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Thella W. Brock papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 5977

Scope and Contents note

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.

Dates

  • Other: 1943-2004

Creator

Conditions Governing Access note

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use note

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.

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.

Extent

4 boxes (2 linear ft.)

Language

English

Abstract

The Thella W. Brock papers and publications contain correspondence to various parties and her publication materials from her time as an author of her book, Operation Housewife, where in she details her life as a spy on the Communist Party for the United States government.

Other Finding Aids note

More detailed finding aid available in repository.

Custodial History note

Donated by Thella Brock, 2004.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Donated; Thella Brock; 2004.

Appraisal note

Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (20th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts, 5.VII, 2007).

Processing Information note

Processed; Alicia Lynn Harris; 2009.
Title
Register of Thella W. Brock papers
Status
Completed
Author
Alicia Lynn Harris, student manuscript processor, and John Murphy, curator,
Date
5 May 2008
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

Contact:
1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States