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Full text of "Investigation of communist activities, New York area. Hearing"

HARVARD COLLEGE 
LIBRARY 




GIFT OF THE 

GOVERNMENT 
OF THE UNITED STATES 



/ 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES, 
NEW YORK AREA— Part VI 

(ENTERTAINMENT) 



HEARINGS 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMEMCAN ACTIVITIES 

HOUSE or EEPRESENTATIVES 

EIGHTY-FOURTH CONGEESS 

FIRST SESSION 



AUGUST 15 AND !(!, 1955 



(INDEX IN FART VII OF THIS SERIES) 



Printed for the use of the Committee on Un-American Activities 




UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
68010 WASHINGTON : 1955 

HARVARD COLLEGE LIBRARY 
DEPOSITED BY THE 

iiMncn CTATCC no\/FRMMFNT 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
United States House of Representatives 
FRANCIS B. WALTER, Pennsylvania, Chairman 
MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois 

CLYDE DOYLE, California BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York 

JAMES B. FRAZIER, Jr., Tennessee DONALD L. JACKSON, California 

EDWIN E. WILLIS, Louisiana GORDON H. SCHERER, Ohio 

THOMAS W. Bkalb, Sr., Chief Clerk 



CONTENTS 



Part VI 
August 15, 1955: 

Testimony of — Pas« 

George Tyne 2262 

John Randolph 2276 

Stanley Prager 2286 

Afternoon session: 

Martin Wolfson 2300 

Lou Polan 2310 

Phil Leeds 2314 

Sarah Cunningham 2319 

August 16, 1955: 

Testimony of — 

ElHott SuHivan 2325 

Afternoon session: 

Lee Hays 2348 

Irma Jurist 2362 

Susan d'Usseau 2368 

Index. (-See Pt. VII.) 

Pabt VII 
August 17, 1955: 

Testimony of — 

George Hall 2373 

Madeline Lee 2387 

Afternoon session: 

Peter Lawrence 2398 

Joshua Shelly 2412 

George Keane 24 16 

Albert M. Ottenheimer 2424 

August 18, 1955: 

Testimony of — 

Alan" Manson 2431 

Tonv Kraber 2435 

Peter Seeger 2447 

Afternoon session: 

Ivan Black 2460 

Harold J. Salemson 2470 

David Kanter 2485 

Index (See Pt. VIL) i 

m 



Public Law 601, 79th Congress 

The legislation under which the House Committee on Un-American 
Activities operates is Public Law 601, 79th Congress [1946], chapter 
753, 2d session, which provides : 

Be it enacted iy the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States 
of America in Congress assembled, * * * 

PART 2— RULES OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 

Rule X 

SEC. 121. STANDING COMMITTEES 

* * 4: * * * * 

17. Committee on Un-American Activities, to consist of nine Members. 

Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 

* 4< * * « * * 

(q) (1) Committee on Un-American Activities. 

(A) Un-American Activities. 

(2) Tlie Committee on Un-American Activities, as a whole or by subcommit- 
tee, is authorized to make from time to time investigations of (i) the extent, 
character, acd objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, 
(ii) the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un-American propa- 
ganda that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and 
attacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitu- 
tion, and (iii) all other questions in relation thereto that would aid Congress in 
any necessary remedial legislation. 

The Committee on Un-American Activities shall report to the House (or to the 
Clerk of the House if the House is not in session) the results of any such investi- 
gation, together with such recommendations as it deems advisable. 

For the purpose of any such investigation, the Committee on Un-American 
Activities, or any subcommittee thereof, is authorized to sit and act at such 
times and places within the United States, whether or not the House is sitting, 
has recessed, or has adjourned, to hold such hearings, to require the attendance 
of such witnesses and the production of such books, papers, and documents, and 
to take such testimony, as it deems necessary. Subpenas may be issued under 
the signature of the chairman of the committee or any subcommittee, or by any 
member designated by any such chairman, and may be served by any person 
designated by any such chairman or member. 

V 



RULES ADOPTED BY THE 84TH CONGRESS 

House Resolution 5, January 5, 1955 
• ***••• 

RXH.E X 
STANDING COMMITTEES 

1. There shall be elected by the House, at the commencement of each Congress, 
the following standing committees : 

******* 
(q) Committee on Un-American Activities, to consist of nine Members. 
4> ***** * 

Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 

* * * t * * 

17. Committee on Un-American Activities. 

(a) Un-American Activities. 

(b) The Committee on Un-American Activities, as a whole or by subcommittee, 
is authorized to make from time to time, investigations of (1) the exteut, char- 
acter, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, (2) 
the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un-American propaganda 
that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and attacks the 
principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitution, and (3) 
all other questions in relation thereto that would aid Congress in any necessary 
remedial legislation. 

The Committee on Un-American Activities shall report to the House (or to the 
Clerk of the House if the House is not in session) the results of any such in- 
vestigation, together with such recommendations as it deems advisable. 

For the purpose of any such investigation, the Committee on Un-American 
Activities, or any subcommittee thereof, is authorized to sit and act at such 
times and places within the United States, whether or not the House is sitting, has 
recessed, or has adjourned, to hold such hearings, to require the attendance of 
such witnesses and the production of such books, papers, and documents, and to 
take such testimony, as it deems necessary. Supeuas may be issued under the 
signature of the chairman of the committee or any subcommittee, or by any 
member designated by such chairman, and may be served by any person desig- 
nated by any such chairman or member. 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES, 
NEW YORK AREA— PART VI 

(Entertainment) 



MONDAY, AUGUST 15, 1955 

United States House of Representatives, 

Subcommittee of the 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

New York, N. T. 

PUBLIC HEARING 

A subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met 
at 10 a. m., pursuant to notice, in room 1703 of the Federal Building, 
Foley Square, New York, N. Y., Hon. Francis E. Walter (chairman) 
presiding. 

Committee members present: Representatives Walter, Willis, and 
Scherer. 

Staff members present: Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., counsel; Donald 
T. Appell and Frank Bonora, investigators; and Thomas W. Beale, 
Sr., chief clerk. 

Chairman Walter. The committee will come to order. 

Let the record show that I, Francis Walter, of Pennsylvania, chair- 
man of the Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Rep- 
resentatives, Washington, D. C, pursuant to the provisions of law, 
have duly appointed a subcommittee for the purpose of conducting 
this hearing, composed of Representative Edwin E. Willis, of Louisi- 
ana, on my right, and Gordon H. Scherer, of Ohio, on my left, and 
myself as subcommittee chairman. The full membership of the sub- 
committee is present. 

The Congress of the United States has imposed upon this com- 
mittee the duty of investigating the extent, character, and objects of 
un-American propaganda activities in the United States, the diffusion 
within the United States of subversive and un-American propaganda, 
that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and 
attacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our 
Constitution, and all other questions in relation thereto that would 
aid Congress in the performance of its responsibility. 

In that connection I would like to state that the investigations here 
conducted are not being conducted because this subcommittee has 
any desire to do this work, but are being conducted in pursuance to 
the provisions of a law which was enacted overwhelmingly, and for 
the work of the committee the appropriation of which was approved 
at this session of the Congress unanimously. 

2259 



2260 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Those of you, or those of our citizenry who feel that they have 
cause to complain about the work of this committee, ought to be 
aware of the fact that their own Congressman did not oppose the 
appropriation for this committee. 

This committee has devoted the greater part of its effort in the past 
few years to the investigation of communism. Prior to that time the 
committee investigated communism, naziism, and fascism. The com- 
mittee has endeavored to keep Congress informed of the Communist 
conspiracy within this country. 

In the performance of this huge task, the committee in its reports 
to Congress, has made 48 recommendations for legislation by the Con- 
gress, or the strengthening of existing legislation designed to aid the 
fight against this Communist conspiracy. 

All but four of these recommendations have been enacted into law 
in one form or another by the Congress of the United States. 

In performing the statutory duty imposed upon this committee as 
outlined above, investigation of Communist activities within the field 
of entertainment, following an earlier interrogation of persons known 
as the Hollywood Ten, was begun in 1951. During the course of 
numerous hearings conducted in Los Angeles between 1951 and 1955, 
it was learned that many individuals alleged to have knowledge of 
Communist Party activities within this field came to Hollywood from 
the city of New York, and in instances returned from Hollywood 
to the city of New York. 

A conclusion was reached by the committee several years ago, or 
several years before I became its chairman, that the hearings begun 
in the general field of entertainment should be extended to the New 
York area. 

Quite a few witnesses from this area have been heard by the com- 
mittee in Washington since 1951. A large part of the committee's New 
York hearings conducted in May of 1953 dealt with activities in the 
entertainment field. At the original meeting of the committee in Janu- 
ary of 1955, further preliminary investigative work was agreed upon, 
and on June 8, 1955, the committee took the following action : 

This is from the minutes of the committee meeting : 

The clerk was directed to proceed with the investigation of Communist infiltra- 
tion in the field of entertainment in New York, a preliminary investigation having 
been authorized earlier. 

In opening these hearings, I should like to state for the record that 
the committee is concerned with only one problem. That problem is 
the extent to which the Communist Party is active in the entertainment 
media. This hearing is not an investigation of the field of entertain- 
ment nor of any of the great trade unions which represent actors, 
actresses, and writers, and allied workers in radio, television, or the 
legitimate theater. 

During these hearings, witnesses will appear before the committee 
who will, I assume, criticize the committee as they have previously 
criticized the committee in the public press. They will accuse the com- 
mittee of being a tool of this organization or that organization, or 
being an instrument of fear to be raised over the heads of the television 
and radio workers or the Broadway producers. The committee is 
interested in one thing and one thing alone. That is to ascertain, and 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2261 

identify individuals who are or were members of the Communist Party 
and who are using or did use their influence to promote the objectives 
of the Communist Party within the entertainment field, and to inquire 
as to the character, extent, and objectives of such Communist Party 
activities. 

It has been fully established in testimony before congressional com- 
mittees, and before the courts of our land that the Communist Party 
of the United States is part of an international conspiracy which is 
being used as a tool or a weapon by a foreign power to promote its own 
foreign policy, and which has for its objectives the overthrow of the 
governments of all non-Communist counti'ies, resorting to the use of 
force and violence if necessary. 

The Communist Party cannot live in this country except by the 
promulgation and diffusion of subversive and un-American propa- 
ganda and in the view of this committee, and of the Congress, every 
person who remains a member of it is contributing to the ultimate ac- 
complishment of its purposes. Communism and Communist activities 
cannot be investigated in a vacuum. It is necessary that witnesses be 
called and interrogated regarding their knowledge of such activitiesi 

It is the standing rule of this committee that any person named in 
the course of a committee hearing as a member of the Coimnunist 
Party be given an early opportunity to appear before this committee, 
if he so desires, for the purpose of denying or explaining any testimony 
affecting him. 

Should such an occasion arise, the individual concerned should com- 
municate with a member of the staff or with me. 

Those of you present in this hearing room are reminded that you 
are the guests of the committee. A disturbance of any kind, or audible 
comment during the course of testimony, whether favorable or un- 
favorable to any witness or the committee will not be tolerated. For 
infractions of this rule, the offender will be immediately asked to leave 
the room. 

May I make it clear that the fact that a lawyer appears before the 
committee as counsel for a witness should not be taken as any dis- 
paragement of counsel for so doing. We invite counsel to be present. 
However, for the benefit of counsel who have not heretofore appeared 
before this committee, may I state a positive limitation on the privi- 
lege that legal counsel has before this committee ? Counsel is not per- 
mitted to address the committee or to argue questions of law or fact 
with the committee. Counsel is permitted to be present for the pur- 
pose of advising his client of liis constitutional rights, wliich of course 
the counsel will understand does not include prompting tlie witness, 
or suggesting testimony as to factual matters. 

Have you a witness, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. I would like to call Mr. George Tyne. 

Mr. Tyne, will you come forward, please ? 

Chairman Walter. 2dr. Tyne, will you raise your right hand, 
please ? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help vou God? 

Mr. Tyne. I do. 



2262 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

TESTIMONY OF GEOEGE TYNE, ACCOMPANIED BY COUNSEL, 
MARTIN POPPER 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your name, please, sir ? 

Mr. Tyne, My name is Geoi-ge Tyne. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is noted that you are accompanied by counsel, 
Will counsel please identify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Popper. Martin Popper, member of the bar of the State of New 
York. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien and where were you born, Mr. Tyne ? 

Mr. Tyne. I was born in Philadelphia, Pa., February 6, 1917. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside? 

Mr. Tyne. I reside in New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. At what address? 

Mr. Tyne. 415 Central Park West. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in New York City? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, at this residence, sir ? 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Begin that way, yes, at that residence. 

Mr. Tyne. The reason I asked, is that I have been out of New York 
for most of my adult life. At this address, I have been, I think, about 
2 years or 3 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your occupation ? 

Mr. Tyne. I am a radio, screen, theater, and television actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. In what work are you presently engaged? 

Mr. Tyne. I am presently engaged in the theater. 

Mr. Tavenner. What type of work in the theater ? 

Mr. Tyne. As an actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. In what play are you an actor ? 

Mr. Tyne. The Rainmaker. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, what your 
formal educational training has been ? 

Mr. Tyne. Formal educational training consisted of spending my 
primary education in Philadelphia, and in New York City. I grad- 
uated from high school in Brooklyn, and attended the School of Busi- 
ness Administration of City College for two semesters at night and 
that is the end of my formal education. 

May I inject, sir, I have a statement that I would like to make to 
this committee. May I read it ? 

Chairman Walter. No ; you may file it and it will be made a part 
of the record. 

Mr. Tavenner. In all probability, my questions will bring out or 
give yovi an opportunity to state what you have in mind, if your state- 
ment is material to the inquiry. 

Will you tell the committee, please, what your career has been in 
the field of acting ? 

Mr. Tyne. Surely. I have done a number of plays in New York 
and in 

Mr. Tavenner. Let us begin first with the plays you did in New 
York, and the period of time. 

Mr, Tyne. Surely. My first professional engagement was in a mu- 
sical entitled, "Of Thee We Sing." I also appeared subsequently in 
another musical review entitled, "Let Freedom Sing." 

Mr. Tavenner. Were those engagements in New York ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2263 

Mr. Tavenner. Approximately what date ? 

Mr. Tyne. I would say 1941 and 1942. 

I have appeared in Sound of Hunting, See the Jaguar, Lunatics and 
Lovers, and I also appeared in plays in California. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were the plays that you mentioned, plays in New 
York? 

Mr. Tyne. The preceding ones ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Tyne. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. During what period of time ? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, I just mentioned the first two were around 1941 
and 1942, and the subsequent Sound of Hunting was in 1945. 

Mr. Tavenner. How were you employed between 1942 and 1945 ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is what I am getting at. I went to California, at 
which time I appeared in plays and in motion pictures. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you go to California ? 

Mr, Tyne. I went to California in the end of 1942, I believe, sir, 
and I am not sure of the exact month. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your employment after you arrived in 
California? 

Mr. Tyne. I was employed in the motion picture industry as an 
actor, and I appeared in many films, up until the year 1951, at which 
time I was blacklisted out of the motion picture industry. This com- 
mittee published my name, in a press release, in a newspaper, which 
ended my acting in the motion-picture industry. 

Chairman Walter. Just a minute, let us get the record straight. 
The committee didn't publish your name at all. Your name appeared 
in the public press ; isn't that correct ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think that is tantamount. 

Chairman Walter. All right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you have employment arranged in Hollywood 
prior to your leaving New York in 1942 ? 

Mr. Tyne. I don't think that I quite understand. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you go to Hollywood for the purpose of seek- 
ing employment, or were you certain of your employment before leav- 
ing New York ? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, if you know anything about actors, and their search 
for employment 

Mr. Tavenner. I am just asking you what was the situation in your 
case. I am not asking about actors generally. 

Mr. Tyne. Well, I think mine is a pretty general case. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the situation in your case ? 

Mr. Tyne. I went to seek my fortune in Hollywood, and I went to 
look for a job in the motion picture industry. 

Mr, Tavenner. What was your first employment in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Tyne. My first picture ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Your first employment. 

Mr. Tyne. You see, the reason I can't quite recall, sir, is the first 
couple of years in Hollywood I worked at what we call in the trade, as 
a "bit actor." This entailed 1 or 2 days work in a motion picture, I 
am sure you are acquainted with this, and I must say over a period of 
years I have done 50 or 60, and I am trying to recall the first one. I 
think it was a comedy, with Laurel and Hardy. I think that was a 
day's work on a set, and I couldn't remember the name of the picture. 



2264 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you give us your screen credits while acting as 
a moving picture artist or actor. 

Mr. Tyne. I have appeared — suppose I give you the important 
credits, as I said, I don't want to mention the 60 or 60, it is a waste of 
time. 

Mr. Tavenner. And give us the approximate date. 

Mr. Tyne. Surely. I free-lanced at the major studios. At Twen- 
tieth Century Fox, I appeared in Call Northside 777. And the date, 
I think it is 1947, and I am not sure of that. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you have any screen credits prior to 1947 ? 

Mr. Tyne. Yes. I am not taking these in any particular chronologi- 
cal order, and just as they occur to me. 

Mr. Tavenner. Pick out the first credit. 

Mr. Tyne. The first major credit was A Walk in the Sun. 

Mr. Tavenner. At approximately what date ? 

Mr. Tyne. That was shot during 1943, and I think it was released 
in 1944. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your next credit ? 

Mr. Tyne. Call Northside 777 I think was the next one, and The 
Highway was the next one, in 1947 and 1948. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you go from 1942 until 1947 without a screen 
credit ? 

Mr. Tyne. Yes, sir. The screen credit, you mean feature billing on 
the screen, as I said before, many jobs didn't give you the right to 
have screen credit. 

Mr. Tavenner. How were you employed in 1944? That is after 
you had your first screen credit. 

Mr. Tyne. As I said before, I was employed as a bit actor, free 
lancing from one studio to another, jobs entailing 1 or 2 days at a 
time. 

Mr. Tavenner. "VlTiere did you reside during that period, in 1944 ? 

Mr. Tyne. In Hollywood. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where ? 

Mr. Tyne. In 1944, I don't remember. I would speculate, I think 
it was Sycamore Avenue, and I think it was Pinehurst Drive, and of 
course I moved a couple of times in that area. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall what address on Sycamore Avenue ? 

Mr. Tyne. I don't remember. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall what address on Pinehurst Drive ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think it was twenty-one-hundred-something, and I am 
not sure. 

Mr. Tavenner. Could it have been 2008? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, frankly, it sounds right, but I couldn't say, I 
wouldn't swear that it is. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well, will you proceed now to give us your 
other screen credits in Hollywood? 

Mr. Tyne. I skipped one. Walk in the Sun, Objective Burma, a 
Warner Brothers picture, and Sands of Iwo Jima. 

Mr. Tavenner. Approximately what date? 

Mr. Tyne. Objective Burma was also 1944, and Sands of Iwo Jima 
was I think, in 1948 or 1949, if I remember correctly. I think that is 
right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you proceed with the remaining major screen 
credits which you have received. > 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2265 

Mr. Tyne. After that I appeared in, Decision Before Dawn, where 
I received feature billing, and that was the last moving picture job 
I had. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien was that ? 

Mr. Tyne. In 1951. 

Mr. Tavenner. What part of 1951? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, the picture was made in 1950, it was shot in 1950 
and the production was in 1950, and it was released in 1951. I couldn't 
recall exactly what date it was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then, what was your next work in Hollywood? 

Mr. Tyne. As I said before, because of the fact that I was black- 
listed out of the motion picture industry, I came to New York to seek 
employment. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you come to New York? 

Mr. Tyne. I was in New York in the end of 1951. 

Mr. Tavenner. By the end of 1951, do you mean by December of 
1951? 

Mr. Tyne. I think I came to New York Christmas Eve, or Christ- 
mas Day. I think it was Christmas Eve. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where were you prior to coming to New York? 

Mr. Tyne. Prior to coming to New York I was in Europe. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you go to Europe? 

Mr. Tyne. I went to Europe in 1950. 

Mr. Tavenner. So vou were in Europe from 1950 until December 
of 1951? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your purpose in going to Europe? 

Mr. Tyne. My original purpose was to be a tourist, to see the 
world, and fortunately, I found employment in Decision Before Dawn 
which kept me occupied, or the job lasted practically about 10 months. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the name of your employer? 

Mr. Tyne. That was Twentieth Century Fox production, Decisiop 
Before Dawn. 

Mr. Tavenner. And that was work you did abroad? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where? 

Mr. Tyne. The picture was shot in Germany. Would you like to 
know the cities ? It was on location. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is sufficient. Then you returned in December 
of 1951 to New York? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. What employment did 3''0u obtain in New York? 

Mr. Tyne. I obtained employment on television. 

Mr. Tavenner. By whom were you employed? 

Mr. Tyne. I am trying to remember the first show. I think it was 
the Columbia Workshop. 

Mr. Tavenner. About when did you obtain that employment? 

Mr. Tyne. I couldn't remember the specific date. I think it was 
in the spring of that year, of 1952. I do not have the dates with me, 
and I couldn't tell you specifically. 

Mr. Tavennisr. Was it as early as February of 1952 ? 

Mr. Tyne. It might be. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain employed in television 
after your first employment in February of 1952 in New York ? 



2266 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tyne. Well, I would say approximately 3 or 4 months, that is, 

1 was blacklisted off television I think in May, and I am not sure, 
April or May. So I would say 3 or 4 months. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you ^o then ? 

Mr. Tyne. That summer I drove back to California and assisted my 
father in his business, since he needed help, and since I was out of 
work and I could not work on television, and I decided this would 
be a good way to spend the summer. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain in California? 

Mr. Tyne. I remained in California, let us put it this way, I was 
there about a year, but it was interrupted by a job in a play called See 
the Jaguar, and unfortunately it only lasted 5 performances. So I 
went right back to California. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain in California ? 

Mr. Tyne. As I said, about a year. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then you mentioned you came back to New York. 

Mr. Tyne. That is right, I came back in September, I think it was 

2 years ago. 

Mr. Tavenner. That would be 1953. 

Mr. Tyne. I think that is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. What has been your employment since 1953 ? 

Mr. Tyne. Now, in 1953 it was pretty rough. I did some winter 
stock which amounted to about 2 or 3 weeks in Memphis, Tenn., and do 
you want to know the plays ? 

I appeared in an off-Broadway production, Three-Penny Opera, and 
I spent the subsequent summer as a director of theatrical activities at 
a summer resort, and I returned to New York again to seek further 
employment, and I got a job with Lunatics and Lovers, which I was 
with from approximately the end of October to the end of July. 

Mr. ScHERER, Pardon me, may I interrupt to ask a question ? 

Did you say that you were a director of entertainment at a summer 
camp? 

Mr. Tyne. Summer resort. 

Mr. Scherer. Where was that resort located ? 

Mr. Tyne. Schrooncrest. 

Mr. Scherer. In what State ? 

Mr. Tyne. Pottersville, N. Y. 

Mr. Scherer. In what year were you at this resort ? 

Mr. Tyne. This was a year ago this past summer. This summer, 
that is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that a resort or was it in the nature of a camp 
which young people attended for the summer ? 

Mr. Tyne. It was an adult hotel resort. As a matter of fact, they 
frowned on children coming there. Probably felt they ate too much 
or something. 

Mr. Tavenner. At what other resorts did you work in 1953 ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is George Tyne your professional name? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right ; it is. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your real name ? 

Mr. Tyne. I was born Martin Yarns. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you at any time act under that name ? 

Mr. Tyne. Yes. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2267 

Mr. Tavenner. So you did for a period of time, use your own name, 
and then later adopted a professional name ? 

Mr. Tyjnte. Wliich is also my own name. I think they both are my 
own names. 

Mr. Tavenner. But one is your professional name, and the other 
is the name under which you were born ? 

Mr. Tyne. Well, as you pointed out, I have used both professionally. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have noticed in some references to plays in which 
you have been engaged, that your name has been used George, and 
then parenthesis "Buddy", parenthesis, and Tyne. Were you known 
as "Buddy" Yarns? 

Mr. Tyne. Yes, Buddy is a nickname that my intimates use, and 
my family. 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated that you left California in 1950 for 
Europe. What time in 1950 did you leave ? 

Mr. Tyne. In May, I think. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that about the time the Committee on Un- 
American Activities was calling members from the moving-picture 
industry, and I mean by that, persons employed by the moving-pic- 
ture industry, to Washington for purposes of interrogation ? 

Mr. Tyne. May I consult my counsel ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

(The witness consulted his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. My only knowledge of that would be of what I read in 
the public press, and also the press that I read while I was in Europe. 
While here and also while in Europe. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your knowledge of it ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think, as you stated, that tliis committee called people 
for inquiry. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you aware that a subpena was issued on June 
15, 1951, for your appearance before the committee in the city of 
Washington, and which the United States marshal in the southern 
district of California as late as September 10, 1951, was unable to 
serve ? Were you aware of the existence of that subpena for you ? 

Mr. Tyne. I was not aware of this subpena until several months 
after my name had appeared in the Los Angeles newspapers that this 
committee was looking for me. 

Mr. Tavenner. You didn't advise the committee where you were, 
did you ? 

Mr. Tyne. As I said before, that was several months later. 

Mr. Scherer. The question is whether you advised the committee 
several months later where you were. 

Mr. Tyne. No, of course not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you advised in February of 1952, when you 
were employed in New York City for a period of about 3 months, that 
the committee was endeavoring to serve a subpena on you in New York 
City? 

]Mr. Tyne. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. I understand from your testimony, that you 
went to California in 1942. I have before me the testimony of Mr. 
Lee J. Cobb, which was taken before this committee on June 2, 1953. 
Mr. Cobb described to the committee his Communist Party member- 
ship, and the activities in the Commmiist Party which he was aware of, 



2268 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

and he told the committee how he got into the Communist Party and 
the circumstances under which he left it. 

He advised the committee that in January or February of 1943 he 
was a member of a group of the Communist Party of which George 
Tyne, Elliott Sullivan, and Victor Killian w^ere members. In refer- 
ring to you, he uses the name George Tyne, also known as Buddy 
Yarus. 

Were you a member of the group of the Communist Party in 1943 
of which Mr. Lee J. Cobb was a member ? 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. Mr. Tavenner, 1 would like to say that I see no legislative 
purpose in this committee and its inquiry into the theater, and I would 
like to voice my responsibility to the Constitution and say that tliis 
committee has no right to invade my inner beliefs and my conscience 
or my associations. 

Chairman Walter. Maybe we could shorten this by asking you if 
you know Mr. Cobb. Do you know Mr. Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. As I said before, my associations and my beliefs are my 
own. 

Chairman Walter. That is not an answer to the question. Either 
ansAver the question or do not. If you don't, why don't you ? 

Mr. Tyne. Because I feel that I have to answer this in my own way, 
and secondly I take no value in the word of a stool pigeon. 

Chairman Walter. Now just a moment; Mr. Cobb is not a stool 
pigeon, and I assume, that because you have described him as such, 
you are disturbed because he told about your activities with him in an 
illegal field. Isn't that why you describe him as a stool pigeon? 

Mr. Tyne. I am disturbed by anybody who appears before this com- 
mittee as a stool pigeon, who curries favor, who tries to get jobs, and 
money, and gives names. 

Chairman Walter. That is not a response to the question. Do you 
know Mr. Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think that — one moment. 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I must repeat that I find 

Chairman Walter. Do you know Mr. Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. I am trying to answer the question. 

Chairman Walter. You have not answered it at all. 

Mr. Tyne. I have to answer it the way I can answer it. 

Chairman Walter. Do you know Lee J. Cobb, and I direct you to 
answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne. I want to say I find this question an invasion of my 
private 

Chairman Walter. Do you know Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. I repeat, sir, this is an invasion of my associations, 
and 

Chairman Walter. The Supreme Court has already passed on 
that ; so you are in error, and now, do you know Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. As far as I know, Mr. Walter, I haven't got your ex- 
perience with the Constitution and the laws. 

Chairman Walter. Do you know Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Tyne. I must answer that I refuse to have my rights and my 
private associations invaded, and I cannot answer that question. 

Chairman Walter. In other words, you refuse to answer the 
question ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2269 

Mr. Tyne. I refuse to answer because I feel this committee has 
no right 

Chairman Walter. For what reason? 

Mr. Tyne. Because I feel this committee is invading my conscience, 
and my beliefs, and my rights as a human being, under the Consti- 
tution, as a member of the fourth branch of the (xovernment, the 
citizenry, and I cannot see any point to the inquiry of this committee, 
what legislative purpose in knowing 

Chairman Walter. For what constitutional reason do you refuse 
to answer the question ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think that I have made my reason quite clear. 

Mr. Scherer. I think that we should say to the witness that he 
has not given a sufficient legal reason for not answering the question, 
and in our opinion he is guilty of contempt. 

Chairman Walter. Under the recent decisions of the Supreme 
Court, it is the duty of the committee to warn a witness wdien he 
takes the position that you have taken, that he is in contempt. I 
advise you, or at least I warn you, that in our judgment, you are in 
contempt for not giving a legal reason for not answering the question. 

(The witness consulted his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I would like to say that I beg to differ with the chairman. 

Chairman Walter. All right. You have refused to answer the 
question. Ask the next question, Mr. Tavenner, 

Mr. Tyne. There is no legislative purpose, and their point 

Chairman Walter. Let us get over that bridge. I have heard all 
that about legislative purpose before. We have another purpose, and 
it is within the law. The Supreme Court has passed on that, and we 
are doing a very distasteful job in accordance with the law. If you are 
not going to answer the question, all right. Ask another question, 
Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Scherer. Mr. Chairman, before Mr. Tavenner proceeds, may 
I ask a question ? 

Mr. Tyne, Mr. Tavenner read to you the testimony of Mr. Cobb 
before this committee, and you classify Mr. Cobb as a stool pigeon. 
Was any of the testimony that was given to this committee by Mr. 
Cobb about you untrue? You have your 0])portunity now to say 
whether the testimony of this man, whom you classify as a stool pigeon, 
was true or untrue. 

Mr. Tyne. I will use this opportunity. I think this is a variation 
of the same question, and I feel this is an invasion of my rights as an 
individual, and I will not talk about my political, personal, or private 
beliefs, and I stand on my constitutional rights. 

Mr. Scherer. He didn't say anything about your beliefs. He 
merely said you were a member of a Communist cell. 

Mr. Tyne. I have answered your question. 

Mr. Scherer. Mr. Chairman, I ask that you direct the witness to 
answer my question as to whether or not anything Mr. Cobb said in 
his testimony before this committee about this witness was untrue. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne. I say, again, that I stand on the basic rights, the Bill of 
Rights, of the Constitution, which says that Congress has no right to 
make inquiries or interfere or question my private beliefs, and the 

68010— 55— pt. 6 2 



2270 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

invasion of my associations and of my conscience. There is no legis- 
lative purpose in this committee making an inquiry into the theater. 
This is an area of ideas. 

Chairman Walter. Just a minute. You are not the theater. You 
may think you are, but you are not the theater. 

Mr. Tyne. I am a proud member of this theater. 

Chairman Walter. That is a difference. 

Mr. Tyne, I am a member and I want that clear, and I have worked 
many years in polishing my craft so I could be in this theater. I am 
very proud of my profession, and I am proud of my talent. 

Chairman Walter. Yes, I suppose you are. 

Mr, Tyne. That makes me an integral part of the theater of Amer- 
ica, of the United States of America. 

Chairman Walter. But I think that most people in the theater 
would think that you are presumptuous for attempting to speak for 
them. 

Will you proceed, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Tyne, I have before me a photostatic copy of 
a Communist Party registration card, which shows that the 1944 card 
number was 46948, the name is Buddy Yarns, and the address, 2008 
Pinehurst, city of Hollywood, county of Los Angeles, State of Cali- 
fornia. The new card issued December 9, 1944. Will you examine the 
document please, and state whether or not you recognize it as having 
been your Communist Party card ? 

(A document was handed to the witness. ) 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I think this is the same question, sir, and just in an- 
other form. 

Mr. Scherer. Mr. Chairman, he has not looked at the card, and I 
think that you should direct him to look at the exhibit which was 
handed to him, 

Mr. Tyne. I have looked at the card, and I see it. 

Chairman Walter. Is it your card ? 

Mr. Tyne. Again I am not going to answer that, Mr. Chairman, be- 
cause I feel this is an invasion of my rights and my beliefs. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne, I have to repeat, sir, that I stand on my previous answer. 

Chairman Walter, Wliich is what ? 

