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Full text of "Investigation of Communist activities in the Baltimore area. Hearing"

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Given By 

U. S. SIJPT. OF DOCirmNTJ 



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INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMORE AREA-Part 1 

HEARING 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMEEICAN ACTIVITIES 
HOUSE OE REPRESENTATIVES 

EIGHTY-THIRD CONGRESS 

SECOND SESSION 



MAY 18, 1954 



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




PUBLIC 



UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
469U WASHINGTON : 1954 








Boston Public Library 
Superintendent of Documents 

JUN 1 6 1954 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
United States House of Representatives 

HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois, Chairman 

BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York FRANCIS E. WALTER, Pennsylvania 

DONALD L. JACKSON, California MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri 

KIT CLARDY, Michigan CLYDE DOYLE, California 

GORDON H. SCHERER, Ohio JAMES B. FRAZIER, Jr., Tennessee 

Robert L. Kunzig, Counsel 

Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., Counsel 

Thomas W. Beale, Sr., Chief Clerk 

Raphael I. Nixon, Director of Research 



CONTENTS 



Page 

Testimony of John A. Hutchison 4056 

Index 4077 



III 



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 by the Seriate 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 
» « * • * * * 

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

Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 
* 41 * * * * • 

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

(A) Un-American activities. 

(2) The 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, 
cliaracter, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, 
(ii) the diffusion witliin the United States of subversive and un-American propa- 
ganda that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and at- 
taclis the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitution, 
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 S'tates, 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 cliairman 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 83D CONGRESS 

House Resolution 5, January 3, 1953 
******* 

Rule X 

STANDING COMMITTEES 

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



* « « « 

H) Committee on Un-Amei 

* * * 



-•- -r f If. V ^ 

(q) Committee on Un-American Activities, to consist of nine members. 



Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 
* * * * * * * 

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 extent, 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 prop- 
aganda 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 (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 investi- 
gation, together witli such recommendations as it deems advisable. 

For tlie 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 such chairman, and may be served by any person desig- 
nated by any such chairman or member. 

VI 



mVESTIGATIOJ( OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMOKE AEEA— Part 1 



THURSDAY, MARCH 18, 1954 

United States House of Representati\tes, 

Subcommittee of the Committee on 

Un-American Activities, 

Washington, D. G. 

PUBLIC HEARING 

The subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met, 
pursuant to notice, at 10 : 25 a. m. in the caucus room, 362 Old House 
Office Building-, Hon. Donald L. Jackson presiding. 

Committee members present: Representatives Donald L. Jackson 
(acting chairman), Gordon H. Scherer (appearance noted in tran- 
script), Francis E. Walter, Clyde Doyle, and James B. Frazier, Jr. 

Staff members present : Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., counsel ; Raphael I. 
Nixon, director of research; George Cooper, investigator; and Riley 
Smith, representative of the clerk. 

Mr. Jackson. The committee will be in order. 

In accordance with the established rules of procedure of the House 
Committee on Un-American Activities requiring that the subject mat- 
ter to be explored in any hearing be announced by the chairman at the 
outset of the hearings, the Chair announces at this time that today's 
hearing represents a continuation of committee hearings into the na- 
ture, extent, and objectives of Communist infiltration in the area of 
Baltimore, ]Md. 

The fact that the witness this morning, the Reverend Hutchison, is 
a minister should carry no connotation that the committee is investi- 
gating religion or any church. There is sworn testimony to the effect 
that several ministers were used by the Communist Party in Balti- 
more, and the committee hopes that those who are called in this con- 
nection will cooperate fully by giving the committee the benefit of 
their personal knowledge of the situation as it existed during the 
period in question. 

For the purpose of taking testimony this morning the chairman has 
established a subcommittee consisting of Messrs. Walter, Doyle, 
Frazier, and Scherer, with Mr. Jackson as acting chairman. 

Mr. Counsel, are you ready to proceed? 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Yes, sir. Will Dr. John A. Hutchison come for- 
ward, please? 

Mr. Jackson. Will you raise your right hand, sir ? Do you solemnly 
swear in the testimony you are about to give before this subcommittee 
to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you 
God? 

Dr. Hutchison. I do. 

4055 



4056 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

TESTIMONY OF JOHN A. HUTCHISON, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS 
COUNSEL, PEANK S. KETCHAM 

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

Dr. Hutchison. John A. Hutchison. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Are you accompanied by counsel, Mr. Hutchison ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I am, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel please identify himself for the record? 

Mr. Ketcham. Frank S. Ketcham. 

Mv. Tavenner. When and where were you born? 

Dr. Hutchison. March 2, 1912, Cedar Grove, N. J. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wluit is your present profession ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I am full professor of religion at Williams College, 
Williamstown, Mass. 

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

Dr. Hutchison. I graduated with a degree of bachelor of science 
from Lafayette College, Easton, Pa. in 1932. I attended Princeton 
Theological Seminary, 1932-33. I graduated with a degree of bachelor 
of divinity from Union Theological Seminary in New York City in 
1935. I received a degree of Ph. D. from Columbia University in 
1941. I took courses in the year 1947-48 at the University of Edin- 
burgh, Scotland, and the University of Basel in Switzerland. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, what your em- 
ployment has been since the completion of your work at the Union 
Theological Seminary in New York City in 1935 ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I became, early in 1935, either January or February 
of 1935, the assistant pastor of' the Brown Memorial Presbyterian 
Church in Baltimore. In November of 1937 I became pastor of the 
Christ Presbyterian Church, Bayonne, N. J. I was assistant in the 
Philosophy of Religion Department at Union Seminary in 1940-41 
and was instructor of religion at the College of Wooster, Wooster, 
Ohio, from 1941 to 1943: professor of religion at Wooster, 1943 
through 1947, and in 1947 was made full professor of religion at 
Williams. 

The first year of my tenure at Williams, I was traveling in Europe. 
Since then I have been at Williams. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, ])lease, when you first 
began your assignment during the year 1935 in Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. I went there early in the year 1935. It was either 
January or Febiuary, and commuted to Baltimore weekends from 
that time until May when the seminary term was completed, and 
then took up residence and full-time work in Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you remain in Baltimore from May of 1935 
until November 1937 when you took a church at Bayonne, N. J.? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Doctor Hutchison, as indicated by the chairman 
of the subcommittee a few moments ago, the Connnittee on Un-Ameri- 
can Activities has conducted extensive investigations in various cities 
of the United States, including Baltimore, Md., for the purpose of 
ascertaining the character, extent, and objectives of Communist Party 
activities in those areas. As pointed out, evidence has been received 
indicating that the Communist Party in Baltimore was especially in- 
terested in promoting the activities of the American League Against 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4057 

War and Fascism and the Ethiopian League and in promoting cer- 
tain demonstrations, such as the demonstration which was conducted 
at the time of the docking of the German battleship Emden in 1936. 

The committee desires to know the method which the Communist 
Party used and the extent to which the Conmiunist Party used any 
particuhir minister in carrying out its plans with regard to those or- 
ganizations, and it desires also to know whether or not any particular 
minister collaborated with functionaries of the Communist Party in 
the work of those organizations. 

Let me ask you, were you a member of the American League Against 
"War and Fascism at any time you were in Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. I was. 

(Representative Gordon H. Scherer entered the hearing room at 
this point.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you seek membership in that organization, or 
was your membership solicited \ 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, it is very difficult to remember the precise 
facts of things which happened 19 years ago, but to the best of my 
recollection I sought membership in the [American] League Against 
War and Fascism, and as for dates, to the best of my recollection 
it was sometime in late summer or early autumn of 1935. 

Mr. Tavenner. You had no affiliation with the American League 
Against War and Fascism prior to that time % 

Dr. Hutchison. I don't think so, sir. It is, again, extremely 
difficult to remember the precise facts of things which took place as 
long ago as this and activities, which I may say, were peripheral and 
not central at the time. But again to the best of my recollection, 
being as honest and as candid as I possibly can be, it was late summer 
or early autumn of that year. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Were you counseled by any particular individual 
or group about your joining that organization? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, this question, of course, was put to me in 
executive session, and I have searched over the grounds of my memory 
as well as I can, and to the best of my recollection, no, I was not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you reach a position in that organization where 
you became chairman of any committees or a member of any executive 
group or council of the organization? 

Dr. Hutchison. Again, to the best of my recollection, I was a 
member of the city committee, at least I do distinctly recall going to 
meetings of a committee that planned the activities of the [American] 
League Against War and Fascism. I have forgotten what the com- 
mittee was called or the precise nature of its functions, but I do have 
a distinct recollection of attending, I should suppose, half a dozen to 
a dozen meetings of this committee during the 2 years or more that 
I was in Baltimore. 

Mr. Ta\t-nner. What was the work of this committee of which you 
were a member and which you attended several dozen times ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Not several dozen times. 

Mr. Tavenner. What did you say? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would say a dozen at most. I would say half 
a dozen to a dozen times. 

Mr. Tavenner. I beg your pardon. 

Dr. Hutchison. I am glad you asked that question because it gives 
me a chance to tell why I joined the league and what my motives were. 

46914 — 54 — pt. 1- 2 



4058 coMivruNisT activities in the Baltimore area 

I was concerned at. tlie time with two things essentially, tlie anti- 
semitism of the Hitler movement and the menace which Hitlerism 
presented to the United States of America. I think that concern was 
not unfounded in the light of subsequent events, and this seemed to 
me the only organization that was doing something about a situa- 
tion in which there was large-scale irresponsibility in our country; 
that is to say, I wanted very much for our country to assume some 
posture of international responsibility at the time when most of the 
people, as I recall, were sitting on their hands and letting Hitler take 
control in Europe and do prett}' much what he wanted. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Those were the motives, you say, which led you 
to become active in that organization? 

Dr. Hutchison. That is right. 

Mr. Tavexner. Now, will you tell the committee, please, what the 
functions of this council were of which you were a member? 

Dr. Hutchison. The functions, as I recall them, were to carry on 
activities, propaganda, for peace and against Hitlerism, against 
Nazism wherever it occurred in the world. 

Mr. Taat^nner. Now, what part did you play in the work of that 
council ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Again, sir, it is extremely difficult to recall with 
precision and adequacy things which took place as long ago as this, 
but recalling as candidly as I can, I made some S]:)eeches for them. If 
you asked me precisely how many, I couldn't begin to tell you. I 
made a few speeches for them around the city of Baltimore, and I was 
a member of this city committee, whatever the precise title may have 
been. 

Mr. Tavenner. What woi-k was done in those city committee 
meetings ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, to plan for meetings, to plan for getting 
speakers who would represent the late point of view before as many 
and as varied groups in the city as might be possible. 

Incidentally, I do have in this connection a clear recollection that 
the organization was a pretty complete failure, that it did not succeed 
in accomplishing many, if any, of its objectives "with any considerable 
group of people. 

Mr. Tavexner. I understood you to say that one of the functions 
of the council was to plan i^ropaganda to be used by your group. 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, quite. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you observe the activities of the Communist 
Party in an eifort to outline or to direct in any manner the propaganda 
that the council of this group advocated ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would not be able to say under oath that I recall 
any evidence whatsoever of deliberate Communist activity here. In 
a vague sort of w\ay I was aware of the fact that there were Commu- 
nists in the organization, and, so to say, around the organization, but 
as 1 said in the excutive hearing, I would not have been able to testify 
at the time that I knew any single person in the group to be a 
Communist. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you able to so testify now ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, I am. I read the papers, and since that time 
various people with whom I had a speaking acquaintance — two, to be 
precise — have been caught by the Smith Act, and as the New York 
Times informs me, have been serving time. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4059 

Mr. Tavenner. Who are they ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Professor and Mrs. Albert Bliiinbero;. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is Dr. Albert Blumberg, who was a profes- 
sor 

Dr. Hutchison. He was an instructor in philosophy at Johns Hop- 
kins University at the time. I might say I never knew Mr. Bliimberg 
very well. I had a speaking acquaintance with him. 

Mr. Tavenner. For the sake of the record, I do not believe that 
Professor Blumberg has actually been prosecuted. 

Dr. Hutchison. I understood from the papers that he had been 
convicted of violation of the Smith Act. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think his whereabouts are unknown today. 

Dr. Hutchison. Okay. 

Mr. Walter. He has been indicted, that is the situation. 

Mr. Tavenner. You mention those two. Are there any other per- 
sons known now to you to have been members of the Communist 
Party who were active in the work of the American League Against 
War and Fascism on the council of which you were a member? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would not be able to state under oath that I 
know this person to be a Communist. At the time he seemed to me 
to be intellectually a Marxist. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, if you do not know, I don't want to ask you 
to surmise about it. 

Dr. Hutchison. All right. This would be a surmise. 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated that you made a number of speeches 
around over the city of Baltimore in behalf of the American League 
Against War and Fascism. 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was the decision made to have you offer these talks 
conducted or arranged for at the meetings which we referred to? 

Dr. Hutchison. I believe in at least 1 or 2 cases that was true. I 
was asked to speak as a representative of the league in one case to a 
church young people's group, and again, to the best of my recollec- 
tion, I spoke about the menace of Hitlerism, particularly in its threat 
to freedom of religion and to its threat to world peace. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that meeting, to which you referred, adver- 
tised as being sponsored by the American League Against War and 
Fascism ? 

Dr. Hutchison. It was not sponsored by the American League 
Against War and Fascism. It was a very conventional meeting of a 
Protestant church young people's group. It was a Presbyterian 
church somewhere in northwest Baltimore, but I am sorry, I don't 
just recall which of a dozen or so churches it might have been. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlio was it within your group of the American 
League Against War and Fascism who arranged for your handling 
that occasion ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no precise recollection that anybody in the 
league made these arrangements. It may well have been the min- 
ister of the church who wanted to hear what this point of view was. 
I am sorry ; here I simply have no precise recollection. 

Mr. Tavenner. Normally who assigned you the duty of making 
speeches in behalf of the league? 

Dr. Hutchison. Nobody assigned me at all. I wasn't assigned. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, vou were solicited then? 



4060 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, quite. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who solicited you to do this work? 

Dr. Hutchison. It could be anybody connected with the city com- 
mittee of the American League Against War and Fascism. 

Mr. Tavexner. Who was the secretary of the league at that time? 

Dr. Hutchison. As I recall, Sam Swerdloff was the secretary. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell "Swerdloff" ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Again I am not sure. It is either S-w- or 
S-v-e-r-d-1-o-f. 

Mr. Tavenner. I believe the correct spelling is S-w-e-r-d-1-o-f-f. 

Dr. Hutchison. All right. I would like to add in this connection 
what I spoke about at this meeting again. It was a meeting at which 
there was consideration of what seemed at the time and which I still 
believe to be issues of great social and international import which 
are of very fundamental concern to anybody who takes the Christian 
religion seriously. I spoke from that point of view. I never spoke 
from any other point of view. 

Mr. Taatenner. How long did you remain a member of that organi- 
zation ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I was a member of it during my entire stay in 
Baltimore until November 1937. 

Mr. TA^^ENNER. Did you resign at that time ? 

Dr. Hutchinson. No ; I did not. I resigned at sometime during my 
stay in Bayonne, N. J. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the reason for your withdrawing from 
the organization ? 

Dr. Hutchison. The reasons were manifold. For one thing, the 
purge trials in Russia seemed to make it increasingly clear that no 
honest Christian could have any connection whatsoever with people 
who were connected in any way with movements of this kind. Also, 
while I was in Bayonne, N. J., I was interested in the problem of civil 
liberties in Hudson County, N. J. If you will recall, at the time Mayor 
Hague had clamped down hard on freedom of speech in Jersey City, 
and indeed in all Hudson County. I was interested in seeing that 
free speech might get established or maintained there. It became 
increasingly apparent to me that people who seemed to me to have 
some connection with Mar/xism were not genuinely concerned with 
the problem of freedom of speech but were using this and related 
issues to support their partisan ])urposes. I suppose the really basic 
reason  

Mr. Tavt'^nner. Let me interru])t a moment. Did you observe the 
same thing in your experience in this group in the city of Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. No ; I can't say that I did. It did become apparent 
to me, certainly by the year 19-38, and I would like also to say that in 
my own thinking about these issues I was increasingly influenced by 
two of my former teachers, Henry Sloan Coffin and Reinhold Niebuhr, 
who had been consistently anti-Communist, vigorously anti-Commu- 
nist, and I must say that my sevei-ing mv coTitact with the league — 
it was then the [American] League for Peace and Democracy — was 
more than anything else the result of their influence on my thinlring 
in these matters. 

