A. Weinberg; Writer and Social Historian

Social historian and author Arthur Weinberg, probably best known for his biographical works on legendary attorney Clarence Darrow, died Saturday at a Chicago hospital. He was 73.

Weinberg wrote “Attorney for the Damned,” an anthology of Darrow’s greatest case summations, in 1957; it was on the New York Times best-seller list for 19 weeks. He also co-authored with his wife, Lila, six other works of nonfiction, including “Clarence Darrow: A Sentimental Rebel” in 1980.

The others are “The Muckrakers,” selected for the White House library during the John F. Kennedy Administration; “Instead of Violence,” a study of nonviolence through the ages; “Some Dissenting Voices,” a book about dissenters aimed at young adults; “Verdicts Out of Court,” another Darrow study, and “Passport to Utopia,” about economic and social highlights in U.S. history. Both “A Sentimental Rebel” and “Verdicts” are to be rereleased this spring.

At the time of his death, Weinberg was a 1988-89 Lloyd Lewis Fellow in American History at Chicago’s Newberry Library, where he spent many years as a scholar and researcher.


Describing himself as a “philosophical anarchist,” Weinberg was active in the Industrial Workers of the World and served a term as its president during the 1930s.

At the time of his death, Weinberg and his wife were working on “Bold Spirits: Women of Hull House,” about the early women who lived in that pioneering place, and also were consultants on two television projects about Darrow’s life.

His writing and book reviews have appeared in numerous publications, including the Saturday Review, Ebony, the Progressive and the Los Angeles Times.