Mr, Tyne, That I see no legislative purpose in this committee's 
inquiry into the theater, and I stand on my constitutional rights, and 
not only do I stand on it but I feel a responsibility to stand on my con- 
stitutional rights that this committee has no right to invade my beliefs, 
my associations, and how I think, 

Mr, Scherer, I understand then that you are not relying on the 
fifth amendment? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right, and I would like to point out that I have 
no incriminating evidence to hide, and I recognize the validity of 
the fifth, and I think the people who have used it, and the privilege 
is wonderful. 

Chairman Walter, Will you ask the next question, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you one of the 1,500 delegates who attended 
a peace meeting at Mexico City in August of 1949 ? 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 



COIVIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2271 

Mr. Tyne. I must repeat I think this is the same question, and you 
are trying to make some association or try to find out what my 
political beliefs are. 

Mr. ScHERER. That is not the same question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne. I think it is the same question, sir, and the same kind, 
and I must answer in the same way. 

Chairman Walter. You are not under any obligation to answer, 
and you say that you must answer. You are not obliged to answer in 
that fashion. 

( The witness consulted with his counsel. ) 

Mr. Tyne. It isn't a question of obligation. I have a right to 
answer as I see fit. 

Mr. Scherer. In refusing to answer Mr. Tavenner's question as to 
whether or not you attended this meeting in Mexico City, you are not 
relying on the fifth amendment ; is that right ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is right. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Were you a sponsor of that meeting ? 

Mr. Tyne, The same pattern, and the same question. _ 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne. I repeat, sir, that I have a right not to have my personal 
affiliations, associations, and beliefs invaded by any committee, and 
I stand on that as my answer. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. In ascribing to the committee the shows in which 
you participated in California, did you advise the committee that you 
took part or that you were the director of a show in 1953 entitled, 
"Going Down the Road" ? 

( The witness consulted with his counsel. ) 

Mr. Tyne. Yes ; I participated in this production. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you its director ? 

Mr. Tyne. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. I hand you a photostatic copy of the July 15, 1953, 
issue of the Daily People's World, published in California. It carries 
an article over the name of Charles Glenn. Were you personally 
acquainted with Charles Glenn ? 

Mr. Tyne. There we go again. That is the same question, and it 
is the same pattern. I will not reveal my associations and my beliefs 
to this committee. 

Chairman Walter. You are not being asked anything about your 
beliefs at all. You are being asked whether or not you know Charles 
Glenn. 

Mr. Tyne. I am being asked about my associations. 

Chairman Walter. Do you know Charles Glenn ? 
( The witness consulted with his counsel. ) 

Mr. Tyne. From what I understand of the Constitution, I have a 
right to peacefully assemble with anyone. 

Chairman Walter. We are not talking about that, and we are not 
questioning that. Wliat we are asking you is whether or not you 
know this man. 

Mr. Tyne. I think that I have made my position clear. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask that you direct the witness to answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct the witness to answer. 



2272 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tyne. Then I repeat that this committee has no right to invade 
my political beliefs, and my associations, and my conscience, and I 
stand on that as my answer. No matter what way you ask me. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Tyne, the reviewer, Charles Glenn, has this to 
say about the show : 

Bourgeois theater enterpreneurs insist iipon entertainment values, so called, and 
an abandonment of a minimizing of a "message" — 

the "message" is in quotation marks — 

A people's theater must insist on content, on the dramatization of the struggles 
of tlie people. It must insist as well on its "message," being clothed in a form 
lending itself to dramatic and entertainment value. Freedom Stage undoubtedly 
has this potential in its group, and so does Ellis, and this play proves it. 

I want to ask you whether or not this was a play designed to carry 
a Communist message ? 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I think this question really reveals the purpose of this 
committee in New York City, in the sense that you are trying to 
control and censor and set up conformity as to what should appear 
on the stage in America. I think that this is an invasion of the first 
amendment as I believe it to be. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. 

Mr. Tyne. I see no legislative purpose, and incidentally, I think, 
as I understand the Constitution, thai: this committee has no right to 
legislate in this area. 

Chairman Walter. Just a moment. I think not for your benefit, 
but I think for the benefit of the record it might be appropriate for me 
to read a part of the decision in the case of the United States against 
Josephson, in which the same question was raised. 

The argument of the appellant, and the amicus, is in substance that the com- 
mittee's power to investigate is limited by Congress' power to legislate. Con- 
gress is prohibited from legislating on matters of thought, speech, or opinion. 

Ergo, a statute empowering a congressional committee to investigate such 
powers is unconstitutional. The mere statement of this syllogism is sufficient to 
refute it. 

That is what the Supreme Court of the United States has had to 
say about what you are talking about. 

Mr. Scherer. I want to keep the record straight. I ask that you 
direct the witness to answer Mr. Tavenner's last question. 

Chairman Walter. 1 direct you to answer Mr. Tavenner's last 
question. 

Mr. Tyne. INIay my attorney answer the legal argument ? 

Chairman Walter. No, I know what he will say. 

Mr. PorPER. I will say that you made an error, first of all, because 
that wasn't the Supreme Court. 

Cliairman Walter. It is the circuit court of appeals, but the Su- 
preme Court refused to review. 

Mr. Popper. That is the point. Very recently the Supreme Court 
decided to review it. 

Chairman Walter. I am just keeping the record straight. 

Mr. Tavenner. The chairman directed tliat you answer the ques- 
tion. You did not reply. 

Mr. Tyne. I have forgotten what the question was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will the reporter read the question ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2273 

(Whereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded. ) 

Mr. SciiERER. That is the question I asked Mr. Chairman to direct 
the witness to answer. 

Chairman Walter, I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Tyne. I feel I have ah-eady answered that question in answer- 
ing the previous questions, and this is the same question. 

Mr. ScHERER. For the record, I think it should be stated that we do 
not accept his answer, and we feel that the reasons given are not legal 
reasons for refusing to answer the question. In our opinion the wit- 
ness is in contempt of the committee.. I think that is in conformity 
with the Supreme Court decision. 

Chairman Walter. That is correct. 

Mr. Scherer. I think we should state our position, namely, that my 
statement is a basis for a future action by this committee of a citation 
for contempt. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party at the 
time that you were engaged as director of this play ? 

Mr. Tyne. Here we go again. This is the same question, and I give 
you the same answer. This is an invasion of my private rights and 
associations and beliefs, and personal political beliefs, and I stand on 
that. 

Chairman Walter. Is that the sole reason for your refusing to 
answer ? 

Mr. Tyne. I also see no pertinency of any legislative purpose. 

Mr. SciiERER. Do I understand that you are not relying on the fifth 
amendment for refusing to answer this question ? 

Mr. Tyne. Exactly, sir, and there is no question of self-incrimina- 
tion. I have great respect for the iifth amendment and the people who 
use it. 

Mr. Willis. But you are not invoking it ? 

Mr. Tyne. I am not invoking the fifth. I personally feel that I 
have to stand on what I think is my constitutional right which is that 
this committee or any section of Congress has no right to invade my 
privacy as a citizen, and my beliefs, and my associations. 

Mr. SciiERER. Even as to your membership in a criminal conspiracy 
which the Communist conspiracy is ? Do you feel that way ? 

Mr. Tyne. I am not in a position to argue any opinion. 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Tyne, are you a member of any unions organ- 
ized within the field of acting ? 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I repeat the answer to this question is the same as the 
question about my association and my beliefs, and I see no pertinent 
points or any legislative purpose in answering your question because 
I think it is an invasion of my rights as an individual, my economic 
and political beliefs, and my conscience. 

Mr. Willis. I think he should be directed to answer the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I have answered the question, and I stand on that. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of Actors Equity ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is the same question. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well then answer it. 



2274 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tyne. I have answered the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question as to 
whether or not you are a member of Actors Equity ? 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. I must answer in the same way, and I repeat it, and this 
committee has no right to ask me of my associations and my beliefs and 
I stand on that as my answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the American Federation of 
Television and Eadio Artists ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is the same question and I give you the same answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. I ask that the witness be directed to answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Tyne. I repeat, this committee has no right to inquire into my 
associations, my beliefs, and my conscience. 

Chairman Walter. In view of the fact that that is not an answer, 
I am compelled to warn you that you are in contempt of this com- 
mittee. 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. That is your opinion, and I disagree with it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you aware of the existence within the American 
Federation of Television and Radio Artists of a caucus composed of 
members of the Communist Party who are also members of that 
organization ? 

Mr. Tyne. I think that your question is trying to entrap me, and I 
have already answered, and it is just the same thing all over again 
with another form and another word. If you would like me to repeat 
what I believe and what I stand on, I will. 

Chairman Walter. Never mind, you have already answered the 
question. 

Mr. Tyne. I am glad I made myself clear. 

Chairman Walter. You haven't exactly made yourself clear, but 
we know what you are saying. 

Mr. Tyne. The committee has made itself clear, and I feel that 
I have made myself clear. 

Chairman Walter. All right. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. ScHERER. I think that there should be a direction to answer Mr. 
Tavenner's last question. We do not accept his answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tyne. I will glady repeat my previous answer, that this com- 
mittee or any section of Congress has no right to invade the rights of 
the individual, his beliefs, his conscience, his associations and his right 
to assemble, period. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you at any time attended a caucus of members 
of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, who were 
members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Tyne. This is the same question with a few other adjectives and 
nouns. I repeat my answer to this question, that I stand on my con- 
stitutional right that this committee has no right to invade my rights 
and my associations. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I ask a direction ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Tyne. Yes, it has gone on, and it is very easy to see. It is get- 
ting a little monotonous. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES EST THE NEW YORK AREA 2275 

Chairman Walter. It is not monotonous to us. 

Mr. Tyne. Certainly it is not to me, because I am very clear in my 
position. I stand on my constitutional right to say this committee has 
no right and no legislative purpose in invading this area of my think- 
ing, and my associations, and my beliefs. 

Mr. Tavenxer. Are you aware of any effort made by the Commu- 
nist Party to exert influence within any union of which you are a 
member ? 

Mr. Tyne. This is another question to try to entrap me, and I re- 
peat 

Mr. Tavenner. No, it is an effort to obtain facts, Mr. Tyne, which 
you apparently are unwilling to give the committee. 

Mr. Scherer. Facts which, if he wanted to, he could give the com- 
mittee. I know he has knowledge of the situation. 

(The witness consulted with his counsel.) 

Mr. Tyne. Would you please repeat the question ? 

(Wliereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded. ) 

Mr. Tyne. I believe this is the same question in other words. I 
would like to say again that I think this committee has no right to 
invade my rights and I would like to see the day when the courts will 
uphold my feeling about this, and the feeling of a lot of people, that 
there is no legislative purpose in making inquiries into the theater, 
or inquiries 

Chairman Walter. We made it abundantly clear that we are not 
making any inquiry into the theater. We are just finding out, if we 
can, what elements there are in the theater which might at some time 
or other bring criticism upon decent and innocend people. 

Now go ahead, Mr. Tavenner, and ask the next question. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions. 

Mr. Tyne. Does that prove that you have no legislative purpose, 
that statement that you just made, Mr. Walter ? 

Chairman AValter. Are there any further questions ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Chairman Walter. Are you a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Tyne. That is the same question. 

Chairman Walter. Now, right now, are you a member of the Com- 
munist Party ? 

Mr. Tyne. Mr. Walter, if I were to answer that, that would be in 
my feeling, personally, that I would be violating the Constitution 
which says that Congress has no right to invade the beliefs and the 
associations and the conscience of the individuals of this country. 
That is my answer. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any questions ? 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer your last 
question. 

Chairman Walter. We will proceed. 

Do you have a question? 

Mr. Scherer. No. 

(Whereupon the witness was excused.) 

Mr. Tavenner. I will call Mr. John Randolph. 

Mr. BouDiN. May I ask that there will be no pictures? 

Chairman Walter. After he starts to testify, there will be no pic- 
tures taken. You know the rule and you have been before this com- 



2276 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

mittee on other occasions, and you know that the rule is to permit the 
taking of pictures prior to the testifying of the witness. 

Will the witness take his place, please 'i Will you stand up, please, 
and raise your right hand ? 

Mr. Randolph. Can I put my papers out ? 

Chairman Walter. After you are sworn. Do you swear that the 
testimony you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, 
and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Randolph. I do. 

Now I would like to have no pictures and no camera and nothing 
taken of me during or before or afterward. 

Chairman Walter. That is right. 

TESTIMONY OP JOHN EANDOLPH; ACCOMPANIED BY HIS 
COUNSEL, LEONAED B. BOUDIN 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name, please? 

Mr. Randolph. Just a minute, sir, do you mind, please? 

Mr. Tavenner. It is quite all right. 

Chairman Walter. The committee will stand in recess for 5 min- 
utes, and that will give you an opportunity to arrange your props. 

(Whereupon, a short recess was taken by the committee.) 

Chairman Walter. We will proceed. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name, please, sir? 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. John Randolph. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is noted that you are accompanied by counsel. 
Would counsel please identify himself for the record? 

Mr. BouDiN. Leonard Boudin, 25 Broad Street, New York, 5, N. Y. 

Excuse me, Mr. Tavenner, the witness wishes to ask a question which 
relates directly to the jurisdiction of the committee. 

Chairman Walter. You are not going to ask questions. You are 
here to answer them. 

Mr. Tavenner. When were you born ? 

Mr. Randolph. Excuse me, it seems to me if I am going to answer 
questions here, I should know the purpose of this investigation. 

Chairman Walter. Just a minute. Go ahead, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. When were you born, Mr. Randolph? 

Mr. Randolph. Bronx, N. Y. 

Mr. Ta^'enner. When? 

Mr. Randolph. June 1, 1915. 

Am I authorized to see the resolution authorizing the subcommittee 
to conduct today's investigation? 

Chairman Walter. No, but if you want to question the validity of 
these proceedings, the United States courts are open for that purpose, 
and I suggest that you do it in the proper fashion. Go ahead and 
ask your questions, IMr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere do you now reside, Mr. Randolph? 

Mr. Randolph. Mr. Tavenner, according to my counsel, the 
courts 

Chairman Walter. You answer the questions. 

Mr. Randolph. I have to give you the opinion of my counsel. 

Chairman Walter. I don't care about your attorney's opinion. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere do you now reside, Mr. Randolph ? 



'COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2277 

Mr. Randolph. 561 West 163d Street. 

Mr. Tavenner. New York City ? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in New York City? 

Mr. Randolph. That is giving my age away, but that — — 

Mr. Tavenner. You have already done that. 

Mr. Randolph. Forty years, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat is your occupation? 

Mr. Randolph. I am an actor, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged in the field of 
acting professionally ? 

Mr. Randolpit. I am glad you put in that word "})rofessionally," 
because there was about 7 years that I didn't make a cent at the thing. 
I think professionally since 1940. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will j^ou tell the committee please what your formal 
educational training has been ? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes. Do you want me to go right through public 
school and high school and all of that stuff? 

Mr. Ta\tenner. Just tell us briefly what it was. 

Mr. Randolppi. Well, I went to DeWitt Clinton High School, and 
then I spent 21/^ years at CCNY, and a summer session at Columbia 
University. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you take your summer session work at 
Columbia University ? 

Mr. Randolph. I can't even remember that. It was somewhere in 
between that time, when I got a curiosity about philosophy. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you, as many other actors have, adopted a 
professional name as distinguished from your real one? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is John Randolph your professional name? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir, it is. 

Mr. Ta\T3NNEr. What is your real name ? 

Mr. Randolph. All right. The real name — and don't laugh at 
this — is Mortimer Lipman. My mother changed that name from 
"Manny" to "Mortimer" because she thought I would go higher in 
the world. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you used the name "Mortimer Lipman" pro- 
fessionally ? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir. You see, I had better ask you a question, 
and this won't, I am sure, infringe on tlie jurisdiction of this com- 
mittee. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think that you could answer the question. It is 
a very simple one. 

Mr. Randolph. I had better ask you another question. 

Wlien you said "professionally," did you mean for example, like the 
Federal Theater? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Randolph. All right, then let us switch that answer back then 
to 1938, 1 think. It was 1937 or 1938 when I got in the Federal Theater 
and my family was on home relief, and I had been acting in some small 
theater groups, and I got on the Federal Theater project as an actor. 
So that now, let us go back to that other question. 

Mr. Tavenner. Suppose you just let me ask the questions. 

Mr. Randolph. O. K. 



2278 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. What small group were you referring to a moment 
ago, when you said that you went from a small group to the Federal 
Theater project ? 

Mr. Randolph. I don't think that I am going to identify any ques- 
tions regarding any group that may in some way, through the wording 
of the committee, or the conmiittee's inference, lead into a violation of 
my constitutional rights. So I would therefore invoke my privilege 
under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. ScHERER. Mr. Chairman, I ask that you direct the witness to 
answer the question because obviously he has waived his right to plead 
the fifth amendment when he testified voluntarily that he went from a 
small group to this other organization. 

Chairman Walter. Yes, I direct you to answer the question. 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. ScHERER. The w^itness mentioned the words "small group," on 
the record, and all we want to know is to what small group he is refer- 
ring? 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. O. K. I am going to refuse to answer that question 
on the grounds that I can test the jurisdiction of this committee, and 
that the committee is not engaged in an inquiry for a valid legislative 
purpose, namely to recommend legislation, but in a nonlegislative pur- 
pose, specifically, to create an atmosphere, conformity and blacklist in 
theater, and I believe therefore the investigation is in violation of the 
first amendment of the Constitution. I don't think any law can be 
passed against the theater, and I also refuse to answer that question 
by invoking my privilege under the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. We haven't any idea of enacting any law against 
the theater. 

Mr. Scherer. I think the record should indicate that the witness 
read his last answer. 

Mr. Randolph. There is something wrong with that, Mr. Scherer? 

Mr. Scherer. There is not a thing wrong with it. 

Mr. Randolph. Because I can take these notes and throw them 
away, but I would like to know. I would like to explain something, 
and I have been out playing summer stock, and I haven't had a chance 
to talk to a lawyer. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you employed in the Federal 
Theater? 

Mr. Scherer. Let us get the record straight. He invoked the fifth 
amendment the first time Mr. Tavenner asked the question, and the 
second time he did not invoke it. 

Chairman Walter. Yes, he did. 

Mr. Scherer. The fifth amendment? I am sorry. I thought he 
had not. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you employed in the Federal 
Theater project? 

Mr. Randolph. About 2 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. "VVliat unit or group of the Federal Theater project 
were you in ? 

Mr. Randolph. The Children's Theater, Mr. Tavenner, in the be- 
ginning. Then after that I got a little restless and I asked to be 
transferred, and they sent me up to Portland, Maine, to be in a play 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2279 

called Sure Fire, where we played all of the small towns and in Port- 
land, and somewhere in there I also went to Salem, Mass., where I 
made the lead in the show called, strangely enough. Created Equal. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Did you participate in any way in the play, Sing 
For Your Supper ? 

Mr. Randolph. No, sir. 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. Just a moment. Can you take this answer off until 
I speak to my lawyer ? 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. I would answer all of these questions, and I don't 
understand why, or what bearing this has on what this committee is 
going to do, and it sounds a little bit like 

Chairman Walter. This is just a little preliminary question and if 
you will answer the question we will have no difficulty at all. 

Mr. Randolph. It makes me a little nervous. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your answer ? 

Mr. Randolph. You know, I forget what I am talking about. What 
was that question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. My question was whether you took ])art in any way 
in a play entitled "Sing For Your Supper," put on by the Federal 
Theater project? 

Mr. Randolph. No, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the 2-year period in which you were a part 
of the Federal Theater project did you hold any position of any kind? 

Mr. Randolph. I was just an actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you aware of the organization of a group of 
Communist Party members within the Federal project at any time 
during the period that you were employed by that project? 

Mr. Randolph. Well now, you are asking questions of a political 
nature, and whenever we get on this field I must feel impelled, there- 
fore, to then contest or refuse to answer any questions of that kind 
under my rights under the first amendment and my constitutional 
privilege under the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter, I direct you to answer the question. 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. I must say that I am declining to answer this based 
on all of the other reasons I gave you before in my very first response, 
because the chairman hasn't told me the purpose of the investigation. 

Chairman Walter. If you had been here at the outset, when you 
were supposed to have been, you would have heard me read a state- 
ment of the purpose of these hearings. 

Mr. Randolph. I am sorry, sir, I only had 1 hour's sleep. 

Chairman Walter. That is too bad, but I did read a statement as 
to the purpose of these hearings. They are entirely within the pur- 
view of the law. 

Mr. Randolph. Mr. Walter, can I see a copy of that statement ? 

Chairman Walter. After a while, I will try to find one for you. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Mr. Randolph, will you give the committee a gen- 
eral description of your employment after you left the Federal Theater 
project? 

Mr. Randolph. All right, I will make it fast, and go right down the 
line. 

Mr. Tavenner. Give the dates, as well as you can. 



2280 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Randolph. In 1940 1 appeared in my very first Broadway show, 
called Medicine Show. Do you want anything about the parts I 
played ? 

Chairman Walter. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is enough. 

Mr. RANDOiiPH. I don't know if anybody ever saw the show. 

In 1941, Hold On To Your Hats. In 1942 Native Son, on the road. 

Then that was interrupted by the United States Army Air Force. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you in the armed services ? 

Mr. Randolph. Four years, sir, and I actually tried to volunteer 
the day of Pearl Harbor, but they rejected me and told me to go back 
to New York where I came from. Then I tried to volunteer in Pitts- 
burgh, and I tried to volunteer in Philadelphia, and they always said 
to me, "Just go back, and wait until you get to New York." So I did, 
and I was rejected for medical reasons which I would rather not go 
into details about, and that was taken care of, and I entered the Army 
in April of 1942 and I was put in the Air Force. Do you want to 
know anything more about it ? 

Chairman Walter. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. That accounts for 4 years. What was your employ- 
ment after 1946 ? 

Mr. Randolph. Then in 1947, I was in the Chicago company of 
Front Page, which was a pretty bad flop. In 1947 after that, I joined, 
or went into Command Decision, a Broadway company, and that lasted 
a year, and I went on the road with that. 

Then in 1948 I appeared in the Chicago company of The Respectful 
Prostitute, and that also flopped. 

In 1949, 1 went into Peer Gynt. and that lasted 2 weeks. 

In 1950 I went in Come Back Little Sheba, the Broadway company, 
and in 1950, after Sheba closed, I got a job in Golden State, which was 
a flop. 

Then in 1951, I auditioned in Paint Your Wagon, and I got into 
Paint Your Wagon and that lasted 9 months. 

Then I had a rather bad season and I went into Sea Gulls Over 
Sorrento, an English hit that lasted only 2 weeks in New York. 

In 1952 1 was in Gray Eyed People, which lasted 5 days. 

In 1953 Room Service, a revival of Room Service, which also only 
lasted 2 weeks. 

I am leaving out summer stock, and just giving you the main shows 
in New York. 

Madam, Will You Walk, down at the Phoenix Theater, 6 weeks. 
All Summer Long — wait a minute. 

After Madam Will You Walk, put down Coriolanus. 

Chairman Walter. How many weeks ? 

Mr. Randolph. That lasted 6 weeks. 

Then I went into All Summer Long. We are right up to 1955 now. 
All Summer Long, 8 weeks. Glad Tidings in Washington, 2 weeks. 
Time Of Your Life, revival, 2 weeks at 85 bucks a week. 

Chairman Walter. It kept you busy flitting around, did it not ? 

Mr. Randolph. I was busy. I was playing different characters and 
I didn't know whether I was coming or going. 

Then I replaced an actor in House of Flowers, the musical, and 
when that folded, I auditioned for Guys and Dolls, New York City 
Center, in the part of Nathan Detroit. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2281 

xVnd now, and I mean nothing personal about this, I am playing at 
the Brattle Theater in Cambridge, in Much Ado About Nothing. 
That will explain these sideburns. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the summer periods, did you also engage 
in stock shows ? 

Mr. Kandolph. Yes, sir, and I can name a few of them, and my 
lawyer is telling me — all right. I was in a show by George Bernard 
Shaw. As a matter of fact, just before this I was in Born Yesterday, 
and I played a drunken Washington lawyer, who used to have a social 
conscience, and Deveree is the character's name. That was, Born 
Yesterday at the Philadelphia Playhouse in the Park. 

The year before that, in summertime, I was in. Too True To Be 
Good, by George Bernard Shaw, and generally in between that I 
used to spend a couple of weeks at Fishkill, N. Y., at the Cecil Wood 
Theater. 

I had one pretty rugged summer when I came out of the Army. I 
was trying to rehabilitate myself, and I went into Savel Playhouse 
Stock Co., and by the time I find I really needed to be rehabilitated 
and I had 10 weeks of hard work there. 

Mr. Tavennek. Will you tell the committee whether you are at the 
present time a member of the American Federation of Television and 
Radio Artists ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. liANDOLPH. Mr. Tavenner, I am going to answer that question, 
and I just want to tell you that I kind of object to your asking me 
about what unions I belong to because I think that you inject the 
name of the union into the hearing and it bothers me, because it seems 
to me that that is something that I have a right 

Mr. Tavenner. It shouldn't bother you at all. If you will be frank 
and explain all of the questions, it shouldn't bother you or your union 
at all. 

Mr. Randolph. I don't like the idea of bringing unions up, and 
that is my right as an American to belong to a union. 

Chairman Walter. It is your right, and we have been doing every- 
thing we can to strengthen the hands of the unions in America, and 
not the other kind of operations which masquerade as unions. 

Mr. Randolph. I don't quite understand what you mean by that, 
]Mr. Walter, but you have a riglit to your opinion, and I know you 
mean something by it but I don't understand. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you ansAver the question, please ? 

Mr. Randolph. The American Federation of Radio and Television 
Artists, a charter member. 

Mr. Tavenner. When was the organization formed ? 

Mr. Randolph. Gee, I don't remember the exact date. 

Mr. Tavenner. Approximately^ how long have you been a member ? 

Mr. Randolph. When did I do the first radio show ? It was some- 
where around when it was formed. There was a television union and 
it was first a radio union, and I was a charter member of the radio 
union. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yon were in the radio union ? 

Mr. Randof.pii. American Federation of Radio Artists, from about 
1940 or something, or so, sir. Then when the amalgamation between 
AFRA and the television field took place and became AFTRA, I am 



2282 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

sure you have those dates better than I have, and I can't remember 
offhand, but it was 3 years ago, or somewhere around that time, and 
we automatically became members. 

Mr. Tavenner. And you have been a member continuously since 
that time ? 

Mr. Randolph. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee whether or not you are 
aware of the existence within that union of any organized group of 
the Communist Party which meets as a caucus ? 

Mr. Randolph. Well, here we go. I think that that question again 
really invades my rights under the first amendment of association. 
Although I don't want to give any credit to the question, I feel that 
I will then have to refuse to answer that question because of my rights 
under the first amendment and my constitutional privileges under the 
fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party during 
any period of time that you were a member of the American Federa- 
tion of Television and Radio Artists ? 

Mr. Randolph. I am afraid, sir, I will have to answer that ques- 
tion again with the same answer that I refuse to answer that question 
because of my rights under the first amendment, the rights of associa- 
tion, and all of the rest of it, and my constitutional privilege under 
the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party now ? 

Mr. Randolph. I am not getting facetious, but there is a story by 
Henry Steel Comet 

Chairman Walter. Answer the question ; we don't care about your 
stories. 

Mr. Randolph. I don't want to bore you men. 

Chairman Walter. I am afraid that you are going to, so just an- 
swer this question, and then we will eliminate that. 

Mr. Randolph. If you were to ask me a question if I am a member 
of the Republican or Democratic Parties, I would be bound to answer 
that I have to under my constitutional privileges, under the fifth 
amendment, answer that by invoking that right. 

Chairman Walter. You say that you would answer if I asked you 
whether you were a Democrat or Republican ? 

Mr. Randolph. I would not answer any question of a political na- 
ture if you asked me whether I was a Democrat, Republican, Commu- 
nist, or Socialist, although you might be pretty well surprised at my 
answer, if I wanted to answer it. But I don't believe it is your right 
as a committee to ask me that, and I have to invoke my constitutional 
privilege. 

Chairman Walter. You don't have to at all, and you are not under 
any compulsion. 

Mr. Randolph. I desire to do so. 

Chairman Walter. Well, that is different. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Randolph, I did not ask you a question as to 
what your political belief was, or whether you were a member of a 
political party. 

Mr. Randolph. I understand, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. I was asking you about Communist activities and 
your membership, alleged membership, in the Communist Party. 

Mr. Randolph. I know. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2283 

Mr. Tavenner. That is an entirely different thing from a political 
party. 

Mr. Randolph. That is a point of view, you see. 

Mr. Tavenner. You don't think so ? 

Mr. Randolph. Well, I am not going to, as I said, indulge in politi- 
cal opinions with the committee, because I did research like you do for 
an acting role, and I did research, and found out that the committee 
has certain political opinions, and anybody who opposes the commit- 
tee somehow falls into disrepute. So rather than get involved in any 
kind of political discussion^ which I don't mind doing backstage or 
any place else, I have a feeling, I just don't feel that the questions of 
political associations of any kind are the province of this particular 
committee. 

Chairman Walter. Just a minute. I want to get you straightened 
out on that. You say "the province of the committee." Actually we 
are an arm of the Congress of the United States. 

Mr. Randolph. I understand. 

Chairman Walter. This committee has no desire to do this work, 
and this work has been wished on us. 

Mr. Randolph. I have no desire to be here. 

Chairman Walter. There you are, we are both doing something 
unpleasant. 

Mr. Randolph, Then let us leave. 

Chairman Walter. In order to make it more pleasant, why don't 
you help us ? 

Mr. Randolph. I am really honestly trying to help. Wherever I 
feel deeply about something, Mr. Walter, I must tell you in all honesty 
that I have strong feelings about what is going on today. 

Chairman Walter. We both have strong feelings. 

Mr. Randolph. I know you do, and 

Chairman Walter. Tell me this in order to develop that particular 
question, have you ever been a member of the Communist Partj^ ? 

Mr. Randolph. Well, you know I am going to have to give you the 
same answer ? 

Chairman Walter. You don't have to. 

Mr. Randolph. Well, I would love to give you, and I want to give 
you, that answer. 

Chairman Walter. Why don't you then ? 

Mr. Randolph. But I don't think you should really ask me any 
questions or any citizen of the United States, that kind of a question. 
I think that is the thing, that is the way I was brought up, and that is 
the way I believe. I think every person in this room, including you, 
basically, really were taught that you have a right in this country to 
believe anything you want and any political party and any idea or 
association. 

Chairman Walter. No, I haven't. Is there anything further ? 

Mr. Ta^^nner. You said that you had done research work in prepa- 
ration for your testimony here. Have you done any research work 
regarding the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Randolph. You see, you are asking a political question again. 
I am not a belligerent person, and if I sound a little loud, in my family 
we used to argue a lot all of the time. 



2284 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Chairman Walter. We are not concerned about that, we are con- 
cerned about your arguments in this Communist cell of which we. 
think you were a member. We are more interested in that. 

Mr. Kandolph. Now, Mr. Walter, just a minute 

Chairman Walter. Will you answer the question ? 

Mr. Randolph. I am kept from being personal. Don't make in- 
ferences. 

Chairman Walter. I am not making any inferences. 

Mr, Scherer. Was his inference wrong that you were a member of 
the Communist Party? 

Mr. Randolph. No 

Mr. fecHERER. You said "Don't make inferences," and I want to 
know whether his inference that you were a member of the Communist 
cell was wrong. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Scherer. You have an opportunity to answer right now 
whether a member of this committee had a wrong inference. 

Mr. Randolph. Mr. Scherer, I feel all of tJiese questions are the 
same question, and so in any event, when we get in this field, I w^ould 
like to invoke my constitutional privilege under the fifth amendment, 
sir. 

Chairman Walter. All right, proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

^iv. Tavexner. Plave you been active in the work of the Committee 
for the Negro in the Arts, an organization established some years ago ^ 

Mr. Randolph. Mr. Tavenner, again what I feel is happening here 
is that this committee by bringing up names of organizations, and 
everything else like that, serves a purpose of censoring or frightening 
people regarding organizations. 

Mr. Tavenner. That organization has been cited by the Attorney 
General of the United States, and I don't want to mislead you on it, 
but I want to know if you served as a member of a committee of that 
organization? If so, I want to ask other questions relating to it. 

Mr. Scherer. You didn't finish your statement, that organization 
has been cited by the Attorney General as what? 

Mr. Tavenner. As a Communist subversive organization. 

Mr. Randolph. You are asking again a political question, of a kind 
that I just 

Chairman Walter. He is not asking you about your beliefs at all. 
Pie is merely asking you whether or not you did work for this or- 
ganization. 

