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Against the Evil Tide 

Oijil Jia£ 
An Autobiography 

Author: Ben Klassen 
Format: Paperback 

Creativity Bool< Publisiier 
Pub. Date: 1991 

00. Prologue 

01. My Mennonite Heritage 

02. Personal Memories of Russia 

03. Trans Europe and Across the Atlantic 

04. Wild Sojourn in Mexico 

05. North to Saskatchewan 

06. Wheat Farming on the Prairies 

07. Achieving a Measure of Self-Confidence 

08. Rosthern and the German-English Academy 

09. Becoming Career Conscious 

10. On to Saskatoon and Higher Education 

11. Schoolteacher at OskaloosaS.D. #3702 

12. War Breaks Out: I Opt for Engineering 

13. Summer in Saskatoon and Second Year Engineering 

14. Nickel Mining at Sudbury, Ontario 

15. Final Year of Engineering in Saskatoon 

16. The Summer of '42 in Sudbury 

17. Fourth Year Engineering at the University of Manitoba 1942-1943 

18. California, Here I Come! 

19. Montreal and Northern Electric 
20. 1 Make it Legal 

21. California - The Settling-in Process 

22. Romance, Marriage and Real Estate 

23. Up in the Mountains of Big Bear 
24. 1 Go Into Business for Myself 

25. Fallon, Nevada, and into the Wild West 

26. To the San Francisco Bay Area 

27. Glenmore Gardens and Canolectric 

28. Seven Weeks in Europe 

29. Canolectric All the Way 

30. Discovering Florida 

31. Playing in the Big Leagues 

32. Hawaiian Holiday 

33. Reconnoitering Florida 

34. Building a Home in Florida 

35. Travel, Business and Boating 

36. Philosophical Reflections put in Writing 

37. European Tour: Six Weeks and Eleven Countries 

38. Six Years with the John Birch Society 1963-1969 

39. Trip to California and Parts West 

40. Speaking of the Toastmasters Clubs 

41. Trip to Canada and Points North 

42. A Brief Venture into the Political Arena 

43. A Stint in the Legislature 

44. A Family Tour through Europe 

45. Pines n Palms Ranches and the American Opinion Bookstore 1967-1973 

46. The George Wallace for President Involvement 1967-1969 

47. The American Independent Party 1969 

48. Alpine Tour mit Oberammergau Passion Play 

49. The Nationalist White Party 1970-1971 

50. The Genesis of a White Racial Religion 1971 

51. Saskatchewan Homecoming 

52. Writing and Publishing the First Book 1971-1973 

53. Our 25th Wedding Anniversary - November 22, 1971 

54. Our Daughter Gets Married 

55. Exploring Ancient l-listory Around tlie Aegean Sea 1973 

56. Venture into Nortti Carolina 

57. Hawk's Nest in the Keys 

58. A Polyglot Meeting in Kansas City 1977 

59. Putting THE WHITE MAN'S BIBLE Together 1980-1981 

60. The Miami Herald and the Jews Take Note 

61. Publishing the Third Book: SALUBRIOUS LIVING 1981-1982 

62. Building the World Center of the Church of Creativity 1982 

63. Trip to Texas and Colorado April, 1982 

64. Putting Together the First Edition of Racial Loyalty 1983 

65. Leaving Florida for North Carolina June 1983 

Copyright © 2003 by World Church of Creativity 



Against the Evil Tide - 00 


All my life, from the day I was bom to the present. It seems that, stubbornly and against overwhelming odds, I have been 
bucking the current tide of history. In one way or another, consciously or subconsciously, my entire life has been dedicated 
towards fighting against those evil and powerful forces that now hold the world in their tyrannical grip. I have been waging war 
against these evil forces intermittently and spasmodically perhaps, in the beginning not even recognizing what those malignant 
destroyers were doing, or who the real evildoers were. But my struggle has been persistent and tenacious. Furthermore, as 
time went on, the picture became more clearly focused, the tyrannical destroyers more specifically identified, and the complex 
solution to the puzzle more nearly solved. 

But my struggle was, and is, not only one of doing battle AGAINST the evil tide. There Is also a very POSITIVE side to this 
picture, and that is what I am and have been fighting FOR. The answer to that is clearly delineated in the several books I have 
written and can be summed up in a few words - namely, the SURVIVAL, EXPANSION AND ADVANCEMENT OF THE WHITE 
RACE. In our racial religion, CREATIVITY, I strongly believe, we have the Total Program, the Final Solution, the Ultimate 


This Is the true story of a Mennonite boy who was born in the midst of the Communist revolution in the Russian Ukraine. At 
nine months, while the Red and the White armies were waging civil war In his native village of Rudnerweide, he suffered a 
severe siege of typhoid fever and nearly died. Nevertheless, he survived the disease, he survived the anarchy and terror of 
revolution and the two years of famine that followed. When he was six, he and his family fled Russia to try to start life anew in 
the wide-open wilds of the Mexico ranch country. Shortly thereafter they moved to the wheat farming country of Saskatchewan, 
Canada, where he grew to adulthood. In 1945 he moved to the United States, where after a long and checkered career, he 
finally found his life's purpose structuring and establishing a racial religion for the survival, expansion and advancement of his 
own racial kinsman Nature s Finest. 

I was that boy. After seven decades I can say that it has been a long and circuitous Odyssey, and I thank Fate that she has 
allotted me sufficient time to reflect on the ensuing course of events that permitted me to finally consummate the paramount 
mission of my life, and propel it into perpetuity. 


By any yardstick, the White Race is the most creative, productive and intelligent creature Mother Nature has produced In the 
2.3 billion years that it is claimed lift has existed on this planet Earth. Strangely, however Nature's Finest in the last half century 
has become a highly endangered species, whose demise and extinction is at most only a few generations away. This is almost 
a certainty unless this unique species drastically changes course, and does so promptly and most forcefully. What the White 
Race has direly needed in the last 6,000 years of its civilization is a racial religion of its own a racial religion whose overriding 
fervor was, and constantly remained, the survival, expansion and advancement of its own kind. This is not a novel idea Nature 
has Implanted this Innate drive In every other creature alive, but strangely, in its long and tumultuous history, the White Race 
has never fully grasped this idea While eagerly pursuing the advancement of science and high technology, at the same time It 
has stupidly and tragically utilized Its vastly superior endowments to kill, decimate and destroy its own kind. 

Now the White Race has a racial religion of its own and we call it CREATIVITY. I have faith that It will provide the spark that will 
kindle the conflagration of a vast worldwide movement of religious fervor - the first real constructive revolution in history to 
really accrue to the benefit of the human race. If enough of my fellow kinsmen will grasp that realization, the redemption and 
salvation of Nature's Finest will be assured. For this I have labored and it is my fervent hope and prayer that it will come to pass 
in this next generation. 

As the founder of a new religion, I feel an obligation not only to my White Racial Comrades but also to posterity - and even to 
my enemies - to permanently set down the events of my life, detailing my origins, my thoughts and my objectives. I believe that 
having come this far it might perhaps be incumbent for the future that I do so. 

I say perhaps. There are two ways of looking at It - two possibilities. If the White Race falls to rise up and accept the challenge 
and if the Jewish pestilence succeeds in their age-old frenzy of mongrelizing and/or exterminating the White Race from the 
face of this Planet Earth, then all my writings and my other efforts and sacrifices will be in vain. Creativity and its whole network 
of ideas will be flushed down the memory hole of history. In such case, it will matter little as to what I did or what I wrote. In fact, 
as far as I am concerned, nothing will really matter anymore, should the White Race be destroyed. 

If, on the other hand, the White Race rises up in wrathful vengeance, mobilizes its awesome power, and smashes the Jewish 
tyranny into oblivion, then I feel certain that Creativity will have played a major part in giving inspiration, goal and direction in 
freeing the White Race from the tentacles of Jewish tyranny. When that comes to pass then there will be a major demand for 
endless details regarding Creativity's early beginnings, as well as the life of the Founder, and many details will be such that 
only I would have knowledge of them and they would be a vital source of basic Information. Fortunately, fate has spared me 
the time that I may write my memoirs without any undue pressure from either financial worries or from political duress. 
Unfortunately, too many of our racial warriors who have contributed significantly to the cause have been denied this 
opportunity, and the only source material (highly fabricated) about them comes from the lips and pens of our racial enemies - 
traitors and Jews. As a result, our racial fighters have been slandered, calumnied and lied about before and after their death 
with little authoritative refutation from the White racial side. Adolf Hitler is a prime example of such distortions and calumnies, 
but there are any number of others. 

Every person born is a composite of their cultural heritage and the genetic inheritance of their ancestors. Of all these factors, 
genes are of major importance, and this is something only our ancestors can hand down to us. The innate character of each 
individual is then further shaped and molded for better or for worse by the multitude of events that swirl about them during the 
tenure of their life. Some are crushed by events, while others overcome events and remain masters of their own destiny. In any 
event, all are the sum total of their heritage, whether it be cultural, genetic, or any one of a number of other variables. 

Against the Evil Tide - 00 



I Home I 




Against the Evil Tide - 01 

Milestone Zero: My Mennonite Heritage 

Heritage is an important word to me. Altiiougii I personally never joined the Mennonite Church (I will explain this later), 
nevertheless, I am extremely proud of my ancestors and my Mennonite heritage. Both have been most generous, and I am 
thankful. All of us owe everything we are to our ancestors - our culture, our civilization, our very genes and life itself. But it does 
not end there with merely a thank you note. We have a grave responsibility, yes, a sacred obligation to carry that precious 
heritage on to future generations, and in so doing not only preserve and expand that which is best, but also to strive to upgrade 
those genetic qualities to ever higher levels as we bequeath our genes and heritage to each succeeding generation. 

My ancestors for the last four hundred and fifty years have been Mennonites. Although the term Mennonite is a religious 
designation, actually the Mennonites are also a special group of ethnic people who are unique unto themselves. Now scattered 
all over the world, they nevertheless have maintained a certain cohesiveness that goes beyond their religious bond, beyond 
nationality and country of residence. Now, after four hundred and fifty years, they have a unique history and heritage that is 
peculiarly their very own. I am proud to be part of it, and I want to relate some of the mileposts of that ethnic history. 

I was born on February 7, 1918, according to the inscription In the big old family Bible. I managed to retrieve this old book as a 
valuable archive from my older sister just very recently. The book is at least eighty or ninety years old, and I treasure it highly, 
not because of its contents, but because it is an heirloom that has inscribed in it some of the important mileposts of my family, 
including my birth date. The February 7 date, however, represents the dates according to the Julian calendar then in use in 
Russia and is actually 13 days behind the Gregorian calendar that we now use. So my actual birth date is February 20. The 
place was in the Klassen family home in the Mennonite village of Rudnerweide. This village was part of the Molotschna colony 
of Mennonites, located along a river of the same name in the Russian province of Taurlda. This thriving colony was located in 
the southern Ukraine just north of the Sea of Azov. 

The Mennonite colony known as the Molotschna consisted of a homogeneous group of German speaking people, about 22,000 
in number (by 1910), living in approximately 60 villages and hamlets, although a few could be considered of town or even city 
status. I will have more to say about the Molotschna colony later. 

Actually, we spoke two languages. Low German (Plattdeutsch or Plautdietsch), and High German. We spoke a colloquial 
Plautdietsch in our ordinary, everyday conversation, a language that I now look upon as being rather colorful and uniquely 
expressive. However, in church and in school High German, the language traditionally used in Germany, was the standard 
fare. All books, correspondence, sermons delivered in church, hymns, etc., were in High German. No dictionary or grammar 
was ever compiled for the popularly used Plautdietsch. It was an arrangement we then took for granted, but looking back on it 
now after all these years I find this dual language arrangement as a rather strange and superfluous phenomenon, and wonder 
what purpose, if any, it served. 

My ancestors (as Mennonites) originated in either Holland and/or the Danzig area of Prussia. Approximately 450 years ago in 
the year 1536 while the Protestant revolution was in full turmoil, a Catholic priest by the name of Menno Simons branched off 
into a Protestant sect of his own. His followers were called Mennonites. With the turmoil and persecution that was then 
rampant, the Mennonites dispersed into many countries, such as Switzerland, France, Prussia, and several others. The 
Mennonites have been dispersing and emigrating ever since. In fact, I guess I am an emigrated emigrant myself, several times 

When we study historical movements, whether they be religious, political, cultural or whatever, we find that seldom do such 
movements originate from out of a vacuum. On the contrary, we usually find that each movement has its roots in some similar 
previous movement. It then branches off from its parent movement not unlike a rebellious child from its former family. 

And so it is with the Mennonite religion. Tracing back its origins, we find that it is an offshoot of the Anabaptists, who in turn 
emerged from out of the melee of the Protestant Reformation during the turbulent Sixteenth Century. Protestantism, as we all 
know, is a Christian religion that broke away from the Catholic church which had then been in existence for some fifteen 
centuries. Without the Catholic church there would undoubtedly have been no Christianity with its present plethora of 
thousands of sects and cults. (As a passing observation, I have found that the definition of a "cult" is a matter of biased opinion - 
one man's religion is another man's cult and vice versa.) Pursuing origins and branches further back into history, we find that 
Catholicism and Christianity have their roots in still earlier Judaism, the Jews' intransigent religion. Three-quarters of the 
Christian bible, the Old Testament, is really a compilation of fabricated Jewish history and folklore. Going back even further, we 
find that the Jews pirated practically every concept in their religion, the idea of soul, eternal life, the hereafter, baptism, 
circumcision, and a dozen other ideas from the Ancient Egyptians. (See Page 200, "Building a Whiter and Brighter World".) We 
could explore further the origins of the religious ideas of the Egyptians, but I believe we have gone back far enough to make a 

The Anabaptists 

I believe at this point it beliooves us to look into the beginnings of the Mennonite movement by first reviewing the Anabaptist 
movement, and then the life of Menno Simons, whose activities were spawned by the Anabaptists, and of which the Mennonite 
religion is an offshoot. 

We are all fairly familiar with the turmoil of the Protestant Reformations and its movers and shakers such as Martin Luther, 
John Calvin, Hulldreich Zwingil and several other zealous reformers who got their dander up and thought the Catholic church 
needed to either shape up or be reshaped. This they did with a fervor and obsession that always bordered on fanaticism and 
sometimes far exceeded it. Little, however, is commonly known about the Anabaptists who also played a large role in the 
Reformation and were the forerunners of the Mennonites. 

Anabaptists was a name given to those people who broke away from the dominant types of Protestantism I referred to in the 
previous paragraph, and instead preferred a voluntary religious association with a vigorous maintenance of New Testament 
ordinances. The word Anabaptist was also used loosely as a derogatory term against all religious radicals in the sixteenth and 
seventeenth centuries and so came into common usage also because the term was utilized by most major parties of the 
Reformation, the Catholics, the Lutherans and Reformed polemicists. The word Anabaptist means baptized again, or 
rebaptized, or double baptized. The Dutch word for Anabaptists was Doopsgezinde, and in German they were called Tauter, or 
Taufgesinnte, or Wiedertaufer, or in other words. Double Dippers. 

It Is perhaps more constructive to speak of the different wings of the Anabaptist movement: the Swiss Brethren, the South 
German Brethren, the Moravians, the Hutterites and the Dutch Mennonites, the latter being my ancestors and of special 
concern in this treatise. 

Anabaptism proper began at Zurich in 1524 (five years after Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses on the church door) when a 
small band led by Conrad Grebel broke away from Huldrelch Zwingll's leadership and gathered congregations practicing 
apostolic non-resistance in accordance with Matt. 5:39 of the New Testament. They further insisted on communion (Acts 4:32); 
government by elders (Acts 14:23) and the ban (Matt. 18:15-17. Impatient with the Reformers' plan to win the cantons of 
Switzerland to Protestantism by slow, statesmanlike decisions of the Town Councils, they proposed to form free churches of 
those who heard, believed and were baptized (Matt. 28:18). Although they were savagely persecuted by the authorities of both 
the State and also the Church (both the Catholic and the Protestant) these Swiss Brethren, as they were called, gained a warm 
reception among the common people in the German speaking lands. A considerable following developed in Moravia in South 
Germany, and a parallel movement led by Menno Simons (1496-1561) emerged in the 1540's and 1550's in Holland. It is from 
this group that the Mennonites in America, in Canada, and those that moved to Russia were descended. I will have more to say 
about the Russian Mennonites. 

Also spawned from the Anabaptist movement is a sect founded by Jacob Hutter in Moravia in 1533, who formed religious 
colonies holding property in communal possession, not unlike the communists, but there the similarity ends. They have since 
settled in many colonies in the Dakotas, and in Manitoba and Alberta in Canada, as well as in Paraguay. They still preserve the 
ancient Christian communism based on the practice of the primitive Christian church described in Acts. Although both were 
spawned from the Anabaptist movement, the Hutterites are a far cry from the Mennonite groups who were my ancestors. The 
latter believed strongly in private property as well as in Racial Teamwork. 

From the early archives that were exhumed in growing quantities since 1 879 it seems that the chief quarrel the Anabaptists had 
with the mainstream Protestant Reformers was over the union of Church and State. The Anabaptists took the Early Church as 
their model. They repudiated infant baptism and claimed that it was meaningless, that until an adult professed a confession of 
faith and was baptized, he had not entered the "true" church. They taught that a "Fall" of the church occurred under 
Constantine when the secular government took over the religious or spiritual movement of Jesus Christ. Instead, they preached 
a restitution of primitive church life. 

Menno Simons (1496-1561) 

Menno Simons was not the founder of the Anabaptists in the Low Countries, but he became its most outstanding leader after it 
had been in existence for a number of years. He is significant because he took responsibility for leadership at a time and in an 
area where the movement was floundering and would probably have succumbed to more revolutionary theories. Especially 
strong were those apocalyptic fanatics who were preaching that Christ's return was imminent and the millennium was at hand. 
Another radical group were the Muensterites, who preached open revolt and joined with the Peasant's Rebellion in open 
warfare against the authorities. 

Menno Simons was born in 1496 in the little village of Witmarsum, in the Dutch province of Friesland. He joined the Catholic 
priesthood at the rather late age of 28, and received his training in a monastery in Friesland or an adjoining province. According 
to his own accounts, he did not initially take his priestly duties too seriously and joined his fellow priests in "playing cards, 
drinking..." But after the first year he suddenly became frightened, and he began to have doubts when he administered the 

Mass as to whether the bread and the wine were actually being changed into the flesh and blood of Christ. At first he 
considered these thoughts as the whisperings of Satan. But his doubts persisted and he began to have doubts about many 
other teachings of the Catholic church. He came more and more under the influence of the Sacramentists, who denied the idea 
of transubstantiation, that is, the presence of Christ at the Lord's Supper. 

After two years of torment and doubt he finally turned to the bible in his search for an answer. "I did not get very far before I 
saw we had been deceived", he said later. He found further help by reading the writings of Martin Luther, who taught that not 
the church but the Scriptures had to be the prime source and sole authority for his beliefs and preachings. He repudiated the 
authority of the Catholic church and became an "evangelical preacher" but his theology was still very much in the formative 
stage, being buffeted about and influenced by a number of other "reformers". 

A turning point in Menno's life came when the Muensterites (who favored armed rebellion) were defeated at their "New 
Jerusalem" at Muenster, Westphalia, and that movement came to a tragic end. This brutal affair is of some significance in the 
whole Reformation movement, creating a number of martyrs, and it behooves us to digress briefly here. 

Muenster, Westphalia, had been seized by force by the Anabaptists on February 9, 1534. Soon thereafter Bernhard 
Knipperdolling became its mayor. Anabaptists all through Germany, Switzerland and Holland had been hard pressed to stay 
alive, since persecution against them (and other religious sects) was severe and rampant. When the Muensterites gained 
control of this particular city it became a gathering point and refuge for numerous other beleaguered Anabaptists all over 
Europe. Meanwhile, the (Catholic) Bishop Franz of Waldeck, who was the ruler of this territory, gathered a powerful army and 
laid siege to this city, with a view of exterminating these heretics. After approximately a year of skirmishing he finally broke 
through the city walls on June 25, 1535. The massacre and cruelty that followed was typical of the intense hatred and religious 
fervor of the times and we must remember these were Christians on both sides. Most of the male population of the city was 
put to death. The leaders were put in Iron cages, displayed in various cities of Europe, tortured and then put to death, including 
former Mayor Knipperdolling. 

As we shall see later, what the Christians did to each other during the Reformation is not too unlike the cruelty and terrorism 
visited upon our Mennonite kinsmen by the Bolsheviks in Russia nearly four centuries later. 

The tragic Muenster catastrophe made a deep and traumatic impression on Menno, as he considered that all of these people, 
to many of whom he had preached, had been willing to lay down their lives in order to cling to their newly found faith. Although 
he was not in agreement with many of their principles, nevertheless, it steeled his resolve to leave the Catholic church and 
dedicate the rest of his life to preaching the word as he saw it, regardless of the cost or the risk. His own beliefs were still not 
fully clear, not fully resolved. 

He dedicated his full time to preaching, moving about the country. He also wrote tracts and books from time to time, and as he 
did so his own theology began to take a more definitive form. 

For the next 18 years, from 1536 to 1554, he moved about the country, preaching, writing and winning converts. During this 
time he also took a wife, but neither the date of the marriage nor his whereabouts have been too clearly recorded. Nor is it 
known as to when or where his own baptism took place. He became an underground evangelist, preaching and writing in 
seclusion, baptizing converts whenever and wherever he could. Some of his extant tracts are "The New Birth"; "The Blasphemy 
of Jan van Leyden", (the latter being an Anabaptist leader); "The Spiritual Resurrection", and several others. He traveled much 
at night and was in perpetual danger of death and persecution. In 1542 one hundred guilders were offered by the authorities of 
Leeuwarden for his apprehension. Miraculously, although many of his friends were put to death, some for as much as 
harboring him overnight or distributing his literature, he managed to survive. 

In 1554 he found a measure of shelter and protection with Bartholomeus von Ahlefeldt, on one of the latter's estates, called 
Wuestenfeld (Desert Field). Here, near the town of Oldesloe in the province of Holstein, his printer began to print some of 
Menno's books. Menno also took the opportunity to revise some of his earlier editions and write several new books. 

But nevertheless, controversy and turmoil continued. Never resolved during his lifetime was the matter of church discipline. 
Since the Mennonites were committed to nonviolence, nonresistance and professed to a free expression of conscience, how 
do you keep the church and its members a cohesive organization with a stable creed and identity? It is a question that has also 
plagued many another organization that has tried to maintain its basic character and originality. It was a question that was not 
settled for at least another century. The only means the Mennonites employed (and still do) to maintain discipline is the ban 
and ostracism. In 1557 a large conference of Anabaptists met in Strasbourg to try to resolve this question, but it was in vain. Its 
failure saddened Menno to the end of his life. 

Although his activities may not seem impressive compared to many another preacher and evangelist that may have paraded 
across the pages of history, nevertheless, the consequences of the movement he founded have mushroomed into a significant 
series of historical events, the ramifications of which redound unto this day. Unfortunately, although most of his writings have 
survived, much about his life has not been historically recorded, especially his wanderings during the preaching years of 1536 

to 1554. Although a number of pictures of him are depicted along with his writings, no authentic portraits or paintings of him 
were made during his lifetime, at least none that survived, so any likenesses of him are purely postmortem artists' conceptions, 
not dissimilar to those attempting to depict the likeness of Christ several hundred years after the supposed event. 

During the last years of his life he was crippled, adding further to his agony. His wife had preceded him by a few years when he 
died at Wuestenfelde on January 31 , 1 561 . 

But his movement went on and his followers spread all over the world. It is not my purpose here to pursue the further history of 
the worldwide movement Menno founded, but rather to briefly illuminate the course of events of my ancestors, the Mennonites 
in Russia, the flowering of their culture and their prosperity, followed by its ill fated destruction when it was engulfed by the 
Communist revolution of 1917. 


My particular ancestors after several generations in Holland moved as a group into east Prussia, specifically to the Danzig area 
and founded several cohesive and successful settlements. They were real industrious agrarian farmers. But being productive 
farmers was not their only accomplishment. They also raised large families and multiplied, taking over more and more land as 
the number of families expanded. Although in a few generations these Dutch Mennonites became thoroughly Germanized, 
there was nevertheless one idiosyncrasy that was thoroughly uncharacteristic of the military-minded Prussians. Inherent in the 
Mennonite religion was the commitment to nonresistance, to passiveness. In short, to pacifism. They deemed it sinful to bear 
arms, and refused to enter into military service. After a period of time the traditionally military-minded Prussians and their 
government began to take note of both these factors the expansion of the Mennonite numbers, and their refusal to render 
military service. Friction began to develop. 

Land along the Vistula river in Prussia had become scarce and the Mennonite families were large and expanding. In 1787 
Frederick William II of Prussia issued an order of the cabinet which forbade the Mennonites to enlarge their land holdings. The 
"Mennonite Edict" of 1789 followed with further restrictions. Frederick William III further increased the restrictions by a 
supplementary declaration In 1801 . It became apparent that all these restrictions were aimed more at the Mennonite principle 
of nonresistance than their increasing expansion. Mennonites who abandoned that principle were free to purchase all the land 
they wanted. 

This presented a crucial problem for the Mennonites, not unfamiliar to the one their ancestors had faced in Holland a few 
generations previously, and one that their religious cohorts were to face again and again in many other countries. What to do? 
The solution, they decided, was to emigrate, a solution that has been forced upon them many a time again in their long 
turbulent history, and in many other parts of the world. 

This particular group in Prussia chose to take advantage of an extremely propitious situation that presented itself In Russia. 
The time was in the 1780's. Catherine II (the Great) of Russia was looking for some industrious farming people to settle some 
of the wide-open spaces of the Ukraine that had recently been acquired through conquest in a war with Turkey. In order to 
consolidate her gains she wanted this area settled with good sturdy farmers as quickly as possible. The Mennonites had a 
reputation for being hard-working, industrious and exceptionally successful farmers. 

After some scouting and negotiating a deal was struck. The Mennonites could have not only a large tract of contiguous land, 
but they would forever be exempt from military service. Furthermore, they would be relatively free to set up their own local 
government without too much interference from the Russian government. 

In 1789 the first group of 228 Prussian Mennonite families moved into what was called the Chortitza settlement. It was located 
on the Dnieper River in the southern Ukraine between the cities of Ekaterinoslav and Alexandrovsk. (Since the Communist 
revolution both of these cities have been renamed to Dnepropetrovsk and Zaporozhe, respectively.) In 1797 a second train of 
118 families followed, all of which soon expanded to about 400 families, and they became the basis of the Chortitza settlement. 
In 1819 the settlement consisted of 560 families with 2888 souls, and in 1910 about 2000 families with about 12,000 members. 
As I said, the Mennonites were not only good farmers, but they were also prolific in expanding their own kind. Their numbers 
Increased at a significant rate of about 5% annually. 

The Molotschna Colony 

In spite of the reports of hardships experienced by the Chortitza settlers, it was, nevertheless, an outstanding success. This 
quickly encouraged a large second group to follow suit, and a new movement to the steppes of the Ukraine began in 1803. 
This group was to become the Molotschna Colony, the area settled by my ancestors, and where several generations later I was 
born in the village of Rudnerweide. The Molotschna colony was to become not only the largest Mennonite colony in Russia, but 
also its most prosperous. 

In many ways, inn sheer logistics and numbers, these migrations were in every way the equal of the Mormon Trek into Utah led 
by Brigham Young. The Mennonites preceded the Mormon move by about 50 and 60 years respectively, but they, too, moved 
into wide-open and uncivilized territory, as did the Mormons. 

The motivating force propelling the Mennonites was the determination to stick with their particular religious creed, of which the 
principle of nonresistance (wehrlosigkeit) was of major significance. In 1809 Czar Paul I had given the Mennonites the special 
"Privtiegtum", or a set of privileges, of which freedom from military service was a major one. The first Molotschna group arrived 
at Chortitza in the fall of 1 803. Other groups followed, making a total of 365 families through the years of 1 803-1 806. These 
immigrants were on the average much more prosperous than were those who had first gone to Chortitza. 

However, various problems impeded the movement's growth for several years. Prussian authorities insisted on keeping 10% of 
the property of those leaving the country. For a while passports were refused. The Napoleonic wars, which were in progress at 
the time, stopped immigration temporarily. Nevertheless, in 1819-20 a total of 254 more families migrated to Molotschna, 
followed sporadically by further groups. By 1835 migration to Molotschna came to a close, with a total of 1200 families residing 
there and an estimated population of 6000. Once the Mennonites were established in their new colony on the steppes of the 
Ukraine, they lost no time organizing themselves. They had 120,000 desslatines (324,000 acres) of good fertile land located 
east of the Molotschna river along its tributaries of the Tokmak, Begemthsokrah, Kurushan and the Yushanlee. They were 
located about 100 miles southeast of the earlier Chortitza settlement. To the west resided non-Mennonite German settlers, to 
the north and cast Ukrainians, and to the south nomadic tribes such as the Turks and the Tatars. 

They organized the land holdings into 175-acre farms per family. These could not be cut up and partitioned into smaller farms, 
a wise and farsighted restriction. The families did not necessarily live on their main acreage, but lived contiguously to each 
other in hamlets and villages, where each had an acre or two around their dwelling. The house and barn usually adjoined each 
other into one large building. Next to their dwelling in the village each family had a good-sized orchard and garden plot, but the 
main farm itself might be half a mile or a mile away. 

Soon the Molotschna colony had organized its holdings, and a total of 60 villages had been built, of which Rudnerweide 
(established 1820) where I was born, was one. Here is a short synopsis of their progress. 

In the firstyear of 1804, ten villages were established. In the next year eight more villages were founded. By 1821 sixteen more 
villages and hamlets had sprung up. By 1863 the remaining 26 villages had been built and all the available land had been 
occupied and utilized. The newly found freedom, the abundance of fertile acreage brought on a glow of prosperity and an 
unlimited optimism for the future. Having come from excellent racial stock in Prussia, such a combined set of circumstances 
also produced some outstanding personalities and leaders. I have a large, four volume Mennonite Encyclopedia with a total of 
approximately 3800 pages. In it are chronicled hundreds of outstanding personalities and leaders who benefited the Mennonite 
cause in many parts of the world, including many of whom once resided in the Molotschna colony. Although I cannot go into 
detail about them, there is one early leader that I believe warrants special mention because of his manifold contributions to the 
colony. His name was Johann Cornies. 

Johann Cornies (1789-1848) 

Although these pioneering settlers had already proved themselves to be experienced and industrious farmers in Prussia, their 
progress was substantially enhanced by one Johann Cornies and the Agricultural Association that he headed. The many 
constructive improvements he contributed to the colony and even to the country of Russia were broad and far-reaching and 
their influence extended far beyond his own lifespan. 

In the field of agriculture they included such areas as up-grading the breeds of cattle, horses and sheep; experimenting with 
and selecting better seed grains; crop rotation and many other advances in agriculture that were completely novel for that day 
and age. He was especially vigorous in promoting the planting of trees and orchards around every farmhouse and homestead 
on the formerly treeless steppes. But his energy was not limited to the improvement of agronomy. He was also extremely active 
in the fields of education and the structuring of model colonies, activities that extended to other peoples far beyond the 
boundaries of the Mennonite settlements, as we shall see. 

Johann Cornies was born on June 20, 1789, at Baerwalde, near Danzig, in the state of Prussia. He migrated with his parents in 
1 804 to the infant Mennonite colony of Chortitza, but after a two year stay the family joined the new colony on the banks of the 
Molotschna, where like many others, they took over a homestead of 175 acres. They settled in the newly founded village of 
Ohrioff. Here father Cornies became the village "doctor", using medicinal herbs found on the steppes, doing what healing he 
could until his death In 1814. 

Johann was the oldest of four sons. He first worked a year as a laborer for a miller at Ohrioff. During the next three years he 
marketed farm produce from the surrounding settlements to the nearby Russian cities. In 181 1 , at the age of 22, he married 
Agnes Klassen, and in the following year he bought a homestead of his own at Ohrioff. Being a man of imagination and vision, 
he soon recognized the favorable opportunities which the fertile steppes provided for expansion and development of the 

agricultural industry. 

He started out by breeding sheep. He leased fallow-lying government land nearby for grazing. By 1830 Cornies expanded by 
leasing another 9000 acres of government land along the Yushanlee river, where until now he had maintained his small sheep 
ranch. Six years later Czar Nicholas I gave him 1350 acres of this land as a reward for his outstanding services in agriculture. 
Here he also began to raise cattle, and soon began to cultivate 729 acres of this land. He used 16 acres to start a large nursery 
which was to furnish the Molotschna colony with tree seedlings. He also began to plant a forest on the formerly treeless 
steppes, which in a few years numbered 68,000 trees. 

As early as 1816, at age 27, Cornies undertook his first successful attempts at horse-breeding, and also at about this time 
started importing bulls for the improvement of his cattle. The progeny of such improved stock he promoted and made available 
to the other colonists. We must remember that the idea of breeding cattle selectively to improve the stock was relatively new at 
this time and not widely practiced. In America in the 1820's the ranchers had hardly even started to round up the wild remnants 
of the Spanish longhorns, and predominantly stayed with this lean and unproductive species for the next eighty years or more. 

By 1847 Cornies' own livestock consisted of 500 horses, 8000 sheep and 200 head of Dutch cattle. Two years after his 
establishment at the Yushanlee, Cornies purchased Tashchenak, an estate of 9450 acres near Melitopol, and ten years later 
the Verigin estate, so that he was soon cultivating 25,000 acres. (This was outside of the Molotschna colony, and not adjoining 
it.) His own brickyard produced the brick for the many buildings he erected, and he also expanded into commercial tile works. 
Both were profitable. 

The Russian government soon took note of the success of Cornies' large-scale activities. As early as 1817 it made the 28-year- 
old Cornies a life-long chairman of the Society for the Effective Promotion of Forestation, Horticulture, Silk Industry and Vine 
Culture, later called the Agricultural Association I mentioned earlier. 

Cornies was tireless in his efforts not only to find methods of farming best suited to the locality, but also in opening up new 
Industrial possibilities for the settlers. For a long time he experimented with building a silk industry and planting mulberry trees 
on which the silkworms feed. He even built a school in Ohrioff to instruct girls in the art of silk reeling. However the Ohrioff 
silkworm plague combined with stiff foreign competition thwarted success. His venture into the tobacco industry suffered a 
similar fate. 

But Cornies was not daunted and most of his ventures were highly successful, all of which benefits were passed on to the 
Molotschna colonists. He dammed streams and irrigated meadows, tremendously improving both pasture land and the hay 
crop. He was especially zealous in planting forests, understanding the value and significance of trees on the formerly treeless 
steppes. In 1845 over half a million fruit and forest trees had been planted in the Molotschna alone, to which 300,000 mulberry 
trees were added. Six years later there were over five million trees in the 47 villages. Cornies also instructed settlers in raising 
vegetables and flowers. Through his foresight and aggressive leadership he veritably turned the Molotschna colony into the 
garden spot of Russia. 

But his influence was not limited to the Mennonites alone. In 1839 the Russian government showed exceptional confidence in 
Cornies' outstanding leadership and educational abilities and they placed a number of young Russians in his hands for 
instruction in practical agriculture. A little later these trained Russians established special model villages. Many Russian and 
Ukrainian farmers were sent to the Mennonite settlements to learn how to raise potatoes, a crop that had not been grown in the 
area until Cornies promoted it. 

His Instruction and leadership, with the blessing of the Russian government, soon extended further afield. Cornies' aid was 
given to the Dukhobors and Molokans and he was made responsible for placing model Mennonite farmers in the newly 
established Jewish settlements in the province of Kherson. He was also instrumental in settling the nomadic Nogals into a 
17,000 member colony in 1835. However, these sometime later emigrated to Turkey. 

Cornies accomplished much through his tireless energy and sometimes ruthless determination, but it was not without 
considerable opposition in some quarters from his own Mennonite constituents. This was especially so from some of the more 
fanatic religious leaders, of which there were a considerable number. This opposition was most obvious in the field of education 
in which Cornies had a special concern, and which he insisted was badly in need of reform. Until 1843 the Mennonite schools 
in Russia were controlled by the church. Farmer-teachers instructed the children and there were no trained teachers as such. 
The only sources of education were the ABC-book, the Bible, the catechism and the hymnbook. 

As early as 1818 Cornies founded the Society for Christian Education which built its first Secondary School in Ohrioff in 1820. 
He also built a library and created a reading circle. Under his urging in 1 843 all Mennonite schools were placed under the 
Society that Cornies had formed in 1818, and he divided the Molotschna settlement into six school districts. He was especially 
concerned about the curriculum and content of the children's education and in this direction he laid down a set of rules. His 
contribution in this respect was a curriculum he produced called "General Rules Concerning Instruction and Treatment of 
School Children" which reveal his vision and understanding of what was needed to greatly improve education and the system 

as a whole. Although he was chairman of the Society for Christian Education for only five years, from 1843 until his early death 
in 1848, his long-range work produced real reform in Mennonite education that lasted until the colony crumbled under the 
Communist onslaught during and after World War I. in fact his influence and foresight made the Mennonites the most literate 
and best-educated group of people in Russia. A year before his death the Department of Crown Lands also placed the 
Chortitza schools under his management. 

Cornies' influence and activities spread far beyond the limits of the Mennonite colonies. This was shown by the esteem in 
which he was held by the South Russian authorities and by the government at St. Petersburg (now Leningrad.). These officials 
showed their appreciation for his manifold contributions by various honors bestowed upon him. Czar Alexander I and also the 
Crown Prince visited him in 1825. In 1837 he was received by Czar Nicholas I at Simferopol. He refused various other honors 
and medals that were conferred upon him, accepting only a simple gold commemorative medal. 

Cornies died at the relatively early age of 59. Despite his broad knowledge of agriculture and people, it is doubtful that he was 
aware of the basic principles proscribed in Salubrious Living. Hardly anybody of that time period was. Had he been aware of 
the few simple rules we embody in our 14 Basic Points, it is very likely that he would have been able to prolong his energetic 
and creative life for perhaps another 20 or 30 years, during which time he could, and undoubtedly would, have added even 
more to the voluminous and productive contributions he had already made to his people and community. 

When he died on March 13, 1848, a huge crowd attended his funeral. Among them besides the Mennonites he had served so 
well were also a significantly large number of Ukrainians, Russians, Nogals, Molokans and Tatars. Such was the influence of a 
single immigrant boy from Danzig. Despite all the honors that were heaped upon him, and although he became a very wealthy 
man, at heart his lifestyle and orientation remained that of a hardworking Mennonite farmer, whose foremost desires were to 
push ever forward, to achieve progress and advancement of his society and the world around him. 

By 1850, the Molotschna colony was progressing beautifully. In fact, the favorable soil and climatic conditions, abetted by the 
farsighted leadership of such men as Cornies and others that followed, plus the industriousness of the majority of its farmers, 
all combined to make the Molotschna colony the garden spot of not only the Ukraine, but, it was conceded, of all of Russia. 
Catherine the Great had made a wise choice when she invited the Mennonites to come in as potential settlers. 

After 1850 several changes came into play that further enhanced the prosperity of the colony, and also presented new 
problems for its rapidly expanding population. 

With the introduction of hard winter wheat, and the improvement of formerly rather crude farm machinery, more intensive 
farming came about. Winter wheat became the chief crop, and as a result the milling industry expanded significantly. Factories 
for farm machinery were built. In addition many other branches of business began to thrive so that business and manufacturing 
became significant adjuncts of a formerly agricultural community. Furthermore, since this community produced not only 
prosperity but also large families, a landless class became a growing problem. The 175-acre farms were not subject to being 
subdivided, a farsighted provision that remained in force. 

Finally in 1866 the landless population persuaded the Russian government to distribute the community surplus and reserve 
land which had formerly been rented out mostly to well-to-do farmers. This the government did, and each formerly landless 
family thus received 16 desslatines (approximately 40 acres) of land, and with it the right to vote. 

This only partially solved the land and space problems of a rapidly expanding population of intelligent and industrious people. 
The Mennonite leaders set about to solve this problem, and also being energetic and resourceful administrators, they did solve 
it effectively. A colonization program was developed whereby the surplus population was given the opportunity to establish their 
own homes in new settlements called daughter colonies. The administration of the mother settlements created funds for the 
purchase of new lands, and supervised the purchase, the financing and the distribution of such lands. To their credit, it should 
be noted that the Chortitza colony had already established daughter colonies much earlier, the first such colony being in 1836 
in Bergenthal. However, in this matter the Molotschna colony, although later in its own establishment and that of daughter 
colonies, once started, far exceeded the Chortitza colony in both enterprises. 

The first daughter colony was established in 1862 in the Crimea (Taurida province) and consisted of 25 villages on 108,000 
acres of land. This was followed by 12 more settlements ranging over a wide area of Russia all the way from Turkestan to the 
Caucasus. The last of the 13 daughter colonies was established in the Terek (Caucasus) in 1901 on 76,950 acres of land and 
consisted of 15 villages. 

In addition to these settlements, the Molotschna Mennonites purchased in their neighborhoods and in various provinces 
smaller and larger estates, which were known as Khutas. Some of these estate builders became extremely wealthy. Other 
enterprising individuals established prosperous places of business, such as retail and wholesale stores and factories. 

Besides the 1 3 daughter colonies mentioned earlier, Molotschna settlers established a number of colonies in Siberia, having 
over 1 00 villages with an acreage of over one million. 

Whereas the Mennonite colonies were an astounding success by almost any yardstick, and although they had originally been 
welcomed and given certain assurances of semi-autonomy with no military service obligations, friction began to develop 
between the Mennonites on the one hand, and the Russian government and people on the other hand. Partly this was 
engendered by the Mennonites' remarkable industry and prosperity, partly because of envy and jealousy, and partly by the 
changing of the regimes at the head of government. 

By 1 870 the Mennonites had to accept state service in some form. If not direct military service, this might consist of a few years 
of conscription into the forestry service, or some similar commitment. This led the Molotschna colony into new negotiations with 
the government, and also towards emigration to America. 

Whereas most of the Chortitza emigrants went to Canada, most of the Molotschna emigrants went to the United States. Of the 
total from all the colonies, at least half of the 18,000 people that emigrated during this period came from the Molotschna colony. 

We now bring this prosperous, thriving Molotschna colony up to World War I, the Communist revolution of 1917 and the 
disaster that followed, a disaster for which the otherwise farsighted Mennonite leaders had left their precious colonies totally 

World War I and the Communist Revolution 

Hostility against the Mennonites did not start with the Communist revolution. Hate against everything German had been 
assiduously built up by the international Jewish propaganda machine for the previous 50 years, and it found fertile ground in 
Russia. This was by no means aimed exclusively at the Mennonites, but even more so at the German colonies that were of 
various religious denominations. There were a number of these, Lutheran, Catholic, etc., some of which were larger than the 
Mennonite colonies. They, too, were relatively prosperous, and aroused the envy and jealousy of the less affluent Russians. 

The first overt action against the German speaking colonists was the decree of November 3, 1914, (WW I was In progress) 
forbidding the use of the German language in press or public assembly of more than three persons, under threat of a 3000 
ruble fine and three months in prison. Armed with this Draconian decree thousands of ethnic Germans were transported to 
central Asia and to Siberia. The second official action included property liquidation laws of February 2 and December 13 of 
1 91 5, which were further harshened in the next two years. 

According to the liquidation laws the properties were to be sold within eight months of the date of the decree. If the property 
was not sold voluntarily, the banks were given the first opportunity to purchase, which they did promptly, at about 10% of their 
actual value. Whereas the large estates were victimized first, soon all the properties of German speaking owners were targeted 
for pirating actions, including the Mennonites. 

To escape liquidation, the German speaking Swiss colonists of Lutheran persuasion sought to prove their non-German origins. 
The Mennonites followed their example and sent a delegation to St. Petersburg, (then the capital of Russia, name now 
changed to Leningrad) In December, 1916, to try to document their Dutch ancestry. The effort to deny their German 
background came to be known the Hollanderel of the Mennonites. The same argument was raised again by the Canadian 
Mennonites to resist registration requirements during World War II, and again in the European refugee crisis following that war. 

The actual identity of the Russian Mennonites with regard to Dutch or German origins has never been fully settled. Since I 
personally am included in this category, I don't categorically say whether I am of Dutch or German ancestry, or a mixture of 
both. In any case, I am happy and proud to fit into any of the above, and suspect that the latter is the most likely, but I am not 
going to lose any sleep over It. In any case, the fact remains that the Russian Mennonites had taken their cultural and 
educational nourishment exclusively from German sources, spoke German, and during their long stay in Prussia had 
undoubtedly absorbed much German blood. 

The same Jewish revolutionary elements that had been fomenting hatred against all things German had for the last several 
centuries also been carrying on a vicious and deadly racial war against the Russian Czars. In fact, this insurgency had been 
directed not only against the government, but against all the non-Jewish Russian people, especially the White Russians who 
had brought civilization and orderly government to Russia a thousand years earlier. At the time of the Communist revolution 
Russia harbored the largest mass of Jews in the world, officially numbering approximately six million, but the actual number 
was undoubtedly much higher. These were the Khazar Jews, a swarthy Turkish tribe stemming from the ancient Khazar 
Empire that lay between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. This tribe was converted to Judaism en masse by their ruler In 
the eighth century. In 1083 they were conquered by the Russian Archduke Yaraslov and absorbed into the Russian empire. But 
they were never assimilated and remained a fiercely hostile and revolutionary element, finally bringing about the downfall of 
Russia in 1917. As they spread into Poland and the rest of Europe they have proved to be a disruptive and disintegrating virus 
in every country that had the misfortune of becoming their unwilling host. Khazar Jews, now spread all over the world, make up 
90% of the total Jewish population. 

Warfare between Russia and the conspiratorial Jews started in earnest in the Sixteenth century, and kept on heating up until 

the Jews finally overthrew the Romanov dynasty in 1917, and behind the facade of "communism", clamped an ironclad 
dictatorship on the Russian people. But the controlling iron fist that was in charge of Communism was entirely Jewish, and it 
remains so to this day. 

Whereas the Czarist government had taken a hostile attitude towards all things German, it was relatively mild compared to the 
beastly viciousness of the Communist regime that followed. And in this matter the Germans and the Mennonites were by no 
means the sole victims of the fierce onslaught that followed. When the Communists took over in November of 1917 they first of 
all shot the Czar and his entire family in some dingy basement in which they had the family imprisoned. Thus ended the 
Romanov Dynasty and with it the ruling influence of the White Russians who had brought culture and ruled Slavic Russia for 
the last thousand years. A reign of terror, of bloodshed and the wholesale slaughter of 30 million White Russians, the 
descendants of the Vikings who had built Russia, was underway. 

With the former Czarist government in shambles, the Bolshevik (Jewish Communist) leaders lost no time in consolidating their 
forces and taking charge. Leon Trotsky, a Jew, soon had mustered an army of five million revolutionaries. Although disunited 
and badly lacking in leadership, opposition forces sprang up to try to quell the Bolsheviks. Remnants of the Czarist armies, the 
old ruling classes, the Orthodox Church, the large property owners, all tried to organize opposition that was fragmentary at 
best, into what was called the "White Army." Badly organized, they were united only in opposition to the Bolsheviks, who had 
the advantage in being more vicious and determined in both leadership and followers. It was now the Red Army against the 
White Army, a situation the Jews dearly love in deploying their Divide and Conquer technique, namely having their enemies 
divided into two hostile camps and killing each other off. For the next three years civil war raged over the land in both mass and 
sporadic local battles. As in most civil wars, terror and atrocities abounded, and the Russian civil war was no exception. In fact, 
it exceeded most civil wars in both cruelty and atrocities, and we are reminded of the terrors of the Muenster affair in 
Westphalia nearly four hundred years earlier in which the Mennonites were also caught up due to no fault of their own. The 
Ukraine and the Middle Volga area where most of the Mennonites lived were hardest hit by the ravages of the civil war. This 
was undoubtedly at least partly due to their former affluence, which made the Mennonites choice targets for looters and 

We have now reached the point in time and place where the personal events of my family and myself become involved, and I 
believe it is incumbent that I now pick up the story from here by relating the history and experiences of the Klassen family in the 

Family Genealogy 

It just so happens that I have two uncles by the name of Jacob. I should really say had, since both are now deceased. One 
uncle was Jacob Klassen, my dad's oldest brother, who lived and died in the Molotschna colony in the Ukraine. My other uncle 
with that same first name was Jacob Wiens, who married my dad's youngest sister Margaret, and who with his wife and two 
kids emigrated to Herschel, Saskatchewan, in the year 1925. The latter uncle, before he died in 1978, rendered a memorable 
service to both the Klassen family and the Wiens family by compiling a detailed genealogy of both families, a project on which 
he labored many years. Fortunately, I acquired a copy of the Klassen segment of that compilation a few years ago, and have 
found it to be a veritable goldmine of source material for tracing my ancestry. For this I am eternally indebted to my Uncle 
Jacob W., whom I have had the pleasure of knowing for more than 50 years and whom I considered as my favorite uncle. 

As I list the names of various relatives, there is one little quirk that may seem peculiar and I believe I should explain at the 
outset, and that is the designation of middle names. It was customary with the Mennonites in Russia to automatically adopt the 
father's first name as the middle name for each boy born into that family. For instance, my dad's first name was Bernhard, his 
dad's first name was Kornelius, therefore my dad was named Bernhard Kornelius Klassen, and every other boy In that large 
family also had Kornelius as his middle name. However, no such rule evidently applied to girls, who, as far as I know, were left 
without a middle name. 

My paternal grandfather was born on April 10, 1855, in the Molotschna hamlet of Ellzabetthal, and named Kornelius Jacob 
Klassen. His father, Jacob Klassen, was born on March 12, 1823, presumably in the Molotschna colony, but I do not have a 
record of exactly where. Jacob's wife's maiden name was Augustee Penner. She was born in Danzig on October 17, 1826. The 
two were married on July 4, 1843, and subsequently had eight children, of which my grandfather was the third. 

My paternal grandmother's maiden name was Sarah Bergen. She was born on May 8, 1854, where. Uncle Jacob did not 
record. She was a hardy soul, extremely fecund, as we shall see, and lived to the ripe old age of 89. She died in the fluctuating 
ravages of WWII, on November 29, 1943, where and how I do not know. Her father's name was Bernhard Bergen, born July 
22, 1816, and died December 10, 1882. His wife's maiden name was Sarah Klassen (January 22. 1820 - November 6, 1883). 
Bernhard Bergen and Sarah Klassen were married sometime in 1841, and had seven children, of which my grandmother was 
the fifth. 

So much for third, fourth and fifth generation ancestors. I recapitulate them mostly for the record. I do, however, want to take 

special notice of my paternal grandparents, Kornelius J. Klassen and Sarah Bergen. 

They were married on December 30, 1 875, when he was 20 and she was 21 . The place was Hierschau, one of the Molotschna 
villages. They lost no time whatsoever going into production and doing that which Nature has instinctively programmed each 
creature to do, namely, reproducing and nurturing their own kind. Within a month and a half after they were married they had 
their first child and named her Justina. (No middle name for girls, as I mentioned before.) They had the good fortune to live in 
the Molotschna colony at the height of its prosperity and when big families were the norm. They made the best of both 
situations, and in the next 21 years they bore another 13 children, of which my father was the third. Of the 14 children they 
produced, 12 lived to adulthood, most of them married and had good-sized families of their own. So you can see that on my 
father's side I had a plenitude of uncles and aunts and cousins. 

Four families of that large brood emigrated out of Russia in the middle 1920's. Besides my dad's family, these included that of 
my Uncle Jacob Wiens mentioned earlier, my Uncle Abe Klassen and his clan, and Uncle John Klassen and his wife Lena. The 
latter three families moved to Herschel, Saskatchewan, in 1925, where we were to join them before the end of that same year. 
But more about that later. 

Unfortunately, there was no Uncle Jacob on my mother's side to chronicle the genealogy of her ancestors, so what information 
I have is very limited. Nor was this side of the family as robust or as prolific as was the Klassen side. 

My mother's maiden name was Susanna Penner. She was born in the hamlet of Rudnerweide on November 23, 1883, the 
daughter of Heinrich Penner and his wife. Although 1 have a picture of the whole Penner family taken in 1 887, I do not have any 
further information regarding my grandmother's name, nor date or place of her birth. An old family bible that I have inherited, 
which has a few random records listed in it, says that Grandfather Penner was born December 16, 1851 , but nothing about 
where he was born, when he died, or when or where they were married. I do recall my mother telling me that her parents had 
five children, three boys, my mother and Aunt Katharina. The three boys all died In their teens, and Aunt Katharina married and 
lived in the village of Prangenau. 

Grandmother Penner died sometime after mother and her youngest sister were born. Heinrich Penner married again, and in 
about 1912, he and his wife set out for America, California to be exact. Evidently, they purchased a farm at Reedley, in Central 
California. Not being too well versed in either the English language or in the ways of unscrupulous real estate operators, he 
entered into a land contract that was loaded with a booby trap he did not understand too well. It had a clause in it that 
demanded some hefty balloon payments after a year or so. These he neither understood nor anticipated, and after about a two 
year stay, the farm was repossessed, grandpa having not only lost his farm, but also all the payments he had poured into the 
farm, as well as his entire nest egg. 

He and his wife returned to Russia, he a broken man and penniless. He was now in his early sixties, and in poor health. They 
moved in with my parents in Rudnerweide. Evidently, he lived for another four years or so, since I remember my mother telling 
me how Grandpa used to play with me and bounce me around on his knee. Grandma Penner, after his death, evidently 
acquired a domicile at the other end of Rudnerweide. She was still alive and well when we left Russia in 1 924, and I remember 
her as a sweet and lovely grandmother with whom we had many enjoyable visits, both at her house and at ours. 

My dad and mother were married in the village of Groswelde on January 26, 1906. (These hamlets and villages were all in the 
Molotschna colony I have described previously.) They, in turn, had five children, namely, my older brothers Henry (Heinrich) 
and Kornelius, and my sisters Sarah and Katie (Katharina). I was the youngest, born February 7, 1918. (Besides the quirk 
about middle names, I should also explain the oddity that all these dates are according to the old fashioned Julian calendar in 
use in Russia at that time. These dates are all 13 days behind the Gregorian calendar we now use, and therefore 13 days 
should be added. As a result my birthday is actually February 20.) 

Knowledge of my own family history before I was born is also somewhat scanty. I do know that my dad, who was born in 
Mariawohl on November 25, 1878, did serve in the Forestry Corps for four years in the Crimea. This was in lieu of otherwise 
mandatory military service and occurred shortly before he was married. I still have an excellent photo of him at this time (1904) 
showing him in corps uniform. After completing the service he married my mother at the time and place previously stated. He 
then became manager of a lumberyard in Nelgowka for several years until in 1912 he bought his father-in-law's farm in the 
village of Rudnerweide. It was here that I was born and where the family lived for the next twelve years until we departed from 
Russia in 1924. 

Civil War, Revolution, Anarchy and Terrorism in Russia 

By the time I was born in February of 1 91 8, all hell had broken loose in the Molotschna colony. Not that I had anything to do 
with the course of events, but nevertheless, the timing couldn't have been more propitious. Whereas the real Bolshevik 
breakthrough had taken place in Moscow and St. Petersburg (now Leningrad) in the month of November, 1917, the shock 
waves arrived in our area a few weeks later, and anarchy, pandemonium and terror were unleashed on the hapless Mennonite 
population, a hellish nightmare for which they had been totally unprepared. Even had they been able to foresee the doom and 

disaster that awaited tiieir precious Garden Spot, I doubt tiiat tiiere was mucii of anytiiing tiiey could iiave done to avert the 
outrageous tragedy that was about to engulf thenn. The Jewish revolutionaries had planned too well. They had set in motion a 
massive Juggernaut of such magnitude that neither the Mennonites, nor even the Russian people, were now able to stop this 
evil monster from pursuing its ruthless path of destruction. History was on the march and the forces of evil were of a worldwide 
nature. The Mennonite victims were but a small segment of the sacrifices that were to be exacted by the malevolent beast that 
was set loose on devouring the very foundations of civilization. 

The first thing the Bolsheviks did after they had destroyed the Czarist regime and had themselves seized power, was to open 
wide the gates of the penitentiaries and let loose all the hardened criminals on a defenseless population. Not only did they 
encourage these criminals to run wild, but they readily supplied them with guns so they could terrorize the population at large. 
Since law and order had already broken down, since the economy was in shambles and the population frightened and 
confused. It soon became a matter of survival, a matter of every man for himself. In this state of bedlam, as always in history, 
the first groups to organize themselves were the criminal gangs, and this is exactly what happened in the Ukraine. 

The reign of terror in the Mennonite colonies began soon after the Bolshevik Revolution. Temporarily, the Kerensky 
government held a shaky sway in the power struggle succeeding the Czar. It was soon replaced by the iron-fisted "Workers' 
Soviets", the real Jewish Marxists. These councils, which consisted of criminals, Jews, former prisoners and other dregs of 
society, soon took over and exercised their brutality, as in other areas of Russia. The Mennonites in the Chortitza and 
Molotschna colonies from November, 1 91 7, until April of 1 91 8, when the German troops arrived, lived under constant fear of 
robbery, imprisonment, torture and murder. The largest city, Halbstadt, in the Molotschna colony, was the hardest hit. In the 
days of February 16-19, known as the "Halbstadter Tage" a band of Bolshevik Marines took over. People were shot without 
court hearings, homes were looted and ransacked, most of the horses were stolen, women were raped. 

In April of 1918, the German troops arrived in the Molotschna colony and with them they brought a semblance of peace and 
security to the Ukraine. The Mennonites were sympathetic to the German occupation, since it offered them relief from the 
brutality of the Bolsheviks and the anarchistic robber bands. Some of the Mennonites even loaned funds to the German 
occupation government. 

The end of World War I and the defeat of Germany in November of 1 91 8 brought about the withdrawal of German troops from 
Russia. This action was immediately followed by a renewed reign of terror. 

In his youth Nestor Makhno had been a Russian cattle herder on the estates of some wealthy Mennonite landowners. Now 35 
years of age, he soon became one of the dregs of the revolution who organized the peasants and terrorist bands that were to 
ravage and wreak havoc on the hapless countryside. Being of a criminal nature, he had spent a number of years in Siberian 
exile. Now that the country was in a state of anarchy, he seized the opportunity to wreak vengeance on anybody and 
everybody for his former deprivations, imagined or otherwise. Even before the German troops left, he had started organizing 
the revolutionary riff-raff in the province of Ekaterinoslav. By the time of the German withdrawal he had an army of 1 00,000 
followers, all criminals, all hostile to humanity, their hatred directed against everybody, including the communists. They carried 
a black flag with the inscription: Anarchy is the Mother of all Order. Having stolen most of the horses in the countryside, they 
exemplified terror on horseback as they carried out their program of plunder, rape and murder with a vengeance. 

With the German troops gone, the Mennonite colonies now stood defenseless and alone against the murdering marauders of 
Makhno. Their traditional religious tenet of non-resistance was now put to a severe test. Encouraged by German soldiers 
(some of which remained) some of the young Mennonite men had decided to arm themselves to defend their loved ones 
against the brutal ravages of the Makhnovskys. This action was known as the Selbstschutz (self-defense) and lasted from 
November, 1918, (when the Germans left) to March of 1919. 

The center of conflict was the Catholic colony of Blumental, where Catholic, Lutheran and Mennonite defense troops (all 
German speaking) fought the Makhno troops for three months. Outnumbered by reinforced bands of criminals the Sebstschutz 
began a two-day retreat from Blumental to Halbstadt (the center of the Molotschna colony) fighting all the way. Panic broke 
loose in the Molotschna villages, and hundreds of wagons of Mennonite, Catholic, and Lutheran refugees fled in the direction of 
the Crimea. Through the influence of three Lutheran medical doctors they were persuaded to return the following day. From 
their inception, the Selbstschutz had decided they would not fight the Bolsheviks and Trotsky's five million member Red Army. 
When they discovered that the Bolshevik and Makhnovskys had now joined forces, they laid down their arms on March 11, 
1 91 9. The Mennonite colonies were now completely at the mercy of massive bands of vicious armed criminals. 

On the condition that they could have absolute sway in the province of Taurida (where the Mennonite colonies were located) 
the Makhnovskys placed themselves under the command of the Bolsheviks. This period, which lasted from March to July of 
1919, proved to be a time of ultimate horror, terror and brutality for the Molotschna colony. Many of the Selbstschutz young 
men were shot down in cold blood. Others were sent to prison in Berdjansk and Melitopol. The wealthier Mennonite land and 
factory owners were killed in gruesome fashion. The Revolutionary Tribunal (shades of the French Revolution, in which the 
Jews murdered the best of the French leadership by the thousands) sat in Melitopol. Every week during these months, 
hundreds of death sentences were passed, including a number of Mennonites. In many instances the Kommissars were the 

former laborers on the estates of Mennonite landowners, who now exercised their criminal powers to wreak vengeance on their 
former employers. Such is the nature of criminals when in power. 

From July to October of 1 91 9, the White Armies of Deniken drove out the Makhnovskys and the Bolsheviks and maintained 
control in the south. Temporarily the Crimea, the Molotschna and the Old Colony (Chortitza) had a reprieve and a breathing 
spell. As Deniken moved farther north, the Makhno forces rallied and broke through the Deniken front again, overrunning the 
Old Colony and Molotschna from October, 1919, to January, 1920. 

In the Molotschna colony terrorism ran rampant. All suffered from beastly criminals gone berserk. The village of Blumenort was 
hardest hit and here is one incident of many that exemplifies the viciousness and criminality of the perpetrators let loose on the 
former peaceful and prosperous Mennonites. On November 10 (1919) fourteen men were sent into the basement of a house. 
After shooting into the group for a while, the Makhno bandits threw hand grenades at the wounded survivors, finally indulging 
themselves by slaughtering with swords any signs of life left among the mutilated bodies. Six other men were killed outside. 
The women and girls were raped, and even wives in stages of pregnancy were not spared. The whole village was then burned 
to the ground as an act of revenge for the death of four Makhnovskys at the hands of a partisan group (not Mennonite). A few 
days later these same murderers were slaughtered by fierce Cossack troops who were on the side of the White Army. At 
Christmas time the Makhnovskys returned to the Molotschna colony, but were driven out by the Bolshevik troops In January of 
1920. The Old Colony (Chortitza) had even a more difficult time than did the Molotschna colony. For four long months from 
October, 1919, to January, 1920, the robber bands held sway. In the village of Eichenfeld 81 men and four women were 
murdered in one night alone. The village was then burned to the ground. Six other villages suffered a similar fate, also being 
burned to the ground. The 15 villages that remained in the Chortitza-Nicolalpol district, were completely stripped and 
plundered. Farmers were fortunate if they were left with a horse and a manure wagon with which to take the bodies to the 
cemetery. Women and girls were violated and raped en masse with resulting plagues of venereal disease. The hospital at 
Chortitza at one time registered 100 VD cases. Murder casualties in the Chortitza district numbered 245 victims. The Zagradov 
district, although equipped with weapons, insisted on remaining non-resistant in compliance with their religious tenets. This did 
absolutely nothing to mitigate the ferocity of the criminal attackers, and the Makhno brigands here instituted a literal blood bath. 
Over 200 men, women and children were either shot down or cut to pieces by sword. 

The terrorist acts of the criminal bands were soon followed by a plague of typhoid fever. The Makhnovskys had frequently 
occupied the beds of the Mennonite villagers. Since most of the sheets had long been stolen and the bandits were filthy scum 
with the most filthy personal habits, very unsanitary conditions prevailed in the Old Colony, to say the least, and disease spread 
like wild fire. In the village of Rosenthal with 1346 Inhabitants, 1183 were infected with the malady. Of the 678 residents of the 
Chortitza village nearly all, a total of 662, were sick. In the village of Schoenhorst, out of 350, more than 130 died. The village 
of Neudorf, with a former population of 2000, soon had 384 orphans as a result of the plague. During the winter of 1 91 9-1 920 
approximately 1 500 died of typhus in the Old Colony alone. The plague was checked only after fresh supplies of clean linen 
and bedding arrived from the Molotschna colony, which, although also suffering from the epidemic, was not as hard hit. 

From January to June of 1920 the Mennonite colonies were under the control of the criminal Bolsheviks. In the summer of that 
year the White armies, now under the leadership of Wrangel, the successor to Deniken, again challenged the Bolshevik Red 
armies in that area. From June to September the front seesawed up and down through the Mennonite colonies, with some 
areas changing hands as many as 23 times. In November of 1920 the Bolsheviks finally pushed Wrangel back and thereafter 
gained control of all of South Russia. Wrangel and about 135,000 civilian and military refugees, including many Mennonites, 
fled on French ships from the Crimea to Constantinople to begin their lives as migr s elsewhere. 

In this compendium of terror, civil war and criminal rampage, I have been concentrating mainly on the fate of the Mennonite 
colonies, since that is what this story is all about. However, it is incumbent to point out that although heavy as their suffering In 
this holocaust was, they were only a small part of the tragedy that the Bolshevik Jews unleashed upon Russia. In fact, even 
percentage wise, the mass slaughter of the Mennonites was far below that suffered by the Russians as a whole. After the few 
years of war, revolution, civil war, epidemics of disease, and finally famine, Russia showed a population loss of over 20 million 
(some say the figure of 30 million is closer). This is proportionately considerably higher than that suffered by the Mennonites. 
However, to chronicle all the atrocities, murders and wholesale slaughter throughout the land, although of unprecedented 
magnitude, is not in the scope of this book. 

Suffice it to say, however, that whereas the suffering of the Russians was greater, the Mennonites suffered a much greater 
psychological shock, and the setback from where they formerly were to where the criminal rampage left them was also much 
greater. The Russian people had a long tradition of suffering and they took the war and revolution more or less as a matter of 
course. For the Mennonites, who were prosperous, orderly and religious, peacefully living in their Garden Spot for more than a 
hundred years, the terror that descended upon them came as a sudden violent shock as though a wild beast, or Satan himself 
had entered their beautiful Garden of Eden. In a few horror-filled years their peaceful and prosperous colonies that had been 
built up through industry and planning over five generations had suddenly been stripped to the bone and driven to the brink of 
despair. It was a shock and devastation from which the colonies never recovered. The problem that now confronted them was 
survival of those that were left. 

Reflections and an Assessment 

From the foregoing history of the Mennonite settlements in Russia, especially the Molotschna colony, I might have left the 
unqualified impression that the Mennonites were solely possessed of virtues they were industrious, hard working, 
resourceful, intelligent, practically devoid of crime and had many other qualities and characteristics that are to be admired. All 
of the above may be true, and probably are, but the fact that they did not survive in their own "Garden Spot" would point to the 
conclusion that they were also possessed of some glaring weaknesses and shortcomings, and this too, is obviously true. One 
of Nature's Eternal Laws regarding life on this Planet Earth is the law of Survival of the Species. Whereas the Mennonites were 
outstandingly proficient in the reproduction and expansion of their own kind, they failed to protect their precious progeny, at 
least in their prime habitat in the Molotschna colony and in Russia as a whole. The once beautiful Molotschna colony is now a 
shambles and a desolation, as it has been for some seventy years, and it will never again return to its once pristine glory. 

In assessing these virtues and weaknesses, those of us who have survived should learn some important lessons, not only for 
ourselves, but also to pass on to our future progeny, and the White Race in general. For example, let us remember that the evil 
forces which destroyed the Mennonites in Russia were not a local occurrence, nor is this by any means the end of the story. 
No, indeed, the evil forces are still as malevolent and malignant today as they were seventy years ago, or a century ago, or a 
thousand years before that. I will directly come to the point: the Jewish network destroyed the Mennonites deliberately, 
wantonly, and viciously. They also destroyed the Romanov dynasty and murdered the Czar and his family. They wreaked 
chaos and anarchy on the Russian people and deliberately murdered approximately 30 million Russians, selectively targeting 
the White Russian segment in particular, in line with their long-standing policy of destroying the White Race - Always Kill the 
Best First. They used the same tactics against the French Nation a hundred and thirty years earlier when they guillotined the 
nobility and leaders of that beleaguered nation. They have used the same modus operandi against the German people for the 
last four hundred years, and vehemently so in the last fifty years. They are employing the same tactics and principles in their 
deliberate program of destroying the White Race in America, in Europe and wherever the White Race resides in the world. Let 
me remind you it is happening today. 

So the first thing for which I criticize the Mennonite people, my people, is that they have never even tried to identify, or confront 
the real enemy that wantonly destroyed them. In fact, in their misdirected religious zeal they are the first and foremost to 
worship, praise and eulogize the so-called "Israelites" as "God's Chosen people". In this respect they are congenitally blind and 
continue to be so more than ever to this very day. 

Concomitantly with this charge, secondly I criticize them for their insane infatuation with Jewish Christianity, the spooks in the 
sky swindle, the most vicious fraud and brain scrambler of all time. Thirdly, with this obsession about Jewish Christianity also 
goes the fatal flaw of adhering to the worst of the bad advice dispensed in the "Sermon on the Mount", namely of religiously 
refusing to take up arms and defend their own people, their loved ones, their family and their own kind. Practically no creature 
in Nature will descend to such stupidity. This is my third criticism of the Mennonites. 

In one respect, however, I will come to the defense of the Mennonites, namely, that this is not due to cowardice or lack of 
courage, since I am firmly convinced that the Mennonites are as courageous as are their Dutch and/or German ancestors, or 
as courageous as any of the best of them. But it is their religious insanity or stubbornness that has induced them to cling to 
their fatal tenet of non-resistance, or charitably turning the other cheek throughout the centuries, a most fatal flaw Indeed. 

The fourth criticism I have of the Mennonites is their geographic rootlessness, similar to that of the Jews and the Gypsies, 
settling in any and every country of the world, but never having tried to build a state of their own. In their defense I want to 
further point out that unlike the Jews and the Gypsies, the Mennonites are and always have been a highly industrious and 
productive people. They never had any need to be a parasite (like the Jews), or steal their way across the land (like the 
Gypsies). No, indeed, they have always more than paid their way, always been highly self- sufficient and extraordinarily 
capable of organizing and governing themselves. Of course, it can be argued that had they been allowed to expand peacefully, 
say in Prussia, or even in Russia, by the sheer rate of their multiplication they would over a period of a few centuries have 
populated and occupied the whole country. But this never happened, and again this can be blamed on the flaw in their religious 
dogma that they were deliberately determined to take no steps to protect themselves and insure their own survival. 

These are the main criticisms I have. There are a few others of a minor and petty nature that I have observed, which are not 
necessarily peculiar to the Mennonites, but shared by mankind in general, although the Mennonites may perhaps possess 
them to a slightly larger degree. Some of these characteristics are the petty, backbiting way in which they, in their 
aggressiveness to get ahead, will criticize those who do rise above the crowd. I have noticed that many (not all) will gossip 
about and malign those who have done better than themselves, at the same time disparage and laugh at those who have done 
worse. This is a petty Catch-22, a no win attitude, and one to which I cannot point with pride. 

Having made the above criticisms reluctantly, let me reiterate that in weighing the pluses and minuses, I believe the 
Mennonites are a great people, that they have excellent genes, physically, mentally and morally. If the whole world were 
populated with their kind it would be a far superior world to the scum-infested, Jew-ridden world of today, a world that is rapidly 

bursting at the seams with environmental pollution and exploding mud peoples. 

What I would like to see the Mennonite people of today, what is left of them, do, is this: For one thing, I would hope that they 
would forget their spooks in the sky nonsense once and for all and instead pay closer attention to their biological origins and 
values, which are excellent. I would hope that they would join with the rest of the White Race, that they would get their priorities 
straight and help get the parasitic Jewish pestilence that destroyed their Garden of Eden in Russia off the backs of mankind. In 
short, if they would exert the same zeal, dedication, aggressiveness and industry as they have wasted on their fraudulent Jew- 
instigated religious beliefs, and convert all that great talent and energy toward building a Whiter and Brighter World, we might 
yet Indeed have a Garden of Eden on Planet Earth In totality. 

Against the Evil Tide - 01 

Milestone Zero: My Mennonite Heritage 







Against the Evil Tide - 02 

Milestone One: Personal Memories of Russia Nostalgic and Otherwise 

Although along with my family, I lived through most of those horror filled years (I was born in February of 1918) it seems my 
memories began to register when I was about three years old, the year 1 921 . By this time the Bolshevik regime had pretty well 
demolished the opposition and they were now consolidating their tyranny. This did not mean that the terror was over. Far from 
it. In fact, it was the beginning of a long and endless nightmare that persists to this very day. Not that all my recollections of 
Russia are negative. I have many memories that I treasure fondly and with a certain amount of nostalgia, and I will try to 
reconstruct what I can remember of my life between the ages of three and six, both the good and the bad. 

We lived in the village of Rudnerweide in the Molotschna colony, at the south end of the village. We occupied a large, 
comfortable house. It was a long rectangular building with a tile roof, with the front half being our living quarters and the barn in 
the back half of the building. The yard, the garden and a beautiful orchard comfortably took in a few acres of land. Also on this 
same yard was another building, a large blacksmith shop that normally held the farm machinery and other equipment. During 
the years in question it housed two other families (at different times) that we had taken in, families that were even more 
destitute than we were. 

The one family was named Henry Dyck. I remember that one day we learned that Mrs. Dyck had died during the middle of the 
night and we were all awakened to hear the report. My dad helped prepare her body and build the coffin for the ensuing 
funeral. They had a little daughter that was my age. Her name was Heidi. I was to see her again later when they had moved to 
another village. 

The other family that followed was by the name of Driediger. They had a flock of uncouth kids whom we did not like. 

Probably my earliest memory is during the famine years of 1921-22. i remember having half slice of dark bread rationed to 
each of us for dinner and my dad telling us that that was ail there was going to be dished out for this evening meal. I remember 
looking around and smiling, and thinking - this isn't really so bad! I don't really remember feeling hungry, although I am sure 
that there were many times when we were. The fact is many people died of starvation during the famine years of 1 921 and 
1922, including some Mennonites, but many more millions were Russians. To be exact, five million Russians died of hunger in 
the Ukraine alone during those two years. 

This was no accident of nature, nor the result of drought, nor any other natural catastrophe. We must remember that the 
Ukraine, where we lived, was the largest, most fertile farming area in Europe, and was, in fact commonly known as the 
breadbasket of the continent. Then why did five million people die of starvation in the Ukraine during those two miserable 

The answer is simple. It was planned that way. True, the devastation of the previous three years of looting, murders, and 
anarchy had left the farms pretty much of a disaster area, but still, the countryside could and would easily have produced 
enough to have fed its population. When the Bolsheviks took over, one of their insane programs that was number one on the 
list was to take the land away from the people (as well as all their other property) and "collectivize" the farms. This they did with 
a vengeance. The first step in doing so was to break the "Kulaks", the land owning farmers, by either starving them to death, or 
shooting them, or shipping them off to Siberia. The Bolsheviks employed all these methods with a great deal of zeal and vigor. 
Many who resisted were shot. On a number of occasions they would round up a "herd" of Kulaks, force them into cattle cars, 
lock the doors and ship them a thousand miles up the line towards Siberia, then throw them out into the wilderness and let 
them fend for themselves, if they could. 

But even more effective was starving them to death on their home premises. The Communist commissars would come around 
to every household, to every farmer, and demand tribute, mostly grain, and levy every bushel, every cupful they could find on 
the premises after a thorough search, and cart it off. Thus, the farmers were left without food and without seed grains for next 
year's crop. In charge of this vicious program in the Ukraine was that sinister slant-eyed Asiatic criminal by the name of Joseph 
Stalin, who was to later become the most cruel, the most bloodthirsty murderer in all the annals of history. The result was five 
million Ukrainians died of a deliberately planned famine, and among them, many Mennonites. During those years cats, dogs, 
the carcasses of dead horses were eaten in order to stay alive. The only reason our family did survive is because my dad had 
the foresight to see what was coming and took great pains to hide, to bury and otherwise squirrel away enough grains to feed 
his family of seven. 

Many of the more gruesome events that happened while I was still an infant too young to recall, were related to me by my 
parents and by my two brothers and sisters, all of which were older than I, and I will try to relate them first. 

The civil war that raged back and forth in the Ukraine was very much evident in the Molotschna colony, and in our own village 
of Rudnerweide, and in fact in our own backyard (as well as in the front yard). Mother tells me of the family cowering in the 
middle hall of the house (evidently presumed to be the most protected place) while cannon balls and grenades were exploding 

and flying all about us. One cannon ball took off the top corner gable of our house, a visible scar that I still remennber. Another 
cut a swath through the beams of our barn. Another missile exploded in an outside pigpen and killed several of our pigs. 

Dad and mother also tell of criminal gangs of Makhnovskys riding into our village on horseback, sometimes as many as 60 In a 
gang, and ransacking our house (and that of others). They tell me of my dad being taken into the basement at gunpoint and 
being lined up against the wall to be shot, but evidently he was spared at the last minute. My mother has also told me a number 
of times that when I was nine months old I contracted a terrible illness, typhoid or scarlet fever, I don't know which. While I was 
in this state and near death (my mother tells me) the Red armies and the White armies were battling it out in our yard, shot and 
shell were flying, with the family again all huddled in the hallway of the house. 

By 1923 this ferocity of the Bolshevik regime abated somewhat and they began to realize that unless they allowed the people 
some latitude in the rebuilding of their broken-down farms and economy, not only might the economy of the whole country 
collapse, but their newly inaugurated tyranny might very well collapse along with it. So things began to improve. We planted 
crops of grain again and we planted our vegetable gardens. We restored our badly mauled orchards. We were able to eat full, 
nourishing meals again. I remember the family bringing in wagonloads of sheaves from the field, the wagon being drawn by a 
mixed team of one horse and one cow. 

I also remember a pleasant scene of sitting in the middle of a beautiful large vegetable garden. I was sitting in the middle of 
some high rows of something, hiding out for the fun of it, while my sister was calling for me, wondering where I was. Another 
time in the same lush garden setting, I was sitting on the ground, eating raw sweet peas, when that same sister ambushed me 
from the back and scared the daylights out of me. 

Here are a number of other trivial Incidents, random vignettes of memory, that still linger after sixty-five years. They happened 
somewhere between the age of three and six. 

My first attendance at Sunday school when I was three or four. This was my introduction to "heaven" and the spook world 
beyond "up there" somewhere. I still remember the hymn we sang, and like an oft-repeated commercial jingle, it still circulates 
through my mind from time to time, demonstrating the effectiveness of mind indoctrination at an early age. It was in German, of 
course, and the words went like this: 

Der Himmel steht often 

Hertz weiss du warum? 

Well Jesus gekaemft und geblutet Darum. 

Translation: (The) heaven stands open. 

Heart, do you know why? 

Because Jesus battled and bled 

That's why. 

The picture my young but then still unpolluted mind conceived of "heaven" was the attic of a small room or cabin, and the 
opening that I pictured was like that of an open crawl hole. 

Playing around in the large orchard that was part of our estate. Climbing around in the large fruit trees - apple, cherry, peach 
and others. Eating too many ripe cherries one afternoon and ending up with a bad case of diarrhea. 

Sitting on a warm tile hearth bench in the evening with my mother and older sisters, Sarah and Katie, singing religious hymns. 
One in particular still reverberates in my mind: 

Muss Ich gehen mit lehren haenden 
Muss Ich so vor Jesu stehen. 
Kann Ihm kelne Garben bringen 
Kelne einzige Garbe nicht. 

Translation: Must I go with empty hands 
Must I so stand before Jesus. 
Can bring him no sheaves 
Not a single sheaf even. 

My mother was especially delighted with the verve and the loudness I put into those songs, and I remember her praising me for 
it. By 1923 and 1924 we began receiving some food packages from America, through what agency I have no idea. Anyway, I 
remember receiving sugar, and I would put a spoonful in my mouth and let it slowly dissolve into a syrup before swallowing. 
Unlike the cherries, too much sugar produced the opposite results ~ constipation. The only other food I remember receiving 

from America was thick slices of porl< fat, altiiougii I am sure tiiere was more. Speal<ing of America, it became even tiien a 
promised land that some day we must go to. In talking about it with my mother it also introduced to me the concept of a round 
world with a large body of water between us and America. As I questioned my mother further about this round world 
surrounded by water, my understanding was that It was flat, of course, like a platter, with a circle of water around the perimeter 
and a straight cut of water across the middle of the plate, dividing the world into two portions of land, one of which was us, and 
the other was America. We had a brass cup in the kitchen that had a handle and had been made from a cut-off artillery shell. 
One evening it was standing on a counter, half-full, and I was thirsty. I drank it all before I realized it was not water, but 
kerosene. I became very sick and had a terrible headache. My dad, in order to comfort me and cheer me up, further 
aggravated the situation by foolishly giving me a tablespoon full of sugar. As can be expected, it did not help any, but somehow 
I survived the night. 

At one time we had two horses in our barn (as well as some other animals and poultry). Since everybody was in need, thievery 
was rampant in the land, not perpetrated by the Mennonites but by itinerant Russians, some of which worked in the village, 
others that roamed the countryside and figured the Mennonite villages were good pickings. This was not exactly a new 
phenomena. The Russian peasants had a long history of thievery, and the poverty and chaos that followed the revolution only 
intensified it. Anyway, one morning we woke up and found one of our horses had been spirited away during the night. This 
was, of course, a severe loss, since horses were direiy needed to work the land and extremely hard to get. How we managed 
to acquire two horses after having been repeatedly ransacked by the Makhnovskys and Bolshevik bandits, I can't say. As an 
object lesson of locking the barn door after the horse was stolen, my dad installed a three-inch iron pipe with a lock on it across 
the stall in which the other horse was kept, and punctiliously kept it locked every night thereafter. 

I remember playing with the neighbor children across the street. The name of the family was Friesen, and they had several 
children that were of a similar age to that of my sisters. I also remember seeing my sometime friend Heidi Dyck again. Her 
family had lived in our former blacksmith shop for a while until moving to another village. 

The raising of winter wheat had been a mainstay crop among the Mennonite farmers since the early 1850's, and when the 
pandemonium described earlier somewhat subsided, evidently the villagers, including my father, managed to get the crops 
going again, to what level, I don't know, but I do remember that we had a one-cylinder diesel engine that was mounted on a 
concrete base. My dad heated up the fire-plug with a blowtorch to get it going. It was coupled by a heavy drive belt to a still 
functioning threshing machine, all of which were housed in a machine shed attached to the side of the barn (not to be confused 
with the larger separate blacksmith shop which stood separately in the yard, and now housed some of our destitute friends). 
One harvest that I remember we brought home the sheaves from the field in a wagon pulled by a team that consisted of one 
horse and one cow, as mentioned earlier. 

There was a large windmill that ground the wheat into flour located about a quarter of a mile west of the end of the village 
where we lived and I remember going there several times to have our wheat converted into flour. Evidently the harvest in 1923 
and 1924, I don't know which, was more than we needed for our own use. I remember my dad sacking the remaining wheat 
and taking it off to market In Berdlansk, a Russian city. This was located about 50 miles distant and the trip and return required 
several days. My dad and evidently a neighbor undertook this trip while the weather was favorable and I had the privilege of 
being taken along. We slept out in the open during the nights and ate what victuals we had packed and brought along. 

I remember particularly as we approached the city of Berdlansk, which lay on the shore of the Sea of Azov, that we had to 
descend a particularly steep dirt road. Evidently, my dad had anticipated and prepared for this emergency. The rear wheels of 
the wagon were locked with a long pole across the wagon, and then steel shoes, like short skis were attached to the stationary 
wheels. The horses then leisurely pulled the wagon down the hill, with the rear wheels skidding in the dirt. 

Evidently dad and the family had made up their minds we were going to emigrate and get out of Russia. I presume the money 
he received from the sale of the wheat went towards saving up for the fares and anticipated travel expenses. The years of 1923 
and 1924 had been much better than all the anarchy and bloodshed that preceded them and evidently goods were again 
something that could be bartered or sold for money. In May of 1924 we had a grand auction in our yard and sold everything we 
owned - farm, machinery, cattle and horses. I have no idea how much dad received for what was left of his former estate, but I 
presume that most of the goods were bought by our Mennonite friends, neighbors and relatives. 

By June, 1924, evidently the passports, visas, railroad and steamship fares were all in order, and we had a grand, tear- 
wrenching farewell party. It was held in the large blacksmith shop that stood by itself and where some of our refugee friends 
had temporarily lived. The place was all decked out, large amounts of cakes, sandwiches and tea were served. All our friends 
and neighbors from the village of Rudnerweide were there as well as our many relatives from nearby villages. The preachers 
from the Mennonite church were there and gave tear-wrenching sermons followed by an emotional singing of "God be with you 
till we meet again." We all cried and memories of it still bring tears to my eyes. 

Next day we gathered all of our few personal possessions, which consisted of a small assortment of suitcases, boxes and a 
small old-fashioned trunk. All were loaded onto a low buckboard. Including ourselves, and our neighbor from across the street, 
Franz Friesen, drove us to Marlawohl, where our grandmother lived. As we crossed the little bridge on the Sisikulak River we 

cast our eyes on the village of Rudnerweide for the last time. As we passed over a slight rise and out of sight, my mother and 
two sisters broke Into fitful spasms of crying. We all knew that this part of our life was behind us and would never return. What 
the future held was extremely uncertain. Our destination was Mexico, somewhere in Mexico. 

We stayed in Mariawohl over night. Then Uncle Heinrich, dad's brother, on another vehicle, drove us to Lichtenau, where we 
boarded our first train, the beginning of a long and momentous Journey. 

Against the Evil Tide - 02 

Milestone One: Personal Memories of Russia 

Nostalgic and Otherwise 







Against the Evil Tide - 03 

Milestone Two: Trans Europe and Across the Atlantic 

Although leaving our native village was an emotional experience, I looked forward to the trip into the unl<nown as an exciting 
adventure, something to look forward to with a great deal of anticipation. By and large, that is the way it turned out, and even 
my dad and my older brothers Korni, 16, and Henry, 18, got caught up into the spirit of adventure with the attitude that they 
were enrolled in a grand world tour, the like of which they would probably have only once in a lifetime. 

As we embarked on the train and first headed for Moscow, every sight for me was new. In fact, until then, I had never even 
seen a train before. We traveled day and night, and had to make several transfers. The family was organized and everybody 
had the responsibility of certain pieces of luggage to carry on and off, to guard and make sure they were not stolen or lost. I 
remember that Korni had the small wooden trunk with the rounded top as his charge. It had in it some of our basic books such 
as the family photo album, the big family bible, and other valuable books. It was relatively heavy. As we sat on station platforms 
with our mound of goods waiting for the next train connection to come along, I remember getting awfully sleepy and tired, 
especially when such transfers occurred during the middle of the night, which they often did. 

But by and large, the trip from beginning to end (it took about three months to finally reach a destination in Mexico that we had 
not even determined when we started) was an exciting, invigorating and tremendously educational experience. One of the 
things that immediately attracted my attention as we rolled along in the various trains was the number of vendors hawking their 
wares to the transient customers. I was especially attracted to the candy vendors. I discovered that for one kopek, the 
equivalent of a cent, I could buy a good-sized piece of candy. As a result, my sisters and I continuously badgered our dad to 
give us a kopek. This he did sparingly, since his resources were extremely limited and the unforeseen exigencies of future 
requirements almost unlimited. 

I want to digress here a moment and point out that we, like practically all refugees and migr s fleeing Russia at that time, 
were traveling on an extremely meager, in fact, shoestring budget. But I also want to point with pride that unlike many 
emigrants who followed us, we did not travel on borrowed funds. My dad paid for the entire trip with funds he had precariously 
scraped together from the sale of our belongings in Russia, and any other moneys he had managed to squirrel away prior to 
the auction. How he managed to do so, I have no idea, but I do know he was a frugal man. Many other Mennonites who left in 
the next few succeeding years did so with the help of several charitable Mennonite organizations in Canada, and also the 
United States. But most active in helping some 20,000 Mennonite refugees make the transfer to Canada were such agencies 
as the Mennonite Central Committee, the Mennonite Colonization Association of North America, the Mennonite Migration Aid 
Society, Mennonite Immigration Bureau, Canada Mennonite Board of Colonization and a number of others. A most active 
leader in this respect was the Rev. David Toews, out of Rosthern, Sask. but he was not alone. There were hundreds, even 
thousands of others who contributed heavily in time and money to help their Mennonite brethren make the transition out of 
Bolshevik-ridden Russia. Such emigrants had funds loaned to them by these charitable organizations, which the migr s 
promised to repay later when they became settled and able to repay, which sometimes took many years, sometimes even 15 
or 20 years. But that is another story that is well chronicled in several other books, such as "The Mennonite Exodus" by Frank 
H. Epp, and several others. 

As an aside, most Mennonites paid off these charitable loans as soon as they got back on their feet, and had the money with 
which to do so. However, there were some (a few) ungrateful ingrates who repudiated these debts and refused to repay a 
charitable loan and much travel assistance that had enabled them to transfer out of the Bolshevik slave-labor concentration 
camp that was, and still is, Communist Russia. 

But to resume our odyssey across Europe. 

We finally arrived in Moscow where we were delayed for some days, perhaps weeks. My memory regarding such stopovers for 
matters of arranging fares, itineraries or immigration papers, or whatever, is not too clear. I know that they occurred again and 
again in different cities as we wound our way across the continent and even in Cuba and in Mexico and that we were holed up 
in a variety and number of places, but how long each stopover was I couldn t say. 

Our stay in Moscow was most interesting. I remember staying in a bedroom that had vertically striped wallpaper, a novelty, and 
what was even more remarkable was that the room had an electric light bulb hanging down from the ceiling, which wonder of 
wonders, could be turned on and off by means of a switch on the wall. Also, I discovered ice cream. The vendors on the streets 
were selling ice cream, much as we know it today, but not in cones but in equivalent canoe shaped cookie crusts. I thought 
they were delicious, and continued to bug my poor dad with repeated requests for more. 

Our next stop, as I recall, was Riga, Latvia, about which I remember very little. Then on to Berlin, Germany, where we were 
again laid up for some time. I also recall stopping over in Cologne, and dad and the boys going to visit the sites. One of these 
was the famous Cologne Cathedral with its twin 550-foot steeples. I remember them bringing back a small silver medallion as a 
memento, with the cathedral engraved on both sides. 

Our next stop was Paris, where again much sightseeing was done by dad and the boys, visiting the Eiffel tower and other 
famous landmarl<s. Usually, my mother and my sisters did not join in on these sightseeing tours, which were always strictly on 
foot, and my dad took me along on most of them. 

From Paris we took the train to our embarkation point across the Atlantic. We boarded a Royal Mall Lines steamship at 
LaRochelle, France, and for the first time laid eyes on the vast Atlantic. We not only laid eyes on it, we soon became 
thoroughly familiar with the vagaries of the ocean. As I recall, all seven of us shared a rather small cabin, which had an electric 
light bulb dangling from the ceiling and a small washbasin to one side. 

We were not too many hours afloat, undulating over the rolling waves, when some of the family began to get seasick. The only 
ones, in fact, that did not on the entire trip were my dad and I. However, even on the first day out as I watched one of my 
sisters throw up into the washbasin. It turned my stomach, and I immediately followed suit. 

There evidently was no switch in the cabin with which to turn off the electric light bulb that was dangling from the ceiling. When 
it came time for everyone to go to sleep that pesky light remained on. My dad obviously was not familiar enough with these 
new-fangled lighting systems to know that the light could be extinguished by unscrewing the bulb, so he did the next best thing. 
He hung a handkerchief or a towel around it. 

We were all eating in the ship's dining room and really felt like we were living high on the hog. Evidently a bottle of wine was 
served gratis with each dinner meal, and everybody consumed it with relish. Even I, as a six-year-old boy, received a small 
bottle and drank it in lieu of water. Apparently it was very light in alcoholic content, since I don't remember myself or any other 
members feeling any drastic effects from it. 

The ship was also the occasion when I viewed black Africans for the first time. They were in the cooking department of the 
kitchen and I remember my dad going to the kitchen each morning and requesting hot milk for us kids to drink in the cabin 
before we went down for breakfast. I also remember being introduced to oranges, pineapples and bananas for the first time. 

One day my oldest brother Henry and I were wandering about on deck and I happened to trip over a tangle of steel cable. As I 
fell I hit my forehead on the sharp edge of a rim on a ventilation funnel. These are no longer used on modern ships, but at that 
time these funnels could be rotated to face into the wind and funnel fresh air into the quarters below. Anyway, I fell and not only 
cut a nasty gash in my forehead, but it temporarily knocked me unconscious, and I bled profusely. Henry picked me up and 
carried me to the ship's dispensary where a doctor wrapped my head in several layers of bandages. Apparently he was not the 
most skilled in his profession, for when he secured the end of the wrappings with a safety pin he partially ran the pin through 
my scalp. I still carry a scar on my forehead from that particular mishap. 

On route across the ocean we saw much marine life. We saw any number of flying fish, practically anytime of day. We saw a 
few whales in the distance, one at a time. One day we saw two large dolphins swimming at top speed just ahead of the bow, 
keeping time with the speed of the ship for several miles. 

After more than a week we finally dropped anchor in Havana harbor. Havana at that time evidently didn't have any piers to 
accommodate ocean steamships. There was much hustle and bustle when we landed. Any number of vendors were hawking 
their wares in little boats below to the potential customers on a deck at least 30 feet above. This consisted of such as oranges, 
beads and various other tourist items. After much gesticulating and haggling, the money would be lowered in a basket at the 
end of a rope and the items brought up in the same basket. 

Finally, the time came to disembark. Again much noise, confusion and bedlam. Each passenger and their belongings were 
transferred to shore by means of small tenders rowed by one lone native Cuban. This apparently was not part of the overall 
fare and the natives had to be paid extra for their individual transfer services. Since the tenders were small, our family had to 
go in two different boats. After a long descent down a precarious ladder on the ship's side, my mother, two sisters and myself 
and a number of our belongings were loaded into one tender. We were rowed to the shore about a quarter of a mile away 
where we unloaded ourselves and our belongings onto a beach. Dad and the two boys with the bulk of the rest of our kit and 
caboodle were to take off in another little boat, but not until after a considerable delay. As I remember there was some 
argument about something, since there were a limited number of these small tenders and hundreds of passengers waiting to 
be transferred. Anyway, our little group of four arrived safely on shore, arranged our belongings into a compact pile. We sat on 
them to make sure they were not hoisted by some of the light-fingered thieves who always infest such places. So there we sat 
and sat, waiting for the major male contingent to arrive. Time went on and my mother was getting increasingly nervous with all 
the uncouth dark-skinned characters milling about the waterfront, some of them black as the ace of spades. Finally as 
darkness began to descend my dad and two brothers arrived and we all breathed a sigh of relief when we found each other. 
This was not easy since there were a lot of people on that beach and the people and piles of their belongings were strewn over 
a large area. 

We settled into some boarding house or other in Havana and stayed there for at least two weeks, awaiting further information 

as to where to go next. Finally we embarked on another steamer, smaller than the Royal Mall, and headed for the port of Vera 
Cruz, Mexico. 

From there we took a train and headed north all the way up to the city of Chihuahua. There we were accommodated into some 
kind of a compound that had a high adobe wall around a large courtyard and a number of flat-roofed adobe buildings inside. 
Here we stayed for about three weeks, until the end of August, where my dad met with some other Mennonite families and 
representatives, trying to decide where to go next. 

Against the Evil Tide - 03 

Milestone Two: Trans Europe and Across the Atlantic 







Against the Evil Tide - 04 

Milestone Three: Wild Sojourn in Mexico 

Where we went next was a small railroad station named Rosario, about 50 miles up the tracks from Chihuahua. When I say 
station, I use the word loosely, since it did not have a station house, but only a water tower for locomotives to replenish their 
supply, a long dirty white shack right next to the railroad track where two or three Mexican families lived with their little 
muchachos. It was their business to maintain the railroad tracks. Besides these two modest structures there was a five-room 
flat roofed adobe building which was set a little further back from the tracks. It was presently empty (except for a few mice, rats 
and insects) and ready and waiting to accommodate us. 

Now five rooms of any building would have seemed like a mansion to us then, but we were not alone. Four other Mennonite 
families were now in our group and were sharing the building with us. That divided up very nicely, exactly one adobe room per 
family. The others, too, were migr s from our part of the Ukraine. One family was the Heinrich Gosens, who had two boys, 
one about my age, one a year or two older. Another was the Gerhard Klassens, no relation, who also had some kids. Then 
there were the two Dickman families, John Sr., and John Jr. The older Dickman and his wife also had grown children other than 
John, and the latter and his wife had young children of their own. 

So there we were, one big happy family settled into a small adobe building with five rooms, none of which were even so much 
as plastered either inside or out. The floor was plain dusty dirt, and I have no idea how long it had been uninhabited, or who 
had ever lived in it. There was no electricity, no plumbing, and I don't remember that the whole building even had any windows. 
This little hacienda sat about 50 yards removed from the railroad tracks in the middle of a huge Mexican rancho that was 
owned by a Spaniard by the name of Saenz. About half a mile away was the main headquarters of the ranch which consisted 
of large complexes of perhaps 20 or so adobe buildings, where the ranch workers lived. Six other Mennonite families moved 
into similar adobe buildings at the ranch, so with eleven families we now had the makings of a potential Mennonite colony. 

Senor Saenz did not live at the ranch. He lived in a small city by the name of San Antonio, probably 15 or 20 miles removed. 
Every so often he would breeze over in his Model T to inspect his ranch holdings and I suppose also to collect rent from us, 
although I don't remember anybody ever paying any rent. Anyway, he was a nice looking young man, and he would usually let 
us kids get into his car with him and take us for a ride. He looked a lot like the Cisco Kid and he always wore a gun belt 
studded with live ammunition and a real gun in the holster. 

In fact, all the Mexican men wore guns, even the lowly railroad maintenance workers who lived next door in the dirty white 
shack by the railroad track. This was 1924, and "The Revolution" which had occurred just recently, supposedly was over, but 
not quite. Banditos still roamed the hills and the countryside in a number of places. Other than that, the country was placid, 
very placid, very somnambulant. A four or five car freight train would rumble into Rosario practically every day, stop to take on 
water and rumble on its way. One of the most interesting things we kids observed about this freight train, which we would go to 
meet every day, was that one box car was always loaded with soldiers, a dozen or so, in full uniform and armed to the teeth. 
One of the rules that was in force then and persists to this day was that any banditos caught in the act were not brought to trial 
in a court of law. Justice was swift and final. They were shot on the spot. 

Evidently the plans of this small group of Mennonite families was to obtain some land and start the nucleus of a small 
settlement. How do you go about starting a settlement without funds or resources? 

Well, the first thing we did was to plaster the dirt floor with a mixture of cow dung and adobe, reinforced with straw. The next 
thing my dad did was to go to the nearest small town (by railroad) and find jobs for my two older brothers, Korni, 16, and Henry, 
18. In this they were successful and Henry obtained a job as a clerk in a hardware store, and Korni elsewhere, the exact nature 
of which escapes me. Both boys learned Spanish fast, but poor Korni soon came down with a severe case of rheumatic fever 
and had to be brought back to the hacienda in Rosario. Where my dad got the idea of plastering Korni's skin with massive 
doses of iodine I have no idea, but that is the treatment the poor fellow received and I remember him moaning and groaning as 
the brown stuff was applied daily until he began to look like a brown zombie. 

After a while Korni recovered, although he was later plagued with arthritis for the rest of his life. Henry, who was a strapping 
young fellow, six foot, very personable and good looking, soon caught the eye of a Spanish banker by the name of Melendez 
and was promoted to an excellent job in the bank. This job he maintained for the rest of our stay in Mexico, and even beyond, 
for when the rest of the family decided to migrate to Canada a year and a half later, Henry stayed with his job for another five 
months or so, until we were better established in our new setting. 

I have very little knowledge of how our finances were being managed at this time, but I am sure they were extremely meager, 
and that Henry's salary was a mainstay in helping pay for the necessities of getting our part of the "new colony" started. I 
remember dad taking the train to San Antonio every so often and coming back with a canvas bag loaded with silver pesos. 
How often and how much I have no idea, but I do remember that when he returned, I would rush to meet him at the station and 
volunteer to carry the canvas bag, and I recall that it was as heavy as a six or seven year old boy could comfortably carry. 

We initially rented some acreage from the rancho estate and planted beans and potatoes. We were soon in possession of a 
wagon and two teams of oxen to pull said wagon, although it only took one team to do the job. The oxen were attached to the 
wagon by means of a yoke that was strapped across their forehead and horns (they had long horns) and the yoke attached to 
the front end of the wagon tongue. The oxen were then urged to move forward or turn by means of a skillfully manipulated 
prod, in conjunction with voice commands. It worked out pretty well, except one red ox by the name of Colorado was somewhat 
rebellious and one day in a fit of pique he threw my 14 year old sister Sarah up into the air with his long horns, in the finest 
tradition of the Spanish bullring. Poor Sarah! She came down with a bloodied nose and a few other bruises, but otherwise was 
not too badly hurt and soon recovered. 

