Vol. XXXV, No.1
FOUNDED IN 1937 BY THE VOLUNTEERS OF THE LINCOLN BRIGADE. PUBLISHED BY THE ABRAHAM LINCOLN BRIGADE ARCHIVES (ALBA)
Human Rights Award for Florida Farmworkers
CIW staff members and Fair Food Program educators Leonel Perez, Silvia Perez and Nely Rodriguez outside the CIW office in Immokalee. Photo CIW.
Women Journalists in Spain (p. 16) ALBA Moves Offices (p. 4) The Bremen Riot (p. 10)
Dear Friends and Comrades: Founded by the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade 239 W. 14th Street, Suite 2 New York, NY 10011 (212) 674-5398 www.alba-valb.org Editor Print Edition Peter N. Carroll Editor Online Edition www.albavolunteer.org Sebastiaan Faber Associate Editor Aaron B. Retish Book Review Editor Joshua Goode Graphic Design www.eyestormonline.com Editorial Assistance Phil Kavanaugh Manuscripts, inquiries, and letters to the editor may be sent by email to email@example.com The editors reserve the right to modify texts for length and style. Books for review may be sent to Joshua Goode Claremont Graduate University Blaisdell House, #5, 143 East 10th Street Claremont, CA 91711
www.albavolunteer.org The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) is an educational non-profit dedicated to promoting social activism and the defense of human rights. ALBA’s work is inspired by the American volunteers of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade who fought fascism in the Spanish Civil War (1936-39). Drawing on the ALBA collections in New York University’s Tamiment Library, and working to expand such collections, ALBA works to preserve the legacy of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade as an inspiration for present and future generations.
IN THIS ISSUE
This past January, hundreds of thousands took to the streets in the Second Women’s March. Their protest underscored that fighting misogyny, xenophobia, and exploitation requires broad alliances. As this issue of the Volunteer illustrates, the Women’s March follows a tradition of activist protest that has deep roots in our nation’s history. Eighty-three years ago, for example, thousands of New Yorkers openly defied the despised Nazi flag flying on the bow of the Bremen, as Dan Czitrom recounts on page 11. Struggle against oppression carries with it real personal cost, as Noël Valis details in her account of the experiences of women journalists Martha Gellhorn, Josephine Herbst, and Frances Davis (see page 17). And David Bacon, in his article on the role of Spanish Civil war vets in organizing California farm workers (see page 7), reminds us that the struggle against racism and in support of human rights cannot be separated from the pursuit of social justice. Chris Brooks and Lisa Clemmer explain (see page 14) how, for some, participation in the Spanish Civil War was a family affair. ALBA will continue to develop the connections between past and present in our forthcoming teachers’ workshops in Pittsburgh, Plymouth, Mass., New York City, and Bergen County, NJ, as well as during a two-part symposium on the Spanish Civil War at Hofstra University. For more details, see the calendar below. Drawing on the experiences of the women and men of the International Brigades, ALBA is firmly committed to the basic principle that labor rights and human rights go hand in hand. For this reason, we are proud to announce that the recipient of the 2018 ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism is the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (see page 3). Based in Immokalee, Florida, the Coalition is a worker-based organization devoted to the battle for workers’ rights and against human trafficking and gender-based violence. At ALBA we look to the future with optimism. With your support, we will never cease to persevere as we continue to uphold the ideals of the Lincoln Brigade.
Fraser Ottanelli Chair of the Board of Governors
Marina Garde Executive Director
ALBA Teaching Institutes Spring Calendar FEBRUARY 22: One-day institute in Pittsburgh, PA; co-hosted by the Allegheny Intermediate Unit and Classrooms Without Borders.
supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) in partnership with the City Council.
p 6 Letter to the Editor
MARCH 2: One-day institute in Clemson, SC; co-hosted by Clemson University.
p 7 HR Column: Farm Workers Unions
MARCH 15: Two seminars in Long Island, NY; co-hosted by Hofstra University.
APRIL 15: Seminar in Pittsburgh, PA; cohosted by the Allegheny Intermediate Unit and Classrooms Without Borders.
p 3 Florida Farm Workers p 4 ALBA Moves
p 10 The Bremen Riot p 13 Fathers & Sons in Spain p 16 Women Journalists p 19 Ferdinand the Bull p 21 Book Review p 22 Contributions 2 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
MARCH 23-24: Two-day institute in Plymouth, MA; co-hosted by Collaborative for Educational Services. MARCH 24: Table at the 8th Annual Conference of New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE) in New York City, NY. APRIL 14, 15, 28: Three-day institute in New York City, NY; co-sponsored by NYU’s Tamiment Library & King Juan Carlos Center (KJCC), and
APRIL 21: One-day workshop in Seattle, WA; co-hosted by the University of Washington. MAY 25: One-day workshop in Bergen County, NJ; co-hosted by the Bergen County Technical Schools.
For more information, contact Andrés Fernández Carrasco, Educational Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org
LABOR RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS:
ALBA to Honor Activist Organizers at May Event By Fraser Ottanelli
This year’s recipient of the ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Award is the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, a worker-based labor and human rights organization founded in Florida in 1993.
slavery and other human rights abuses in agriculture,” said CIW Member Julia de la Cruz. “Even more recently, the program has provided a success model for ending sexual violence in the age of #MeToo, as the country seeks to combat sexual harassment and assault in the workplace.”
n March 6, 1930, over one million people took to the streets across the United States in the first major organized protest of the Great Depression. Women and men of all ethnic and racial backgrounds congregated to demand unemployment relief and protest evictions. The largest demonstration took place in New York City’s Union Square, where tens of thousands battled police in an attempt to march down Broadway to bring their demands to City Hall. Among the many were three future Lincoln Brigaders, Lou Gordon, Abe Smorodin and Saul Wellman, who had cut classes from Boy’s High School in Brooklyn to attend. Years later, Wellman recalled how the reality of widespread economic hardship combined with the understanding of the power of collective action turned him into a “professional revolutionary.” The youthful ardor that led them to take to the streets of New York in 1930 saw them, along with thousands of other women and men from around the world, on the front lines of the battle against oppression and exploitation in Spain seven years later. Shaped by their consciousness of the inequities produced by capitalism, the three young men spent their lives fighting for social justice and human dignity.
While continuing to organize for fair wages and better working conditions, the CIW turned its attention to a campaign to eliminate modern-day slavery in the agricultural industry, under which workers are held against their will by violence or the threat of violence, including beatings, shootings, and pistol-whippings. The CIW’s Anti-Slavery Campaign has uncovered, investigated, and assisted in the prosecution of numerous multi-state farm slavery operations across the Southeastern U.S., helping to liberate over 1,200 workers held against their will since the early 1990s. CIW also pioneered the worker-centered approach to slavery prosecution, playing a key role in the passage of the 2000 Trafficking Victims Protection Act, and advocating for solutions to prevent and end all forms of human trafficking and modern slavery around the world.
The same ideals that inspired Lou, Abe and Saul animate this year’s recipient of the ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Award: the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW).
One of the largest monetary awards for human rights in the world, the ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism is a $100,000 cash prize granted annually by ALBA and the Puffin Foundation in honor of the 3,000 Americans who volunteered in the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) to fight fascism under the banner of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. The award was created by visionary and philanthropist Perry Rosenstein, President of the Puffin Foundation, which established an endowed fund for this human rights award in 2010.
Founded in 1993 in Immokalee, Florida, the CIW is a workerbased labor and human rights organization. It began its activities by organizing protests against wage cuts and the use of violence by supervisors against field workers. In 2005—after numerous strikes, marches, a nationwide boycott of Taco Bell and a 30-day hunger strike—the CIW secured major wage increases and the implementation of the Fair Food Program (FFP), a strict code of conduct governing working conditions for farm workers. These victories inspired similar successful campaigns with fast food giants McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, and Chipotle, and retailers Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Walmart and The Fresh Market. The Fair Food Program standards are enforced through legally binding agreements, in which participants commit to buying produce only from growers in good standing with the FFP. The United Nations Working Group on Business and Human Rights has described the FFP as a “smart mix of tools” that “could serve as a model elsewhere in the world.” “The Fair Food Program has proven itself to be a uniquely effective solution to the scourge of
Lou, Abe and Saul, and many others like them, understood the connection between social inequality and the rise of oppressive regimes. With this award ALBA honors their memory and renews its commitment to supporting ongoing struggles against exploitation in the United States and across the globe.
ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism Annual Award Ceremony Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 2:30 p.m. Japan Society, 333 E 47th St. New York, NY 10017 For tickets, visit www.alba-valb.org, contact us at email@example.com, or call 212-674-5398.
March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 3
A New Home for ALBA in New York, and a Homecomingâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;of Sorts By James D. FernĂĄndez
ALBA has moved offices from one historical location to another one. Our new home is steeped in history and ripe with promise.
North sidewalk of West 14th Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues, c. 1929. New York Public Library Digital Photos. 4 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
The building that would become the true focal point of Little Spain in the 1920s and 30s is the handsome brownstone that still stands, and that still flies a Spanish flag, at 239 West 14th Street.
fter four decades at 799 Broadway, ALBA has moved its offices to a new location in Manhattan. The historical Broadway building known as the “St. Denis Hotel” has been bought by a developer and will be demolished. But our new home—239 West 14th Street, to be exact—is steeped in history and ripe with promise. We are moving into the building of the Spanish Benevolent Society, also known as “La Nacional.” By the early 1930s, the area around the west end of Manhattan’s 14th Street had already become known as “Little Spain.” As the main commercial artery of this part of the city— where Greenwich Village, Chelsea and the Meatpacking District all converge around the Hudson River piers—“La Catorce” was chosen as the site of the first Catholic Church established in New York expressly to minister to the growing population of immigrants from Spain. Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe was founded in 1902, between Seventh and Eighth Avenues, on the north side of the street. In the following decades, that very block, on both sides of this broad two-way cross-street, would become home to a remarkable number of businesses and organizations catering primarily to Spaniards. By 1914, for example, just a few doors east of the church, Casa María would be founded; a Spanish settlement house that promoted “the temporal, social, mental, moral and religious welfare of young women, particularly for those dependent upon their own exertions for support.” And because Spaniards have bodies as well as souls, by the mid-1920s a brownstone storefront just across the street from the church and settlement house would become a bustling Spanish grocery and general store. In 1929, that store would be renamed Casa Moneo, a place destined to become a legendary institution: the main purveyor, for decades, of chorizo, saffron and all things Spanish to New Yorkers from the neighborhood and far beyond. But the building that would become the true focal point of Little Spain in the 1920s and 30s is the handsome brownstone that still stands, and that still flies a Spanish flag, at 239 West 14th Street. This row house was acquired in 1925 by a remarkable Puerto-Rican born Catalonian, José Camprubí, who at the time was the owner-editor of New York’s only Spanish-language daily newspaper, La Prensa, and President of the Unión Benéfica Española [UBE]. The UBE was a mutual aid society that had come into its own during the World War I years, when Spanish immigration to the US reached its historic peak. The building has served as the
clubhouse/headquarters of the UBE and the other Spanish organizations that eventually merged with it, including La Nacional (founded in 1868). Today, in the midst of the 150th anniversary of the founding of La Nacional, the descendants of those immigrants of more than a century ago are combining forces with the recent wave of Spanish professionals who, like their precursors, have come to New York in search of opportunities. And together they are breathing new life into the club and its landmark building, by renovating the club’s restaurant, developing vibrant cultural programs, and attracting tenants and partners who share the club’s sense of history and its connections to Spain. During the mid-1930s, as storm clouds gathered over Spain and the rest of Europe, West 14th Street was already a bustling enclave of Spanish immigrants. The building at number 239 was a de facto community center for the neighborhood, with a restaurant on the ground floor, ballroom on the second, and meeting rooms as well as rented offices and apartments on the third and fourth floors. New York’s Spanish colony was predominantly a working class community. Like Spanish immigrant enclaves all over the US at the time, its members had, for the most part, high hopes for the Second Republic. In fact, many Spaniards returned to their country during the early years of the precarious democratic regime inaugurated in 1931. Many others were toying with the idea of returning, when, in July of 1936 the Civil War exploded. “The Spanish War Comes to 14th Street,” screeched the headline of the red-baiting publication “Telling Facts Concerning Communism” in its January-February 1939 issue. The article, biased and lopsided as it was, did point to an underlying reality: though predominantly pro-Republican, the Spanish colony was ideologically split. Carmen Barañano, for example, the owner of Casa Moneo was a woman of strong Catholic beliefs and a generous benefactor of Our Lady of Guadalupe church just across the street from her store. She was also staunchly pro-Franco—although many—probably most—of her neighbors and customers were hard-core Republicans. And so it was, that the war in Spain would usher in a long period of solidarity and strife in both Spains, Big and Little. Still, throughout the war and the post-war years, 239 West 14th Street would remain a beacon of anti-fascist and anti-Francoist mobilization and activism. And, as of 2018, a most auspicious address for the new offices of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives. James D. Fernández, professor of Spanish at NYU, serves on ALBA’s Executive Committee.
