House Un-American Activities Committee Created

1938

Rep. Martin Dies, a Texas Democrat, persuades the House to create the Un-American Activities Committee to investigate allegedly subversive political activities in the country. Dies chairs the committee, which at first investigates right-wing and left-wing groups.

In 1947, the committee will investigate the Hollywood movie industry to find leftist sympathizers. Some people named members of left-wing groups, but others refused and were convicted of contempt. Those who were named were ordered to testify before the committee. If they refused to name names, they were blacklisted by film studios and prevented from working in the industry.