The little "colony" of eleven families were resourceful and energetic. They soon got themselves organized to live like civilized 
people should, and being Mennonites, one of the first things they did was to organize Sunday school and church services. Herr 
Gosen was the preacher and each Sunday services were held in his quarters (one room) of the adobe hacienda in which we all 
lived. Also, after a while regular schooling was organized to be held in a room in one of the buildings at the ranch headquarters 
about half a mile away. Our next-door neighbor, Gerhard Klassen, was the schoolteacher and I remember my first introduction 
to the ABC's and numbers. All this was taught in German and the word "Pferd" (horse) sticks in my memory. However, since 
we continually associated with the Mexicans at the railroad station and elsewhere, we all, especially us younger kids, soon 
became quite proficient in conversational Spanish. 

We had left Russia in June and by the time we finally arrived at our destination in Rosario it was the beginning of September, 
the height of the tropical hot and rainy season. The mornings would be clear, becoming hotter as noon approached. Then by 
early afternoon almost as if by the clock the sky would suddenly cloud up and in a matter of minutes a heavy downpour would 
ensue. Since we had not yet been acclimated to the tropics and since sanitary conditions were less than ideal we were all very 
much vulnerable to yellow fever. I don't remember who all in our family came down with it, but my two sisters and I all three 
contracted it at the same time, and I will never forget it. We were all lying in the same bed. Just burning up with fever, and air 
conditioning had not yet been discovered, at least not in Mexico. I was so hot and so miserable I thought surely I would die. But 
once again, I pulled through and so did everyone else in the small colony, including my mother, who also had a terribly severe 
siege of it. 

After the tropical rainy season was over, and we were more or less acclimated, the fall and winter weather was most pleasant 
and invigorating. It was dry and sunny and a more delightful environment could hardly be wished for. We were beginning to 
enjoy Mexico, or at least some of us were. 

The Mennonites soon got their act together and went about it in earnest to get their infant "colony" started. The rancho where 
we lived was not too unlike the Serengeti plain of Africa. It was flat, an abundance of grass in a fertile plain surrounded by 
mountains on a perimeter about ten miles distant. Plenty of animals roamed the plains, some of which were only semi-wild - 
such as burros, mules, cattle, and a number of totally wild, such as rabbits and lots of rattlesnakes. About half a mile to the 
North of us was a valley, a flat depression through which ran a gentle stream and when the rainy season was on became a not 
so gentle turbulent river. The Mennonite group in Rosario purchased a tract of land in this valley, in which they planned to build 
the nucleus of their settlement and start farming on their own. 

My dad was as enterprising as any of them. Soon he with the help of his progeny were pouring large adobe bricks into wooden 
moulds and letting them bake in the sun. As soon as the bricks were ready, he started building an adobe house. He and Korni 
also hand dug a well and we were about to be on our way to having an adobe hacienda of our own in the valley. 

The house was never finished. As 1 925 got under way, there began a serious reappraisal by the eleven families of our little 
Mennonite "colony", each for different reasons, but before I go into that phase let me first recapitulate a few other random 
"vignettes of memory" of that period. 

I was coming back to the hacienda by myself from the little adobe "home we were building in the valley and walking through 
some tall grass. Suddenly I found myself running rapidly about a foot above the ground as I glimpsed the head of a big snake 
moving toward my bare ankles. 

Speaking of snakes, we all became real familiar with rattlesnakes, and of course tried to kill them at every opportunity. Even I 
as a six or seven year old kid soon became quite adept at stoning them to death and keeping my distance at the same time. 

As I described earlier, there were a number of ranch animals roaming the grasslands near our door. Sometimes we (kids) 
would approach a tame burro and get on its back. Once with the help of some of the other kids I ventured to get on the back of 
a larger animal, a mule, that was meandering by. The mule took issue with this kind of tomfoolery. It promptly bucked me off, 
and then, to add injury to insult, it kicked me in the ribs while I was down. 

One day my dad, my sister, and some others drove to a pass in the mountains where there were some fruit orchards, apples, I 
believe. The trip was made in our flat bed wagon which was drawn by oxen and took all day. 

Another time my dad, my brother and I drove to a town by the name of LaJunta to look at some oxen or horses, I don't know 
which. I was very much impressed by the skill with which these Mexican vaqueros were able to handle a riata. I remember this 
one fellow roping first one horn, then the other, of a longhorn steer about fifteen feet away, each time giving the rope a gentle 
flip to disengage, then, repeat the exhibition. 

Every so often Henry would come home for the weekend from his bank teller s job in San Antonio (it was a minor trip on the 
directly connecting railroad). By this time the boys had bought themselves a neat looking shotgun, of which they were rather 
proud. We would sometimes go hunting over the plains which abounded with rabbits and wild foul, all of which were a welcome 
addition to our Sunday dinners. 

One night my dad and another neighbor or two borrowed the railroad handcar that the maintenance workers had available, and 
by means of hand power propelled ourselves to a neighboring small town where we visited a few other Mennonite families. We 
returned late that same night. 

As I stated a little earlier, the eleven families that started out to build a nucleus of a Mennonite colony in Mexico had serious 
second thoughts about the whole prospect, and not all for the same reasons. My mother was unhappy about the whole 
environment and considered the country too wild, too uncivilized and too raw. In the meantime, things had been stirring with 
our other relatives back in Russia, and three of dad's family, the Abe Klassens, the John Klassens, and the Jacob Wienses 
were emigrating from Russia to Herschel, Saskatchewan, in Canada. So evidently were a considerable contingent of other 
Mennonites that were not related to us, to form a larger community of about 40 families in the Herschel area. Also the idea that 
the next generation (we children) would be engulfed by a sea of half civilized Mexicans did not present a very cheerful prospect 
to our parents. Whatever the reasons, what with contacts and arrangements with the Canadian Mennonite Board of 
Colonization, we decided to once again emigrate to a less primitive and more congenial environment. Personally, I enjoyed 
Mexico, I liked the warm climate, I liked the wide-open spaces and I enjoyed the raw adventurous setting. 

In any case, by December of 1925 we had again packed our few essentials in a few suitcases and boarded the train north, to 
again face an uncertain future and a strange environment. Henry alone remained behind in the relatively good job he had at the 
bank in San Antonio to join us later if things worked out. He was now nineteen. 

Against the Evil Tide - 04 

Milestone Three: Wild Sojourn in Mexico 


Back 1 





Against the Evil Tide - 05 

Milestone Four: North to Saskatchewan 

Our trip from the State of Chihuahua, IVIexico, to the Province of Sasl<atchewan, Canada, progressed much more rapidly than 
had our long drawn out Journey from Russia a year and a half earlier. We left Rosario by the end of November 1 925 and 
arrived in Herschel in the middle of a cold December. I remember no long stopovers on this trans-America trip, but mainly I 
recall different railroad stations and their comparatively lavish Interiors, or so they seemed tome. 

This was during the period before Christmas and I also remember a whole raft of novel toys that were on display at the stores 
in the larger railroad stations. Of these, one toy in particular stands out in my mind, and that was a mechanical monkey on a 
string. When the string was pulled tight the monkey climbed up the string, working its arms and legs in a coordinated action. 
When the string was slackened, the monkey climbed down. 

Our itinerary took us through the cities of El Paso, Dallas, Kansas City, Des Moines, Minneapolis, St. Paul, and others. We 
entered Canada at North Portal, Saskatchewan, passed through Regina on the way to Herschel. 

The little village of Herschel owed its existence to the rich wheat farming country that surrounded it. It had been founded about 
a dozen years before we arrived there and its main architectural impressiveness at the time were four towering grain elevators, 
all painted a red rust color. A little later these increased to five. In 1925 Herschel did not yet have an electrical distribution 
system in this village of about 200, but a year or two later it did install its own crude system. A gasoline-powered generator 
could be heard chugging away at any part of the village, day or night, and it was soon the pride of the village, and everybody 
soon had electric lights. 

We arrived there one dark evening in the middle of December. The snow lay heavily on the ground and it was miserably cold. I 
don't remember ever seeing snow before, not in the southern Ukraine, nor in Mexico and when I did meet up with it in Canada I 
was not favorably impressed. That attitude remained with me until I left Canada for California nearly twenty years later, when I 
swore that If I never saw any snow again It would be too soon. 

To meet us at the railroad station in a box sled was my Uncle Jacob Wiens and Uncle John Klassen, and some other relatives. 
(For those who are not familiar with farm equipment, let me explain that a box sled is the winter version of the box wagon used 
when the snow is gone. In either case a sturdy open box about three feet high, four feet wide and about ten feet long, sits 
either on a set of wagon wheels or on a two-piece set of heavy sled runners.) 

It had been arranged that we would move in with Uncle Jacob (Wiens) and Aunt Margaret, the latter being dad's youngest 
sister. There were six of us, (brother Henry still stayed in Mexico) and what with their two children, the ten of us now shared a 
two room house, a small clapboard structure that had been thrown together in haste a few months previously. The Wienses 
were themselves pioneering out here and barely getting on their feet. 

Arriving in Herschel earlier in 1925 were a contingent of several Mennonite families, all of whom had gone there directly from 
our area of Russia, about a year after we had left. Several more followed in 1 926, until soon there were a total of at least 40 
families. Three of these families were of dad's immediate relatives, namely Abe Klassen and his brood. Uncle John and his 
family, and Uncle Jacob, his wife Margaret (dad's sister) and their two infants. By the time we arrived there, one of these 
groups had already negotiated a massive real estate transaction, having purchased five sections of land from a wealthy estate 
owner by the name of Lamborne. These holdings were not contiguous, but scattered over a considerable area all north of the 
village of Herschel. Some of these parcels had dwellings on them, some did not, but all were now under cultivation. These five 
sections were divided up among ten families into farms of 320 acres each. The participants in this particular deal were as 
follows: (a) Jacob J. Wiens, an Elder of the Church, and three of his sons, Jacob J. Wiens, Jr., an uncle of mine, and his 
brothers. Peter and Ben, accounting for four half sections; Bernhard Wiens and George Wiens, both of whom were brothers to 
the Elder Jacob Wiens, taking two more parcels. Uncle Abraham Klassen taking another; Henry Wiens, another. Two more 
participants outside of the Wiens and Klassen clans took the remaining two farms. They were the Jake Isaacs and the Peter 
Sawatsky families, to make a total often. These might be called the original First Families of the Herschel Mennonite 
settlement. They were soon followed by many more, including my dad's family, in 1926. 

By and large, the farms they purchased were already operating concerns of choice fertile land, level, and extremely well 
adapted to wheat farming. Besides the main Lamborne purchase, the Mennonites also acquired any number of smaller pieces 
from other individuals, so that every family soon had a farm of their own, but not all of them as yet had houses on them. 

The Mennonites are a social and cooperative clan, and in one way or another they all practiced racial teamwork. They 
accommodated each other, some by several families moving into the limited housing available, and also by other means. There 
was a large white two-story structure that had been the headquarters of the Lamborne establishment. Several of the new 
Mennonite families moved into it. There were also several large red barns, machine sheds, and an array of farm equipment that 
were on the main premises and also went with the deal. In order to house the other families of the Lamborne group, these 

enterprising people soon built a row of temporary clapboard dwellings such as the one we now shared with the Wienses. (This 
was pure charity. As a latecomer we were not a party then or later, in the Lamborne purchase.) 

So there we were, in the middle of the winter, in the middle of Saskatchewan. To me it was not only a culture shock but even 
more a climatic shock, one for which neither we nor our inadequate clothing were prepared. What winter clothing we now 
possessed consisted mostly of hand-me-downs, given to us by some of the Canadian Mennonite organizations that were now 
highly active in not only helping refugee Mennonites make the trip out of Russia to Canada, but also providing advice, guidance 
and material necessities to the increasing flood of immigrants. 

The rest of the Mennonite kids having arrived some six months earlier were already enrolled in the English speaking rural 
school that was situated a few miles away from our new colony. So my sister Katie, aged 12, and I, nearly 8, were swept along, 
practically the day after we arrived there, and also sent to the local country school which had the Indian name of Winona. Such 
country schools dotted the rural landscape all over Saskatchewan and normally had one room, one teacher, a pot bellied stove 
in the corner and about 20 to 30 pupils, grades 1 to 8. 

The weather was miserably cold, and the days were short in the middle of December. Each morning while it was still dark a box- 
sled (also known as bob-sled) would load up all the kids from the headquarters farm. We were then packed on the floor of the 
sled and covered with blankets as best as possible. Then, with a team of horses equipped with sleigh bells, off went the 
bobsled full of Wienses, Klassens, Sawatskys, Warkentins, etc. It would saunter into the Winona schoolyard to unload its 
charge. Then at about 3:30 P.M., when it was already getting dark it would again pick us up and transport us back to the farm 
over the fields of frozen ice and knee deep snow. At this point I wished we would have stayed In Mexico. 

Undoubtedly, this was one of the low points in my young life. Our clothing consisted mainly of hand-me-downs and cast-offs, 
none of it suited for the cold weather with which we now were confronted. My shoes were totally unsuited for the cold weather 
and my feet were often frostbitten. It was inevitable that I soon developed chilblains in my toes and heels. 

To add to my woes, because of the poor diet, I also contracted intestinal worms, which aggravated me no end. I was given 
some strong purgative that finally killed the worms. It almost killed me, too. 

Not only was I cold, worm-ridden and miserable, but my initiation to the Canadian schools was a severe trial. Because I was 
different, could not speak English, and was a foreigner, some of the older native bullyboys picked on me and slapped me 
around. They also thought it was good sport to goad me into a fight with kids my own size. This usually culminated into a 
wrestling match rather than a fistfight. I soon learned the art of wrestling and could usually beat any of the kids my size. 

Our teacher, as I recall, was a blonde spinster named Miss Cratcher, aged about 35. I remember one of the older bachelor 
farmers by the name of Russell Gardiner, who was well to do, used to come calling on her while school was still in session. A 
year or so later, as I recall, they were married. 

We are still in the middle of December, and preparations for the Christmas program, which was the highlight of the rural area, 
were in full swing. Christmas finally came and went, but he cold winter went on and on. 

Meanwhile, at the two room, two family cabin, our poor beleaguered parents were doing their best to put on some kind of 
display of Christmas festivities, play Santa Claus and scrape together a few makeshift presents to celebrate this important 
festival In our new setting. It was this very Christmas that it began to dawn on me that the whole Santa Claus story was a hoax. 
Meanwhile my oldest brother Henry was still in good old warm Mexico, earning silver pesos. My oldest sister Sarah, now a big 
girl of 14, soon found a job as maid with the Crulkshank family, who owned the one and only General Store in Herschel. They 
were nice people, and Sarah was quite happy with them, learning to speak English all the while. Dad and brother Korni were 
working around the main farm (there were a million things to do to prepare for spring planting) and attending a small class at 
night, learning the English language. Soon brother Korni obtained a job as farm hand with a well to do farmer named Bill Shirk. 
So in one way or another we were all learning English, getting acclimated and getting into the swing of it. 

I should add that the other 40 families that had arrived in Herschel at about this time were all more or less as poor and destitute 
as we were, but they were all industrious, energetic and hardworking. I don't know how they managed to purchase these large 
tracts of really choice farmland, but I am sure that it was on long drawn out installment payments, with little or no money down. 
The sellers recognized the buyers for the hardworking, trustworthy people they were, that they would make a go of it and would 
pay off the mortgage with the productivity of the land. In this the seller's judgment was sound and what with weather and wheat 
prices being favorable, they were soon in business, both the buyers and the sellers. I am sure that the Mennonite agencies 
previously mentioned also had a big hand in successfully negotiating these transactions and also standing good for the down 

In the meantime, my dad was still without a farm and without means. During the winter of 1926 he, with the help of the 
agencies, and relatives (I presume) was scouting around to buy a farm in the Herschel area. About four miles south of Herschel 
such a farm was found and he negotiated a transaction with a farmer by the name of Tillinghast. The latter had originally 
homesteaded the place in 1910, had built a decent two story house, a large red barn with an enormous hayloft, a tool shed. 

fences in place, and accumulated an assemblage of farm machinery. In short, he offered a going concern, a ready-made farm. 
We bought the place, 640 acres, half a mile wide and two miles long. 

Again I don't know what the terms of the transaction were, but the price was $25.00 per acre. Not all of this land was under 
cultivation. There was quite a bit of pasture land, some of it already fenced, and the north 320 acres still had quite an acreage 
of prairie land that could and would be "broken" (ploughed) after the rocks had been dug out and picked off of it. (Although it 
was good farm land, not quite as rich as that north of Herschel, this rock picking was an ongoing process, as I later 
discovered.) So the papers were drawn up, with the mortgage and the interest rates duly stipulated, and the payments to be 
made each fall in the amount of half the net proceeds from the sale of the grain produced, mostly wheat. We moved onto the 
premises in the spring of 1926. The weather was now beautiful, and everybody, including me, was happy as a lark, to be living 
in a good-sized, full-fledged home of our own, and in the possession of land, lots of land. 

Other Mennonite families, which consisted of Sawatskys, Warkentins, Schroeders, Lingers, Penners, Krahns, Eliases, 
Toewses, and some others whose names I do not remember, negotiated individual deals of their own and settled on the farms 
north of Herschel. To their eternal credit, every able-bodied family soon had a farm of their own, and a decent house to live in. 
By 1930 Bill Loewen, a Mennonite, opened up his own grocery store in Herschel, the third such store In town. 

Also during this time more Mennonite families moved in south of Herschel where we were. Some of these families were more 
Wienses, the Lenzmans, the Pletts, the Wedlers, the Bergs, the Dycks, and the Gerzes. About eight miles further to the south 
of us was the little village of Fiske, where a further scattering of Mennonite families settled, two of which as I remember were 
the Zacharlases and the Martins. Soon a substantial and prosperous Mennonite community was firmly established in the 
Herschel-Fiske area, all of which socialized and communed with each other. 

Against the Evil Tide - 05 

Milestone Four: North to Saskatchewan 







Against the Evil Tide - 06 

Milestone Five: Wheat Farming on the Prairies 

As to how we acquired a herd of cows, a number of horses, farm machinery and a whole plethora of other equipment and 
accoutrements completely escapes me. In fact, I know very little about the negotiations that led to acquiring the farm itself. Be 
that as it may, we were soon off and running, planting crops of wheat, oats, flax, etc., and managed to get the crops in on time 
during that first spring of 1926, and harvest them that fall. 

Sister Katie and I were soon enrolled in the local school with another Indian name, a dumpy little one room, one teacher school 
about two and a half miles distant across open prairie. It was named Oskaloosa, School District No. 3702. 1 will never forget it, 
especially since eleven years later, during the depression, I was to be its teacher for two years, under most adverse conditions. 
But more about that phase later. 

During the spring and fall we walked the two and one- half miles across the pastures and open prairie, carrying our books and 
lunch palls. The latter, as I remember, were not the kind you buy in a store, but empty five-pound corn syrup containers. For 
some reason, when it came to registering us at school my dad added year to my age and Katie's, evidently to get us into a 
higher grade sooner. Anyway, I started in the first grade and Katie in the second. This extra year stayed with me in the school 
registration for several years. It continued to bug me no end, until I finally questioned the pointlessness of this little lie and 
corrected it myself. 

We found this little school with about 20 country kids had a perpetual contingent of at least five niggers, sometimes more, all of 
which were part of the Lafayette family. They lived on a farm about half a mile south of the school. Louie Lafayette, the old 
man, who could trace his ancestry back to the slavery days, (or so he claimed) had sired a brood often, and as a result there 
were always Lafayettes attending Oskaloosa S.D. No. 3702, coming and going. Even as the older members were exiting, a 
new brood of younger ones were coming in, including two illegitimate little bastards from two of the older girls. 

One thing about these niggers, they were outstanding athletes when it came to running and jumping. When the Herschel, and 
also the larger Rosetown area, began having "Field Days" (around 1928) as they were called, the school of Oskaloosa 
invariably won "the Shield" and the silver plaques that were riveted to it. These Field Days were contests in a series of athletic 
events similar to the Olympics, in which points were awarded for first, second and third place in each event, with the school 
with the most points being awarded the coveted shield. For years Oskaloosa carried away the prize for country schools, and 
the Lafayette brood was the main difference, although through the competitiveness engendered, the White kids were giving an 
excellent account of themselves also. Especially outstanding was this black fellow by the name of Earl, who was about my age, 
and in the second grade when I started in the first. 

During the cold winter months the first few years Katie and I were driven to school in a small cutter, by either my brother Korni 
or my dad. This continued to be a miserable process, as had the trips to Winona when we first arrived. After about two years, 
we were considered old enough to drive to school ourselves. There was a barn on the schoolyard where the horses were 
stabled while the rest of us were in school. Regardless of our transportation, getting to school during the winter continued to be 
a cold, miserable experience, with no ameliorating Influences. 

Soon I began to latch onto the system that was going on in the class room (such as it was) and within months I was upped a 
grade to where I was now in the same class as Earl. Soon I was in a grade ahead of him. Also, I began to learn the score in 
playing baseball, the prime game of the school. I remember the first year I was introduced to the game. When I was designated 
as a fielder, I asked one of the boys, Roy Moore by name, "Roy, supposing the ball comes my way and I catch it, what do I do 
with it next?" By 1928 and 1929 I could field, play first base, and bat home runs as well as anybody, and was. In fact, usually 
the pitcher for whatever side I played on. Also, I began to have a very active part in the Field Day athletic events. Whereas I 
was never a fast runner, I excelled in the jump, both the high jump and the broad jump, and even in an event called hop, skip 
and jump, a three-stage stint, when that event was on the schedule. 

To get back to the farm. I was always glad when June arrived and school was out (somewhere in the middle of June). About a 
quarter of a mile below the hill from the barn there was a beautiful lake about a mile long, and the southerly fourth of that lake 
extended into our pasture. It was a favorite nesting rookery for wild ducks, with probably a dozen different species being 

That first spring, in 1926, I found a set of three 2x8 boards on the shore, nailed together like a raft, having a length of about 
twelve feet. I soon latched onto these and tried rafting on the lake. Since It was only a little over two feet wide, I had a problem 
staying balanced on it and several times I tipped over into the water. Then I got the idea of nailing two six foot boards 
crosswise and about four feet apart towards the middle of the raft, connecting the outside ends with another set of boards. 
Thus I now had a set of what was equivalent to outriggers and my balancing problem was solved. Next I nailed a wooden apple 
crate in the middle of the raft for a seat and I had a raft that I could now either pole or paddle all over the lake. Many were the 
hours and the days I spent rafting on that lake during the lazy summer days of those early years on the farm. 

Meanwhile dad and the two older boys were getting the farm into high gear. At first everything was done by horse. We "broke" 
new prairie land with a John Deere plough having the one-share plough pulled by four horses. The cultivated land was seeded 
(to wheat, oats, etc.), with a drill pulled by four horses. The land was tilled with a "disc" pulled by horses. The wheat and oat 
crops were harvested by a binder (McCormick-Deering) pulled by four horses. The grain was threshed by a neighbor's 
threshing machine (on a per diem basis) and the wheat hauled to the town elevator four miles away by box wagon pulled by a 
team of two horses. We traveled by buggy or democrat (buckboard) drawn by horses. 

Within a year or so the farm soon became mechanized. Soon we bought a J.I. Case tractor, 12-20 horsepower, (12 on the 
drawbar, 20 on the pulley). We bought a threshing machine of our own. We bought "one-way" cultivators drawn by tractor, 
which ploughed the land and seeded the grain in the same once-over operation. Any new prairie land was now broken with a 
gang plough drawn by tractor. 

By 1928, only two years after starting from scratch, farming in a completely new country, dad and the boys were prospering. 
Not only were they now highly mechanized with tractor, threshing machine and a host of other tractor-oriented machinery, but 
they were expanding their land holdings. We first bought an adjoining 320 acres to add to the 640 we already owned, then 
bought another 320 adjoining it. Then we bought another farm that was about three miles west of Herschel and about six miles 
from the home farm. 

Not only did we buy powered machinery but as early as 1927 we bought a big old (1920?) Studebaker touring car. Since the 
car was old and our experience with cars very new, considerable trouble ensued. It did not have a self-starter, of course, and 
had to be hand cranked. Sometimes after the boys got tired trying to repeatedly crank it without getting it started, we 
sometimes employed a different means. Since our yard sloped towards the barn and then past the barn was all downhill 
towards the lake, we would sometimes push it into the downhill position and let her roll towards the lake. Then when it 
developed good momentum, we would throw it into gear and hope it would start. Most of the time it did, but when it did not we 
would hitch a team of horses to it and pull it back up the hill and try the procedure all over again. 

The Studebaker served us less than a year, after which we traded it in for a Model T Ford, touring, of course. It did much better 
and we put a lot of country road miles on it. (There were no paved roads in the area in those days. The closest stretch of paved 
road was a piece eleven miles long leading into the city of Saskatoon from the west. But that was 1 00 miles distant.) The next 
car we bought was a blue 1 929 Chevrolet Tudor coach, and we now felt we had the ultimate and were living high on the hog. 

Regarding this additional farm we acquired west of Herschel, I remember in particular the summer of 1 928. My brother Henry 
and I "batched" in the house on the premises for approximately two weeks while Henry was ploughing or discing the fields into 
shape, using our Case tractor. What stands out in my mind about that particular summer is that we had an unusually heavy 
crop of mosquitoes. They were so thick that if you slapped the rump of a horse pulling a wagon or whatever with the reins it 
would leave a heavy and visible imprint of dead mosquitoes. While Henry was driving the tractor that summer he wore a small 
white flour sack over his head, with only two small peep holes cut in it for visibility. Why this summer had such an unusually 
heavy proliferation of mosquitoes I do not know, but I suspect it was because we had a wet year. 

About this time I remember several unusually violent thunderstorms with much lightning, heavy winds and even tornadoes 
sweeping across the countryside. I remember one especially bad storm that resembled the one depicted in the Wizard of Oz. 
Our two-story frame house was creaking and straining and we felt sure it would be blown away, as we all sought refuge in our 
basement. Not only were the winds especially violent, but the occasional gusts felt as if they were of tornado proportions. Along 
with this storm came massive bursts of hailstones. After it was all over, we discovered in the next few days that some barns 
and some houses in the area had indeed been ripped apart, and there were swaths cut through our wheat fields that had been 
devastated by hailstones. 

In the meantime, the other Mennonite farmers and their families also prospered. Already as early as 1927 the Mennonite 
colony got together and built themselves a church about three miles north of Herschel, and is in use today, although none of 
the original farmers live there anymore, only a scattered few of their children and grandchildren. Be that as it may, the church 
became the center of all our social life, and the Mennonites developed a society and life style all their own. Not that they 
weren't friendly and on good terms with their English speaking neighbors. They were. I remember many a winter evening we 
would visit our neighbor Clinton Davis who lived on the other side of our lake. We would play dominoes or Lotto, and were on 
the best of terms. But, nevertheless, when it came down to prime-time socializing such as young peoples' parties, visiting 
families on Sunday afternoons, having dinners, marriages, etc., the Mennonites were a family unto themselves, and they 
preferred to keep it that way, much as did the Mennonites in Russia. The church remained the center of their social, religious 
and cultural life. 

Against the Evil Tide - 06 

Milestone Five: Wheat Farming on the Prairies 







Against the Evil Tide - 07 

Milestone Six: Achieving a Measure of Self-Confidence 

From the farming point of view, tlie years of 1927, 1928 and 1929 were a period of expanding success. Tlie weather was 
favorable, the crops were good, and wheat prices were satisfactory. We worl<ed hard, but the results were tangible and 
gratifying. The farming venture was profitable, we were expanding our land holdings, buying tractors, threshing machines, cars, 
and making substantial payments on our mortgage. In fact, for a family of new immigrants that started out in the spring of 1926 
strictly from hunger, we were prospering very nicely, thank you. 

By the fall of 1927 my sister Katie and I (together) were hauling wheat into the elevators by the wagonload. By 1928 we were 
each In charge of a team and wagon separately, hauling more wheat to the elevators than ever. In 1 929, when I was 11,1 even 
remember the price of wheat as indicated on the sales invoices we received from the elevator agent. It was, as I recall, around 
$1 .33 per bushel of #1 Hard Northern. 

My progress at school was better than anticipated. My sister dropped out in the spring of 1929, while I had been skipping a 
grade every now and then. By the fall of 1 929 I found myself in the sixth grade of Oskaloosa S.D. #3702. Being a one-room 
school with only about 20 kids, there happened to be a serious disparity of pupils per grade at that time. I was all alone in my 
grade and found the lessons a breeze. I had become proficient in arithmetic and spelling and felt quite comfortable in the usage 
of the English language. There was nobody in the seventh grade, but there were seven pupils in the eighth grade. Naturally, 
my teacher at that time, whose name was Miss Berger, had her hands full and was not keen in preparing lessons and teaching 
one lone sixth grader. Since I was getting along so well, after about a month and a half into the fall term, she asked me - how 
would I like to be promoted into the eighth grade? Did I think I could handle it? I said I wasn't sure, but I would be glad to give it 
a whirl. Without further ado I was promoted from the sixth into the eighth grade. 

I was only eleven, and most of the other kids in the eighth grade were sixteen or seventeen. I remember one French gal whose 
name was Gabrielle Benjamin condescendingly saying to me, "You'll have to work like a nigger to keep up with us." 
Coincidentally, one of the Lafayette nigger girls was also in the eighth grade at that time. 

Next June, 1930, we wrote our final exams in a government-supervised classroom in the Herschel High School. Each 
candidate's exam paper was then numbered without a name and then sent to Regina, the provincial capital, to be marked by 
impartial examiners so that no partiality was possible. It so happened that a few weeks later I received word from Regina that I 
had passed, and along with it in the envelope was my beautiful Eighth Grade Diploma. Of all the diplomas, certificates and 
degrees I have received since, none is as precious to me as that first Eighth Grade Diploma. Unfortunately, Gabrielle had not 
passed, nor had her black classmate, nor had two others. Out of a class of eight, only four of us had made it. 

By the summer of 1930 I felt a surge of confidence I had never felt before. I could play baseball as well as anybody and had no 
trouble knowing what to do with the ball when it came my way. I had learned to skate and to ski and to swim. Most of all, 
mastering the eighth grade at age 12 when half of my 16 year old classmates had not, gave me a sense of mastery, the 
confidence that I had something on the ball, that I was smarter than the average kid. 

I also found out that there was a penalty that went with success, something that would plague me as it has millions of others in 
a similar category. That discovery was this people hate to see someone else get ahead of them, and the non-achiever is 
jealous of the achiever. When I would make a 98 on a spelling test and some kid would make a 62, invariably the reaction 
would be, "You think you're smart, don't you? Well, you're not as smart as you think you are." 

As I have learned since then. It is extremely hard to accommodate the jealous, and my attitude soon became to hell with 
them. Forty years later when I wrote my first book. Nature's Eternal Religion, I understood the situation a little better, and I 
stated a truth that unfortunately will always be with us. It is this. The inferior hate the superior. The dumb hate the intelligent. 
The blacks hate the Whites. The ugly hate the beautiful. The poor hate the rich. The unsuccessful hate the successful, and so 
on ad infinitum. In short, to be successful is to automatically create jealousy and animosity. That is the way of human nature, 
and nothing is going to change it in the foreseeable future. 

By now the depression was beginning to set in in earnest. However, by the end of 1930 I had saved up $10 of my own and 
bought a second hand bicycle. It was really an oldie. The wheels had wooden rims. In fall I went back to Oskaloosa to take the 
ninth grade, albeit by correspondence course. There were four of us, and we sat in the same classroom with the other eight 
grades. The teacher did not teach us, but was available for consultation. 

The winter of 1930-31 was unusually mild, with practically no snow on the ground - a very unusual occurrence in 
Saskatchewan and a harbinger of poor crops for the coming summer. My parents celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary, 
and I especially remember how warm the weather was that day in January 1 931 . 

Getting back to the depression that was now upon us, I have already stated that I recall the good crop of 1 929 and the 

favorable wheat price of $1 .33 that year. I recall further that as I was hauling wheat to the elevators in 1 930 the price had 
dropped to half of that, approximately 67 cents a bushel. By 1 931 it was half of that again, approximately 32 or 33 cents a 
bushel, less than it cost to produce. Not only was the price abominable, but the droughts of the 1930's had begun, and the 
crops in the following years were extremely poor. What with the drought, the poor crops and the ridiculously low prices for our 
produce, we were in for a long siege of extremely hard times. The whole farming industry, which had seemed so rosy just a few 
years ago, now became a miserable back- breaking ordeal that promised nothing but bankruptcy and hardship. Farmers were 
going broke and even a little bit of spending money was extremely difficult to come by. What little cash we could scrape 
together was now supplemented by shipping a 5 gallon can of cream to a creamery about 100 miles away. We milked a 
number of cows and managed to ship about a can a week, for which we would receive a paltry 3 or 4 dollars. We also sold 
eggs to the local store, for which we would receive something like 5 cents a dozen. 

However, we did not go hungry. We had chickens, ducks and geese. We had a large vegetable garden and grew a large plot of 
potatoes each year. We raised pigs, some of which we sold, and at least one of which we butchered for meat each fall. So we 
had plenty of eggs, milk, butter, vegetables, chicken and pork, and sometimes even beef. There was poverty, but no hunger 
such as we had experienced ten years earlier in Russia. Nevertheless, the drought and the bad crops continued, and we, too, 
were plagued with miserable dust storms and tumbleweeds rolling across the landscape, only to be caught up in the fences, 
then to be further fortified with dirt and topsoil from our suffering fields. 

Against the Evil Tide - 07 i ,. , m „ , ir^ i 

w Next Back Home I 

Milestone Six: Achieving a Measure of Self-Confidence 




Against the Evil Tide - 08 

Milestone Seven: Rosthern and the German-English Academy 

By the summer of 1931 I had successfully completed the ninth grade, and had to make a decision as to where I wanted to 
enroll in the tenth grade, or if I wanted to continue at all. I was never too keen about schoolwork, and not very interested in 
doing homework. Whereas I did well in writing exams, I was not really a good student as such. However, I decided that farming 
wasn't exactly my dish either, and since I was only 13, 1 might as well finish high school. Where to go? Old Oskaloosa was out, 
since they didn't take tenth graders, even in correspondence classes. 

During that summer a tall, slim young man by the name of Benno Toews visited the Herschel area to drum up support for the 
German-English Academy at Rosthern, Saskatchewan, a small Mennonite college located about 150 miles northeast of 
Herschel. At the age of 28, he had now been appointed as the new principal of that college. He also visited our farm and 
interested my dad in the benefits of sending his youngest son there in the coming session. It was a Mennonite sponsored 
boarding school and it promoted religion, the Mennonite ethic, as well as studies in the German language. The cost for tuition, 
room and board was $150.00 for the year (nine months). My dad was interested in my becoming more thoroughly indoctrinated 
in all three of those activities. He said he would have to give it some more consideration, since $150.00 was a lot of money in 
those days, and for us, hard to come by. Although my dad was a frugal man, he was generous to a fault when it came to 
supporting the church and/or any phase of the Mennonite cause. 

One day towards the end of September 1 931 , my dad, brother Korni and I were picking rocks onto the flatbed of a wagon from 
off a summer-fallowed field, an occupational hazard that we pursued intermittently year after year when time allowed. This was 
another one of those farming activities that I liked even less than doing homework. In fact, much less. Anyway, we had been 
discussing the Rosthern prospect favorably for some time, and that morning while picking rocks, my dad and I suddenly 
decided bilaterally that I would go to Rosthern, In fact, why not leave that very afternoon? Why not, indeed? 

We went back home, I packed my few things, and by 2:30 p.m. the three of us were in our blue 1 929 Chevy coach on our way 
to Rosthern. We arrived there at 9:00 o'clock that night without any prior announcement. Benno Toews was glad to see us, and 
Anna, the school cook, fixed us a late supper. I was assigned a room in the dormitory, and having arrived a few days before the 
October 1 opening date, I was their first arrival. Dad and Korni stayed overnight, and after a congenial visit with Mr. Toews they 
left the next day. 

The Rosthern German-English Academy was a small high-school college, grades 9 to 1 2 inclusive, that back in 1 931 had an 
enrollment of perhaps 75 or 80 students. About half of them were local residents and the other half were from out of town and 
stayed in the two-story dormitory. It was co-educational, with the girls occupying the upper floor of the two-story building and 
the boys the ground floor. The kitchen and dining room were in the basement. Also included on this small campus was a two 
story red brick building, which held four classrooms, two upstairs, and two down. 

The Rosthern G.E.A., as we called it, (it has now been renamed as the Rosthern Junior College) was founded in 1905. The 
father of Benno, the Rev. Bishop David Toews, was one of its early founders and undoubtedly its most ardent promoter, as he 
was the leader and guiding spirit in so many other Mennonite activities. The school was founded with the objective of fostering 
two basic objectives besides pursuing the regular academic studies. These two purposes were (a) to promote the Mennonite 
ethic and keep it alive by the additional study of the German language, and (b) to inculcate religion and the study of the Bible 
(from the Mennonite point of view) into the minds of the upcoming generations. So both German and religious courses were 
added to the regular curriculum, a cause that was warmly supported by my dad, and one of the main reasons he was willing to 
make the heavy financial sacrifice. 

I believe that it is fitting that I give a brief resume here about the interesting life of the Rev. Bishop David Toews, who, like 
Johann Cornies in Russia almost a century earlier, was another one of those most outstanding Mennonite leaders. His services 
to the Mennonite people, in both Canada and Russia, were monumental. Toews was a great man by any standard in terms of 
life-long dedication, hard work and sacrifice for a cause he believed in - namely, the welfare of the Mennonite people. In this 
respect he has been neither surpassed, nor even equaled in this century. Besides being a founder of the Rosthern G.E.A. he 
was the prime mover and head of the Canadian Mennonite Board of Colonization from its founding in 1922 until shortly before 
his death in 1947. Toews and the board he headed were largely instrumental in helping the emigration and transfer of 
thousands of Mennonite refugees from Communist Russia to Canada during the peak years of the 1920's. 


David Toews was born February 9, 1 870, at Lysanderhoeh near the Volga River in Russia. He was one of 1 4 children of Jakob 
Toews, a minister, who had come to Russia in 1869 from Marlenburger-Werder in Prussia. Although he was elected minister in 
1864 to serve a Prussian congregation, the elder Toews migrated to Russia to escape military service for his sons, four of 
whom were born in Prussia. 

However, in 1870 Russia also threatened tlie traditional privileges of the Mennonites, as I have noted before. Some 
Mennonites decided to avoid this threat by migrating to North America, and there was a considerable movement to Canada 
and the United States during this period. Another group felt that security and freedom lay in the east, not west. One such man 
was Claasz Epp, a dynamic and magnetic leader, who had come from Prussia with his parents in 1853. Epp was fervently 
promoting the idea that the Millennium was at hand, that Christ was about to return and it was the beholden duty of the 
Mennonites to prepare a Bergungsort (a place of refuge) according to the Book of Revelations. Epp managed to attract a small 
group of fanatic followers about him, and in 1880 he managed to lead his small group to Turkestan in Central Asia, where they 
would meet the Lord and inaugurate the millennium. Jacob Toews and his family was one of the victims of this sorry and tragic 
hallucination, and joined the Epp expedition. Toews and others sold their choice farms in Russia very cheaply, and in August of 
1 880 began their projected two-year trek with covered wagons and horses. David was then ten years old. 

The expedition was well organized. David went along on the trek as a barefoot boy running alongside the wagons. They 
encountered many hardships accidents, sickness, hunger, thirst, rain, frost, storms, thunder and lightning. For every incident 
the resourceful leader had a well sounding biblical explanation, drawing heavily on the Revelations, and like the biblical John, 
he claimed to have a direct hotline to the Almighty. Cholera, smallpox and typhus took a heavy toll of both children and adults, 
but the wagons kept rolling on towards the Bergungsort, wherever that was, a place none of them had ever seen. David, too, 
came down with smallpox and fever. But the fanatic Epp kept pushing onwards, becoming more disoriented by the day, and by 
now imagining himself to be the prophet Ellas. Tensions mounted and a Molotschna group split off and left Epp to form their 
own settlement. But the Toews family continued to stick with Epp on his onward push. 

Finally this remnant group arrived at Khiva and settled on a tributary of the Amu Darya River, where this deranged visionary 
imagined to discover the millennium amply stocked with grape vines and fig trees. This was now October of 1882, two years 
and two months after this ill-fated expedition had left their comfortable homes and farms in the Molotschna. So there they now 
were, deep in the wilds of Central Asia. 

The little settlement was soon beset with a myriad of problems. The first crop was a failure because of locusts and drought. 
Robber bands harassed them and one of the men was killed. Turkmen stole their feed. Finally some of the settlers, including 
two of the Toews boys, acquired guns and two Cossacks were hired as watchmen. This staved off any further attacks for the 
time being. 

Their visionary leader, Claasz Epp, became more unbalanced and more tyrannical as time went on. He now designated himself 
as a brother of Jesus and a fourth member of the Trinity. He attacked anyone who doubted him. Finally after 20 months of this 
ordeal at the Khiva, a number of families, among them the Toews family, had had enough. They admitted the folly and insanity 
of it all, and on April 17, 1883, they and 20 families began their return trip to wherever that might take them. They did not follow 
the same route back, but the hardships and hazards were the same, if not worse. They wandered through deserts, nearly died 
of thirst, endured unforeseen accidents. The Toews family went directly to the Alt Samara Mennonite settlement, where Mother 
Toews had a brother and sister. Here they sold their horses and equipment, what was left of them. They made preparations to 
immigrate to the United States. 

After overcoming many problems, the Toews family arrived in Kansas on October 14, 1884. David was now 14 years old. Of 
the 14 children in the Toews family, eight were still with them, six having died in childhood. The family settled on a farm at 
Newton, Kansas. 

David began his schooling at age 14 and learned the English language. He graduated at Halstead College and became a 
teacher in 1893. After some years of teaching, he went to Winnipeg, Manitoba, under the auspices of an old friend, H.H. Ewert. 
Here he attended Wesley College and the Normal School, now becoming a fully qualified teacher. He taught school near 
Winkler, Manitoba. 

In 1898 he went to the frontier regions of Saskatchewan, then not yet a province of Canada. He taught at Tiefengrund for three 
years, and again at Elgenhelm for a similar period. (These towns are in the Rosthern area.) 

In 1900 he married Margaret Friesen who had arrived from Prussia with her parents five years earlier. In 1905 they moved to 
Rosthern, which was to remain their permanent home. Their marriage was blessed with eight children. 

In 1904 David Toews became one of the founding fathers of the private German-English Academy. He was one of its first 
teachers and became its principal in 1905, which post he held until 1920, and he remained chairman of the board until 1944. 
His efforts in promoting the school, helping raise finances and steering its course were prodigious. He manifested an unusual 
capacity for work and had tremendous amounts of energy. 

But his life was filled with a large number of other activities, too numerous to list here. In 1914 he was elected chairman of the 
Conference of Mennonites in Central Canada. He became a much sought after preacher and filled many other roles in 
promoting the cause of the Mennonites in Canada, and in a larger sense, in Russia, and on a worldwide basis. His biggest role, 
however, was when at the age of 52 (1922) he became chairman of the Canadian Mennonite Board of Colonization. It was a 

role into which he submerged himself with total dedication and energy and it was the main obsession to which he devoted 
himself for the rest of his life. Although thousands of other dedicated Mennonites participated in this mighty cause, David 
Toews was undoubtedly the mainspring in helping 20,000 Mennonites emigrate from Russia to Canada during the peak period 
of 1923 to 1930, but his work and efforts continued long after. I devote this much space to the story of Bishop Toews for two 
major reasons, namely, he was one of those outstanding Mennonite leaders who richly deserve the recognition, and secondly, 
he deeply touched the course of my life and that of my family, as he did of thousands of others. 

I can say unequivocally that had it not been for David Toews, the Klassen family would never have made the move from out of 
Russia, and I would, of course, not have been attending the Rosthern German-English Academy at the beginning of October 


After I was assigned a room on the ground floor of the dormitory, I quickly surveyed the situation and the lay of the landscape. 
As activities and classes began, I found that I was not only the youngest member of the school, but also the smallest. At 13 I 
was only five foot one. Although there were some other kids in the ninth grade that were 13 and 14, even the youngest was at 
least a month older, and the smallest at least an inch taller. Most of the students were between 16 and 20, and since the 
membership also included a number of recently arrived Mennonite immigrants from Russia, some of them were even 
considerably older. These included some who had perhaps already finished high school back in the old country or even taught 
school. Several of the latter students were even in their middle or late twenties. I also discovered there were two kinds of 
Mennonites. There were those who were descendants of the major migrations of the 1870's and 80's, and were native born. 
Then there were those of us who had come as a flood during the 1920's and were trying to get our bearings in the new land. 
There were large settlements of the old-line Mennonites around Rosthern, Hague and the surrounding area. The native born 
would sometimes refer to us newcomers as "the dumb Russlanders", but it was all in a friendly way. 

Things started off pretty well. The month of October was mild and pleasant as far as the weather went. We played quite a lot of 
Softball, at which I was fully adept. We had a kind of Field Day in which I participated in the high jump and the broad jump. I 
was soon introduced to the game of tennis. The school had two dirt courts, which area was converted into an ice skating rink 
during the winter. 

Tennis soon became my main sporting preoccupation. I immediately took to it like a duck takes to water and it has continued to 
be my best game ever since. The school furnished the balls and some dilapidated tennis racquets. However, I did not even 
own any tennis shoes, so I improvised by wearing rubbers over my leather shoes in order to prevent slippage and also to 
protect the dirt surface of the court. So while most of the boys and girls were interested in each other and in dating, I played 
tennis. By the end of October, I became fairly good at it. The following spring, when the warm weather returned and the ice rink 
was converted back to tennis courts again, I was again its most ardent activist. 

Unfortunately, because of my age, I missed out on the most popular game on the campus, namely the romance and dating 
game. As I mentioned before, the school was co-educational, and most of the students were sixteen or older. The boys in the 
dormitory were on the first floor, the girls on the second. We all ate in a common dining room in the basement, the boys at one 
set of tables, the girls at another. As can be expected, there was a lot of romancing, a lot of dating. There was even some 
hanky-panky, although since the school had the semblance of a religious atmosphere (not too heavy) most of the boys and 
girls were nice, clean, wholesome kids of good moral fiber, and I would say that the standards observed were certainly much 
higher than they are in today's liberal and sex-oriented society and colleges. 

But there were exceptions. My roommate was a tall, handsome, irresponsible, daredevil type of fellow. His name was Lindsey 
Wiebe and he was from Weyburn, Saskatchewan. At 19 he very much resembled a young Glint Eastwood. Although smoking 
by the men and older boys was permitted, (but not in the buildings) drinking was strictly verboten, on the campus or even up 
town. Lindsey was in the same tenth grade as I was, but he was on the wild side and not a good student. Anyway, after the 
second term, and after we had finished our Easter exams, he and two of his drinking buddies, one by the name of Menno 
Unruh, 21, and the other by the name of Jakle Funk, 17, decided to celebrate. They went uptown and got stinking drunk and 
committed some other outrageous public spectacles. Our teacher of German, music and religion, was a certain Rev. Franz 
Thiessen who had been a teacher back in Russia, and was more of the religious, old school type. Rev. Thiessen took umbrage 
at their scandalous behavior, and claimed they had given the school a bad name and had insulted the whole student body. He 
insisted that since they had done the latter, they should publicly apologize before the whole student body, or be expelled. 
Menno and Jakle complied, and remained for the remainder of the third term Lindsey did not, and he was indeed duly expelled. 
I was without a roommate for the rest of the term. 

After a mild October a severe winter suddenly set in and things were extremely cold. The tennis courts were duly converted 
into a skating rink. I had received a pair of skates for Christmas about a year or two earlier and had an opportunity to learn to 
use them on the wide-open expanses of the frozen lake that lay below our barn. I had also played hockey a number of times on 
the lake. So when the skating and hockey season started I joined in wholeheartedly, and even skated with girls, as did the 
bigger boys. I also played hockey whenever such practice was in session which happened several times a week. When the 

G.E.A. team played the regular Rosthern High School in the downtown rink, I was one of the G.E.A. teann players. 

When the Christmas holidays arrived, I went back home to visit, but for some reason disembarked at Fiske, instead of 
Herschel. Since I had to change train connection at Saskatoon, and stay some place overnight, Benno Toews, the principal, 
was concerned about my plight, and phoned his friend the Rev. J.J. Thiessen, who picked me up at the station and allowed me 
to sleep in his home overnight. 

The Rev. Thiessen, who was also born in Russia, was a dynamic young man of 38 in 1 931 , and he already had played a major 
role in the Mennonite drama by that time, as he was to do even more so during the remainder of his long productive life. He 
held a number of prominent positions in the promotion of the Mennonite cause, and shortly after my meeting him at the end of 
1931 he became head of the Rosenort Mennonite Church In Saskatoon, a church I attended sporadically during my Normal 
School and college years between 1935 and 1942. I was again to meet the Rev. Thiessen in 1971 when my wife and I visited 
Canada. By that time he was an elderly man of 78, still head of his church and soon ready to retire. 

Meeting me at the station at 9 o'clock on a cold blustery night at Fiske was my brother Korni on horseback, in tow of a spare 
horse that was to take me and my bundle back home to the farm about eight miles away. The ride was long and cold and the 
horse I rode was skinny and without even a saddle. When we got home in the wee hours of the morning I was cold, tired and 
my rear end was sore from riding on the spine of a skinny horse. However, I was glad to visit with my family again and enjoy 
Christmas together. 

Back to Rosthern and the boarding school. The dormitory had electricity, but it had no indoor plumbing and the outhouse was 
some distance away. To get to the latter we had to climb over a high snow bank most of the winter. We had to do our own 
laundry in some makeshift setup by the furnace in the basement of the schoolhouse, which was about 100 feet removed from 
the dormitory. Behind the furnace also there was some kind of a claptrap shower arrangement that was most inadequate. I 
somehow arranged to do my laundry every other Saturday, and to take an inconvenient shower every other Saturday in 
between, whether I needed it or not. I picked up the latter joke from my father-in-law who used to own a sheep ranch in 
Colorado. He loved to tell about one of his Mexican sheepherders who used to take a bath every spring, whether he needed it 
or not.) 

Although I did not like homework, I somehow always managed fairly good grades. The other two teachers we had besides 
Benno Toews, the principal, were Arnold Friesen, a young man of 23 from Hague, Saskatchewan, and the Rev. Franz 
Thiessen, already mentioned earlier. Being the youngest in the school, I was somewhat conspicuous for the fact that I was one 
of the brighter kids in the tenth grade, and usually near the top of the class, despite my lack of interest in homework. Benno 
Toews and I had sort of a special relationship, a running sort of love and hate relationship, trying to best each other at every 
opportunity. I would ask questions that would throw a monkey wrench into his lectures and he would try to put me down in a 
good-humored way. Once, when he was going on about the Ice Age and the glaciers pushing on down towards the southern 
part of Canada, I asked him, what made the glaciers move? I had him stumped for a while, and then he came out with the age- 
old alibi and cop-out "The Ways of the Lord are mysterious..." Another time while teaching geometry, he fervently assured us 
that the total degrees of every triangle always added up to 1 80 degrees, and he challenged anyone to draw one that didn't. I 
raised my hand and volunteered. Okay, come up to the board and show us. I drew a regular triangle, and then designated two 
of the angles as outside angles. This got a laugh from the class as Benno pooh-poohed my illustrious demonstration. 

We had any number of activities going and the nine months I spent at the G.E.A. was one of my better years. The Rev. 
Thiessen not only taught religion, German and music, but he also led the choir, meetings of which we had several times a 
week, and in which I participated. We sang such hymns as "There's a Church In the Valley In the Wildwood", "Rock of Ages", 
and any number of other pieces in four-part harmony. Most of the Mennonite students were excellent singers, although I wasn't 
one of them. I still sang Soprano, experimenting and trying to find the secret code (I thought there was one) of how to sing Alto 
or Tenor or Bass. Anyway, one day the Rev. Thiessen stood beside me as we were singing and said he was trying to detect a 
growl in the choir and wondered if I was the source. After listening for a while he observed that I growled like a bear. "Du 
Brurnst Wie Ein Baer", he concluded. 

Before Christmas the school put on a play and I played the part of a rebellious kid who complained the teacher had cruelly 
beaten him, and the kid raised a ruckus about the affair. Evidently I played my part well, because even the critical Rev. 
Thiessen complimented me on it. Another time in our English class, we all had to prepare and give a speech on any subject of 
our choice. My subject was "The Country vs. The City" In which I extolled the virtues of country living, why I don't know. We 
then had a vote from our classmates as to who gave the best speech. I had no preconceived notions, and to my surprise 
whereas most kids received two or three votes (there weren't that many votes to go around) I received 12, by far the most. That 
made me sit up and take notice. Maybe I should become a politician? 

I was glad when the winter was over and spring came. Again the ice rink was converted back to tennis courts and now I took 
up the game in earnest. By the end of June, I was in prime shape. 

Finally, the end of the year exams. I came in second in my class, only slightly behind a certain Mr. Hildebrand, who was 23 

years old, and had been through high school in Russia, also taught school. I left the school at the end of June with high 
confidence in nnyself and even somewhat on the cocky side. During the last day there I even had the gall to snnoke a cigarette 
at a time I knew Benno Toews would see me, more as a token of open defiance than any desire to smoke. After all, I had 
already graduated. What could he possibly do to me now? 

Against the Evil Tide - 08 

Milestone Seven: Rosthern and the German-English Academy 


Back 1 





Against the Evil Tide - 09 

Milestone Eight: Becoming Career Conscious 

When I returned from Rosthern to Herschel I had a sort of letdown feeling. Getting back to the farm seemed so anti-climactic. It 
was not unlike the sentiment expressed in the post-World War I ditty about "How are you going to keep them down on the farm 
after they've seen gay Paree?" Rosthern was no gay Paree, but I was fourteen and some of the adolescent rebelliousness and 
independence was beginning to surface, characteristics that I already perhaps had more of to start with than the average kid. 

It was a matter of getting back into the routine of farming chores and work, and Christ knows, when you live on the farm there 
is no end to what can be done and must be done. There were cows to milk, fields to cultivate, potatoes to plant and to dig up 
later, there were rows and rows of garden vegetables to hoe, fences to mend and rocks to pick off the fields. 

But one of the most essential jobs I performed that summer of 1932, as I had a few summers before and would a few summers 
thereafter was that of herding our some two dozen head of cows and cattle. As I noted previously, not only did the depression 
set in financially, but so also did the lean years of drought. Since we were now actually more dependent on our livestock for our 
meager cash income, we tended to increase our herd. But the large pasture field that adjoined the barn, and even combined 
with the planted alfalfa field, were not enough during the drought to support our relatively small herd of cows, steers, heifers 
and calves. In order to sustain all these cattle my dad had me take them out on some "public" lands nearby, some unused 
ravines and prairie hills that were anywhere from one to three miles removed from our own farm. So there I would be on 
horseback (no saddle) taking these cows out in the morning and bringing them back in the late afternoon. This I would do three 
or four days a week over a period of several summers during the dry years of the depression. 

Then come fall, from the time I was 12 until I was 17 when the crops were ripe and cut with the binder, I would be out in the 
fields "stocking", along with some hired laborers when additional help was needed. For the uninitiated to the western wheat 
fields, stocking consisted of setting up sheaves in nicely structured piles, with heads up and the cut ends on the ground. This 
was a necessary procedure in order to keep the grain in the heads from getting too wet on the ground and either sprouting or 
getting moldy, or both. The sheaves would stand in stocks for the period of time between when the crop was cut and when it 
would be picked up to be threshed. This could be a matter of a week or two, or if the weather became rainy. It could be several 
weeks more, sometimes even into the snow. We must remember this was before the time combines were in general use, and a 
decade before my brothers could afford them. 

By the time I was 15 I was eager to prove my manhood by volunteering to have a team and a rack and be a regular member of 
the threshing crew. Looking back on it now I cannot understand why in the world I should be so eager. Both stocking and 
threshing in fall were some of the most grueling, backbreaking type of work to be found anywhere. Stocking was a matter of 
actually being out in the field and working 1 hours a day, usually during the hottest time of the year. It was a monotonous 
matter of endlessly bending over, picking up two sheaves at a time and setting them up, and more of the same, over and over 
and over. Generally, we were out in the field by 7 in the morning, worked till 12, walked back to the house for "dinner", and 
were back in the field by 1 , worked another 5 hours until 6, then back home for supper. 

Threshing was even harder. After getting up at 4:30 in the morning, there was the matter of feeding your team of horses, 
getting them harnessed, eating breakfast, hitching up your team to the "rack" (a wagon with a large rack to hold the sheaves) 
and being out there in the field with a pitchfork in hand along with the rest of them by 6:00 A.M. Instead of 10 hours as in 
stocking, the ante was upped to 12 hours out in the field - on through to 7 o'clock in the evening. Then on home, taking care of 
the horses, unharnessing, feeding, etc., until finally you had time to feed yourself and drag your tired carcass into bed. The 
wages for this during the '30's were somewhere around $3.00 to $3.50 a day and usually $2.00 a day for stocking. 

To sustain the tremendous exertion required during the threshing season, we ate five big meals a day. Besides the breakfast, 
"dinner" and supper, the womenfolk brought a healthy lunch to the field at mid-morning and again at mid-afternoon, which 
consisted of sandwiches, coffee and cookies. Man, could we eat! You haven't seen real eating until you have witnessed a 
hungry threshing crew going at it. As cold as it got to be in Saskatchewan in the winter, usually during harvest time it was 
unbearably hot and the amount of food and liquid a man could consume between 6 A.M. and 7 P.M. was prodigious. Luckily 
during my first two years on the threshing crew, at ages of 15 and 16, the crops were light and the season relatively short. 

So much for work and chores. During those years I developed ideas about what I wanted to become, what I wanted to do in 
life. Rather than something I felt I must resolve, they came on more as fantasies, something I dreamed of doing. At the age of 
12 I was totally engrossed in baseball. I wanted to become a professional baseball player like Babe Ruth or Lou Gehrig. This 
lasted for about two years. Then I began reading western stories, such as Zane Grey and western pulp magazines, and my 
interest shifted to becoming a cowboy, then perhaps a rancher. I had been riding horses ever since we moved to the farm in 
1926. By now I was an expert rider. I also became more interested in guns, both handguns and rifles. By the time I was 13 I 
began to practice in earnest with a .22 rifle we had. I began to dream of owning a large cattle ranch in Mexico some day, 
starting small and gradually building up the herd. 

Somewhere between the baseball and cowboy obsessions, or shortly thereafter, my interest was sparked in becoming a 
policeman, or a lawman, or perhaps even a Canadian Mountie. 

The romantics of western lore, ranching and cowboys fluctuated over the years, but off and on stayed with me for the rest of 
my life, and even now, more than 50 years later, I consider the Winning of The West as the finest and most productive period in 
the history of America. 

After the summer and fall of 1 932 were over, I had to make the decision again did I want to continue education? After 
considering the pros and cons, I reluctantly decided I would take another year of it. I was now 14 and in the eleventh grade. We 
did not have enough money in 1932 to send me to Rosthern for another year, which was what I would have preferred. So the 
only other alternative was to enroll in the Herschel High School, four miles from the farm. 

This was fraught with a number of difficulties, the biggest one of which was getting back and forth. I had but few choices. I 
could either walk or ride some skinny nag when available. By this time we had an old army saddle to go with the nag. During 
the winter months (the biggest part of the school year) I rode horseback, which can be freezingly cold on bad days. My legs 
above the boots were often peeled from being exposed and frost bitten. During the spring and early summer days, I walked, 
because the horses were in use in the fields. 

My eleventh grade year was not nearly as congenial as had been my tenth at Rosthern. At 14 I was still small, and some of the 
kids at Herschel thought I was lying to them when I said I was 14 and in the eleventh grade. There was still some hostility 
between the Mennonite kids and the predominantly English speaking, but it was not a big factor. Nevertheless, there was 
neither the congeniality nor the camaraderie among these students as there had been at Rosthern. 

After completing the eleventh grade the next fall, 1933 was much of a repetition of the previous year, except there were a few 
improvements. Again, came fall, I debated whether I wanted to go back to school. I wasn't particularly enthusiastic, and my dad 
left it up to me as to whether I wanted to continue or drop out. Reluctantly I decided, what the hell, I might as well finish the 
twelfth grade. What else was there to do? 

This last year at Herschel was better than the first. For one thing, I was now 15 and I had grown considerably, I even became 
interested in girls. Besides, I was now in the 12th grade, a senior, to be looked up to by the lower classes. My grades were 
good and I felt I was on top of my subjects. 

Furthermore, in the Mennonite society, I was now old enough to go to parties, as they were called, along with my older sisters. 
Ever since the Mennonite colony around Herschel got started back in 1926, and soon after the Mennonite church was built in 
1927, the social life among the Mennonites was a lively and on going enterprise. The young people were a "set" to themselves, 
and every Sunday afternoon they held "parties" at one house or another. These were good old fashioned parties, where they 
would play a number of games such as "Schluesselbund" and a number of other parlor games, of which singing and playing of 
musical instruments (the violin, the guitar, the balalaika) was a big part. There was no dancing, not so much that they were 
against it, but because few knew how to dance, it never having been the custom. Most of the young people were good singers, 
and at this German songs and conversation still predominated as a holdover from the Old Country. Some of the favorite songs 
I remember were such as "Schoen is die Jugend", "Ich hat' ein Kameraden", and others that stemmed from the lore of the 
Russian Mennonite colony. There was little drinking, although beer began to intrude later. If it was an afternoon party, "fesper" 
would be served in the middle of the afternoon. This consisted of coffee, sandwiches, cookies, cakes, pies and other goodies. 
By and large, good clean fun was had by all, and it was the prime arena for blossoming romances and future marriages. 
Sometimes the parties lasted well into the late of night. My sisters, Sarah and Katie, hosted many such parties at our house 
during the late 20's and early 30 s, as did, of course, many of the other participants. 

Came the fall of 1934. 1 had completed my twelfth grade in June and had my 12th grade diploma. After again going through a 
strenuous fall of stocking, threshing and other accoutrements of harvesting, the question was. What should I do next? i was 
now 16, but too young to go to Normal School and become a teacher, the most obvious short cut to getting away from the farm 
and having a profession. You had to be at least 18 to enroll. Anyway, I was tired of studying and there was no urgent need to 
continue education, now or ever. I decided I would quit school, and stay home. I would do some siding and skating. I would do 
a lot of hunting. 

It was at this time that I had become intensely interested in guns and in hunting. For the last eight years one of my closest 
friends had been a boy by the name of Peter Wiens. Although he was four years older than I, he was, it seemed, always at the 
same stage of development as I was, and about the same size. We wrote our eighth grade exams at Herschel in the same year 
of 1930 and had a lot of fun doing it. We played a lot of baseball together. And now we had an intense common interest in 
hunting, in guns, and reading Western stories by Zane Grey. In the winter of 1934-35 we went hunting together, sometimes on 
horseback, sometimes on foot. We shot rabbits, crows, ducks, geese, weasels, blackbirds, sparrows, pigeons, and prairie 
chickens. In fact, just about anything that flew, walked or crawled. We also did a lot of target practicing. 

On my own, I also did a lot of trapping. On that mile long lake below the barn there were a number of muskrat colonies. In the 

summertime these muskrats had tunnels in the banks of the lake. When the lake froze over in the wintertime, they would build 
a number of muskrat houses on the surface of the ice. These were built out of the abundant seaweed that now became more 
prolific as the lake began to fill with mud and sediment. These brown houses would then have a number of interconnecting 
tunnels in and under the ice for the muskrats to reach the water and seaweed underneath. 

Anyway, that same winter, besides a lot of shooting and hunting, I did a lot of trapping. I set traps in the muskrat houses. I 
trapped rabbits in their runs around our haystacks. I even caught a few weasels. 

My biggest catch, however, was in the fall of 1934. While riding around on horseback about two miles south of the farm, I 
noticed some newly dug badger holes on some open prairie. I went back to get my traps. (In my assortment, I also had some 
large ones.) Within a matter of two days I caught my first badger, and a few days later my second, undoubtedly its mate. 

There were two problems with this. For one thing, it was too early in the season for badger skins to have developed their full 
prime, and secondly. It was illegal to trap badgers at any time of the year. It so happened that when I was attempting to stow 
the second badger in a burlap bag and cart it off on horseback that my old black school buddy. Earl Lafayette, casually 
sauntered by on horseback to see what was going on. Anyway, I managed to cart both badgers back to the farm alive, housed 
them in an empty granary for several months of the winter, feeding them rabbits all the while. When I decided their fur was 
prime, I killed them and skinned them, stretching and nailing the skins down on a board to dry. After scouting for a buyer for 
some time I finally sold them for $5.00 apiece to a local grocery merchant. Bill Loewen, who had connections with a fur buying 
outfit out east somewhere. 

My biggest rabbit hunting day was sometime in February of 1935. A Mennonite friend of ours, a Mr. Bernhard Berg, owned a 
farm about three of four miles east of us. In a modest valley there was a running stream that remained partially open all winter, 
and was a favorite rendezvous of the rabbit population. It so happened due to certain solar conditions that repeat themselves 
every 1 1 years or so, that this winter was an exceptionally prolific year for rabbits, such as I had never seen before or after. 
Anyway, that winter Berg's farm was swarming with rabbits. One fine day I arrived on the scene at the stream, and I could 
hardly believe my eyes. I had never seen so many rabbits all in one place in my life. I lay down behind an embankment and 
started firing with my trusty .22 single shot. Instead of the herd scattering immediately, they did not, but curiously seemed to be 
so confused as to come around and sniff their dead and dying members. Before I was through I had bagged some 20 rabbits. 

I was on foot and obviously could not carry them back home. So I piled them in a neat pile and walked back to the farm. My 
dad and I then returned in a horse-drawn cutter, loaded up the rabbits and hung them up in our barn. I spent the next several 
days skinning them and stretching their hides on a frame. The going price for a rabbit skin that winter was a mere 1 cents a 
hide, but the rabbits did provide good provender for our numerous chickens. 

Came the fall of 1 935. The crops were a little better, but the prices for our produce were as bad as ever. I spent the fall again 
stocking and being a full-fledged member of the threshing crew. After laying off schooling for a year, I was still undecided as to 
what to do. However, I decided I had had enough of farming, hunting and trapping, and I had better get on with my education. I 
was seventeen. My dad concurred and felt he could subsidize me through one year of college. The tuition fee at that time was 
approximately $150.00 at the University of Saskatchewan and board and room cost around $18 to $20 a month. After a hard- 
earned harvest I boarded the train at Fiske on October 1 , 1 935, and was off to dabble in the halls of higher education at the 
University of Saskatchewan. 

Against the Evil Tide - 09 

Milestone Eight: Becoming Career Conscious 







Against the Evil Tide - 10 

Milestone Nine: On to Saskatoon and Higher Education 

Another one of my Mennonite buddies that I had associated with for many years was a young fellow by the name of David 
Heinrichs. He was part of the Herman Lenzman family, who lived on a farm about three miles west of us. His widowed mother 
had married Mr. Lenzman several years ago. What with four of hers, three of his and two of theirs they now comprised of a 
mature family of nine children plus two parents. The Lenzmans and the Heinrichs too had come from Russia, but whereas we 
and most of the Mennonites around Herschel were General Conference Mennonites, the Lenzmans were Brethren Mennonites, 
a faint distinction of which the picayunish Mennonites made the most. 

Like Peter Wiens, Dave was four years older than I, (it seems for some reason that most of the young people I associated with 
were a few years older than myself). He had been in the same time slot in his education as I was, having written his eighth 
grade exams at the Herschel High School at the same time as did Pete and I. However, unlike Pete, he went right on through 
high school, and then immediately on to the University of Saskatchewan to study agriculture. Since I had stayed home a year 
after high school, he was now, in 1935, academically a year ahead of me. 

When I arrived in Saskatoon that first day of October, it was a fine bright Sunday afternoon. As I disembarked from the train at 
the CNR station that afternoon, and strolled down Second Avenue, the main drag of Saskatoon, I felt on top of the world. I was 
seventeen and felt like a new era was opening up for me. I especially remember the movie marquees (Saskatoon had three 
movie theaters at that time) and one featured Bing Crosby and Frances Farmer playing In "Rhythm on the Range". It 
introduced the still popular song "Don't Fence Me In". 

The first place I headed for was the boarding house where Dave was staying, a square, red brick, two story building of ancient 
vintage, on Fifth Avenue, I believe. I had previously made arrangements with Dave that we would room together. Classes at 
the university had started a week earlier, and Dave was already well settled in. I was starting a week late, which, it seems 
somehow I managed to do just about every time in subsequent years. After making arrangements with the landlady, Dave and I 
went back to the station to pick up my small steamer trunk that was to remain my mainstay for many years, and contained all 
my worldly possessions. 

Next morning. Monday, Dave went to his classes and I went to the University to look at the lay of the land. What did I want to 
study? I had no idea. Somebody steered me to Dean W.P. Thompson's office. I met the Dean, a tall, thin faced, square-jawed 
man of fifty who headed up the Department of Arts and Sciences. After a long, confused conversation to find out what it was I 
wanted to study, (I didn't know myself) I said that I could probably only afford this one year, and probably would go to normal 
school next year to become a teacher. The Dean suggested in that case it would perhaps be best if I took a general course and 
enrolled in the college in Arts and Science. There were, of course, a number of other colleges at the University - education, 
medicine, engineering, law, accounting, agriculture and more, the Dean pointed out. It was all news to me. I had thought 
University was University. I was learning fast. After this bit of briefing, we mutually decided Arts and Science was probably my 
best ticket, and decided on taking Chemistry, Physics, English, Ancient History and German. I figured that since I already knew 
German, the latter would be a snap. 

After participating in a few football games (as a spectator) and some other indoctrination sessions, the serious work began, and 
the weather soon turned cold. Having come from off the farm as a green country yokel, it took me a while before I began to get 
the lay of the routine. In the first midterm exams between the start and Christmas I did not do well. By Christmas I was 
beginning to get the hang of the routine, but still had problems. I failed in Ancient History, and was having problems in 

In Chemistry 2, which consisted of Qualitative and Quantitative Chemistry, we had at least six hours a week in the lab. We 
were given random samples of a certain substance in each experiment, then had to determine what elements were in it. That 
was the Qualitative part of it. In the Quantitative part, again we were given a substance, and we had to determine the exact 
percentage of a given element contained in the sample. For the first half of the year, it appears, I could not seem to get a grasp 
on the secret of the procedure. Suddenly I caught on and in the last semester I seemed to make 100% in just about every 

In any event, I was not overly engrossed in my studies. I didn't even know what it was I was studying for. I was more interested 
in movies. I was trying to date girls. I went to the Mennonite church just about every Sunday, with Rev. J. J. Thiessen presiding 
and preaching. 

Meanwhile, back at the boarding house we had an interesting but mixed family. This was 1935-36, in the depth of the 
depression. The owners of the boarding house were an elderly couple who were trying their best to eke out a meager living. 
They had two grown sons who were unemployed and seemed to prefer it that way. They had two teenage girls, one of which 
had a job, and the other attended school. Both of them worked to help fix meals and run the boarding house. There was a 
boarder by the name of Ray in his late 20's who worked as a mechanic in a garage. There was another fellow, dapper little 

chap that he was, whose name was Charlie. He worked for a printing company. He had a cute little girl friend (both were small) 
who would spend evenings with him into the wee hours of the night behind a locked door. They wanted to get married, but 
claimed they couldn't afford it. There was Queenie Chow, a very attractive young Chinese girl who also studied at the 
University. Then there was a good-looking young Norwegian fellow who was studying law, whose name I can't recall. What with 
Dave and myself that completed the "family" in the house. We were a mixed bunch, and congenial enough to make it 

I began to date a few girls, but was not experienced enough to feel comfortable with them. I had no experience in dancing 
since this had not been part of the Mennonite ethic. However, I did go to a number of movies when I could afford it. They were 
about 25 cents for an evening viewing, less in the afternoon. The movies probably made the biggest impression on me, and I 
remember several of the better ones to this day. A few that stand out are "Mutiny on the Bounty" with Charles Laughton and 
Clark Gable; "The Informer" with Victor McLaglin; "Smiling Through" with Leslie Howard and Norma Shearer. 

There were two more Mennonite buddies of mine from Herschel who were going to Normal School that year. Their names were 
George B. Wiens and Jakie Ellas, and both had been a year behind me in high school, although both were two years older. 
Came time for the Easter vacation, they got the bright idea that we should have a real blast to celebrate the end of the term 
exams. So we all chipped in and got a gallon crock (the little brown jug kind like the hillbillies use) of wine and a sack of 
peanuts. Included in this group was Dave and myself, George and Jakie, and three college students by the name of Henry 
Rempel, Ernie Dyck and his brother, whose name escapes me. The latter three were six or seven years older than I. So there 
we were in the three bachelors' stuffy room (they did their own cooking and the smell went with it) the seven of us eating 
peanuts, drinking wine and singing bawdy songs. None of us had had too much experience in drinking. I had had a sip of wine 
or beer on rare occasions, but I had never been intoxicated before in my life. It did not take very long and all of us were not only 
intoxicated but roaring drunk and climbing walls. Jakie Ellas was the first to go down. He threw up all over the floor. Wine and 
peanuts evidently didn't agree with him. Dave and I hung on to each other as we groggily staggered back to our boarding 
house about six blocks away. When I lay down in bed (still dressed) the room was spinning round and round. I was sick, sick, 
sick all of the next day and stayed in bed. Luckily it was the weekend. I asked myself this is fun? 

In the last semester, it seems my studies all came together. I began to become intensely interested and involved in Ancient 
History and began to get a thorough grasp of the whole picture. I was doing excellent in Qualitative and Quantitative Chemistry, 
in fact making several 100's in the lab tests. I learned a lot about Goethe, Schiller, Lessing and other German authors I would 
never have known had I not taken German. In the final exams I passed all, making modest C's and B's. 

When it was all over, what had I learned that was of real value? The answer, it seemed to me at the time, was not much. I 
came to the conclusion that Arts & Science was more or less a useless waste of time. I concluded the people who took it were 
neither fitted nor trained for any specific job, while at the same time, because they were "educated" they considered 
themselves too good to do manual labor. That's the way I saw it. I decided I would never pursue it any further. 

There were a few other things that I learned at that time that appear more important now in retrospect than they did at the time. 
Whereas I was never too serious about church and my Mennonite religion, through the study of Ancient History, the study of 
the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Phoenicians, etc., there began to emerge in my mind a broad overall picture about religion per 
se. I came to the conclusion that the Mennonite religion, and in fact, Christianity, was not the only game in town. The fact that 
there had been hundreds, yes, thousands, of other religions that had come and gone would indicate that religion all religions 
were man-made concoctions, inventions, if you like, that had no base in reality any more than the idea of a Santa Claus. My 
views about heaven and hell, God and the Devil were never the same again. I had made a major discovery, but gave it little 
further thought at the time. 

After writing and passing all exams I was back on the farm by early May, back to the same routine - ploughing, planting, 
hording cows, harvesting, stocking and threshing. Surely, I thought, there must be something better. There was one other 
conclusion I came to. I did not want to become a farmer. I was 18 now and my dad was nearing 60. He was wondering who 
would take over and carry on his farm. He wanted me to, but he knew I never would. He also wanted me to take catechism and 
be baptized in the Mennonite church. This, too, he knew would never come to pass. When I argued that the Mennonite religion 
was just another religion, no different from hundreds of others, he replied, that may be true, but if you throw your own religion 
overboard, you will do the same with any other church you may join. I said yes, maybe so - perhaps I won't join any church. I 
did not want to hurt his feelings by telling him the whole story. 

We were still in the midst of the depression, and I still had to make up my mind as to where I fitted in. However, it seemed that I 
did not have too many options. I could either stay on the farm, or I could go to Normal School and become a teacher. I had no 
great desire to make teaching school my life's ambition, but as I said, my options were limited. One year of Normal School and 
I was qualified to teach. My dad agreed to fund me, although he made it clear it was the last go around. He wished that I would 
stay on the farm and take it over when he retired. My older two brothers already had farms of their own. 

By the end of the summer I had made up my mind. I would go to the Normal School in Saskatoon and become a teacher. I was 
now 18, fully grown and more sophisticated about both education and city life. In fact, I looked forward with a great deal of 

anticipation for an interesting year of being bacl< In Saskatoon. 

The Normal School was located on Avenue A in the northern part of the city. I had already made contact with a Mrs. Trevillo 
who had a boarding house a few blocks south of the Saskatoon Normal School on Avenue A. I checked in at Mrs. Trevillo's and 
soon had a roommate as well. His name was Eric Neufeld, a Mennonite from Laird, Saskatchewan. He too, had attended the 
Rosthern G.E.A. when I was there in 1931-32 and we had quite a lot in common. Things started off very well. The session 
began on September 2. 

The weather was pleasant far into the fall months. I had bought a tennis racket of my own for $1 .50 and resumed the game of 
tennis with mucho gusto. The school had several courts. Towards the end of the season the school had a championship tennis 
tournament, one for the boys another for the girls. I entered the tournament and soon found myself in the finals. In fact, I had 
the championship as good as wrapped up, having my opponent, whose name was Cecil Johnson, down to match point. I only 
had one more point to make and the championship was mine. Then something happened. I began to play real carefully to 
make sure I won that last point. My overly cautious attitude lost the next point, lost the game and finally lost the match. I 
learned an important lesson, namely, in order to win you have to take chances. Instead of champ, I came in runner-up. So 
much for caution. Anyway, out of a school of 300, 1 felt that being runner-up wasn't too bad. 

Normal School was much more fun than had been college the year before. For one thing, we were all in the same boat, had the 
same educational background more or less, were pretty much in the same age bracket (about 18-20) and were all aspiring to 
become teachers. And there were lots of girls, they outnumbered us two to one. Furthermore there was a lot of socializing and I 
was now more mature. In fact, my interest in girls had reached a high level. 

There were six classrooms in the S.N.S. as we called it. They were designated from Room A to Room F. I was in Room C. One 
pleasant evening in September Room C organized a Wiener Roast to be held on the wooded banks of the Saskatchewan 
River. We had a big bonfire, plenty of wieners and buns, and also a load of marshmaliows to roast. We sang songs, of which 
"There's a Long, Long Trail A-winding" sticks in my mind. Among the girls in attendance was a pretty girl by the name of 
Victoria Neufeld (no relation to my room-mate) who was from Evesham, Saskatchewan. She had twinkly eyes, and that Dutch 
peaches and cream complexion. Although she was from Room "E" rather than Room "C" she had somehow come to the party. 
She, too, had a Mennonite background and we soon hit it off. I took her home, and we went steady for the rest of the year. She 
stayed at a school principal's house and exchanged baby-sitting for her board and room. All this was very convenient. 
Whenever the young principal and his wife were out for the evening, she would be "baby sitting" and invited me over to help. 
We soon had a flourishing romance going. She was, in fact, the first steady girl friend of serious nature that I had. We were 
both 18. 

The school was continuously featuring events there were plays, musicals, dances, amateur contests, meetings, workshops, 
and athletic field days. One of the plays we put on before Christmas was the Sleep Walking Scene from Shakespeare's "Mac 
Beth", in which I played the doctor. As the actors were introduced each quoted a line from their part. I remember mine as I 
gazed into space I quietly breathed "Hark! She speaks!" 

Now a few comments about the school's teaching staff. They were congenial but they were not the greatest. The Principal was 
a certain C. P. Seeley, M.A. He talked in atone of voice that was reminiscent of Gen. Douglas MacArthur. But there the 
similarity ends. His outstanding characteristics were his huge ego and extreme pomposity. Of the total teaching staff of eleven, 
I liked our music teacher the best. Her name was Mrs. Helen D. Sherry, L.T.C.M. Although somewhat on the portly side, she 
looked and sang like a true Prima Donna in a fine opera. The rest of the staff seemed more like has-beens doing their job 
rather than the kind that inspired anyone to become a dedicated teacher, and reminded me of the old saying "Those who can, 
do. Those who can't, teach. Those who can't teach, teach teachers." 

All in all however, it was a great year. After nine months of social intermingling, practice teaching and much pontificating, we 
were finished. Those of us who graduated were now ready to go out and buck the real world. The first thing to do was to find a 
job, a school to teach in. 

Against the Evil Tide - 10 

Milestone Nine: On to Saskatoon and Higher Education 







Against the Evil Tide - 11 

Milestone Ten: Schoolteacher at Oskaloosa S.D. #3702 

Having spent a happy year at the Saskatoon Normal School, the time had now come to go out into the huntings and find a 
school to teach. This was not easy, since it was now 1 937 and the depression still lay heavy on the land. However, I had no 
problems in this respect, it seems, whereas many graduates did. I went to see the Reeve of our municipality, whose name was 
Earse Moore, a thoroughly British Englishman, who, although born in Canada, was still highly imbued with a staunch loyalty to 
Great Britain and allegiance to the king, God bless the little wimp. I was well known in the community in which the school was 
located and had the enviable reputation of being the brightest kid that ever attended Oskaloosa S.D. #3702, whether it was 
warranted or not. The male teacher that year happened to be leaving and there was an opening. Could I have the job er 

The three members of the school board met to consider the proposition and came up positive. They were delighted to hire me if 
I would take the job at $50 a month. This would, of course, include doing the janitorial work sweeping the floor, firing up the 
pot-bellied furnace on cold winter mornings and other details. Also included with the package were free living quarters at a 
small teacherage that stood on the school grounds. It had two small rooms a bedroom, a living room that also doubled as a 
kitchen. It had, of course, no indoor plumbing, but then who did? To sweeten the pot I would even get a $5 a month raise the 
second year, provided I was still there. 

Although $50 a month may seem like a pittance today, it was a fairly decent salary for a country teacher at that time. 
Economically, the situation for me was quite favorable. Having the little two-room teacherage to live in relieved me of paying 
any board. I did my own cooking, what there was of it, and groceries cost me next to nothing. I was only 2-1/2 miles from the 
family farm, and my mother was only too glad to supply me with all the milk, eggs, bread, cookies and other goodies that I 
could wish for. I soon sold my old bicycle with the wooden rims for $5.00 and bought a new one from Eaton's catalogue for 
$20.00 (Eaton's in Canada is, or was, similar to Sears). 

The community and even the kids were friendly and receptive, and most of the families were eager to invite me over for dinner. 
I was, in a small way, a celebrity, a local success story, a local farm boy who has become educated above the crowd. Things 
began fairly well, although I had no desire to teach, to prepare classes and to mix in with the local gentry. There were still the 
Lafayettes with their large black brood half a mile down the road, and the bigger boys, Glenn, Homer, Earl and even Carl, had 
a habit of dropping by on their way from the fields and engaging in friendly chit-chat that would go on for hours. Furthermore, 
there were still four of the black brood that were now my pupils. However, whether I liked it or not, I was soon involved in 
teacher's conventions, social dances, and local affairs of every nature. 

At that time I read Dale Carnegie's book "How to Win Friends and Influence People." I wanted to please everybody, have 
everyone like me and be Mr. Nice Guy, didn't I? I wasn't sure. I had an uneasy, ambivalent attitude toward the whole situation. I 
didn't like teaching, yet I wanted to do a good job. I wasn't particularly interested in the country yokels that made up the 
community. They were, by and large, dumb, uneducated, uncouth, crude and stubborn as mules, gossipy and highly 
opinionated. Yet, like a politician, they were my constituents and I had to socialize with them, intermingle with them and act like 
I was one of them. 

So I read Dale Carnegie's book. It was about the worst thing I could have done. Like the Sermon on the Mount, it was loaded 
with suicidal, self-destructive advice. It said, in effect, of course you want everybody to like you, and in order to influence them, 
first of all, you must get them to like you. Flatter anybody and everybody you come in contact with, make them feel important, 
talk to them about those things that they (not you) want to talk about, and never mind what might be of interest to you. In other 
words - give, give, give, and like the Sermon on the Mount, love your enemies and sell all thou hast. It was, and is, lousy, 
stupid advice, and being young (I was 19) naive and inexperienced, I went along with it. I especially tried to translate it in terms 
of my attitude towards my pupils. 

So I immersed myself with my "constituents", and initially everything went fine. Everybody (well practically, there were already 
some jealous troublemakers in the bushes) liked me. I played softball with the pupils. They crowded into my teacherage at 
noon, and I played the guitar and we sang songs. I accepted dinner invitations at every family home that invited me, even the 
Lafayettes who invited me more repeatedly than anybody. I went along with a small crowd of my age (some of which had been 
my former schoolmates at Oskaloosa) to the numerous country-dances. 

It had only been six years since I had been a pupil at Oskaloosa myself, and the upper half of the pupils were junior classmates 
when I took my ninth grade in 1 931 . Some even reminded me of a hole in the window screen that was still there when I had 
volleyed a rock through the screen and windowpane in demonstrating the effectiveness of firepower by means of a sling. (The 
glass pane had been replaced, the screen had not.) Some of the girls in the upper grades were only a year or two younger than 
myself and began making eyes at me. We were all just one big happy family, were we not? 

As can be predicted, I began having disciplinary problems. There were two nasty boys in the ninth grade (taking 

correspondence) who were especially bent on pranks and trouble nnaking, and before the year was half over, discipline was a 
major problem throughout the school. I began to throw Dale Carnegie overboard and became tough. I used the strap on some 
of them. Before the year was over I had a major knock down and drag out fight with the two biggest boys. I expelled one of 
them. I was glad when the year was over. I hated teaching, and was at odds with the school kids and also with the surrounding 
community. It is a wonder I didn't quit or wasn't fired. But neither happened and I hung in there for another year. 

It was the summer of 1 938, an interesting and significant year for me. Surprisingly, of the $500 I had earned the previous year, 
I had saved better than half. Since we were required to take additional classes in education to nail down our teaching 
certificates, I decided to take a six-week summer course at the University of Saskatchewan. I chose Child Psychology, of all 
things, still figuring to unlock the secret of what made those little brats tick. 

That summer was a pleasant and adventurous respite from the previous year of teaching I checked in at Mrs. Trevillo's 
boarding house again where I had been staying while going to Normal School more than a year previously. I was joined by my 
old buddies, Jakie Ellas and George Wiens, who had been partners in crime when we had that inebriate blast after the Easter 
exams a little more than a year ago. Added to this congenial group at the boarding house were a few other fellow teachers who 
were also taking advanced courses. We did a lot of dating and much fun was had by all. It is one of the happier summers of my 

I was 20. Up to that time my interest in politics had been practically nil. However, Adolf Hitler was beginning to make some 
rampant noises in Europe and I, along with the rest of the world, was beginning to take notice. In April of 1938 he had 
successfully brought about the Anschluss or annexation of Austria to Germany, to the overwhelming roar of approval of his 
fellow Germans on both sides of the border. Mussolini, too, was on the warpath and had not only invaded Ethiopia but was 
making some bombastic speeches in challenge to the democracies. At about this time I began reading Hitler's "Mein Kampf in 
German. It had been in our house for years, but until now I had taken little interest in it. 

The events in Europe and the reading of "Mein Kampf had a major influence on my total "Weltanschauung" and philosophical 
outlook on life as a whole. It did not come suddenly, but it grew as time went on, and in retrospect, although I had not the 
faintest idea of it then, it laid the groundwork for the philosophy of Creativity that was to evolve in my mind thirty years later. 

But to get back to 1938. I resumed the second year of teaching with a grim resolution to finish the year and resume my studies 
in some other profession. I had never contemplated making teaching my life's work, but regarded it only as a practical stepping- 
stone to the next phase, whatever that might be. I considered two options, either I would go into law, or I would become an 
engineer, what kind I hadn't decided. To prepare me for the law, I began taking Latin by correspondence, since it would be a 

The second school year was a strain. I withdrew from as many of the social activities as possible, and even decided to cancel 
putting on a Christmas Concert for the year, an activity that was a customary must, and I presume every teacher had put on 
since Oskaloosa SD #3702 was founded. That, too, did not set too well with the parents nor the community, but I didn't care 
anymore at that point. To hell with them. I became more and more interested in my future and that of Germany and Adolf Hitler. 
By the end of the school year I had made up my mind what I wanted to do. I wanted to live in a rejuvenated Germany, amongst 
creative and dynamic people of my own kind. I decided on engineering, and would study at the fabled and time-honored 
University of Heidelberg. I made preparations to make the big move. 

By the summer of 1939 I had saved up about six or seven hundred dollars, a tidy sum for me in those days. I made application 
for my passport, visa, and other papers to move to Germany. I wrote to the German authorities about Heidelberg and other 
matters, and found that they welcomed people of German descent to return to the Fatherland. In fact, any money you brought 
in would be enhanced by special privileges, beyond the regular rate of exchange. 

Everything seemed highly favorable and encouraging. There were several other Mennonites around Herschel that were 
thinking about moving to Germany, or had already done so. Among the latter was a noted Mennonite author by the name of 
Georg Toews and his family. Among the former was my brother-in-law. Peter Plett, who was married to my sister Sarah. The 
further conflict in Czechoslovakia in the spring of 1939 and the pending hostilities with Poland further heated up the political 
polarization between some of us Mennonites and some of the pro-British minded Canadians, especially those of the Canadian 
Legion, veterans of WW I . 

Before my school year was over at the end of June, 1 939, the British government, in a slick piece of incendiary propaganda, 
decided to use their king and queen as a political ploy and send them over on a tour across Canada to rouse the political and 
patriotic fervor of their Canadian "subjects", subjects of the British king, a situation the American people revolted against, fought 
against, and freed themselves from in 1776. 

The Jewish propaganda machine was heating up war fever to a high pitch during that summer, not only in Canada, but 
throughout the world. On the other hand, although at a tremendous disadvantage, since the overwhelming mass of the world's 
propaganda machinery was in Jewish hands, Germany was doing what it could to stem the vicious barrage against it. We were 

getting second-hand German newspapers sent directly to us (witii our consent) by some private sponsors in Germany to get 
tiieir side of tiie story. "Their side" sounded pretty good to me and to a lot of other Mennonites around Herschel, and it was this 
information that alerted me to the Jewish menace and its worldwide tentacles of power. Although not all the Mennonites felt 
that way, most of them did, and there was a strong political polarization of emotion. Some of our former English-speaking 
friends were beginning to call us Nazis. 

When King George V and Queen Elizabeth made their much-ballyhooed grand political tour across Canada at the end of May 
and beginning of June of 1939, the schools were still in session. Every school and school child was strongly urged to go see 
and meet the King and Queen at one of their designated stopping points. Our closest "stopping point" on their itinerary was 
Saskatoon, about 100 miles away. Despite all kinds of pressure to do so, I refused to go, nor would I make any arrangements 
to have our kids from the school sent to this political charade. In fact, for some time I had been telling Canadians that they 
owed Britain less than nothing, that Britain had been milking them for centuries. I further argued that we would be far better off 
to cut loose from Britain and join with our natural geographic entity, namely the United States of America. (I continued to take 
that position during the next six years of the war.) The Veteran's and other pressure groups arranged for transportation for the 
kids despite my opposition, and I couldn't care less. This, of course, did not endear me with the school board nor my former 
constituents, but since the school year was nearly at an end anyway, I didn't give a damn. 

The school board sent me my notice as I expected, and that was the end of my teaching experience, and I was glad of it. I had 
no intention of teaching another year on any terms. I began selling my few personal possessions, my bike for $17, my guitar for 
$7. I had targeted the end of October as the date of departure. I began to tidy up my personal affairs and looked forward to 
Heidelberg, to engineering and a New Germany. 

Against the Evil Tide - 1 1 P^ 


Milestone Ten: Schoolteacher at Oskaloosa S.D. #3702 






Against the Evil Tide - 12 

Milestone Eleven: War Breaks Out: I Opt for Engineering 

During the summer of 1939 the political situation in Europe began to heat up rapidly. After Hitler's invasion of Czechoslovakia, 
the so-called "democracies" that were under the iron-fisted control of the Jewish power structure had evidently decided that 
Germany must be crushed, must be destroyed at all costs. I was not totally unaware that summer that war might ensue, but like 
everyone else, had no crystal ball to predict if it would come, and if so, when, or where, or how, or what its outcome might be. 
The National Socialist idea was rapidly spreading to other countries. Mussolini had led Italy out of the Communist mire even 
years before Hitler, and was solidly on the side of Germany. In Britain, Oswald Mosley was heading up the Black Shirts. In 
America such stalwart heroes as Charles Lindberg, Eddie Rickenbacker, and others were promoting the America First Party 
and trying to stave off any American involvement in a European war. Simultaneously, the Silver Shirts were active in both 
Canada and the United States. In Rumania, Ian Antonescu was heading up the powerful Iron Guard. Other countries such as 
France, Holland, Sweden, Norway, and even several of the South American countries had incipient counterparts that were 
sprouting up and growing. Who knows? Perhaps National Socialism could take over the world without ever going to war, as 
they had done inside Germany itself. 

The Germans in Canada had for many years celebrated Deutscher Tag (German Day) as a way of expressing their roots and 
in appreciation of their German heritage. Some of the Mennonites had attended these for a number of years, but it was not until 
the summer of 1939 that I enthusiastically attended this celebration in Saskatoon. I remember it vividly, although I had already 
had a few beers. It was held in a large hall downtown, and there was a good-sized crowd. The Canadian authorities were 
standing by and "surveilling." They had forbidden the picture of Adolf Hitler to be displayed at the meeting, nor could his name 
even be mentioned. Nevertheless, I do remember that several fiery speeches were delivered, the red, white and black 
Swastika flags hung vertically in the background of the stage, and many sporadic Hell Hitler salutes were given repeatedly and 
enthusiastically. I thoroughly enjoyed the rousing get-together. It seemed to further polarize my dedication to sweep away the 
rotten old Jewish system and build a healthy New Order worldwide. Come what may, I wanted to be part of it. 

I had already applied for a visa, a passport, and written to Nord Deutscher Lloyd for steamship passage, and was in the 
process of making all preparations for the big move. As August approached, I did the usual - stocking, running the binder, to 
earn a few extra bucks. One day, September 1 , to be exact, as I came home at six o-clock after stocking in the field, my brother 
Korni broke the news to me that war had been declared and I would not likely be going to Germany. 

So all my plans were shattered, or at least temporarily delayed. I had to revise my strategy. I could not now get to Germany 
even if I wanted to. What to do? Well, first I would wait to see the unfolding of events. 

Events unfolded rapidly, as all the world now knows. After a few days England and France jumped into the fray and declared 
war on Germany under the specious pretext of "saving" Poland, for communism, evidently. A few days later, good old Canada, 
being the faithful patsy for England that she had always been, decided she must stand by the good old "motherland" and 
support England, although French Quebec and most of the other nationalities were against war. Even most of those of Anglo 
descent, especially the Irish, were probably against war, could they have voted on it. But of course, as always in a "democracy" 
the people never get to vote on the important, meaningful issues, only such trivialities as to which Jewish stooge should be put 
up front next. It would be laughable were it not so tragic to observe in retrospect as to how gingerly and surreptitiously the 
Canadian government slipped their people into a major worldwide conflict with tremendous ramifications that were irretrievable 
and irreversible. Parliament voted an "initial" sum, a paltry $100,000, to "support" Britain in her war against Germany. When we 
think of the billons and billons that Canada later spent directly on the war, and directly and indirectly subsidizing and supporting 
Britain before it was over, and the thousands killed in the war itself, this initial piddling sum to get itself sucked into the war 
seems like the ultimate exercise in hypocrisy and deceit. 

Anyway, the war was now a reality and I had to change my plans. I decided I would study engineering here in Canada and then 
pursue either my studies or my career in engineering in Germany when the war was over. Again, I did not have a crystal ball 
with which to predict the coming events, but with the Blitzkrieg tactics demonstrated in Poland, perhaps it would be over in a 
year or two, and, I was confident, under the superior leadership of Adolf Hitler, this time Germany would be the victor. I would 
yet move to the Germany of my Ideals and help build the New Order. I decided that meanwhile I would enroll in the University 
of Saskatchewan and get started in my engineering career. 

After a hard month of stocking and threshing and earning an extra hundred bucks, I was ready to leave. On September 24 my 
brother Henry drove me to the little CNR station of Fiske and I boarded the train for Saskatoon. I established board at the 
Henry Dyck family, who were also Mennonites. The landlord's brother, Ed, had been a schoolmate of mine at the Rosthern 
G.E.A. (he was then in the ninth grade) and another brother, Bill, now also studied engineering at the U. of S. 

I enrolled in five subjects and entered into the studies with vigor and enthusiasm. I liked what I was studying and I wanted to 
make a good showing. Unlike the first year in Arts & Science four years earlier, I had no particular problem with my subjects. 

To my surprise, I found there were three other Klassens, all Mennonites, no relation, in First Year Engineering. The first was a 
young man by the name of Harold Klassen, who was a fine fellow, but had no special merits to recommend him. The second 
was a young fellow by the name of Jake. He was a brilliant student, 18 years old, and he was keenly dedicated to his studies. 
Four years later he was to win the Governor General's Gold Medal, a most prestigious prize given to that one student in the 
whole University considered to have made the best grades over their total college enrollment at graduation. 

The third member of the clan was a man of 29 by the name of Henry Klassen, whom I had also known at the Rosthern G.E.A. 
eight years earlier. He was not a great student, but he was a cultured man, handsome and quiet, seeking his niche in life and 
trying to make a living. He had a beautiful, well-trained baritone voice, and he would have loved to make professional singing 
his career, but the opportunities in that field eluded him. Anyway, we got together and after being at Dyck's a month, I decided I 
needed a change of venue. Henry and I agreed to room together and soon found a nice room with board at a family by the 
name of Bowers. They were a fine English couple who had the tragic misfortune of having to care for a ten-year-old idiot son. 

Meanwhile, the war in Europe was spreading, and I watched its progress with interest and excitement. At this boardinghouse 
there also resided a young lawyer, a bachelor, by the name of Ted Nieman. We would usually listen to the evening news on the 
radio. Many is the time we were engrossed in lively and sometimes heated discussions of the historic events that were 
unfolding, such as the pursuit of the Graf Spec and its dramatic scuttling at the mouth of the River Platte off the coast of South 
America. (December 17,1939) 

In the meantime, in extracurricular activities, I took up boxing at the Varsity gym, a course I pursued with enthusiasm for the 
next two years, and also a few classes in wrestling, which I did not pursue for very long. I also took swimming lessons at the 
Varsity pool and swam regularly each week. I did see a number of good movies, sometimes taking a girl friend along. However, 
my most ardent flame at that time was a vivacious Mennonite girl by the name of Lily Zacharias, from Fiske, of whom I had 
been seeing much for the last year while teaching school. For several reasons she came to Saskatoon every so often, and 
when she did we always had a most happy reunion. 

It was at this time that I also embarked on a program of reading a series of major books. One of the books that I took out of the 
library and read in early October was Emil Ludwig's "Napoleon". His life and career made a big impression on me at that time, 
and I equated Hitler and Napoleon as two great and outstanding figures of history. I might say, in retrospect, that since then my 
esteem of Napoleon has decreased and that of Hitler has increased, and I presently regard Napoleon as a major catastrophe 
that happened to the White Race. Whereas he was undoubtedly a dynamic military genius of the first order and caused a major 
furor in world history, his twenty years of warfare and 40 battles served the White race badly. These wars killed off millions of 
Europe's finest manhood in their prime and thereby considerably lowered the quality of Europe's gene pool. The most tragic 
victim of this sorry massacre of White Men killing White Men was the French nation itself. This, after the massive bloodletting of 
the French Revolution, left France, who had been a first rate power for a thousand years, now and forever a second rate 
nation. For this we can impugn the Jews, who constituted the basic membership of the Jacobins, and were the prime 
organizers and instigators of the French Revolution. History will show that the Jacobins were the forerunners of Jewish 
communism, a force with which Hitler had to deal more than a century after Napoleon, and is still a Jewish cancer on the face 
of this planet. 

Anyway, it was at this time, although I did not realize it, that I was beginning to become a philosopher and beginning to 
formulate a meaningful Weltanschauung. During this period I began to keep a bound blue-green notebook, in which from time 
to time I would write down random impressions of what was going on, and of what I was thinking. This I did for a period of two 
years, and fortunately, the book has survived unto this day. In the winter of 1940, when I was 22, I entered the following 
observations in my blue-green notebook. 

Wednesday, March 6, 1940. In the fall of 1939 I read Napoleon, by Emil Ludwig, through which I developed an intense interest 
and admiration for the man. In his life story I found an expression of some of my own ideas and also gained a new outlook and 
Weltanschauung. I think to get the most out of life a person must work hard, fast and all the time. A timid, secluded life is worse 
than no life at all - "to have passed thru this world and not even have left a mark in it." Therefore, it is better to risk life to gain 
some valuable end than to carefully preserve it and gain nothing. This is shown by Hitler's personality and even more so by 
Mussolini. Doing work at the maximum rate of speed and when doing it applying all energy solely to it. 