Top: Spanish women picketing Casa Moneo, the Spanish grocery store on West 14th Street, in the heart of Little Spain. Courtesy of the Cividanes family of New York. Bottom: Telling Facts Concerning Communism, Vol 1, No. 3, Jan-Feb, 1939. March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 5
Letter to editor Editors’ Note: Due to a technical glitch, only a small part of Mr. Murtha’s letter was printed in the December 2017 issue. We apologize for the oversight and print the letter in full below. To the Editor: Reading “Forgotten Fighters: American Anarchist Volunteers in the Spanish Civil War” (The Volunteer, Sept. 2017), I noted that at least one prominent American who volunteered for service in the Anarchist Durruti Column remains forgotten. I mean, of course, Carl Marzani. Herein, I borrow freely from Carl’s memoir, “The Education of a Reluctant Radical”, Vol. 3, pp. 11-36. Carl had been awarded a fellowship to study at Oxford. By the time he arrived, early in October 1936, Germany and Italy had both invaded Spain and savage fighting was underway. He knew he couldn’t stay away so he persuaded the Daily Herald to take him on as its foreign correspondent in Spain. Early in December, he went to Spain by way of Paris where he boarded a train carrying nearly a thousand, mostly French, volunteers for the international Brigades. Carl was the only American. The mood on the train was somber. These men were going to fight because they felt they had to. There were no illusions of glory. The train arrived in Barcelona at 3 a.m. Right from the start, Carl felt pressure to volunteer and step by step, he skidded down the slippery slope until he ended up at the Aragon Front. On his way to join the Spanish Army at Sariñena, he met an Anarchist, Captain Amilar, who persuaded him to come to Bujaraloz and join the Durruti Column, an Anarchist militia. Carl had heard of Buenaventura Durruti, a ferocious Anarchist leader who had helped clean Catalonia of fascist forces, brought a brigade to defend Madrid and then led a column of 9,000 men towards Zaragoza. In Madrid, he had put his troops under Army Command. Shortly thereafter, he was shot dead while addressing his men, ostensibly by a stray bullet. Many believed that he had been murdered by one of his own for a violation of Anarchist dogma in submitting to Army Command. After Durruti’s death, the column was taken over by Lucio Ruano. The Durruti Column held the center of the Aragon Front. On its left was a large P.O.U.M. (Workers United Marxist Party) column. George Orwell was serving with the P.O.U.M. Column at the time but he and Carl never met. The front was mostly quiet with the odd rifle shot now and again and occasional savage skirmishes. Carl once accompanied Amilcar to the field hospital at Peña Alba where he was appalled, not so much by the dead, who were laid in neat rows covered by sacking, but by the wounded, some of them horribly so, who were operated on without anesthetics. Ruano put Carl to work translating a French Army Manual. Later, he was put in charge of training truck drivers and organizing transport. Lucio Ruano was poorly educated but was well read, articulate, and well-grounded philosophically. He believed that the best government was the least government. So did Carl, but he was getting suspicious “Too much government” was the catchword used by reactionary opponents of the New Deal. Ruano was deeply opposed to government regulation which, he explained, “Undermines the self-reliance of a person and impairs his sense of responsibility”... 6 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
Ruano refused to consider disciplining the troops or turning them into a modern army. To him, this represented regulation so extensive that men were enslaved and their uniform a badge of slavery. Anarchist theory held discipline came from within the person, “The Discipline of Indiscipline”. In practice, this often added up to paralysis. The troops could sit around for hours discussing whether or not to show up at the battle. Carl thought that “The Discipline of Indiscipline” was a meaningless abstraction, a delusion—something like Democratic Centralism, which has no democracy in it or the “free” market where huge corporations are propped up by the government because they are “too big to fail”. Carl thought that Ruano had surrendered his reason. He participated in discussion and gave his opinions freely. He argued that Ruano's arguments applied to a bourgeois army trained to dominate and control but not to a people’s army raised to defend the people’s liberty whose uniform was a badge of honor. Ruano, infuriated, grabbed Carl by the lapels, shook him and declared, “You are all head and no heart. You don't understand the Spanish Soul.” Then he flung Carl back into his seat with such force that he sprawled out on the floor. Ruano, immediately sorry, gave Carl his hand, pulled him to his feet and asked if Carl was hurt. Carl replied, “Only in my Dignity as a man”. Ruano laughed and the tension dissipated. The leadership of the Anarchist militias was under heavy pressure to embrace reality. The greatest pressure came from the success of the Fifth Regiment (Quinto Regimiento) which had been created by the Spanish Communist Party to show, by its example, the value of discipline and training. It was renowned for its ferocity and valor and had laid to rest forever any implication that Spaniards were not willing to fight. The International Brigades enjoyed similar renown. Carl subsequently made it his business to avoid serious political discussion in Ruano’s presence. Nevertheless, not long thereafter, Ruano came to him and told him it was time for him to leave the column. Carl agreed and Ruano revealed that the Anarchist Council had taken from the tone of Carl’s remarks that he was an agent of the Comintern (Communist Third International), sent to spread confusion in the Column and sentenced Carl to death. Ruano had told them that he would give Carl the benefit of doubt and get him out of there. Carl left for Barcelona immediately and from there returned to Oxford, where, despite his good repute in anti-Stalinist circles, he was soon recruited to the British Communist Party by Abe Lazarus. Carl had not been impressed by Anarchism in action but had liked what the Communist Party was doing in Spain. Carl later said that he had not contributed much to the Spanish Civil War but that it had contributed massively to his understanding of politics, international affairs and the complexity of human beings. Robert A. Murtha, Jr. Counsellor at Law
HUMAN RIGHTS COLUMN
FROM SPAIN TO DELANO: THE RADICAL ROOTS OF FARM WORKERS UNIONS
By David Bacon
We can’t talk about defending the human and labor rights of farm workers without talking about their history of organizing unions—and the efforts by the government to suppress them.
holds that farm worker unions didn’t exist until the creation of United Farm Workers in the ‘60s and that the farm worker unions and advocacy organizations of today appeared out of nowhere, with no history of struggle that went before. But in fact, during the 1930s Filipinos and other farm workers organized left-wing unions and huge strikes. According to Rick Baldoz, a professor at Oberlin College, “The burgeoning strike activity involving thousands of Filipinos in the mid-1930s occasioned a furious backlash from growers who worked closely with local law enforcement.” The people who fought to organize unions in the ‘30s, ‘40s and ‘50s on the West Coast were the same people who fought for Spain—in the same organizations, like the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, and especially ILWU Local 37. Of all the efforts to organize farm workers, the ones that were closest to the International Brigades were those of the Filipinos during those years. And the forces that later went after the Lincoln vets were the same as those that went after the farm worker unions, using the same tools: blacklisting and deportations. Baldoz gained access to the FBI files on one of the most radical of the Filipino leaders, Carlos Bulosan. “The fact that these partisans attracted the attention of federal authorities during the Cold War is hardly surprising,” he says. “Filipino workers had developed a well-earned reputation for labor militancy in the United States dating back to the early 1930s. That a considerable number of Filipinos (both from the U.S. and the Philippines) had volunteered for the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War… only added to the perception that they were immersed in international left-wing politics.” iberal mythology
In their history of Asian volunteers in the Spanish Civil War, Nancy and Len Tsou write: “At least 11 Filipinos went to Spain to join the International Brigades. Among them, several came from the United States. [Pedro] Penino was able to establish the Rizal Company, a part of the International Brigades named in honor of a Filipino national hero.” The Tsous name the following volunteers: Manuel Lizarraga, Artemio Ortega Luna, Enrique Almenar Gabra, Modesto Ausobasa Esteban, Dimitri Gorostiaga, Eduardo Miranda Gonzales, Pedro Penino, Carlos Lopez Maestu, Mark Fajardo, Servando Acevedo Mondragon and Aquilino Belmonte Capinolio. Bulosan had worked as a farm laborer since his arrival in the U.S. in 1930, but after his health was destroyed by his work he tried to make a living as a journalist. “Every word is a weapon for freedom,” the FBI reported him telling a colleague. In 1946, Bulosan wrote America Is in the Heart, a classic and moving account of life as a Filipino migrant farm worker during the 1930s. The FBI viewed the book as evidence of his Communist associations during the Cold War. Bulosan was hired by leaders of Local 37 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Ernesto Mangaoang and Chris Mensalvas, to edit the union’s yearbook in 1952. Among its many appeals for support for radical causes, it urged solidarity with the Huk movement in the Philippines, against continued U.S. imperialist domination of its former colony. In the 1930s, Local 37 was organized by Filipinos who were the workforce in the salmon canneries on the Alaska coast. They were mostly single men, recruited to come to the U.S. from the Philippines. They were shipped to the canneries from Seattle every season, where they faced discrimination and terrible conditions. They organized Local 37 to change those conditions and
Carlos Bulosan March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 7
Cannery Worker’s Union leaders contribute to the Caughlan Defense fund after the attorney was indicted for perjury in a blatant attempt to shut down the legal wing of the CRC and the Communist movement. (New World August 9, 1948). Courtesy of UW Seattle.