Mr. Randolph. Representative Walter, he is asking a question of 
association, which certainly comes under the first amendment of the 
Constitution. I will therefore refuse to answer that question because 
of my rights under the first and my constitutional privileges under the 
fifth amendment. I told you we would get boring after awhile. 

Chairman Walter. I know what you are going to say. 

Mr. Randolph. You didn't know everything. 

Mr. Tavenner. To Avhat extent has your acting been on television ? 

Mr. Randolph. It was quite good, and I did a lot of television work 
up until 1952 when I was blacklisted by Mr. Johnson of Syracuse, as 
I imderstand, then later by Counter- Attack, and then later by Aware, 
Incorporated, and I never knew what the accusations were, or what 
reasons, but they were anonymous phone calls, and you know the kind 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2285 

of stutf. There were little hate letters and so on and so forth, and not 
many, but enough to make me quite disturbed about it, and find out 
that 1 was being blacklisted on television and I never could find out 
who did the accusations or any of that sort, and I never had a chance 
to answer any of that. That happened about 1952. 

Ever since that time I have devoted my entire time to fight black- 
listing, and Aware, Inc., and all of those little outfits that unfor- 
tunately bring so much fear and terror into our industry. Am I 
speaking too loud? 

Mr. Tavenner. Oh, no, not at all. I am accustomed to all types 
of speaking. 

Mr. liANDOLPH. I never get personal, and I really never do. So if it 
sounds at any moment that I am getting belligerent or something like 
that, you tell me, and I have respect for you as a congressional com- 
mittee. I have got certain positive ideas, unfortunately. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you taken part in any caucus of the Commu- 
nist Party within the organization of the American Federation of 
Television and Radio Artists? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. You know, you see, I don't quite understand, I have 
to answer the same question. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am going to ask specific questions and you will 
have to answer them specifically. 

Mr. Randolph. All right. 

Mr. Tavenner. I want to know definitely whether you were a mem- 
ber at any time of a Communist Party caucus within that organization. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Randolph. Well, I am going to give you exactly the way I 
feel about it. I am going to contest again the jurisdiction 

Mr. Tavenner. You mean you refuse to answer? 

Mr. Randolph. On the grounds that this committee is not involved 
in a legislative purpose, and that it is seeking to create an atmosphere 
of fear and conformity and blacklist in the theater, and that this 
investigation is a violation of my rights under the first amendment, 
and I will invoke my constitutional rights under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Scherer. Do you deny that there was such a caucus within 
the union? 

Mr. Randolph. The same answer, Representative Scherer. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any questions? 

Mr. Scherer. Were you a member of the Communist Party during 
the time that you served in the United States Air Force ? 

Mr. Randolph. I decline to answer that on the same reasons. Repre- 
sentative Scherer. Do I have to repeat them? 

Mr. Scherer. No. When did you first seek to volunteer? 

Mr. Randolph. December 7, 1941. 

Mr. Scherer. We were a cobelligerent with Russia at that time, 
were we not? 

Mr. Randolph. I don't answer any questions of a political nature, 
as I told you before, and I don't want to get involved in any political 
controversy with the committee, and I would make my feelings known 
later on. 

Can I read a statement ? May I read the statement that I prepared ? 

68010— 55— pt. 6 3 



2286 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Chairman Walter. You may leave the statement with us, and if 
we decide it is material, it will be made a part of the record. 

Is there anything further? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused, and call the next wit- 
ness. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Stanley Prager. 

Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand, please ? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Prager. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF STANLEY PEAGER, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS 
COUNSEL, MARTIN POPPER 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name ? 

Mr. Prager. Stanley Prager. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is noted that you are accompanied by counsel. 
Will counsel please identify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Popper. Martin Popper. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Prager? 

Mr. Prager. New York City, and Mr. Congressman, I have a very 
short statement. 

Chairman Walter. Just leave it with us, and I will be very happy 
to examine it, and if it is relevant, we will make it a part of the record. 

Mr. Prager. If you could read it, it would facilitate the whole thing. 

Chairman Walter. I know all about that. We have our own pro- 
cedures. Go ahead, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Prager. May I leave it with you now, and may I ask it be put 
in the record ? 

Chairman Walter. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is the date of your birth, please, sir ? 

Mr, Prager. January 8, 1917. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside ? 

Mr. Prager. New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been a resident of New York 
City? 

Mr. Prager. On and off, all of my life. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your profession ? 

Mr. Prager. I am an actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged professionally as 
an actor? 

Mr. Prager. I would say since about 1942, or 1943, somewhere 
around in there. 

Mr. Tavenner, Will you tell the committee please, what your for- 
mal educational training has been ? 

Mr. Prager. I was educated in the public school system in New 
York City and I went to John Hopkins IJniversity, in Baltimore, Md., 
for 3 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the date of the completion of your studies 
in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Prager. I believe it was 1937. 

Mr, Tavenner, I believe you stated that you began your acting 
career in 1942. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2287 

]\Ir. Prager. Around in there ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your employment prior to that time ? 

Mr. Prager. I was a college student. 

Mr. Tavenner. I understood you to say that you finished your 
studies in Baltimore in 1937. 

Mr. Prager. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavexnek. What schools did you attend after that ? 

Mr. Prager. What schools ? 

Mr. Ta\t2Nner. Yes. You said you were a student in 1940, when I 
understood you had completed your work at Hopkins in 1937. 

Mr. Prager. I beg your pardon. I don't think I said I was a stu- 
dent in 1940. 

Mr. Tavenner. I so understood you. 

Mr. Prager. Well, sir, it is not so. I left Johns Hopkins Uni- 
versity in 1937. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Then how were you employed in 1940 ? ; that was 
my question. 

Mr. Prager. In 1940, now I am not exactly sure about this date but 
my first job in the theater was in a play called, The Skin of Our Teeth. 

Mr. Tavenner. But you said you began acting in 1942. How were 
you employed prior to 1942 ? 

Mr. Prager. May I consult with my attorney for a moment? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr, Prager. I actually can't really remember how I was employed. 
Now I do remember, I had odd jobs like I was a counselor, a dramatic 
counselor at a camp for children, called Camp Graylock, near Pitts- 
field, Mass. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is the name again ? 

Mr. Prager. Camp Graylock, located near Pittsfield, Mass. I was 
also dramatic counselor in the summertime, at a camp called Camp 
Potomac, which is also near Pittsfield, Mass., and I got odd jobs 

Mr. Willis. Will you develop, Mr. Counsel, the period of his asso- 
ciation with those two children's camps ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you give us the dates of your employment at 
those summer camps ? 

Mr. Prager. I will give them to you to the best of my recollection. 
I believe that they were right towards the end of my college career, 
and perhaps the summer following. 

Mr. Tavenner. That would make it in 1937, and 1938. 

Mr. Prager. Yes, sir. i i • r, 

Mr. Tavenner. Which camp did you work at in 1937, and which 
one in 1938? 

Mr. Prager. I believe the last one I worked at was Camp Potomac, 
which would be in Pittsfield, Mass. May I make a correction? It 
now occurs to me that I was a camper at Camp Graylock, and a 
dramatic counselor at Camp Potomac. There is a difference. At one 
you pay, and the other you get paid. 

Mr. ■Ta\t<:nner. So it was the camp you attended m 1938 where 

you were paid? , - n <• 

' Mr. Prager. Yes ; I believe in 1938. To the best of my recollection 
that is an accurate date. I also believe I did that for two summers 

at Camp Potomac. i ..noo -.noo 

Mr. Ta\T2nner. Those were two summers ; 1937 and 1938, or 193-s 

and 1939? 



2288 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE XEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Prager. I don't know exactly. You see, since I was not work- 
ing on i^roadway at that time, I would pick up odd jobs like being 
a dramatic counselor, or— may I consult with my attorney for a 
moment ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr Prager. Well, that is about the extent of it, Mr. Tavenner. I 
had all ot these odd jobs. 

Mr Tavenner. Will you come back please and answer the question 
that 1 originally asked you, as to what your employment was prior to 
1942, when you entered into the theater as an actor ?" 

Mr. Prager. I believe I have just answered it. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have answered it as to 1938 and 1937 ; that is 
a long way prior to 1942. 

Mr. Prager. Let me explain myself to you. I had many odd jobs, 
as you see, and I cannot be held responsible for every particular job 
that I had. Now, if you have some information about a job that I 
had. maybe I could refresh my memory with you. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have told us what your employment was in 
1942, and what it was in 1937. What was it between those two periods ? 

Mr. Prager. I really can't recollect to the best of my recollection. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where were you living ? 

Mr. Prager. I was living in New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. For a period of 4 years.'you are unable to tell us 
what you were doing, and how you were employed ? 

Mr. Prager. No, I have told you that I have had odd jobs, and I 
worked here and there. I am not trying to be evasive, you understand. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am trying to help you remember. Can't you recall 
how you were employed at any time ? 

Mr. Prager. I was living at home, and I was fortunate enough at 
that time to be supported by my family, and so I would work in the 
summertime, as I described to you; aiid in the wintertime, because 
I wanted to be an actor, I would look for a job in the theater, and 
that can sometimes turn into a full winter's work. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well, did you engage in any theatrical work 
prior to 1942 that you can recall — during that 4-year period when 
you are unable to recall how you were employed ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. No, not in a theater, no. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, how were you employed? Was it radio? 

Mr. Prager. Mr. Tavenner, I have told yoii I had all of these odd 
jobs, and I can't recollect specifically what they were, and I might 
have had a radio job. 

Mr. Tavenner. I hand you a photostatic copy of the Daily Worker 
of April 25, 1940, and I call your attention to an article appearing 
there under the heading, "New Theater Players to Tour 20 Cities; 
IWO Lodges Will Sponsor Awake and Swing." After examining 
that article state whether or not it refreshes vour recollection as to 
your employment at that time by this show spoiisored by the IWO. 

(A document was handed to the witness. ) 

(The witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. Mr. Tavenner, I am going to answer this question in 
this way : I believe that what I think and say, and with whom I asso- 
ciate, is not this particular or any particular congressional committee's 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE NEW YORK AREA 2289 

concern. Consequently, I am not going to answer that question, be- 
cause of my constitutional rights guaranteed to me by the first amend- 
ment. 

Now, I would like to enlarge upon that a little bit. You see, I have 
another position about why I am here. I have been very vocal against 
the blacklist in my union, and I ran 

Mr. Tavenner. That is not responsive to the question, Mr. Chair- 
man. 

Mr. Prager, I believe it is. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Prager. May I explain a bit more ? 

Chairman Walter. Will you answer the question ? 

Mr. Prager. I cannot answer the question because I believe that 
you are prying into my right of association by this question, and I 
will not sit here and attack the Constitution of the United States. 
Consequently, I am not going to answer the question because you are 
violating my freedom of association, and you are prying into certain 
affairs of mine which you have no right to pry into. I refuse to answer 
the question on that basis and on another basis, which I would like 
to talk about for a moment. 

Chairman Walter. Is that the fifth amendment? 

Mr. Prager. Let me explain it to you this way 

Chairman Walter. We don't want any explanation, just say why 
you are not answering. 

Mr. Prager. I think it is terribly important to me to explain it in 
my own way. That is that I am going to invoke my privilege under 
the fifth amendment, and I would like to point out that in invoking 
my privilege, this has absolutely, or there is no inference of guilt 
connected with this on any level. 

Chairman Walter. I am entitled, or we are all entitled, to draw 
whatever inference we may from the fact that you invoke the fifth 
amendment. 

Mr. Prager. I think that you are, and I think that I am entitled 
to point out what my inference is. 

Chairman Walter. You have invoked your privilege under the 
fifth amendment. 

Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Prager. Also, I would like to say that I cannot see any legisla- 
tive purpose that could possibly be in anybody's mind on holding 
this kind of a hearing. Also I would like to point out, since it is no 
secret that I am working in the theater, that I consider this particu- 
lar congressional hearing an attack on the theater. 

Chairman Walter. I am sure that most of the good actors in the 
United States, and actresses, resent the fact that you presume to speak 
for all of them. 

Mr. Prager. I would not like to discuss my talent with you, or any- 
body else's talent. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then as a matter of fact, your reluctance or failure 
to state what your employment was between 1938 and_1942, wasn't 
because you didn't remember, but it was because you didn't want to 
answer ? 

Mr. Prager. That isn't so. that is not so. 



2290 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. I desire to offer the photostatic copy of the docu- 
ment in evidence and ask that it be marked "Prager Exhibit No. 1," 
for identification only. 

Chairman Walter. Mark it and let it be received. 

Mr. Prager. May I say something ? 

Chairman Walter. There is no question, is there, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Prager. I thought that perhaps I could use the time. 

]May I speak to my attorney please, before you ask the next question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

(Witness consulted counsel.) 

ilr. Ta'^t^nner. It is noted from the account of this play, which 
toured 20 cities, wliere I WO lodges would act as sponsors, that the 
pamphlet, The Yanks Are Not Coming, was to be dramatized. 

Will you tell the committee what was the purpose of the dramatiza- 
tion at that particular time, April 25, 1940, of the pamphlet entitled 
"The Yanks Are Not Coming" ? 

Mr. PiiAGER. ]Mr. Tavenner, you are asking me now to discuss the 
content of theatrical material, and I think it is quite significant that 
you are asking me this. And I am not going to discuss the content of 
theatrical material with you in this particular room, in this particular 
session, and I think that it is quite pertinent that you ask me a ques- 
tion like that. Because if I involve myself with jon on a discussion 
of this level, it is conceivable to me that you will ask me about the con- 
tent of all theatrical material, and I say to you 

Chairman Walter. Let us wait until that occurs. He is asking 
you about something specific at this moment. 

Mr. Prager. He asked me a question, and I am trying to answer it. 

Mr. Tavenner. The dramatization of The Yanks Are Not Coming 
took place during the period of the Hitler-Stalin pact, did it not? 

Mr. Prager. We are discussing the same thing. 

Mr. Ta^'~enner. And it represented at that time the line of the Com- 
munist Party, the party line through this country ? 

Mr. Prager. What is your question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that right ? 

Mr. SciiERER. That is the reason I asked the preceding witness 
whether or not he volunteered for the Army at a time we were cobel- 
ligerents with Russia, and after the Stalin-Hitler pact. 

Mr. Prager. How many questions are there now ? 

]Mr. ScHERER. That was an observation. 

(Whereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded. ) 

Mr. Prager. Now you are asking me a question 

Mr. Tavenner. It is the same question. 

Mr. Prager. Which involves content, and since the theater involves 
content, and since the hub of all theater is content, and you are tieing 
up this question with a question of a political line, I cannot involve 
myself. 

Mr. SciTERER. Of a conspiracy line and not a political line. 

Mr. Prager. I cannot involve myself with you in a discussion about 
the theater or about the theater's ideas, because this is an attack on 
the theater and something I won't be a party to. 

Chairman Walter. Go ahead and ask your next question. 

Mr. ScHERER. He hasn't answered the question. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2291 

Chairman Walter, I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Prager. I cannot answer it because in answering it, I would be 
doing the Constitution a disservice, and I think that the question is 
designed to entrap me, and consequently I will invoke my constitu- 
tional privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. It was a line of the Communist Party which was in 
opposition to the foreign policy of this country at that time, was 
it not? 

Mr. Prager. We are going through the same thing again, and so in 
the interest of time, I would like to once more make this quite clear. 

Chairman Walter. Don't bother about the time, we have plenty of 
time. 

Mr. ScHERER. He hasn't answered the question. 

Mr. Prager. What is the question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Read him the question. 

CV^^iereupon the reporter read the pending question as above 
recorded.) 

Mr. Prager. Well, I am going to give you the same answer, because 
it is actually the same question. I am not going to answer it because 
I am going to stand on my privilege guaranteed me under the fifth 
amendment, and also I am going to object to you asking it of me be- 
cause of my position on the first amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party in 
April of 1940, at the time this show was advertised as going on the road 
to tour 20 cities, where IWO lodges would be the sponsors ? 

Mr. Prager. You are asking me a very fundamental question, and 
in my position, I repeat, is a very simple one. I do not believe that 
what I think and say and what I read and with whom I associated and 
where I worship is a legitimate concern 

Mr. ScHERER. Nobody asked you where you worshiped. 

Mr. Prager (continuing). Of this or any other congressional 
committee. I know I am a good American, and I have never done any- 
thing I am ashamed of, and I have never been a member of any 
organization I believe to be a threat or advocated the overthrow of 
this Government by force and violence. 

Chairman Walter. Have you ever been a member of the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Prager. I am answering this gentleman. 

Chairman Walter. You have just answered that you have never 
been a member of any organization 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question because you are 
invading my right of association, and you are trying to entrap me. 

Chairman Walter. I am not trying to entrap you at all. 

Mr. Prager. I am going to invoke my constitutional privilege, 
which is by the way, an issue of law. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer. 

Mr. Scherer. In view of his statement it is my opinion that he has 
waived the right to invoke the fifth amendment, and I ask you to 
direct the witness to answer the question, whether he is a member 
of the Communist Party or not. 

Mr. Prager. In your opinion I may have 

Mr. Scherer. Are you a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Prager. I just answered this gentleman and now I will answer 
you, that I will not involve myself in it because I believe it is an in- 



2292 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

vasion of my privacy and my association, and I also am invoking my 
privilege guaranteed me under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain an actor in New York 
City after you began in 1942 ? 

Mr. Prager. I appeared in 2 plays, and then I was assigned to do 
a motion picture made of the last play I was in. It was The Eve of 
St. Mark, by Maxwell Anderson, a play about the war. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that the one that you were assigned to do a motion 
picture of ? 

Mr. Prager. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere did you do that motion picture work? 

Mr. Prager. Hollywood. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you go to Hollywood ? 

Mr. Prager. I believe that would be about 1943. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Prager. I remained in Hollywood on and off for approximately 
6 or 7 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you reside in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Prager. I lived at a number of places, and I believe that when 
I first went out there I lived in Beverly Hills, and I had an apartment 
on a street called Orchard Drive, and I lived 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the number of the address on Orchard 
Drive or Orchard Avenue ? 

Mr. Prager. I really couldn't tell you ; I don't remember. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was it 1782 ? 

Mr. Prager. It could have possibly been. 

Mr. Tavenner. While living at 1782 Orchard Avenue, in 1944, were 
you issued Communist Party card No. 46929 for that year ? 

Mr, Prager. Is that a question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question, Mr. Chairman, 
for the same reasons that I said before. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you acquainted with Sterling Hayden? 

(Witness consulted with counsel. ) 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question, Mr. Chairman, 
for the same reasons as previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sterling Hayden testified before this committee 
that he was a member of a group of the Communist Party in Holly- 
wood which was interested in a controversy that had arisen between 
the studios and a union. It was between two unions, I believe. He 
vv^as assigned by the Communist Party group to work with another 
group, and he told the committee he was certain that the other persons 
in that group were members of the Communist Party, the same as he. 
According to his testimony, among those were Howard DaSilva, Stan- 
ley Prager, and George Tyne. 

Can you enlighten the committee upon the real purposes of that 
second group, of which ]Mr. Hayden said that he himself was a 
member ? 

Mr. Prager. Well, you see, now you are again dealing in an area 
which I don't believe, or you are questioning me in an area which I 
don't believe you liave a right to question me in, but I would like to go 
on a little bit and discuss Sterling Hayden. I would like to discuss 
him in this way 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2293 

Chairman Walter. We don't care about your viewpoint about 
.Sterling- Hay den. You have been asked a question as to certain things 
that this group is doing, and now will you answer the question or won't 



you 



( Witness consulted with counsel. ) 

Mr. Prager. Mr. Chairman, I am not going to discuss this on the 
grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. The period about which Mr. Hayden was testifying 
was 1943. 

Are you acquainted with George Tyne ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. Yes, I am. He is an actor, and a good actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you ever a member of a Communist Party 
group with hun ? 

Mr. Prager. I am certainly not going to answer that question, Mr. 
Chairman, and on the grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Howard DaSilva ? 

Mr. Prager. Yes, sir, I am. He is another good actor, a blacklisted 
actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party with 
Howard DaSilva? 

Mr. Prager. I will not discuss that with you on the grounds 
previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Another witness testified before this committee by 
the name of Mrs. Pauline Swanson Townsend. Were you acquainted 
with Mrs. Townsend, the wife of Leo Townsend ? 

Mr. Prager. May I consult with my attorney ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. What is that name again ? 

Mr. Tavenner. The wife of Leo Townsend, Mrs. Pauline Swanson 
Townsend. 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to discuss Mrs. Pauline Townsend 
with you on the grounds previously stated, but I am going to tell 
you what my opinion is of Mrs. Pauline Townsend. 

Chairman Walter. We are not concerned with your opinion of 
this lady. 

Mr. Prager. This kind of informant and stool pigeon 

Chairman Walter. What do you mean by an informant? 

Mr. Prager. I saw a movie once called. The Informer, which af- 
fected me a great deal, and a wonderful movie, made by John Ford, a 
Hollywood movie. 

Chairman Walter. By an informer, you are inferring that this 
lady has told about activities that you and she engaged in; is that 
what you mean ? 

Mr. Prager. Congressman, I am not inferring anything, and I am 
stating what I feel here. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mrs. Townsend in her testimony before this com- 
mittee identified you as a member of the Communist Party, along 
with a person by the name of Bart Lytton. She was the literature 
director of the group of the Communist Party, of which she said you 
and Mr. Lytton were members. 

Were you a member of any group of the Communist Party in 1945, 
of which Bart Lvtton was a member ? 



2294 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Prager. The same question in another form, and I refuse to 
answer it on the same grounds. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you acquainted with Bart Lytton ? 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question on the grounds 
previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Bart Lytton also testified before this committee, 
and each of these witnesses who testified, testified as to the circum- 
stances under which he became a member of the Communist Party. 
They advised the committee of the character of Communist Party 
activities engaged in by the groups as far as they knew, and they told 
the committee the circumstances under which they left the Communist 
Party and the time they left. 

Mr. Bart Lytton also identified you as a member of this group of 
the Communist Part3^ 

So again I want to ask you if he was in error in his identification 
of you ? 

Mr. Prager. I believe that because I have been vocal against the 
blacklist of my union, and because I signed a letter against an organ- 
ization called Aware, Inc. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question that was 
asked you. 

Mr. Prager. I will not answer that question, Congressman, on the 
grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. As a matter of fact you were served with a subpena 
as early as 1953 for your appearance before this committee, were you 
not? 

Mr. Prager. Yes, I was. 

Mr. Tavenner. And you were excused at the time ? 

Mr. Prager. Well, I sat here, yes, I was excused. 

Mr. Tavenner. You were excused because that was in May of 1953, 
when the committee heard numerous witnesses and closed before hear- 
ing all of the witnesses. 

Mr. Prager. I imagine that is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. So the committee's interest in you isn't any matter 
of recent date. 

Mr. Prager. My interest in the committee isn't of recent date. 

Mr. Tavenner. No, it shouldn't be. 

Chairman Walter. And that is understandable, of course. 

Mr. Prager. I must say since I was served in 1953, and since I have 
been working in New York, I think this must be a fairly good indica- 
tion of what kind of threat to the national security I must be. 

Mr. Tavenner. Possibly you could give this committee information 
about the workings of the Communist Party, and from that infor- 
mation we might be able to determine to what extent your particular 
information may be of value. Will you give it to us? 

Mr. Prager. I will not involve myself in what I could possibly give 
you, because that is a word that has a wide variance, but I only can 
repeat to you that I feel quite strongly about the fact that I am here, 
and it is an interruption in my life. All I ask is that I be let alone 
so that I can pursue my right to work in the theater, and in television, 
and in radio, and that I will not join with you, Mr. Tavenner, or with 
anybody, or this committee, or any other congressional committee, 
and I respectfully submit this to you gentlemen, I will not join with 
yoa in an attack on the Constitution. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2295 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you join with the Communist Party? 

Mr. Prager. You are asking me the same kind of question in a dif- 
ferent kind of way, and again I must stand on my constitutional 
privileges. 

Chairman Walter. You have declined to answer because of your 
constitutional privilege. 

Ask the next question, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated you were active in your union, that is the 
way I understood you to express yourself. 

Mr. Prager. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. What union is that ? 

Mr. Prager. I belong to the American Federation of Radio and Tele- 
vision Artists, and I belong to the Actor's Equity Association. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee please whether there is 
an organized group of the Communist Party within either of those 
organizations ? 

Mr. Prager, This is the same question, designed to entrap me, and 
I will not answer it on the grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you aware of the holding of caucus meetings 
within either of those organizations or both of tliem 

Mr. Prager. This is the same question. 

Mr. Tavenner. Just a moment. For the purpose of propagating 
Communist Party decisions within those groups ? 

Mr. Prager. This is the same question in a different form, and I 
refuse to answer on the grounds previously stated, but I would like to 
explain how I personally was active in my union. 

Chairman Walter. We are not concerned with that. 

Mr. Prager. I tried to get the basic minimum wage raised. 

Chairman Walter. You were asked a question and you declined to 
answer it, and that is all. 

Mr. Prager. These things are very important to me, and the fact 
that I fought against the blacklist. 

Chairman Walter. Other things are important to us. 

Mr. Prager. And I fought to get the minimum wage raised, and I 
think it is quite important to all factors. 

Chairman Walter. The matter of the Communist Party activities 
are unimportant, is that right? 

Mr. Prager. This attack against the union is uncalled for. 

Chairman Walter. Nobody is attacking any union. We are just 
trying to assist the union members in seeing what the true situation is. 

Mr. Prager. I think that is not a legislative purpose, and I think 
that the union's business is the union's business. 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. You say that you returned from California to New 
York in 1947, is that your testimony ? 

Mr. Prager. I believe so, but again I implore you to understand 
that I am very bad on the exact dates, but yes, I think that is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Since your return to New York, in 1947 or 1948, 
how have you been employed ? 

Mr. Prager. I came back in 1947 and I worked in a nightclub. 
Wliile I was here, after the finish of the engagement in the nightclub, 
I was hired for a film while being here, and I went back and made 
that film, and 1 or 2 others, and then I came back to New York after 
that, and I have been here ever since. 



2296 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. "V^Hiat has been your employment since you have 
been back in New York ? 

Mr. Prager. I worked in a musical review called, Two on the 
Aisle. 

Mr. Tavenner. What year was that ? 

Mr. Prager. A^ain approximately, I think that that must have 
been around 1952 or 1953 and it was in the summertime, around in 
there. When that closed, I worked in a musical package of a play 
called. One Touch of Venus, and wdien I came back I worked in a 
musical review called, Two on the Aisle, and when that closed I 
worked in a revival of a play on Broadway called Eoom Service. 

After that I did some more summer work in Dallas, and on the 
cape, and then there followed a period of unemployment, and I'm 
now currently engaged in a Broadway musical. 

Mr. Tavenner. ^t^iat is the name of that musical? 

Mr. Prager. The Pajama Game. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will j^ou tell the committee your television credits? 

Mr. Prager. When I came back from California, I worked on a 
show called The College Bowl, a musical show, which had a contract 
show, which had a certain kind of run, and I think it was about 
26 weeks. 

After that I worked very sporadically on television, and I think 
that I can't give you these chronologically, but I have worked on, the 
Colgate Comedy Hour, on the Jackie Gleason Show. 

There are very few. That is about offhand all I can remember. 
I am sure there were 1 or 2 others, and I worked for instance, on a 
show whose name I can't think of, where I was acting out sketches, 
a kind of game, you know. I also worked on a show called, Say It 
With Acting, which was playing charades. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat about radio shows ? 

Mr. Prager. To the best of my recollection, I haven't been on a 
radio show in a long time. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the period of time that you have been an 
actor, you have been prominent in numerous Communist Party activi- 
ties, have you not ? For instance, the sponsorship of the Conference 
for Thought Control, held in California in 1947, under the auspices 
of the Hollywood Council of the Arts, Sciences, and Professions and 
the Progressive Citizens of America. 

Mr. Prager. I can answer that by saying to you first of all that I am 
against thought control, and I am for peace, and I will not answer 
any question which invades my privacy and my right of association, 
and I will invoke my privilege under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you against thought control on the part of the 
Communist Party against its members ? 

Mr. Prager. That is a trick question, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. No, it isn't. 

Mr. Prager. To me it is, and consequently I can't involve myself 
with you in it. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have never spoken out against thought control 
as exercised by the Communist Party, have you ? 

Mr. Prager, That is the same question, and I won't answer it for 
the same grounds previously stated. But I will tell you tliis, at some 
other time, at some other place, I will discuss anything with you on 
any level, but not in this wall cloaked with these ground rules. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2297 

Mr. Tavenner. And not under oath ? 

Mr. Prager. Well, I think that I have answered it. 

Mr. Tavenner. You also took part in the movement by the actor's 
division of the Progressive Citizens of America, on November 3, 1947, 
in attacking the predecessors of this committee, did you not? 

Now, in asking you that question, anyone has a right, of course, to 
attack this committee, and the only purpose, or the reason I ask you 
about it is to find out whether or not you were part of a Communist 
Party plan to do so. 

Mr. Prager. I would like to answer that by saying that it is true 
anybody has the right to attack this committee, but you do it at the 
risk of losing your job. History has sliown that if you attack this 
committee and if you are openly aggressive against the committee, 
you are in great jeopardy of losing your job. In answer to your 
question, I am not going to answer it on the grounds previously stated. 
But if you look at the history of the people who have attacked this 
committee, you will find tliat they have been blacklisted. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think that your testimony shows that since 1947, 
you have had quite extensive employment. You took part as one of 
the signers in the amicus curiae brief filed in behalf of the Hollywood 
Ten, did you not? 

Mr. Prager. Yes, I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. To what extent was the Communist Party instru- 
mental in procuring your signature to it? 

Mr. Prager. It is the same kind of trick question, and I won't answer 
it on the grounds jireviously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did the Communist Party or any person known to 
you to be a member of the Communist Party influence you in obtain- 
ing your signature to that brief ? 

Mr. Prager. I stand on my previous statement. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct him to answer the question, Mr. 
Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

yiv. Prager. I am not answering it because I believe my constitu- 
tional rights are being attacked, and I will not answer it because you 
are prying into my associations and because I don't think that this 
{[uestion has any legislative ])urpose in relation to this committee, and 
1 will not answer it because I am invoking my privilege under the 
fifth amendment. 

Also I will not answer it because I think that the question has in 
it an intention to intimidate people from filing briefs. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask that the witness be directed to answer the 
question because I think that he waived his right to invoke the fifth 
amendment when he said that he signed the petition. 

Chairman Walter. He was directed to answer, and he didn't. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you one of the sponsors of the peace meeting 
held in Mexico City in August of 1949 ? 

Mr. Prager. I am for peace, and I always have been for peace, and 
I don't think there is going to be a war. 

Chairman Walter. Will you answer the question, please? 

Mr. Prager. Any question of peace, I am for. 

Cliairman Walter. What about this particular one? 

Mr. Prager. I am going to decline to answer that on the grounds 
previously stated. 



2298 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. ScHERER, Did you go to Mexico at that time, Witness? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. I believe that that is the same question, and I refuse 
to answer it on the gi'ounds previously stated. 

Mr, ScHERER. Were you ever in Mexico ? 

Mr. Prager. Yes, I have been in Mexico. 

Mr. Scherer. What was the date of this peace meeting? 

Mr. Tavenner. August of 1949. 

Mr. Scherer. Were you in Mexico in August of 1949 ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. I was in Mexico around 1950, in a place called Rosa 
Rita Beach, and it is near Ensenada, and I have never been in Mexico 
City to the best of my recollection. 

Chairman Walter. Were you in Mexico in August of 1949, that 
was the question ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. I stand on the previous grounds that I stood on before. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. I cannot 
accept your answer. Witness. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Prager. I will not answer it because I stand on my constitu- 
tional privileges. 

Mr. Willis. Were you in Mexico more than once ? 

Mr. Prager. I think that I might have been, and it is kind of easy 
to drive down from Los Angeles into Lower California. 

Mr. Scherer. What were your reasons for going to Mexico ? 

Mr. Prager. I think that that question is, you know, also, intend- 
ing to entrap me, and I am not going to answer it, and no matter what 
the reasons are, I don't think that you have the right to ask me my 
reasons to go anyplace. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness. 

Chairman Walter. I direct the witness. 

Mr. Prager. I will not answer and stand on the grounds previously 
stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is Stanley Prager your professional name or is it 
your real name ? 

Mr, Prager. It is both 

Mr, Tavenner, It is both ? 

Mr, Prager. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you used any other name ? 

( Witness consulted with counsel, ) 

Mr. Prager. I decline to answer that on the grounds previously 
stated. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question, 

Mr, Prager. I decline to answer on the grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Scherer. Do you feel that to tell us whether or not you have 
used any other name would tend to incriminate you, Witness ? 