Mr. Ta\t=',nner. You were also a student of Dr. Ward, were you 
not, at the seminary? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4061 

Dr. Hutchison. I took one course and audited one other course 
from Harry Ward, but I should like to say quite plainly that I don't 
think Harry Ward ever had any considerable influence upon me. I had 
no personal contact with Ward outside of the classroom. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. He was the president of or the head of the Ameri- 
can Leaf^ue Against War and Fascism? 

Dr. Hutchison. I believe that is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was he not? 

Dr. Hutchison. I believe that is correct. 

Mr. Ta\"enner. Did that have any influence upon your becoming 
a member of it ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I suppose that I learned ai^out the [American] 
League Against War and Fascism from Harry Ward, but that was 
the extent of my connection with Ward. 

Mr. Ta\tenner. Very well. I interrupted you in your statement. 

Dr. Hutchison. I finished what I wanted to say, thank you. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Were you affiliated at any time while in Balti- 
more with an organization engaged in i:>romoting public sentiment in 
favor of Ethiopia and against Italy? 

Dr. Hutchison. You mean the Ethiopian League? 

Mr. Tavenner. It is sometimes referred to as the Ethiopian 
League; at other times as the defense group of the 

Ml*. Jackson. Ethiopian Defense Connnittee, I believe. 

Dr. Hutchison. I heard about the Ethiopian League or whatever 
it is called, for the first time, from you and from members of this 
committee. I had never heard of the organization prior to that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. You mean you had never heard of it by name ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I had never heard of it by name. I have no recol- 
lection of any such organization, anything that answers to that 
description. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you take part in the activities of any group 
Avhich was engaged in promoting public sentiment in favor of Ethi- 
opia against Italy? 

Dr. Hutchison. To the best of my recollection, no, I did not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Rev. Joseph S. Nowak? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, I am. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien did you first become acquainted with him ? 

Dr. Hutchison. In the year 1932-33 at Princeton Theological 
Seminary. He and I transferred to Union in the fall of 1933. I 
knew him as a fellow student there. I knew him also as a fellow 
Presbyterian minister and as a friend in Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you graduate at the same time from Union 
Theological Seminary? 

Dr. Hutchison. We graduated in May of 1935. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was he assigned to ministerial work in Baltimore 
also? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would like to correct one minor inaccuracy in my 
tenancy before the executive session of your committee a month ago. 
At the time I said that Joe Nowak went to Baltimore in 1935. I have 
since communicated with him by phone and by mail, and he informs 
me that he went down in the summer of 1934, and I am quite prepared 
to accept his word for that. 

Mr. Tavenner. You say he went there in 1934. It must have been 
on a plan to commute from Baltimore to New York. 



4062 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Because he ■was still in j'oiir classes. 

Dr. Hutchison. He had a little Polish Presbyterian Church in 
east Baltimore and commuted weekends to Baltimore. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Just the same as you did from Januaiy until May 
of 1935. 

Dr. Hutchison. That is correct. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Did you retain j-our acquaintanceship and friend- 
ship with him after coming to Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes; he ushered at my wedding, as a matter of 
fact, and I saw liim not infrequently. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you been associated with him in any way 
since you left Baltimore in 1937, November 1937? 

Dr. Hutchison. At most I saw^ him once or twice. I cannot recall 
that I did, but I have had no contact with him except to communicate 
with him by telephone and by letter after this broke. 

Mr. Walter. When was the last time you talked with him by tele- 
phone ? 

Dr. Hutchison. About 2 or 3 weeks ago. I called, incidentally, to 
ask him if he had any recollection of an episode which was alleged to 
us, as to Nowak and to me, by a witness before this committee. The 
committee had, it seemed to me, and it seemed to my counsel, implied 
that Nowak had gone a good deal further than I had gone in my testi- 
mony in admitting this connection. 

I called him on counsel's advice in order to, as counsel said*, to refresh 
my memory. I found somewhat to my surprise that he had cate- 
gorically denied the particular contact that was under question, as I 
had denied it. 

Mr, Walter. What was that? 

Dr. Hutchison. In executive session, sir, about a month ago it was 
stated that Mr. Reno or Mr. Dixon had testified that when Joe Nowak 
and I had gone to Baltimore, we had — and I think I quote verbatim 
here — reported to the Communist Party headquarters for orders before 
we went to the churches to which we had been assigned. When this 
was put to me in executive session it seemed so fantastic and so ridicu- 
lous that I fumbled the ball for a minute and instead of making a 
categorical denial, I said I had no recollection of it. I should like to 
make that categorical denial right now. That statement is false. 

Mr. Walter. Is the headquarters of the American League Against 
War and Fascism 

Dr. Hutchison. Subsequently the American League for Peace 
and Democracy. 

Mr. Walter (continuing). The headquarters of the Communist 
Party? 

Dr. Hutchison. I don't know where the Communist Party head- 
quaiters were in Baltimore. I was never there. I learned the loca- 
tion of that headquarters from this committee a month ago. 

Mr. Walter. You were never in the Communist Party headquarters 
in Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. I was never in the Communist Party headquarters 
in Baltimore. 

(At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. KetchauL) 

Dr. Hutchison. Or in any other place, and incidentally, while 
you are on that, I should like to deny categorically — and I realize under 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4063 

oath — ^that I ever sought membership in the Communist Party, ever 
was a member of that party, or ever expect to be a member of that 
party. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Counsel, may I ask a question at this point? Let 
us more closely locate the Communist Party headquarters in Balti- 
more at that time in order that there may be no possible doubt on this 
point. During the course of the executive session I asked you a ques- 
tion, or rather, made a statement : 

Continuing the testimony of Mr. Reno lie identified the party lieadquarters of 
the Communist Party at that time as being at the corner of Pratt and North 
Bond Street in an old building there close to the waterfront. 

In that connection I have found since that it was Pratt and South 
Bond Streets instead of as originally phrased in this question. Were 
you ever at a meeting at that location ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I was not, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 

Dr. Hutchison. I might say that it has taken considerable recol- 
lection for me to realize even in what geographical area of the city 
of Baltimore, Pratt and Bond or Pratt and South are, and whether 
they are north and south or east and west streets. 

Mr. Jackson. Have you since determined in your own recollection 
as to where that would be approximately ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would have to do a good deal of searching if I 
went to Baltimore and looked for it now, but I should like to deny 
categorically that I ever knew the location of the Commimist Party 
headquarters or was ever there. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well ; thank you. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this question, Mr. Chairman: Might you 
have been there and not have known they were Communist Party 
headquarters ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I suppose that is possible, but I have no recol- 
lection of ever having been to a place that was even remotely indicated 
as Communist Party headquarters. 

Mr. Doyle. Did you go to any headquarters in Baltimore of any 
political organization known to you to be a political organization or 
a political coimnittee ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have absolutely no recollection of doing such 
a thing, sir. 

Mr. Walter. Do you know Leonard Patterson ? 

Dr. Hutchison. No, sir ; I do not. 

Mr. Jackson. Leonard Patterson, I think it should be said for the 
record, was the Young Communist League organizer, is that correct, 
Mr. Counsel? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir; he was the organizer of the Young Com- 
munist League. 

Mr. Jackson. In Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. In Baltimore from 1934 until near the end of 1935. 

]VIr. Jackson. He is a Negro. 

Dr. Hutchison. I wouldn't have known had you not told me. 

Mr. Jackson. I wanted to say that to refresh your recollection, but 
you repeat that you did not know Leonard Patterson ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not. 

Mr. Walter. Do you know Mary Himoff ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not know anybody by that name. 



4064 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Walter. Did you k^o^Y Earl Dixon? 

Dr. Hutchinson. No, sir ; I did not. I was asked that question in 
the executive session, and I have spent the month since then trying 
to recall anybody who might have answered to that name, and I did 
not known and never knew anybody named Dixon, or I believe you 
stated in executive session that his real name was Reno or Sereno or 
something of the sort. 

Mr. Jackson. I think counsel should identify Eeno, alias Dixon, for 
the record. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Earl C. Reno was transferred from the De- 
troit area to Baltimore in April 1935 as the organizer of the Com- 
munist Party. 

Dr. Hutchison. In 1935 ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Dr. Hutchison. What time of the year, sir ? 

Mr. Tavenner. April 1935. I believe the question has been asked 
you, but I want to make certain about it : Did you meet Earl Dixon, 
whose real name was Earl Reno, at any time in the Communist Party 
headquarters 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not. 

Mr. Tavenner. In Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not. 

(At this point Dr. Hutchinson conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 

Dr. Hutchison. I have not been to the headquarters, and I would 
think that logically would cover the question whether I met him there. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, did you meet Earl Dixon 

Dr. Hutchison. Or anywhere else. 

Mr. Tavenner. At any other place ? 

Dr. Hutchison. No, sir. Now, as it has been suggested, I went to 
meetings here, there, and everywhere around Baltimore, and quite un- 
known to myself I may have met the man, but I am sure that I was 
never introduced to a man, never had any acquaintance with Mr. 
Dixon or Mr. Reno. 

Mr. Jackson. Preliminary to your appearance. Reverend, before 
the executive committee hearing a month ago, had you ever heard 
the name Earl Dixon ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I do not think I had, sir. This was news to me. 

Mr. Jackson. Or Earl C. Reno ? 

Dr. Hutchison. No, sir; I believe not. 

IMr. Jackson. Or Leonard Patterson? 

Dr. Hutchison. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 

Dr. Hutchinson. It was news to me at the executive session of your 
committee a month ago. 

Mr. SciiERER. Of course, you knew Reverend Joseph Nowak ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, very well, indeed. 

Mr. Water. Did you and Reverend Joseph Nowak go to a building 
over the front door of which was a makeshift sign on which was con- 
tained the words "Communist Party Headquarters"? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no recollection of that at all. 

Mr. Walter. Did you or didn't you? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4065 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you identify yourself at any time to a func- 
tionary of the Communist Party, whether it be Mr. Reno or any other 
functionary, as having come from the Union Theological Seminary in 
New York? 
Dr. Hutchison. That is a ridiculous and fantastic falsehood. 
(At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 
Mr. Jackson. The answer is, you did not ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not. I identified it as a falsehood because 
this question was put to me a month ago, and it seemed at the time 
so fantastic and so bizarre that I simply fumbled the ball for the 
moment. I did not meet such a person. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you discuss at any time or engage in a conver- 
sation at any time with Mr. Leonard Patterson, at which Rev. Joseph 
S. Nowak was present, regarding the theory of the Communist Party 
and its principles? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, I have already said that to the best of my 
recollection I did not meet either of these men, and so it would hardly 
have been possible for me to have talked with them. Categorically I 
did not have such a conversation about the structure of the Communist 
Party. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you discuss at any time with Reverend Nowak 
a plan to aid the Communist Party in work of any character? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, again, sir, this was a long time ago, and 
I can only say that I recall no such conversation, and furthermore, can 
never recall any attitudes which would lead me to discuss such a thing. 
In short, I was never that sympathetic with communism. 

Mr. DoYXJ3. To what extent were you sympathetic with communism ? 
Dr. Hutchison. Only to the extent that it seemed to me, as it 
seemed to a large number of people then, that the Communists might 
be fighting for commoji objectives, i. e., some conception of interna- 
tional responsibility, some resistance to nazism and anti-Semitism. 
Mr. DoTLE. What year was that? 
Dr. Hutchison. This was 1935 to 1937, sir. 

Mr. Doyle. Did you ever stop having that extent of sympathy with 
communism ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, I did. 
Mr. DoTLE. When? 

Dr. HuTCPiisoN. As I have indicated in my testimony. Well, to 
the best of my recollection it was sometime in 1938. Now, again it 
is very difficult to recall precise dates and times, but I do remember 
very definitely that when the Nazi-Soviet pact was signed in 1939, I 
recall having been clear of it for sometime and recall being very much 
relieved that I had been clear of it for some time. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think it only fair to say to you. Dr. Hutchison, 
that Mr. Reno, in his testimony, stated that at this first conference 
that he held with you — which conference I understand you do deny 

as having taken place 

Dr. Hutchison. I do deny it, indeed. 

Mr. Tavenner (continuing). That you stated to him, both you and 
Reverend Nowak, that you were not members of the Communist Party. 
Did you consult any functionary of the Communist Party in Balti- 
more about the manner in which you desired to carry out your work 
in any of these organizations to which we have referred? 



4066 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Dr. Hutchison. To the best of my recollection I never carried on 
such a conversation with anyone who was known to me at the time to 
be a Communist. Now, I may have talked about tactics to people who 
were not then known to me to be Communist, but I can recall abso- 
lutely nothing, and I certainly would want to deny categorically that 
1 ever consulted any known Communist for orders, directions, or any- 
thing of that sort. That is plainly false. 

Mr. Tavenner. I didn't ask you about orders. I asked you about 
advice and general suggestions as to how you should perform your 
work. 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, now, my work in what? 

Mr. Tavenner. In any of these organizations. In particular, the 
organization of the American League Against War and Fascism. 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, I have already indicated that I was a member 
of this league. I was sympathetic to its professed aims and objectives, 
and I well may have talked with this person or that person about how 
the league should pursue its business, but I can recall no specific con- 
versation with a Communist on any of these matters. 

(At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 

Dr. Hutchison. I didn't know who these Communists were, and, as 
I understand it, it was part of Communist strategy at the time to 
adopt false names and to proceed under false colors. 

Mr. Jackson. Would it be a fair statement. Reverend, to say that at 
no time have you ever consulted relative to the work of the Ethiopian 
League or of the American League Against War and Fascism with 
any individual who was known to you to be a member of the Commu- 
nist Party? 

Dr. Hutchison. That is a very fair statement, a true statement. 

]\Ir. Jackson. Thank you. 

Mr. Walter. Perhaps this question has been answered, Mr. Taven- 
ner : Do you remember the address of this American League Against 
War and Fascism? 

Dr. Hutchison. I don't remember its precise address, sir. This 
question was put to me when I was down here before, and I can locate 
it best by saying that it was on Park Avenue in Baltimore about 20 
or ?)0 blocks below the church which I served, and that I do have a 
distinct recollection of going down the same street or same avenue, 
Park Avenue, to the building in which the American League Against 
War and Fascism had a room. 

Mr. Walter. That was not in the church ? 

Dr. Hutchison. The league office— oh, no, no. No, it was in a 

counsel asked me several questions about this when I was here before, 
and, I am sorry. I would be able to locate it on the lower part of 
Park Avenue. It was a converted dwelling house which had been 
turned into offices, and, as I recall, the league had a room there. 

Mr. Tavenner. I referred at an earlier point in your testimony to 
certain demonstrations which were held in Baltimore. Did you take 
any ])art whatever in the demonstration that was conducted at the 
time of the docking of the German battleship Emden, in 19o6? 

Dr. Hutchison. I signed, along with a number of other ])eople, 
a letter of protest to the mayor of Baltimore against a public demon- 
stration for the battleship Emdoi and its crew, which had come to 
port. I did it because I thought the Nazis were unclean and evil 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4067 

and that we should have as little to do with them as possible. I think 
I might well do the same thing over again. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that the full extent of your participation in the 
demonstration? 

Dr. Hutchison. To the best of my recollection it is. I don't think 
I even went around to the demonstration. As I recall, I was busy 
with church business at the time it was held. 

Mr. Jackson. Did you take any part in any public demonstration 
in the way of making speeches or participating in any programs hav- 
ing to do with a demonstration against the Emden? 

Dr. Hutchinson. I did not speak — to the best of my recollection 
I had no part whatsoever beyond signing this letter to the mayor 
which 

Mr. Jackson. I gather then you did not attend public demonstra- 
tions or rallies on the occasion of this protest. 