force the fish companies to sign contracts. Until 1949, Local 37 had been part of the Congress of Industrial Organizations’ (CIO) farm workers union, the United Cannery, Agricultural and Packing House Workers of America. From 1936 to 1953, the U.S. labor movement was split between the left-wing CIO and the rightwing American Federation of Labor. In 1949, as the Cold War started, the CIO expelled nine unions, including UCAPAWA and the ILWU, because of their leftwing politics and often Communist leaders. At the height of the McCarthyite hysteria more than 30 members of Local 37 were arrested and threatened with deportation to the Philippines. Raymundo Cabanilla, a former CIO organizer, named names to the FBI, identifying fellow labor activists, including Ernesto Mangaoang, as Communists. Eventually Mangaoang’s deportation case was thrown out by the courts. He argued that he couldn’t be deported, given that he was a U.S. “national” when he arrived in Seattle in the 20s. “National” was a status given Filipinos because the Philippines was a U.S. colony at the time. Filipinos couldn’t be considered immigrants, but they weren’t quite citizens either. Meanwhile, the Federal government tried to bankrupt Local 37 by forcing the accused workers to pay high bails and lawyers’ fees. Union leaders were so tied up in legal defense that a conservative faction took control of the local. That group held it until it was thrown out in the 1980s by a new young generation of radical Filipinos, two of whom, Silme Domingo and Gene Viernes (a former farm worker) were assassinated. UCAPAWA (renamed the Food, Tobacco and Agricultural Workers Union) was destroyed in the 1949 purge of the CIO, and the Filipino local in Seattle was taken in by Harry Bridges’ union, becoming ILWU Local 37. It survived, and today is part of the ILWU’s Inland Boatman’s Union. Today, 52 years after the historic 1965 Delano grape strike, it is important to reexamine this history, especially the radical career of Larry Itliong, who headed the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC). Itliong not only shared leadership with Cesar Chavez but actually started the strike. He had a long history as an organizer. Itliong was Ernesto Mangaoang’s protégé. In the late 1940s, he was Local 37’s dispatcher, sending workers on the boats from Seattle to the Alaska salmon canneries. After the salmon season was over, many Filipinos would return home to 8 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
California’s Salinas and San Joaquin Valleys, where they worked as farm laborers for the rest of the year. In the segregated barrios of towns like Stockton and Salinas they organized hometown associations and social clubs. Itliong used these networks to organize Filipinos when they went to work in the fields. Along with Chris Mensalvas, at the time Local 37 president, Itliong organized a strike in Stockton’s asparagus fields in 1949. Once the left-wingers lost power in the union, however, its conservative leaders stopped its farm worker organizing drives. Still, in the early 1950s Filipino farm workers continued to organize. Ernesto Galarza (author of “Merchants of Labor”) started the National Farm Labor Union, which struck the giant DiGiorgio Corporation, then California’s largest grower. In 1959 the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC) was set up by the merged AFL-CIO. After hiring Itliong as an organizer because of his history among Filipino workers, AWOC used flying squads of pickets to mount quick strikes. In 1962, it struck the Imperial Valley lettuce harvest, demanding $1.25 per hour. The grape strike started in Delano on September 8, 1965, when Filipino pickers walked off the fields. Mexican workers joined them two weeks later. The strike went on for five years, until all California table grape growers were forced to sign contracts in 1970. The strike was a watershed struggle for civil and labor rights, supported by millions of people across the country, breathing new life into the labor movement and opening doors for immigrants and people of color. California’s politics have changed profoundly in these 52 years, in large part because of that strike. Delano’s mayor today is Filipino. That would have been unthinkable in 1965, when growers treated the town as a plantation. Children of farm worker families have become members of the state legislature. Last year they spearheaded passage of a law that requires the same overtime pay for farm workers as for all other workers—the first state to pass such a law. The 1965 Delano grape strike did not, however, start in Delano. It was in the Coachella Valley, near the Mexican border where California’s grape harvest begins, that Filipino workers struck the vineyards that summer. They won a 40¢/hour wage increase from grape growers and forced authorities to drop charges against arrested strikers. The Coachella strike was organized by Larry Itliong. After the grape harvest moved north to Delano, he and the Filipino workers of AWOC walked out again.
International volunteers in Spain. Left to right: a seaman from Chile; Sterling Rochester (USA); Artemio Luna (Philippines); Juan Santiago (Cuba); and Jack Shirai (Japan).
The timing of the 1965 strike was not accidental. It took place the year after Galarza, Bert Corona, Cesar Chavez, and other civil rights and labor activists forced Congress to repeal Public Law 78 and end the bracero contract labor program, under which growers brought workers from Mexico under tightly controlled, almost slave-like conditions. Farm worker leaders acted after the law’s repeal, because once the program was ended growers could no longer bring braceros into the U.S. to break strikes. The Delano strike was a movement of immigrant workers. To organize farm labor, both Filipinos and Mexicans wanted to keep growers and the government from using immigration policy against them. In ending the bracero program, they sought instead immigration policies favoring families and communities. In the 1965 immigration reform they established family reunification as a basic principle of immigration policy. This enabled thousands of people, especially family members of farm workers, to come from the Philippines, Mexico and other developing countries. The Delano strike was not spontaneous or unexpected. It was a product of decades of worker organizing and earlier farm worker strikes. Many Filipino workers in Coachella and Delano were members of ILWU Local 37 in 1965, when the grape strike began. Every year they still traveled from the San Joaquin Valley (where Delano is located) to the Alaska fish canneries. Through the end of their lives, they were often active members of both Local 37 and the United Farm Workers. Cold war fears of communism were strong in the 1960s—one reason why the contributions of Itliong and the Filipinos were obscured. The strike in Delano owes much to Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta, Gilbert Padilla, and other Chicano and Mexican leaders who came out of earlier community organizing movements. But the left-wing leadership of Itliong, Philip Veracruz and other rank-and-file Filipino workers was equally important. Chavez willingly acknowledged that the NFWA hadn’t intended to strike in 1965. The decision to act was made by left-wing Filipinos, a product of their history of militant fights against growers. Their political philosophy saw the strike as the fundamental weapon to win better conditions. And it was a decision made by workers on the ground, not by leaders or strategists far away. Growers had pitted Mexicans and Filipinos against each other for decades. The alliance between Itliong’s AWOC and the Cesar Chavez-led National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) was
a popular front alliance of workers who had, in many cases, different politics. AWOC’s members had their roots in the red UCAPAWA. NFWA’s roots were in the Community Service Organization (CSO), which was sometimes hostile to Communists. Yet both organizations were able to find common ground and support each other during the strike, eventually forming the UFW. Strikers in Delano developed close friendships. Cesar Chavez’s son Paul recalls the way the older Filipino men looked at him and other children of Mexican strikers as their own family. Most of the Filipinos were single men, because anti-miscegenation laws prohibited them from marrying non-Filipinas, and the immigration of women from the Philippines was limited until the late 1960s. In the wake of the grape strike, the UFW and scores of young activists from California cities built a retirement home for them in Delano, Paolo Agbayani Retirement Village, to honor their contribution. Philip Veracruz, a Filipino grape picker who became a vicepresident of the UFW and later left over disagreements with Chavez, wrote during the strike’s fourth year: “The Filipino decision of the great Delano Grape Strike delivered the initial spark to explode the most brilliant incendiary bomb for social and political changes in U.S. rural life.” Liberal mythology has hidden the true history of the grape strike’s connection to some of the most radical movements in the country’s labor history. The contribution of that generation of Filipino radicals, including some who went to Spain, should be honored— not just because they helped make history, but because their political and trade union ideas are as relevant to workers today as they were in 1965. Those ideas, which they kept alive through the worst years of the Cold War, led to a renaissance of farm worker organizing that is ongoing to this day. David Bacon is a California-based writer and photographer. He was a factory worker and union organizer for two decades with the United Farm Workers, the United Electrical Workers and other unions, and has been documenting the lives of farm workers through photographs and journalism since 1988. His latest book, In the Fields of the North / En los Campos del Norte, copublished by the University of California Press (Berkeley) and the Colegio de la Frontera Norte (Tijuana), shows the lives of farm workers in photographs and oral histories.
March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 9
Bill Bailey in The Good Fight
New Light on the 1935 Bremen Riot By Daniel Czitrom
When the Bremen, a German luxury ship proudly flying the Swastika, was ready to sail from its berth at Pier 46 in New York, two seamen who later volunteered to fight in Spain managed to fool the crew and rip down the Nazi flag. In the archives, Dan Czitrom came across a deserter’s testimony that fills out the story.
into State Department files at the National Archives, I recently came across a curious document that provides a fuller picture of the so-called Bremen riot in 1935. The 1,200 passenger German luxury ship, proudly flying the Swastika, was ready to sail from its berth at Pier 46 on 46th Street in New York on July 26. A group of Communists, including two seamen who later volunteered to fight in Spain, planned and executed a daring dash to the bowsprit, ripping down the Swastika and sending it into the Hudson River. Thousands of sympathetic hile doing research
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demonstrators cheered and a full scale riot broke out on the ship as New York City police struggled to restore order. One detective was beaten, one of the conspirators was shot, and six men were arrested. The incident made the front pages of New York newspapers and led to a diplomatic crisis between Hitler’s government and the United States. In the 1982 documentary The Good Fight, seaman and Lincoln vet Bill Bailey offered his colorful first person account of how he and two others raced across the ship, pushing through startled German crew members, and, after a few anxious
moments with an uncooperative rope, managed to cut down the hated symbol of Nazism. The Bremen incident galvanized anti-fascist and Popular Front activism against the menace of Nazi ideology. One of Bill Bailey’s accomplices was another seaman, William Jamieson, who went by the name William Howe when he volunteered for the Lincoln Brigade in 1937. Born in 1908 in Michigan, Howe had joined the Communist party in 1934, organizing seamen in Seattle, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and other cities. He was recruited to go to Spain by fellow seaman Harry Rubin and future Lincoln com-
Headlines from The Daily News. Still from The Good Fight.
THOUSANDS OF SYMPATHETIC DEMONSTRATORS CHEERED AND A FULL SCALE RIOT BROKE OUT ON THE SHIP AS NEW YORK CITY POLICE STRUGGLED TO RESTORE ORDER.