Mr. Prager. I decline to answer, Mr. Congressman, on the grounds 
previously stated, but may I have a moment with my attorney ? 

Mr. Scherer, I ask you to direct the witness, Mr. Chairman. 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. I am declining, Mr. Chairman, to answer that ques- 
tion on the grounds previously stated, but I am also stating that there 
is no inference of guilt involved here. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2299 

Mr, ScHERER. I am asking you again, do you feel that to answer the 
question of whether or not you used any other name would tend to 
incriminate you? 

Mr. Prager. I decline to answer on the grounds previously stated, 

although I again say 

]Mr. SoHERER. You cannot take the fifth amendment on the fifth 
amendment. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Prager. I decline to answer, again, on the grounds previously 
stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have stated that your professional and your 
true name is Stanley Prager. Were you born under the name of 
Stanley Prager? 

Mr. Prager. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the last television play that you were 
engaged in ? I am not certain that I understood you. 

Mr. Prager. Well, let me ask you to clarify that. The last tele- 
vision play, or appearance ? 

Mr. Tavenner. xVppearance. 

Mr. Prager. I believe the last television appearance that I made 
was at a benefit for cerebral palsy. 

Mr. Ta^t:nner. What was the last television play in which you 
engaged ? 

Mr. Prager. To the best of my knowledge, it must have been last 
summer on the Colgate Comedy Hour. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you had a position of any character within 
the framework of the American Federation of Television and Radio 
Artsists' organization ? 

Mr. Prager. I don't understand the question. Would you define 
that a little more clearly ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Have vou held any position within tliat organiza- 
tion ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel. ) 

Mr. Prager. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. Elective or appointive? 

Mr. Prager. Not to my knowledge, I don't remember holding any 
position. I am a member in good standing. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you held any position in Actors Equity? 

Mr. PrxVGer. Not to my knowledge. 

Mr. Tavenner. You would know if you had. 

Mr. Prager. I was never an officer or council member, if tliat is 
what you are referring to. 

Mr. Scherer. Were you ever a committee chairman of either of 
the unions? 

Mr. Prager. Not to my knowledge, I might have at one time been 
a teller, or, yes, I was a sergeant-at-arms at a couple of Actors Equity 
meetings. 

Mr. Scherer. That is an office, 

Mr, Tavenner, Were you a member of the Communist Party at 
any time that you were a member of either of these organizations ? 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question because you 
are prying into my associations, and you are attacking the Constitu- 
tion, and I am going to invoke my privilege guaranteed me under the 
fifth amendment. 



2300 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party now? 

Mr. Prager. I am not going to answer that question because, as I 
exphiined to you, my associations and my beliefs and my i-ight of 
whom I meet with, or wliat I read, is my own private affair, and it 
has no business of this committee and I can't see any legislative func- 
tions that this committee has in asking these kind of questions, and 
consequently I refuse to answer it on my rights guaranteed me under 
the first amendment, and I invoke my privilege as guaranteed me 
under the fifth amendment, although I say that there is no incrimina- 
tion necessarily stated here. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Sciierer. Mr. Prager, Mrs. Townsend, as you know now, testi- 
fied under oath before this committee as to your Communist 

Mr. Prager. May I speak to my attorney f oi- a moment ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Prager. I meant in the last statement that no inference should 
be drawn, and I used an incorrect word, and may I have that corrected, 
please ? 

Mr. Scherer. Mr. Prager, as you now know, Mr. Lytton and Mrs. 
Townsend testified under oath before this committee as to your Com- 
munist Party membership. You referred to Mrs. Townsend as an 
informer and a stool pigeon. I am going to ask you whether or not the 
testimony which Mrs. Townsend gave to this committee under oatli 
about you was true or false ? 

Mr. Prager. I decline to answer that question on the grounds pre- 
viously stated. 

Mr. Scherer. I have no further questions. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused. 

The committee will stand in recess until 2 : 15 p. m. 

(Whereupon, at 12 : 50, the committee recessed until 2 : 15 p. m., the 
same dav. ) 

AFTERNOON SESSION— AUGUST 15, 1955 

Chairman Walter. The committee will be in order. 

Will you call your next witness, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Martin Wolfson. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I have a little trouble with hearing, and I would like 
to have counsel sit on this side of me. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no objection. 

Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand, Mr. Wolfson. 

Do you swear that the testimony you arc about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Wolfson. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF MAKTIN WOLFSON. ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, 

PAUL L. EOSS 

Mr. Ta\^nner. "\Vliat is your name, please, sir ? 
]Mr. Wolfson. My name is ]\Iartin Wolfson. 

jNIr. Tavenner. It is noted that you are accompanied by counsel. 
Will counsel please identify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Ross. Paul L. Ross, 160 Broadway, New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and wdiere were you born, Mr. Wolfson? 

Mr. Wolfson. I was born in New York City. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2301 

Mr, Tavenner. When ? 

Mr.WoLFSON. In 1904. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. New York City. 

Mr. Tavenxer. What address? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Counsel, if you don't mind, I have a wife and child, 
and I would like to not give the address. There are some crackpots 
in this town, and I don't want to have any trouble for them. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you answer the question, please ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I will give it to you privately. 

Mr. Tavenner. For the record ? 

Chairman Walter. That is all right. 

Mr. Tavenner. How^ long have you resided in the city of New 
York? 

Mr. WoLFSON. On and off, all of those years, 51. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your profession ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I consider myself an actor, and I have been an actor 
for 30 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your present employment as an actor? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I would be working right now if I hadn't been 
served with a subpena by this committee, which forced me to cancel 
a 3-week contract at the St. Louis Municipal Opera, and a contract 
that I liad entered into in March. I asked for a postponement, inci- 
dentally, and I didn't get it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you answer the question, please, sir ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I am not employed now. 

Mr. Tavenner. What show were you employed by at the time you 
say you came here to testify ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. South Pacific. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, what your for- 
mal educational training has been? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I was educated in the schools of Brooklyn, N. Y., 
and graduated from the College of the City of New York in 1924 with 
a B. A. degree. 

Mr. Tavenner. AVlien did you first begin your employment as an 
actor in a professional capacity ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I would say in 1925. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic copy of the Decem- 
ber 17, 1931, issue of the Daily Worker, and I find there a notice re- 
garding a play in which you were an actor. The play was entitled 
"Counselor at Law." Do you recall that play ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I do. 

Mr. Tavenner. In giving the account of the play, it is stated that — 

Wolfson, just before entering the cast, had traveled in Russia, studying the 
theaters there, and had staged the Front Page in Moscow." 

Is this a correct report of your experience in Russia ? 

Mr. Wolfson. Mr. Chairman, I am glad to say that today we are 
talking about cultural exchanges between peoples, and I went to the 
Soviet Union because at the time that we had a depression, I didn't 
have any stocks, and I had a few dolkrs, and I went to study the 
theater. It is correct to say that I helped direct the play. I don't 
speak Russian myself. 

68010 — 55 — pt. 6 4 



2302 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Was the play Counselor at Law taken to Russia? 
It is noted in this article it had been invited to the Soviet Union. 
Mr. WoLFSoisr. As far as I know, it did not, 
Mr. Tavexxer. Do you know whether or not it was invited? 
Mr. WoLFSON. No, I do not. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you in the Soviet Union ? 
Mr. WoLFSON. About 3 months. 

Mr. Tavenner. T\^iat was the purpose of your going ? 
Mr. WoLFsoN. I thought I explained, Counselor. 
Mr. Tavenner. Was there any other purpose ? 
Mr. WoLFSON. There was no purpose — purely cultural. 
Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party at the 
time that you were in Eussia ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Mr. Chairman, I think that the purpose of this com- 
mittee is to throw fear into the theater. I think that it is no accident 
that you come here at this time, just when productions are being 
planned for the fall, actors are being engaged, and plays are being 
read. You are trying to throw fear into the theater, and I don't think 
the purpose is a correct one or valid one. 

Chairman Walter. Will you answer the question ? 
Mr. WoLFSON. Further, I would say that I refuse. Will you state 
the question again ? 

Mr. TA^T.NNER. My question was in substance this : Were you a 
member of the Communist Party at the time you were in Eussia ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. You have no right to inquire into my associations, 
my beliefs, and my thoughts. 

Chairman Walter. Never mind the argument, answer the question. 
Mr. WoLFSoN. May I say it in my own way, Mr. Chairman? 
Chairman Walter. Answer the question, and don't give us an argu- 
ment. We are not interested in that. 

Mr. WoLFSON. You may not be interested in it but I am interested 
in giving the reasons for it. 

Chairman Walter. Now answer the question. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I have the right to give the reasons for my refusal 
to answer this question, have I not ? 

Chairman Walter. After you refuse to answer. 
Mr. WoLFSON. I refuse to answer the question and I do it on the 
right of my privilege of refusing to bear witness against myself. 
Chairman Walter. All right. 
Mr. ScHERER. Now, will you read that answer ? 

(Whereupon the reporter read the previous answer as above 
recorded.) 

Mr. ScHERER. You are invoking the fifth amendment then, against 
self-incrimination ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I think that you will find that in the fifth, 
Congressman. 

Mr. ScHERER. I understand, but under the recent Supreme Court 
decision, there is a duty imposed upon this committee to ask the wit- 
ness when it is not clear that he is invoking the fifth amendment, to 
specifically ask that question. 

Mr. WoLFSON, I do. I invoke the fifth amendment. 
Mr. Tavenner. Have you been engaged as an actor at any time in 
Hollywood ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I have been there with plays. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2303 

Mr. Tavenner. You were there in an official capacity, I assume 
then. 

Mr. WoLrsoN. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you first go to California ? 

Mr. WoLTSON. To the best of my recollection, I would say in 1926. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your purpose in going at that time ? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I was in a play called Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that a screen production ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. It was a play, counselor, I just told you. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was it also produced on the screen ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Subsequently it was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you in it when it was produced in movies ? 

Mr. WoLrsoN. I was not. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you in California at that time? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. To the best of my recollection, I would say a few 
months, playing up and down California. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the occasion of your next trip to Cali- 
fornia ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I believe it was in 1932. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the occasion of your going there at that 
time ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I think that was in the play Counselor at Law, but I 
am not sure, though. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell us the next time that you were in Cali- 
fornia engaging in your profession ? 

Mr. WoiJ-soN. It was in 1933. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the occasion of your being there then? 

Mr. WoLFsoN, A tryout of a play called, Ladies and Gentlemen. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that on the stage or screen ? 

Mr. WoLFSoN. It was on the stage, a tryout of a play. 

Mr. Taaenner. Did you at any time engage in acting for the 
screen ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I have for some commercial pictures here in the East, 
the names of which I have forgotten. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you engaged in that work in the West? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. No, I have not. I might have engaged in it at tliis 
point if this committee hadn't subpenaecl me, and I had two offers. 

Mr. Tavenner. In 1939, this was a tryout for a stage play. How 
long were you in California at that time? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I would say about a month. Maybe a little more. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the occasion of your next trip to Cali- 
fornia ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. That is all. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. Will you tell the committee please what your princi- 
pal stage credits have been in New York, and the approximate dates? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I was in a play called, Grant Street Follies, about 1924 
or 1925, I guess it was around there, in which I played the part of a 
takeoff' on a Senator in Grant Street Follies, as you know. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is not my purpose for you to give us the plot of the 
play, merely the title of it. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I see. I appeared in a play called. The Glass Slipper, 
and I appeared in a play called, Faust, and I appeared in a play 
called Goat Song. I have been in the theater 30 years, you know. I 



2304 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

have appeared in a play called Marco's Millions, Vulpani, As You 
Were, Counselor at Law, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. 

Mr. Tavenner, Now up to that point, about what date have you 
reached ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Well, that i» 1932, that includes 1932. 

I was in a play, and I don't mean any oflense to the committee, 
called No for an Answer, and I was in a play called Black Pit, a very 
good play. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that play by Albert Moltz ? 

Mr. WoursoN. I believe it was. 

Mr. Tavenner. You know it was, don't you ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. A very good play. 

Mr. Tavenner. Don't you know it was ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Which castigated stool pigeons. 

Mr. Tavenner. Don't you know it was Albert Moltz' play \ 

Mr. WoLFSON. I know it was, yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you personally acquainted with Albert Moltz ? 

Mr. WoLFsON. I don't think that you have the right to inquire into 
my associations, and I shall therefore refuse to answer. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer the question, 
Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I fear the consequences of your question, and there- 
fore invoke my privilege under the hfth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I refuse to bear witness against myself. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you proceed ? 

Mr. WoLP^soN. I was in a play called Brooklyn, USA, a play called 
Counter- Attack, and no relation to the pa])er that has blacklisted me. 

I was in a play called Cup of Trembling. Guys and Dolls, and 
Threepenny Opera. 

Did I tell you South Pacific? 

Chairman Walter. You did a while ago. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the period that you were engaged in acting, 
did you also engage in other activities in which the Communist Party 
had a special stake and in which it was interested, such as tlie 
following: 

About the time of the purge by Stalin in the Soviet Union, in 1938, 
there appears in the Daily Worker issue of April 28. 1938, an adver- 
tisement in defense of the purge trials in the Soviet Union, which 
contained a statement as follows : 

The measures taken by the Soviet Union to preserve and extend its gains and 
its strength therefore find their echoes here where we are stalving the fixture 
of the American people on the preservation of progressive democracy and the 
unification of our efforts to prevent the Fascists from strangling the rights of the 
people. 

American liberals must not permit their outlook on these questions to be con- 
fused, nor allow their recognition of the place of the Soviet Union in the inter- 
national fight of democracy against fascism to be destroyed. We call upon 
them to support the efforts of the Soviet Union to free itself from insidious 
internal dangers, principal menace to peace and democracy. 

Will you examine the list of those who signed it and state whether 
or not your name appeare there. 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 



COMMUXIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2305 

Mr. WoLFSON. Mr. Counsel, I think the paper speaks for itself, but 
I am not going to allow you to inquire into any of my associations, 
and I refuse to answer on the basis of my 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you examine the paper and state to the com- 
mittee what name you see, the third name from the bottom of the list 
on the right-hand column ? 

Mr. WoLFSON". Mr. Congressman, or Mr. Counsel, anyone could 
read that for himself. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, can you read it ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I decline to answer. 

Mr. ScHERER. Mr. Chairman, I ask you to direct the witness to 
answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. WoLFSON. The same answer for the previously stated position. 

Mr. Tavenner. I desire to offer the document in evidence and ask 
that it be marked "Wolfson Exhibit No. 1," for identification only. 

Chairman Walter. Mark it, and let it be received. 

The name at the bottom of this list, third from the bottom, is Mar- 
tin Wolfson. Are you the Martin Wolfson whose name appears on 
this paper ? 

Mr. Wolfson. For the same reason, Congressman, I refuse to 
answer that. 

Mr. Tavenner. At the time that defense was made of the Soviet 
purges, were you a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Wolfson. The same objection, and the same refusal to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Plas there been any other activity in the field of 
acting which you engaged in, and which you have not told us about? 

(Witness consultecl with counsel.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Your experience has been over such a long period of 
time, I will try to simplify the question. Were you a member of, or 
employed by the Federal Theater project? 

Mr. Wolfson. Yes. I wasn't a member of the project. I was em- 
ployed by it for one show. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was that show ? 

Mr. Wolfson. It was a Yiddish prodiiction called Tailor Becomes 
a Storolreeper, I think. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long were you connected with it ? 

Mr. Wolfson. A short time, I would say. 

Mr. Tavenner. What do you consider a short time ? 

Mr. Wolfson. Six months maybe, or five months. 

Mr. Tavexner. The committee has received considerable evidence 
indicating the existence among the employees of the Federal Theater 
project, of organized groups of the Communist Party. Were you 
aware of the existence of any such organized group during the period 
you were in that play ? 

Mr. Wolfson. I think the Federal Theater was one of the greatest 
things that ever happened to xYmerica, and I think this committee 
helped to defeat that. I don't think this committee is here to help 
the theater, as I have indicated in the statement of mine. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I ask that the witness be directed to answer 
the question ? 

Mr. Wolfson. Will you repeat the question again ? 



2306 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you aware of the existence within the Fed- 
eral Theater project of any organized group or gi"oups of the Com- 
munist Party while you were employed by it ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I shall refuse to answer that question for the previ- 
ously stated reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee whether there was an 
outgrowth from the Federal Theater projects of an organization en- 
titled "Theater Arts Commitee"? 

Mr. WoLFSON. For the same reason I shall refuse to answer that 
question. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you on the executive board of the Theater 
Arts Committee ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I shall refuse to answer that for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic copy of a letterhead 
of the Theater Arts Committee which gives the names of the members 
of the executive board, including the executive secretary and the 
advisory council, in which the name Martin Wolfson appears as a 
member of the executive board, in charge of production division. 

I desire to introduce it in evidence and ask that it be marked "Wolf- 
son Exhibit No. 2" for identification only. 

Chairman Walter. Mark it and let it be received. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Wolfson, you were an actor over a long period 
of time. Will you tell the committee whether or not the Communist 
Party or any of its members endeavored to obtain assistance from 
actors in taking part in causes that the Communist Party was inter- 
ested in in the United States and was endeavoring to promulgate or 
support ? 

(Witness consulted counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFsON. I think that is a question that you know what the 
answer will be. I take the same position. I refuse to answer it for the 
same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall a period of time when the Communist 
Party was extremely interested in the trial of Harry Bridges ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall that Attorney General Biddle of tlie 
United States, in reviewing the record of that case, made a severe in- 
dictment of the Communist Party ? 

(AVitness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr, WoLFSON. I am going to plead the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall that the Communist Parcy made a 
great effort to obtain a reversal of that condenmation by the Attorney 
General, which took the form of a letter to the President requesting 
that he demand that Attorney General Biddle rescind his decision? 

Mr. WoLFSON, My answer is the same. 

Mr. Tavenner. I hand you a photostatic copy of a pamphlet, or 
rather pages from a pamphlet issued by the National Federation for 
Constitutional Liberties, the title of which is "600 Prominent Ameri- 
cans Ask President To Kescind Biddle Decision." Will you look at 
page 32, and see whether or not your name is one of those whose sup- 
port was lent to that project? 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

Mr. Tavenner. It is on the last page. 

Mr. Wolfson. I plead the fifth amendment. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2307 

Mr. Tavenner. I desire to offer the document in evidence and ask 
that it be marked "Wolfson Exhibit No. 3" for identification only. 

Chairman Walter. Mark it and let it be received. 

Mr. Tavenner. I will call the attention of the chairman to the fact 
that the last name appearing in the left-hand column on page 32 is 
the name of Martin Wolfson. He is identified as an actor in New 
York City. Did you sign that document, Mr. Wolfson ? 

Mr. Wolfson. The answer is the same, Counsel. 

^Ir. Tavenner. Did you lend your efforts, Mr. Wolfson, to various 
peace appeals that the Communist Party endeavored to foist upon the 
American public ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Wolfson. I have always been interested in peace because oiily 
with peace can an artist develop and can culture develop, which is 
what we need very badly. I think we are living in a world today when 
peace is really a reality, but by the same token, the fact that this com- 
mittee asks me that question, puts me in a position of having to take 
the fifth amendment in answering, that I will not answer that because 
I will not be a witness against myself. 

Mr. Tavenner. It isn't the fact that the committee asks such a ques- 
tion, is it ? Isn't it the fact that these particular peace appeals were 
engineered by the Communist Party for Communist Party purposes 
and propaganda ? 

Mr. Wolfson. The answer is the same. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you endorse the Waldorf conference? 

Mr. Wolfson. The same answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the National Council of the 
Arts, Sciences, and Professions ? 

Mr. Wolfson. The same answer. 

Mr. SciiERER. Has that been cited as a Communist-front organiza- 
tion, Mr. Tavenner ^ 

Mr. Tavenner. The Congress on American-Soviet Relations was 
sponsored by the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship in 
December of 1949 and a program put out by that organization con- 
tains the names of a number of endorsees, including the name of Martin 
Wolfson, New York. Will you tell the committee, please, how your 
name was obtained for use by the National Council of American- 
Soviet Friendship, if it was used with your permission? 

Mr. Wolfson. I decline to answer for the previously stated reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with a person by the name of 
Robert Shayne ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Wolfson. I refuse to answer for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Shayne's Communist Party name was Robert 
Grosvenor, according to his testimony before this committee. Mr. 
Shayne testified that he had been a member of the Communist Party 
and had withdrawn, and he gave the committee the benefit of facts 
within his know^ledge. In the course of his testimony, he identified 
you as a person who appeared at Communist Party meetings attended 
by him. Do you recall having appeared at Communist Party meet- 
ings attended by him ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel. ) 



2308 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I think informing has become a profitable industry 
as a result of this committee, I decline to answer that question for the 
previously stated reason. 

Chairman Walter. I just can't let this statement go unchallenged. 
Nobody has ever made a profit out of testifying for this committee, or 
before the committee, and this man received the same witness fees that 
you will receive after you testify. 

Mr. WoLFSON. Will I receive the loss of 3 weeks' work, Congress- 
man, to wit, $1,065? And I would like this committee to know that 
the average income of the actor is less than $800 a year. This is for 
the committee to know. 

Chairman Walter. We are talking about witnesses being paid to 
testify. 

Mr. WoLFSON. I lose a very good engagement as a result of this. 

Mr. ScHERER. You said the average income is $800, and you are 
losing $1,200 for this period '( 

Mr. WoLFSOx. That is right. You can't figure that, Congressman? 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you now a member of the American Federation 
of Television and Radio Artists ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFSON. I don't think whether I am a member of the union 
or not is a concern of this committee. But I shall answer your ques- 
tion — I am. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been a member of it ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. One of the things that I fought for in my career was 
the organization of radio, and I have been a member of it since its 
inception. 

Mr. Tavenner. Since its inception have you endeavored to assist 
the Communist Party in any manner in promulgating its policies or 
its plans within that organization or any of its predecessors? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I have been a good member of this union. I have 
been against anything that tends to put the actor in a strait jacket of 
frightened conformity. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you tried to impose the Communist Party 
line upon the organization ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I refuse to answer your question on the grounds pre- 
viously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you played any part in an effort to impose 
upon your group, in which j^ou say you are so interested, any decision 
of the Communist Party ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFsON. My union activities are a matter of record, but I 
decline to answer your question for the same reasons. 

Mr. Tavenner. You spoke of what is a matter of record. Will you 
tell the committee whether or not it is a matter of record that caucus 
groups composed of members of the Communist Party within the 
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists were held ? 

Mr, WoLFSON. I decline to answer that question for the same 
reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, if it is not a matter of record, do you know 
of the holding of such caucus meetings ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I decline to answer for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you present at any time during such a caucus ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2309 

Mr. WoLFSON. I decline to answer for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. At the time you state that you were such a good 
member of the union, were you also a member of the Communist 
Party ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I decline to answer for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you also a member of Actors Equity? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I repeat that I think that this committee has no right 
to ask me my associations, but I shall answer that. I am a member 
of Actors Equity. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been a member ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Since 1927. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you attended any caucus meetings of the 
Communist Party within Actors Equity ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. I shall refuse to answer that for the previously 
stated reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party now ? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. Naturally I am going to answer that by the same way, 
and I refuse to testify against myself. 

Mr. Tavenner. Up to this point we have been speaking exclusively 
of your profession of stage acting. Have you engaged in television 
work as an actor ? 

Mr, WoLFSON. Very little. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat was your last employment in television ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. A program called American Heritage, and this I 
appeared in at the time when it seemed that the blacklist was about 
to be lifted and which has been reimposed by the appearance of this 
committee. 

Mr. Tavenner. "V\^ien did you appear on that program ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. Several months ago, and I don't remember exactly 
when. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where? 

Mr. WoLFSON. In New York. 

Mr. Tavenner. By whom were you employed ? 

Mr. WoLFsON. I think it was the National Broadcasting Co., but I 
am not sure. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your television participation prior to 
that? 

Mr. WoLFSON. An interview, I think, once. 

Mr. Tavenner. As an actor ? 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I did vei^ little. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your television participation as an actor 
prior to the interview you mentioned ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. It must have been 3 or 4 years before that, when I 
was in a play, and 1 don't remember the name of it. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic copy of the Daily 
Worker of January 26, 1950, which reflects that you took part in a 
play called Trial of the Traitors. I don't believe you told us about 
that. Do you recall it ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFSON. Where was this performed? 

Mr. Tavenner. Capitol Hotel. 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I am going to invoke my constitutional privilege 
and refuse to answer the question. 



2310 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. ScHERER. I am going to ask you to direct the witness to answer 
the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. WoLFSON. Then I will not bear witness against myself. 

Mr. ScHERER. Was there anything about your participation in that 
play which would tend to incriminate you, witness? 

Mr. WoLFSON. My position is the same, Congressman. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask that he give an answer. 

Chairman Walter. He has given an answer, I think. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that play written by Jerome Chodorov ? 

Mr. WoLFSON. May I see that copy ? 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Yes. 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

Mr. WoLFsoN. I shall stand on my constitutional right and refuse 
to answer that question for the reasons previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. I desire to offer the document in evidence and ask 
that it be marked "Wolfson Exhibit No. 4" for identification only. 

Chairman AValter. Let it be received. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Jerome Chodorov? 

Mr. Wolfson, I don't think that you have a right to inquire into 
my associations, and I shall plead the fifth. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any questions, Mr. Willis, or Mr. 
Soberer ? 

Mr. Scherer. I have no questions. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused. 

Mr. Wolfson. May I offer a statement to be filed ? 

Chairman Walter. Call your next witness, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. I would like to call Mr. Lou Polan as the next 
witness. 

Will you come forward Mr. Polan. 

Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand. 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Polan. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF LOU POLAN. ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, 

DAVID SCRIBNER 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you Mr, Lou Polan ? 

Mr. Polan. That is correct, sir. 

Mr. ScRiBNER, I suggest there be no photographs during the 
testimony, 

Mr, Tavenner, Will counsel please identify himself for the record? 

Mr, Scribner. David Scribner, 11 East 51st Street, New York. 

Mr, Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Polan? 

Mr. Polan. I was born in Russia, in 1904. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. When did you come to this country ? 

Mr. Polan. I came to this country in 1906, 

Mr, Tavenner. Are you a naturalized American citizen ? 

Mr. Polan. I am. 

Mr. Tavenner, Through derivative citizenship ? 

Mr, Polan. Through the fact that my father became naturalized 
when I was a young child. 



COMMUXIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2311 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your present place of residence ? 

Mr. PoLAN. In New York City, 45 West 69th Street, New York. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in the city of New York ? 

Mr. PoLAN. About twenty-odd years. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your present occupation, or profession? 

Mr. PoLAN. Actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged in the profession 
of acting? 

Mr. PoLAN. 35 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is the name Lou Polan a professional name ? 

Mr. Polan. Actually, my name is Louis Polan, but I have adopted 
Lou Polan for the stage. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee please what your formal 
educational training has been. 

Mr. Polan. Elementary school, and one grade of high school. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did vou begin 3'our acting career in the city of New 
York? 

Mr. Polan. That is correct, I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. About what date ? 

Mr. Polan. 1920. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you remain constantly in the city of New 
York for a period of time in the practice of your profession ? 

Mr. Polan. Constantly. 

Mr. Tavenner. Except while engaged in trips ? 

Mr. Polan. Or on a tour, overseas for two periods. I was in New 
York as the center from which I carried on my work as an actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. You said you were overseas for two periods. Was 
that during the period of the World War II ? 

Mr. Polan. One period, yes. I went to the Philippines, and New 
Guinea with the USO, in Oklahoma. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you go overseas as a member of the Armed 
Forces ? 

Mr. Polan. With the USO. Before you go into great detail, I 
would like to establish the fact that I am an actor, and I have been in 
the the;iter a long time. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am trying to develop that right now, sir. 

Mr. Polan. I think we can save a lot of time. I have played with 
the outstanding companies of New York; the Play writes Co., the 
Theater Guild, and I have played with the outstanding stars of the 
American theater, with Walter Huston; Judith Anderson; and Otis 
Skinner; and Jane Cowl; Lunt and Fontaine; and I can go down 
a tremendous list, and I have been with Walter Hampden, and I 
played every play he had in the classical repertoire, and particularly 
Cyrano de Bergerac, and I have been in Oklahoma for 2 years, and I 
have been in stock, and I have been in films, and I have been in tele- 
vision and radio, and the screen, and it is obvious that my activity for 
the past 35 years professionally has been as an actor. 

All of my adult life and a good part of my youth has been dedicated 
to the theater, and my name is hardly important to you for the purpose 
of your inquisition, and your subpena naming Lou Polan might just as 
well have named, "Mr. Theater." 

I wish to put this committee on notice that I will not assist you 
in your lawless efforts to censor the legitimate theater or control the 
entertainment field which, in my opinion, are the real aims of this 



2312 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

committee. I challenge the legal authority of this committee to con- 
duct this star-chamber proceeding. I am going to take an unequivocal 
position here, and I am going to give the reasons for not answering, 
and I am not going to answer any questions of this committee, and I 
wish to state the reasons. 

Chairman Walter. You just wait until you are asked a question. 

Mr. PoLAN. All morning you have been saying to people, "Why 
don't you mention the reasons you don't want to answer my 
questions?" 

Chairman Walter. You will answer whatever questions are pro- 
pounded to you. Mr. Tavenner, proceed with questioning. 

Mr. ScHERER. I suggest that if the witness continues in this vein, 
and in this outburst, violating the orders of the chairman, that he is 
guilty of contempt. 

Chairman Walter. We are not concerned about that for the mo- 
ment. 

Mr. Scherer. I am so advising him. 

Mr. Tavenner. At the time you launched upon your prepared 
speech, I was asking you about the two occasions on which you were 
overseas, and you told us of one. Now, what was the other? 

Mr. Polan. I have spent 35 years 

Mr. Tavenner. I am not asking you about 35 years. 

Chairman Walter. This is not responding. Answer the question. 

Mr. Polan. I would like to state, and I will not answer that ques- 
tion 

Chairman Walter. Why won't you answer the question ? 

Mr. Polan. I will now state the reasons why. This committee has 
no authority under the Constitution to censor, or control, or super- 
vise, or direct the activities of a free American theater, or 

Chairman Walter. You have not answered Mr. Tavenner's ques- 
tion. 

Mr. Polan. Or become casting director for the American theater. 
As the Supreme Court has stated, this committee cannot investigate 
in that area. 

Chairman Walter. We are not making any investigation of what 
you are talking about. Answer the question about your other trip 
abroad. 

Mr. Polan. This committee has no authority as the Supreme Court 
has stated, to become a law enforcement agency. That job is as- 
signed to other branches of our Government who in turn must 

Chairman Walter. Answer the question about your other trip to 
Europe. 

Mr. Polan. I am trying to state the reasons. 

Chairman Walter. You have not given us a legal reason. 

Mr. Polan. I may say I worked very hard on these reasons. 

Chairman Walter. You didn't work very hard. 

Mr. Polan. I did, because I wanted to be succinct and unequivocal 
in my position. 

Chairman Walter. You are not kidding anybody. 

Mr. Polan. I wish you would allow me 3 or 4 minutes to state my 
reasons. I don't have much time, and these are my reasons for not 
answering. I refuse to answer any questions this committee puts 
before me. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2313 

Chairman Walter. If you refuse to answer, we are not going to 
hear your reasons. 

Are you going to ask any more questions, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. 

Mr. ScRiBNER. He is telling you he is not answering. 

Mr. ScHERER. You know the rules. 

Mr. ScRiBNER. And I don't like them, and that is the reason. 

Chairman Walter. I want to again tell this audience that you are 
here as the guests of the committee, and any further demonstrations 
will compel me to order that the room be cleared. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, I think that the witness should be 
clearly directed to answer that question. He says he has refused, 

Mr. PoLAN. I will ask to be directed to answer that question, then. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. PoLAN. I will not answer that question, and I am now giving 
the reasons. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are only permitted to give legal reasons. 

Mr. PoLAN. This committee has no authority. 

Chairman Walter. That is not the kind of a reason that you are 
permitted or should attempt to give. 

Mr. PoLAN. It isn't ? 

Mr. ScRiBNER. I say they are legal reasons, as his counsel, and if 
you will go into his reasons, you will find that he is going into every 
issue that the Supreme Couit has been considering in the case that 
3'^ou know about that I was involved in. 

Chairman Walter. And has passed upon. 

Mr. ScRiBNER. They have not. and perhaps there will be an oppor- 
tunity to pass on it, and maybe they will do as they did in the Emspak 
and Quinn cases where the Court created limitations on this com- 
mittee. Perhaps this will be a limitation on all of the activities of 
this committee, certainly in the field of the theater and I am very 
hopeful that is going to come about. 