The secret of good thinking is concentrating completely on the problem at hand and forgetting about all others - shutting them 
out - they can by far best be solved by taking a definite other time to solve them by themselves. Doing a lot of thinking and 
planning at all times, including spare time, for after all, thinking costs nothing and hurts no one and is not unpleasant and yet it 
is the fundamental origin and cause of all success in work. In solving a problem and planning the "why and wherefore" are very 
important and must be understood. Details are very important and the success or failure of a large venture may rest on the 
success or failure of a small detail. A brilliant plan consists necessarily of a large number of carefully worked out details, and 
not a few "brilliant" ideas. Therefore, to execute a brilliant plan or program the work behind it will determine its success. Never 
let your mind go idle - have it going like an electric motor at full speed. In working out details, be vacillating, be grasping for a 
variety of ideas and pick out and select the ones most suitable. Try to think up all the possibilities in each case and just what 

you would do for each possibility so that when it does come you are ready for instant action. Always, when with people, act as 
if you were sure of yourself, even when you aren't. It is better to be sure of yourself and make a mistake than not to be sure of 
yourself and make a mistake. It is better to give a wrong answer than no answer at all due to being afraid of giving the wrong 
answer. Take chances and plan what action you could take in case your chance falls. (From Hitler.) Never let hardship or pain 
frighten you from an enterprise. They will do you good. If there is something I want to do and am afraid to do it, I must do it 
immediately. It is always wiser and easier to do it immediately than to put it off and wait in suspense. Have a strong will and 
determination and regard other people's wishes as obstacles of no value. Judge all things by their relative value and by no 
means over value public opinion and convention. They are hampering to action and success. However, listen to other people's 
ideas, for they are often material of which wise use can be made. Regard life not as a distant future but as a swiftly passing 
performance of today from which you are going to grasp your full measure. When speaking you must think intensely, make it 
lively, think quickly of the most suitable words to express your ideas. Speak as if you were deeply convinced that what you are 
saying is absolutely right and that you take it for granted that the person listening believes you. However, don't be fooled and 
reserve in your own judgment whether or not he believes you. Pronunciation is important. Get plenty of movement into your 
lips, speaking as clearly as possible, never too quietly or shyly and make the best possible use of your voice. In argument, bluff 
is valuable. Turn the debate onto grounds that your opponent knows little about and then talk as if you were an authority on it, 
even if you are not. It will make the opponent feel ill informed. If it is necessary to use force, decide quickly whether or not you 
are going to use it. If you do, use plenty of it to carry your objective through immediately. If you aren't, lead the contest away so 
that it seems it never came near a showdown. In most cases use force. Some of these ideas I got from Napoleon, some from 
Hitler, some from Mussolini and some I concluded myself. 


The next day I was involved in a minor incident that I evidently considered of some importance. I made the following entry. 

Thursday, March 7, 1940. Today 3rd Year Engineers walked into the Drafting Lab, surrounded and overpowered me and tried 
to shave my mustache. They had a camera there to photograph the scene. I put up a hard fight - punching, kicking and cursing 
them. First year fellows quickly came up to see. I yelled at them (between curses) to sock these fellows. They (especially 
Smith) piled in and 3rd year guys got cold feet and gave up without having cut a hair. As soon as I was loose I slugged one 
guy. They then ambled off. My pants had been torn in the struggle. Dennis Herring and I went down to collect for damages. 
Half the engineering lab fellows (mostly First Years) followed. We walked into their lab and demanded repair of damage They 
(3rd years) quickly collected they'd pay the balance of the bill. They'd actually succeeded in cutting a 3rd year guy's mustache. 
We first years were sorry a free-for-all had not been pulled off. 


About the end of February, Mrs. Bowers, the landlady, told us all that they would have to close their boarding house, since they 
were unable to make ends meet. She would probably go to Vancouver, B.C., where she was offered a job. I felt very sorry for 
the Bowers. The most tragic burden in their family was the fact that they had to care for a ten-year-old son who was a complete 
moron. I do not remember too clearly anymore what Mr. and Mrs. Bowers looked like, but I will never forget that troubled, idiotic 
look on the face of this boy. This experience drove home to me the tragedy of having defective and/or deformed children, not 
only to the child itself, but what a burden and what misery they inadvertently heap on the rest of the family. It also raised the 
question in my mind - just what is the point of keeping such people alive? 

Henry and I went looking for a new place to stay. I found a place with the Schmidt family, not too far away from the University. 
Henry did not find it suitable and we parted company. The Schmidts were a nice Dutch family, and had two beautiful blonde 
daughters, Alvina, 16, and Verna, 19. Of the two, Alvina was more brainy and Verna had the better figure and was better 
looking. Both had that peaches and cream complexion for which Dutch girls are noted. I stayed with the Schmidts after the end 
of the college term for several months. After a while Verna and I struck up quite a close relationship. 

Came the end of April and the end of the term. I wrote my exams and since I had made a special effort to do well during the 
year I made all "A"'s in every subject. But for about a month before the end of the year another major concern had to be 
addressed, and that was the matter of getting some kind of a job during the summer to earn a few extra bucks. 

Against the Evil Tide - 12 

Milestone Eleven: War Breaks Out: I Opt for Engineering 


Back 1 





Against the Evil Tide - 13 

Milestone Twelve: Summer in Saskatoon and Second Year Engineering 

By the end of April 1940, the war had been on for about eight months, but this reflected very little in the job nnarket and the 
depression was still with us. For a month or two before the end of the term I began scouting for a job, any kind of a job. I made 
any number of applications. I contacted one of my professors for a job in electrical line work. I called the Saskatoon City power 
plant. I went to the newspaper (Saskatoon Star- Phoenix) to see if I could work on the printing presses. I called on the 
telephone company. I applied for a clerking job at the giant Hudson's Bay Co. I went to the CFQC (Saskatoon) radio 
broadcasting station, also CBK at Watrous, Saskatchewan. Finally, on my way down to Streb Electric, who seemed to offer me 
a good prospect, I stopped at Davies Electric, and the owner, Mr. Davies, offered me a job as an electrician's helper at 25 cents 
an hour, nine hours a day. I accepted and immediately was in business. 

Now $2.25 for a nine-hour day may seem like peanuts by today's standards, but it was a living wage in those days and I had no 
complaints. My board and room at the Schmidt's was $20 or $25 per month, and this included a boxed lunch while working. I 
was holding my own, surviving, and even saving a few bucks. 

The work at Davies Electric consisted mostly of house wiring, or electrical wiring in factories, re-wiring motors, and other 
general electrical wiring. One major job we worked at was the electrical wiring of a slaughterhouse on the west side of town 
that was being completely rebuilt within the ruins of a previous brick building. The new owner was a wealthy Hungarian Jew 
who had evidently fled Europe before the war started and absconded with all the loot he had. 

Meanwhile, I was on the lockout for a better job and I soon landed one. On July 3 I started work with Saskatoon General 
Electric. This company, too, was in the electrical wiring business and had landed a major contract wiring a number of new 
hangars the Canadian Air Force was having built in the northern section of Saskatoon. The pay here was 40 cents an hour, an 
increase of 60% over what I had been getting at Davies Electric. This job lasted a month and a half. 

I went back to Herschel August 19, and again stocked, ran the binder and worked on the threshing crew. Wages were now a 
little better - $3.50-$4.00 a day. 

On Sunday, the 29th of September, I caught a ride with a farmer by the name of Ogle who was going into Saskatoon with his 
truck. I arrived back at the Schmidts at 1 1 :30 A.M. and was back at the old boarding house. Next day I enrolled at the 
University again for my second year in Engineering, taking Physics 13, Geology 2, Thermodynamics II, Surveying, Applied 
Mechanics, Hydraulics. I also enlisted in the C.O.T.C. and was assigned to H Co., Second Platoon. 

By the end of October, Abe Thiessen, a blonde fellow about my age who was taking first year Engineering, invited me to room 
with him at a boarding house owned by a certain Miss Adams. The rent was $20.00 a month, a little less than it had been at 
Schmidt's, but there was an added incentive. Miss Adams had a small "ballroom" where her sister, Mrs. Adams, gave dancing 
lessons. Actually, the ballroom was a former living room with a polished hardwood floor. Unfortunately, unlike Fred Astaire, I 
was not "born to dance", and I felt that some professional lessons was just what I needed to improve my terpsichorean 
deficiencies and improve my social graces. So I moved in, with Abe Thiessen as my roommate. Soon I was learning the 
difference between a foxtrot and a tango, a waltz and a polka. But lessons or no, a Fred Astaire I was not, and dancing never 
did become one of my more outstanding social graces. Too little too late. 

The Adams ballroom had another major benefit. That Christmas I did not go back home, but instead I bought myself a set of 
boxing gloves which cost me $6.95. In this second year I continued taking boxing lessons at the "U" gym, and I was putting 
more punch into it. Besides myself, there were four other young fellows staying at the Adams' boarding house. There was Abe, 
already mentioned, Calvin Wight, a brainy engineering student, a handsome young fellow by the name of Morley, and there 
was a country yokel by the name of Mort whom we called Mortimer Snerd, after Charlie McCarthy's sidekick. We were all 
interested in dancing and also in boxing. The rest of the boys chipped in 50 cents each to help defray my costs of buying the 
gloves, and soon after Christmas we staged regular boxing bouts in Miss Adams' "ballroom", that is, when she wasn't using it 
for dancing lessons. Also staying at the boarding house was a young married man by the name of Gilbert, who was an expert 
boxer, in fact, a semi-pro. He would give us some valuable pointers from time to time, but was not a regular participant in our 
"bouts". He was just out of our class. 


On New Years Day, 1941 , I made the following entry in my little blue-green book, an entry that reflected my philosophical 
outlook at that time, but not necessarily that of today. 

Wednesday, January 1 , 1 941 . Another year shot and a new one starting. Although I am young, I hate to feel that years are 
slipping by - have felt this for eight years. I feel confident that this new year of 1 941 will see tremendous changes in the world's 
history and also in my own life. This year will see the end of the war with a German victory. It will also see me in another 


My impression of my boarding house. As a whole I am more satisfied than I contemplated. The board, as far as that goes, is 
average only, but the people are swell. My roommate Abe Thiessen and I get along fine. Although he hasn't the same 
intellectual outlook and ambitions as I have, we agree perfectly in religion and morals, that is in the complete lack of both. We 
are both fully convinced that religion is a farce, a man-made mode of worship for the benefit of honoring the man that set 
himself up as the object of worship. As far as morals are concerned, we both have a great contempt for convention and that 
reason should be the deciding factor of our actions - not obsolete outmoded convention. I do not think that I will ever change 
these basic ideas which I have had for two or three years but that I'll probably only modify them in later years. I believe that the 
world at large under the influence of totalitarianism will see drastic changes in conventions of the past few centuries, and that 
religion (Christianity) will be exposed as the spreading of a great idea by no doubt a great man but still a farce as far as the 
promised after-life is concerned. 

What I learned about the exams - First of all, at least a month before the exam study like hell - it pays well - especially the last 
few days. Even if it becomes very monotonous, work hard. Never be too sure that certain parts of the course not stressed in 
class will not be on the exam. An example of this is the Math paper. Therefore, leave nothing out. Never be too confident of a 
subject and thereby neglect to study it. An example of this is Physics 13 in which I got a "C" instead of the "A" I would have 
gotten if I hadn't neglected studying it throughout the term. Never rest assured at the beginning of the paper that you have 
plenty of time to finish it and therefore need not hurry. Examples of this are the Thermo and Applied Mech papers. Speed for all 
you're worth and then spend all the rest of the available time reviewing and checking the paper - something that I was usually 
too lazy to do. Check and re-check - it's well worth the small amount of extra energy when compared to the time and effort 
spent throughout the year in preparation of the subject. 

I have been at this boarding house two months and am glad that I have moved. In the first place Mrs. Adams is a swell old girl. 
Although her life and morals are far from a Sunday school example, she's fine to get along with and really a congenial soul. 
This just goes to bear out my idea that a person can be a fine character although they totally lack religion and morals. One 
important thing that I have gained at this place is the opportunity to learn dancing and I've made the most of it. In these two 
months I've learned the foxtrot, turns in the foxtrot, the flea-hop, the Schottische, slow waltzes with fast spins, the tango, the 
French minuet, the Blues, as well as the shag, and variations in foxtrot, such as in an "Old Dutch Garden". Because of all the 
practice and instruction available in the music room, before the year's over I'll be an accomplished ballroom dancer, 
comparatively speaking. Also, since I've bought boxing gloves I'm going to become good in the art of boxing by practicing with 
the boys in the music room and getting instruction from Gilbert, who is an expert. 

I didn't go home for Christmas this year because looking back at last year's program in the diary I know damn well that I would 
have very little chance to enjoy my holidays. Since during the term I was too busy to go out very much I decided I'd make up for 
it during the holidays. 

Somehow, I've lost my zest for studying. I don't feel that it's as important as I did when I came here. Maybe it's because I'm 
getting lazy or maybe it's because I feel I won't finish my Varsity here anyway and that a lot of the stuff I study here will be 
useless in Germany. Perhaps, too, if I read "Napoleon" or Hitler again I'd get more inspiration. I am now reading "Bismarck" by 
Emil Ludwig. 


During the year, as the war was becoming an ever increasingly ominous presence. It now became compulsory for all male 
students to attend Canadian Officers Training Corps (C.O.T.C.) Since my sympathies did not lie with the so-called Allied cause, 
I had little enthusiasm for these classes, and mostly found them to be a bore - a matter of taking orders from a bunch of tin- 
horn soldiers who didn't know one end of the gun from the other. I missed a number of classes and utilized whatever excuses I 
could trump up. 

Towards the end of winter, our Varsity boxing group staged a boxing tournament in which we competed against some other 
"U", which one escapes me. It was an exhibition tournament. In which I represented our team in the welterweight class. As I 
remember, I boxed two bouts, the outcome of which i cannot recall, but evidently I did not get hurt, or I would have 

My roommate, Abe Thiesen was a fine looking blonde Nordic type with a handsome smile and was quite a ladles man. During 
the year he was repeatedly fixing me up with dates. There were, however, two girls during my second year that have left a life- 
long impression with me, but Abe had nothing to do with my meeting either one of them. It so happened both girls' first names 
were Phyllis. The first one was Phyllis Erikson, a tall, blonde, statuesque girl of 16, who came to visit Gilbert's wife, and soon 
we were attracted to each other. She was a lovely girl, well built, long, flowing blonde hair and a beautiful face and figure. In 
fact she had excellent genes, and I would rate her a "ten". She soon became serious and wanted me to marry her. Abe, on the 
other hand, kept ribbing me that I was robbing the cradle, since she was only 16. However, she was, in fact, mature beyond her 
years, and would probably have made an excellent wife. Anyway, I was far from ready to tie the knot with anybody, and had a 

lot of plans to unravel first, and I told her so. 

The second girl was a dark beauty by the name of Phyllis Bowie, who was also tall and well built, but very much of a contrast to 
Phyllis Erikson. I only met her towards the end of the year at a dance at a Technical School where she was studying to become 
a stenographer. In a way she was a strange girl with many unreal fantasies. She had great ambitions to become an actress on 
stage, and, in fact, she was not only a beauty, but a terrific actress. She would treat me to exhibitions of her thespian talents at 
the drop of a hat, and she was good. She performed in recitations, comic skits and other performances at church groups, at her 
school and in the living room. She also sang and played the piano beautifully, and some of my fondest memories of the times 
are when, after taking her home, she would play "The Blue Danube" or "Intermezzo" or other exhibition pieces on the piano. 

But then there were times she would wander away from reality. When I first met her she told me she was several years 
younger than she actually was. (She was 20.) She also told me that she was the illegitimate daughter of a great stage actress 
by the name of Eva LeGallienne, whom she called "mummy" and who was now dead. She also liked to tell me what a brilliant 
mind she had, and that she made fantastic grades, that she passed the 12th grade at the age of 14. Actually, none of these 
fantasies were true, except that there was, in fact, a celebrated stage actress by the name of Eva LeGallienne, and she was 
still very much alive at that time, but had never heard of Phyllis. It took me till the end of the term to find out that there were 
some gross contradictions in her claims. When I confronted her with some realities, she broke down and confessed that these 
were creations of her over-active imagination, that she wanted to be somebody, and she had woven these fairy tales about her 
to construct a beautiful dream world. I was shocked, but she was so attractive, our relationship continued. In fact, intensified 
over he next year or two. 


Towards the end of the winter I made the following entry in my little blue-green book. 
Sunday, March 16, 1941. The worst sin, I think, is to be poor. 
Finished reading "Bismarck". Points to remember from him: 

1 . Kick like hell if you have a complaint coming and never let a wrong to you go by unanswered. 

2. Psychological trickery devised by your own common sense. 

3. Much narrating and talking. 

4. "Unless your life you set at stake, your life you cannot hope to win." 

5. Supreme courage. 


By the end of the second year in the spring of 1941, my interest in my studies was flagging. I finished the outdoor field survey 
work necessary to complete the requirements in that class. I wrote my other exams, passed all, but with only a little better than 
average marks. 

There was one other obligation we had to fulfill to complete the year, and that was two weeks of military camp at Dundurn, 
Saskatchewan, as the finale to our C.O.T.C. training. 

On May 3, after completing a set of four short exams, I locked up what belongings I had at the Adam's boarding house into my 
trunk, put on my army uniform and collected my gear. We gathered at a pre-selected spot at the "U" with our packs on our 
back. After standing in line for what seemed an endless period of time, we were finally marched to the CNR station to entrain. 
After we arrived at Dundurn we were again standing and waiting before the bungling officers could finally find the key to our 
hut. (The old army routine - "Hurry up and wait in line.") 

Thus began my routine exposure to camp life in the Army. Everything was drab. The Dundurn landscape looked like a desert 
wasteland. The food was plain, the accommodations were crude, the routine was extremely boring. 

By the end of the week, on Saturday, after drill till 12 noon I managed to get a 13-hour pass, to be back by 1:00 A.M. Sunday. I 
took a bus back to Saskatoon and by 7:15 I was back in the embrace of Phyllis. We sat by the bank of the Saskatchewan River 
and watched a full moon rise, then went to a dance at the Avenue Ballroom. By this time I had decided that in the interest of 
romance I would overstay my leave. After a beautiful evening of dancing, we had lunch at Campbell's Cafe, then back to the 
Bowie's home and the chesterfield. At the last minute I rushed back to the Adam's boarding house, changed back into my 
uniform and barely caught the 4:00 A.M. bus. There were a number of other fellow recruits In the bus that were already AWOL. 
Anyway, we got back at 5:30 A.M. and I crawled into my seedy bunk, only to be awakened by reveille at 0700 hours. No 
repercussions about the late return. 

On May 13 we finally had an interesting day. I had been assigned to Platoon #7 and we were to participate in army games in 

the hills and sand dunes west of the camp. After much confused maneuvering and running around we were "charged" by army 
trucl<s who "overran" our positions, while we threw paper bags filled with sand (mock grenades) at them and snapped our 
empty rifles. 

But two days later we were on the rifle range shooting with real live ammunition, and our skill as marksmen was tested. We had 
slow fire, rapid fire, pop and dodger, firing from both sitting positions and kneeling positions. Our ranges were 100, 300, and 
500 yards. To my surprise, I did much better than expected and before the day was over I had racked up the highest score in 
the platoon. Evidently all that rabbit hunting with my good old .22 single shot back in 1934-35 had paid off. 

That night the "army" had a major bash and banquet and I will never forget it. Loquacious speeches were made by the 
"generals", Scotch was served in paper cups and beer was generously dispensed by the pitcher. One of the generous 
dispensers of beer was a bunkmate of mine by the name of Kinsman, who normally slept in the upper bunk above me. As the 
banquet progressed. Kinsman proved to be one of his own best customers. Fortunately, I had enough sobriety left to take 
careful note of that fact and I took the necessary precautions to sleep in his upper bunk when I went to bed that night. When he 
finally crawled into my lower bunk sometime later, it was not too long before the expected happened. He puked all over the 
landscape, but fortunately, except for the smell, I was high and dry in the upper bunk. 

On May 17, it was all over, and I returned to the Adams' house in Saskatoon to pick up my belongings. I said goodbye to 
Phyllis and headed back home to the farm. However, this summer I would not again engage in farm labor. In fact, farming, all 
farming, was behind me. Never again would I lift a sheaf to a stock, nor pitch a sheaf into the hopper of a threshing machine. I 
would instead, spend the summer as a hard-rock nickel miner, a piece of manual labor equally tough, if not more so. 

Against the Evil Tide - 13 P^^ 

Milestone Twelve: Summer in Saskatoon and Second Year Engineering '" 






Against the Evil Tide - 14 

Milestone Thirteen: Nickel Mining at Sudbury, Ontario 

A month or so before the end of the second year, Abe Thiessen told me that there was a strong demand for miners in the 
nicl<el and gold mines around Sudbury, Ontario. He had information that they paid fairly decent wages, something like $5 a 
day, and even as much as $1 a day if you managed to work in a bonus stope. This was 1 941 , and those kinds of wages 
sounded pretty attractive to me. At the beginning of April I wrote a letter to a few of the mining companies in the Sudbury area, 
and on April 18, 1 received a return letter from International Nickel Co. and another from Wright-Hargreaves Gold Mines. Both 
offered me jobs for the summer. I was delighted. 

Sudbury, Ontario, is the largest mining complex in all of Canada, and is the mainstay of that mining giant, the International 
Nickel Co. The latter, at Sudbury, represents the largest nickel mining operation in the world. But there are also any number of 
other major mining companies spread throughout that vast area called the Canadian Shield, a huge geological formation of 
rock that covers an immense area wrapped around the Hudson Bay. Besides nickel, many other metals such as gold, silver, 
platinum and copper are also mined in this mineral-rich area. Accompanying these various mining operations are huge 
smelters and refineries spread over the landscape, with their tremendously tall smokestacks belching their toxic fumes into the 
surrounding atmosphere. As a result (this is more than 45 years ago) the landscape was barren, with hardly a tree or a blade of 
green grass to be found for miles around any of these smelter complexes. A typical smelter of such kind was Inco's Copper 
Cliff operation, located about five miles outside of Sudbury. Not only was the area treeless, but it was also as rocky as any 
moonscape, except here the boulders were larger. 

As can be expected, Sudbury was a rough and ready city, with brawls, mayhem by knife or gun, or even murders a common 
occurrence. The Wild West towns of half a century earlier had nothing on Sudbury, Ontario. Add to this the hazards of working 
underground in the mines, and you come to the conclusion that It Is not the kind of quiet, peaceful city in which you would want 
to bring up your children. Any way you look at it, Sudbury is (or was, when I was there) a rough town complete with a number 
of breweries, all of which were doing a flourishing business. 

The "good" wages had attracted several other college students. My buddy, Abe Thiessen, did not have to attend C.O.T.C. 
camp and had left for Sudbury two weeks earlier, along with another student by the name of Ernie Martin, and had reported 
back to me. Meanwhile, I got in touch with two other Martin brothers, Len, who was studying medicine and whom we called 
"Doc", and Ed, who was not a college student. Since Sudbury was about 1500 miles distant from where we were in 
Saskatchewan and since we were all broke, the three of us decided to get there by riding the rails, something I had never done 
before. Fortunately, Doc had had some experience in this time-honored profession and knew his way around. 

After returning from C.O.T.C. camp I spent two or three days making the rounds with my family at Herschel. Then in the 
afternoon of Tuesday, May 20th, my brother Henry drove me to Rosetown where I boarded a bus at 9:30 that night for Swift 
Current. I was warmly dressed and had sewed a $20 bill into the lining of my jacket as a safety precaution in case I got rolled. 
When I got on the bus, I found my old buddy, Dave Heinrichs, who was my roommate back in 1935-36, already on the bus. He 
was now a full-fledged agronomist employed by the provincial government, and heading back to his home base. 

We arrived in Swift Current at 12 midnight. Dave went to his quarters and I walked the streets for a while. Finally I turned into 
an empty church whose doors were unlocked. I laid a few hymnbooks on the floor for a pillow and went to sleep until morning. 

At 2:00 P.M. I met with Doc and Ed Martin in front of Cooper's Store, our pre-arranged meeting place. An hour later the three of 
us were on a freight train, heading east. 

We arrived at Moose Jaw at 8:00 P.M. and walked up town about a mile and a half to have supper at a cafe. When we got back 
our previous mode of transportation was just pulling out. But no matter. An hour later we caught another freight and found 
partial shelter in the nooks of an open timber car. We arrived at Brandon, Manitoba, by noon the next day. It was here that I 
almost lost my traveling companions. I had gone to a nearby store to buy some butter and milk. When I returned, the freight 
was just pulling out. I ran like hell and just barely caught the tall end of the caboose, with a friendly caboose tender waving 

We kept rolling on to Portage La Prairie, then into Winnipeg, Manitoba, by 7:00 P.M. that same day. We went to a cafe and had 
dinner, which, by the way cost only 20 cents. There Doc met an old friend of his and talked on into the night. By this time I was 
very tired and very sleepy, and we decided to stay overnight in Winnipeg. Ed and I went to some cheap hotel and I slept like a 
log. Doc stayed with the friend he had met, talking on until the cows came home. 

Next morning after we had breakfast (porridge, milk, toast and coffee, all for 10 cents) I happened to run into an engineering 
classmate (from U. of S.) by the name of Ken Biliingsley, who was heading for the same place as we were, so he joined our 

The four of us boarded a train at noon and rolled on to the next divisional point, which was Kenora, Ontario. We were now 
sitting on top of the boxcars, since none were unlocked. One advantage was we could get a better view of the scenery we were 
passing through, which now was changing rapidly from the flat drab prairie plains to beautiful lake country of forests, rugged 
ridges of boulders and an 80 mile string of lakes. 

Whereas the days were moderately warm, the nights were decidedly cold. I remember riding through the Lake of the Woods 
area just inside Ontario one night. We were riding on top of a boxcar. Whereas I had come prepared and was wearing warm 
clothing, poor Billingsley was not. As we lay on the top ridge of the rattling, swaying boxcar, I sheltered the poor fellow from the 
windward side with my body, clinging to him tightly, while he was shaking like a trip hammer, and both of us trying to conserve 
what warmth we could. 

After various other stops at divisional points of Ingles, to Port Arthur and Fort Williams, (the latter two are now combined into 
one city called Thunder Bay) we then rolled on to Schreiber, White River, Chapleau and Gartier. Sometimes we would get into 
a divisional point at midnight. No matter. We would build a bonfire on the ground and sleep under the stars in the company of 
the rest of our less erudite fellow travelers. The way we looked you couldn't tell us from the rest of the bums. 

Finally on the last lap, from Gartier to Sudbury, we found ourselves holed up in some nooks and crannies of an open timber 
car. It was drizzling and we were trying to get as much cover from the elements as we could. We got into Sudbury at 6:30 in the 
morning, wet, dirty, unshaven, and we were cold. Our clothing, hair and faces had collected a lot of soot in the last several 
days. We took a taxi to 198 Oak Street to call on Abe Thiessen and Ernie Martin, who had already established themselves two 
weeks earlier. As we knocked on the door of this boarding house in the early morning hours, a maid came to the door. As she 
looked through the glass panel at the black unshaven faces of four fierce looking desperadoes in their wet, bedraggled rags, 
she panicked. She kept the door locked and went back for help. Finally the landlady came and peered at us through the glass, 
but she would have none of us either. Finally, with our persistence, and by means of written messages that we displayed, we 
got the message across that we were friends and relatives of two of her star boarders. Abe and Ernie were in the middle of 
their sleep shift, but were alerted and soon identified us as friendlies and the door was unlocked. 

After a short happy reunion, we sought out a hotel to shave, shower and get cleaned up. But, in our condition, this too, did not 
come easily, even in as rough a town as Sudbury. After being asked to leave in two successive dumps, the third finally referred 
us to the New Queen's Hotel, a fourth rate dump. Here we took a room and shaved, showered and cleaned up our sorry mess. 
We unpacked our bundles and got into clean clothes. 

This was now Monday, May 26. We had been on the road and on the rods for the better part of six days. By 9:00 A.M. Abe and 
Ernie hurried over and showed us the way to the International Nickel Go.'s employment office, then went back to their boarding 
house to resume their interrupted sleep shift. (Everybody in Sudbury was on one of three shifts.) 

At the employment office we found a large mob waiting and milling around. By virtue of our letters assuring us of jobs. Doc and 
I by-passed the mob and soon found ourselves at the company doctor's office getting our X-rays and medical examinations. 

Doc and I then looked over the town for a place to stay. There were a number of boarding houses and the average going rate 
seemed to be about $8.50 a week, with three meals a day, one of which would be a boxed lunch. We didn't settle on any one 
location, and since I hadn't slept for three days by that time I was tired and sleepy, we went back to our sleazy hotel room. At 
9:00 P.M. I hit the sack and slept like a log, only to be awakened at midnight by Abe and Ernie, who had just gotten off their 
swing shift and wanted to talk. 

The next day we got a few things done. We (the four of us) selected a boarding house on Walnut Street with a family called 
Smythers, with Billingsley and myself in one room and Doc and Ed in the other. I was assigned a job at the Frood Mine and told 
to take a bus over to it. When I checked in I was given my employment tag (No. 8348), locker key, boots (they had special steel 
toe protectors), belt and a helmet. 

Next day I reported to a Mr. Smith, who sent me to Stope 35.75 at the 3200-foot level. I made the following entry in my blue- 
green book: "Here I started my first day of mining, working in the "School Stope", with Jack Johnson as the stope boss. First 
impressions of mining - - changing pressure on ear drums while going down in cage - length of trekking along drifts mucking 
(shoveling ore) - safety rules - stope levels - hard work - boss' long talk with me on general items to kill time and let me take it 
easy." So ended my first day of mining. 

I found out a lot about the mining industry that summer, an industry that is an underground world unto itself. My job was that of 
the lowliest laborer shoveling the fragmented nickel ore down the hole of the stope (called a chute) to where it would feed into 
ore cars on one or more levels lower down. The cars would then take the ore to a vertical shaft where it would be dumped into 
a large cage or elevator which in turn would hoist it to the surface. 

Shoveling ore for seven hours a day (an eight hour shift, one hour off for lunch) was hard physical labor, about as tough as 
threshing. Not only was it hard, but the atmosphere in which we worked was grueling. We would work on levels that were 
anywhere from 2000, 3000 or more feet underground. During the four months I worked underground, I worked in at least half a 

dozen different levels and under as many different stope bosses. The lowest level I was in was a full 5000 feet underground. 
That's almost a mile! The temperature gets about one degree hotter for every 100 feet down and at 5000 feet it is almost 
unbearably hot. Not only is the heat oppressive but the air is extremely humid and oppressive. Hot water is leaking out all over 
the place and has to be pumped to the surface continuously. The only way that such areas can be made tolerable at all is to 
have large quantities of air blown down through the shafts and the levels to the individual stopes, but even this does the job 
only partially. At the lower levels, everything is hot the walls are hot, the ore is hot, the leaking water is hot. Add to this the 
increased atmospheric pressure and the inky darkness to which a workingman is confined, and you have a less than pleasant 
environment in which to work. The only light you have is the electric light fastened to your helmet. When it is turned off, the 
blackness is total. In order to power these lights, it was necessary to wear a heavy rechargeable battery on your belt. This 
battery was recharged every day after you divested yourself of it at the end of the shift. 

There were three eight-hour shifts. There was the night shift, which lasted from 12 midnight till 8:00 A.M., the day shift, from 
8:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., and the swing shift, from 4:00 P.M. to midnight. 

The routine mining operation was carried out around the clock, 24 hours a day. The whole mining network consisted basically 
of a series of shafts (vertical), levels and drifts, (horizontal), and stopes. The latter were about the size of a room and it is here 
that the broken ore lay to be shoveled down into a grate (a hole about three feet square; with two iron bars or rails across to 
help keep a man from dropping down this same hole. The spacing between these rails was approximately a foot, large enough 
for a man to drop through if he were careless, and every now and then they did, usually to their death.) The ore then fell down 
a shaft, called a chute, to a waiting ore car below. 

There were several sets of specialized crews working in the operation, besides us muckers who shoveled the ore. One of the 
other crews of vital importance were the drillers and the dynamiters. This crew would drill holes about 1-3/4" in diameter and 
about six feet deep into new ore on the face of a stope that had been emptied of ore by the previous shift of muckers. They 
would then push sticks of dynamite into these holes with wooden pokers. They would then insert the fuses into the holes and at 
the end of their shift when everything was set, light all the fuses as quickly as possible and run for cover. The next shift would 
then come in and remove the blasted ore by shoveling it down the stope shute, as I mentioned earlier. This was called 
mucking, and that is what my job was that summer. After the stope had been cleared, the timber men would come in and frame 
it up with heavy timbers the size of railroad ties. After that the drillers and dynamiters would come in and drill and blast again 
and so on, around the clock. Another crew would come in and fill the emptied stopes with crushed rock so as to keep the whole 
network from caving in and collapsing. 

As can be expected, what with handling dynamite, heavy chunks of ore that might dislodge from the ceiling and drop on a 
worker, what with heavy timbers to install, ore cars and heavy machinery to manipulate, deep chutes to fall into, the work was 
rugged and it was dangerous. Despite ail the myriad of safety regulations that were strictly enforced, there was a considerable 
number of workers that were hurt and that were killed each year. Among the most vulnerable, of course, were the greenhorns, 
many of whom were the temporary summer student workers, to whom all this was a one-time operation. In fact, I had a few 
close shaves myself. One time a large piece of ore dislodged from the ceiling above me and just barely grazed my forehead. 
Another time, when I was alone in the stope shoveling away at a large pile of broken ore (muck) that reached to the ceiling, a 
heavy piece rolled down the slope at me. In my effort to back away from the oncoming mass, I stepped into the chute, and one 
leg went down into it while the other lay astride the protecting rails. The oncoming piece, which weighed a couple of hundred 
pounds, kept on coming and pinned down my ankle. Outside of a minor sprain, I was unhurt. 

After I got settled in I found that there were quite a number of "U" students from all over the country, and even quite a few that I 
had known back in Saskatchewan. So there was ample intelligent company, besides the group of six I have already mentioned. 
There was also abundant opportunity for recreation. I had my tennis racket shipped out to me (along with other articles) after I 
arrived, and it was one of my favorite sports during this summer. We also did a considerable amount of bowling at the alleys, 
and now and then went swimming at nearby Lake Ramsey. It was an interesting side observation that when at the latter, to see 
so many white, untanned bodies and faces at a swimming beach. Whereas almost anywhere else you would expect browned 
and tanned bodies and faces at a beach, these underground miners not only got very little sun during their workday, but the 
humidity and sweat of their working conditions seemed to further bleach and whiten their skin tone. 

All the while, I was avidly following the events of the war in Europe. I remember vividly that on June 22, 1 941 , I was just coming 
off of my night shift (8 A.M.) and getting out of my dirty working clothes in the men's locker when I heard much excited talk 
about another historic event - Germany had declared war and crossed the borders into Russia! I was exhilarated! At last! I had 
always known that it would happen! Hitler would march into the very lair of the communist beast itself and crush it once and for 
all! It would be just vengeance and retribution for all the destruction and agonies the communist criminals had caused my 
family and my people! In the following days and weeks I watched with pride and excitement as the German armies marched 
eastward with amazing rapidity and scored one victory after another. 

Although bars were numerous and the liquor flowed freely in Sudbury, fortunately, our group indulged very little, as did most of 
the other college students, with some exceptions. However, the same cannot be said about the permanent hard core of 
professional miners. They were a rough and rowdy bunch. Payday was twice a month, the first and the fifteenth. On such days. 

much of the population degenerated into a drunl<en brawl, and sometimes it seemed it wasn't safe to cross the street on such 
days. Ethnically, besides the Anglo-Saxon population, there was a large concentration of Finns, and also of Ukrainians. The 
latter remind me of a memorable incident. 

One Sunday in the middle of July, Bill Williams, one of the boarders at the house where Abe and I were staying, came back 
from a Ukrainian wedding with enthusiastic reports about what a good time was being had by all, what with good food and 
plenty of drinks being served. The day was hot and Abe and I had just been ready to go for a swim in Lake Ramsey, which we 
did. There we ran into two of the Martin brothers. Doc and Ernie. After a cool swim, we got to talking about this Ukrainian 
wedding that would still be going on far into the night. Suddenly all four of us decided we would go to the party and find out for 
ourselves the joys of a Ukrainian wedding. We found that everything was just as Bill Williams had described, even better. They 
welcomed us (and anybody else) with open arms. There was much dancing, good Ukrainian music, good food. They were also 
serving some excellent 50-60 punch, and also plenty of hard stuff. It was the kind of proposition we could not refuse. After a 
while we were feeling very good, and twirling the Ukrainian girls around in their native dances. As the night wore on we were 
feeling better and better and by 2:00 A.M. when we left, we were feeling damn good. As we walked home we were singing 
college songs so loudly they could be heard a block away. Soon some cops drove up and shouted from the patrol car for us to 
pipe down. I shouted back happily "OK Doctor", a phrase we commonly used, since we had Doc in our company. The cops 
misunderstood me and thought I had called them suckers. Instantly, they picked me up and hauled me off to the police station, 
where they quickly emptied my pockets and were ready to book me. Once there, I quickly sobered up like the gentleman I 
always was and politely explained the "doctor" phrase, and that of course, I had nothing but the highest respect for the police 
department. By this time the other boys arrived at the police headquarters to see what was happening. The chief believed my 
story (which was true), restored my valuables and let us go with the admonition - next time, boys, keep it down! 

On Sunday, September 21 , the mining episode in Sudbury was all over and I emerged after a little less than four months with 
no broken bones and considerably richer in the pocket. I was happily heading back to Saskatoon to embark on my third year of 
Engineering. This time I was not going to ride the rails like a bum, but was dressed up in suit and tie, and bought a first class 
ticket at the CNR station. I changed trains at Sudbury junction and got into a sleeper, instead of a day coach. This time I was 
going back in style. 

Against the Evil Tide - 14 

Milestone Thirteen: Nickel Mining at Sudbury, Ontario 


Back 1 





Against the Evil Tide - 15 

Milestone Fourteen: Final Year of Engineering in Saskatoon 

This time I did not check in back at the farm at Herschel, but took the train from Sudbury directly to Saskatoon. The first thing I 
did was check in at the Senator Hotel and make a date with Phyllis Bowie that night. It was wonderful to see this beautiful, 
lovely, loving girl again after four months in Sudbury. 

The next day I checked in with Calvin Wight, who had found a place at 1008 - 11th Street with a landlady by the name of iVIrs. 
MacDonald, another poor widow trying to make a living. Calvin was taking the same courses in Mechanical Engineering as I 
was, and we decided to room together. That same day (September 24) I registered with the University and paid an $80 tuition 


As usual, at the beginning of a college year, my resolve and ambitions were always at their highest, and I recorded my 
resolutions at that time in my little blue-green book. 

Saturday, September 27, 1 941 . This is the beginning of my Third Engineering Year at the University, therefore I am going to 
state my objectives and resolutions of what I wish to accomplish for the year. 

1 . Make the fullest use of my time. 

(a) Work like hell when I work and concentrate in the same fashion. 

(b) Take enough time out for enjoyments and make them plenty worthwhile. 

(c) Organize and schedule my time. 

2. Win a scholarship in Third Year Engineering. I MUST DO THIS to justify my confidence in myself. 


I had been bored and disgusted with last year's C.O.T.C. classes, and they were still as compulsory this year as last. I had 
dragged my feet about signing up for C.O.T.C. as the term commenced, and as October ended, I had not gone to a single 
parade or lecture. I decided, to hell with them, I would join the Air Force. Fortunately, the University was offering an Air Crew 
Training course that was an alternative to C.O.T.C. On October 31 I signed up and promptly had my R.C.A.F. medical exam. 
Five of us from the U. went down to the medical center for the R.C.A.F. (not at the U.) at 7:30 in the morning and were 
thoroughly examined until II A.M. Evidently, I passed with flying colors, according to the R.C.A.F. officer's general remarks. His 
report read: "This chap was found to be calm and cooperative, keen and alert. He was polite and mannerly for a University 
student. Good neuromuscular, cardiovascular. Rapid reaction time. Very desirable material. Fit for full flying duties." 

So I was through with the boring, time-consuming lectures and parades demanded by the C.O.T.C. I was now getting 
instructions in flying, in navigation, in radio, in identification of enemy aircraft, and much more. Even before this, my interest in 
flying and aircraft had been keenly aroused. I was interested in what I was now studying and glad to have rid of the C.O.T.C. 
Also, a vague plan began to form in my mind. Should the war last longer than expected, I might join the air force after 
graduation and somehow drop in on German soil to help strike a blow for the cause. Maybe. A possibility. 

After three weeks with Calvin and Mrs. MacDonald I was fed up with the place. Jim Dodd, a big young Irishman from Agassiz, 
B.C., with whom I had been collaborating in my studies during the latter part of last year, and even more so this year, seemed 
like a more compatible roommate, and we were more or less on the same ideological wavelength. Besides, there were three 
old fuddy-duddies in the same boarding house where I was, and they were getting on my nerves. So on October 27 I moved in 
with Jim and into the Johnson's boarding house at 71 4 University Drive. Some added advantages were that it was closer to the 
"U", and had a number of rambunctious college students that were more in my peer group. 

At the end of the first semester my grades were fairly high: Applied Mechanics, "A"; Hydraulics, "A"; Machine Design, "A"; 
Electrical Engineering "B"; Economics 5, "C"; Air Navigation, "C"; Mechanical Engineering, "D". So I had three "A"s, not bad. 
The only other fellow in third year Engineering that had four "A"s was Jake Klassen, that brilliant student I mentioned earlier 
and who was to be awarded the Gov.-General's gold Medal at the end of his fourth year. I guess I had made a point, that I 
could make good grades if I wanted to. But my heart wasn't in it, because for the rest of the year my interest in my studies 
waned, and my grades at the end of the year, although I passed all, reflected it. 


I went home to Heschel that Christmas and made the rounds with my family. There were, besides my aging parents, three 
other families to make the rounds to, namely, those of Henry and Annie, Sarah and Peter (Plett), and Korni and Martha. Since 

the latter three families all had kids, this included a lot of nieces and nephews as well. 


After the beginning of the year I made another notation in my little blue-green book, and from the vantage point of 46 years 
later when I have a lot less time left than I had then, I am somewhat amused by my ongoing obsession with TIME during that 
period. Here is what I wrote: 

Wednesday, Jan. 7, 1942. 

I am determined- To utilize my time to the utmost possible extent in both work and pleasure. In work conserve time by working 
at a speed typical of winning a speed contest or the rate and effort I use in writing an exam. Only by racing for time can 
CONCENTRATION on a subject be maintained. Budget your time as if every minute lost would cost a dollar. Plan your leisure 
recreational time generously, then splurge into it relaxed and wholeheartedly. Plunge into pleasure as when diving into an 
ocean of water. Time profitably spent and utilized to a maximum makes for a full and interesting life. Time is the key to 
success. Do today what you can do tomorrow. 


My love affair with Phyllis Bowie continued throughout the year. Although she was unpredictable and sometimes erratic (aren't 
we all?) and although we sometimes had our problems, by and large, it was a beautiful experience filled with mucho nostalgia. 
We saw each other as much as three or four times a week. Besides a number of movies, skating and other minor events, I took 
her to several major events such as "The Engineer's Theatre Party and Dance (Oct. 10); Arts Summer Waltz Nite (Oct. 24); 
"Informal Dance", at the Cavern (Nov. 28); New Year's Eve celebration at a theater (Dec. 31); The first University Informal 
Dance of 1942 (Jan. 9); Engineer's Theatre Party and Dance (Jan. 30); she took me to "The Ladies Formal Dance" at the 
Bessborough Hotel (S'toon's finest! Feb. 6); celebrating my birthday I took her to "The Engineer's Formal Dance" at the 
Bessborough (Feb. 20). We celebrated our "First Anniversary" by having dinner at her home then went back to the "Success 
Business School" where we had first met exactly a year earlier. (Mar. 8). 

Towards the end of the last term, I had to make a decision as to what kind of engineering I wanted to pursue, since in the fourth 
and last year, the classes become more specialized towards that end. Both Jim and I had decided we would pursue Electrical 
Engineering. Since the U. of S. didn't offer that course in the last year, we had to think of another college that did. There were, 
of course, several, but the University of Manitoba at Winnipeg seemed like the best choice. The first three years of its Electrical 
Engineering Course dovetailed with that of the U. of S. Mechanical Engineering course, and the credits were interchangeable 
both ways, our mechanical students could finish in electrical, and similarly, their electrical students could finish the fourth year 
here in mechanical, without losing any credits or having to take any extra classes. 

Before I left Sudbury in the summer of 1941, 1 had checked into the electrical department of International Nickel as to job 
availability in that division for the next summer. I did not want to spend another summer underground shoveling (mucking) 
heavy nickel ore. The possibilities seemed favorable and I followed this up during the year with further correspondence which 
assured me of a job in the electrical department for the summer of '42. 

Finally, on Friday, April 17, 1 finished my last exam at 5:00 P.M. I took the streetcar back to the boarding house, packed my 
things and whipped over to the bus station at 6:00 P.M. to board a bus for Rosetown. When I got there at 9:00 P.M., by 
prearrangement, my brother Henry was there to pick me up and take me home. But first we thought it appropriate to celebrate 
the occasion. We went over to the Rosetown Hotel and had three beers each, before making the 20-mile drive back to his 
place. It had been a busy day. 

Again, I made the family rounds, went to the Mennonite church the following Sunday, and shook hands with a lot of old friends 
and renewed a number of acquaintances. 

Then Monday, only three days after I had arrived, I was back on the bus headed for Saskatoon. I checked In with Jim Dodd, 
who was still at the boarding house, and also checked in at the "U", where I had to finish and clean up a few workshop 
exercises in blacksmithing and also machine shop. This I did In a matter of two days. 

Jim had decided not only to take electrical engineering at the U. of Manitoba with me next year, but that since I had already 
arranged a job for myself in the electrical department of Inco., that he would go along with me to Sudbury and try his luck in 
getting a similar job. 

Against the Evil Tide - 15 

Milestone Fourteen: Final Year of Engineering in Saskatoon 







Against the Evil Tide - 16 

Milestone Fifteen: The Summer of 42 in Sudbury 

The evening before I had spent saying goodbye to Phyllis, and getting back to the boarding house at 12:30 A.M. was later than 
I had planned. I still had my packing to do and a few errands to run before catching the bus at 11 In the morning of Thursday, 
April the 23rd. However, with Jim's coordination and cooperation, we were both on that 1 1 A.M. bus, off and running, headed 
for Sudbury. 

We stopped at Regina to have a bite to eat. While passing through we happened to see two of our fellow classmates, namely 
Loucks and Busby, who were just coming off their jobs in Regina. Back on the bus, we arrived at Brandon, Manitoba, at 3 A.M., 
where we had another quick lunch of a hot dog and a vico. It rained all through the night, and finally at 7:30 in the morning we 
arrived in Winnipeg. 

There were two matters we intended to take care of in Winnipeg. First, we wanted to look over the University and find out more 
details about the engineering college. On going over there we first met with the president of the University, the renowned Dr. 
Sidney S. Smith, a congenial and giggly fellow in his early fifties. Then we met with the head honcho of the Engineering 
department. Dean E. P. Fetherstonhaugh, a lean, tall, dignified old Scottish gentleman who headed the Electrical Dept. 

The other matter was getting together with a man by the name of Gladman, who was the Winnipeg International Nickel 
representative. In their letter Inco had promised to pay my fare if I came to work for them. After much scurrying around we 
finally caught up with Gladman, but he claimed he knew nothing about paying for our fare. By this time it was late in the 
afternoon and we were too tired to get on the bus again. 

We took a room at the Brunswick Hotel and had dinner. Then we went to the Times Theatre and saw a double feature. Jim 
slept through the whole performance. (We hadn't had much sleep on the bus the night before.) Next day at 1 1 A.M. we went to 
see Gladman again. He informed us that the word from H.Q. was we would have to pay for our own fare. 

On the way over, Jim and I saw some typewriters at Crawford Salvage, a second hand store. We thought every student should 
have a typewriter, so we each bought one. I bought a Remington Rand Portable "Cadet" for $32.50 and Jim bought a Baby 
Hermes for $21 .00. Deciding to make the rest of the Journey by train rather than bus, we went down to the CNR station and at 
6:30 P.M. we boarded the train for Sudbury. 

We arrived at Sudbury the next day, on Sunday, 10:15 P.M., April the 26th. We immediately tried to make contact with my old 
buddy Abe Thiessen, who had not gone back to college, but had stayed on with his old job. However, we were unable to reach 
him, and being tired and hungry, somewhere around midnight we had something to eat and then took a room at the same 
place, the Rex Cafe. 

At 9 A.M. sharp the next morning, April 27, we were down at the Inco Employment office to sign in and take our physicals. It 
was a bad day. A carload of men had just arrived from Winnipeg, to also be processed. There was much milling around and we 
were treated like a consummate herd of cattle. After passing the inspection, we were sent to Copper Cliff, about five miles out 
of Sudbury, where Inco's big smelters are located. Here we met two senior Inco officials, J. S. Gordon, and the head of the 
electrical dept., and a Mr. Gillespie. The latter interviewed us (Jim, myself and two other "U" students), fixed our wages and 
assigned us to our respective jobs. 

I was first assigned to the Coal dept. This section served the function of blowing huge quantities of powdered coal dust to fuel 
the furnaces of the various smelters that were scattered over the immense complex. Conveying the powdered coal to its 
various destinations was a complex of huge pipelines, some as much as six feet in diameter. Supplying the power to move all 
this fuel at a rapid clip were giant blowers powered by electric motors. It was a dirty, dusty set-up, and after two weeks I asked 
for a transfer. It was extremely fortunate that I did so, for it was only about three days later that a powerful explosion ripped the 
coal plant and several men were killed. 

My transfer was to the Meter Dept. with a man by the name of Clayton Robertson (Robbie) as my foreman. However, a 
congenial fellow by the name of Bert (Tiny) Thompson was my working partner and my surrogate boss for the rest of the 
summer. He was quite a character. He was six foot five and weighed in at 300 pounds. He was highly intelligent, well educated, 
and well versed in the arts and in philosophy, literature, and basically a cultured man. Yet here he was working in a roughneck 
environment, frequented the roadhouses with an uncouth gang of men, and in a trade rather than a profession for which he 
was educated and should have pursued. He had one major weakness. He drank like a fish, and as a result, he would not drive 
a car and did not own one. He was a jovial fellow, interesting to converse with, and we became good friends. 

The major part of my summer was spent in restructuring the meter and control panels in a large building called Sub Station No. 
1 (Electrical). In it were located a number of huge motors that drove a series of large compressors or blowers, which supplied 
forced air to the smelters and also to the coal department. It was a terribly noisy place and the high whine of the blowers was 

ear shattering. We worked a lot of overtime and often in 12-lioursliifts, sonnetimes even as mucii as 15 or 16 iiours a day. I 
iiad no complaints, since the pay was good (67 cents an hour) and I was paid time and a half for overtime. 

Jim and I stayed at a rooming place at 178 Pine Street but made arrangements to eat at the Kuluttajat Restaurant - a Finnish 
establishment. We bought weekly tickets and could eat as much as we wanted to, three meals a day, when we wanted to. They 
also fixed our box lunches to take to work. It was a convenient arrangement, except the company we ate with was rather 
lowbrow. But then, of course, this was Sudbury. 

Despite much overtime, I still seemed to have plenty of time for tennis, swimming, bowling, snooker and movies. Nor was there 
any lack of peer company. Besides Jim Dodd, most of the old gang was either still there or had returned. Abe Thiessen was 
still with us and all three of the Martins fellows were back. Also, there that summer from the U. of S. were some engineering 
buddies by the name of Dan Stann, Ted Smith, Ed Gawley and a few others. We were a congenial gang and we made the 
most of an excursion we would not necessarily want to make permanent. 

On May 11, through the published resume in the Saskatoon Star Phoenix (it published everyone's grades wholesale in one 
issue) I found out what my grades were for the previous third year Engineering. I managed to get two "A"'s, three "B"'s, two 
"C"'s, and one "D". I was happy with that. It was better than I had expected, especially since I had put more emphasis on 
"pleasure" in the last half of the year than "work". Phyllis accounted for much of the former, but it was worth it. 

Jim Dodd was assigned to a foreman by the name of Sharkey, whose gang worked on outside line and buss work. After being 
Into his Job for a month, poor Jim met up with a most terrible accident. They were working on a distribution platform about 15 
feet above ground installing copper buss bars. One day, on June 27, to be exact, Jim had been told to pick up some supplies 
from the Parts Dept. to bring to the job. When he got back there was no one on the platform, but the power had been turned 
on, a vital fact of which Jim had not been informed. As he climbed back up the platform, he was burned by a jolt of 30,000 
volts. He fell back to the cinder ground, face first, and after he regained consciousness he broke Into violent muscular spasms, 
that, I understood later. It took three men to hold him down. He was then rushed to the Copper Cliff hospital, where he barely 
clung to life for several days. Here he remained for the rest of the summer. He had many severe burns on his feet, his hands, 
and his face and on some parts of his body. He also lost the sight in one eye permanently. I went to see him often at the 
hospital, and as he was recovering, he seemed to be enjoying himself In the company of the jovial nurses who attended him. In 
fact, he became romantically involved with one of them, and about two years later they were married. Her name was Marj 

Meanwhile, my sister Katie, who had been studying as a missionary at a Bible College in Three Hills, Alberta, was now at 
Niagara Falls, where she was getting her last minute instructions from the Missionary center before embarking for Colombia, 
South America, to convert the natives. She sent me a card inviting me down for a few days visit before leaving. On Saturday, 
August 1 , 1 took an overnight train for Toronto, about 300 miles away, where Katie met me at the Union Station at 6:45 A.M. 
After having breakfast together, we immediately went to the docks and boarded the steamship "Cayuga" for Niagara Falls. After 
disembarking we took the special elevator at the Falls to see the Whirlpool Rapids, then boarded the "Maid of the Mist", a 
recreational boat that took us as close as was feasible to the bottom of both the American Falls and also the Canadian Falls. 
After a grand tour of Niagara Falls and a good chicken dinner, we caught the bus to Queenstown, boarded the "Cayuga" again 
and were back in Toronto at 9:00 P.M. 

Next day I slept till noon (at Katie's missionary house) and Katie brought me breakfast in bed. We then took in several sites in 
the then beautiful city of Toronto. (It was then still uninfested with mud peoples.) We took a lot of pictures and saw the 
Parliament buildings, the zoo, and went through a museum. After dinner we went to "All People's Church" - Katie's sponsor, 
where some of her friendly but overly zealous cohorts vainly tried to convert me before I might get away. 

Next day we covered some more interesting sites, the most outstanding of which was Casa Loma, a lovely castle built by 
entrepreneur Sir Henry Pendleton. 

At 1 1 :00 P.M. that night I kissed Katie goodbye and boarded the train back to Sudbury. Except for a short two-day visit in May 
of 1 943 I was not to see her again for another 1 5 years. By this time she had married another missionary by the name of 
Herbert Snider while in Colombia and would be the mother of eight kids. 


As a romantic reflection of the different girl friends I had known at that period of my life (I was 24) I made the following entry in 
my little blue-green book. 

Tuesday, July 21 , 1 942. Some day when I am established in Germany and have sufficient money, I intend, in memory of all the 
girls I have loved and left behind me, and also to recreate those beautiful impressions, to buy records of all those songs that I 
associate with the memory of each one. 

1 . Victoria Neufeld - "0 Genevieve", "Drifting and Dreaming", "When my Dream Boat Comes Home". 

2. Elsie Fell - "Little Old Lady". 

3. Erna Martens - "Sweet Bunch of Daisies". 

4. Mary MacRorte - "Let's Sail to Dreamland". 

5. Caroline George - "Woodbecker's Serenade". 

6. Lily Zacharias - "Two Sleepy People", "You Snnile and the Angels Sing", "Beer Barrel Polka", "Little Sir Echo", "Scatterbrain". 

7. Verna Schnnidt - "In an Old Dutch Garden". 

8. Phyllis Bowie - "Down Argentine Way", "Tales From Vienna Woods", "Blue Danube", "Zwel Herzen Im Drel VIertel Takt". 

Apparently my romantic interests were very much alive, and so was my dream to one day live in Germany. It had been my 
dream ever since 1939 to settle in Germany, become an engineer, marry a beautiful blonde German "maedel", and live happily 
ever after. As we all know, history intervened and changed the course of my life, as it was destined to do to hundreds of 
millions of others. 


On September 10, Tiny Thompson, Robbie (my foreman Clayton Robertson) and I loaded up the maintenance truck and 
departed for one of Inco's hydro-electric power plants to do some meter and controls restructuring. It was a beautiful, rustic 
area that was far enough away from all the smelters and contamination that polluted the Sudbury area. It was green, luxuriant 
and pristine, about 50 miles distant from Sudbury, and it was called High Falls. About half a mile up the river was the Big Eddy, 
as the dam and the power plant itself were called. It had some of the biggest generators I had ever seen at that time - a series 
of 8000 KVA (or about 9400 HP) babies. 

We were to stay here a little less than two weeks. Although it was a lonely, isolated area out in the woods, it was a pleasant 
respite from the hustle and bustle of Sudbury. Mostly we worked, many times as much as 14 and 15 hours a day, but I had no 
complaints. I was logging in a lot of overtime, for which I got paid time and a half. In fact, it was Robbie, the foreman, who had 
been with the company for 20 years who complained. He was on straight salary, and he complained to me that I was drawing 
down more money than he was, a rank injustice, he claimed. No problem of mine, I told him. Take it up with the company 

While I was at High Falls, Jim Dodd got out of the hospital and went back to the Paquettes, the French family where he and I 
had been boarding before he had his big accident and where my things were still stored. The college term at the U. of Manitoba 
was coming up in less than two weeks and we had plans to make. I sent in my seven days notice to the company, as was 

On Sunday, September 27, I kissed Mrs. Vera Walman goodbye. She had been our cheerful landlady and cook who had kept 
us in tasty victuals during our short and pleasant stay. Tiny and I went back to Sudbury by car (driven by somebody else) and I 
arrived at the Paquette boarding house at ten that night to see Jim Dodd again. The next day Jim and I went to Copper Cliff to 
wind up our affairs, collected our pay, sold any kit and caboodle we had to a second hand store, and were off on the train to 
Toronto at 1 1 :05 that night. 

The next day we did some site seeing in Toronto, and also in Niagara Falls the following day. While in Toronto we were joined 
by another "U" student, a blonde Swede by the name of Orville Swenson, who was also going back to Winnipeg. From here on 
out we took a southerly route by bus to tour the northern fringe of the United States. We crossed the border at Sault Ste. Marie, 
went on to Erie, Pa., then to Buffalo, to Cleveland, and on to Chicago. We made a stopover at Chicago, where we visited the 
Field Museum, went to the top of the Wrigley Building, and to several other places, taking pictures all the while. Next we rolled 
on to Minneapolis, St. Paul, where we again stopped and saw the sights. Here I bought a leather brief case and a new camera. 

We finally crossed the border back into Canada at Emerson, Manitoba, and arrived in Winnipeg on October 3, 1942, where we 
immediately checked in at the St. Regis Hotel. It had been an eventful summer, and Jim and I were now ready to tackle the U. 
of M. and our final year of electrical engineering. 

Against the Evil Tide - 16 

Milestone Fifteen: The Summer of 42 in Sudbury 




Against the Evil Tide - 17 

Next I Back Home 

Milestone Sixteen: Fourth Year Engineering at the University of Manitoba 1942- 

Whereas the fourth year, now in Winnipeg, was interesting enough and academically rewarding, it was not socially as 
congenial as had been the three previous years in Saskatoon. Somehow, it was less warm, less comfortable. Winnipeg 
seemed colder and less accommodating. The first thing Jim Dodd and I did when we arrived in Winnipeg was to look over the 
roster of boarding houses on the recommended list put out by the University. We happened to choose one run by a family 
named Saygol. That was the first dumb mistake we made and we should have known better. Although they initially seemed 
very friendly and accommodating, it wasn't too long before we found out they were Jews, and not too long after that before their 
nasty characteristics began to surface. Staying at the same place were five snotty, highbrow senior college girls studying Home 
Ec. at the same University. Staying next door were four of our engineering classmates from the U. of Sask., who were bent on 
raising all the hell they could. Soon a hassle developed between us, the landlord, the girls, and the fellows next door. Before 
the end of the first term we gave the landlord two weeks written notice we were moving, which threw this bug-eyed Jew into a 
tantrum, but leave we did. 

Another unpleasant event for me was the discovery that there was no Air Crew Training program here, and I would have to 
attend C.O.T.C. at Osborne Barracks, Minto Field, whether I liked it or not. I did not like it. (Due to his serious accident the 
previous summer, Jim was 4F, so this did not apply to him.) 

For these reasons and others, the first term was somewhat depressing, a big part of it being that all the social contacts I had 
had in Saskatoon were missing here. The one compensating aspect was that the classes, most of which now concerned some 
phase of electronics or electricity, were more interesting. 

In any case, by December 19 I had written my last midterm exam, checked out of the Saygol compound, and at 10:15 that 
evening was on board a train bound for Saskatoon, to see Phyllis again. She met me at the C.P.R. station at 3:30 the next 
afternoon, and I was invited to stay at the Bowie home. It was great to see Phyllis again. As usual, she had some bizarre new 
stories to tell me, most of which weren't true. 

I had promised the folks back home I would spend Christmas with them. After four most pleasant days with Phyllis, two days 
before Christmas I caught the train to Herschel. There I again made the rounds. On Christmas eve we all went to the Annual 
Mennonite Christmas Concert at the church. On Christmas day we had a big goose dinner at Korni and Martha's. Two days 
later we were all at Sarah and Peter's place to have a second big goose dinner with all the trimmings. Luckily in those days I 
had no trouble with putting on weight! Then on December the 30th I was back on the train for Saskatoon to see Phyllis again 
and on New Year's day we had a big turkey dinner at the Bowie's. 

On the fifth of January I was back in Winnipeg again arriving at 8:45 in the morning. Somehow Winnipeg in the wintertime 
seemed more dreary and colder than Saskatoon, and I was not in the best of spirits. To make things worse, Jim and I had to 
find a new place to stay, since we had terminated our previous place two weeks ago. When I finally got in contact with Jim I 
found that the poor fellow had contracted chicken pox and was quarantined in the King George Hospital. He was to stay there 
for more than two weeks. 

This left the business of locating a place up to me. I finally found a place at a Mrs. Keating s, at 82 Spence Street. Next day I 
went to bring Jim some chocolates and some of his things. Finally, the next day I was back at classes, two days late. All this 
time the weather was getting colder. 

Meanwhile, the war in Europe was going on and on, hot and heavy, and the German position was worsening. At this time, 
however, I still felt Germany would win. I did not give up the German dream, but the future looked uncertain. Since we were 
coming towards the end of our term, the pressure from several quarters became heavier to sign up in one of the services upon 
graduation. The military machine needed more engineers, in particular. And anyway, the draft was in full force and the only 
reason we were not already in the armed forces was due to the fact we were presumed to be pursuing a technical education 
essential to the winning of the war. 

I was hostile to the whole situation. Even when we were asked to become voluntary blood donors, while just about every able- 
bodied man and woman complied, I refused. Towards the end of the term the pressure to sign up for the armed forces 
increased. Every Engineering graduate did, in fact sign up, except for two of us, but, strangely enough, for exactly opposite 
reasons. One was a Jew by the name of Saul Bronstein, who connived to stay out because he was a coward, and like most 
Jews would rather see someone else do the fighting and bleeding. I, on the other hand, was determined not to fight for a cause 
I was against, when really I wanted to fight on the other side. As usual I was bucking the tide of contrived public opinion. I was 
hauled into Dean Fetherstonhaugh's office for a lecture. He strongly admonished me to sign up. The Army, Navy and Air Force 
all needed engineers, he told me. There would be dire consequences for me if I did not. I refused. 

Jim Dodd, although he was ideologically against the war also, had no problenns. For the same reasons he did not have to 
attend C.O.T.C, due to his tragic accident in Sudbury the summer before, he had a 4F category and was exempt from the 

There was an interesting fellow engineer in our class by the name of Phil Mees, who was from the United States. He kept 
telling us about the fabulous jobs that were available south of the border. By this time, both Jim and I had determined we would 
go to the States after graduation, should the war still be on. There was one hitch. Before you could even get out of Canada you 
had to have a Labor Exit Permit, which said. In effect, that if your abilities were needed to contribute to the war effort, your 
chances of getting permission to leave the country were practically nil. For a young man, and especially a graduate engineer, it 
was next to impossible to get such a permit. Jim and I both applied and were rejected. However, Jim, crafty fellow that he was, 
somehow connived to convince them that his bad eye needed special medical attention such as he could only get in the States, 
and somehow, shortly after graduation Jim did indeed find himself in Cleveland, Ohio, and a good job with Brush Development 

Since most able-bodied men were now in the services, many of the large companies were now hurting for qualified male 
employees, especially engineers and trained technical personnel. There was avid competition for such prospects as remained, 
and some of the large companies sent out scouts to the various university campuses to recruit whatever graduates they could. 
One of these was Northern Electric, from Montreal. They represented the equivalent of Western Electric in Canada. There were 
other scouts, and I listened to several offers. Finally, I decided to go with Northern Electric when I graduated, and I signed a 
letter of intent with them. This was about a month before the end of the term, and there was still a lot of work to be done in the 

One of the jobs left to do was to write our thesis. At this time television still seemed like a far-off technical dream of the future. I 
saw it as an immense potential that would come into being shortly after the end of the war. Jim Dodd, Charlie Muirhead and I 
combined in a joint project to construct a crude apparatus that had some of the basic principles of television embodied in it. 
Based on it, we wrote our thesis, called "Theory of Television". It consists of 43 typewritten pages, and I still have a bound copy 
of it today. The profs evidently thought we did all right, since we received an A- grade on it. 

By the 25th of April I had handed in my thesis, handed in my C.O.T.C. uniform and finished writing all my final exams in 
electrical engineering. The next day I took a medical exam by an accredited Dr. O. Waugh for Northern Electric. I passed that 
also, and signed up with this company. I was through with Winnipeg. There were only the graduation exercises left. 

However, since I had a certain number of credits with the University of Saskatchewan for my Arts and Science year of 1935-36 
and the class in Education in the summer of 1938, plus all my science classes accrued in engineering over the previous three 
years, I had enough credits to obtain a degree in Arts and Science from the University of Saskatchewan as well. So I had a 
choice as to which graduation to attend, since both of them were approximately on the same day. I opted for Saskatoon and 
the University of Saskatchewan. But that was a few weeks later. 

Back to Herschel to stay with the family for a few days. It was a wet and snowy spring. I spent the time lazily, doing some 
reading, visiting old friends, helping my brothers with some of the farm work. Then off to Saskatoon to see Phyllis for a few 
days. She had some drama studies appointment in Melfort, Saskatchewan for the summer. She kept talking about marriage. I 
saw her off on the train, then returned to Herschel again. 

On May 14 I was back in Saskatoon again for graduation exercises. I stayed with the Bowles again, but Phyllis was not there. 
She had left me a graduation present. The Graduation Ceremonies were held in the huge Third Avenue Church. There was a 
tea party in the afternoon. Then the grand graduation dance at S'toon's finest - the Bessborough Hotel. At the tea party I 
happened to meet a cute girl by the name of Helen Bubniuk, and she became my date for the dance that night. Despite no 
Phyllis, a good time was had by all. 

Back to Herschel, and after a few more days on the farm, on May 20th Henry drove me to the railroad station at Herschel and I 
embarked for a new venue Montreal and Northern Electric. 

Against the Evil Tide - 17 

Milestone Sixteen: Fourth Year Engineering at the University of Manitoba 1942- 

Next I Back Home 




Against the Evil Tide - 18 

Milestone Seventeen: Montreal and Northern Electric 

On May 20th my brother Henry drove me to the station, and for $50.75 I purchased a railroad ticl<et to IVIontreal, Quebec, the 
land of the French Canadians. On the way out to Montreal I made two stops. One was in Winnipeg to see Jim Dodd, who was 
still negotiating for his entry into the United States. The other stop was in Toronto to see my sister Katie who was still staying at 
the World Wide Evangelism center and being further programmed for her assignment in Colombia, South America. After 
staying in Toronto for two days, sleeping at World Wide, and doing some more sightseeing in Toronto, I left for Montreal on the 
morning of May 24. 

When I arrived in Montreal at 6:45 that evening, it was a beautiful, pleasant day. As I walked down the main drag of the city, St. 
Catharine s Blvd., I felt exhilarated, much as I had felt eight years earlier when I first arrived in Saskatoon to start my first year 
of college education at the age of seventeen. I again felt like I had the world by the tail and was entering into a brand new 
adventure. I had successfully completed my four years of electrical engineering and had my degree locked up. I had a good 
paying white-collar job assured to me in my chosen profession of electronic engineering. Montreal was the largest and most 
exciting city in Canada, and it was all mine to explore and enjoy. I felt that adventure awaited and I was free to make any 
number of choices in whatever direction suited me best. 

After checking In at the St. James Hotel and having a good dinner, I went to a movie and saw a double feature, "Now Voyager" 
with Bette Davis and Paul Henreld, and "I Live on Danger." 

Next day I checked in at Northern Electric. They were a huge and well-established manufacturing complex which at that time 
occupied a position in Canada similar to that of Western Electric in the United States of that same period. Besides 
manufacturing millions of telephones, telephone cable, and thousands of other accessories that go with the telephone 
business, they were also deep into the radio and electronics business. As I had requested, I was assigned to the Electronics 
Dept., in which there was a considerable amount of research going on. My Immediate boss was a mousy little man by the 
name of Ernie Kelsey. Northern Electric at that time was up to their eyebrows in war contracts, as was Just about every other 
company with manufacturing facilities, operating on a cost plus 10%, plus what ever else they could pad, and the larger the 
payroll the better. 

The following day it drizzled and I spent most of it walking the streets looking for a place to stay. I found one at 462 Wood Ave. 
West, a boarding house run by a fading divorcee in her middle forties, who, nevertheless, still managed to put up a fairly good 
front, false eyelashes and all. Her name was Peg. 

The first week at Northern Electric was spent in familiarizing new recruits with "the system"; how N.E. worked; visiting all the 
various departments both in and outside the Electronics Dept.; meeting the various heads of departments; then writing up 
notes of what I observed and remembered. This process took all of the first week. One of the department heads I met at that 
time was Bunn Sheffield, a congenial up-and-coming young executive, whom I was to see much more of at his home at a later 
date, due to his most attractive sister-in-law. But I am getting ahead of my story. 

After settling in at Peg's place, I bought a second hand short wave set ($65.00) so I could listen to short wave broadcasts 
directly from Europe without first having it processed by our local media. I could now listen to broadcasts from both Britain and 
Germany - 1 was especially interested in what the latter were saying. During that summer, although established in a job in 
Montreal, my dream of living in a victorious, rejuvenated Germany was still very much alive. In fact, I still toyed with the idea of 
joining the Air Force, flying over and parachuting down onto German soil, to be captured, then to convince them that I had 
purposely done what I had done in order to join their side and fight for the sacred cause. However, I was never quite sure 
whether I was serious or whether It was only a fantasy. I did go so far as to check in at the R.C.A.F. headquarters on July 5th, 
and talk to the commanding officer there by the name of A. R. Smith. Nothing came of it, however. As the war dragged on and 
as I became more and more involved in the local circle of people in Montreal, the more that dream faded. 

In the meantime. Peg and I had many long-winded philosophical discussions on many subjects, not the least of which was 
religion. She was a fluent talker and had a hearty belly laugh. Furthermore, she was quite intelligent, whereas none of the rest 
of the boarders could be ranked very high in that category. As far as I was concerned, ourconversations, which turned more 
and more into debates, were no more than an exercise in intellectual discourse. But that religious issue seemed to bug her, 
and she kept coming back to it again and again. Although I had not given religion that much thought at the time and was not 
that well informed on it, I had, of course, made up my mind years ago that religion as such was a phony, man-made 
concoction, and not worthy of serious consideration by intelligent people such as myself. Even so, I drove home what 
arguments I had available with devastating effects. When I candidly told her that Christianity was nothing more than an 
anachronistic collection of hocus-pocus, only fit for the superstitious and the gullible, this really cut her to the quick. After 
sulking for a few days, she told me she wanted me to leave. Undaunted, I said, fine, I didn't care for her cooking that much 
anyway, and moved out. I'm not sure what upset her most, the fact that I was winning most of the brownie points in our 

arguments, or the fact that my unassailable logic had raised some serious doubts in her own mind about the credibility of the 
make-believe games she had been playing. 

I relocated at 1122 St. Catherine s St., fairly close to the downtown section of Montreal. The landlady was a Mrs. Aquinn, a 
congenial but quiet elderly woman. Staying in the same house were about seven or eight McGill University students, most of 
them from the United States, and most of them studying medicine. This created a more lively, (if not uproarious) and 
intellectual atmosphere, since most of these boys were in my age bracket and on my intellectual level. The horseplay and 
debates that ensued at the dinner table at night were sometimes more boisterous than a barrel of monkeys. 

That summer I covered quite a lot of territory in exploring Montreal and its surrounding environs. I visited its museums, of which 
it had many. I visited its more outstanding cathedrals for which Montreal is famous. (In all this, the reader must remember, I am 
speaking in the past tense, as it was at a period of more than 45 years ago.) Throughout Montreal at that time there were more 
than 300 churches. Many of them were internationally famous - the Cathedral of Notre Dame, St. James Cathedral, Christ 
Church Cathedral, and the Oratory of St. Joseph, a noted Catholic pilgrimage shrine, to name a few. I explored McGill 
University. I took a St. Laurence River cruise in one of the large excursion boats. I took in some of Montreal's many cultural 
events, such as the opera "Lohengrin", some light operas, the Don Cossack Choir, and even the Burlesque Theatre. I Joined a 
public speaking class at McGill University, and also a radio design class at the same university. I even gave a speech on "The 
Future of Electronics" at the public speaking class. 

During Northern Electric's annual summer vacation period (the whole plant was put on standby at a given time) I spent a week 
at Camp Otoreke north of Montreal and near St. Agathe, up in the beautiful Laurential Mountains. This was run by the Montreal 
branch of the "Y" and offered an excellent rustic outing on Lake Otoreke, with lots of fun and games, such as swimming, 
boating, tennis, etc. But the biggest plus was the good-sized assembly of fine young people, most of whom were in my age 
bracket, and with whom romance was the most popular game of all. 

All the while, I was monitoring the progress of the war, which was not at all going well for my side. On July 25th, the headlines 
read "Mussolini Quits". The next day Marshall Bagdoglio took over and started negotiating surrender with the "Allies". On 
August 1 1th Churchill and Roosevelt met in Quebec City in a summit to plan the total destruction of Germany, of Europe, and 
of the White Race, and of how these traitors would like to carve up the carcass at the end of the war. 


As I got settled into my job, I found that there were a number of other former students I had known that were now also 
employed by Northern Electric. One of them was my buddy, Charlie Muirhead, who had been a partner with me in compiling 
our thesis on television at the university of Manitoba. Another was Nell Vanular, also from Manitoba. Nell was rooming with 
another young man by the name of Ray Martin. In the latter part of 1 943 the four of us formed a sort of "rat pack" in many of 
our social activities. One Saturday night, November the 1 3th to be exact, the four of us were bowling at a large alley downtown 
called Karry's. Suddenly the place was swarming with Mounties - the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. They were there to 
round up any unregistered draft dodgers. Every able-bodied young man had to have an identity card showing he had registered 
for the draft and what his status was. Since most of the French Canadians were hostile to the British, all British, and also 
against the war as such, many had refused to do so. Although I had done all I could to stay out of a war I was also against, I 
had nevertheless registered, and had the legal status of being occupied in essential industry and so was at least temporarily 
exempt. However, it so happened that this particular evening I had forgotten to take my wallet along, in which the registration 
card was located. So there I was, swept up in the net with a lot of angry, muttering young "Frogs", as the French were 
derisively called by the Anglos. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police loaded us up into a number of paddy wagons and hauled 
us off to the police station to be interrogated. When it finally came to my turn I explained to them that I had a legitimate card, 
but had forgotten my wallet. In the meantime, at my request, the three other fellows had gone back to my room at Mrs. Aquinn's 
to pick up my wallet. When they finally returned with it, the Mounties apologized and let me go on my way. 


At this time, as the war dragged on and on, my ideals were being sorely tested. They were beginning to fade into a gray area 
as to what my goals might be for the future. It didn't look as though Germany would be in the picture anymore. I began to look 
more towards the United States for my future career and domicile. I became less responsible and more hedonistic. 

Nor was I too interested in my job at Northern Electric anymore. At the large office where I was ensconced there were islands 
of six desks, three facing three, packed together. To the right of me was a Jew by the name of Harry Schwartz, also an 
electronics engineer. To the left of me was a technician by the name of Tony. Across from me was Josephine "Joe" Sheffield, a 
sister to Bunn Sheffield mentioned earlier. She was sort of a librarian and assembled technical literature for us. Catacorner 
from me was another Jew by the name of Larry Merson, an electronics engineer, and at the other corner of our island was Jack 
Hayles, a personable young engineer from Vancouver, B.C. We were all engaged in "research" of one type or another. Back of 
the large office room was a laboratory in which we puttered away at our various projects, the direction and purpose of which 
was designated from time to time by our various department heads under whom each of us worked. I did not see any great 

purpose in most of these projects, and soon got the feeling that we were on payroll more for the purpose of increasing that 1 0% 
plus margin than in achieving any new great technical breakthroughs. 

Be that as it may, every mid-morning and every mid- afternoon we had a 15 minute "smoke break", during which time we were 
allowed to smoke. After a while, foolishly, I began to take up smoking, along with the rest of the crowd. This I was to continue 
for the next fifteen years, when I quit abruptly and decisively. But that is another story. 

At the beginning of 1 944 Charlie Muirhead moved in with me as my roommate. The three of us, Charlie, Nell Vanular and I 
joined the M.A.A. Club - the Montreal Amateur Athletic Club. Also, two other University of Saskatchewan engineering 
graduates working for N.E. joined. Their names were Bill Anderson and Joe McGuire, but they were not in our inner circle. The 
M.A.A. Club had a fine headquarters building not too far from where Charlie and I stayed. It was replete with a good-sized 
indoor swimming pool, a bowling alley, indoor squash courts, pool tables, a dining room, a lounge, a dance hall, a library and 
other accommodations. 

One day, while Bill Anderson, Joe McGuire and Nell Vanular were in the lounge and somewhat inebriated, they evidently were 
overheard by some ladles in the same lounge being loud, rowdy and using some foul language. This was duly reported by the 
ladies to the President of the club. The president called the three boys on the carpet and threatened to expel them. The boys 
evidently didn't help matters any by being belligerent and as can be expected, they were duly expelled. This left only Charlie 
Muirhead and myself of our group as members in good standing, but we did not renew at the end of the year's tenure. 


As I mentioned earlier, Joe Sheffield sat directly across from my desk in our office island. She was a highly capable and 
intelligent woman about six years older than I. Naturally, we had many conversations, most of them interesting and informative. 
She even fixed me up with a tennis date, and invited me over to her apartment one day for a home cooked dinner. But there 
was no romantic interest, at least not on my part. 

One bright day, into the office skipped her sister-in-law, who also worked for N.E. She whirled in like a spring breeze with a big 
smile, a musical laugh and bright sparkle in her eye. Her name was Beth Ralston. She attracted my immediate attention. 

Within a day or so I was on the phone asking her for a date. Maurice Fast, an Alumnus of the University of Saskatchewan, was 
organizing a dance for the Alumni assembled in Montreal and it happened to coincide with my birthday on February 20. I asked 
Beth to be my date and she accepted. We immediately hit it off. She reciprocated by asking me to be her date at a bash the 
Montreal Bachelorettes were having a week or so later and I was most happy to oblige. From there on we were off and running. 
She became my steady and my participation in the former "rat pack" soon became extremely former. 

We participated in many interesting and enjoyable events. We went siding in the Laurential Mountains about 80 miles north of 
Montreal. We went to any number of dances. We went to Camp Otoreke during the summer of 1944 (where I had been the 
previous summer). We played tennis, we bowled, we saw the opera "Carmen" and we took a cruise up the St. Lawrence River 
on an excursion boat. We went on many walks up to the top of Mount Royal. It was a most enjoyable relationship. 

Soon the relationship became more serious and she began to talk of marriage. I didn't really feel I was ready for it yet. I still felt 
footloose and fancy-free. My hopes were now directed more and more towards moving to the United States after the war was 
over. In fact, I had even targeted the city - Los Angeles, California. 

But the war dragged on and on. I rememberthat while we were at Camp Otoreke, I heard with dismay of the attempted 
assassination of Hitler at his military bunker on July 20th. The German dream was sinking fast. 

By August I was rapidly yielding to the idea of marriage. We became engaged. On August the ninth I went to Birk's Jewelers 
and bought her a diamond engagement ring. 


After being on the job in Montreal for a year, I seriously began to re-assess both of these factors. As my hopes for Germany 
faded towards the latter half of 1 944, as my interest in my job declined, so in direct proportion did my interest and enthusiasm 
for a future in the United States dramatically rise. I had no enthusiasm being stuck in a salaried job with Northern Electric for 
the rest of my life, nor did I wish to live in Montreal. Interesting as the city may be, I thought, I did not like the gloomy, over-cast 
winters, nor the hot muggy summers. Nor did I care to live in a polyglot, dual language city of predominantly French Canadians 
in an ongoing hassle with the British element who controlled most of the industry and economy. (Actually Jews, but I was not 
that much aware of this fact at that time.) 

So more and more I began to explore the American scene. In this respect Jim Dodd was not only a big help, but also an 
inspiration. As a traveling representative of Brush Development Co., he made contacts in many of the major cities in the United 
States, and also touched bases frequently in Montreal. I wrote to a number of companies in the electrical business, with now 

more of an aim as a technical representative rather than as an engineer. I found the response was very good. Since war 
production in 1944 was in high gear and since most able-bodied men had now been drafted into the service, the demand for 
young engineers and/or technical men with a degree and some experience was high. There still always remained this one hitch 
- 1 needed a Labor Exit Permit to leave the country. On August 5, 1 again went to see the Chairman of the Canadian 
Mobilization Board, and used all the persuasive arguments I could muster to get that permit, but it was still no go. However, I 
was undaunted. Sooner or later I would get that permit, and anyway the war couldn't last too much longer. 

I decided to make a foray into the United States and look into some of these companies with whom I had been corresponding. 
One of the letters was from Sperry Gyroscope in New York, and they even offered to pay my fare if I came down for an 
interview. Jim happened to be in town at that time. On Sept. 26 I decided to take up Sperry's offer and go to New York. Jim 
decided to come along and see if perhaps he could improve his status, a situation that seemed perpetual with him. We wired 
Sperry to make room reservations for us (hotel accommodations were tight during the war) and at 9:25 P.M. we were on the 
train to New York. Beth was there to see us off. We arrived in the Big Apple at 8:45 in the morning of the next day. 

We talked to some of the higher executives of Sperry, who made us various offers. We also scouted the possibilities with a few 
other companies the next day, especially Federal Telephone and Radio. The following day we went to Newark and contacted a 
few more companies. That night we took a pullman from New York and were back in Montreal on Saturday 9:05 A.M. 
September 30. That night Jim, Charlie Muirhead and I took our respective girl friends out to dinner at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, 
discussed our foray in New York and proceeded to get inebriated. 

When I went back to work at Northern Electric on Monday morning, I had some explaining to do about my absence last week. 
Whatever excuse I offered didn't set very well, but I didn't care. I felt pretty independent and didn't care too much about my job 
anyway. I was transferred to another department. Systems. My first job was to lay out the grounds for a radio transmitter, 
ground wires for the major antennas, etc. It entailed quite a bit of surveying on the grounds and I was glad to be outdoors. 

I pressed on with the American adventure. On Sunday October 22 after Jim, Charlie Muirhead, Beth and I had dinner at 
Murray's Restaurant, I boarded the train for Cleveland to see Brush Development Co. for whom Jim worked. This time Jim did 
not go along. I arrived in Cleveland at 10:45 in the morning after having a cloak and dagger, hide and seek escapade with a 
Canadian Immigration official, one of whom was now on board every train crossing the border to make sure that none of their 
valuable subjects escaped to the United States. I had been warned that security at the border had been tightened considerably, 
and that it was not now possible to go more than 20 miles past the border without having that damned Labor Exit Permit. To 
forestall such a problem I had bought two tickets, one to a little town en route just inside the American border, and another one 
from there on to Cleveland. Sure enough, as we were nearing the border the immigration official boarded the train, went down 
the cars eyeing every passenger with his professional scrutiny. When he came to me he sat down on the seat opposite. He had 
a real mean look on his face. He asked to see my ticket. Then he gave me the third degree - where was I going? What was my 
business? and on and on. I sat there and sweated and lied like a trooper. I told him I was going to see my family outside this 
little American town. What was their name? Where did they live? Name? Klassen. Lived about 15 miles east of town. Round 
and round, for 15 minutes. I was getting in deeper and deeper. Finally we arrived at this little town on the American side of the 
border and I got off and he got off. It was midnight and it was dark. I walked to the other side of the train where it was even 
darker. When I saw he had walked out of sight I jumped back on the train again in another car down the line and was on my 

Once in Cleveland, I met with three of the top officers of Brush. Things looked favorable. I also went to see the U.S. 
Employment Service and got a clearance card from them and also a Statement of Availability (but not from the Canadian 
Mobilization Board.) I also went to the U.S. Immigration Office and that hurdle, too, did not seem insurmountable. On October 
25, I left Cleveland and took the train back to Montreal. 

As I crossed the border that night, that same Canadian Immigration officer was making the rounds again checking everybody 
out. He immediately recognized me as the fellow who had conned him a few days earlier, saying that I was only going to see 
some relatives within a few miles of the border. He knew I had conned him and he gave me a severe dressing down, even 
threatened to run me in. But he didn't, and I proceeded on to Montreal, arriving there at 1 1 :00 A.M. 

When I went back to work at Northern Electric on the following Monday I got put on the carpet for my repeated absences, not 
only by Radford, my immediate supervisor, but I had the honor of being thoroughly chewed out by the great Mr. Peachy 
himself, who was head of the whole electronics division. He even threatened to fire me, but he didn't. I went back to running the 
transit and surveying the layout of the Transmitter Station. 

This idea that the United States welcomed me but Canada wouldn't let me out, began to get to me. What the hell was this all 
about anyway? Was this another Russia? Were we in a Stalag, a slave labor camp? I was beginning to feel pretty independent 
about the whole situation, job or no job. My rebellious nature was beginning to come to the fore. To hell with them! I went to 
see a Jewish lawyer by the name of Max Bernfeld about getting a visa and hurdling those tyrannical restrictions. Nothing much 
came of that ploy. I still needed that damned Labor Exit Permit. 

Beth had pressed for a wedding date and we finally agreed that June 15th, 1945, was to be the big day. As the time drew 
nearer, I began to have second thoughts. I still wasn't ready to take the big plunge. I was determined to first get squared away 
and get myself established in the United States, before or after the war was over. Besides, was Beth really the right girl? By the 
middle of March, I made up my mind and said no. There was a great flurry, the tears flowed, but I was obdurate. 

The war was drawing to a close in Europe. On April 30, came reports that Hitler had committed suicide. By May the 7th rumors 
were flying around that an armistice was about to be declared. That afternoon as I went up town, the streets were crowded with 
what seemed like millions of people in a state of frenzy some drunk, all wild and irresponsible. The next day, the 8th, was 
declared a holiday, V-E day. 

This further spurred me on to action. I again went back to see the War Mobilization Board to see if I could now get that Labor 
Exit Permit. After much hassle, the answer was still no. 

Undaunted, on July 24, Charlie Muirhead and I decided to make another foray into the United States to line up a good job 
before they were all gone (we thought, since there would be a realignment of jobs at the end of the war.) We arrived In New 
York at 9:00 A.M. the next morning and checked in at the Harmony Hotel. Jim Dodd and his new wife Marj, happened to be in 
town also and we got together with them that night and had dinner in Newark. In the meantime, Charlie and I saw some 
employment agencies, made contacts with Burlingame Associates, International Standard Electric, and others. Nothing 
definite, but it looked promising, the salaries better than in Canada. 

After two days, Charlie went back to Montreal. I went on to Cleveland with Jim and Marj, where they were now domiciled. I 
checked in at the Belmont Hotel, then called up Margo Bradov, a blonde I had been corresponding with. We agreed on a date 
for tomorrow. Meanwhile, I called several electrical companies, visited Reliance Electric and again visited Brush Development 

The afternoon of Saturday July 28, 1 spent with Margo. We went to a circus that was in town. We went on a motorboat ride at a 
lake, and we had a drink of Southern Comfort at the Punch & Judy, where I met her dad, who incidentally owned the joint. 

After having lunch with Jim and Marj the next day, I boarded the train back to Montreal. All trains were now very crowded, what 
with a massive returning and/or shift of troops. The trains were also late. I finally got into Montreal next Monday at 1 1 :00 A.M. 

This trip to Cleveland and New York somehow irrevocably made up my mind I would be done with the East. I was going to go 
to California, legally or illegally, the sooner the better. 

On Friday, August 10, I dropped into Radford's office and told him: "I'm quitting." Radford, who was my supervisor, told me I 
couldn't do that. I had to give at least two weeks notice. I went over his head to my old pal Mr. Peachey, who had threatened to 
fire me for my many absences only nine months earlier. I told him the same thing I quit, take it or leave it. We settled for 
Wednesday, August 15. 

On August 14th the Japanese surrendered and again the streets were overrun with hordes of people in a wild state of jubilation 
and frenzy. 

The next day was V-J Day and declared a holiday. I lost no time. I packed my things. At 4:00 In the afternoon I left the house 
and Charlie Muirhead accompanied me to the station. At 6:25 I was on the train to Utica-Cleveland to touch bases with Jim 
Dodd. I had no Labor Exit Permit, no visa, no passport, nothing but a railroad ticket and a few hundred bucks cash in my 
pocket. But I was headed for California, legally or illegally, and nothing was now going to stop me. 

Against the Evil Tide - 18 

Milestone Seventeen: Montreal and Northern Electric 







Against the Evil Tide - 19 

Milestone Eighteen: California, Here I Come! 

The day after V-J Day I arrived in Cleveland and dropped in on Jim Dodd unannounced. As I walked into the yard, he was bent 
over working on his jalopy. (Not too many people owned a car at the end of the war.) I told him I was headed for California, 
come what may. Did he want to come with me? He said, yes, sure, but why didn't I wait a week or so In order that he could 
wrap up several loose ends. I said, no, I'm leaving tomorrow, with or without you. 

Jim soon made up his mind. The next day, Friday, August 18, we both boarded a train for Chicago at 4:00 P.M., and arrived 
there at 9:25 P.M. At midnight we caught the Santa Fe California Limited and were on our way. 

We arrived at Kansas City at 10:00 A.M., August 19, where I sent a postcard to my mother, and another to Charles Muirhead. 
We had lunch at Topeka at 4:00 P.M. and arrived at Dodge City at 9:30 that evening. While in Albuquerque, N.M. we had a 
lengthy stopover and while there, I happened to talk to immigration officials who were scrupulously surveilling and questioning 
any suspected Mexican wetbacks. This was back in 1945, and at that time the I.N.S. was still making an honest effort to keep 
out the Mexican hordes. 

While there, I got my first impression of the hot, dry Southwest, and I liked It. I liked the aromatic smell of the pepper trees, of 
the blooming cactus, the oleanders and other flowering shrubs. It was August, the air was hot but dry, except in the railroad 
car, where it was hot and muggy. At this point we managed to change into an air-conditioned car, a new experience for me. 

The morning of August 20, we crossed the border into California, and at 3:00 P.M. we disembarked at Los Angeles Union 
Station. We had arrived! I got that exhilarating, adventurous feeling again! I liked everything I saw, including Olvera Street and 
the Mexicanos. 

We checked in at the Cecil Hotel on Main Street and immediately started scanning the want ads for employment opportunities. 
We collected a pocket full of nickels and before even the first day was over we were already making a number of calls from the 
pay phones to check out job opportunities. By the next day we had already made a few appointments and were talking to 
company heads. Our mode of travel was the streetcar, or by bus. 

On September I we moved to the Wagner Hotel. On that day I also talked to a Mr. Ray Thompson, of Bardwell McAllister in 
Hollywood about a job, which three weeks later actually worked out. In the meantime we made dozens of phone calls, 
appointments and in general effectively covered the technical job market in the whole Los Angeles area, from Pasadena to 
Long Beach, from Santa Monica to the eastern limits of Los Angeles. 

Bardwell McAllister had been a lighting company before the war, specializing In arc lights and other sophisticated lighting 
equipment for the movie industry. During the war it converted to war production and government contracts, and at present was 
working on a sophisticated B-29 trainer, which would simulate flight conditions for trainees while enjoying the safety of the 
ground. When I started work there on September 21 , (approximately a month after arriving In Los Angeles) I was aware, as 
were the other employees, that this was now a dead-end contract which would at best last another six months. But the pay was 
good, and a job was a job. In the meantime, it offered a base from which I could scout for other jobs. Two weeks later I opened 
a bank account in Hollywood and deposited my second paycheck - $143.80. Progress! I had a Hollywood bank account. I felt 
like a full-fledged mogul. 

Jim had also latched onto a job. He had initially come with me on a temporary basis, intending to go back to Cleveland after 
looking over the lay of the land. His wife was back in New York some place, still holding down a job. But now he decided to 
stay permanently. We started looking for cars to buy. On October 28, I bought a '34 Oldsmobile sedan, and Jim bought a '37 
Pontiac coupe. The first thing I had to do was get a temporary beginner's permit to drive a car. I found I was on precarious 
ground - not having legal residence in the United States. The next thing that happened was I had a flat tire, and I needed four 
retreads. Then I needed the brakes relined. Next I needed new seat covers. Then it was something else. I soon found out that 
it cost money to own a car even if it was only - especially if it was a Jalopy. 

By now Jim and I were taking in the sights and felt and acted like native Californians (everybody there was from someplace 
else.) We took in the sights. We went swimming in the Pacific Ocean, both at Long Beach, and also at Santa Monica. We now 
both had cars. We dated girls. I especially got chummy with a Marie Jansen who worked in the accounting office of Bardwell 
McAllister and had her eye on me. 

In fact, I was driving down Hollywood Blvd. in the wee hours one night with Marie when a traffic policeman flashed his lights on 
me. It seems i was driving without my lights on. The lights on the car were so dim I hadn't noticed the difference, but the cop 
had. He asked for my driver's license. I showed him my temporary permit. The last thing in the world I needed at this point was 
a ticket and to be hauled into court. I apologized profusely for my carelessness and sweet-talked the cop out of charging me. 
He did not press it further and did not give me a ticket. 

That little incident convinced nne that my legal status was precarious and I had better clean up my act as soon as possible 
before I got into real trouble. Two weeks later I decided to do something about. 

On November 29th I cashed my latest check from Bardwell McAllister, and withdrew what little money I had in the bank. I left 
my car with Don Campbell and his new wife, at whose house I had been staying. (He was a young engineer who also worked 
for B.A.) I explained my situation to Mr. Thompson and got temporary leave of absence from Bardwell McAllister without losing 
my job. At 1 1 :55 P.M. that night I was on the Grand Canyon Limited headed for Chicago, then to Montreal, Quebec, to 
hopefully wade through all the necessary legal rigmarole to become a legal resident of the United States. 

I had been in California just a little over three months, but I had made a few basic decisions - 1 liked it and I was coming back. 
Jim and his wife Marj saw me off at the station. The last thing I said to them was - "I shall return!" to quote a famous general. 

Against the Evil Tide - 19 

Milestone Eighteen: California, Here I Come! 


Back 1 





Against the Evil Tide - 20 

Milestone Nineteen: I Make it Legal 

After stopping in Cleveland temporarily to take care of some affairs for Jim, I boarded the "Empire State" for Buffalo, then the 
"Maumer" on to Toronto, and finally to Ottawa, arriving at the latter at eight in the morning of December the fourth, 1945. The 
first place I headed for was the War Mobilization Board to try to obtain that much needed Labor Exit Permit which had for so 
long eluded me. I was all primed and loaded for bear to argue my case to the hilt, with all systems go. When I confronted the 
colonel in charge I gave an approximately 20 minute exhortation, non-stop. I claimed that to deny me the permit was an illegal 
repression; it was tyrannical not to allow citizens to leave the country; it had all the earmarks of a dictatorship; it was in direct 
contradiction of all the principles of democracy for which we supposedly fought a war for the last six years; and anyway, the 
war was now over. What possible reason could the Board now have for wanting to keep me here? The colonel listened 
patiently, and when I was all through he said, yes, the war is over. There is no problem. You can have your Labor Exit Permit. I 
was jubilant. Finally I had that elusive piece of paper. 

Next I checked in at the Dunkirk Hotel and made a few phone calls. I called the American Consulate in Ottawa about an 
appointment to apply for a visa. They were booked solid for several weeks. I called Toronto. They were booked for two months. 
Next I called the Consulate in Montreal. Same story. I was getting desperate. I couldn't wait that long. Next I called Regina, 
Saskatchewan. Fine, no problem, no waiting time. 

Before I left Ottawa I took care of two other items. I obtained my Canadian passport, and I received a clearance permit from the 
Royal Canadian Mounted Police HQ that I had no criminal record. 

However, I had some unfinished business in Montreal that needed taking care of, such as picking up my trunk, and withdrawing 
the few hundred dollars I had in the bank. I arrived in Montreal on December 6, a week after I had left Los Angeles. There I 
checked in with the Carre family in Lachine, where Charlie Muirhead and I had been staying during the summer months. 
Charlie was still there, and so was Bobbie Carre, and the boys. They were all ears to hear all about Los Angeles and California. 

After taking care of several chores in Montreal, I left two days later, heading for Regina, Saskatchewan, arriving at the latter at 
7:10 P.M. on December 9. I had a cold and the weather was miserably cold, as it only can be in Saskatchewan. I checked in at 
the Champs Hotel. 

First thing next morning I checked in at the American Consulate to apply for my visa. There I encountered a new roadblock I 
had not anticipated. The Consul, Mr. D.E. Cyphers, blandly informed me that I could not enter the United States unless it was 
under the auspices of an Alien Contract Labor permit, which meant that America needed some special skills or training that I 
might have that they could not obtain from their own ranks in the United States, a most difficult hurdle indeed. Whereas during 
the war there might have been any number of jobs available for engineers, that situation had now changed. War contracts were 
being cancelled left and right, and jobs terminated along with them. Furthermore, as servicemen were coming back and being 
discharged, there was now a more than ample supply of applicants. 

I sent off two letters. One was to Charlie Muirhead to obtain a letter from Northern Electric as to what my qualifications were. 
Another was to R.J. Thompson of Bardwell McAllister as to what it was they needed in the way of technical skills that I had that 
they could not obtain otherwise. Then, figuring that this would be a long drawn out process, I decided I might as well go home 
to Herschel and stay with my relatives there rather than in some dreary hotel. 

My brother Henry came to pick me up at the station in Herschel. After seeing the rest of the family I left for Saskatoon two days 
later to see my mother. She was in the hospital awaiting an operation. She was so happy to see me again. 

When I got back to Herschel, I had a letter from Charlie telling me he didn't have the authority to write a letter such as I 
requested. I immediately called him long distance and exhorted him to get busy and find someone at Northern Electric who did. 
A week later I received the kind of letter from Charlie such as I had requested in the first place. I sent the letter on to D.E. 
Cyphers in Regina. 

By this time it was Christmas Eve and we all went to the annual Christmas Concert at the Mennonite Church - just like old 
times again. It was the last such concert I was to attend there. The next day we all had a big Christmas dinner of plum soup, 
sausages and beef, at Henry and Annie's, and then at night we lit up the Christmas tree and sang songs. 

Two days later I called D.E. Cyphers at the American Consulate in Regina. He said he needed a more specific description of 
my job in California. I sent a wire to that effect to R.J. Thompson in Hollywood and asked him to send the letter directly to the 
American Consulate in Regina. In this respect I found out later that my friend Marie Jansen at Bardwell McAllister had been a 
big help in getting out a speedy reply, for which I have been eternally grateful to her ever since. 

On New Years Eve our assembled families had a big goose dinner at Korni and Martha's, after which I stayed over night at 

Sarah and Pete's. Next morning, New Year's Day, at 1 0:40 in tiie nnorning I again boarded tiie train and left for Regina. I 
arrived tiiere at 7:00 P.IVI. and ciiecked in at tiie Kitciiener Hotel. The weather was colder than ever. I couldn't wait to get back 
to sunny California. 

Next day I went back to see Cyphers at the Consulate. He informed me that he had received a satisfactory letter from R.J. 
Thompson. He sent a wire to the State Department on my behalf. That afternoon I took my medical exam. On January 3, I filled 
out an application for my American Visa, then went to a show and at 1 1 :55 P.M. I was on a train for Saskatoon to see my 
mother again. 