missar John Robinson. But Howe quickly soured on his experience in Spain. When Bill Bailey met up with him there Howe grumbled angrily about military discipline. He left the front lines more than once and visited the American consulate in Barcelona seeking repatriation. After the battle of Belchite in September 1937, he deserted the front for good and disappeared from the world of radical activism. By June 1938 Howe had made his way back to New York, where he was interviewed by a State Department special agent and a NYPD detective. The stenographic account in the archives is a long, rambling, sometimes contradictory narrative of Howe’s life in the labor movement, the Communist party, and his time in Spain. In a cover note, the State Department explained it was most interested in Howe’s “disclosures regarding the actual methods used in sending American citizens abroad for military service in Spain.” Howe obliged them by detailing the use of fake or stolen passports and birth certificates. He renounced his work with the Communist party and his decision to join the Lincolns. “After you get to Spain, things start to change,” he told his interviewers, “you find out the score. You don’t go there to be dictated to as a volunteer, believing you are going to fight for Democracy. That’s what I went there for—not to fight for Stalin but for principles, but it turned out different.” We can only imagine the questions Howe was asked and the promises (or threats) made by his interviewers. But he did everything he could to distance himself from his former life and com-
rades, and for good measure he embraced a deeply anti-Semitic interpretation of his plight and of the Bremen affair: “The Russian Jews are behind the Communist efforts to recruit men to fight in Spain and supply the finances…Their modus operandi is somewhat similar to that shown in the Bremen case, where they got a number of us fellows—Irish and Christians—to start trouble, concealing the fact that the Jews were responsible for it.” Here is Howe’s account of his role in the Bremen riot:
In 1935 in the month of July, around July 18th, I met Eddie Gillette [Edward Drolette] by the Workers Book Shop on Broad Street, New York. He approached me and asked how I would like to go on a job. I asked what kind of a job and he said: “I cannot let out the information now. Be on the job and have a suit of clothes and look respectable.” I asked what the job was and he said: “We are going on the Bremen, just walking around.” I asked him about it and he told me about [Lawrence] Simpson, who was arrested in Hamburg, and being seamen we were going aboard the Bremen and just protest with our voice. Well, I couldn’t see why they should just take a seaman off the boat in Hamburg and arrest him and throw him in jail. A week later, it was around the 24th or 25th, [William] McCormack approached me in the New China Cafeteria on 14th Street off Broadway. McCormack said: “Do you know what the score is? I am supposed to go up and pull down the Swastika and you fellows make a passage for me to get off the ship.” I asked how many are in on it and he said “fifty seamen” and that we are going to make Hitler release Simpson. That suited me all right. I said: O.K. On the 26th of July, Friday night, we met up here in the Workers Cafeteria Union— the Food Workers Industrial Union away uptown. We met there and they gave us our instructions. We were supposed to go aboard the ship in twos and threes and perform this demonstration. We went
aboard the ship and hung around. Every once in a while the guide would say, “What’s the password?” It was 11:45. At that time he was to make the dash to pull down the Swastika. He never got there. At 11:45 the signal was given—McCormack was knocked cold—the works went off—McCormack was knocked cold before he got there. Daly [Bill Bailey] and [Arthur] Blair, they pulled down the Swastika and threw it in the North River. I got near Gillette when he was shot by Moore of the Police Department. At that time I was wrestling with a Heinie, who was twice as big as myself. I was arrested and put in jail and bail was fixed at $2,500, but later reduced to $1,000, and I was released on $1,000 bail. Vito Marcantonio was my attorney and he was assigned to defend us by the International Defense. We thought we were fighting for Democracy. We didn’t think it was Democracy to take a seaman off a ship and arrest him and that was our way of having Simpson released. It was great publicity for the Communists and they made a lot of money in extending their Communistic propaganda. I gathered this after the thing was over. I haven’t quite got over the effects of the beating I got on that ship. Then I was fully convinced that there was no justice in the United States! I had no use for the police—I was always getting in a jam for something I thought was right. I wasn’t a Red Hot Bolshevik— I opposed a lot of their program and because of that in Spain I was sentenced to be shot. Americans are misled by their propaganda. Their minds are not what they would be if they had a job and the Communists take advantage of that. Howe’s version essentially supports the story Bill Bailey told in The Good Fight and in his memoir, The Kid from Hoboken. Other sources—the official NYPD report, press coverage, a Communist party organizing circular, and court records—give us more context and underscore the international uproar that followed. The plot evidently originated with a small group March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 11
Top: Protesters at Pier 47. Still from The Good Fight. Bottom: The SS Bremen in 1931. Bundesarchiv, Georg Pahl, CC-BY-SA 3.0.
THE PLOT EVIDENTLY ORIGINATED WITH A SMALL GROUP OF COMMUNIST SEAMEN, INCLUDING BAILEY, OUTRAGED BY THE RECENT ARREST IN BERLIN OF FELLOW AMERICAN SEAMAN LAWRENCE SIMPSON. of Communist seamen, including Bailey, outraged by the recent arrest in Berlin of fellow American seaman Lawrence Simpson, who had been thrown in jail when he was found with anti-fascist literature meant for distribution in Germany. The local Communist Party club on Tenth Avenue, which included many seamen and dockworkers, issued a circular announcing a protest demonstration. Addressed to “Catholics of New York” (perhaps a nod to the neighborhood’s largely Irish population), it also called for Jews, Communists, and all anti-fascists to unite against Hitler and fight for civil and religious freedom in Germany. Local police had received a copy of the circular through an informant, and they showed it to the head of the Hamburg American Line. But the line rejected the NYPD’s plan to have cops on board the ship; it relied instead upon fifty uniformed private detectives. The NYPD sent 50 officers and ten mounted police to patrol the demonstration to be held on Pier 86. The original plan cooked up by the local CP leadership called for Bailey, Howe, and about a dozen other men to dress in suits and board the ship while pretending to visit with relatives about to depart. (The ship charged ten cents for this privilege, and each of the men was given a dime to cover it.) As soon as the “all ashore” whistle blew, signaling for visitors to leave the ship, the idea was for the men to form a corridor to the bow, have one or two of them rush up and grab the Swastika, and then bring it ashore for the demonstrators to pour gasoline on and burn. But the veteran seamen were skeptical. “Who the hell worked out a plan like that?” Bailey asked. “Some lunkhead who never saw a ship before, I suppose,” answered another. Meanwhile, the raucous demonstration on shore had grown to thousands, with people carrying placards and banners, and chanting anti-fascist slogans. When the “all ashore” whistle blew at 11:40 p.m., the men went into action. But with German officers on alert for trouble, and with dozens of private cops on board, 12 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
they were forced to scrap the plan and improvise. One group worked its way up the starboard side to the bow, distracting the crew and cops, while a trio of men made for the bow on the portside, intent on pulling down the Swastika. Seaman William “Lowlife” McCormack knocked out a German officer who questioned the men, and then was beaten himself by an NYPD detective. Bailey, with the help of fellow seamen Arthur Blair and Adrian Duffy, finally managed to cut the Swastika down and send it fluttering into the Hudson River. Bailey, Howe, and
four other men were arrested, including Eddie Drolette who was shot in the thigh by a police detective. The arrested men were “worked over” by cops on the pier and then taken to the Eighteenth Precinct station near 47th St. Outside, a boisterous crowd of 1,000 demonstrators shouted in unison, “Free the arrested seamen!” A diplomatic firestorm followed. The German Ambassador to Washington protested emphatically to the State Department, demanded an apology for a grave insult, and called for severe punishment of those found guilty. Mayor Fiorello
LaGuardia, noting the ship’s owners had rebuffed the NYPD’s offer of help, refused to offer any apology. President Franklin Roosevelt declined to comment directly on the affair, but he made it known that he sympathized with protests by American Jews against Germany’s religious repression. In early September, City Magistrate Louis Brodsky poured more fuel on the fire when he dismissed the charges (felonious assault and unlawful assembly) against Bailey, Howe, and their confederates. Brodsky, a Jew himself, wrote a courageous decision denouncing Nazism, noting “the regime, represented by the swastika, supports a merciless war against religion, against freedoms. The regime steals the elemental rights from people solely on the grounds of their background and religious beliefs.” The Bremen affair was provoked by “this flaunting of an emblem to those who regarded it as a defiant challenge to society.” The press secretary for the pro-Nazi German American Bund, outraged by Brodsky’s decision, called it “another proof of the world-wide JewishCommunist conspiracy against new Germany.” Secretary of State Cordell Hull sent a note to the German government expressing “regret” over Brodsky’s ruling. On September 15, the German government proclaimed the Swastika banner, previously the symbol of the Nazi party, to be the sole flag of the German Reich. It also approved new legislation stripping German Jews of citizenship and banning intermarriage between Jews and Gentiles. In his speech to the Reichstag, Hitler referred directly to the Bremen incident and Magistrate Brodsky—“an illustration of the attitude of Jewry toward Germany”— as a justification for the new so-called “Nuremberg Laws.” Daniel Czitrom is an ALBA Board Chair Emeritus and the author most recently of New York Exposed: The Gilded Age Police Scandal That Launched the Progressive Era.
Mark Thornton with the Flag of the Fifth Army Corps Primer Cuerpo de Tren, 1938, Courtesy Georgia Wever.
FAMILY BONDS: AMERICAN FATHERS AND SONS IN THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR By Chris Brooks and Lisa Clemmer
Three pairs of fathers and sons chose war over peace when they volunteered to be among the 2,800 Americans who served with the International Brigades in Spain. They came from varied pasts and with divergent motivations. One father followed his son to Spain while each of the other fathers volunteered together with their sons. Dr. Samuel Franklin and his son Zalmond served in the Republican medical services. Mark Thornton and his son Nate worked as drivers and mechanics. Ralph Field and his son John enrolled in the infantry.
“No one would be foolish enough to choose war over peace—in peace sons bury their fathers, but in war fathers bury their sons” —Croesus of Lydia Samuel and Zalmond Franklin Samuel Nathan Franklin was born in Glukhov, Russia on November 16, 1891. He was a preteen when his family arrived in the U. S. in 1903. Dr. Franklin attended the Marquette Academy and graduated from the Marquette University School of
Medicine in 1916. After completing his residency at Milwaukee County General Hospital, he entered private practice in Milwaukee. He married Minnie Schnell and together they raised three children: Denora, Zalmond, and Charlotte. Dr. Franklin’s political position was left of center. In 1918, he ran successfully on the Socialist Party ticket for the post of Milwaukee County coroner. It appears that he held the post for a single term. His affiliations for the next two decades were more mainstream: he was listed as a member of the American Medical Association and the Wisconsin and Milwaukee County Medical Associations. After the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, Dr. Franklin became more politically active. He headed the
Dr. Samuel Franklin and his son Zalmond, undated, family photograph. March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 13
When Nate Thornton arrived in New York, The Volunteer announced that his father was awaiting his arrival “back in Frisco readying the family homestead.” Milwaukee Medical Bureau of the North American Committee to Aid Spanish Democracy and became a prominent member of the group of doctors and nurses from Wisconsin recruited to serve in the American Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy (AMB). Zalmond David Franklin, also known as Solomon or Zollie, was a student studying bacteriology at the University of Wisconsin at the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War. After volunteering to join the International Brigades, Zalmond applied for and received his passport on June 4, 1937. Eight days later, he sailed for France aboard the Georgic. His father was issued a passport on June 28, 1937, and arrived in Spain the following month. It appears that Dr. Franklin met up with his son shortly after arriving in Spain, where they served together in a base hospital. Zalmond worked in the laboratory. Father and son returned to the United States before the end of the war: Dr. Franklin on March 2, 1938, aboard the Berengaria, and Zalmond 21 days later aboard the Andania. After returning Dr. Franklin took up his private practice. Zalmond, a Communist Party member, married Sylvia Calen. They both served as agents for the Soviet Union. Zalmond was assigned to several missions in Canada on behalf of Soviet intelligence. Zalmond and Calen divorced in the early 1940s. He married Rose Richter in 1944 or 1945. Shortly after his second marriage, he was removed from active work after another agent reported that Zalmond “bragged too much about his contact with Soviet Intelligence.” Both Dr. Franklin and his son died in 1958. Mark and Nate Thornton Mark Thornton and his son Nate served as drivers in Spain. International drivers performed an invaluable, often hazardous, service to the war effort as the ability to drive and maintain a vehicle was not a common skill-set in Spain. Mark Binns Thornton was born on April 6, 1893, in American Fork, Utah. He was one of seven children born to Nathan and Sarah Thornton. Mark attended school through the fourth grade before leaving to help support his family. He worked at various times as a coal miner, farmer and longshoreman. After marrying Mary Alice Idle and starting a family, he moved his family to Fresno, California. Mark often worked away from home and the Thornton family saw him infrequently. Thornton’s family broke up when Mary Alice died in 1926. James Nathan “Nate” Thornton was born January 14, 1915, in Oasis, Millard Country, Utah. Soon after his mother’s death, his younger sister and brother were sent to live with relatives, while he remained with his father. The two moved to San Francisco, where Nate attended Commerce High School. Nate found sporadic work on the waterfront and as a merchant seaman. He 14 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
joined the Sailor’s Union of the Pacific and participated in strike actions. Later he served a stint in the Civilian Conservation Corps. Nate recalled that the Great Depression came early for his family and that his struggles to find steady employment led to his radicalization. In the pamphlet “I Am An International,” Nate recalled a man on the street passing him a handbill that announced a Communist Party meeting at the Worker’s School. Nate joined the Young Communist League and encouraged his father to join the Communist Party. When volunteers were requested for Spain, the Thorntons volunteered. They set sail from the U. S. aboard the Paris on March 27, 1937. After arriving in France, they were smuggled across the country to the Spanish border. After entering Spain on April 8, 1937, they travelled to Albacete. Mark initially served with the Albacete Auto Park as a driver. Later he served as a mechanic and driver with the Fifth Army Corps Primer Cuerpo de Tren. While serving as a mechanic, he instituted a tire rotation and refurbishment policy that greatly prolonged the life of the unit’s tires. He was repatriated in the fall of 1938. In recognition of his service, the command presented him with a flag. Mark traveled back to North America aboard the Aurania, arriving in Québec, Canada on September 11, 1938. He crossed the border into the U. S. on the same day. Nate initially served in the kitchens at the Albacete Auto Park. He quickly grew restless and transferred to an ambulance service supporting the Córdoba Front. During the winter of 1937, he was attached to a Spanish training school where he worked as a driver. Later he was attached to the Fifth Corps, Regt. de Tren as a driver. Nate was repatriated in December 1938. When he arrived in New York aboard the Paris on December 15, 1938, The Volunteer announced that his father was awaiting his arrival “back in Frisco readying the family homestead.” Mark returned to the West Coast and worked in various jobs. During World War II he worked as a longshoreman on the docks in Portland, Oregon. He continued this vocation into the early 1950s. He used his savings to purchase a farm outside of Fresno, California where he raised turkeys. From his retirement in the early 1960s until his death February 17, 1974, Mark spent much of his time hiking around Death Valley. It was there that the family scattered his ashes. Nate also returned to the West Coast after the war. In 1939, he married Phyllis Golland, an English immigrant, and together they started a family. During World War II, Nate worked as a civilian defense worker in the Wilmington Shipyards in California. After the war, he continued to work in the shipyards as a skilled carpenter. He also worked as a freelance photographer. He remained in contact with his fellow Spanish Civil War veterans. Nate was a founding member of the San Francisco Post of the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade and “The Fort Point Gang,” a less formal group of SCW veterans and waterfront workers. After his wife died in 1984, Nate lived as a widower for several years before marrying fellow activist Corine Hodges on October 6, 1988, in San Francisco. Nate Thornton (far right) and two unidentified Spanish Soldiers, Thornton collection.
