass transit as part of the Clean Air Act, Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA), the summer food program, the building of a rail freight tunnel in New York's harbor, her fight against mortgage redlining through support of the Fair Access to Insurance Requirements (FAIR) plan, and her support of the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA). Of additional note are extensive materials related to the founding and work of the Congresswomen's Caucus (#141.14-141.27). Other major subject areas reflected in these files include abortion, crime, employment, environment, energy, women's civil and legal status, and urban policy. This subseries is arranged alphabetically by surname of staff person, and then alphabetically thereunder.
Subseries E, Legislative files: special issues, 1965-1980 (#148.1-151.43, F+D.5), contain additional files of Holtzman's legislative assistants. The files are not attributed to any specific staff member; however, various assistants' names appear throughout, including Aviva Futorian, Ann Stone, James Schweitzer, and Pat Baars. Although identified by Holtzman's office as special issues, this subseries is similar to Series II, Subseries D, as it pertains to Holtzman's initiatives and concerns and potential or pending legislation. Some of Holtzman's efforts and actions were accomplished through her roles on committees, including the Judiciary Committee and the Vice Presidential Selection Committee. Topics include Holtzman's legal challenge to the President's right to continue military operations in Cambodia without Congressional approval; Holtzman's foreign relations priorities, including support for emigration to the United States of minorities and oppressed populations from countries such as the Soviet Union and Romania; her support for causes of individual freedom in foreign countries; her work advocating for equal pay for women through the Fair Labor Standards Act; her inquiries into foreign covert actions of the Central Intelligence Agency; and her efforts to determine accountability for the New York City blackouts in the 1970s. Files include background and research materials, drafts and final versions of legislation and amendments, articles, notes, reports, press releases, statements, speeches, testimonies, correspondence, briefings, court records, etc. This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries F, Legislative files: subject files, 1968-1980 (#152.1-156.25), contain files similar in scope to Series II, Subseries D and E. As with Subseries E, the files are not attributed to any specific staff member; however, various assistants' names appear throughout. The subseries covers House business and potential or pending legislation and includes drafts and final copies of bills and amendments (mostly those that Holtzman sponsored or co-sponsored); correspondence; memos; notes; research materials; press releases; statements; speeches; Congressional documents, such as transcripts from hearings, committee reports, conference reports, proceedings and statements published in the Congressional Record, etc.; and reports of investigations. Topics include Holtzman's successful efforts to extend the deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment; Holtzman's actions regarding public health concerns and regulation of microwaves and industrial radiofrequency (RF) sealers; investigation into the alleged illegal activities of South Korean intelligence agents in the United States; and Holtzman's investigations into New York City's summer food and youth employment programs. There are extensive files related to the Refugee bill (Refugee Act of 1979/1980) which she supported and worked on as the chair of the Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees, and International Law. The Refugee Act established a comprehensive policy for admitting and resettling refugees in the United States, while providing for Congressional participation in planning refugee admissions. In addition, as the chair of the Budget Committee’s Task Force on State and Local Government Holtzman sponsored the State and Local Government Cost Estimate Act of 1979. Of particular interest are Soviet Union emigration case files (#152.39-153.13), which contain case materials related to the human rights violations of Soviet Jewry and political prisoners, many of whom were arrested or not allowed to emigrate. Content in these files include background on cases; requests for exit permission from the Soviet Union; printed materials related to publicity; Holtzman's and other Congressional members' support for individual cases; description of problems faced by individuals who requested exit visas in the Soviet Union, etc. This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries G, Correspondence, 1970-1981 (#156.26-212.11, F+D.6, E.317), contains correspondence generated or received in Holtzman's Washington, DC, office. Correspondents include constituents; friends; supporters; members of Congress and other government officials; community leaders; representatives from businesses, unions, and community organizations, etc. In addition to correspondence, there are notes, petitions, postcards, clippings, reports, statements, memos, talking points, legislative documents, etc. Included are thank-you letters and invitations to speak at universities and community gatherings, letters from Holtzman's office to local and national news media alerting them of her upcoming speaking engagements at conferences and community gatherings, congratulations letters from constituents and colleagues regarding her victory in the 1980 Senate primary elections, and letters of encouragement after her subsequent election loss in November 1980. A significant portion of the correspondence is with constituents who were concerned about timely issues and legislation, such as the Watergate investigation and post-impeachment events, the state of the American economy, and signature programs and initiatives of Holtzman. Although in general, the correspondence does not offer in-depth coverage of issues, some of the letters provide insights into Holtzman's views, voting record, and priorities, as well as those of her constituents. Holtzman's correspondence highlights her relationships with other New York State politicians; fellow members of the House of Representatives; the legal community; feminist, environmental, and labor activists; and Jewish and Catholic constituents.