At 6:25 A.M. I arrived in Saskatoon and immediately checked in at the King George Hotel. I went to see mother in the forenoon 
and while there I met Henry, Annie and Korni visiting at the hospital also. We had lunch together and then said goodbye. It 
would be many years before I would see them again. I stayed in Saskatoon another two days and saw mother several times 
again. She had had her operation and was feeling quite a bit better. It was to be the last time I was to see her, although, of 
course, I did not know it at the time. She died less than two years later. 

On January 7th I entrained for Regina. I anticipated receiving my visa any day now and called the Consulate repeatedly. I also 
made dally airline reservations so that when my visa arrived I would not be delayed by having to wait for plane space. Finally, 
on January 9th, I received my visa, I had my passport, my Labor Exit Permit, my health certificate. In fact, my whole act put 
together. The next day, January 10th, I was on a plane to Calgary, where I changed planes. Then on January 11th I officially 
and legally entered the United States at Cutbank, Montana. There, after going through immigration and customs, I flew on to 
Salt Lake City, then to Las Vegas and on to Los Angeles. This was 1946 and the plane was a small two engine, prop driven 
crate that made many stops. 

I arrived at the Burbank airport at about 1 1 :00 o'clock that night. Jim and Marj were there to meet me. The first thing I said to 
them was, "I have returned", again quoting that famous general. 

Against the Evil Tide - 20 i „ i| „ , ir^ 1 

^ Next Back Home I 

Milestone Nineteen: I Make it Legal ' ' ' ' ' ' 




Against the Evil Tide - 21 

Milestone Twenty: California The Settling-in Process 

So there I was, back in sunny California again! In a matter of less than two days I was transported from the miserably cold, 
dreary winter in Saskatchewan to the sunny clime of Southern California in the middle of January. It was again one of those 
rare periods in my life when I felt euphoric and optimism ran high. 

True, I still had most of the major problems of my adult life to solve, which I mentioned earlier. But I had solved one of them, 
beautifully, I thought, and that was the matter of where I wanted to live. Furthermore, I had my job at Bardwell McAllister to go 
back to immediately, and although I realized it was temporary, it would serve the purpose adequately until such time as I could 
make a better placement. l\/!y hopes were high and California at the beginning of 1946 looked beautiful, real beautiful, to me. 

And California of the immediate post-war period did have much to offer, although the signs of its coming dissolution and 
degeneration could even then be detected by the discerning eye. Since no new cars had been produced for the previous five 
war years, traffic was not yet any major problem. There weren't that many cars. There were still no freeways to worry about. 
The only one that existed in the whole Los Angeles area was the six-mile stretch of the Pasadena Freeway partially connecting 
Pasadena to a downtown Los Angeles. 

Smog was not yet a major factor, but it was even then beginning to display its eye-irritating stench when the atmospheric 
conditions were right. True, there were a lot of Mexicans in the downtown section, and around the Olvera Street area, but they 
were still regarded as Mexicans and they knew their place. They were not organized, nor were they militant. The nigger 
situation was still insignificant and confined to a few slum areas. Welfare, which has enabled niggers to breed like cockroaches 
without working, had not yet raised its ugly head, although it, too, was in the making. The beaches were still very accessible 
and relatively clean, a real pleasure to go to. 

Above all, the weather was balmy and warm even in the wintertime, compared to most of the country. The palm trees and the 
orange groves that proliferated over the landscape had a most exhilarating effect, at least on me. Evidently, all these 
attractions also excited millions of other people, not only Americans, but also Canadians and peoples from other lands. The 
mass migration was on, what with millions of footloose and fancy-free G.l.'s being discharged from the Armed Forces. 
California, and especially Los Angeles, became one of the prime magnets of the world. I was lucky, I told myself, that I got 
there ahead of the crowd. 

Soon after I went back to work at Bardwell McAllister I was scouting for a better, more permanent job. I still had my tan-colored, 
broken down jalopy whose front wheel linkages were so loose the wheels would suddenly go into an uncontrollable shimmying 
every once in a while. The car would go into a spasm and oscillate from side to side. It could be very embarrassing at times, 
especially if I had a passenger. However, it was transportation. 

I moved my domicile from Don Campbell's place to a fine location at 1348 Idlewood Road in Glendale. The house was of 
Spanish-Mediterranean style with a red tiled roof, one of the characteristics of Southern California that fascinated me. It was 
owned by a Mrs. Connors, a member of the "I am" people. 

To pursue further my problems and adventures with my broken down Jalopy at this time, I distinctly remember two different 
occasions when old Betsy failed me, and caused me considerable embarrassment. 

Also working at Bardwell McAllister was a beautiful young girl by the name of Joan Busch, who was aspiring to become an 
actress. (All girls in Hollywood were, it seemed.) She had the leading part in a dinner theater melodrama called "Under the 
Gaslights", a theater located at 732 Highland in Hollywood. She gave me some gratis tickets and invited me to see the show, 
which I did. One thing led to another and soon I had a date with her one fine Sunday. On the way over, the clutch broke down 
and I was temporarily stranded. My date was ruined, and unfortunately, was never resumed. 

On another occasion, I happened to wander over to the old San Gabriel Mission to look it over. (The old Spanish missions of 
California had a special attraction for me, and at one time or another I believe I explored practically all of them.) While at the 
San Gabriel Mission I found that a rehearsal was going on for the production of a musical outdoor play to be staged at the 
mission. It was one of those historical dramas reflecting back to the days of Old Mexico and the Spanish Conquistadors, history 
that supposedly happened around the mission about two centuries ago. The Prima Donna putting on the production spotted me 
and said I was just the right man to play a certain part in the play, a Spanish Don somebody. Surely, I had acting experience? 
No, not really. Well, I would do, anyway. So I said, why not? and joined the company. 

Several weeks and rehearsals later, my jalopy again broke down on the way to a very important rehearsal. When I arrived 
about two hours late, the temperamental Prima Donna was roaring mad at my ostensible unreliability. I didn't bother to explain. 
And so ended my incipient acting career, nipped in the bud. 

Two months after returning to California I left Bardwell McAllister and took a job as a technical sales representative with a 
manufacturer's representative, run by a certain Jerry Miller and his wife. He had a small office located at 1051 Havenhurst 
Drive, in the Hollywood area. My job was to promote, demonstrate and sell, some kind of sophisticated oscillograph that had 
very limited application for a few specialized technical companies. I was paid $400.00 a month, and the gasoline for my car, 
which was 18 to 20 cents a gallon in those days. I was to get a small override commission for the units I sold, said units being 
extremely expensive, but I felt highly optimistic, nevertheless. The job lasted for two months, during which time I demonstrated 
the unit probably a dozen or so times, but sold not a single unit. 

However, I made a lot of contacts and had learned the layout of all the main thoroughfares from Santa Monica to Whittler, from 
Long Beach to San Fernando and beyond. Furthermore, the Job had given me the opportunity to learn something about the 
manufacturer's rep business and also the names and locations of most of the leading electronics companies. 

This was the postwar period and there was much change and reshuffling going on in business and in Industry. The times were 
rife with opportunities and also studded with an equal number of booby traps. New businesses were being formed dally and 
businesses were also going broke at a record rate. 

By the time I realized the Jerry Miller deal was a flop, I had already landed a new job with another manufacturer's rep called 
The W. Bert Knight Co., located at 908 Venice Boulevard, Los Angeles. It was a bigger and more substantial outfit and had 
already been well established during the war years. It represented about a dozen different national manufacturers in the 
electronics and supportive fields. It handled such lines as small transformers, vacuum tubes, condensers, resistors, and other 
parts used in the manufacture of radios and other electronic and electrical products. My job, however, was not in the electronic 
field, but to try to develop the industrial market, such as electric motor manufacturers, or whatever. Although my salary was not 
fixed, it varied somewhere between $500.00 and $700.00 a month, depending on the company's over all business. Besides 
Bert Knight himself, there were two other salesmen. Chuck Nace, who was Bert's brother-in-law, and Al Rissi. Two girls in the 
office doing the paperwork completed the staff. 

I was now making more money than I had ever before, and soon I got rid of my old, broken down jalopy and bought a better 
car. It was a light blue Oldsmobile '98 coupe, a real powerhouse. It was pre-war, second hand, of course, but I felt like I was 
now riding around in style. The fellow I bought It from was a young Irish race horse jockey by the name of Gerald O'Steen. 

What with a bigger car, a fairly well paying job, I soon began to feel like a native and enjoy many of the amenifies of California 
life. Jim Dodd and his wife Marj had taken an apartment In the Los Angeles area at 5424 Denker Avenue and I spent a 
considerable amount of fime with them, being invited for dinners and often staying overnight. We took a number of exploratory 
trips to different surrounding areas, all the way from Tijuana, Mexico, to Santa Barbara to the north. Jim had become interested 
in real estate and bought a scrubby lot in the La Crescenta area for $300.00. He soon found a house that needed to be moved 
to make way for the coming freeways. He moved it onto his lot to rebuild and remodel. In which project I often would help him 
on weekends. It was an endless project that he never did finish, but we had a lot of fun working at it. 

Even before I had gone back to Canada I was dating a number of girls. With a bigger and better Oldsmobile that avocation 
became even more inviting, and I was playing the field. We went to the beaches, we went to the mountains, often as a 
foursome with Jim and Marj. I was even beginning to consider the idea of marriage. 

My job with Bert Knight was interesting to the extent that I traveled much, made a lot of contacts, covered most of the territory 
of metropolitan Los Angeles. Bert Knight himself was a wealthy man and at this time bought a five-acre rancho in the middle of 
Encino, in the San Fernando Valley, only a stone's throw from where dark Gable had a similar layout. Bert's main forte in 
business was not his technical knowledge of condensers and vacuum tubes, but his lavish entertainment of company 
executives who came from out of town to visit the California scene "on business." On such occasions he would usually throw a 
party, at which we three salesmen were always present to enhance the image of a prosperous operation. Bert used to 
philosophize that there were three things dear to any man's heart good liquor, good food, and women, the latter not 
necessarily good. Also, the company would participate in a number of local trade shows, at which entertainment of the local 
executives, our customers, was a major endeavor. 

Anyway, life was new, it was exciting, and 1 was even putting a few dollars In the bank. One day I walked into the First National 
Bank in Glendale to cash my check and deposit a hundred dollars or so into a savings account I had established. I was 
standing in one line, when I noticed a beautiful blonde girl with big blue eyes, a mass of wavy blonde hair and a vivacious smile 
at the window of the next cage. Wrong line, I thought. I took my check and deposit slip back to the counter in the middle of the 
room, fussed around for a minute or so and queued up at her window. Sure enough, there was an immediate rapport when I 
looked into those big blue eyes. We got into such a spirited conversation that when I walked away I had left my money on the 
counter of her window. She called after me, don't you want your money? Her name was Henrie Etta McWilliams. 

Against the Evil Tide - 21 

Milestone Twenty: California The Settling-in Process 







Against the Evil Tide - 22 

Milestone Twenty-One: Romance, Marriage and Real Estate 

Once we had looked into each other's eyes across the counter of the teller's cage, we lost no time getting together. Even 
before I went back to pick up my money I had already asked her for a luncheon date and she agreed. It was a Saturday, and 
the bank closed at 12:00 noon. She said I could pick her up at 2:00 P.M. when they would be through with balancing the books. 

We went to the Tarn O'Shanter Restaurant in Glendale. The lunch lasted for two hours. We even had a few highballs along 
with much conversation, in which we each reviewed our life history in brief. Things went so well we decided to get together 
again that same evening and go horseback riding. 

I picked her up at her apartment at 7:30 that evening. She was living with her mother at 231 "A" North Kenwood Street in 
Glendale. After introducing me to her mother and further conversation we drove to the stables at Griffith Park and rented some 
horses. After riding the trails for about an hour we rode to the top of the mountain and sat down under a large tree to view the 
lights of Los Angeles, to spoon, and to plan the future. It seemed that we were already thinking of marriage, and we had met 
only that afternoon! We talked of traveling all over the world, to Europe and I even promised that some day I would take her to 
Rio de Janeiro. Well, I did take her to Europe and many parts of the world, but never to Rio de Janeiro, not that I couldn't have, 
but it did not later seem to be as choice a place to visit as it did at that particular moment in time. Anyway, we became so 
engrossed in our plans sitting there at the top of the mountain that time passed quickly, and by 1 0:30 P.M. the stables thought 
we had either gotten lost or rode off into the sunset with their horses. They sent out a wrangler to look for us. 

Henrie Etta McWilliams was the daughter of William and Eleanor McWilliams. She was born in Craig, Colorado, where her dad 
owned a sheep ranch, and her mother taught school. Henrie Etta had attended Colorado Woman's College in Denver and had 
worked as a secretary in a bank at Grand Junction, Colorado. In 1938 the family sold the ranch and moved to California, largely 
due to a crisis in her dad's health. To me, she seemed the epitome of the blonde blue-eyed "maedel" I had earlier dreamed of 
marrying in Germany some day. However, she was not German. She was Scotch, Irish, English and Swedish, to trace her 
national ancestry. But no matter. We were now in America, in fact, we were now Californians, more to the point. Her Anglo- 
Saxon ancestry suited me just fine, as did just about everything else about her. 

After that first hectic Saturday in August of 1946, our romance progressed rapidly, and we saw each other almost daily. The 
next weekend we took a trip to Lake Arrowhead, about 80 miles east of Glendale. This too resulted in an unusual encounter in 
which I again had problems hanging on to my money. 

It was a Sunday and we started early, having breakfast out at a restaurant. While there I had to make a phone call, and left my 
wallet on the checkout counter of the restaurant. Somewhere about 50 miles down the road at San Bernardino I realized I had 
left my wallet at the previous restaurant. What to do? Turn back and spoil the day? No. We stopped at another restaurant and 
sweet-talked the owner (she was a lady) into loaning us $5.00 to carry us through the day. Reluctantly she complied, saying 
that if a nice couple like us let her down she would never trust anybody again in her lifetime. In the meantime we called 
Henrie's mother and had her pick up the wallet and went on to Lake Arrowhead. We had a marvelous day. Five dollars would 
go a long way in those days. We had many good times during our courtship. We went to Earl Can-oil's nightclub in Hollywood, 
we went to the Seven Seas. We went to the beach and we took an excursion one other Sunday to San Capistrano Mission 
about sixty miles to the south, this time in a foursome with some friends of mine from Montreal, Canada. They were a young 
married couple by the name of George and Dorothy Joel. We visited frequently with Jim and Marj Dodd. In fact, Marj couldn't 
be happier and fully approved of my choice. "Finally you're showing good sense", she told me. After a whirlwind courtship of 
about a month, we were picnicking in Griffith Park one fine Sunday afternoon when I asked her to marry me. She consented 
and we made plans. We set the date for November 22, 1946. 

We were duly married at 7:30 P.M. at the picturesque little Wedding Chapel called the Wee Kirk o'the Heather on the beautiful 
grounds of Forest Lawn Memorial Park. This elegant little chapel is supposed to be an exact replica of the one built in honor of 
Annie Laurie back in Scotland. Henrie's father, William McWilliams had come back from Craig, Colorado, about a week earlier 
to attend the wedding. Hugh and Jackie McWilliams, Henrie's brother and sister-in-law came from San Jose, and Jackie was 
Henrie's maid of honor. Jim and Marj Dodd were there, and Jim stood up for me as best man. Henrie's Aunt Lenora and her 
grandmother were there. Altogether there was a nice group of about 30 people in attendance. Reverend E.E. Ellis, a Methodist 
Minister, performed the ceremony and when it was consummated a shower of orange petals floated down upon us from above. 
It was all very inspiring and we were off to an auspicious start. 

A reception at her parent's apartment at 231 "A" N. Kenwood followed and lasted about an hour. Then we were off for our 
reservation at the beautiful and historic old Mission Inn at Riverside, California, about 60 miles away. When we arrived there 
after midnight, the clerk at the desk told us we had the honeymoon suite available to us, an unexpected surprise, although I 
suspect Henrie's mother had something to do with this. 

We stayed there a few days. While there we met another newly married couple. He was a middle aged Irishman by the name 

of O'Brien and she was a Spanish gal by the name of Juanita, an interesting connbination. They were friends of Jacqueline 
Cochran, the famous aviatrix and her wealthy business magnate husband, Floyd Bostwick Odium. The latter owned a lavish 
ranch in the Coachella Valley near Indio. The O'Briens had the use of the Odium's guest cottages and invited us to stay in one 
of them, since they were going to spend the next several days there. We took them up on the offer and stayed there for a day 
or two, enjoying the brisk clear air and desert scenery. A lot of pictures were taken and Juanita had this funny hang-up of 
saying "I see two eyes" every time she took a picture. From Indio we went to a motel in Palm Springs where we enjoyed lolling 
about the pool, soaking up the desert sunshine and sampling some of Palm Springs' better restaurants. From the desert we 
changed venue to the seashore and drove north and west up the coast to Santa Barbara, a beautiful city in those days, very 
much in the Spanish motif. We spent a few days there, much of the time on the beach. 

We were driving back to Glendale after a ten-day honeymoon, returning late on a Sunday night when our troubles started. 
While driving down the long narrow road through Topanga Canyon, the drive shaft of my Olds '98 suddenly started banging on 
the floorboards like crazy. I stopped and checked it out, and found the drive shaft was utterly kaput. We managed to flag a 
passing motorist to send word to a lowing service to pick us up. (Fortunately, I belonged to the Triple A Auto Club at that time.) 
After about an hour a tow truck arrived. As the man was hitching our car to his towlines, a drunken driver came hurtling around 
the curve and slammed into the tow truck. The towing service now had to send word back for another service truck a real 

We finally got back to our apartment at about 3:00 A.M. Henrie's parents had charitably turned over their nice apartment to us 
and found themselves a lesser apartment in Glendale. Apartments in the post-war era were not easy to come by, and we were 
eternally grateful for their selfless and helpful gesture. 

So it was now back to work. Henrie resumed her job at the bank. I had the problem of first getting the Olds fixed and then back 
to W. Bert Knight and company. At that time, I was becoming more aware of the tremendous potentialities of the real estate 
business. Prices were rapidly escalating, new subdivisions were popping up like spring flowers all over the landscape. Maybe I 
was in the middle of a bonanza and missing out on an unusual opportunity. I became more and more interested. I decided to 
take a course in real estate at a school exclusively devoted to that subject in downtown Los Angeles. It was a night course and 
lasted about six weeks. Furthermore, I had come to the conclusion that you could never get anywhere working for somebody 
else. If you were worth X number of dollars to your employer, you were worth five times that much to yourself, I reasoned. 

Also, my relationship with Bert Knight was deteriorating, after we had had some philosophical exchanges at some of his 
parties, and in the presence of some of his guests. I began to wonder if despite his staunchly Anglo-Saxon name whether Bert 
Knight was really a Jew incognito. One day 1 broached the subject with Al Rissi, one of the two other salesmen I mentioned 
earlier. He said, could be, he didn't know, a defensive nolo contendere. Obviously, he did not want to get involved. Anyway, 
word got back to Bert that I had raised the question, and he was not pleased. I stayed on another month, to the end of March 
1947, and then we parted company. I never did find out for certain whether he was or was not a Jew, but his physiognomy 
indicated to me that he was, and so did his mannerism. Anyway, I said to hell with him. 

Shortly thereafter I had completed my real estate course and taken the California real estate exams to obtain my R.E. Broker's 
license. (At that time you could go for the Broker's license without first having to be a salesman. Although the exams were 
harder, I opted for the Broker's license.) I scouted the territory for a suitable company and finally made a meaningful contact 
with a partnership called Augustine and Pierce, whose office was located in Beverly Hills. Mr. Augustine, the younger of the 
two, assured me I had entered into the right field of endeavor when I decided to go into real estate, that opportunity was 
unlimited, and that I would make more money in real estate than I had ever dreamed of. I was eagerly motivated to test his 
claim, but nevertheless, took it all with a grain of salt. 

Against the Evil Tide - 22 

Milestone Twenty-One: Romance, Marriage and Real Estate 







Against the Evil Tide - 23 

Milestone Twenty-Two: Up in the Mountains of Big Bear 

About a month before I left Bert Knight, I had traded in my big gas-guzzling Olds '98 and bought a snazzy, brand new 
Studebaker Coupe. It was off-white in color and a classic one-of-a-kind, very streamlined, and looking at it from the side it was 
hard to tell which end was which, or whether it was coming or going. It cost a bundle, about $1600, which was a lot of money in 
those days. Since I had paid cash, I had practically wiped out all of our savings for this little indulgence. 

The job Augustine & Pierce offered me was selling lots at a subdivision that they had newly acquired at Big Bear, a mountain 
resort area located about 1 1 miles east and north of Glendale. Actually, it was an old pre-war subdivision, complete with a 
good well and a broken down set of water lines that leaked like a sieve. They added a pump, a diesel motor and a large 1000 
gallon water storage tank to the water system, bulldozed the streets a little, and they were ready to go. They did not really own 
all the lots. What they had done was buy up what tax lots they could, and what unsold lots were left from the previous 
subdivision owners. The lots were small, 30' x 80', but the ground was level, and the view was good. Also on the premises was 
a new two-story pine cabin, built under the auspices of Augustine & Pierce to serve as a sales office and residence for the 
sales manager, who ever he or she might be. The cabin had been built out of green lumber, and when we moved in we found 
the boards had shrunk drastically, leaving large cracks for the wind to howl through in incumbent weather. In short, the walls 
were as incapable of holding back the wind as the water lines were of containing the water. 

But none of this particularly bothered us. We were young and full of new adventure and we eagerly took the job. Soon after we 
arrived there in the first part of May, a snowstorm blew up (the elevation here was about 6000 feet) and we found snow blowing 
profusely through the cracks in our upstairs bedroom the first night we were there. But no problem. We hung up some blankets 
against the windward side of the wall, and anyway, it was only temporary. The weather soon turned pleasant. 

The project turned out to be no financial bonanza. I was to get a 10% commission on the lots I sold. The lots averaged about 
$300 each, with the "frontage" lots going for $500. So my commission at best would be somewhere between $30 and $50 a lot, 
if and when they were paid for. Since the property was at the extreme eastern end of the road, prospects coming by to look at 
the property were few and far between. As a result we had a lean, lean summer as our first venture into real estate. Mr. 
Augustine's predictions about great financial rewards seemed extremely remote at this juncture. 

However, not only did we have ample time and opportunity to explore and travel the area, but we had fun. Early in the season I 
bought two lots for ourselves and we started building a mountain cabin of our own. We used native stone for the foundation 
and the fireplace, a commodity of which there was an unlimited abundance. The outer siding consisted of slabs we obtained for 
next to nothing from a nearby sawmill boards of varying width anywhere from 4 to 14 inches, with the bark still on one side of 
the board. It turned out to be a real attractive rustic cabin. One weekend Jim Dodd and a friend came up and helped put the 
framing together and set it up. (This was in repayment for all the hours I had spent working on his house in La Crescenta.) 
Unfortunately, by the time the summer was over, we did not quite get it finished, but we did get it closed in. Anyway, we had a 
lot of fun building it, and it was a novel experience. 

One other job I had on the subdivision was keeping up the water pressure in the system. As I said previously, it was an old 
subdivision that had the water lines installed some 20 years earlier and the system leaked like a sieve. By morning the 
pressure would invariably be down to zero. So every morning I would go down to the pump house, start up the diesel and 
pump up the large pressure tank. One morning as I did so we had left the faucets open at the kitchen sink (no pressure). 
Henrie happened to be out of the house while I was pumping up the system. When we came back the water was rushing out 
over the kitchen sink, out of the kitchen and running out through the front door of the living room. 

Another time we had gone to a movie for the evening and the water pressure was down. The water in the hot water tank, which 
was heated by propane, had evidently sunk to a minimum level and evidently caused the thermostat to fall. Anyway, it had 
heated up like a steam boiler and when we flushed the toilet a cloud of steam came gushing up. When we opened the faucets 
in the kitchen sink nothing but hot steam came rushing out. It's a wonder the house didn't blow up. 

About a mile south of us there was a big dog ranch. One day we were visited by a very large dog. I don't know what breed he 
was, but he was neither a Great Dane nor a St. Bernard, but he looked like he might have been a cross between the two. 
Whatever his breed, if he had one, he was as big as a horse, but very friendly. He liked us and we liked him, and he stayed 
with us for a month. I would take him around in my little Studebaker and when he sat in the passenger side of the front seat he 
looked as big as a person, and twice as impressive. 

One day towards the end of summer, a real estate tycoon by the name of M. Penn Phillips from Azusa drove up to look over 
our layout. We entered into a friendly conversation and he suggested when I came back down from the hill I should look him 
up. He was sure he could fit me into his sales staff. He gave me his card. 

It had been a lazy, lackadaisical summer, almost like a vacation at a mountain resort. I sold about 25 or 30 lots, hardly enough 

to pay for our groceries. By the end of the summer we were flat broke. 

During the last week in September I decided to go "down the hill" and look up Penn Phillips about the job he said he had 
waiting for me. By this time fall was coming on up in the mountains and the days were getting colder. We had an oil-fueled 
heater in the middle of the living room that took care of the whole cabin. The heater, too, was somewhat erratic and unreliable. 
Sometimes more oil would gather at the bottom of the unit than was safe. The day I was getting ready to go down and see 
Penn Phillips and getting all spruced up in my best suit and tie, I lit the heater. 

Somehow the damn thing flared up into a minor explosion, and blew soot all over the building, even into the upstairs. I had an 
appointment to keep, and making the best of a bad situation, I washed up, showered, dressed up and took off for Azusa, 
leaving Henrie with the sooty mess to clean up. I met with Penn Phillips in Azusa, and he steered me to W. W. "Bill" Beacom, 
who had a real estate office on east Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena. Penn Phillips at this stage was 66, was a very wealthy 
little man, and had been in the subdivision business for 40 years. He specialized in the $10 down, $10 a month type of 
operations, and had started any number of subdivisions from Coos Bay, Oregon to San Diego to Riverside. In fact, at one time 
he bragged that his outfit had sold more lots than any other in the country. Bill Beacom was just starting up in the real estate 
business and his prime efforts were directed at selling the properties set up by Penn Phillips. I went to see Beacom and he 
hired me on the spot. 

I went back "up the hill" to Big Bear. We closed in our log cabin that we had labored on all summer. (Although it was not 
finished inside, I sold it about a year later for about $1 500). We loaded all our belongings into our little Studebaker and left for 
the bright lights again. We rented a duplex apartment, one of Beacom's projects, in Azusa, and I started my new job in 
Beacom's United Realty office during the first week of October. 

Things went much better. Beacom had a motley crew of six salesmen, some of which were just now getting their salesman's 
license. Anyway, by the second month I was the top salesman in the office. Nevertheless, when we landed in Azusa, I had to 
take out an $800 loan from the bank against my Studebaker to help pay for rent, groceries and some furniture we had to buy. 
In a few months I had the loan paid off and we were even putting a few dollars in the bank. 

After seven or eight months I had saved up about $1500 and had a backlog of about $5000 coming in commissions. (Most of 
our commissions were paid on the installment plan as the payments came in on the lots sold.) I thought the time had come to 
make good on my theory that I was worth more working for myself than for someone else. This I soon managed to do. I was 30 
at the time, and if we ignore being a slave to the Jewish I.R.S., never again was I ever in the employ of another man, or 
another company. 

Against the Evil Tide - 23 

Milestone Twenty-Two: Up in the Mountains of Big Bear 







Against the Evil Tide - 24 

Milestone Twenty-Three: I Go Into Business for Myself 

Working in tiie same office with me at Bill Beacom's was a fellow by the name of Ben Burke. He was a fast-talking Irishman 
about ten years older than I and claimed he had been in the real estate business (off and on) for 13 years. He and I decided to 
go into partnership. We took over a small office at the corner of Huntington Drive and Alhambra Road, an office formerly run by 
his father-in-law. We agreed to pay his father-in-law $1200.00 for the privilege, with me putting up my half in cash. Since Burke 
was stone-broke, he just gave his father-in-law a note for the other $600.00, a note that I am sure was never paid or intended 
to be paid. Exactly what we were paying the old man for still remains a mystery, since there was nothing of much value he had 
to convey, except perhaps that elusive commodity called "good will". Even this was extremely doubtful. One day I answered the 
phone and someone on the other end wanted to place a bet on the horses. When I told him he had the wrong number, he 
insisted he did not, that I was kidding him. I later found out that the old man had done very little real estate business, but had. 
In fact, spent most of his time playing the horses and run a sort of amateur bookie joint. 

We were now into the summer of 1948, trying to get listings and sell properties. Business was slow. I made another unpleasant 
discovery. My partner had some glaring weaknesses. He, too, liked to play the horses. But that was not all. Every so often he 
would go on a drunken binge and stay away from the office. A few such episodes and I had had enough. I offered to "buy him 
out", which consisted of paying him the other $600.00 he supposedly owed his father-in-law. 

After I had the office to myself, business began to pick up. Penn Phillips offered me an exclusive on one of his subdivisions in 
Antelope Valley. We made a deal and I soon had about four or five salesmen working for me. After another six months, I 
abandoned the small office on Huntington Drive and rented a larger office at 5612 East Beverly Blvd., in East Los Angeles. 

Among the salesmen I hired were Gene Vogt, Ray Belt, Louis T. Bethan, to name a few. Another man I hired was a renegade 
ex-preacher by the name of M. Stanley Peek. He was from Arkansas and was a member of the Church of Christ. I had known 
him when we both worked as salesmen for W. W. Beacom. After I left Beacom he went into partnership with another real estate 
salesman by the name of Don Trout and the two of them had worked a land deal in Nevada. The deal had failed and Peek 
came to work for me. However, he was bullish about the possibilities of acquiring some large tracts in Nevada for subdivision 
and after a while I was interested enough to look into it. 

Trout and Peek had worked a large acreage deal whereby they sold the acreage in 160 acre tracts at $10.00 down, $10.00 a 
month, and $10.00 an acre. One of their problems was that neither one of them had any money of their own to speak of, nor 
did they own the land they were selling. Half the proceeds went to owners of the land for whom they were acting as agents. On 
top of this, their somewhat irresponsible advertising promised more than they could deliver. As I mentioned earlier, the venture 
failed, partly due to bad management, and partly due to the inherently sleazy nature of the two characters running it. 

Merle Stanley Peek was one of those colorful but cantankerous characters of whom you would not want to meet more than 
once In a lifetime. He could lie as only an ex-preacher can, and had the unusual ability to appear arrogant and sanctimonious 
at the same time. He had a tremendous ego whose past accomplishments did not by any means justify the overweening 
opinion he had of himself, nor did it support his braggart rendition of his past. At 44 he was broke, he was a drifter and was 
married to a mestizo Mexican woman by the name of Esther. They had three young boys, ages seven years and younger. He 
had been married before, and had a shiftless, irresponsible son from the previous marriage who was also married and 
alternated living with his mother, and when Stan was able, sponging off his dad. Somehow, Stan Peek was always in the 
middle of a hassle, and I should have known better than to have had anything to do with him. But I did not. When he came to 
work for me in 1949, he managed to suppress most of his nastier characteristics, and I was somewhat intrigued about the 
Nevada land possibilities, which as I saw it, if managed differently could be built into a major venture. One of the prerequisites 
that I insisted on if we did go into such a venture was that we would not act as agents for some third party, but would own our 
land outright and have complete control of our business. 

Meanwhile, my real estate business at 5612 E. Beverly Blvd. was going well. I specialized in acreage and lots and had 
subdivision deals going at Fontana, Riverside and Antelope Valley. I now had a staff of five or six salesmen. Whereas I was not 
getting rich, I was putting some money in the bank. I had traded off my snappy little Studebaker and bought a new 1949 blue 
Hudson sedan, which could accommodate more passengers, a necessity in showing properties. My wife and I now rented a 
nice apartment in South Pasadena at 1100 Maple Street. While Peek was still my salesman, we decided to take a tour of the 
State of Nevada and look for some promising properties to buy. We made an extensive tour of the state and ended up in the 
office of Wayne McLeod, whose official position was that of Surveyor General of the State of Nevada, and also its Lieutenant 
Governor. His office was in the State Capitol in Carson City. As a sideline, Wayne McLeod was also a real estate broker. This 
combination gave him a considerable advantage and a fairly wide knowledge of real estate in Nevada. 

He had a property listed that sounded interesting. It consisted of 18,200 acres lying in a valley west of Lake Lahonton. This 
property was part of the famous Break-a-Heart Ranch, owned by a flamboyant playboy by the name of Richard Conklin. 

Richard had married a young heiress several years previously and when she died young, he had given his ranch the tragic and 
romantic name mentioned above. As well as the 18,200 sagebrush acres he had listed for sale, his ranch consisted of some 
fertile alfalfa land along the Carson River, and a beautiful ranch dwelling. It was, in all aspects, a gentleman rancher's dream. 
The property for sale sounded interesting. Not only was it mostly level, but it was intersected and accessible by two major 
highways, namely U.S. 50 and U.S. 95 Alternate. The fact that it bordered a large sized lake (although it had no direct lake 
frontage) was so much icing on the cake. On further negotiation we found that it could be purchased at $2.00 an acre, in other 
words, $36,400.00, with $1 ,800.00 down and installments of $1 ,800.00, including 6% interest, every six months. The property 
lay 35 miles east of Carson City and 26 miles west of Fallen, Nevada. However, the section at the direct intersection of 
Highways 50 and 95 was owned by another party and was not part of the deal. One added plus, however, was that the land 
had been surveyed by the U.S. Geodetic Survey and the brass plate section markers were in at every corner. 

The deal looked good and we decided to form a partnership, Klassen and Peek, and buy the land. I had about $6,000.00 saved 
up at this time, had a going office, and had an income. Like Ben Burke before him. Peek was flat broke. He managed to borrow 
the necessary $1 ,000.00 down payment from his wife's Mexican parents and I put up the other $1 ,000.00 and the deal was 

So now I was running two businesses out of my office. The former land business with my other salesmen continued as before, 
and now the Nevada partnership with Peek, in which the other salesmen had no part. 

The Nevada venture consumed more and more of my time, not only in the office, but also the increasingly frequent trips we 
would have to take to Fallen for various reasons. Fallen was 500 miles away, a trip that usually required more than a day to 
accomplish just one-way. Therefore, what with time consumed at the property, the trip up and back, usually a whole week was 
consumed. Also another problem developed in the office. The other non-participating salesmen resented the fact that Peek, 
who had been one of them, now had a special deal and they were being neglected. The time had come to decide on Nevada or 
to run the local business. I saw where the Nevada deal could be built into a business that could be the basis for a major 
operation for decades. To run it properly, I felt that one of us should be on the site in Nevada and properly take care of that end 
of it, while the other should run the office In the Los Angeles area and send up the prospects. 

We decided to call our venture The Silver Springs Land Co. 

Against the Evil Tide - 24 

Milestone Twenty-Three: I Go Into Business for Myself 







Against the Evil Tide - 25 

Milestone Twenty-Four: Fallon, Nevada, and into the Wild West 

On October of 1950 we made our decision. Henrie and I would move to Fallen, Nevada, and the Pecks would stay in Alhambra 
and run the office there. In short order we sold the few pieces of furniture we owned in the South Pasadena apartment, and 
loaded the rest of our belongings into our navy blue Hudson sedan. I can't help but be amazed how few our belongings were 
then compared to the large moving vans we have had to utilize in all our subsequent moves. Anyway, with our Hudson loaded 
to the gills, off we went to a new venture and a new environment a farming and ranching area that still had much of the old 
Wild West inherent in its atmosphere. I looked forward to the change as a new adventure. After all, I had always had a 
hankering for the Old West, what with its ghost towns, ranching and wide-open spaces. Fallen, Nevada, not only represented 
plenty of ranching and farming, but only about 25 miles to the west of Silver Springs was the storied old mining town of Virginia 
City, which, although no longer rich in ore, it was rich in lore and storied romance. 

We had previously befriended a young couple in Fallen by the names of Bill and Adah Petherbridge, and had asked them to 
find us an apartment to rent. Since my wife was pregnant at the time, she told them to make sure it was a ground floor 
apartment. The Petherbridge couple were about our age, in their middle thirties. They were a congenial couple and we soon 
became close friends. Bill was head of the Fallen and Churchill County Chamber of Commerce and had many contacts. Both 
Bill and Adah had been married before. He had a 13-year-old son, and now they had a young daughter of their own, only about 
two years of age. Bill sometimes had his moody side, and also sometimes indulged in too much to drink. He had had a father 
who had gone insane. At times this preyed on his mind and he brooded that perhaps he, too, might end up as did his father. 
Although a most friendly and outgoing couple, they had more than their share of marital spats, some of which we had to 

Having initially headquartered in Fallen, I set about expanding our Silver Springs Land Co. venture. Although when in 1949 we 
bought the 18,200 acres in the valley around the crossroads of U.S. Highways 50 and 95 Alternate, we did not at that time 
acquire the particular section at the intersection Itself. This was owned by a young fellow and his mother who lived in nearby 
Wabuska, about 15 miles to the south. Their names were Glenn D. Hurt and Katherine Hurt respectively. On June 6, 1950 we 
managed to negotiate the purchase of this strategic piece of property for the sum of approximately $1 0.00 an acre. Since there 
had been some acreage taken out for highway right-of-way (for both 50 and 95 Alt.) and also a piece of acreage for the existing 
airstrip utilized by the Naval Air Force during the war, our total price came to about $6000.00. 

Once we had acquired this property, it was urgent that we build a headquarters and an office at the crossroads and put our 
sign "Silver Springs Land Co." in large letters at the ridge of the roof. This we did in short order. Stan Peek's brother, Dan, who 
was a contractor, came all the way from Silver Spring, Maryland, to do the job in the fall of 1950. We now had a nice concrete 
block building that consisted of an office occupying the front one third of the building, and a large room and a small bathroom, 
occupying the back two-thirds. 

I set about subdividing and laying out the town site of Silver Springs. To do this job, I hired a surveyor from Virginia City. His 
name was Walter G. Reid and he was also a senator in the Nevada legislature. I laid out the street plan, the size of the blocks 
and the size of the lots, and named every one of the dozens of streets in the five hundred and some acre subdivision. We had 
a well drilled in the middle of the subdivision and put in a pump and pressure tank in a pump house. We then ran water lines to 
each individual lot throughout the subdivision at considerable expense. 

We also laid out 320 acre, or 640 acre, subdivisions of five-acre lots on various sections away from the crossroads itself. These 
did not have a water system but required the owners to drill their own well. We did, however, have these surveyed and staked, 
the lots numbered and a graded road to each. We started selling these for $249.00, $10.00 down and $10.00 per month. We 
soon discovered that these offerings of 5 acres proved much more popular than the smaller city lots with water lines. Soon we 
were doing a land office business. Our prices soon went up to $295.00 per five acres, then to $345.00 then $395.00 and 
before long they were selling for $895.00. We were in business. By the middle of 1951 we were taking in as much as 
$10,000.00 a month. We acquired more large acreages in this same Lahontan valley. On January 31, 1951, 1 negotiated the 
purchase of approximately 6000 acres from an enterprising young rancher by the name of John J. Casey and his wife Myrtle E. 
Casey. Whereas we had paid only $2.00 an acre a little more than a year earlier when we made our first purchase from 
Richard H. Conklin, we now paid more than three times as much for similar adjoining acres in our purchase from Casey. Our 
activities in the area had driven up the price, which while favorable when selling, worked against us in buying. Nevertheless, we 
were now in a position to buy, and sales looked promising. We also bought up several smaller pieces in short order to round 
out our possessions. We bought 640 acres from M.P. Glessner and his wife Patsy, who resided at nearby Femley. We bought 
some scattered pieces from the County itself, namely Lyon County, that they had acquired through tax foreclosures. 

Since much of the land in the west was checker-boarded due to the fact the railroads in the nineteenth century acquired vast 
areas of patented government land in an every other section pattern, there remained a number of sections that were still owned 
by the government, the Bureau of Land Management. One of the most important negotiations we were able to accomplish at 

this time was to trade some of tlie interspersed government sections tiiat were in the valley for some of our outlying sections 
that were on the slope of the hills and mountains. This accrued much to our benefit in two ways: it made our holdings more 
contiguous, and secondly, we usually acquired a better piece of valley land. 


Meanwhile, back in Saskatchewan, I still had two brothers and one sister, all of which were married and had families, and lived 
on farms. My youngest brother Korni (Kornelius) who was ten years older than I, had written me on a few occasions of how 
miserably cold it got during the Saskatchewan winters (a situation of which I was well aware) and how he hated living where he 
did. He wrote about a particularly poignant incident where he and his wife Martha were coming home from somewhere one 
dark night and they got caught in a blizzard. Evidently, they got lost and ran into a snow filled ravine. The horses and sled got 
bogged down in the deep snow and they set off on foot to find the nearest dwelling, not knowing north from south. They finally 
ended up crawling on their hands and knees with the two little ones tied to their backs. They finally saw a light and stumbled 
into a neighbor's house, on the verge of being frozen to death. 

When he related this tragic story to me by letter, I wrote him and suggested if he disliked Saskatchewan that much why didn't 
he move to some warmer clime. When I said that, I was not at all inviting them to come to Nevada, but merely making a 
detached and obvious observation. One day in February of 1951 as I came home for lunch to our apartment in Fallon, my wife 
acted a little strange as we engaged in conversation. All of a sudden, surprise! surprise! The surprise was on me! Through the 
door from the next room, with much fanfare, emerged my brother Korni, his wife Martha, and their brood of four boys, aged 
from two to eleven. So there they were, having taken my suggestion seriously. Here we are, we have no plans, now what can 
you do for us? Surprise! Surprise! 

We moved them into the rear room of the Silver Springs office building. A little later, we provided them with a choice 320-acre 
piece fronting on U.S. 95 Alt., about three miles south of the intersection. We had a well drilled for them at our expense. He 
bought a small house for $1500.00 and had it moved onto the 320 acres. He had some vague ideas about farming the land by 
irrigation. I "loaned" him $5000.00 to purchase a set of aluminum irrigation pipes. I never saw the $5000.00 again. 

On June 7, 1 951 our one and only daughter (and child) Kim Anita was bom in the hospital at Fallen. It so happened that my 
wife's birthday also fell on June 7. The birth of our daughter put a new perspective on our lifestyle, as to where we lived, and 
how we lived. Our business was prospering but we lived in a not so great apartment (there were no new apartments) and the 
town of Fallen itself was not the most auspicious or desirable place in the world in which to reside and bring up a family. 
Whereas the winters were tolerable, the springs and falls were most pleasant, the summers were intolerably hot, with dust 
storms whipping up a scenario every now and then, not an uncommon phenomenon out in the desert. (Whereas that area, as 
most of Nevada, is desert, there were about 50,000 acres of green, irrigated farms in the Fallen Irrigation District deriving their 
water from Lake Lahontan, a lake which bordered much of our property at Silver Springs.) In any case, after the birth of our 
daughter, my wife was unhappy about living in Fallen, or building a house at Silver Springs, or for that matter living anywhere in 
Nevada, and she was becoming unhappier by the day. The time had come to make an agonizing re-appraisal. 


Besides the two major highways that cut through our property, and besides the adjoining Lake Lahontan, there was a railway 
that ran up from Yerington and on north between the lake and U.S. 95A. A slow freight train ran through there, perhaps once a 
day, if at all. One Sunday, a few weeks after the birth of our daughter, I started out to show some of our five-acre properties to 
a nice couple from San Francisco. They and their two boys got into my Hudson and the five of us drove along a graded dirt 
road that crossed the railroad tracks to a five-acre subdivision near the lake. We were heavily engrossed in conversation as I 
slowly started to cross the railroad tracks. In fact, I was driving so slowly the car happened to stall at exactly the middle of the 
tracks. I had had some problem with the ignition key making connections the last few days, a matter I intended to get fixed, but 
had not. I tried to re-start the engine, but the ignition switch made no contact. Just then i heard the shrill whistle of an oncoming 
locomotive to my right, and to my horror I realized the freight train was bearing down upon us. I tried again to start the engine. 
No luck. By this time the whistle was screaming and I could see the engineer in the side window of the cab frantically waving 
his arms for us to get the hell out of the car. I got the message. I told the man and wife, who were in the front seat with me, to 
get out quick, and then yanked the two small boys in the back seat out. Only about two seconds later the locomotive hit my 
Hudson amidships, and I'll never forget the sound of that crash. Caught up on the cowcatcher, I can still hear the "rat-a-tat-tat" 
as the car bounced along over the crossties for the next several hundred yards before the train could finally come to a stop. It 
had a long line of heavy ore-filled cars behind the engine. 

After the train came to a halt, the crew pushed the battered Hudson off the tracks. I got into the cab of the locomotive and they 
took me another mile or so, to where it stopped again opposite our land office. I walked the intervening distance to the office 
and got into one of the Peek brothers' cars and picked up our prospective customers, whom I had left at the scene of the 
accident. Either through sheer gratitude that they were all still alive, or through sympathy for the misfortune I had suffered, they 

went ahead and bought a five acre piece anyway, a property they did not get to see, at least not that day. 


There was never a dull moment during the year we spent in Nevada. One day during the spring of 1 951 , I was peacefully sitting 
at my desk in the front office when a car drove up. Out jumped a band of five or so Indians from one of the nearby reservations 
and barged into my office. One Redskin was carrying a nice shiny rifle. Shades of the Old Wild West! They did not seem like 
friendly Injuns. "You wanna buy a rifle? Cheap! Only five dollars!" I declined and nervously made some friendly conversation, 
hoping they would not use the business end of the rifle to consummate the deal, or to collect the five dollars and whatever else 
I might have in my wallet. After a few minutes of "no deal!" they left, much to my relief. About ten minutes later, a squad car 
with a sheriff and two deputies swerved into the drive. They asked had I seen a band of Indians with a rifle? I sure had. 
Which way did they go? They went thataway, pardner, north, up the road towards Femicy. Off they went in hot pursuit, and 
soon caught the Redskins. As I had correctly suspected, the rifle had been stolen. 

My college roommate, Jim Dodd, who had come to California with me, was settled with his wife Marge, in the western part of 
Los Angeles. He was quite an aggressive eager beaver and had done quite well in various enterprises in which he had 
engaged. At present, 1951, he had a small manufacturing plant that made electric induction coils on specialty orders, that were 
used in airplanes, electronic gear and other military equipment. Since the Korean war was now in full swing he could pretty well 
name his own price, and he was making a killing. He watched our Silver Springs project with keen interest, and some avarice, 
and having extra money to invest he let us know that he would like part of the action. 

At this time, we were expanding rapidly and committing ourselves to buying more land. Although business was good, and we 
had an increasing number of $10.00 a month payments coming in, we also had a lot of expenses (streets, surveying, water 
systems) and some fairly heavy mortgage payments to meet. We could use some extra cash, over and above our cash flow. 
So we made a deal. We wanted more buildings to appear on the scene in our subdivision. If he would build two major CBS 
buildings (for himself) at or near the intersection, plus a certain sum in cash to us, we would deed some good and valuable 
pieces of property over to him. 

The deal was made, and Dan Peek, Stan's brother, was the contractor. He built a factory building on Highway 50, about half a 
mile west of the crossroads, and when it was finished he had three or four employees actually working in there winding 
induction coils. The other structure he built was a large warehouse type of building, walls 12 feet high, and approximately 50 x 
100 feet in dimensions. However, after he had the walls up, he was stalled for a while waiting for steel beams for the roof and 
other details. This left the long walls exposed and unsupported. Meanwhile, one of those almost hurricane force windstorms 
that are characteristic of the desert, came along and broke down all four walls, leaving only the jagged four corners standing. 
So it stood for a while, an eyesore to say the least, certainly no advertising asset to our project. He finally finished repairing and 
restructuring the building after I had divested myself of the operation. I never did see the finished building. 

After the loss of my revered navy blue Hudson on the railroad tracks, I bought a big black used Cadillac. We had already come 
to an agreement with Stan and Esther Peek that we had completed our tour of duty, and that in exchange they would now man 
the station at Silver Springs. We in turn would reside in California, open an office, advertise and send prospects up to Silver 
Springs. I would come up to the property on weekends to help out, when needed, a process that we had carried out before, 
with our positions now reversed. My wife and I and our little daughter got into our newly purchased black Cadillac and set out 
for the San Francisco Bay area to do some serious house hunting. 

Against the Evil Tide - 25 

Milestone Twenty-Four: Fallon, Nevada, and into the Wild West 







Against the Evil Tide - 26 

Milestone Twenty-Five: To tlie San Francisco Bay Area 

After having spent a year in tlie wide-open spaces of Nevada, we chose to move to the so-called Bay Area of California, rather than go back to 
the Los Angeles area. The reasons we chose this locale were several. For one thing, the climate was cooler than in Southern California. 
Secondly, the area was closer to our Nevada property, approximately half the distance, and a majority of our prospects came from this 
population center. Thirdly, a spirit of exploring a new territory also had something to do with the choice. 

In any case, towards the end of October of 1951 we hired a moving van and transported our increasing assortment of belongings to move into 
the new home we had purchased in the village of San Lorenzo a few weeks previously. Although not large, it was a beautiful house, two 
bedrooms plus small den, the first home we had ever owned. It had been a model home for the developer who had built it as a combination 
sales office and show model for the tract that he was merchandizing. It came complete with model furniture, carpeting, walls decorated in 
attractive wallpaper and colors, everything ready to move into. We paid $12,500 for the home, an extra premium, but felt it was worth every 

My role regarding the land sales in Nevada was now reversed. Peek and family were now on the property, and I was advertising and sending 
prospects to the property. I soon rented a small office in Oakland, which became my operating headquarters. 

Not only did I try to contact prospects, but nearly every week-end I would drive to Silver Springs to help show property. I would usually leave 
San Lorenzo at approximately four o'clock on Saturday morning - drive the 260 miles over U.S. 50 in approximately five to five and a half hours 
and arrive at the property at about nine o'clock, or shortly thereafter. I would sleep overnight on a couch in the front office of our headquarters 
building, while the five Peeks lived and slept in the large room in back of it, all of us sharing a small bathroom. Then, if things went well, I would 
leave at about five o'clock on Sunday afternoon, arriving back home at San Lorenzo sometime between 10:00 and 11 P.M. However, many a 
time there were numerous delays and I might get back at three o'clock in the morning. More often than not there were emergencies, extra 
problems that required my attention, and I would have to stay over a few extra days. 

One Sunday night I was barreling down the western slope of the Sierra Nevadas on U.S. 50, just west of Placerville. It was about 12 o'clock 
midnight when I noticed a car about a quarter of a mile ahead of me was slowing down to a stop, but staying in the two-lane road. As I was 
getting ready to pass it on the left I saw a deer standing there in the headlights about 50 feet ahead of us. Too late, I slammed on the brakes, 
only to swerve my car sideways and catch the other car's rear bumper with my rear fender. Why the fellow hadn't driven his car off the 
shoulder, I will never know but when I talked to him I noticed the smell of alcohol on his breath. In no time at all, it seemed, a woman patrol 
officer appeared on the scene and took notes of the whole affair. Luckily, my car was not so badly damaged that I could not continue the rest of 
the trip home. 

In the meantime, sales were going fairly well and business was prospering. We were doing especially well in the sales of five-acre tracts, which 
in fact, by this time were our mainstay. Other than the fact that business was good, all other aspects of the partnership were becoming 
increasingly intolerable. Dan Peek, Stan's brother, had moved with his family of five from Maryland to Silver Springs and now lived on the 
property. His main preoccupation was building Stan Peek's new house, a dwelling that was located on 160 acres about a mile south of the 
cross roads. There was increasing rancor between Stan Peek and his brother. There was a bitter feud between the Peeks and my brother 
Korni. Stan Peek, at the age of 45, for the first time in his life had a small measure of financial success (still in the small leagues, but that did 
not dampen his arrogance) and his inherently pathological nastiness began to surface more openly. He became more overbearing and high 
and mighty, trying to over-compensate for his previous failures as a drifter and a loser. In fact, all those obnoxious and unsavory characteristics 
one would expect from a lying renegade Arkansas preacher that I had suspected he had to begin with, now came to the fore and were further 

I now began to take stock of the situation. Although I did not go to Silver Springs every weekend, my repeated trips up there and back were 
beginning to become an unpleasant bore, made more unpleasant by all the wrangling that I was continually drawn into as an unwilling 
participant. My half interest in the project now was worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $200,000. Peek and I were now discussing the 
prospect of one party buying out the other. He was willing to go either way, and for a while, so was I. However, either way it would have to be 
done on an installment basis, over a period of perhaps five years. Being aware of the shifty nature of my partner, I was not too keen about 
depending on him to make his payments in the coming years. 

I began to consider the several alternatives. My wife and I were established in a beautiful home in the peaceful, attractive area of San Lorenzo, 
adjoining the larger city of Hayward, an area which back in 1951 had much to offer. The climate was pleasant, in contrast to the hot desert 
summers and cold winters of the Nevada landscape, not to mention the sandstorms. My wife much preferred living where we were to going 
back to Silver Springs. And then there was the matter of our new daughter. Certainly she would have a much more pleasant up bringing and 
environment here than in the Nevada milieu. In one way, I had a certain vested attachment to the Silver Springs development, into which I had 
poured much energy and imagination, and I had a desire to really make something big and meaningful out of the project. On the other hand, it 
would be a decided relief to be rid of all the hassles, pressures and commitments that went with the territory. Still, I did not want to sell to Peek 
and probably have to hassle with him in the future to make his committed payments, or even to have to listen to his damn ongoing hassles with 

A solution presented itself A lumber dealer from Redwood City, across the bay from where we lived, was interested in buying my half interest. 
Whereas Peek was willing to pay me $200,000 (on the installment basis) Phillip Hess was only willing to pay $150,000, also on the installment 
basis. I agonized over the matter for some time. Should I buy out Peek? Should I sell to Peek? Should I sell to Hess for a lower price instead? 

Finally, in November of 1 952 I made up my mind. I would sell to Hess for $1 50,000, wash my hands of the whole affair, and live the life of a 
retired gentleman. The more I thought about it, the more the idea appealed to me. A contract was drawn up and the sale was consummated. A 
few years later, Hess sold out to Peek, and made a $50,000 profit, I understand, but I couldn't care less. The point is that not only did he make 

his payments on time, but Hess paid up the end balance a year ahead of when it was due. 

Against the Evil Tide - 26 

Milestone Twenty-Five: To tlie San Francisco Bay Area 







Against the Evil Tide - 27 

Milestone Twenty-Six: Glenmore Gardens and Canolectric 

While $1 50,000 may not seem like a great deal of money today, we must remember that 35 or 40 years ago it was probably the equivalent of a 
million dollars today. Anyway, I felt that we could comfortably live on our nest egg for the next 20 years, if not longer, what with accruing 
interest and all. As my interests shifted away from Silver Springs, and I now had the independence of time and some money to play with, I 
naturally became interested in other investments. 

One of my first (but no means last!) business boondoggles that I got involved in was a new company in San Mateo that proposed to put a self- 
lighting cigarette on the market. The name of the company was Commercial Tobacco Corp. It was headed by a little Greek barber by the name 
of Frank Witt. The idea intrigued me, as evidently it did a lot of other people. Even the business press seemed favorably impressed and was 
helpful in putting out some glowing reports of its future prospects. (In fact, that is how I first heard about it.) Initially, I bought a few hundred 
shares at $1 .00 a share. 

Next, I traded in the black Cadillac sedan I had bought second hand a year earlier (after my Hudson was demolished on the railroad tracks at 
Silver Springs) and bought a brand new powder blue Cadillac Coupe de Ville. 

This cost a neat $5000, a fairly decent sum in those days, but what the hell, I always did want a new Cadillac, and I was entitled to one, I 
convinced myself. 

Also, we felt that we needed a bigger house, especially one that had a larger den or recreation room. There was an interesting new subdivision 
being started in the cow pastures near the little town of Centerville, about ten miles south of where we lived. Again, going back about 35 years 
ago, the area on the east side of San Francisco Bay between Hayward and San Jose at that time consisted mostly of farming land, orchards, 
and cow pastures with five little towns scattered on either side of Highway 1 7. These towns were (in order going south) Union City, Centerville, 
Irvington, Newark and Milpitas. Even before we left the area in 1958, this conglomerate was incorporated into a new city called Fremont, and 
represents a major population center today. 

But getting back to 1 952, we selected a lot in Glenmore Gardens and had a home built to our specifications, which included a large recreation 
room or den. The plans also called for two flagstone fireplaces, one in the living room, the other in the den, back to back. We negotiated the 
deal, lot and all, for $17,500.00, again, a fairly tidy amount in those days. Our address was 439 Morris Road. (My daughter, who revisited the 
place in 1987, tells me the street numbering system has been changed since then.) 

We put our home in San Lorenzo up for sale and soon found a buyer willing to pay us $1 5,000 for it. Our new place in Glenmore Gardens was 
to be ready by Feb. 1 , 1 953, and we retained an option to stay in the San Lorenzo home until that date, although the closing date was earlier. 
The new house was not ready on time, and reluctantly we moved out on Feb. 1 , took a motel room in San Jose and put our furniture and 
belongings into storage. Finally towards the end of May 1953, our new home was ready and we moved in, much to our relief. 

I was now a gentleman retired, and with no visible business activities. I had time on my hands. There was, of course, a considerable amount of 
work entailed in fixing up the yard, putting in the lawn, the planters, the shrubbery. I joined a Country Club in Oakland, or Piedmont, and played 
golf. However, I found that didn't interest me too much, and I don't believe I played more than half a dozen games before dropping my 
membership. However, I did play a lot of tennis, and Glenmore Gardens had a set of courts in a park only a few blocks from our new home. 

My interests turned to woodworking as a hobby. In order to do this properly I had to have a workshop, of course, so I built one in the back yard. 
This soon became a major project, and not only did I build a gorgeous workshop paneled in knotty pine, with a shake shingle roof and a large 
plate glass window, but I also built a lanai between the workshop and the house, complete with an outdoor fireplace and a barbecue. The latter 
were built of used brick, as was a central planter. 

Soon I had the workshop stocked with an assortment of electrical tools - a bench saw, a drill press, a shaper, a woodworking lathe, a band 
saw, and a collection of hand tools, electric and otherwise. So now I had to make something, do something, with all that equipment. The next 
thing I did was build a playhouse for my then four year old daughter. It was constructed out of redwood and it, too, had a shake shingle roof. 
What next? My interest in the self-lighting cigarette increased as time went by, and so did the amount of my investment. Soon I had $4,000 
sunk into this gamble. Not too long after that the venture went flat broke. The company did reach the point where it had actually manufactured 
some crude cigarettes with a sulphur tip that lit like a match when struck on a prepared surface on the side of the pack. But by that time the 
business was out of money and out of confidence. It went flat broke. I had taken a big gamble and lost. I contemplated how much better off I 
would have been if I had invested that same $24,000 in IBM stock, an alternative that I had considered. 

But I was not broke, and I weathered the loss. What it did do was stimulate my imagination as to what could be done with an innovative new 
idea, a new invention, if handled properly. Why didn't I invent something? Why didn't I come up with a bright new idea? Here this Greek barber 
had come up with the idea of a self-lighting cigarette, and he had convinced me and hundreds of others that we all could make millions, 
hundreds of millions. It had failed, but some other idea could make it a reality, couldn't it? I began thinking along those lines. I wanted to 
become an inventor, an entrepreneur. 

We were vacationing in Southern California during the spring of 1954. One evening about 10:00 o'clock I was sitting around the swimming pool 
of the motel we were staying at in Pasadena and I was racking my brains as to what I might invent, and I went over the procedure quite 
methodically. I started out with the question - in what category would there be a good, widespread demand, a large market? My answer was, 
some new kitchen gadget, perhaps. All right, what could I invent for the kitchen that wasn't already in existence? My answer to that was to 
electrify some item that was now still done by hand. My next question was - what was, there left in the housewife's line of kitchen equipment 

that didn't already come equipped witli an electric motor? There were electric mixers, electric garbage disposals, brooms had been replaced by 
vacuum cleaners. There were electric irons, electric coffee pots. I went down the line. Finally I came to the hand operated can opener. That 
was it! What the world needed was an electric can opener! Of course! I had my idea. Eureka! An electric can opener! 

I went back to my workshop in Glenmore Gardens and started to try to design an electric can opener. What I had in mind was not just an 
electric can opener as such, but a push button electric can opener, one whereby you put the can in place, pushed a button and the power 
mechanism took over, punctured the can, spun the can, and released it when the button was released. I soon had a name for it as well. I would 
call it Canolectric. What the world needed was a Canolectric in every kitchen! 

But now, to get back to the Glenmore Gardens. We lived there for a little more than five years. In looking back, I believe it was probably the 
most peaceful, pleasant and buoyant period of our life, at least the first half of it, before I became too heavily involved with putting the electric 
can opener on the market. Both the era and the area were auspicious for their well-being. This was during the earlier part of the Eisenhower 
administration, when the country was expanding, subdivisions were going up all over the landscape, and an ordinary young couple could buy a 
nice house for between $9000 and $12,000, with practically nothing down. The political horizon was still relatively unclouded by racial 
problems, or screaming "civil rights" agitators, nor were there then any serious threats of worldwide conflagration. True, the Korean war had 
raised considerable anxieties a few years earlier, but it had simmered down to an "incident" that we could now almost ignore and get on with 
our business. My wife and i were in our middle thirties, in good health, and financially relatively secure. We had a nice home of which we were 
proud, and a nice little family that included one daughter, of whom we were also proud. 

Furthermore, the neighborhood in which we lived, especially on Morris Road, were our kind of people, and we enjoyed the social fraternization 
and friendships during those five years we lived there more than we have experienced in any other area. For one thing, we had much in 
common with our new neighbors everybody had just moved in on the street and we were all most receptive to making new friendships. The 
day the van arrived with our furniture, Mel Gillette, and his wife Ray, who lived across the street, came over and invited us over for dinner that 
night, an invitation which we gratefully accepted. They had just moved in the week before. There were still a number of houses under 
construction when we arrived, and new people were moving in every week. Most of them were young couples in our age bracket, successful 
young people who were moving up in the world, and were now moving into a nicer and better than average home. They were all White, no 
niggers within miles, and the threats of Mexicans, Asians or other mud races moving in never even occurred to anyone at that time. 

We were a congenial group, and as the construction on the street was completed and all the houses occupied over the next several months, 
there was much getting together and partying. Every so often one neighbor or another, at the slightest pretext, would throw a bash, and we 
would each bring a bottle and have a hilarious party. There was no rowdiness, there were no nasty characters, just good clean merriment and 
fun. Here are some of the good neighbors I remember, although I don't by any means remember them all. There were the John Beumers, who 
lived next door to our left. They had a boy and a girl, John and Kathy, a little older than our Kim. Next to them lived the Tom Brooks family, who 
had three cute girls, not yet in their teens, two of them being twins. There was Jim and Jean Feitner, who had a highly intelligent little boy by 
the name of Jimmy, who was Kim's age and favorite playmate. A little later they had a daughter by the name of Sally. Next to the Gillettes 
across the street lived the Carl Martineaus. He was a professional engineer. His wife's name was Lou, and they had a little boy by the name of 
Pierre, who also was about Kim's age. Then there was the family of Joe and Margaret Meadows, who had a beautiful little blonde daughter by 
the name of Sandra, who was a few years older than Kim. Joe was a real jokester, and between him and Margaret, they were usually the life of 
the party. Further down the street lived the Jim Grooms. He was a real handsome fellow and was a major executive of the Hunt ketchup 
company in Hayward. Their little daughter Nancy was also one of Kim's favorite playmates. At the end of the street on the west end lived an 
older couple in their sixties. Their names were Ralph and Gladys Donahue, a jolly couple, although not in our age group, nevertheless were 
part of "our gang" and joined in our parties. Tragically to note, Gladys died of a heart attack while we were still in Glenmore Gardens. 

This is not to say that everyone in Glenmore was happy, successful and financially independent. Like everywhere else, there were some 
people with severe problems. Our next-door neighbor to the east, who worked for the newly built Ford plant in nearby Milpitas, had been 
demoted in his job. Evidently, this seriously preyed on his mind, and he tragically over-reacted. One morning, as I was about on my way to 
drive to San Jose, I noticed a hearse in front of his house. The despondent man had not been able to tolerate the setback. He had taken a 
pistol and shot himself in the temple. 

For the first two years at Glenmore, I was retired, a man of leisure, while I watched my eager beaver friends and neighbors going off to work 
every morning. Whereas I was improving our yard, building a workshop, designing my electric can opener and otherwise making myself useful, 
I did not exactly feel comfortable about being retired at my age while everyone else was going off to work. However, I tried not to let it bother 
me, and enjoyed myself. Whereas I couldn't get interested in golf, I enjoyed and played plenty of tennis in the nearby Glenmore courts. It was, 
and still is, my best game. My playing partner often was Bill Adcock, who was owner of a manufacturer's rep company in Oakland. Bill and Irma 
Adcock were also among our social circle. 

Glenmore Gardens soon also had a church. It was a Presbyterian church and was headed by Pastor Tom Fuhr. He and his wife Ruth were a 
congenial couple who were also in our age bracket and we soon became good friends. We soon joined the church shortly after it was built, and 
on the 26th of November 1 955, Henrie, Kim and I even went so far as to get ourselves baptized. Why, I'll never know, unless it was for social 
reasons. We still have the certificates in our files, and looking at them recently, I noted that it says we received the "Certificate of Batism". 
Batism is right. How batty can you get? 

We did not go to church regularly, but we did contribute money to its maintenance. Actually, the sermons bored me stiff. One day Tom and I 
were discussing philosophy and religion, and I said to him, "Tom, there are a few things that bother me about this whole religious mess. Why is 
it that God would create all these millions of people and then let most of them go to hell and be tortured forever and a day? It doesn't make 
much sense to me, and frankly I don't believe in all this hocus-pocus." It didn't particularly bother him, and he didn't try to explain it to me. All he 
said was, "If that's what you believe, stick with it." I had a feeling he didn't really believe the stuff either. Tom and Ruth visited us in Florida 
about six years later and he was no longer in the ministry. They were off on a tour to Europe with a wealthy friend of theirs, who bankrolled 
their trip. Since we had the time and the means, my little family and I took any number of trips and outings in the nearby area, and in California 
at large. Some of our favorite outings included trips to Southern California, to Santa Barbara, to Monterey and Carmel, to the grape and wine 
country of the Russian River area north of San Francisco, and to the Boulder Creek area between San Jose and Santa Cruz. We also visited 

most of the choice national parl<s, such as Yosemite, Sequoia and Kings Canyon, where some magnificent stands of giant redwoods are 
located. Also, in this list of parks I should include the John Muir Woods in the Mt. Tamalpais State Park. 

The Glenmore Gardens subdivision, started by a real estate salesman by the name of Jim Meyer in the cow pastures west of the then little 
village of Centerville, grew and grew and became an outstanding success as a fine community. Soon we had a shopping center, a fine school 
within easy walking distance, and in which Kim enrolled a little later. We also had tennis courts, a community swimming pool and a community 
center. All these were conveniently located only two or three blocks away from our home. But best of all, we had as fine a group of people 
living there as you could expect to find anywhere in the United States. 

Against the Evil Tide - 27 

Milestone Twenty-Six: Glenmore Gardens and Canolectric 







Against the Evil Tide - 28 

Milestone Twenty-Seven: Seven Weeks in Europe 

By the early spring of 1 955 I had worked out the mechanical design of my push-button electric can opener and had also built a working model 
in my workshop. Using a five dollar sewing machine motor to power the unit, I was satisfied that it was feasible and commercially practical to 
proceed with the project and go to the next two stages (a) manufacturing design, and (b) production. At this point I had no experience, no idea 
as to how to proceed with either one. I had some vague idea of building a plant near Centerville and go into manufacturing. 

On further contemplation, 1 came to the conclusion that maybe I should have it engineered and manufactured in Germany. Undoubtedly, I 
thought, they could produce it cheaper there than it could be done in the United States. It was an assumption, not necessarily a fact. Anyway, 
the idea intrigued me, even had a hint of romance to it. Why not go over there and explore the situation? 

I made the necessary preparations passport, visas, etc. I went to a travel agency and had them reserve passage on the U. S. S. United 
States both outward and return. (Flying overseas was not so common back in 1 955.) While I was at it I was also going to visit a few nearby 
countries, France, Italy and Austria, but I had no prearranged schedule. I didn't know where exactly I was going, nor whom I was going to see. I 
was going to play it by ear, to explore the opportunities as they presented themselves. 

Jean and Jim Feitner, two doors down, gave me a going away party - another good excuse for a Norris Road bash. Then during the last week 
in March I took off. I had $1500.00 cash in my pocket, which was to cover all my expenses while in Europe -travel, meals, hotel bills, etc. 
(Although this may seem very little, it proved to be quite adequate. We must remember that travel expenses in those days were somewhere 
between one-fifth and one-tenth of what they are today.) Embarking at the San Francisco airport I flew to New York, staying there at a hotel for 
two or three nights. In the meantime I took in a few of the sights there, such as going to the top of the Empire State Building, visiting the 
Metropolitan Museum of Art and having dinner at Jack Dempsey's Restaurant. I even had my picture taken with Dempsey and shook the fist 
that shook Gene Tunney's chin back in 1 926. 

Then the following morning I took a taxi to New York harbor and boarded the U.S.S. United States. Back in 1 955 she was one of the Queens of 
the ocean liners, if not THE Queen. She was the flagship of the United States Lines and boasted of being the fastest ocean liner afloat, having 
established new Atlantic speed records, both eastbound and westbound, on her maiden voyage, July 3, 1 952. She won the Blue Ribbon Speed 
Trophy handily: eastbound three days, ten hours 40 minutes; westbound three days, 12 hours, 12 minutes, between Ambrose Lightship, New 
York and Bishop's Rock, England. She was 990 feet in length, (almost five city blocks) had a beam of 101.5 ft. and a gross tonnage of 53,330. 
She was manned by a crew and officers totaling over 1 000 personnel. So here I was, ready to recross the Atlantic Ocean, back to Europe, from 
which I had come 31 years earlier. However, the route was different, whereas in 1924 we had sailed from La Rochelle, France, to Havana, 
Cuba, and then to Veracruz, Mexico, now I was sailing from New York to Southampton, England, then to Le Havre, France. I was traveling 
tourist class and was assigned a cabin that I shared with two other men. The cabin was relatively small, but then there were so many other 
diversions and entertainments aboard that practically the only time spent in the cabin was as a place to sleep. The dining room was vast and 
luxurious and the meals sumptuous. In the dining room seating I was assigned a table with another young man and two young ladies, an 
arrangement that proved compatible for all. 

I don't remember the names of the other two table companions, but one of the two ladles was named Linda Schreck. She was a tall brunette, 
and she was going back home to her parents in Bamberg, Germany. She had been married to an American G.I. and had lived with him in the 
United States for a number of years. Their marriage had proved to be an unhappy one, and now newly divorced, she was rejoining her six-year- 
old daughter who had already preceded her to Germany by a year or two to live with her grandparents. She told me much about life in 
Germany during the Hitler years (she had once as a little girl had the honor of presenting him with a bouquet of flowers), about the terrors of 
the war, and the coming of the conquering American occupation troops. 

The voyage eastward was not overly calm, but tolerably so, at least below the seasickness level for me. As we approached the English coast 
on the evening of the fifth day, I remember standing at the rail. Also watching the approach were two elderly English ladles, returning to 
England after a long absence. I remember their emotional reaction, tears in their eyes, as they recounted the glories of dear old England and 
how great it was to return to their native land. 

After being docked in Southampton for a few hours, we crossed the English Channel during the night and disembarked at Le Havre, France, 
early the next morning. Many of us took the boat train from there directly to Paris. 


Once in Paris I checked into a hotel somewhere in the downtown section. No sooner had I settled In my room than the telephone rang. Who in 
the world could be calling me here, I wondered. "Hello, Ben, this Is Gretchen!" said a feminine voice sweetly, "You remember me, don't you?" 
Gretchen? No, I don't. You must have the wrong number. I don't even know any Gretchen, I said naively. She gave me some more sweet talk, 
surely I remembered her! When I insisted I did not, she finally agreed she had the wrong number indeed and hung up. Not having been to Paris 
before, except when I was six years old, I was a little puzzled, but passed it off as a mistake, poor girl. I called the desk and asked, what was 
that all about? The man at the desk assured me, tongue in cheek of course, ah yes, undoubtedly she just dialed the wrong number. 

I stayed in Paris for three or four days and saw most of the major sights. I visited the Louvre, and was tremendously impressed with the 
tremendous number of famous paintings, and also by the vast collection of Egyptian artifacts. In fact, it was this viewing that first sparked my 
interest in the great civilization of Ancient Egypt. I went to the top of the Eiffel Tower, to the Tulleries Gardens, to les Invalides where Napoleon 
is entombed. I took pictures of the Arch of Triumph and the Place de la Concorde. I visited two of her famous cathedrals, Notre Dame and the 
Church of the Sacre Coeur. I was impressed with the historical Paris, but was disgusted by the service and the sleazy way in which waiters, 
busboys and others in the industry repeatedly tried to rip off the tourists. 

From Paris I went to Heidelberg, Germany. Sixteen years earlier, in 1939, it had been my objective to go to Heidelberg and study electrical 
engineering. However, as I have related earlier, the war intervened and instead I went to the Universities of Saskatchewan and Manitoba, 
respectively, and earned my degree. But now I was in Heidelberg and I was excited about it. I wrote back home, "After sixteen years I finally 
made it to Heidelberg!" It was a beautiful city, and, as the locale of the romantic operetta "The Student Prince", it justified its reputation. I took 
the cable railroad up the side of the mountain to the Heidelberg Castle, hundreds of years old, and which embodied the architecture and also 
the ruins of construction representing eras several hundred years apart. I went all the way to the top of the mountain on the cable car and 
viewed the beautiful Neckar River below and the city through which it flowed. I went to their famous beer cellars and although I don't particularly 
care for beer, I drank their famous beer and watched as some of the hefty blonde waitresses carried as many as five large mugs of beer in 
each hand. 

I also visited the university buildings and they were somewhat of a disappointment. Compared to the spacious wide-open campuses of 
Saskatchewan and other universities in Canada and the U.S.A., the grounds at Heidelberg were cramped and the buildings, of course, were 
very old. But there was a lot of history and romantic lore in the atmosphere. Altogether it was, and is, a beautiful city. Next I went to Cologne 
(Koln) where the famous Cologne Cathedral is located, with its twin 555-foot high spires. I stayed in the Kolner Dom hotel, right across the 
street from the cathedral. Only half the original hotel was standing, and even much of that had been rebuilt. The rest of the hotel site still had a 
large crater on the grounds where bombs had evidently blown much of the hotel into rubble. However, miraculously the famous cathedral itself 
had evidently escaped major damage. 

But I was in Germany to explore the prospects of having my electric can opener designed and manufactured, I reminded myself. I contacted 
some smaller electric motor manufacturers. The German economy at that time was still hurting and every small or large company was most 
eager to do business with an American company, or any other, for that matter. So they were most accommodating and easy to contact. 
However, the idea that they could produce a small electric motor of the kind I was looking for any cheaper than we could in the United States 
didn't seem too promising. 

Then I made contact with the largest electrical company in Germany. This was Siemens Electric, who were the General Electric of that country. 
I called them in advance (I forget what city they were in) and told them I was coming, and I wanted to talk to them about manufacturing an 
electrical appliance. They were all ears. They sent a chauffeur driven limousine to meet me at the railroad station when I arrived, and had 
convened a panel of half a dozen engineers and top officials to hear my proposition, as we sat around a large conference table. They all spoke 
a fairly passable English as well as German, of course. I could speak a passable German as well as English, but I kept the conversation in 
English. So what was my proposition, they asked. Well, I said, I was interested in having an electric kitchen appliance manufactured for me, 
and then exported to the United States, where I would market it. Great! What was the particular appliance? I began to waffle. After all, I had not 
at that time applied for any patents to protect my idea, not even un the United States, and I did not want to give it away gratis, to them or 
anyone else, so that they could pick it up and run with it on their own. So I was in a dilemma. I realized that the first order of business was for 
me to get my patents on record before I went around spreading the idea of an electric can opener to all and sundry. I told them I could not 
divulge the item at this time. There was an angry murmur around the table. They began talking to each other in German, speculating what the 
item might be. I was listening. After about an hour the conference ended, with, of course, no tangible results. 

I learned that the German Patent Office was located in Stuttgart, and that this city also had an ample supply of patent lawyers in its environs. I 
headed for Stuttgart and checked in at the Bahnhoff Hotel, about half a mile from the railroad station. It was to be my home for the next few 
weeks. After selecting a law firm from several available, we went to work in earnest of making the necessary drawings and spelling out all the 
details of the apparatus in German. The attorneys and also the secretaries were highly efficient and soon we had it all put together. 
Incidentally, while I was there in Stuttgart, I solved one particular facet of the design that I had not resolved before I left home. That item was a 
delay clutch in the apparatus so that the can could be pierced and firmly held in place before the drive started spinning the can around. This 
was important, since otherwise the drive had a tendency to throw the can off the drive wheel before it could be pierced. 

After the patent application was wrapped up, I still had to stay around and wait for the processing and official approval of the patent office, 
which came after a week or so. Prices in Germany at that time were extremely reasonable, including attorney's fees. Hotel rates, meals, taxis, 
all were unbelievably low. Anyway, now I had my patent, at least a German patent, and it was all paid for. Although I now had my patent in my 
pocket, I did not go back to Siemens Electric to present my idea. By this time I was convinced that the idea of having the can opener 
manufactured in Germany and then shipped to the United States was not a feasible economic arrangement. I abandoned the idea and decided 
to spend the rest of my time sightseeing in Germany and Europe. I had about two and a half weeks left before my scheduled sailing back to the 
United States. 

I was particularly interested in the Hitler scenario, and first went to Nurnberg, where the gigantic Hitler rallies had been held. It was an 
interesting, historic old city with massive high walls and towers surrounding the ancient city. It still showed many of the ravages of the recent 
war. Even the thick ancient walls were pockmarked with hits from bombs and artillery fire. I visited what was left of the grounds and buildings 
where the huge annual Nazi rallies had been held in the 1930's. Most of what structures had existed were now completely demolished. I also 
visited the chambers where the Nurnberg trials had been held. It was all rather depressing to see all the former pomp and glory now smashed 
by the parasitic hand of the Jew. 

r * * * * 

Next I traveled to Munich. I had no sooner checked into a hotel when the phone rang. This time it was a man. He had a clipped British accent, 
but I could also detect the German origins. He explained that he had obtained my name from some German trade agency, and understood that 
I was looking for some trade contacts. He was most friendly and accommodating and offered to show me the city and help me in any way he 
could in making contacts with any number of different business establishments. His name was Fred Bleger. 

Herr Bleger was undoubtedly one of the finest gentlemen 1 have ever met any time, anywhere. He was five years older than I, about 42. I 
learned more about Germany during the Hitler era before the war, about the war itself, and about post-war Germany, first hand from him, than I 

have from any other source. I also learned much about the German economy and business as it was in 1 955 from him. Fred Bieger had been a 
member of the Nazi Party, had been an officer in the German Wehrmacht during the war. He had learned to speak excellent English during a 
prolonged stay in Britain before the war. He had fought in the Egyptian campaign, as well as several others, and lastly, on the Russian front, 
where he was severely wounded. One of the things that he told me about the German tragedy was that things were a thousand times worse 
after Germany capitulated to the victorious "allies" than they were during the ghastly war itself. 

Without a doubt, meeting Fred was the highlight of my trip. He had a car and he took me to any number of interesting places in Germany. He 
played the role of secretary, confidante, and business adviser to a beautiful redheaded young lady in her late thirties who owned an import- 
export business she had inherited from her father. Whether there was any romantic Interest between her and Herr Bieger I couldn't tell, since 
their association always seemed on a business level. Anyway, they had a nice car to travel the countryside and seemingly, the time. What 
established a particular bond between Fred and myself right from the beginning was that he had found one American who was not only pro- 
German but also pro-Hitler. Besides, I could speak German, if not fluently, at least passably well and although I was more comfortable 
speaking English, he repeatedly encouraged me to speak in German. We had an excellent dinner together the first night, and drank several 
glasses of good German wines. 

The next day, after showing me around Munich, the beer hall where Hitler had spoken, some good restaurants and other places of interest, the 
three of us drove south from Munich to Garmisch-Partenkirchen and then to Oberammergau, some of the most picturesque towns in Germany. 
We then went to a famous ski lodge on the side of the Zugspitze, one of the higher peaks in the Alpine range, and which happens to sit on the 
border between Germany and Austria. The weather had turned colder by this time and when we arrived at the ski lodge it was snowing. But at 
that altitude there was still an abundant snow pack from the winter (this was in the middle of April) and skiing was in full swing. It was a 
beautiful spot and a beautiful sight. We spent the night at the lodge, ate sumptuous meals, but did not do any skiing. 

We then drove on to Innsbruck, Austria, and spent a day there. Fred was one of the best of tour guides, and knew all the history and all the 
places. After about a three-day circuit that took in several smaller places of interest, we returned to Munich, just in time to take off for Hanover, 
where the annual Heavy Industries Fair was going on, from April 24 to May 3. This was the largest commercial fair of its kind in Germany and 
took in a wide variety of exhibits huge cranes hundreds of feet tall, tractors, bulldozers, farm machinery, electrical motors, machine tools, and 
every other aspect of heavy industry. But the fair also embraced an unlimited variety of industries outside of that field, such as textiles, office 
equipment, china, ceramics, glassware, watches and clocks, hardware and cutlery, kitchenwares, and even toys. I don't know how much area 
the Fair Grounds took in, but I am sure it consisted of several hundred acres. Although similar fairs, some more specialized, were held in 
Frankfurt in the spring and in the fall, also in Cologne and Munich, nevertheless Hanover was the biggest of them all. There were thousands of 
exhibitors from all over the world and tens of thousands of visitors and interested dealers. 

Since the hotels in Hanover would be booked solid far in advance for such a large influx, many private residences offered limited 
accommodations to the overflow of guests. I don't know where Fred and the red headed business associate stayed, but he found me bed and 
board with a nice German couple. Their rented apartment consisted of only three rooms - a living room, a kitchen and one bedroom. I slept on 
the couch in the living room. Although the husband was at work most of the time, the wife was a most talkative hostess and told me much (in 
German) about Germany during the thirties and during and after the war. 

There were so many business deals being made right and left before my very eyes that soon I got caught up in the spirit of the export-import 
trade. There were stories bandied about of how one broker had consummated a deal whereby he had sold German locomotives to the Indian 
government and had made a three million dollar commission on that deal alone, and other similar stories. I was offered any number of "deals", 
and, of course, Fred Bieger, being in the business, recommended and encouraged such offers. There would be a 5% commission, or override, 
in the contract for him. Finally, I signed two different contracts with two different companies that I would import a specific gadget they made in a 
certain minimum quantity per year (or month) and that also I would be protected as being the sole and exclusive agent for that item in the 
United States. Both items were novel, but unnecessary gadgets associated with the automobile. 


Time was running out before my scheduled sailing back to America, and there were a few other places I wanted to visit before I left Europe. 
During the ocean voyage on the USS United States, Linda Schreck had invited me to visit with her family in the historic city of Bamberg in 
Bavaria. I gave her a call to see if the offer was still good and she said she would be most delighted for me to come. I boarded a train for 

Linda met me at the station when I arrived in the late afternoon. The first question I asked her was: how did she like being back in Germany? 
She said it was terrible, she hated it. She and her six-year-old daughter were living with her parents and her younger brother, the latter in his 
early twenties. She told me she was practically being treated as a pariah by her relatives and her former friends. They deeply resented the fact 
that she had married an American G.I., and now that the marriage was kaput, it served her right, they said. All this reflected a deeper hostility 
the majority of Germans had for Americans, something I had sensed before. Although at the Hanover Fair, and at other places, I had found the 
Germans were most polite and friendly, still, beneath the surface they harbored a deep resentment, and for good reasons. The Americans 
(controlled by their Jewish overlords) without any meaningful provocation, had come from across three thousand miles of ocean, to smash their 
cities and kill their people. The outrageous behavior of the occupying G.l.'s (including a horde of savage niggers) in raping their women and 
flaunting their arrogance in the post-war period had not assuaged the situation any, only aggravated it. (For further details about the atrocities 
heaped upon the Germans, read Avenge Dresden! in Racial Loyalty, Nos. 51 and 52.) Linda and I walked to their apartment, which was in an 
old building, (all buildings were old) located at 2565 Luisen Strasse 3. There I met the rest of the family her little daughter, her brother and her 
father and mother. 

They were all very accommodating, and her mother immediately pleaded for me to join them for dinner. I did not want to inconvenience them, 
especially on such short notice, so I declined and said I would take Linda out to dinner instead. This, I believe was a mistake on my part, since I 
believe they felt hurt that I had rejected their hospitality, but I did not realize it at the time. Anyway, after some further conversation, Linda and I 
left to go to the restaurant where her brother was a waiter. I will never forget, before we left the apartment, her little daughter poignantly asked, 
"Kommst du zuruck?" (Are you coming back?) The little dear evidently had been left without her mother so many times that every time her 

mother now walked out of the house the poor little thing wondered whether she would ever be back. 

After dinner we walked back to their apartment, where I had a lengthy conversation with her father. Otto Schreck had been an official in the 
Nazi party and an officer in the Wehrmacht. He was tall, ramrod straight, and of stern, no-nonsense disposition. He now had some minor 
government position. When I tried to talk to him about politics and about Hitler, he steered away from the subject and said he would never 
again have anything to do with politics. He reminded me several times, "We remember 1945." Evidently, he, like so many others in his 
category, had been tortured, put through the mill, and thoroughly "de-Nazified." His fighting spirit had been broken and "We will not forget 
1 945", he kept telling me. This was now 1 955, ten years later. 

Bamberg is an historic and most interesting old Bavarian city. It was founded in the tenth century and owes what prominence it has enjoyed 
due to being one of the two Catholic archbishoprics in Bavaria. (The other is in Munich.) In this ancient kingdom of Bavaria, whose population 
is still 70% Roman Catholic, the power of the Catholic church shaped much of its history and is reflected in some of its fine architecture. The 
Bamberg cathedral is one of Germany's grandest Romanesque edifices, built in the tenth century. Other notable buildings are the St. Michael, 
the St. Martin and the St. Mary churches. Linda and I visited all of these the next day, as well as the historic old town hall, and the picturesque 
10th century Altenburg Castle. I still have a picture of the latter. 

Late in the afternoon I said goodbye to Linda and her family and took a flight to Rome. 

My flight was due to land at about midnight, a rather late time to be arriving in a strange city without any previous hotel reservations, or, for that 
matter, even knowing the name of a single hotel. Fortunately, I overheard two young fellows across the aisle in the plane talking to each other, 
and they were discussing where they were planning to stay when they got to Rome. Finally, they came to the conclusion they would share one 
room and save expenses. I latched on to this opportunity and asked the fellow who was giving up his reservation whether he would mind if I 
picked it up in his place. No problem. When we arrived I took a taxi to the designated hotel and used his reservation. Not a bad hotel, but next 
day when I had the time to pick and choose, I moved to the Quirinale, which remained my home for the rest of my stay in Rome. While in Rome 
I tried to take in most of the major sights. I spent quite a lot of time in the Vatican complex, ogling St. Peter's massive insides and outsides, the 
endless exhibition of statues, paintings and ornate, gilt covered columns, all the exquisite works of great White artisans and geniuses of many 
past generations. Standing in the huge plaza, I even saw Pope Plus XI in one of the Vatican windows, pointlessly waving his hands and 
"blessing" the thousands of gullible yokels below. It was early in the season, and, anyway, back in 1 955 the tourist floods were not anywhere 
as rampant as they are today. As a result, when I was in the Sistine Chapel, I was able to leisurely lie on my back on one of the benches and 
view Michelangelo's vaunted ceiling at my convenience for as long as I wished. When I was back at the same chapel with my family in 1 967, 
the place swarmed with milling mobs, led by dozens of tour guides, speaking Japanese and every other language. Just going down the 
passageway to the chapel was like being in midstream and seeing millions offish swimming in two different directions, one coming and one 

Viewing the ruins of Ancient Rome at that time, I would say, sparked my initial interest in the greatness and grandeur of those ancient Romans. 
Seeing the ruins of the ancient Capitol, the gigantic Coliseum, the Baths of Caracalia, Hadrian's Tomb, made me realize that there had dwelt a 
superior breed of men two thousand years ago, of whom I had known, but had not taken sufficient note. Now I was seeing first hand the 
remarkable remains of an astounding civilization. Why had it collapsed, I wondered. Of special interest were the art museums of Rome. I 
visited the National Museum (Musco Nazionale Romano) and also the Vatican Museum and was especially impressed by the vast collections 
of the latter. Also, I attended the Rome Opera house and saw and heard the Opera "Faust" by Charles Francois Gounod. 

After about four days in Rome, I took a plane to Nice, on the French Riviera. The coastline was beautiful, the sea a brilliant blue-green, and the 
weather most pleasant. From Nice I took a bus to Monaco and Monte Carlo, visited the Casino and took in some of the other sites. 

From Nice I flew to Paris, and from Paris I took the boat train back to Le Havre. After I had taken my seat in the train, I looked out of the open 
window to view the people on the station platform that were about to board. There was a tall dapper young man that stood out from the crowd. 
He was about six foot two, very thin and although he wore a homburg, his bright red hair was conspicuous. He was talking and gesticulating 
most energetically. Soon he entered the railway car I was in and with his companions sat down a few seats away from me. From the loud 
conversation with which he continued to harangue his traveling companions inside the car, I soon learned that he was a young Mormon 
missionary who had completed his two-year stint in Belgium and was now returning to the United States. He was noisily broadcasting all the 
sins of the Roman Catholic priests he had encountered during his stay in Belgium, how they fornicated with the nuns and others of the fair sex, 
and how many children that obviously resembled various priests abounded in the country of Belgium. He continued in this vein all the way to Le 
Havre. Sitting a few seats away also were two young Catholic women who could not help but hear his loud voice, and they were fuming and 
fidgeting at what they were hearing. I expected a battle royal to erupt at any moment, but the tirade and the controlled agitation continued all 
the way to Le Havre. 

Back on the U.S.S. United States on the fourth day of May, the voyage started out uneventfully enough. About a day out on the high seas, we 
ran into a severe storm. The rest of the voyage was less than fun, more like sheer survival. At times as the thirty-foot waves hit the big ship 
broadside, the whole ship would shudder. A ship can roll, pitch and yaw. The United States did all three and when there was a following sea, 
many a time the stem end would be so far up, the propellers would be out of the water and the motors and propellers would suddenly rev up to 
a high speed whose vibrations could be felt throughout the entire vessel. 

During that storm, most people were too sick to come out of their cabins, and the dining room was practically empty. I remember my table was 
near the outside window and as the ship slowly rolled from one side to the other. It always felt uncomfortably close to the point of no return. As 
I sat down for breakfast (alone at my table) I would start out eating dry rolls, recommended to settle your stomach. Nevertheless, I made sure I 

knew where the exit to the nearest toilet was, in case I had to mal<e a dash for it. Was I afraid we were going to sink? Not really, but the 
possibility entered my mind several times. The situation reminded me of some quotation I had once read, "Oh God, thy ocean is so large and 
my ship is so small." The USS United States was five blocks long, not small by any means, but nevertheless, she was pretty much at the mercy 
of an angry sea. This, I decided, was no way to cross the Atlantic. 

We docked in New York harbor on May 9, and after going through immigration and customs, I collected my baggage and took a taxi to the 
airport. By that time it was late in the evening and I boarded a night flight to San Francisco, after I had called my wife to inform her of my time of 

Next morning she and my sweet little four-year-old daughter Kim were there to meet me. Also there was my young friend, Al Miller, from San 
Jose. He was putting together a cosmetic company whose one lone product was a hand lotion called Lanoglove. I happened to have a small 
investment in his company. The four of us had breakfast in the airport dining room and after exchanging a volume of news, the three of us 
drove back to Glenmore Gardens. It was good to be home again. 

Against the Evil Tide - 28 

Milestone Twenty-Seven: Seven Weeks in Europe 







Against the Evil Tide - 29 

Milestone Twenty-Eight: Canolectric All the Way 

When I left for Europe my main objective had been to explore the possibilities of having my electric can opener engineered and manufactured 
in Germany, if they could do it for less per unit cost. What I had learned is they could not, and that what with shipping, time delays, excise 
duties, etc., it was not economically feasible. Now, back home, I was also back to square one, except for one thing. The Hanover Fair had 
opened up the possibilities that there were a number of items available that could be imported, distributed and sold in this country at 
considerable profit. In fact, there were any number of American importing companies doing just that. Why go to the expense and hassle of 
manufacturing anything when you could import somebody else's product already made, waiting for buyers? So, I had an important decision to 
make. Should I pursue the development and manufacture of the push-button electric can opener or should I go into the import business? I 
already had snagged two exclusive items, frivolous as they were. One was a little plastic, many-jointed little horse, that sat on the dashboard of 
a car. When connected with the carburetor intake by a plastic tube, it performed a number of interesting antics, reflecting the status of the 
vehicle, whether it was accelerating, slowing down, cruising, or whatever. The other was a two-cup electric coffee pot that plugged into the 
cigarette lighter on the dash. It could come in handy when camping or traveling. 

The first thing I did was consult with my friend Bill Adcock, with whom I played a lot of tennis and who had a well established business as a 
hardware wholesaler. The next thing I did was call on a few hardware and automotive stores to get their reaction. The results of both of these 
surveys were not too encouraging. In the meantime I had jumped the gun and already had some stationery and business cards printed up with 
the caption of "Klassen Importing Co." These I had printed by the local Centerville newspaperman, who, sensing a story, came over to 
interview me. 

For a while I dallied. Then the urge to be a bonafide inventor and the hopes of becoming a multi-millionaire business tycoon prevailed. 1 made a 
resolute decision: come hell or high water, I would put the Canolectric on the market. This required a lot of doing. 

So to get started. On September 16, 1955 I incorporated Klassen Enterprises, Inc., under the corporation laws of the State of California. The 
corporation was authorized to issue 500,000 shares of stock, with a par value of $1 .00 per share. My attorney was Gene Rhodes, a personable 
young fellow my age who also lived in Glenmore Gardens. The incorporating directors were Wm. E. Adcook, who had a hardware wholesale 
business; Albert J. Miller, of San Jose, who owned Milco, Inc., engaged in the manufacture of the previously mentioned Lanoglove hand lotion; 
Gene Rhodes; my wife Henrie Etta, and myself, as president. 

My neighbor next door, John Beumer, was an engineer for an electronics company by the name of Ampex in Redwood City, across the bay. 
Across the street from him was a young engineer and draftsman by the name of Charles Wilson, who worked for John. I showed them both my 
working model and they were very much impressed. I persuaded the young draftsman to make up a set of engineering drawings that could be 
translated into production blueprints. This was in October of 1955. Over a period of a few months he completed these drawings. In the 
meantime, I designed an attractive housing and had a plastics craftsman by the name of Chapman (company name: Chapman Plastics, 
Berkeley, California) construct a white plastic cover for the unit. 

Next I had a machine shop. Engineered Instruments of Hayward, try to make a model according to the blueprints. After spending several 
weeks and $400.00, they were not doing a good job and I cancelled their contract. I found a machine shop outfit by the name of Frisch & 
Herzberg in San Leandro who were more capable. They did a good job in making a model that could be a prototype and could be used for 
demonstration purposes. (Feb., 1956.) 

Now that I had a working demonstration model to show, we went over to Hunt's Ketchup plant in Hayward and obtained a carload of new 
unused tin cans to open, and we were in business. I realized that it would take money, a lot more than I had, to put the product on the market, 
and that I would need investors from the public. One positive benefit that accrued from my previous boondoggle investment with the 
Commercial Tobacco Co. was that I learned something about corporate structure that I had not known before. I learned that the initial promoter 
could make a public stock offering and at the same time retain an equal number of promotional shares for himself, thereby still keep control of 
the company he founded. At our Director's Meeting on March 5, 1956, we authorized our attorney. Gene Rhodes, to apply for a permit 
authorizing our corporation to issue and sell 100,000 shares at $1 par value per share. This application was made to the California 
Corporations Commission, and limited our stock sales exclusively to residents of California only. By March 20, the desired permit was granted. 

On March 26, 1956, I filed an application with the United States Patent Office for a patent on my "Electrically Operated Can Opener." Handling 
this application for me were a couple of Jewish attorneys in Oakland by the name of Gardner and Zimmerman. We were asking for 1 9 separate 
claims in our application. It would be another 13 months before we were to receive a favorable response to that application, April 23, 1957, to 
be exact. 

At the beginning of April I leased a one room office at 1079 "B" Street, Suite 222, in downtown Hayward and found myself a "sales manager" 
by the name of Al Bierman. Al had been sales manager for Al Miller of the aforementioned Lanoglove company (Milco, Inc.) which was now 
hurting badly for cash. At the April board meeting the directors voted both myself and Al Bierman a salary of $500 a month. We were now 
ready to demonstrate our "baby" and sell securities to the public. 

So now I was in business. I had an attractive product to show and demonstrate. We had a patent application in the mill to protect our invention. 
We now had an office to work from, a permit to sell stock, and a vocal sales manager to help sell that stock. 

At about this time I also acquired a most efficient secretary and bookkeeper. In preparing some of our previous literature for promoting the 
Canolectric and also the stock sales, we employed a local printer who had a shop in Castro Valley. His name was Sam Totaro. He did $500.00 
worth of printing for us and decided to take payment in 500 shares of Klassen Enterprises, Inc. stock. While we were over at his house to 
present the stock offering circular, his wife, Louise, and her mother were also present. She seemed hostile to the idea of buying the stock and 
was forthright in saying so. However, Sam went ahead anyway, and used to drop in at our office just about every other day. We told him we 

were looking for a good secretary, and he told us that his wife Louise was looking for just such a job. I called her up and asked her to stop in for 
an interview. When she did, I was duly impressed and hired her on the spot. She proved to be one of the most intelligent, loyal and efficient 
secretaries I have ever had the good fortune of hiring. Soon after she began working she too was highly impressed with the merits of 
Canolectric and soon bought an extra 50 shares on her own account. One day A! and I were sitting at our desks in our Hayward office when in 
walked a young man by the name of Cecil W. Boswell. He had heard of our electric can opener, and now that he saw it with his own eyes he 
was grinning from ear to ear. He, too, had been thinking about the need for an electric can opener, he said. When he saw our demonstrator 
neatly cut open a number of cans we had on hand for that purpose, he became even more excited. Cecil was from San Francisco, where he 
had an office at 1139 Mission St. He was sales representative for Robbins & Myers, whose H.Q. were in Springfield, Ohio. When Cecil Boswell 
walked out of our office he was an enthusiastic promoter of Canolectric, and he was just dying to tell the rest of the Robbins & Myers sales staff 
in Springfield of his newly found gem. This he did with gusto at their next regularly scheduled sales meeting. 

The next thing I knew I got a telephone call from Springfield, Ohio. It was an invitation to demonstrate our appliance to the management, all our 
traveling expenses paid. This I did, taking Al Bierman along with me. The top officials were impressed. Unfortunately, the president of Robbins 
& Myers, namely, Albert W. McGregor, was out of town. A week or so later I was asked to come back and demonstrate our Canolectric again, 
in front of the president. This I did and he also seemed to be favorably impressed that our invention was a winner. 

The follow-up was that Robbins & Myers made us an offer under the terms of which, if they could have an exclusive contract to manufacture 
our can opener, they agreed to advance approximately $50,000.00 in tooling costs, which costs were to be repaid at the rate of $1 .00 per unit 
upon the first 50,000 units manufactured. 

Robbins & Myers would also do the advance engineering on the unit. There was one tough stipulation, though. Robbins & Myers wanted an 
equivalent amount of collateral to make sure that we would live up to our side of the bargain. This I met by pledging the remainder of my notes 
of the Silver Springs land deal, the balance of which at this time still amounted to roughly $115,000. The culmination of these negotiations was 
that on September 17, 1956, Klassen Enterprises, Inc., and Robbins & Myers signed a binding contract on the above terms. 

Robbins & Myers had previously bought up an old established firm by the name of Hunter Fan and Ventilating Company, who were located in 
Memphis, Tennessee. Our appliance was to be manufactured by Hunter, whose manager was Frank S. Brady, and whose chief engineer was 
a brittle, but brilliant, fellow by the name of Carl Buttner, who had immigrated from Germany back in 1928. From here on out most of my trips 
now were to meet with the Memphis people, to coordinate design, prices for manufacturing, packaging and other details. Most of the times 
when in Memphis I stayed either at the Peabody Hotel, or the King Cotton. 

Up to this time Al Bierman and I had been selling our stock directly to whomever we could, as rank amateurs. We had so far sold only about 
19,000 shares. In the meantime I had been financing the company expenses strictly out of my own pocket, loaning the company a few 
thousand or so every month, since we were prohibited from using any of the stock proceeds unless and until we had sold a certain minimum 
amount, which as I recall, had to be 1 00,000 shares. Before that happened I had loaned the corporation a total of $25,500. Now that we had 
the Robbins & Myers contract in our pocket, it was a new ball game. With our improved prospects we now went to a brokerage house in 
Oakland to have the pros do the stock selling job for us. 