Chairman Walter. It cannot come about, and we cannot raise the 
kind of a question here that would be ])assed on by the Supreme Court. 

Mr. ScRiBNER. All he can do, and in all fairness, we have known 
each other a long time, and I say this most respectfully, and certainly 
to the institution of Congress as such, and what he is doing now 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask for regular order. I insist on the rules of 
this committee being followed. 

Chairman Walter. I am going to break the rules for one second. 

Mr. Scribner. All he wants to do is give what he considers to be 
legal reasons. You may not agree with the legal reasons, and you 
ai-e an eminent lawyer, and I know that. I am a lawyer, and I say 
those reasons are good. 

N^ow, he relies on me, rather than on you, and that is fair. I am 
re|)resenting him. In doing so, he is ready to take any risks and any 
chances that are involved in giving these as legal reasons. 

Chairman Walter. Except this is the wrong place to raise the 
reason. 

Mr. Scribner. He is asking him a question. 

Chairman Walter. He can refuse to answer on the grounds he 
doesn't have to answer. That is enough. 

Proceed. Mr. Tavenner; ask another question. 



2314 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. ScRiBNER. You don't know whether he is going to wind up with 
the fifth amendment. You wouldn't know that. 

Mr. TA^^<:NNER. You stated that you made the city of New York 
your headquarters and you worked out of here, if I understood you 
correctly. 

Mr. PoLAN. That is right. 

Mr. ScHEEER. I still want to know where he went on this other trip. 

Chairman Walter. We will get around to that, Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you reside in the city of New York during the 
years 1939 and 1940 ? 

Mr. PoLAN. I think that I made it quite clear that I am not going 
to answer any questions, and I am not going to answer this question, 
and I am not going to answer any question that this committee puts 
to me. I would like to continue stating my reasons on any question 
relating to the theater. 

Chairman Walter. That is all. You have just declined to answer 
the question, and now I think at this point, Mr. Tavenner, we ought 
to excuse the witness. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well. Could we give him a direction on that 
question, first? 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the last question. 

Mr. Willis. I think the record should show that I do not agree with 
his reasons, and we overruled them. 

Chairman Walter. He has refused to answer that question, and 
he said that he will not answer any questions of this committee. Now, 
I direct you to answer the last question. 

Mr. PoLAN. Without giving my reasons ? 

Chairman Walter. Where do you live ? 

Mr. PoLAN. I think the rules of this committee indicate that a per- 
son can give his reasons for not answering the question. 

Chairman Walter. You have been directed to answer the question 
about your residence. 

Mr. Polan. I am refusing to answer any questions, and I insist 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Polan. I refuse to answer this question and I would like to 
give my reasons. 

Chairman Walter. We are not concerned with your reasons for 
refusing to answer the question as to your residence. 

Are there any other questions, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Phillip Leeds. Is Mr. Leeds in the room ? 

Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand ? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Leeds. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF PHIL LEEDS, ACCOMPANIED BY COUNSEL, 
MAETIN POPPER 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you Mr. Phil Leeds ? 

Mr. Leeds. Yes, sir, 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell your name, please ? 

Mr. Leeds. L-e-e-d-s. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2315 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel accompanying the witness please iden- 
tify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Popper. Martin Popper. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Leeds ? 

Mr. Leeds. I was born in the Bronx, New York City, April 6, 1916. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside ? 

Mr. Leeds. I live in the Borough of Manhattan, New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner, What address ? 

Mr. Leeds. Excuse me. 

(Witness consulted with counsel). 

Mr. Leeds. 411 West End Avenue. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in the city of New York ? 

Mr. Leeds. With the exception of the 3 years in the Army, and about 
6 months in California, all of my life, on and off, aside from the tours 
that I made. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your profession ? 

Mr. Leeds. I am an actor, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged professionally as 
an actor ? 

Mr. Leeds. I would say roughly about 17 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. Would you tell the committee please what your prin- 
cipal stage credits are ? 

Mr. Leeds. My theater credits, sir? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, theater credits. 

Mr. Leeds. That is excluding television and radio, just the theater 
credits ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Leeds. I appeared in a show, my first show I think it was. Let 
Freedom Ring. Excuse me, it was. Of Thee I Sing, and I appeared 
in Let Freedom Ring, and then I went into the Army, and that was 
3 years, and I did a show called Make A Wish, and another show called 
Curtain Going Up, and most recently, Can Can. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell us what your television credits have 
been ? 

Mr. Leeds. I have appeared with all of the major, or most of the 
major comedy shows, the Milton Berle Show, the Jimmy Durante 
Show, the Victor Borge Show, and I had my own show once, or what 
amounted to my own show, called Front Row Center. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your latest appearance with television? 

Mr. Leeds. My last appearance on television was the Garry Moore 
Show. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien was that ? 

Mr. Leeds. That was about May, it must have been the end of May, 
of this year. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee please what your radio 
credits have been ? 

Mr. Leeds, I have appeared on the Jane Pickens Show, where I was 
for a year, and I appeared on a Maxie Rosenbloom Show, and I have 
done odd mystery shows from time to time. 

Mr. Tavenner. During this rather extensive career on the stage and 
television and in radio, were you a member of any trade unions in those 
various prof essions ? 

Mr. Leeds. In order to perform your job in radio or in television or 
in the theater, you must belong to a union. 



2316 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. What unions did you belong to ? 

Mr. Leeds. I belonged to AFRA, which was the radio union, and 
then I belonged to Actors Equity, and I also belonged to AGVA 
(American Guild of Variety Artists), which is the variety union. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the American Federation of 
Television and Radio Artists ? 

Mr. Leeds. Yes, sir, and I still am. 

Mr. Tavenner. I understood you to say AFRA a moment ago. 

Mr. Leeds. AFRA was an organization that predated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did I misunderstand you ? Did you mean AFTRA ? 

Mr. Leeds. Xo, at that time, that particular time when I was in 
radio work, I had to belong to AFRA, and when television came into 
being, I joined the two unions that were merged. 

Mr. Tavenner. With regard to the American Federation of Tele- 
vision and Radio Artists, will you tell the committee whether or not, 
to your knowledge, there was a caucus within that organization of 
members of the Communist Party ? 

(AVitness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Leeds. I must say at this point that I have been listening 
to this all morning, this particular line of questioning, and I would 
like to state how I feel so that perhaps we might, in the interest of 
time saving, get on with this hearing. 

Mr. Tavenner. If you would just answer that question, it would 
be the quickest way to get on with it, as you say. 

Mr. Leeds. Except sir, that I consider that you are throwing me a 
kind of a curved question. 

Mr. Tavenner. No, that is straight from the shoulder. 

Mr. Leeds. It might come straight from your shoulder but it kind 
of curves when it reaches me, to this degree, sir. 

I think anybody who has ever been questioned on the stand could 
be made to turn out to be somebody completely dift'erent than what he 
is, because of the nature of the questions. You cannot answer a ques- 
tion "yes" or "no," and really get the complete picture of what is in 
the person's mind. That is, the person who is being questioned. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you remember what the question is ? 

Mr. Leeds. Yes, I do. You asked me do I know anything about a 
caucus. Communist caucus in the unions in which I belonged. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Leeds. And I must tell you this, sir. that I believe that it is — 
I am very proud to be an American citizen. 

Chairman Walter. Do you know anything about a caucus that took 
place in the union ? 

Mr. Leeds. I am afraid sir that I must decline to answer that ques- 
tion and invoke the privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. My question related particularly to the American 
Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and I want to ask you 
the same question with regard to Actors Equity. Were you aware of 
the existence of a Communist caucus within that organization ? 

Mr. Leeds. I must answer in the same manner, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you ever attend such a caucus meeting? 

Mr. Leeds. I must again answer in the same manner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party at 
any time while you were a member of the American Federation of 
Television and Radio Artists ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2317 

Mr. Leeds. I believe that it is tlie privilege of an American citizen 
to believe in Yogi Berra if he so desires, or that lanolin will save 
the world. I do not believe that it is your right to ask me any 
question concerning my politics, how I worship, and how I think, 
and what I read, and if I wear suits with narrow lapels or if I use an 
underarm deodorant. I think you are intruding on the privacies, or 
my privacy as an American citizen and as such I refuse to answer that 
question on the grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are not a member of the Communist Party 
at this time, are you ? 

Mr. Leeds. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds previ- 
ously stated. 

Mv. Tavenner. Didn't you tell the investigators of this committee 
when they interviewed you that you did join the Communist Party in 
li)40, but that you are not now a member ^ 

Mr. Leeds. I am afraid that I must refuse to discuss what I say 
away from this court with anybody. I may talk to the trees, sir, if I 
so choose, and in fact sometimes I do talk to them. I think that is my 
]:)rivilege as an American citizen. I must decline to answer that ques- 
tion on the grounds previously stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. If you are talking to the trees, and you don't tell 
them any more than you tell us, it doesn't amount to much. You are 
unwilling to tell the committee anything within your knowledge re- 
garding the activities of the Connnunist Party within the various or- 
ganizations of which you have been a member. That sums it up, does 
it not ? 

Mr. Leeds. Are you suggesting that I am a member of — you are 
putting words into my mouth, sir, or you are trying to get me into 
a position which I am ill-equipped to face. Will you repeat the ques- 
tion? 

(Whereupon the reporter- read the pending question as above re- 
corded.) 

Mr. Leeds. If you will ask me a direct question, I will try and 
give a direct answer. I don't consider that a question. 

Mr. Tavenner. What Communist Party activities have you ob- 
served within any of the labor organizations of which you have been 
a member ? 

Mr. Leeds. I think that I have previously stated my position, 
and I don't think that this committee has any right to ask me questions 
concerning what I think, and what I saw. 

Chairman Walter. Are you going to answer the question or do you 
refuse? 

Mr. Leeds. I decline to answer the question on the ground previously 
stated. 

Chairman Walter. By that you mean the first and fifth amend- 
ments ? 

Mr. Leeds. The privilege, that is right, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you affiliated with the National Council of 
American-Soviet Friendship in 1047? 

Mr. Leeds. The same answer, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the period in which you were spe-^ializing 
in acting, did you engage in your profession at Camp Wo-chi-ca, in 
New Jersey ? 

68010— 55— pt. 6 5 



2318 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Leeds. The same answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that an IWO sponsored camp for young- 
people ? 

JMr. Leeds. The same answer, sir. 

(xVt this point, Mr. Scherer left the hearing room.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Li 1940, were you an entertainer for a concert and 
lecture bureau of the IWO ? 

Mr. Leeds. I am afraid I must give the same answer, and 1 must 
confess that my memory that far back is very vague, but I must give 
the same answer, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were yon a member of the IWO at that time ? 

Mr. Leeds. The same answer. In order to save ourselves trouble, 
you may consider this same answer. I hate to be this dull, sir, because 
I have gotten some kind of a reputation as a humorist, but these ques- 
tions all have the same tired answer, and I am sorry. 

Mr. Tavenner. But you need not necessarily make the same tired 
answer, if you would just tell the committee facts. 

Were you a member of the New Theater League ? 

Mr. Leeds. I would not give you the same tired answer if you 
would not ask me the same tired question. You are asking me these 
same questions and I have already expressed my o])inion about what 
I think my rights are as an American. 

Chairman Walter. These were not the same questions at all, they 
are entirely different. 

Mr. Lfjeds. They are pretty much the same questions, and they 
involve what I think, and who I associate with, and what I do with 
my time, which I think is quite my own business. Don't you, sir? 

Chairman Walter. No, I don't. 

Mr. Leeds. Well, I am awfully sorry, but I do. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you acquainted with Zero Mostel ? 

Mr. Leeds. Yes, sir. 

Mv. Tavenner. Did you engage in stage performances with him? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Lt':fds. Would you be more specific, sir ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall whether or not you did engage in 
performances with him, and if so, what performances ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

(At this ])oint, Mr. Scherer returned to the hearing room.) 

Mr. Leeds. As I recall, several sunnners ago, I performed with 
Zero at some — ]iardon me — some philanthro]:)ic Jewish organization, 
to the best of my knowledge. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall a show entitled ''Doctor lOI^"? 

Mr. Leeds. No, sir, I do not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Which was given by the Voice of Freedom Com- 
mittee ? 

Mr. Leeds. Do you have any information about that, sir, because 
I don't know whereof you speak ? 

Mr. Tavenner. I hand you a document and ask ,you if it refreshes 
your recollection. 

( A document was handed to the witness.) 

Mr. Leeds. I must say that I do not recall this at all. I must 
explain to you, sir, that in these 17 years I have been in shoAv busi- 
ness, I have performed at hundreds and hundreds of functions, but 
t reallv don't recall this at all. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2319 

Mr. Tavenxer. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walti<:r. Have you any questions of the witness, Mr. 
Scherer? Mr. Willis? 

The witness is excused. 

I think this would be a good place for a 5-minute recess. 

(Whereupon a brief recess was taken by the committee.) 

Chairman Walter. The committee will come to order. 

Call your next witness, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Miss Sarah Cunningham. 

Mr. BouDiN. The same request about pictures, and no pictures now . 
or later. 

Chairman Walter. As soon as the witness has been sworn, there 
will be no more pictures. 

Will you ste]) around here, please? Will you raise your right hand, 
please? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole trutli, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Miss Cunningham. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF SARAH CUNNINGHAM, ACCOMPANIED BY HER 
COUNSEL, LEONARD BOUDIN 

Miss Cunningham. I am sworn in, and no more pictures, please. 

Mr. BouDiN. 1 thought there was an order by the chairman. 

(^hairman AValter. There was. 

Miss Cunningham. I think I sent this statement to the committee, 
and I would like to be permitted to read it here. 

Chairman Walter. ^lay I see it, please ? 

(Document was handed to the chairman.) 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your name, please ? 

Mr. BouDiN. Will you allow the chairman to look at the statement, 
ind may my client read it ? 

Chairman Walter. No, you know the rules. 

Mr. BouDiN. I thought that the rule was that you could if it were 
given in advance. 

Chairman Walter. It will be made a part of the record if it is 
relevant. 

Mr. Tavenner. A\^iat is your name, please ? 

Miss Cunningham. Sarah Cunningham Eandolph. 

Mr. Tavenner. The wife of John Eandolph ? 

Miss Cunningham. Yes, a wonderful actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel accompanynig the witness please iden- 
tify himself for the record ? 

Mr. BouDiN. Leonard Boudin, 25 Broad Street, New York 5, N. Y. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your profession, Mrs. Cunningham? 

Miss Cunningham. "Miss" Cunningham. I am an actress. 

Mr. Tavenner. I assume since you corrected me that your name, 
Miss Cunningliarn, is a professional name ? 

Miss Cunningham. That is correct. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. What is your true name ? 

Miss Cunningham. My true name is Sarah Cunningham Randolph. 

Mr. Taa"enner. Will you tell the committee please what your prin- 
cipal stage credits have been ? 



2320 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Miss Cunningham. Well, let me see. Professionally I suppose the 
first thill o; I did was summer stock in Maine and in New York, and 
where I played a full season, 

Mr. Tavenner. In what plays w^ere you in Maine and New York? 

Miss Cunningham. Oh, dear, Kiss and Tell; Three Is a Family; 
Private Lives ; Kind Lady ; you know, the nsual run of summer stock 
stuff. 

Mr. BouDiN. Mr. Chairman, I ask that no pictures be taken and 
you ordered that that be done, and now I have heard, and the com- 
mittee has heard these clicks going on. 

Chairman Walter. I haven't noticed it. 

Mr. BouDiN. It has been perceptible to the average ear, and mine 
is worse than average. May I ask you to instruct the cameramen not 
to take pictures while my client is testifying ? 

Chairman AValter. They know the rules. 

Mr. BouDiN. May I ask you to enforce it ? 

Chairman Walter. I will enforce it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you also engaged in acting for Ivaphael Pro- 
ductions ? 

Miss Cunningham. Would you state that question again ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Raphael Productions ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. BouDiN. Will you spell it ? 

Mr. Tavenner. R-a-p-h-a-e-1 P-r-o-d-u-c-t-i-o-n-s. 

]Mr. BotT)iN. You are confusing that with something. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think it is Rachael instead of Raphael. Does 
that clarify the matter ? 

Miss Cunningham. Yes, it certainly does, because I think that is 
the highlight of my career ; it was when I was offered a lead in a play 
that was totally different from my tradition, and it was called The 
World of Sholem Aleichem, wiiich was based on the writings of a 
famous Jewish writer who wrote in Yiddish. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who were the owners of that production, of that 
organization? 

Miss Cunningham. I don't talk about people that I know, or don't 
know. 

Mr. Tavenner. I ask that the witness be directed to answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Miss Cunningham. All right, Mr. Walter, I will be glad to answer 
it, and I feel this is an infringement of my private life. Under the 
first amendment I am guaranteed the right of associations, or associ- 
ate with whom I please, and under the fifth amendment I refuse also, 
and I invoke the privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. You decline to answer the question for the 
reasons you have just stated ? 

Miss Cunningham. That is true. 

Mr. Tavenner. In what year were you engaged in The World of 
Sholem Aleichem ? 

Miss Ct NNiNGHAM. Let me see — I did a try-out provluction in the 
spring of 1953 and then it opened again in the fall of 1053, and we 
ran for 10 weeks into 1954. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was Morris Carnovsky an actor and producer in 
that play ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2321 

Miss Cunningham. I don't talk about peoi)le that I know or don't 
know, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I ask for a direction, ])lease ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct yon to answer that question. 

Miss CuNxixGiTAM. Tlieu I (jive the same answer based on the same 
answer that I gave before. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was Phoebe Brand also one of those engaged in 
the cast ? 

Miss CuNNiN(jnAM. I don't talk about peoi:)le that I know or don't 
know, Mr. Tavenner, and if you want me to give the same reasons as 
before, Mr. Walter, I would be glad to. I invoke the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. Do you decline to answer for the reasons that 
you give ? 

Miss Cunningham. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was Jack Gilford also one of those in the cjist ? 

Miss Cunningham. I decline to answer based on the previous 
reasons that I have stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you ])aid for your services ? 

Miss Cunningham. Yes, I was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who ])aid you ? 

Miss Ct'NNin(;ham. I was under contract. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who ])aid you l 

Miss CuNNiN(;nAM. The management. 

Mr. Tavenner. AVho was the management? 

Miss Cunningham. I think that you stated, Rachael Productions. 

Mr. Tavenner. By whom was the check signed in payment for 
your services I 

Miss Cunningham. Well, I had better — I refuse to answer based on 
the fifth amendment, 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the Avitness to answer the question, 
Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Miss Cunningham. I decline to answer under the privilege of the 
fifth amendment. 

JNIr. Tavenner. As an actress, I suppose you were a member of the 
American Federation of Television and Raclio Artists. 

Miss Cunningham. I was, and still am, because you have to be. if 
you intend to work in television and radio. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you also a member of Actors Equity I 

Miss Cunningham. That is my parent union, and I have been a 
member of Actors Equity. 

Mr. Tavenner. During what period of time were you a meml)er of 
Actors Equity ? 

Miss Cunningham. Well. I think I got my first contract, as I said, 
professionally, in 1945. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did your membership in Actors Equity 
continue ? 

Miss CuNNiN(iiiAM. It continues to this day. I am paid up through 
November. 

Mr. Tavenner. I understood from your answer that there may be 
some question about your membership now in that organization. 

Miss Cunningham. No, I said that I still am a member. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well. Will you tell the committee, please, 
what knowledge you have, if any, of the existence within the Actors 



2322 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Equity of a o;roup of persons organized by tlie Communist Party as a 
Communist Party group ? 

Miss Cunningham. Do you really expect me to answer tliat ques- 
tion? 

Mr. Tavenner. I am very much in hopes that you will answer it. 
I hope that you will have enough courage to tell the committee what 
you know about communism in the field in which you are a specialist. 

Miss Cunningham. I see. Well, 1 would like to use my courage in 
the way that I feel it takes more courage, and that is to tell you 
that I do refuse to answer this question because my folks signed 
the Declaration of Independence, and they fought in the American 
Revolution and settled this country, in the early l770's in the South, 
and the tradition of my family has been that we do not defy — 
I am sorry, would you strike that from the record ? 

Chairman Walter. You can read it, it is here. 

Miss Cunningham. What I am trying to say is, because this is what 
I consider a very foul question, that we do not talk about any of our 
associations. My mother taught me that I had the freedom to tliink 
as I pleased and to go where I pleased, and to talk with whom I 
pleased, and to have any friend that I wished, and that no one had tlie 
right to question me about it. 

I believe that I am carrying out the tradition of my ancestors by 
saying that I refuse on the basis of the first amendment, and I invoke 
the privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are of the opinion then that your duty to re- 
main silent is greater than any duty you may owe to your country 
to advise it of Communist Party activities which you may know^ about? 

Miss Cunningham. I consider that the defense of the Constitution 
is my duty to my country. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have spoken of your stage credits. What about 
your television credits? 

Miss Cunningham. Well, you can put those in a thimble. 

I played an amazon on Buck Rogers once, and I was the weepy girl 
on Rocky King, and I was on Treasury Man, and I played the 
Cabbage Woman, they called it, and there may have been one or two 
others which I don't remember. It has been a long time ago. 

Mr. Tav-enner. "VYhat are your credits in the field of radio ? 

Miss Cunningham. I have never done radio. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your last employment in television ? 

Miss Cunningham. Well, may I say to the best of my knowledge, 
perhaps T-Men. 

Mr. Tavenner. What year was that ? 

Miss Cunningham. Let me see. I would have to look at my income 
tax records, and I don't know. I have a record of it, you know, and 
if you want me to go home and get it, you know, 

Mr. Tavenner. Oh, no, I wouldn't ask you to do that. 

Chairman Walter. Just to the best of your recollection. 

Miss Cunningham. I really couldn't tell, it was probably some- 
where in 1950, or maybe 1949, or maybe 1951. 

Mr. Tavenner. I understand you to state that you feel that your 
obligation to the Constitution is such that you cannot advise the com- 
mittee regarding anything that the Communist Party may be en- 
deavoring to do wnthin your union. Am I correct in that? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2323 

Miss Cunningham. Is that an assumption, or what is it? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Read the question, please. 

(Whereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded.) 

Miss Cunningham. You see, that is such a general question, and 
if you make a specific question, you know, I will endeavor to answer it. 

Mr. Willis. I think he was trying to paraphrase your answer a 
little while ago. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is a repetition of her answer as I understood it. 

You ask for a specific question, and I will ask you, have you been a 
member of the Communist Party during the period of time that you 
have been in Actors Equity, and in the American Federation of Tele- 
vision and Radio Artists ? 

Miss Cunningham. I refuse to answer that question. The fact that 
I am subpenaed here is jeopardizing my career, and it incriminates 
me, and it smears me, and I refuse to answer on the basis of the 
previous grounds of the first amendment, and I invoke the privilege 
of the amendment designed to protect the innocent, the fifth amend- 
ment. 

Mr. Tavenner. It would smear you only in the event you were not 
a member of that group. 

Miss Cunningham. I beg to differ with you. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party now? 

Miss Cunningham. The answer as I have given it before, pertains, 
and I invoke the amendment designed to protect the innocent, the 
fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any other questions ? 

The witness is excused. 

The committee will stand adjourned to meet at 10 o'clock tomorrow 
morning. 

(Whereupon, at 4 p. m., August 15, 1955, the committee recessed 
to meet at 10 a. m., Tuesday, August 16, 1955.) 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES, 
NEW YORK AREA— PART VI 

(Entertainment) 



TUESDAY, AUGUST 16, 1955 
United States House of Representatives, 

SuBCO:MMIT'nEE OF THE 

Committee on Un-Aivierican Activities. 

Neio York, N. Y. 

PUBLIC HEARING 

A siibcoiiiiiiittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met 
iit 10 a. m., pursuant to recess, in room 1703 of the Federal Build- 
ing, Foley Square, New York, N. Y., Hon. Francis E. Walter (chair- 
man) presiding. 

Committee members present : Representatives Walter, Willis, and 
Scherer. 

Stall' members present : Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., counsel ; Donald 
T. Appell and Frank Bonora, investigators; and Thomas W. Beale, 
Sr., chief clerk. 

Chairman Walter. The committee will come to order. 

Mr. Tavenner, call your first witness. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Elliott Sullivan, will you come forward, 
please ? 

His counsel is not here, and if you will bear with us just a moment, 
please. 

Chairman Walter. We will wait a few minutes. 

(Whereu])on, a short recess was taken by the committee.) 

Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand, please, Mr. 
Sullivan ? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
trutli, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Sullivan. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF ELLIOTT SULLIVAN, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS 
COUNSEL, BELLA S. ABZUG 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name, please, sir ? 
Mr. Sullivan. Elliott Sullivan. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel accompanying the witness please iden- 
tify herself for tlie record 1 

Miss Abzug. Bella S. Abzug, 205 West 34th Street, New York. 
Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Sullivan? 
Mr. Sullivan. San Antonio, Tex., July 4, 1907. 
Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell your name, please, sir ? 
Mr. Sullivan. E-1-l-i-o-t-t S-u-1-l-i-v-a-n. 

2325 



2326 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside? 

Mr. Sullivan. New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. At what address ? 

Mr. Sullivan. 2 Peter Cooper Road. 

Mr. Tavenner. How loiio- have you been a resident of New York 
City? 

Mr. Sullivan. On and off since 1029. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee please what your pro- 
fession or occupation is ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am an actor. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged in the field of 
acting? 

Mr. Sullivan. 26 years approximately. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee please what your formal 
educational training has been ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I graduated from high school, and I had one semes- 
ter in college. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you take that semester in college? 

Mr. Sullivan. In 1925, 1 believe. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you serve for a period of time in the Armed 
Forces of the United States ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I did. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Will you tell the connnittee during what period 
of time you served in the Armed Forces? 

Mr. Sullivan. From 1943 to 1945. 

Mr. Tavenner. Prior to 1943, will you tell the committee what your 
acting or stage credits were? 

Mr. Sullivan. I started in the professional theater in New York in 
1929, and I was in a passion play, a play called Lisistrata; First Mort- 
gage ; Red Rust ; Green Grow the Lilacs ; and a few others that I can- 
not recall. In Hollywood I appeared in over 80 motion pictures. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. When did your work in Hollywood begin ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In 1937, 1 believe. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you in Hollywood continuously for a period 
of years beginning in 1937 ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell us for how long a period ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Until 1943 when I was drafted into the Army. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you give us your screen credits during that 
period of time ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I recall several. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is, the major ones. 

Mr. Sullivan. Kid Gallahad;' They Won't Forget: Angels With 
Dirty Faces: Eacli Dawn I Die; Action in the North Atlantic; Slight 
Case of Murder: AYild Bill Hickok: Yankee Doodle Dandy; Bachelor 
Mother; Racket Buster; Trailer Romance; The Lady Gambles; So 
Young. So Fair; Guiltv bv Slander; Nnked City; Winged Victory, 
which was the Army Air Force show which I was in, and I was also 
in the play, and the movie. 

Mr. Tavenner. For what producers did you work in Hollywood? 

Mr. Sullivan. All of the major producers. 

Mr. Taa^enner. That brings you up then to the period of 1943 when 
you went into the Armed Forces ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, it does. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES EST THE NEW YORK AREA 2327 

Mr. Tavenner. You became a member of the Armed Forces and 
you returned in 1945 ? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you return to the Hollywood area, or did you 
return to New York ? 

Mr. Sullivan, To New York. 

Mr. Tavenner. How did you become employed when you returned 
to New York i 

Mr. Sullivan. In the theater. 

Mr. Tavenner. In the theater, on the stage ? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is right. 

Mr. TxVVENNER. Will you tell the committee ])lease what your major 
stage credits have been since 1945 ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I was in a play called Shooting Star; Skydrift; 
Brigadoon: The \"ictim; Khig of Friday's Men; arid ])erhaps another 
one or two that I can't remember. And in all of this I got these jobs 
because of talent and ability and not because of my political reasons. 

Mr. Tavenner. What do you mean when you say "political rea- 
sons" 'i 

Mr. Sullivan. What I mean by that is that I think that this com- 
mittee has changed the qualifications for acting, and I think they 
have substituted good standards of talent and ability with some sort 
of a political test. 

Mr. Tavenner. What did 3^011 mean by "political" assistance to 
obtain employment? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is exactly what I mean. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did 3^011 mean Communist Part3^ influence when 
3^ou used the word "political," because the term has been so generally 
used by certain witnesses when referring to the Communist Party, 
that I want to know whether that is what you were referring to? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is part of what I am referring to, Mr. Tavenner, 
but I am also referring to the fact that many other kinds of political 
shades of opinion have also been denied employment in the industry. 

If you look through Red Channels 3^011 will see a great number of 
names there of people who are obviously not Communist Party mem- 
bers, and who have been denied employment because of the blacklist 
that this committee has lielped to create, 

Mr. Sciierer. Pardon me a moment. Wlio in this publication of 
Red Cliannels is not a Communist? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know for a fact who is, but there are names 
in there like Howard K. Smith, and I forget now, but there are a 
great number of names whom I am sure you know too who couldn't 
possibh^ be Communists. 

Mr. Scherer. Which ones in there are Communists ? 

Mr. Sullivan. How would I know ? I don't know that. 

Chairman Walter. Do j'ou know any of them who are Communists ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't think that you have the right to ask me that 
question. 

Mr. Scherer. You volunteered the information. 

Chairman Walter. Just a moment. I direct 3'ou to answer that 
question. 



2328 COMMUNIST ACTRITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Sullivan. I will answer it anyway, by saying that I chal- 
lenge the right of this committee to ask me any question which has to 
do with my associations or with my thinking or with my personal be- 
liefs and eyerything else that has to do with the first amendment. 

Chairman Walter. You were not asked about your beliefs at all, 
you were asked about your knowledge of certain people. 

Mr. SuLLiyAN. Weil, it is obyious that this infers my beliefs, if you 
ask me if I know any of these people were Communist Party members. 

Chairman Walter. You said tliat you obtained your employment 
because of your ability and other things, and not because of your 
political beliefs. Do you mean by that that you got this employment 
not because you were a Communist, or in spite of the fact that you 
were a Communist '^ Is that what you mean ? 

Mr. SuLLivAisr. It is obyious you are loading the question. I ha ye 
giyen you my answer, and I don't think you have the right to ask 
me this question, sir. 

Chairman Walter. All right, then T direct you to answer that ques- 
tion. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. What I said a moment ago was, that regardless of 
my ])olitical beliefs, I got these jobs, or tliis is what I meant to say. 

Chairman AY alter. All right. 

Mr. Tavenner. What Avas the last stage credit that you referred to? 

Mr. SuLTVAN. I believe it was. King of Friday's Men. 

Mr. Tavenner. When was that staged ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In 1952 or lOoo, I am not sure. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you continued on the stage since that time? 

Mr. Sullivan. No, I have not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell tlie committee please what your tele- 
vision credits have been? 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, I have been on almost every major dramatic 
program on the air. I was on Big Story three times ; I was on the 
Philco program a number of times; Goodyear; Robert Montgomery 
show; Comedy Hour: Pulitzer Prize Theater; Jack Carson's show; 
and I have worked for all of the major networks in television. 

Mr. Tavenner. How are you now employed ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am employed at Wingdale I.,odge. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is Wingdale Lodge ? 

Mr. Sullivan. It is a sunnner resort. 

Mr. Tavenner. By whom is it o])erated ? 

Mr. Sullivan. By Mr. Ken Friedman. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is he the director or manager of it ? 

Mr. Si'LLivAN. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Willis. Where is Wingdale Lodge located ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In Wingdale, X. Y. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that a smnmer camp for both adults and 
children? 

Mr. Sullivan. It is a sumer camp for adults that has a day camp 
for children for the accommodation of parents who have children. 

Mr. Tavenner. How are you emi)loyed at that camp ? 

Mr. Si'i-LivAN. I put on the shows there. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been so employed ? 

Mr. SiLLivAN'. Just for this summer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been engaged in radio also? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2329 

Mr, Sullivan. Yes, I have. 

Mr. Tavenner. What credits do you have in that field ? 

Mr. SuLiVAN. Well I have only made about 75 radio shows over 
this ])eriod of time and I don't recall any s])ecific ones. 

Mr. Tavenner. I will not ask you to o^o into detail, but what are 
some of your more recent apj^ea ranees ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In radio ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Sullivan. I haven't appeared in radio in a number of years. 

Mr. Tavenner. What has been your most recent appearance in tele- 
vision ? 

Mr. Sullivan. On the Robert Q. Lewis show. 

Mr. Tavenner. When was that ? 

Mr. Sullivan. This last sprinir. 

