The life of Anna Walling, an advocate of socialism and the cause of labor, was molded by three prominent socialists: Jack London, William English Walling, and Leonard Abbot. The Anna Strunsky Walling Papers are most significant for understanding Walling's relationships with these three men and for the picture of the radical, bohemian circle of friends that surrounded them in San Francisco, New York, England, and Russia.
A Russian immigrant, Walling graduated from Stanford in 1900 where she joined the Socialist Labor Party. With ambitions of becoming a writer, Walling at the turn of the century moved in a circle of San Francisco writers and authors that included Jack London. She developed a passionate friendship with London and coauthored a book with him, The Kempton-Wace Letters. She married William English Walling, prominent Socialist party member and a founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). She and English traveled together to Russia to witness the expected revolution and Civil War. The collection includes material relating to their travels to Russia where they met with leading revolutionary figures, including Lenin and Gorky. When the marriage ended in 1932, Anna Walling turned to Leonard Abbot, known as the "gentle socialist." Though the two were together for nearly twenty years, they never legally married.
An excellent resource for the study of U.S. social and intellectual history, women's history and radical history, the papers are divided into two series:
I. Correspondence of Anna Walling: prominent correspondents include Charlotte Perkins Gliman, Emma Goldman, and Selig Perlman.
II. Correspondence of Others: includes correspondence of William English Walling, other family members and Leonard Abbott.
Number of reels: 20