We contacted Lester M. Grant, of Stephenson, Leydecker & Co. at 1404 Franklin St. in Oakland. Les Grant was an up and coming young man, 
in his early thirties, and was also vice-mayor of the City of Oakland. Although he was only a salesman in the firm, he nevertheless was one of 
their best and had a wide range of contacts. We demonstrated our Canolectric by setting it on his desk and opening several cans. He, too, was 
immediately fascinated. He took a few days to check us out, and personally called President McGregor of Robbins & Myers to confirm whether 
we really had a contract as we said we did. When he confirmed that we did indeed, Les came over to see us at our office. He said he had 
talked it over with the head of his stock company and they were willing to sell our stock. We soon reached a written agreement and were off 
and running. Finally we were in the big leagues, I thought to myself. Already I could see millions dangling before my eyes. 

In the meantime, we had managed to get quite a bit of good publicity in the major newspapers in and around the San Francisco area and the 
business community was beginning to take note that maybe we had a hot item on our hands. In August of 1 956 I received a call from Forrest 
Tanser, one of the executives of the brokerage firm of Sutro & Co. He said he had a wealthy client who might be interested in buying my 
interest in Canolectric. We went over to his San Francisco office and demonstrated our prize baby to him and his elderly client, a Jew by the 
name of Adrian Falk. A few days later I received a call from Tanser, slating that his client was willing to buy my interest for $250,000 to be paid 
$50,000 down and $50,000 a year over the next four years, and at the same time I was to stay with the company at a salary of $25,000 a year. 
I considered the offer for a while and we discussed it at the next directors meeting on September 3. I finally called Forrest Tanser and told him I 
wasn't selling, the offer just wasn't good enough. He was mad, and hung up on me. At about this time I also received another offer from a San 
Jose real estate tycoon. He offered me $150,000 cash, no strings and no delay. I also considered that offer for a while, then turned it down. I 
felt I had a big thing, I was going to ride it all the way, and nobody was going to rob me of its ultimate benefits. 

In October I made another trip to Memphis to further negotiate and finalize engineering, styling and production plans. During the same month I 
negotiated and signed a contract with Stephenson Leydecker in Oakland to sell the 80,000 remaining shares, allowing them a 15% 
commission. Gene Rhodes applied to the Corporation Commission for approval of this arrangement and it was granted. 

During the month of December we received an invitation from Robbins & Myers to display our demonstration model of the Canolectric in their 
booth at the Chicago Housewares Show in January, an offer we readily accepted. This show was an annual affair and was undoubtedly the 
largest in the country. It was staged on the Chicago Pier premises, a gigantic building complex and layout extending far into Lake Michigan. 

Taking along our prized demonstrator model and an ample supply of tin cans, Al Bierman and I flew into Chicago, lodging at the Drake Hotel. 
Robbins & Myers had a large booth at which they displayed not only their own products, but also those of Hunter Fan and Ventilating Co. The 
major segment of their combined sales staff was also on hand and we got to know all of them quite intimately during the week of January 16 to 
23, 1957. They were a good, congenial crew. 

Our push-button electric can opener immediately attracted an unusual amount of attention, more so than all the myriad of products R & M and 

Hunter Fan had on display in their booth. This, of course, evol<ed some mixed feelings among their sales staff, who, although glad they had 
latched onto a hot item, nevertheless, they had their own interests to promote and their own wares to display. Al Bierman claimed we had the 
most sensational new product at the show, and whether true or not, we did attract a tremendous amount of attention. General Electric 
executives came to look it over, the president of Oster Mfg. Co. came by several times to take notes. Even the president of Sears, Roebuck, a 
fat little Jew by the name of General Woods asked me to demonstrate it for him, after which we got into a lively disputation, with him lecturing 
me as to what was wrong with it. Having an open little penknife in his fat little hand, he emphasized his last point by cutting a scratch on the 
metal plate of the flip-up lid of my can opener, an arrogant gesture that left me furious. I still have that demonstrator, scratch and all. 

After the first two days, we called Les Grant back in Oakland and reported the enthusiastic reception we were getting from the trade, and sent 
him a telegram to that effect. When we got back to California, we found that that telegram had given the sales crew at Stephenson Leydecker a 
strong shot in the arm, and stock sales were booming. Our trip to Chicago had proved doubly beneficial - both to stock sales and responses 
from jobbers and dealers in the appliance field. In fact, we soon received a call from Sears, Roebuck saying that they were interested in 
discussing a major purchase contract. 

Against the Evil Tide - 29 

Milestone Twenty-Eight: Canolectric All the Way 







Against the Evil Tide - 30 

Milestone Twenty-Nine: Discovering Florida 

For the last several years, during the middle fifties, I had become intrigued with the stories about the attractions and the rising real estate 
opportunities in the State of Florida, especially the east coast of South Florida. Now in February of 1957, as I was approaching my 39th 
birthday, I felt that after working hard for two years putting my Canolectric deal together that I deserved a vacation. I had to make another 
business trip to Hunter Fan at this time anyway, so I decided I would take my wife and daughter with me, and we would go on from Memphis 
and explore South Florida. We had never been there. Shouldn't everybody make a trip to Florida at least once? After making the necessary 
reservations, the three of us took off in the latter half of February, prime time in South Florida. When we arrived in Miami the weather was 
absolutely perfect, bright, sunny and clear. The beaches were as beautiful as the travel posters advertised, and palm trees lined the 
boulevards. We rented a car at the Miami airport and off we went to our motel at the north end of Miami Beach. 

Kim and I immediately hit the beach and into the water. It was unbelievably warm and we were delighted. Kim was not quite six, and she loved 
the beaches and took to the water like a duck. Although she could not yet swim, what with her little inflated plastic doughnut, she was having 
the time other life. Back in 1957 South Florida, in my opinion, was truly beautiful, a virtual tropical paradise, it seemed. It was still uncrowded, 
with large stretches of beaches along the east coast undeveloped and vacant, and wide stretches of open countryside between the small cities. 
U.S. Highway 1 was still merely a two-lane road. The Cubans, the Haitians and other mud races were still practically unknown. Tourists, of 
course, had been coming here for the last century, but the influx of permanent residents was still relatively small. 

But even then, Florida already abounded in tourist attractions, and we now took every opportunity to cover the territory. We visited Parrot 
Jungle, Monkey Jungle, Fairchild Tropical Gardens, Viscaya, and the Cloisters of the Monastery of St. Bernard. We also took far ranging trips 
to Coral Gables, to Ft. Lauderdale and to Pompano Beach. Even then I had in the back of my mind - if we did move out here, which area would 
be most desirable? 

During my several visits with the Hunter Fan Co. management in Memphis I had met a flamboyant young design artist who was on a retainer 
basis with both Robbins & Myers and Hunter Fan. His name was Shelton Rutter. He did product design and styling for their various 
merchandise and packaging. He was now involved in designing a plastic front cover for my second model of Canolectric, the unit that would be 
built into the wall. It was Shelton who had made our reservations for the motel in Miami Beach at the height of the season, something not easy 
to get. He had a wife and seven children, all of which lived in the city of Kendall in South Dade County. 

We had made arrangements to all have dinner together, my family and his entire family. It so happened that after we had been enjoying the 
sights in and around Miami for about a week that Kim suddenly came down with the measles, just before we were to get together with the 
Rutter couple and their seven kids. Naturally, not wanting to transmit the measles to his brood of seven, I called him up to cancel the meeting. 
Shelton, being an excitable fellow, only allowed me to get as far as "my daughter has the measles", when he hit the ceiling, and the meeting 
was off before I could say another word. 

The next day I had to leave for Memphis where I had a meeting scheduled with Frank Brady, the manager of Hunter Fan, and with several 
other executives. While there the Hunter company was also having one of their meetings in which all their salesmen gathered from different 
parts of the country. Shelton Rutter and I were invited to join them at some bash at a night club, at which, as I remember. Nelson Eddy, the 
great baritone singer, had a temporary engagement. During the 1930's I had seen Nelson Eddy in practically every movie he ever starred in - 
"Rose Marie", "Maytime", and many others, and I was a devoted fan of his and Jeanette MacDonald's. I was excitedly anticipating seeing him 
in person. When I did see him I felt let down. True, his singing was still great. However, the ribald jokes and chatter that went with it seemed to 
cheapen the whole preconceived image I had of him. 

About five days later I was back in Miami Beach. Kim had stayed confined to the room in the motel, and had her food brought to her on the sly 
by a motel maid. The management did not want the word to get around that there was someone harbored in their motel that had the measles. 
Henrie had been giving Kim baths in the tub with large doses of Linnet Starch to help heal the rash. By the time i got back Kim was pretty well 
over the outbreak. We resumed our sightseeing and swimming in the ocean. One of the trips we took at this time was a pleasure cruise on one 
of the sightseeing boats in Biscayne Bay. I remember that during this cruise we were treated to viewing many of the fabulous mansions along 
the bay front and on its many man-made islands. The tour guide was describing them one by one and which millionaire lived in which mansion. 
I remember him telling about one in particular. This one, he said, is owned by the man who invented the pinking shears. He sold his patent to 
some big company, and, he emphasized, the man never worked another day in his life. I felt highly encouraged. If this individual could retire by 
inventing a gadget as simplistic as a pinking shear, why, surely, I could do even better with my push-button electric can opener. 

The trip to Florida had an important bearing on our future course of events. It was at this time that I became enamored with boating, swimming 
pools, beaches, palm trees and the tropical life style in general. It had made a lasting impression on me, and I began thinking, why don't we live 
out here? 

A few days after returning from Memphis, we flew back to San Francisco, to Hayward, and our home in Glenmore Gardens. 

Against the Evil Tide - 30 

Milestone Twenty-Nine: Discovering Florida 







Against the Evil Tide - 31 

Milestone Thirty: Playing in the Big Leagues 

The permit for the original 1 00,000 share stock offering had an expiration date of February 28, 1 957, beyond which date, if not sold out, no 
more shares could be sold. Before I had left for Florida I had my attorney prepare an application for an extension. Gene Rhodes' Junior law 
partner, M. O. Sabraw, was in charge of this application, a fairly routine procedure in which we did not anticipate any particular problems. The 
enthusiastic acclaim we had received from jobbers and wholesalers at the Chicago Housewares Show was most encouraging, and besides, we 
were now also coming out with a second unit that opened up a whole new market in the home builder trade, namely the built-in the wall unit. 
The prospects looked good. 

After the Florida trip, when I came back to the office in early March, all hell broke loose. I asked my attorney, M. O. Sabraw, where is the 
renewal for the stock permit? He searched his files. It hadn't come yet. Why hadn't it? He searched his files some more. The application was 
still in his files. It had never gone out. He had forgotten to mail it out a month ago. 

We were now in deep trouble. The boys at the brokerage firm, Stephenson Leydecker, had assumed that the permit extension had been 
approved. Nobody had told them any different. It happened that stock sales had been exceptionally good after the permit expired, and now all 
those sales were in violation of not only California law, but also what was worse. Federal law. 

What to do? 

We had to inform the California Commissioner of Corporations of our boo-boo, and the commission took a dim view of our error. We had to 
offer a refund to all those purchasers who had bought stock during the period the permit was invalid. This we did and about $6000.00 had to be 
refunded, and all sales were now suspended until we received a new permit. This was granted on March 26, and we were off and running 
again, and by the middle of April the remainder of the 1 00,000 shares were sold out. We were now able to take the funds out of escrow and 
utilize them for the operation of the company. I no longer had to loan my personal funds to keep the company afloat, but the company, in fact, 
could now repay me the $25,000 in loans I had been advancing it over the last two years. By this time we were getting a lot of good publicity in 
a number of trade journals and even the regular press - magazines and newspapers. We had a hot item and the business world was taking 
note. Sears, Roebuck was interested in negotiating an order for 10,000 units. I flew to Chicago and sat down with the purchasing agent. Yes, 
they were ready to buy. We haggled over price and deadlocked over a 50 cent per unit difference. The deal finally fell through. 

Although the Sears deal didn't come off, the future looked bright, nevertheless, and we felt we had a big deal ahead of us, if we could put 
together enough money to properly promote it. At our March 25th board meeting we decided to apply for a larger stock offering, another 
200,000 shares for a total of 300,000. Our underwriter, Stephenson, Leydecker & Co. in Oakland agreed to sell this offering on a best efforts 
basis (no guarantee), however, this time, Mr. Stephenson insisted we had to go first class all the way. We had to go through the U.S. 
Securities Exchange Commission, which would remove the restriction of selling to California residents only. We also had to get a big name 
public accounting firm to audit our books and issue its official financial statement. Furthermore, we had to get a large, well-known San 
Francisco law firm to put our stock offering circular together and present it to the Securities Exchange Commission. One more stipulation: we 
had to have the Bank of America National Trust to act as our transfer agent for the stock. 

All of this was a big order and I had been warned before that once I went through a Securities Exchange application I would never want to do it 
again. I had this directly from the horse's mouth - the San Francisco attorneys. 

However, at this time the outlook was bullish and I took the plunge. We retained the national firm of Ernst & Ernst, C.P.A.'s, out of San 
Francisco to audit our company and issue a financial statement. They sent one of their young C.P.A.'s down to our office, and he spent a whole 
week pawing through every file and letter in our office. Our bill for this gambit was $6000.00. 

We retained the prestigious San Francisco law firm of Orrick, Dahlquist, Herrington and Sutcliffe of 405 Montgomery Street to put the Offering 
Circular together, and make the application to the Securities and Exchange Commission, who happened to have an office in San Francisco 
also. I found out from the lawyer in charge of our application that the S.E.C. does not give you a "permit" as does the California Corporation 
Commission, nor does it even "approve" your application. It only approves such application in a negative way by not denying it, provided it 
meets all its requirements. Orrick, Dahlquist also sent one of their lawyers down to our office to plow through our files for several days. Their 
fee for checking us out, for making the application and putting the Offering Circular together was $10,000.00. I still have copies of that 
expensive Offering Circular. 

When we talk about sums such as $6000 for a financial statement from the CPA's, $10,000 in attorneys fees, we must remember that these 
were pretty hefty sums in those days, when a dollar would buy somewhere between eight to ten times what it will today. 

Well, anyway by June 26, 1957, we had it all together and we were in business to sell another 200,000 shares. 

At this point I want to digress and recall my recreational interest that was kindled at about this time. While in Florida I was enchanted with the 
tropical ways of life - the beaches, the oceans, the swimming pools, the palm trees, the pleasures of boating. Some time after we came back to 
California I happened to be reading a full page ad in the San Francisco Examiner about a major boat show that was to be held in the S.F. Cow 
Palace, and with my appetite now whetted for such things, I decided this was a must see. Seeing such a vast display of beautiful new boats 
really put me over the brink. I must have one, I decided. Where had I been all my life? I made a contact with one of the dealers, and a week 
later I was the proud owner of a 22-foot Owens cabin cruiser, powered by a 220-horse power motor. The new toy cost me $4400, but what the 
hell, I was delighted. I put it up in a berth at Alameda, and soon I was skimming along in San Francisco Bay. The San Francisco Bay waters 
are not the calmest for small boats. I remember one of the early outings on which I took my wife and six-year-old daughter Kim. It was the May 
Day Regatta when all the small boats were to assemble under the Golden Gate Bridge at a given hour (it was at noon, I believe.) As a new 
owner, I wanted to participate, of course. The waters were rough as usual, and they were even rougher as we approached the inlet itself. We 
didn't quite make it before we turned around, as my daughter became more and more terrified, in fact, she hunched up on top of the engine 

box, head down and covered her eyes. She says that is when she learned to pray. 

However, we did have a lot of enjoyable cruises, and many a time I would take the boat out by myself, or take somebody like Cecil Boswell out 
for an afternoon of fishing. Finally, later on we decided to take the boat to calmer waters, and secure it in a berth in the Delta area, north of 
Oakland, an area where the Tuolumne and the Sacramento River come into confluence and form a conglomerate of lakes, bays and lagoons, 
islands and sand bars. We would sometimes drive up there for weekends and live in the cozy cabin quarters for several days at a time. 

Getting back to business and the Canolectric, in the spring of 1957 we had taken several other steps forward in expanding and building up the 
company. On April 1 we moved into larger quarters. We rented a whole building with about five rooms at 221 05 Meekland Avenue, Hayward. 
This building had previously been occupied by one of the departments of the City of Hayward, and came complete with a large steel walk-in 
vault. On April 23, I received final approval on the patent application filed more than a year earlier. We now had Patent No. 2,789,345, and the 
patent office had allowed every claim that we asked for - all nineteen of them, an unusual occurrence, my attorney proudly informed me. We 
could probably have obtained even more claims if we had asked for them, he added. We had also filed for a Canadian patent, which was later 
granted. We filed for a design patent for the styling of the plastic over. This design, by the way, had been done over a period of several months 
by a group of young design artists with very special talents. Their names Melvin H. Best, Robert S. Inlow, James M. Powell and William J. 
Ward, all living in and around the Los Angeles area, four hundred miles to the south of us. Their tab was $4,000.00. We also applied for 
registration of our trademark the name "Canolectric". This, too, was later approved. In this respect we ran into some opposition from a large 
established company by the name of Rival, that made a non-electric hand operated can opener called "Canomatic". They claimed we were 
infringing on their trademark, which seemed pretty far-fetched to me, in view of the fact their unit was neither automatic nor electric. After 
writing the president of the company and talking to him on the phone several times, they finally decided not to sue us. 

There were several other major changes in our organizational set-up. Al Miller had resigned from our Board of Directors and he was replaced 
by Les Grant of Stephenson Leydecker. We also increased our sales staff by one, and soon thereafter reduced it by one Al Bierman. I had 
originally met Bierman and known of him when he worked for Al Miller of the Lanoglove company, who by now was struggling to keep his 
company afloat and could no longer afford to pay Berman. However, Miller had high praise for Bierman's promotional abilities. The story 
Bierman told about himself was that he had been part of a group of six, of which his cousin was the head honcho, that they had promoted a 
vitamin company into a multi-million dollar category. He loved to tell stories about the myriad of big deals they had pulled off, hundred thousand 
dollar contracts, about what high rollers they were and how they all traveled in the fast lane in high style. Al Miller believed all this, and on the 
basis of these stories was convinced that Bierman must be a great promoter. 

Since we were now reaching the stage where the first 5000 units of Canolectrics would soon be arriving we were aggressively preoccupied 
organizing sales distribution with (a) a number of groups of sales reps all over the country for distribution to wholesalers and retailers, and (b) 
contacting most of the prestigious department stores directly. For this 

I needed additional help. One day in the latter part of March a distinguished looking man walked into our office who was selling fleet car rentals 
for a large company. He was a big man, 6 foot, 2-1/2, handsome in a macho way, and seemed to have the necessary charisma to make a 
good sales representative. I asked him if he would like to work for my company. A week later he decided he would, and I hired him. His name 
was Jack Hainline. 

Right from the beginning there seemed to be an antagonism, a rivalry, between Jack Hainline and Al Bierman. Jack suspected that Al was a 
phony, and took the trouble to check out Bierman's background. He came back to tell me that all these stories Bierman had been telling about 
his participation in the high flying vitamin company he loved to tell about were a pack of lies. The fact emerged that Bierman was merely a 
drifter, had from time to time been a car salesman, an insurance salesman, etc., but never with any amount of success. When I confronted 
Bierman with all this, he admitted he had lied flagrantly, and I let him go. Al Bierman resigned from the Board of Directors, and was soon 
replaced by a man of substantial means. 

Louis F. Buran, who replaced Bierman on the board, was a multi-millionnaire and head of the Buran Equipment Co. which dealt in heavy road 
building equipment, with branches in Oakland, Santa Clara and Lost Angeles. He was a friend of Les Grant and had purchased 3500 shares of 
Klassen Enterprises. 

By the beginning of May, 1 957, the first shipments of our 5000-unit order of Canolectrics began arriving. I soon hired a second sales and 
promotion hand, a cocky little fellow by the name of John Pledger. As the summer progressed we were successful in setting up sales 
representatives through manufacturer's reps in the States of New York, New Jersey, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and 
most of the other Eastern states. We also had fair coverage in the State of California. For this we enlisted a pair of aggressive Irishmen by the 
names of Danny Dunn and Jim Karnes. They had established themselves as manufacturer's reps in the Los Angeles area, 712 So. Olive, to be 
exact. They were a flamboyant pair, and well versed in the small appliance field. Our sales by September amounted to $22,872; in October, 
$17,543; in November, $17,372; in December, $21,457. This was not great, in fact, disappointing, but then we were a struggling new company 
trying to put a new product on the market. 

Throughout this sales period, I was having problems with my No. 1 sales manager. Jack Hainline. Although physically he gave a strong macho 
image, actually he had feet of clay. Whenever a crisis arose, instead of meeting it he would run away from it like a crybaby. Instead of selling 
the product as was, he would try to redesign it every other day, a useless pursuit. Finally I got tired of his habitual whining, and one day I sat 
him down and told him, "Jack, we have spent $50,000 cutting the dies to manufacture this appliance. We have had 5000 units manufactured 
and shipped to us. Now you go out and sell them or don't come back." But he kept on whining and kibitzing. Finally at the end of December I 
fired him. John Pledger and I went to the Chicago Housewares 

Show again in January as guests of Robbins & Myers. We had a meeting of all our sales reps who were also there and tried to stir up their 
enthusiasm, but after the Christmas sales rush, our sales had fallen off dramatically, and it was not easy to regenerate the earlier optimism. I 
began to see the handwriting on the wall. We were running out of steam and we were running out of the money necessary to launch any further 
large promotions as we had done in the past. There were two factors working against us. One was the fact that there was a recession coming 
on in 1 958, and a retrenchment of purchasing. Secondly, by now the larger companies were getting into the electric can opener market - 
General Electric, Sunbeam, Oster Mfg. Co., Nu-Tone, and a dozen others. True, they did not put out a push-button, fully automatic can opener 

as we did, but merely a cheaper unit at about lialf tlie price, a unit wliereby tlie can was pierced by means of a manual lever. They also had a 
number of other advantages they had large, established sales forces, they had prestigious, well-known names, and they had large amounts 
of promotional resources. General Electric, for instance, could sell a quarter of a million units by just filling their sales pipelines of wholesalers, 
jobbers and retailers, before the first unit ever even reached the first retail customer. We were outclassed and outmaneuvered by the giants. 

Robbins & Myers, and their subsidiary. Hunter Fan, had always wanted to manufacture our unit and sell it under their own name and on their 
own account, and in the past, had made a number of offers to that effect. By the spring of 1 958, we seriously considered their offer. In fact, it 
seemed to me to be the only way out. 

Against the Evil Tide - 31 

Milestone Thirty: Playing in the Big Leagues 






Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 32 

Milestone Thirty-One: Hawaiian Holiday 

By the middle of May, 1 958, I was pretty well convinced that we could no longer support a meaningful sales force, nor could we mount a 
massive advertising campaign. I had let John Pledger go before the end of March. The only option we now had open to us was to accept the 
offer Robbins & Myers presented to us, and that was to let them manufacture, promote and sell the can opener on their own account and pay 
us a per unit royalty. On this basis I signed a contract with them, and we, as a company now had very little to do except hope for the best and 
sit back and collect royalties. I had mixed feelings. I felt let down, and I also felt relieved. What should I do next? I had Florida on my mind. Why 
don't my family and I take a nice vacation and think it over? Why don't we all take a nice leisurely cruise to Hawaii, that tropical paradise? 

No sooner said than done. I contacted my travel agent and made arrangements for a three-week cruise to, and tour of, that tropical paradise 
called Hawaii. We had never been there before. 

On June 6, 1958, we embarked on the Lureline, the flagship of the Matson Steamship Lines, from out of San Francisco. There to see us off 
were Jean Feitner, my devoted secretary Louise Totaro, and Henrie's mother. It was a happy occasion. The weather was ideal, and we even 
popped the cork on a bottle of champagne. Coincidentally, it so happened that also on the same ship were our Presbyterian minister, Tom 
Fuhr, his wife Ruth, and their financial angel and traveling companion. Burton Williams. The cruise across the Pacific during the next five days 
proved to be the most enjoyable of any we have ever experienced in any of our many travels. Unlike my stormy crossing of the Atlantic three 
years earlier, the Pacific Ocean was most calm and pacific. The weather was sunny and warm, and became warmer each day as we 
approached nearer to Hawaii. In the dining room seating arrangement we had the good fortune to be seated with a congenial young couple our 
own age by the name of Bill and Evelyn Evatt, whose little daughter Julie happened to be just about the same age as Kim. The two of them hit 
it off immediately and were soon running loose and at random all over the ship. 

The next day after we left San Francisco was Kim and Henrie's birthday, June 7. We had cake and candles at our table, and it was also the day 
Kim lost one of her front teeth. She had just turned seven. 

The trip across the Pacific was a lot of fun and games. The ship's entertainment director gave lessons in how to dance the Hukkilau, a then 
popular dance in Hawaii, a sport in which all of us participated, including the preacher and his wife. One afternoon I tried my hand at skeet 
shooting off the deck at the stern of the ship. I should have stayed in bed. I had never tried it before, and trying to learn in front of an audience 
is neither the best time nor place, but it was an experience. The food aboard the ship was superb, and I fondly remember especially those 
delicious afternoon buffet lunches set out on the deck in the open. The long buffet tables were richly laden with all kinds of seafood cold 
shrimp, scallops, and all the lobster you could possibly eat. 

Arriving at Hawaii was an event in itself. As the profiles of the islands hove into view, there was a certain mystique, a certain excitement in the 
air. As the ship temporarily anchored about a mile offshore from the harbor, official greeters came aboard, hula girls came aboard and hung 
leis about everyone's neck, and there was that jolly air of festivity on deck as if we were participating in some historic event. 

We stayed at the old Moana Hotel. (Since then, a much larger modern structure has been added.) As we approached the entrance to the hotel, 
there appeared a tall slim hula girl and a photographer to take our pictures. While our rooms were being readied we sat at the tables under a 
huge banyan tree that was in back of the hotel, between it and the beach. We were served spiked Planters Punch, while we watched the 
breakers rolling in and listened to the sound of the ocean. It was ail very Hawaiian. 

That same afternoon we started out on the first of several tours of the island. One evening a few days later we went to a Hawaiian Luau, a 
feast that was being prepared before our very eyes on an uncrowded beach. (Beaches were still uncrowded in those days.) As we were all 
watching the cooks unravel the ti leaves from the barbecue pit in the ground and take out the roast pig, our little seven-year-old daughter piped 
up (during a particularly silent lull) "Aren't they going to wash that thing off before we eat?" 

We took a number of island tours, and occasionally we would meet up again with the Evatts, who were with a different tour and stayed at a 
different hotel. We visited Pearl Harbor and had pointed out to us where the different ships had been sunk on that fateful day of December 7, 
1 941 . We visited the Schofield Barracks and the Wheeler Air Force Base where so many of our planes had been bombed out of existence. We 
visited the pineapple fields, and we visited the Robert Louis Stevenson cottage. We drove into the middle of Diamond Head. 

Henrie and I took a cruise on a catamaran out in the open waters and witnessed a pair of dolphins who were playing games with our boat. We 
also took a ride on an outrigger canoe in which the native oarsmen would paddle us far out into the surf, and then we would return on the back 
of a rolling breaker. 

During this time Kim and I also spent a lot of time on the beach and in the surf, while Henrie stayed in the hotel. At this time also, for the first 
time in the last three years, I had time to relax, to think, and to philosophize. I read a book on the history of Hawaii, and I also read a book 
called "Many Lagoons", by Ralph Varady, which captured my fantasy. The latter is a story of a city office worker who finally wanted to get away 
from it all and did something about it. He left everything he was doing and transplanted to the distant Polynesian island of Moorea, about ten 
miles distant from Tahiti, where he became a beachcomber of sorts. The South Seas setting, the simple, languid life somehow intrigued me. I 
thought some more about moving to Florida, an idea I had come to Hawaii to try to resolve. I broached the subject to my wife. She was not too 
keen about it. 

After we had fairly well done Honolulu and Oahu, we flew to the Big Island, Hawaii, by means of a small two-engine plane. We stayed at a little, 
one-story motel on the Kona Coast, a motel with louvered wooden doors and window shutters for ventilation. It had no air-conditioning, but had 
a nice big swimming pool, a big rotary spit and barbecue pit that could accommodate a whole beef. We were again served Planter's Punch 
when we arrived and the whole atmosphere was much more rural and informal than in and around the big city of Honolulu. 

Our guide for the whole stay on the Big Island was a friendly fellow by the name of Norman, who boasted that he was a "pure blooded" 
Hawaiian, and that there were only very few of those around any more. After more than a hundred years of flagrant miscegenation on these 
islands, how anyone could be sure that they were "pure blooded" remains a mystery, but it made good conversation. Anyway, he strummed on 
his guitar, he had a beautiful voice as he sang "Beyond the Reef and other Hawaiian songs, and he was a likable fellow. He and Kim got along 
famously, and she remembers him with affection. He was also a good raconteur, and I especially remember him telling the story about how the 
Christian missionaries came to Hawaii a hundred or more years ago to proselytize the natives, and convert them to Christianity. While the 
Hawaiians were down on their knees and had their heads bowed down in prayer, he said, they found that when they looked up again, the 
missionaries had stolen their lands. There was more truth than poetry in that story, and at the time I sympathized with him. (But I don't now.) 

We toured the Big Island for the next several days. Norman took us to the Kilauea crater, to the Black Sand Beach and to Paradise Falls. He 
took us to the ruins of the Village of Refuge. After several days we flew back to the Honolulu International Airport and from there flew back to 
San Francisco. 

Against the Evil Tide - 32 

Milestone Thirty-One: Hawaiian Holiday 







Against the Evil Tide - 33 

Milestone Thirty-Two: Reconnoitering Florida 

Before we left Hawaii, Henrie and I discussed the idea of moving to Florida some furtlier, and altliough she wasn't too enthusiastic about it, she 
agreed that she would go along with it, if that's what I wanted to do, and thought best for our future. When we arrived back in California, I had 
definitely made up my mind that that is what we should do, and i immediately made arrangements to do so. The first step, I thought, was to 
make an in-depth reconnaissance trip and survey the territory. What I had in mind was to go back into real estate, since Florida was booming in 
rising real estate values, and prices at this time had not yet sky rocketed. What I wanted to do in the preliminary trip was to survey the business 
opportunities, check the different areas as to where we might want to live, and have a fairly meaningful assessment of the situation before we 
made the final move. 

In the middle of July, two weeks after we got back from Hawaii, I took a flight out of Oakland Airport to Miami. I arrived there at approximately 
midnight, and as our plane circled in for a landing, I remember how clear the air was as I looked down on that vast panorama of lights. I also 
remember how hot and humid the air seemed when I stepped out of the plane onto the tarmac, compared to the cool temperatures I had left in 
Oakland. 1 checked in at a nearby airport motel for the night and called it a day. The next morning I rented a car and began driving north on 
Federal Highway, also known as U.S. 1, stopping 

in at various real estate offices along the way. (Federal Highway at that time was merely a two-lane road, cutting through large segments of 
cow pastures and empty spaces.) During our previous trip to South Florida in the winter of 1 957, I had already more or less discounted the 
Miami area as a place to settle, and targeted the Ft. Lauderdale and Pompano Beach area, but now that I was here, I wanted to see all of 
Florida, or at least the southern portion. One of the real estate offices I stopped in at for information during that first day was Tropical Acres, 
Inc., on U.S. 1 in Ft. Lauderdale, where I met a salesman by the name of Arnold Nordene, a blonde Swede, age 45. This office dealt mostly in 
acreages, the sector of real estate in which I was particularly interested. 

What I had in mind was to find a piece of undeveloped acreage, possibly at the intersection of two major highways, and consider starting a 
town site, a development similar to what I had started in Nevada eight years earlier, which had proved to be highly rewarding financially. I 
studied the road map of Florida, and found a few such possibilities. Next I looked over the different cities which might be most desirable to live 
in, with the prime stipulation being that they had to be on the coast, either next to the gulf or next to the Atlantic, with canals and waterways. 
When in Florida, I wanted to indulge in boating! That, too, was a prime concern. 

Going north, I looked at Hollywood, Ft. Lauderdale, Pompano Beach, Deerfield Beach, Boca Raton, Palm Beach, Jupiter, Fort Pierce and Vero 
Beach. From there I drove westward on Hwy. 60 and paid special attention to a development at the fork of Hwy. 60 and Hwy. 6, where a large 
new subdivision was being promoted. It represented something similar to what I had in mind. From there I went on to Tampa, St. Petersburg, 
and on down the West Coast to Naples, stopping in at various real estate offices along the way to inquire about properties, developments and 
prices. I also went back north to check in and around the Lake Okeechobee area. 

Finally, I wound up back in Arnold Nordene's office in Ft. Lauderdale, and negotiated two contracts for the purchase of two pieces of property in 
Collier County. One was a forty acre piece lying west of Miami and having a quarter of a mile frontage along Tamlami Trail, and the other was a 
640-acre section lying north of the trail. My conclusion was that the real estate business in Florida looked encouraging, and I had made a 
definite commitment to that effect by purchasing those two pieces of property. My other observation was that the Ft. Lauderdale - Pompano 
Beach area was probably the choicest area in which to settle down. What with the two purchase contracts in my pocket, I called it a day and 
flew back to Oakland. 

My wife met me at the airport. While having a cup of coffee and a sandwich at the airport restaurant, I related to her a brief summary of my 
travels. At this time I also made an important decision. While we were having our cups of coffee, we were each smoking a cigarette. When I 
finished mine, I ground out the butt in an ash tray and said to her, 'This is the last cigarette I am ever smoking." That was 31 years ago. I have 
never smoked another cigarette since. 

Against the Evil Tide - 33 

Milestone Thirty-Two: Reconnoitering Florida 







Against the Evil Tide - 34 

Milestone Thirty-Three: Building a Home in Florida 

When I arrived back from Florida it was tlie beginning of August. We wanted to be in time for tlie start of tlie scliool term and set September I 
as our target date to leave California. Since this did not leave us much time to make preparations, we lost no time in winding up our affairs and 
preparing to make the big move. I listed our home with a real estate agent in Glenmore Gardens with an asking price of $25,000. I advertised 
the several electric tools and equipment I had in my workshop, and luckily, managed to sell everything I did not want to take along. We were 
taking some of our furniture with us, and managed to sell the rest without too much difficulty cither. 

I terminated the lease at the office of Klassen Enterprises for August the 1 5th, to an unhappy landlord, who grumbled about not giving him 
more notice. I called the last directors meeting and announced that I planned to move to Florida, that since there was nothing more to do now 
than collect royalties from Robbins & Myers, that I could do such just as easily from Florida as from Hayward. They, too, were unhappy about 
that, but there was nothing much they could do about it, and anyway, since the company was now in doldrums, it was no longer an issue of 
major importance. They all tendered their resignations. Having arranged for a moving van to pick up our furniture and belongings on the last 
day and having our suitcases packed (including Kiki, our cat, in a traveling cage) we drove ourselves to the San Francisco Airport. There a 
buyer I had made arrangements with picked up my car, and we in turn, boarded a plane and were off, cat and all. 

It was not a through flight and we had to change planes in Dallas, after a several hour stopover. Meanwhile, Kiki and the baggage went a 
different route and a change of planes in Chicago. We all arrived in Miami airport at more or less the same time in the early afternoon of the 
next day. As always at this time of year, the weather was hot and humid, and we all arrived hot and tired as we collected our baggage. Poor 
Kiki, she was sprawled out flat as a pancake in the bottom of her cage, practically passed out from heat prostration and panting heavily. We 
took her out of her cage and gave her some water to drink and she soon revived. I rented a car and we drove north towards Ft. Lauderdale. 
Kim and Kiki were soon sound asleep in the back seat. On the way we ran into one of those sudden heavy downpours for which Florida is 
noted. Finally, we checked in at the Sherwood Motel on North Federal Highway in Ft. Lauderdale. Kim and I were immediately in the water, 
enjoying the pool and the Florida sunshine. 

We stayed there for a week, meanwhile scouting the territory. Then we moved into an apartment located on Hwy. A1A and about a block from 
the beach. This apartment building, located in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, was run by a nice couple who went by the name of Englehardt. As soon 
as we had settled in we enrolled Kim in the nearest school. The school, called McNab Elementary School I believe, was located on the west 
side of Federal Highway, some distance away. 

In the meantime, we started looking for a house to buy. Since I had moved to Florida with the idea of enjoying boating and swimming, this 
meant the house we were looking for would not only have to be on a canal, but it would also have to have a swimming pool. Furthermore, not 
just any canal would do. In order to do this boating bit properly and be able to accommodate any size motorboat or sail boat, the house had to 
be on a canal that had open passage to the Intercoastal Waterway. This meant at the very least that it had to be on the east side of Federal 
Highway, since this road had no opening bridges in the northern part of Ft. Lauderdale or Pompano Beach. We looked at a few dozen houses, 
but none of them seemed to have the right combination. Either the location was wrong or the arrangement was not to our liking. Finally we 
decided we would buy a lot and build our house to our own specifications. 

We began looking at a number of lots and finally decided on a waterfront lot on 26th Street in Lighthouse Point, a new prestige development 
that was replete with wide canals and complete with coral rock seawalls. The whole area had formerly been a huge mangrove swamp, but now, 
after a lot of dirt had been dredged and moved, and miles of fancy seawalls built, it had all the makings of a real high-class prestigious water 
front community, which later in fact it did become. 

We spent some time planning and sketching the layout of our new house, then took our sketches to a professional architect and had him draw 
up the blueprints. Essentially, the house was in the shape of a broad "H", with a 1 5' by 30' swimming pool in the lower part of the H. We had a 
30-foot boat dock on the seawall for a future boat. The building was of CBS, concrete slab floor, and one story. It had a white tile roof, an 
enclosed two-car garage with an electric door opener. The house had three bathrooms, with a sunken bathtub for Kim. It had only two 
bedrooms, and a large den and library off to one wing. The total square footage was a little over 2200. 

We paid $10,500 cash for the lot of our choice, a considerable amount in those days. While our plans were being drawn up we drove around 
the streets of Lighthouse Point more intensively, and finally Henrie saw a lot on the inside curve of a fat banana shaped island that constituted 
31st Court. It had a wide, open view looking towards the tall lighthouse that later gave our city its name. (There were still only a few homes in 
this development and it was not incorporated at this time.) My wife insisted that she much preferred this lot to the one we had already bought. 
So we finally bought it for $12,000 cash, and now had two lots on our hands. 

We had already lined up a contractor by the name of Paul Wackes, and as soon as we closed the deal on the newly purchased lot we were 
ready to start building. By now it was the first of November 1 958. 

In the meantime, several other things had happened. Our house back in Glenmore Gardens in California had been sold at the asking price and 
we received the proceeds there from (less the balance on the mortgage.) We had moved from our apartment in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea to a 
house on North 5th Avenue in Pompano Beach. We had put Kim in a private school called Palm Cove Beach School, which was located about 
a mile north of where we now stayed. I had rented a one-room office on the second floor of a building at 2605 East Atlantic Blvd., in Pompano 
Beach, in order to get started in the real estate business. For this I paid Seese Realty a rental of $65 a month. The van with our furniture and 
other belongings had arrived at the end of September and we had put the furniture into storage in a warehouse in Oakland Park. 

By the first part of February 1959, our house was finished and we moved in. The first thing I did when I got up in the morning after the first 
night's sleep in the new house was to open the large sliding glass doors from our bedroom and jump into the pool for a swim. I felt like this was 
the Florida dream and we had now arrived. 

Against the Evil Tide - 34 

Milestone Thirty-Three: Building a Home in Florida 

■" Next 






Against the Evil Tide - 35 

Milestone Thirty-Four: Travel, Business and Boating 

From the time the three of us arrived in Florida we felt that we now had a new world to explore, a sub-tropical world. It was a world of beaches, 
of islands and palm trees. There were The Keys, the islands of the Bahamas and the Caribbean, the Everglades and the sugar fields of the 
Lake Okeechobee area. There was Palm Beach and there was Cyprus Gardens. Soon after we arrived I turned in the rented car and bought a 
peach-colored Dodge station wagon, and when not house hunting we went exploring. The travels I am about to mention pertain mostly to the 
first few years. 

We covered more territory during the first two years than any other period, although our travels never ceased. One of our favorite places to visit 
was to go down to the Keys, which at that time was an arduous drive from Lighthouse Point. There was no 1-95, no Sunshine Parkway, nor 
were there freeways of any kind. It was just a matter of hard city driving through the streets and traffic lights of Ft. Lauderdale, Hollywood, 
Miami, and what other cities lay in the way. Furthermore, Hwy. 1 through the Keys themselves was then still a narrow two-lane road, crossing 
over the numerous narrow bridges Henry Flagler had built for his railroad some sixty years earlier. After having explored Key West, one of our 
favorite places in the Keys was to go down to Islamorada and dine at the Chesapeake House, i can still remember the delicious Lobster 
Thermidor dinners we used to feast on for a mere $3.95. By the way, this atmospheric seafood place with all its seafaring relics and artifacts 
was completely gutted when in 1 960 Hurricane Donna swept through that section of the Keys, it was inundated by huge waves and a swell of 
nine feet of water. A few people who were caught in the storm saved themselves by climbing up in its stone lighthouse tower that was, and still 
is, its particular landmark. However, Chesapeake House was rebuilt and refurbished by new owners soon thereafter, but it was never quite the 
same. In the South Miami area we visited such places of interest as the Coral Castle, Crandon Park Zoo, Monkey Jungle, Parrot Jungle, The 
Seaquarium, the Serpentarium, the Viscaya/Dade County Art Museum and the Fairchild Tropical Gardens. 

Our favorite vacation spot in northern Florida was the old and historic city of St. Augustine. It lays claim to being the oldest city in the United 
States, although this claim is sometimes disputed by Santa Fe, New Mexico. St. Augustine does have a lot of history to show for itself, of which 
the old Spanish fortress of Castillo de San Marcos is the most outstanding. However, it also has a number of other, more recent tourist 
attractions of note. There is the Ripley Museum ("Believe it or not"), there is Potter's Wax Museum, there is the Zorayda Castle, there is the Old 
School House Restored area, all a mixture of the old and not so old, but all interesting. 

During the summer of 1 959, the three of us took a two-week excursion to Mexico. Taking off from Miami by Aeromexicana, an airline that is no 
longer in existence, we flew into Mexico City. The flight itself, as I recall, was a memorable experience, because 1 still remember the delicious 
dinner that was served, and the fine wine that went with it. Landing in Mexico City, we took a taxi to the Reforma Plaza Hotel, one of the better 
ones. Kim was eight years old at the time. 

We took several different tours of the city itself. Of particular interest were our visits to the central square, called the Zocalo, or Plaza de la 
Constitution. Located around this square are several of Mexico's most historic and monumental buildings. There is the great Cathedral on the 
north side, built between 1573 and 1667. On the east side is the National Palace, once the residence of its earlier Spanish viceroys. It is now 
highly decorated by the murals of communist leaning Diego Rivera, who in his murals tried to glorify the native Indians and the half-breeds, and 
at the same time to denigrate the Spanish conquistadors, and especially the conqueror of Mexico, Hernando Cortes. We also visited the then 
beautiful gardens and canals of Xochimlico and enjoyed the boat ride and the flowers. (Visits to these same gardens in later years made them 
appear like overcrowded garbage dumps.) We took a tour to the Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe, and noticed its ancient walls were cracking, 
but were flimsily held together by steel cables. Also highly interesting were the huge crowds that milled about, most of them poor and deluded 
peasants, who, driven by their superstitions, had crawled to this shrine on their lacerated and bleeding knees. Some had come in this 
miserable condition for many days and many miles. 

We also visited Chapultepec Castle, which was the scene of a violent battle when General Winfield Scott captured the city in 1 847. The castle 
was further enhanced by the brief presence of Emperor Maximilian and his wife Carlota. They landscaped and beautified its location and added 
much to its romantic and historical lore. We visited the colorful University of Mexico, highly decorated and covered in mosaic imagery. We 
stepped back into the ancient history of Mexico in visiting the not too distant Pyramids of Toltec at Teotihuacan. 

One of the most memorable events was our visit to a bullfight in the famous Plaza de Toros. The place was packed and as the first bull was 
brought out, the crowd went wild. None of the three of us had ever seen a bull fight before, and, I must admit, when the Toreador plunged that 
long sword in between the shoulder blades of the brave bull, I had a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. Kim, always an animal lover, 
cried. However, after the first bull, we became immunized to the slaughter and joined in the clamor with the rest of the paisanos. 

While in Mexico City Kim temporarily came down with a virus, Montezuma's revenge, I think. One of the bellboys, a young fellow by the name 
of Carlos, was especially concerned and took good care for her. 

After we left the capital, we motored to the beautiful and ancient silver mining town of Taxco. We stayed at the top of the mountain in a 
picturesque little hotel by the name of Victoria. It was a restful and artistic place to relax. I have often thought of it as a place to get away from it 
all, at least the way it was 30 years ago. Undoubtedly, by now it is no longer the way it was, and is probably overrun by tourists and peddlers 
hawking their sundry wares. 

We visited a few other places, such as Puebia and Cuernavaca, then flew back to Miami. The most significant observation that I came away 
with was that practically all the outstanding buildings, cathedrals, monuments or pyramids had either been built during the ancient times, or 
during the Spanish rule before the revolution of 1 81 0. Nothing much of interest had been built by the Mexican mestizos after that period, 
except, some of the modern hotels and skyscrapers, and even these, of course, were mostly all built by American capital and/or entrepreneurs. 

Of particular interest to us were the Bahamas and the nearby Caribbean Islands. One of the first islands we flew over to was New Providence, 

whose capital, Nassau, is the largest city in the Bahamas, and also the capital of the British West Indies. When in Nassau we usually stayed at 
the old British Colonial Hotel, which is built of solid poured concrete and has withstood many a hurricane. 

Another favorite vacation spot was Jamaica. At first we visited its capital, Kingston, where we stayed at the Myrtle Bank Hotel, but on 
succeeding trips we preferred to stay at the picturesque Tower Isle Hotel situated on the north shore of the island. There was a tiny island 
about half a mile offshore that sheltered the fine beach next to the hotel, and on this little island stood an old look-out tower, built of stone by 
the British some two hundred years ago. I will never forget the delicious buffet dinner we had out on the large stone patio of this hotel. It was a 
beautiful night, a full moon was shining and the tables were laden with boiled cold lobster. What more can you ask? 

We also made several flights out of Palm Beach to the West End of the Grand Bahama Island. We took one trip to the American Virgin Islands, 
at which time we stayed at Charlotte Amalie on the island of St. Thomas. The mountains, the view of the harbor from our hotel and the flowers 
and the bougainvillea were all very picturesque and beautiful, but the people were not. We also visited the towns of Christiansted and 
Frederiksted on the nearby island of St. Croix. Somehow, because of its Dutch and Danish origins I expected to see some fine houses and 
businesses there, but I was very much disappointed. Like St. Thomas, it was overrun by blacks and coloreds, and everything was very much 
run down and looked like an ongoing slum, even more so than St. Thomas. 

On one Easter vacation we took a seven-day tour of several Caribbean islands on a cruise ship out of Miami harbor. We sailed by a number of 
picturesque islands and dropped anchor and stopped in at a few. One of the most beautiful harbors we stopped in and docked at was Port 
Antonio on the north shore of the island of Jamaica. The harbor was a perfect horseshoe shape, with an island lying in the opening of the 
horseshoe so that the harbor had two entrances. The harbor was used as a shipping dock for the export of bananas by the United Fruit Co. 
Also inside the harbor at the shoreline was a bar and restaurant, known as Flynn's Inn, named after the late Errol Flynn, who used to spend all 
winter there. At one time he owned the bar and also the Tichfield Motel that was located up the hill from it. We enjoyed a good dinner in the 
dining room of the motel. Another island we visited was Hispaniola. We spent a day anchored offshore at Port au-Prince, Haiti. The moment we 
arrived we were greeted by a flotilla of small rowboats, with the natives hawking their assortment of wares to the American tourists. The scene 
reminded me much of when my family and I first arrived in Havana harbor from Europe back in 1 924. The tourists all lined the rail, and while 
the natives below were hawking, the tourists above were gawking. Soon a number of natives had climbed aboard our ship with ropes which 
were tied to baskets. These baskets then acted as conveyor belts to transfer the merchandise upward, and the money downward. The 
bargaining was done by shouting up and down. Available were all kinds of goodies flowers, bananas, pineapples, oranges, woodcarvings, 
spears, native paintings, and a plethora of other items. We soon got into the fray, and bought a number of useless souvenirs, among them a 
pair of maracas for Kim, and a big (three foot) black wooden carving of some voodoo icon. As I remember, this wooden statue a few years later 
became badly worm eaten and had to be thrown away. 

Since this backward country docs not (or at least did not then) have any decent docking facilities for large cruise ships, we were transported 
ashore by means of small tenders, as soon as we had concluded our rail side bargaining. Those of us who bought the extra excursion tickets 
were then loaded into private taxis and given a tour of the city and also of the island. The scenes in the city of Port au-Prince were almost 
unbelievable. As we drove very slowly through the Iron Market district, we were besieged by hordes of hungry, filthy, poverty-stricken people. 
Some were again hawking some trinkets or some other item, but most of them were just plain panhandling and begging, and I might add that 
they had this art of panhandling down to a science. Any time our car stopped and we just so much as rolled down a window for fresh air, 
immediately a number of black hands would be thrust through the open window, begging for a handout. I will never forget a small boy who was 
leading his little blind sister around by the hand. He was doing much better than his competitors. 

Our taxi driver then took us northward across country and across the mountains to Cap Haitlen, where we saw the remarkable mountain 
fortress of La Citadelle Laferriere. It was built high up on the mountainside of the north shore in the early 1 800's with black slave labor by the 
tyrannical mulatto "Emperor" Henri Christophe. (For more background history on Haiti, read my description in the White Man's Bible, C.C. No. 
30, "The Grisly Lesson of San Domingo.") 

Meanwhile, our sojourn in Florida was by no means all fun and games. I had come to Florida to get back in the real estate business, and 
starting in on a new business in a new location is never easy. As Bill Simon, the owner of the hardware in Lighthouse Point once jokingly told 
me, "I'll never forget that first year when we opened the hardware. Try as I may, I'll never forget it." As I have already stated previously, soon 
after we arrived in Florida I rented a one-room office at 2605 East Atlantic Blvd. I used this as my base for operations both for what files and 
records I still had for Klassen Enterprises, and also for the fledgling real estate business. I had already bought two large pieces of acreage 
before, during my scouting trip to Florida in July of 1 958, and I now subdivided these into smaller acreages and began selling these on small 
down and small monthly payments. Within less than a year I bought another section, and from time to time, another and another. By February 
of 1 961 , things were going fairly well, and I moved into a larger two room office which I rented from Walcott, Inc. It was located about a block 
east of my first office and its address was 2741 E. Atlantic Blvd. My rent now was $1 00 per month. 

Located a few blocks west on Atlantic Blvd. was the office of Kidder, Peabody & Co. During the first year, even before I opened my own office, I 
used to drop in and follow the stock market, buying and selling several issues. During this time I made money on some, lost on others. The net 
result, however, was a small loss, and I soon learned my lesson, namely, playing the stock market was a sucker's game, and I soon got out of 
it and stuck to real estate. 

In the meantime, I was still involved in Canolectric and Klassen Enterprises, and Hunter Fan was still sending me royalty checks from Memphis 
each month. Although they were now selling both the built-in model and the on the wall model, sales were only mediocre. After being absent 
from California for a year the stockholders were beginning to grumble and wanted to know what was going on, despite the fact that I had 
mailed out financial reports from time to time. So in September of 1959 I flew back to California and called a stockholder's meeting in the 
boardroom of one of the big banks in Oakland. Flanked by my attorney. Gene Rhodes, and by Les Grant, of Stephenson Leydecker, I told them 
the whole story over again, a story of which they had already been informed by previous reports I had mailed. I told them we had done our level 
best to aggressively sell and distribute the Canolectric as long as we were able. When it became a losing proposition, we signed a licensing 
agreement with Robbins & Myers to produce and sell the can opener on a royalty basis. Robbins & Myers were now selling it under their own 
trademark and also making their best efforts, and I quoted statistics on the amounts of their sales, something I had also already done in my 
previous reports. After everyone had voiced their gripes and opinions, we elected a new board of directors. I still remained president, and I flew 

back to Florida. Hunter Fan continued manufacturing and selling tlie Canolectrics for another tliree years, selling a total of approximately 
50,000 units, then in 1962 discontinued the operation. When they did, we dissolved the company and dispersed the cash on hand, which 
amounted to about $8,000, to the stockholders. And so ended the episode of the Klassen Pushbutton Electric Can Opener, also known as 

Now to get back to the good part of the story, namely my involvement In boating, one of the main reasons as to why I wanted to move to 
Florida. When I left California, my 22 foot Owens was left behind, tied up in a yacht basin in the Delta area near Benicia. I had listed it with a 
broker in Oakland, the same yacht broker that had originally sold it to me. A few months after we made the move to Florida, he did in fact sell it 
and sent me a check for $4,000, only a little less than I had paid for it new. (Prices on the new model had gone up in the meantime.) Soon 
thereafter I bought another Owens, a 25-foot cabin cruiser, from a neighbor who lived at the end of our canal. I named the boat Kim Anita after 
my daughter, and we were all back into boating. Now in Florida, I did not have to dock it in some distant yacht basin, but could tie it up at my 
own 30-foot dock, right in my own backyard. 

This 25 footer had a wooden hull. It had a nice comfortable forward bunk, a dinette that could be converted into another bunk, a sink and an 
alcohol stove, and a head. For the three of us, it had enough room to nicely accommodate us for cruising and for living on board. It had a 
single, inboard motor. We took it up and down the Intercoastal, all the way from Miami to Palm Beach. We took it out in the ocean. We went on 
extended cruises and lived aboard. 

Almost from the beginning, (May 19, 1959) I joined the Pompano Beach Power Squadron and enjoyed the camaraderie of the boating crowd, 
which in that area was extensive. This group gave classes in boat handling, in navigation and in other aspects of maritime technology. They 
had meetings on a weekly basis and every so often organized group cruises. We also had parties and social events every so often. From the 
beginning I was interested in the educational classes it offered, which were basically spread over a period of years, and a certificate issued as 
each yearly class was completed. I immediately enrolled in the beginning class, which was Seamanship. After completing the first year, I 
enrolled in Advanced Pilot the second year, then in Junior Navigator the third year, but did not finish that class. 

After having a lot of fun with the Owens for about two years, it began to develop dry rot in its wood structure, and I decided to get rid of it. I next 
bought a fiberglass boat, a 1 3 foot Boston Whaler, with an outboard motor. It was excellent for water skiing, something in which Kim and I had 
become much interested. We had a lot of fun with it, not only water skiing, but also going out to a reef in the ocean that was about a quarter of 
a mile offshore from the Hillsborough Lighthouse and Inlet. Here we would toss out a small Danforth anchor, wade around in the shallow water 
and pick up coral and species of sea life. 

The next boat I bought was a 23-foot fiberglass Seabird with and inboard-outboard motor and drive. It was a cabin cruiser of sorts, being 
limited to a forward bunk for sleeping quarters, but it was speedy and small enough we could use it for water skiing. It was also an excellent 
cruising boat and soon the three of us took an extended cruise down to the Keys in it, a round trip that encompassed several hundred miles. 
One of the places we tied up for several days was Plantation Harbor in Plantation Key, which had cabins, a restaurant and a sheltered harbor. 
This was probably one of the finest cruises we ever enjoyed, as we went exploring among the smaller keys, the bird rookeries and all the 
beautiful blue-green waters. 

Poor Seabird! In the summer of 1 964 we were hit by Cleo, one of the few, but the most devastating of the hurricanes we experienced in our 25 
years of sojourn in Florida. Our Seabird was tied up at our dock in the canal bordering our back yard. All the windows of our house had been 
shuttered in with aluminum panels except for the small window looking out of the kitchen towards the canal. As I looked out of that window that 
early September morn, the winds were howling furiously, and I could see some huge waves rolling westward down our canal. The Seabird was 
bobbing up and down like a cork and taking a tremendous pounding. Soon the bowline broke loose, but the stern line held and wedged the 
boat out at right angles to the dock, a position it undoubtedly could not long maintain. Kim and I ran out into the hurricane winds and tried to 
bring the boat back alongside the dock, or at least tie it up to the extent it would not break loose altogether. The best we could was to keep it 
from breaking away, but it took a severe pounding of its hull against the rough coral rocks of the seawall before it was all over. At least it did not 
sink, and a few days later I was able to drive it down the Intercoastal to a marine harbor where I had the fiberglass hull repaired at a cost of 
over a thousand dollars. Some other boats did not fare as well during that hurricane. Many were sunk. Some were cast adrift. One large cabin 
cruiser ended up in the middle of Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. 

At the instigation of my friend, John Seeley, who lived one canal north of us, I joined a group of six, to jointly own and operate a larger cabin 
cruiser. John was a stockbroker, another fellow was an accountant, and another was a doctor. Anyway, the six of us first formed a corporation 
known as "Deep Six, Inc." We then bought a 36 foot Pacemaker cabin cruiser, that had two 280 H.P. General Motors engines, ample room for 
sleeping six, a refrigerator, a generator, a shower with hot water, and even air conditioning. We had fixed schedules for priorities as to who 
could use it when, but of course, we could always trade around. Outside of a few short cruises up and down the Intercoastal, my family and I 
never really used it much except for one grand cruise we took to the Keys in 1 965. With us went Kim's friend, Mardee Martin. Both girls were 
14 at the time, and they had more fun than a barrel of monkeys, as did we all. We first docked at Ocean Reef, an exclusive yacht basin on the 
Atlantic side of the north end of Key Largo, a place where Herbert Hoover did much of his fishing in his later years. After staying there about a 
week, we cruised on down to Islamorada and docked in Chesapeake Harbor, where also was located our favorite eating place, the 
Chesapeake House. After a few days there we leisurely cruised back up along the Keys in the open Atlantic, then into Biscayne Bay, tying up 
in a harbor somewhere in Miami overnight, then up the Intercoastal, and back home, everybody having had a fine time. That was the last cruise 
we took on the Deep Six. About six months later we Jointly decided to sell her. This we did, and split the proceeds. By 1 967 I also sold the 
Seabird and that was the last boat I ever owned, although not the end of my boating. From time to time I would rent a boat and we would take a 
cruise to the Keys, or even to Lake Okeechobee, which Austin Davis and I did at one time. However, after ten years my interest in boating 
waned, and 
I became involved in more serious endeavors. 

Against the Evil Tide - 35 

Milestone Thirty-Four: Travel, Business and Boating 







Against the Evil Tide - 36 

Milestone Thirty-Five: Philosopliical Reflections put in Writing 

By the middle of 1960 I reached a stage in my life where I began to asl< myself some serious questions about the very meaning of life itself. I 
began to drift into a sort of depressive state of mind that was, undoubtedly, thoroughly pessimistic. I began to wonder - what was the purpose 
of it all? Undoubtedly, I was not the first to raise such questions, men had been wondering about the meaning of life for thousands of years, but 
to me it was a unique experience, one that came not from some outside prompting, but something which at this stage of life came from within. I 
began asking myself such questions as: Why am I doing what I am doing? Why are we here? What is the purpose of life? Is there any purpose 
to it all? Not finding any answer, it depressed me. 

Why I should fall into such a state of mind at that particular time, I cannot explain. Here I was, 42 years old, in good health, and at this point 
had not suffered any serious setbacks. We were living in Florida, an area of my choice, we had a nice, comfortable house, a swimming pool, a 
boat tied up at the dock in our back yard. My business was not doing great, but it was building up and progressing satisfactorily. We were 
neither broke nor hard pressed for money. In fact, I could hardly think of a time when we were in a better situation. Yet, I felt that I had reached 
a watershed in my life, that something was missing, that I should have some answers as to what it was all about, and lacking such answers, I 
had the uneasy feeling that probably there were no answers to the questions that were perturbing me. 

Finally, I began to put down on paper my random thoughts and reflections. The first of these was dated December 20, 1960, and as time went 
on, sporadically I wrote more and more of these philosophical treatises. Most of them were of a negative, anti-religious nature, analyzing all the 
inequities and stupidities of humanity. By and large, they were, in fact, downright pessimistic and mostly pointless. I had my secretary type 
them out on yellow sheets, and put a date on each. My first secretary was an older gal with strong Catholic leanings, and as she typed my 
material she looked at me with a quizzical eye. One day she asked me, why did I write such stuff? Obviously, she concluded, I just wanted to 
get it all out of my system. Anyway, as more and more subjects began floating through my mind, I began putting them together in a loose-leaf 
ring binder, and finally, I began to think about writing a book. To give the reader some idea as to what my "stuff' was all about, it so happens I 
still have that loose-leaf binder today so that I can refer to it. I made up a list of suggested titles I might use as a title for the book. By quoting 
them verbatim I might give the reader some indication of my state of mind at the time. Here are the suggested titles: 

Rat Race to Oblivion 

Brushing Aside the Cobwebs 

Humanity without Purpose 

Perpetuity without Purpose 

Adrift without Destination 

Pointlessness in Perpetuity 

Round and Round - but Why? 

Who Started It All? 

Reality vs. Dreamworld 

A Look Outside the Dreamworld 

A Look at Reality 

The Dizzy Road to Nowhere 

To Be or Motto Be 

(On the) Treadmill to Oblivion 

My final choice was the first one, "Rat Race to Oblivion". Since all this might sound somewhat depressive, let me make it clear that my mood of 
the time did not in any way hamper my vigor or interfere with my activities. I still eagerly pursued my participation in the Pompano Beach Power 
Squadron; I continued to build up my business with the usual drive; we still took any number of trips as usual (including a major tour to Europe, 
which I will describe later.) It is just that these questions kept plaguing me, and it was not only that I could find no answer to them, but even 
more so. It seemed to me that no one else over the centuries had come up with any satisfactory answers either. 

However, looking back on it now, I have come to the conclusion that this particular period was not exactly wasted. I now see it as an incubation 
period, a span in my life when I correctly analyzed many of the ills of humanity, but was not yet far enough advanced to come up with some 
constructive answers and conclusions. This had to wait another eight or ten years when I began to look to the laws of nature for answers, 
rather than in some theoretical philosophical dissertation concocted by some previous philosopher. Had it not been for that inward examination 
and probing I would probably never have been able to advance to the next stage of development where I could have arrived at the positive, 
constructive ideas set forth in the Creativity ideology some ten years later. 

In any event, I kept on writing analyses and conclusions about the vagaries and idiocies of the human population until I filled a whole loose-leaf 
binder. The last article I wrote was dated October 16, 1963. In the meantime, somewhere along the line I read a book entitled "Philosopher s 
Quest", by Irwin Edman, some Jew, perhaps. It was not a great book but in one chapter it told of another human being who was concerned 
about some similar questions, and like myself, never came up with any answers. He finally resolved his dilemma by forgetting the whole thing, 
and entering into the hedonistic mainstream of life with the attitude of Que Sera, Sera, what ever will be will be. Finally, I drifted into the same 
attitude myself. To hell with it all! Forget about trying to solve all the problems of the world. Enjoy life and let Nature take its course. I pursued a 
more irresponsible and hedonistic course. But the ensuing and deteriorating events of history still kept nagging at me more and more, and 
would not let me rest in peace. 

Against the Evil Tide - 36 

Milestone Thirty-Five: Philosophical Reflections put in Writing 







Against the Evil Tide - 37 

Milestone Thirty-Six: European Tour: Six Weel<s and Eleven Countries 

By 1 962 my real estate business was coming along relatively well to the point where I felt we could enjoy some of the fruits of my labor. I had 
installed a fairly reliable secretary by the name of Helen Metzger, whom I felt I could trust with the day-to-day bookkeeping and the installment 
payments that were coming in, so that I could take some time off. My wife had never been to Europe before, and we concluded It was now time 
we both took an extensive trip to see the Old World and the roots of our heritage. 

We decided to leave Kim home on this trip and take her on such a trip at a later time when she was a little older and could appreciate such a 
tour to better advantage. We bought her an airline ticket and sent her to stay with her grandmother, who lived in Shatter, California. In order to 
fly there she had to change planes in Los Angeles, then fly to Bakersfield, a rather risky venture about which we had some qualms at the time, 
and even more afterwards. After all, she was only eleven. However, she arrived safely, and after we had checked with grandma, we were 
ready to take off. 

On Sunday, June 17, 1962, our neighbors from across the street, Ralph and Evelyn Dixon, drove us to the Ft. Lauderdale airport through a 
pouring rain and at 1 :05 PM we took off in an Eastern Airlines Jet, Flight No. 820. Once airborne and above the clouds at 33,000 feet, we soon 
slipped into the holiday mood. The rain and the hustle and bustle were now behind us and everything was bright sunshine and smooth sailing 
as we flew over the water towards the Big Apple. 

Henrie took notes on the entire trip (except the last day or two) and I am going to let her tell it from her notes from here on out. Here is what 
Henrie wrote: 

NEW YORK. We landed at Idlewild Airport and took a cab to the Taft Hotel in Manhattan. What a skyline! Was smoky - looked like the Los 
Angeles smog. For me to see all those skyscrapers for the first time was indeed a thrill. We passed the site of the next World's Fair (1 964-65) 
that they are already working on. The trees in New York are lovely and everything is so green. We passed an old cemetery - never have I seen 
so many tall gravestones so close together. As we crossed a bridge (one of so many, I lost track of which was which) we saw thousands of 
Puerto Ricans walking across the same bridge going to some festival on Randall Island. 

What a thrill to drive downtown and look at all those tall buildings! After getting to the Taft Hotel we changed clothes and walked one block to 
the Time & Life Building. We took an elevator to the 48th floor and had a most marvelous six or seven-course dinner at the Tower Suite 
Restaurant. It was one of the most delectable meals I've ever eaten - and such beautiful service - mm-mm. After dinner, since no Broadway 
shows played on Sunday, we went to the Radio City Music Hall and saw a movie, "That Touch of Mink." It was an excellent comedy, and it was 
followed by a live stage show, the famous Rockettes. They were terrific. 

Monday, June 18. The first thing we did was to go to the top (102nd floor) of the Empire State Building. Unfortunately, It was so smoky we 
couldn't at all see well. We could barely see the dim outline of the Statue of Liberty in the distance. We dashed into Gimbals Dept. Store for a 
brief look, after which we took a taxi to Wall Street and a look at the Stock Exchange. It was very interesting to watch all the frenzied trading 
that was going on. We next went to the United Nations building, where a number of tours were being conducted. We felt we didn't have time for 
a full tour so we settled for a lunch in their basement restaurant. From there we went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art on the edge of Central 
Park. What a huge and magnificent museum! We crossed over to the other side of the park to see the Museum of Natural History, a memorial 
to President Theodore Roosevelt. 

By this time I was tired and footsore. We went back to the hotel and slept for an hour. After the brief rest we had dinner in the hotel dining room 
and listened to the lovely dinner music of Vincent Lopez. 

It was now time to leave for the airport and board the plane for London. We were half an hour late getting away from the hotel and we just 
barely caught our flight with only three minutes to spare. They had already assigned our seats to someone else, but we managed to retrieve 
them. Whew! That was close! Too close! Anyway, we are airborne and left the international airport at 8:45 PM, and we will be in London in 
about six hours, which will be 7:30 AM their time. It is fairly dark and we watched a beautiful full moon rising through the clouds. 

It is now 1 1:00 PM, New York time. We have just finished a most delectable dinner on the plane, the second of the evening. We had cocktails 
before dinner and a small bottle of red French wine with the dinner, so we are literally "flying high!" What a delightful trip! In 3-1/2 hours we will 
be in London. What a beautiful night! It is 1 1 :30. I'm getting sleepy. Good night! 

ENGLAND. Tuesday, June 19. I dozed off and woke up at 1:30, according to my watch, and it was daylight. One hour later we landed in 
London. We had gained five hours and it was now 7:30 AM, London time. England looked very beautiful and green from the air. The flowers, 
especially the roses, are some of the largest and loveliest I've ever seen. 

We landed at a large and extremely modern airport. After going through customs, we went to a bank and exchanged some currency for British 
pounds. We then took a bus to the City Terminal in London, where we were met by a Swan Tour representative. He took us to the Strand 
Palace Hotel, where we checked in. 

After a hot bath, we climbed into bed and slept until about 3 PM, getting a much-needed rest after a hectic day and considerable jet lag. After 
getting dressed we sampled English tea, a very enjoyable custom. We left the hotel and strolled across Waterloo Bridge to look at the Big Ben 
clock tower. Ben had a picture of himself taken in front of the tower - he called it a picture of Big Ben and little Ben. We also took pictures of the 
beautiful Parliament buildings on the River Thames, and of Westminster Abbey. 

The English men as a rule are very smartly dressed. They carry an umbrella under their arm and wear a neat homburg. The women, on the 
other hand, gave an appearance of being generally somewhat unkempt. 

Personally - 1 think their hair is a mess. Nearly everyone has a beautiful complexion - a white skin and rosy cheeks. They all seem to be great 
walkers or bike riders. They don't just leisurely stroll along, either, they really stride. We ourselves must have walked miles, and finally got back 
to the hotel. The weather was cool, windy and drizzly. Back at the Strand Hotel we had a good dinner with wine in the Exeter Room. Our waiter 
was a Greek. We had some sort of hard meringue for dessert. When I went to cut a piece of it with my fork it went off into "orbit", as Ben said, 
and flew across the room. I finally got the knack of how to handle it with a large fork and spoon. 

Wednesday, June 20. We went on a city tour and first of all we visited the Tower of London and saw the Crown Jewels. Wow! Such diamonds! 
The weather was chilly and rainy. We took a tour through Westminster Abbey where many of the famous Britishers are buried. It was exciting 
to witness all this history. We drove down "The Mall" to Buckingham Palace. There were beautiful parks on both sides - St. James Park, loaded 
with flowers, and Green Park, which had no flowers. The knights of old used to joust in this park, with the ladies watching, we were told. We 
next drove down Bond Street and Regent Street, which are some of London's finest shopping areas. We then drove on and saw Downing 
Street, St. Paul's Cathedral and White Hall, with the Horse Guards sheltered in the archways of the latter. There are many lovely archways in 
the city, and everything is in either gray or black stone, old, old and older. 

In the residential areas the houses looked exactly alike in each section. They had tiny little front yards with beautiful roses and an abundance of 

Thursday, June 21 . We went to the National Art Gallery at Trafalgar Square and saw a most magnificent collection of Old Masters. This was to 
be our last night in London and we wanted to make the most of it. We went to the Drury Lane Theatre and saw "My Fair Lady", a memorable 
event, with an excellent cast. We thoroughly enjoyed the play. We happened to sit next to a couple from Pomona, California and exchanged 
American impressions of English London. 

Friday, June 22. We started the day by taking a taxi to Buckingham Palace to watch the old, time-honored English event called "The Changing 
of the Guard." When we got there some snappy-looking retired old English Colonel seemed to take a special interest in us. He took us under 
his wing and rushed us off to St. James Court to get the best and closest view of the changing of the guard. Ben took a whole roll of movie film 
of the event. Although the Colonel was probably in his seventies, he could certainly walk fast. I had to run to keep up with him. He took us on 
all the shortcuts from which we could get the best shots, all the while relating an endless review of ancient English history. It was all very 
interesting, but I got lost in all the dates and kings. When it was all over, we said, thank you! thank you! How can we ever thank you for being 
so nice to us? Well, he said In clipped British accents, you could start by leaving me a nice tip. We were somewhat surprised, since after all, we 
hadn't asked him to guide us around. He had approached us and volunteered. But no matter. We took the broad hint and gladly tipped him. He 
was well worth it. We had a good lunch at Lyon's Corner House at Trafalgar Square, after which we rushed back to the National Gallery for 
another quick look. We bought some prints there of some of the more outstanding paintings and had them shipped home. We viewed the 
statue of Erotica and the Piccadilly Circus. Trafalgar Square is beautiful with the towering Statue of Nelson, the lovely fountains and the 
hundreds of pigeons. 

The food in London was excellent, the coffee was very strong, and was best diluted with hot milk. All over London there are flower boxes at the 
windows, a reminder of the Coronation, we were told. 

And so we left dear old London at 5:00 PM on a bus with our tour group. Our tour guide was a 33-year-old German fellow by the name of Heinz 
Biedermann. We drove through the lovely English countryside to the town of Harwich, 90 miles away, our port of embarkation for crossing the 
English Channel. The grain fields were so green, the flowers so bright, and always, so many fine trees. We also saw a lot of cattle and sheep, 
and some horses. There were any number of thatched-roof houses along the way, all very picturesque. The tour stopped at the Red Lyon Inn, 
a typical English pub, for refreshments and a "rest stop." The latter turned out to be just a plain old "outside privy", not very accommodating for 
us American gals. 

We arrived at Harwich at about 8:30 PM to board the SS Amsterdam to cross the English Channel for the Hook of Holland. We had to present 
our boarding passes and our passports, and took what few things we needed for the night from our luggage and put it In our tote bags, since 
our main luggage would not be available to us until the next night. After our cabins had been assigned to us we all had dinner on board. After a 
long day, this included wine and some good soup. We set sail at about 1 PM. We stood out on the deck for a while and watched the waters of 
the English Channel. I had expected the waters to be rough, but it was the smoothest boat ride I have ever experienced. Finally, at about 
midnight we went to bed, with an early awakening scheduled for the morning. 

HOLLAND. Saturday, June 23. A busy day was ahead of us. We got up at 5:45, dressed and were ready to go ashore at the appointed time of 
6:30 AM. We again showed our passports and then the whole tour of 44 marched off to the railroad station dining room to have breakfast. We 
sat at long tables, where our breakfast of excellent breads (several kinds), butter, plates of thinly sliced cheese and thin slices of ham were 
served. It was all very good, including the coffee, which we could now drink black. We were introduced to our bus, which was to be our 
traveling home for the rest of the European trip, also our Italian driver, whose name was Carlos. Our crew of 44 completely filled every seat on 
the bus. The "director" or "leader" as we called him, speaks four languages, plus some Spanish and Arabic. Carlos does not speak English, or 
so he claimed, although we suspect that he knew more English than he let on, just so he would not be bothered by talkative passengers while 
he was trying to concentrate on his driving. 

So off we went to Amsterdam. The houses along the way were of little brown brick. The little Dutch children are so cute, with their blonde hair 
and rosy little cheeks. The little ones wore such short skirts, or short pants and jackets. Their little bare legs looked so cold. Some of the young 
men and girls riding bicycles, too, wore very short shorts, while others were all bundled up. There were also many motorcycles, some with side 
cars attached. In contrast to England, everyone was now driving on the right side again, much to our relief. 

On our way to Amsterdam we soon saw our first windmill, and the tour bus stopped to give us all the opportunity to take pictures of this famous 
Dutch symbol. Actually, whereas the windmills were originally used to pump the water from a landscape below sea level, they have now been 
replaced by electrically powered pumps, and for all practical purposes the windmills are now obsolete and more of a tourist attraction than 
anything else. 

When we arrived at "The Hague" we took a picture of the Peace Palace, and several other notable buildings were pointed out to us. However, 
they all looked alike to me. As we drove past the residential housing, I was impressed by the large picture windows, and how clean and shining 
they were. It seemed that many of the ladies were busy washing windows, and all the windows had lovely lace curtains. 

When we arrived in Amsterdam, our troupe of 44 was treated to a tour in one of those modern, streamlined sightseeing boats up and down the 
miles of canals. We saw the Rembrandt house at one point and also passed a huge passenger ship laid up in dry dock. The canals were lined 
on either side by tall, mostly three-story houses, most of which had pointed gables which stuck out to accommodate a winch with which to hoist 
up heavy furniture to the upper stories. We were repeatedly passing under bridges with which the city abounded, some 700, I believe the guide 
said. Some of the canals were so narrow the boat had to maneuver back and forth a few times to get around the curves. It seemed like most of 
the buildings were of dirty old red brick. 

Came lunchtime we were taken to the Five Flies, a famous old restaurant. It was such a quaint place after we entered we walked down to a 
basement and then up to the ground floor again on the other side. We had steak for lunch, followed by ice cream lit up with sparklers. The 
service was wonderful and the food superb. It was all very festive - we even had our pictures taken at the dining table. By three o'clock we were 
taken to our lodging place - the Krasnapolsky Hotel a lovely structure looking out upon the Dam Place, the latter featuring a huge modern 
War Memorial in its center. We were fortunate in getting a lovely big room that looked out directly on the square. The rest of the afternoon was 
free time. While Ben slept, I did some laundry, had a good bath and washed my hair, and felt 100% better. 

Before dinner we took a delightful walk down some real cobblestone streets along a canal, sniffing the many beautiful flowers that were 
displayed in flower carts along the way. We stopped in at a little sidewalk cafe, of which there were several, and had two cups of very good 
coffee. How pleasant to sit at the tiny tables and watch the people go by! Unfortunately, the tulips, for which the Dutch are so famous, were not 
in bloom at this time, it being too late in the season. 

We had a marvelous dinner in the Garden Room Restaurant of the Krasnapolsky Hotel. It was such a lovely big room that resembled a huge 
greenhouse, with palm trees placed about the floor and monstrous baskets of greenery hanging from the ceiling. Shortly after dinner, about 10 
PM, we went to bed, after a long, eventful day. 

Sunday, June 24. We were up at six, had breakfast and were in the bus by 8:30, half an hour late getting away. Somebody had misplaced their 
passport and the guide was hard put retrieving it. As we drove through the countryside we saw many windmills, two different kinds, in fact, and 
lots of cows and sheep. Most of this land was "polder", that is, land recovered from previous sea bottom. It takes twenty years to convert such 
land into arable soil, we were told. 

We drove on through the city of Rotterdam, next to New York the busiest seaport in the world, we were told. We could see the tall control tower 
which directed the complex shipping traffic coming and going, night and day. There were two restaurants in the tower, one lower and the other 
at the top. 

BELGIUM. We crossed the border into Belgium at Zundert. No one asked to see our passports. Once in Belgium we immediately noticed a 
change in the architecture of the buildings. I thought the farm houses look peculiar, two story, no eaves, and so thin it almost looked as if 
someone had come along and sliced off part of the house with a big knife. The first town we came to we were delayed by a church parade in 
the middle of the street celebrating some religious festival (it was Sunday.) As we passed the parade we saw two women with buckets, 
sprinkling something on the street. Everyone in the procession was in costume, and we could see lit candles in the windows of the houses. 
Each town we came to seemed to have its own kind of parade that day. 

Before we crossed the border we were supposed to have had a "rest stop" but unfortunately, it being Sunday, the place on his schedule was 
closed, and our guide was unable to find another suitable place to accommodate 44 people. One and a half hours later many of the people in 
the bus were really getting desperate, and the guide was considering letting us all out into the woods and fend for ourselves. Finally, the guide 
found some dingy little restaurant that was open and would accept us. To our horror we found it had only one dirty little rest room and the men 
and women had to take their turns as best they could. A real mess, but finally everyone was relieved. As we drove on we saw some of the 
finest residential buildings of the entire trip. The houses had thatched roofs and were built of either white or red bricks. The grounds were 
simply beautiful. 

As we came into Brussels we drove past the Royal Palace, all decked out nicely with the guards in their uniforms standing out front. However, 
we were not allowed to stop, as security was real tight. We found Brussels to be a lovely and very interesting city. As we drove past the site of 
the World Fair we had a good view of the Atomium and some of its other outstanding buildings. 

We went straight on to the Plaza Hotel, which was to be our lodging for the night, and immediately went to the dining room to have a rather 
large lunch of french fries and fried chicken, the latter looking more like turkey. There were two more courses, but I forget what they consisted 
of. After checking in we went on a city sightseeing tour of Brussels. We saw the Justice Building where the Supreme Court sits. It was not open 
to the public. There was also a lovely statue or War Memorial to the Unknown Soldier, in honor of those who died in both world wars. We then 
saw and went through the St. Gudule church. It was French Gothic, built in 1216-1438. It was very beautiful, our guide, Heinz Biederman, 
called it "Petrified Music." We next drove to The Place, or The Plaza, a magnificent 1 3th Century Court, in which the sculptured face of each 
building was an outstanding masterpiece of art, created by the Craft Guilds. The stone surfaces had become blackened with age, and the city 
was in the process of cleaning them. This showed up in a marked contrast, with one-half of the buildings in gloaming white stone and the other 
half very black. 

The Plaza was so beautiful we walked back to it again that night to see it lit up under the floodlights. We saw the lovely Opera House, and 
stopped in at some of the shops. They had so many beautiful things, especially in cloths. We watched them making a tablecloth in one shop. I 
bought two of the Ecru tablecloths in one of the shops. 

As we walked back to the hotel, we stopped for coffee at one of the sidewalk cafes. It was served in a little silver one-cup dripilator very 
novel. Wish I had one. Monday, June 25. We had our first real continental breakfast rolls, jam and coffee, then were off on the bus by 8:10 

AM. We will do a lot of driving today, some 400 miles, in fact. 

The countryside we were now traveling through was especially beautiful, the Ardennes Forest, rolling hills, pasturelands and lots of cows. The 
trees were thick and tall and everything was so nice and green. We are seeing a lot of apple and cherry trees in this area. In Europe the forests 
are planted and no one can cut down a tree without permission. When a tree is cut down a replacement has to be planted. 

We drove through the area of the famous battlefields of Bastogne and stopped there to view the tank and statue of Gen. Anthony C. McAuliffe 
of World War II fame. When faced with an ultimatum to surrender he is reputed to have answered with the one word, "Nuts!" They even have a 
"Nuts Museum" here. 

We stopped for lunch at Bastogne. Most of the houses here are of stone. We are also beginning to see a number of Chateaus. Women are 
draping laundry on the grass as well as on clotheslines. We are viewing miles of planted fir trees, sections of which are at different states of 
growth. There are also fields of gorgeous yellow wild flowers, such as mimosa and sweet peas, and domestic flowers, such as lilacs and 

The terrain is now beginning to become more mountainous with a lot of outcroppings of exposed slate. Many of the big Belgian horses we see 
have their tails cropped to where they are only about a foot long. 

LUXEMBOURG. We have now come to the Belgian-Luxembourg border. Luxembourg is one of those small, independent principalities of 
Europe, having only a population of about 200,000, but it is one of its larger steel producers. We enjoyed a good lunch here, then hurried off 
without having any time to take pictures. I dashed off a postcard to Kim, and paid the postal clerk to put a stamp on it and mail it. Much in 
evidence was the old 12th century wall and its towers. We visited the American Cemetery and Memorial. The grounds are very beautiful and 
well kept. So many, many rows and crosses. General George Patton is buried here. 

GERMANY. We crossed into Germany at the Mosselle River. This is one of the few places we had our passports stamped. The fields here are 
divided into funny little strips of land, each seemingly growing a different crop. In handing down the formerly large estates to more and more 
heirs, after several generations the portions got smaller and smaller, until they were reduced to the tiny strips we see today. Sprinkled in some 
of the fields along the road are lovely red poppies. People in the fields are hoeing the crops, or pitching hay into mounds. Along both sides of 
the road are rows of poplars, planted by Napoleon, we are told, so he could find his way back. 

Our route took us over a mountain and then down into the Saar Valley where we see evidence of immense amounts of coal being mined, and 
at Wolkingen, where we had a rest stop, there are a number of huge steel mills. There are massive slag piles to be seen everywhere, and 
when they reach a certain height, grass is planted on them to top them off. The Saar Valley is the second largest iron and steel complex in 
Europe, next only to the Ruhr Valley. The city of Wolkingen was practically destroyed during the war, and much of the bomb damage is still in 
evidence in the old city walls. The buildings as a result are mostly all new and modern. 

Leaving the Saar Valley, we are now rolling along the divided Autobahn Highway that eventually leads to Berlin, and we are entering the Rhine 
Valley with all its lovely vineyards. We passed by a 1 2th century medieval castle, now in ruins, then crossed over the Rhine River at Mannheim. 
There are beautiful farmlands in the surrounding countryside, and although it is now 7:15 PM, men, women and children are still working in the 
tiny fields. I suppose they work until it is dark. 

We have been passing huge U.S. Army Installations all afternoon, and the largest of them all, I believe, is at Mannheim. 

From there we crossed the beautiful Neckar River into good old Heidelberg. Long before we arrived at the city we could see the grand old 
Heidelberg Castle on the side of the mountain. By now it is 8:00 PM and we take a short city tour, which included the Bismark Platz, and a few 
other sites. We arrived at our hotel and had our rooms assigned. We were fortunate in getting another lovely room, better than the average, 
then had dinner, which was lesser than average. 

By this time it was 9:30, and we had had a long day, but tired as we were, we piled into the bus again to go to a "typical" Student Inn. After 
leaving the bus we walked down a narrow cobblestone lane to the inn. It was packed with students, U.S. Air Force and army men, and two 
other busloads of tourists. The music was very loud and lively, presented by three people decked out in their colorful costumes. Our waitress 
was very blonde and very, very buxom. She could carry five steins of beer in each hand without any problem. We each drank a huge stein of 
Heidelberg beer. One show-off on the stage was drinking a large plastic and transparent boot full of beer, to the cheers of the watching crowd. 
All very festive and merry. By 1 1 PM we all left. 

Ben had told me so much about the Heidelberg Castle up on the hill that he had visited on his previous trip in 1 955, and since we would be 
leaving early in the morning, this would be our only chance to see it. Late though it was, Ben, Mrs. Paulette Slegrist and I hired a taxi at 1 1 PM 
to drive us up the mountainside to the castle, which was still floodlit on its face. We arrived there, and the gates were still open, and although 
the face of it was floodlit, the light was rather dim in the courtyards back of it. We walked around on the terrace and looked down on the 
beautiful city below. Such a view! It was well worth it. 

We had been traveling on the bus for 12 hours. It was now midnight and we were dead tired when we got back to the hotel. We had fine beds 
with huge down pillows and comforters, and we slept like logs. 

Tuesday, June 26. Much as we needed our rest, Ben accidentally woke us up an hour early. Ugh! Had our good old hard rolls and coffee and 
off we went on the bus for another long day. I hated to rush off from Heidelberg so soon. It was such an interesting place. I would have loved to 
have spent several days there. Outside of town we passed a fenced area with tiny plots of flowers and vegetables, dotted with tiny doll-like 
houses. They belong to city folks who enjoy gardening for a hobby in their spare time. The little houses, which they could lock, held their tools 
and a change of clothes. We just passed a woman who was leading an ox pulling a plow, the latter being guided by a man. The fields of grain 
and other crops are most unusually small, a few hundred feet long by about 50 feet wide, in which grain, vegetables, potatoes, etc., alternate. 
After hearing so much about the beautiful Black Forest for days from Heinz, we finally arrived there, and I must agree. It is really beautiful. Our 
rest stop is at Titisee, a beautiful big resort lake surrounded by mountains. We drove on to the little village of Bonndorf and the Schwarzwald 

Hotel, where we had lunch. The latter consisted of fillet steak and huge glasses of red wine. When we got back on the bus we slept all the way 
to our next stop at the Rheinfals, which are the beginning of the Rhein River. Here we took some pictures of these beautiful falls and walked 
along the interesting paths and over picturesque stone bridges. 

SWITZERLAND. We drove on through gorgeous countryside and on to the historic city of Zurich, stopping in the middle of the town on the 
shores of lovely Lake Zurich to take pictures. Mostly all the houses here are in Swiss Chalet style, and like most of the houses in the previous 
countries, they too have window boxes filled with beautiful bright flowers geraniums, petunias and the most gorgeous roses. In the two 
countries of Germany and in Switzerland especially there were an abundance of climbing red and pink roses. 

We arrived at Lucerne at about 7 PM, another lovely city on a picturesque lake, and stopped at some hotel that was on the tour guide's 
schedule. Evidently, there was some mix-up, since this hotel was not expecting us and did not have any rooms to spare. So the busload 
climbed a steep hill to the Montana Hotel a beautiful view from here. Half our group stayed there and the rest of us went down by cable car to 
the Palace Hotel, one of the finer ones in the Deluxe class. Things were kind of fouled up. Poor Carlos, in tears and most unhappy. He had a 
lot of extra work to do in sorting out and loading and unloading luggage. So far on this trip we have been most fortunate in our room 
assignments, and always have had a room with a bath. Some of the others did not, and when they didn't they were most unhappy about it. This 
was one of those times when some in our tour did not get baths with their rooms. It so happened that those with a beautiful view of the lake and 
mountains had no baths, and those of us that had smaller rooms with a bath, had no view. I soaked a long time in a hot bath and then stayed 
draped in a monstrously big towel, hoping our luggage would arrive before dinner. It finally did arrive, but only after I had got back into my dirty 
clothes. I rushed and changed again, and all very tired, we piled into the bus again and went out to the Flores Hotel dining room at 9:30 PM. 

The restaurant was very novel, completely out of doors under large trees. We had excellent entertainment from the time we arrived until the 
time we left at 1 1 PM. With the dinner we had plenty of white wine and that old Swiss favorite, cheese fondue, with everyone dipping into a 
large pot of hot, melted cheese in the center of the table. After that we had Swiss sausage and French fries (everyone here serves French 
fries). Then for dessert we had ice cream with a little Swiss flag stuck in it. When we got back to the hotel, we fixed instant coffee for Joan 
Reltsma in Jan's room and had conversation and looked at the beautiful view from her picture window until one in the morning. 

Wednesday, June 27. This morning I broke down and had some scrambled eggs and bacon with my "continental breakfast", ($1 .00 extra) the 
first since we left home. I just couldn't face another cold hard roll. The coffee, however, is real good, but quite strong. Here it is served with a 
pot of hot water, and diluted with cream and sugar. It's very good. On our sightseeing tour this morning we went to see the lovely "Lion 
Monument", which shows the dying lion. It is carved in the face of a large stone. In memory of the Swiss Guard that died defending Marie 
Antoinette during the French Revolution. We browsed around some of the shops, but only ended up buying a watch for Kim, and one for me. 
Had a good lunch at our hotel dining room. We were planning to take a trip by cable car and funicular railway up to the top of beautiful Mt. 
Pilatus, but since it was cloudy and rainy, we could not. I was very disappointed. We spent most of the afternoon exploring the streets and the 
many interesting shops. While having dinner in the hotel dining room, I thought I recognized a girl I went to high school with in Colorado. Sure 
enough, it was Peggy Hampshire, now married to Chuck Lamper, both of whom now reside in Grand Junction, Colorado. It's a small world, 
after all. 

I am snuggled in bed as I am writing this. Such beds they have here! We have had a king size bed everywhere we have stayed except in 
London. Here we have great big thick down comforters and giant pillows, not to mention several tiny pillows for good measure. As we drive 
through the countryside, piles of bedding can be seen in the open upstairs windows, out for airing. 

In both Germany and Switzerland, as we pass through the villages we see the farmers' barns attached to their dwellings. The buildings are 
quite large and some of the barns are also decorated with flowers in the window boxes. In Germany there is usually a big pile of manure in 
front of the barn, next to the street. They proudly display these as an indication of wealth - the bigger the manure pile the more animals the 
farmer owns. The towns also have a big watering trough in the town square. The people are snowbound part of the winter, at which time it is 
most convenient to be close to their animals, the reason for having the barn attached to the house. 

Thursday, June 28. Well, here we are settled in the bus ready to leave for Innsbruck, Austria. It's a beautiful clear day. I wish it had been like 
this yesterday - we could have gone up Mt. Pilatus. I wish we were staying here longer. We are traveling through some of the most wonderful 
scenery, the magnificent Alps. There is a lot of snow on them and we see waterfalls, big and small, everywhere. Where one peak had been 
climbed a white cross has been erected. 

The farmers live in villages and they raise hay on the steep mountainsides. We see them cutting the hay by hand with a scythe. The terrain is 
too steep to use machinery. We did see one tractor, however. The women, too, work in the fields, tossing hay in order to first dry it, then gather 
it into piles. Most of the women wear long dresses. I have only seen two women in slacks. The cattle look beautiful, big, fat and grayish tan in 
color. Some have horns, and each one has a big cowbell. A farmer can identify his own cows and also his neighbors cows by the sound of the 
bells, even though they might not be in sight. 

We have come to a rest stop high up in the mountains at Cafe Kerenzer-Berghus, where we had some good coffee and pastry. The cafe is on 
Lake Wallensee, at Filzbock, Switzerland. The view from here is absolutely magnificent. Hector took a picture of us here. It is quite chilly as we 
look down at an emerald green lake far down below. 

We drove on through the majestic scenery and passed a couple of castle ruins. Everything is so very green. Hay is draped over wire and over 
stakes to dry. Little sheds dot the mountainsides. They store their hay in them and in the winter they bring it down by sleds. 

LIECHTENSTEIN. We have arrived at the tiny principality of Liechtenstein. First we met with Baron von Falz-Fein who gave us a short talk 
about his country. Then we had a very good lunch of steak and mushrooms in a little restaurant. This is considered a heavy meal here in 
Europe. The bus had to wait for the judge, who got lost wandering around in the village. 

AUSTRIA. We leave Liechtenstein and cross into Austria. After a long drive we crossed the Ariberg Pass and had a rest stop. Such superb 
scenery. At 7:30 PM we arrived at the city of Innsbruck, situated in the beautiful Inn valley and on the river of the same name. After a short tour 

of the city and seeing some points of interest, we disembarl<ed at the Hotel Europa. We had a fair dinner in the hotel dining room at 8:00 PM 
and then went upstairs to a large hall to watch a native Tirolean show. It was quite good, consisting of singers, dancers, with yodeling, and 
music with accordian, zither and harp. I had a front seat with Joan and Jan and others. Ben came in a little late, and try as we may, we couldn't 
find a chair for him next to us. So he sat down at the back of the room. No sooner had he sat down when along came a beautiful (so I've been 
told at least a million times!) blonde Austrian Princess who looked like a movie star and sat down beside him. I guess everyone on the tour saw 
her but me. Finally Joan got up and went over to Ben and said in a loud voice, "Go up front and sit with your wife!" Ben just said, "Why? I'm 
happy where I am." Seems like all the Englishmen sitting at the table behind him got a big kick out of it all and had a good laugh. 

After the show we went up to Jan's room and had some champagne to celebrate Paulette Slegrist's birthday. After that, I took a hot bath and 
went to bed. Such a good bed! Love those down comforters and pillows. 

Friday, June 29. Had "breakfast" at 7:00 AM. Coffee was 50 cents a cup at dinner. Wow! Seems like everywhere on this trip they try to put off 
serving coffee as long as possible. 

We got off on the road before 8:00 AM for a change. We saw part of the new European Highway now under construction and saw some of the 
supports for a terrifically high bridge they were building. I guess it will be quite a fine road when it is finished. We passed Brenner Lake and 
crossed the Italian border at Brenner Pass at about 41 00-foot elevation. 

ITALY. We got some American money changed into Lire. Such a mess of paper! For $70 we received 43,000 Lire, 61 5 Lire per dollar. The 
border guards checked our passports, but did not stamp them. Father Valencia, a Mexican national, did not have an Italian visa for some 
reason, and as a result we were held up at the border for quite a long time. Our guide, Heinz, and he walked about a mile to the police station 
and finally got him a visa. One lady on the bus volunteered that Father Valencia would have even more trouble at the Spanish border, because 
Spain and Mexico have broken diplomatic relations. Switzerland and Austria had been so clean and tidy, but the moment we crossed into Italy 
nothing was very clean. We drove on through the majestic Dolomite mountains. They rise sharply on either side of the highway. We could see 
holes up in the rocks where snipers had hid out during the war and a few men could control the pass. At one place we saw bombed-out ruins of 
houses and a fort. In fact, a whole city had been bombed out and abandoned since World War 1 . Drove on through those unbelievable 
Dolomites. They are very rugged and seem to go on forever. Lots of snow on them. 

Drove through the city of Cortina d'Ampezzo (3000 pop.) where the 1 956 Winter Olympics were held. What a beautiful valley! Had lunch in an 
Italian restaurant high up on a mountaintop that overlooked the valley. We had our first Lasagna, and did it ever taste good! Also, the wine was 
light and excellent, but it always makes me so sleepy. We drove back down the mountain and drove past the ski jump used during the 
Olympics. We stopped and took some pictures. Carlos can really handle this big bus. He misses stonewalls by inches where the gates are 
narrow. We drove out of the mountains and into the Po valley. It is the most fertile valley in Italy, having many vineyards, orchards and fields of 
grain. We now started seeing those famous cypress trees, and also some feudal estates or villas on the high hills. After coming to Mestre we 
drove on over a causeway underpinned by 80,000 oak pilings leading on to Venice. 

Our leader had phoned ahead to have water taxis ready to take us from a parking lot to our hotel. Carlos unloaded us and our luggage, and 
then with piles of our luggage we got into motor boats (our taxis) and off we zoomed to the Bauer Gruenwald Hotel. Venice is an unbelievable 
city, out in a lagoon and completely built on pilings. All the streets are really canals. It seems so strange to go down a canal and see those 
monstrous buildings rising stories high up on either side right out of the water - no set-back and no sidewalks, and to see the water running in 
under many of the doorways. The water is not very clean. In fact, all the sewage is run directly into the canals, and the only cleaning action is 
the coming and going of a changing tide. 

Saturday, June 30. We visited the St. Mark's Square and the huge St. Mark's Church. Its ceiling is covered with beautiful mosaic designs and 
gold mosaic backgrounds. We saw and went through the Doges Palace and saw much that was interesting - murals by Tintoretto and Titian, 
halls of old armor, a machine gun designed by Michelangelo. The paintings were most magnificent, and in the Great Council Hall was the 
largest oil painting in the world - 'The Glory of Paradise" by Tintoretto. 

We saw some of the dungeons where, we were told, prisoners were stashed and forgotten, and where during high tides in the winter the water 
would come into the cells and the prisoners would sometimes be standing waist deep in water. Lord Byron spent 1 days in one of those 
dungeons in order to get inspiration for writing his poem, "The Prisoner of Chillon." He didn't. We also crossed the "Bridge of Sighs", reputedly 
where prisoners were led off to the dungeon, and where through the grillworkthey got their last look at the outside world and beautiful Venice. 
We went to a glass factory and saw many beautiful artifacts of glass and artisans at work blowing glass. The last evening in Venice we went on 
a lovely gondola ride, with four or five people in each gondola. We all went up the Grand Canal as a group and had an opera singer serenade 
us, as well as an accordion player accompanying him. It was all very delightful. Such beautiful singing. Some of the gondoliers sang, too. Our 
gondolier invited Ben to try his hand at rowing or poling the gondola, and Ben took him up on the offer and in a few minutes had the "hang" of it 
all. It was all very romantic. Wish the ride would have lasted longer. 

After the ride we walked to the St. Mark's Piazza, drank a cup of cappuccino and listened to a concert. 

Sunday, July 1 . Up early, as usual, and left in the water taxis for the bus and were off for Florence. We traveled over a lovely new highway and 
a long, high bridge. We saw St. Anthony's Church in Padua in which St. Anthony's tomb is located, along with his preserved tongue 
(supposedly.) We had lunch in Bologna, which is supposed to have the best food in Italy. The wine was excellent, but the lunch wasn't all that 
good. Almost everyone bought some extra bottles of wine to take along. We almost didn't have lunch at all, since at this time all the restaurants 
were on strike. After a short sightseeing tour in Bologna, we checked in at the Minerva Hotel in Florence. After dinner, although we were quite 
tired, we went en masse to the town piazza to listen to an orchestra and some opera singers. Gateway, our tour company, treated us to free 
drinks on this occasion. Also had some black coffee. 

Monday, July 2. A woman local guide led us on a city tour through Florence. Saw the beautiful golden doors of the Baptistery, sometimes 
referred to as "The Gates of Paradise." We went through a leather factory, then a silver factory. We then drove to the left bank of the Arno 
River to the Pitti Palace, a huge stone structure, where we saw a part of its art collection. The museum also had some magnificent tables, 

constructed of natural colored marble mosaics. One table took many artisans and fourteen years to make. One table was done in malachite. 
Had our pictures taken in Michelangelo Square, high up in the mountain overlooking Florence. The Medici family were most prominent and 
ruled Florence for many generations in the Middle Ages. 

After lunch Ben took a nap and then got a haircut. I browsed the streets alone, bought an alabaster ashtray and a silver salt spoon, and saw 
the numerous shops on the Ponte Vecchio bridge. 

Back at the Minerva Hotel. We had a very nice room overlooking a square. Lovely tiled bath, dark blue floor and multi-colored walls. We drank 
one of our bottles of wine from Bologna during dinner. Ben met an old acquaintance, Fred Bieger, in the dining room. He was the man he had 
met in Munich during his trip there seven years ago, and with whom he had spent quite a bit of time traveling around in Germany and Austria. 
They had a real nice visit again. At the hotel desk we picked up three letters from home. 

