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HOLLIS 9007636

Scott, Byron N. (Byron Nicholson). William H. Taylor Case Files, 1938-1957: Finding Aid.

Harvard Law School Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard Law School

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: HOLLIS 9007636
Repository: Harvard Law School Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Scott, Byron N. (Byron Nicholson), 1903-1991
Title: William H. Taylor case files
Date(s): 1938-1957
Quantity: 7 boxes
Language of materials: English
Abstract: Attorney Byron Scott's case files relating to his defense of William Henry Taylor in hearings before the International Organization Employees Loyalty Board

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

In September 1998, Bruce Craig gave the Law School Library a collection of materials he acquired while writing his dissertation (American University) on Harry Dexter White, a high-ranking Treasury Department official accused of being a Soviet spy. These materials, accumulated by George A. Eddy, comprised three separate collections: the research papers of Elinor Ferry -given to Eddy by Ferry's son James in 1992-the William Henry Taylor case files -given to Eddy by Bryan Scott in October 1973-and the papers of George A. Eddy himself. Although a single gift, these three collections have been processed and inventoried as distinct collections. One box of Scott's case files related to his defense of Taylor is held by the Library of Congress.

Processing Information:

Processed by Erica C. Bicchieri, 2002.

Conditions Governing Access:

Access to these papers is governed by the rules and regulations of the Harvard Law School Library. This collection is open to the public, but is housed off-site at Harvard Depository and requires 2 business-day advance notice for retrieval. Consult the Special Collections staff for further information.

Conditions Governing Use:

The Harvard Law School Library holds copyright on some, but not all, of the material in our collections. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be directed to the Special Collections staff. Researchers who obtain permission to publish from the Harvard Law School Library are also responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations who hold copyright.

Historical/Biographical Information

Byron Scott was a member of Congress from California who served two terms from 1935 to 1939. In 1949 he settled in Washington, D.C. to pursue a legal career. His papers concern his defense of William H. Taylor, Treasury Department and International Monetary Fund specialist, accused of espionage by former Soviet spy turned informer Elizabeth Bentley. The case files relate primarily to Mr. Taylor's two hearings before the International Organization Employee Loyalty Board (IOELB). The first hearing, begun in 1953, resulted in a determination of reasonable doubt as to Taylor's loyalty to the United States. Scott was able to obtain a new hearing for Taylor in 1955, and this second hearing resulted in a reversal of the IOELB's initial determination.
As one of the few success stories of its kind from the McCarthy era, this collection is an important resource for Cold War researchers. The legal brief filed by Mr. Byron on Taylor's behalf had a devastating effect on Miss Bentley's credibility. Taylor later successfully sued Miss Bentley, and was able to retain his job at the IMF while many others were fired. His successful case brought an end to the hunt for communists in that organization.

Series List

The arrangement imposed upon this collection of case files by Byron Scott has been retained. For research purposes it has been intellectually divided into twelve series.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of Attorney Byron Scott's case files relating to his defense of William Henry Taylor during two hearings before the International Organization Employees Loyalty Board (IOELB) between 1953 and 1955. Taylor, an employee of the International Monetary Fund and former Economist for the U.S. Treasury, was accused by Elizabeth Bentley, a former communist, of being involved in a Soviet espionage ring. When the first hearing resulted in a determination by the Board that expressed doubt as to Taylor's loyalty to the U.S., Scott was granted a request for a new hearing. The second hearing, which ended in 1955, resulted in a successful reversal of the Board's initial determination.
The case files included in this collection document both of Taylor's hearings before the IOELB, with more extensive material relating to the second. Materials include typed and handwritten notes; notes specifically related to each allegation against Taylor; copies of the IOELB's determination of doubt as to Taylor's loyalty; transcripts of various portions of the hearings; extensive correspondence with members of the IOELB and with friends and acquaintances of Taylor concerning Taylor's activities and political views; affidavits and depositions in support of Taylor; memoranda between Scott and Taylor; government documents relating to Taylor; various anti-communist pamphlets and other publications; interrogatory questions and answers; documents relating to Taylor's employment at the U.S. Treasury; information related to other accused communists with links to Taylor; newspaper clippings; press releases; correspondence with newspaper and magazine editors concerning libelous articles; transcripts of libel cases; and biographical information about Taylor.

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Anti-communist movements --United States.
Communism --United States.
Bentley, Elizabeth
Brownell, Herbert, 1904-
Coe, Frank.
Cohn, Roy M.
Dirksen, Senator Everett McKinley.
Eastland, James O. (James Oliver), 1904-1986
Eddy, George A.
Eisenhower, Dwight, D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969
Fairbank, T. Paul.
Garety, P.J.
Hennings, Thomas Carey, 1903-1960
Hoover, J. Edgar (John Edgar), 1895-1972
Humphrey, George M. (George Magoffin), b.1890
Jenner, William E. (William Ezra), 1908-
Johnston, Olin D. (Olin Dewitt) 1896-1965
Kefauver, Estes, 1903-1963
Kennedy, Robert F., 1925-1968
Kilgore, Harley Martin, 1893-1956
King, Samuel W.
Ferry, Elinor.
Langer, William, 1886-1959
Malin, Patrick Murphy, 1903-1964
McClellan, John L. (John Little), 1896-1977
McWilliams, Carey, 1905-
O'Mahoney, Joseph Christopher, 1884-1962
Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Deleano), 1882-1945
Rooth, Ivar, b. 1888
Scott, Byron.
Silvermaster, Nathan G.
Stephenson, William B.
Taylor, William, 1906-1986
Tompkins, William F.
Ullmann, William L.
Waldman, Henry S.
Walter, Francis E. (Francis Eugene), 1894-1963
Watkins, Arthur V. (Arthur Vivian), 1886-1973
Welker, Herman.
Wiley, Alexander, 1884-1967
White, Harry Dexter, 1892-1948