Among the numerous issues addressed are personal appeals from constituents, such as requests for help in obtaining Social Security income and unemployment benefits; improving neighborhood conditions and quality of life; improving mail delivery or addressing stolen mail; securing tours of the White House; filing for rent increase exemptions or increasing living stipends for the elderly; and obtaining visas for family members of constituents. There are also many letters addressing issues of local and national concern. Subjects include the United States secret bombing of Cambodia; foreign affairs in the Middle East, particularly the state of Israel, related terrorism, and Israeli relations with Egypt; emigration policies of the Soviet Union; the impeachment hearings for President Richard Nixon and subsequent pardon by President Gerald Ford; investigation of Nazi war criminals living in the United States; Supreme Court decision regarding abortion; President Gerald Ford's domestic and foreign policies, including his energy proposals, his veto of a bill that would increase minimum wage, and his proposed limit to Social Security cost-of-living increases; budget cuts and concern for their effect on New York City schools; Secretary of State Henry Kissinger's role in foreign relations with Turkey and his efforts with Gerald Ford to end military aid to Turkey; Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which Holtzman supported; child nutrition programs and the school food programs, which Holtzman initiated; opposition or support from constituents on the creation of an aviation facility at Floyd Bennett Field; legislative efforts to halt importation of Rhodesian chrome; concerns about the Mill-Vanik amendment (1973-1974); concern for the humane treatment of dogs and other animals that were being used for biological and chemical research; opposition to the use of pesticides in farming; Holtzman's plans to investigate safety of nuclear power plants near crop fields; etc. This subseries also contains correspondence with members of Congress, which includes acknowledgments for support or sponsorship for bills and amendments; congratulation letters regarding Holtzman's re-elections; and regrets for invitations to receptions and events.
Questionnaires, which were placed in the newsletters that Holtzman regularly mailed to constituents, encouraged feedback on a variety of issues, including Watergate, the energy crisis, wage and price controls, Nixon's pardon, Rockefeller's vice-presidency, Vietnam War resister amnesty, and the postal service. Although questionnaire responses can be found throughout the subseries, the bulk of these are grouped at the end of the inventory (#209.8-212.11). In addition, electronic records were received on a BASF Endura 9-track tape. The data was retrieved and saved as both a text file and an Excel file by a vendor, Data Conversion Resource, Aurora, Colorado, in November 2015. For access to electronic records, please contact the reference desk.
See also Series I, Subseries G, Subject files (#100.13-115.6) for more information on topics and subject areas addressed in this subseries. This subseries is arranged in sections: a chronological run of mostly carbon copies of outgoing letters; alphabetical grouping by last name of the correspondent or name of the organization; subject files, which until 1976 consisted mostly of carbon copies of outgoing correspondence, shifting to a mix of incoming and outgoing letters after 1976; and questionnaire responses. The chronological section is arranged by date, followed by miscellaneous and unfiled correspondence. In general, the alphabetical and subject files are arranged alphabetically by Holtzman's term in office. In the alphabetical section the 1977 and 1979 terms have been combined. The questionnaires are arranged by date. Some duplication exists among the three categories and there is overlap among the groupings regarding topics addressed.
Subseries H, Speeches, statements, press releases, and related, 1973-1980 (#212.12-220.51, 217CB), contain press releases, speeches, statements, dear colleague letters, and other writings, which help to document Holtzman's positions on issues and her activities while in office. Much of this material mirrors the contents in Series I, Subseries B. Press releases found here and which contain only the New York office contact information were removed to Series I, Subseries B or were discarded due to duplication in Series I. Some duplication of the Washington, DC, press releases which include statements, letters, and other supporting materials, can be found between these two subseries. Speech files from the Washington, DC, office correspond in large part to the speech files kept in Holtzman's Brooklyn district office. As with Series I, Subseries B, speech files include speech notes and outlines, talking points, transcripts and drafts, statements, testimony, or remarks, edited versions of speeches, notes, memoranda, publicity, programs, etc. Speech files with a corresponding speech file in Series I, Subseries B were added to Series I up until January 19, 1975 (#7.67). Duplicates of materials already found in Series I, Subseries B were discarded. (#217CB) provides an index to speeches by date, subject, group, and place. Researchers should refer to Series I, Subseries B as well as this subseries for a complete set of Holtzman's speeches.
This subseries also contains Holtzman's statements (#218.1-219.386) mostly presented in the House and printed in the Congressional Record. These were filed separately by the Washington, DC, office. The letters (#212.12-213.181) section contains primarily dear colleague letters regarding legislation and government policy and signed by multiple legislators, including Holtzman. In the letters section, folder dates are assigned by date of the dear colleague letter referred to in the folder title, although associated materials, such as clippings, memos, and other letters in the folder may contain other dates. Subject files (#220.1-220.38) contain similar types of materials found throughout this subseries. Organized in folders by subject, these files may have been used by Holtzman to access this information by topic. The subject section contains statements published in the Congressional Record, press releases, correspondence, reports, bills/legislation, clippings, telegrams, etc. Finally, there is a section of writings by and about Holtzman (#220.39-220.51). These files include drafts of writings, notes, and supporting correspondence. This subseries is arranged by format in alphabetical order and then chronologically within each grouping.
