QUESTION: want to locate documents / rare books relating to anarchism in bay area

question / pregunta: 

im looking for documents relating to anarchism in san francisco.

who might have original editions of The Blast, for example?

This is for a video project relating to the forms and aesthetics of radical politics.

many thanks
Beatriz Santiago Muñoz


Answer posted by:

I wanted to add a couple more libraries and other resources regarding The Blast and other anarchist materials held in the Bay:

California State University (East Bay) and the University of California (Santa Cruz) also have original editions of The Blast.

I haven't been to the Longhaul Infoshop in Berkeley in a good while, but they should have materials on anarchist history in the Bay Area. It may not go as far back as the 1910's, but i know they have a sort of library in there.

Freedom Archives is an audio archive with materials on all kinds of social movements in the Bay Area and beyond. Doing a search for "anarchism" gives you a number of results on the anarchist inspired Food Not Bombs project. (Searching for "anarchy" or "anarchists" brings some stuff up, but it's not Bay Area stuffs.)

The Labor Archives at San Francisco State University has one entry of materials relating to anarchism:
* JEAN PAULINE: (b. 1921) Retired from Modern Times Bookstore Collective in 1996 after
twenty-five years; discusses youth in Brooklyn, 1920s-1930s, early interest in cooperatives and
anarchism, coming to California, 1944; helping establish Peace and Freedom Party in San Diego,
1967; and Modern Times Bookstore Collective in San Francisco, 1971; describes assisting
victims of AIDS crisis, San Francisco, 1980s.
Interview conducted by Harvey Schwartz

The San Francisco Public Library has an entry for a 1992 anarchist newsletter called The Web. It's not clear what their holdings are. You might want to contact the archives of the San Francisco Public Library to see what they have as well.

The Oakland Public Library has the book:
In other words : notes on the politics and morale of survival
Molloy, Alice.
Oakland, Calif. : The Womens Press Collective, [1980?]
Descriptions from the MARC catalog record:
650 0 Feminism.
650 0 Anarchism and anarchists|zCalifornia|zOakland.
650 0 Lesbianism.
The book is for Library Use Only at the Oakland History Room, which is a really great place to check out!

San Francisco's Holt Labor Library also has a document which was "Drafted in May 1976 by a group of comrades from the Bay Area who had been involved ... in various Marxist or anarchist tendencies"--Prelim. statement.
A world to win.
[San Francisco, Calif.? s.n., 1976?]
I'd ask them about other materials that they're familiar with, as well.

Hope that helps!


I'm not in SF, but I came across some libraries in San Francisco on Worldcat that contain back issues of The Blast. I've added links for each library so you can see the hours and get phone numbers etc.

Oakland Public Library Oakland, CA 94612 United States
Main Library Oakland History Room

San Francisco Public Library San Francisco, CA 94103 United States

San Francisco State University Library San Francisco, CA 94132 United States

University of California Berkeley Berkeley, CA 94720 United States

I imagine these libraries will also have some more anarchist materials.


anarchist documents

my friend also sent me this information: "there is also this collection of zines by Eric Lyle called Backtracking 199485. he was involved with bay area anarchist organizing in the later part of the 20th century like food not bombs, gay shame etc, and the zines date back to the 80's with photos and stuff." UC Berkeley does have some of the issues. You will have to contact the Bancroft library because it is non-circulating material...

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