Hutchins, Grace, 1885-1969

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Grace Hutchins (1885-1969) was a Communist and radical labor economist who lived and worked in New York City with her partner, Anna Rochester. For several years in the 1920s, they shared a communal home in New York with several other women. Together, Hutchins and Rochester founded the Labor Research Association in 1927. She was the editor of The labor fact book, and she ran for state office in New York on the communist party ticket in 1936 and 1938. Hutchins was active in the labor movement for forty years and wrote three books that had great impact, Jesus Christ and the world today, Women who work, and Labor and silk. She also published numerous articles and pamphlets regarding women, children and capitalism in the United States and abroad.

From the description of Grace Hutchins papers, 1902-1968. (University of Oregon Libraries). WorldCat record id: 57228039

Labor reformer and Communist intellectual Grace Hutchins was born in Boston in 1885 to Susan and Edward Hutchins. She was a descendent of colonial ancestry and the Daughters of the American Revolution. In 1898, her parents took her on a trip around the world when she was just 14 years old. After attending Bryn Mawr College, Grace pursued missionary teaching at St. Hilda’s school in China (which she became the principal of during the 1916-1917 school year).

In 1926, Hutchins traveled the world again but this time with her partner Anna Rochester. Together they investigated the situation of women and the status of socialism in other countries. Soon after returning in 1927, Hutchins was one of the women arrested for demonstrating against the executions of Sacco and Vanzetti.

Grace Hutchins was a radical labor economist and proved this through her life’s work. She worked as an investigator for the Bureaus of Women in Industry and helped found the Labor Research Association in 1927. She was the editor of the Labor Fact Book and ran for state office on the communist party ticket in 1936 and 1938.

Hutchins was active in the labor movement for forty years. During this time, she wrote three books that had a great impact, Jesus Christ and the World Today , Women Who Work and Labor and Silk . Besides these three best sellers, she also published multitudes of articles and pamphlets regarding women, children and capitalism in the United States and abroad.

In 1920, Hutchins spent two years living in a community house with five other women. One of these women was Anna Rochester with whom Grace would continue to live for the rest of her life. Together they worked and traveled and dedicated their lives to social justice. According to Janet Lee (Hutchins’ and Rochester’s biographer), Hutchins and Rochester “were a part of [a] cohort of women whose commitment to social activism was integrated with their lesbian orientation.”

Hutchins died in 1969, cared for until the end by long time friend and secretary of the LRA, Bob Dunn.

Source: Lee, Janet. Comrades and Partners: The Shared Lives of Grace Hutchins and Anna Rochester . Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2000.

From the guide to the Grace Hutchins papers, 1902-1968, (Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Clint O. Dumm,. More Hutchins Family outings photographs, 1939. Boulder Public Library
referencedIn Clint O. Dumm,. Hutchins Family photographs, 1939-40. Boulder Public Library
referencedIn Earl Browder Papers, 1879-1990 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
referencedIn Guide to the Labor Research Association Records, 1914-2009 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Guide to the Labor Research Association Records, 1914-2009 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Ferry, Elinor. Papers, 1944-1988 Harvard Law School Library Langdell Hall Cambridge, MA 02138
referencedIn O'Connor, Jessie Lloyd, 1904-. Papers, 1850-1988. Smith College, Neilson Library
referencedIn Clint O. Dumm,. Hutchins Family Outings photographs, 1939. Boulder Public Library
referencedIn Guide to the Daily Worker and Daily World Photographs Collection, 1920-2001 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Hutchins, Grace, 1885-. Correspondence with Theodore Dreiser, 1931-1942. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Guide to the Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Photographs, 1895-1967 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Grace Hutchins papers, 1902-1968 University of Oregon Libraries. Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Labor Research Association/Robert Dunn Photographs, 1888-1960 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Hutchins, Grace, 1885-. Grace Hutchins papers, 1902-1968. University of Oregon Libraries
referencedIn Guide to the Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Photographs, 1895-1967 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Hutchins, Grace, 1885-. Letter, 1926, to Lewis Mumford. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Anna Rochester papers, 1880-1958 University of Oregon Libraries. Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Guide to the Labor Research Association Records, 1914-2009 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Rochester, Anna. Anna Rochester papers, 1880-1958. University of Oregon Libraries
referencedIn Jessie Lloyd O'Connor Papers MS 254., 1850 - 1988 Sophia Smith Collection
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Browder, Earl, 1891-1973 person
associatedWith Chambers, Whittaker person
associatedWith Chambers, Whittaker. person
associatedWith Communist Party of the United States of America. corporateBody
correspondedWith Ferry, Elinor person
associatedWith Flynn, Elizabeth Gurley person
associatedWith Flynn, Elizabeth Gurley. person
associatedWith Labor Research Association (U.S.) corporateBody
correspondedWith O'Connor, Jessie Lloyd, 1904- person
associatedWith Rochester, Anna. person
associatedWith Sacco, Nicola, 1891-1927. person
associatedWith Vanzetti, Bartolomeo, 1888-1927. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
New York (State)
Subject
Labor History
American literature--20th century
Women communists
Women social reformers--New York
Literature
Women
Civil rights
Communal living
Women authors, American--Political and social views
Lesbian activists--New York
Women social reformers
Women communists--New York
Government and Politics
sexuality
Women labor leaders
Women labor leaders--New York
Communal living--New York
Lesbian activists
Occupation
Activity

Person

Birth 1885-08-19

Death 1969-07-15

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