Tuesday, July 3. Up early again and off on the bus, headed for Rome. I slept a lot on the bus. It seemed we passed nothing but old yellow ruins 
along the way, and the streets in the towns we drove through were very narrow. We arrived at Assisi where we had a good lunch in a hotel 
near the famous Monastery. Then we walked up a narrow street to the beautiful church of St. Francis. A young Irish priest showed us through 
the church. It is called a Basilica and was most unusual, with low ceilings and built on three levels. There were beautiful frescos on the ceilings. 
It is a monastery for the Franciscan Order of Monks. We also saw St. Francis' tomb in the Basilica. 

On and off to Rome. We passed some ancient aqueducts on the way. Rome is a huge city of three million people, spread over several hills. It 
once had a population of eight million. We arrived at our destination, the Claridge Hotel, around dinnertime. We had the smallest and darkest 
room of our trip so far, but we had an excellent dinner. We are paying for our own meals in Rome. Went to bed early. 

Wednesday, July 4. Sightseeing in Rome all day. Went to St. Peter's Square. Huge crowds everywhere, with much pushing and shoving. Saw 
Pope John in a window of the Vatican and heard him speak. We went in to St. Peter's Basilica and saw St. Peter's chains, Michelangelo's 
statue of Moses, beautiful columns, and many other fabulous statues and paintings. While in the church the Colonel's wallet was stolen. He 
carried it in his hip pocket. 

That evening we took a nightclub tour - "Rome by Night." The first night club we were taken to was 'The House of Caesar." A doorman dressed 
as a Roman warrior greeted us. We were then seated outdoors in a sort of tent affair under blue and red awnings. The waiters wore red togas 
in the style of Ancient Rome. We were served champagne and danced under the stars. 

The next nightclub was in a cellar. We watched dancers do the twist. After a long wait we were finally served champagne. We were also 
supposed to get a snack to eat, but as usual, the guide loused us up. At the next place we were served wine. In the last place we saw a floor 
show and had champagne. 

Thursday, July 5. We had the whole day free. Went back to the Vatican Museum to see what we had missed the day before. Got back for lunch 
at 2:00 PM. I was very tired and after eating I went to bed. 

After a nap, we went to Alfredo's famous restaurant with Paulette and Linda Slegrist. The violinists serenaded us with "Irrivadercca Roma" and 
other Italian pieces. We had Alfredo's fabulous noodles for dinner and then I was given the serving platter for "good luck." 

There was some kind of a mix-up with two taxis, but we finally got into one and rushed off to see the opera "Alda", which was held out in the 
open at the ancient Roman Baths of Caracalla. The traffic was terrible. There don't seem to be any traffic lights, signals or speed limits, or 
anything else. Everybody just drives like crazy. Murder! But somehow our driver zipped around and got us to the opera on time at 9:00 PM. 

It was held out in the open and the stage was built into the ancient ruins. We had cushioned seats. The program said it was the largest stage in 
the world. Magnificent opera. We took a bus back to the hotel, arriving at 1:30 AM. Packed and went to bed at 2:30. 

Friday, July 6. Got up at 5:30 after three hours of sleep and off on the bus at 7:00 AM. Slept most of the time. After the morning rest stop we 
had our first view of the Mediterranean Sea. We drove on down the coast and through Naples, reputed to be the poorest city in Italy. It is a very 
large city with many huge apartment buildings and miles of the most horrible slums. I had to cover my nose with a hanky - the stench was so 
terrible. The squalor was unbelievable. 

Drove on down the Apian Way and saw a huge ancient Roman amphitheatre and many other ancient Roman ruins. We saw clothes strung out 
on lines across the streets. We passed huge sulphur plants. Stopped at a cameo shop. The items were very expensive. 

We arrived at Pompeii. Here we had lunch, after which we had an hour's tour of the ancient ruins. We could see the old chariot tracks in the 
stone-laid streets. If there was one upright stone in the street, it was one-way, if two. It was a two-way street. Some of the old ruins of buildings 
still showed beautiful baths with mosaic floors. Also the kitchens were identifiable and we even saw the remains of copper pipes. 

On to Sorrento. When we got there we hiked down several flights of steps from high cliffs to the boat landing, carrying our tote bags along with 
us. We boarded a small boat that now took us on a one and a half hour trip to Capri. The seas were rough and the boat rolled considerably. 
Two people became ill. 

Finally we arrived at Capri. Toting our gear we walked along the docks - such a bedraggled little army! Finally Der Leader got us a few local 
taxis and off we sped on a narrow winding road on the edge of the steep mountainside. Thank goodness there was a stonewall on the drop-off 
side. The taxis were open with a fringe on top and had several seats, more like a bus. The driver was giving us a thrill ride, driving with reckless 
abandon as if he didn't care whether we dropped over the edge or not. I enjoyed it all, but a surprising number of our people didn't like any part 
of it. I think they were scared half out of their wits. 

We arrived at our hotel, the Europa Palace, very high up on the mountain. Fortunately, we were assigned the best room yet of our entire trip. 
We have two bathrooms, a living room, and a balcony overlooking the hill and the garden. Also we have piped music in the room and yellow 

tiled floors - just lovely. After a good dinner, off to bed. Saturday, July 7. Today we took a taxi to the town square of Capri. Browsed around in 
art shops and walked down winding cobblestone streets. I have never seen such lovely clothes as in these shops. After lunch we took a chair 
lift ride to the very top of Mt. Solaro, (1 932 feet.) Joan, Paulette and Linda went also, but Jan was too afraid to go up. Joan was pretty nervous 
also, and Ben singing "Goodnight, Irene, goodnight!" didn't help any. 

After we got back we took another wild taxi ride down along the steep mountainside to take a boat ride into the Blue Grotto. Jan missed that 
too. Joan went, but still scared. Once inside, Joyce went over the side of the boat and swam in the clear water. It was beautiful so sparkling 
and so blue. I put my feet in and they looked an eerie white under the water. It is certainly a beautiful place. 

At dinnertime we met our friend, Fred Bieger again and Ben had a long conversation with him. He is heading up another tour group. I wish we 
could stay here for a week. 

Sunday, July 8. Well, we got up early to rush around so we could stand on the dock in the hot sun and wait and wait for the ship at 9:00 AM. 
The ship arrived on time and we took off for Naples. The boat ride was most enjoyable. We passed a hydrofoil boat that was going like a 
streak. When we arrived in Naples Bay, we found that the U.S. fleet was in the harbor. We could see big carriers (one was the Shangri-la), 
destroyers and submarines. 

After we arrived we again stood in the hot sun and waited. Finally the bus arrived and took us to the railroad station in Naples. Then we waited 
another hour for the train to arrive. All we do is rush to wait. After we boarded the train we went to the dining car and had a huge five-course 
lunch. One whole car was reserved just for our Gateway group, and we found ourselves in compartments of about six people in each. We went 
through numerous tunnels. The countryside looks much like the midwest. We arrived in Rome at about 3:00 PM. Four of the ladies who had 
stayed over in Rome now joined us again. At 6:30 we were off again on the train headed for Genoa. Had a delicious dinner - two desserts. Also 
our first olives since arriving in Italy. We saw the Leaning Tower of Pisa through the train windows. After dinner we went through some real 
pretty country. The mountains looked like the Dolomites. We are traveling close to the sea and going through dozens of tunnels. Although the 
train was real noisy, on this trip we got to telling jokes In our compartment, and especially with Paulette Slegrist leading the way. It was a real 
riot. Ben said he had never laughed so hard in all his life. 

As we neared Genoa we were asked (or told) to move to the back of the train to make room for another group, apparently, and that we would 
have to stand for 1 to 15 minutes while they reconnected or rearranged cars. As it turned out we had to stand up for a whole hour, with our kit 
and caboodle in hand. Finally we got off in Genoa and hiked up a long flight of stairs in the station and walked to our hotel, the Colombia 
Excelsior, a lovely hotel. It was after 10:00 PM when we arrived. We had a most heavenly bed and I was ever so glad to get into it. 

Monday, July 9. We met up with Carlos and our bus again and had a beautiful trip along the rugged coast through the Sea Alps. 

MONACO. After having lunch at San Remo we followed the coast to Monte Carlo. Here we took a little trip around the city and the Castle, the 
Sea Museum and stopped to go through the Casino. We could see Onassis' huge yacht in the lovely harbor below. 

FRANCE. We drove on to Nice and checked in at the Atlantic Hotel. We had baths with our room, some of our people did not. We loaned our 
bath to Linda and her mother. Took a walk through a lovely park and on to the beach. No sand at the beach, just big rocks the size of a football. 
Saw lots of pretty gals in bikinis. Such lovely brown bodies. 

While in Nice a group of us sent a wire of protest to Gateway headquarters in Lugano, Switzerland, demanding that we get grouped into a bus 
with no more than 28 people, as we had been promised in the tour literature. We were all getting mighty tired of 44 people trudging in and out 
of the bus every time we came to a stop. 

Tuesday, July 1 0. Went on a tour of Cannes, then drove up the mountains to the town of Fragenard and a perfume factory. Everything smelled 
heavenly. The cutest little Italian lady, who had been taught English by an Irish priest, showed us how perfume and soap were made. Such 
charm and wit! I bought a few items. 

Drove back to Cannes and stayed about an hour. Saw a lot of beautiful huge yachts in the harbor, one of which was from Wisconsin. The 
beaches were sandy here. Saw an artist with a palette knife doing a lovely floral painting with the paint as much as half an inch thick in places. 
Saw a Cannes beach scene I would have loved to have had. Arrived back at the hotel about 7:30, just In time for dinner. Took a walk after 

Wednesday, July 11. Up at 6 AM. Breakfast the usual continental and into the bus. We bypassed Cannes and drove through fields of lavender 
and other flowers. Most of the latter were under the shade of coverings of wooden slats. Practically all these flowers are used in the making of 

Drove on through the so-called Van Gogh country and had lunch at Aries, where Van Gogh spent much of his time and did some of his best 
paintings. There are lots of lovely fields and vineyards everywhere. There are caves in the nearby rock formations which contain primitive 
paintings some 4000 years old, which were discovered only recently. The soil here is very red and there are many outcroppings of huge rocks. 
Also, at Aries we discovered our first "sunken" toilet. Had lunch at Aries in a rather smelly restaurant. (No connection between the two.) 
Mountains of rice was one of the courses. 

After a short ride we arrived at Mimes and checked in at the Imperator Hotel for the night. After dinner Biederman had a meeting with our group 
to determine how many of us wanted to go into a new bus to reduce the overcrowded 44 in the present setup. Only seven of us insisted, the 
others "chickened" out. Anyway, he agreed to get us a second bus or limousine after much phoning back and forth to headquarters. We were 
happy. Went for a walk in a park that had beautifully landscaped gardens, canals, swans swimming around, and indirect lighting on the statues. 
These were the Gardens of Diana, originally built as Roman baths. At this time a festival was going on in the old Roman ruins. We could only 
see a small part of the goings on, since people were admitted only by invitation. We walked up a set of stairs and winding paths leading up the 
side of the mountain, all covered with trees which were also lighted. It was one of the loveliest parks 1 have ever seen on the whole trip. We 
came down some steep stairs that were carved into the rock of the mountain until we came to a grotto which had a beautiful waterfall flowing 

over the top. 

Bought an ice cream cone after we were back down. The ice cream is very good in Europe. Saw the ruins of an old Roman Temple and the 
large facade of a theatre that was built a hundred years ago. The theatre itself was burned down by an opera singer some ten years ago. Also 
in the outskirts of the city was a huge Roman arena still in very good condition. It could seat 20,000 people and was the largest in Europe, next 
to Rome. The gardens around the hotel were lovely - lots of muscatel grapes. 

Thursday, July 12. Off to Barcelona today. At Perpignan we had a delicious lunch of beef stew in lieu of roast pork. The weather is hot and 
some of us didn't want to risk eating pork out here. Had quite a time trying to get iced tea, but finally got a pitcher of hot tea and a bucket of ice. 

SPAIN. We crossed the border at Junquero, where we had to show our passports. The guards took a lot of bags out of the luggage 
compartment, but did not open any of them. We drove through some beautiful country, with many vineyards in evidence. I thought the country 
was noticeably cleaner than it had been in Italy and the part of France we had just left. There were many cork oaks in the countryside. They 
harvest the bark from these trees every three or four years. This they then ship to Germany and from there it goes out in the form of cork. Saw 
police patrolling the highway. We pass many little carts with big wheels drawn by one horse or a mule, or a donkey. Some carts had canvasses 
covering them, and a lot of them had a little dog tied on a leash following. Usually the dog would stick close to the cart so that it could stay in its 
shade. There are lots of gnarled old olive trees along the wayside, and a lot of bicycles and motorcycles on the road. 

We drove on through the fertile Ebro Valley. Everything is so much greener here than we had expected. We drove on over the foothills of the 
Pyrenees mountains near the ocean and arrived at Barcelona at dinnertime. Barcelona is a lovely city of one and a half million. It has wide 
boulevards with double avenues and a wide paved center strip for strolling pedestrians. There are lots of flowers and lots of places to sit. Also, 
the city has many beautiful large fountains. 

We checked in at the Manila Hotel. The room was quite warm and no air conditioning. I had been riding in the rear of the bus most of the day 
and had caught a cold, so didn't feel too well. Had dinner in a lovely dining room on the ninth floor of the hotel. The dining room had large 
windows and we had a good view overlooking the city. Four of the Mexicans are staying over in Barcelona and will meet us later in Madrid. 

After dinner we had another discussion with "der Leader". We seven insisted he make good on his promise to get us a second bus. After a 
phone call to company headquarters he told us the company insisted they were within their proper limit of 40 persons on the bus. The fact that 
when the Mexicans return we will again be overloaded was ignored. We were much disgusted. 

Friday, July 1 3. This morning Ben had a headache and didn't feel too good, so he stayed in bed. Probably too much vino last night. I went 
sightseeing with the group. Saw a beautiful cathedral that has now been turned into a museum. We also saw the sight of the World's Fair held 
here in the 1 920's. There are many replicas of houses from each province in Spain. Now they house shops displaying merchandise and crafts. 
There is a huge 200-foot high statue of Columbus overlooking the harbor. 

We returned to the hotel for lunch. Ben now felt OK. After lunch we walked down to the harbor where they had an exact replica of Columbus' 
ship, the Santa Maria. We went aboard and looked it over. It looked pretty crude as a craft with which to cross the Atlantic. We then hired a 
motorboat and took a cruise around the harbor. Next we went through the Maritime Museum, all of which was extremely interesting. Went to a 
huge department store, the Casa Jorba, where I tried to find a dress for Kim, but no luck. 

We went back to the hotel and had dinner in the ninth floor dining room. At this time we received a picture of our group taken in St. Peter's 
Square in Rome. Heinz Biederman is leaving the group to go into advertising work at the company headquarters in Lugano, Switzerland. 

Saturday, July 14. Left at regular time this AM. Met our new tour guide. He is a robust young German fellow of 25, and his name is Dietrich 
Kronzucker. The last name, translated from German into English, means "crown sugar." However, to make it easy for us Americans he has 
invented the short name of Ted. He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Vienna the day before. He is a jolly good fellow with a 
good sense of humor and everyone likes him immensely He is not stiff like Biederman, and the morale of the group has lifted considerably and 
the people are singing again. 

Followed the Ebro Valley and the coastal road along to Valencia. We witnessed the strange way people here have of drawing water from a 
well. It is sort of a water wheel contraption. A mule or a horse is hitched to a long pole and it goes round and around in a circle turning a water 
wheel. More carts and mules on the road. Some of the mules carry large stacks of hay on their back. All one can see are a face and long ears 
at one end and a tail sticking out at the other, with a huge load of hay over it all. Poor things. 

We arrive at Valencia and check in at the Astoria Hotel. It is a lovely hotel. The lobby is air-conditioned but the rooms are not they are hot! 
Had a good dinner with excellent vino punch. After dinner a group of us went for an hour's walk with Ted. It is real hot out, I almost wore out my 
new face. Paulette and I were browsing and window-shopping when we suddenly realized the rest of the group had left us and we were lost. 
We couldn't even remember the name of our hotel! I couldn't make myself understood in my limited Spanish, but Paulette fared a little better 
with her French. She explained to a nice man that we had lost our group and the man named off a list of hotels. When he came to Astoria, I 
recognized the name. He and his party of charming ladies escorted us all the way back to our hotel. Quite a group of our party had gathered 
and wondered what had happened to us. Ben was about ready to go out and start looking for us. Had another cold coke and went to bed. 

Sunday, July 1 5. We left Valencia in the morning and a short while later Carlos discovered there was a leak in the radiator. He stopped the bus 
a number of times to refill the radiator, sometimes from water in a ditch along the road. Finally, at our AM rest stop, which came at about noon, 
he stopped the bus, pulled over on the side of the road and worked on the radiator for a long time. We were out in the middle of nowhere, but 
we were next to the sea. It was a very hot day, so some of us went over to the very rocky beach and waded into the cool water. Mr. Cespedos 
helped Carlos with the repair work. Curtis and Linda were doing the twist. Don't know how they could do it in all this heat. 

Finally we were off again. Very arid and rocky country and the wind blowing through the bus is hot. There are rock walls everywhere and it is 
unbelievable how so much rock terracing could be done is such a dry place. The olive trees and other plants seem to be dwarfed in this dry 
land. Saw many ruins of old castles and high towers constructed out of stone. The towers were used to signal messages by means of mirrors. 

Saw a Moorish castle on top of a high rock, and a Catholic church built on top of it all. Also passed a 56-foot statue of Christ. Lots of goat herds 
along the way, some black, some white, but not many mixed herds. 

Just before our lunch stop we drove through a well-irrigated valley that had huge fields of date palms. It looked like an oasis in the desert. Had 
lunch at the Rene Victoria Hotel at Murcia at about 3:00 PM, left a little after 4:00 PM, and had our afternoon rest stop at about 5:30 PM. it was 
beginning to cool down a bit. We drove on through some more very arid country and into the Sierra Nevada Mountains. We passed a number 
of Gypsy caves that were their dwellings. They were built right into the side of the hills and had whitewashed fronts and often brightly colored 
doors. The chimneys would rise right out of the hills. They looked like a lot of monuments. Fascinating. Soon the sun set over the mountains. 
Beautiful. A full moon rose and shone over the landscape. We drove on over continually winding roads and through terribly wild looking 
country. The mountains were extremely rugged and rocky, with steep drop-offs from the narrow road. It all looked especially eerie in the 
moonlight. A lot of the younger people sang for a long time. I guess the trip was quite frightening to some. Ben and I enjoyed it, but I guess we 
were the only ones. 

Finally, at about 1 0:30 we looked down into a valley and saw the bright lights of Granada. The air was very dry, and by now quite cold, 
something we all enjoyed after the awful heat of the day before. The city looked lovely by night. We passed a lovely part with beautiful 
fountains lit up with a variety of colored lights. The streets were crowded with people strolling about. We arrived at the Nevada Hotel, and 
Immediately had a drink with Jan and Paulette before we went up to the dining room at 1 1:00 PM, where we had some vino again. Everyone 
was tired after a long, long day, and a little silly and slaphappy at dinner. 

Monday, July 16. At 9:30 AM we went on a sightseeing tour of the city. We drove through the beautiful park that had been planted by the British 
Duke of Wellington. (His portrait, done by the Spanish artist Goya, is still missing from the London Museum.) Went to the Generalife, the 
summer palace of the royalty. Magnificent gardens. On to the famous Alhambra, the most beautiful structure we have yet seen on this trip. 
Next, to a lace factory where they served us wine, all we could drink! Several little girls were working on the lace. One was a really beautiful 
doll. She had pierced ears, beautiful brown eyes, and hair piled up high on top of her head. Lots of lovely lace scarves. 

We had an excellent lunch at the hotel and then left for Seville at about 2:30 PM. Passed numerous carts pulled by three or four mules hitched 
in single file. Also saw a number of goats and sheep, a few cattle and one herd of pigs. I have not seen a single wild animal on this whole trip, 
except for one lizard in Florence. Saw miles and miles of beautiful olive orchards, as far as the eye could see over the rolling hills. There were 
thick groves of tall trees in the river bottoms, trees that looked a little like aspen. The land here was mostly irrigated, as were the fields of 
potatoes and corn. 

Arrive in Seville at about 7:30 PM, and the weather again was quite hot. Carlos took us to the Madrid hotel and no sooner had we entered the 
hotel when we got the word to load up again. It seems the hotel only had 30 rooms available. So, off to the Alfonso XIII, a real lovely luxury 
hotel. Beautiful dining room and a choice of menu, somewhat similar to the Palace hotel in Lucerne. Had a nice room overlooking the garden 
and a nice cool breeze coming in. The first night we dressed up, boarded the bus and drove to an outdoor restaurant. Had a typical Spanish 
dish - Bahia - delicious. After dinner we went to a nightclub and witnessed some real wild Flamenco dancing. Also had a glass of champagne. 
Enjoyed the show very much. Tuesday, July 17. Went sightseeing in the morning. Saw the 1929 Exposition buildings, then off to the Alcazar. It 
was even more beautiful than the Alhambra in Granada. Went through the third largest cathedral in Spain. In it was the tomb of Columbus, and 
supposedly also contained his bones. In it also was what was claimed to be the highest altar in the world, some 60 feet high. In the cathedral 
also was a huge 500-pound silver ornament and a one-ton candelabra. 

I was terribly tired after lunch, so I stayed in the room, washed my hair and rested. Had food brought to the room. At night Ben and the group 
went to the bullfights. Jan and I stayed at the hotel and had a quiet dinner with champagne. At 1 1 PM the group returned from the fights and 
had their dinner. Some of the people were ill after seeing the fights, but most of them enjoyed it. Wednesday, July 1 8. Joyce and Curtis were 
very sick and had been ill all night. The doctor came to see Joyce. However, they will live, I guess. We left the hotel at 8:30 AM, an hour late. 
Drove for over an hour through miles and miles of cork oak trees, all planted in rows like an orchard. Lots of stonewalls and corrals. Saw some 
herds of pigs, also goats. Saw two storks, some palmetto trees. Passed a tall cart piled very high with hay, drawn by two oxen. 

We are now driving through the province where tin and copper are mined, and the countryside is very rugged. Passed a large herd of bulls. 
Oleanders and crepe myrtle are in bloom in the villages we pass through. We see women doing their laundry in long washhouses. 

At this time of the year a lot of grain is being threshed. It is a very primitive procedure, as we have also witnessed in other countries. First of all, 
horses and mules trample the grain on the ground, then men with pitchforks toss the straw and chaff up into the wind to separate it from the 

We drive on through countryside that has a lot of different trees. We see apple, mango, olive, oak, pine, figs, poplar and almond trees. Saw a 
lovely castle that had been turned into a hotel and summer resort sitting at the top of a mountain. Took a nap in the bus until we came to our 
AM rest stop at a very primitive little village. Some of the streets were laid out with square designs in stone. Many of the houses had 
whitewashed walls and geraniums in the window boxes. Very pretty. Stopped at Mario's restaurant in a little town by the name of Rosal de la 
Frontera. The little restaurant had dirt floors, and on some of the shelves on the wall were some caged hawks and falcons. 

PORTUGAL. We have now arrived at the border. The Spanish authorities took our passports and stamped them, and now the Portuguese 
require us to fill out their forms. The Spaniards also checked our names against a "mug" list. Then the Portuguese collected our passports and 
then stamped them. Finally, after an hour we got across the border. It had been such a hot ride. I slept most of the way after crossing the 
border. Stopped at noon and had a good lunch of goat meat and fish, Port vino and native dishes. Passed Moorish walls and towers, rice 
paddles, cork oaks and pine trees. This has been a most hot and tiring day. Had an afternoon rest stop at a most dirty place. 

Towards evening the temperature began to cool noticeably. We crossed the Tejas River, which was very wide and full, and arrived at Lisbon at 
about 7:30. It seemed like the most modern city in all of Europe. With its suburbs, Lisbon has a population of about one million. It was nice to 
see houses with green lawns again. Our hotel, the Mundial, is rather modern and quite nice. Had a good dinner In the dining room on the 
eighth floor with a good overview of the city. After dinner some of the group (who had rocks in their heads) took a "walk" with Ted, up and down 

cobblestone streets and hills (in high heels yet) at a nice brisk clip. I understand they are cured of evening strolls. I went to bed right after 

Thursday, July 19. I slept until 10 AM and then had breakfast brought to the room. Have switched to tea. With this miserable European coffee, I 
don't know why I didn't do it sooner. Did some laundry and sent some out. 

Had a grilled steak for lunch - it was very good. At 2:30 we all went on a city sightseeing tour. Saw the National Museum of Coaches where 
over 50 antique coaches were on display, many of them used by royalty. Then went through the St. Jerome Monastery and also the adjoining 
church where many of the Portuguese royalty and rulers have been buried. We drove around the bay and the yacht harbor and up to the top of 
a big hill overlooking the entire city. Everyone was tired and hot so the tour was cut short and we returned to the hotel. I had a cool drink and 
took a two-hour nap before dinner, then back to bed. 

Friday, July 20. Slept till 9:30 and had breakfast sent to the room again. Our room is on the 6th floor and on the street side. It is absolutely the 
noisiest place we have been in yet, and it lasted all night long. Streetcars, busses, horses and carts rattling over the cobblestone streets, 
people yelling and roosters crowing. However, it didn't affect our sleeping too much. 

I have never seen such confusion as in our dining rooms. There are so many waiters they seem to fall all over each other, and never seem to 
get their orders straight. They seem to think all Americans want is ham and eggs. (I'll admit, it'd taste pretty darn good, provided I could cook it 
myself.) The food here is certainly nothing to rave about. Ben and some of the others took an afternoon trip to the coast and Estoril, which is 
now a gathering place for retired royalty. They also visited some castles. Meanwhile, I stayed at the hotel and slept. 

Saturday, July 21. We left Lisbon in the morning and drove through some lovely country. The weather is quite cool for a change and the driving 
was very comfortable. We made a stop at Batallia and went through the Benedictine Monastery of Batallia of St. Mary's. It is a Portuguese 
National Monument. There were at one time 500 monks in this monastery, but it has now dwindled to a mere 20. Don Pedro, the first king of 
Portugal, is buried in this church. A light is perpetually burning next to his casket and two guards are on duty at all times. 

We had lunch at Fatima and stopped to see the huge shrine, the building of which was started in 1928. Arrived in Coimbra at about 5:30 PM. It 
has the oldest University in Portugal. We saw women washing clothes in the Mondego River. There are lots of vegetable gardens, and this 
appears to be the most verdant countryside we have yet seen in this southern part of Europe. We were required to turn in our passports at the 
Braganca hotel, where we stopped for the night. Joan is terribly ill and had a doctor come in and see her. She has a virus and cold, evidently 
brought on by the heat we have been through. Never have I seen anyone so chilled and feverish. 

Took a walk before dinner. Saw women walking with huge loads of laundry, etc., on their heads and at the same time carrying other items in 
their arms. The streets are very narrow. Almost have to jump into doorways in order to avoid being hit by the wildly driven cars. This is a city 
with the most interesting variety of streets. Some are narrow, some are wide, some level, some rounded, some real steep. 

Had a little better dinner tonight. Heavens, the meals have been so miserable and unappetizing in Portugal. Fish and veal, hard rolls and string 
beans, hard rice and french fries. Have not been eating much these days. I gave up on coffee and now drink tea. An occasional chocolate bar 
helps a lot. We have had good ice water in Portugal, so have indulged, but I guess it will be back to Agua Mineral, or natural con gas, or vino in 
Spain and France. Ugh! Had a very interesting walk with Ted and the group, up the steepest, narrowest, winding little cobblestone streets and 
steep flights of stairs. It was rather rough on the "fatties". We could peek into some of the homes, and saw lots of religious pictures hanging on 
the walls. There are a lot of cats roaming the streets and quite a few dirty children. We saw one tyke with only an undershirt on. We walked 
across the bridge to witness a big carnival that was in progress. The temperature is quite cold. Got to bed at 1 1:30 PM. 

Sunday, July 22. The hotel forgot to call us this morning. Fortunately, Ben woke up 1 5 minutes before we were due for breakfast. Finally, we 
got off on the road, late as usual. Quite cool this morning. Very rugged country. Pine forests, eucalyptus trees, vineyards and olive orchards 
along the way. We also see cornfields and vegetable gardens, and we saw pine trees being tapped for tar. The pear trees here produce 
miniature pears that are very good. Yesterday we saw quite a few places that made red tiles for roofs and buildings. Today we see occasional 
truckloads of cork going by. We watched women filling huge jugs with water and then carrying them off on their heads. Some of the houses we 
pass have one or two pictures set in blue tiles on the outside walls. 

Our rest stops in Portugal are really something for the books. Such primitive facilities, so broken down and dirty. One for the men and one for 
the women (which far outnumber the men). Sometimes there is only one for both men and women. We must be quite a sight - bedraggled 
looking tourists, standing in a long line, first on one foot, then the other, waiting for our turn at a smelly "John" that seldom flushed. Ah, me. 
Other smells that are beyond description are those emanating from the food shops along the narrow streets. Phew! Pastries sharing windows 
with files. Dressed chickens (uncovered, as is everything else) strung on a pole. Other meats in the sun in the window show case. Cheese, 
fish, olive oil and garlic, rancid, strong and nauseating smells. 

Portuguese men are quite swarthy and usually good-looking. Businessmen wear dark suits, white shirts and ties. 

Had a luncheon stop at the Hotel de Tourisme in Guarda, which is the highest city in Portugal. It sits high on a mountain where we could 
overlook a beautiful valley below. Despite the fact that we had veal again, it was the best lunch we have had for some time. The rest room was 
divine, one of the best we've had. How incongruous to find new and extremely modern buildings next to some that look, and probably are, 
centuries old. 

On the roadside we pass some of the most fantastic looking rocks. They are very black, smooth and round, and of tremendous size. Some, 
where they are split open, are very white. Some are of odd and peculiar shapes, and some seem to be precariously balanced on top of each 
other. Very strange. And as always all over Europe, endless stone fences. The streets winding through the small towns are extremely narrow, 
and often Carlos has difficulty getting our bus through, often having to back up a few times in order to make it. But, with the help of the local 
police and volunteering citizens, we always get through. The only colors In these drab, dirty little towns are the bright flowers in the flower 
boxes, and in the pots on the balconies. It seems that at any stop we come to, people line up to stare at us and look us over. 

Well, here we are at the border. It takes longer to get across the Portuguese border, either way, than all the other countries added together. 
Had to fill out another form like we did coming in. Such a long wait! 

SPAIN. Now we are waiting on the Spanish side, and it is hot again. It always is, when we have a long wait in the bus. We will probably be very 
late arriving at our hotel. It seems they took down a description of everyone's picture in their passports. As soon as we are on our way again in 
Spain the landscape is thick with oak trees. We see quite a few cattle and fields of grain. Sheaves are piled in huge stacks and harvesting is in 
progress. There are a few threshing machines, but mostly it is done by the old, primitive method of oxen or mules trampling the grain on the 
ground, or dragging a sled-like contraption over the grain. Saw a lot of oxen, most of them pulling carts piled high with hay. We see more cattle 
here than we have seen on our entire trip. 

We crossed the River Tornes and arrived in Salamanca at 5:30 PM. The river seemed quite shallow and had several overflows in which people 
were wading and swimming. Salamanca is the oldest university town in Spain. We have an interesting view from our window overlooking the 
steeples of a large cathedral. Although the rest of the buildings are now in shadow, the sun is still shining on the church domes. Thousands of 
swallows are flitting madly about. Never have I seen so many at one time. I expect one to fly into our open window at any time. We are on the 
4th floor (actually, the 5th floor, since in Europe the 1st floor is the one above the ground floor) and can look out over many red-tiled roofs, and 
over a high stone fence into a garden where several men in black robes and white robes are sitting together and walking around. People here, 
as in Naples, hang their laundry out the windows and across the streets. They seem to love to display it as a sign of wealth. Out in the 
countryside we passed through, the laundry was often draped over rocks and bushes to dry. 

Took a stroll to the Plaza Major at night. It is quite large, with many shops, sidewalk cafes and apartments all around. 

Monday, July 23. it is 9:30 AM and we are late as usual in taking off. We are now on our way to Madrid and are traveling over some quite flat 
country with a lot of grain fields. After a while we start climbing a bit and the landscape suddenly changes to one covered with huge oak trees 
and groves of tall poplars here and there. Such abrupt changes. 

Finally we arrive in Avila, the highest city in Spain. It is a most remarkable medieval looking town surrounded by a very high wall with 89 huge 
towers and seven gates into the city. These walls were built between the 11 th and 12th centuries, and as such are still the best preserved in 
the country. We can't get the bus inside the city, since the gates are too small. We can see some storks on top of the towers, and saw two with 
a nest. Since we couldn't drive in, we just parked the bus outside the gate and took a short walk into part of the city. Here we had a lunch that 
was not too great, except for the cherries and ice cream. 

We arrived in Madrid at 4:30 PM. It is a lovely city, out in the plains, and has a population of about three million. When we arrived at the Plaza 
Hotel we went to the bar and had a lemonade while we waited for our room to be made up. Our room is large, contains a sofa, a coffee table 
and a desk, but there is no air conditioning. We are on the 15th floor, and have a beautiful view of the city and can see to the plains beyond the 
outskirts of the city, and even to the mountains in the distance. Immediately across the street is a lovely park. 

At 5:30 we took a jaunt with Ted to locate some of the stores and shopping places in the immediate area. We left Ted and I bought a few things 
for Kim. Got some ice cream and then stopped at a sidewalk cafe for coffee. Also strolled through an art exhibit. Stores are open from 9 AM to 
1:30 PM, then from 4 to 7:30 PM. Were back at the hotel at 8 PM, in time to change and ready for dinner at 9 PM. Ted, Carlos, Paulette, Linda 
and Joan sat at the table with us. We had champagne, and an excellent dinner for a change. Everyone seemed happy. 

Took a little stroll through the park after dinner. It is still hot. Back at the hotel, we took the elevator to the 26th floor to the roof gardens to see 
the big swimming pool, and view the lights of the city. The water in the pool seemed awfully green, I guess they don't use chlorine like we do. 
After getting back to the room at about midnight I did some laundering and washed my hair. 

Tuesday, July 24. After breakfast, we took a taxi to the El Prado, that most wonderful Art Museum. It has a marvelous collection of paintings by 
Spanish artists such as Goya, El Greco, Valesquez, and of course, from any number of other countries as well. We were in there for two and a 
half hours but still didn't see it all. 

After lunch we left for Toledo at about 2:30. It is very hot. With its ancient walls, towers, castles and the Tajus River, Toledo makes for a very 
picturesque city. We could see fish swimming in the river below. Went to a factory and watched them working on Toledo steel items (knives, 
etc.) with gold leaf inlay. Very beautiful and very expensive. We left the bus and hiked for what seemed miles down some very narrow 
cobblestone streets to the Toledo cathedral. It had beautiful altars, etc., ornately carved, exquisite stained glass windows and another huge 
gold and silver ornament similar to the one we saw in Seville. From there we wandered over to El Greco's house. In the process we lost four 
people from our group, but finally found them back where we had gotten out of the bus. So we were late getting started back to Madrid, and did 
not arrive there until 8:20 PM or so. On the way back we sang Spanish songs with Hector and Father Valencia leading the chorus. What a 
lovely voice the Father has! 

Back at the hotel, fast showers and out to a restaurant for dinner, the "Corral de la Moreria." It was air conditioned and quite cold. I had not 
brought a sweater along, and in a few minutes the headwaiter came up with a white tablecloth and draped It over my shoulders. Soon quite a 
few of the rest of the party were also draped. Had an excellent dinner, which included some thick steaks. At 1 1 :45 the floorshow started. Our 
table was right next to the tiny stage. There were four girls, two guitarists, two male singers and two male dancers. They were doing flamenco 
dances and singing gypsy songs. Such clapping and heel tapping. Such pained expressions when they sing and dance! As they danced and 
twirled a green rose came flying through the air and went into orbit from the head of one of the dancing girls and Ben happened to catch it in 
mid air. He wanted to keep it as a souvenir, but she insisted on having it back. 

Wednesday, July 25. Went on a city sightseeing tour in the morning. The University of Madrid has 60,000 students and a Soccer Stadium that 
seats 1 50,000, the largest in Europe, they claim. We went back to the hotel for lunch and after lunch we repacked our things, then at 5 PM we 
were off to the bullfights, which started at 6 PM sharp. This show did not have professional performers, nor were the fights nearly as colorful 
and exciting as the ones we saw in Mexico City a few years ago. The fifth fight was terrible. The matador lost his cape several times, as well as 
his sword, and had to make five attempts before he could finally kill the bull. Poor bull! The sixth and last fight, in which the matador was from 

Mexico, was pretty good, but the matador was not awarded an ear. 

When we got back to the hotel, we had another good dinner, then went to bed. 

Thursday, July 26. Up at 6:00 AM. The Colonel and Mrs. Byrd are flying home to Orlando today. (The Colonel had fallen and hurt his hip at the 
Alcazar in Seville.) The Cespedos left our group and are going back to Barcelona. The two sisters are taking a train to Paris from here. We 
leave at 8:00 AM and have one of the longest drives of our trip ahead of us. Had our morning rest stop in the mountains and the air is quite 
cool and clear. We are driving through some pretty countryside of rolling hills, of cypress trees, and some oaks. We also pass by miles and 
miles of grain fields. The harvesting is very primitive. The grain is cut by hand with sickles, and then tied into sheaves, also by hand. Women 
are working In the fields, and we also see them washing clothes in the rivers. Passed through many small villages, some of which are almost in 
ruins. Arrived at Burgos. Visited the Principe cathedral. Very beautiful. Saw where El Cid and his wife were buried. Had lunch at the El Cid 
Hotel, a very pretty place. Beautiful flower gardens in front, and lots of roses. Had Bahia again for lunch, but it was very good, delicious meat 
instead of chicken. Took a stroll through the flower gardens, then back into the bus. 

Slept for two hours in a bumpy bus and had a bad headache when I woke. We are traveling through part of the Pyrenees Mountains. They are 
very rugged and very green, and just beautiful. We are now in the heart of the Basque country and find the houses are better looking than in 
the previous villages, and the hostels are very pretty and look like Tyrolean houses. Flowers everywhere and everything very green. Everything 
looks much more prosperous than most other parts of Spain. Ted says the Basques are the most industrious and outstanding of all the peoples 
in Spain. Engineers, architects, etc., come to this part of the country. 

The clouds are hanging low and it is very cool and pleasant. Carlos is really pushing it in driving down these winding mountain roads. We 
skipped our PM rest stop, and arrived at the Hispana Americano Hotel in San Sebastian at 6:00 PM. Our room was the worst of the entire trip. 
It was small and the bed was bumpy. The floor was not quite on the level and there was also a terrible odor from the nearby canal. We both felt 
somewhat tired and bushed and went to bed without having dinner. Slept until 10 PM, when our bags were finally delivered to our room. Ted 
had to deliver most of them. Took a shower and back to bed. 

Friday, July 27. It was raining when we woke up. San Sebastian is a summer resort on the ocean, having a population of about 1 00,000 in the 
winter and about 200,000 in the summer. It appears to have quite a bit of industry also. It was quite refreshing to see brightly painted new 
houses, many of which are in the Tyrolean architecture, very pretty with lovely gardens. 

We left San Sebastian at about 8:10 AM and the weather was cool and cloudy most of the morning. 

FRANCE. Crossed into France without having much of a wait at the border. We are told that 2/5 of all the tillable land in France is planted in 
grapes. We arrived at Biarritz, where Father Valencia left us. Some of the homes here are quite lovely. Ted says a lot of bootleggers live here, 
bootlegging wine across the border. He says that half the population are smugglers, and the other half are police trying to catch them. 

We have driven through miles and miles of pine forest, and see some of these trees being tapped for tar. It is a lovely countryside. Soon we are 
out of the mountains. When we came to our morning rest stop the place would not let us use their rest rooms. The bus stopped at another 
crummy place later for those who were really desperate, but the rest of us waited until we arrived at Bordeau. Here we had a perfectly 
marvelous lunch at the Cafe de Bordeau, the best meal and wine we have had in ages, (since Madrid.) The men all wear black berets, and 
some of the women do too. 

Drove on through a very lovely countryside that had lots of rolling hills, lots of trees and vineyards, and the houses have that Spanish look 
again. The land is very fertile and we see the grain fields being harvested with more modern machinery, such as combines and tractors. Our 
afternoon rest stop was at Angouleme. This is where Joan of Arc talked to the University Regents about her plans to save France, and the 
nearby area is where the Battle of Orleans was fought. 

Arrived at Poitiers at about 7:15 PM and checked in at the Hotel de France. It is not much of a hotel on the outside, but very nice inside. We 
have a nice spacious room with a big bath, but, as always, we have to ask for the soap. In San Sebastian we were even asked to pay for the 
soap, so we used up what we had and didn't get any. Had an excellent bed here. Went for a walk in the evening. The Chamber of Commerce 
was still open so we stopped in to see what they had. Two Frenchmen loaded us up with pamphlets and we even bought two of their beautiful 
posters for souvenirs. 

Saturday, July 28. Were up early at 6:30 and off before 8 AM. Drove through the beautiful Loire Valley and along the Loire River. There are 
Chateaus everywhere, and it is about the loveliest countryside I've ever seen. Very fertile valley, beautiful big trees, extremely tall poplars and 
lovely flowers everywhere. Most of the houses were built of stone, had slate roofs, and lots of chimneys visible. Drove through Tours and on to 
Biols. We were given a tour of the outstanding Biols Chateau, called the "Court of the Kings of France." Had an English-speaking guide. 
Murder! He looked like an old riverboat captain, and only Paulette could understand him. 

After the tour we walked to our designated restaurant for lunch, which was very good. Then back to the bus and on to Chartres. Had a nap on 
the bus before we arrived at the famous Chartres cathedral. Saw its beautiful stained glass windows, reputed to be the most outstanding works 
of art in stained glass in the world. 

Arrived in Paris at 6:00 PM and checked in at the Grande Hotel. Had a letter waiting. Our room is very nice, has a balcony, a huge bath, and a 
real fireplace with a marble mantle. It is an old hotel, but has a very strategic downtown location, overlooking the lovely old Opera House. Had 
a light lunch at a self-service place across the street from the hotel, since we weren't particularly hungry. Ted had told us on the bus coming in 
to Paris that we were required to eat at least one $4.00 meal a day at the hotel we were staying at, which was news to us, and some of us 
refused. Ted is very hurt and angry (he probably gets a rake-off from the hotel.) So we had a round with Ted and the hotel manager, and Ted 
says we will probably be transferred to some hole in the wall across the river, or some such place. So far we haven't moved. Took a 
sightseeing tour of Paris by night. Many lights and very pretty. 

Sunday, July 29. (By this time Henrie was tired and exhausted from the long trip, and she asked me, Ben, to take over the chore of taking 

notes, so the remainder are my notes.) 

This morning we went on a city tour, and for the first time we had an English-speal<ing guide whom we could understand. We went to the 
Sacred Heart Cathedral, very white and beautiful, in the Montmartre district. Nearby we saw a number of French artists displaying their 
paintings set up on the sidewalks. The paintings looked very good, but unfortunately we did not have enough time to examine them in detail. 
We next drove to the theatre district, and from there on to the famous Notre Dame Cathedral, which is situated on an island, the Isle de France. 
The crowds were overwhelming and soon we got separated from the guide and were lost from the group for a while. We walked to the edge of 
the Seine River and into the park behind Notre Dame and saw some beautiful modern tour ships on the river. 

That night we went to the Lido night club (extra, at our own expense) and had an excellent dinner and saw an outstanding show. We noticed 
Ed Sullivan and a group sitting at a table nearby, and I went over to shake his hand as one American to another and talked to him for a while. 
Sullivan later signed up one of the acts, a fellow who had the knack of picking someone's pocket almost unnoticed while innocently standing in 
front of them engaged in an ongoing conversation. Ted was also at this dinner with us, and by this time we had made peace and he had given 
up the idea of making us have our dinners at the hotel. 

Monday, July 30. This morning we drove to the Versailles Palace, about 30 miles out of Paris. The forest surrounding the area was beautiful. 
We saw the Trianon Garden houses of Marie Antoinette. The palace grounds were large barren cobblestone yards, but the gardens behind the 
Versailles Palace were outstandingly beautiful and a wonder to behold. We went through the palace itself and saw the Hall of Mirrors, the desk 
where the Treaty of Versailles was signed, and the window where Marie Antoinette stood and from which she proclaimed one of history's most 
famous boo-boos: "Why not let them eat cake?" Also saw many paintings of Napoleon here several by Jacques Louis David. 

On the way back, Henrie and I got off the bus at the Eiffel Tower. We took the elevator all the way to the top, took in the lovely view and took a 
number of pictures. We then went down to the Eiffel Tower Restaurant (about a third of the way up) and had one of the best dinners we have 
had on the entire trip. We then walked to the Arc de Triumph about a mile away, took some more pictures, then walked up the Champs de 
Elysees to our hotel. 

After dinner we went to the Follies Bergler, after having a most difficult time trying to catch a taxi. Several others of our group also went. We all 
sat in a box on the left hand side of the stage and were close enough to have some of the showgirls kiss Hector. The show was simply 
gorgeous. Wonderful sets, wonderful girls. They change the show completely once a year. 

Tuesday, July 31. Henrie and I, along with Elly and Carol, took a taxi to the Louvre. My return trip to the Museum was even more interesting 
than when I had been there seven years earlier. I took special note of the whole room full of 22 large Rubens paintings. I also noted that the 
Mona Lisa now had a protective glass covering, and further, that it had been reworked, so that the cracks were now gone and it had a strange 
greenish tint. Henrie, by this time, was getting very tired and somewhat sick. That night I took a walk through the Tulleries Gardens, while she 
stayed at the hotel. 

Wednesday, August 1 . In the morning I walked to the Place de Concord for a while, then back to the hotel and did some packing. American 
Express was located across the street, and I shipped a large box of excess items on its way home. 

That afternoon we left the hotel and took a bus to the Orly Airport, about 20 miles out of Paris. On arriving we discovered that Ted had not 
confirmed our airline reservations, as he claimed he had done. Luckily, and nevertheless, we still got on the same plane for which we had 
tickets and left at 4:00 PM. The food and the coffee were first class American again! 

We arrived in New York at 7:30 PM, and had no problem at customs, nor did we have to pay any duty on items. Ted was also to have 
confirmed our Eastern Airline tickets from New York to Miami. When we checked at the Eastern counter, we found out just what we had 
already suspected, namely that Eastern had been on strike for weeks. Again, luckily, we obtained seats on National Airlines, and left only 15 
minutes later than we would have had we been on the Eastern flight. However, we still had to wait until 9:30 at the airport, and it was beastly 
hot. We arrived in Miami at 1 1 :30 PM, and from there took an airport limousine to home, sweet home. 


In reflecting on this major six-week adventure in our lives, I feel compelled to highlight some of the interesting characters that were part of this 
diverse group with whom we traveled. I am writing this codicil some 29 years after the event. 

We have been on a number of other similar tours to Europe and elsewhere, but none of them were of six weeks duration, nor was there ever a 
group with whom we became so intimately acquainted and chummy as we did with this particular assembly. None ever left such a permanent 
impression on us as did this motley crew of 44 with whom we traveled during the summer of 1962. 

There was Colonel R.L. Byrd and his recent bride of 75, from St. Petersberg, Florida. The colonel was a trim 90 years of age, six foot tall, 
ramrod straight and every inch the military prototype. He was proud to tell us that he had taken part in the famous charge up San Juan Hill with 
Teddy Roosevelt's Rough Riders in Cuba during the War against Spain in 1 898. He had been a military engineer and participated In the 
building of the Panama Canal. He had traveled much, been in any number of other episodes in South Africa and elsewhere, and had 
distinguished himself during service in World War 1 . Now he wanted to show his new bride some of the highlights of Europe, especially the 
Alhambra, in Granada, Spain. His wife, who had been a nurse all her life, was more concerned about getting the crotchety old Colonel back 
home all in one piece than she was about seeing Europe. Poor Colonel! He carried his wallet and his military credentials (of which he was so 
proud) in his hip pocket. While we were all on a tour and viewing the inside wonders of St. Peters Cathedral in Rome, Italy, some pickpocket 
lifted his wallet, including all of his most valuable papers. When we finally got to Seville and the famous Alcazar, unfortunately the colonel 
missed a step-down in the courtyard and fell, breaking his hip. He and his wife then left the tour and flew back to the United States. 

Then there was Paulette Siegrist and her most attractive 1 7-year-old daughter Linda, from Chicago. Linda was not only pretty but extremely 
intelligent and well informed for her age. Paulette had been married twice, now in her late thirties, was divorced. Paulette was a most jovial and 
interesting character, always the life of the party, and Henrie and I probably spent more time with these two than any other individuals on this 


To get an idea of Paulette's personality, I recall a conversation early in our tour. She was telling us about her early childhood when they were 
living in a wealthy neighborhood in Miami Beach in the 1920's. Her father, she said, was a hot-tempered Lebanese, and her mother was 
French. Since her father was loaded with money, she was chauffeur-driven to school in a limousine, she recalled. "I presume your dad was in 
real estate?" I asked. "Hell, no!" she replied with a loud belly-laugh, "He was a bootlegger!" That was her typical style. When we all took a train 
from Rome to Genoa, a group of us were gathered in a compartment. Indulging in telling jokes, clean, ribald, and otherwise. Paulette's 
repertoire was not only the most voluminous but also the most hilarious, and I cannot ever remember laughing as hard and repeatedly as I did 
on this particular train ride along the rocky western coast of Italy. Also close to us was a Mrs. Jan McClelland with her two teenage sons, 
Donald, 1 9, and Curtiss, 1 3. The latter, although barely a teenager, already seemed to have a proclivity for beer and wine, and his mother did 
little to discourage him. Another character in our group was a schoolteacher from Miami by the name of Joan Reitsma. She was 29, rather a 
large woman and seemed to have a natural inclination to take charge of the young people on the tour. This included the McClelland boys, 
whether they liked it or not. Evidently Joan found it hard to shake her schoolteacher habits and training, even on vacation. 

Included in the tour were about seven or eight Mexicans, and although not close to us, this group too had some Interesting characters. Some of 
the names I recall were Mr. & Mrs. Carlos Cespedes, Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Nunez, and Hector Hurtado and his mother Maria Hurtado. Of these, 
Hector, a short, stocky fellow, was the most outstanding. He was surprisingly well educated, well versed in the arts and literature, and seemed 
to know his way around. His favorite gambit was to take a group on a walking tour when we would come to a new city, and half the time he 
would get lost. But he was witty and entertaining and reminded me of the Mexican actor by the name of Cantinflas, who played the clown and 
valet in the movie Around the World in 80 Days. Also in that group was a handsome young Spanish priest by the name of Father Luis Valencia. 
He was the kind of likeable scatter train who couldn't keep his earthly affairs, such as visas, etc., straight, but he more than compensated for 
this with his lovely voice and personality, and often led the sing songs in the bus, or even gave us solo renditions. 

Judge Charles Fortier was a frail old man in his late sixties. He was sort of a loner, interested in exploring the byways and highways of life, but 
he hated the hypocrisies of Christian churches, and he would prefer to sit in the bus or walk the streets rather than go inside of one in the 
numerous tours of the great churches and cathedrals that were a major part of this tour. I had many interesting conversations with him, and 
although at that time I was merely indifferent (not hostile) to Christianity, I learned much from him. About a year after we were all back home. 
Judge Fortier sent me a complete set of Colonel Robert IngersoH's twelve books on religion, except for Volume One, which was missing. He 
also sent me a nice letter, saying that he wanted to donate these books to me, because I was probably the only person that had enough sense 
to understand them! Thank you. Judge. 

Another recently married but elderly couple (they were in their sixties) on this tour was Mr. & Mrs. Frank Bachmann from Orlando, Florida. Poor 
man! He had latched on to an extremely jealous wife, and no matter what he did she would publicly accuse him of flirting with the younger girls, 
which he was not. I remember one typical incident when we were on a boat on our way to Capri. The poor fellow was innocently standing at the 
rail watching the Mediterranean, and not too far away doing the same was our schoolteacher, Joan Reitsma. Up comes his wife from behind 
and accuses him of finding the back of Joan's calves more interesting than the view of Capri. I felt sorry for him. I wonder how long they stayed 

Also in our tour was an Italian grandmother by the name of Mary Criscuola. She and her parents had left Italy for the United States when Mary 
was a little girl of 5. Now, in her early seventies, she so eagerly wanted to see her native Italy again before she died. As we neared the Italian 
border she was happily singing Italian songs, such as Marie! Marie! and in a high state of anticipation and excitement. Once in Italy, the first 
thing that happened to her was that some pickpocket stole her purse and all the money she had with her. We all felt so sorry for her. She was 
completely disillusioned and heartbroken. 

There were a number of other interesting people in this tour, including a number of pretty young girls, of which Eleanor Larson, a statuesque 
blonde of Swedish ancestry was perhaps the most impressive (in my opinion). Also, in this category were a number of young schoolteachers, 
of which I remember the names of Betty Bollinger and Carol Heunann. 

Also, before I leave this motley crew, I must mention our first tour leader (he was later replaced by another towards the end of the trip.) His 
name was Herr Heinz Biedermann, a young fellow from Germany, age 33. He was quite an intellectual, and as we would approach the next city 
on our tour he would give us the historical background of the place over the bus audio system. Usually the preamble would start with the 
Romans. As we approached Vienna, "The Romans first built a military garrison here which they named Vindobona because the ample 
vineyards." He was an interesting racont and I must say that I enjoyed his lectures and learned much. In fact, his spotlight on the Roman 
history in beginnings of the evolving European culture more than anything stimulated in me an enduring interest in, and appreciation of, the 
Ancient Romans. 

Against the Evil Tide - 37 

Milestone Thirty-Six: European Tour: Six Weel<s and Eleven Countries 

f Next 






Against the Evil Tide - 38 

Milestone Thirty-Seven: Six Years with the John Birch Society 1963-1969 

When I finished reading the German edition of Hitler's IVIein Kampf in 1938, my dad asl<ed me if I had understood what I had read. I said, yes, I 
believe I understand it fairly well. He was surprised on two counts. First, that I could read such a lengthy book in German in the first place, 
since I had had very little formal instruction in German; and secondly, that I could comprehend such a complex political document, which he 
had also read, and much of which, he confessed, escaped him. In any case, having read this historical document at the age of 20, it greatly 
influenced my future outlook on life as a whole, and especially on the political structure of the world. In particular, it brought home to me the 
overwhelming fact that the Jews controlled the world, and that they were now, and had been for centuries, our most dangerous and sinister 
enemies. It was a fact of life that I had learned, and although I pursued it in further detail for the rest of my days, this fundamental fact 

Just before World War II broke out on the first of September 1939, I had been preparing to migrate to Germany and study engineering at the 
University of Heidelberg, and hopefully settle in Germany permanently. The outbreak of the war precluded that and as I have already 
chronicled previously, I entered the University of Saskatchewan instead, and in the final year graduated with a B.Sc. degree in Electrical 
Engineering from the University of Manitoba in 1943. At this point, as the war ground on, I was anxiously watching the turn of events, hoping 
Germany would win, and at the same time, facing the inevitable, I began to become more and more interested in the United States as the land 
of my future. 

As I have also reviewed earlier, I did migrate to the United States in 1945, and whereas my enthusiasm for political and ideological causes 
were now subdued and submerged (not changed) into the background, I looked forward to building for myself the good life in America, the land 
of the boundless future. I became more or less apolitical, no longer interested in pursuing lost causes, but more interested in constructively 
building a future home here in America. My perception of who ran America at that time was still somewhat naive, although I knew the Jews had 
most of the money, and controlled the press. I believed that, still, the government and our politics, were in the hands of good "Americans", but I 
wasn't too sure. The fact that we were now (supposedly) opposed to communism allayed my fears and suspicions to a certain extent, but why 
was our government making so many stupid moves? Anyway, for the next decade or so I paid little attention to the political events in America 
and concentrated on my family affairs, building up my business, having a nice home and looking forward to an unclouded future. After all, I 
lived in America, the Land of Promise. What more could anyone ask? 

This idyllic, but naive, outlook became somewhat troubled by about 1 953 and 1 954 when Senator Joseph McCarthy began pointing the finger, 
naming names and flushing out some of the communists in the State Department and various other agencies of the government. What 
especially bothered me was the vehemence with which he was attacked by the news media for doing what I considered was the duty of any 
patriotic citizen. I even had a few heated arguments about it with some people with whom I discussed the McCarthy episode. However, no 
matter, I wasn't going to lose any sleep over it, and went about my business. 

Before I leave the McCarthy uproar, I want to make it clear that I did not then, and do not now, unequivocally support Senator McCarthy's 
position, nor his approach to a very serious problem, namely the worldwide Jewish conspiracy called communism. In fact. Senator McCarthy 
remains a puzzle to me to this very day. Like the Birch Society, McCarthy blamed all the evils on "the communists", meanwhile leaving the real 
cause, the centuries-old Jewish network that produced and manipulated the communist conspiracy, completely unscathed. For a man who was 
privy to all the information that was available to McCarthy, or any other senator, to then completely ignore the Jews that were behind all the 
evils of the world, is inconceivable. Why did he stick his neck out to attack communism and not point the finger at the Jews, the real villains 
behind it all? This I can't understand. Further, to compound it, he had two obstreperous and freewheeling young Jewish attorneys as the key 
investigators on his staff, namely Roy Cohen and David Schine. This is like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse. Certainly McCarthy didn't 
lack guts, as he proved by his illustrious war record. Certainly he had the information about the Jews available to him, since most of his lists of 
communists were Jews. In fact, Kehilla honcho Bernard Baruch pointed this out to him and severely took him to task for it. So why didn't he put 
two and two together? I'll never know. After thoroughly destroying him through their massive propaganda machinery, the Jews finally put 
McCarthy out of the way by giving him a shot of hepatitis when he had entered the hospital for nothing more than a severe cold. So by 1 957 
McCarthy was dead at the age of 48, thoroughly discredited and killed by the Jews. In fact, his name entered the national vocabulary as a man 
who unfairly slandered poor innocent people, such as the communists in government. 

As I said, I went about my business. The next incident that raised my hackles was when in 1 957 the Eisenhower administration brought in a 
huge contingent of army troops to force integration of the Little Rock, Arkansas, High School. This in the face of violent opposition from the 
White population, and seemingly, even from the then Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus. Now, knowing how the Jews usually set up a false 
stooge in the opposition camp, I strongly suspect that the governor was a phony, in cooperation with the conspiracy to facilitate the sellout. 
(See the Phony Fight Ruse, P. 120 of Expanding 

Creativity.) About this time, 1957, I was deeply engrossed in the electric can opener business and by 1958 in making a major move to the State 
of Florida, and politics and conspiracies were not uppermost in my mind. By 1 961 however, another incident jarred my consciousness and that 
was when under the confused and disjointed Kennedy boys the United States government again brought in a major contingent of 20,000 troops 
to Oxford, Mississippi to put one lone desultory nigger by the name of James Meredith into the University of Mississippi, by using sheer brute 
military force against its own citizens. 

A year later, 1962, Governor George Wallace began attracting my attention when he "heroically" stood in the schoolhouse door in Alabama 
and proclaimed, "Segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!" Little did I then know that he, too, was a phony, but it did 
arouse my racial awareness and pride. I was becoming more politically aware and racially excited. No longer did I feel that everything "was 
alright" in America. I began to revive my memories of Hitler and his racial creed. 

When President John Kennedy was publicly assassinated on November 22 of 1 963, I became even more alarmed and I immediately smelled a 
rat. Instinctively I sensed that this was a set-up, that Lee Harvey Oswald was neither the lone gunman nor the real culprit that the press so 

vociferously proclaimed. It was at this point that I felt that I had to do something, I had to get involved. I had previously read in the press that 
Bobby Kennedy, as Attorney General, had publicly denounced the John Birch Society. I thought that rather strange, but hating just about 
everything the Kennedys stood for, I concluded that if Bobby went out of his way to denounce the Birch Society, there must be something good 
about it, and anyway, the Birch Society was against communism. At this time there was a group In Ft. Lauderdale that was pushing "Operation 
Alert", and I remembered that somewhere I had saved their phone number. I called the number, and asked them if they were part of the John 
Birch Society. A woman answered cautiously, said no, but they could put me in touch. I said, fine, I want to find out about them. Next thing I 
knew I received a telephone call from a man by the name of Jim Cochrane, a member of the Pompano Beach chapter, and he came over to my 
house to tell me all about the John Birch Society. The first thing he did was play Tom Anderson's phonograph record, "Bi-partisan Treason". I 
was immediately impressed. Tom Anderson, in his homespun drawl, nevertheless eloquently made the point that both parties, the Republicans 
and the Democrats were alike as two peas in a pod, and both collaborated and were manipulated by the communists to sell this country out to 
communist Russia. I signed up immediately and eagerly awaited our first "chapter" meeting. 

It was held at the home of Cranford Sproul in Pompano Beach. He was the "chapter leader" and conducted the proceedings. The routine, 
which was to be followed by many future meetings went something like this. The meeting opened with a Pledge of Allegiance to the flag, which 
stood in one corner of the room. It was followed by an invocation, or prayer, given either by the chapter leader or one of the members. Next 
followed a discussion of the present month's J.B.S. Bulletin and whatever items in the news were of current interest, and/or whatever projects 
the Society or the local groups were promoting. The meeting ended with another prayer, or benediction, as it was called. This was then 
followed by a social hour, during which the hostess of the meeting usually served coffee and cookies, or some similar refreshments. 

Cranford Sproul was an architect by profession. He was a solemn, cautious man. When I attended those first meetings, which were held 
monthly and rotated to the homes of the different members, I was impressed by the seeming conspiracy-like atmosphere, as if we were in 
some danger of being rounded up at any time and put into an internment camp. Cranford hinted at certain passages of Robert Welch's in the 
latest bulletin that could mean that our postal mailings might soon be curtailed and that our means of communicating abridged. After a few 
meetings, Cranford Sproul, without giving a specific reason, resigned as chapter leader and as a member. It sounded like he had a more 
important mission to perform and was going underground. We must remember that this was back in 1 963-64, some twenty-five years ago. It 
seemed to me even from the beginning of my membership that the members were overly secret to the point of being paranoid, and I pointed 
this out to them. I took the position that if we were going to expand we should be more public and more open. What was there to fear? 

As soon as Cran Sproul resigned, Jim Cochrane, one of the members of the group, volunteered to take over as chapter leader, and we carried 
on. I avidly read and studied all of the J.B.S. literature. The society was founded in 1958 by Robert Welch, the scion of a candy manufacturing 
company. He had called together a group of twelve leading conservatives, most of which were well-heeled millionaires, to a secret enclave and 
gave them a concentrated two day lecture on the menace and spread of communism. These lectures were complied into what was called the 
Blue Book, and it constituted the basic bible of the John Birch Society. 

I studied the Blue Book and was impressed and alarmed at the powerful inroads communism had made on the government of the United 
States, on the governments of the so-called "free" countries of the world, and the takeover of the numerous so-called "Iron-curtain" countries. 
In fact, I was alarmed at the rapid communist takeover of the total societies and peoples of the world! Something had to be done! In his Blue 
Book, I noted, however, that Robert Welch scrupulously avoided any mention of the Jewish participation in this whole conspiracy, something 
that Hitler had dramatically pointed out. I wondered why. Oh, well, no matter. Perhaps Welch had found a better way of exposing communism 
by avoiding the dangerous charge of being anti-Semitic, and could do it more expeditiously by sneaking in through a backdoor approach. So it 
was explained to me. In any case, it was pointed out emphatically that we must never succumb to the dangerous entrapment of being accused 
of anti-Semitism, nor any kind of racism, for that matter. Hitler and Nazism were as bad as Stalin and communism, both being the extreme 
wings of tyranny and dictatorship. The only difference was that the Nazis were on the extreme right and the communists represented the 
extreme left wing. Both were to be shunned, and we Birchers wanted to stay in the moderate and modest middle, good fellows that we were. 

Although I knew better, I went along with this line of approach, rationalizing that at least here was a compatible, concerned group that was 
willing to do something, and probably, were the only game in town, in terms of the vernacular. I wanted to do something meaningful, and soon I 
went all out to do my part. A few months later, by March of 1 964, I closed my real estate office in Pompano Beach and devoted practically full 
time to promoting the activities of the John Birch Society. At this time the Society had several branch activities going. It had a bookstore in Ft. 
Lauderdale that had a large selection of books, leaflets and sundry materials available for sale. It also sponsored a Speaker's Bureau, called 
the Fact Finder's Forum, which had been featuring speakers such as William F. Buckley, and others, who were prominent in "conservative" 
circles. Some of these speakers were members of the Birch Society and directly on their staff, others were not. Just about at the time I joined 
towards the end of their 1963-64 Winter Season, Fact Finders Forum was ready to close up shop for lack of leadership willing to do the 
arduous work of carrying on. I considered this a catastrophe for our "cause, something that I could not let happen. I volunteered to take over, 
and in no time at all I found myself to be chairman. They had found a patsy. 

I remained chairman for three seasons. We would meet in the large dining room on the second floor of the old Governor's Club Hotel in 
downtown Ft. Lauderdale for a dinner session and a speech, the affair usually starting at 8:00 PM. After a social gathering at the bar and a 
good dinner, the key speaker would then ventilate some major issue of alarm, relating in scholarly detail how the communist traitors in 
government and elsewhere were selling the United States out to the communists. Of course, there was no lack of issues to belabor, but never 
would they ever mention the Jewish involvement behind the communist conspiracy, nor was the issue of race ever brought up. Both these 
subjects were strictly taboo, I soon found out. In fact, some of the speakers the JBS had on their roster were themselves niggers or Jews. It 
was always a case of deplore and lament, of listening to an endless retinue of bad news, but never presenting a meaningful solution to the 
multitude of problems raked up. Unfortunately, I did not understand then what I understand now, namely, that the John Birch Society was 
instigated by the Jewish conspiracy itself in order to confuse the goyim with endless no-win projects and to run interference for the Jews. 

Among the speakers I remember having on my programs were such notables as Tom Anderson, Editor and majority owner of "Farm and 
Ranch Magazine" and also one of the key people on the JBS Board of Directors; G. Edward Griffin, a very personable young fellow and an 
excellent speaker, who also authored a number of books, among them the "The Great Prison Break", (about the Supreme Court), "The Fearful 
Master", (about the United Nations), "World Without Cancer", and several others. Some twelve years later I wrote him a critical letter about the 
cancer book, a complete copy of which can be found In THE KLASSEN LETTERS, Vol. II, starting on page 1 04. Other speakers were Cleon 

Skousen, a big wheel in tlie IVIormon Church and author of "The Nal<ed Communist" and a few other books. I remember picking him up at the 
Palm Beach airport and driving him to the Governor's Club Hotel, a distance of about 40 miles. During the ride, I tried to involve him in a 
conversation about the Jews, implying that they were really behind communism and most of our other ills. I also remember how circumspect he 
was about the subject, trying to deflect the issue with such pointless questions as, "Who are the Jews?" implying that they were only some 
nebulous religious group with no particular cohesion. What a lie! Some others were Alan Stang, a Jew, and Julia Brown, a negress. Also on my 
program at the time were T. Coleman Andrews, Director of Internal Revenue during the Eisenhower administration; Willis Stone, author and 
founder of the Liberty Amendment movement; and James Kilpatrick, political columnist and Editor of the Union Leader, Manchester, N.H. I will 
have more to say about Mr. Kilpatrick later. 

During the third session of my tenure I was influenced to change the venue from dinners at the Governor's Club Hotel to having meetings in a 
large auditorium in a high school in downtown Ft. Lauderdale. Some of the members complained that the price of the dinners was too high and 
we could probably have more people attend our lectures and hear our message of gloom and doom if they could attend without having to pay 
the additional price of the dinner. I went along with this approach and thought I would try it. However, it did not turn out to be productive. Most 
of the membership had enjoyed the fellowship of the social hour and the dinner, and we had fewer than the usual 200 members attend in the 
new setting. The routine procedure had been to meet, eat and retreat, and evidently the majority of the Birch members liked it that way. 

The year was 1 964, and we "conservatives" felt ever so fortunate that our great conservative leader, Barry Goldwater, was running as a 
candidate for the presidency of the United States. "Goldwater for President" offices soon sprang up in Pompano Beach, in Ft. Lauderdale, in 
Boynton Beach, and elsewhere, mostly under the auspices of Birchers and/or cohorts. The Pompano Beach office was manned by Fletcher 
Riley, Tom and Marge Herrington, Cranford Sproul and a number of other supporters. I was soon caught up in the campaign, determined to do 
my part. It was during this campaign that I met up with Austin Davis, a young contractor and builder in Lighthouse Point, and another member 
ofthe JBS. 

It was at this time also that John Stormer, of Florissant, Missouri, came out with a paperback book called "None Dare Call it Treason" (NDCIT), 
a highly successful book that was sweeping the conservative movement and enthusiastically embraced by the members ofthe JBS. From the 
very beginning of the Goldwater campaign, Austin Davis and I took it upon ourselves to order this book in case lots, first a few hundred at a 
time, and then supply them to the Goldwater H.Q. Soon sales were going so well we were ordering the book in quantities of several thousand 
and still we could not keep up with the demand. The book was selling at 75 cents retail, and we were paying 40 cents wholesale, with the 
profits going to the Goldwater headquarters and to the campaign. Soon my two-car garage became the main distribution center for NDCIT for 
not only Pompano Beach, but for Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and Boynton Beach as well. We also handled volume sales of "A Texan Looks at 
Lyndon" and a few other fast moving books during the campaign. 

Sometime during the summer of 1964, June Abbott, ofthe Ft. Lauderdale JBS, along with a few others, arranged to have John Stormer come 
down to Miami to give a speech to the faithful. The event was more than successful. More than 4000 came to hear him speak in a large 
auditorium in downtown Miami. Since I had been one of Stormer's most active salesmen, I managed to approach him after the speech and he 
was most happy to recognize me as one of his most ardent promoters in the country. I asked him what kind of a deal we could strike if we 
ordered 50,000 of his books in one shipment. He considered the proposition for a while, then said he would ship them out at cost, at 1 5 cents 
per book. I said, great, give me about a week and I will see if I can t raise the funds and have them shipped to my garage. I soon raised 
$10,000 from about a dozen individuals in South Florida, including my own contribution, guaranteeing them all they would either get their 
money back in full, or they could take the difference in books at 15 cents each. Soon the shipment was on its way, and I had to move both cars 
out of my two-car garage. We not only moved all 50,000 books, but ordered additional quantities as well, selling approximately 80,000 NDCIT 
during the Goldwater campaign. I even sold a lot shipment of 5000 books to Britts Department Store in the shopping center located at the 
corner of Federal Highway and Oakland Park Blvd. Unfortunately, soon after the delivery, Hurricane Cleo came along and crashed in the roof 
of the store and most of those books became water logged and unsellable. 

As soon as the Goldwater campaign was over and Goldwater lost miserably, the sales of the book stopped almost immediately, and we had a 
problem of getting rid of the last few hundred, whereas before we were moving thousands. However, John and I became well acquainted 
before he returned to Missouri. He and his wife and daughter stayed at our house, and we took them to the Calvary Baptist Church next 
Sunday morning, all of which came as a big surprise to Pastor Wes Auger, who was preaching profusely when we entered. After church, I 
introduced him to John Stormer and family, and Wes was 
mighty pleased that this celebrity had chosen to come to his church. 

There is an epilogue to this story. Soon after John Stormer returned home he was suddenly bitten by the Christianity bug, and he became an 
ardent born-again. Some time thereafter he wrote another book, called "Death of a Nation", hoping to repeat his previous success with NDCIT. 
He sent me a copy ofthe manuscript even before the book was printed, hoping I would again enthusiastically promote the new book as I had 
the previous best seller. I only read part of the manuscript before I turned it away. The book was full of gloom and doom, with about every 
chapter ending with an apparently "new" solution Turn to Christ! Christ is the answer! 

And herein we have another twist and apparent effect the JBS had on its members. Although the Birch Society openly declared that it was a 
non-religious society, (not unreligious) nevertheless, Its espousement of God and country, the flag and the constitution, had the overwhelming 
effect of turning its former non-church going members into church-goers, and I was one of those. Although my wife and I had sporadically 
attended the large new Presbyterian church in nearby Pompano Beach, I soon tired of the nonsense, and by 1 963 I had not attended for years, 
having taken a dim view ofthe Christianity hoax. However, after joining the Birch Society, and wanting to be a good "patriot", somehow 
sometime in 1 964 I was lured back into attending Pastor Wes Auger's little Calvary Baptist Church, located just north of Sample Road and west 
of Federal Highway, in Pompano Beach. Wes, who wanted to build up his small congregation, had the Birch members in mind as his potential, 
and was preaching the God and country hard line. Soon Austin Davis and Jim Cochrane joined, as did a number of other Birchers. Wes Auger 
admitted in his sermons that he had been a near criminal in his younger years, until Christ came along and "saved" him. However, looking back 

on it now, I can't help but believe that he was essentially a real con man, and remained such for the rest of his life. By 1 967 1 had had enough 
of this religious garbage and never set foot in his, or any other church again. Getting back to the John Stormer episode, some twelve years 
later, in 1 976, while I was busily engaged in promoting and expanding the Creativity movement, out of the blue I received a letter from John, 
eulogizing the virtues of Christianity and imploring me to join with him in being saved through the blood of Jesus Christ. He apparently was now 
heading up some Christian church in Missouri and he had thought of my need to be saved. I sent him a copy of Nature's Eternal Religion and 
sent him a sincere letter suggesting that he get his thinking straightened out. Receiving no response, I sent him a second letter about three 
months later. Copies of both letters are recorded on pages 22 and 40 respectively of The Klassen Letters, Vol. Two. 

Soon after the Goldwater debacle, I had James Kilpatrick as featured speaker for the January 1 965, meeting of Fact Finder's Forum. As I 
mentioned earlier, James Kilpatrick was recognized as a leading "conservative". He had a syndicated political column in several newspapers, 
and was himself the editor of the Manchester, New Hampshire Union Leader. He was also a strong supporter of Barry Goldwater. Whereas I, 
too, had strongly supported Goldwater during the campaign, by the time of the November election in 1964 I was thoroughly disenchanted with 
Goldwater. It seemed to me that not only 

had Goldwater done everything wrong, but I began to suspect that he had done so deliberately in order to lose the election and thereby 
discredit and undermine the conservative movement. In other words, I came to the conclusion that he had allowed himself to be used as a 
stalking horse for the opposition and that he was a phony. Today I still think so. In fact, more strongly than ever, that although he is only a half 
Jew, nevertheless, underneath his phony conservative veneer, his true loyalty lies with the Jewish cause. It did then and it does now. Be that 
as it may, when I had conversation with James Kilpatrick at the dinner table before his scheduled speech, I asked him a leading question that 
was uppermost in my mind: Why did Goldwater sell us out? Kilpatrick flew into a rage, and we almost had an imbroglio before I amiably 
introduced him to our group as "one of us." However, I don't think Kilpatrick ever forgave me nor I him. 

Whereas the Birch Society preached that "truth is our only weapon", the Goldwater campaign nevertheless impressed a lesson upon me, 
namely, if we were ever to acquire some clout in the affairs of our nation we would ourselves have to become politically active. I began 
preaching this line among our membership and encouraged them to run for the different political offices available in Broward County, and for 
the sake of unity we should concentrate on the Republican party and take control of it in this county. My wife and I ran for Republican 
Committeeman and woman in our district, about the lowest office available, and I went campaigning for both of us, door to door, in Lighthouse 
Point. We won overwhelmingly in the next election, and soon I was knee deep into politics. Other Birchers did likewise countywide, and soon 
we were the controlling power of the Republican Committee in Broward County. This then led to my further running for the office of Florida 
State Representative later, but that is another episode, and in this chapter I basically want to stick to my experiences within the Birch Society. 

During the summer of 1966, while I was running for the office of State Representative from Broward County, the combined Birch Societies of 
South Florida staged a major event by having Robert Welch, the founder of the Birch Society, speak in the Ft. Lauderdale Armory. It was a hot 
South Florida summer night and the Armory was not air-conditioned. It was at this time that I first met Welch and I had the honor of giving the 
introductory speech to an assembly that was crowded with about 1600 people. In my speech I gave Welch a glowing eulogy, even quoting a 
verse as I remembered it from my eighth grade reader of the "Burial March of Dundee": 

thou lion hearted warrior 
Reck not of the aftertime 

When honor may be deemed dishonor 
And loyalty a crime. 

It seemed like it was even too much for Robert. He kept shaking his head repeatedly as I spoke. I still have my speech on a tape somewhere, 
not that I am proud of it. Had I known then what I know now, I would have said something altogether different. 

It was also at this assembly that I met Dr. William Campbell Douglass, who wrote the pre-recorded "Let Freedom Ring" telephone messages 
for the Society. After my election in November of 1966, Welch called me from Boston and invited me to sit at the head table with a select group 
for a major bash and dinner the JBS was having in the ballroom of a major hotel in New York. In his main address Welch pointed with pride 
how Birch members were being elected to national and state offices. He pointed to a member who had just been elected to the office of State 
Senator in Alaska, and to myself to the office of State Representative in Florida, inferring that we had the country wrapped up from one end to 
the other. 

It was at this dinner meeting that I happened to sit beside an extremely successful young man in his early thirties from California. He was by 
now a multi-millionaire and his name was William Penn Patrick. He had founded the cosmetics firm of Holiday Magic a few years ago that was 
by now expanding by leaps and bounds. He was also very active in California politics, being the head of an organization known as UROC 
(United Republicans of California). He told me how his secretary had been attacked late one night while working alone in his office. Her face 
had been severely slashed and disfigured, and her breasts also had been slashed with a razor. She was left bleeding to death when she 
managed just enough energy to get to the telephone to call for help. Before leaving, the attacker left the warning that the next time it would be 
her boss. Although Patrick did not know the identity of the attacker, he plainly got the message that it was based on politics. 

The next morning after the dinner the Board of Directors of the JBS had their private monthly board meeting, which both Patrick and myself 
were invited to attend and speak about the political climate. This we did, and William Penn Patrick warned the group that Ronald Reagan, who 
was then the new governor of California, was another Eisenhower and a very dangerous man. Reagan was being groomed for the presidency 
of the United States, he said, and he predicted that sooner or later Ronald Reagan would be elected. We must remember he made this 
prediction in 1 966, fourteen years before it happened. Sitting by himself off to one side of the room at a little table observing all and busily 
taking notes, but not participating in the meeting, was a swarthy Jew, the head of the Jewish branch of the John Birch Society. Why the Jews 
should have a special "branch" when no one else did was never explained to me, but we were oh, so happy that this powerful group was on 
"our" side! How lucky can you get? 

1 had some further exchange of correspondence with William Penn Patrick and he sent me a beautiful blue vinyl LP record for which he had 

written the script and wliicli lie narrated. Tlie title of it was "Happiness and Success through Principle. " I still have that record today. There is a 
tragic footnote to this story. A few years later, while his company, Holiday Magic, was rapidly expanding even into several foreign countries, I 
happened to see an article in the morning paper about William Penn Patrick. It seems that during a flight in his private plane there had been a 
malfunction, and the plane suddenly nose dived to the ground, killing both him and his pilot. Now, in retrospect, I am sure that the Jewish 
Mossad sabotaged his plane, recognizing that he was a potential political power to be reckoned with and decided to have him killed, as they 
had threatened to do earlier. I also suspect that it was one of their assassins that attacked his secretary earlier. Soon after I was elected to the 
State Legislature, the Supreme Court, or the Jewish power network behind it, did not like the complexion of the new membership of both the 
House and the Senate and decided that Florida had to be redistricted". This also meant that there had to be a new election. Since I had shown 
my true political colors for the short time I had been in there, which was anti-liberal, anti-establishment, I began to draw fire from the press, and 
also from the political leadership. This was to be expected, but what surprised me was that when I now ran for the office of State Senator, 
instead of the support I had expected, I now sensed a certain hostility from some of the leading members of the Birch Society Itself. At first I 
couldn't believe it. Here I was, sticking my neck out, openly running as a member of the Society, giving the organization wide-spread publicity, 
yet the leadership was now plainly showing opposition and hostility. Again, the details of this campaign belong in another chapter. Suffice it to 
say that my suspicions about the JBS were aroused after this episode, but I carried on. 

After my defeat for the Senatorial race in 1 967, I decided to take my family on a tour of Europe, then after returning from that trip, I decided to 
go back into the real estate business. This I did and opened an office at 884 No. Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. Initially, I took in with me 
Austin Davis, with whom I had been collaborating in both my political activities and also in the JBS. We opened up a dual set of twin offices, 
side by side, connected by a door in the dividing wall. We formed a new corporation, known as Pines 'n Palms Ranches, Inc., for our real 
estate operation, and in the office next door we set up a JBS bookstore, known as American Opinion Bookstore. We were now in business in a 
big way, and were the main center and gathering point for the Society in the north half of Broward County. 

We not only sold books and Society literature but we also held meetings and showed films. One of the most effective films the JBS had put 
together at this time (1967) was a 45 minutes production called "Anarchy, U.S.A." it showed how the "communists" were stirring up dissention 
and revolution all over the world, never, of course, mentioning that the Jews had a hand in it all. The clincher came in the end, when the film 
showed George Lincoln Rockwell, that terrible Nazi, leading a small parade somewhere, then, zeroing in for a close-up of his face and the 
corncob pipe. It concluded with the dire warning: never, never must we Birchers join in with those nasty racists, who were the real 
troublemakers of the world. End of lesson. 

Although we were putting in more of our time and money than anyone else in the county, there was a certain hostility and jealousy from the 
older members of the Society, especially from the southern half, and even from some in our own area. Evidently, I was talking about "the 
Jewish problem" too much by now, and also about the niggers taking over. The "Jewish problem" began to weigh more and more in my mind. I 
began to examine my original premises more thoroughly, and again read Henry Ford's "The International Jew." I became more interested in the 
racial problem, and looked into The Citizens Councils organization, who were similar to the JBS, but were against niggers, mildly. Soon I 
formed another corporation, the Pompano Beach Citizens Councils, and we had regular meetings at the Bookstore headquarters. Among the 
members, I noticed, was one Jew, of whom I was immediately suspicious. 

Austin and I began to lean more and more towards the racial issue, and, to check our premises we decided to visit the Citizens Councils 
headquarters in Montgomery, Alabama. While attending a major dinner there, we kept bringing up the Jewish issue, and found out soon 
enough that the head honchos of the Councils, like the JBS, were not interested in discussing this issue. It took us a little while longer to 
discover that the Citizens Councils were a twin Jewish replica of the Birch Society, again, running interference for the Jews, but organized to 
neutralize those goyim that didn't like niggers. On the way back from Montgomery, I called up Dr. William C. Douglass, he of the "Let Freedom 
Ring" fame, and made an appointment to discuss with him the Jewish issue. This we did for three hours at a real fancy restaurant in Sarasota, 
Florida, one he had selected. We debated the issue until the restaurant owner suggested they were ready to close. Throughout the debate the 
doctor kept defending and alibying for the Jews, although hard put in doing so. That ostensibly was the end of our friendship, and I have never 
seen the doctor again. One of his acquaintances sometime later informed me that Douglass was himself half Jew. My last contact with him was 
when, after breaking with the Birch Society, I wrote him a long letter, the contents of which can be found on page 18 of THE KLASSEN 
LETTERS, Vol. 1. 

The final realization for me, I believe, had already come when I attended the John Birch Society God and Country Rally in Boston during the 
July Fourth weekend of 1 969. When I saw the musical band that Welch had selected to entertain us consisted solely of niggers in baggy, bright 
colored pants, it turned my stomach. It was at this time it began to dawn on me that the Birch Society was a phony set-up, but the full extent of 
it had not yet sunk in. It was also at this meeting that I met another Californian (not William Penn Patrick) who was very agitated about their 
governor, Ronald Reagan, and again warned that Reagan was another Eisenhower, a wolf in sheep's clothing. I argued more and more about 
the racial issue, and about the Jewish issue. These issues became more and more paramount in my mind, as they also did with Austin Davis. 

Meanwhile, in August and September of 1969 Austin and I were still preoccupied with the Citizen's Councils and also the American 
Independent Party, although our faith in either was fading rapidly. On August 29 Austin and I flew into Montgomery, Alabama to attend a two- 
day convention at their newly built headquarters to try to find out once and for all where the CCA stood. (Both these stories about the CCA and 
the AlP are related in more detail in Milestone 46.) 

Suffice it to say that when I returned from Colorado in the latter part of September, Austin and I sat down at a table in our bookstore to make a 
long, agonizing re-appraisal of our situation, especially the integrity of the John Birch Society. We had some major decisions to make as to 
what and whom we had been supporting. 

A week or two later, we called Jim Cochrane, one of the major JBS chapter leaders in Pompano to a conference in the bookstore and 
confronted him with the Jewish issue. He started sweating profusely, and his only defense was "All the Jews?" meaning that even if it was a 
Jewish conspiracy we should not condemn every Jew as being part of that conspiracy, just individual by individual, regardless of their race or 
religion. I said to Jim: Why the double standard? When the "allies" manipulated by the Jews in the mass horror of fire-bombing Dresden to 
death, killing some 350,000 Germans in two days, they did not selectively spare the women, the children, the little babies or the refugees from 
the east that were fleeing the communist killers. So why are you all blubber and why are you so goddamn protective of the Jews? That was the 

last time I ever saw Jim Coclirane. 

A few days later we called in Claude Boring, the JBS Coordinator for South Florida, whom we had known for years. We sat him down at the 
same table in the bookstore and put the same question to him. He, too, sweated profusely and kept chain-smoking one cigarette after another. 
He came through more frankly than had Jim Cochrane. "Listen," he said, "We all know it's the Jews. Welch knows it's the Jews and so does 
just about every member of the Birch Society. If we went against the Jews we would be labeled anti-Semitic and that would be the end of the 
Society." Really? What about your credo that "the truth is our only weapon?" You are sure as hell not telling the whole truth when you totally 
ignore and fall to expose the most important and powerful enemy in the whole conspiracy, now are you? He could not come up with any logical 
answer, and Austin and I could come to only one conclusion that made any sense: namely the Birch Society was running interference for the 
Jews, all the while pointing the finger at the communists, while the Birch Society itself was a part of the Jewish conspiracy. 

I did the honorable thing and did what I had to do. On November 5, 1 969, I wrote Robert Welch a long and accusative letter, letting him know 
what he undoubtedly already knew, namely that the John Birch Society was a hoax and a fraud, set up by the Jews themselves in an attempt 
to protect their sinister conspiracy from becoming common knowledge. Furthermore, I was resigning, and demanded a refund of my one 
thousand dollar lifetime membership contribution I had so trustingly given them two years earlier. The full text of my letter can be read on page 
1 6 of THE KLASSEN LETTERS, Vol. 1 . Welch wrote me a pious, but hypocritical 2 page letter, to the tune of, Ben, what in heaven's name 
has happened to you? But the treacherous scoundrel refused to make a refund for his treachery. What evidently had happened to me is that 
was confronted with reality and began to see the whole picture. 

So ended my involvement with the deceitful John Birch Society. It was a major turning point in my life. 

Against the Evil Tide - 38 

Milestone Thirty-Seven: Six Years with the John Birch Society 1963-1969 




I^Next ' 



Against the Evil Tide - 39 

Milestone Thirty-Eight: Trip to California and Parts West 
Summer of 1965 

We had left California in 1 958 and I had only been back there briefly to conclude some business affairs for my Canolectric company in 1 959, as 
I related in a previous chapter. Now, in 1 965, the whole family decided we should take a trip out West and see a lot of the good old U.S.A., and 
especially Henrie and Kim wanted to spend some time with Henrie's mother, who, of course, was also Kim's grandmother. Mrs. Eleanor 
McWilliams was now 80 years old, and retired from teaching school. She was living alone in her comfortable house at 458 Mannel Ave., in the 
small town of Shatter, located about 15 miles northwest of Bakersfield, California. 

We had acquired a lovable boxer female about a year earlier from one of our neighbors, the Mayes, three doors down the street. You could 
almost say that Kim abducted the dog and lured it away from them by sheer love and affection. Anyway, Kim and Tammy took to each other 
with so much mutual fervor that the dog spent practically all of its time in our yard and at our house. Finally, the Mayes boys, who owned the 
dog, decided they might as well transfer ownership of the dog over to Kim. Which is what they did, including all of Tammy's prestigious 
pedigree papers. 

So early one morning in July we took off, with Kim and Tammy in the back seat of our four door Chevrolet Impala. Our first destination was St. 
Augustine, Florida, where we stayed overnight. After a good dinner we went to see the perpetually running historical performance of "The 
Cross and the Sword." It was staged outdoors in a major setting and replays the early Spanish history of Florida, of the Conquistadors and the 
priests who built the Missions and tried to convert the heathen Indians. It was heavily weighted in propaganda against the White Man and in 
favor of the Indians, but nevertheless, an impressive production. We left very early the next morning, since we had made New Orleans our 
target destination for the day. Considering that in 1965 there were still no interstate freeways to help speed us on our route, we had a long day 
ahead of us. But we made it to New Orleans and had dinner at the Court of the Three Sisters, and an excellent dinner it was. 

We had a bit of a problem with Tammy. According to the New Orleans city ordinances at the time, a motel could not allow dogs in its rooms. 
Since it was a hot summer night, it was difficult to leave her in the car all night, even with the windows partially down. So about midnight Kim 
sneaked Tammy into the room anyway, and then early next morning put her back in the car. 

In the morning we all went to Brennan's Restaurant, another famous New Orleans eatery, and had "Breakfast at Brennan's." There was a 
movie by that name made earlier. Our next important destination was San Antonio, Texas. We wanted to see the historical Alamo, about which 
we had heard so much. When we got there it was hot, real hot, as Tammy found out, as she gingerly tiptoed over the hot pavement around the 

A subsequent night we stayed at a motel in Ft. Stockton, Texas. I happen to remember this stop because of a beautiful painting of some 
running horses. The painting was hanging over the fireplace in the lobby. Henrie was sorely tempted to buy the painting at the time, but she 
decided not to. She has been sorry she didn't ever since. We drove on westward to see the Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, staying in a 
motel in Whites City. It was the first time any of us had seen the Caverns, and we were highly impressed by their immensity and their beauty. 
Their cool temperatures inside were a welcome contrast from the heat outside. 

While at the motel Kim happened to run downhill on a gravelly road and fell, severely cutting one knee in the gravel. We bandaged it up as best 
we could and went on to Santa Fe the next day. There we went to a doctor and had the cuts examined, cleaned, and freshly bandaged. From 
there we pressed onward to the Grand Canyon. When we arrived there in the middle of the afternoon we had difficulty finding a place to stay. 
Finally we were able to rent a cabin, but when we were ready to move in, we discovered to our dismay that a skunk had been there before us, 
if not in the cabin itself, at least underneath of it. After much further search, we finally found a fairly decent room for the night, minus any scent 
of skunk. 

We stayed at the Canyon a few days, exploring the outlying attractions and walking partway down the South Rim trails into the Canyon Itself. 

After watching some of the Indian dances and other attractions, we left, backtracking eastward along the South Rim and crossing the canyon 
and the Colorado River at Marble Canyon. Traveling through the Kalbab Forest we saw some of the unique squirrels for which the forest is 
famous. From there on we headed for Las Vegas. In Vegas we arranged to see some of the nightclub shows and one that stands out 
particularly was called "The Spirit of America." It was good clean family type of entertainment, a great show with plenty of song and dance and 
an amplitude of flag waving. Being very much caught up in the Birch Society at the time, it greatly appealed to all of us. 

We arrived in Shatter, California, a few days later. Shatter is a farming town located in the southern end of the fertile San Joaquin Valley, about 
fifteen miles north and west of Bakersfield. At the time it had a population of about three thousand, which has now increased to about seven 
thousand, largely due to the Mexican and Chicano influx. The farming area around it is highly productive, growing mostly cotton, potatoes, 
alfalfa and grapes. Several of the farmers are millionaires, which includes a few Mennonites. 

When we arrived, one of the first events was to be invited to a barbecue dinner with the Wiedmann family. Mert and Pat Wiedmann own the 
Stringham Drugstore, started by Pat's father, Mr. Stringham. It was at the time the main drugstore in Shatter. The Wiedmanns are one of the 
wealthier and leading citizens of the town. They had an illustrious family of four children, three girls and one boy, all of which now, 25 years 
later, are either in medicine or the drugstore business in other towns in California. Mrs. McWilliams, who for several years taught school in 
Shatter, was the teacher of some of the Wiedmann children at one time or another. In the summer of 1963 their daughter Janet, who is about 
Kim's age, had come to visit and stayed with us in Lighthouse Point for a week. 

During our stay in Shatter, about 130 miles to the south, the Birch Society was having a dinner and speakers in a motel in Norwalk, a suburb of 
Los Angeles. Being a good Bircher, I drove down to attend. Now Norwalk is south and east of the then nigger enclave called Watts. Twenty-five 
years ago the area was not laced with freeways as it is today and in driving through the area it was necessary to utilize main streets and 
boulevards to traverse the megalopolis. It just so happened that the day after the night I drove through Watts on my way back to Shatter, all 

hell broke loose in Watts. It was one of the earlier niggertown riots of burning, looting and mayhem during the so-called "civil rights" era, a 
phenomenon that was to occur again and again in many parts of the nation during the sixties and seventies and beyond. Had I driven through 
that black Jungle one night later I would undoubtedly have been caught up in the crossfire of these rampaging jungle bunnies. 

In 1965, the Los Angeles Music Center had just newly opened. Henrie and I called in for reservations and were fortunate enough to obtain 
tickets. Although I don't remember much about the program, except that the music was beautiful, I do remember the impressiveness of the 
building itself, the three huge crystal chandeliers in the foyer and the lavishness of the furnishings. 

By the middle of August Henrie and Tammy and I drove back across the country. Kim stayed on in Shatter and went on a boat trip with the 
Wiedmann family. It seems that at that time each summer the Wiedmanns and a group of their friends would take a cruise out of Seattle on a 
flotilla of small boats. Anyway, in 1965 they joined a group of about five boats and cruised up Puget Sound to some destination in Canada and 
back, the trip lasting about a week. It was an interesting adventure for Kim. 

Meanwhile, on our drive back to Florida, we did not make as many stops as we had on the way out. We did stop in New Orleans for a few days 
to take a better look at the city. We stayed at a motel on Bourbon Street and ate at some of the famous restaurants. I remember picking up a 
large poster of Adolf Hitler at some hockshop on Bourbon Street. The poster only cost $2.00. I still have it, and it was recently utilized as a copy 
for an oil painting, done by Ron McVan. 

Since New Orleans had this prohibition about allowing dogs in motels, we had put Tammy in a kennel. After being cooped up for three days, 
she was very antsy and eager to run. When we picked her up I put her in the back seat of the car, as usual. Shortly thereafter, while stopping at 
a filling station to get gas, I made the mistake of leaving my front window down. Tammy jumped over the front seat, out the window, and took 
off like a streak of lightning, darting off across a busy six-lane boulevard and just ran, ran, ran. Cars were honking and screeching and we 
thought surely she would be killed. Henrie almost had a heart attack. Miraculously, after she had her workout, she dashed across that same 
busy boulevard and got back into the car, much to our relief 

We returned safely to Lighthouse Point. A week or so later we picked up Kim at the airport on her return. Soon thereafter she enrolled in her 
first year at Pine Crest, a private school in Pompano Beach. 

Against the Evil Tide - 39 

Milestone Thirty-Eight: Trip to California and Parts West 
Summer of 1965 




1^ Next 



Against the Evil Tide - 40 

Milestone Thirty-Nine: Speaking of the Toastmasters Clubs 

In the chapter on the John Birch Society I have already alluded to the conclusion that if we were ever to exercise any clout in the control of our 
affairs it was necessary that we ourselves would have to become significantly involved in politics. The secondary conclusion that accrued from 
the political involvement was that in order to be successful in politics it was necessary to become a capable and convincing public speaker. The 
next question was how do you become a good public speaker? 

The answer to that question was - Toastmasters. The Toastmasters International, whose world headquarters were in Santa Ana, California, 
offered an excellent opportunity to become a good public speaker. Shortly after I had decided that political action was the answer to our 
problems, I inquired into the matter and in the spring of 1964 I became a member of the Pompano Beach Toastmasters Club 3003. It was 
relatively easy to join, and not very expensive. Not only did it provide a continuing opportunity to improve one's speaking abilities but it was also 
a congenial social club. 

We met at a local restaurant in Lighthouse Point on a weekly basis. The meetings were scheduled for the evenings and included dinner. The 
members were scheduled two or three months in advance as to what their duties would be at each meeting, whether they were to be speakers, 
or timekeepers, or parliamentarians, or evaluators, or one of about a dozen other duties. Usually three or four members would speak on an 
evening, and the speeches were programmed for five to seven minutes, with a maximum of 15 minutes. One of the fellows would control the 
"Ah Box", and bang a bell every time a speaker would pause and inject an "Ah", a no-no that the club tried to expunge and a good speaker was 
taught to avoid. Every "Ah" was counted and the offending speaker had to ante a nickel into the "Ah Box" for each offense at the end of the 
evening. Usually there were also two or more evaluators who would criticize each speech and offer suggestions for improvements. This was 
done after all the speakers had finished. Then there would be a vote by the total membership and a Best Speaker Award was presented at the 
end of the evening. 

There was plenty of competition and rivalry, but by and large it was a friendly type of competition, and quite constructive. I found that it did a lot 
for me and was a big help in the political arena. There was a Basic Training Manual and also a number of other official books and manuals the 
club offered. By October the 6th, 1 967 I had completed the series of speech assignments proscribed in the Basic Training Manual and was 
awarded the Certificate of Merit from the general manager of Toastmasters International. 

During my five-year tenure with Toastmasters, I probably got to meet more than a hundred individual members in our own club, and in 
neighboring clubs. One common characteristic about most of them was that they were interesting people. By and large they were intelligent 
individualists, more competent than the average, and also more ambitious and articulate. A few of those in our own P. B. Club #3003 that were 
regulars and stand out in my mind after more than 20 years are the following: 

Arthur D. Donnelly, an urbane retired gentleman with a furry voice and a benign smile, reminiscent of our ex-president Ronald Reagan (no 
offense, Arthur.) Jack Flaherty, a robust Irishman, who was a major executive of a Ft. Lauderdale construction company, and was capable of 
expressing himself forthrightly without quibbling. 

Vincent Ring, an accountant and a capable speaker, Ray Maurer, an account executive with the Kidder Peabody brokerage firm. 

John Shanahan, another good Irishman and a long time member. He was a partner in an insurance firm. Arthur Burton, who acted and looked 
like a Jew and repeatedly bragged about all the corporations of which he was president. Actually, his racket was to dig up old defunct land 
corporations, reactivate them, then use them to blackmail title companies to pay him a few hundred dollars to quiet title in order to erase some 
cloud the old corporation might threaten to the title of what was now very valuable real estate. Usually it worked, with the title companies 
rationalizing that it was cheaper to pay him off than argue in court. 

Then, last but not least, there was my long-time sidekick, Austin Davis, who shared many of my political endeavors. 

In the meantime, as individuals we could also participate in other clubs on invitation, which I did quite often. 

I participated in several Toastmasters clubs to the south. One was the Sunrise Toastmasters Club #2508 in Ft. Lauderdale. The Sunrise Club 
held their meetings in the morning for early breakfast sessions. I recall attending probably half a dozen of their meetings, being a speaker on 
each occasion. I remember representing our Club #3003 in a debate with the Ft. Lauderdale club about the Vietnam War. My partner and I took 
the position that we should be in that war and that we should win it as quickly as possible. The other side took the position that we should get 
out of it as soon as possible. Today, in hindsight, I regard both of those positions as stupid. We should never have sent our boys out there to 
be killed for nothing in the first place. Further to the South, I also participated in the Hallandale "Early Bird" Club meetings and in the Hollywood 
Toastmasters Club #3770 a few times. 

Usually I would write and type my anticipated speech, rehearse it and time it. Whereas we might use a few notes while speaking we would 
never read our speeches. I still have several typed copies of my speeches in my old files. 

Soon I was giving any number of outside speeches to various clubs, fraternities and organizations other than Toastmasters. After I became 
involved in the political campaign of 1966 the number of invitations increased. I spoke before the Kiwanis, the Rotary Club, any number of 
political groups, especially the Republican clubs, to the League of Women Voters, to P.T.A. groups, to Veteran's groups, to a few Ft. 

