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Illustration of the E. H. Butler LibraryArchives & Special Collections

Descriptive Summary

Title: The Manny Fried Collection

Date Span: [bulk 1950-1980]

Acquisition Number: N/A

Creator: Manny Fried

Donor: Manny Fried

Date of Acquisition: April 2009

Extent: 36 boxes; 40 linear ft.

Language: English

Location: Archives & Special Collections Department, E. H. Butler Library, SUNY Buffalo State 

Processed: Please contact the Archives & Special Collections Department for access, holdings, and inventories. 

Information on Use

Access: The Manny Fried Collection is open for research. 

Reproduction of Materials: 
See Archivist for information on reproducing materials from this collection, including photocopies, digital camera images, or digital scans. The heirs of the Manny Fried Estate retain copyrights for materials deposited in the SUNY Buffalo State Archives & Special Collections. Dr. Fried granted Buffalo State College permission to perform his plays for the educational benefits of students with no fee charged for performances. 

Even though all reasonable and customary best-practices have been pursued, this collection may contain materials with confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the SUNY Buffalo State assumes no responsibility.

Preferred Citation: 
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, The Manny Fried Collection, Archives & Special Collections Department, E. H. Butler Library, SUNY Buffalo State.

Biographical Note:
Dr. Emanuel J. Fried was born on March 1, 1913 in Brooklyn, NY.  As a young boy, Fried’s family moved to Buffalo, NY where he finished elementary and secondary education and wrote his first play at the age of 14.  Fried worked as a bellhop and elevator operator, concessionaire, theater usher, salesmen, and newsboy.   His first play written as a teenager was about an entertainer while working as a bellhop. 

Dr. Fried continuing acting under the stage name Edward Mann and became close friend with theater and film director Elia Kazan while living in New York City.  In 1939, he returned to Buffalo and was employed as a template maker for Curtis-Wright airplane factory.  While employed at Curtis-Wright  he was active with the UAW—CIO Volunteer Organizing Committee and  the UE for United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers and also organized employees at the Wurlitzer, Spaulding Fibre, Buffalo Bolt, Columbus McKinnon, Wales-Stippit, Pratt & Letchworth, Otis Elevator, & Blaw-Knox.   In addition, Dr. Fried led the Labor Writers Workshop and was a representative to the Buffalo AFL-CIO Council.  Questionable activities while representing several unions resulted in his blacklist from unions and employment for several years.   He served in World War II on the 20th Infantry and worked up to the position of lieutenant until discharged in late 1945.   During the McCarthy Era, Fried was a person of interest by the Un-American Activities Committee on two separate occasions in which he refused to answer questions. Most notably from a 2007 interview “my answer will be, I will not answer. The first and the Fifth” “or in other words, it’s none of your business”. 

For a short time Fried served as director of the Buffalo Contemporary Theatre that produced shows about the working class.  Dr. Fried attended the University of New York at Buffalo earning a Bachelor and Masters of Arts in Humanities in 1971 and a Ph. D in English in 1974.  Dr. Fried taught English and Creative Writing courses at Buffalo State College and retired in 1983 but continued to teach part-time until 2008.

In 2009, Dr. Fried donated his collection to the E.H. Butler Library Archives and Special Collections.  The collection of 36 boxes includes plays, letters, correspondences, audio and video tapes, and FBI papers.  In addition, Dr. Fried granted Buffalo State College permission to perform his plays for the educational benefits of students with no fee charged for performances.  Dr. Fried died on February 25, 2011 at his Kenmore Nursing Home, he was 97. 

Scope and Contents: Plays, letters, correspondences, audio and video tapes, and FBI papers.

Inventory: Please contact the Archives & Special Collections Department for access, holdings, and inventories.