Mr. Tavenner. I assume that havino; followed the profession that 
you have, both on the sta^e, and television and radio, it was necessary 
for you to become a member of various unions organized within those 
fields? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is a correct assumption, yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Which of the unions were you a member of? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, it is apparent, from the various aspects of the 
industry that I have been in, that I have to be a member of the various 
unions involved, and so it is a matter of public record but I do insist 
on challenging your right to ask me this question. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I have a direction I 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answ^er the question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I answer it in the way that I have before, that I 
believe you do not have the power to ask me questions regarding 
my associations. 

Chairman Walter. In view of the fact that the Supreme Court has 
handed down a rather decisive decision recently, I feel that it is my 
duty to warn you that you have taken an incorrect position and I 
again direct you to answer the question. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, it may be your opinion, Mr. Walter, that this 
is an incorrect position, but I am firmly convinced that the Bill of 
Rights was meant to mean what it says, and I insist on my right toj 
challena:e your rioht to ask me about my associations. 

Mr. Sciierer. May I ask a question ? 

I miderstand you are not relying on the fifth amendment in refus- 
ing to answer the question asked you by Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is correct,' but I don't want any inference 
from that. 

Mr. Sciierer. I understand. 

Mr. St LLivAN. That I don't believe that the fifth amendment isn't 
cue of the amendments in the Constitution. 

Mr. SriFERER. Rut in refusing to answer this particular question of 
Mr. Tavenner, you are not relying on the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Sullivan. I am not taking the position that I am refusing to 
answer this question, Mr. Sciierer. I am answering it in this fashion. 
If you want to know specifically whether I am invoking my privilege 
under the fifth amendment, I am not. 

Mr. Sciierer. That is all I want to know. 



2330 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

I think we should further say to this witness, at least it is the opin- 
ion of tliis member of the committee, that he is in contempt for refusing 
to answer this question. 

Mr. Willis. I certainly concur in it. 

Chairman Walter. I don't think it makes any difference to liinL 
So why tell him ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Of course it makes a diflerence to me, Mr. Walter, 
to be in contempt. AVliy do you say that ? 

Chairman Walter. I was taliving to Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Slllivan. I beg your pardon, I thought you were making a 
public statement and I thought it was in the record that it doesn't 
make any difference to me. Of course it makes a difference, and I 
have a wife and two children, and I am very anxious to work and 
this is a big waste of time as far as I am concerned. The harrass- 
ment that is involved in this is utter nonsense, and when you make a 
statement such as you don't think it makes any difference to me, I beg 
to differ with you very strongly about that. It makes a serious differ- 
ence to my entire life, my appearance here, and I resent that remark. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sullivan, have you been active in the affairs of 
(he American Federation of Television and Radio Artists? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. Whether I have been active in my unions or not, 
again is a question which I believe to be an invasion of my personal 
right to associate with whom I please, and I will answer this question 
in this way but not under compulsion here. 

Chairman Walter. Just a moment, let us straighten this out. 

Mr. Sullivan. That was a bad sentence, I agree. 

Chairman Walter. Now that we agree it is a bad sentence, let us go 
to something else. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. 

Chairman Walter. He was about to answer it after he made that 
little speech, and he got off on the wrong foot, and now he is going to 
answer it. 

Mr. Scherer. Let us keep this record straight. Wait a minute, Mr. 
Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. I don't believe the witness understands there has 
been a direction to answer. Maybe I misunderstood. 

Mr. Scherer. There has not been a direction. 

Chairman Walter. He started to answer the question and then got 
off on to something else. It was a bad sentence. Let us get around to 
this question. Have you been active in the affiairs of your union ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Is that the question now ? 

Chairman Walter. Wasn't that the question, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been active in the affiairs of the American 
Federation of Television and Radio Artists? 

Mr. Sullivan. Again, I respectfully submit that as far as I am 
concerned, I believe that that question invades my ability to associate 
with whom I please, and therefore I challenge your power to ask that 
question, 

Mr. Scherer, ]\Ir. Chairman, I ask you to direct the witness tf> 
answer that question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I do answer this question in the way I have just 
stated. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2331 

Chairman Walter. All right. Is that your answer ? 
Mr. Sullivan. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been active in the alf airs of Actors Equity ? 
Mr. Sullivan. This is the same question again and I answer it in 
the same way. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. Because I believe that the right to associate freely 
has been fought for and won in unions, I thiiik that it would be my 
right or any other individual's right to associate with whom they 
please in unions, but I also believe as I have stated before, that this 
committee does not have the power to ask me questions relating to my 
associations. 

Mr. ScHERER. You understand. Witness, that when the chairman 
directs you to answer a question, the committee is not accepting your 
answer and that is the reason for the direction to answer. l)o 3'^ou un- 
derstand that? 

Chairman Walter. He understands, he is represented by counsel. 
Mr. Sullivan. I don't know anything about the legalisms, and if 
tliis is what you mean, I suppose I will take it. 

Miss Abzug. The witness is giving his answers to tlie ((uestion. 
Mr. ScHERER. The Supreme Court has said that it is the duty of this 
committee to say to the witness that we do not accept his answer, and 
it is the duty of this committee to inquire whether he understands what 
the direction of the chairman means, and that is the reason I made 
the statement. 

Miss Abzug. I can only say, Mr. Scherer, that there is no decision 
which holds that you do not accept an answer. You are raising a ques- 
tion as to whether he is answering the questions, and he is answering 
the question as he sees fit. 
C •hairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sullivan, the committee has received a great 
deal of evidence over a number of years that rank-and-file members, 
and those who are functionaries of the Communist Party are required 
by the Communist Part}- and expected by the Communist Party to take 
an active part in mass organization work. 

Testimony has been received from a number of individuals that they 
have complied with that understanding and that directive by engag- 
ing in work of that type. 

I want to ask you whether or not during the period of time that you 
have been a member of the American Federation of Television and 
Radio Artists and Actors Equity, whether you have been engaged in 
mass organization work of any character in response to advice or any 
understanding that you may have received from the Communist Party 
or its members. 

Mr. Sullivan. If ever there was a loaded question, I just heard it^ 
and I will repeat that the right of people to engage in union ac- 
tivity is one which I think by this time is inalienable, and I do not 
believe or rather I believe firmly that you do not have the powder and 
tfip riofht to ouestion me regarding my associations and my thought 
and my speech. 

Mr. SciiERER. Again, Mr. Chairman, I ask you to direct the Avitness 
to answei- the question. 



2332 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I will answer the question by repeating that I chal- 
lenge this committee's power because I believe its jurisdiction is 
limited, and I don't believe any branch of the (xovernment can inquire 
into people's individual beliefs or opinions. 

Chairman Walter. Didn't you understand the question^ Mr. Tav- 
enner wasn't asking you about beliefs or opinions. He was asking 
you about activities. 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, as far as I am concerned, I don't know how 
one can separate activities from beliefs. No one acts without belief. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Jerome Robbins ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I know him. I used to know him. I will amend 
that definitely, I used to know him. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you know him between 1944 and 1047? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know what dates. 

Mr. Tavenner. You said you "used to know him,'' when did you 
cease to know him ? 

Mr. Sullivan; I am not sure about that. 

Mr. Tavenner. When he testified before this connuittee, is that wjiat 
you have reference to ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. I am sorry ; will you rejieat the question ? 

Mr. TavT'^nner. You said that you have ceased to know him, and 
I am asking whether the time you ceased to know him began at the 
time he testified before this committee ( 

Mr. Sullivan. I would say that that is the case ; yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Now, mv next question is, did you know him between 
1944 and 1947? 

Mr. Sullivan. It is ])ossible that I did ; yes. I mean those dates, 
it is possible in those dates I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you attend Connnunist Party meetings with 



linn 



Mr. Sullivan. You are asking me again a question which is involv- 
ing my associates and beliefs and I challenge your right to ask it. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am s]:)eaking of your action and your conduct, and 
I am not asking you about your beliefs. 

Mr. Sui-irFVAN. Well, that is a matter of opinion, and I believe that 
you are asking me about my beliefs and this is why I answer this 
question in this way. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Robbins testified before this connnittee that 
you were a member of the group of the Connnunist Party of which 
he was a member, and in order to identify the matter a little further, 
nnoth'^r person in that grouj) identified by Mr. Robbins was Lloyd 
Cough, also Jei'ome Chodorov. and P>dwai"d (^liodorov, according to 
the testimony that he gave befoi'e this connnittee in New York, in 1953. 

Were you a member of a Connnunist Party grouj> in 1947 in the city 
of New York ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Again I repeat that this question is outside of your 
power to ask and that is how I answer that. 

Chaivman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Si LLivAN. AVell, it is almost no longer a question of mv rights, 
but of your lack of power to ask it, to ask (juestions regarding the 
tenets within the first amendment. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2333 

Mr. WiLi.is. As you said earlier, that is the aineiichnent you are 
relying on throughout your testimony. You are not invoking the 
privilege of the fifth amendment in giving testimony against yourself ( 

Mr. HiTLLivAN. That is correct, sir. 

Mr. Wilms. And throughout your testimony we may assume that 
that is the case without repetition i 

Mr. SuLi.iVAN. Yes, you may. 

Mr. Tavkxnek. You told the connnittoe that you went to Hollywood 
in IDHT. Did you hecome a member of the Communist Party soon 
after your arrival or at any early date after yovir ariival in California 
or at any time while you were in California '( 

Mr. SiiLivAN. Again I challenge youi- right to ask this question as 
J have stated hefore. 

Chairman Wai/i'Er. I direct you to answer the (|uest ion. 

Mr. SuiJJVAN. Well my answer again is along the same lines. I 
will not violate my I'iglits although I believe you ai'c trying to violate 
my rights. 

Mr. Tavknnkk. Did you become ac({uainted with Martin Herkeley 
in California^ 

Ml'. Si'LLiVAN. I knew Mnrtin Beikeley ; yes. 

Mr, Tavknner. Mr. Martin Berkeley testified Ijefore this committee 
in 1951 and he descrii)ed tlie difliculty that had arisen in the Com- 
munist Party in ('alifornia which necessitated the bringing of V. J. 
Jerome, then the cultuial secretaiy of the Comnnmist I*arty in New 
York City to California to straighten it out, and Mr. Jerome picked 
Mr. Martin Berkeley for the |)erformance of certain services in con- 
nection with that woi-k. He (lesci'ibed a faction meeting of the (Com- 
munist Party which, he said, Elliott Sullivan attended. He is also 
known as Ely Sullivan. Upon being asked what his occupation was, 
his reply was that he is an actor. 

Did you attend any faction meeting of the Connnunist Party which 
was attended by Mr. Martin Berkeley? 

Mr. Sullivan. I will repeat my challenge to this committee that it 
does not have the right to ask me (juestions regarding my asso- 
ciations and I will say fuither that the long, tired list of men 
and women who have appeared before this committee who in my 
opinion have sold their honor and dignity and in fact the best tra- 
ditions of American life for a mess of pottage, for a job, for a movie 
contract, I believe all of these people will be judged and are being 
judged today by the decent peo[)le in this country. 

Mr. ScuKHER. You are referring to the witness Berkeley, whose 
testimony Mr. Tavenner referred to, are you not? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am referring to him along with others. 

Mr, SciiEUER, Along with others? 

Mr, Sullivan, Yes, 

Mr. SciiERER. Is anything that Mr. Berkeley told this committee 
undei- oath about you false? In other words, did he lie to this com- 
mittee, Mr. Sullivan ? 

Ml'. Sullivan. I will challenge your right to ask me that question, 
Mr. Scherer. 

Chairman Walter. Mr. Scherer's question is whether or not Mr. 
Berkeley's testimony was true or false, 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

68010— 55— pt. 6 G 



2334 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Sullivan. I merely repeat what I have said before. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. Sullivan. What was the question ? 

Chairman Walter. Was the testimony of Martin Berkeley, adduced 
by this committee, true or false ? 

Mr, Sullivan. I also believe that you do not have the right to ask 
me this question. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. I do not believe that you have the power to ask me 
this question any more than you had the power at the time to ask him 
those questions. 

Chairman Walter. But we had the power and the authority to ask 
him those questions, and the only difference between you and Berkeley 
is that he answered them and you won't. That is the only difference. 

Mr. Sullivan. I insist that I am answering your qiiestions to tlie 
best of my ability. 

Mr. Scherer. Mr. Sullivan, you attacked Mr. Berkeley and I am 
saying this to you. He was under oath when he testified before this 
committee and you are under oath, and if you say to us now that the 
man whom you attacked lied about you, then I am going to ask that 
the testimony of Berkeley and your testimony be referred to the 
Department of Justice, and we can ascertain whetlier Berkeley lied. 
You have the opportunity now to say whether this man whom you 
attacked lied. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Scherer. Here is 3"our opportunity. 

Mr. Sullivan. Because I am firm in my belief that you do not 
have the power to ask me any question regarding my associations, 
I will certainly not engage in any discussion with you under compul- 
sion on this question. 

Chair-man Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee whether or not V. J. 
Jerome interposed in any activities of Connnunist Party groups in the 
city of New York to your knowledge ? 

Mr, Sullivan. I will again say that you are asking me questions 
that have to do with the area of freedom of speech and of association 
and I will answer that question in that way. 

Mr. Tavenner, May I have a direction ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullr'an. I answer that in the same way, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you employed by the Federal Theater project? 

Mr. Sullivan. No, sir, 

Mr. Taa^nner, At any time ? 

Mr, Sullivan. No. sir. 

Mr, Tavenner, Were you acquainted with V. J. Jerome ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Again whether I was acquainted with V. J, Jerome 
or anyone else I believe is a question that invades my associations. 

]\rr. Willis. He volunteered acquaintanceship with other witnesses. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I answer it in the same way, sir, 

Mr. Tavenner, Were you acquainted with Mr. Lee J. Cobb ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I was. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2335 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you know liini, in California, or New 
York, or botli ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In California. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Cobb testified before this committee that you 
and certain other persons were members of the same Communist Party 
group that he was a member of. Will you tell the committee whether 
or not you were a member of the Communist Party group of which 
Mr. Cobb was a member ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Mr. Cobb is among those on the shameful list of 
people who have given testimony 

Chairman Walter. Let me get this straightened out. These people 
whom you have called shameful have made great contributions to the 
preservation of this Republic and these people have recognized the 
mistakes that they have made, and they have testified in closed and 
open session before this committee. I think they are deserving, and 
are i-eceiving the credit from the vast majority of the American people. 

Mr. Sullivan. Not from the papers I read, Mr. Walter. 

Chairman Walter. If you stop reading the Daily Worker, maybe 
\oii wnll find out the truth. 

Mr. Sullivan. I beg your pardon ? 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Sullivan. Since you raised that point, I am talking about the 
many, many columnists and editorials in this country that have begun 
to denounce professional informers. 

Chairman Walter. You hope. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you acquainted with George Tyne, also known 
as Buddy Yarns, while you were in California? 

Mr. Sullivan. I know Mr. Tyne, and I am not sure whether it was 
in California or here. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you ac(iuainted with Victor Killian? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I was. 

Mr. Tavenner. While you were in California ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I was. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were either or both of those persons members of 
the Comnumist Part}^ o^roup with you in California ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Again you are asking me a question which has to 
do with my associations, and I do not believe you have the power to 
do so. 

Chairman Walter. You say you did know this man Killian, is that 
cori'ect ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I did know him. 

Chairman Walter. Did you know V. J. Jerome ? 

Mr. Sullivan. AYell, whether I knew him or not I believe again is 
a question which I have raised before, and I have answered it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee if you know what the 
Communist Party w-as endeavoring to accomplish in Hollywood with- 
in the moving picture industry at the time that you were there and 
at the time that you were a screen actor ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I take it that this question results from the stated 
purposes of this committee in its investigation in New York, in 1955? 

Mr. Tavenner. There doesn't seem to be as much distance between 
New York and Hollywood as geography would indicate. 

Will you please answer the question ? 



2336 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Sullivan, Well time certainly indicates there is a lot of differ- 
ence. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan, I insist that the question is not pertinent, and again 
I will say to you that I challenge your right, and I do not believe you 
have the power to ask me this question because it involves the indi- 
vidual guaranty under the Bill of Rights. 

Mr. Tavenner, Mr, Robbins in his testimony, which I referred to 
a moment ago, said that he was in a theatrical transient group of the 
Communist Party here in New York between 1944 and 1947, Will 
you tell the committee, if you know, what the Communist Party was 
endeavoring to do in the theater ? 

Mr, St^LLivAN, Well, Avhether I know or not, again I believe is in 
the area of private opinion and private thought, and I again say that 
I do not believe this committee has the power to invade that area with 
questions, 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee what the Communist 
Party was endeavoring to do within the American Federation of 
Television and Radio Artists ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I again repeat my same answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sullivan, were voii acquainted with Nicholas 
Bela? 

Mr. Sullivan. Yes, I am ashamed to say that I have been. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you ashamed to say that because he told this 
committee facts within his knowledge ? 

Mr. Sullivan, I am ashamed to say it because I believe he is one of 
those people, I know he is one of those people who has lost his dignity. 

Mr. ScHERER. Is he one of those who testified so that he could get 
a job or some personal preferment ? 

Mr. Sullivan. There must be something at stake of that sort, for 
a man to lower himself to that extent. 

Mr. ScHERER. You people talk about witnesses being smeared. You 
are smearing tliis man by claiming that he perjured himself for some 
personal advancement, isn't that what you are doing ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, the worse smear is a word which is used by 
people for different reasons. 

Mr. SciiERER. You have smeared three witnesses who have testified 
before tliis committee, 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't tliink I have. If I have smeared them, I 
don't think it is not merely that I am making this characterization 
of these people, but I believe manv hundreds of thousands of people 
do. 

Mr. ScHERER. Isn't it a fact that you have stated tliat they testified 
falsely and that is perjury, because of some personal advantage that 
they would get ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't think the ultimate outcome or I don't believe 
the ultimate judgment is going to be either yours or mine, Mr. Scherer, 
frankly, and I think it is going to de])end upon what the American 
people feel about people like this. 

Mr. Scherer. That isn't my question. My question was, isn't it in 
effect that you have charged these people with ]:)erjury, and haven't 
you smeared these three former associates with you in the Comnninist 
Party ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE NEW YORK AREA 2337 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know what the detinition of "perjnrv*" is, bnt 
I do know what the definition is of an "informer." 

Chairman Walter. Did they testify falsely when they said that you 
were a member of a Communist <;roui) ^^ith them '. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. That isn't pertinent to my position, Mr. Walter, and 
I believe that you do not have the right to ask me this question. 

Mr. SciiEREK. I just think we should make it clear, Mr. Chairman, 
from time to time, who is smearing whom. 

Chairman Walter. I think it is perfectly obvious. 

Mr. Tavenner. Bela in the course of his testimony before this 
committee identified Elliott Sullivan, an actor, as a person known to 
him to be a member of the C^ommunist Party. 

Was his testimony true or false I 

Mr. Sullivan. Again I repeat, sir, that this man has forsaken his 
conscience and has given testimony true or false for undignified 
leasons. 

Mr. Tavenner. My question is, was his testimony true or false ^ 

Mr. Sullivan. I said regardless of what kind of testimony he gave, 
whether it w^as true or false, I believe that this man has forsaken liis 
conscience. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was his testimony true or false? 

Mr. Sullivan. 1 am not going to answer. I will answer that ques- 
tion by telling you again that the (luestion is intended to determine 
what my beliefs are, and there is no power under this Cxovernment 
that can do that. 

Mr. SciiERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer. 

Chairnuin Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I will tell you again, Mr. Walter, and as strongly 
as I know how, as a human being, that I (io not believe that there is 
any branch of our (jovernment that the very foundation of our (xov- 
ernment, the rockhottom pinnacle, or whatever you want to call it, the 
basis of our democratic (lovernment depends precisely on this very 
])oint, that peo])le may not, or no branch of the Government may 
invade the individual rights of freedom of speech or association. 

Chairman AValter. Do you suppose that this subcommittee, with its 
distinguished counsel, who ])rosecuted Toje in Japan, would ask a 
question if he thought it was an improper question? Noav, you feel 
as strongly as you do about it, and I feel as strongly as I do about it, 
and there is only one way to Hnd out, and I assure you that you will 
be given that opportunity if I have anything to do with it. 

Mr. Sn.LivAN. What are you implying, Mr. Walter? 

Chairman Walter, I am not implying anything, I am just indicat- 
ing to you that in my judgment you are in contempt, and I will ask 
the subcommittee to recommend to the full committee that you be 
adjudged in contem])t, and I will ask the Congress of the United 
States to pass on such a resolution. We can find out whether or not 
the arm of Government that is charged with the responsibility of pro- 
tecting its citizens from subversives has a right to ask the kind of 
questions and the only questions which will throw light on the con- 
spiracy that we believe you have been a party to. 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, you are making an accusation, Mr. Walter. 

Chairman Walter. Well, were you ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I beg your pardon ? 



2338 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE NEW YORK AREA 

Cliairman Walter. I sa}' have you been a member of the Commu- 
nist conspiracy, or the Communist Party ? 

Mv. Sullivan. You don't have the rio;ht to ask me that question, 
because it is not a pertinent question, and it is a question that has to 
do as:ain, as I say, with my personal beliefs, whether I was or I 
wasn't. 

Miss Abzuo. I would like to suggest, Mr. "Walter — — 

Chairman Walter. You advise your client, and not me. 

Proceed, ]Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Sullivan. I want this straight for the record, that I am not a 
conspirator, and that I have committed no crime, and I believe that 
in your statement a moment ago that you made some sort of an infer- 
ence to that effect, and I resent it. 

Chairman Walter. I didn't mean to make an inference, I was stat- 
ing it as plainly as I could, that in my opinion you were a member 
of the Communist conspiracy. 

Mr. Sx'LLivAN. Didn't you say I was going to have the op])ortunity ? 
What is contained in a phrase like that, if there isn't some kind of an 
implied threat? 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sullivan, you have not seen fit to deny or ex- 
1'lain this testimony which very positivelv identified you as having 
Veen a member of the Communist Party. If that testimony be ac- 
cepted as trustworthy, then during the period of time that you were 
a member of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, 
and durinjr ^he time that you were a member of the Actors Equity, 
you were in a position to know what Communist Party activities were 
goiiiQ- on, if any were goinff on, within those organizations. 

What were the activities of the Communist Party within those 
groups ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I will tell you again, and T respectfully submit that 
I do not believe that you have the power to ask me such a question, 
because it has to do with my associations, and if this is true there 
would be no reason why you wouldn't be able to ask me about my 
reliffion, and about many other kinds of things. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. Mr. Sulli- 
van. 

Mr. Sullivan. I answer that question by telling you that I do not 
believe that you have the power to inquire into personal and private 
affairs of individuals and I want to say furthermore 

Mr. Tavenner. Therefore do you refuse to answer the question ? 

Mv. Sullivan. I am not refusing to answer the question. 

Mr. Ta^tenner. Then answer it. 

Mr. Sullivan. I did answer it. 

Mr. Tavenner. No: you are explaining, and you are endeavoring to 
avoid answering the question. 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, it is a matter of opinion. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then let me rephrase the question, and put it more 
directly. 

Did you ever attend a caucus meeting of members of the Communist 
Partv within the American Federation of Television and T\adio 
Artists? 

Mr. SuTLTVAN. My answer to that question is that I do not believe 
you have the power to ask me. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2339 

Mr. Tavenner. And therefore you won't answer. 

May I ask for a direction ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct yon to answer the question. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. I state again that I believe that this committee does 
not have the right under the first amendment to ask me questions which 
1 believe violate my own persoiial thinking on this matter, the matter 
of association. 

Mr. Tavexner. I have before me a photostatic copy of the July 31, 
1952 issue of the Dailj- Worker, which shows an advertisement under 
the auspices of tlie National Council of Arts. Sciences, and Professions. 
There Avas a meeting referred to as Peace and Presidential Candidates. 
Those engaging in the program, or among those engaged were Howard 
DaSilva, Morris Carnovsky, and Elliott Sullivan. i)o you recall the 
occasion ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I do not, no. 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you examine the document, please, and state 
v.hether in tlie performance of your part of that program you were 
carrying out a Communist Party function ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. Was your question whether or not I remembered this 
now ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No; my question was if that advertisement re- 
freshed your recollection, would you tell the committee please whether 
while engaged in that program you were carrying out what you con- 
sidered to be a Communist Party function ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I remember being present on this occasion here, and 
1 have certainly no lecollection of having carried out any Communist 
Party ideas or whatever it was you said, and despite tliat however, I 
still do not believe that you have the right to ask me this question. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a copy of the May 5, 1947 issue 
of the Daily Worker, advertising a Carnival-Bazaar, under the aus- 
pices of the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship, in 
which Phil Leeds, Elliott Sullivan, George Keane, and others took 
part. 

Will you examine the document, please, and state whether or not 
in that instance you were carrying out a Communist Party function? 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Chairman Walter. The committee will stand in recess for 10 min- 
utes. 

( A brief recess was thereupon taken by the committee.) 

Chairman Walter. The committee will be in order. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was there a question pending? 

("\'\'liereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded.) 

Mr. Sullivan. In answer to this question, all of these questions 
which you have been asking me, and which I assume you will be ask- 
ing me, are in the area of my associations, of where I entertained, 
and what I do as an individual, and I will say now, as I have all morn- 
ing been answering these questions, that I will answer all of these 
questions in the same way. That is to say that my understanding of 



2340 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

tliis form of o^overnment and our democracv is that tliis committee 
oi- any other committee like it, has the right or the power to ask me 
such questions. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I have a direction ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Tavenner. The committee does not accept your reason for 
your refusal to answer, and you are now being directed to answ^er the 
question. 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't take the position that I am refusing to 
answer your questions. I am taking the position that I am answering 
your questions to the very best of mv ability and my answer to the 
directed question is again tliat I do not believe that this committee 
has the right and the power and that it should not assume such right 
to ask me questions which are enunciated under the first amendment 
of the Bill of Rights. 

Chairman Walter. Because you believe that we have no authority 
to ask these questions, you decline to answer them, is that right? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am not declining to answer, Mr. Walter. I am 
answering. 

Mr. SciiERER. Obviously the witness is declining to answer, and 
just giving reasons for refusal to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is a statement by the witness wdiich is not a 
factual reply to anything that I have asked. 

Chairman Walter. That is right. Go ahead and ask another ques- 
tion. 

Mr. Tavenner. The National Council of American-Soviet Friend- 
shi]) under the auspices of which this entertainment w^as conducted 
has been cited as a Communist-front organization, and as I mentioned 
to you in the early part of your testimony, numerous witnesses have 
told us that it was part of the function and duty of the Communist 
Party members to assist mass organizations which'are considered front 
organizations. 

I want to ask you whether or not in addition to your ]>erforming 
this service for the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship 
you were in any way affiliated with it. 

Mr. Sullivan. I have tried to make clear as firmly as I know how 
that this question is one of those which falls into "the area of free 
association and free beliefs. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do vou know the purposes for which the money 
to be derived by the National Council of America-Soviet Friendship 
was to be used, that is the money from this particular benefit ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Whether I know or not, again I do not believe you 
have the right to ask me this question. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you receive any compensation for your serv- 
ices to the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship in this 
!)erformance? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Sullivan. In this instance I don't recall whether I received 
any compensation or not, and despite this fact, how^ever, I again re- 
peat the same answer tliat I have been tiying to give you all morning. 

Mr, Tavenner. Did you ever receive compensation from the Na- 
tional Council of American-Soviet Friendship for any services per- 
formed by you for it ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE NEW YORK AREA 2341 

Mr. Sullivan. Again I say that whether I did or not is one of those 
kinds of questions wliich invades my private affairs and my ability to 
associate with whom I please and entertain where I please, and say 
what I please. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic co):)y of an excerpt 
from the October 6. 1041), issue of the Daily Worker which states 
''You play an important part in the Case of the Loaded Mike, with 
Jack (xilford, Elliott Sullivan, and certain other persons," produced 
by Voice of Freedom Radio Division. NCASP, which is the National 
Council of the Arts, Sciences and Professions, Committee for the 
Neirro in the Arts. 

Will you examine it i)lease and state whether or not you recall that 
you took ])art in that ]:)rogram ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Mr. Tavenner, I don't want to examine it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall it without examining it ? 

Mr. SiTLLivAN. I recall having a])i)eared to entertain on a number 
of occasions in 26 years, in many, many different areas, for many, 
many different causes and reasons. 

Chairman Walter. Do you remember that particular occasion? 

Mr. Sullivan. My basic point here is that I do not believe 

Mr. Tavenner. Let us be specific. 

Mr. Sullivan. You don't have the right to in(iuire into my ])ersonal 
behavior, and this is wliat I am trying to make very clear, that I 
believe it is beyond the function of this committee, and I believe that 
it is beyond the recognized limitations of its investigative function. 

Mr. Tavenner. The Committee for the Negro in the Arts is an 
organization which has been cited by the Attorney (ireneral of the 
United States as subversive, and I want to ask you to state under 
what circumstances you were induced or submitted your efforts in it-^ 
behalf or contributed your efforts in its behalf. 

Mr. Sullivan. As I remember the stated pur]>oses of the Committee 
for the Negro in the Arts, it was to the effect that they attempted to 
get jobs for Negro artists and was successful to a certain extent in 
doing so, and in giving auditions for Negro artists and having con- 
certs and in making it possible for Negro artists to obtain jobs- 

I was very happy and proud to help in this effort, but I again repeat 
that I do not believe that you have the power to ask me questions about 
my associations. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have stated very emphatically that it was the 
stated purpose of this organization to do certain very laudable things. 
What other i)urposes were there for the organization of this group ^ 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know of any other purposes, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are aware of the fact that it has been cited by 
the Attorney General and is on his subversive list; are you not? 

Mr. Sullivan. I have read that list many times, that long list of 
organizations that have been cited, yes. I am aware of it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Committee for the Negro 
in the Arts ? 

Mr. Sullivan. It is possible that I may have been a member of it. 
I am not sure, but again I insist that you don't have the right to ask 
whether I was or not. 

Mr. Tavenner. W^ere your services contributed to that organization 
as a result of what you considered to be your duty as a member of the 
Communist Party ? 



2342 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Sullivan. The question has a great deal of inference in it, 
and I again repeat to you that you are asking me a question that has 
to do with my ])er8onal l)eliefs, and I will repeat that I do not believe 
that you have the power to do so. 

Mr. Tavenner. You said that I have made an inference. I haven't 
made an inference at all. I have reviewed testimony of numerous wit- 
nesses stating that you were a member of the Conmiunist Party. You 
have not seen fit to deny it or to explain it. You have remained mute 
on that subject, and there is no inference that can be drawn other 
than the fact that you were a member of the Connnunist Party. 

Mr. Sullivan. Well, that is your inference and you are welcome to 
it, but I don't happen to agree that that is true. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is not true that you were a member of the Com- 
nninist Party? 

Mr. Sullivan. I didn't say that ; I said that it is not true that your 
deiinition of that inference — I don't agree with that; that is what 
I am saying. 

Mr. Tavenner. I shouldn't have used the term "inference" ; it is a 
conclusion. 

Mr. Sullivan. Simply because you ask a number of questions and 
1 am answering them to the best of my ability, based on wJiat I believe 
to be in the best interests of furthering the Bill of Rights, 1 don't think 
ihat you have the right to infer from this that my denial or acqui- 
•^scense to the question has any inference to it. 

Chairman Walter. I thinly there is a misimderstanding here. It 
was not the inference that was drawn from your failure to answer 
Muestions, but because of the sworn testimony of a number of people 
concerning your Communist activities. 

Ml-. SuLUVAN. Mr. Walter, I don't have any respect for the sworn 
restimony of informers. 

Chairman Walter. Whether you have or you have not, there it is, 
and these are reputable people in the profession. 

Mr. Sullivan. They are reputable in some people's eyes, but not in 
mine. 

Chairman Walter. I can understand that, too. 

Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have told the committee that you are a director 
at a summer camp. What is the name of that camp again ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Wingdale Lodge. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where is it located ? 

Mr. Sullivan. In Wingdale, N. Y. 

Mr. ScHERER. Whom did you say was the director of that camp ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Mr. Friedman. 

Mr. ScHERER. What is his first name? 

Mr. Sullivan. Kenneth. 

Mr. ScHERER. Wasn't he the director of Camp Wyandotte last year? 

Mr. Sullivan. He may have been. 

Mr. ScHERER. You know that as a matter of fact, do you not? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know for sure whether he was or not, and I 
heard that he was. 

Mr. ScHERER. Camp Wyandotte is the camp that was closed by the 
State of New York for subversive activities, was it not? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2343 

Mr. Sullivan. Is this part of the stated purposes of this committee, 
Mr. Seherer, really in 1955. to find out what is p-oincr on in the theater 
here, as to whether a camp was closed by the State or not ? 