Lauderdale Klan gatherings and picnics, and even to tlie Gold Coast Cliapter of Parents without Partners. I remember the latter because I still 
have their flyer which says I spoke to them on January 17th, 

1969 on crime prevention and safeguarding your home. Being in the "Borscht" speaking circuit also got me involved in a few radio and 
television talk shows. I participated in several "Dick Vance" radio programs in Ft. Lauderdale, sometimes solo with Dick, and one time in 
partnership with Jim Coryell. Both of these fellows professed to be dyed-in-the-wool "Conservatives", but in retrospect I strongly suspect both 
of them were agents of the establishment. Jim Coryell, when I had a private lunch with him at one time, confessed he had been an F.B.I, agent 
(he probably still was). He put out a periodical smear tabloid in which he would do a hatchet job on some politician at a critical time before the 
election. Dick Vance had a radio talk show that seemed to support the Birch group and the "conservative" viewpoint, but really lacked in 
substance. I also recall being invited to a talk show in Miami Beach sometime in 1 968. In this I was promoting George Wallace, while the host, 
who claimed he once lived in Alabama under the Wallace governorship, was roundly denouncing George Wallace. 

In my Toastmasters' file I have a letter dated January 3, 1969, from the Community Television Foundation of South Florida, Inc., WTHS-TV, 
inviting me to discuss the Liberty Amendment on "The Bill Smith Show" at 9:30 PM, Monday, January 13, 1969, at their Miami studio. This I 
did, and I recall the event quite clearly. Bill Smith, probably not his real name, was a smooth talking, nice looking young Jewish talk show host. 
I was for the Liberty Amendment and he was against it. The Liberty Amendment was sponsored by Willis Stone and was part of the Birch 
agenda. It proposed to repeal the Sixteenth Amendment and do away with the Income tax. 

I also appeared on a TV show in Ft. Lauderdale in partnership with Pastor Wes Auger, whose Calvary Baptist Church I had started to attend. 
The subject of our appearance, however, escapes me. 

Sometime in early 1 967, while I was in the Florida Legislature, I was the subject of an editorial attack by a TV commentator in Orlando, Florida. 
The station had the decency of sending me a transcript of the commentary, which criticized my membership in the Birch Society and my 
"extremist" conservative leanings. They invited me to make a rebuttal on the same time slot and have the whole five minutes the commentator 
had used to answer him with my own prepared speech. I took up the challenge, drove all the way to Orlando to give them my "what fer" in my 
five minute spiel. 

I don't recall exactly when I stopped participating in Toastmasters, but it must have been towards the end of 1969, when my philosophical focus 
took a new turn, away from the "conservative" viewpoint and towards that espoused in Nature's Eternal Religion. The last piece I have in my 
Toastmasters file is a "Certificate of Appreciation" for an address to the Deer-field Beach Kiwanis. It is dated August 2. 1 969. 

Against the Evil Tide - 40 

Milestone Thirty-Nine: Speaking of the Toastmasters Clubs 





Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 41 

Milestone Forty: Trip to Canada and Points North 
Summer of 1966 

By 1 966 I was thoroughly enmeshed in the activities of the Birch Society and thinl<ing about running for political office in order to be more 
effective. The Society was holding their annual "God and Country" rally in Boston over the coming Fourth of July celebration and I thought it 
would be educational and constructive to have the whole family attend and get to know better the Society's roster of speakers and their top 
echelon. The JBS was headquartered in Belmont, Massachusetts, and a suburb of Boston. 

While that far north, I thought, we might as well meander over the border into Canada and visit my sister Katie and her family, who lived in 
Niagara Falls, Ontario. So again we packed Kim and Tammy into the backseat of the Impala and away we went. 

Arriving in Boston, we stayed in a downtown hotel nearby to the hotel where the rally was being held. The weather in Boston that weekend was 
hot, somewhere around 93 degrees, as I recall. The rally lasted three days over the weekend and I listened to an endless array of speakers 
give their particular spiel. I managed to arrange a meeting with Tom Anderson and Dan Smoot and tried to drum up some kind of a political 
action program with the leaders in the top echelon, similar to what I was promoting in Broward County. 

I had read many of Dan Smoot's reports on the first page of which his picture always appeared. He had been a former FBI agent and I had 
always imagined him to be a husky, two-fisted fighter, ready to do battle with anybody. When I met him in the flesh, I was disappointed. He was 
short, small and timid, I thought. Tom Anderson did a lot of talking and Dan Smoot did a lot of waffling, but mostly it ended up with alibis as to 
why we would be better off just doing our thing disseminating "the truth" and let someone else do the politicking. 

There were any number of seminars, booths and bookstalls at the rally, much like a regular convention. One of the booths that attracted our 
attention, or at least Kim's attention, was a certain one from Vermont, called "The Green Mountain Boys." It was being manned by Vaughn 
Griffin, Jr., and his father. Kim was 15 at this time, and looked like a grown-up young lady several years older. Vaughn was a strapping young 
man of 21 , six foot three, and very personable. Soon Kim volunteered to help man the booth, distribute literature and promote the "Green 
Mountain Boys." Soon, also, Kim and Vaughn were hitting it off nicely. Next, Henrie and I were meeting Mr. & Mrs. Vaughn Griffin and they were 
inviting us to come and visit them after the Rally at their summer home on the shores of Lake Champlain. With Kim's urging we accepted. 
Vaughn Griffin, Sr. was an attorney in Rutland, Vermont, where the family lived most of the year. He was very active in the Birch Society and 
the Green Mountain Boys was his own special organization to promote the cause. Their summer home on the shores of Lake Champlain was 
located near Shoreham. The home itself had quite a history that went back more than a hundred and fifty years. It used to be a travelers' inn 
and also a stagecoach stop in the early part of the nineteenth century. 

We stayed with the Griffins for two days. Kim and Vaughn Jr. spent quite a bit of time canoeing and swimming in the lake. Tammy took part in 
the water activities and joined in the fun. The two big German Shepherds that the Griffins had were somewhat of a puzzle and a worry for 
Tammy. She never was quite sure whether they were friendly or a threat to her safety. 

From Shoreham we drove north and east to the rocky coast of Maine. Here we visited Acadia National Park, and saw the stately old mansions 
of the old time millionaires at Bar Harbor. All of the scenery here was very rocky and very picturesque. From there, by extremely circuitous 
routes, we found our way to the little fishing town of Stonington, located at the very tip of a series of rocky Islands. Here we visited Wilma and 
Chad Knowiton, friends we had known in Pompano Beach. Chad's father was a lobsterman, going out daily in his typical old New England 
lobster boat and tending to his traps. While there Chad invited us to go on a round with his dad on his boat, which we did. I found it very 
interesting, but considered it a hard way to make a living. 

While in Maine we indulged in much native seafood for which Maine is famous. I remember especially a whole pot of steamed clams being set 
before us on the table at one session, and us stuffing ourselves silly. 

From Maine we backtracked west to Niagara Falls, where we crossed the border into Canada. When the Canadian Customs and Immigration 
officer saw Tammy in the back seat, he took a sharp look and reminded us we had to have some kind of medical certificate for the dog before 
we could take her across the border into Canada. Of course, we didn't have any, but after another look and second thoughts, he concluded, 
what the hell, she's all right, and let us cross. 

My sister Katie and her husband Herbert (Snider) had met in 1945 in Colombia, South America, where both were missionaries. Soon they 
married and soon they started raising a large family. They left Colombia in 1961 and stayed at our house in Lighthouse Point for a week, 
deciding what they should do next. Another missionary had left a car, or more of a jalopy, in our driveway, a month or two before, much to our 
highbrow neighbors' consternation. Some began asking us if we were starting a used car business or a junk shop. Anyway, Katie and Herbert 
arrived at the Miami airport with their brood of eight and after staying with us for a week decided to go back to Niagara Falls from which mission 
center Katie had departed some 16 years earlier. They packed all their sparse belongings and eight kids into their gratis jalopy and off they 
went. We bade them a fond farewell. That was in the summer of 1961. 

Now in 1965 they had availed themselves of a 20-acre fruit orchard with a house, and while not getting rich, they were doing quite well. Their 
eight children now came into good use in tending the garden (they also raised vegetables and grapes) and in picking cherries and apples. We 
had a very lovely time visiting with them, while they showed us many of the sights for which Niagara Falls is famous. We went down the 
elevator shafts to view the massive falls from the backside. We went on one of the sightseeing boats below the falls, the same "Maid of the 
Mist" that Katie and I had toured back in the summer of 1942 when I worked at the nickel mines in Sudbury, Ontario, and had come to visit her 
in Toronto and Niagara Falls. 

We also took a side trip to visit my cousin Helen (nee Klassen) who lived with her husband Waldemar Schroeder and her seven-year-old 
daughter Margaret in Kitchener, Ontario. While there we also visited a distant Mennonite uncle, Henry Epp, and his gracious wife, who had a 
lovely home in Kitchener. They were so hospitable and indulged us in the old Mennonite custom of serving us "fesper", a mid-afternoon 

luncheon of tea or coffee, and cakes and cookies. From there we began our trip back to Florida again, where I soon resumed into my political 
campaign in running for the office of Republican State Legislator. 

There is a tragic epilogue to our visit to see Katie and her family. A month or two after we returned we received the news that their oldest son, 
Paul, who was 1 9, had drowned in the whirlpool rapids below the falls while on a picnic with friends one Sunday afternoon. It seems that they 
were having their picnic lunch on a rocky promontory at the waters edge, and in an instant of careless movement the turbulent waters caught 
him off balance and swept him down the whirlpool to his death. His body was found floating in Lake Ontario three days later. We were all 
shocked and Katie never did fully recover from that tragedy. 

Against the Evil Tide - 41 

Milestone Forty: Trip to Canada and Points Nortli 
Summer of 1966 




Against the Evil Tide - 42 

Milestone Forty-One: A Brief Venture into tlie Political Arena I ^gxt 

Running as a Conservative Republican for the Florida House ' 




As in most of the southern states, the Democratic Party had been holding sway in Florida ever since the Reconstruction days, and usually it 
was only a matter of who won in the primaries of the Democratic Party as to who was the next elected official. By 1966, however, the political 
climate in Florida was changing, especially in Broward County, which had a large number of new residents who were transplants from the 
north. But the biggest factors were President Lyndon Johnson and the Vietnam War. Everybody was sick of the no-win war, and for good 
reasons, and just about everybody hated Lyndon Johnson, also for good reasons. Added to this was the fear and apprehension generated by 
the ongoing "Civil Rights" movement, with the niggers burning down whole sections of cities like Detroit, Washington, Watts and dozens of 
others. Public sentiment nationwide was turning against the Johnson administration (1963-1968). Even in the "solid" South, and especially in 
Florida, voters were turning away from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in 1 966. However, few people realized this while it was 
happening, and least of all the candidates in Broward County who lined up to run as Republicans. But not all the counties in Florida were 
turning to the Republican Party by any means, and the majority of the House and Senate at Tallahassee remained in Democratic hands even 
after the 1966 November elections. 

For the last two years I had been advocating to our Birch members that they get into politics and get elected, that we take control of the 
Broward Republican Committee, and it had paid off. To put my money where my mouth was, I had registered as a Republican, was a 
committeeman from my district, and Henrie was a committeewoman from the same district. I now decided to run for the office of State 
Legislator District 1. (Broward County had eight districts, although the election of each was at large, and countywide.) In recalling the campaign 
of 1 966 and again the campaign for Senator in 1 967 I am fortunate in not having to rely solely on memory. Although incomplete, I have a file of 
a number of newspaper clippings of that era to which I can refer. On February 17, 1966 a headline on the front page of the "B" section of the 
Pompano Beach Sun Sentinel it stated: "GOP Endorses 5; Bircher Included." The letters in the double headline were large, almost 3/4 of an 
inch high. This was undoubtedly the opening gun of the GOP campaign. Five of us had filled out the screening committee's questionnaire, 
three candidates for the Legislature, two for the Senate. Although five of us applied and were approved, more than half of the article was 
devoted to me, apparently because a "Bircher" had the nerve to try to run for office. Here are two paragraphs from the article: 

'Questioned as to whether his Birch membership would be a benefit or a hindrance to his candidacy, Klassen replied "It is a good, patriotic 
organization dedicated to the principles of freedom, the Constitution, free enterprise and all the things a good American should go along with." 

Another paragraph stated: Klassen listed no definite issues for his legislative race, but said as a legislator he would fight "bigger and bigger 
government," socialism, and try to aid in recovering for the state some of the powers given to the states in the Constitution, and keep some 
money in the state instead of sending it to Washington and seeing it come back under certain conditions. 

That same day the Miami Herald ran an article on the same subject, namely that five GOP candidates for the Florida legislature from Broward 
had been endorsed. But the headline focused on Ben Klassen: "Birchite Hopeful Asks GOP Support." 

A few days later the rest of the GOP slate filed and was completed. Here is how the line up stood. 

Group 1 Bernard Klassen 
Group 2 Richard A. Bird 
Group 3 John W. Bell 
Group 4 Henry J. Prominski 
Group 5 Arthur Rude 
Group 6 James D. Mackey 
Group 8 James R. Eddy 

No Republican filed for District 7, and it was left unopposed to the Democrats. Two Republicans filed for State Senator in two different districts, 
namely Chester Stolzenberg and James Gregory, in Districts 39 and 48 respectively. District 30 was left unopposed to incumbent Democratic 
Senator A. J. Ryan. 

That completed Broward County's Republican slate for the House and the Senate. There was no primary opposition for any of the seats. 
Republicans were too scared at this point to run against each other. We were now off and running for the finals in the November election and 
did not have to worry about Republican primaries. My Democratic opposite in Group 1 was to be Richard Brown, an incumbent. 

We were a jolly crew. Since there were no rivalries nor the primary election, there was a spirit of good teamwork and no infighting as such. 
Most of us were first time novices and relished our newly won opportunity to appear in the spotlight and enter into the political arena. There 
were a number of expenses. I had probably a few dozen 4'x6' billboards with my picture made up. My aide-de-camp Austin Davis and I nailed 
them upon 2x4 posts all over the county. I had hundreds of fluorescent bumper stickers made up, and probably a hundred smaller posters to 
nail up on telephone poles. I set up two telephone lines for people to call in on a recorded message, said message changing weekly. I had a 
number of campaign fliers printed up. 

Once in the race, it seemed we raced around and had a meeting almost every other day at which we assembled and spoke before some 
group. The groups we appeared before seemed endless. They were in the categories of some civic or political group - the Republican 
Committee at the Courthouse, the League of Women Voters, teachers groups, school groups. Chamber of Commerce, Kiwanis, Rotary, etc., 
etc. On such occasions we would each take our turn and give a short speech about ourselves and what we stood for. There were also a 
number of occasions when we spoke solely as individuals and had the podium to ourselves. After I had all my political paraphernalia printed 
and put together, I held my opening rally in some school auditorium in Pompano Beach at which I assembled all the Birch faithful and what 

members of the Fact Finders Forum I could gather. (I was still head of Fact Finders Forum.) It turned out to be a very enthusiastic meeting. I 
had boxes full of my political flyers, bumper stickers and other pieces for distribution. All seemed a bed of roses. Another occasion in which I 
was the main event and gave a major political speech was at the Silver Thatch Inn on September 6, 1 966, before the Pompano Beach 
Republican Club. The Silver Thatch was located on the beach and owned by Ed Stack, who was later to go into the political arena in a big way 
and a few years later finally ousted Herbert Burke for the seat in the House of Representatives in Washington. My speech was given 
considerable prominence in the Pompano Beach "Sun Sentinel" the next day in an article that included my picture. It was written by Sylvia 
Martin, one of the few reporters who seemed friendly to my political views. Some of the quotes in the article are worth repeating, and we must 
remember that at this time I was up to my eyebrows in the Birch Society and promoting their views. The headline of the article was "State 
Committee to Probe U.N. asked by GOP Office Seeker". I quote more copiously from this article because it sums up my political position more 
comprehensively than any other material I still have of that era. Here are some of the leading paragraphs: 

Klassen, who is opposing incumbent Democrat Richard Brown for the Group One representative's seat, told members of the Pompano Beach 
Republican Club that Communists have found their way into high places in the federal government and that they are "trying to railroad us under 
an atheistic. Communist U.N." "Things in the U.S. Congress would not be the way they are," Klassen, a member of the John Birch Society, 
said, "if state legislatures had defended states rights and not accepted federal handouts." 

At the state level, Klassen said, he would promote the "Liberty Amendment" and a committee to investigate the U.N. in an effort "to right things 
in the federal government. " 

If all states would adopt the "Liberty Amendment", Klassen said, "It would end the personal income tax, thus depriving the federal government 
of a large part of its power. The personal income tax," he said, "is only half of the federal government's income, and that's more than it needs to 
carry on its constitutional business." Klassen charged that the federal government is illegally appropriating money for "give-away programs" 
that are not authorized by the Constitution. 

Maintaining that he is a "middle-of-the-roader" about the type of government he supports, Klassen said he favors "limited constitutional 
government as set forth in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights - the greatest freedom documents ever 
created in 6,000 years of recorded history." Klassen, who said he is not an "extreme right-winger," said he is "extremely dedicated to 
protecting" a constitutional form of government. 

The Constitution, he said, does not give the federal government the authority "to extract money from the people to spend on foreign aid, 
education, welfare, anti-poverty and other projects... the free goodies. What the government is doing, he said, "is illegal, unconstitutional and 

Calling the various federal projects "socialistic", Klassen said the United States is gradually being turned over to the Communists through the 
appointment of Communists to high government offices, the adoption of communistic practices and the turning over of the command of U.S. 
military forces to the U.N., which is "run by Communists." 

The Florida legislature, Klassen said, should appoint a committee to investigate the U.N. If the U.N. charter is found to be illegal by the 
committee, the legislature should pass a bill which would denounce, "anything the U.N. does as illegal in Florida and will not be recognized." 

The government, he said, is running 20,000 illegal businesses in competition with private enterprise. The "Liberty Amendment," Klassen said, 
would force the government to sell these businesses. 

"The big issue," Klassen said, "is if the United States will become a collective dictatorship or remain a constitutional republic. At present we are 
being ruled by evil men who are selling us out to the Communists." Even the Miami Herald had a reporter there to take notes. A shorter article 
by Bill Martinez headlined "Klassen: I'm Not An Extremist," started off with "Wearing a golden Birch leaf in his label. Republican candidate for 
Group One State House seat, Ben Klassen Thursday night launched a strong tirade against the Federal government." 

Further down in a paragraph that stood out in bold print. It said "Klassen, who admits membership in the John Birch Society...." Horrors! How 
brazen can you get? There were a few other occasions in which I had a whole gathering to myself, but I don't have any record of them. One 
meeting of which I have no notes but which I clearly recall was a head-to-head confrontation with my Democratic opponent, incumbent Richard 
Brown. It was before a luncheon group of about 200 in Pompano Beach, either the Kiwanis or the Rotary Club, I don't recall which. Richard 
Brown spoke first. In his speech he accused me of focusing on national issues, rather than the state government. In this he was absolutely 
correct. I was, in fact, attacking the Supreme Court, the Viet Nam war, the usurpation of power of the Federal government at the expense of the 
rights of the states, and especially the bungling by the Johnson administration of the Viet Nam war. Brown made it clear that he was distancing 
himself from the Johnson administration in Washington, that he should not by judged by what went on in Washington, and that he was running 
on state issues. 

When my turn came, I admitted that I was pounding the left-wing policies of the Johnson administration, but all Democrats in the party were 
tied to it, I said, whether they liked it or not. If they didn't like it they should leave the party and become good Americans instead of one-worlder 
socialists. Anyway, I ended up with a resounding denunciation of the Democrats, of Lyndon Johnson and of Richard Brown, saying in effect 
"Let's make a clean sweep from top to bottom and throw the rascals out." 

Apparently the voters of Broward County were of the same mood, as we shall see later. But before we do there is one other episode during the 
campaign I want to relate. 

Richard Nixon had made a bid for the California governorship in 1 962 and had been beaten, mostly because of a hostile liberal press, which 
never forgave him for exposing communist Alger Hiss more than a decade earlier. It was after the defeat in California that Nixon seemingly 
threw in the towel and said he was quitting politics. "You won't have Nixon to kick around any more." However, by 1 966 his star was rising 
again and that of the Democrats declining. He felt that he could make a comeback and run for the presidency again. In his countrywide 

campaign to do so, on September 29, 1 966, he staged a Republican political rally on his behalf at the Ft. Lauderdale Municipal Auditorium to a 
full house. I still clearly recall his staged entrance into the auditorium, all the blaring music and spotlights as he and his entourage marched 
down the center aisle and up to the stage to the thunderous applause of a partisan crowd. Along with the rest of the Broward Republican 
delegation (about a dozen) I had the "honor" of shaking his hand, sitting on the stage with him, and listening to his rousing address. He was a 
good speaker and roundly denounced the Johnson administration then in power. 

But to get back to the main event - my campaign for a seat in the Florida Legislature in Tallahassee. Came the final showdown, the day of the 
General Election, November 8, 1966. At about seven o'clock that evening I was driving down to the Broward County Courthouse and I had the 
car radio on. The results were coming in rapidly and we Republicans seemed to be winning, not only in Broward County, but also statewide for 
the governorship. When I arrived at the large County Commission Auditorium it was already crowded with friends, supporters and reporters and 
there was an air of jubilation in the Republican ranks, and gloom and doom in the Democratic Party. We were winning, but big! 

As the evening wore on, the final results came in. The Broward Republican delegation to the Legislature had made a clean sweep. All seven of 
us won. So did the two Republican candidates for the State Senate, Chet Stolzenburg and James Gregory from Senatorial Districts 39 and 48 
respectively. Only Hugh B. Cramer, who was unopposed, won a Democratic House seat, and incumbent State Senator A.J. Ryan, a fine 
gentleman, who ran as a Democrat and was unopposed, captured a Democratic seat from Broward County in the Senate. 

Republican Claude Kirk won the governorship over Robert King High, a liberal Democrat from the Miami area. J. Herbert Burke, Republican 
candidate for the House of Representatives (Washington) won handily over Joe Varon, the Democratic candidate. 

All in all, we had won big in Broward County and had made history. This was the first time the Republican Party had won the governorship and 
made a significant dent in the State House and in the Senate since the Reconstruction days of a century ago. Palm Beach and Pinellas County 
went overwhelmingly Republican also. However, the House and the Senate still remained strongly in the hands of the Democratic majority. The 
new House now had 26 Republicans and 92 Democrats, and in the Senate the Democrats outnumbered the Republicans 37 to 11 . 
Nevertheless, in Broward County our win was almost total. We had, in fact, won every seat we had contested. We were jubilant and much 
celebration was in order. I had won my seat in District 1 over my Democratic opponent Richard L. Brown, the incumbent, by a vote of 57,843 to 
51,543. I was in! 

Against the Evil Tide - 42 

Milestone Forty-One: A Brief Venture into the Political Arena 
Running as a Conservative Republican for the Florida House 







Against the Evil Tide - 43 

Milestone Forty-Two: A Stint in the Legislature 

What had originally started out as an experiment and a gamble had now turned into a reality. Suddenly I was a celebrity of sorts. In short order 
after being elected I received all kinds of congratulations and mail, not only from friends, but from people I had never heard of. I was now a 
politician and I wielded a certain amount of clout. As a result, I was sought out for making speeches, invited to lunches and given a number of 
perks I had not even asked for. For example, I received an embossed membership card that entitled my wife and me to attend the Pompano 
Beach Harness Racing Track gratis any time I wanted to, and not only that, but when I took up their offer, my wife and I were given loge seats, 
free steak dinners and all the bourbon, Scotch, or whatever we wanted to drink. A similar card arrived from the Hialeah Park Race Track near 
Miami, and from the Hollywood Dog Track. (This "perk" was no particular boon as far as I was concerned, since I had no great interest in horse 
tracks, or any other form of gambling, for that matter.) 

Having participated in Toastmasters for the past several years, I was now invited to speak at several functions and before any number of 
groups, ranging from Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce to P.T.A. groups. League of Women Voters, Rotary Clubs, Kiwanis and a 
number of others. Even my own Toastmasters group now looked at me with new respect. I utilized as many of these occasions as I could to 
promote my "conservative" message, being, by and large, that of the Birch Society, namely that our government and whole system was going 
towards socialism, big government and collaboration with the communists. Never, however, did I point out that behind communism was the 
manipulative hand of the Jew. At least not yet. 

Shortly after the election there was a private eyeball-to-eyeball session with the newly elected governor, Claude Kirk, at his headquarters in 
Palm Beach. Whether he had such a session with all the Republican electees, or just a select few, I do not recall. Anyway, I was called up to 
have a private talk with the governor at his then headquarters in Palm Beach. What I remember of it was that Kirk admonished me that I was 
not to pull "any surprises", whatever that meant, probably fearing that I might introduce some radical legislation of some sort. I assured him that 
there were no secrets as to what I stood for, having been extremely candid during my election campaign. I made it clear, however, that I would 
pursue the same independent path in the legislature. Kirk, being more liberal than he had pretended during his campaign, was not too pleased, 
and I couldn't have cared less. Whereas Kirk made an ideal candidate, tall, handsome, charismatic and well spoken, yet his past record 
indicated he was all front and no substance, and as phony as a three dollar bill. My opinion of him was not very high. 

Came the day we were all sworn in at the old State Capital. (A new high-rise Capital building has been constructed since then, and the Old 
Capital is now a museum and also serves as storage for archives.) The nine of us Republicans from Broward County, the seven Legislators 
and two Senators, all of whose names I have previously listed, now formed a tightly knit group. All of us were neophyte first term electees, 
except Senator Chet Stolzenburg, who had served a term before. We always stayed at the same motel, and usually went out to dinners 
together, unless such was served at some function. We were a jolly crew, drank a considerable amount of Scotch after a session and before 
dinner, and we got along relatively well. 

I soon learned the ropes in the legislature and got to meet and know most of the 118 members in the Legislature, and a fair number of the 48 
members in the Senate. The number of functions we were invited to was staggering. There were all kinds of barbecues, dinners and functions 
hosted by teachers' groups, educators, highway committees, police groups, bankers groups and a slew of others. All of which were interested 
in either (a) having more money appropriated in their direction, or (b) getting legislation favorable to them, or both. Of all the groups, the 
education people were undoubtedly the most aggressive and persistent. 

For some reason I don't recall, I requested to be appointed to the Banking Committee, and my request was granted by Ralph D. Turlington, 
Speaker of the House. Although I knew next to nothing about banking, I felt that it would probably put me in touch with the affluent and 
influential in Broward County. (I was also on some other committees but I don't recall what they were.) I was not mistaken about being 
contacted by the banking people. They had their lobbyist in the Capitol, and it so happened that he offered to take me out and buy my lunch 
much more frequently than any other lobbyist, an offer I could not refuse. Back home in Pompano Beach I was sought out by the scion of one 
of the wealthiest families who owned not only much real estate in Pompano Beach, but was also chairman of a Pompano Beach Bank. He, too, 
took me out to lunch and discussed legislation, something he would not have dreamed of before my election. 

Came January 3, 1 967, the day for the inauguration of the governor, his cabinet, and the legislators. There were parades in Tallahassee, 
speeches in the House, swearing in of the various officers. We eight legislators from Broward County were sworn in as a group and I still have 
a photograph of that event But the highlight of the day was the Governor's Inaugural Ball at the Tully Gymnasium at the Florida State 

In preparation for the big event, which was formal, I bought the first and only tuxedo I have ever owned. Henrie bought a special evening gown 
for the occasion also. There was much ceremony, there was much music, much booze and there was dancing. Governor Kirk, who was 
divorced, surprised the audience by making his grand entrance with a big brassy blonde on his arm and announcing his engagement. Whether 
he ever married the woman, I am not aware. Rumor had it that he had picked her up in some bar in Brazil. But for that particular evening they 
made a handsome and impressive couple. 

Although the official session for the Florida Legislature was regularly scheduled to last only 60 days each year and was to begin April 4 this 
year, nevertheless, we were repeatedly called into special session, and much pre-session legislation was dropped into the hopper and voted 
on. I noticed that the Miami delegation, or more properly the Dade County delegation, which consisted of 22 members (the largest in the state) 
was by far the most active. Every member of it was a Democrat, mostly very liberal, and at least seven of them were Jews. I especially 
remember that much of that legislation originated from one Kenneth M . Myers, a Jew. The sheer amount of legislation that was generated even 

before the official opening of the legislative session amazed me and also alarmed me. 

About this particular issue, namely the deluge of legislation, I remember giving a speech to the Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce. I said 
that I was not interested in encumbering the people of this state with more laws than they already had, but repealing some that were already on 
the books, laws that we could do without. I reminded them that every law, whether old or new. Imposed one of three burdens on the people, or 
a combination of one or more: (a) 11 required them to do something they did not have to do before the law was passed, (b) it prevented them 
from doing something that they were free to do previously, and (c) it cost them more money, in one way or another, either because of 
enforcement, or administration, or in taxes, or in funding whatever program the new law provided for. When we added up the thousands of laws 
passed each year by the U.S. Congress, by the individual states, by the county in which they lived, plus the city ordinances, we were subjected 
to an impossible plethora of restrictions, obligations and expenses. That, I told them, was my philosophy less government, rather than more, 
more, more. 

I was barely getting into the swim of things and hardly getting my feet wet. Nevertheless my main concern was what the heavy hand of 
government was doing to us stemming from the actions of our nation's capital, Washington, D.C., an issue I had repeatedly pointed to during 
my election campaign. One of the actions I had promised during my campaign was to have the legislature investigate the United Nations and if 
it could be shown that it was an alien organization detrimental to the interests of the United States, to resolve that the State of Florida would 
ignore and invalidate any of its edicts and impositions. During the middle of January 1 967, just as I was getting ready to frame such a 
resolution, the Supreme Court dropped a bombshell in our lap. It declared in effect that Florida was improperly districted and did not comply 
with their one man, one vote edict. Therefore, ipso facto, Florida now had to be redistricted and a new election had to be held all over again, 
and that post haste. The real reason, I suspected, was that the Jewish power establishment did not like the complexion of the new legislature 
and that too many candidates had unexpectedly been elected over whom they had no control, such as Ben Klassen, for instance. 

Especially Ben Klassen. 

I had been attacking the Supreme Court as well as the United Nations during my campaign, and when the Supreme Court intruded into our 
State's election procedures with their heavy hand, I was furious. I immediately spread the word among the legislators, both House and Senate, 
that we should ignore the Supreme Court and tell them to go to hell. I suggested that we stand on our States Rights as spelled out in the 
Constitution and defy the Court. I soon filed a resolution in the House to that effect. 

On Monday, Jan. 23, 1967 there appeared a major article in the Pompano Beach Sun Sentinel that stated my position fairly accurately. The 
headlines were large with letters 3/4 of an inch high. "Klassen Hits Edict Of Supreme Court." Then the sub-headline stated "1-Man, 1-Vote 
Scored". Since this article describes my position better than I can recall it from memory, I quote it in full: 

Broward County state legislator Ben Klassen challenged the U.S. Supreme Court's right to throw out Florida's apportionment plan and 
announced Sunday he has filed a resolution in the State House of Representatives asking that the body carry on with the state's business in 
spite of the Supreme Court ruling. The resolution, filed by Klassen, a Republican, for consideration by the House during its regular session in 
April, states that the U.S. Supreme Court is "exercising an arbitrary and unconstitutional exercise in raw power in declaring the present 
legislature illegal. . . " 

It asks that the House invite U.S. Senators Spessard Holland and George Smothers to testify as to the validity of the one-man, one-vote decree 
of the Supreme Court. 

It seeks creation of a House committee to study four matters regarding the high court- 

* The extent and limitations of the court's powers. 

* A 1 962 report by U.S. Sen. James O. Eastland staling that the Supreme Court has decided in favor of Communist causes in 90 percent of its 
decisions affecting Communist activities. 

* Whether the origins of the one-man, one-vote decree emanates from the United Nations or the United States Constitution. 

* What measures can be taken by the states to prevent further "serious and dangerous erosion of state's rights and the sharp increase of 
dictatorial centralization of federal power in Washington." 

Klassen said he wants to see Sens. Holland and Smothers testify to the State House as to the validity of the one-man, one-vote decree - 
because the U.S. Senate is not apportioned by the one-man, one-vote principle. With two Senators from every state, representation varies as 
much as 80-1 on a population basis, Klassen said. 

"If one-man, one-vote is not the law of the land, which of course it isn't, then the senators would be under compulsion to answer to us why they 
aren't taking any action to curb the Supreme Court from forcing an unconstitutional edict upon us," Klassen said. 

His resolution states that nowhere in the U.S. Constitution is the federal executive or the U.S. Supreme Court given any jurisdiction over the 
electoral processes of any of the sovereign states or over the structure of their governments, nor is there any requirement of the "arbitrary one- 
man, one-vote edict decreed by the Supreme Court." 

The resolution would have the legislature state "that the legislature is convinced that the Supreme Court is not acting in good faith; that it is not 
trying to solve the reapportionment problem, but to compound it and prolong it indefinitely; to reduce or destroy the rights of the sovereign State 
of Florida and further aggrandize and concentrate the federal power of a central government." Klassen said it is his hope that such a resolution, 
if passed, would create "sufficient commotion" so that the U.S. Senate and Congress would be forced to take action. 

The wimpishness of the legislators and the senators amazed me. Despite the alarm I tried to stir up, nobody seriously thought of challenging 
the Supreme Court, although we had every legal right to do so, and should have done so. But, outside of myself, nobody did. They all took it 
submissively as if the word had come down from on high and God had spoken. The primary was set for February 28, which gave us little time 
to file, to organize, and to campaign. 

I did not relish mounting another campaign. I had to make up my mind in short order whether I wanted to run again at all, and if so, what seat I 
would want to seek. After much soul searching, I decided to run, and decided I might as well go all out and run for the Senate. There was more 
prestige and more clout in being a Senator than a Legislator. There were only 48 of the former, and 11 8 of the latter. 

I decided to run for Senate District 37, in which case I would be challenging incumbent Republican James Gregory. Although he was a 
personable fellow, he was nevertheless a lightweight, a drifter and an alcoholic. I remember vividly when shortly after the election all the newly 
elected Legislators and Senators had a big bash and get together in some large meeting hall in a hotel in Tallahassee where the liquor was 
free and flowed freely, and Jim Gregory was stoned to the gills. When he staggered out of the hall his tongue was hanging out and he had to 
be supported by two of his aids. I thought to myself, the Senate deserves better than that. 

Whereas prior to the November election there had been a dearth of Republican candidates and no competition in the primaries, the tables were 
now turned in February of 1967. Since we "pioneers" had taken the gamble and shown that Republicans not only could win, but in fact, had an 
edge, the field now became crowded. Instead of just Gregory there were now five Republicans vying for that one seat (including Gregory and 

There was, furthermore, a completely new element hurled into this election. The Jewish establishment had not called for a new election for 
nothing. Whereas they had slipped up last November and put their money on the Democratic candidates, who had lost, they were now going to 
make damn sure they got their hand-picked candidates in there this time around, even if they were Republicans. In order to implement that job 
in Broward County they brought in a professional hired gun from out of state. 

They imported a professional campaign manager from Colorado by the name of Dick Kirk (no relation to Claude Kirk). Dick Kirk had just 
successfully completed the gubernatorial campaign for Republican John A. Love and helped make him governor of Colorado. Now he came to 
Broward County to make sure the "right" Republicans were elected here, and I was not one of the favored. 

It was amazing how quickly the word spread as to who was in and who was out in the cold. Whereas we all got out to campaign and speak, 
there was now jubilant applause for the favored, a cold chill for those who were not. And this even from my former comrades in arms with 
whom we had campaigned so harmoniously and had shared so many congenial occasions in Tallahassee. But the chill was there and it was 

Even the Birch Society evidently had received the word from the Jew high command, although at that time I was still naively unaware that this 
outfit was organized for the sole purpose of running interference for the Jews. Whereas in November I had seemingly had the full cooperation 
of my Birch comrades, now suddenly out of nowhere appeared a disrupter, a nobody, who was not even a member of the Society. His name 
was Bill Partin, and he was head of a small electrician's union in Broward County. He had done his best to throw a monkey wrench into J. 
Herbert Burke's election in November, but the latter nevertheless won the Congressional seat from Broward. Somehow Partin now managed to 
start a squabble in the Birch Society which split their support for me right down the middle. Knowing what I know now, I can clearly understand 
their game, but at the time it both puzzled and aggravated me. 

I had little time to get organized and furthermore, I was unwilling to spend much money on this second go around. I made up bumper stickers, 
a number of cardboard posters and an ample supply of flyers. I also installed a set of telephones with a recorded message and ran a number of 
newspaper ads. But the odds were stacked against me. At the last minute the Republican group headed by hired gun Dick Kirk delivered their 
most telling shot. They sent out a mass mailing to all the registered Republican voters of Broward County with a suggested "official" list of 
candidates to vote for. Each category contained only one name their picked candidate. My name, of course was not on it. The only name (out 
of five Republicans) for the Senatorial seat in the 37th District was that of Charles H. Weber, the picked candidate of the Dick Kirk machine. 
When I got on the telephone to talk to some of my formerly faithful, they naively would tell me, "Yes, Ben, I'm with you. I just got the official 
Republican list. I'll be voting Republican, you can bet on that." I had to patiently explain that of course you'll be voting Republican. Since this is 
a primary and your are registered as a Republican, it is the only way you can vote. But for which Republicans are you going to vote? The list 
you got in the mail is a partisan list and my name is not on it. Are you going to vote for me? Then the said voter was vastly disturbed and 
puzzled. "Oh, I didn't understand that. I thought we Republicans were all together." And so it went. Most voters didn't have the foggiest idea 
who was who. The damage had been done. My workers, few in number could only call a very small percentage of the confused voters. 
Meanwhile, with the little slip of preferred candidates in their hand, the Republican voters went to the polls and voted mostly as the 
"professional" hired gun had programmed them. Charles H. Weber, who had done nothing in the previous campaign in November, was in, 
beating out even the incumbent, James Gregory. I came in third out of five. The "professional's" ruse had worked perfectly. I felt cheated and 
was mad as hell. 

My only consolation was that in my own precinct in Lighthouse Point where people knew what I stood for, I was the runaway winner. 

The morning after the election I had the honor of getting the biggest headline I had ever received during my entire campaign. There at the top 
of the front page in the Pompano Beach Sun Sentinel was a big black headline as in a funeral announcement, KLASSEN, CONDON 
DEFEATED. The Jews smelled blood and were licking their chops. 

Against the Evil Tide - 43 

Milestone Forty-Two: A Stint in the Legislature 





Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 44 

Milestone Forty-Three: A Family Tour through Europe 
The Summer of 1967 

After having lost out in the Republican Primary elections on February 28, I wall<ed away from that debacle with mixed feelings, (a) I was 
disgusted with politics as such, (b) I was relieved to have no further commitment in that whole tawdry and expensive business. I decided on two 
unrelated moves, (a) I would go back into the real estate business again and recoup my diminishing reserves, and (b) I would temporarily 
forget it all and take my family on a wide-ranging trip through Europe. When my wife and I took a six-weeks trip to Europe in 1 962, I promised 
my daughter Kim, who was eleven at that time, that we would make another trip to our ancestral homeland and the next time we would take her 
along. We promised that it would be in a few years from then and that she would be able to appreciate it more when she was a little older. 

Now, in 1967, I felt that this was the opportune time to make good on that promise. Kim was 16 now, a beautiful young lady who could now 
enjoy such a trip to the utmost. Besides, I felt that after all the strenuous politicking I had been through I needed to get away from it all, and 
there was no time like the present, before I got too involved in real estate. It seemed like this was the perfect opportunity. No sooner said than 
done. We went to see our local travel agent and signed up for a 30 day European tour. We had our family passport picture taken, and applied 
for our new passport, with all three of us on the same passport. Since we would be room sharing, two to a room, we decided that rather than 
have Kim share a room with some unknown during the trip, why not ask Henrie's Aunt Lenora if she would like to come along. Aunt Lenora was 
delighted that we asked her. She had been a nurse in the Navy during and after W.W. II. After retirement she had married another Navy retiree 
by the name of Corliss Dean and they lived in Claremont, California for several years, but now in 1 967, she was a widow, having lost her 
husband in 1 965. A trip to Europe was just what she needed to cheer her up. She came to Florida ahead of time to join us before we all took 
off. On Monday, June 12, Kim, Henrie, Aunt Lenora and I took off from Miami International Airport on BOAC Flight #674 at 5:30 P.M., about 
half an hour later than scheduled. It was drizzling outside, but in short order we were above the clouds and in bright sunshine. Somewhere 
below there was an ongoing tropical storm, but sitting in our beautiful BOAC you wouldn't know it. 

At 6:10 P.M. we landed in Nassau and back in the rain again. However, we stayed in the plane. We watched them loading our dinners, so we 
knew we were going to eat before we reached Bermuda, our next stop. 

It was still light when we reached Bermuda. Since we had some time before take-off, we all got out and walked around in the airport to pick up 
some of the local atmosphere. After about half an hour we took off again, with 136 passengers on board. 

We knew that our sleeping time would be shortened considerably because of the change in the time zones, so we bundled up with a blanket 
each and dozed off. Meanwhile the plane was cruising at 33,000 feet. 

Tuesday, June 13. 

We were awakened for breakfast at 1 :45 A.M. (Miami Time) and the horizon to the cast was already becoming light. After a very smooth flight 
we arrived at the London airport (Heathrow) at 9:30 A.M., London time. The sun was shining brightly and it was a beautiful day. In no time at all 
we were through immigration and customs. We had a long bus ride through the countryside and through the city, riding in one of those bright 
red double-decker buses that are so typically British. Kim and I rode on the top, outside deck. In recalling the event Kim remarked how thrilled 
she was to be riding in such a strange contraption and seeing London for the first time. Arriving at the City Terminal, we were met by an 
American Express representative who had collected our respective pieces of luggage. He put us into a taxi and dispatched us off to our hotel 
the President. 

We arrived at the President at 11:40 A.M., but since our rooms were not ready we waited until 12:00 noon at which time our luggage was 
carted up to our rooms. When we entered, the prior occupants' luggage was still there, so back to the lobby again. Fifteen minutes later we got 
the all clear signal and went into our respective rooms. But what was this? The other peoples' luggage was still there. 

Meanwhile, we went back down again, and the hotel served us with tea and excellent chicken sandwiches in the lounge to assuage our 
frazzled nerves. Finally, the housekeepers moved the unwanted luggage into the hall and we settled in. We were in Room 138 and Kim and 
Lenora in Room 140. After taking a nap, Henrie and I took a long walk around the environs of the city. Back at the hotel we met our tour 
director, a Mrs. Gerda Ostertag, from Germany, and the other members of the tour. At 7:00 P.M. we all got on a nice bus and drove to 'The City 
Pride" pub, where we had an excellent English dinner. We had a choice of 3% beer or 5% hard cider, and we chose the cider. It was real crisp 
and nippy. The dinner consisted of a delicious soup, excellent roast beef, veggies, and apple pie with cream over it. After a short tour of the 
pub it was back to the hotel. Henrie especially appreciated the two fat down pillows and the down comforter we each had for our single beds 
after a strenuous day. 

Wednesday, June 14. 

Back to "continental breakfasts" - hard rolls, jam and coffee. Henrie skipped the hard rolls and jam and had coffee only. At 9:00 A.M. our group 
assembled punctually in the same bus we had had the night before, and with a city guide by the name of Emily Lawinski (obviously not a native 
born Britisher, but a real doll) we set off for a city tour. Emily was from Poland and she and Kim got along real well with Emily calling Kim her 
adopted daughter. Our first stop was the Tower of London. There were such crowds waiting there we simply didn't have the time to see the 
crown Jewels. Henrie and I had seen them on our previous trip in 1 962, but Kim and Lenora were very disappointed. We did see the famous 
ravens again, which have the run of the place. (Legend has it that when the ravens are gone the British Empire will go down the drain. I wonder 
if they are still around.) 

England was having a heat wave at this time, the weather being real hot, especially for cool old England. We are off to Buckingham Palace to 
see the changing of the guard. But for some reason the mounted guard did not parade today. Could it be the heat? Anyway, we are all 
disappointed, especially Kim and Lenora. Henrie and I did see them on our prior trip. In fact, we seemed to have seen quite a bit more then 
than we are seeing now. 

At night we went to the famous Palladium to see a vaudeville show. They had a comedian, several outstanding acts and a chorus of beautiful 

dancing girls, all of which all four of us thoroughly enjoyed. However, I still remember the comedian having some skit about a toilet seat with an 
ostrich feather. Evidently it tickled Lenora no end, because she seemed to have the time of her life and I can still hear her laughing her head 

After the Palladium, we had a night tour of the city. One thing that impressed Henrie and me was the change in the skyline and all the tall 
modern buildings that had been erected since we were here five years ago. 

Kim was especially impressed when we crossed the famous London Bridge. She remembers it as all lit up and very beautiful, and that we also 
passed a place where every rich and famous family's coat-of-arms are recorded and stored. 

Thursday, June 15. 

This was a free day, one we had to ourselves without any scheduled projects by the tour. Henrie kept some notes and for the next few days, as 

long as her notes last, I am going to quote her verbatim. These are her notes. 

We had a late breakfast. Then we all went to the National Galleries to see their wonderful paintings. While Ben stayed there to spend more 
time studying the paintings, Lenora, Kim and I left to go shopping. 

We were trying to hall a taxi when Emily, our London tour guide, happened to come along in her little car. What a dear she is! Kim sat in the 
front seat, and Emily told me half a dozen times that if we ever got tired of Kim she would like to adopt her as a daughter. Ha! Emily drove us to 
a big department store where she let us off. Here we had a snack of strawberries with delicious thick cream on them. The butter and the cream 
on fruit here is so good! 

We next went to Carnaby Street where all the Mod shops are. Wow! Lenora made a valiant effort to be broad-minded and kept saying she'd 
"go along with a gag." Kim bought a mini-mini skirt, a bright red kilt with all pleats in the back and also a pair of pants hose (pantyhose?) We 
then went into the lovely Liberty store and Lenora bought a nice blouse. 

Going up the elevator in the store, Kim met a girl from Australia. She was so sweet and pretty. She said she would be visiting here in England 
until Christmas. She told Kim she had a pet lamb and a pet kangaroo back in Australia, and that the two pets sleep together. Kim and her new 
friend got along real well and they exchanged addresses and promised to write to each other. 

Kim really attracts a lot of attention, and I notice the boys are giving her the eye. We met a lady at the Palladium who was from Jacksonville, 
Florida, and she told Ben what a lovely daughter she thought we had. 

Lenora kept waving for a cab and we finally flagged one down and went back to the hotel, where we joined with Ben. Lenora decided she had 
had enough and would stay and rest. Kim changed into her new hose and mini-skirt and the three of us walked down to the British Museum. 
We saw the Magna Carta and the Rosetta Stone. Kim was especially interested in old religious books that were in Latin. Am so glad she 
enjoyed the Galleries and the Museum. While at this Museum, Kim was quite self-conscious about her mini-skirt, and one of the guards who 
was seated on a chair keeping his eye on all the visitors, made several comments about how shocking it was that all the young girls were 
wearing these "outrageous short skirts". 

We next went to the Lyons Corner House and had an excellent roast beef dinner. It is a huge place and has several dining rooms. Ben and I 
ate here when we were in London five years ago. We went into the "Carving Room" as we had done before, where you can carve your own 
large slices of roast beef and help yourself to the veggies and other goodies and the waiters bring you your appetizer and desert. 

After dinner we picked up Lenora at the hotel and we all walked to the Palace Theatre and saw the stage operetta "The Desert Song." How we 

all loved it! After we arrived 

back at the hotel at 12:30 midnight we got our things packed to leave early in the morning 7:00 A.M. 

Friday, June 16. 

We were called at 6:30 A.M., had breakfast at 7:30, and were on the bus at 8:30. After our leader, Gerda Ostertag, reminded some of the 
group about the keys they had not turned in, that some had not paid for their room service bills, and that some of the bags were still unmarked, 
after all that was settled, we were finally off a good 1 5 minutes later. 

It took a long time to get out of London, the largest city in the world, we were told, with a population often million. The countryside was lovely, 
everything green and many flowers. The day was overcast, which I liked, making it cooler. We are now headed for Dover, and on our way we 
drove over much hilly country. On top of one of those hills stood the ruins of an old Roman castle. How those Romans did get around! 

After having a good lunch at the Port of Dover we boarded the steamer (ferry) at 11 :30 A.M. The ferries are run by the Belgians and hold about 
200 or more cars. The Port of Dover is a very busy take-off point, since it sits at the narrowest point of the channel. One man told me that 
within a fortnight there would be 42 ferries a day going back and forth. 

As we left the port, Kim was especially impressed by the beautiful and famous White Cliffs of Dover, enhanced by white seagulls sailing 
overhead. She soon attracted the attention of some of the sailors aboard, some of whom were trying to entice her to come down "below" with 
them, an offer she discreetly declined. Those were the days, she says. 

Kim and I took our last airsickness pills, so I fared pretty well in what was a rough crossing. Some people were seasick before we reached the 
other side. However, Lenora, being an old sailor, just loved it, but I take a dim view of boats. Kim and some of the other kids were all over the 
ferry. The pills had made me drowsy, and I slept during most of the four-hour crossing. 

BELGIUM. We arrived at Oostend in Belgium, and after going through customs, we were introduced to our nice new bus that will be our partial 

home for the entire trip. 

The driver is a very young chap, only 23, and I understand he speaks only Flemish and German. 

It was raining and we got started an liour late. Finally we arrived in Brussels, where we checked in to the Brussels Hilton Hotel. What a lovely 
hotel! After arriving we were treated to a short sightseeing tour of the city, where among other things, we visited a lace making shop along a 
cobblestone back street. Finally, we had a late dinner at the hotel at 9:00 P.M. Ben and I were assigned room #604 and Kim and Lenora to 

Poor Kim! She finally got her hair washed, but when she plugged in the hair dryer, the heating element immediately blew up. The voltage here 
is 220. We did have an adapter, but no converter, and Kim wasn't aware of the difference. At least her hair is clean. Ben and I walked the 
streets until 11 P.M. We were looking for a pharmacy, and when we finally found one it was closed. However, we did get to look in the windows 
of some beautiful dress shops. 

Saturday, June 17. 

We were called at 7:15 this morning, and off at 8:30. We drove through the city of Antwerp, and again, as in London, we were amazed at the 
huge modern structures that had been built since we had been here five years ago, and the number that were under construction at present. 
The countryside is lovely. All the cows and the huge Belgian horses look so fat and contented and well cared for. Many of the country homes 
are quite large, they have thatched roofs, and are just beautiful. 

HOLLAND. We cross into Holland and see many of the famous Dutch windmills. The fields are lovely and well cared for. We see many little 
garden houses where city dwellers keep their tools and work clothes when they come out to work on their tiny plots of land, where they raise 
flowers and vegetables. 

On our way to Amsterdam we saw "The Hague" and the Palace of Justice again. We arrived at Amsterdam at 2:30 P.M. and checked into the 
Palace Hotel. It is very nice. We immediately have lunch before we even go to our rooms. Our rooms, #114 and #115, are across the hall from 
each other. They are good size and we have a big bathroom. 

Ben and Kim went for a boat ride on the canals. Ben also wanted to go to the Fine Arts Museum and see Rembrandt's famous painting, the 
Nightwatch, but by the time he finished with the boat ride the museum was already closed. I had a headache and stayed in the room and wrote 
a letter to mother. Lenora went to bed she has a slight cold. 

When Kim came back she and I went shopping for about half an hour. After changing some dollars for Dutch guilders Kim bought a pair of 
wooden shoes. I bought some Delft shoes for a charm bracelet for a friend, and a letter opener for Ben for Father's Day tomorrow. The flower 
vendors along the street have such beautiful flowers. After getting some postcards and airmail stamps, we had to rush back to the hotel and 
get ready for dinner. 

We had a very nice dinner in the lovely hotel dining room, which had huge mirrors and crystal chandeliers. A man at the piano played all the 
American songs we liked, but he could not speak English very well. 

After dinner we did some more shopping in the little shop in the hotel. I bought a couple of lovely hankies from Switzerland, two windmill 
charms for Kim as gifts, and a box of chocolates for Ben for Father's Day. 

Sunday, June 18. 

Early call this A.M. at 6:30. Bags out in the hall, breakfast done with and on the bus at 8:20 A.M. Since this is Sunday and the traffic is light, we 
were able to get out of Amsterdam and onto the highway in very short order. We drove through the lovely countryside of Holland. So many little 
colts and so many Shetland ponies with their tiny little colts. We saw two baby Shetland ponies nibbling each others necks. So many sheep, 
too, with lambs, and cows with calves. The fields of grain and other crops are so lush and well tended, and there are so many lovely trees. 

GERMANY. We soon crossed into West Germany. Again, the fields and the trees are just lovely. We drove on into the Ruhr Valley with all its 
industrial plants. It being 

Sunday, many of the people were out from the cities and working in their little garden plots with cute little houses in which they keep their tools 
and work clothes. 

We arrived at Cologne where we had lunch in a very picturesque beer cellar. From there we walked about a block to the fabulous twin towered 
Cologne Cathedral. It is so high and the outside is sculptured in a way that reminds me of black lace. 

For some reason, here is where Henrie's notes end. In summarizing the rest of the trip, I am relying on our composite recollections, and the 
itinerary, a copy of which Kim fortunately retained. I am especially interested in Kim's Impressions, since this was her first trip to Europe at a 
most impressionable age. To continue: 

From COLOGNE we drove to BONN the capital of West Germany. Here we visited the house where Ludwig von Beethoven was born on 
December 16, 1770. It was a beautifully cool and sunny day as we drove along the Rhine to COBLENZ and then a side trip to nearby BAD 
EMS, a health spa. We checked in at the Diehl's Hotel in Coblenz forthe night. 

Monday, June 19. 

In the morning we drove to BOPPARD and boarded a steamer for a cruise on the RHINE RIVER, a most inspiring sight. We saw many ancient 
and picturesque castles halfway up the banks, but most of them on top of the hills. Many were in ruins. The banks themselves were terraced 
with an endless number of vineyards that added much to the beauty of the river landscape. 

Disembarking from our cruise we were back on our motor coach again and off to WIESBADEN, to FRANKFURT and WURZBURG. It was a 
long day and we finally arrived at the ancient and historic city of ROTHENBURG, where we checked in at a quaint old inn called Der Goldener 
Hirsch (the Golden Stag.) It had a large glided sign of a stag over the entrance as its emblem. Most of the inns and motels in Rothenburg had 
some kind of structured emblem out front, symbolizing their name, and most them were in gold or glided color. The sun was just setting as we 
arrived and the driver just barely managed to maneuver the bus through the narrow gates. 

Tuesday, June 20. 

Rothenburg is an ancient but beautiful post-card city, most unique and most German. In the morning we tool< a walking tour of the city. We 
visited the town square with its famous tower. It has a mechanical arrangement which re-enacts an historic event of the middle ages, during the 
Thirty Years War. It shows the mayor downing a tankard of ale, which, if he could do it at one sitting, the town's people would be spared. He did 
it, and the town was saved, or so the story goes. 

Henrie and Kim bought some beautiful candles and other items, then had lunch at the inn. 

We left in the afternoon and traveled on to MUNICH, where Verena Ostertag, the tour director's daughter joined us for the next five days of the 
tour. She was four years older than Kim and they soon became fast friends. A year later, in fact, Verena came to visit us in Lighthouse Point, 
Florida. We did some sightseeing in Munich, then headed for the Austrian border. 


We reached SALZBURG late in the afternoon and checked in at the Europa Hotel. That night we had a lively evening of entertainment and 
merriment at the Stelgelbrau Beer Keller. We participated in a folk dance held in a large hall with both men and women decked out in their 
colorful Tyrolean costumes. Kim was especially popular with the male dancers, with one fellow having his eye on her. Lenora speculated he 
probably had a wife with ten kids at home, trying to dampen the affair, but Kim said she had a ball. 

Sunday, June 20 

We had a free morning in Salzburg. We wandered through the town square where we saw the statue of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. We also 
saw the house in which he was born. Since the setting of the film "The Sound of Music" was laid in Salzburg we also made it a point to see the 
palace that was the centerpiece of the movie. 

Then on to VIENNA 

We checked in at the modern Hotel Intercontinental, 

Wednesday, June 21 . 

First on the agenda was an early morning tour of the Schonbrunn Castle, the immense palace that was the home of the Habsburg Emperors. 

Had lunch in the countryside in 

the hills of Kahlenburg at a quaint inn. Returned to the hotel via the VIENNA WOODS. 

We stayed in Vienna for three nights and two days. Here are some of Kim's impressions in Vienna. About the Schonbrunn palace "What a 
place!" then, "We saw the Spanish Riding Academy and the Lippizanner horses. I was alone at the hotel when dad called me and asked me to 
take a taxi to the Art Museum. (Kunst Historical Museum) I soon got there after a wild ride. The building itself was beautiful, so were hundreds 
of paintings and exhibits. Saw the historic St. Stephens Cathedral. That night we went to the Staats Opera, a majestic building, and saw the 
opera "Turandot". Lenora and I had great seats on the very top balcony (there were three) and were practically hanging from the chandeliers. 
Morn and Dad had seats on the ground floor near the front and center. We waved at each other." 

The last night our tour went to a suburb of Vienna called Grinzig, where it is traditional to have a festival "tasting" new wines. While there we 
were entertained with folk music and songs. While walking back to the bus along the road, Lenora had the misfortune of twisting her ankle, 
poor thing. 

Saturday, June 24. 

After three nights in Vienna, we took off for a leisurely drive south past KLAGENFURT and along the shores of the WORTHERSEE to the city 

of VILLACH. Here we stayed at Park Hotel. Villach has been immortalized in the well-known light opera "The Merry Widow" by Franz Lehar. 

Sunday, June 25. ITALY. 

Leaving Villach we passed through many quaint and picturesque villages on our way to VENICE. Arriving there we checked in at the Park 

Hotel. (Same name as at Villach, but an altogether different setting.) 

Here is what Kim recalls about Venice. "Our whole tour went on a gondola ride one evening. The troubadours sang songs as only the Italians 
can. I could hear dad shouting from across the water, requesting they sing "O Solo Mio." We saw the Campanile Tower in the San Marco 
Square, many beautiful cathedrals and the Bridge of Sighs." 

We also saw the Doges Palace, the Grand Canal and several other sights. 

Monday, June 26. 

Off to FLORENCE. Here we stayed at the Londra Hotel for two nights. Kim noted: "Saw the beautifully sculptured brass plates on the doors of 
the baptistery, which are often referred to as The Gates of Paradise. This is part of the sculptures of di Ghiberti in the 15th century. "At one 
place we ate, I had a special desert given to me by a cute waiter. Aunt Lenora complained why wasn't she given the same treatment?" 

We also visited the Medici Chapel, the Cathedral and Baptistery of St. John, the Ponte Vecchio (bridge with many shops) and the Pitti Palace 
or Uffizi Art Galleries. 

Wednesday, June 28. 

We left Florence and drove south along the Autostrada del Sol to NAPLES where we did some sightseeing. Kim's impressions of Naples are as 

follows: "I remember all the lines of laundry hanging between rows of shoddy apartment houses, and that they had schools for pickpockets." 

We drove on to SORRENTO, on the Mediterranean coast, where we checked in at the Cesare Augusto Hotel. 

We stayed two nights. Quoting Kim: "We had a spaghetti dinner in Sorrento. ' From Sorrento we scooted across the water in a hydroplane boat 

to the unique Isle of Capri. We took an excursion to the inside of the Blue Grotto. I had my bathing suit on, and with a little push from dad, I 
went over the side of the boat and swam around in its silvery waters." 

Leaving Sorrento we took a tour to ancient POMPEI to view the multitude of interesting ruins that had been excavated over the years. Then on 
to ROME. 

Friday, June 30. 

Arriving at Rome, we checked in at the Residence Palace Hotel, where we stayed for three nights. In Rome we took in St. Peters Cathedral, 
the ancient pagan temple called the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, the Vatican Museum and the Catacombs. Kim and Henrie attended a 
fashion show one night. 

Monday, July 3. 

On to PISA, where we stayed one night at the Pisa Duorno Hotel. Here's Kim's account: 

"Went up the coast and saw the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Naturally, we climbed to the top. Then dad and I arranged a scenario where it looked 

like dad was holding up the leaning tower with one hand to keep it from toppling, and I took a picture." 

Tuesday, July 4 

Kim continues: "We went up the coast to GENOA, Italy. Then on to MONTE CARLO, MONACO. We visited the casino there. Then on to NICE, 

France. I was going to buy a bikini there, but I chickened out." 

We stayed at the Napoleon Hotel at Nice for two nights. Then, Kim remembers, "We went on to Cannes where we stopped to buy some 

Thursday, July 6. 


Our itinerary wound along the coast of the FRENCH RIVIERA, past ANTIBES, then stopped for lunch in CANNES where we also visited a 

perfume factory. We then proceeded through the FRENCH ALPS to GRENOBLE and AUX-LES-BAINS, where we stopped in at the Albion 

Hotel for the night. 

Friday, July 7. 


Driving via ANNECY (France) we cross the border into SWITZERLAND at GENEVA, where we check in at the posh Intercontinental Hotel. 

Saturday, July 8. 

In the morning we take a city tour of GENEVA, and see the United Nations building and other points of international interest. After a great lunch 
at the Intercontinental, we drive along the shores of LAKE GENEVA, taking time out at LAUSANNE for a city tour. From Lausanne we cross the 
Alpine mountains to INTERLAKEN, then traverse the BRUNIG PASS and reach the resort city of LUCERNE. We check in at the deluxe Palace 
Hotel, where we stay for two days. 

Sunday, July 9. 

We have the day at leisure, but we are quite busy making the rounds in all the different shops, since Lucerne was and is designed for tourist 
business. Henrie and Kim each buy a Swiss watch at Buchers. Here is what Kim has to say about Lucerne. "We went up to the Swiss Alps and 
checked in at Lucerne. One of the highlights was taking the cable car trip up to the top of MT. PILATUS. We horsed around with some of the 
younger group and had a snowball fight there in July during which I lost my new watch which I had received for my birthday. We took a narrow 
gage railroad on the way down. The view, the countryside, and the Swiss cows were all very memorable. The day was cool and cloudy. We 
stayed at the lovely Hilton Hotel." (Actually the Hilton Intercontinental was at Geneva.) 

Notable among the "younger group" Kim refers to was a young, very blonde 1 8-year-old fellow by the name of Craig Fielding. He and his 
mother were from New Braunfels, Texas. He was studying to become a missionary. The last night in Geneva we had a lively bash - a big 
dinner party with all the Swiss accoutrements. Alpine horns, yodeling, music and dancers. 

Monday, July 10 


We started out early for a long day's drive to PARIS, 'The City of Lights," as the French like to advertise it. We were to stay at the Hotel de 

Paris for the next three days, the final wind-up of our trip. Kim's recollections are as follows: 

"From Lucerne to Paris in one day. Lenora was smitten and took a shine to a French border patrol. In Paris, we took in most of the sights, 
including a trip to the top of the Eiffel Tower. We saw the show at the Moulin Rouge, and I had a sampling of some French champagne. I didn't 
particularly like it. At a luncheon we had at the Caf de la Paris, dad refused to pay for a salad we were charged for, but were never served. On 
the last night we had a farewell party and dance, then the next day we flew back to Miami and home." 

Kim also brought back a large 20-page booklet of the Moulin Rouge's program of the show. It looked pretty good then and it still looks great, 
not the least of which were all the tall beautiful girls and their elaborate costumes. Even when they appeared topless, the costumes were still 
terrific. So were the topless. 

Thursday, July 13. 

Kim's last comment: "We arrived back in New York, and then flew to Miami, on July 1 3, 1 967. It was undoubtedly the most interesting, 

enjoyable and educational experience of my young life." 

Against the Evil Tide - 44 

Milestone Forty-Three: A Family Tour through Europe 
The Summer of 1967 




Against the Evil Tide - 45 

1^ Next 



Milestone Forty-Four: Pines 'n Palms Ranches and the American Opinion Bookstore 
1967 to 1973 

Even before I left on the European tour in June of 1 967, I had already made some far-reaching decisions as to what future course I should 
pursue, now that I had split with the Republican Party. By no means was I though with politics. It was just that I had lost all confidence in the 
two major parties, the Republicans and the Democrats. I was still firmly attached to the John Birch Society and my concern about the country 
going to hell in a hand basket was as strong as ever. Moreover, my concerns were now more and more directed to the racial situation, an issue 
that was heating up, and one that the JBS deliberately seemed to be ignoring. I was becoming increasingly attracted to the cause being 
espoused by George Wallace, the then governor of Alabama. 

When George Wallace back in 1 962 "took a stand in the schoolhouse door" in defiance (or so it seemed) of the Federal government's strong- 
arm drive to integrate the schools, and confronted Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach, I sat up and took notice. I had been fascinated by 
this little man's antics ever since, and now that I had been thoroughly disenchanted with the Republican Party, I came to agree with Wallace 
that the two parties were alike as two peas in a pod, and that there wasn't a dime's worth of difference between the two of them. I felt strongly 
that both the Republicans and the Democrats were in cahoots in selling this country out to the communists. Also, I was becoming increasingly 
alarmed about how the niggers in this country were taking over in their "Civil Rights" program and were granted one major concession after 
another. What could I do about it? I didn't know, but I was groping for some answers. 

I decided I would go back into the real estate business and at the same time I would somehow step up my activities in politics as well, in one 
way or another. I had no clear picture as to what the solution might be. Perhaps joining the Wallace movement was the answer. I got together 
with my old buddy, Austin Davis, who had been such a big help in my campaign for election to the Legislature, and also when I ran for the 
Senate seat. We were both closely involved in the John Birch Society, and our political and racial concerns were pretty much on the same 
wavelength. Since we worked together real well, I offered him a partnership in my real estate business, although his only experience related to 
this kind of endeavor was that he was a building contractor, owned some warehouses and a sixteen-unit apartment building. Nevertheless, I 
felt that in our political pursuit we needed each other and could accomplish more as a team. Having made that decision, the first thing we did 
was to engage an attorney by the name of Ralph A. Hauser and form a corporation. We called it Pines'n Palms Ranches, Inc., and we received 
our incorporation papers from the State of Florida dated May 18, 1967. I was President, Austin was Vice-President and my wife was Secretary- 

After I returned from my European trip in July, Austin and I scouted Pompano Beach for suitable office space, and finally rented two parallel 
offices at 884 and 886 North Federal Highway, taking out a five-year lease. These offices were located in a shopping center that had about two 
dozen other small businesses going at the time. We decided one office (884) would serve as our real estate headquarters and in the other 
(886) we would set up an official JBS bookstore - the American Opinion Bookstore. It would also serve as our political headquarters. We 
installed our own air conditioning units in both offices and had an interconnecting door cut through the wall between them. Starting with the 
latter half of 1 967, my activities were now equally divided between building up my real estate business on the one hand, and promoting the 
bookstore, the Birch Society, and politics on the other hand. Both emanated out of 884-886 North Federal Highway, and with a doorway 
between the two I shuttled back and forth as the spirit moved me. 

Since these entitles were, of course, of an entirely different nature but nevertheless closely interwoven, I believe in the interest of clarity it is 
best I treat the two activities separately. I will briefly describe the real estate business first and get it out of the way, so that I can concentrate 
more fully on my then prime interest the political ventures, which had a way of shifting, changing and growing as time went on. 

Having settled into the two offices and having incorporated our real estate business, we now scouted for a section of land to buy so we could 
subdivide and sell. I had been in the acreage business between 1 960 and 1 964, and it was now our intent to pursue a line of activities similar to 
what I had been doing before I closed my office on Atlantic Boulevard in March of 1964. 

With the help of a broker by the name of Joe Thompson in Naples we found and purchased a suitable section of 640 acres at what we 
considered a reasonable price. We then set about preparing it for subdivision and marketing. 

It had been more than three years since I had been in the land sales business, and now getting back into it, I found that the rules and 
regulations had changed considerably. As always, when dealing with governmental agencies, things had become much more complex and 
complicated. Whereas formerly we had to deal with the Florida Real Estate Commission only, we were now faced with not only one, but two 
new regulatory agencies. First, there was the newly created Florida Land Sales Board, out of Tampa, Florida. Duplicating and overlapping it 
was the also new federal agency out of Washington, D.C., namely the Department of Housing and Urban Development, also known as HUD for 
short. It had a huge branch agency of its own called the Office of Interstate Land Sales, with its own complex set of rules and regulations. If a 
company was engaged in selling more than 50 parcels and some of those sales were to out of state buyers, it was mandatory that such seller 
register with both the Florida and the Federal agency. This we did, since it would be impossible not to have some buyers from out of state. All 
this took a considerable amount of time, expense and red tape. 

In the meantime I sold out the parcels I still had on hand from my previous subdivisions, which due to the grandfather clause, were still in good 
standing under the previous registrations. 

Finally, by the first of 1 968, we had all our legal requirements taken care of and started selling. Austin Davis still had his warehouse business 
and his apartment building with sixteen rentals to take care of. It soon became obvious that Austin's contribution to the sales of land was 
somewhat less than great and more than deplorable. In fact, I was doing all the selling and his contribution was nil. Who needs a partner like 
that? I offered to buy him out. After some haggling, we came to an amicable agreement and Austin was no longer in the land business. I had it 
all to myself. However, he was still very much with me in our JBS activities and all the political promotions we were pursuing. He would drop 
into the office practically every day as we continued our promotions and endeavors, and he paid half the rent on the bookstore. 

Soon I hired a real good secretary by the name of Mary Childress. Her husband was with the Pompano Beach Fire Department, and although 
Mary was not with the JBS, she was also politically motivated. Soon we had a morning routine going whereby Mary would fix coffee and raisin 
bread toast at about 10:30 and we would all sit around a card table in the bookstore and have a political confab, usually joined by some outside 
visitors who might wander into the bookstore. 

My business prospered. These were the Nixon years and business was good. By August of 1 968 I bought another large parcel of 11 45 acres 
with one mile of frontage on Highway 84 that connected Naples and Ft. Lauderdale. In this subdivision I built three and a half miles of roads 
leading south from Highway 84, and surveyed and staked it into highway frontage lots, 1-1/4 acre and 2-1/2 acre parcels. 

I kept on buying more land. In March of 1 969 I bought another section of 640 acres. While in the process of negotiating this piece the news 
broke that the Miami Port Authority had purchased 39 square miles of land in the eastern part of Collier County and were now planning on 
building a major international airport, located about 35 miles west of Miami. Immediately land prices in the area started skyrocketing and I 
ended up paying three times the original asking price. 

By 1 969, my accountant and my attorney persuaded me that I should break my business up into six different corporations, in order to reduce 
income taxes. This I did, but whether it really helped me or not, I was never quite sure, but I do know that both my attorney and my accountant 
benefited considerably thereby. 

During these years I kept on buying more land. In July of 1 969 I bought another three-quarter of a mile of highway frontage on 84. It consisted 
of 480 acres, and this property I kept for some time, and later deeded it all to the Church of the Creator. It is from the resale of this property that 
most of the funds were derived for the building of the church, the school, and all the multitude of expenses involved in the promotion, the 
printing of the books, and a multitude of other expenses. 

In 1971 I became more interested in property in North Carolina, and in May of 1971 my wife and I bought a lovely piece of property about nine 
miles north of Franklin. It consisted of 54 acres and had several hundred feet of frontage on a rushing trout stream by the name of Burningtown 
Creek. We thought we might build a summer home there some time. However, I next found an opportunity to buy 160 acres about 13 miles 
south of Franklin, just north of the Georgia border. Here we did build a summer cabin in 1 974, and later I subdivided part of it and deeded the 
rest of it to the church. It is this property on which the church and the school were later built, and our present rebuilt dwelling stands. 

In April of 1 972 I bought some five-acre ranchettes in a subdivision in Palm Beach County. It catered to people who liked to keep a few horses 
for their own riding pleasure. Then I turned my attention to the Colorado mountains and my wife and I bought a 160-acre ranch that was 
complete with canals and irrigated pasturelands. It was located in that most scenic area of Colorado, near Ouray, in the beautiful San Juan 
Mountain Range. We thought we might build on it some day, but we never did. However, we did take a number of enjoyable trips to Ouray and 
other parts of Colorado over the next several years. 

In April of 1 973 I bought another 90 acres of highway frontage on 84, about seven miles east of Naples. I put in some roads, surveyed and 
subdivided it. It is the last piece of property I bought in Collier County. 

This completes a brief resume of my business activities up to and including 1973. Between 1960 and 1973 I was inactive for three years. 
During those ten years that I was active in real estate, I estimate that I negotiated some 2500 transactions, and I am proud to say that in all 
those deals I never sued anybody, nor did anybody ever sue me. During this period there were a number of other lesser deals, and later on I 
did buy an apartment house, a warehouse and some other properties, but that is another story. Let us now get back to politics and to the 

After the mixed support I had received from the Birch Society during my campaign for the Senate, I began to have similar feelings toward the 
Society, namely mixed. Nevertheless, what with the bookstore as a center, I now had more to work with and I worked harder than ever for the 
cause. What that cause now had become was not too clear, but it was no longer in harmony with what Robert Welch and the Birch Society 
preached. What that cause had now become was more diversified and extended into a number of directions, but it was nevertheless as urgent 
as ever. I realized more than ever before that something was wrong, and I was groping for answers. I no longer believed that the Birch Society 
had the answer, but then on the other hand, I didn't know of anyone who did. 

During the next few years after opening up the bookstore in 1 967, Austin Davis and I looked into a number of other organizations for answers. 
We still had our regular JBS Chapter meetings, we showed the J.B.S film "Anarchy, U.S.A." to any and every group who would sit still and 
listen. We showed the film in our bookstore, or we would show it at their meeting halls to police officers, civic groups, firemen, or 

But there were a number of things that now disturbed us about the Birch Society. Forced busing of school children was coming to Broward 
County, and it was causing a major uproar. The JBS took no stand on integration, which, of course, meant they condoned it. In fact, they took 
no stand on the race issue, period, which meant that they were covertly covering for continued race mixing. They vigorously condemned 
anyone, including any of their members, who dared to mention the Jews. All this puzzled me and aggravated me at the time. It had not yet 
dawned on me that the Birch Society was specifically organized by the Jews for the sole purpose of neutralizing all those militant White people 
who might organize effectively and expose the Jewish conspiracy. 

Austin and I were looking into other groups and organizations. We were taking "The Thunderbolt" and reading their material, put out by the 
National States Rights Party. We were subscribing to Gerald L. K. Smith's "The Cross and the Flag" newsletter, put out by his organization, 
"The Christian Nationalist Crusade" out of Los Angeles, California. We looked into the Citizens Councils of America, who had a program similar 
to the Birch Society, but who were very much race conscious, such antipathy being directed mainly to niggers, but no mention of the Jewish 
conspiracy. We followed Richard Cotton's "Conservative Viewpoint" out of Bakersfield, California. He also made a number of radio broadcasts, 
in which he took on the Federal Reserve and the Jews. Later I met with Richard Gotten at a meeting in Ft. Lauderdale. I also corresponded 

with James H. Madole, of the National Renaissance Party, out of New Yorl<, who was strongly racist, but mixed it with a certain amount of 
mysticism and other hocus-pocus. 

Finally, Austin and I made it a point to go see some of these people. We took a trip to Ocala, Florida to go see "Dr." Oren Fenton Potfto, who 
called his organization the Christian Nationalist Church. He had a strong Nazi message in which he almost deified Adolf Hitler. But 
unfortunately it was also strongly interlaced with Christianity and other hocus-pocus. Furthermore, he was a Mason. When we left Ocala, we 
were convinced that this was not it. 

We took a trip to Augusta, Georgia, to see the "headquarters" of the Nationalist States Rights Party. All we found was a ragged card on the 
door of an office which said "J.B. Stoner, Attorney." Later we did visit Stoner and Dr. Edward J. Fields in their new location in Marietta, Georgia. 
We talked to both and found their program had some merit. Sometime later Austin and I took the trouble to attend one of their annual meetings. 
We flew into the Cincinnati Tri-County Airport and attended a meeting of about 200 followers out in a field or hilltop south of Covington, 
Kentucky. We were not impressed and felt we had wasted our money in making the trip. 

During all this time I also attended some (about three or four) of the Klan meetings in Ft. Lauderdale. I was, in fact the main speaker at one of 
them, held in Hollywood, Florida. 

We had also contacted the Citizens Councils of America out of Jackson, Mississippi and their racial position appealed to us. On our invitation, 
Leonard Wilson, a representative of the C.C.A., came to visit us at the bookstore, and advised us how we could form our own chapter. On his 
suggestion, we did just that. I was beginning to have some savvy as to how to form a corporation without the expense of a lawyer. For $30.00 I 
filed incorporation papers with the State of Florida for the Broward County Citizens Councils of America, Inc., with our headquarters at the 
bookstore. On June 1 3, 1 968 we received our charter from Secretary of State Tom Adams. I was President, Elmer Nicks was Vice President, 
Mary Childress, Secretary, and Austin Davis the treasurer. Listed in the charter were a dozen names of those who were our founding 

We held regular monthly meetings. Since the Citizens Councils were strong supporters of George Wallace and his campaign for the 
presidency, the forming of this chapter was really a supportive move for the promotion of that campaign. However, since my involvement in the 
George Wallace campaign was considerable, it really belongs in another chapter. 

Against the Evil Tide - 45 

Milestone Forty-Four: Pines 'n Palms Ranchos and the American Opinion Bookstore 
1967 to 1973 





Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 46 

Milestone Forty-Five: Tlie George Wallace for President Involvement 

For several years George Wallace, the perennial governor of the State of Alabama, had been making noises as if he were running for the 
presidency of the United States. By 1 967 those noises were beginning to attract serious national attention. This was the decade of rebellion 
and civil strife. The niggers were burning down large sections of Watts, Detroit, Washington, and any number of other major cities. There was 
that stupid war in Vietnam and the rebellion against it. Personally, as integration and civil rights had become what I considered a national 
outrage, I began to pay more attention to what George Wallace was saying. After my experience with the Republican Party, his claim that there 
wasn't a dime's worth of difference between the two major parties echoed my own sentiments. 

Instrumental in building the Wallace movement was an intriguing character from California, a sort of a kingmaker, by the name of William K. 
Shearer. Sometime in the late spring of 1967 he contacted me and about four other like-minded people in the State of Florida about forming a 
third party headed up by George Wallace. I was receptive to the idea. It was not a new idea. The Klan, members of the Citizens Councils, and 
even a number of conservative Birchers had been talking about it for some time. 

Soon after my return from the European trip I received a letter from Shearer inviting me to a general meeting to be held in the Holiday Inn, at 
Marianna, located in the Florida panhandle below Alabama. The date was August 19, 1967. There was a good-sized turnout and Shearer 
sketched out the details of our program. 

William Shearer was a good speaker and a capable organizer. He was tall, then probably in his late thirties, had a blonde mustache and was 
walleyed, meaning that his eyes. Instead of focusing on an object, diverged in two different directions so that you were never quite sure 
whether he was looking at you or somebody else on the other side of the room. Now, in hindsight some twenty years later and in reviewing his 
subsequent activities, I strongly suspect that he was then, and is now, an agent provocateur whose job it is to organize, then neutralize, large 
segments of the White Race in the pursuit of useless causes. 

Shortly after I returned back home, Wallace gave a speech at a banquet in a large ballroom in one of the major hotels in Miami. The date was 
August 29, 1 967. I went to hear Wallace and although he sounded a bit too Southern and plebian, he was a convincing speaker, and what he 
said made sense to me. In the opening paragraph of his speech he said, "A basic purpose of government is to protect the life and property of 
its citizens. No nation can endure if, for any reason, it ceases to serve the purpose for which it was created." He pounded away at law and 
order, and the willful failure of the Federal government to maintain such. 

I had long ago made up my mind to join the Wallace movement and I now set about to take meaningful action. After my experience in 
campaigning for the Legislature and then for the Senate, I had developed a certain rapport with the news media and reporters and getting them 
to broadcast my views. Checking back in my "Wallace" file, I find I have collected a goodly number of clippings which chronicle my involvement 
in the Wallace campaign during this period, and I am going to rely mostly on those clippings to tell the story. 

An item in the Ft. Lauderdale News dated August 31,1 967 under the headline "Klassen Resigns GOP Job", it says, "Former State Rep. Ben 
Klassen announced today he has resigned from the Republican executive committee as committeeman and will "very likely" join a third party in 
working to elect former Alabama Gov. George Wallace to the U.S. presidency." 

Further on down the column it quotes me as accusing the local and national GOP party of deteriorating "to the point where today it is in 
collusion and collaboration with the Democratic Party in selling out America." 

Prophetic words. Further on down, the article concluded with quoting me "My country comes before party. I feel I can best serve my country by 
working for the election of Gov. George Wallace to the presidency of the U.S. in 1 968. I am sure that overwhelming millions of Americans will 
follow the same course of action and will choose to stand up for America." 

On September 1 5, 1 967, the Miami Herald had a big headline in its Broward Peach Section (the paper was of a light peach color) in which it 
said "Five Bolt GOP Ranks to Back Wallace in '68". Above it was a smaller sub-headline "Klassen Gains Supporters" and below the main 
headline another sub-headline "Republican Future Success Dimmed by Manpower Loss." 

My picture appeared with both the August 30 and September 1 5 articles. 

I was soon attacked by the leaders of the Broward Republican Party, new chairman Davis W. Duke and also finance chairman Gray Boylston. 

A letter I wrote to the Sun Sentinel, published September 27, is headed "Wallace Offers Choice", I say about Boylston "Presumably he doesn't 
like the Wallace platform: 'Stand up for America'." Further on I say "Probably Boylston prefers such pro-Russian positions as taken by leading 
GOP conservatives (?) such as Dirksen, Hickenlooper and Dominick in ramming through the Consular Treaty which allows the Russian 
Gestapo to set up headquarters in all our major cities to commit murder, treason and sabotage with complete immunity from our laws. Boylston 
evidently favors Dirksen in collaborating with L.B.J, to turn over our lifeline, the Panama Canal, to the Communists." There is more, but space 
will not permit. 

In an article of September 23rd published in the Ft. Lauderdale News, I took on Florida State Chairman William Murfin. Under a headline at the 
top of the page and spread across seven columns, it states "Klassen Blasts State GOP Stand on Wallace", with a sub-headline about it stating 
"Stand Up For George, He Says." The article quoted me as raising the question, "Where, when and on what major issues has the Republican 
Party leadership ever tried to effectively oppose L.B.J.'s Great Society programs? Klassen accused the GOP of aiding and abetting "trade with 
the Reds". He said Republican leadership has helped Johnson "ram forced integration down the throats of the American people" and he asked 
"could L.B.J, have launched his orgy of unlimited spending without the help of the GOP"? Hasn't the GOP leadership helped promote the 
federal juggernaut in taking over control of our local schools?" There is more. 

On October 18, 1967, an article appeared in tlie Pompano Beacli Sun Sentinel entitled "Klassen Raps Duke Remarks on Faction Backing 
Wallace" in which I am quoted as saying "Republican leaders are not half as worried about L.B.J, winning as they are worried about Wallace 
winning." This was in answer to Broward Chairman Duke's remarks that the Wallace faction would help re-elect Lyndon Johnson. 

On October 20. 1 967, William K. Shearer, from California, called for all the party faithful in Florida to meet in Orlando in order to organize the 
Wallace party. An article in the Sun Sentinel headed "Wallace Unit Taps Klassen", states "Ben Klassen, Lighthouse Point, Sunday, was elected 
vice chairman of the state committee supporting former Gov. George Wallace for president." Chairman of the state committee for Wallace is Dr. 
William C. Douglass, Sarasota." There was some discussion as to what the name of the new party should be. "Klassen said the organization 
did not adopt a party name, but two names were discussed. One, The Constitution Party, is already registered. The other name discussed was 
Stand Up for America Party." 

This issue - a party name - was, and continued to be a contention in the Wallace campaign. For any individual to get elected, such individual 
has to belong to and be registered with a specific party, a party that is officially on the ballot of that state. For a new party to get on the ballot, a 
certain number of registered voters have to sign petitions and present them to the State Board of Elections, or whatever body has the authority 
to place a party on the ballot in each particular state. The laws vary with each of the different states, and the percentage and the minimum 
number of petitioners required also vary. But unless a party is on the ballot, all the political activity in the world is of no avail. Wallace never did 
formalize a particular party name and the individual states were left to flounder for themselves. Whether Wallace and Shearer left this issue up 
in the air deliberately is a moot question to this day. Even more ominous, Wallace himself remained a registered Democrat in his own native 
State of Alabama. This whole question as to what party we were working for became a major issue, and, as we shall see, more so as time went 
on. Nevertheless, along with millions of others, I kept plugging away for Wallace, never realizing the party issue never would be resolved. My 
daughter Kim and I went to hear Wallace in Palm Beach, met with him, and I had my picture taken with Wallace. Austin and I went to hear him 
again at Cape Canaveral. We arranged a number of party meetings with supporters at our Bookstore, and kept promoting the "Wallace Party." I 
gave a number of speeches at other gatherings, such as the Klan at their barbecue, to the Toastmasters, to the Citizens Councils, and to other 

An article dated March 5, 1 968 in the Miami Herald had a headline across the top of Page 4 BR which said, "Wallace Will Carry Broward, Aide 
Says." Here are a few excerpts from the article: 

"LIGHTHOUSE POINT: The move to put Gov. George Wallace in the White House is gathering momentum in Broward, Wallace's Florida vice 
chairman says. 

"Ben Klassen, who wears a second hat as local Wallace chairman, claims the husband of Alabama's governor will carry the Broward 
presidential vote. 

"With a pocketful of polls and statistics, Klassen said recently that 78% of Broward Countians favored Wallace in a television poll. Other polls 
showed that the American independent Party is the county's second, not third, party, beating out the Republican Party. " 

"Frankly, I'm amazed at the number who voted for Johnson in 1964 that Goldwater couldn't have touched that now support Gov. Wallace," 
Klassen said. 

"They are highly concerned about the anarchy and disregard of law and order that the administration is doing little about. . . " 

There is more. 

About that time some members from the Klan came into my Bookstore and said they were holding a major rally for Wallace at the Odd Fellows 
Lodge Hall on April 27, 1 968. They would like to have me billed as the main speaker. I agreed I would accommodate them, but asked also that 
we (the JBS) show our feature film "Anarchy U.S.A." during the day. We all came to a happy agreement and on Saturday, April 27, we did 
indeed hold our meeting to an overflow crowd of about 200. We showed "Anarchy" twice during the day and I gave about an hour-long speech 
in the evening. The meeting was considered a major success. 

Another clipping I have says that on October 1 9, 1 968 I represented the Wallace Party in a three-way debate at the Thomas Aquinas High 
School in south Fort Lauderdale, where the students staged a well-planned political convention of their own. Representing Nixon and the 
Republican Party was Norman Roettger, a Ft. Lauderdale attorney, and head of the Broward Nixon for President Campaign. Hubert Humphrey 
and the Democratic Party were represented by Robert Curtis, another attorney, and Democratic Executive Committee Chairman for Broward 

Before that meeting, some of the black students staged a protest that Wallace, the alleged segregationist, should get representation at all. 
However, we all spoke our piece, about 15 minutes each, and the convention itself was relatively orderly. H. Wm. Christie, whose brainchild the 
convention was, commented "both in his speech and in the press conference later, Klassen surprised students with his honest statements on 
his feelings about segregation. " 

"Everyone's equal to a degree" was the gist of his words, Christie observed. He said the students who interviewed Klassen had expected him 
to cover up his feelings, if they were segregationists." (I am still quoting the Miami Herald.) 

In the vote that followed, "A majority of the St. Thomas Aquinas High School students cast their votes for Nixon at the climax of the school's 
mock political convention. 

"Hubert Humphrey barely edged out George Wallace, in spite of demonstrations by Negro students prior to the start of the show." (Miami 

By this time my own patience with Wallace's lack of meaningful organization and resolving the registration of a party name on a nation-wide 

basis was beginning to wear thin. True, lie was mal<ing a lot of noise throughout the nation. He was getting a tremendous amount of favorable 
publicity, much more than he warranted. But was he mal<ing any effort to really translate all this into meaningful political action? He was not, 
and it seemed almost deliberate. We in Florida had been promised Wallace bumper stickers and other literature, but none was forthcoming. 
Wallace was still registered as a Democrat. Sometime in the beginning of November 1967, Dr. Wm. C. Douglass, who was Florida Chairman of 
the Wallace party (also known as the Constitution Party), along with Col. G. M. Nelson, a former Florida State Legislator (who predated my 
time) and myself, decided to confront Wallace and his aides in their headquarters and get a few answers. 

The three of us flew into Montgomery, Alabama and knocked on the door of his H.Q. office. Despite the fact that Dr. Douglass had made 
arrangements for the meeting in advance, Wallace was not there. In fact, nobody of significance was there. After cooling our heels for about 
two hours, we finally got to see Joe Fine, Wallace's national campaign manager. Joe Fine was a Jew. In fact, he even bragged about it. He 
gave us a lot of meaningless sweet talk, but no answers. He assured us that Wallace and his staff were not racists (So what in the hell was the 
whole campaign about, I wondered.) He said they had repeatedly been accused of being racists, of being anti-Semitic, but, he answered his 
critics, "I'm a Jew myself and I am Wallace's campaign manager." He had a big smile on his face. 

However, I was not smiling. With a staff like that, I thought to myself, what in the hell was I doing in this camp? All three of us left to return 
home. We had no answers, but personally, I had a lot of re-thinking to do. 

Against the Evil Tide - 46 

Milestone Forty-Five: Tlie George Wallace for President Involvement 




1^ Next 



Against the Evil Tide - 47 

Milestone Forty-Six: The American Independent Party 

As the new year of 1 969 was ushered in, I had mixed emotions about Wallace and the "George Wallace" Party. Our visit to Montgomery had 
been revealing, to say the least. Was Wallace for real, or was he nothing more than a stalking horse, a diversionary tactic set up by the liberals 
and the communists? (I was still in the Birch Society and viewed all evils as emanating from hidden communists in government and the news 

However, my concern about what was happening to our country was as urgent as ever and I was looking for solutions. I wanted answers. I was 
more convinced than ever that the Democrats and the Republicans were selling us out and leading us to disaster. Therefore, Wallace or no 
Wallace, we needed a good Third Party. Other than slumping the country and promoting Wallace, "our leader" made no concerted effort to 
form a real third party, had not even decided on a uniform name. In the November, 1 968 elections his supporters worked under at least six 
different organizational names. The "Wallace" parties did receive 9,897,141 votes out of 73 million cast, 13.53% of the total, and received 45 of 
the 538 Electoral College votes. Evidently the public sentiment and support for change was there to be organized and harvested. But was 
Wallace really trying to organize and do something with that sentiment? It seemed he was not. One of his closest aides. Bill Jones, out of 
Montgomery, said Wallace had no plans for the 1972 presidential elections. 

However, I went ahead and organized the American Independent Party (AlP) in Broward County. We requested and obtained permission to 
use the County Commission Chambers in the Courthouse building to hold our meetings, the same as did the Democrats and the Republicans. 
We held our first meeting on Jan. 24, 1969. I was chairman, Mary Childress (my secretary at the office) was secretary of the party and Austin 
Davis was treasurer. 

At that meeting we passed a resolution in which we condemned the "open space" school, a program the county board was considering in 
which a group of classes would be in one large room, no walls between classes. We viewed this as "a step toward anarchy, chaos and 

According to an article in the Feb. 6th Sun Sentinel, we also condemned "forced integration of our schools" and "the abolishment of 
neighborhood schools". We then sent the resolution to the School Board Chairman, Dr. Wilson C. Atkinson. 

"The resolution was proposed by Ben Klassen, Chairman of the Broward branch of the party, and was approved by a vote of 26 executive 
committee members at the party's first local meeting. The party plans to meet once a month," the article concluded. 

On February 9, 1969 a statewide meeting of all Florida committeemen and women supporting Wallace was held in Orlando. Dr. Wm. C. 
Douglass, who was the sponsor of the Birch Society's "Let Freedom Ring" program, had been the original organizer and chairman of the 
Florida Wallace Party. Prior to the meeting he had urged me to take over the leadership and I said I would be willing to do so if the membership 
so chose. 

The meeting was chronicled in a number of Florida papers: the Miami Herald, the Ft. Lauderdale News, Pompano Beach Sun Sentinel, 
Bradenton Herald, Tampa Tribune, and the Orlando paper, to name a few. The Sun Sentinel ran a headline "AlP Names Klassen Chairman." 
The article continued: "Klassen's wife, Henrie Etta was elected secretary of the state AlP executive committee, while Arleen L. Lent of Naples 
was elected vice-chairman, and L. Alien Greer, Sarasota, was chosen treasurer." 

About 50 committee officials were present. "This is not a new party", Klassen explained. "Formerly, for about four years, this was the 
Constitution Party of Florida. We changed the name about a year ago and filed it with the secretary of state." 

Klassen said the "big drive" of the AlP statewide will be for re-registration of voters. "Then," he said, "we plan to qualify the party for the ballot 
and seek candidates for all levels of governmental offices." Two weeks later William K. Shearer called for a national meeting of committeemen 
and women from the various states. It was held in Louisville, Kentucky on Sunday, February 23, a meeting in which Henrie and I attended. We 
flew in by plane. An AP news item in the Sun Sentinel described it as follows: 

New Party "Will Save America' 

LOUISVILLE, KY. A national group of Wallace supporters formed a third Party Sunday without his blessing and William Shearer of San Diego 

said "We are on our way to saving America." 

The new organization passed resolutions urging repeal of the federal income tax and calling on the United States to pull out of NATO. 

It was on the way to approving a U.S. ultimatum to North Vietnam to halt all aggression within 30 days or face "all out war which would involve 
destruction of the rice crops, thereby bringing peace to Southeast Asia." 
End of article. 

As I recall, there were parties with different names from the various states. Some, such as New York, even had two different rival parties. 
Again, no unanimity of a party name, and Wallace gave no leadership. In fact, he wasn't even there. 

On April 15, income tax day, our Broward group distributed flyers in front of the Courthouse in Ft. Lauderdale, promoting the Liberty 
Amendment which would do away with the income tax. An article in the Miami Herald is headed "Anti-Income Tax AlP gets 1 3 New Members." 
Further down it says "But when 5 PM came only 1 3 Broward residents had 'stood up for America' and changed their registration to the party of 
former Alabama Gov. George Wallace." 

"The Liberty Amendment, Klassen explained, "would abolish the income tax over a three year period. At the same time the federal government 

would withdraw from all federal aid programs and also cancel all operations within the U.S. 'not specified in the Constitution."' 

On April 27, Bob Kunst, representing Florida's "New Party," and myself, representing the AlP, appeared on Broward Celebrity Line, written up 
in the Miami Herald. It is a long interview, in a format in which each of us expressed our party positions on a number of issues. I will try to give 
a few of the highlights. 

Q. Why didn't you join either the Republican or Democratic Party? 

KLASSEN: I once belonged to the Republican Party. But both parties are in collusion today to give us a socialist dictatorship. They've joined to 
destroy the Constitution they've sworn to uphold and are dedicated to bring this country into a one-world government where we can merge with 
Communist Russia and other socialist monsters in happy brotherhood under United Nations control. 

KUNST: We feel problems hurting us so badly in this country - inequality, slums, poor people starving - are not met by people in politics. We 
felt we had to offer an alternative . . .We call for freedom and democracy not just for White, Anglo Saxon Protestants (WASPS) but for all 

KLASSEN: The American Independent party believes in individual responsibility Government is taking from the thrifty and giving to the shifty, 
encouraging parasites and free loaders not to work, taking earnings away from those who are still productive. 

A Florida State AlP executive committee meeting was held in Bradenton on June 22, 1 969. The Tampa Tribune under the heading 
"Independent Party Pushes Recognition" the next day reported the following: 

BRADENTON. The Florida American Independent Party late last week unanimously voted to institute a legal suit against the state, declaring 
"discriminatory and prohibitive" a Florida constitutional stipulation requiring 150,000 re-registered voters in order to receive party recognition. 

State AlP Chairman Ben Klassen told some 50 state and county party representatives at a special meeting here he would contribute $1000.00 
to launch the attempt to be placed on ballots here. The suit will be filed pending raising of sufficient funds, it was decided. (End of quote.) 

(Several resolutions were passed, including condemnation of SIECUS, sex education in schools, and there were several swipes at Nixon and 
Republican Gov. Claude Kirk.) 

That same evening we held a banquet at Belro's Restaurant at which Medford Evans was the key speaker. Present were about 200 party 
faithful. The Bradenton Herald reported the following: "Wallace Party Speaker Urges: Save this Country." It went on, "Urging his audience 'to 
save this country as it was bequeathed to us by our ancestors.' Dr. Medford Evans of Jackson, Miss., author and lecturer won a standing 
ovation at the end of his talk on 'The Future of the American Independent Party. " 
(End of quote.) 

Dr. Evans was a member of both the John Birch Society and also the Citizens Councils. He gave a good speech, but it lacked any meaningful 
specifics. He praised us for being able to muster some 200 members to a meeting such as this. Things seemed to be going pretty well for our 
AlP. However, at this same meeting someone warned me that when your organization really gets some clout, look for the disrupters and 
dynamiters to move in, they'll be sure to come. The prediction proved so true, as we will sec later. After the speech Dr. Evans and his wife, 
Jimmy Harrison and his wife, and I sat down in one of the booths in the restaurant for a cup of coffee and some intimate conversation. Dr. 
Evans was an interesting individual of many parts. He had been a doughboy in France during World War 1 . Dr. Evans was not only a good 
speaker, he was also a good raconteur. Soon he was telling us about when he was in Paris during the war he unknowingly walked into a 
French whorehouse, and he found out what that was all about. But I soon turned the conversation to more serious issues. Since Dr. Evans was 
one of the most prominent officials in both the JBS and the Citizens Councils, this was my opportunity to ask him some penetrating questions 
that had bothered me about both organizations, namely in regards to the Jewish involvement in the communist conspiracy and the "civil rights" 
movement. Dr. Evans blandly fielded the questions as if it were no big deal, and stated that it was "his opinion" that the Jews once had control 
of the communist regime in Russia, but that they were now out and the Russians were in control of the communist party. I wasn't convinced, 
but I didn't argue. His evasiveness on the Jewish conspiracy didn't enlighten me any about communism, but it told me quite a bit about both 
organizations in which he was so prominent, and about Dr. Evans himself. 

The following excerpts are taken from the Ft. Lauderdale News dated August 13. Under the heading "AlP Raps Nixon on Schools, Tax" AlP 
State Chairman Ben Klassen, a member of the county executive committee, said Tuesday the heavy and progressive graduated income tax, 
registration of firearms, federal control of schools and forced integration as part of Republican programs, has paralleled Marx's Communist 

"Consequently, Klassen said, their resolution seeks the removal of the government from the control of schools, and that includes forced 
integration. He said they also want the income tax eliminated and gun control legislation outlawed. 
(End of quote.) 

Throughout the spring and summer I had been holding a number of smaller meetings at the bookstore and regular meetings of our Broward 
County Citizens Councils group. Some of these people were from other racist groups such as the Nazis, the States Rights Party, Klan, etc., 
and the Jewish question came up repeatedly, a question the Birch Society tried so hard to suppress, but one that to me became increasingly 
more important. I read Henry Ford's book "The International Jew" again. I had read it about 20 years earlier, but in context of what I was now 
doing, it really hit home. The worldwide Jewish powerhouse and conspiracy was so obvious that it caused me to become increasingly 
suspicious about the whole basis and intent of the Birch Society. Why were they trying so hard to deny the existence, cover up and defend the 
most vicious of all our enemies? And where did the Citizens Councils stand in regard to the Jews? They claimed they were racists, against the 
niggers, that is. But what about the Jews? 

In mid August, 1969 Kim and Henrie drove out west to Colorado to scout arrangements for Kim entering the Colorado State University at Ft. 
Collins. It was our plan that I would fly out later and Henrie and I would then drive back in the Camaro. Meanwhile, there was a Citizens Council 

Convention at their lieadquarters in Jacl<son, IVIississippi on August 29 and 30. Austin Davis and I decided we would fly out to Jacl<son and 
attend tliat meeting and find out first liand some of their positions on the Jews and other issues. By now we had pretty well written off the Birch 
Society as hopeless. 

Austin and I were impressed with the Citizens Councils' new headquarters building and were hoping for the best. We heard all the speeches at 
the two-day convention, attended all the banquets. We had brought along some extra copies of The International Jew and were displaying it 
freely. We talked to several members about the Jews, to solicit their opinions, especially Leonard Wilson, the coordinator who had come to 
Pompano Beach to help us set of our local C. C. group. He was not interested in "The International Jew" and frankly told us that the C. C. was 
not at all anti-Semitic, in fact, they had some nice Jewish members. So, we had run into another stonewall. 

Meanwhile, back in Florida the word was getting around in the Birch Society, and also statewide to the members of the AlP, that Ben Klassen, 
Chairman of the AlP, was an anti-Semite. 

After the convention was over I flew on to Denver to meet with Kim and Henrie, while Austin flew back to Florida. When I arrived in Colorado, 
Kim and Henrie picked me up at the airport and we drove back to a motel in Estes Park, where they were staying. It was then that I learned that 
Henrie had been sick, but she felt better now. However, that very first night she had a very serious and painful attack, and we had to call an 
ambulance in the middle of the night to take her to a hospital in Longmont, 45 miles away. 