Subseries I, Floor business - United States House of Representatives, 1972-1980 (#220.52-229.16), pertains to actions on the House floor, including legislation introduced during Holtzman's tenure in Congress. The sponsorship files contain copies of the bills (#220.57-223.19), amendments (#220.53-220.56), or resolutions (#229.3-229.16) sponsored or co-sponsored by Holtzman. The bill sponsorship files for the 94th Congress also include "dear colleague" letters, correspondence and memos about the issue or legislation, press releases, Holtzman's notes, Congressional Record statements, research materials, etc. Legislative files (#225.16-228.18) include
Whip Advisories, as well as fact sheets, Democratic Study Group legislative reports, copies of legislation, "dear colleague" letters, statements, letters from public interest groups, and memos about legislation and other floor business. Also included are notes regarding whether Holtzman supported or rejected the legislation and notes on how she voted. The "black books" (#223.20-224.17) are notebooks maintained by Holtzman's staff and were intended to be a complete record of Holtzman's activities for each Congress by subject, although 1973 and 1980 are incomplete. The books' content includes list of bills sponsored or co-sponsored by Holtzman, records of votes, lists of statements, and press releases. The content is organized by subject or committee, and subject areas include agriculture, disasters, energy, judiciary, immigration and naturalization, New York, public works, transportation, etc. Correspondence with members of Congress (#224.18-225.1) includes acknowledgments or requests for support or sponsorship for bills, amendments, and resolutions; comments regarding progress on legislation; information on appointments and schedules related to committee work; and congratulation letters regarding Holtzman's re-election. In addition, this subseries contains materials related to Congressional or political groups that Holtzman was involved with, such as the Democratic House Caucus and the New York State Congressional Delegation. Also of note are Government Accounting Office reports that Holtzman requested regarding subject areas of interest to her, and organizational and delegation selection information for the Democratic National Committee's mid-term conference in Kansas City, Missouri, December 1974. This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries J, Judiciary Committee, 1965-1980 (#229.17-233.37, F+D.7-F+D.8), contains files on subjects or legislation under consideration by the House Judiciary Committee of which Holtzman was a member. These files generally relate to the work and deliberations of the full Judiciary Committee, but do also contain materials generated by subcommittees, including the Subcommittee on Criminal Justice. Included are records generated by Holtzman and her staff as well as other committee materials. This subseries includes correspondence; notes; copies of final bills or amendments offered (some of which were introduced by Holtzman); notices of Judiciary Committee meetings to discuss bills; arguments for and against bills; revised versions of bills; committee mark ups; section-by-section summaries of bills; reports; press releases; clippings; articles; statements appearing in Congressional Record; Congressional Research Service reports; letters from interested parties or organizations supporting or objecting to bills; materials related to hearings including witness lists, testimonies, questions, and statements; and other background or research materials. Legislation introduced includes an anti-Arab boycott bill (H.R. 5246) drafted to prohibit economic coercion in response to the Arab boycott of Jewish-owned businesses and firms doing business with Israel, and which was introduced by Holtzman and Peter Rodino, chair of the Judiciary Committee; the House-passed resolution extending the deadline for ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment which was authored by Holtzman; the "illegal alien bills" (H.R. 982 and H.R. 8713), which amend the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act and include making it unlawful for employers to knowingly employ undocumented immigrants; the Right to Privacy Act of 1976 (H.R. 214), which was intended to give an individual some control over the transfer or disclosure of certain personal information by government agencies; and the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA) bill (H.R. 13636), which was an anti-crime bill extending federal aid for local law enforcement. The LEAA bill's provisions regarding speedy trials, fighting crime against the elderly, and increased evaluation of LEAA projects were initially introduced by Holtzman. This subseries is arranged alphabetically by subject.