Mr. ScHERER. I am askino; you the question. Is that not a fact? 
You know that to be a fact, do you not ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Don't put words into my mouth. 

Chairman Walter. Do you or don't you? Do you know whether 
that camp was closed by the State of Xew York? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know that for a fact, Avhether it was or not. 
I know that there has been some investigations around with these 
camps, but that is all I knoAv about it. 

Mr. Scherer. You haven't heard that fact, that Wyandotte was 
closed? 

Mr. Sullivan. I may have, and I am not denying that I haven't 
heard it, and I am merely sayin<r I don't know it now for a fact, and 
I can't tell you for a fact. 

Mr. Scherer. You have discussed it with Ken Friedman, have vou 
not ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I discussed what with Friedman ? 

Mr. Scherer. The closing of Wyandotte, and the investio;ation. 

Mr. Sin.LivAN. I don't recall any discussions I have had with him 
him about this. 

Mr. Scherer. Do you deny that you had any discussions with Fried- 
man ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am sayinc: I do not recall ever havin<2; any discus- 
sions with him. 

Mr. Scherer. You don't deny that you did have discussions, though ? 

Mr. Sullivan. Are you insisting on the answer to that question, 
Mr. Scherer? 

Mr. Scherer. Yes. 

Mr. Sullivan. I just ansAvered it a moment ago, and why are you 
repeating it again ? 

Mr. Scherer. Evidently the question hurt. 

Mr. Ta\tsnner. Was Cam]i Wingdale known by any other name? 

Mr. SuLiiR'AN. Wingdale Lodge, are you referring to? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Sullivan. It had been known as Camp Unity before this. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that one of the camps upon which a considerable 
mortgage was held by the lAVO and which in the proceedings brought 
by the State of New York, the mortgage was assigned to the State of 
New York? 

Mr. Sullivan. I am an employee at Wingdale Lodge tliis summer, 
I happen to know that this used to be a camp known as Camp Unity, 
and this is all I know about it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is it the same camp that was involved in the pro- 
ceedings brought by the State of New York against the IWO? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know. 

Mr. Taa'enner. Have you heard that it was the same camp from 
any of the operators or any other persons connected with the camp? 

Mr. SuixivAN. I did not. 

Mr. Tavenner. The committee has seen an advertisement of a pro- 
gram put on by you at this camp this summer in which Lloyd Gough 
was one of the performers. Is the advertisement correct in stating 



2344 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEAV YORK AREA 

tliat he was enj^aged in tlie entertainment work with you at this camp 
on one occasion ? 

Mr. Sn.TJVAN. That is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is this the same Lloyd Goiioh witli whom you 
became acquainted in California ( 

Mr. SuLi.ivAN. I don't know where I became acquainted with Lloyd 
Gouo-h, and I believe it was in New York. 

Mr. Tavenn;?:k. You told us earlier in your testimony that you were 
acquainted Avith Lloyd Gough in Galifornia. 

Mr. Sn.iJVAN. I was acquainted with him there, and I thouo-ht that 
your question was where I had first met him. 

Mr. Tavenxer. I understand. But you did know Mr. Lloyd Gouoh 
wliile you were in California ? 

Mr. Sfllivan". Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you select him for this entertainment ? 

Mr. Sri.LivAN. I recommended him as orie of a number of })eople 
that could be hired for this job. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you influenced in that decision by your Com- 
munist Party association with him in California ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I was influenced by selectino; him because he is a very 
fine entertainer and he sings delightfully funny songs, and I thought 
it would please the audience at Wingdale Lodge, and this is why he 
was selected, and this is why all of the entertainers at Wingdale Lodge 
are selected, because of their ability, and talent to jjerform, and they 
don't have to pass any political test or have to know anybody to get 
the job there. 

Mr. Tavenner. Again you have used the phrase, "passing a poli- 
tical test." 

Mr. Sullivan. Because you a moment ago asked me whether or not 
lie had to pass some sort of a political test which you enunciated, and 
1 am telling you very firmly that he was chosen because of his talent 
to i^erform, as are all of the people there. 

Mr. Tavenner. The testimony has shown here, which you have not 
denied, and Avhich you have refused to answer any question about it, 
that you and Lloyd Gougli were members of the same group of the 
Communist Party in California. We find the two of you together in 
an entertainment project at this particular cam]), Camp Wingdale, in 
New York State. 

Mr. Sullivan. It almost sounds like a mjstery novel, doesn't it? 

Mr. Tavenner. We want to know the facts. 

Chairman Walter. It is not a mystery to us, but it may be to you. 

Mr. Sullivan. What do you want me to say to this 'I I have known 
hundreds of entertainers for the past 26 years, of all shades of political 
o])inion, and it has never been a question as to a person's politics as to 
their ability to perform. If you spent a little more time around the 
theater, I think that you would discover that. 

Mr. Tavenner. As the director of the camp, the responsibility of 
hiring those who take part in their entertainment is yours, is it not? 

Mr. Sullivan. In the first place, I am not the director of the camp. 
I am the director of the stage shows there. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are director of the entertainment there, are 
you not? 

Mr. Sullivan. That is right. It is different from being the director 
of the camp. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2345 

Mr. Tavenner, Yes, and if I said that, I didn't mean to say it. 

Mr. Sullivan. As such I do recommend people for jobs there, and 
the manager hires them, if he feels my recommendations are O. K. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you used Jack Gilford in any of the enter- 
tainments you have conducted there ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I certainly did. He is one of the finest comedians 
in America. 

Mr. Tavenner. And Pete Seeger? 

Mr. Sullivan. I did, and a great singer. 

Mr. Tavenner. The committee is informed that during the July 
Aveekend you took part in a skit involving a dialog regarding a copy 
of the Bill of Rights. According to the committee's information, it 
consisted of only a few lines. You are represented as coming on the 
stage, and saying ""AVant to buy a copy of the Bill of Rights T' 

Another individual says "How muchr' 

And you say "Two bucks*'. 

The man says 'T will take it for a dollar." 

Then each of you go through the act of passing money and paper 
and arresting each other. 

Was that not a very unusual type of a skit to present to a summer 
camp ? What was the purpose of it ? 

Mr. Sullivan. The purpose was to entertain an audience there by 
satirizing a condition which exists in this country today, and 1 be- 
lieve the best musical theater of the past has always been the kind 
which lias satirized current events. In my estimation this sketch falls 
into that category. The fact that you are asking me about a 2-minute 
sketch that takes place 80 miles away from New York would lead me 
to believe that there is some censorship notions about your raising the 
question. Is it your province to examine material that goes on the 
stage anywhere, and to comment on it in such a way that it may dis- 
courage people from making comments about things that go on 
today ? 

This again seems to me to be contrary to the stated purposes of 
this committee, and it very clearly indicates what I have said in my 
statement here that this committee encourages censorship, and it en- 
courages fear to produce this kind of material. In my estimation 
this is as good a piece of American theater as you could possibly get. 
It presents two men who are selling the Bill of Rights to each other, 
and then the minute each of them buy it, they disclose themselves as 
being members of the FBI, or some other Government agency, and 
they arrest each other. Of course, this is exaggerated, but such is 
the' nature of humor on the stage. However, it is not terribly exag- 
gerated when you consider the fact that a newspaper reporter some 
time ago attempted to get signatures to the very Bill of Rights itself, 
and out of 125 people, 1 believe, he succeeded in getting one signature, 
and the rest were afraid to sign it or considered him to be some sort 
of a subversive, as several of them actually said. 

On another occasion in California, some years ago, a man attempted 
to read the Bill of Rights on a soap box in an open square there, and he 
was arrested for doing so. 

Mr. Tavenner. But he wasn't arrested for reading the Bill of 
Rights, he was arrested for some violation of a local statute in appear- 
ing there. 

Mr. Sullivan. AVhat violation was that? 



2346 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. I don't know, but certainly is was not for reading 
the Bill of Eights. 

Mr. Sullivan. Are you sure that was it? 

Mr. Tavenner. But you don't know, and you are not sure. 

Mr. Sullivan. This is what was said in the papers, and while I 
don't always believe what is said in the papers, I believed this. I be- 
lieved at least that it was possible, that is what I mean. That is this 
condition iii this country and there is no use denying it, everybody 
knows it, and people are afraid to sign petitions, and people are afraid 
to do things because this committee has helped to create this kind of 
an atmosphere. 

Mr. Scherer. My experience is just the opposite. People are will- 
ing to sign any kind of petition, and we get them every day in Con- 
gress, hundreds of petitions. Many people don't know what they are 
signing. 

Mr. Sullivan. You mean that you are getting more signatures to- 
day on petitions than you did in the past? Is that what you are 
saying ? 

Mr. Scherer. I am saying that we get petitions every day in Con- 
gress. 

Mr. Sullivan. I didn't say that there isn't anyone in the country 
who is afraid, or every one is afraid, I said more and more people are, 
Mr. Scherer. 

Chairman Walter. If I understand what you mean then, I feel that 
this committee has really accomplished something. 

Mr. Sullivan. It is a matter of opinion, Mr. Walter, whether the 
committee has accomplished anything or not. I think it has accom- 
plished a good deal in the area of creating intimidation and helping 
to further the blacklist, and now an example of the encouragement to- 
ward censorship. The theater has always fought censorship in every 
form. 

Chairman AV alter. So have all of us. 

Go ahead. Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have not come to the point about this skit at all. 
What was the idea in having the skit represent the sale of the Bill of 
Bights for $2, and then settling for half price? Isn't that a form of 
ridicule of the Bill of Rights, and if so, what was the purpose oi' it? 

Mr. Sullivan. You are taking a couple of words or lines out of the 
context of the sketch, and attempting to make it appear that I had the 
purpose of subverting the Bill of Rights. I insist that I believe 
that I am a stancher defender of the Bill of Rights than you are in 
our relationship at this moment. And the veiy asking of the ques- 
tion to me indicates as I said before, very clearly that there is an at- 
tempt here at censorship of some sort, all through 

Mr. Scherer. We are trying to find out how far the Communist con- 
spiracy has succeeded in its infiltration. 

Mr. Sullivan. All through the Berkshires, and through the forests 
around Wingdale Lodge, and all over the place. 

Chairman Walter. How do you suppose that we knew of this ^kit i 

Mr. Sullivan. I gather that you knew of the skit from the testi- 
mony in Washington that was read to me, and you enunciated and you 
enumerated that there were 10 numbers, and apparently most of the 
notes that were taken were fairly accurate, and I assume that the way 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK ARElA 2347 

you knew about this is that you purposely sent someone up there on 
July Fourth weekend to do this job. 

Chairman Walter. No, we found out because a number of people 
who were at the show at this place were shocked at what you and 
others did in an attempt to discredit this form of government. 

Mr. Sullivan. Isn't it interesting, Mr. Walter, that after the show 
was over a number of people who were shocked by one sketch were 
able to report so accurately about the whole show ? Would you be 
able to do that, frankly? 

Chairman Walter. Surely. 

Mr. Sullivan. You could tell me there were 10 numbers in the show, 
and you could remember specific lines, and songs and so forth, and is 
that so? I doubt it sir. 

Mr. ScHEKER. They heard your show the night before. 

Mr. Sullivan. I wonder who it was in the audience that did all 
of the laughing, then, at the show ? 

Chairman Walter. I have my ideas about that, too. 

Mr. Sullivan. I have my idea, too. 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Sullivan, Your inference again, Mr. Tavenner, is that some- 
how the presentation of this sketch was an attempt on my part to sub- 
vert the Bill of Rights, and I insist again that I think that this is a 
method of alerting people to the preciousness of the Bill of Rights and 
how important it is to all of us. 

Mr. Tavenner. We were wondering but what it may be an effort 
on the part of the Communist Party itself to create fear in bringing 
up the question of the Bill of Rights in such a manner as this. This is 
to depreciate its value. 

Mr. Sullivan. Well apart from these few people who apparently 
didn't enjoy it, the rest of the audience howled with such laughter 
that it would be curious 

Mr. Tavenner. You think that it had no Communist Party barb 
stuck in it? 

Mr. Sullivan. Of course not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who wrote the skit, did you ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I don't know who wrote the skit. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wasn't it your idea ? 

Mr. Sullivan. No, this is a sketch which has been done around, 
I believe. When we do sketches and put a show together, we talk 
over material, and one fellow who has been around other places has 
an idea for something, and slowl}^ build a show by talking over vari- 
ous kinds of material. 

Mr. TA^-ENNER. Was it your idea to put that skit on, or did you 
obtain it from someone else that evening? 

Mr. Sullivan. It may have been my idea, and I have a big file full 
of notes and material of all kinds, and I can't answer that question 
accurately, and I am not sure exactly how the sketch came about. But 
again what relevance does this have, Mr. Tavenner ? That is whether 
it was my idea or someone else's idea as to whether this is subverting 
our country or not. I don't believe it is. And I don't believe you 
believe it is. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is very important, if it is an evidence of Com- 
munist Party influence, on your part, it is very important. 



2348 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

That is, after having developed your opportunity for knowledge, 

1 want to ask you again to tell this committee all you know about 
Communist Party activities within any group within the American 
Federation of Television and Radio Artists, 

Mr. Sullivan. I have told you before what my answer is to a 
question like that. I believe you are invading my personal beliefs 
and that is my answer, and my associations, and that is my answer to 
your question, and it will continue to be my answer to any question 
that falls within that area. 

Mr. Tavenner. I want to ask you what knowledge you have of any 
Communist Party activities at Wingdale Lodge. 

Mr. Sullivan. I have no knowledge whatsoever of any Communist 
Party activities at Wingdale Lodge. 

Mr. Tavenner. Not at the lodge; but you won't answer as to the 
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists? 

Mr. Sullivan. Is that a question or a statement. 

Mr. Ta%'enner. It is an observation. 

I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any questions? 

Mr. SiTLLiVAN. I have a statement, Mr. Walter, that I would like to 
read. 

Chairman Walter. Just a moment. 

Mr. Sullivan. May I read this, Mr. Walter? 

Chairman Walter. We will put it in the record if it is relevant. 

Mr. Sullivan, are you now a member of the Communist Party? 

Mr. Sullivan. Mr. Walter, I don't believe that you have the right 
to ask me any question having to do with my personal beliefs or 
associations. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Are you a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Sullivan. I will tell you again, I answer tliat question by saying 
that I do not believe, or I challenge the right of this committee to ask 
such a question. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused. 

The committee will stand in recess until 2 o'clock. 

(Whereupon the committee recessed at 12 : 15 p. m. to reconvene at 

2 p. m., the same day.) 

AFTERNOON SESSION— AUGUST 16, 1955 

Chairman Walter. The committee will be in order. 
Call your witness, please, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Lee Hays, will you come forward, ])lease ? 
Chairman Walter. Will you raise your right hand, please? 
Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 
Mr. Hays. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF LEE HAYS, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, 

PAUL L. ROSS 

Chairman Walter. Be seated, please. 
Mr, Tavenner. Are you Mr. Lee Hays ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2349 

Mr. Hays. That is right. . 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell your name, please, sir i 

Mr. Hays. L-e-e H-a-y-s. , . 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel accompanying the witness please iden- 
tify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Koss. Paul L. Ross, 160 Broadway, New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Hays i 

Mr. Hays. March 1914, Little Rock, Ark. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where do you now reside ? 

Mr. Hays. Eleven Cranberry Street, Brooklyn. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived m the Borough ot 
Brooklyn ? 

Mr. Hays. About 4 years. 

Mr. Tavenner. Prior to that time, where did you reside ^ 

Mr Hays. I resided in various places in New York City. I believe 
the previous address, before I moved to Brooklyn, was 52 fepring 
Street, perhaps, and various other addresses going back to 1940. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you mean that you were a resident ot the city 
of New York, or the immediate area, from 1940 on ? 

Mr. Hays. On and off from about 1940. 

Mr. Tavenner. You say on and off— what period of time did you 

exclude ^ 

Mr. Hays. Well, I suppose I was always a legal resident, and I was 
travelling a great deal, and sometimes for a year or 6 months at a 
time. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your profession ? 

Mr. Hays. Folk singer. . 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, what your ±or- 
mal educational training has been ? .,,,.*, i 

Mr. Hays. I attended grade school and high school m Arkansas and 
Georo-ia. I never got a college degree because of the occurrence of 
the d^epression at that time. I think that I will have to claim to be 
a self -educated man through reading and study. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged professionally as 
a folk smffer ? 

Mr. Hays. I think that to be a professional folk singer one has 
to be paid for singing, and I sang for fun for a great many years, 
and I was quite surprised when people started to pay me for smgmg. 
I don't know exactly what years that would have been, probably as 
early as 1934 or 1935. 

Mr. Tavenner. What I am interested m is to know when you began 
making your living that way, if that is the source of your living. 

Mr. Hays. The period in which my living could be said to be com- 
plete,' or most productive, began with me in about late 1949 or early 
1950, and lasted for 2 or 3 years, when I was a member of a folk sing- 
ing group. 

Mr. Tavenner. What group was that ? ,, . m^ 

Mr. Hays. I was a member of a folk-smging group called ihe 
Weavers. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who are the other members of that group « 

Mr. Hays. The members of the group were myself ; Ronnie Gilbert, 
alto ; Mr. Peter Seeger, tenor ; Mr. Fred Hellerman, baritone ; and I 
was the bass. 

68010 — 55— pt. 6 7 



2350 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. During that period of time, did you hold an official 
position m any other musical group ? 

Mr. Hays. What period of time is this ? 

Mr. Tavenner. During the period of time that you were with the 
group you have just described. 

u ^^^'■J^.''T^- Would you please let me know what you would mean by 
"an official position" ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you connected in any way with People's 
feongs ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Tavenner. I mean in an official way. 

Mr. Hays. I am not aware that People's Songs was in existence 
during this period that the Weavers were in existence. 

Mr Tavenner. During that period of time were you connected with 
the Weavers ? 

Mr. Hays. As I said, it was 1949 through 1952, or early 1953. I 
^^^7t '^V^^^ong on those dates, but that is the best of my recollection. 

Mr. Tavenner. You say that you do not believe that the People's 
Songs was in existence during that period of time ? 

Mr. Hays. It is the best of my recollection that it was not. 

Mr. Tavenner. During what period was it in existence ? 

Mr. Hays. I think in 1946, 1947, and 1948 there was an organiza- 
tion called People's Songs. 

Mr. TA\rENNER. Were you connected with it during that period in 
an official capacity? 

Mr. Tavenner^ Wliat does a question like that have to do with 
the nature of this present inquiry into the theater in New York City ? 

Chairman Walter. If you will answer the question, it will become 
apparent. 

Proceed. Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I ask that the witness answer the question ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hats. To questions like this, I am going to assert my privilege 
under the fifth amendment because I do not believe that the purpose 
of this inquiry allows anyone a right to examine into my associations 
and my beliefs and my personal private convictions ? 

Chairman Walter. So therefore you refuse or decline to answer? 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. May I have a direction ? 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Hays. I must give the same answer, and decline under that 
privilege. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you know whether People's Artists was a booking 
agency for People's Songs ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. Any question of that kind I will have to rely on the same 
privilege. 

Chairman Walter. Do I understand you to mean that you decline 
to answer this particular question ? 

Mr. Hays. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did the Weavers, of which you were a member, use 
the People's Artists as a booking agency ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2351 

Mr. Hays. I am afraid this again comes under the area where I 
must decline to answer under the privilec^e. 

Chairman Walter. You are not under any compulsion. Do you 
decline ? 

Mr. Hays. I do decline. 

Mr. ScHERER. I understand you are invoking the fifth amendment ? 

Mr. Hays. That is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. My question related to the connection of the Weav- 
ers with People's Artists. Have you received any bookings, individ- 
ually, through People's Artists ? 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer for the same reasons given. 

Mr. Tavenner. You told us that your profession of folk singing 
really became successful as a commercial matter about 1949. How 
were you employed prior to 1949 ? 

Mr. Hays. For what period, for example ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Begin in 1949, and tell us how you were employed 
in 1948 

Mr. Hays. I have had a number of jobs. I believe in 1948 I was 
functioning as a folklorist in collecting and research, and in the course 
of that I was traveling about quite a bit, as I have done through the 
years ever since I can remember. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you do that research work ? 

Mr. Hays. There are so many sources for folk material and folk- 
songs. There are libraries, and there are people, and there are folk 
festivals, and conventions, and there are record collections. 

Mr. Tavenner. Let me put the question in this way : 

Were you employed to do that type of research work at any par- 
ticular place ? 

Mr. Hays. No ; I was self-employed. 

Mr. Tavenner. For how long a period of time prior to 1948 was 
your time occupied in that type of work ? 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. Well, this is a lifelong profession, INIr. Tavenner, and 
it doesn't go along, it is interspersed with many jobs, let us say. 

Mr. Tavenner. \Vliat type of jobs ? I want to find out for the bene- 
fit of the committee what the nature of your employment was. There 
shouldn't be anything complicated about stating it. 

Mr. Hays. I have worked in factories as a laborer, and I have 
worked in a public library as a page, and I have worked on numerous 
farms as a farmhand, and I have worked in the undesirable part of 
a good many greasy-spoon restaurants, and I have worked as I say 
at warehouse employment, and whatever came along, and wherever 
I was at the time that was sufficient to earn a living and still allow 
me to pursue my profession. 

Mr. Taat:nner. I want to go back to approximately 1935. You 
need not go back any further than that. 

Did you have any other type of employment from 1935 to 1949 
that you have not described to us ? 

Mr. Hays. I will try to think if I have left out anything. 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. You are asking about employment and jobs, and not 
self -employment ? 
Mr. Tavenner. Yes; any means by which you made a livelihood. 



2352 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Hays. I believe that the jobs that I have mentioned, the gen- 
eral areas of various types of laboring jobs, and considering the fact 
of an occasional job singing folksongs, that is, actually being paid, 
in those days sometimes as high as $5 an evening, which doesn't consti- 
tute earning a living but it is part of the picture, I daresay. 

Mr. Tavenner. You said that you acted as a page in a library. What 
type of employment was that, and where ? 

Mr. Hays. In Cleveland Public Library, when I was in Cleveland, 
in 1930 or so, that would be way before the period you asked. A page 
is a page. He usually was a student. 

Mr. Tavenner. There is no other employment that you engaged in 
which you can now recall beyond those you have described ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Scherer. Maybe you can refresh his recollection a little. Coun- 
sel? 

Mr. Hays. Do you have anything in mind that I may have over- 
looked ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Probably I have. I have before me a photostatic 
copy of the Daily Worker, issue of May 21, 1938, and it is an article 
written by Mike Gold, entitled "Change'the World," and a part of the 
heading is "Uncle Mike Indulges in a Few Tabloid Keminiscences." 
I am not interested in the content of the article but in the introductory 
paragraph, it reads as follows : 

Lee Hays runs the dramsftics at Commonwealth, that brave and youthful work- 
ers college in Arkansas. I have never met this young mountainer, but in public 
print, Lee once referred to me as "Uncle Mike." Thanks, son, for bringing it to 
my attention. 

Did you teach dramatics at Commonwealth College in Arkansas ? 

Mr. Hays. Again, Mr. Tavenner, this is an area which I consider a 
matter of my personal convictions and beliefs, and therefore I must not 
get into a discussion of my associations and I must decline to answer 
for the grounds stated. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. Did you 
teach dramatics at this college ? 

Mr. Hays. I must decline to answer under the same grounds, sir. 

Chairman Walter. You mean you do decline to answer ? 

Mr. Hays. I do decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. You had not forgotten that you did teach at Com- 
monwealth College when I asked you to state your employment, had 
you? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I don't know what you have in mind by a question like 
that. 

Mr. Tavenner. That ought to be plain enough. My question was 
that you were not short in your memory about your employment. You 
just were not going to tell the committee what your full employment 
had been ; isn't that true ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. It seems to me that as I have given you the answers, I 
have been exercising my rights as a witness to assert my privilege 
whenever I felt the question was getting into an area of my associa- 
tions or beliefs. 

Mr. Tavenner. 'VVliat other occupation or employment did you have 
of which you have not yet told us ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2353 

Mr. Hays. I have told you about as many as I can offhand 
remember. Again if you would like to refresh my memory, I would 
like to know what you have in mind. 
Mr. ScHERER. What was the name of that college, Mr. Tavenner. 
Mr. Tavenner. Commonwealth College, 

Mr. ScHERER. Did you forget about your employment at Common- 
wealth College, Witness ? You said that you told us about as many as 
you could remember. Now I want to know whether you forget about 
your employment at Commonwealth College in responding to Mr. 
Tavenner's initial question about employment. 

Mr. Hays. Well, sir, when the initial question was asked, I declined 
to answer, asserting my privilege under the fifth amendment, and I 
think that I must decline to answer your question for the same reason. 
Chairman Walter. You think that you might be prosecuted for a 
crime if you admit that you taught dramatics at some college in Ar- 
kansas ? 

Mr. Hays. That is not my inference at all, sir. 
(Witness consulted with counsel. ) 

Mr. ScHERER. If that is not his inference, he is improperly invok- 
ing the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Hays. I don't believe that I am improperly invoking the fifth 
amendment. 

Mr. ScHERER. Do you feel, Witness, that the answer to the ques- 
tion asked you by Mr. Tavenner about your employment at Common- 
wealth College would subject you to possible criminal prosecution? 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. My answer is that I believe firmly that under the fifth 
amendment I have a right not to be a witness against myself. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask that you direct the witness to answer the ques- 
tion. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 
Mr. ScHERER. We have a right to test this witness's sincerity and 
good faith in invoking the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question, and in 
that connection I would like to point out to you that so far as I know, 
it has never been a crime to teach anything in any college. 

Mr. Scherer. That is the reason I asked the question, Mr. Chair- 
man. 

Chairman Walter. I directed you to answer the question. 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. It is my understanding, Mr. Walter, that this institu- 
tion that Mr. Tavenner brought up has been listed in the Attorney 
General's list. 

Chairman Walter. I didn't know that. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, that is correct. Commonwealth College was 
cited as Communist by Attorney General Tom Clark, on April 27, 1949, 
and by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities in its report 
of March 29, 1944. 

To what was Mr. Gold alluding when he said in this introductory 
paragraph that you once referred to him as "Uncle Mike" in public 
print ? 

Mr. Hays. In view of the manner in which this document has been 
mtroduced, I feel that I am not able to discuss any questions relating 
to it under my privilege. 



2354 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

•Mr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic copy of page 21 of 
the January 11, 1938, issue of New Masses. There I find an article 
entitled "Wants Communist Poetry," addressed to the New Masses, 
and signed "Lee Hays, Commonwealth College, Mena, Ark." 

Will you examine it, please, and state whether or not you addressed 
such a letter to the New Masses ? 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

(Witness consulted with counsel. ) 

Mr. Hays. Mr. Tavenner, I decline to answer that question for the 
leasons given. 

Mr. Tavenner. I desire to offer the document in evidence and ask 
it to be marked "Hays Exhibit No. 1" for identification only. 

Chairman Walter. Mark it and let it be received. 

Mr. Tavenner. The general purport of this article, Mr. Hays, is to 
complain about the form of Communist poetry and ask that it be of a 
more rugged and revolutionary character, is it not ? 

Mr. Hays. I don't feel that I can answer any questions relating to 
this document under my privilege. 

Mr. Tavenner. The letter shows that it bears date of January 11, 
1938, or at least it is printed on that date in New Masses, and that your 
nddress was Commonwealth College at that time. How long did you 
remain at Commonwealth College ? 

Mr. Hays. Again for the reasons given, I have to decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you there in 1944 ? 

Mr. Hays. The same answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party on 
January 11, 1938 ? 

Mr. Hays. This question I do decline to answer according to my 
privilege under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. In 1949, you were practicing your profession in the 
city of New York, I believe, according to your testimony ? 

Mr. Hays. That is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you become a member of the American Federa- 
tion of Television and Radio Artists? 

Mr. Hats. Was there such a union in 1949 ? 

Mr. Tavenner. I didn't ask you whether you became a member in 
1949. I asked you, after you came to work here, whether you became 
a member of it. It was not organized as early as 1949. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I am not sure that I agree that this committee or 
anyone else has a right to inquire into my or anyone's union 
affiliations. I do think that I can tell you that to the best of my knowl- 
edge, and this is a peculiar thing to be shaky about, but to the best of 
my knowledge I have never been a member of this union. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Of what union were you a member ? 
Mr. Hays. The question again, it seems to me, invades the basic 
right of union membership, to be inviolate. The unions of which I 
have been a member are local 802 of the American Federation of 
Musicians, and the Variety Artists, AGVA. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the American Federation of 
Radio Artists, which preceded the formation of the American Federa- 
tion of Television and Radio Artists? 

Mr. Hays. I believe that I was never a member of this union, that is 
the best of my recollection. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2355 

Mr. Tavenner. Just prior to 1949, you have not told us exactly what 
you were doing, but I have before me a photostatic copy, page 2, of 
"People's Songs, issued February-March 1947. I see under the heading, 
"Board of Directors," there appears the name "Lee Hays." Were you 
a member of the board of directors in 1947 ? 

Mr. Hays. Would you repeat those dates, please ? 

Mr. Tavenner. February and March of 1947. 

Mr. Hays. What does it say ? 

Mr. Tavenner. It says, "Board of Directors," after nammg others, 
and I find the name of Lee Hays. 

Mr. Hats. This is of People's Songs you are referrmg to? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, let me hand it to you so that you may see it. 

(A document was handed to the witness.) 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) . 

Mr. Hats. This question I decline to answer under my privilege 
and the reasons already stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Does the document show that the national director 
and the editor is Peter Seeger ? 

Mr. Hats. The same answer. 

Mr. Scherer. I assume the exhibit does so show, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir, and I shall introduce the document in 
evidence and ask it to be marked, "Hays Exhibit No. 2," for identi- 
fication only. 

Chairman Walter. Without objection, it is so ordered. 

Mr. Scherer. May I ask a question of the witness ? 

Mr. Hays, you said that you were engaged in research in this field 
about the year 1948, is that correct ? 

Mr. Hats. That is correct. 

Mr. ScHERFJt. Were there any results, as a result of this research ? 
Were there any publications resulting ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hats. The onlv result I can think of, offhand, is in the gen- 
eral field of folklore, "it is a murder mystery, relating to superstition 
and folklore which I wrote. I believe I wrote it in that year. 

Mr. Scherer. Who published it ? 

Mr. Hays. Charm magazine. I do not know the issue. 

Mr. Scherer, Is that all that resulted from your research ? 

Mr. Hats. No, there would be other things, and you asked about 
publications. 

Mr. Scherer. What other works resulted from your research work 

in those years ? 

Mr. Hats. Writing songs for example which might not have been 
published, and learning songs, and swapping songs with people, and 
corresponding with people about folk music and folklore. 

Mr. Scherer. None of that material has been published then or was 

published ? 
Mr. Hats. Not that I can specifically state as relating to that exact 

Chariman Walter. Under whose auspices was that work done? 
Mr. Hats. This is my own professional, personal, and private work. 
Chairman Walter. 'Who compensated you during that period for 
your work ? 

Mr. Hats. This is the year 1948? 

Chairman Walter. The year that you were talking about, yes. 



2356 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hats. I wasn't compensated, sir, for doing this particular work 
by anyone. It was not a very profitable enterprise. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you doing this work for People's Songs? 

Mr. Hays. Although I have stated just now that I wasn't doing 
it for anyone but myself, this specific question that you now ask I 
do decline to answer under my privilege. 

Mr. ScHERER. In view of his testimony, I ask that you direct the 
witness to answer. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer. 

Mr. Ta's^nner. Did People's Songs receive a grant from any source 
to carry on this work which you have described ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I must decline again on the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you received personally any grants from any 
source for the ])urpose of carrying on that type of work ? 

Mr. Hays. Would you define what you mean by the word "grant" ? 

Chairman Walter. Compensation or anything of value ; let us put 
it that way. 

Mr. Hays. You mean as from a foundation ? 

Mr. Tavenner. It would include that. 

Mr. Willis. But it would not include any other source. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is right. 

Mr. Hays. What other sources would there be ? 

Mr. Tavenner. You are in a better position to know. 

Mr. Hays. Philanthropic foundations. I have had no such grants 
from any research organization or any philanthropic organization like 
the Guggenheim, or the Rosenwald, or whatever it was. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the source of the compensation that you 
received for that work ? 

Mr. Hays. I believe that I can say that I received no specific com- 
pensation for any of this general research work, that it adds only to 
my professional ability to perform and function perhaps years later 
on, when I am employed as a folk singer. 

Mr. Tavenner. You were performing this type of work as part of 
your general duties in the employment that you had at that time? 

