Word H. Mills (1864-1933) was a journalist, businessman, and active member of the Socialist Labor Party. The papers of Word H. Mills cover the years 1906 to 1933, and consist of a large scrapbook of clippings of articles Mills wrote as a journalist for the Weekly People, the newspaper of the Socialist Labor Party, as well as other papers; a signed limited edition of Mills's book The Evolution of Society; two drafts of essays concerning socialist movements in Mexico and the economic situation in the United States in 1933; and one portrait photograph of Mills.
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0.75 Linear Feet
The Word H. Mills papers cover the years 1906 to 1933, and consist of a large scrapbook of clippings of articles Mills wrote as a journalist for the Weekly People, the newspaper of the Socialist Labor Party, as well as other papers; a signed limited edition of Mills's book The Evolution of Society; two drafts of essays concerning socialist movements in Mexico and the economic situation in the United States in 1933; and one portrait photograph of Mills.
Word H. (Worden Horst) Mills was born on February 18, 1864. Little is known of Mills' early life until 1900, when he first became identified with the socialist movement in Texas. Two years later, his political career began at the socialist convention in Grand Saline, when he was nominated as a candidate for lieutenant governor, but lost the election. Two years later, he ran as the socialist candidate for both governor of Texas and county clerk of Dallas and again was defeated. Later in life, as a member of the Section Baltimore of the Socialist Labor Party, he continued his political interests by both serving on the section's executive committee during the 1920s, and by running for attorney general of Maryland in 1930.
Word H. Mills worked primarily as a newspaper correspondent for the Socialist Labor Party's newspaper, the Weekly People, as well as other newspapers nationwide. His pieces focused on socialist issues, such as labor conditions, the Paris commune, and the socialist movements in Latin America. Mills also opposed the U. S. preparation for and involvement in World War I, as he urged the working class to abolish war.
Besides being a correspondent, Mills translated letters and articles for the Weekly People by individuals such as Lenin, Gorky, and Tolstoy. While reporting on Latin America, Mills provided both Spanish and English accounts on the events there.
Throughout his career, Mills lectured on behalf of the Socialist Labor Party across the country. In 1906, Mills tried to lecture against statehood for Oklahoma, claiming that only the rich and powerful would benefit, but celebrations of the admission to statehood caused the cancellation of his presentation.
Throughout his life, Mills was actively involved in many professional organizations and businesses. By 1923, Mills was the senior member of the Mills Realty Company. In addition, he was connected with a Baltimore survey for the Census Bureau that was credited with an increase in the number of businesses and prosperity, before assisting in a business survey in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1927. He was a member of the Modern Language Association of America, the American Association of Teachers of American, and the founder of the Spanish Section Maryland Academy of Sciences in 1919, as well as serving as the translator for the Baltimore Association of Commerce from 1921 to 1929, and the translator for the Mexican Consulate (Consul Garcia) from 1923 to 1929. Mills also was associated with the Baltimore American's Art Department in 1911, and belonged to the Baltimore Press Club, the Advance Guard of the Associated Boards of Trade of Maryland, the National Executive Committee of the Socialist Labor Party, and the Advertising Club of Baltimore.
Word H. Mills died on December 6, 1933 at the age of sixty-nine.
The collection is organized as four series:
James A. Knowles gave the papers of Word H. Mills to the University of Maryland Libraries in 1990.
Loose newspaper clippings were copied on to archival bond paper and placed in a separate acid-free folder following the scrapbook. In 2003, the scrapbook was removed from its binding and divided into six acid-free folders. Acid-free paper was interleaved with the pages to prevent further deterioration. Paper clips were removed before placing the collection into acid-free folders and into acid-free boxes. The photograph was transferred to the photographic collection.