Dr. Hutchison. To the best of my recollection I had no contact 
with those demonstrations. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall that a sound truck was used and 
speeches were made from the sound truck down at the dock as a part 
of the demonstration ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no recollection on this score at all, sir. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. You did not see the sound truck ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no recollection that I saw the sound truck 
or was in any part of the city at that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you take any part in the preparation for the 
demonstration ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, once again, memory is fallible, but to the 
best of my recollection the only contact I had with the demonstration 
was to sign this letter to the mayor. 

Mr. Jackson. This letter was gotten up by what organization or 
gi'oup ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I don't know. 

Mr. Jackson, It contained the names, I assume, of representative 
citizens of the community ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I should certainly think so. I have no distinct 
recollection on that score at all. I do recall signing the letter. For 
personal reasons it created quite a commotion, and it is in this con- 
nection that I remember it. I must say that most of these things are 
very remote, and it is extremely difficult to dig up the distant past 
in the way in which the committee is asking me to do. I don't want to 
perjure myself. I want to speak as candidly and as accurately as I 
can, and it is extremely difficult to do. 

Mr. Jackson. Recalling the letter, or the occasion of your signing 
the letter, would you recall if you had, for instance — I believe counsel 
mentioned a souiid truck — would you recall whether or not you had 
spoken on that occasion? 

Dr. Hutchison. I would rather think I might recall that, and I 
have no recollection of it whatsoever. 

Mr. Doyle, Do you have any recollection of ever having spoken 
irom a sound truck? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes ; on one occasion I did. 

Mr, Walter. In Baltimore? 

Dr. Hutchison. In Baltimore. 

Mr, Walter. What was the occasion ? 



4068 COIVIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Dr. Hutchison. "Well, again, dating it as accurately as I can, it 
was in the summer, and that would make it either the summer of 1936 
or 1937. It was a vacant lot somewhere in West Baltimore at which 
there was a meeting on the issue of anti-Semitism. It was a section 
of the city in which there were many Jewish people, and I spoke to 
this issue. 

!Mr. WaIvTer. Under the auspices of what organization ? 

Dr. HuTCHisox. Under the auspices of the American League 
Against War and Fascism. That, by the way, is the one distinct recol- 
lection I have of speaking under their auspices. 

INIr. Walter. Wlio invited you to address that gathering? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no distinct recollection there. I presume 
it was somebody connected with the city committee. 

Mr. Walter. Do you remember who were on the city committee? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have given you all the names that I recall there, 
sir. 

Mr. Taa'enner. On the day prior to the demonstration at the docks 
we understand that you spoke at Johns Hopkins University at what 
was termed a strike of the student body or members of the student 
body; do you recall that? 

Dr. Hutchison. I do recall speaking at Johns Hopkins Univer- 
sity, but, as I remember it, it was a day on Avhich the issue of peace 
was proposed, not the Em den issue. 

Now. I may be wrong about that. 

Mr. Tavenner. It was the day before, as I understand it, the dem- 
onstration took place, and I am asking you whether there was any 
connection between anything that transpired at that meeting and 
the demonstration. 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no recollection of this meeting beside the 
fact that I did speak at Johns Hopkins University, and I would have 
said that it was a meeting which attempted to focus student sentiment 
on the issue of militarism and for peace, issues of that sort. 

Again I have no distinct recollection beyond that point. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman, may I ask this question? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. Going back, please, to that occasion when you recalled 
in answer to a question that you did speak from a sound truck on 
one occasion, who spoke in addition to you from that sound truck on 
that occasion? 

Dr. Hutchison. There were other speakers, but for the life of me I 
have no recollection of who they were or what they said. I am sorry. 

Mr. Doyle. You have no recollection of even one other? 

Dr. HrrcHisoN. No, I don't. I recall that there were other 
speeches, and I have no more recollection of that than I knew what I 
had for dinner that night. 

Ml'. Dd^u:. Do von recall whether they were by men or women or 
both ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I wouldn't be able to say about that, sir. This was 
193() or 1937 which makes it what — 17 or 18 years ago. 

Mr. Doyle. That is quite true. How old were you in 1938 ? 

Dr. HiTCHisoN. Well, I am 42 now, and that was what — 15 years 
ago, so I was in my early twenties. 

( At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4069 

Mr. Tavenner. Do I understand from your testimony that you deny 
that you knowingly colhiborated in any way with the Communist 
Party or functionaries of the Communist Party in tlie work of these 
organizations or any of them which you belonged to involved? 

Dr. Hutchison. Again I had the general impression that there were 
Communists in the league. I certainly would not want to say I did 
not know there were Communists in the league. It, by open profes- 
sion, was an organization which sought to organize liberals, together 
with Communists, for the objectives which I stated, but I would not 
have been able to testify under oath at the time that any one of the 
people whom I knew were Communists. 

Mr. Walter. Do you know Thurgood Marshall ? 

Dr. Hutchison. The name doesn't mean a thing to me, sir. 

Mr. Walter. Maybe I can refresh your recollection by telling you 
that Mr. Marshall was the speaker on the occasion we have just dis- 
cussed. 

Dr. Hutchison. The Etnden issue, you mean ? 

Mr. Walter. Yes. He alleged you and Reverend Nowak were on 
the sound truck with Marshall. 

Dr. Hutchison. I have no recollection on that score at all. I 
wouldn't be able to tell you whether he is short or tall or white or 
black. 

(At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 

Dr. Hutchison. To the best of my recollection I have denied being 
there. 

Mr. Walter. You deny being there ? 

Dr. Hutchison. At the Emden episode, yes. At the Ertiden episode, 
to the best of my recollection — I think I might have been there had I 
not been busy on other things, but I do have a recollection that when 
the Emden • 

Mr. Walter. I am not talking about that. I am talking about the 
mass meeting 

Dr. Hutchison. Where? 

Mr. Walter. At some square, a neighborhood meeting. 

Dr. Hutchison. Wlien ? 

Mr. Walter. On the occasion when you said that you spoke, the oc- 
casion being the day before the arrival of the Emden. 

Dr. Hutchison. No, I am sorry. You are confusing two things. I 
said that sometime in the summer of 1936 or 1937 there was a kind of 
neighborhood meeting somewhere in West Baltimore. 

Mr. Walter. And that is the only time you spoke in Baltimore ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, it is the only time — not the only time, no, 
sir. I do recall definitely putting the general case for the [American] 
League Against War and Fascism before a church young people's 
group, and I think I may well have spoken on other occasions. Again, 
T think I did. I should have said that I made a half dozen speeches 
for them in 2 years time. These are the two I recall. 

Mr. Walter. I am talking now about sound-truck appearances. 

Mr. Ketcham. Mr. Chairman, the witness already testified he did 
speak at Johns Hopkins University. 

Mr. Jackson. Yes. 

Dr. Hutchison. I don't recall that there was a sound truck there. 

Mr. Walter. All right. 



4070 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Jacksox. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta\'exxer. I have no further questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Scherer. I just have one question. Reverend, did you ever 
have a discussion or an understandin<r witli Rev. Joseph Nowak and 
Dr. Harry Ward in which the view was expressed that it would be 
only about 10 years from the date of that discussion or that under- 
standino- that the Communist Party would take over in the United 
States and that then you three would be leaders of that group ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I think that is fantastic and ridiculously untrue. 

Mr. Jackson. You deny that? 

Dr. Hutchison. I deny that. 

Mr. Jackson. Anythinfr else, Mr. Scherer ? 

Mr. Scherer. That is all. 

Mr, Jackson. Mr. Walter. 

Mr. Walter. Did you participate in a strike at Johns Hopkins 
University in April of 1936 on the day that the Emden landed ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, now", I told you previously I have no recol- 
lection of being at Hopkins. I do recall on one occasion making a 
speech 

Mr. Walter. Do you deny that you were at Hopkins organizing a 
strike of the student body 

Dr. PIuTCHisoN. I deny that I was organizing a strike at Hopkins. 
I never had that much connection with Johns Hopkins University. 

Mr. Walter. Did you participate in a strike at the university ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Again, I made one speech there. My recollection 
of it is of an occasion when the issue was world peace. I did speak 
there then, but in asking me to date this precisely or tell j^ou the 
j)recise circumstances, I am as unable to do that as I would be to tell 
you what kind of necktie I was wearing on that day. 

Mr. Walter. I don't think my question was that absurd. I had 
an idea that you could place the meeting because of the arrival of the 
Eiiulen, and our information is that you were quite active in the 
demonstration that occurred at that time. As a matter of fact, we 
have been reliably informed that you had students at Johns Hopkins 
dressed as soldiers, German soldiers. 

Dr. Hutchison. I never had that much connection with studente 
at the Hopkins during my entire time in Baltimore. 

Mr. Walter. Then the information we have is in error. 

Dr. Hutchison. I think it is quite in error. 

Mr. Walter. All right. 

Mr. Jacjkson. Anything further, Mr. Walter? 

Mr. Doyle? 

Mr. DoYT.E. No further questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Frazier? 

Mr. P^razier. No questions. 

Mr. Jackson. So we can get it very clearly for the record 

Mr. DoYi.E. Mr. Chairman, may I change my thought there and ask 
a question? 

Ml-. Jackson. Yes, Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Don.E. The reason I asked you what your age was in 1938 
is because I judge that you were a fairly young man. 

Dr. Hutchison. I was. 



COMRIUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4071 

Mr. Doyle. I take it from what you have said, aUhoii^h this is 
the first time I have ever seen you, that you were of an inquiring 
mind. 

Dr. Hutchison. I hope so, sir. 

Mr. DoTLE. You mentioned Marxism in one of your statements a 
minute ago. To what extent, if any, did you accumuhite a hbrary 
on communism? I am not going into the question of book reading 
as such, but I very frankly am interested in the extent to which you 
were active, if you were, knowingly at any level with the Communist 

Party. .„ , . ^ 

Dr. HuTCiiisox. I bought books on Marxism. I still buy them, i 
am very much interested in it. It seems to me to be one of the chief 
rivals for human allegiance to the faith I profess, namely, Chris- 
tianity. 

If you were to come to my library, you would see some books on 
Marxism, and for that I make no apology. The attitudes I have to- 
ward Marxism are a matter of public record that the committee can 
inquire into if they want. I edited a book last year in which I wrote 
an introduction undertaking to state what seems to me the attitude of 
Christianity toward Marxism, and this is a matter of public record. 

The book is Chrisian Faith and Social Action, and pages 13 through 
16 will give you as a matter of published record what I think on these 
scores and what I have thought for years and years. 

Mr. D0Y1.E. Is this a fair question: Since 1938 and 1039 in your 
pulpit or otherwise have you made any public declarations against 
organized communism? 

Dr. HuTciiLsox. Day in and day out. sir. 

Mr. Doyle. Give me, from your specific memory, 2 or 3 occasions 
when you did, and where. 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, I would suppose not a week goes by but what 
1 have occasion to allude to communism in class, and if you want to 
know that, ask my students. I regard it as an altogether evil thing 
which freemen must resist at all costs, and furthermore, a thing which 
derives its demonic and evil quality from the fact that it is held as 4 
religious faith. 

Mr. Doyle. What students are those ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Students at Williams College. Now, I have 
preached about it. I suppose scarcely a month goes by--I may say 
in my spare time I preach in the Methodist Church in Williamstown, 
and when I told a couple of members I had been subpenaed to come 
down here, the attitude was one of com])lete surprise. 

Mr. Doyle. Yes, but may I interrupt ? 

Dr. Hutchison. Surely. 

Mr. Doyle. Before you were subpenaed, before you knew anything 
about the concern of this committee as to the extent of communism in 
Baltimore, where, if at all, did you publicly speak out against 

Dr. Hutchison. You regard a sermon as publicly speaking out? 

Mr. Doyle. I regard a sermon as very public if it is in an open 



meeting 



Dr. Hutchison. I am very much interested in this question, sir, be- 
cause I don't keep a diary and therefore have been hard put to it to 
tie down specific references. I do keep my old sermons, and some 
that I was preaching in Bayonne, N. J., froin 1937 to 1940 had state- 
ments vigorously denouncing communism as an evil thing. 



4072 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Doyle. Do you still have copies of those ? 

Dr. Hutchison. I do. 

I\Ir. Doyle. Subsequent to 1938 — you included to the year 1940. 
Subsequent to the year 1940 where, if at all, have you made public 
declarations against communism? 

Dr. Hutchison. Well, again, sir, day in and day out, week in and 
week out, in classroom and in pulpit and in pereonal conversation. 

Mr. Doyle. Thank you very much. I think it is fair to you for me 
to say the purport of my questions is to this basis : If a man has been 
identified in any way with a movement that he has had any reason to 
think was Communist-inspired or Communist infiltrated, and he is 
opposed to it, he speaks out against it, if he is intelligent at all, as 
soon as he discovers it. 

Dr. Hutchison. I should suppose that one is recreant to his duty 
if he does not. 

Mr, Doyle. The purport of my question was to find out if 30U had 
been active against it. 

Dr. Hutchison. My record there is open to the public, and I could 
wish the committee had conducted a more thorough investigation in 
order to get the truth about this because I think the record would 
speak for itself. 

Mr. Walter. You would be surprised if you knew how thorough 
this investigation was. 

Dr. Hutchison. I do know, sir, in the investigation the committee 
did not consult the man in Baltimore who knew me best, my boss, the 
Reverend Guthrie Speers. 

Mr. Walter. I don't think we knew his name or we would cer- 
tainly 

Dr. Hutchison. I gave the agent his name when the agent first 
came to see me, and he was appalled that you had not consulted with 
him, and he would be able, I think, to have cleared up some of the 
things without the expense and nuisance which has been involved. 

Mr. Jackson. May I say to the witness that if it is deemed neces- 
sary and desirable by the committee as it proceeds in this matter, 
we will be very happy to so check and bring all of the relevant facts 
into the matter. 

Dr. Hutchison. I think they have not been brought in. 

Mr. Jackson. We shall be vei'y ha])py to have any further informa- 
tion you may wish or desire to furnish to the committee. In the first 
place, I think it should be made absolutely clear that there has been 
no suggestion. Reverend, that you are or have been a member of the 
Communist Party. You were a resident in Baltimore at the time 
when there was a considerable turmoil, much of which was directed 
by the Communist Party. 

Several of the organizations with which you are alleged to have 
been a member or in the activities of which you are purported to have 
taken ])art were organizations which have been the subject of investi- 
gation by committees because of known Communist direction. 

However, T do want to make it very clear that there is no allegation, 
and thei-e should be no connotation in the mind of anyone that this 
committee has alleged that you were a member of the Communist 
Party. That is not the case. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4073 

Dr. Hutchison. Mr. Chairman, could I say just a word on this 
score ? 

Mr. Jackson. Yes. 

Dr. Hutchison. I came to the executive session a montli ago and 
was as candid and as honest as I could be, and I spent 3 weeks search- 
ing over the ground of my memory as adequately as I could, and I 
can only say, to bring me down a second time has been at very con- 
siderable personal inconvenience to me. 

It has pulled me out of classes for 4 days in a space of a month, 
which is more time than I take off through a whole year. It has 
taken me away from a church service this evening which I will not 
be able to get back to. 

Mr. Jackson. The committee regi'ets any inconvenience it may have 
caused in that regard. However, I should like to ask you if, during 
your period of residence in Baltimore, you had an opportunity to 
draw any conclusions as to the degree of activity or of direction exer- 
cised by the Communist Party in these various organizations. 

Did anything come to your attention personally w^hich would indi- 
cate that the Communist Party did have a hand in the formulation of 
policies and direction of activities? 

Dr. Hutchison. Only very vaguely, sir, if at all. 

Mr. Jackson. No personal knowledge whatever as you have 
testified ? 

Dr. Hutchison. That is correct, and when this became clear to me, 
I broke the tie and have had none since then. 

Mr. Jackson. I think during the course of the executive hearings 
you were asked a question as to whether or not, looking back on the 
matter in retrospct, there were activities carried on by the American 
League Against War and Fascism that were in fact helpful to the Com- 
munist Party. 

Dr. Hutchison. Conceivably that is true. 

Mr. Jackson. "Well, looking back on the situation, is it true or isn't 
it true that the things they did were helpful to the Communist Party ? 

Dr. Hutchison. In a practical sense I think no. That is to say, it 
seems to me that the [American] League Against War and Fascism 
was a washout. It simply didn't succeed at its professed objective. 
Looking back on it now I don't think it should have succeeded, and 
I think it is testimony to the good sense of the American people that 
it didn't but it didn't infiltrate what the Communists would call the 
broad groups of public opinion. 

