Thella W. Brock papers

Thella W. Brock papers

Dates: 1943-2004

This collection contains Thella W. Brock's scrapbooks documenting her activity as an undercover involvment with the Communist Party, USA and her activities in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s as an FBI informant. Additional collection materials document current political activites as well as the publication of her book, "Operation Housewife." Additional material includes family correspondence while Thella and her second husband were serving a mission, and after, as well as an extensive collection of Family newsletters. Anti-Vietnam War literature is included.

  • Extent: 4 boxes (2 linear ft.)
  • Creator: Brock, Thella W. (Thella Wilson)
  • Call Number: MSS 5977
  • Repository: L. Tom Perry Special Collections; 20th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; 1130 Harold B. Lee Library; Brigham Young University; Provo, Utah 84602; http://sc.lib.byu.edu/
  • Access Restrictions: Open for public research.
Languages and Scripts
English
Conditions of Use
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from the Thella W. Brock papers and publications must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.
Preferred Citation
Initial citation: MSS 5977; Thella W. Brock papers and publications; 20th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts; L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University. Following citations: MSS 5977, LTPSC.
Custodial History
Donated by Thella Brock, 2004.
Acquisition Information
Donated; Thella Brock; 2004.
Other Finding Aids
More detailed finding aid available in repository.
Subject Terms
Brock, Thella W. (Thella Wilson)--Archives; Communist Party of the United States of America; United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation; Informers; Political Campaigns; Politics, Government, and Law; Vietnam War, 1961-1975--Literature and the war
Genre / Form
Books; Letters; Scrapbooks
Processing Information
Processed; Alicia Lynn Harris; 2009.
Appraisal Information
Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (20th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts, 5.VII, 2007).
Finding Aid ID Number
UPB_MSS5977
Finding Aid Title
Brock (Thella W.) papers
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Alicia Lynn Harris, student manuscript processor, and John Murphy, curator,
Finding Aid Creator
This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2014-04-27T04:06-0600
Finding Aid Language
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.
Biographical Info:

Biographical History

Thella Wilson Brock (1921-) was a Brigham Yong University student who later became did undercover FBI work with her husband.

Thella Wilson was born on May 8, 1921, in Tridell, Utah, to Seth and Alta Morrill Wilson. Thella was the middle of nine children, including a younger sister who died of pneumonia at one-month old. In 1929, the Wilson family moved to Roosevelt, Utah, thirty miles away. While in high school, Thella saved money from her first job, a weekly babysitting service, to buy tap dancing lessons. In 1940, Thella Wilson started attending Brigham Young University. She stayed in college four years, particularly enjoying her English and American Poetry classes. She met her husband, Daniel Wesley Brock, on October 4, 1943, when he came into the Logan photo lab where she worked as a secretary. Daniel Brock joined the L.D.S. church in June 4, 1944 and was married to Thella on October 4, 1944 in her Aunt Rhoda’s home. On January 16, 1958, FBI Agent Lee Meyers came into Daniel Brock’s photographic studio and asked to talk to him and Thella. He asked them to keep track of subversive people within Los Angeles, namely Communists. From that time on, Thella and Daniel Brock attended Communist Party club meetings and lectures in L.A. Thella Brock came to know the aims and beliefs of the Communist Party during the Cold War. On March 17, 1979, an FBI agent called Daniel Brock and dismissed him and Thella from informant work. Throughout her life, Thella Brock was very active in political developments and tirelessly campaigned for conservative values and legislation. Ironically, in 1989, she served a full time mission for her church in Boston, Massachusetts, and did not see one broadcast related to the Fall of Communism, including tearing down the Berlin Wall. In 1998, she published a book about her espionage work entitled, Operation Housewife: Communist FBI informant.



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John Murphy
Curator - 20th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts
john_m_murphy@byu.edu