Subseries K, Judiciary Committee: Subcommittee on Criminal Justice, 1970-1978 (#234.1-239.19), contains materials concerned primarily with legislation on crime and the courts that were being considered by the subcommittee, of which Holtzman was a member. Content is similar to materials in Subseries J, including subcommittee agendas and minutes, comments on articles/rules; correspondence; notes; copies of final bills or amendments offered (some of which were introduced by Holtzman); notices of Judiciary Committee meetings to discuss bills; arguments for and against bills; revised versions of and summaries of bills; committee mark ups; reports; press releases; clippings; articles; statements appearing in Congressional Record; Congressional Research Service reports; letters from interested parties or organizations supporting or objecting to bills; materials related to hearings, including witness lists, testimonies, questions, and statements; and other background or research materials. Holtzman's views and her impact on legislation are evident throughout the subseries. For instance, Holtzman considered S.1, the Criminal Justice Reform Act of 1975, to be a legacy of the Nixon administration and adamantly opposed it; particularly the provisions which punished government officials who reveal information and reporters who receive and publish it. S.1 also allowed emergency wiretapping by government officials without a warrant (#234.4-234.9). The Federal Rules of Evidence bill (H.R. 5463) (#235.6-236.3) was designed to establish rules of evidence for certain courts and proceedings. Holtzman had submitted an amendment to an earlier related Senate bill, S. 583, which provided that the new rules could not take effect unless expressly approved by an Act of Congress. Voted on in 1973, this was the first piece of legislation proposed by Holtzman. In the 95th Congress, Holtzman introduced an insanity bill (#236.16-236.20) which authorized, in federal court cases, the commitment to a mental institution, after additional evaluation, of persons acquitted of violent crimes on the basis of insanity. A political patronage bill (#236.39-236.40), which prevented government from denying employment to persons who refused to make political contributions, also included a provision, offered by Holtzman, imposing criminal penalties for sex discrimination in employment. In 1976, Holtzman introduced a bill to protect rape victims from cross-examination about their past sexual histories in Federal courts (#236.41-237.26) and she introduced a victims of crimes bill which provided for the compensation to persons injured by certain criminal acts (#238.13-238.25). Holtzman's concerns regarding Watergate-related events are evidenced in (#236.24-236.38) and (#238.26-239.19). After President Gerald Ford's pardon of Richard Nixon, Holtzman requested the subcommittee undertake a further investigation and additional hearings. Holtzman's request was prompted by a report that General Alexander Haig, then President Ford's Chief of Staff, had urged the President to pardon Nixon. After the Watergate Special Prosecution Force (WSPF) closed its investigation permanently and published its final report, Holtzman wished to address the still-unanswered questions about the Force's work in order to determine if they had conducted a thorough investigation. Holtzman introduced a bill (H.R. 15814) which required that the WSPF submit to Congress a full and complete report describing in detail each allegation against Nixon that was investigated. This subseries is arranged alphabetically by subject.
Subseries L, Judiciary Committee: Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, and International Law, 1960-1980 (#239.20-243.15), contains records relating to the work of the subcommittee primarily in its function of oversight and monitoring of the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) of the Department of Justice and to the amending and revising of the Immigration and Nationality Act. In addition, this subseries contains records relating to other legislation and activities concerning immigration and citizenship, undocumented immigrants, and the plight of refugees, particularly from mainland Southeast Asia. Content is similar to materials in Subseries J and K, and includes correspondence; notes; copies of final bills or amendments offered (some of which were introduced by Holtzman); revised versions of and analysis of bills; court records; reports; press releases; clippings; articles; statements appearing in Congressional Record; Congressional Research Service reports; letters from interested parties or organizations supporting or objecting to bills; materials related to hearings including witness lists, testimonies, questions, and statements; and other background or research materials. Many immigration and nationality efficiency bills were introduced by Holtzman (H.R. 5087, H.R. 6663, H.R. 7273) (#240.9-240.26). These bills amended the Immigration and Nationality Act to improve efficiency of the INS through reforms, clarification of provisions of immigration law, etc. H.J. Res. 422, which was also introduced by Holtzman, encouraged the participation of undocumented immigrants in the upcoming 1980 census. The legislation was designed to allay the fears of undocumented immigrants that information which they supplied to census takers would be released to the INS and lead to deportation. A foreign medical graduates bill (H.R. 7118) (#239.27-239.31), introduced by Holtzman, amended the Immigration and Nationality Act with respect to the admission to the United States of foreign physicians for graduate medical education or training and improved the eligibility of noncitizens with degrees from foreign medical school to enter the United States to practice medicine. Holtzman saw the restrictions on admission of foreign physicians as a serious problem in regards to the health care of inner city residents in several east coast cities, particularly Newark and New York City. Holtzman's interest in the fate of the Fort Worth Five and her support for their case is also evident in the files (#239.33-239.37). Fort Worth Five materials include resolutions regarding the state of the investigation of the five Irish Americans who were subpoenaed to give testimony before a grand jury because of their possible knowledge of the purchase of weapons and explosives in Texas for shipment to Ireland. They were imprisoned in the United States, and charged with contempt for refusing to testify in court. Holtzman also introduced an illegitimate fathers bill (H.R. 10993), which was intended to end the arbitrary discrimination in the immigration laws against fathers of illegitimate children. At the time, illegitimate children were exempted from numerical quotas and considered "immediate relatives" if their mothers were citizens or permanent residents of the United States, but fathers did not have the same privileges. Holtzman noted that this problem came to her attention through compelling cases from her constituents. Other activities addressed in this subseries include a series of oversight hearings by the subcommittee to review the administration of the Immigration and Nationality Act by the Bureau of Security and Consular Affairs of the Department of State and the management and operation of the INS. Holtzman also introduced a series of private bills regarding the relief and support of specific individuals (#241.24-241.34). These bills relate to requests for visas to the United States. Emigration issues include an ineligibility to emigrate due to minor, previous drug possession charges; threat of deportation due to loss of student status; and request to adjust status to permanent residence in the United States. These files include correspondence with family members, letters of support, and copies of bills. Holtzman also introduced legislation to provide a simplified procedure for reacquisition of citizenship for persons who either renounced or lost their United States citizenship. The Western Hemisphere immigration bills (#243.5-243.15) were meant to extend to the Western Hemisphere the same preference system and per country limit on immigrant visas that were currently in place for the Eastern Hemisphere. This subseries is arranged alphabetically by subject.