Top: Ralph Field, undated, Zeigler, “When Americans Fought in Spain,” Bottom: John Field in 1934. U of Rochester Yearbook.
To keep construction costs low, Ralph Fields ingeniously utilized found items from “the capitalist dump heap.” Nate and Corine were active participants in peace and labor activities including VALB, Veterans for Peace, In Solidarity with Cuba, School of Americas Watch, and Grandmothers for Peace. Together they travelled to Spain, Cuba, and the Soviet Union as part of various delegations. In retirement Nate indulged in the art of woodcarving, creating numerous intricate and labor-related works of art. He died January 2, 2011 in Hayward, California. Ralph and John Fields Ralph Higbee Fields was born on July 16, 1879, in Leon, Iowa. According to his son Will, he “was the kind of fellow movies are made about. He tried to trace the Amazon to its source, panned for gold and was a forest ranger, cowboy, and college professor.” By trade Ralph was a civil engineer but he pursued many vocations. He was an International Labor Defense organizer and lived for several years at Liano Cooperative Colony before moving to South America. In 1904, he met and married Alice, a woman of Scottish descent, who was living in Paraguay. Their son John was born in Paraguay in 1913 and his brother Will in Brazil in 1919. Shortly after Will’s birth, the family moved to the United States and settled in Rochester, New York. Ralph established a landscaping business and later The Rockbrick Corporation. He divorced Alice in 1923, and married Mabel Bridge in 1926. Shortly thereafter the business failed and his marriage ended. John and Will moved in with Mr. and Mrs. William Barnes of Rochester, who served as their foster family. Ralph eventually found a position at as “maintenance student and member of the permanent group” at Commonwealth College in Mena, Arkansas. He applied his experience as a civil engineer to projects that enhanced living conditions for the students: a new furnace, steam plant, insulation of stovepipes, and a footbridge. To keep construction costs low, he ingeniously utilized found items from “the capitalist dump heap.” In addition to his maintenance duties, Ralph taught an introductory class to incoming students. He continued to maintain contact with his sons. John Fields graduated from West High School and entered the University of Rochester, where he was a popular student and a stand-out runner captaining the cross country team. John was elected vice president of the class of 1935. He was also active in the Y.M.C.A. Council, serving as the yearbook circulation manager. While he was in high school and college, John worked a variety of jobs including farm work, typesetting, and electrical goods sales. After graduation in 1936, he joined his father at Commonwealth College as a labor student.
Ralph and John Fields were both members of the Communist Party. John later indicated that he was influenced “by friends and by my father” to join the party. Father and son traveled together, sailing to France aboard the Queen Mary in May 1937. They crossed the Pyrenees and arrived in Spain via Setcases, near Girona, on June 15, 1937. Fellow veteran Douglas Hitchcock recalled that during the crossing, Dr. Julius Hene gave Ralph a “drink of rum that turned out to be ether.” Ralph was knocked out cold. Amazingly, he came to, “got up and walked the rest of the way unassisted over the hardest part of the mountain. And this while others including myself had to be helped.” After arriving in Spain, Ralph attempted to pass himself off as John’s older brother and join the infantry. The ruse did not work and Ralph was assigned to the commissary department of the MacKenzie-Papineau Battalion (Mac-Paps). John was assigned to the MacPaps as well and served initially as an assistant section leader in the first company. Ralph and John both served at Fuentes de Ebro in October 1937. In December, John was sent to the training base at Tarazona to help train new recruits. He returned to the Battalion when the unit was alerted for service at Teruel. John served as a section leader in the third company of the Mac-Paps. During the course of the battle for Teruel, the battalion was holding a key central position on the floor of the valley. When Republican Spanish infantry pulled back from a small hill, John led two sections forward to take over the position. John’s brother Will recalled that John wrote “that he didn’t think he’d survive” the war but “never once said that he shouldn’t have gone.” Arthur Landis noted that “of the fifty men who occupied the hill 45 were casualties” this number included John Field. Ralph, who was serving just behind the lines, was devastated by the death of his son. Ralph returned to the U. S. on July 20, 1938 aboard the Champlain. Interviewed in the NY office of the VALB, Ralph stated: “The cream of United States citizens fell in that slaughter which surpasses description.” Will Field later noted that his father was “bitter.” The bitterness stemmed not only from the death of his son but also “the defeat of the Loyalists.” Will originally planned to accompany his father and brother to Spain, but met the woman he would later marry and decided not to go. Will believed that his father regarded John “as the kind of son I never could have been.” Will never saw his father again. Ralph Field died on March 29, 1960 in Lehigh, Pennsylvania.
March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 15
Martha Gellhorn and Ernest Hemingway with unidentified Chinese military officers, Chongqing, China, 1941. JFK Presidential Library. Public domain.
From the Face of My Memory:
AMERICAN WOMEN JOURNALISTS IN THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR By NoĂŤl Valis
The Spanish Civil War, sparked the imagination and allegiance of a small group of pro-Republic American women journalists: Martha Gellhorn, Josephine Herbst, and Frances Davis. These women, displaced in war, are representative of a much larger displacement.
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“We had never in one place seen people so different, so real, and so disinterested.”
aces and memory have long been associated. In his Confessions, Augustine famously used the “hand of his heart” to brush spontaneously appearing images from “the face of his memory.” We see faces like words: as parts of a whole. This partial vision is a kind of defacement, in which we first disarticulate or displace something in order to understand it. Perhaps the largest displacement, other than death, is war. War, in all its bodily offense, is paradoxically a kind of disembodiment because it displaces us from everything that we think of as “home,” when we think of home as an embodied state of being. But what is the face of war? Dalí visualized it in 1940 as floating death in the shape of a disembodied head, a visage of fixed horror and misery, populated by similar faces reproduced in the mouth and eyes, with even tinier faces inside, the jaws of serpents snapping at the image, a picture that only the vandalism of the human soul could have produced. The faces of war multiply, but one conflict, the Spanish Civil War, sparked the imagination and allegiance of a small group of pro-Republic American women journalists: Martha Gellhorn, Josephine Herbst, and Frances Davis. These women, displaced in war, are representative of a much larger displacement. Going beyond the physical mass dislocations of peoples, this displacement constitutes a general “structure of feeling” characterizing the period. (Structure of feeling was the phrase that Raymond Williams coined in the 1950s to refer to emerging new ways of grappling with the fluidity of experience in a changing world.) For these women, uncertainty, confusion, and awkwardness symbolically marked that displacement, suggesting that ideology and politics were not necessarily self-sufficient to explain the complex reality of their experiences in Spain. Martha Gellhorn (1908-1998) was from a reform-minded St. Louis, Missouri family. In Madrid, her affair with Ernest Hemingway put Gellhorn in an awkward position, having arrived with a vague accreditation from Collier’s magazine. In The Face of War, Gellhorn wrote about ordinary people during war, soldiers and civilians: “what was new and prophetic about the war in Spain was the life of
the civilians, who stayed at home and had war brought to them.” The walls of the Hotel Florida where she and most reporters stayed in Madrid shook daily from city bombing of a scale no one had ever seen before. The front was only 15 blocks from the hotel, in University City. You could walk to the battlefield. The war was everywhere. That meant there was no clearly demarcated space that spelled out war: “You would be walking down a street . . . and suddenly, . . . would be that huge
stony deep booming of a falling shell, at the corner. There was no place to run, because how did you know that the next shell would not be behind you, or ahead, or to the left or right?” Gellhorn asks: how do we locate where war is? Gellhorn went from place to place, creating a moving collage of memory. She wandered the streets and found houses. Some were like doll houses, with gaping fronts; some had dangling floors and the furniture blown away. They were “like scenery in a war movie: it seemed impossible that houses could really be like that.” At the Palace Hotel, now a military hospital, “one of [the men] I tried not to look at. I was afraid that I couldn’t look at him without showing it on my face.” “He was blond and young, with a round face. There was nothing left except the eyes. He had been shot down in his plane
Ernest Hemingway (back to camera) and Martha Gellhorn in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. JFK Presidential Library. Public domain.
