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Robert W. Halfhill papers, 1956-2011

Summary Information
Title: Robert W. Halfhill papers, 1956-2011
Dates: 1956-2011, undated
Creator: Halfhill, Robert
Extent: 44 boxes (52.17 linear feet)
Language: English
Collection Number: Tretter: 228
Abstract:
The collection contains the personal and professional papers of Robert Halfhill, as well as his collection of subject files and clippings.

Repository: University of Minnesota Libraries. Jean-Nickolaus Tretter Collection in Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Studies

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

The collection was donated by Robert W. Halfhill.

Access Restrictions:

Items in this collection do not circulate and may be used in-house only. Materials will be retrieved from and returned to storage areas by staff members.

Copyright:

Please contact staff regarding copyright status of these materials. Researchers may quote from the collection under fair use provisions of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code).

Processing Information:

The collection has been processed in several accessions. Processors include: Heather Dahlgren, Susan Hoffman, Jordan Burrell, and Jennifer Shaw. Most recent processing efforts completed in part with funds provided by the State of Minnesota from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the Minnesota Historical Society.

Preferred Citation:

Robert W. Halfhill papers, 1956-2011, Jean-Nickolaus Tretter Collection in Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Studies, University of Minnesota Libraries, Minneapolis.


Arrangement

The Robert W. Halfhill papers, 1956-2011 are arranged in four series:

  • Series 1: Act Up
  • Series 2: Prisoner Support Work
  • Series 3: Personal and Biographical
  • Series 4: Subject files

Biographical Note

Robert W. Halfhill was born in Lexington, Kentucky in 1940. He graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Kentucky in 1963. He briefly studied at the University of Chicago and attended the University of Minnesota’s graduate program for Psychology. While at the University, Halfhill became involved in the nascent and rapidly evolving gay rights movement in the Twin Cities. He wrote for several gay community papers, short stories, and a novel. He ran unsuccessfully for Aldermen of the Seventh Ward and also participated in several organizations, most notably as secretary and treasurer for Act Up Minnesota – Gay Liberation Front.

Act Up Minnesota was founded in April of 1989. The organization’s efforts led to changes in policy in several areas. Act Up Minnesota organized protests against limiting HIV/AIDS education in Mora, Minnesota schools and as a result AIDS and sex education was restored. Act Up also advocated for prisoners living with AIDS.


Collection Scope and Content Note

The Robert W. Halfhill papers (1956-2011) are composed of clippings, subject files, financial records, organizational records, correspondence, personal writing, and ephemera. Coverage is given to the Act Up Minnesota – Gay Liberation Front and Halfhill’s prisoner support work, Halfhill’s personal papers, as well as subject files documenting AIDS activism, GLBT activism, and topics of personal interest to Robert Halfhill. Covered extensively is Halfhill’s work as an activist for Act Up and his efforts to assist prisoners living with AIDS. In addition, materials include documentation of Halfhill’s involvement with organizations as secretary and treasurer, personal campaign for alderman, correspondence and personal writings. Additional detail regarding the specific series is outlined below:

Series 1: Act Up

Contains correspondence, event materials, public relations, national network records, meeting minutes, treasurer’s reports, financial documents, program resources, and administrative records of the Act Up Minnesota – Gay Liberation Front organization.

Series 2: Prisoner Support Work

Contains correspondence, event materials, public relations and awareness campaigns, resources on prisons, HIV/AIDS, and mistreatment of prisoners, Halfhill’s writings on prisoners, and clippings.

Series 3: Personal

Contains the records of Halfhill’s involvement with organizations, including F.R.E.E.; his personal campaigns; his work on other candidates’ campaigns; documents on legal cases; personal events; materials on his mother; personal health documents; correspondence; and his personal writings which includes several manuscripts for short stories and his novel, Priapus .