Mr. Jackson. Again may I say that we regret any inconvenience 
we may have caused you in this matter. 

Dr. Hutchison. May I say just one word more? I was interested, 
from the executive committee hearing, that the allegation seemed to 
be that Nowak had implicated himself more deeply than I and that 
I had better come clean or else. Nowak got precisely the same im- 
pression, as did my counsel who could not by any stretch of the imagi- 
nation be called uncooperative 

Mr. Walter. When was this ? 

Dr. Hutchison, This was a month ago, sir. Now, the business of 
setting witnesses off against each other seems to me to be a very dubi- 
ous, and if I may say so 



4074 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Jacksux. May I say, there has been no effort made to ph\y off 
aofainst each other. 

Dr. HuTCHrsox. If I could see the record, I think I could prove it 
to you. 

i^Ir. Jackson. So far as communications are concerned, I might say 
they are in the possession of the committee, and we are aware of the 
exchange of letters. 

Are there any further questions by connnittee members? 

(At this point Dr. Hutchison conferred with Mr. Ketcham.) 

Mr. Jackson. It seems to be the consensus of the committee, Rever- 
end Hutcliison, that as long as the letters have been mentioned, the 
matter should be gone into at this time. As I say, we are in possession 
of copies of the connnimications. However, when did you first com- 
municate with Mr. Nowak? 

Dr. Hutchison. I have a carbon copy of the first letter I Avrote to 
him when it was intimated to me by grapevine telegraph that he and 
I would be subpenaed, and I will be very glad to give j^ou a carbon 
copy of that, if you wish. 

After my hearing on February 18, my counsel, Mr. Stuart Rand, 
was concerned because he thought I had been equivocal on the issue 
of this purported meeting with Dixon where Dixon had claimed that 
Nowak and I asked for directives, and he asked me in the interests 
of fair play and so on to write Nowak a letter and ask him about this. 

I called him on the phone and followed up — he asked me to put it 
in writing, which I did. Do you want the wdiole letter or just part 
of it? 

Mr. Jackson. I want to get the facts. 

Mr. Walter. We have the original. 

Dr. Hutchison. Of Nowak? 

Mr. Jackson. Yes. We have the exchange of communications. 
Now, what is the date ? I want to get the chronological sequence. 

Dr. Hutchison. March 9, 1954. 

Mr. Jackson. Was that communication answered by Reverend 
Nowak ? 

Dr. Hutchison. There is Nowak's letter. 

Mr. Jackson. T\1iat w^as the date of your letter? 

Dr. Hutchison. I called him on the phone a week or so before this 
and asked him what his pitch was on this statement that he and I had 
had a meeting with Dixon, and he said, "Put it in writing," and I 
wrote the question to him as carefully as I could, and he wrote back 
stating that he had said to the committee that any such meeting be- 
tween Joe Nowak and John Hutchison and Mr. Dixon was fantastic 
and that he had said so to the committee. 

I am quoting here. 

Mr. ScHERER. You wrote him two letters, didn't you? 

Dr. Hutchison. Yes, I did. I heard from various friends that this 
was in the ofTin^, and I wrote asking if he had heard that it was in 
the offing and what he knew about it. 

Mr. ScHERER. Did you get an answer to that letter? 

Dr. Hutchison. I did not get an answer to that letter. 

Mr. ScHERER. Then you called him on the telephone? 

Dr. Hutchison. I called him on the telephone after the executive 
committee session of Februarv 18. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4075 

Mr. ScHERER. You didn't get an answer to the first letter you wrote ? 
Dr. Hutchison. I did not. 

Mr. Jackson. Any further questions ? Mr. Counsel ? 
Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. With the thanks of the committee, Reverend Hutchi- 
son, the hearing is adjourned. 

( Wliereupon, at 11 : 45 a. m., the hearing was adjourned.) 



INDEX 



Individuals 

Page 

Blumberg, Albert 4059 

Blumberg, Mrs. Albert 4059 

Coffin, Henry Sloan 4060 

Dixon, Earl (alias for Earl C. Reno) 4062, 4064, 4074 

Hague, Mayor 4060 

HimofC, Mary 4063 

Hutchison, John A 4055-4075 (testimony) 

Ketcham, Frank S 4055-4075 

Marshall, Thurgood 4069 

Niebuhr, Reinhold 4060 

Nowak, Joseph S 4061,4062,4064,4065.4069,4070,4074 

Patterson, Leonard 4063, 4064, 4065 

Rand, Stuart 4074 

Reno, Earl C. (alias Earl Dixon) 4062-4065 

Speers, Guthrie 4072 

Swerdlof, Sam 4060 

Ward, Harry 4060, 4061, 4070 

Oeganizations 

American League Against War and Fascism 4057, 

4059-4062, 4066, 4068, 4069, 4073 

American League for Peace and Democracy .. — 4060, 4062 

Basel University, Switzerland 4056 

Columbia University 4056 

Communist Party 4056, 4058, 4059, 4062-4065, 4069, 4070, 4072, 4073 

Edinburgh University, Scotland 4056 

Emden (German battleship) 4057, 4066-4070 

Ethiopian Defense Committee 4061 

Ethiopian League 4057, 4061, 4066 

Johns Hopkins University 4059, 4068-4070 

Lafayette College, Easton, Pa 4056 

New York Times 4058 

Princeton Theological Seminary 4056, 4061 

Union Theological Seminary 4056, 4061, 4065 

Williams College 4056, 4071 

Wooster College, Ohio 4056 

Young Communist League 4063 

4077 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMORE AREA-Part 2 




HEARING 



BEFORE THE 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 



EIGHTY-THIKD CONGRESS 

SECOND SESSION 



MARCH 25, 1954 



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



INCLUDING INDEX 




UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
46914 WASHINGTON : 1954 



£ 



Boston Public Library 
Superintendent of Documents 

JUN 1 6 1954 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 

United States House of Representatives 
HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois, Chairman 



BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York 
DONALD L. JACKSON, California 
KIT CLARDY, Michigan 
GORDON H. SCHERER, Ohio 



FRANCIS E. WALTER, Pennsylvania 
MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri 
CLYDE DOYLE, California 
JAMES B. PRAZIER, JR., Tennessee 



Robert L. Kunzig, Counsel 

Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., Counsel 

Thomas W. Beale, Sr., Chief Clerk 

Raphael I. Nixon, Director of Research 



rt 



CONTENTS 



Page 

Testimony of Earl C. Reno 4080 

Index 4119 

III 



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 
******* 

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

Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 
• •****♦ 

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

(A) Un-American activities. 

(2) The Committee on Un-American Activities, as a wbole or by subcommit- 
tee, is authorized to make from time to time investigations of (i) the extent, 
character, and 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 at- 
tacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitution, 
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 sesstion) 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 autliorized 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 
tbe 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. 



RULES ADOPTED BY THE 83D CONGRESS 

House Resolution 5, January 3, 1953 
* m * * * * * 

RXJLE X 
STANDING COMMITTEES 

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

« 4: :(> * * * * 

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

Rule XI 

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 
******* 

17. Committee on Un-American Activities. 

(a) Un-American Activities. 

(b) The Committee on Un-American Activities, as a whole or by subcommitttee, 
is authorized to malie from time to time, investigations of (1) the extent, char- 
acter, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, 
^2) the diffusion witliin the United States of subversive and un-American prop- 
aganda that is instigated from foreign coimtries or of a domestic origin and 
attacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitu- 
tion, and (3) all other questions in relation thereto tliat 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 tlie 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. 

VI 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMORE AREA— Part 2 



THURSDAY, MARCH 25, 1954 

United States House of Representatives, 

Subcommittee of the Committee on 

Un-American Activities, 

Washington^ D. G. 

PUBLIC hearings 

The subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met, 
pursuant to call, at 10 : 29 a. m., in the Caucus Eoom, 362 Old House 
Office Building, Hon. Donald L. Jackson, presiding. 

Committee members present: Representatives Donald L. Jackson 
(acting chairman) , Kit Clardy, Gordon H. Scherer, Francis E. Walter 
(aiDpearance noted in transcript) , and Clyde Doyle (appearance noted 
in transcript). 

Staff members present : Robert L. Kunzig, counsel ; Frank S. Taven- 
ner, Jr., counsel ; Thomas W. Beale, Sr., chief clerk; Raphael I. Nixon, 
director of research ; and George E. Cooper, investigator. 

Mr. Jackson. The subcommittee will come to order. 

Today's hearing is a continuation of previous hearings into the na- 
ture and extent and objectives of the Communist Party in the general 
area of Baltimore, Md. 

For the purpose of taking testimony today, a subcommittee has been 
appointed by the chairman consisting of Messrs. Scherer and Walter, 
with Jackson acting as chairman. 

Are you ready to proceed, Mr. Counsel ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Who do you have as your first witness ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, I have as the first witness Mr. Earl 
C. Reno. 

Mr. Reno, will you come forward, please ? 

Mr. Jackson. Will you raise your right hand, please, Mr. Reno? 

Do you solemnly swear in the testimony you are about to give before 
this subcommittee to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but 
the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Reno. I do. 

Mr. Jackson. Be seated, please, 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, you pointed out the general purpose 
of this hearing. It may be well, with your permission, to add a few 
remarks about the hearing. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is a continuation of the hearing held in this room 
on March the 18th when Dr. John A. Hutchison was called as a witness 
before the committee. 

4079 



4080 COMJVIUNIST ACTIVITIES EST THE BALTIMORE AREA 

The chairman pointed out at that time that the fact that Dr. Hutchi- 
son is a minister should carry no connotation that the committee is 
investigating religion or any church. 

During the course of the hearings in New York City on July 7, 
1053, the committee received testimony indicating that two unnamed 
young ministers, who had graduated .from the Union Theological 
Seminary in New York, were members of a committee in Baltimore 
for the defense of Ethiopia against the Italian invasion, the head of 
which was a functionary of the Communist Party. 

The Communist Party in Baltimore at that time, according to 
testimony received by the committee, was especially interested in pro- 
moting activities of the American League Against War and Fas- 
cism, the Ethiopian League, and certain demonstrations, such as the 
demonstration which was conducted at the time of the docking of the 
German battleship Emden. 

(Representative Clyde Doyle entered the hearing room at this 
point. ) 

The committee, desiring to supplement the extensive investigation 
of the extent, character, and objects of Communist Party activities 
in Baltimore, Md., proposes to inquire at this time as to the methods 
used by the Communist Party in carrying out its plans with regard 
to those organizations, whether or not the ministers referred to, in 
fact collaborated with functionaries of the Communist Party in the 
work of those organizations and, if so, whether that collaboration 
occurred with knowledge on their part of the function they were 
performing in aid of the Communist Party in attaining its objectives, 

Mr. Reno 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Let the record show at this point that also present 
are Congressman Clardy and Congressman Doyle. 

One other point : Are you represented by counsel ? 

Mr. Reno. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. It is the practice of the committee to permit wit- 
nesses to be accompanied by counsel and to confer with counsel during 
tlie course of the interrogation. Is it your desire that you be repre- 
sented by counsel? 

Mr. Reno. I won't need counsel. 

Mr. Jackson. If at any time during the course of the hearing 
you decide that you would like to have counsel by your side, the com- 
mittee will hear your request at that time. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

TESTIMONY OF EARL C. RENO 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state your name, please, sir? 
Mr. Reno. My name is Earl Reno. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you born, Mr. Reno? 
Mr. Reno. 1 was born at Muncie, Ind., "October 9, 1902. 
Mr. Tavenner. Wliere do you now reside ? 
Mr. Reno. At Marlow, N. H. 
Mr. Tavenner. What is your occupation ? 

Mr. Reno. I am employed by the United States Immigration and 
Naturalization Service. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4081 

Mr. Clardt, Mr. Chairman, may I ask a question ? 

Has the witness been given a copy of the printed rules ? 

Mr. Keno, I have one. 

Mr, Clardy. You have one. 

I just wanted to be sure since you didn't have counsel present. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Reno, will you tell the conunittee, please, what 
educational training you have had ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I have had high school and approximately; 2 years 
of college, plus additional technical training in Pratt Institute, in 
Brooklyn, Toledo University, in Toledo, Ohio, and a lot of self -study 
and education. 

Mr. Ta\tenner. Where did you receive your 2 years of college 
training ? 

Mr. Reno. Toledo, Ohio ; Toledo University. 

(Representative Francis E. Walter entered the hearing room at this 
point. ) 

Mr. Tavenner, Will you tell the committee, please, how you have 
been employed, by a brief statement, not in great detail, since the 
completion of your formal educational training ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I have been employed as a skilled glassworker, as 
a designer of furniture, and a cabinetmaker. I have been employed 
in engineering offices as junior engineer in mechanical engineering, 
and as chief of maintenance section in one very large corporation. 

Those are the principal forms of occupation, other than having been 
a functionary of the Communist Party of the United States. 

Mr. Tavenner. ^Vlien did you become a member of the Communist 
Party of the United States? 

Mr. Reno. January 1931. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, the circum- 
stances under which you became a member and where ? 

Mr. Reno. At that period I was living in Detroit, Mich., and it was 
in the height of the depression years, and I was drawn into the Com- 
munist Party movement through the medium of the Unemployment 
Councils. Personally, I was not unemployed, but in my neighborhood 
practically all of the people were unemployed. Being friends and 
neighbors, my sympathies were with them and I participated quite ac- 
tively in the work of the Unemployment Councils with those people, 
and in the process I met leading people of the Communist Party in 
Detroit, and after long discussions I finally became a member. 

I felt at that time that the Communist Party had the answers to such 
problems as the sufferings that the people encountered during the de- 
pression years. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you remained a member of the Com- 
munist Party? 

Mr. Reno. I was a member of the Communist Party until April 
or May 1942. 

Mr. Tavenner. Before your testimony is completed I will ask you 
the circumstances under which you left the party. 

You stated you were a functionary of the Communist Party for 10 
years. 

What was the nature of the position that you held in the Communist 
Party? 

46914— 54— pt. 2 2 



4082 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Rexo. I was section organizer of the east side of Detroit, in 
the Michigan district of the Communist Party, in 1931. 

During 1932, 1933, 1934 I was organizational secretary of the ISIich- 
igan district of the Communist Party. 

Mr. Ta%-exxer. Will you speak just a little louder, please? 

Mr. Rexo. In 1935, April 1935 specifically, I came to Baltimore as 
the Connnunist Party organizer of the Maryland section of the Com- 
munist Partj', United States of America, and remained there until 
the end of 1936. 

I returned to Detroit, Mich., in 1937 and, upon my arrival in Detroit, 
in January 1937, 1 was sent to Flint, Mich., as the section organizer of 
Flint, until approximately September 1937, when I returned to Detroit 
and assumed the post again as organizational secretary of the Michigan 
district. 

In 1938 I was made district secretary of the Michigan district of 
the Communist Party. 

In 1939, January specifically, I was sent to the Chicago, 111., district 
as sort of field or State organizer for the State of Illinois in the area 
south of Chicago. 

In 1940 I went to Gary, Ind., as section organizer of the Communist 
Party in Gary and State chairman of the Communist Party of Indiana. 

In 1942 I separated myself from the Communist Party and left. 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated you were assigned to the city of Balti- 
more as the Communist Party organizer in April 1935, and remained 
there until close to the end of the year of 1936. 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien you took up your duties in Baltimore, what 
name did you use? 

Mr. Reno. "VA^ien I was in Baltimore, I used the name of Earl 
Dixon — D-i-x-o-n. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliy was that? 

Mr. Reno. Well, when I came to Baltimore the party was in a sort 
of demoralized situation, and there was a feeling in New York before I 
left if I were to assume that name it would give me an advantage in 
finding where the demoralization lay and help in cleaning it up; it 
would give no key to the local people in my past experience. 

That was the main reason. Any other reason I don't know. It was 
done in discussion with the national committee. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you use the name of Dixon while you were 
Communist Party organizer in any of these other territories to which 
you were assigned? 

Mr. Reno. Xo; I always used my correct name, except in Baltimore. 