Mr. Hays. In the personal profession that I have had for a good 
many years. 

Chairman Walter. What was your source of income? You have 
testified that between 1949 and 1953 you were gainfully employed 
by the Weavers, and before that time you were not. 

Now, what we would like to know is what your source of income 
was the year before you got this steady employment with the 
Weavers ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. At various times during that period I had individual 
jobs as a singer, paying sometimes not too much. 

Chairman Walter. $5 you said a moment ago, "as much as $5." 

Mr. Hays. That is not just a joke, either, because of the precarious 
living that folk singers make. There might have been an occasional 
$20 booking, and it would have looked like a fortune. 

Chairman Walter. Did you have any of those ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK ARElA 2357 

Mr. Hats. I don't remember specifically the amounts that I may 
have earned. 

Chairman Walter. Wliat other source of income did you have 
during that period? 

Mr. Hays. This is the year 1948 ? 

Chairman Walter. The year immediately before your steady em- 
ployment with the Weavers. 

Mr. Hays. Offhand I can't lionestly remember that there was any- 
thing other than what I have already stated, these occasional jobs. 

Mr. Tavenner. Going back to Hays Exhibit No. 2, it is noted that 
Earl Robinson is one of those who served on the board of directors in 
1947. Were you acquainted with Earl Robinson ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. Would you separate that question from the reference to 
this document, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir ; you may separate it if you desire. 

Mr. Hays. You state that Earl Robinson 

Mr. Tavenner. If I asked you 2 questions in 1, I didn't mean to. 
I will try to clarify it. 

Are you acquainted with Earl Robinson? 

Mr. Hays. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was he a member of the board of directors of 
People's Songs in 1947 ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I believe that I will decline to answer that under my 
privilege as a question inquiring into my associations. 

Chairman Walter. Do you decline? 

Mr. Hays. I do decline. 

Mr. Scherer. Are you invoking the fifth amendment or just the 
first amendment ? 

Mr. Hays. That is correct. The fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is Mr. Earl Robinson's telephone number your tele- 
phone number now ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. It is. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you live at the same place ? 

Mr. Hays. I live at the same address ; yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was Earl Robinson engaged in the business of 
People's Songs in 1947 ? 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer that under the reasons given. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat is Mr. Robinson's employment now? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I can tell you what his profession is. 

Chairman Walter. We want to know what he is doing now, and 
not what his profession is. 

Mr. Hays. I would like to ask you to state the question again, and 
now I am confused. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat is Iklr. Earl Robinson's employment now? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. The reason I was confused is because many composers — 
I take it for granted Mr. Robinson is self-employed. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am not asking you to take anything for granted, 
I am asking you to state his employment, if you know, 

68010— 55— pt. 6 8 



2358 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Hays. All I know is that he is a composer, and that he is em- 
ployed composing music. 

Mr. Tavenner. By whom ? 

Mr. Hays. Self-employed. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are not assuming that, you are stating that you 
know that ? 

Mr. Hays. Well, isn't a composer automatically self-employed, and 
I don't know the details of his business and to whom he may sell his 
compositions. I only know that he writes them. 

Mr. Tavenner. You seem in some doubt about it. 

Are you acquainted with Mr. Alan Lomax ? 

Mr. Hays. I have been. 

Mr. Ta^^nner. Where is Mr. Lomax now ? 

Mr. Hays. I don't know. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is he in this country ? 

Mr. Hays. I don't know. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did he serve on the board of directors of People's 
Songs in 1917? 

Mr. Hays. As with any of these others, I must take the same privi- 
lege and decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wasn't he actually the founder of People's Songs ? 

Mr. Hays. I must again give the same answer. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. Will you tell the connnittee to what extent the Com- 
manist Party was interested in the product of People's Songs, if any ? 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer that question under the privilege of 
the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Experienced as you were in the field of research of 
folk songs, and as a folk-song singer, will you tell the committee 
whether or not the Communist Party used People's Songs in order 
to support any of the organizations or programs in which it was 
interested ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I will give you the same answer as before. 

Chairman Walter. By that you mean you decline to answer be- 
cause of the reasons given before ? 

Mr. Hays. That is right. 

INIr. Tavenner. I have before me a photostatic copy of the Daily 
People's World of November 15, 1954, in which there appears ref- 
erence to an appearance on the west coast of a concert of People's 
Art Songs, sponsored by the Northern California Peace Council. 

The committee has just returned from southern California where 
it heard a great deal of evidence about peace crusade work in Cali- 
fornia and how the State of California was divided into two areas, 
the southern part, of which Peter Hyun was the executive secretary, 
and then the northern part. Will you tell this committee anything 
about the circumstances under which you were employed to take part 
in this enterprise sponsored by the Northern California Peace Coun- 
cil? 

Mr. Hays. I am confused now. Could I see the document? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 
(A document was handed to the witness.) 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. As far as I can tell, this does not say that I am taking 
part as you say in this thing. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2359 

Mr. Tavenner. What does it say about you ? 

Mr. Hats. I believe it says that someone is going to sing some songs 
allegedly written by me, among others. I believe that is all it says. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you there on that occasion ? 

Mr. Hays. I wasn't in California so far as I recall. 

Mr. Tavenner. You did not take part in the program then? 

Mr. Hays. As I stated, I did not take part. This is purely a listing 
of certain songs that I am supposed to have written. 

Chairman Walter. Did you participate in any activities on behalf 
of this California Peace Council ? 

Mr. Hays. Is that the name of the organization you are asking me 
about ? 

Chairman Walter. Did you participate on behalf of any program 
which was announced as being in furtherance of peace ? 

Mr. Hays. I don't know anybody who is against that. 

Chairman Walter. Everybody is for peace ; yes. 

Mr. Hays. But there must be a good many organizations active for 
peace, and I couldn't answer a general question like that. I am not 
connected with California at all for that matter. 

Chairman Walter. But did you participate in any sort of a per- 
formance in California conducted by Jenny Wells ? 

(Witness consulted witli counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. My best recollection is sir, that I did not. 

Chairman Walter. All right. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. The article referred to says that these songs were 
songs by various persons, including Lee Hays. What songs have you 
composed ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. A folk singer quite often changes songs as he learns 
them and sings them, and sometimes he gets credit for it and 
sometimes he doesn't. I have worked on a good many songs which 
people have learned and sung. I have written some. I have rewritten 
others in the course of my professional life. I have written a great 
many songs. I regret to say that there are not nearly as man}' good 
songs among them as I should have liked. 

Mr. Tavenner. Give us the names of those that you feel are good 
songs. 

Mr. Hays. I wrote a song more or less based on a little fragment 
of a folk song, out of one of Carl Sandburg's books, called. The Colo- 
rado Trail. With the Weavers I wrote a great deal of material wdiich 
finally came out as Kisses Sweeter Than Wine. 

I worked on what we call the folk process, the editing of a good 
many songs, including one which, according to the New York Post has 
been quite useful here lately when ceremonies for former Air Force 
Secretary Talbott on August 12 — I see that the Air Force Band played 
a Weavers song, So Long, It's Been Good to Know You. So that folk 
songs generally have their purposes, and this is one of the ones that 
I can't claim authorship for but I can say in the course of singing it, 
I have added and subtracted lines from it and from a good many other 
songs. I just rewrote yesterday, I wrote two verses to the Ballad of 
John Henry, which I hope someday will be of some use to folk singers. 

Mr. Tavenner. We have just heard one of your songs, entitled, 
Wasn't That a Time. Were you the author of it ? 



2360 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Chairman Walter. Did you write that song ? 

Mr. Hays. I will decline to answer that question, sir, under the 
privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. ScHERER. Wasn't that the song Elliott Sullivan had on his pro- 
gram at Wingdale Lodge ? 

Mr. Tavenner. That was one of the items at the summer camp on 
the weekend of July 4, 1955. 

Mr, Scherer. It is the one that deals with Valley Forge, Gettys- 
burg, and Bunker Hill. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Scherer. It sort of ridicules them, doesn't it ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Could it be that tlie use the Communist Party has 
put your songs to has influenced you in your refusal to answer the 
question that I asked you ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I think this is in the matter of my associations, and be- 
liefs, and I will decline to answer under my privilege. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wasn't the song that I referred to. Wasn't That a 
Time, written for the purpose of extending comfort to those who were 
convicted under the Smith Act case, the 11 who were tried and con- 
victed in Foley Square? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. You are still in this area of my associations and beliefs, 
and I must decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. What I am trying to get at, Mr. Hays, is to learn 
to what extent the Communist Party has used you in its program to 
advance the cause of the Communist Party in this country. 

Mr. Hays. I don't know what you mean, sir, by the use of the word 
"used." 

Mr. Ta\'enner. I mean used in the sense that you contributed 
your talent and your services, and your time, and your effort knowingly 
to assisting the Communist Party in the field of your talent. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. You are asking questions which to me are highly argu- 
mentative and debatable, and I don't propose to get into that debate 
and argument because it is an area that deals with associations and 
beliefs and so I do decline to answer that under the reasons stated. 

Mr. Tavenner, It is not an argument, it is a question calling for a 
factual reply. 

Mr. Hays. I give you the same answer, sir. 

Chairman Walter. You decline to answer because of the fifth 
amendment, is that right? 

Mr. Hays. Under the privilege of the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. Under the privilege, yes. 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party from 
1949 until the time your association with the Weavers terminated? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer for the same reasons, 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party now ? 

Mr. Hays. I decline to answer for the same reason. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr, Chairman, during the course of the committee's 
investigation, it was discovered that there is another person in the field 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2361 

of entertainment by the same name, and both the first name and the 
last name have the same spellings. This other individual by the name 
of Lee Hays — or first let me ask you, what is your address ? 

Mr. Hats. 11 Cranberry Street. 

Mr. Tavenner. I am mentioning this so that the press will not get 
the two names confused, and so the record will be clear. The address 
of the other Lee Hays who is to be kept distinct in description from 
the one on the witness stand — I am sorry to say, I have his telephone 
number and not his address, and so I don't want to give his telephone 
number. 

Mr. Hays. His address is on my subpena. Perhaps that would 
help you. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well, sir. 

The address of the other Mr. Hays is 309 West 82d Street. The 
other Mr. Hays has been in television, screen, and the theater. 

I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any questions ? 

Mr. Scherer. I have a question, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Hays, you have refused to answer all significant questions bas- 
ing your refusal to answer on your privilege to do so under the fifth 
amendment. In other words, you have said to us that you refuse 
to answer these questions because you fear that to answer those ques- 
tions might tend to incriminate you. 

The last Congress passed a law which gives this committee, with the 
approval of the Federal court, the right to grant you immunity. In 
other words, it can say to you that no matter what your answers 
might be to the questions propounded, you cannot be prosecuted. 

Now, if tliis committee should see fit in your case to grant you 
immunity, would you answer the questions ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mr. Hays. Mr. Scherer, my advice is that this matter is still being 
considered in tlie courts, and that it has not come to a final conclusion. 
Therefore, I would have to wait until the matter was settled before I 
could face that situation. 

Mr. Scherer. Let us go one step further. 

I disagree with what your counsel has said, but let us assume that 
it is in the courts and let us assume that the courts eventually decide 
that this law passed by the 83d Congress is constitutional and is a 
proper law, and then this committee, after such a decision, should 
decide in compliance with that law, as I said before, to grant you 
immunity with the approval of the Federal court. 

In other words, no matter what your answers might be to the ques- 
tions propounded, you could not suffer the prosecution or the incrim- 
ination which you say that you now feel and which is the basis of your 
refusal to answer these questions. 

Would you then answer the questions ? 

Mr. Hays. Mr. Scherer, it seems to me that this is a supposition 
that you are asking me to comment on. 

Mr. Scherer. Yes, it is. 

Mr. Hays. And I would prefer to wait until the matter was settled 
and I was faced with the problem before having to give an answer 
to it. 



2362 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr, ScHERER. My question was that if you had nothing to fear, 
would you then answer the questions ? 

Mr. Hays. I will still wait until the matter was settled. 

Mr. ScHERER. That is all. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused, and we will take a 5- 
minute recess. 

(Whereupon a short recess was taken by the committee.) 

Chairman Walter. The committee will be in order. 

Call your next witness, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Irma Jurist, will you come forward please ? 

Mr. Sacks. My client requests no pictures be taken. 

Chairman Walter. Your request will be complied with. 

Will you raise your right hand, please? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mrs. Jtrist. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF IRMA JURIST, ACCOMPANIED BY HER COUNSEL, 

RAYMOND SACKS 

Mr. Ta'st:nnek. Will you state your name, please? 

Mrs. Jurist. Irma Jurist. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell it ? 

Mrs. Jurist. J-u-r-i-s-t, it is a sort of lawyer's name. I-r-m-a. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel accompanying the witness please iden- 
tify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Sacks. Raymond Sacks, 36 West Mth Street. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a native of New York City ? 

Mrs, Jurist. Yes, I am. 

Mr. Tavenner. AVhere do you now reside ? 

Mrs. Jurist. 601 West 113th Street. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. Wliat is your profession, please ? 

JMrs. Jurist. I am a composer and housewife. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged in the business 
of composing, professional speaking ? 

Mrs. Jurist, May I read? I tell you I am a very poor speaker, 
and I 

Mr, Tavenner. That only requires giving a date, and you 
shouldn't 

Mrs. JtTRisT. You mean in a formal way ? 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you been engaged professionally as 
a composer ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I would say from about the years 1945 and 1946, until 
through my last show, which was, Caesar and Cleopatra. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee what your formal edu- 
cational training has been ? 

Mrs. JiTRisT. All of my schooling was received in New York City. 
At the end of my junior year, at college, I left to pursue my musical 
studies, and I went to Hunter College. In the middle 1930's, I com- 
pleted my formal school training and graduated summa cum laude 
from the Yiller Quail School where I had been a scholarship student 
from earliest childhood. I then taught at the school. 

Don't take pictures. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK ARElA 2363 

Cliairman "Walter. You have heard the request, and please, gen- 
tlemen. 

Mr, Tavenner. I am sorry, I didn't hear your last statement. 

Mrs. Jurist. You mean the last part of that statement ? 

Mr. Tavenner. You tauo;ht at the school ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Yes, sir, I will try to speak up, 

Mr. Tavenner. At what school was that ? 

Mrs. Jurist. The Viller Quail School, a very fine music school. 

Mr. Tavenner. And you tauo;ht there durin<^ what years ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I think 1937 and 1938. I think that was it, 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated a moment a^o that you had com^iosed 
throLijrh your last show; what show is that you are speaking of? 

Mrs. Jurist. They came together, they came simultaneously. You 
would have made it so much easier if you had just let me read it 
straight. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well, proceed. 

Mrs. Jurist. It is very simple. For a number of years, from ap- 
proximately 1938 until 1948, I worked with an eminently gifted 
comedian and artist in a variety of supper clubs. We were very popu- 
lar, and a very amusing team, and were constantly regaled with re- 
quests to appear at many functions. We entertained at the annual 
Gambol of the Lambs Club, for the 12 Night Club, at various and sun- 
dry highly social and, I presume, respectable occasions. As a matter 
of fact, I even recall a birthday party to which we were invited to 
entertain, which was the birthday party for one of the presidents 
of the New York Stock Exchange, since deceased. 

During the war, when entertainers were on constant call for their 
services, we did a very substantial amount of volunteering, and ap- 
])eared at stage-door canteens both here and in Washington, and at 
Army and Navy posts in this vicinity. On occasion we also had com- 
mercial employment. 

Some of the supper clubs where we were engaged were — and some 
of these go back quite a number of years and are not very familiar 
namevS — Schaeffer House, which is defunct; Cotillion Room at the 
Pierre, in the year 1940 and 1941 : the Blue Angel, we had two engage- 
ments there, 1941 and 1948: the Starlight Roof of the Waldorf; Pari 
Kitchen, which was a little pleasant French restaurant; and the 
Somerset in Boston, approximately 1947; and the Golden Room of 
the Copacabana in Rio de Janeiro, 

Shall I continue? 

Chairman Walter. Well, if you want to, go ahead, 

Mrs. Jurist. It makes it so much simpler for me, and I have thought 
it through this way. 

Mr. Scherer. I wiir^h the witness would talk a little louder. I can't 
hear her. 

Mrs. Jurist. In 1943, or 1944. I became Gertrude Lawrence^ ac- 
companist in a radio series of musical plays in which she was starred. 

At about that time I began to think seriously about composing. I 
had done some years back, quite informally, for modern dancers. 
Composing for tJie theater seemed to me at the time such a lucrative 
career — how innocent I was. 

Shortly thereafter I had my first encounters with the commercial 
theater in the area of composing. 



2364 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

During the next few years I worked on scores for Spec. 
Mr. Tavenner. When did that begin, please ? 

Mrs. Jurist. About 1944 and 1945. I was employed as a matter 
of fact. 

Mr. Tavenner. Now you have begun to answer the question I asked 

JSIrs. Jurist. I couldn t remember that date without looking at this 
paper, though. 

During the next few years I worked on scores for Spec, and coached, 
and accompanied, and prepared material for reviews, which remained 
unproduced, and lived on promises, and unfortunately, borrowed 
money, and stubbornly continued composing and studying. 

By 1949 I hnally received a tangible commission and contract with 
a small retainer fee. 

That winter, the winter of 1949, I had two credits on Broadway — 
Lo and Behold — Caeser and Cleopatra, and a show called Alive and 
Kicking. The management of A. & K. absconded with all of my 
royalties. Caesar did not pay back its production costs, and so I could 
not receive the balance of my fee, and then being newly married, I 
decided to kiss an unprofitable business goodby. 

Since that time I have been unremittingly involved in life with my 
family. 

That is my entire re]3ort on my career, my professional career. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you also during that period of time write the 
musical score for movies and plays ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Yes; how silly of me to have left that out. Of course 
I did. It shows that you should never write your little preparations 
at night when you are sleepy. 

I wrote the scores, and 1 did some original scores for two United 
Nations films, and I am glad you mentioned that, and one of them 
was called. International Road Signs, which dealt with the way peo- 
ple drive cars, and the other was a story of delegates, and I selected 
and edited some music for a film that I think we did, I think it was 
on Bolivia or Chile, and I don't remember which it was. I was in a 
free-lance capacity for the United Nations. 

Wliat was your other question? I sort of lost it. You asked me if 
I did films and something else. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you write musical scores for the stage? 

Mrs. Jurist. And the stage, oh, yes. Did I leave something out? 
I thought I sort of generally covered almost everything that I could 
remember. 

Mr. Tavenner. You were speaking of the films 

Mrs. Jurist. Yes ; United Nations films. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were there other films for which you wrote the 
score ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Oh, yes ; I did an original score for a short on Degas, 
the French painter, and I also selected some music for a series of art 
films that were done in connection, and they were art films that were 
independently produced. You know, it was music from Liszt which 
I entered, and added some Berlioz, and others. 

Mr. Tavenner. Does that complete the list? 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. It does, to the best of my recollection. 

Have you anything particular in mind ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK ARElA 2365 

Mr. Taa^nner. Did you write the music for Carl Marzani's ex- 
pose of monopoly, as it was called, Dollar Patriots ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I respectfully submit this question is an encroach- 
ment on my constitutional rights, and I therefore very simply plead 
the protection of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness to answer the question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mrs. Jurist. Does that mean that I repeat my answer ? 

Chairman Walter. I have directed you to answer the question. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. I repeat my answer, sir, as I have stated it. 

Chairman Walter. In other words, you refuse to answer, and give 
as a reason the protection afforded people under the fifth amendment 
of the Constitution ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Yes ; I quite so do. I think that you have said it much 
better than I did. 

Chairman Walter. I have had more experience. 

Mrs. Jurist. We should change seats. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Carl Marzani ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I respectfully submit, sir, that this is an encroach- 
ment of my constitutional rights, and I therefore firmly plead the 
protection of the fifth amendment. 

Chairman Walter. And decline to answer ? 

Mrs. Jurist. And decline to answer ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. According to the October 29, 1948, issue of the Daily 
Worker, a photostatic copy of which I have before me, Dollar Patriot 
was written by Carl Marzani, the commentary was by Sam Wana- 
maker, and the music by Irma Jurist. xVre you acquainted with Sam 
Wanamaker ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Do you really want me to answer that? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes ; I would like for you to. 

Mrs. Jurist. I respectfully submit this question is an encroachment 
of my constitutional rights, and I decline to answer, and I plead the 
protection of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee what interest the Com- 
munist Party had in the production of that movie? 

Mrs. Jurist. If I knew I would be very glad to tell you, however, 
I must plead the fifth amendment, out of ignorance. 

Mr. TA^'ENNER. You must plead the fifth amendment out of ignor- 
ance ? 

Mrs. Jurist. It doesn't sound very right, "out of ignorance," but it 
is a fact. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. I decline to answer — the same answer as before. 

Mr. ScHERER. I ask you to direct the witness now, in view of her 
statement. She said if she knew she would be glad to tell us, and then 
slie pleads the fifth amendment, so she is obviously improperly and not 
in good faith, invoking the fifth amendment. 

Sirs. Jurist. Well then, in good faith, in answer to a question of this 
nature, may I put it perhaps a little more seriously? Lret me plead 
the protection of the fifth amendment. 

In other words, I decline to answer and plead that protection. 

Chairman Walter. "V^^io was the person that you asked her about ? 



2366 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. Tavenner, Sam Wanamaker. 

Chairman Walter. And you feel that if you would answer the ques- 
tion as to whether or not you know Sam Wanamaker, you might be in- 
volved in some sort of a criminal proceeding ? 

Mr. SoHERER. I am sorry, let me interrupt, but counsel is in error, 
and he proponded the wrong questions. 

Mr. Tavenner. I had asked that question prior to the one we are now 
discussing. 

Mr. Scherer. The question before the witness is a different one. 

Chairman Walter. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a member of the Communist Party at the 
time Dollar Patriots was filmed? 

Mrs. Jurist. I deem this an improper question, and I plead the pro- 
tection of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you refuse to answer. 

Mrs. Jurist. I refuse to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, wdiether or not 
your residence was us?d for Communist Party purposes at anv time 
between 1945 and 1948 ? 

Ml"s. Jurist. I decline to answer and invoke the protection of the 
fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. You spoke of musical skits in which you partici- 
pated. Wliere were the rehearsals done for those skits ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Usually at rented halls, to my knowledge. Various 
studios, or if it was a f)roduction that was really going to take place, 
they generally had the use of a theater. 

Mr. TA\Ti:NNER. I am speaking of rehearsals and practices. 

Mrs, Jurist. Yes; you are referring to that. On occasion my own 
home, which was really a studio, too, and after all, I did all of my 
work at my home and m}^ piano is at home, and whatever teaching 
or coaching I did at home, at my studio. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were any of these skits in which you participated 
put on at Cafe Society downtown ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I didn't participate in skits. I don't write texts, I 
only write music. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Did you accompany any of the entertainers in skits ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I don't understand the purpose of the question. Cafe 
Society, you mean the professional night club ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Any place downtown. 

Mrs. Jurist. I think I understand you then. I decline to answer 
Counsel, and I must invoke the fifth amendment. Where I fail to 
understand you, I must get clarification. 

Mr. Tavenner. What field generally did these musical skits cover 
which you participated in ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I really don't understand that question. In a sense 
we have separated certain questions in our minds, haven't we '? 

Mr. Ta\tenner. Let us see if we can understand each other. Did 
you prepare or assist in preparing skits to be used for political pur- 
poses in political campaigns ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Yes ; I decline to answer on previously stated grounds. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall a skit enitled, "Show Time for 
Wallace"? 

Mrs. Jurist. I decline to answer on previously stated grounds. 



COMMUXIST ACTIVITIES IX THE XEW YORK AREA 2367 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you work in that skit ? 
(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. I decline to answer and inA^oke the privilege of the 
fifth amendment. 

Mr. ScHERER. Did you ever receive any compensation either di- 
rectly or indirectly from the Communist Part}^ for any of the work 
you did? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. I decline to answer that, Mr. Scherer, on grounds of 
self-incrimination, and all the protection the fifth amendment affords 
me. 

Mr. Scherer. Did you ever make any contributions, either financial 
or through your work, to the Communist Party directly or indirectly? 

Mrs. Jurist. I think this is a dreadful question. I really do. I 
must refrain from answering this question, Mr. Scherer, and plead 
my protection of the fifth amendment. I think that is really quite a 
question. I don't know what purpose it will serve either. 

Mr. Scherer. I am giving you the opportunity to answer. 

Mrs. Jurist. I have answered. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was your home used at any time for the purpose 
of the annual registration of Communist Party members ? 

Mrs. Jurist. I decline to answer that on previously stated grounds. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you now a member of the Communist Party? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. Jurist. Excuse me, sir. I might as well enjoy myself, I have 
been so tired all day long here. 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

IVIrs. Jurist. Just one second here. 

Now, would you repeat the question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Would you read her the question ? 

(Whereupon the reporter read the pending question as above re- 
corded. ) 

Mrs. Jurist. It would be nice in a sense to end my testimony with 
a great deal of bravura, and a great many statements, and in some way 
trj^ to use this desk as a platform, but I am really not a speaker, and 
I am not prepared to do things like tliat. 

Chairman Walter. What is your answer to this question ? 

Mrs. Jurist. Then, comma, or semicolon, I decline to answer, in- 
voking my protection in the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions. 

Chairman Walter. The witness is excused. 

Mr. Tavenner. I will call Mr. Joshua Shelley. 

Mr. Shelley, will you come forward, please ? 

Mr. Popper. I am the attorney for Mr. Shelley, and I explained to 
Mr. Beale about a week ago that Mr. Shellej^ could not be here until 
tomorrow afternoon. He had an engagement out of town and 
hasn't had a chance to consult with counsel. His engagement only 
finished at the end of the week, and if Mr. Beale is here, he will con- 
firm that fact. I am calling to vour attention that Mr. Beale said, 
"O. K." 

Chairman Walter. We will grant your application for a postpone- 
ment until tomorrow. 

Have you another witness, Mr. Tavenner ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mrs. Susan d'Usseau. 



2368 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Mr. France. Mr. Chairman, my client lacks hearing in one ear, 
and I wonder if I might sit on this side of her. 

Chairman Walter. Whatever is convenient to you. 

Will you raise your right hand, please, Mrs. d'Usseau ? 

Do you swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF MRS. SUSAN d'USSEAU, ACCOMPANIED BY HER 
COUNSEL, ROYAL FRANCE 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name, please ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Susan d'Usseau. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell your last name, please ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Small d, apostrophe, capital U-s-s-e-a-u. 

Mr. Tavenner. Would you try to raise your voice a little ? There 
is no amplifying system here. 

Where do you reside, INlrs. d'Usseau ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. In New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in Xew York City ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. All of my life. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been engaged in a profession ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I am an artist. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a writer, also ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. No ; I am not. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have not engaged in writing ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. No. 

Mr, Ta\tenner. You are an artist ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. A painter. 

I think that you have made a mistake in calling me to this commit- 
tee. I have nothing to do with the theater. 

Mr. Tavenner. It hasn't anything to do with the theater. You 
were subpenaed before this committee in 1953, and as a matter of con- 
venience to your attorney, you were not called at that time. 

Have you lived in the State of California at any time ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Yes, I have. 

Mr. Tavenner. During what period of time did you live there ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Between 1938 and 1941, 1 think. 

Mr. Tavenner. \^^lile living there, did you become acquainted with 
Stanley Roberts ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Do you mean that thing that talked badly about 
people who befriended him when no one else would ? 

Chairman Walter. We don't know anything about that. 

Do you know this man, Stanley Roberts? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question. 

Mr. Scherer. I ask you to direct the witness to answer that ques- 
tion. 

Chairman Walter. You are directed to answer the question. 

Mrs. d'Usseau. On the basis of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Roberts testified before this committee that he 
met Arnaud d'Usseau and his wife Susan d'Usseau in 1938, and that 
they asked him to become a member of the Communist Party. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 2369 

Did you endeavor to recruit Mr. Roberts into the Communist Party ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the basis of the 
first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you engaged in any business in 1938, in Los 
Angeles, or in Hollywood ? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the same grounds. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer that question. 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Well, in the first place, T don't know why you are 
investigating me, because this committee is supposed to be investigat- 
ing the theater, and 

Chairman Walter. No, we are not supposed to be doing anything 
of the sort. We are charged with the responsibility of investigating 
communism and Communist activities no matter where, whether it 
is in the theater, labor unions, or wherever it is. 

Mrs. d'Usseau, I also think that what I do and what I think, 
and what I feel, and what I have done, is a very private affair. 

Chairman Walter. Were you in business in Hollywood in 1938? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. d'Useau. I refuse to answer that question. 

Chairman Walter. I direct you to answer the question. 

Mr. France. She said on the grounds of the first and fifth amend- 
ments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Not knowing all types of business that you may 
have been engaged in, I will make my question more specific. Did you 
operate a bookstore in 1938 in Hollywood ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. It is the same question and I still refuse to answer. 

Mr. Tavenner. You refuse to answer that question ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. On the grounds of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner, Were you acquainted in Hollyw^ood with a person 
by the name of Pauline Swanson Townsend ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds 
of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mrs. Townsend testified before this committee, as 
Mr. Roberts did, about the period of time she was in the Communist 
Party. She discussed the reasons that took her into the Communist 
Party, and the reasons that took her out of it. 

Mrs. Townsend testified that she was assigned to a group of writ- 
ers' wives within the Communist Party, that is, the husbands of these 
persons were writers, and this was a group composed of wives of 
writers. She described what her activities in the Communist Party 
were, and she told the committee how she was employed at the time in 
the Fourth Fighter Command as a radar plotter. It was a position 
which she enjoyed and in which she felt she was doing something use- 
ful in the war years. She said after being in the Communist Party a 
short time, Elizabeth Leech, the section organizer of the Communist 
Party, decided that she must take over the job of executive secretary of 
the Los Angeles County Council of the National Council of American- 
Soviet Friendship. 

In other w^ords, she must get out and take over the duties of that 
office. She did not want to do that. Her friends and her husband 
protested against the new assignment. She said that, "Susan d'Usseau 
wrote from New York protesting," that she be taken out of this 



2370 COIVIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE NEW YORK AREA 

Communist Party group and assigned to this secretarial position with 
the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship. 

Will you tell the committee whether you did make a protest, and 
if so, why you made it ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I don't know how I can answer that question. 

Mr. Tavenner, Well, first, did you make a protest ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. Knowing this woman, and so I refuse. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have not acknowledged it but neither have you 
denied that you knew Mrs. Townsend. 

Mrs. d'Usseau. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you protest her assignment to this secretarial 
position ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I am not going to answer that question on the 
grounds of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then you decline to testify as to any of the reasons 
which might have been involved in the matter '^ 

You stated that you returned to New York in 1941. In what busi- 
ness did you engage in New York after you returned in 1941 ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. None, I studied art. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you engage in work tis an instructor or lecturer 
at any school in New York ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds of 
the first and fifth amendments. 

My. Tavenner. Did you actively take part in the May Day parade 
on April 30, 1947? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds of 
the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been active in the National Civil Rights 
Legislative Conference which was held in Washington in Januarv 
of 1949? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds of 
the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. The reason I am asking you these questions is that 
the committee has received a great deal of testimony indicating the 
type of activities that Communist Party members understood they 
were required to perform, and in some cases, were directed to perform, 
as Communist Party members, outside of the actual Communist Party 
group. 

ISIrs. d'Usseau. No one ever directed me to do anything, and what- 
ever I do, I do because I want to. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you engage in activities in any mass organiza- 
tion because you understood that as a member of the Communist 
Party you were supposed to do that? 

(Witness consulted with counsel.) 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I am not going to answer that question on the 
grou.nds of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you a signer in 1950 of a resolution against 
atomic weapons, sponsored by the National Council of Arts, Sciences, 
and Professions? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I am not going to answer that question, on the same 
grounds. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you an endorser of the National Council of 
American-Soviet Friendship in December of 1949? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE NEW YORK AREA 2371 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I am not going to answer that question on the 
grounds of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a member of the Communist Party at this 
time? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds 
of the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been a member of the Communist Party 
at any time in New York since your return from Hollywood in 1941 ? 

Mrs. d'Usseau. I refuse to answer that question on the grounds of 
the first and fifth amendments. 

Mr. Tavenner. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Walter. Are there any other questions? 

The committee is adjourned until 10 o'clock tomorrow morning. 

(Whereupon at 4: 10 p. m., the committee recessed to reconvene at 
10 a. m., Wednesday, August 17, 1955.) 

(Testimony of witnesses appearing on August 17-18, 1955, printed 
in pt. VII of this series.) 



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