and burned . . . His face and hands were a hard brown thick scab, and his hands were enormous; there were no lips, only the scab.” At one point, a bunch of American journalists took the day off and managed to get inside the off-limits zoo. Afterward, Gellhorn writes, “we began to talk about the war. We did not think any one would believe us when we got home, or understand, or even care. They would not know . . . how important this war was because it was like nothing else before it. We said to each other the things we already knew by heart: that we had never in one place seen people so different, so real, and so disinterested. Then we began to talk about how incredible it was to have everything mixed up together, the zoo and the gun positions behind the [Alfonso XII] statue, and the café that grew up in one half of a shelled building.” For Gellhorn, the zoo reinforces the abnormality of war: how everything is out of place, though alternatively, the war can also be seen as a normalized, confused mess. Her later reflections make transparent what was implicit: “Unexpectedly, [memory] flings up pictures, disconnected with no before or after. It makes me feel a fool. What is the use in having lived so long, travelled so widely, listened and looked so hard, if at the end you don’t know what you know?” Gellhorn was not alone in her uncertainty. Also a Midwesterner, the novelist Josephine Herbst (1892-1969) was born in Sioux City, Iowa. Her politics were to the left, with communist sympathies. In The Starched Blue Sky of Spain, she said, “it may have seemed to me that what I had brought back was too appallingly diffuse.” Her unpublished diary shows she wasn’t able to grasp the big picture, wavering between the personal and the political: “Write about (the truth—the terrible necessity of the truth) elusive but there, oh justice—blood and thunder stories not true.” She jotted down: “say why I am here, really, truly. To tell news, propaganda for the cause. Viper’s nest and I don’t know it.” Herbst was beginning to realize how complicated the situation in Spain was, and how challenging it might be to square justice and truth with propaganda. Self-conscious, as “shells seem to be tearing right into the room,” she wrote,
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“I can hardly think back upon Spain now without a shiver of awe; it is like remembering how it was to be in an earthquake.” “No one notices me.” “Everyone knew where he was going . . . except me.” Herbst said: “I didn’t even want to go to Spain. I had to. Because.” “I can hardly think back upon Spain now without a shiver of awe; it is like remembering how it was to be in an earthquake where the ground splits to caverns, mountains rise in what was a plain. The survivor finds himself straddling a widening crack; he leaps nimbly to some beyond, where he can stand ruminating upon his fate.” Memory is a geological cataclysm, a shattering of everything that went before. The rupture creates the depths and heights of some obscurely fathomed change you understand has happened on a larger than individual scale that is still connected to the deepest levels of the individual. In Herbst’s memoir, the earthquake that is Spain acts as an enormous dislocation. It is easy to dismiss her comments as fuzzy thinking, but that misses the point: upheaval of this magnitude overwhelms. In the Hotel Florida, she writes, “I never seemed to be there, even when I was actually there.” “Something inside seemed to be suspended outside . . . There was a disembodiment about my own entity.” Herbst’s homeless psyche is like the Hotel Florida: filled with disembodied elements, like people constantly milling about. Her feeling of suspension recalls Dalí’s painting, in which miniature forms of death are hangared within, on an indefinite layover. Herbst also felt awkward because she had no real press assignment. So she “did a lot of walking around, looking hard at faces”: “what had been left,” she writes, “was the aliveness of speaking faces.” An American soldier tells about the night he helped his wife deliver their baby because there was no doctor. That story and the night in the trenches “all got mixed up together.” As they walked in the dark, Herbst stumbled and he caught hold of her. “I could not see his face, only feel how he felt and that he was sorting things out from a jumbled mass of experiences if only to make some order to help him to live.” These faces of war are the face of her memory, tangled like the soldier’s experience or Gellhorn’s. But when a townsman claimed “she under-
stands everything!”, she wrote, “I was far from understanding everything. About the most important questions, at that moment, I felt sickeningly at sea.” Frances Davis (1908-1982) found herself in an equally intolerable position, ending up by chance in the Nationalist zone. The product of a radical utopian community, The Farm, in West Newbury, Massachusetts, by age 13 she was working as a printer’s devil at the Medford Mercury. Breaking into the business of foreign correspondent, however, proved much more difficult. Davis’s story, first published in 1940, in My Shadow in the Sun, makes explicit how out of place these women war journalists were. Like Gellhorn and Herbst, she felt she was tagging along with the men reporters: “Somewhere within me there is the cloud of discomfort at being where I am not wanted.” Davis saw herself on the outside looking in, as the men fraternized and shared information. She won them over, when she volunteered to smuggle their stories into France, by hiding them in her girdle. A courier, she found herself ferrying between Burgos, the Nationalist headquarters, and France, leaving her in enemy territory, with “a feeling of precarious balance.” If war is an ever-present, protean displacement, here, the writer herself suffers her own physical dislocation: “I live upon the roads of Spain . . . I live in this car, shuttling back and forth . . . The car is my house, my bed, my skin. I work in my moving car, my typewriter upon my lap . . . [with] the swaying of the car as it flies over the lifting and falling and turning of the road.” Displacement is also political: “There are the never-ending tensions of the guards . . . now my friends,” she writes;
but when will they turn? Other faces, Republicans living in the Nationalist zone, “are locked against us.” Her equivocal location is symbolic of a larger question: how do we locate war ideologically? She herself was carried away for a moment when young Nationalist soldiers cried out “Long Live Spain!” She seemed caught between identities and, perhaps more disquieting for Davis, stirred, if only briefly, by the revelation that brotherhood could also be found on the other side. Davis’s uncertain place, her “precarious balance,” means she can never quite absorb her experience. During an attack, she actually lost her balance, nearly falling on a dead body: “If I had touched that thing it would have burst. Oh, God, how close I came to touching—”. “He has been burnt and his black skin is stretched tight across his putrefied fat and muscle and insides . . . His arms stretch up to embrace my fall, skidding down the rock . . . [I]f I barely grazed that leather flesh, it would break and crumble and the gas of the putrid insides would rise and engulf me.” Her fear of touching the body speaks to the inability to articulate fully the horror of war and, more broadly, the feelings war has produced. The decomposing formlessness of “that thing” is the war, a dissolving structure that politics and ideology cannot explain. This corpse is also without a face: “He grins. He grins from ear to ear.” He joins the charred face that Gellhorn cannot look at and the unseen face that Herbst can only sense in the dark. The de-facement of war creates a structure of feeling that cannot be entirely grasped because it is displaced, like civilians without homes and soldiers without faces, but it is vividly remembered in the words of these women journalists. Noël Valis is Professor of Spanish at Yale University. Her previous books include The Decadent Vision in Leopoldo Alas and The Culture of Cursilería. This essay has been adapted by permission from: “‘From the Face of My Memory’: How American Women Journalists Covered the Spanish Civil War,” Society (Springer Nature) vol. 54, no. 6, 2017.
Josephine Herbst with villagers of Alcala de Henares. Yale U, Beinecke Library. 18 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
FERDINAND IN HIS 80S: STILL NO ONE KNOWS WHY HE SMELLS THE FLOWERS By Joshua Goode
When it first came out, The Story of Ferdinand was not greeted as the simple story that Munro Leaf claimed to have written. With the Spanish Civil War raging, the book seemed to be an obvious allegory. But of what?
n December 2017, when 20th Century Fox released an updated version of Munro Leaf’s classic children’s book, The Story of Ferdinand, attention returned not just to the Spanish bull who preferred to sit under his cork tree and smell flowers rather than fight in the ring, but also to the turbulent moment of its release in September 1936. With the Spanish Civil War then three months old, Leaf’s book was not greeted as the simple story that Leaf always claimed to have written. Instead, the book elicited a wide range of responses. It was condemned, celebrated, berated, and beloved, with all of these reactions either bespeaking or belying the book’s immense popularity with adults and children that has always marked Ferdinand’s reception. By the end of 1938, The Story of Ferdinand was outselling Gone with the Wind. Ferdinand had appeared as a balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and had marched on a float (ironically?) in the Rose Parade in Pasadena, CA. The book, illustrated by Leaf’s friend and collaborator, Robert Lawson, had been remade as a Disney animated short film, which then, in turn, won an Oscar. But, by the 1940s, Ferdinand had also been banned in Franco’s Spain, reputedly burned by the Nazis in Germany, celebrated by Mahatma Gandhi and Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt among others, and characterized elsewhere either as pacifist twaddle or as “red propaganda” and, for good measure, as a pro-Fascist allegory of one person “who wants his own way and gets it.” (New Yorker, Talk of the Town, 1938).
Of course, the weight of these many different readings rested on a relatively light foundation. The Story of Ferdinand totaled just 800 words. Leaf always claimed to have composed the book in forty minutes one Sunday afternoon in October 1935 after his wife, Margaret, begged him to leave her alone so she could finish her own work reading a book manuscript for a publisher. Ferdinand’s character never offers why he prefers flowers to fighting. He just does. When his mother asks him why he stays under his cork tree while the other bulls knock heads with each other, Ferdinand responds simply if not enigmatically: “I like it better here where I can sit just quietly and smell the flowers.” So, perhaps Munro Leaf did give the reader who sought causation in their plots a lot of room to maneuver. And one did not have to look far. The world outside the shade of Ferdinand’s favorite cork tree was brimming a slew of causative factors, politics and war. With the Civil War raging and the November 1936 Battle of Madrid on the verge of starting, Leaf’s story, set in Spain and about a meek and gentle bull, seemed to be an obvious allegory. But, of what? Troops were massing. Bombs were falling. International Brigaders were arriving in Spain. The great contest of ideologies, Democracy, Communism and Fascism was exploding, and yet, here was the biggest, strongest bull in the herd whiling away the day sniffing flowers. Was Ferdinand’s refusal to fight part of a broader celebration of pacifism? Was Leaf ruminating on the events transpiring in Spain at March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 19
all? Or, was it a call for continued isolationism for the United States? After all, Ferdinand just wanted to be left alone and not fight other people’s fights. Was it a call for steadfast individualism and independence? Other reactions proved that this big, strong bull contained multitudes. Newspaper letter writers around the US claimed that Leaf’s book was creating “mollycoddles” of their sons. A woman’s group in New York in 1937 condemned the book as an “unworthy satire of the peace movement.”* Others implied that Ferdinand’s message was ultimately one opposed to peace movements. Ferdinand does not intercede in the affairs of the other bulls and he seems to take no position about whether the other bulls should fight. Munro Leaf always appeared befuddled by these disparate readings of The Story of Ferdinand. He no doubt enjoyed the fruits of the multi-sided appeal and profound popular success. The book has now sold millions of copies. Ferdinand has appeared in movies, toys, clothing, even jewelry. Yet, when it came to the multiplicity of meanings, Leaf always appeared weary: “As far as I am concerned,” he said once in an interview, “there is one story there — the words are simple and quite short. They try to make sense and if there is a message in them, as many people seem to want, it is Ferdinand’s message, not mine — get it from him according to your need.” And readers have. In 1951, Ernest Hemingway wrote a short story ostensibly to counter Ferdinand entitled The Faithful Bull. Here in the opening paragraph of the story, one might glean what Hemingway felt was missing from Leaf’s version of bull-fighting: One time there was a bull and his name was not Ferdinand and he cared nothing for flowers. He loved to fight and he fought with all the other bulls of his own age, or any age, and he was a champion… And here, after the bull not named Ferdinand has fought bravely and died in the ring, the story leads the dead bull out of the ring: “…Qué toro más bravo," the matador said as he handed his sword to his sword handler. He handed it with the hilt up and the blade dripping with the blood from the heart of the brave bull who no longer had any problems of any kind and was being dragged out of the ring by four horses. Sixty years later, the story still generates a wide range of readings. Pamela Paul, writing in 2011 on the 75th anniversary of the book, said, “It’s not a stretch to think of Ferdinand as more than just a symbol of peace, but as an icon for the outsider and the bullied.” Even the 2017 film version of The Story of Ferdinand, now simply Ferdinand, renders the animal as an adorable family pet, a bull of great strength and power who is a sensitive and fun soul who needs just “to be himself.” An historian’s mission is to chart the changes in these kinds of images over time. The historian’s assumption is also that the way in which a character is read and reproduced over 20 THE VOLUNTEER March 2018
time always speaks more to the context of the reader than it does of the character. While Ferdinand could not escape being read as an allegory of Spain, as a rumination of the conflict that raged when the book appeared in 1936, Ferdinand was also a protean enough figure to accommodate any number of interpretations. Perhaps this protean quality reflected Leaf’s own character. Always speaking to more than one audience, intentionally or not, seemed to be one trait that Leaf carried with him. A year after the publication of the book, Munro Leaf spoke to an audience of mostly children and their parents at the New York Times National Book Fair in November 1937. Awaiting a chance to laugh at the exploits of Ferdinand, the hundreds of children in the audience were instead offered an opportunity to hear Leaf bemoan one criticism he personally received that called the book a “celebration of the laissez-faire theory of economics seconded by the bourgeois ideology of utility.” According to the Times, the loudest laughs came from the children in the audience. * Among the many recent works on The Story of Ferdinand, one good summation that is more deeply researched than most, and the source of some of the examples here, is Bruce Handy, “How the ‘The Story of Ferdinand’ Became Fodder for the Cultural Wars of its Era,” in The New Yorker (15 December 2017). Joshua Goode is The Volunteer’s book review editor. He teaches at Claremont Graduate University.