Mr. Jackson. My understanding is that you were instructed to take 
another name. 

Mr. Reno. Tliat's right. 

Mr. Jackson. Instructed by the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. TA\Ti:NNER. You state that the Communist Party was in a 
demoralized stat« in Baltimore when you first went there. Will you 
expand upon that and loll us wliat you mean ? 

Mv. Rkno. Well, the members]ii|) in number was very low. 

Mr. Tavenner. About how many were members of the Communist 
Party? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4083 

Mr. Reno. Actually, there were between 36 and 40 in good standing 
and probably another 45 that hadn't been checked for membership or 
dues for a long period. The membership would not have exceeded 
75, and actually in good standing it was about 40. 

Mr. Clardy. May I inquire, ]Mr. Chairman ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Clardy. 

Mr. Clardy. Would you explain what you mean by "good stand- 
ing?" 

Mr. Eeno. Well, by "good standing" I mean people who have paid 
their dues to date, attended their regular unit meetings, and were 
comparatively active in one way or another in carrying out Commu- 
nist Party activity. 

Mr. CLAm>Y. Was one of the tests whether or not they had accepted, 
without question, party discipline ? 

Mr. Reno. That would be a basis of good standing ; yes. 

Mr. Clardy. Tliank you. 

Mr. Tavenner. You were telling us of the state of the party when 
you first arrived in Baltimore. How many groups or cells of the 
Communist Party were in Baltimore at that time, if you can recall? 

Mr. Reno. We probably had seven. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, in what work 
the Communist Party engaged after you took over its management 
in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, one of the principal things that lay before the 
Communist Party at that time was the development of what is termed 
basic activity. By "basic activity" I mean such things as the develop- 
ment of a strike struggle, or an unemployed struggle, or developing the 
issue among any group of people, and developing some kind of activ- 
ity, bringing together organized groups, and through the process of 
this activity, in the organization of the people, extending the influence 
of the Communist Party. 

Mr. ScHERER. Pardon me. When you say "developing strike ac- 
tivity" you mean inciting strikes ? 

Mr. Reno. I mean actually giving the inspiration and the leader- 
ship and the organization for the development of strikes inside the 
factory. I suppose 

Mr. ScHERER. You mean the Communist Party did that? 

Mr. Reno. That is what I mean ; yes. 

Mr. ScHERER. That was part of your duties as an organizer ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Scherer. And then when I use the word "inciting," that is a 
correct use of the word, is it not ? 

Mr. Reno. I suppose it can be used that way ; yes. 

Mr. Scherer. Go ahead, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Since the subject of strikes has been mentioned, did 
your work or the work of the Communist Party in Baltimore result 
in any activity of the Communist Party in the development of strikes? 

Mr. Reno. During the period I was in Baltimore we had developed 
a strike in the Eastern Rolling Mill, very largely through the work 
of one member of the Communist Party that we had sent to work in 
that plant. 

There was a strike of the seamen on the waterfront. 



4084 COMJMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Ta\t:xner. Just a moment. Who was the individual Com- 
munist Party member who took the leadership in the strike at the 
Eastern Rolling Mill? 

Mr. Reno. The person that we used in the Eastern Rolling Mill was 
sent to us from New York. 

Mr. ScHERER. When you say "we used," you mean the Communist 
Party used ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. "VNHien I say "we" in this sense 

Mr. ScHERER. To develop the strike you are going to tell us about ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

A young man had been sent to us from New York. 

Mr. Tavenner. Sent by whom ? 

Mr. Reno. By the Young Communist League of New York. 

He was supposed to be employed by the Young Communist League 
in Baltimore. We had him go to work in the Eastern Rolling Mill 
and, by assisting him and through his work inside the mill, we were 
able to develop a committee that developed the strike there that led 
to the organization of the steelworkers in the Eastern Rolling Mill. 

The person came to us — originally he used the name Smith and later 
adopted the name Howard. 

Mr. ScHERER. Were you generally interested in the problems of 
the worker in developing these strikes or inciting these strikes or was 
the party interested in merely creating the strike? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I think it is necessary to understand that the pro- 
gram of the Communist Party calls for an overall objective, that is, an 
ultimate objective. The ultimate objective, of course, is the revo- 
lutionary overthrow of the existing order of government and the 
establishment of what they term the proletarian dictatorship. 

A strike struggle, an unemployed struggle, a struggle for Negro 
rights, a struggle for civil rights, is a tactical objective. 

The tactical objective is a step in the direction of the ultimate ob- 
jective. It is used as a training ground for workers or other groups in 
the struggle for the ultimate objective of the Communist Party. 

Therefore, I would say that these strike struggles, the tactical 
objective, the principal purpose therefor is to begin the road toward 
the ultimate objective, other than anything else. However, it is always 
the propaganda that we are benefiting the workers; we are taking up 
their immediate aims and issues for their good. However, the Com- 
munist keeps in mind at all times the ultimate objective and, there- 
fore, each tactical step is developed for the purpose of reaching that 
final aim. 

Mr. ScHERER. Then what I indicated by my question is true — the 
Communist Party was primarily interested in the strike as a strike 
rather than the problems of the workingman? 

Mr. Reno. The Communist is interested in the strike primarily as 
a training ground for the ultimate objective. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this question, Mr. Chairman ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. Have you yet stated what the ultimate objective of the 
Communist Party is? 

Mr. Reno. I did a moment ago. 

Mr. Doyle. I ask you to state 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4085 

Mr. Reno. The overall objective of the Communist Party is the 
revolutionary overthrow of capitalism and the Government as it is 
established, and the establishment of what Communists call the prole- 
tarian dictatorship. 

Mr. Doyle. When you say "the revolutionary overthrow," in what 
sense do you use the term "revolutionary overthrow" or what 

Mr. Reno. I think an examination of the program of the Com- 
munist International published in 1933 would answer the question. 
They say, quite frankly, in there : 

This means the forcible overthrow. We disdain peaceful methods, and this 
means the forcible, violent overthrow of the existing government. 

Mr. Doyle. Forceful. By what means of force ? 

Mr. Reno. By arming what the Communists term the proletariat; 
by seizing the seats of government; by liquidating the law enforce- 
ment agencies, liquidating such things as parliament and establishing 
a dictatorship. 

Mr, Doyle. By "liquidating them," do you mean at the ballot box ? 

Mr. Reno. Not at all. The Communist Party 

Mr. Doyle. By constitutional methods and means, or what ? 

Mr. Reno. The Communist Party in its program says, quite dis- 
tinctly, that they have no use for parliamentary forms. 

This was the original basis for splitting from the old Socialist Party 
in 1919. 

The Communist Party places itself on the revolutionary, or the 
forcible, the violent destruction of capitalism and its forms of gov- 
ernment. 

Mr. Doyle. You mean even to the extent of using ammunition and 
arms? 

ISIr. Reno. Quite so, because they say, in several places, to try to 
infiltrate the Armed Forces, to turn their arms against their own gov- 
ernment, rather than to use it in a w^ar against some other nation. 

Mr. Doyle. Thank you. 

Mr. Clardy. May I inquire, Mr. Chairman ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Clardy. 

Mr. Clardy. Could you sum it up by saying, then, that they have 
the policy of "off with the heads of all the sinners" ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I suppose that's a term that could be used almost 
literally. 

Mr. Clardy. And would you further say that the only practical 
difference between the soft-headed Socialists and the Communist 
Party, as you have been describing it, is the advocacy by the Com- 
munist Party of the use of force and violence, as you have described 
it, to achieve their end as distinguished from the other method of 
trying to do it through parliamentary procedures ? 

Mr. Reno. That is my understanding ; yes. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. You stated another objective of the Communist 
Party in Baltimore under your leadership involved work in the sea- 
men's strike. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

]Mr. Ta\^nner. Will you tell the committee about that ? 
Mr. Reno. We always maintained what was called the marine unit, 
composed of Communist Party members who were seamen. 



4086 COMMUNIST ACTRaTIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

"VYe also maintained a full-time waterfront organizer for the Com- 
munist Party. 

In 1936, through the efforts of the Communist Party members who 
were seamen, we were able to develop a strike among the seamen in 
Baltimore. 

Mr. Walter. Who directed that strike ? 

Mr. Rexo. The principal character in that strike was Patrick 
Whalen. 

Mr. Walter. What has happened to him ? Do you know ? 

Mr. Reno. He, I understand, died when a ship was torpedoed dur- 
ing the war. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Will you tell the committee, please, whether any 
leaders of the Communist Party in other areas of the United States 
lent their aid during the course of the seamen's strike to which you 
referred ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, of course, we had need of calling on Roy Hudson, 
who was a member of the national bureau of the Coimiiunist Party, 
for assistance. 

Mr. Tavenner, Roy Hudson? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

And we had help from what is known as the national fraction of 
the seamen in New York. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were there any other strikes in the Baltimore area 
during the period you were there between April 1935 and the latter 
part of 1936 in which the Communist Party took an active part? 

Mr. Reno. There was a strike in the Celanese Corp. at Cumber- 
land, in which the Communist Party played quite a prominent part. 

During the summer of 1936 we had sent some people to Cumber- 
land for the purpose of organizing the Communist Party there, and 
as a result of their activity during that period approximately 50 
people in the Frostburg-Cumberland area had been recruited to the 
Communist Party. Some of these people were employed in the Cel- 
anese plant and, through the work with these people in the Celanese 
plant, we were able to develop a strike there, too. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who were the leaders of that movement who were 
sent by the Communist Party in Baltimore to Cumberland? 

Mr. Reno. Well, among the people we sent during the summer of 
1936 was one man named Tom Pinkerton, the Howard that I named 
before, or Smith, Avho had been previously in the Eastern Rolling ]\f ill, 
and a woman named Evelyn Howard. At a later j)eriod we sent 
other people from time to time, but they were there during the sum- 
mer of 1936 for the purpose of organizing the Communist Party in 
that area. 

Mr. Tavenner. In what other types of activity did the Communist 
Party engage, in Baltimore, under your leadership? 

Mr. Reno. In 1935 the Ethiopian Defense Committee was devel- 
oped. We had assigned Leonard Patterson, wlio at that time was 
the Young Communist League organizer in Baltimore, to get to- 
gether a small group of people, and we gave him the money to open 
a headquarters on ronnsylvania Avenue in Baltimore, a store front, 
and to begiji activity of street corner meetings, mass meetings, con- 
ferences, to utilize the attack that Mussolini had made upon the 
Ethiopian people as an issue whereby we could penetrate deeper 
among the Negro people of Baltimore. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4087 

Almost at the same time we assigned people to develop the Ameri- 
can League Against War and Fascism, to use the issue of Hitler and 
the general international hatred for Hitler as another instrument 
whereby we could reach wide groups of the American population. 

These, I think, would be the major activities during this period. 

Mr, ScHERER. Again, Mr. Reno, was your interest in the Negro 
directed to the problems of the Negro and discriminations against 
the Negro, or was it merely to attract him to the Communist cause? 

Mr. Reno. I am afraid that the prime interest in penetrating the 
Negro people was to use their natural feeling of resentment against 
depression and segi-egation, to develop a national movement among 
the Negro people as a sort of an auxiliary to the revolutionary aims 
of the Communist Party. 

Mr. ScHERER. Will you state categorically, then, that the primary 
interest of the Communist Party was not in the problem of the Negro? 

Mr. Reno. That is my impression ; yes. 

Mr. Jackson. Is that not characteristic of all of the operations 
of the Communist Party as they relate to minority groups or to causes, 
that is, that the Communist Party does, in fact, parallel these groups 
and these causes to the extent that the causes and groups can serve 
the end goal of world domination by the Communist conspiracy? 

Mr. Reno. I don't want to use all the time it would take to develop 
the theory of tactics and strategy of the Communist Party. However, 
to make it as brief as possible, the Communist Party always has as 
its main objective that thing I have stated before, the revolutionary 
overthrow of the existing form of government, the establishment of 
the proletarian dictatorship; and toward this aim they have what 
is called their main line of strategy. The main force of achieving 
this is what they call the proletariat or the industrial working class. 

As first-line reserve to the industrial proletariat in achieving the 
overthrow of the existing government, they have what is called the 
national minorities — specifically in the United States the Negro people. 
This is the first line of reserve to the main revolutionary force, and 
in this respect all work in all national minorities, whether it is Negro 
people or any other national group — they are approached ; their prob- 
lems are taken up ; they are utilized for the purpose of arousing this 
particular group of people, so that an organized auxiliary or an 
organized reserve for the revolution is developed. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman, may I ask this ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. A few minutes ago, in answer to the chairman — ^lie 
asked about the Negroes — you said, "That is my impression." 

You were a high functionary in the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I could make that much more definite. 

Mr. Doyle. That is what I am asking you. If I were just reading 
your statement, that that was your impression, I would take it you 
were not very firm in what you were saying. 

Mr. Reno. Well, what I said 

Mr. Doyle. Therefore, I am asking you, frankly: How much do 
you know about that? Is it just an impression? 

Mr. Reno. No. 

Mr. Doyle. Or is it a matter of your personal knowledge as a high 
functionary ? 



4088 COMLIUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Reno. I have just outlined what is the main objective, the 
strategy and the tactical approach. In view of what I have just said, 
in this light, there is no question that the Negro people, the problems 
of the Negro people are utilized for the purpose of mobilizing them as 
an auxiliary' force for the revolutionary aims of the Communist 
Party, and that is their prime interest. 

Mr. Doyle. Thank you. 

Mr. Walter. From whom did you receive your instruction? 

Mr. Reno. Specifically which instruction, sir? 

Mr. Walter. In carrying out this pronounced policy. 

Mr. Reno. The principal policy is developed by the natioixal com- 
mittee of the Communist Party, and the principles and the policies 
and program developed by the national committee are transmitted 
to the various districts and the districts apply them as they fit in the 
specific conditions of their area. 

Mr. Walter. How were they transmitted ? 

Mr. Reno. They were transmitted sometimes through the discus- 
sions at the enlarged national committee meetings; sometimes by let- 
ter, and sometimes by visits from the members of the national com- 
mittee. 

Mr. Walter. What I am getting to is this : Did you ever have con- 
tact with the people who devised the various activities ? 

Mr. Reno. Quite regularly; yes. 

Mr. Walter. And who were they ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, they were members of the national committee, 
such people as Earl Browder, Jack Stachel, Roy Hudson, other 
members of the national committee. 

It was quite necessary in that period to be in fairly close contact 
so that you didn't divert or get too far away from the national posi- 
tion. 

All jDolicies are developed in this way, and the national committee 
transmits them to the districts, to the sections, to the units, and specific 
application in each place is adapted according to local conditions. 

Mr. Walter. From whom did the instructions come concerning the 
strike on the waterfront ? 

Mr. Reno. That was in discussion with the national fraction of the 
seamen, at that time headed by Roy Hudson, who was also a member, 
incidentally, of the national bureau of the Communist Party in that 
period. 

Mr. Walter. Where is he now? 

Mr. Reno. I have no idea. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, the committee subpenaed Roy Hud- 
son before it in California in December, but he refused to answer any 
material questicm on the ground that to do so might tend to incrim- 
inate him. 

Mr. Walter. What is he doing now, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. I do not know of the full nature of his activities 
now. 

Mr. Walter. All right. 

Mr. Tavenner. But in part he has a position in which he is working, 
outside of tho. Communist Party, in California. 

Mr. SciiERER. Wasn't he one of the belligerent witnesses we had 
out there, Mr. Tavenner? 

Mr. Tavenner. Fairly so. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4089 

Mr. Jackson. Practically all of them we had out there were bel- 
ligerent. 

Mr, Cl.\rdy. Is that typical of California ? 

Mr. Jackson. No, but it is typical of the Communist Party line. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. Will you describe a little more in detail how the 
Ethiopian Defense Committee functioned and also how the Ameri- 
can League Against War and Fascism functioned while you were in 
Baltimore ^ 

Mr. Reno. Well, in its inception the Communist Party assigned 
people to develop the activities of the two organizations. It was 
their task to surround themselves with as many nonparty people 
as possible and to spread the movement as far as they could, to at 
least give the appearance of being a genuine movement of the popula- 
tion of Baltimore. 

