Ruth Mansberg Collection of Bernard Bender

1 box (0.209 linear feet)
Call no.: MS 1204
rotating decorative images from SCUA collections

Background on Ruth Mansberg

Ruth Mansberg was a writer, editor, poet, mother, and ardent peace activist. She worked with several civic, social, service, and political organizations dedicated to social change including a Pound Ridge, NY Nuclear Freeze chapter, the League of Women Voters, and the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. She lived with her husband Hyman Mansberg and children Laura and Daniel in Pound Ridge, NY until moving to Chapel Hill, NC in 1991. After sidelining a writing career due to family obligations, she returned to writing upon her children entering adulthood. She enrolled in a continuing education writing course at the University of Connecticut, Stamford, where, thanks to a teacher there named Mel Goldberg, she picked up freelance work with two trade journals, Dental Management and Optometric Management. In 1971 she pitched a story to Dental Management on Bernard Bender, a 52 year old Los Angeles dentist who was convicted of helping young men avoid the draft by applying braces to their teeth. He was convicted in February of 1972 and sentenced to 15 years in Federal prison, but was later released in late 1973. Mansberg worked for a number of newspapers and trade publications and co-authored two books. She died in November of 2000 in Chapel Hill

Scope of collection

This small collection consists of Mansberg's correspondence and research materials related to her article, "The Strange Case of Dr. Bender", which was published in the June 1972 issue of Dental Management. This includes correspondence between Mansberg, Dr. Bender and his wife Bea discussing the article and other things. In addition, there is correspondence with Mel Goldberg, the editor of Dental Management and others, whom she wrote for information about the case. There is also a reporter's transcript of the trial and the testimony of dentist Spiro J. Chacanos.


Article notes
Box 1: 1.
Correspondence: Article research
1971 Dec. - 1972 Aug.
Box 1: 2.
Correspondence: Bender, Bernard/Bea
1972 Mar. - 1973 Aug.
Box 1: 3.
Correspondence: Friedlander, Florence
1972 Jan. - Jun.
Box 1: 4.
Cowan, Paul: "The Dentist and the Draft", Village Voice
1971 Nov. 11
Box 1: 5.
"Dentist Given 15 Year Term in Draft Evader Aid", Stamford Advocate
ca.1971 Feb.
Box 1: 6.
Mansberg, Ruth, "Orthodontia: Modus Operandi for Conspiracy" article draft
Box 1: 7.
Mansberg, Ruth: "The Strange Case of Dr. Bender", "Postscript to Bender: Pro and Con"Dental Management
1972 Jun., 1972 Aug.
Box 1: 8.
U.S. v. Bernard Bender: Testimony of Spiro J. Chacanos
Box 1: 9.
U.S. v. Bernard Bender: Reporter's transcript of proceedings
1972 Feb. 28
Box 1: 9.

Administrative information


The collection is open for research.


Gift of Laura M. Cotterman, 2023.

Processing Information

Processed by Jeremy Smith, November 2023.



Copyright and Use (More information )

Cite as: Ruth Mansberg Collection of Bernard Bender (MS 1204). Robert S. Cox Special Collections and University Archives Research Center, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.

Search terms


  • Draft resisters--United States
  • Draft--United States
  • Trials (Conspiracy)--California--Los Angeles
  • Vietnam War, 1961-1975--Protest movements--United States--California
  • Women journalists--United States


  • Mansberg, Ruth, 1924- [main entry]
  • Bender, Bernard

Genres and formats

  • Articles
  • Clippings (information artifacts)
  • Correspondence
  • Legal documents
  • Notes (documents)
  • Testimonies