The New Deal’s Federal Writers’ Project (FWP), begun in 1935, employed more than 10,000 out-of work writers, editors, art critics, researchers and historians. Women made up forty percent of the workforce, including as state directors. It hired now-renowned African American writers. The FWP’s founding director, Henry Alsberg, was a journalist, a Jew and a suspected Communist. A group of conservative business men complained to FDR that the Project was “dominated by Communist sympathizers.” A censor was installed at the FWP’s central office to police for “subversive” material. The chair of the House Un-American Activities Committee, Rep. Martin Dies, claimed that one-third of the FWP’s members were Communists. Alsberg was called to testify, then fired. The FWP was dissolved and nearly erased from the public’s mind. Until now.