The Ethiopian Defense Committee was primarily a committee that 
conducted street-corner meetings, mass meetings, and conferences. 

The American League Against War and Fascism became a much 
larger organization, did draw in a considerable number of people, 
ancl their activities were on a larger scale. There were demonstra- 
tions, such as that of the arrival of the German battleship Emden. 
There were street-corner meetings of considerable size, as, for example, 
one where a large platform had been built at the corner of Irwin 
and East Baltimore Streets, and quite a large mass meeting there, 
with loudspeakers, lights, and so forth, and the control of these or- 
ganizations was maintained by what we considered at that time Com- 
munist Party fractions, or through the organized Communist Party 
members who worked inside these organizations. 

Mr. Taat3nner. Who were the Communist Party leaders assigned 
to develop these two organizations? 

Mr. Reno. I've already said we had assigned Leonard Patterson, 
who was at that time Young Communist League organizer in Balti- 
more, and with him a couple of others who I don't recall at the 
moment. 

Mr. Tavenner. To which organization ? 

Mr. Reno. That was the Ethiopian Defense Committee. 

For the American League Against War and Fascism we had as- 
signed Sam Swerdloff as executive secretary of the city. There were 
other people who were assigned, too, 2 people named Bohannon and 
1 named Schlesinger. They formed the Communist Party 

Mr. Tavenner. Can you give their names more fully? Do you 
recall their full names ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I recall Walter Schlesinger, a YCL member ; Edith 
and Walter Bohannon, members of the Communist Party ; and there 
are still others at the moment I don't recall, and these people formed 
the first core and around them by calling conferences and setting up 
a city committee they were able to involve a considerable number of 
people other than Communist Party people. 

Mr. Ta^^nner. You spoke of a person by the name of Swerdloff. 
What was his first name? 

Mr. Reno. Sam. 

Mr. Clardy. Mr. Chairman, may I inquire? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Clardy. 

46914— 54— pt. 2 3 



4090 COMAIUXIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Claruy. You used the expression "they were able to involve a 
number of other i)eople." Woukl you expUiin what you mean, how 
that involvement took place and what it was? 

Mr. Kkno. There is no question that in the period of 1936 and 1935 
the danger of German fascism was a very great danger, and there is 
also no doubt that millions of people were afraid and alarmed about 
German fascism. 

It was possible for Connnunist Paity people to approach, oh, people 
on a very wide scale on this issue, that by working with, coming into 
the American League Against War aud Fascism they would be able to 
fight against the danger of Hitler and nazism and a great many people 
responded to this. 

Mr. Waltp:r. How were they able to solicit the assistance of some 
respectable person to make contributions? 

For example, I was a very substantial contributor to your organ- 
ization. The man who solicited my contribution was a respectable, 
respected citizen. 

How was a man imposed upon, if you want to call it that, to solicit 
from people who certainly had never been suspected of Communist 
leanings ? 

Mr. Kexo. Well, we had a great many people who were at least in 
appearance and their position in the communitj' looked upon as highly 
respectable people, not always known as Communist Party members, 
not known as Communist Party sympathizers, and holding such posi- 
tions were able to approach any number of professional people, church 
people, all kinds of people, who were genuinely interested in fighting 
against nazism and would contribute and would actually do active 
work in such an organization. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Clardy. May I continue, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Jacksox. Mr. Clardy. 

Mr. Clardy. Then are you saying this : That the same tactics were 
used in connection with this anti-Nazi feeling that were used in 
trying to win minority groups to your support? 

Mr. Reno. This is another instance where an issue that almost every 
strata of American society felt was being exploited for the purpose of 
deepening the influence of the Communist Party. 

Mr. CiiARDY. Yon suggested something else to me. You said they 
were able, in answer to Mr. AValter's question, to win people by or 
through the use of people who were not known to be members of the 
Communist Party. By that, did you mean to imply that they used 
people who had respectable positions in the community but Avho were 
secretly connected with the Communist apparatus, who worked 
therein ? 

Ml-. Reno. Well, not in every instance secretly, but as far as the 
public was concerned they were respectable people and not particu- 
larly known as Communist Party members. 

Mr. Clardy. Are you implying by that, however, to mean they were 
at least in their mental slant Communist? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Clardy. So that the public, not knowing that, would fall for 
almost any solicitation they made? 

Mr. Reno. That is possible. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4091 



^g 



Mr. CL.VRDY. Isn't that typical of the Communist Party recmitin< 
metliod? 

Mr. Reno. That's very typical. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr, Chairman, may I ask this? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. Right along that line I made a note— I thought I wrote 
down your exact statement — 

They were able to gather around them a number of other people who were not 
members of the Communist Party. 

Now, I think that was your exact wording. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Doyle. That is quite different from the point Mr. Clardy has 
brought out. 

Mr. Reno. Well, I think it's a different point entirely. 

For example, I think the question I just answered — innocent 
people were contacted, and it was possible to reach them because 
in the contact the person couldn't be identified other than a 
respectable citizen of the community and not as a Communist Party 
member. 

Mr. Doyle. In other words, while Mr. Clardy brought out one 
segment of American citizens that you identified, there was the other 
segment of perfectly respectable citizens who were not Communist in 
their intention or leanings in any way that you brought in ? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

Mr. Doyle. That is true, isn't it ? 

Mr. Reno. That's true. 

Mr. Doyle. And that, by far, was the largest number numerically, 
wasn't it ? 

Mr. Reno. It would have been the largest number ; yes. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, may I ask you, so as to clarify my own thinlving 
on this, as you proceed: This American League Against War and 
Fascism, the unit to which you have been testifying, was the Balti- 
more unit? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Doyle. Would that same control thereof which was maintained 
by the Comunist Party members in Baltimore extend generally over 
the United States — iii other words, that the Communist Party, to 
your knowledge, generally controlled the American League Against 
War and Fascism throughout the United States from 1935-36? 

Mr. Reno. The condition that existed in Baltimore existed through- 
out the country. 

There were national factions called from time to time of all the 
leading Communist Party people involved in the American League 
Against War and Fascism for the purpose of coordinating the activity 
of the Communist Party members in all of the American League 
branches throughout the country. 

Mr. Doyle. Then that must have meant in 1935 and 1936 the 
numerical strength of the Communist Party in the United States 
was sufficient numerically to actively organize or at least take control 
of the American League against War and Fascism in most of the 
American cities where it was organized ? 

Mr. Reno. That's correct. 

I think there's one point, however- 



4092 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Doyle. Even including Pennsylvania, where it was active, 
according to Mr. Walter? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

I think there's one point, however : It wasn't necessary for the Com- 
munists to have a majority of the membership to control it. 

Mr. Doyle. Oh, I realize that. 

Thank you. 

Mr. Jackson. What percentage, in an organization such as the 
American League Against War and Fascism, would the Communists 
require to effectively dominate the group ? 

Mr. Reno. Sometimes one person, if he's skillful, a sufficiently skill- 
ful Communist, can control an organization; in the same sense can 
control a very large local union of workers ; but I would say the maxi- 
mum number of Communists in the American League would not have 
exceeded 10 percent of its total membership, 

Mr. Jackson, Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta^^nner. Proceeding again to the question that was asked you 
by Congressman Doyle, would it be fair to give this illustration : That 
you, as the Conmiunist Party organizer of the city, would be quit© lim- 
ited in your ability to get respectable citizens to join in an enterprise of 
that character ? 

Mr. Reno. That would be very limited. 

Mr. Tavenner. But if you were acting through some other citizen, 
who was not publicly known as a member of the Communist Party, you 
would expect to be more successful ? 

Mr. Reno, I would have a lot of additional arms then, I would be 
able to reach in a great many other places where otherwise I wouldn't 
be able to reach. 

Mr, Ta\\enner, I asked you a moment ago about Mr. Swerdloff, and 
I did not understand his first name. 

Mr. Reno. Sam. 

Mr, Tavenner. Sam. 

Was he a member of the Communist Party in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Reno. He was. 

Mr. Tavenner. How do you spell his last name ? 

Mr, Reno. I believe it's spelled S-w-e-r-d-1-o-f-f. 

Mr. ScHERER, Do you know where he is today ? 

Mr. Reno. I just saw him in the room a while ago. 

Mr. ScHERER. In this room ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Jackson. Is that the first time you have seen Mr. Swerdloff? 

Mr. Reno. That's the first time I've seen him, I think, as long ago as 
1938 or 1937. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 

Mr. Tavenner. What position did he hold in the Communist Party, 
if any ? 

Mr. Reno. He had no position in the Communist Party as such. He 
was assigned as executive secretary in the American League Against 
War and Fascism. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is he had no position while you remained in 
Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. That's right, in my experience. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4093 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you state to the committee, please, whether the 
work done by these two organizations w^as considered successful from 
the standpoint of the overall Communist objective? 

Mr. Reno. In the period that I was in Baltimore the work of the 
American League Against War and Fascism was considered an out- 
standing bit of work in that particular field. 

I think the work conducted by the Baltimore chapter was used as 
an example of one of the best in the country at that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. Can you give us the names at this time of any other 
persons known to you personally to have been members of the Com- 
munist Party who were active in the organization of the American 
League Against War and Fascism? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I don't recall all of them. I think I have already 
given the names of the Bohannons, Schesinger, a number of YCL 
persons whose names I don't recall at this minute. 

Mr. Clardy. Will you keep your voice up a little higher? 

Mr. Reno. Dr. Albert Blumberg, who was an active leader of the 
Communist Party locally, was also active in the American League 
Against War and Fascism. 

From time to time I would attend there as a delegate of the Com- 
munist Party, an affiliated group in the American League Against 
War and Fascism, but other people at the moment I don't recall. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you identify Albert Blumberg more definitely ? 

Mr. Reno. Albert Blumberg was known as Dr. Blumberg and was 
instructor in the department of philosophy at Johns Hopkins Uni- 
versity, a member of the Communist Party. In the period before I 
left Baltimore I worked with him in his capacity at that time as 
organizational secretary. 

Mr. Ta^'enner. Organizational secretary of what? 

Mr. Reno. Of the Communist Party. 

Mr. ScHERER. Where is Dr. Blumberg today, if you know? 

Mr. Reno. I have no idea. 

Mr. ScHERER. When was the last time you saw him ? 

Mr. Reno. The last time I saw Dr. Albert Blumberg was in 1938. 

Mr. ScHERER. Go ahead, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. You spoke of various activities of the American 
League Against War and Fascism, including the demonstration of 
the docking of the German battleship Emden. Will you describe that 
more fully to the committee ? What was done and what was sought 
to be accomplished ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, the docking of the battleship Emden was the 
epitome of fascism on the American shores, that is, in a symbolic 
sense. A great many people were aroused by the ship coming into 
the harbor, people who were genuinely anti-Fascist, not at all Com- 
munist, but anti-Fascist, and the docking of the ship it was decided 
would be an issue around which a very large movement could be 
developed. 

Mr. Scherer. When you say "it was decided," you mean it was de- 
cided by the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Well, it was first decided in the Communist Party city 
committee, and through the fraction of the Communist Party in the 
American League — the policy was transferred there, and 



4094 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. ScHEREK. That is what I meant. It was initially conceived and 
decided to start this demonstration of opposition in the Commnnist 
Party ? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

A tremendous amount of jiublicity was put out ; a great many organ- 
izations contacted; a few dramatic instances — for instance, a truck 
driven through the streets with young YCL'ers on it in Nazi uniforms, 
and then finally the demonstration itself, which was of considerable 
size, at the docks where the Emden was docked, at Recreation Pier in 
Baltimore. 

Mr. Jackson. B}' YCL, ^-ou mean Young Connnunist League 
members ? 

Mr. Reno. Young Communist League members ; yes. 

Mr. Clardy. All under the Communist Partv inspiration? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Ta\t.nner. Was any campaign made in the nature of the ad- 
dressing of communications to the mayor and the governor and other 
officials? 

Mr. Reno. Letters were sent to the mayor, to the Governor, not to 
welcome the ship, not only by the American League but through their 
influence by a great many organizations throughout the city, even to 
the point where the Governor of the State, I think, had to get the ad- 
vice of the State Department on what the whole problem was in meet- 
ing such a ship. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the value to the Comnumist Party of the 
organization and the promotion of this demonstration ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, the promotion of such a demonstration is in line 
with what I have previously stated. This puts them into motion. 
This is struggle in its active form, and in the process of bringing it into 
action against such a thing it draws them closer to the organization ; it 
gives you the opportunity of using this to develop the propaganda 
that the Communist Party w^ants to implant through such an issue. 

(Representative Gordon H. Scherer left the hearing room at this 
point.) 

Mr. Tavenner. During the period of your leadership in Baltimore, 
was there any activity of the Communist Party within military 
organizations ? 

Mr. Reno. In the early period when I came to Baltimore there was. 
At tliat time it was tlie policy of the National Committee of the Young 
Communist League to conduct what they called antimilitary work. 

Part of the antimilitary work was to have some YCL members join 
the Ai-med Forces, and from the inside to develop such Communist 
propaganda as it was possible for the purpose of breaking down the 
spirit within the Army, so that the Army in the event of a crisis would 
be friendly to the Communist revolutionary program. 

At that time we had people in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Holabird, 
Meade and other j)laces in the area of Baltimore. 

At a little later date the national decision was made that this type 
of work would no longer be conducted. 

Mr. Clardy. May I inquire, Mr. Chairman? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Clardy. 

Mr. Clardy. When was that, and why ? 

Mr. Reno. That type of work was conducted in 1934, in 1934 and tlie 
first part of 1935. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4095 

Mr. Clardy. I mean wlien was it discontinued, and why? 

Mr. Reno. It Avas discontinued about the first part of 1936 because, 
first of all, it had been ineffective; second, it was rather dangerous for 
the people inside and, considering the amount of progress made 
through it, it just wasn't worth the dangers and the effort. 

Mr. Cr.ARDY. The leaders thought there was more i)rofit in using 
their energv in some other direction? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman, may I ask this question, please? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyt.e. a minute ago you said, "We had people at Aberdeen." 

Mr. Reno. "When I say "people" 

Mr. Doyle. When you say "people," do you mean active members 
of the Communist F'arty ? 

Mr. Reno. Actually, they were members of the Young Communist 
League that had been planted there or colonized there. 

Mr. Doyle. At this point, Mr. Chairman, may I go back and ask 
the witness this question, please : You said that a man came to you 
by the name of Smith ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Doyle. And was employed by the Young Communist League 
in Baltimore as the leader of one of the strikes there? 

]\Ir. Reno. Right. 

Mr. Doyle. Was the Young Communist League strong in Baltimore 
at that time, in 1935 and 1936? 

Mr. Reno. Not particularly. The work in the Eastern Rolling 
Mill was developed through the work of this one individual alone at 
that time. 

Mr. Doyle. Was he on salary from the Young Communist League 
in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Reno. He was not on salary. He had been sent here as a sort 
of an assistant to Leonard Patterson, who was the Young Communist 
League organizer. 

Mr. Doyle. Who paid his salary ? 

]Mr. Reno. He went to work in the Eastern Rolling Mill to earn his 
wages. 

Mr. Doyle. The reason I asked that is you said he was employed 
by the Young Communist League. So, I 

Mr. Reno. Not on a salary basis. He had been sent here as a force 
to strengthen the Young Communist League in Baltimore. 

Mr, Doyle. Thank you. 

Mr. Ci^rdy. The correct word would have been he was "used" ? 

Mr. Reno. He was used. 

Mr. Clardy. By the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Yes ; that's correct. 

Mr. Jackson. Go ahead, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. As a result of the activities of the Communist Party 
in the promotion of the American League Against War and Fascism 
and the Ethiopian Defense Committee, would you say that the strength 
of the Communist Party in membership was increased ? 

Mr. Reno. It was increased through that activity ; yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the extent of the increase during the 
period you were there in Baltimore ? 



4096 COIMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Keno. It was not due entirely to the work of the American 
League 

Mr. Ta\'enner. I understand. 

Mr. Reno. But through the general activity of the Communist 
Party. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. 