Minchom, Martin. Spain’s Martyred Cities: From the Battle of Madrid to Picasso’s Guernica: Including the Reconstructed Text of Louis Delaprée’s The Martyrdom of Madrid. Sussex Academic Press, 2016. By Katherine O. Stafford
We are often unaware of the ways in which journalism has shaped and influenced our conception of a historical conflict. Martin Minchom’s Spain’s Martyred Cities addresses this question through a history of French journalist Louis Delaprée’s work during the Spanish Civil War. While journalism and photojournalism have long been subjects of interest in both popular and academic Spanish Civil War historiography, this is the first monograph that addresses the role that Delaprée played in shaping many of the prominent narratives of the conflict—influencing not just Virginia Woolf, Pablo Picasso, and André Malraux, but most of the prominent stories about the war that are sustained to this day. Louis Delaprée, a moderate, politically independent French journalist, covered both Nationalist and Republican territories during 1936 for the commercial Sunday night paper Paris-Soir. His experiences with the Nationalist terror bombings in Madrid during November 1936 marked his transformation into a kind of prophetic voice of dissent. His writing gradually became personal, dramatic and urgent as he sought to condemn the atrocities he witnessed, despite the relative indifference of Paris-Soir editors to the events unfolding in Spain. Later, Delaprée’s mysterious and controversial death in an airplane crash converted the writer into a legend. It also provoked a series of controversies about editorial deception, ultimately resulting in the publication of the seminal pro-Republican pamphlet The Martyrdom of Madrid, which would go on to influence many leading writers and artists of his day.
Minchom’s Spain’s Martyred Cities is a self-proclaimed “hybrid text” that includes a history of Delaprée’s life, work, and influence; a critical discussion of the influence of journalism on the primary narratives of the Spanish Civil War; and a lengthy annotated text written by Delaprée himself. Minchom dedicates Chapters 3 and 4 to the Battle for Madrid and the bombing of Madrid respectively, and to some of the biases and tropes adopted in international reporting. He attributes some of the emphasis placed on the heroism of International Brigades in the battle for Madrid to a publicity campaign organized by the press-censors Arturo Barea, Gustav Regler and Ilsa Kulcsar, and to the fact that non-Spanish speaking international reporters were finally able to communicate with participants in their mother tongues. Chapter 4 shows how international reporting turned the Madrid bombings of November into an international media event. They also marked a turning point in Louis Delaprée’s sense of vocation and led to his eventual falling out with the Paris-Soir. The third and final section of the book explains how Louis Delaprée, after his death, became a legend and a symbol of ethical and honest journalism among many French progressives. Minchom highlights the link between the “Delaprée affair” and Picasso’s conversion to explicitly political art. He argues that Guernica not merely represents Picasso’s reaction to the bombardment of the Basque city of that name, but also those of Madrid and Durango—events whose narratives were shaped by Delaprée’s writing and the subsequent press controversy. The book’s hybridity is its greatest strength and weakness. While it embarks on important questions, the text meanders, dithering in tedious historical debates that don’t always seem centrally relevant to the principal aims of the book. The book also lacks a conclusion to solidify its central claims that Delaprée, and French journalism in general, played a central role in the construction of some of the most salient narratives of the war. By and large, however, Spain’s Martyred Cities is a thoughtprovoking, thorough, original, and important work about the complex relationships between journalists, editors, editorial conditions, and war. It also is relevant to our times. In an era of tension among the press, civilians, and political powers, Spain’s Martyred Cities shows that debates about journalistic integrity are not new and that journalism does indeed shape our understanding of conflict, perhaps to a greater degree than we may realize. Katherine O. Stafford is an Assistant Professor of Spanish at Lafayette College. She is the author of Narrating War in Peace: The Spanish Civil War in the Transition and Today (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015) and has worked recently on the image of perpetrators in contemporary Spanish history and memory.
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CONTRIBUTIONS RECEIVED FROM 11/1/2017 TO 1/31/2018 Benefactor ($5,000 and above)
Emily Mason Kahn • The Kurz Family Foundation, Ltd. • Puffin Foundation, Ltd.
Steve Birnbaum in honor of the International Rescue Committee • Paul Blanc • Robert Coale • Stephanie Fein • Angela Giral • Jeffrey Heisler in honor of the Resistance! • Josephine M. Labanyi • Harry Parsons • James and Ellyn Polshek • Robert Shaffer • Cynthia Young
Kathie Amatniek Sarachild in memory of Ernest & Sara Amatniek • Joan Amatniek in memory of Ernest & Sara Amatniek • Anonymous • Joshua Barnett in honor of Ruby Gould • John & Jane Brickman • Burt Liss Charitable Fund • John & Irene Bush in memory of Max Schwartz • Peter Carroll in memory of David Wills, Associate Bay Area VALB • Larry & Christine Carsman • Kathleen Densmore • Henry Doherty • Sebastiaan Faber • Laura Goyanes • Adam Hochschild in memory of Hank Rubin & Bill Sennett • Raymond & Bonnie Hoff • Leslie Hsu • Timothy Johnson • Barbara Lilley • the Lindfors family in memory of Veikko Lindfors, Clarence & Kenny Forrester• Linda & Steve Lustig • Christopher Lutz • Peter Miller • NYU • Julia Newman in memory of Irving & Freida Weissman • Michael J. Organek • Fraser Ottanelli • Ronald Perrone in memory of John & Ethel Perrone • Walter J. Philips • Nancy Wallach in memory of Hy Wallach, VALB • Josephine & Henry Yurek in memory of Steve Nelson
Frederick & Ann Adams • Helene M. Anderson in memory of Carmen Aldecoa • Margarita Asencio-Lopez in honor of brigadista Virgilio Fernández del Real, celebrating 99, December 26 • Deni Asnis in memory of Shirley Asnis • Richard Barker in memory of Joaquín, José & Manuel León Trejo • Dale Baum in honor of Peter Carroll • Catherine Blair & Steve Becker • Tobyanne Berenberg • Nancy Berke • Nancy S. Bishop • Jane Bjoze in memory of Jack Bjoze • Richard & Joanne Bogart • Robert Bordiga in memory of Milt Felsen • Eric Botts • Victoria Brady • David Brown • David & Suzanne Cane in memory of Lawrence Cane, VALB • Barbara Caress in memory of Robert S. Caress • Gil Cividanes • Charlie & Nancy Clough • Patricia Coatsworth • Barry & Naomi Cooper in memory of Sol Zalon • Richard Cooper in memory of ALB vet Louis Kupperman • Ken Coplon in memory of B.L. Mazel • Leslie Correll • Paul Cox • Rita Delespara • Bunny Rosmarin Dell in memory of Joseph & Pauline Rosmarin • Steve Dinnen • Jeron & Marjorie Donalds • Vincent Doogan • Ariel Dorfman in memory of Adolfo Dorfman • Daniel Drake • Frank & Dolores Emspak • Alan Entin • Felicita Fields • Paul V. Fitzgerald • Robert A. Fitzgerald • Noel & Cathy Folsom • Amy Freeman in memory of Jack Freeman • Herbert Freeman • Joshua Freeman in memory of Jack Freeman • Barbara Friedman in memory of Aaron (VALB) & Helen Harris • Elvira Garcia in memory of William (Willie) Garcia • Paula Gellman in memory of Isaiah Gellman • Margo George • Bert & Esther Glassberg in memory of Samuel Gonshak • Alan J. Goldman in memory of Ernest J. Goldman • Paul Goldstein in memory of Irving Weissman • Jim Gonzales • Francisca González-Arias in memory of Julia Arias Tejelo y Emilio González Ojea • Anne Gordon in memory of Lou Gordon • Alba Greco-Garcia, M.D. • Michael Grossman in memory of Henry Grossman, VALB • Ilsa & James Halpern • Hershl Hartman • William A. Hazen • Birry Heagle in memory of Ned Golomb • William Hedrick • Elaine Herman in memory of Daniel F. Herman • Ann F. Hoffman • Jeanne Houck • Stephen Jacobs • Steven Jonas in memory of Edward K. Barsky • Sheldon E. Jones in honor of Sheldon S. Jones & Dave Jones • Henry Kahn • David Kannerstein • Jane Q. Koenig • Arnold Krammer in memory of Tom Trent (real name Arthur Witt, VALB, killed 1937) • Susan Linn in memory of Sidney Linn • Peter Lotto in honor of Ralph Fasanella • Henry Lowendorf in memory of George Watt • Roger Lowenstein • Joe Luttrell • Morris Markoff in honor of Charlie Flam • Jay Laefer & Sara Matlin • Gerri Matusewitch in memory of Sergei & Boris Matusewitch, supporters of the Brigades • Gerald Meyer • David Miller • James & Juliane Monroe in honor of Americo Castro • Daniel Moskowitz in memory of Leo & Joe Gordon • Theresa Mueller • Patricia Murphy in memory of Saul Wellman • Judy Nakadegawa • Ralph & Marta Nicholas • Lucienne O’Keefe • Ann & Vittorio Ottanelli • Paypal Charitable Giving Fund • Lola Pazos in memory of Juan Dominguez Pazos • Duna Penn in memory of Ted (Penn) Pniewski • Olga Penn in memory of Ted (Penn) Pniewski • Rachel Perelson in memory of Eugene & Gertrude Reich • John Purdy • Aaron Retish • Brian A. Reynolds • Chris Rhomberg • Kathleen Robel in memory of Charles (Buck) Robel & Oiva Halonen • Gerald & Mutsumi Robinson • Maria Cristina Rodriguez • Lenore Rody in memory of John & Eleanore Rody and Marvin Nelson • Thomas Roe • William Rosen • Susan Rosenberg in memory of Dave & Eve Rosenberg • Michael De C. Rosenfeld • Peter J. Rubin • Joseph B. Russell in memory of George Watt • June Sale • John Sayles • Meryl B. Schwartz • Helen E. Searing • Nadrian Seeman • Paul Shneyer • Teresa Shtob • Lewis Siegelbaum in memory of Morton Siegelbaum • Thomas Silverstein • Carol Smith • Irene & Eric Solomon in memory of Ben Leider • Laura Stevens in memory of Rae Harris, nurse, & Gus Heisler, plumber • Louise Katz Sullivan in memory of Sylvia & Bob Thompson • Helene Susman in memory of Bill Susman • Cindy Shamban & Marge Sussman • Eric Tabb in honor of Hy & Tammy Tabb • Theodore Tapper, MD • Lorraine Trachtenberg • David Turner • Constancia Warren • Frederick Warren in memory of Alvin Warren, Maury Colow & Arthur Munday • Lucy Weinstein in memory of Morris Kornblum (aka Martin K. Balter) • Bonnie & Barry Willdorf • Dolores & Gordon Wine in memory of my parents, Ernest J. Romero (VALB) & Charlotte Braun Romero • Sandra Zagarell in memory of Eugene Wollman • Kenneth Zak in memory of Lou Bortz