Soon she was scheduled for an operation. She stayed in the hospital for more than a week, while Kim and I stayed in a motel. We then stayed 
in Longmont for another week while Henrie was recuperating her strength. We took Kim to her college to get her settled in. Then Henrie and I 
started our trip back to Florida, taking our time. 

After my experience in Jackson with the C.C, I was more alarmed than ever, and was curious what my old friend and predecessor in the AlP, 
Dr. William C. Douglass, had to say about the Jews. I called up in advance and made arrangements to have dinner with him in Sarasota, where 
he resided. We met at a swank restaurant of his choice (he was quite a gourmet.) He brought his secretary with him, but Henrie wasn't up to it 
and stayed at our motel. We sat down to dinner at about 8:30 and I quickly got down to business. I asked him - what about the Jews? I had 
tons of evidence, I said, that the Jews were the real instigators of communism, controlled most of the world's finances, controlled practically all 
of the news media, the governments, in fact, the world. 

Bill Douglass was very much on the defensive, and his secretary backed him up by acting as if she was very much shocked that I even brought 
up the subject. But unlike my encounter with Dr. Evans, I kept pressing and pressing hard. Although we kept it on a seemingly friendly and civil 
basis, we kept arguing until midnight, when the proprietor let us know that he was ready to close up, much to Dr. Douglass' relief. That is the 
last time I saw Bill, but I now knew where he stood, where Medford Evans stood, where the AlP stood, the position of the Birch Society, the 
Citizens Councils, and the whole ball of wax. 

I arrived back in Pompano Beach on Sept. 21st, after having been away for nearly a month. Things were piled up at the office. There were 
contracts to pursue, bills to pay, letters to write. Also those disrupters and dynamiters in the AlP were now surfacing visibly. One was a fellow 
by the name of Victor Barrett in Broward County. Having originally ingratiated himself and attached himself to our AlP group he now became 
ugly and threatening. The other (among others) was a very vocal shrew from Naples, Florida, by the name of Arleen (Larry) Lent, who had 
been needling me for most of the year. She claimed she had been secretary to the late Senator Joseph McCarthy, in Washington, and that she 
was working on a book about him. 
(She never wrote it.) 

This brings me to a subject that has puzzled me for all these years. Why would a courageous, intelligent man like Senator McCarthy take on 
the whole liberal-communist-Jewish establishment and at the same time have not one, but two young Jewish attorneys, namely David Schine 
and Roy Cohen, as key men on his staff? Didn't he realize that communism was Jewish? And why would he have a secretary like Larry Lent 
working for him, who, I was convinced, was monitoring his office (as I believed she did our activities in the AlP) and forwarding such 
information to the Anti-Defamation League? To this day it remains a mystery to me. Poor Joe McCarthy! The Jews destroyed his political 
career, destroyed his reputation and killed him in the hospital. He went into the hospital with nothing more than the flu, but came out feet first, 
dead of hepatitis. I am convinced that the Jews gave him a shot that did him in. 

A few days after I returned from Colorado, Austin and I sat down at a table in the bookstore for a review of what we had recently learned. We 
had to make some major decisions, some agonizing re-appraisals of what we had been supporting -the Birch Society, the Citizens Councils, 
the American Independent Party. Why were they all ignoring the Jewish menace when the evidence was overwhelming that the Jews were the 
real power establishment behind the whole dastardly conspiracy to destroy America and the White Race? 

We called Jim Cochrane, one of the major JBS chapter leaders in Pompano to a conference in the Bookstore and confronted him with the 
Jewish Issue. He started sweating profusely, and his only defense was - "All the Jews?" meaning that even if it was a Jewish conspiracy we 
should not condemn every Jew as being part of that conspiracy, just individual by individual, regardless of their race or religion. I said to Jim: 
Why the double standard? When the "allies" manipulated by the Jews in the mass horror of fire-bombing Dresden to death, killing some 
350,000 Germans in two days, they did not selectively spare the women, the children, the little babies or the refugees from the east that were 
fleeing the communist killers. So why are you all blubber and why are you so goddamn protective of the Jews? That was the last time I ever 
saw Jim Cochrane. 

A few days later we called in Claude Boring, the JBS Coordinator for South Florida, whom we had known for years. We sat him down at the 
same table in the bookstore and put the same question to him. He, too, sweated profusely and kept chain-smoking one cigarette after another. 
He came through more frankly than had Jim Cochrane. "Listen," he said, "We all know it's the Jews. Welch knows it's the Jews and so does 
just about every member of the Birch Society. If we went against the Jews we would be labeled anti-Semitic and that would be the end of the 
Society." Really? What about your credo that "the truth is our only weapon?" You are sure as hell not telling the whole truth when you totally 
ignore and fail to expose the most important and powerful enemy in the whole conspiracy, now are you? He could not come up with any logical 
answer, and Austin and I could come to only one conclusion that made any sense: namely the Birch Society was running interference for the 

Jews, all the while pointing the finger at the communists, while the Birch Society itself was a part of the Jewish conspiracy. 

My old buddy. Dr. Bill Douglass, joined the dynamiters by circulating a letter in which called me an anti-Semite, and asked for my resignation 
from the chairmanship of the AlP. I was only too glad to oblige. With a party membership that was still willing to ride on the coattails of a fraud 
such as Gov. Wallace, who Douglass himself said treated him "as If he had leprosy" and was really bent on undermining any third party 
movement, what possible future was there in such a set-up? None, I concluded. Not only did I gladly resign from the now useless AlP, but I 
also tendered my resignation from the Birch Society in a letter to Robert Welch, dated Nov. 5. In that letter I also demanded a refund of my 
previous $1000 donation that I had foolishly made in good faith. The complete letter can be read and is reprinted in "The Klassen Letters, Vol. 

Printed in the same book and following the Welch letter are letters to three of the major members of the AlP. On Dec. 5, Dec. 15 and Dec. 18 I 
sent letters to Dr. Wm. C. Douglass, to L. Alien Greer, and to Jas. L. Harrison respectively. These letters further shed light on the political 
situation and conflicts at that time. 

My resignation from the Birch Society caused considerable commotion among the ranks in Broward County. Undoubtedly, I had been the most 
active and visible member in South Florida. The newspapers took note. A headline in the Sun Sentinel read "Klassen Quits Birchers, Says 
Group Too Liberal", and on the same day, Nov. 3, an article in the Ft. Lauderdale News read "Society Becoming Too Liberal For Me, Ex- 
Bircher Says." About this time also someone called up and told me to tune in on a certain Palm Beach radio station, they were talking about 
me. I did tune in, and here was my old buddy, Claude Boring, the JBS coordinator for South Florida, talking to some (Jewish talk-show host. I 
tuned in just in time to hear the Jew ask, "So you're saying that Klassen s anti-Semitic?" and Claude Boring emphatically answering "He is not 
only anti-Semitic, he is anti-Jewish!" Horrors! In summation, after my experiences and the information I had gathered, I concluded that whereas 
the Democratic and the Republican parties were not the answer to the White Man's dilemma, neither was George Wallace nor the American 
Independent Party, and I would not waste my time in that arena any longer. Back to Square One. 

Against the Evil Tide - 47 

Milestone Forty-Six: The American Independent Party 




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Against the Evil Tide - 48 

Milestone Forty-Seven: Alpine Tour mit Oberammergau Passion Play 
Summer of 1970 

By 1 970 Henrie and I felt it was time for another trip to Europe. In our previous trips we liad found tliat of all the scenery in Europe, 
undoubtedly the Alpine areas were the most beautiful, and we decided this time we would select a tour that concentrated on those majestic 
Alps. Besides, this being a decade year, the passion play was putting on its historic spectacle, and we had decided long ago that some day we 
wanted to see it. So we made the necessary preparations, and chose a tour that combined both. 

We chose Olson's Royal Coach Tour that was designated as the "22 Day Imperial Alpine Adventure (Passion Play)." On Monday, July 20, we 
took Northeastern Flight #20 out of Ft. Lauderdale at 5 P.M and arrived at the Kennedy airport in New York at 7:35. After a short stopover, at 
8:30 we took another plane out for a direct flight to Switzerland, arriving in Geneva the next morning. 

Tuesday, July 21. The Olson bus and tour guide met us at the airport, and our group all gathered for a get-acquainted breakfast. After a city 
tour, which included the League of Nations building, the Old Town, and some other interesting spots in this international city, we drove along 
the shores of Lake Geneva. We crossed into France and arrived at the skiing resort of Chamonix, at the foot of Mont Blanc. This huge granite 
massif, which is 28 miles long and 9 miles wide, at 1 5,781 feet, is the highest peak in the Alpine range. We soon checked in at the Carlton 
Symond Hotel and had a good dinner. It had been a long day since we left New York last night. We were ready for a good night's rest. 

Wednesday, July 22. Today we were free to wander around Chamonix on our own, which we did. There is a cable car that goes up the 
mountain, but since the day was overcast and visibility poor, we did not take it. 

There are 44 people in our tour group, a full busload. Most of them are congenial and experienced travelers. Our tour conductor is Tom. He is 
young, comes from Holland, and is Jewish. There is also an older Jewish couple from Miami in our group. Our bus driver is also quite young. 
His name is Michelle, he is from the French part of Switzerland, he speaks very little English and is a superb driver. 

Thursday, July 23. This morning we started off at 8 A.M. and drove through the 12 mile long Mont Blanc Tunnel into Italy. The tunnel was 
completed in 1 965, and is quite an engineering feat. But the French and the Italians don't just dig a tunnel, they did it with an artistic flair, 
constructing a very attractive fluted overhang at the entrance. After a beautiful drive through the Aosta Valley, we entered Switzerland again 
through the St. Bernard Tunnel, which is only four miles long. We had a coffee stop at the entrance to the tunnel and then drove on to Martigny 
for lunch. After lunch, we drove down the lower Rhone Valley to Visp. From there we took a mountain train ride to Zermatt, one of the most 
picturesque and fascinating little towns in all of Switzerland. It is surrounded by high Alps and is the gateway to the Matterhorn. We were taken 
to the Hotel Mont Cervin by a horse drawn bus. It is delightful to hear the jingle of the bells on the horses. There are no gasoline cars in 
Zermatt, only small electric vehicles and horse drawn carriages and buses. The town is a shopper's paradise and Henrie and I strolled down 
the main street of the town before dinner to look it over. Dinner at 7:45. The town, the atmosphere, the dinner, all were delightful. 

Friday, July 24. Today is another free day, with the option to take the tour by cog railway to the foot of the Matterhorn (at our own expense). We 
opted to take the tour to Gornergrat, which is the terminal point station for tourists. It was a perfect day to view this most prestigious of all 
peaks. There was a little cloud hovering several hundred feet directly above the peak, which gave it an aura of distinction. Although the 
Matterhorn is about 1 000 feet lower than Mont Blanc, its granite massif rises so dramatically out of its surroundings that it is the most 
spectacular of all the Alpine peaks. Some of the most impressive sideshows as we rode up the steep incline to Gornergrat were the number of 
rushing streams and waterfalls cascading down over the rocky mountain terrain. Arriving back in the late afternoon, we took some pictures of a 
herd of goats driven up the main street of Zermat, a ritual that is performed twice every day. 

Saturday, July 25. This morning we got up early (5:30), had breakfast and then we all walked en masse to the railroad station to catch the 7:30 
train back to Visp, where we make contact with our bus again. We noticed there was fresh snow on the Matterhorn. Once on the bus we were 
now on our way to St. Moritz. It is a beautiful day. The roads are narrow and winding, there are many sharp curves, which our skilful driver 
manipulates expertly. We drive back into Italy over the Simplon Pass, and along the shores of beautiful Lake Maggiore. We had lunch at a 
hotel high above the Lake of Locarno, a beautiful spot replete with palm trees and tropical flowers. We arrive at St. Moritz at 7:30. It has been a 
long day, and although the distance wasn't that great, nevertheless, the thousands of curves make it rather strenuous. We were settled into the 
Crystal Hotel, not on our schedule, since the designated Hotel Schwelzerhof is being remodeled. The Crystal Hotel is very modern, large 
bathrooms, heated towels, the whole works. 

Sunday, July 26. St. Moritz is a high-class tourist and ski resort. The scenery is breathtaking lovely lakes and mountain vistas. We are free 
until 10:30 A.M., at which time we boarded the bus and were on our way to Davos, where we stopped for lunch. Then back to our hotel at St. 
Moritz again. 

Monday, July 27. Our destination today is Cortina, Italy. We are now in the Dolomites. The mountains in this area are somewhat different from 
the rest of the Alps. They are in the shape of tremendous boulders lying on top of, and/or next to each other. They are bare, of fantastic shapes 
with rugged peaks and very picturesque. On our way, we had lunch at Brunek. We arrived at Cortina at about 6 P.M. It was a beautiful setting. 

Cortina lies in sort of a pass, or valley, among all these huge boulders. Cortina is both a summer and winter resort. After we settled into the 
Hotel de la Poste, we had a real Italian dinner of Minestrone, Veal Scallopine, mashed potatoes, zucchini, and apple cake. 

Tuesday, July 28. We are now headed for Austria and the legendary town of Villach, immortalized by Franz Lehar In the Operetta "The Merry 
Widow." After we entered Austria we continued via Lienz and Spittal and past several beautiful lakes. Villach itself is very picturesque, and 
typically Tyrolean. Arriving at Villach, we soon checked in at the Park Hotel for the next two nights. 

Wednesday, July 29. Our morning in Villach is free. Villach is very near the Yugoslavian border. Our hotel room overlooks a garden. We spent 
the morning exploring the town and stopped in at a sidewalk cafe to have coffee and Austrian pastries. The weather is pleasant and on the 

warm side. In the afternoon we all took a bus tour for a drive around the Worthersee, a large and scenic lake. 

Thursday, July 30. We are taking off through the pinewoods and the beautiful scenery of the Styrian Alps to Portschach, then to Bruck, where 
we had a delicious lunch in an old restaurant of the Hotel Bauer. There was an old square piano here and someone in our group started 
playing it, all of which turned into a general singsong, with most of our group participating. 

We arrived in Vienna at about 4 P.M. and checked into the Intercontinental Hotel, a real winner. It is air conditioned and completely modern, yet 
retains the true Austrian flavor, having such attributes as those lovely crystal chandeliers in the lobby and other public rooms. Our room is on 
the ninth floor, overlooking the beautifully wooded Stadtpark, which is three blocks wide and five blocks long. The park has a canal running 
through its center, with five picturesque bridges spanning the canal. After dinner Henrie and I went for a walk in the park, then sat down at one 
of the tables in the plaza to have coffee and Viennese pastries and listen to an open concert that was already in progress. There were other 
members of our group also sitting in. A very good orchestra played Strauss waltzes and two young couples in formal dress demonstrated the 
classic Strauss waltzes. The park at night is like a fairyland with fountains and flowers, and lights on buildings everywhere. From our room on 
the ninth floor we can see many church spires, beautiful buildings, and the huge, lighted ferris wheel (the largest in the world) in the forested 
amusement park called The Prater, a huge park, about four miles long. There are no skyscrapers in Vienna, which fact helps it to retain its 
romantic charm and historic character. 

Friday, July 31 . City tour of Vienna. In the morning we visited the Inner City, also known as the Old City, which contains the Ringstrasse, the 
Kartnerstrasse, the famous Opera, and most of the parks, museums and historic buildings for which Vienna is so famous. The beautiful 
grounds of the Belvedere Palace, which was once the home of the Crown Prince Eugen, is now a museum. The huge Schoenbrun Palace, the 
former summer residence of the Austrian Emperors, the last of which was Franz Joseph. We went through about forty rooms on the first floor, 
all of which were highly decorated and contained a multitude of oil paintings. The upper two floors are rented out to various businesses and 
people. The Hofburg, which was the Winter Palace for the Emperors, and is now also a museum. We also saw the Kunst Museum, a beautiful 
building that is a work of art in itself, and contains thousands of paintings by the world's most famous artists. 

In the afternoon we drove out to the Vienna Woods, which were not as woodsy as I had imagined. We saw the Cisterian Monastery and 
church, part of which was built in the 12th century. We also saw a children's village for orphans. Nine children of assorted ages live in each 
very attractive house with a "mother" to take care of them. We then went to Baden, where the Russians have their headquarters, and where 
the SALT talks are now going on. Baden is a delightful spa, and while there Henrie and I had tea and a sampling of the famous Sachertorte at 
the Sacher Hotel. Back in Vienna for a fine dinner of Bauerschmaus. After dinner Henrie and I took a taxi to the Light Opera house and saw 
Franz Lehar's operetta "The Merry Widow", sung in German, of course. 

Saturday, August 1 . A free day in Vienna. Henrie and I were busy taking a closer and more prolonged look at some of the places we had briefly 
visited on the tour, but would have liked to have spent more time. We also explored a number of the downtown shops to see what they had to 

At night, the tour took all of us to the "new wine" village of Grinzing, on the outskirts of Vienna, where we enjoyed a jolly good dinner replete 
with folk music and ample samplings of new wine. 

Sunday, August 2. The weather here has been hot the past few days and we have enjoyed our nice air-conditioned hotel. But now it is time to 
move on and we leave at 8 A.M. this morning on our way to Salzburg. On route we stop at the very large, beautiful and famous Cistercian 
Monastery at Melk. Both the interior and the exterior are real works of art and are one of the finest examples of Baroque architecture in Europe. 
At present the monks supervise many parishes in the area and come here only once or twice a year. One wing of the Monastery is used for 
Austrian students and another wing for U.S. students on an exchange program. We had lunch at Gmunden, a lovely spot on a mountain lake. 
Many sailboats were out, and there were numerous swans looking to be fed. Afternoon coffee stop at St. Gilgen on the Wolgangsee, after 
which we arrive in Salzburg and check in at the Hotel Europa. Our room overlooks the town, with a view of the triple tiers of ancient forts that 
rise along the slope of the mountain. We walked through an old cemetery to have dinner at Peter's Cellar in the old part of the town. 

Monday, August 3. In the morning we go on a sightseeing tour of the Old City with a local guide in charge. The city is a gem of rococo 
architecture. We viewed the Heilbrun Castle, Mozart s house, the fortress of Kohensalzburg, the Cathedral and the old and new Festival 

In the afternoon the same guide takes us to Berchtesgaden, where we see the ruins of Hitler's chalet, and those of Goering and Himmler, and 
the tunnels and bunkers connecting them. At a distance we can also see the ruins of Hitler's once magnificent "Eagle's Nest", his private retreat 
perched atop a mountain peak and commanding a superlative view. I was awed to come into such close contact with history, and, at the same 
time I felt depressed that such an illustrious landmark in our history had been so wantonly destroyed by the "allied" forces. 

After our return to Salzburg, we had a fine dinner at our hotel. Then Henrie and I (and others of our group) took off in taxis to the Mirabel palace 
where we listened to a delightful string quartet play Mozart-Schubert-Beethoven music, starting at 9:15 P.M. We walked back, and after a long 
day, were ready for bed. 

Tuesday, August 4. After breakfast this morning, we leave for Munich, seeing many picturesque little towns and much scenic beauty on the 
way. We stop for a lunch of sauerkraut, sausage and song at Munich s famous Hofbrauhaus, where I pick up a beer mug for a souvenir. After a 
sightseeing tour through the city, we drive through the heady Bavarian Highlands past charming old towns and check in for the night at 
Oberammergau, a perfect picture-postcard city in the Bavarian style. The hotels here are overbooked, and late that evening we are taken on a 
long ride across the Austrian border to a little town of Mittelwald, where we are lodged for the next two nights. 

Wednesday, August 5. We are now ready to see the famous Oberammergau Passion Play, which is put on only one summer in ten years, a 
tradition that has been observed for more than 330 years, (since 1634) when the burgers vowed to do so for being spared the ravages of the 
Black Plague. All the players are local people. The stage is a huge set in the open on the side of a hill, but the seating arena is under cover. 
The play lasts all day, with a break for lunch. I enjoyed the presentation, although overly long, which was, of course, in German. 

Thursday, August 6. We motor through the wooded Alpine hills to Fussen for magnificent views of the Mad Ludwig's castles of 
Hohenschwangau and Neuschwanstcin. The latter is especially impressive in its classic beauty and was the model for Walt Disney's theme 
castle at Disney World at Orlando, Florida. On to Garmisch-Partenkarchen, where we have lunch. This is another exquisite village with typical 
Bavarian chalet houses, each of them having beautiful scenes painted on white stucco siding and gables. Then on to the Zugspitze, a famous 
ski resort on the German-Austrian border (where I visited with Fred Bieger back in the spring of 1955), then to the famous violinmakers' village 
of Mittelwald. We are back in Austria and finally arrive at Innsbruck, the Tyrolean capital, for the night, where we stay at the Hotel Arbitrager 

Friday, August 7. This morning we leave Innsbruck and drive along in the River Inn valley through several pretty medieval villages, then across 
the Ariberg Pass on our way to Vaduz. We have lunch in this unique little capital of Liechtenstein, then again re-enter Switzerland, on our way 
to Lucerne, where we check in at the Hotel Europa for the night. 

Saturday, August 8. We take a morning sightseeing tour of the city, which includes the Covered Bridge, the Lion of Lucerne monument and the 
Glacier Garden. We are free to shop and wander in the afternoon, all of which we did. At night we are taken to the Kurhaus, a garden 
restaurant where we enjoy fondue, yodeling and the sounds of the giant alpenhorn. 

Sunday, August 9. We leave Lucerne and proceed along the Irridescent Lake of the Four Forest Canteens, the scenic Alpine peaks and along 
the shores of Lake Geneva as we motor to Berne, where we viewed its beautiful buildings, its flowers, its arcaded shops, the Glockenspiel, 
and, of course, the bears. Then on to Interlachen on the plain, and to Lausanne, where we check in at the Palace Hotel for the night. 

Monday, August 1 0. We drive along the shore of Lake Geneva to the Geneva Airport for our flight back home. Our plane took off promptly at 
10:30 A.M. and we arrived at the Orly Airport in Paris at 11:15. Our Pan Am flight, however, was three hours and 15 minutes late and instead of 
taking off at 12:30 it was four P.M. before our 747 finally took off. We arrived at Kennedy Airport approximately the same amount of time behind 
schedule. Luckily, we were able to arrange another flight to Ft. Lauderdale and arrived there in the wee hours of the morning, glad to be back 
home, safe and sound. 

Against the Evil Tide - 48 

Milestone Forty-Seven: Alpine Tour mit Oberammergau Passion Play 
Summer of 1970 




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Against the Evil Tide - 49 

Milestone Forty-Eight: The Nationalist White Party 

In baseball they have a rule that says: three strikes and you're out. I had now struck out three times. But did I stay down and out? Not by a 
damn site. I had tried to do something within the framework of the Republican Party and found out that they were really in cahoots with the 
Democrats in selling this country down the river. I had tried to support Gov. Wallace for the presidency and discovered that behind all the 
ballyhoo he was nothing but a real phony. I had tried to build a genuine Third Party in Florida and found that most of the members (not all) were 
cither blind to the Jewish control, or afraid to buck them, or worse still, were themselves agents provocateur of the Jewish conspiracy. 

But nevertheless, I kept on searching for answers. For most of 1 970, Austin and I looked into existing movements that might be genuine and 
worthwhile joining, but we had already checked out most of these earlier, as I related in MS Forty-four. We had researched and studied the 
Klan, Matt Kochl's Nazi Party, Gerald L. K. Smith's outfit, and a number of others, and found them completely inadequate. For a while we 
entertained the idea of supporting the National States Rights Party (they had by now moved to Marietta, Georgia) but they seemed more 
interested in promoting Christianity than in saving the White Race. A further search turned up nothing that seemed worthwhile. Finally, after my 
return from the European trip and after a considerable amount of soul searching, I came to the agonizing conclusion that if I were to operate 
within an organization that meant something, I would probably have to put it together myself. After much deliberation and a voluminous amount 
of discussion, Austin and I put an idea together that we felt reflected our total philosophy and something meaningful of which we could be 
proud. We called it The Nationalist White Party. Our creed and program was detailed in our "Fourteen Points." Since these have already been 
spelled out in The Klassen Letters, Vol. I, (starting on P. 35) there is no need to repeat them here. 

Whereas my most vociferous opposition in the AlP when I started exposing the Jewish conspiracy came from the Florida West Coast, now the 
most enthusiastic support came from a group in the same area. The leader of this group was a lovely young woman by the name of Eleanor 
Kramer, married to Rudi Kramer, who, when a boy had been a member of the Hitler Youth. However, of the two, Eleanor was by far the more 
dynamic and enthusiastic leader. Even before we had formed the NWP she came to visit us at our bookstore in Pompano Beach and 
applauded my stand against the Birch Society. She had found out about it through the grapevine, and she related to us that she had come to 
the same conclusion, as had we. 

By November of 1 970 we had the framework of our party pretty well put together, and since by now I was an "expert" at filing for a new 
corporation, we decided to incorporate our party. On November 3, we received our charter from the State of Florida. The Ft. Lauderdale News 
took note. In an article dated Nov. 18 and headed "Third Party' Gets Charter", it stated: 

Damning an alleged coalition of Blacks and Jews in American politics and finance, a new "third party" to pursue the interests of White 
Christians has been formed by two North Broward men - one a former Republican state legislator. 

The Nationalist White Party, with former state representative Bernard Klassen as its national director, recently was issued a charter as a non- 
profit corporation by Florida Secretary of State Tom Adams. 

In addition to Klassen, Austin C. Davis was listed as assistant director of the party, which has its headquarters at 886 N. Federal Highway, 
Pompano Beach. Both men are Lighthouse Point residents. Klassen, who ran George Wallace's presidential campaign in Broward in 1968, 
said the purpose of his new party would be to emphasize that "the White Christian people who conquered America don't intend to be relegated 
to second-class citizenship. " End of article. 

The Jews evidently also took note. Shortly after that article was published, a Jewish gal by the name of B. Jacobson lost no time denouncing 
us in a letter to the editor, which was headed "Hate and Lies." The letter ended with a paragraph that said, "I personally pray that all thinking 
Americans reject the Nationalist White Party and its platform of hate and lies." 

In answer I wrote a letter that was published in the same paper on Dec. 20, in a caption that asked, "Why not White?" 

It stated: "In a letter of Dec. 7 the writer launches a vitriolic attack on the Nationalist White Party apparently for no other reason than that we 
take a stand for the white race, and are tired of being relegated to second class citizenship in our own country. Evidently it is fine for the Jews 
to organize a multitude of organizations such as the A.D.L., A.J.C., the Kehilla, etc., all exclusively Jewish and all fanatically promoting the 
interests of the Jewish Race. It is regarded as a benevolent service to their race when negroes organize the NAACP, CORE, SNCC, and a 
host of other organizations promoting solely the interests of the blacks. But, strangely, when an organization is formed dedicated to protecting 
the interests of the white race, immediately the Jacobsons and their type spring into action and hurl accusations, insults and invectives at the 
White Christian people. 

It is further strange that the writer accused our platform of "hate and lies." Since our platform is only now in the process of completion and the 
writer is totally ignorant of its contents, such words probably best reflect her own position, not ours. Our party is based on love for the white 
race, not hate, and formed to help protect our people from such outrages as forced busing, among many others. 

Ben Klassen 
National Director, 
Nationalist White Party 

Sometime in February of 1971 Jim Guler, political columnist for the Ft. Lauderdale News, came to interview me at my office in Pompano 
Beach. In an article published in the Sunday edition, Feb. 21, 1971, of the combined Ft. Lauderdale News and the Pompano Beach Sun 
Sentinel, he wrote an article about the Nationalist White Party. The heading was "NWP is to the Right of Wallace." Above the main heading 
was a sub-heading that said "Ben Klassen Leads Party." The article continued with the following text: There is a law in physics that declares for 
every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. 

The same is true, of course, in politics. Pusli tlie pendulum too hard in one direction and it comes flying back at you. 

Seeking an answer to what it saw as a "Communist conspiracy" in the past decade was the right-wing John Birch Society. 

George Wallace and the American Independent Party rose up against the liberal extremes of the London Johnson administration. 

A patchwork of "New Left" organizations have taken to the streets to criticize the fighting in Indochina as an "immoral war." 

The Americans for Constitutional Action is the ultra-conservative counterpart to the ultra-liberal Americans for Democratic Action. 

And with the emergence of the Black Panther Party, a small band of black revolutionaries more dedicated to bullets than ballots, it was 
probably inevitable that we would see the formation of a Nationalist White Party at the other end of the philosophical spectrum. 

The Nationalist White Party (NWP), given its state charter last fall, is the creation of a former Republican state legislator who left the John Birch 
Society because he felt it was sliding to the left. 

Ben Klassen, the national director, who helped run Wallace's 1968 presidential campaign in Broward County, said the purpose of his party 
would be to emphasize that "the White Christian people who built American don't intend to be relegated to second-class citizenship. " 

"Jews control most of the finances and the media, and with the Negroes, wield political power far in excess of their numbers," Klassen charges. 
"Despite the fact the white Christian people outnumber Jews 30-1, the political power is predominantly anti-white, pro-Jew and pro-black. " 

He says it is his belief "the white Christians are tired of being pushed around, looted and plundered by an overwhelming tax structure so that 
millions of blacks can live on welfare, breed and multiply indiscriminately and create more and more freeloaders to further burden already 
overburdened working whites." 

It is his party's intent, he adds, to make race a basic issue in political elections, and to confront candidates with the choice of representing 
"white Christian people on the one hand or Jews and blacks on the other." 

Another aim of the party, Klassen adds, is to instill "racial loyalty" among whites while "uniting them the same as our opponents always have 
done (among themselves). " 

Klassen was elected to the State House of Representatives in 1966 as a Republican, but was unseated three months later when he tried for 
the State Senate in the special election. He left the GOP, calling it a tool of the "ultra-liberal Eastern establishment" and later bolted the 
Wallace team because of Wallace's moderating views on segregation. 

"Wallace has weakened his stand on segregation over the past eight years," Klassen explains. "In his first inaugural speech, he pledged 
'segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.' But in his recent inaugural address, he didn't mention segregation once." 

Where, we should now ask, does the pendulum swing from here? 

It was at this time that I designed our logo or insignia, which later became the logo of the Church of the Creator. I first of all drew up the design, 
then turned my sketch over to a commercial artist, a fellow in Pompano Beach that I knew from our Chamber of Commerce meetings, although 
I can't now recall his name. As I do recall, however, he only charged us a paltry $9.00. 

By February and March of 1971 we finally had our act together and were going strong. We had our Fourteen Points, our logo, and other 
literature printed in mass, and we were signing up dues paying members. In this matter we didn't exactly start from scratch. I had a number of 
loyal followers that were with me in the JBS, in my campaign for the legislature, in the Wallace movement, in the Citizens Councils and also in 
the AlP. And now we also had the new group from the West Coast that was headed by Eleanor Kramer. 

We held regular meetings of the NWP at the bookstore. I also made a few trips to the Tampa area and gave speeches to those members on 
the West Coast. We soon had about 40 members. 

Things seemed to be going pretty well, but I began to notice a certain irritant and aggravation intruding into our meetings that baffled me. At 
just about every meeting there would be some fellow, or some little old lady in tennis shoes, who would get up and harp about the Christianity 
issue. They would say something like this: "My Savior was a Jew. I can't go against the Jews!" Or, "My bible says that we are all equal in the 
eyes of the Lord. Isn't it wrong therefore to be against Jews and blacks?" 

Another ploy was, "My bible says about the Jews, I will bless them that bless thee and I will curse them that curse thee, sayeth the Lord. How 
can we possibly oppose the Jews?" I would try to brush off such intrusions and remind them that this was a political party and they could have 
any religious beliefs they wanted to, but we should not drag them into our political movement. But these kind of disruptions continued. Some 
even insisted that we should include in our Fourteen Points that this country was founded as a Christian nation. Furthermore, we should make 
it clear that our party was a Christian party and we adhered to Christian principles. I regret to say that I had inadvertently encouraged this 
position by repeatedly using the term "White Christian" in much of my literature and in my letters. I had stupidly made the mistake of taking for 
granted that "Christian and "White" were almost synonymous, when in reality they were terms that were in bitter conflict, and in complete 
contradiction to each other. Equating the two terms "White" and "Christian", is a treacherous confusion that Dr. Ed Field's NSRP is still 
perpetrating on the gullible yokels to this very day. The Christianity issue was soon to come to a head. 

Countess Guardabassi was a grand old dowager who lived in her stately mansion in Palm Beach. She had been the heiress to a 50 million 
dollar drugstore chain fortune, and although as American as apple pie, she had acquired her Countess title by marrying an Italian Count many 

years ago. The Count had long ago passed on into Nirvana, but the Countess and the title still remained. She was a staunch "conservative" 
and even hated the Jews with a passion. Although she had no clear-cut philosophy of her own, she would periodically invite well-known 
speakers to her mansion to talk to a select group of like-minded conservatives. Austin and I attended several such gatherings, and once or 
twice Henrie was also with us. Enter the General into this picture. During World War II Gen. P. A. del Valle was a military man of some renown, 
fighting the Jewish war In the Pacific, and in the process leading thousands of White young men to their deaths fighting to preserve Jewish 
"Democracy." Comfortably retired on his generous pensions after the war, he became a notorious Kosher Konservative in the style of the Birch 
Society. He formed a post-office box organization called The Defenders of the American Constitution, Inc. From time to time he would give his 
song and dance speeches about God and Country, the Flag and the Constitution to various groups that would listen to him and pay his 
expenses. But never would he defend or patronize the White Race, nor would he ever mention the Jewish menace. 

On April 4, 1 971 , he was giving one of his usual speeches at Countess Guardabassi's mansion and Austin and I went to hear what he had to 
say. After the speech I went up to meet with him and gave him a copy of our "Fourteen Points", along with an application and invitation to Join 
our NWP. 

A few days later, April 7, I received a letter from him. He did not join us, but in a critical paragraph he said, "Another point I would like to know 
about refers to your membership application. Name, address, telephone number and national origin I understand. But Religious Affiliation (if 
any) puzzles me. Because no organization such as you propose should be open to non-Christians." 

There was that damn Christianity Issue raising its ugly head again! I couldn't understand it. I answered him in a long letter, dated April 13, in 
which I said, among other things, yes, indeedy, we were glad to welcome members whether they embraced Christianity or not. We had some 
further correspondence back and forth. I wrote him an even longer letter on April 26, and a final letter on May 12. All of these letters are printed 
in full and can be read in The Klassen Letters, Vol. 1 , and the story followed in more detail. In the second of these letters, namely mine of April 
26, the germ of an idea cropped up that was to be the start of a long train of events to follow. That idea is spelled out on P. 66, of K.L., Vol. 1 , 
when I said, "General, what the White Race desperately needs is a new philosophy, in fact a new religion based upon the concepts of 
preserving the White Race, not a rehash of old Jewish shibboleths." 

The idea that the White Race needed a completely new religion to promote its own best interests grew within my mind. Not just a political party 
such as the NWP, but a complete, fundamentally new religion that established new moral values. The moral values we had been accepting and 
taking for granted were not ours - they were, as I had said, Jewish shibboleths. We needed moral values that reflected the heritage of our own 
great White Race, not that of the goddamned parasitic Jews. Where could I find such a religion? Much as I searched, there was none that I 
could find. Could I perhaps structure such a religion myself? I had my doubts. 

Against the Evil Tide - 49 

Milestone Forty-Eight: The Nationalist White Party 




1^ Next 



Against the Evil Tide - 50 

Milestone Forty-Nine: Ttie Genesis of a Wliite Racial Religion 

The idea of a comprehensive, fully structured racial religion for our people now fully preoccupied my thinking. For reasons that baffle me unto 
this day, the White Race had never had a meaningful racial religion of its own. To try to find out why at every turn in our struggle for racial 
Identity Christianity seemed to block our way, I took a new, hard look at this Jewish religion adopted by our people. There had to be something 
in it, I surmised, that I must have missed. Having had it drilled in to me at Sunday school, and having listened to an endless number of boring 
sermons in church, I was fairly well informed about the contents of the bible. True, when I was seventeen, I had taken Ancient History One in 
college, and studied other civilizations and their religions, I had come to the obvious conclusion that Christianity was just another religion 
among thousands, religions that had come and gone, and was now one amongst the debris of thousands of others that were still around. 

However, although I didn't believe in such superstitious claptrap, I wasn't hostile to Christianity as such. Like most people, I accepted that some 
of its moral values probably had merit, but much of it was nothing more than silly hocus-pocus. Nor did I give much thought to its Jewish 
origins, and I had no reason to doubt the claim that such a character as Jesus Christ once lived. Like Mohammed and others, I took it for 
granted that Christ had been some religious fanatic who went around the countryside preaching his wild claims. For some strange reason that I 
couldn't understand, his stuff had caught on, was then later promoted and exploited by his successors into a powerful movement, I assumed. 

Be that as it may, at this particular time my curiosity was aroused as to WHY Christianity was blocking our every turn. I decided to re-read the 
New Testament and take a closer look to find out just what it was that I had missed. It didn't take me very long to get my answer. Within 1 
minutes, I came to Matthew 5, 6 and 7, and the Sermon on the Mount. To my amazement I read, "Love your enemies." "Sell all thou hast and 
give it to the poor." "Turn the other cheek." "Blessed are the meek." I had read and heard it a hundred times before, but this time I knew what I 
was looking for and I realized the treachery of the booby-trap that was open before my eyes. This is crazy! This is the kind of suicidal advice 
you would give your worst enemies if you wanted them to destroy themselves, I thought. Why hadn't I realized that before? How could I have 
missed the poison in this seemingly benign teaching? And this was the crux of our innermost "faith"? How stupid can you get? How come no 
one else had pointed this atrocity out to me? 

I had now put my finger on the crux of the problem. It now opened the door to a whole plethora of new questions and answers. Christianity was 
deliberately designed to enslave and destroy the White Race! Who had written all this balderdash? Why, the Jews! All the Apostles were 
Jewish. St. Paul, the most prominent writer of all was really Saul of Tarsus, another Jew. Christ himself was a Jew, the bible claimed. 

I studied further. I read up on Christ in my encyclopedia. To my amazement, the encyclopedia flatly acknowledged that regarding the 
"historicity" of Christ there was no historic evidence that he ever existed, in fact, all the information we had about him came from only one 
source, the Scriptures. Wow! That was another major discovery as far as I was concerned. The whole story was a fable, like Mother Goose and 
Santa Claus. And who wrote this whole shoddy mess? A passe! of Jewish scribblers, whose identity is unknown and unverified. Undoubtedly, 
they were cunning, deceitful and characteristically Jewish, but scientifically these desert tribesmen who wrote the Old Testament as well as the 
New, were so ignorant they did not even know the earth was round, nor that it traveled in an orbit about the sun. 

After these major breakthroughs, more information came flooding in, and the pieces to the puzzle began to fit nicely into an orderly mosaic. I 
further read Marcus Eli Ravage's piece, "A Real Case Against The Jews", written in 1928. In his article, this audacious Jew openly bragged 
how cleverly the cunning Jew, Saul of Tarsus, nearly nineteen hundred years ago had conspired a means to torpedo the great Roman Empire 
by feeding it a self-destructive new religion, namely Christianity. He further chortled how brilliantly it had been conceived and executed. It had 
succeeded beyond their fondest dreams, he said. He further gloated that by means of Christianity they, the Jews, had conquered us goyim as 
no people in history had ever been conquered before. "We have put a clog on your progress. We have imposed upon you an alien book and an 
alien faith which you cannot swallow and cannot digest, which is at cross-purposes with your native spirit, which keeps you everlastingly ill at 
ease, and which you lack the spirit to either reject or accept in full. " 

I further studied the peculiar characteristics of the Judaic religion itself, and that too, was revealing. The Jews do not really believe in, or care 
about, the hereafter. I found that their religion was basically a tightly organized criminal conspiracy, deliberately tailored to fit their parasitic way 
of life. It was designed to unify the Jews in an unending war of plunder against the goyim, their term for cattle, but meaning us Gentiles. Their 
basic goal is now, and has been for the last four thousand years, to enslave the goyim, to exploit them for their own gain, and to usurp unto 
themselves all the gold, real estate and wealth of the world. 

To my horror, I discovered that not only was such their objective, but they had already come a long way towards achieving that sinister goal. 
But the most treacherous and deadly essence of that program was their obsession for the mongrelization and genocide of the White Race, 
whom they regard as their most hated enemy. In this, too, they were making rapid and astounding progress, 1 discovered, much to my alarm. 

Why would they want to mongrelize and destroy the White Race? Because, they reasoned ruthlessly, and correctly so, that as long as an 
intelligent White Race remained, their foul conspiracy could at any time blow up in their face. The White people of the world might discover 
their foul conspiracy, as did Hitler in Germany, organize and turn on the Jews. They, the Jews, are now sitting on a powder keg, and they know 
it. Therefore, it behooves them to mongrelize and destroy the White Race as quickly as possible. Once the world population is reduced to a 
mass of stupid brown mongrels, they are home safe, the Jews conclude. These zombie slaves will then be too stupid to ever organize, or revolt 
and shake off their slave masters, but will make nice, docile work animals. 

I felt I had made as much of a major break-through as if I had discovered a new world. Yes, indeed, what the White Race now needed was a 
powerful new dynamic RACIAL RELIGION of its own. If a scurvy racial religion such as Judaism could propel a measly, parasitic race such as 
the Jews into world domination, just imagine what a well conceived; fully structured racial religion could do for the intelligent, creative and 
productive White Race! So I reasoned. We should also remember that we still number some 500 million individuals, and outnumber the Jews 
by 30 to 1 . Why had no such religion ever come forward before now, I wondered. What a difference it would have made in the demographic 

history of the world if the Egyptians had had it, or the Greel<s, or the Romans! Why hadn't they? Was it perhaps too late now? 

No, I decided, it wasn't too late, if we get busy and do now what we should have done long ago. Yes, I decided, I would try to put such a racial 
religion together. Its basic goal would be the survival, expansion and advancement of the White Race alone and exclusively, barring all others. 
I would immediately start writing such a book. I felt I was already armed with a whole warehouse full of potent ideas upon which such a religion 
could be built, and new concepts kept flooding in. 

Austin Davis at this time was still regularly attending Pastor Wes Auger s Calvary Baptist Church, and considered himself a born-again 
Christian who would some day go to heaven. As I discussed all these newly discovered ideas with him, he tenaciously kept defending 
Christianity. After all, he argued, it was the White Man's traditional and well-established religion. Maybe so, I countered, but it was invented by 
the Jews, rejected by them and foisted on the White Man, and look where they are today, and look where we are. I kept working on him. 
Finally, one day as we were sitting in the bookstore drinking coffee, I asked him, do you really believe we should love our enemies, such as the 
Jews? That you should sell all thou hast and give it to the niggers? That you should turn the other cheek? Finally Austin broke down and 
answered honestly. No, I don't. From that day on he was completely de-programmed from all that Christian garbage and became one of its 
most vociferous critics. 

As I contemplated writing my book, I asked myself, what should be the basis of our beliefs? What could I trust and really believe in? When I 
was a kid I had been deceived about Santa Claus, but after all, that was only child's play. I had also been snookered about our basic religion, 
Christianity, from early childhood, I now realized. That was not child's play - it was a major and lasting deception. That I did not find so easy to 
forgive. I had been deceived by the John Birch Society as to what their real goals were. I had been duped by the Republican Party. I had been 
lied to by George Wallace. I had been deluded and let down by the members of the American Independent Party. In fact, "our" government on 
the local, state and national level was one big fraud and swindle, manipulated by our most deadly enemies, the Jews. 

I asked myself again and again, wasn't there anything firm and real? Wasn't there anything honest and unchanging that I could believe in and 
depend on? As I pondered the question, the answer came through, loud and clear - yes, there was! I could believe in the Eternal Laws of 
Nature. I could depend on her laws forever and a day. Having come to that conclusion, a number of other questions and answers rapidly 

What did Nature have to tell us? The answer was much, and everything. One basic lesson Nature taught us was that every species first and 
foremost takes care of its own, in the face of all hostility and/or competition. Each species seeks to reproduce its own kind, expand its own 
numbers and territory, and at the same time advance itself genetically in order to better compete in the eternal struggle for survival. Also 
inherent in Nature's laws was the principle of the segregation of the species. Each species mated only with its own particular species or sub- 
species. There was no interbreeding. Although bluebirds and cardinals might both be birds, they never interbreed. Although canvasback ducks 
and pintail ducks both belonged to the duck family, and even built nests around the same lake, they too never interbreed and mixed their 
genes. Nature forbade it. Any species that flouted those laws was ruthlessly punished with the ultimate penalty - extinction. I came to realize 
that all knowledge and wisdom was derived from a close observation of the Laws of Nature, and even though the lesser animals may not have 
as highly a developed intellect as man, nevertheless, Nature in her wisdom had imbued them with a highly developed instinct to perform in 
harmony with her laws. In taking care of their own they usually carried out those laws and their mission in life with a great deal more wisdom 
and efficiency than did man. 

This brought up the question, how was mankind performing in accordance with these natural laws? Specifically, how was the White Race, 
Nature's Finest and the pinnacle of her evolutionary process doing? When I asked that question in the framework of the last half of the present 
century, the answer came through loud and clear - we were performing dismally. We were doing far worse than the lowly mosquito, in fact. We 
were flagrantly flouting Nature's most basic laws, all in the name of a treacherous Jewish religion. Would Nature also punish her Finest with 
extinction? The answer was a clear and unequivocal yes, we were definitely on our way to extinction unless we rapidly and drastically changed 

During May and June of 1971 I haltingly started writing my book, stumbling as I went along. I hadn't decided on a title as yet, but was 
contemplating on one of two options. I would either call it Nature's Eternal Religion, or. The White Man's Bible. I had not as yet conceived the 
proper name for our racial religion, nor the framework of our organization. But all that could come later. I was loaded for bear and first things 

While all this was going on in my mind, Eleanor Kramer was setting up a rally and a speaking engagement for me with her Nationalist White 
Party group on the West Coast. She was still a devout churchgoer, and like most good White people, considered Christianity as the historic and 
basic religion of all White peoples. I thought the time had now come that I should level with her and share my newly discovered information and 
ideas about Christianity. On June 16, I wrote her a frank and revealing letter about my position on religion. I sent along with the letter copies of 
my exchange with Gen. del Valle. (All these letters can be read in detail in The Klassen Letters, Vol. 1 .) Since my wife and I were planning a 
trip up to Canada during July, I thought it only fair and prudent to inform her in advance not to set up any meetings in her area until I got back, 
and furthermore, until we were clear on this Christianity issue. Otherwise, any rally she might set up could only end in disaster. One thing I 
don't like is surprises, and I had no idea how she would react. I hoped that she would be able to see what I could see, but then I was no mind 
reader, and had no preconceived idea what her response, or those of the other members, might be. But I would soon find out, to be sure. 

In the meantime, Henrie and 1 planned our trip to Canada in July. 

Against the Evil Tide - 50 

Milestone Forty-Nine: Tlie Genesis of a Wliite Racial Religion 





Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 51 

Milestone Fifty: Saskatcliewan Homecoming 
Tlie Summer of 1971 

For some reasons (unknown to me) the Province of Saskatchewan designated the year of 1 971 as the "Year of Homecoming" and decided to 
put on much hoopla to promote it. The Universities sent the word out to their alumni, and every other organization decided to get into the act. At 
this time I still had a goodly number of relatives left in the province, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews, but my Immediate family had 
shrunk down to my oldest brother Henry and his wife Annie, who now lived in Saskatoon, and my oldest sister Sarah, and her husband Peter 
Plett, who still lived near Herschel. It had now been 25 years since I had last left Herschel, Saskatchewan, in the cold, cold midwinter of 
January, 1 946, and the fact was, none of us were getting any younger. (In order to avoid confusion, my brother's name is Henry, originally 
Heinrich in German, and my spouse's name is Henrie, short for Henrie Etta.) For years my family had been imploring Henrie and me to come 
back and visit, and now, with the added inducement that everyone would be coming together in the Year of the Homecoming, their pleadings 
increased. And their point was well taken. It was time to go back and see those who were left. In 25 years the ravages of time had changed 
much. My parents had died a long time ago, as had many others, and many of the still living I had known were now scattered to the seven 
points of the globe. But now many of the scattered would be back. Besides, Henrie had never been to Saskatchewan. We decided this was the 

I called my brother Henry long distance, the first time in 25 years. He wouldn't believe his ears. He insisted It was his son Peter calling from 
Regina and pulling a spoof on him. I therefore had to spend the first five minutes of my long distance call trying to convince him that it was me, 
and that we were planning on coming up there this summer to visit with them. 

After making all the plane arrangements, we left from Miami at 1:45 P.M. on July 4, and arrived at Toronto at 4:30 P.M. There we changed 
planes, left for Winnipeg, arriving at 8:05. Another short layover, leaving at 1 0:25 and arriving at Saskatoon at 1 0:40 that night. Actually, we had 
gone through two time changes, and it was by now 1 2:40 In the morning by Florida time. It had been a long trip. 

Henry and Annie were there to meet us at the airport. Henry had changed considerably since I had last seen him, but then, hadn't we all? He 
had farmed my dad's former farm four miles south of Herschel for the last 30 years, and he had prospered. Two years ago, in 1 969, he had 
retired, and he and Annie had moved to Saskatoon, and bought themselves a nice, comfortable little house at 1704 Avenue "D" North. It was 
located in the Mayfair district, an area that was quite familiar to me some 30 years earlier, being near where I stayed when I attended the 
Saskatoon Normal School. Saskatoon, I soon found out, was now the stamping grounds of any number of my relatives and associates formerly 
from Herschel, many of whom, like my brother Henry, had prospered and had now retired to this magnet city. 

There was my Aunt Margaret and Uncle Jacob WIens, who had raised a family of four boys, Jacob, Arthur, Rudolph and Victor, and two girls, 
Sarah and Helen. All were now grown and living elsewhere. Uncle Jacob, too, had retired from the farm and he and Aunt Margaret bought a 
nice house and were living in Saskatoon in the City Park district across the river. We were soon invited over for a big dinner that included many 
other relatives. Nearby lived my Aunt Helen and Uncle Abe Klassen, who had raised a family of three boys, Jacob, Henry and Ernst, and two 
girls, Helen and Edith, all of whom were now also grown and raising their own families. Uncle Abe and Aunt Helen too invited us over for a big 
Sunday dinner. The Jacob WIenses had an interesting story to tell regarding some of our other relatives, who, unfortunately had stayed behind 
in Russia while four of my dad's Immediate family migrated to the New World in the 1 920's. (My dad and his family, his brothers Abe Klassen 
and John Klassen and their families, his sister Margaret and Uncle Jacob Wiens and their family. Left behind In Russia were eight other 
brothers or sisters and their families.) Two years earlier, in 1969, Aunt Margaret and Uncle Jacob decided that time was running out and they 
would make one last trip to Russia to see those of their relatives that were still left and they could reach. 

This they did, and the efforts and expense to which they went to reach some of their remaining relatives who had now been displaced to the 
wilds of Asiatic Russia east of the Urals, were considerable. Anyway, they did get to see them, took some group pictures, and came back with 
some gruesome stories of what had happened to many of our kinsmen in Communist Russia during the ensuing 45 years. 

Two doors down from Henry and Annie lived the Peter Krahns, who were busily preparing for their daughter Velma's wedding within the next 
few days. We were invited to the wedding. 

Actually, we were even related to the Krahns, although remotely. The Krahn's son, Werner, was married to my sister Sarah's daughter 
Gertrude. The Werner Krahns were at this time living on a farm near Kindersley, Saskatchewan, and are still there at this writing. In 1 990. The 
wedding took place on a following Sunday, and it was almost worth coming all the way from Florida just to attend this spectacular Mennonlte 
wedding. Velma Krahn was married to Peter Gunther in the Mennonlte church with about 200 guests attending. They made a very handsome 
couple. At the reception that followed there was much food, drink and merriment, and I had an opportunity to again meet with dozens of old 
acquaintances and relatives, as well as introduce them to Henrie for the first time. Mrs. Krahn, the mother of the bride, said she remembered 
me back at a time when we were both teen-agers and started going to parties, and that she remembered I sang off key. Although I didn't 
remember her, nor the occasion, I flatly denied the allegation. 

Unfortunately, there Is a sad ending to the story of the beautiful wedding of the young Gunthers. They had two lovely children, but only 15 
years after the wedding, Velma tragically died of cancer. 

While In Saskatoon, Sarah and Peter came up to visit. The two of them, Henry and Annie and some others of the Wiens family and Henrie and 
I drove to Dundum, about 30 miles out, to visit my cousin Sarah, the daughter of Uncle Jacob and Aunt Margaret (Wiens). Sarah was now 
married to Henry Jansen, a former widower, who had a nice farm and had built a beautiful new air conditioned home for his new wife. Cousin 
Sarah had taught school, been in the Peace Corps, and now, although somewhat late in life, seemed happily married. We had a very enjoyable 
visit, one that included the usual and delightful Mennonlte custom of serving Fesper in the middle of the afternoon. 

After several days in Saskatoon, we went to visit my sister Sarah and her family, who lived about half a mile west of the little town of Herschel, 

a distance of about 1 00 miles from Sasl<atoon. Henrie and Annie drove us out, and wliile we were in the area, tliey also took us to take a look 
at the old homestead, the farm my dad had bought back in 1 926, and on which I had spent my younger years while growing up. For some 
reason the scenario now seemed somewhat smaller than I had remembered it. The big red barn now was gray, but whether it had been 
repainted, or just weathered with time, I don't recall. The mile long lake, on which I had spent many happy hours rafting in the summer, and 
skating in the winter, was now completely filled in with silt, and was growing hay and pasture. Henry had leased the farm to a tenant when he 
retired from it in 1 969. He did not show us the inside of the house, since I believe that he thought we might have been somewhat embarrassed 
by the condition it was in under the occupancy of the tenant. 

Off to Sarah and Peter's house. They lived in a large white two-story house that had been built about 60 years earlier. It was not in the best of 
shape either, but it was large and comfortable. It was only about 200 yards away from where the Herschel people had drilled a speculative oil 
well back in 1 928. They didn't hit oil, but they did get a gusher of an artesian well that was still flowing freely with the best soft water in the area. 

Sarah was most glad to be the host, and did her utmost to make us feel at home and cook the very best of meals. Visiting her at this time was 
her youngest daughter Elsie, 21 , who had just arrived from Calgary, where she was working as a secretary for Shell Oil. Soon we were also 
joined by her brother, Walter, his wife, Pauline, and their three children. They had driven all the way from Yerington, Nevada, where they lived. 
Their lovely three children, Terry, Bernard and Brian, were 11,8 and 4, respectively. So we had a full house, and Sarah had her hands full. It 
was good to see my relatives, some of whom I was seeing for the first time. 

Next we were off to see my niece. Ruby, Henry and Annie's daughter, who was throwing an outdoor barbecue party. She was married to Bill 
Sawatsky, whom I last remembered as a young kid. Bill and Ruby lived on a nice farm that I remember was once owned by a neighbor of ours 
by the name of Lenore White. Bill and Ruby now owned that farm. They now had three beautiful children, two boys, Dwight and Merwin, and 
one daughter, Lori, the youngest, being seven. At the party we were joined by more relatives I hadn't seen for ages. Soon Ruby's brother, 
Eddie, arrived, along with his wife Elaine, and their two boys. Also present was my cousin John Klassen and his wife. John is the son of my 
dad's brother of the same name. Uncle John had passed away back in 1 939, as I recall, leaving his wife and two little children in somewhat dire 
circumstances. However, somehow, they managed to survive, and cousin John was now a big fellow, six foot four. 

The barbecue was held in a large machine shed, nicely cleaned up and decorated. There was quite a large assemblage of people, grown-ups 
and children, and I especially remember the singsong that was held. I was impressed how beautifully these Mennonite people sang in 
harmony, with Ruby leading the way, and cousin John Klassen singing bass. 

At this time the Herschel Mennonites celebrated a special "homecoming day". It was held in a hall on the hill just south of Herschel. There was 
a lot of singing, there were recitations and skits, and, of course, speeches. There were also some special awards given out. Henrie and I 
received a special award for "having come to the homecoming from the longest distance away." It was presented by my niece. Ruby. It was a 
happy occasion, and gave us a chance to meet and see a number of people I hadn't seen for some 25 years. 

Among these, was my nephew Peter Klassen, the youngest son of Henry and Annie. Born in 1 940, he had studied law at the University of 
Saskatchewan and had won the Governor-General's Gold Medal as the most outstanding student the year he graduated, no small 
accomplishment. Now, at 31, he was married, and practicing law in a partnership at Estevan, Saskatchewan. Furthermore, he had just become 
a father. He had a promising career ahead of him, indeed. 

Since I had spent very little time at Herschel since he was born, he admitted that he had no memories of me, but nevertheless, we had more in 
common than most, since we were the only two Klassens in the whole complex of Klassen families that were college graduates. While the rest 
of the families were enjoying the afternoon session of the Homecoming test, the two of us spent the afternoon at the Plett's house comparing 
notes and arguing about world affairs. 

At this time I had started writing and laying out my world philosophy about a racial religion for the White Race, and I was enthusiastically 
primed with my new venture. I especially wanted to discuss it with an intelligent young fellow of Peter's caliber who could understand what I 
was talking about. Our conversation soon turned to that very subject. Peter, I soon found out, did not share my Weltanschauung. He was 
brilliant, yes, but he was also a typical product of a liberal intelligentsia education, having been thoroughly steeped in the postwar propaganda 
of hatred of Hitler and everything that was German. He played it safe, going along with the establishment view, with one objective in mind, how 
to advance his career and make money. We spent some three or four hours belaboring the subject, with him trying to put me in a position of 
having to defend Hitler, and me trying to make it clear to him that I had no such obligation, that whereas I regarded Hitler as the greatest leader 
the White Race had ever produced, nevertheless, our religion was a radical departure from that of the Nazi creed in a number of significant 
aspects. I explained to him that what I was doing was structuring a completely new and independent racial religion for the survival, expansion 
and advancement of the White Race, Natures Finest, of which he, too, was a member, I reminded him. 

Soon thereafter Henrie and I drove back to Saskatoon with Henry and Annie. Once there, Henry and Annie drove us around to revisit several of 
the places and institutions that were a sentimental part of my early life. We drove to Rosthern, about 50 miles distant, to take a look at the 
German English Academy where I was in residence and took the tenth grade some 40 years earlier. The place was still the same, but had also 
changed considerably. Some buildings had been torn down and several new ones had been built. (Also, they now had indoor plumbing!) Even 
the name had been changed. It was now called The Rosthern Junior College. I also wanted to visit my old schoolmate, Menno Friesen, who 
was now a prosperous merchant in his own right. We went to his store, but unfortunately, he was not in town that day. I left my business card. 
As a result, he visited me in Lighthouse Point, Florida, some eight years later, but that is another story. 

The next day we visited the grounds of the University of Saskatchewan, my old Alma Mater. The old Greystone Buildings looked as fresh and 
beautiful as they ever had. The old red brick Engineering Building looked a little more time worn. I had spent many hours in that Institution, and 
had a sentimental attachment to it. There were several new buildings on the grounds. It was interesting to reflect that at least two more 
generations had passed through those hallowed halls since I attended between 1935 and 1942. We also drove up to the Saskatoon Normal 
School, the training school for Saskatchewan teachers, which I attended in 1 936-37. The place was closed. It had been turned over to the 
military for a training center during World War II, and it had been closed ever since. Time marches on. How sad. 

As part of our tour we had planned to see the Canadian Rockies and the Calgary Stampede. At 3:15 on July 14 we boarded Canada Air for 
Calgary. We arrived there an hour later, at 3:15 Calgary time, and checked into our hotel. We contacted my niece Elsie, and three of us had 
dinner together. The next day she brought her boy friend, Gordon Piatt, over, and we all spent the afternoon at poolside. Gordon was a 
successful real estate broker in Calgary. The next day the four of us attended the world famous Calgary Stampede. It was a spectacle to 
behold. The weather was excellent. The next day Henrie and I visited the Calgary Zoo and Prehistoric Park. That same morning I called up an 
old childhood buddy I had known in Herschel, and invited him to have lunch with me. His name was George Wiens, who was now an 
accountant with Ernst & Ernst, I believe. He dropped in at our hotel and we walked over to the Petroleum Club, to which he belonged. We had 
a nice conversation and a good lunch as we recalled some of our highlights over the last forty years. George was married, had three grown 
sons. He said two of them turned out just fine, one was a problem, and had a drug problem. He said that he was probably the only Mennonite 
whose kid had spent some time in jail because of drugs. He told me they lived on a small five-acre ranch just outside of Calgary, and that his 
main avocation was putting on musical concerts, something he had been doing for many years. 

The next day Henrie and I attended another session of the Stampede in the afternoon, then that night we had dinner with Elsie in the restaurant 
atop the Husky Tower, now called the Calgary Tower, I believe. 

The following day we took a bus tour to the Rockies, our first stop being beautiful Lake Louise, a real jewel. We stayed at the Chateau Lake 
Louise, one of those prestigious and stately hotels the Canadian Pacific railway built at strategic places in its railroad network shortly after 
World War 1. Henrie and I walked on the scenic path around the lake, then rented a canoe and slowly paddled around the tranquil surface 
enjoying the snow-clad mountain scenery and their reflections in the lake. 

From there we took a bus tour to the nearby Wapta Icefield, changing into a huge van with caterpillar tracks that actually drove us over the 
surface of the glacier itself. We next took the bus over the Kicking Horse Pass, into British Columbia and into the Yoho Park. Somewhere along 
here we stopped on the continental divide at a place where the waters divided and began their long journey flowing into not two, but three 
different oceans, namely the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Arctic Ocean. 

After we returned to our hotel at Lake Louise we left the following day and backtracked to Banff, checking in at another one of those grand old 
Canadian Pacific hotels, called the Banff Springs Hotel. After spending a few days there, we drove back to Calgary and to the airport. At 3:30 
on July 24, we caught a Canada Air plane to Toronto, arriving there at 9:50 P.M. We stayed overnight in a small convenience room with bath in 
the basement of the airport, then at 10 A.M. we caught a flight to Miami, arriving there in bright sunshine and heat at 12:45 P.M., a drastic 
change from the cool Canadian Rockies of the day before. 

Against the Evil Tide - 51 

Milestone Fifty: Saskatchewan Homecoming 
Tlie Summer of 1971 





Back 1 


Against the Evil Tide - 52 

Milestone Fifty-One: Writing and Publisliing tlie First Booi< 

After arriving bacl< home from tlie Canadian trip on July 24, I had my hands full in several categories. The land business was at its busiest and 
needed my attention. There were a number of prospects to see, contracts to close, land payments to make. There was that book I had started 
to write, and any number of ideas floating around in my head that had to be organized and formalized, then set down on paper. And then there 
was Eleanor Kramer and her group in the Tampa Bay area that I had left in limbo before departing for Canada. 

When I got back, I had my answer to the latter situation. In a letter dated June 28 (but evidently mailed later, since I didn't receive it before I left 
on July 4) Eleanor let me know she was devastated about my position on Christianity. The White man's culture and Christianity have for the 
past two thousand years been "inextricably intertwined", she pointed out, and "the 'religion' to which you refer sounds to me a bit like Aryan 
Judaism", she said. Furthermore, although she had (at that time) not yet relayed that information on to the rest of her flock, she was sure that 
they too would not go along with my heretic views on Christianity. 

I was neither surprised nor dismayed. In fact, I had expected as much, and her reaction convinced me more than ever that Christianity was 
indeed the disruptive intruder that had created havoc and confusion in the ranks of the White Race ever since that Jewish snake had raised its 
ugly head. I was more inspired than ever to get on with writing my book. In a letter to her, dated August 5, I laid out my position to her in 
emphatic detail. Regarding Christianity being "inextricably intertwined" with the White Race, I countered that statement with: so had 
tuberculosis, hepatitis and polio, but were they a blessing or a plague? This four and a half page letter, too, is recorded in Klassen Letters, Vol. 
1 , and can be reviewed in full. It was the forerunner of several more letters to follow in the ensuing exchange with other members of the group, 
some of which are also recorded in the same Vol. 1. Of special note is the 11-page letter I wrote on this subject to John R. Adams, Ph.D., on 
January 10, 1972. 

In formulating the manuscript, I decided to divide it into two parts, the first part in general spelling out the problem, and the second part coming 
up with what I considered the solution, namely, a dynamic racial religion for the White Race. When Eleanor said that what I proposed sounded 
to her like "Aryan Judaism", she was not completely off base. I felt that what the White Race sorely needed was indeed a counterpart to the 
Jewish racial religion that had been such a powerful factor in propelling the Jews to gain mastery of the world. I reasoned that if a miserable 
racial religion such as Judaism could do that much for a despicable bunch of parasites such as the Jews, imagine what a powerful, well- 
structured racial religion could do for an intelligent and creative people such as ours. There was, however, this major difference, all to our 
advantage: whereas the Jewish race and religion was parasitic by nature, the White Race and its religion were the very opposite. Whereas the 
Jews needed a productive host on which to feed, we were independently creative and productive and did not need anyone for our sustenance 
and welfare. In fact, the sooner we could get rid of all the freeloaders and parasites on our back, the better. 

I decided to call the first part Book 1: The Unavenged Outrage, and the second part. Book II: The Salvation. I also finally decided on the title. 
By calling it Nature's Eternal Religion, I felt that each one of those three words emphasized the meaning I wished to convey, namely that our 
religion was based on the laws and wisdom of Nature, that such had been with us from time eternal and would remain as such, and that 
Nature's rules were the unchanging creed which governed the actions of all living creatures, including mankind. 

Having written a volume of material, by the summer of 1972, I started looking around for a printer. I realized that because of the controversial 
nature of the material, and since most book printers were in the hands of the Jews, such printer would not be easy to find. A young friend of 
mine by the name of Tony Lukas suggested that he had a good prospect. He was working for a book printer in Hialeah, called Universal 
Printing Company. It was a family owned company, a family by the name of Bechtel, and they were Christians. Of course, that too could cause 
a problem, but he didn't think so. He had already talked to the old man who headed the company, and he seemed favorable. Why not go talk to 
him. They were located at 480 West 20th St., Hialeah. 

I called up Mr. Bechtel and made an appointment. I brought with me half of the manuscript, which consisted of two full loose-leaf binders. I had 
also brought my checkbook, and we got down to business. I informed him up front that, yes, the material was controversial, and we took a dim 
view of Christianity, but then after all, a printer I presumed was a printer, and not a censor. He assured me my presumption was correct, and 
that as long as my book was not pornographic nor communistic, he would print it all right. I assured him it was neither pornographic nor 
communistic, and we soon agreed on a price. He drew up a letter that served as a contract, and I gave him an initial check in the amount of 
$2500 that would bind the deal. I felt fortunate. It hadn't been so tough to get a printer after all. 

About two weeks later, on October the 1 0th, to be exact, I received a telephone call from Ron Bechtel, one of the sons in the business, telling 
me that he was coming to my office to see me. He didn't say what about, but I had a premonition. When he came in, he brought with him my 
manuscript, the contract and the uncashed check. He told me in sanctimonious and holier than thou tones that after reading the manuscript his 
company could not and would not print my book. They were born-again Christians and what I said in my book was contrary to everything they 
stood for. Not only was the deal off, but he started lecturing me about if Christ couldn't enter my heart it was because I wouldn't let him in. But, I 
argued, the old man had said - no matter. The deal was off. So much for broad-minded Christian tolerance. 

Next, I started looking for a new printer. In this regard, Tony Lukas, and also another friend of mine, Pete Martin, were of crucial help. They 
suggested I might go see a company in Ft. Lauderdale, that, although they were not in the book printing business, they did print an advertising 
flyer by the name of The Tribune. They could probably also print books. They were located at 4009 N.E. 5th Terrace. On Friday, October the 
13th, (my lucky day!) I met with Mike Powell, the vice-president and the son of the owner of the company. I gave him the same caveat emptors, 
warnings and disclaimers as I had given the Bechtels, but Mike said he didn't think it would cause any problems. We soon came to an 
agreement on price, a sum that was actually a little lower than had been quoted by Universal. Mike said he would talk with his dad, John 
Powell, for confirming the deal. This he did, and on October 1 7, I came back to his office, and again, as with the Bechtels, I gave him an initial 
deposit of $2500 and completed the deal. He sent me a letter confirming the terms of the deal the next day. This time the deal stuck and we 
were in business. The deal pretty well included the whole package. They would do the typesetting, paste up the pages, do the cover in two 

colors, the bookbinding and the pacl<aging in cartons of 32. I would bring in the copy in installments, pick up the typesetting a few days later, 
proofread it and bring back the corrected copy, including a segment of new material. At this time I had not completed my total manuscript, and I 
kept writing new chapters as the spirit moved me. My wife would do some of the typing for me, with the help of my secretary, Mary Childress, at 
the office, as well as Mary Wimmer and Donna Thayer, two friends who could also type. All this I was doing while trying to keep on top of my 
real estate business and the bookstore as well. 

Finally, the printing job was completed. They delivered the first 1792 books on February 22, 1973, to Austin Davis' warehouse at 681 N.E. 42 
Street, Pompano Beach. By March 6, The Tribune had delivered all the books, a total of 1 9,277, to the warehouse. It was the first book I had 
ever written and the first book The Tribune had ever printed. Although less than perfect, I was well satisfied with the job. Our total cost of the 
printing was $14,141.61, a price I wish I could duplicate today. It had all come out of my own pocket. It was a severe strain on my financial 
resources, for although business was good, I repeatedly had a number of heavy mortgage payments to make on the several land purchases, 
and the cash flow was a matter of nip and tuck. In fact, I had to repeatedly go to the bank and make personal loans to tide me over from one 
payment to the next. 

By this time I had decided on a name for our religion and for our church. Since the White Race was the most creative and productive creature 
Nature had produced in its long process of evolution, I would call our religion Creativity, and the organization The Church of the Creator. I felt 
we Creators well deserved the accolade. In order that the Church would be separated from the fortunes or misfortunes of my own private 
affairs and would have continuity and stand on its own feet, I applied for incorporation papers. On August 16, 1973, we received our Corporate 
Charter as a non-profit, religious organization from the State of Florida. We were now off and running. We now had our creed, we had our 
book, our own "holy scriptures", and we were recognized as a religious institution. So far so good. But I realized that there was still a long and 
precarious battle ahead, to be sure. Not only a battle, but a relentless, unending war against the powerful and evil forces that sought to 
mongrelize and destroy our precious White Race, a war that would finally end in total victory for one side or the other. But now, at least, the 
White Race had a meaningful battle plan and a powerful weapon with which to win that war. It had a fully structured racial religion of its own. 

Against the Evil Tide - 52 

Milestone Fifty-One: Writing and Publisliing tlie First Bool< 




Against the Evil Tide - 53 



Milestone Fifty-Two: Our 25tli Wedding Anniversary l_ ^^^^ 

November 22,1971 

At this time Henrie and I were still interested in exploring the Caribbean Islands and tropical areas offshore to our east and south. We had 
visited many of these islands but had never been to Puerto Rico. Our young friend from our recent 1 967 trip through Europe, namely Verena 
Ostertag from Germany, had resettled in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She invited us to visit there, and in fact offered we could stay at her 
apartment. She was now a professional architect and was specializing in the remodeling and renovating of older hotels for such chains as 
Holiday Inns, and others. To celebrate our 25th anniversary Henrie and I decided we would take a short tour through the U.S. Virgin Islands 
and Puerto Rico. 

We took in three islands, first of all flying to Charlotte Amelie, the capital of St. Thomas. We checked in at the Hilton Hotel, which was perched 
on the side of the mountain, with a spectacular view of the beautiful St. Thomas Harbor below. 

It was here that we celebrated our 25th anniversary. Henrie had bought a colorful, long evening gown for the occasion, and I had brought along 
my tuxedo, a holdover from the Governor's Ball in Tallahassee in 1 967. We had an excellent dinner of lobster and crab at the hotel dining 
room, then spent the evening dancing in the nightclub in the same hotel. Practically all the customers there were White American tourists. It 
was a happy occasion. 

Later, I had occasion to reminisce about my parents 25th anniversary forty years earlier, and how different things were then from now. I 
remember that occasion quite vividly. It was in January of 1 931 . I was then in the ninth grade and not yet quite 1 3. We were then in the middle 
of a long and severe depression. We had an exceedingly mild winter that year, and there was no snow on the ground, a rarity for 
Saskatchewan at that time of the year. I had just bought myself a second hand bike and was learning to ride it. My parents anniversary was 
celebrated at our farmhouse, with a preacher officiating and giving a sermon, reviewing the previous 25 years of our parents' life. My dad had a 
tear in his eye. Present were all five of us children, with my brother Henry, at 24, being the oldest. None of my siblings were married at that 
time. Also present were many of our relatives at Herschel, and also many of our neighbors and friends. As is the usual Mennonite custom, a 
big Fesper was served in the middle of the afternoon. 

But to get back to the November of 1 971 . The day after our celebration we spent exploring the small island, what there was of it. One of the 
attractions was Bluebeard's Castle, and there were a few native restaurants, in one of which we had lunch. But by and large, the most 
conspicuous aspect that I observed was that the city was crowded with niggers, mongrels and Asiatics, that most buildings were old and run 
down, and basically looked like a slum similar to most of the black sections in cities back in the United States. 

From St. Thomas we took a local flight to the formerly Danish island of St. Croix, the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands. Its two main cities are 
Christiansted and Frederiksted. After viewing the depressive state of affairs and the degenerate population in St. Thomas, I had expected that 
the Danes, who had developed this island some two hundred years earlier, were still in charge of St. Croix, and that the situation there was in 
much better shape. 

However, much to my disappointment, there was not a single Dane in sight, but only more niggers and degenerates. Whereas some of the old 
buildings still had some vestiges of Danish architecture, but nevertheless, like in St. Thomas, everything was now shabby and run down. I 
thought to myself, such beautiful islands, such balmy temperate climate, such magnificent beaches and natural landscape, but what a shame 
to have degenerated into the hands of such dissolute and primitive peoples. They had reduced everything the White Man had built into nothing 
more than a stinking slum. This real estate was far too valuable to leave in the hands of such degenerates, I thought. 

We flew back to Charlotte Amalie, then on to San Juan, Puerto Rico. We took a taxi to the address Verena had given us, but she had been 
called away to some convention. She had left a note for us, however, to obtain the key to her apartment from one of her neighbors. We stayed 
there for two nights, meanwhile exploring the island. We took a tour of the Island, visited Morro Castle, and several other tourist attractions. I 
found that the population of Puerto Rico was overwhelmingly Hispanic with a heavy strain of black in its racial mixture, and although several 
cuts above that of the Virgin Islanders, it 

too was extremely depressive. Everything was in Spanish, street signs, storefronts, and what have you. It did not seem at all like this was any 
part of American territory. Why we should subsidize and support all these freeloaders, or even want these revolutionaries to be part of our 
country, was a mystery to me. 

At that time I was deep into writing my new book, and I carried with me a compact little tape recorder to set down any ideas that might be 
useful in compiling the book. On the flight back to Miami, I dictated and recorded some of the impressions and ideas that resulted in Chapter 5 
of NER, entitled The Black Plague in our Midst. I felt that I had seen more than enough of the plague first hand. 

Against the Evil Tide - 53 

Milestone Fifty-Two: Our25tli Wedding Anniversary 
November 22,1971 







Against the Evil Tide - 54 

Milestone Fifty-Three: Our Daugliter Gets Married 

In 1 969 Kim had finished her four years of high school at Pine Crest in Ft. Lauderdale, and she and Henrie started scouting around for a 
suitable college for her to attend. After visiting approximately four prospective schools, we finally settled on Colorado State, at Ft. Collins, 

Henrie had been brought up in the High Country of Colorado, and her love of the mountains stayed with her for the rest of her days. Some of 
this affection for Colorado was evidently conveyed on to her daughter, since I believe the choice favoring Ft. Collins was partially influenced by 
the fact that it was located on the eastern slope of the Rockies in Colorado. It was also at this time, in the fall of 1 969, when we took Kim to 
Colorado State, that Henrie and I first visited Ouray, Colorado, a small town in a most beautiful setting in the San Juan Mountains that fully 
justified calling itself 'The Switzerland of America." A few years later we were to buy a 160-acre ranch north of Ouray. 

During her first year at Colorado State Kim was on a bowling team. Also on a rival bowling team was a lanky young fellow from Wilmington, 
Delaware. He was also attending Colorado State. His name was Walter Scott Moore. Kim walked up to him, shook his hand and said, "My 
name is Kim Klassen." Less than three years later they were married. 

The wedding took place at Estes Park, Colorado, about 40 miles south and west of Ft. Collins. The date was June 5, 1 972, just two days 
before Kim's twenty-first birthday. 

They were married at 1 1 A.M. in St. Bartholomew's Chapel on Devil's Gulch Road. Father King, an Episcopalian priest, officiated. 

Kim's Maid of Honor was Janet Wiedmann, the daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Mert Wiedmann from Shatter, California, who were also at the wedding. 
Although not the official photographer, Mert took quite a number of pictures on his own account, a hobby at which he was quite an expert. 
Besides Janet, the bridesmaids were June Hanning, Betty Lee Love, Jan Briscoe, Peggy Firth and Bea Moore, the latter being Walt's sister. 
As father of the bride, I had the honor of leading Kim down the aisle and giving the bride away. 

The Best Man, who stood up for Walt, was J. D. Moore, his father. The groom's attendants were his brother James, his stepbrother Tim 
Brannaman, Scott Dumler, 

Rick Huddleston, Bruce Douglas, and Ken Slump. Some of the other wedding guests were: Walt's grandparents, Scott and Lucile Moore; his 
aunt, Ann Stern; Kim's grandmother, Mrs. Eleanor McWilliams; Henrie's aunt, Lenora Dean; Mrs. Stringharn from Shatter, who was Mrs. Pat 
Wiedmann's mother; Colleen Kelly, a niece of Gene 

Kelly, the movie actor, and, of course, the mothers of the bride and the groom, Henrie and Ruth, respectively. After a considerable number of 
pictures were taken by photographer John dark, we held a reception at the Black Canyon Inn, a little ways down the same street from the 
church. Incidentally, it was while we were having our reception dinner at the motel dining room, that 1 got a surprise long distance call from 
Australia. It came from the owner of the 160-acre ranch north of Ouray, who was now living on a sheep "station" in the outback of Australia. He 
was calling to confirm acceptance of my offer for the purchase of his 1 60 acres in Colorado, much to my satisfaction. 

Later that afternoon Kim and Walt took off on their honeymoon. Walt had just previously bought himself a brand new Monte Carlo Chevrolet. 
First they drove back to the Moore's home at Wilmington, Delaware. From there they took a flight to the island of St. Thomas, in the Virgin 
Islands, where the Moores had a vacation home, and there they stayed for a week or so. 

When they returned from their honeymoon Kim and Walt both took jobs with the DuPont plastics and textiles plant at Seaford, Delaware, jobs 
that had been pre-arranged some time earlier. In March of 1973, Walt left DuPont and joined the U.S. Air Force and was stationed at Mather 
Air Force Base near Sacramento, California. Here they lived for a period of six months. In September of 1 973, Walt joined me as a partner in 
my ongoing real estate business. In 1 978, Walt decided that the real estate business was not his first choice and that he wanted to become a 
chiropractor. By this time the young Moore family already had two sons, namely Scott and Bryan. The family moved to Davenport, Iowa, where 
Walt pursued three years of intensive study in his chosen profession with the Palmer School of Chiropractic and graduated near the top of his 

Now, some ten years later. Dr. Walter S. Moore is well established in his own clinic in Martinsville, Virginia. The family has now grown to three, 
with the addition of Amy 

Lynn, and they are all doing very well. Henrie and I are very proud of our daughter, of our son-in-law, and of our grandchildren. We feel very 
fortunate to have such a fine family into the next generation, and who could ask for more than that? 

Against the Evil Tide - 54 

Milestone Fifty-Three: Our Daughter Gets Married 




1^ Next 



Against the Evil Tide - 55 

Milestone Fifty-Four: Exploring Ancient History Around the Aegean Sea 

During the summer of 1973 Henrie and I decided it was time to tal<e another trip across the ocean and explore some of the historic vistas of 
ancient history. We were especially interested in Greece and Turkey and some of the islands of the Aegean Sea. After all, my book was 
finished, business was good, and I had worked hard and I owed it to myself to take some time off again. 

We decided on a three-week Maupintaur tour, one of the better ones, and on September 22 we took off. Our first arrival was in the ancient and 
historic city of Athens, Greece, where we checked in at the plush Athens Hilton Hotel. As soon as we had cleaned up, it was off to the dining 
room for a sampling of typical Greek food. I don't remember too many dinners, but I do remember the good food and jolly atmosphere of that 
first dinner after arrival. It was served with Greek wines, Souviakia, a lamb dish and baklava for desert. I enjoyed it all immensely, and it was a 
good introduction to the land of the Hellenes. 

We soon met our tour guide. His name was Victor Stubbs, and he was from England. He was tall, six foot four, blonde. In his early thirties, and 
a very pleasant and good-looking fellow. The first morning after our arrival he took us on a city tour, and one of our first stops was at the 
National Archaeological Museum, where we were to be treated to a lecture on the history of Greek sculpture and its early development by a 
native guide. The guide was more than an hour late in arriving, much to the aggravation of Victor Stubbs. Evidently, he had been held up by the 
police on some traffic charge and hauled into court. Finally he did arrive and we heard an interesting lecture with ample exhibits of the many 
phases during the development of Greek sculpture. One of the interesting facts that I learned from this lecture was that when the early 
Christians arrived on the scene they made it a special campaign to go about and destroy as many of the beautiful sculptures of classical time 
as they could. This, the idiots argued, was to prevent "Idol worship." Those that they did not destroy in totality they would at least disfigure the 
faces of these statues by smashing the noses, the most characteristic part of the face. What a waste! 

My impression of the city itself was not as favorable as had been that of the dinner the night before. The city seemed so bare and treeless, so 
hot and crowded, so much stone and statue, but it did have a most interesting history, and that is what we had come out to see. Nor was I very 
impressed with the native population. Considering the high levels of physical beauty and mental development of their ancient ancestors at the 
time of Pericles and Socrates, of Plato and Aristotle, the present Greek specimens were a major let down. Certainly they were in sharp contrast 
to our fair-haired English guide. It seemed to me that there had been so much mongrelization and down-breeding over the last two thousand 
years in this cradle of civilization that the native population was now such as to be on the very fringes of what we would like to think of as the 
White Race. 

Be that as it may, the accumulation of history at this major fountain of civilization was overwhelming. Our tour included a visit to the Acropolis 
and its centerpiece, the Parthenon. At night we again viewed these ancient landmarks of history from a stadium seating arrangement, in a 
program called "The Sound and Light Show." As the lights played on the Acropolis and the Parthenon, the loudspeakers dramatically narrated 
the ancient history of this legendary and most famous shrine. It told of warriors and conquerors, of marching armies and the clash of arms. 
What with the skillful arrangement of accompanying music and sound effects, it was most impressive. 

We took several side trips outside the city. One that was most memorable was a trip to the ruins of the Temple of Poseidon at sunset. Located 
at Cape Sounlon, the temple sat on a hill overlooking the Aegean Sea, and as the sun sank below the horizon, it cast a shimmering glow of 
gold over the azure waters. 

One other memorable side trip was to the ancient and historic city of Delphi. During the long bus trip we had some problems between the 
smokers and the non-smokers. It seemed like half the people in our group had caught colds (including Henrie) and our guide requested that 
there be no smoking in deference to the confined conditions under which we were traveling. This especially strained the patience of two ladies 
from Dallas, who were chain smokers and happened to sit in the seat behind us. Some argument ensued. 

In traveling along the narrow and winding road to Delphi, I was amazed at the bleakness of the passing landscape. It was hilly, barren and 
rocky, with a few patches of brown grass interspersed. Every once in a while we would see a small herd of goats grazing on the scanty 
provender, attended by a ragged herdsman. Also in evidence every so often were crude huts, where the herdsman evidently lived. 

Arriving at Delphi, we checked in at the Vouzas Hotel. The city has a long and complex history, at various times wielding a most powerful 
influence in the religious affairs of the Ancient Greeks and even beyond in a way that compares to that of the present day Vatican in Rome. At 
the heart of it was The Oracle of Delphi, whose advice was heeded by many of the most powerful rulers of the times, both inside and outside of 

Apparently, it all started in prehistoric times with the discovery of a fissure in some rocks at this place from which issued a mysterious gas, 
which when inhaled, caused hallucinations. The priests in charge of the then prevalent religion were quick to take advantage of this 
phenomenon, and gathering some virgin maidens, they had them sniff this peculiar issue from out of the fissure in the rocks. While in this state 
of intoxication, the maidens would utter some incoherent mumblings which only the priests would claim to understand, and the priests would 
also take it upon themselves to interpret these "Oracles" to the gullible and superstitious. Soon this became a shrine and temples were built 
around the place. Powerful potentates came from far and wide to have this supernatural "Oracle" from out of the bowels of the earth make far 
reaching decisions for them. As time went on, this would become a well established and highly revered tradition that lasted for thousands of 
years. It is fairly obvious that the priests could interpret these mumblings any way they wanted to and had a good thing going. Although the 
fissure has now run out of gas, the City of Delphi and its hallowed history remains. However, in a way, some things haven't changed too much 
since then. People are still as gullible and superstitious today as they were in those ancient and bygone times. 

Still in very good condition was The Stadium, where the Pythian games were held every four years, an event that was similar to the Olympiads, 
but preceded it by several centuries. The Stadium was built of stone, with a seating capacity of seven thousand. How these ancient 

stonecutters, with the primitive tools they had, could cut such a volume of stone and do it so artistically, is a mystery to me unto this day. 

When we returned to Athens, we went straight to the port of Piraeus and boarded our cruise ship that was to take us to the various islands of 
the Aegean. However, that afternoon a strong storm blew up, known in the Mediterranean area as Mistrals, and the harbor master ordered all 
ships to stay in port while the storm lasted. There were a number of large cruise ships in the harbor at that time, just chafing at the bit to get 
going on their proscribed schedules. At twelve midnight the order was lifted. Henrie and I were wandering around on the deck at that time of 
night, and we could hardly believe our eyes and ears as to what happened next. Several whistles started blaring and our ship raced out full 
steam ahead for the narrow entrance (or exit) of the harbor that could accommodate only one cruise ship at a time. Another big cruise ship had 
the same idea and was racing to get out of the harbor ahead of us. Officers with bullhorns on both decks were screaming and cursing back and 
forth at each other's ships to get out of the way and for a short while it looked like they were playing a game of "chicken", not unlike teenagers 
have been known to do with cars. I thought surely there was going to be a mighty crash and collision, but at the last split second the other ship 
threw its engines in reverse and saved the day, while ours steamed on, full speed ahead. 

The storm had not fully subsided and the seas were still rough. Our stalwart guide. Vie Stubbs, who was no sailor, stayed in his cabin for the 
next two days. One of the two smoking ladies from Dallas took out a couple of bottles of whiskey and stayed dead drunk for the next several 
days and felt no pain. However, after a day or so the weather returned to calm, and we visited three very interesting islands of the Aegean, 
missing one on our schedule due to the delay. Of particular interest was the island of Santorini and the ancient 3500-year-old Minoan village 
that was once covered by volcanic eruption and was now being excavated. It is near the present village of Akrotiri. 

From Athens we flew to the ancient and historic city of Istanbul, Turkey, a city that straddles two continents. For more than 1 200 years it was 
known as the city of Constantinople, founded by the Roman Emperor Constantine in the fourth century C.E. It soon rivaled, then surpassed 
Rome as the center of the White Man's civilization and as the dominant headquarters of the Catholic Church. In the ongoing struggle between 
the Turkish Moslems and the White Christians it was finally and decisively conquered by the Osmanii Turks under the leadership of 21-year-old 
Sultan Mohammed II in 1453. It was undoubtedly the most disastrous setback the White Race had suffered up to that time. 

Our group checked in at the Istanbul Hilton, its finest hotel at that time. I found Istanbul a most fascinating city, a contrast in modern structures 
such as the Hilton, the modern suspension bridge just recently built across the Bosporus by White engineers, and the ancient mosques and 
minarets. We visited the Hagia Sophia, built by Roman Emperor Justinian in the sixth century. After the Turkish conquest, it was converted into 
a mosque, and is now a museum. For 1200 years it stood as the city's greatest architectural edifice, being surpassed only by the Blue Mosque, 
built by the Turks in the 1 8th century. The latter is still very much a mosque, and we watched as hundreds of Moslems would kneel in prayer in 
their bare or stocking feet. The city's skyline is silhouetted by over 400 mosques. We also visited the Covered Bazaar, which took in an area of 
some 40 acres and consisted of hundreds of shops of immense variety. It was a place one could easily get lost if they strayed from the group. 
One of the highlights was our visit to Topkapi, the palace of the grand Ottoman Sultans. There we saw the Sultan's jewels and the famous gem 
encrusted dagger. Also of major interest were its extensive gardens, pavilions, reception halls and private quarters. A leisurely cruise along the 
Bosporus to the Sea of Marmara and back concluded our visit. 

On leaving the hotel, we all embarked in small groups, taking a taxi to the Istanbul airport. It so happened that our driver was one of the wildest 
and fastest we have ever encountered. He virtually flew us to the airport, during which process we waved to several others in our group as we 
flew by them. From Istanbul our flight took us to Budapest, Hungary, but not without a short stopover in Bucharest, Romania. Here I noticed a 
number of large anti-aircraft guns stationed around the perimeter of the airport, their immense barrels pointed skyward at a 45-degree angle. 

Arriving at our destination, we checked in at the Budapest Hilton. On taking a city tour we, for the first time, saw at first hand what life was like 
in a communist country, and the overall picture was bleak and drab. However, we soon discovered from a number of lectures by our city guides 
that Hungary and Budapest, too, had a long and checkered history that was very interesting. We also discovered that the city actually consisted 
of two parts, divided by the historic Danube River, with Buda on the west side and Pest on the east. 

Of particular interest were the beautiful Parliament buildings, the former Royal Palace, the Square of the Heroes, (this had a long story 
attached to it, but I forget the details) the great Coronation Church, and the Opera House. We had a memorable dinner out at a nightclub that 
specialized in native Hungarian dishes, and also entertained us with a gypsy floorshow. Very good. One other night we went to a concert that 
specialized in Hungarian folk dances, music and vocals. 

From Budapest we took a flight to Zagreb, Yugoslavia, then a bus tour through the Yugoslavian countryside to the colorful and historic seaside 
resort of Dubrovnik on the shores of the Adriatic. Driving over the landscape, I was amazed at how rugged, rocky and desolate this part of the 
country was. 

Arriving at Dubrovnik, we checked in at the President Hotel, a real beautiful, modern edition that was also referred to as the typewriter hotel 
because of its terraced shape that resembled the keyboard of a typewriter. It was located on the side of an escarpment with the upper part 
being level with the city, and the lower part with the beach. Dubrovnik, too, has a long and colorful history. It was once also known as Ragusa, 
and it was the capital of a Roman province. In the seventh century it was destroyed by the Avars, and the survivors went to the present site, 
rebuilt and heavily fortified the city. It became a republic, and remained under the protection of the Byzantine emperors until 1204 CE, when it 
was dominated by the Venetians for 150 years. Subsequently Hungarians, Turks, 

Austrians and French have dominated or protected the little seaport, which was Austrian from 1814 to 1918, and has been Yugoslavian ever 
since. There are still many landmarks of its colorful past. 

We visited many of these. Of special interest were the Rector's Palace, the Pile Gate, Onofrio's Fountain, St. Lawrence Fortress, the 
Dominican Cloisters and the Franciscan Monastery, which houses Europe's oldest pharmacy. 

On one of our off days, Henrie and I took a small boat over to the Island of Lacroma, about half a mile or so offshore from Dubrovnik. It is here 
that Archduke Maximilian and his wife Carlotta had their summer home before they embarked on their ill-fated venture to become Emperor and 
Empress of Mexico. The Archduke was the brother of the then Emperor of Austria, Franz Joseph. Their summer home, which resembled a 
castle, was now dilapidated and very much in the need of repair. We wandered through it, and walked on some planks that if not careful, you 
could drop down into a basement about 30 feet below. There was a restaurant adjoining, where we had lunch. The grounds around were well 
kept. The story of this romantic and historic couple can be further followed in a published book I have read entitled "Maximilian and Carlotta" by 
Gene Smith. The 1939 movie "Juarez" also portrays their dramatic and poignant story. It stars Brian Aherne as Emperor Maximilian, and Bette 
Davis as Carlotta. 

Of all the tour guides I have encountered, I would say that Victor Stubbs was one of the finest and I had a special rapport with him. Often, as 
we would enter the bus and he was counting noses, I would whisper to him 'Think White." I had already made him aware that I had written a 
book about the racial crisis that was closing in on us, and although he was no racist, he frankly admitted that his native country, Britain, was 
headed for rapid decline and disaster. In fact, he was thinking of becoming a citizen of Monaco, or Switzerland, or some other country. On one 
of our free days in Dubrovnik, I was having lunch with him in the coffee shop of the President Hotel, and we really got into the ideological 
discussion of race and religion for the next three hours. I was pointing out to him that the adventurous Britons, who not too long ago had 
boasted that "Brittania Rules the Waves, Britons never shall be slaves", and that the sun never set on the great British Empire, were now 
indeed slaves in their own land under the tyranny of the Jewish Occupation Government (JOG). I reminded him that whereas they once had a 
great empire, their country was now rapidly becoming a miserable slum, and that the Pakistanis, the Hindus, the niggers and the mud races, 
under the auspices of the Jews, were rapidly taking over. I charged that the once heroic empire builders had become a nation of wimps, and 
instead of emigrating, why didn't he and others stand their ground, fight, and take back their own country? Then I launched into the Christianity 
issue, and told him that we considered it as nothing more than a treacherous Jewish scam designed to soften up the White Race so that we 
could be more easily exploited, robbed and destroyed by those international parasites, the Jews. 

Naturally, all this came as a great shock to Victor. What you are saying, he exclaimed. Is that we are crazy to let them do this to us! Is that 
right? I looked him in the eye, and replied something to the effect that, yes, I think you are getting the general idea. I will send you a copy of my 
book, and you can get the rest of the story. He said, fine, I believe my brother, who is more racially aware, would be much interested. But 
nevertheless, he was much perturbed about what I had told him. When I returned back to Florida, I did 
indeed send him Nature's Eternal Religion, but I never heard from him again. 

Against the Evil Tide - 55 

Milestone Fifty-Four: Exploring Ancient History Around the Aegean Sea 

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Against the Evil Tide - 56 

Milestone Fifty-Five: Venture into North Carolina 

Ever since we moved to Florida in 1958, we were interested in the cooler mountains of North Carolina as a summer alternative to the flatlands 
and the hot and humid summers of South Florida. In the summer of 1 959, when Kim was eight, we made our first trip to Franklin, N.C. to dig in 
the mud for rubies and other elusive gems. (Franklin advertised itself as "The Gem Capital of the World.") On that same trip we also explored 
the Fontana Dam recreational area, which had a number of cabins for rent, and also had facilities for boating, archery, horseback riding, folk 
dancing, craft making and other fun and games. We returned to the same and some of the surrounding areas many summers since then, 
taking in The Smoky Mountains National Park, Asheville, Bryson City, and including Gatlinburg and Pidgeon Forge, Tennessee. 

By about 1968 I began thinking about buying some properties in the Blue Ridge Mountains area around Franklin. I did, in fact, conclude a deal 
on a 2-1/2 acre tract fronting on Cartoogechaye Creek, made the required down payment, signed a legal contract for delivery of the deed. 
When after several months no deed was forthcoming, I checked with the real estate agent as to what was the problem. It turned out that the 
owner, who was a crooked lawyer, shortly after signing my contract, had received another offer (through the same real estate agent) for a 
thousand dollars more. Between the two of them they connived to ignore my prior contract and had sold and deeded the tract to the second 
party and generously offered to refund my down payment. I refused the offer and insisted they live up to the contract and deliver. I tried to sue 
for performance, but evidently the lawyers had a closed fraternity and no lawyer in Franklin would take my case. I found another lawyer in an 
adjoining county who did take the case, or at least pretended he did. However, after taking my retainer fee, and after giving me a lot of double 
talk, he did nothing. So much for my first attempt to buy real estate in North Carolina. I finally settled for the refund. 

Next, I was about to purchase a 21 -acre tract within the city limits of Bryson City. However, after some protracted haggling, that deal fell 

Finally, in 1971, we found a beautiful 54-acre tract about nine miles north of Franklin. It was located on a rushing trout stream called 
Burningtown Creek, with about 2000 feet of stream frontage. It had meadowland in a valley, and it also had mountain terrain and trees. It 
seemed a most likely location for a future retirement home. On May 7, 1971, I concluded its purchase from two Florida couples, Mr. & Mrs. 
Wm. F. Supple, and Mr. & Mrs. Roger F. Amundsen. 

But then, that same year, I got the urge to acquire a going "ranch", something larger, with buildings already in place. Soon, the same broker 
that had sold us the Burningtown acreage, found a likely prospect for us south of Franklin, just north of the Georgia border. It consisted of 
about 160 acres, had a fairly modern house on it, a barn and other outbuildings. It belonged to Richard S. Jones, a leading attorney in town, in 
partnership with his parents. After looking it over in considerable detail, it seemed like just the proper ticket and I decided to buy. When I told 
Austin Davis about my purchase, he expressed an eager desire to have a partial interest in the property, and soon we came to an agreement. 
One of my companies, Pines'n Palms Ranches, would have a 60% interest and Austin the remaining 40%. That purchase was concluded on 
January 15, 1972. 

Soon, a neighbor, J. J. Ayers, who had an excellent 25-acre property facing both Hwy. 441 and Old 441 , made us an offer to exchange his pie- 
shaped piece for 15 acres and our house. His property had an old shack on it, a barn and some buildings, but its main attraction was the 2500 
feet of frontage on the major highway, all of which had commercial potential. We decided to make the trade. 

For nearly two years we did nothing with the property. (I was too busy with my subdivisions in Florida, plus writing my new book. Nature's 
Eternal Religion.) Then, in the latter part of 1973 we decided to put in a system of roads and subdivide the westerly 100 acres that lay in the 
mountainous section of the property. 

In May of 1973 we first contacted Dean Conner, who owned the Franklin Grading Company in Franklin. His company was equipped with 
bulldozers, graders and other heavy equipment for earth moving work. After having a survey company headed by J. Frank Shope survey and 
draw a map of the boundaries of our property, we had Dean Conners and his crew start cutting in a road from Old Hwy. 441 on our eastern 
boundary westward about one third of a mile, then branching out into two roads, the upper and the lower, into the mountainous section, to the 
western boundaries of our property. This they did, starting in August of 1 973. 

After the roads were in we had Frank Shope and his crew come back and stake out individual lots facing the roads. 

We laid out two small subdivisions. One, called Swiss Village, consisted of 32 lots, and the other called Bavarian Village, consisted of 17 lots, 
for a total of 49 lots. J. Frank Shope completed the survey work, staking out each lot, and drawing the subdivision maps on May 9, 1 974. The 
maps were then duly recorded in the Macon County Recorder's Office in the County Courthouse. 

Up to 1 973 the demand for North Carolina properties and building lots had been quite brisk. Then, when the Arab oil boycott hit the news. It 
frightened the traveling public, and sales stopped as suddenly as if a water tap had been turned off. Our timing happened to be most 
unfortunate. A few hundred feet south of the juncture where the roads branched there was a particular site that attracted my attention. It looked 
like in times past it might have been the site of some old timer's cabin, but now long gone. It had seven huge oak trees spaced in a way that 
they would surround the cabin, at the same time offered a lovely open view to the valley and the mountains to the east. What a lovely place to 
build a cabin, I thought. 

No sooner did the idea occur but what Austin and I started working on it. But what by now we were short of was the cash to build such a cabin. 
We needed about $20,000 in order to do the job. We contacted different banks, both in North Carolina and in Florida. Finally, we found a bank 
in Clyde, N.C, that had enough confidence in us to lend us the whole amount, based on a five-year amortization. 

Next, we found a building contractor in the environs of Franklin by the name of Harold Kimsey. What I had in mind a two-story Swiss Chalet 
type of cabin, with a deck on both the ground floor and the second floor. Furthermore, I wanted a basement and a fireplace. All this I 

incorporated in a sl<etcli, and on IVIarch 25, 1974, I sent two copies of tlie drawings to Harold Kimsey. On the basis of the sl<etch, we drew up a 
contract for its construction. No architect was consulted, no blueprints were drawn. The total cost was slightly over $17,500. Soon thereafter 
Dean Conners and his earthmoving outfit started excavating for the basement and moving dirt. 

In April Harold Kimsey started on the construction. Austin and I made a number of trips to the site during the summer to see that everything 
was going all right. Everything went well and by October the cabin was finished. It was a most delightful Swiss Chalet type of mo