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Anthony Wayne Smith papers

 Collection 0049-LBR-RG95-012

Anthony Wayne Smith (1906-1992) was an attorney for the CIO and AFL-CIO from the 1940s into the mid-1950s when he became passionate about environmental issues and took up conservation causes at several National Parks. His papers consist of correspondence, legal materials, and ephemera from Smith's personal life, his time at the National Parks and Conservation Association (NPCA), CIO, and AFL-CIO.


  • 1920-1992

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to the public and must be used in the Special Collections reading room. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies or digital surrogates may be provided in accordance with Special Collections and University Archives duplication policy.

Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs unless otherwise specified. It is the researcher's responsibility to secure permission to publish materials from the appropriate copyright holder.

Archival materials may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws or other regulations. While we make a good faith effort to identify and remove such materials, some may be missed during our processing. If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.


110.00 Linear Feet

Scope and Content of the Collection

The Anthony Wayne Smith Papers consists of five series that document Smith's personal and professional work. His labor work spanned landmark disputes with the unions representing steelworkers and miners, unique environmental and conservation projects on behalf of the federation, and involvement in drafting the National Labor Relations Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act. In his turn to environmental and conservation work, Smith became active in numerous organizations, global and domestic. Smith's work in this field extended until his death in 1992.

Biographical / Historical

This collection is comprised of the personal papers of attorney and conservationist Anthony Wayne Smith (1906-1992). Born in Pennsylvania in 1906, Smith received a B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh and a J.D. from Yale University in 1934. Smith married Anya E. Freedel in 1930. From 1932 to 1933, Smith served as Secretary to Governor Gifford Pinchot of Pennsylvania. From 1934 to 1937, he worked as an attorney at Donovan, Leisure, Newton, and Lumbard in New York City.

From 1937 to 1942, Smith was Assistant General Counsel at the CIO. During that time, Smith served as Counsel to the Steelworkers Organizing Committee during the Little Steel Strike in 1937. He also served as Special Counsel to the United Mine Workers of America in 1939. From 1942 to 1949, Smith served as Special Counsel and Assistant Director of the Industrial Union Council. In this capacity, Smith helped draft the National Labor Relations Act and Fair Labor Standards Act. From 1942 to 1954, Smith served as Secretary for the CIO's Committee on Regional Development and Conservation. By 1956, he moved into the role of attorney for the AFL-CIO. During his time with CIO and after the merger with the AFL, Smith became personally associated with John L. Lewis, Philip Murray, Walter P. Reuther, and John Brophy.

In 1958, Smith became the President and General Counsel for the National Parks and Conservation Association (NPCA). He functioned as publisher, editor-in-chief, and chief editorial writer of the NPCA Magazine. Smith directed major conservation campaigns, including Cape Cod, Fire Island, Assateague Island, Padre Island, Point Reyes, and other seashores, Chesapeake and Ohio (C&O) Canal National Historical Park, Dinosaur National Monument, Rainbow Bridge National Monument, and Everglades, Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and Redwoods National Parks. Along with William O. Douglas, Smith co-founded the C&O Canal Association in 1954. While at the NPCA, Smith served on numerous delegations for the United Nations, Environmental Coalition for North America (ENCONA), and more. By 1980, he served as Special Counsel for organizations including the Adirondack Park Agency, Negative Population Growth, and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

A leading environmentalist, conservationist, and lawyer, Smith died on February 29, 1992. He authored more than 200 articles on conservation and at the time of his death he served as a consultant for the Adirondack Park Agency, the chair of ENCONA, and a board member for the Council on Ocean Law.

Organization of the Collection

This collection is organized into five series:

Series 1
Personal, 1920-1991
Series 2
CIO and AFL-CIO, 1923-1988
Series 3
NPCA, 1930-1991
Series 4
Consultancy Work, 1964-1992
Series 5

Custodial History

The George Meany Memorial Archives acquired this collection in 1996 from Jonas Morris, executor of the estates of Anthony Wayne Smith and Anya Freedel Smith. The George Meany Memorial Archives transferred these records as part of a major transfer of their archive and library holdings to the University of Maryland Libraries in 2013.

Processing Information

Caroline Muglia at the George Meany Memorial Archives initially processed these records in June 2010, with revisions being added by Sarah Springer in August 2010. The collection, originally comprising 153 cubic feet and 9 linear feet, was minimally processed according to the guidelines of the George Meany Memorial Archives. Deteriorating newspaper print; books, magazines, and journals duplicated elsewhere; maps and unidentified slides; and CIO pamphlets and convention proceedings duplicated elsewhere in GMMA collections were discarded. In addition, Smith collected The Living Wilderness, NPCA Magazine, and Scholastic Update magazines, all of which have been discarded. All of the photographs remain in the collection, with the exception of duplicate photographs.

The University of Maryland Libraries received the records and the finding aid in 2013. In 2017, Bria Parker exported and cleaned the finding aid contents from the Eloquent Systems database using OpenRefine, and finally transformed the finding aids into Encoded Archival Description (EAD) using a series of programmatic scripts. The finding aid was ingested into ArchivesSpace in 2018, at which point Rebecca Thayer updated the descriptive content for accuracy. Revisions include changes to biographical/historical notes, scope and content notes, and the creation of new collection numbers. Rebecca Thayer also enhanced custodial histories and re-wrote collection titles to better conform to archival standards.

Guide to the Anthony Wayne Smith papers
Finding aid created by Caroline Muglia at the George Meany Memorial AFL-CIO Archives.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Library Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives

University of Maryland Libraries
Hornbake Library
4130 Campus Drive
College Park Maryland 20742