Subseries M, Judiciary Committee: Nixon impeachment, 1968-1975 (#244.1-257.32), contains materials related to the Judiciary Committee's work during the Watergate investigation and impeachment inquiry hearings. This subseries contains records related to the hearings, as well as background research materials. Included are correspondence and memos; reports; Holtzman's notes; court documents, including briefs and subpoenas; printed materials; clippings; chronologies of events; transcripts prepared by the impeachment inquiry staff; statements, including Holtzman's opening statement at impeachment hearings; draft articles of impeachment, including Holtzman's article of impeachment on war powers relating to the bombing of Cambodia, etc.
A portion of these files were arranged in an alphabetical sequence by subject as listed here (see #244.1 for more information):
- J/A: official reports and resolutions
- J/B: constitutional issues, bribery
- J/C: constitutional issues, high crimes
- J/D: factual issues, bribery (includes re-election deals and scandals, campaign financing issues)
- J/E: factual issues, conspiracy
- J/F: factual issues, obstruction of justice
- J/G: factual issues, campaign contributions
- J/H: factual issues, private finances
- J/J: factual issues, tax evasion
- J/K: general, factual, and legal studies
- J/L: war issues
- J/M: impoundment
- J/N: presidential transcripts
- J/O: individuals involved?
- J/P: articles of impeachment?
- J/Q: ?
- J/R: ?
This group of materials contained an extensive amount of newspaper clippings. The majority of clippings were from major newspapers, particularly The Washington Post and The New York Times, as well as Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, Wall Street Journal, etc. These articles, which are available online through Proquest Historical Newspapers, were mostly removed and discarded. Articles were retained if Holtzman or her staff made significant annotations. Most copies of articles not accessible online, such as those from The Washington Star, were retained in the files.
This subseries also contain binders (now disassembled) of evidence and information. Many of these books were compiled for the committee members by staff of the impeachment inquiry as a result of the investigation into whether there was sufficient evidence to impeach Richard Nixon. Binders of statements of information presented materials on several subjects of the inquiry: the Watergate break-in and its aftermath, International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT), dairy price supports, domestic surveillance, abuse of the Internal Revenue Service, and the activities of the Special Prosecutors. Many books contain a statement of information relating to a particular phase of the investigation, which is immediately followed by supporting evidentiary material. The evidence includes photocopies of memos and correspondence; typed notes of events; photocopies of published hearings (including testimonies); partial grand jury transcripts; copies of partial testimonies from Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities[?] (SSC); court testimonies; depositions; activity logs; copies of appointment calendar pages; transcripts of conversations; interviews, pages of President Nixon’s daily diary; Central Intelligence Agency materials; court proceedings;, criminal dockets; copies of newspaper clippings; press briefings; correspondence; etc. The binders, which often include Holtzman's written annotations, are closed until January 1, 2027. However, the content of many of the binders were published by the Government Printing Office, including Statement of Information: Hearings before the Committee on the Judiciary House of Representatives, Ninety-Third Congress, Second Session pursuant to H. Res. 803 (#246.49-252.15); Summary of Information: Hearings before the Committee on the Judiciary House of Representatives Ninety-Third Congress Second Session Pursuant to H. Res. 803...July 19, 1974 (#253.16-253.19); Statement of Information Submitted on Behalf of President Nixon: Hearings before the Committee on the Judiciary House of Representatives Ninety-Third Congress Second Session pursuant to H. Res. 803...May-June 1974, books one through four (#253.20-254.12); and Submission of Recorded Presidential Conversations to the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives by President Richard Nixon (#253.5-253.15). Digitized copies of these and other published volumes relating to the Watergate investigation and impeachment inquiry are available online through Proquest Congressional and Hathitrust databases. Full access to these databases are available onsite at the Schlesinger Library. This subseries is arranged alphabetically, beginning with the alpha-numerical files.
Subseries N, Judiciary Committee: Nixon impeachment and related, correspondence, 1973-1977 (#258.1-264.22), contains letters from Holtzman's constituents and others throughout the country and abroad expressing thoughts, opinions, and concerns regarding impeachment and post-impeachment events, particularly the hearings related to Watergate, Gerald Ford's pardon of Nixon, and Nelson Rockefeller's nomination to the vice-presidency. Many of the letters express support for impeachment and praise for Holtzman's efforts in her role in the Judiciary Committee, support for the Judiciary Committee's work and the ouster of Richard Nixon, criticism of the process, opinions or observations on the evidence, expressions of dislike of Richard Nixon, and general frustrations with the government. Anti-impeachment sentiment includes calls for Holtzman and the Judiciary Committee to stop the proceedings and allow Nixon to continue working for the country, complaints about the double standard in government, and criticism of Holtzman's style and motives during the impeachment hearings and Gerald Ford's pardon hearings. Also included are comments and opinions on impeachment-related issues, such as multiple letters expressing frustration and anger at Gerald Ford's pardon of Richard Nixon and other actions, including federal payments to Nixon after his resignation and Ford's role in the Watergate scandal, criticism of Nelson Rockefeller's nomination as vice president, and support for Holtzman's lawsuit against the government for its illegal bombing of Cambodia. The letters from October 1974 include extensive praise for Holtzman's hardline questioning of Ford during the pardon hearings. This subseries also includes Holtzman's responses, including sample form letters; postcards; telegrams; completed questionnaires; petitions; address lists; and clippings. This subseries is arranged chronologically.