Series 4: Subject Files

HIV/AIDS Subject Files -- Contains materials relating to HIV and AIDS including nature and origin of the virus; policies relating to the spread of the disease, including bathhouse policies, healthcare workers, and mandatory testing; life stories; insurance; order forms; surveillance and statistic reports; event materials; organizations including MN AIDS Project; MN Department of Health; resources on drugs and treatment; resources on prevention; special issue publications; and newsletters.

GLBT Subject files -- Contain documents, flyers, mailings, and correspondence with or about GLBT organizations; policy, politics, and legal issues including domestic partnerships and marriage, caucus materials, police brutality, vice laws, and crime; discrimination; survey materials and documents from the North Star Survey; health; religion; transgender; order forms; directories; documents on Jack Baker and Michael McConnell; and resources from Gary Rankila.

General Subject Files -- Contains flyers, calendars, and mailings from neighborhood events; announcements and pamphlets from shows at the Guthrie Theater and Ordway Theater; documents and mailings on atheism; marijuana legalization resources and NORML mailings; health including arthritis, and lead poisoning; ozone depletion and other environmental issues; documents and mailings on feminism and women’s issues, underserved populations, and political prisoners; documents on the American political process; documents and mailings on socialism; newsletters from the Minnesota House and Senate.

Series 5: Clippings

ContainsContains clippings published in Skyway news, Psychology Today, Washington Journal, New York Times, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Minnesota Daily, Time Magazine, The Nation, Worker’s World, Phoenix, Chicago Tribune, Vanity Fair, Twin Cities Reader , and TV guide . Subjects covered include articles on court cases, obituaries, HIV/AIDS, personal interactions, hate groups, youth, education, crime, authors, advice columns, famous persons, and GLBT concerns, including domestic partnerships, marriage, discrimination, sodomy laws, and violence.

Related Material

Minnesota AIDS Project Records, 1983-2005

McConnell - Michael McConnell Files, 1965-2014

Tretter - Jean-Nickolaus papers

Subject Terms
Index Terms
  • Halfhill, Robert W.
  • ACT UP (Organization)
  • Minnesota.
  • AIDS activists.
  • Prisons.
  • Human rights advocacy--Minnesota.
  • AIDS activists--Minnesota.
Box Contents
 Location  Title
 
Act Up 1985-1998, undated 
Box 1
Legal Documents 1985-1992, undated ( 1 folder )  Box 1
 
Meeting Materials 1990-1992 ( 1 folder )  Box 1
 
Meeting Minutes and Treasurer's Reports 1989-1996 ( 11 folders )  Box 1
Box 2
Treatments 1989-1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 2
 
Mandatory HIV/AIDS Testing 1989-1992 ( 1 folder )  Box 2
 
Discrimination 1990-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 2
 
Mora, MN Protest 1989 ( 1 folder )  Box 2
 
Public Relations 1987-1996, undated ( 12 folders )  Box 2
 
Correspondence 1988-1996, undated ( 8 folders )  Box 2
Box 3
Financials 1989-1998, undated ( 5 folders )  Box 3
 
Administrative 1989-1997, undated ( 4 folders )  Box 3
 
Act Up National Network 1988-1995, undated ( 4 folders )  Box 3
 
Act Up Newsletters 1990-1994 ( 2 folders )  Box 3
 
Newsletter Proof Materials 1986-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 3
Box 15
MAP Controversy and Carlton Hogan Use of Queer 1990-1993 ( 1 folder )  Box 15
 
Act Up Correspondence 1991-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 15
 
Meeting Minutes and Treasurer's Reports 1989-1992 ( 1 folder )  Box 15
 
Public Relations 1989-1993 ( 1 folder )  Box 15
Box 31
Boxes of Check Registers 1989-1998 ( 4 boxes )  Box 31
Box 32
Posters for Act Up undated ( 2 items )  Box 32
 
Meeting Minutes and Treasurer's Reports 1989-1995 ( 1 binder )  Box 32
Box 33
Meeting Minutes, Letters to Editor 1992-1996 ( 1 folder )  Box 33
 
