Rare Book & Manuscript Library

James H. Sheldon papers, 1945-1971, bulk 1958-1964

Series II: Campaigns, 1958-1964

A majority of the papers relating to the Democratic National Committee document Sheldon's work with various campaigns. Although he worked for additional campaigns not documented by this collection, this series contains materials concerning JFK's 1960 presidential campaign, RFK's 1964 senatorial campaign, Averell Harriman's 1958 campaign for New York State governor, and Robert Wagner's 1961 campaign for mayor of New York City.

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Subseries II.1: JFK Presidential Campaign, 1960 August -November, 1960

The bulk of this subseries is constituted by press releases and speeches, many of which Sheldon wrote to explicitly address various ethnic groups such as Germans, Italians, Poles, and Chinese. In addition, the subseries also contains handwritten notes, correspondence, and pamphlets pertaining to JFK's presidential campaign between the months of August and November, 1960. Of all the campaigns documented by this collection, the material relating to JFK's is the most voluminous.

Box 1 JFK Presidential Campaign, 1960 August -November (2 folders), 1960

Box 2 JFK Presidential Campaign, 1960 August -November (8 folders), 1960

Subseries II.2: RFK Senatorial Campaign, 1964 September -November, 1964

Similar to II.1, II.2 is comprised mainly of press releases and speeches, but also features some handwritten notes and correspondence. In addition, the subseries contains a rather lengthy booklet entitled "The Myth of Keating's Liberalism," which refers to RFK's opponent, Senator Kenneth Barnard Keating. Serving as Senator of New York between 1959 and 1965, he ran for re-election against RFK in 1964. Considered a moderate Republican, the aforementioned booklet challenges his self-proclaimed liberalism, and was likely used by Sheldon for reference in drafting publicity statements on behalf of RFK's campaign.

Box 3 RFK Senatorial Campaign, 1964 September -November (5 folders), 1964

Subseries II.3: Harriman campaign, 1958

Like II.1 and II.2, II.3 also contains speeches and press releases relating to Harriman's 1958 campaign; however, this subseries is comprised more heavily by campaign-related ephemera, mainly in the form of pamphlets. There is also some campaign material generated by Harriman's Republican opponents.

Box 3 Harriman campaign, 1958, (2 folders)

Subseries II.4: Wagner campaign, 1961

The least voluminous of the four documented campaigns, this subseries is comprised mostly of publicity-related material and some ephemera relating to Wagner's 1961 campaign.

Box 3 Wagner campaign, 1961, (1 folder)