Judith Albert • Stefano Albertini • Jose Luis Aliseda M.D. • Mark Alper • AmazonSmile Foundation • Mohsen Amin • Bettina Aptheker • Florence & Peter Ariessohn in memory of Abe Osheroff • Dexter Arnold • John August • Joseph Auslander • Elaine Babian • Jeff Balch • Phillip Bannowsky • Jean Barish • Edward Barlow • Charles Barrett • Elena Beaena • Victoria H. Bedford in memory of Dr. Aaron Hilkevitch, VALB • David Bell in memory of Debbie Bell • Yvonne Benn • Judith & Cyrus Berlowitz • Lawrence Bilick • Maggie Block • Elizabeth Blum • Laura Bock • Martin Boksenbaum • Jorgia Bordofsky in memory of Joseph Siegel, VALB • Ruth Botchan in memory of Al Weinerman • Sonia Bragado • Samuel & Adele Braude • Paula Braveman • Patricia Brodsky • Tibby Brooks • Mira Brown • Joseph Bucholt • Alain Bujard • Paul Bundy • Vinie Burrows • James Cameron • Robert Caminiti • Milton Cantor • Claire Carsman • Chris Castaneda • Victor Chechanover • Geoffrey Cobden • Burton J. Cohen • Daniel & Susan Cohen • Howard Cohen • Jerry Robinson & Diana Cohen • Joan & Barry Cohen
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• Martin Comack in honor of the CNT/FAI • Polly Connelly • Catherine Cook in memory of Gerald Cook, VALB • Barbara Dane • Lionel Davis in memory of George Zlatovski • Nina B. De Fels • Patricia & Peter De Garmo • Stephen Dell • S. Leonard DiDonato • Joni Dibrell in memory of Charlie Nusser • Alvin Dorfman in memory of George Gullinen • Katherine Doyle • Lewis & Edith Drabkin • Pearl M. Drabkin • Andrew Drysdale in memory of Abe Osheroff • Arthur Eckstein • Ilse Eden • Edgar & Iris Edinger • Walter Effron • Elaine Elinson in memory of May Gomberg Elinson • Hugh Ellis in memory of Abe & Dora Ettelson, veterans of the ALB medical corps • Gabriel Falsetta • Reuben & Shaurain Farber • Susheela Farrell in memory of Archie Brown • Hildy Feen • James Fernandez • Jose Fernandez • Alan Filreis • Patrick Finn • William Fleming • Elaine Fondiller & Daniel Rosenblum • Herbert L. Fox • Marcia Freedman • Rebecca Freeman & William Bemis in memory of Jack Freeman, ALB vet killed in action • Susan Freireich in memory of Maynard Goldstein, VALB • Florence Friedman • Jeanne Friedman • Joseph & Jeanne Friedman • Victor Fuentes • Alex Gabriles • Rochelle Gatlin • Anthony Geist • Isolina Gerona • Lawrence Gerzog • Deborah Gold • Sheila Goldmacher • Edward Goldman • Marc Goldstein • Mary Goldstein • Charles Gonzalez • Ciel Gordet • David Gordon • Luke Gordon in memory of Louis Gordon • Julio Granda in memory of Luis & Maria Granda • James Grant • Mark Grunblatt in memory of Jacques & Hilda Grunblatt • Mark & Sandra Haasis in memory of Abe Osheroff • Jeff Hackett • Rebecca Haidt • Annette Halpern in memory of Joseph Siegel • Gary Hammond • Susan Hanna in memory of Jack Penrod & the guys from Johnstown, Pa. • Leslie Harkema • Rachel Harley • Roger & Meryl Harris-Sundove • Erica Harth • Peter Hartzman in memory of Jack Hartzman & May Levine Hartzman • Kendra Heisler • Abby Hellwarth in memory of Abe Osheroff • Nina Helstein in memory of Emily Waldman • Eve Hershcopf • Thomas Hidalgo • Juli Highfill • Barbara Ida in memory of Dr. Aaron Hilkevitch, VALB • Joan Intrator • Gabriel Jackson • Todd Jailer • Elsa Johnson in memory of Anne Johnson • Frederick Johnson • Cecily Kahn • John L. Kailin • Cora E. Kallo • Bart Kaplan • Carol & Lawrence Kaplan • Sidney Kardon • Elizabeth Katz in honor of Kate Katz • Dean Kaufer • Roger & Carol Keeran • Patricia Kelso • Dorothy Kidd • Manfred Kirchheimer • Glenn Kirkindall in memory of Carl Geiser • Sandra Kish in memory of Ruth Kish • John Kittross • Nancy Kline Piore in memory of Polly Eddy Kline • William Knapp • Marilyn Koral • Pearl Kornberg in memory of Morris Tobman • Beatrice Krivetsky • Sherman Labovitz • Heinz Lackner • Vivian Lamb in memory of my mother • Dr. Leonard & Eleanor Larks • Richard P. Layh • Burt Lazarin • Gale Jennings Lederer • Esperanza Leon • Betty Lerner in memory of James Lerner • Gerson Lesser • Eugene & Elizabeth Levenson • David J. Lichter • Catherine Lillie • Paul Limm • Kenneth & Else Lipner • Ann Lipsitt • Marjorie Liss • Marlene Litwin • Fred Lonidier • James Lowenstein • Joan MacDonald • D. Magee • June Malament in memory of Daniel Malament • Eric Mandel in memory of Abe Osheroff • Eliezer T. Margolis • Madeline Marina in memory of my husband, Miguel, a captain in the Republican army • Betty Marot • Mark Martin • Miguel Martinez • James Massarello • Milton Masur • Linda Matheson in memory of Eddie Balchowski • Terry Lee Maul • Vivian Mazur • Joanne McBirney • Elaine McCrate • Andrew W. McKibben • Anne E. McLaughlin • Molly McLaughlin • Nancy Meredith in memory of Barney (Klibanoff) Harris, recruiter for the Queens-NYC Lincoln Brigade • Paul Michabofsky • Tripp Mikich • John Miller • Katherine Judd & Robert Miller • Robert Miller • Ruth Misheloff • Paul B. Mitchell • Selina Morris • Michael Mulcahy • Richard & Victoria Myers • Dr. José-Manuel and Mrs. Maryann B. Navarro • Martha Nencioli • Robert R. Newman in memory of my father, Dr. Robert G. Colodny, VALB, who is quoted on the Monument • Ann M. Niederkorn • Adele & Nick Niederman • Michael Niederman in memory of Albert Niederman • Rebecca Nordstrom in memory of Carl Geiser • Diane Nowicki in memory of Virginia & Barney Malbin • Mike Nussbaum • Harry W. O’Brien • Maureen O’Connell • Shaun O’Connell • Michael O’Connor • Estella Habal & Hilton Obenzinger • Francis L. Olson • Nicholas Orchard • Ruth Ost in memory of Steve Nelson • Dr. Jack Paradise • Julie Penrod-Glenn in memory of John A. Penrod, ALB 1936-1938 • Mariano Perero • Carol Pierson in memory of Steve Nelson • Gordon Polon in memory of Esther Blanc Silverstein • Louise Popkin • Miriam Poser • Margaret Powell • Edward J. and Gynis Pulia • Michael Quigley • Paula Rabinowitz • Jean Kathleen Ranallo in memory of John Hovan of Providence, R.I., who served in Spain • Dorri Raskin • Marci Reaven • Jaana Rehnstrom in honor of Larry Cox • Alan Reich • Ted & Verina Reich in memory of Moe Fishman • Irma Rendina • Jules Rensch • Michael Reshetnik • Margery Resnick • Judith Reynolds • Fariborz Rezakhanlou • Joanne & August Ricca • Kenneth Rice • Dennis Rody in memory of John Rody, VALB • Alicia Roemmele-Putney • Bill Roller in memory of Milt Wolff • Suzanne & Alan Jay Rom in memory of Samuel S. Schiff • Constancia Romilly in memory of Esmond Romilly • Lisa Brier Rose • Josie Yanguas & Carl Rosen • Miki Rosen • Gail & Stephen Rosenbloom • Herb & Sandy Rosenblum • Arthur Read & Cindy Rosenthal • Judith Rosenthal • Jean Ross in memory of Hannah & Isadore Blumberg • Judith Ross in memory of my father, Milton White, who served from 1937-1938 • Leona Ross in memory of Sam Ross • Margaret Rossoff • Blas Ruiz • Mike Russell • Rollene Saal in honor of Ellyn Polshek • Susan P. Saiz • Theresa Salazar in memory of Gloria Salazar • Harold & Marie Salwen • Steve Sargent • Evelyn Scaramella • Herman Schmidt • Peter Schneider in memory of John Wallach, peace activist & brother of vet Harry Wallach • Fred Schoen • Joseph & Beverly Schraibman in honor of the 90th birthday of Morris Tamsky • Ellen Schwartz • Kraig Schwartz • Douglas & Karen Seidman • Peter Selz • Amy Semanscin • Marc Shanker • Judith Shapiro in honor of Herbert Shapiro • D. Shatkin • Steve Tarzynski & Kathleen Sheldon • Allen Sherman & Marion Nelson • Florence W. Shuster in memory of all who gave their lives to fight fascism • Natalie Sierra • Georgette & Bob Silber • Shoshana Silberman • Samuel Sills in memory of Pete Smith • Michael Silver in memory of Nathan Silver • David C. Sloan • Katherine & William Sloan • Carole & Henry Slucki • Harvey L. Smith • Elaine Smitham in memory of Alvah Bessie • Theron Snell in memory of John Tisa • George Snook • Theodore Solis • Mark & Pauline Solomon • Henry & Beth Sommer in memory of Harry Nobel • Kurt & Martha Sonneborn • Susan St. Aubin in memory of Neil Wesson & Ernest B. St. Aubin • John Roderick Stackelberg • Peter Stansky • Elizabeth Starcevic in memory of Abraham Unger, Esther Unger & Evelyn Weiner • Clarence Steinberg • Marvin Stender • Jay Stewart • Marc Stickgold in memory of Saul Wellman • Kate A. Stolpman • Paul Susman • Laura Fandino Swedowsky • Carlyn Syvanen in memory of Carl Syvanen • Elizabeth Tesh in memory of A.J.C. Haley • Carmen Tolivar • Sara Trelaun in memory of Michel Flechin • Merry Tucker • John Turley • Kathrine Unger in memory of Esther & Abe Unger • Judith Van Allen in memory of Benjamin Nichols • Alex Vernon • Pierre-Paul Villafafila in memory of my parents • Ernesto Viscarra • Luis Wainstein • David Warren & Susan Crawford in memory of Alvin Warren, Maury Colow & Arthur Munday • Andrew Weissman in memory of Oscar & Helene Weissman • Donald Weitzman • Joseph Wexler • Robert & Lois Whealey in memory of Herbert Southworth • Shauna Haines & Mark Wieder • Sharon Wilensky • Joseph H. Woodard • Frank Woodman • Pamela Yates • Jose Yuste • Leonard & Ellen Zablow • Charles Zappia • David Zavortink in memory of Ludwig Beregzaszy • Robert Zimmerman • Betsy Zucker • Elyse Zukerman
March 2018 THE VOLUNTEER 23
AT THE WOMENâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S MARCH in New York City, Jan. 20, 2018.