Treasurer's Report, Press Coverage 1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 33
 
Newsletters, Meeting Minutes 1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 33
 
Act Up MN T-Shirt undated ( 1 item )  Box 33
 
Prisoner Support Work 1980-2001 
Box 4
Newsletters 1994-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Associated Organizations 1991-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Notes 1992-1994, undated ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Correspondence 1986-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Criminalization of HIV/AIDS 1992-1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Parchman, Mississippi 1997-2001 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Wisconsin Protests 1991-1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Inmate Assistance Packet 1995-2001 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Associated Support Work 1980-1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Walter Apple 1985-1998 ( 2 folders )  Box 4
 
Todd Balow 1990-1992 ( 2 folders )  Box 4
 
Donovan Bjorkland 1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Oliver A. Branch III 1989-1994 ( 2 folders )  Box 4
 
Bruce Franceschini 1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Stephen Farmer 1991-1996 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Suzanne Goodwin 1992 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Jimmy Magner 1990-1993 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Salvatore Marcella 1995 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Cyndi Potete 1987-1997 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Madeline Rodriguez 1989-1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Robert M. Rosenkrantz 1988 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
William Shotley and Gregory Stampley 1994 ( 1 folder )  Box 4
 
Karl Tyler 1995-2000 ( 2 folders )  Box 4
Box 13
HIV/AIDS and Prisoners 1985-1998 ( 3 folders )  Box 13
 
Resources 1987-2000 ( 1 folder )  Box 13
Box 15
Cindi Potete 1989 ( 1 folder )  Box 15
Box 31
T-shirts for Stephen Farmer circa 1995 ( 2 shirts )  Box 31
 
Personal and Biographical Materials 1234-9876 
Box 5
1969-1997 ( 8 folders )  Box 5
Note  Contains educational materials, including primary school documents, correspondence from colleges and graduate school, thesis notes; and personal organizational involvement, including documents for F.R.E.E., Minnesota Gay Defense Fund, Gay Educational Committee, U of MN Community Gay Association, Gay Rights Alliance of Minnesota, Minnesota Lesbian and Gay Activists, Minnesota Committee on Gay Rights.
Box 6
1961-2007 ( 9 folders )  Box 6
Note  Contains documents on Halfhill's personal finances, including financial aid and budgets and documents related to Halfhill's campaign for Minneapolis 7th Ward
Box 7
1962-2001, undated ( 27 folders )  Box 7
Note  Contains personal correspondence, personal notes, Halfhill's consciences objector application, records of court cases, personal health records, documents belonging to Robert Halfhill's mother, personal collections and personal event records, calendars, and documents from Halfhill's involvement with political parties, and documents from the Free Voice .
Box 8
1961-2007 ( 18 folders )  Box 8
Note  Contains personal correspondence between Halfhill and individuals and organizations.
Box 9
1966-2001 ( 17 folders )  Box 9
Note  Contains personal writings including articles, short stories, letters to the editor, and pages from the Priapus manuscript, as well as, personal correspondence between Halfhill and individuals and organizations
Box 10
1967-2002 ( 16 folders )  Box 10
Note  Contains personal writings including articles, short stories, letters to the editor, and untitled manuscript pages.
Box 11
circa 1984 ( 13 folders )  Box 11
Note  Contains manuscripts for Halfhill's novel Priapus
Box 12
1984-2000 ( 2 boxes )  Box 12
Note  Contains manuscripts for Halfhill's novel Priapus and Notes on the Fight for Gay Rights in Minnesota
Box 13
1971-1972 ( 4 folders )  Box 13
Note  Contains documents from the production of the Uptown Voice zine.
Box 14
1979-1994, undated ( 8 folders )  Box 14
Note  Contains personal notebooks, campaign materials, personal writing, event fans, records of the sit-in a the mayor's office, and DFL city council related clippings
Box 15
1982-2006 ( 8 folders )  Box 15
Note  Contains personal writings, notes, Freedom of Information Act documents, correspondence, organizational records, and Uptown Voice .
Box 31
undated ( 1 box and 9 items )  Box 31
Note  Contains personal note-cards, VHS tapes, cassette tapes, a CD, and a stamp from the Gay Pride Committee.
Box 32
undated ( 1 folder )  Box 32
Note  Contains personal writings and checkbooks for organizations
Box 33
1984 ( 4 folders )  Box 33
Note  Contains manuscript of Halfhill's novel Priapus
 