Mr. Reno. At the time I came I have already said there were ap- 
proximately 40 people in good standing and some that were not in 
good standing. The membership would not have exceeded 75, and 
at the time I left Baltimore we had more than 185 members in the 
city, in good standing, another approximately 45 or 50 in Cumber- 
land, in the State of Maryland. That would have been approximately 
the strength of the party. The party had tripled its membership in 
that period of 2 years. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. How did the Communist Party finance its activi- 
ties in Baltimore while you were there ? 

Mr. Reno. The finances of the party were raised in a number of 
ways. First of all, there were such things as banquets, picnics, social 
affairs, parties in private homes, and so on, where collections were 
taken and used to finance the party. 

Then we maintained at that time a list of people who would give 
at least $1 or more per week as a contribution ; and then, of course, 
there were larger 

Mr. Tavenner. Were they Communist Party members? 

Mr. Reno. Some of them were, and some were sympathizers. 

Mr. Clardy. How did you get that list? 

Mr. Reno. Well, we compiled that list by visiting various people 
and asking them how much they would contribute weekly. Then, 
of course, there w^ere other people who contributed larger sums. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this question, Mr. Chairman ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. You said there were banquets and other functions. 
Were those under the auspices of the American League Against War 
and Fascism? 

Mr. Reno. No; those would have been under the auspices of the 
Communist Party. 

Mr. Doyle. And were they attended by folks other than members 
of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes ; they were attended by other people. 

Mr. Doyle. And did they know it was under the auspices of the 
Communist Party, as far as you know? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. They were usually organized as Com- 
munist Party affairs. For example, on May 1 at a mass meeting a 
collection would be taken, and the people who came generally realized 
that w^as a Communist Party meeting. 

Mr. Doyle. Were they largely attended? 

Mr. Reno. We had meetings that were of considerable size ; yes. 

Then, for example, in 1936, during the election campaign, when 
Earl Browder spoke at the Lyric Theater, where we had an audience 
in excess of 2,300, a very large collection was taken. 

This money was always used to finance and promote the work of 
<lie Communist Party. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4097 

Mr. DoYXiE. Wlien the people put money in that collection in 1936 
that you have just related, they knew the money was going to the 
Communist Party in Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. There wouldn't have been any question because the meet- 
ing was publicly a meeting of the Communist Party presenting its 
national candidate. 

Mr. Doyle. Thank you. 

Mr. Tavennek. Will you tell the committee, please, your estimate of 
the total funds raised for the carrying on of the work of the party, 
per year, while you were in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, roughly, in going over the amount that we needed 
and used, it would run about $2,200 or $2,300 per month, more or 
less. I would say an average of around $2,300 per month. 

This money was used to pay office rents, salaries of organizer, water- 
front organizer, stenographer in the office, and so on. 

The bulk of the money was spent actually for the printing, distri- 
bution of pamphlets, leaflets, organization of meetings, and so on; 
but I think the average would have been arovmd $2,200, $2,300 per 
month in that period. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did that necessarily mean that some contributions 
were of a sizable amount? 

Mr. Reno. Some of the contributions were of quite sizable amounts ; 
yes. 

(Representative Gordon H. Scherer returned to the hearing room 
at this point.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you, personally, acquainted with individuals 
who made sizable contributions to the Communist Party know- 
ing that it was the Communnst Party to whom they were contributing ? 

Mr. Reno. I know some of them ; yes. Others that — some of them 
I knew ; some I never knew. We had a few people who contributed 
sizably in Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were they members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. They were not members of the Communist Party. 

Mr. Tav-enner. How do you know they knew that these contribu- 
tions were being made for the benefit of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I know because when I would speak to them I spoke 
to them as the organizer of the Communist Party and explained to 
them what the money was to be used for. There couldn't have been 
left any doubt in their mind. 

Mr. Taatenner. Were you an open member of the Communist Party 
while working in Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. I was quite public; yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did your name appear in the press as the organizer 
of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. It did. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is, the name Earl Dixon. 

Mr. Reno. It did. 

Mr. Jackson. Did you make any effort at any time to conceal the 
fact that you were a party member ? 

Mr. Reno. No. On the contrary, as the organizer of the area, I 
made it a public point. I appeared regularly publicly; never sepa- 
rated my name from the Communist Party. It was part of the process 
of bringing the Communist Party to the fore, before the people. 



4098 cojsuviuNisT activities m the Baltimore area 

Mr. ScHEKER. Did you have any other occupation during that time ? 

Mr. K.ENO. I had no other occupation. I was a full 

Mr. ScHERER. That was your sole occupation ? 

Mr. Reno. That was my sole occupation. 

Mr. Scherer. You were paid by the Communist Party at that time ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Scherer. You had no other income at that time? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Clardy. How much Avere you paid ? 

jNIr. Reno. How much was I paid ? 

Mr. Clardy. Yes. 

Mr. Reno. During the period I was in Baltimore my salary was 
supposed to have been $25 per week. 

Mr. Clardy. $25 per week 'i 

Mr. Reno. Right. 

Mr. Doyle. That was in 1935 and 1936? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Jackson. Have wages gone up any in the meantime? Do you 
know ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I don't know. 1 don't know. 

Mr. Jackson. Isn't that called slave labor? 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Jackson. Yes, Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. At this point may I ask the witness this : Your state- 
ment that you were publicly known as an organizer of the Communist 
Party in 1935-36 in Baltimore leads me, from my information, to ask 
you this question : You stayed in the Communist Party until 1942 as 
a leading functionary ? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, when, if at all, in your judgment, and to your 
personal knowledge, did the Communist Party, as such, and you, as a 
functionary, if at all, go underground, or stop being knoAvn as a Com- 
munist organizer? In other words, was there a change in public 
opinion, to your knowledge, while you were a Communist Party func- 
tionary, with reference to the Communist Party ? If so, about when 
did that occur ? 

Mr. Reno. The point is this : In my period of the Communist Party, 
the Communist Party organizer always appeared publicly for the 
party. They may have lived in semiunderground conditions, but 
publicly they appeared as the organizers of the Communist Party. 

Mr. Doyle. Up to and including 1942? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Doyle. Then Avhen after that, if at all, to your knowledge, did 
the organizers of the Communist Party deliberately keep their identity 
as such organizers under cover? 

Mr. Reno. That would have been after the period I was out for 
sometime, and I wouldn't be aware of exactly when such a thing 
hapj)ened. 

Ml-. Tavenner. You wouldn't have any personal knowledge of an 
approximate time when the Communist Party leadership concealed 
its identity as such leaders? 

Ml". Reno. I wouldn't at this time; no. 

Mr. Jackson. Probably after the Smith Act was held to be con- 
stitutional. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4099 

JNIr. Doyle. And when is that, for the purpose of the record^ 

Mr. Jackson. The Smith Act, I believe, was held to be constitu- 
tional about 2 years ago, 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask counsel or the staff to get that information 
for the purpose of the record? 

Mr. Tamsnner. I am reasonably certain the October term of the 
Supreme Court in 1951. 

Mr. Doyle. 1951 ? 

Mr. Tavenner. But I will check it. 

Mr. Doyle. I think it would be valuable to have it appear at this 
point. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Have you finished, Mr. Doyle? 

]\Ir. Doyle. Yes. Thank you. 

Mr. Jackson, Proceed. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you make substantial collections from the same 
individual on more than one occasion? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. How were those funds handled that you received 
in that manner ? 

Mr. Reno. We had a man who handled the finances. His business 
was taking the money, keeping the money, assisting in raising it, and 
keeping the books of the financial condition of the party at that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did he keep the names of the contributoi'S ? 

Mr. Reno. He had lists of contributors ; yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who was that individual? 

INIr. Reno. He was known to me as Berne ; Jimmy Berne. 

Mr. TA%TiNNER. Will you spell that last name? 

Mr. Reno. Kown to me as Jimmy Berne — B-e-r-n-e. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you give the committee, please, the names and 
the amounts of contributions which were made to you, personally, of 
a substantial character, whether the individuals making them were 
party members or not, provided the contributions were made under 
circumstances by which they were bound to have known the purpose 
for which they were going, namely, the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, frankly, at this moment it's a little bit difficult to 
recollect those incidents and people. 

Mr. Tavenner. If you are not positive in your own mind, I 
wouldn't want you to surmise in that. 

Mr. Reno. I don't want to surmise. At a later date I might be able 
to recall, but at this moment it's slightly vague as to who and how 
much was contributed, 

Mr. Clardy. You can't recall definitely at the moment the name of 
any certain individual? 

Mr. Reno. Well, yes; for that matter, I can recall 1 or 2, but 
the point is the exact amounts, the circumstances, and so on would 
be vague, 

Mr. Clardy. You have a method of refreshing your memory, how- 
ever ? 

Mr. Reno. That is right. Probably if I thought of it, it would be 
recalled. However, at tliis moment it's somewhat vague. 

Mr. Jackson. If you do have any such recollection, will you please 
furnish the information to the committee ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 



4100 CO]VIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. I believe you have already stated the size of the 
menibershijj in the party when you left in 1936. In the performance 
of the work of the Communist Party through the American League 
Against War and Fascism, and through the Ethiopian Defense Com- 
mittee, did you utilize at any time the services of any ministers or any 
members of the ministry ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. We had two ministers who were particularly 
active in the American League Against War and Fascism and the 
Ethiopian Defense Committee. 

Mr. Tavenner. What were their names ? 

Mr. Reno. Rev. Joseph Nowak and Rev. Jack Hutchison. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien was the last time you saw Reverend Hutchi- 
son? 

Mr. Reno. I saw him in the room here this morning. That's the 
first time I've seen him since 1936. 

Mr. Clardy. Wliat was the name of the other individual, counsel ? 

Mr. Reno. Rev. Joseph Nowak. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. How do you spell 

Mr. Clardy. Is that the Nowak that is now in Detroit, Mich. ? 

INIr. Reno. He's here this morning, too, but I think he's employed 
in Detroit. 

Mr. Ta\tenner. How do you spell his last name? 

Mr. Reno. I believe it's N-o-w-a-k. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, the circinn- 
stances under which you first met them ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I believe it was August or September 1935 in my 
office at the Communist Party headquarters at 209 South Bond Street 
in Baltimore. The two of them came to my office at that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that the office of the headquarters of the Com- 
munist Party in Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. That was the office of the Communist 
Party of Baltimore. 

Mr. Clardy. May I inquire? 

You say two of them. You mean the two you have just named? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Clardy. Came to your office together? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Was tliei'e any marking to indicate that it was the 
Communist Party headquarters? 

Mr. Reno. No. I don't tliink we had a sign up. It was generally 
known as the Connnunist Party headquarters, and they knew I was a 
Communist Party organizer because they said so on the occasion, 
that they liad come to me to discuss wliat to do. 

Mr. Tavenner. All riglit. Just tell the committee what occurred. 

Mr. Reno. Well, the first recollection that I have, as I said, it Avas 
ap[)roximately August or September of 1935 in the office of the Com- 
munist Party in Baltimore, 209 South Bond Street. These two young 
ministers came there, said they had recently come from the Union 
Theological Seminary in New York, that they had been students of 
Harry Ward and intimated that they had some previous contact 
with the Communist Party and wanted to know in what way they 
could work. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, Mr. Counsel, please 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4101 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. I don't want to be technical, or supertechnical, but it 
seems to me in this sort of proceeding that the witness be required to 
state what they said and not draw a conclusion that they intimated 
something. 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes; I think so. 

Mr. Jackson. Yes. I wish the witness would. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Jackson. To the best of his recollection. 

Mr. Reno. I am trying to do that, frankly. 

Mr. Jackson. It is imposssible to state verbatim, of course, the con- 
versation ; but if you will give the general substance of the conversa - 
tion, to the best of your recollection, we would appreciate it. 

Mr. Reno. As I said, they came and told me they had recently come 
from the Union Theological Seminary ; they were assigned to churches 
in Baltimore ; that thev had previously done some work in conjunc- 
tion with the Communist Party, I believe, in New York and wanted 
to know in what way they could clo coperative work while in the period 
they were in Baltimore. 

At that moment I said I wasn't quite sure, "Give me a few days to 
think about it," and I would discuss the question with them again 
later. 

Then, in the meantime, I had had discussions with Leonard Patter- 
son about the possibility of their working in the Ethiopian Defense 
Committee, and at the second meeting with them I suggested they 
work both with the American League Against War and Fascism and 
the Ethiopian Defense Committee, and they did. They became mem- 
bers of these two organizations and participated. 

I remember them more as members of the American League Against 
War and Fascism than with the Ethiopian Defense Committee. 

The work of the American league was wider, more active, and I 
recall their being much more active there than in the Ethiopian De- 
fense Committee. 

Mr. Clardy. Witness, you said something about a second meeting, 
Wlien was that ? 

Mr. Reno. The second meeting was somewhere between a week and 
2 weeks after the first meeting. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. On this first meeting that you have spoken of, was 
any statement made by either of the two ministers as to whether or not 
they were members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. Not that I recall. I don't believe they did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did they advise you at any time that they were not 
members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. No. There were times when they asked the advisability 
of joining the Communist Party, which I advised them against, and 
at one point Dr. Albert Blumberg came and said one minister had 
asked the probability of leaving the church, joining the Communist 
Party. I said, "This is ridiculous." 

Mr. Doyle. Now, Mr. Chairman, I think again it is only fair, as 
long as this witness is undertaking to give a conversation which is very 
important, that this witness be required, as far as he may be able to 
do so, to fix the time and the place and the persons present when these 
alleged conversations occurred. 



4102 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Rexo. Well, the first- 



Mr. Doyle. I mean ilie conversations, Mr. Reno, between you and 
Nowak and this other preacher. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Well, the first occasion I recall Leonard Patterson being in the 
party office. I don't know whether he heard the discussion or not. 
However, he was present. In fact, he was present in the office, I think, 
on 2 or 3 occasions when I had visits from both of them or one of 
them, and there is some possibility he can recall at least parts of the 
conversations. 

I think Leonard Patterson has had personal conversations with 
them. 

On other occasions I don't recall people being present. I know 
that I've had visits from them when there was no one but myself. 

Mr. Clardy. I couldn't hear that last. 

Mr. Reno. I say that I have had visits with them when there was no 
one else present but myself. There are other occasions when I met 
them in the office of the American League Against War and Fascism, 
but on those occasions it was as people working in the American 
League. 

Mi\ Jackson, How many visits would you say were made by one 
or both of these individuals to your office in Communist Party head- 
quarters? 

Mr. Reno. W^ell, the 2 of them together probably on 2 or 3 occa- 
sions. I wouldn't say three. I would limit it to two that I can recall. 

Individual meetings — I can recall at least 2 or 3 on the part of 
Rev. Joseph Nowak, and probably 1 visit alone from the Reverend 
Jack Hutchison; but more than that specifically I can't recall. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, may I ask, Mr. Chairman, that this one visit that 
the witness has said occurred with Reverend Hutchison be fixed as 
to the approximate date and the place ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Well, the first two meetings with them was in the period August- 
September 1953. 

Mr. Doyle. I refer to the one with Reverend Hutchison. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Doyle. The one you remember. 

Mr. Jackson. That is tlie one. The witness is answering to that 
point. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

The next time I recall Reverend Hutchison is at the corner of North 
Eutaw and Franklin. The Communist Party headquarters had been 
moved there, and he came there. The extent of the discussion at that 
time I'm not too clear on. 

Later, in 1936 — it would have been approximately in the period of 
September or October of 1936 — Dr. Albert Blumberg came to me to 
discuss the possibility of Reverend Hutchison joining the Communist 
Party, and at that time I said I didn't think it was wise and I thought 
it was rather ridiculous, and as long as I was in Baltimore I would 
not have accepted membership application from either of them. 

Mr. ScHERER. Why? 

Mr. Reno. I didn't feel a minister belonged in the Communist 
Party. 

Mr. ScHERER. Why? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4103 

Mr. Reno, For several reasons. 

If a minister were identified as a member of the Communist Party, 
his use in the Coimnunist Party at that time would have been nil. In 
my own words, an unemployed minister of the Communist Party has 
no value. 

Second, I felt ideolo<?ically the training for the ministry inevitably 
comes in conflict with the ideological training of the Communist, that 
if they did join they Avould inevitably come in conflict with it and, 
theretore, they would be of much moi'e use not being members of the 
Communist Party than if they were members. 

Mr. Clardy. You mean use to the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. That's right. 