Subseries O, Judiciary Committee: Gerald Ford's nomination and post-impeachment, 1945-1977 (#264.23-271.32), contains information regarding post-impeachment events and issues, as well as materials related to Gerald Ford's nomination as vice president and subsequent confirmation, which occurred in 1973 during the Watergate investigation. This subseries includes reports, briefs, correspondence and memos, statements, notes, press releases, excerpts from Congressional Record, and other clippings. Of note are materials related to President Gerald Ford's controversial pardon of Richard Nixon, including the related hearings conducted by the Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Criminal Justice, concerns that the pardon would obstruct the special prosecutor's further investigation of the office of the president, and Richard Nixon's poor health as a factor for the pardon. Other related issues include Richard Nixon's control of the papers and audio tapes generated during his time in the White House and the controversy surrounding ongoing federal payments to Richard Nixon after his resignation.
This subseries contains materials related to Gerald Ford's nomination as vice president after Spiro Agnew's resignation. Included in these groups of papers are research materials on Gerald Ford collected or created for the investigation and statements, reports, and questions from his confirmation hearings. Subjects include Ford's career in politics and his business dealings; expenditures for his campaign; illegal contributions and government contracts; Ford’s involvement in Watergate; the government's secret bombing of Cambodia; information on Ford's voting record and views on policies. Holtzman ultimately did not support Ford's confirmation due in part to certain unresolved conflicts in his testimony. Three years later, in 1976, Holtzman called for an investigation of Ford's involvement in blocking the Watergate investigation. Similar types of research materials and confirmation hearings information can be found in the files related to Nelson Rockefeller's nomination as vice-president. Subjects include Rockefeller's financial dealings, including gifts and loans; his position on policies; and his priorities and projects which occurred during his career in politics, particularly as governor of New York State, etc.
As with Series II, Subseries M, this subseries contained an extensive amount of newspaper clippings from major newspapers, such as The Washington Post, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Newsday. These articles, which are available online through Proquest Historical Newspapers, were generally removed and discarded. Most copies of articles not accessible online, such as from the Washington Star and New York Daily News, were retained in the files. This subseries is arranged alphabetically, starting with files pre-arranged in an alpha-numerical sequence by subject.
Subseries P, Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy, 1979-1981 (#272.1-273.16), contains records created primarily during Holtzman's tenure on the commission (1978-1980), where she was one of four commissioners from the House Judiciary Committee. The Commission addressed concerns about immigration and provided a comprehensive review of immigration law. Regional hearings occurred in various states throughout the country as part of an effort to ensure that a wide range of information and views were considered by the Commission in the development of its policy recommendations. Issues considered include the plight of undocumented immigrants in regards to work opportunities (including temporary worker programs), government services, acculturation, deportation, etc. and their impact on the United States. The Commission also devised recommendations for general federal improvements to immigration policy. Materials include testimonies from these regional hearings (Holtzman chaired the New York hearing), as well as commission meeting minutes and agendas; briefing papers; reports; correspondence; research documentation; and straw ballots, which include summaries of consultations on various immigration issues, questions and answers, and briefing papers. This subseries is arranged alphabetically by type and chronologically within each grouping.
Subseries Q, Task Force on Facilities and Space Utilization under House Commission on Information and Facilities, 1971-1977 (#273.17-274.33, F+D.9), contains materials related to the Task Force on Facilities and Space Utilization's work under Holtzman's leadership. Holtzman was appointed to the Commission on Information and Facilities by House speaker Carl Albert and then appointed as chair of the Task Force by Commission chair Representative Jack Brooks. The Commission mandated the Task Force to conduct a two-year study of the space requirements and other support services and facilities for the House of Representatives. The task force studied a broad range of services and facilities required by committees and members of Congress, including better utilization of existing office space, the need for additional space, office design and equipment, etc. This subseries includes press releases, meeting minutes, reports and studies, Holtzman's notes, correspondence, memoranda, office plans, hearings, remarks, statements, and meeting materials concerned with office systems, furniture systems, the proposed use of the interior courtyards of the House office buildings for additional office space, etc. This subseries is arranged alphabetically. Meeting files are arranged chronologically within.
