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Otis Graham Jr. papers

Identifier: MS2263

Scope and Contents

This collection contains newspaper articles, journal articles, newsletters, organization's publications, correspondence, and meeting minutes related to the topic of immigration. These papers are a mixture of print media and scholarly policy papers reporting upon and exploring immigration from the late 1970s through 2008. These papers were gathered and maintained by Otis Graham and particularly the documents he saved to assist him in writing his memoir. The papers include some records of the organizations the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) as well as several grassroots reform organizations. Much of this data appears to relate to the state of California in its immigration debate.

Please note that these papers are not processed and will take more time to use for research. Since these are the records Graham used to write his book some folder titles are actually notes to himself about the chapter that is appropriate for these documents or whether the materials were used in the book. Graham had assigned the original boxes a very broad topic such as Proposition 187 or Immigration trends and patterns. When applicable this box description was added to the folder title. In the absence of meaningful folder titles the box title was used as the folder title. As this collection is still unprocessed it does sometimes result in a folder title that is not paticularly descriptive. This is something that will be rectified when the collection is processed.


  • 1978-2008

Conditions Governing Access

The two documents in Folder 10a of Box 2 titled "E-mail and memo regarding the FAIR Board" are closed (and have been removed and replaced with a separation sheet) to research unless permission is granted by Otis Graham. Following the death of Otis Graham the documents will remain closed for ten years. During this ten-year period permission to use may be granted by the Chairman of the Board of FAIR. Following this ten-year period the documents will be open to to the public.

Conditions Governing Use

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.


Otis L. Graham, Jr., was born in 1935. He is an historian who spent most of his teaching life at the University of California, Santa Barbara. In 1978, he was a member of the founding board of the Federation for American Immigration Reform and served on the Board from more than 20 years. He has also served as Chair and a member of the Board of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). Graham has authored or edited numerous books and articles on the subjects of American reform movements, political economy, and environment and immigration. He is the author of a memoir titled Immigration Reform and America's Unchosen Future. This memoir has an insiders perspective of the social movement that challenged the mass immigration movement it identified as forming in the 1960s.

He was a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Center for Advanced Study and Behavioral Sciences, and received the Robert Kelley Memorial Award from the National Council on Public History.

Graham is a graduate of Yale University (B.A., 1957) and Columbia University (PhD, 1966).


9 Linear Feet (18 document boxes)




This collection contains newspaper articles, policy papers, meeting minutes and correspondence related to the subject of immigration and more specifically the topic of immigration in California. The creator of the collection, Otis Graham Jr., served on the boards of both the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). Some of the records in this collection relate to the work of these two organizations. The material dates from 1978-2008.


This collection is minimally processed. The documents are maintained in the order received by the donor which had a loose organization by topic and within a topic the papers were loosly organized chronologically.

Physical Location

Materials may be stored off-site, and may require additional retrieval time. Please contact the Special Collections Research Center for more information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Otis Graham, Jr., 2008 (Accession 2009.009).


Preliminary Guide to the Otis Graham Jr. papers, 1978-2008
Folder Inventory
Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University Repository

2130 H Street NW
Washington 20052 United States of America