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Charles C. Killingsworth papers

Identifier: UA-17.439

Scope and Contents

The Charles C. Killingsworth papers provide an invaluable source of material to the researcher interested in the development of American labor law, and its application to the collective bargaining process. With the exception of some material from World War I, the collection is composed of labor materials. Killingsworth served as a member of several federal agencies, as a consultant to state and private organizations and as an arbitrator and permanent umpire for many large corporations.

The papers span the years from 1918, when the National War Labor Board of World War I was created to resolve issues raised by a fledgling labor movement, to 1968, when labor unions had become powerful fixtures in virtually every major industrial sector of our economy. Arbitration decisions comprise the bulk of the collection, though these are generally accompanied by background information on the grievance, company and unions exhibits, and correspondence. In those instances where the dispute captured public attention, the material is also accompanied by newspaper articles and editorials. These supplementary materials are of special interest because they reveal the social and political climate in which the disputes took place.

The collection also contains material from various federal labor agencies, such as the Wage Stabilization Board and the National War Labor Boards of World War's I and II, as well as various state agencies. In addition, there is a large assortment of publications, ranging from trade journals to U.S. Government reports.


  • Creation: 1918 - 1968


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives and Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

Biographical Note

Charles C. Killingsworth earned his A.B. from Southwest Missouri State University in 1938, his M.A. from Oklahoma State University in 1939, and his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin in 1946. He was an instructor in political economy at Johns Hopkins University from 1941 to 1946. He joined the faculty at Michigan State College (now Michigan State University) in 1947 and was an associate professor of economics from 1947 to 1949. He was promoted to professor in 1949 and served as department chair until 1958. Killingsworth was director of the Labor and Industrial Relations Center (1955-1959) and university professor of labor and industrial relations and economics (1960-1987). He retired with emeritus standing in 1987.

Killingsworth's government service included positions at the national and state level and included the following: panel chairman in various labor disputes, National War Labor Board, 1943-1945; economist, Social Security Administration, 1945-1956. consultant, then member, then chair, National Wage Stabilization Board, 1951- 1953; consultant, Presidential Railroad Commission, 1960-1961; member, Presidential Emergency Board (under Railway Labor Act), 1962; member, President's Aerospace Board (for disputes between six companies and two unions), 1962; member, Research Subcommittee of National Manpower Advisory Committee, 1963-1968; member, National Manpower Task Force, 1964 to date; chair, 1975; member, National Academy of Sciences Committee on Department of Labor Manpower Research and Development, 1974-1975; member, U.S. Census Bureau Advisory Committee on Population Statistics, 1974-; consultant, various times 1956-1964, to Michigan Governors Williams, Swainson, and Romney, especially on drafting of unemployment compensation legislation and settlement of labor disputes; consultant, Michigan Civil Service Commission, on grievance procedures for state employees, 1957-1958; chair, State Manpower Development Committee, 1962-1964; member, Governor's Advisory Committee on Public Employee Relations, 1966-1967.

Killingsworth's work in arbitration included the following: umpire, Bethlehem Steel Company and Steelworkers, 1947-1952. Umpire, U.S. Rubber Company and Rubber Workers, 1953-1955; member, Umpire Panel, Ford Motor Company and UAW, 1955-1958. Umpire, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company and Rubber Workers, 1959-1961; permanent arbitrator, Youngstown Sheet and Tube Company and Steelworkers, 1963-1967; permanent arbitrator, Crucible Steel and Steelworkers, 1971-; permanent arbitrator, Firestone Tire and Rubber Company and Rubber Workers, 1972-; member, Arbitration Panel, Northwest Airlines and Machinists, 1974-.

He was a member of numerous professional organizations including National Academy of Arbitrators (Board of Governors, 1956-1958; Vice-President, 1959-1960; President, 1968); Industrial Relations Research Association (Executive Board, 1955-1958). American Economic Association; Economics Society of Michigan (President, 1967-1968).


31 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials



The collection is arranged into sixteen series. I. Labor Disputes. II. Wage Stabilization Board. III. National War Labor Board WW I. IV. National War Labor Board WW II. V. U.S. Bituminous Coal Commission. VI. President's National Emergency Board. VII. National Railway Adjustment Board. VIII. State Civil Service Commissions. IX. Connecticut Board of Labor Relations. X. Ontario Labor Relations Board. XI. Wisconsin Employment Relations Board. XII. Publications. XIII. Canadian Telephone Employers Association. XIV. Essay Contest: Why Choose Employment Security as a Career? XV. Correspondence. XVI. Miscellany.

Custodial History

Gift of Charles C. Killingsworth, 1970-12-28.

Legal Status

Donor(s) have transferred any applicable copyright to Michigan State University but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright was not transferred. Copyright restrictions may apply. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Processing Information

Record group changed from 00101 to UA 17.439 to reflect Killingwsorth's connection to Michigan State University. -M. Badgley-Malone, January 2023.

Charles C. Killingsworth Papers
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Repository Details

Part of the University Archives and Historical Collections Repository

Conrad Hall
943 Conrad Road, Room 101
East Lansing MI 48824 US