Series III. CLIPPINGS: NEW YORK AND WASHINGTON, DC, OFFICES, 1957, 1970-1980 (#E.1-E.316), consists of newspaper and magazine clippings retained by Holtzman's New York City and Washington, DC, offices. Most of the clippings were either sent to the offices by a clipping service or collected by staff. The clippings cover Holtzman's campaigning and her political and public service work, covering a wide range of her activities and initiatives. Some clippings are in miscellaneous folders and others are arranged by subject area, which include campaigns, Nixon’s impeachment hearings, refugees, women's issues, senior citizens, insurance redlining, Summer Youth Employment Program, summer food program, etc. The range of sources include community newspapers such as Flatbush Life, Jewish Press, and Brooklyn Times, industry newspapers, such as Insurance Advocate, state, regional, and local newspapers, such as Times-Union (Rochester, New York) and Courier Express (Buffalo, New York) and major national newspapers. Included are also some foreign newspapers and New York newspapers written in other languages, including Yiddish and Chinese. Articles from newspapers which are available online through Proquest Historical Newspapers, including the New York Times, Atlanta Constitution, Baltimore Sun, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Hartford Courant, Los Angeles Times, Newsday, Wall Street Journal, New York Amsterdam News, and Washington Post were mostly removed and discarded. Clippings with attached letters or notes have been removed to appropriate subseries. This series is arranged alphabetically within two sections: New York and Washington, DC. Multi-page clippings are sometimes incomplete. This series has been digitized and originals were then discarded. To browse or search within a folder click on the link for that folder. Text searching across all digitized folders can be done through List View.
Series IV. PHOTOGRAPHS, 1958-1980 (#PD.1-PD.306f) contains photographs, contact sheets, transparencies/slides, and negatives of images documenting Holtzman's professional work and life. The majority of the photographs were divided into sections by general subject, probably by an archivist when the collection first arrived at the Schlesinger Library. "Portraits" include photographs of Holtzman, often taken for the purpose to reproduce in campaign literature or other public relations materials. Some of these are formal studio sittings and others are pictures of Holtzman "on the job." "Campaigning" includes images of Holtzman engaging with the public in New York City, as well as photographs of her standing by her district office, and public relations images. "Speaking engagements, meetings, and events" includes images of Holtzman at district, political, and civic events, receptions, and at other functions. Often included are images of Holtzman with other politicians, notable figures, celebrities, constituents, and with her staff. Of note are images of Holtzman taking her oath of office (#PD.44) and images of Holtzman as a child which were possibly used in WCBS television's profile of Holtzman: Channel 2: Eye on Congresswoman Liz Holtzman (#PD.121sl-PD.122). The "In House sessions and special Judiciary Committee hearings" section includes the Judiciary Committee, as well as the Subcommittee on Criminal Justice and the House Budget Committee. "Women's political caucus and other women-related events" includes images of Holtzman and other women legislators at conferences, award ceremonies, White House meetings, Equal Rights Amendment gatherings, etc. "Travel" includes images from Holtzman's trips to Russia and China, as well as photographs of Southeast Asia, which include images of refugees, illustrating the effects of United States involvement in the region. "White House specials" are mostly official White House photographs which include Holtzman. Also included is an image of Holtzman with her Abraham Lincoln High School math class (1958) (#PD.1). This subseries is generally arranged by section in the following order: portraits, campaigning, speaking engagements, In House sessions, Women's political caucus, travel, and White House specials.
Series V, MEMORABILIA, 1972-ca.1980 (#1.4-1m, 275.1m, 276FB.1m), contains a bumper sticker, buttons, and a commemorative cloth. Included are Holtzman's campaign buttons; Congressional pins for the 94th and 95th Congress, which were given only to members of Congress; and a commemorative cloth recognizing the name of one of the many desaparacidos or missing citizens in Argentina under dictatorship during the 1970s.
Elizabeth Holtzman, and her twin brother, Robert, were born on August 11, 1941, in Brooklyn, New York. Their father, Sidney Holtzman, was a lawyer in private practice in New York City, and their mother, Filia (Ravitz) Holtzman, was a professor of Russian at Hunter College. Elizabeth Holtzman graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School in Brooklyn, New York, in 1958. After graduating from Radcliffe College magna cum laude (A.B.,1962), she entered Harvard Law School (J.D.,1965). While attending law school, Holtzman joined the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC); helped found the Law Students' Civil Rights Research Council; worked as a law clerk for civil rights lawyer C. B. King during the summer months; and taught English at Harvard College. In 1965 Holtzman joined the Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen, and Katz law firm in New York City. Two years later she was recruited to work for New York City mayor John Lindsay, becoming the first female assistant to a New York City mayor.
In 1970, Holtzman ran a successful campaign to be the Democratic State Committeewoman from the Flatbush neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. At this time she also founded the Brooklyn Women's Political Caucus and was an organizer of the Take Brooklyn Out of the War Coalition. In 1972, Holtzman ran a grassroots campaign against long-time Brooklyn Democratic Congressman Emmanuel Celler and was elected to the United States House of Representatives from New York's 16th Congressional District, becoming the youngest woman to be elected to the House of Representatives.