Subject Files 1979-2004, undated 
Box 16, 17, 18, 19
AIDS Subject Files 1979-2001, undated ( 4 boxes )  Box 16, 17, 18, 19
Box 16
1979-1998 ( 17 folders )  Box 16
Note  Contains files on the nature and origins of HIV/AIDS, documents about living with AIDS, policies related to HIV/AIDS, order forms, life insurance, underserved populations, and surveillance and statistics reports on AIDS.
Box 17
1983-2003 ( 18 folders )  Box 17
Note  Contains files on associated HIV/AIDS activist organizations, including the Minnesota AIDS Project; the Minnesota Department of Health; and Events
Box 18
1985-2001, undated ( 16 folders )  Box 18
Note  Contains files on prevention, drugs and treatment, and special issue publications.
Box 19
1985-2001 ( 15 folders )  Box 19
Note  Contains files of newsletters from HIV/AIDS activist organizations.
Box 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 31, 32
GLBT Subject Files 1988-2005, undated ( 8 boxes )  Box 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 31, 32
Box 20
1963-2001 ( 21 folders )  Box 20
Note  Contains files on tearooms, crime and the GLBT community, police brutality, surveys and the North Star project, court cases, domestic partnerships and same-sex marriage, sodomy laws, affirmative action, protected individuals, and political files.
Box 21
1970-2007 ( 28 folders )  Box 21
Note  Contains files on GLBT organizations, straight views on GLBT people, GLBT personal stories, coming out issues, youth, education, transgender materials, underserved populations, religion, and discrimination.
Box 22
1971-2001, undated ( 12 folders )  Box 22
Note  Contains files on GLBT organizations.
Box 23
1972-2004 ( 16 folders )  Box 23
Note  Contains files on GLBT events, including Twin Cities Pride; Pride Guides; publications.
Box 24
1970-2004 ( 32 folders )  Box 24
Note  Contains files on gay rights and GLBT organizational newsletters, including national, political, feminist, entertainment, youth and education, and individual organizations.
Box 25
1970-2000, undated ( 15 folders )  Box 25
Note  Contains files on advertisements and order forms for GLBT items and services, press coverage, and resources including the Rankila resource files on homosexuality.
Box 31
undated ( 1 bag and 3 items )  Box 31
Note  Contains a whistle, a key-chain fob, a roll of stickers, and a bag of event buttons.
Box 32
1982-1997, undated ( 4 folders and 2 items )  Box 32
Note  Contains files on film festival calendars, election returns, Bulthus discrimination complaint, a genetics paper, a mask, and a magnet.
Box 33
1982, undated ( 4 items )  Box 33
Note  Contains T-Shirts from Marry Me MN, Gay Pride 1982, DFL Gay Rights Caucus and Minneapolis Gay Pride Week
Box 26, 27, 28, 29, 30
Topical Subject Files 1979-2004, undated ( 5 boxes )  Box 26, 27, 28, 29, 30
Note  Contains flyers, calendars, and mailings from neighborhood events; announcements and pamphlets from shows at the Guthrie Theater and Ordway Theater; documents and mailings on atheism; marijuana legalization resources and NORML mailings; health including arthritis, and lead poisoning; ozone depletion and other environmental issues; documents and mailings on feminism and women’s issues, under served populations, and political prisoners; documents on the American political process; documents and mailings on socialism; newsletters from the Minnesota House and Senate.
 
Clippings 1970-2004 (11 boxes)