Guide to the John Goldmark Papers 1963-1964
Cage 436

Summary Information

Repository
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries
Title
John Goldmark Papers
ID
Cage 436
Date [inclusive]
1963-1964
Extent
4.0 boxes
General Physical Description note
3 linear feet of shelf space
Language
English
Abstract
This collection consists of: typescript transcripts of the proceedings of the case of John and Sally Goldmark vs. Albert F. Canwell, et ux, et al., in the Okanogan County Superior Court, as transcribed by Oren J. Casey.

Preferred Citation note

[Item Description] John Goldmark, Papers, 1963-1964

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections Washington State University Libraries Pullman, WA

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Biographical/Historical note

John E. Goldmark (1917-1979) was a Washington State legislator from Okanogan who served three terms in the state House of Representatives from 1957 to 1962. Goldmark was considered one of the most prominent members of the Democratic Party's liberal wing. However, he was defeated in the primary election in 1962 after several right-wing political opponents launched a campaign that tried to paint Goldmark and his wife, Sally Goldmark (1907-1985), as communists or sympathizers. The Goldmarks sued Albert Canwell for libel and won a $40,000 judgment in a nationally prominent trial. The judgment was later overturned following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in a case involving similar issues. After the trial John Goldmark retired to his ranch in Okanogan and never held public office again. He died in Seattle in 1979 of cancer.[source: "Goldmark, John E (1917-1979)," HistoryLink, last modified July 22, 2011, accessed June 5, 2013.]

Albert F. Canwell (1907- 2002) was a Washington State journalist who specialized in writing articles about the threat of Communist subversion in the labor movement. In 1946, Canwell was elected to the Washington State Legislature as a Republican Representative from the 5th District, and he immediately set about making good on his campaign pledge to "do something about the Communist situation." In March 1947, he pushed through a resolution establishing the Joint Legislative Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities. Initially targeting the Washington Pension Union, by July 1948 the Canwell Committee had focused its attention on reputed subversive faculty at the University of Washington. Three professors– Herbert Phillips, Joe Butterworth, and Ralph Gundlach– were fired in the aftermath of the hearings, while numerous others were threatened with dismissal or sanctioned. The Canwell Committee became a model for subsequent legislative investigations of "un-American" activities on both the state and national levels as McCarthyism and the Red Scare gripped the nation.

Though Canwell’s political career was short-lived, his commitment to anti-communism was lifelong, and he continued to collect information on supposed communists as part of his private security and consulting business for much of his life. As part of this ongoing work, Canwell made headlines again in 1962 when he was sued for libel by State Representative John Goldmark after Canwell claimed both Goldmark and his wife Sally were former Communists. Canwell spent the remaining years of his life in Spokane, where he died on April 1, 2002. [source: "Albert Canwell," Communism in Washington State: History and Memory Project, last modified 2012, accessed June 5, 2013, http://depts.washington.edu/labhist/ cpproject/canwell_interview.shtml]

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Scope and Contents note

This collection consists of: typescript transcripts of the proceedings of the case of John and Sally Goldmark vs. Albert F. Canwell, et ux, et al., in the Okanogan County Superior Court, as transcribed by Oren J. Casey.

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Arrangement note

This collection is arranged in a single series.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries 2013

http://www.libraries.wsu.edu/masc
Terrell Library
P.O. Box 645610
Pullman, WA, 99164-5610
509-335-6691
mascref@wsu.edu

Conditions Governing Access note

This collection is open and available for research use.

Conditions Governing Use note

Copyright restrictions apply.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Materials note

Joseph Wicks Papers, 1930-1974 (Cage 236)

Goldmark Trail Papers, Cage 289

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Washington (State). Superior Court (Okanogan County)

Personal Name(s)

  • Canwell, Albert--Trials, litigation, etc.
  • Goldmark, John--Trials, litigation, etc.

Subject(s)

  • Civil Procedure and Courts
  • Politics and politicians

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Collection Inventory

Box

Goldmark vs. Canwell vol. 1-16 1963-1964 

1

Goldmark vs. Canwell vol. 17-33 1963-1964 

2

Goldmark vs. Canwell vol. 34-38 1963-1964 

3

Goldmark vs. Canwell vol. 39-44 1963-1964 

4