Holtzman served in the House of Representatives from January 1973 to December 1980. In her role as Representative, she tackled a variety of local and national issues, including the energy crisis, the fiscal crisis in New York City, and the plight of Soviet Jewry. Her projects and initiatives included fighting against insurance redlining; improving the Federal Clean Air Act; eliminating waste and corruption from federally funded food programs and youth employment programs in New York City; responding to the dire effects of America's involvement in Southeast Asia, including the refugee crisis; suing the federal government for bombing operations in Cambodia; supporting the investigation of crimes and impeachment of President Richard Nixon; championing the Equal Rights Amendment; advocating for the security of Israel; and advocating investigations of Nazi war criminals living in the United States. She served on the Judiciary Committee, its Subcommittee on Criminal Justice, and chaired its Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees, and International Law; she chaired the House Budget Committee's Task Force on State and Local Governments; and served on the Select Committee on Aging, the Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy, and chaired the Task Force on Facilities and Space Utilization under the House Commission on Information and Facilities. Holtzman was also one of the founding members of the Congresswomen's Caucus (currently known as Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues).
In 1980, Holtzman ran for the United States Senate, winning the Democratic primary, but losing in the general election to Alfonse D'Amato. Holtzman was elected New York City's first female district attorney in 1982, heading the city's largest office in Brooklyn. She remained district attorney until 1989 when she was elected as New York City's first female comptroller. Since 1994, Holtzman has practiced law at Herrick Feinstein, LLP, in New York City.
The collection is arranged in five series:
- Series I. Congressional Papers: New York office, 1965-1980 (#1.1-115.13, 277.1-278.50, 69CB-78CB, 101CB-106CB, FD.1-FD.3, F+D.1-F+D.2, OD.1-OD.3, SD.1-SD.2)
- Series II. Congressional Papers: Washington, DC, office, 1945-1981 (#115.14-274.33, 137CB, 217CB, FD.4-FD.9, F+D.3-F+D.9, SD.3, E.317)
- Series III. Clippings: New York and Washington, DC, offices, 1957, 1970-1980 (#E.1-E.316)
- Series IV. Photographs, 1958-1980 (#PD.1-PD.306f)
- Series V. Memorabilia, 1972-ca.1980 (#1.4-1m, 275.1m, 276FB.1m)
Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Accession numbers: 81-M10, 81-M15, 81-M17, 81-M20, 81-M84, 81-M96, 81-M128, 81-M300
These papers of Elizabeth Holtzman were given to the Schlesinger Library between January and August 1981 by Elizabeth Holtzman.
Donor: Elizabeth Holtzman
Accession numbers: 81-M10, 81-M15, 81-M17, 81-M20, 81-M84, 81-M96, 81-M128, 81-M300
Processed by: Laura Peimer
The following item has been transferred to the Schlesinger Library books and printed materials collection:
- Congresswoman Liz Holtzman report from Washington (newsletter), issues, 1973-1980
Preliminary inventory: August 1982
By: Linda Harding and Madeleine Bagwell Perez
Processed: December 2015
By: Laura Peimer, Emily Cohen, Katie Seitz, Henry Shull, and Lura Steele, with assistance from Caitlin Jones and Dan Bullman.
- Arab-Israeli conflict
- Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.)--politics and government
- Budget process--United States
- Discrimination in education--Law and legislation--United States
- Discrimination in insurance--Law and legislation--United States
- Economic sanctions, Arab countries--Israel
- Elections--New York (State)
- Emigration and immigration law--United States
- Equal rights amendments--United States
- Feminists--United States
- Finance, Public--New York (State)--New York
- Israel--Foreign relations--United States
- Jewish women--United States
- Jews, Soviet
- Legislators--United States
- Motion pictures
- New York (N.Y.)--Economic conditions--20th century
- New York (N.Y.)--Politics and government--1951-
- New York (N.Y.)--Social conditions
- New York (State)--Politics and government
- Nixon, Richard M. (Richard Milhous), 1913-1994
- Northern Ireland--Politics and government--20th century
- Older people--Government policy--United States
- Phonograph records
- Political campaigns--United States--1970-1980
- Public welfare
- Refugees--Legal status, laws, etc.--United States
- Refugees--Southeast Asia
- Rockefeller, Nelson A. (Nelson Aldrich)
- School children--Food
- Social security
- United States--Emigration and immigration--Government policy
- United States--Foreign relations--Cambodia
- United States--Politics and government--1945-1989
- United States--Relations--Middle East
- Vietnam War, 1961-1975
- War criminals--United States
- Watergate Affair, 1972-1974
- Women in politics
- Women lawyers
- Women politicians--United States
- Women's rights--United States
- Women--Political activity--United States
- Holtzman, Elizabeth. Papers of Elizabeth Holtzman, 1945-1981 (inclusive), 1972-1980 (bulk): A Finding Aid
- Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
- Language of description
- Processing of this collection was made possible by gifts from the Mary Mitchell Wood Manuscript Processing Fund and the Rosa Raisel Fund in the Schlesinger Library.
- EAD ID
Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository
The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.
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