Mr. Jackson. I gather in your position as a functionary of the 
Communist Party it was your feeling you could put ministers to a 
much better use if they were not members of the party than if they 
became members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

Mr. Jackson. Do you know whether or not that was a national pol- 
icy of the Communist Party or was there some local autonomy as 
far as that was concerned ? 

INIr. Reno. That was a result of the local autonomy as far as it went. 
That was my personal attitude, I wouldn't want to say that was 
national policy. 

Mr. Clardt. Were you ever reproved, however, by your superiors ? 

Mr. Reno. No ; I never was criticized for that position. 

Mr. Clardy. That wasn't considered heresy and a departure from 
tlie Communist Party line, then, was it ? 

Mr. Reno. No. 

Mr. Clardy. You weren't punished in any way for doing that ? 

Mr. Reno, No ; I wasn't, 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. You spoke of discussions about their joining the 
party. That indicated and was the same thing as saying they were 
not members when they came to see you, as far as you know ? 

Mr. Reno. As far as when they came to see me, they were not mem- 
bers. I didn't question them on that point, and I don't recall they 
said they were. 

Mr. Ta\^nner, They never paid dues that you know of? 

Mr. Reno. They never paid clues in my period. 

Mr. Tavenner. They were never enrolled ? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

INIr. Tavenner. As card-carrying members of the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

Mr. Clardy. Did they accept your suggestions and advice as to what 
to do, however? 

Mr. Reno. They followed the suggestions and advice of the — well, 
in some instances my personal advice, but in the main, in the work in 
the American League, they followed the Communist Party fraction 
position. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, the nature of 
your discussions with them about work that was to be done ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I recall the first time I discussed what they could 
do was to become active in the Ethiopian Defense Committee and the 



4104 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

American League Against War and Fascism. In their capacities as 
ministers, it made it possible for them to go among ministers, to draw 
them into the activities of the American League Against War and 
Fascism and also to contact other professional elements. 

In a wide sense, this answered one of the very early questions. Here 
were people who would work with the Communist Party, but not be 
identified as members of the Communist Party, members with a re- 
spectable standing in the community, who would reach very respecta- 
ble elements and draw in perfectly innocent people. 

This at least was my view, my attitude toward them. I am not 
saying they realized this or anything of the sort. That was my atti- 
tude, and they were instruments in this direction. 

j\Ir. Tavenner. On the various occasions you talked to them, after 
the first occasion tliat you have just testified about, what was the gen- 
eral subject of the conversations between them? 

Mr. Reno. I think generally the conversations ran principally on 
how to develop the work in the American League Against War and 
Fascism. 

Most of the conversations I can't recall too well and I don't want to 
try to give something here that is actually a vague memory. 

Mr. Jackson. But that was more or less the central theme of your 
activities during the period in question, the activities within the 
American League Against War and Fascism ? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

Mr. Tavenner. Can you recall at this time any particular activity 
of the American League Against War and Fascism which you dis- 
cussed with either or both of the ministers ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, of course, the various mass meetings, the one that 
I described before, at Irving and East Baltimore Streets ; again the 
Battleship Emden demonstration, at which both of them spoke, in a 
sense. I think the one-— — 

Mr. Tavenner. Now, just a minute. You said you think. If you 
are not certain about it, don't 

Mr. Reno. In this I am reasonably certain. One minister made the 
invocation at the demonstration and the other one was one of the prin- 
cipal speakers. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask, Mr. Chairman, that he identify which is 
which, if he knows. 

Mr. Reno. The Reverend Nowak made the invocation and the Rev- 
erend Jack Hutchison was one of the principal speakers at the demon- 
stration. 

Mr. Tavenner. You said you thought so. 

Mr. Reno. Well, that is 

Mr. Tavenner. Is there some uncertainty in your mind about that? 

Mr. Reno. There is no uncertainty about it. I just placed it very 
badly. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you there at the time of the demonstration ? 

Mr. Reno. I was present. 

Mr. Tavenner. Can you recall whether you saw both of the minis- 
ters there at that time? 

Mr. Reno. I did see them there. 

Mr. Tavenner. Going back a moment to the first occasion when you 
met them in tlie office of the headquarters of the Communist Party, 
do you recall whether there was a third person present ? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4105 

You have mentioned Leonard Patterson as having been there. 

Mr. Reno. Yes. Mary Himoff was present. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mary Himoff. What position did she hold m the 
Commmiist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Educational director at that time. 

Mr. Tavenner. What phase of Communist Party activities did she 
engage in, other than serving as the educational director? 

Mr. Reno. Well, that was her principal function, to take care of 
the inner party education, that is, the development of discussions and 
studies of Marxism and Leninism, develop propaganda for mass use, 
and so on. 

Mr. Jackson. Was Mary Himoff a paid functionary of the party 

also? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. I did not hear the testimony of Mr. Nowak. So, in 
asking this question I don't know what he has testified to. 

You had an active Communist cell in Baltimore, did you not, in 1935 
and 1936? 

Mr. Reno. We had several. 

Mr. Doyle. You had several. 

Did Reverend Nowak, to your personal knowledge and observation, 
ever attend a closed meeting of the Communist cell in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Reno. None that I recall. 

Mr. Doyle. And I ask you the same question about Reverend 
Hutchison. 

Mr. Reno. I don't recall any actual closed meetings where either 
of them were present. 

Mr. Doyle. That is all. 

Mr. Clardy. Was that because of your advice that they should not 
become publicly identified with the party ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I'm not going to say that. The only thing is they 
were not in my period assigned to the organization. 

Mr. Jackson. I think the witness has answered the question. To 
the best of his knowledge, they were not in and he doesn't know why. 

Mr. Tavenner. How well acquainted did you become with the two 
ministers ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, with Reverend Nowak I became quite well ac- 
quainted. With Rev. Jack Hutchison not so well. We had something 
of a division of work in those periods. I lived close in the neighbor- 
hood where Reverend Nowak had his church and where he lived. As 
a result, I kept pretty close contact with him. On the other hand, 
Dr. Albert Blumberg kept closer contact with Reverend Hutchison 
than I did. His contact was very much closer. I only saw Hutchison 
on several occasions, as I have already said, where Blumberg must 
have seen him on a great many occasions. 

Mr. Tavenner. "Wlien you were speaking to Reverend Nowak, how 
did you address him ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, rather familiarly. I spoke of him as Joe and some- 
times Reverend Nowak, and we were comparatively quite friendly. 

Mr. Tavenner. How did he address you normally ? 

Mr. Reno. I think usually he called me Earl. 



4106 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavexner. What were the terms under which you and Reverend 
Hutchison knew each other? 

Mr. Reno. Well, the friendship there was not — the acquaintance 
wasn't as close and the friendship, of course, as such, didn't exist and 
the meetings were quite formal, that is, in a sense comparatively for- 
mal. I don't 

Mr. Jackson. Formal to the extent 



Mr. Reno. That I wouldn't have called him by his first name, for 
example, or vice versa. 

Mr. ScHERER. 'V\niat did you call him ? 

Mr. Reno. I usually referred to him as Reverend Hutchison. 

Mr. Jackson. What did he call you ? 

Mr. Reno. Frankly, I don't recall. I don't recall that he ever 
called me any particular name. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did either of the ministers have a conversation with 
you regarding advisability of becoming a member of the Communist 
Party ? 

Mr. Reno. Yes. I have discussed this with both of them. I'll try 
to recall the time and the circumstance. 

I think it might have been in 1936, probably in the first half of 1936, 
when I discussed this particular question with them and advised them 
at that time not to join, that I didn't feel they should, and the question 
was not raised again with me, except in the late part of 1936 when Dr. 
Albert Blumberg raised it, and in that last instance and specifically 
in relation to Hutchinson and not in relation to Reverend Nowak. 

Mr. DoTi.E. Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask, in view of the fact that the witness has given 
an alleged conversation, that he state where it occurred ? 

Mr. Reno. The conversation I am referring to was in the first half 
of 1936 in the Communist Party headquarters at the corner of North 
Franklin and Eutaw. 

Mr. Doyle, xlnd that is the headquarters where you said there was 
no sign? 

Mr. Reno. There were no signs at any of our headquarters. 

Mr. Doyle. Were both of the young ministers there at that one 
conversation ? 

Mr. Sciierer. He said Dr. Blumberg was at this one. 

Mr. Doyle. No. 

Mr. Reno. No. That is later. Both ministers were present at that 
time. 

Mr. Doyle. You and they and no one else? 

Mr. Reno. That is all I can recall ; yes. 

Mr. Doyle. That is all. 

Mr. Clardy. May I inquire, Mr. Chairman? 

Mr. Jackson. Just one minute. 

Mr. Scherer, Pardon me, Mr. Chairman. The question was asked 
by (;ounsel with reference to the conversation with Dr. Bhunberg and 
he hadn't finished that conversation with Dr. Blumberg. 

Mr. Reno. That was later in the year. 

Mr. DoYivE. I submit the question was Avhether or not he had any 
conversation with these young preachers and the witness answered 
that, and then he volunteered the statement that he had had a con- 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4107 

versation with Blumberg, which in any court would have been stricken 
out as not responsive. 

Mr. Jackson. Do you have a question pending, Mr. Counsel? 

Mr. Tavenner. I am not sure that the witness completed his answer. 
I was going to ask him as to the place where this occurred. 

Mr. Reno. I just said 

Mr. Tavenner. And that has been answered. 

Mr. Reno. That meeting, I said, was at North Eutaw and Franklin 
Streets, on the second floor. 

Mr. ScHERER. Now, I will ask the question, then: You started to 
tell us about a conversation with Dr. Blumberg. When and where did 
that conversation take place ? 

Mr. Reno. That took place in the same place. North EutaAV and 
Franklin Streets, in the Communist Party office, and that was in the 
last part of 1936. It would have been as late as September or October. 

Mr. SciiERER. What was the substance of that conversation ? 

Mr. Reno. Blumberg had specifically come in to discuss the possi- 
bility of recruiting the ministers to the Communist Party, and I said 
it was ridiculous, and as long as I was there I would not accept an 
application, and that is the essence of the discussion, and that was the 
purpose of the discussion. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, Mr. Chairman, may I ask again whether or not 
either of the young preachers were present at this conversation between 
Mr. Reno and Blumberg? 

Mr. Reno. Not at that conversation ; no. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Clardy. Pardon me. I have one question I would like to inter- 
pose. 

Mr. Jackson. I would like to get through this particular phase of 
the questioning, if there is no objection, in order that we can wind up 
the morning. 

Mr. Clardy. All right. I just wanted to know something I thought 

1 could fit in there. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Just one further question at this particular time: 
Did you have any discussion with either of the ministers at a later 
occasion about their joining the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Not later than I liave already said. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is all I have at the present. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well. The committee will stand in recess until 

2 p. m. this afternoon. 

(Thereupon, at 12: 10 p. m., the hearing was recessed, to reconvene 
at 2 p. m. of the same day.) 

afpernoon session 

(At the hour of 2 : 07 p. m. of the same day, the proceedings were 
resumed. Representatives Donald L. Jackson, Bernard W. Kearney 
(appearance noted in transcript), Gordon L. Scherer, Francis E. 
Walter (appearance noted in transcript), and Clyde Doyle (appear- 
ance noted in transcript) being present.) 

Mr. Jackson. The committee will be in order. 

Mr. Reno, please take the stand again. 



4108 COM]MUNIST ACTIVITIES IX THE BALTIMORE AREA 

TESTIMONY OF EARL C. RENO— Resumed 

Mr. Jackson. Continue, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. Mr. Eeno, j'ou told the committee that you were 
present at the time of the demonstration upon the docking of the 
German battleship Emden. 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Tavennkk. And that you observed both of the ministers at tliat 
demonstration. 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee a little more in detail 
what the demonstration consisted of? 

Mr. Reno. We had called for the demonstration — I want to qualify 
that — the demonstration had been called by the American League 
Against War and Fascism. In preparation for the demonstration 
they had prepared a sound truck, that is, a truck with sound equip- 
ment, amplifiers, and so on, for the speakers. This truck was pulled 
up near the recreation pier in Baltimore and the speakers sat on that 
truck in the sense of a platform to speak from. 

(Representative Francis E. AValter entered the hearing room at 
this point.) 

Mr. Reno. The number of people that came probablv was around 
2,000 or 2,500. 

And the demonstration was principally that kind of a preparation 
and that kind of a demonstration. The speaker spoke from the sound 
truck and denounced the reception for the battleship Emden and gen- 
erally a denunciation of fascism. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you see the two ministers 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Counsel, will you suspend? There is entirely 
too much disturbance in the room. If there is any further moving, 
let us wait until after the committee has recessed. Will the police 
officers out there please close the door. It is difficult at best to hear 
in this room and the assistance of everyone in the room is requested to 
the end that we can get through this matter as expeditiously as possi- 
ble and with some idea of what has been going on. 

Continue, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you see the two ministers during that 
l^eriod ? 

Mr. Reno. Speaking from the platform of the sound truck. 

Mr. Tavenner. Both of them were on the sound truck ? 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is. Reverend Nowak and Reverend Hutchison. 

Mr. Reno. Reverend Hutchison. 

Mr. Tavenner. What position did the Communist Party take in 
Baltimore with reference to the Spanish civil war? 

Mr. Reno. Well, the Spanish civil war, of course, assumed tre- 
mendous proportions to the Communist Party nationally, and the 
ConuTiunist Party in Baltimore aroused all of its people in whatever 
field they were working to intensify the work in the defense of the 
Spanish Republicans. More than that, the Connnunist Party actively 
recruited for the International Brigade for service in Spain. 

Mr. Tavenner. How many persons were recruited from the area 
with which you Avere charged as organizer. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4109 

Mr. Keno. At the time of the recruiting for the International Bri- 
gade, I was in Baltimore in the beginning. Later, when I went to 
Detroit, they were still recruiting for Spain. I would say from Balti- 
more we sent approximately 35 people, principally recruited from 
among seamen. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were the efforts made by the Communist Party in 
organizing support for the Spanish Republicans handled through one 
•of the organizations which you have already testified about? 

Mr. Reno. Well, the American League Against War and Fascism, 
through our fraction in there, we had developed the policy that they 
were to center their main activity around the defense of the Spanish 
Republic. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you confer at any time with Reverend Nowak 
or Reverend Hutchison regarding the activities in behalf of the 
Spanish Republicans, and if so, where did your conference take place? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I believe — at this moment, frankly, I would not 
want to say "yes" to that. I would not answer that "yes" because it is 
slightly hazy, and I would have to say "I believe," so I would rather 
say that I do not recall at this moment a specific discussion with them 
on that particular point. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you know the churches to which these ministers 
were assigned in Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. Well, I do not recall the specific names at this moment. 
Reverend Nowak was in a church in the area of East Baltimore Street 
and Broadway. I believe one of the churches that he did some work 
in was the Broadway Methodist Church. However, I think his main 
work was in another church, the name of which I do not recall. 

Reverend Hutchison, however, was on the other side of the city, 
I believe in the northwest section. I do not recall the specific name 
of that church, either, at the moment. 

Mr. TA^^ENNER. Did you at any time attend either of those churches 
while the services were being conducted or any meeting was being 
€onducted by either of the ministers ? 

Mr. Reno. I have been in both of those churches. I think I went 
to a Xew Year's Eve sort of church party at Reverend Nowak's church. 
I have attended what I think would have been his forum class. I 
have been at Reverend Hutchison's church on one occasion that I 
recall definitely, and possibly more times. However, there is one 
occasion that I recall specifically. I do not recall whether that was 
a regular church sermon or whether, again, that might have been in 
the sense of a forum or class, but I remember being in the church when 
Reverend Hutchison was speaking. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did either of the ministers know at the time that 
you were in attendance at church there ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, Reverend Nowak knew definitely I was present, 
^nd I think Reverend Hutchison, too, knew that I was present. 

Mr. Tavenner. You are not certain in the case of Reverend Hutch- 
ison ? 

Mr. Reno. At this moment I am not going to say that I am definitely 
sure that Reverend Hutchison knew that I was present. 

Mr. Tavenner. It is a little unusual to find a Communist Party 
organizer attending religious services. Will you explain how it oc- 
curred that you attended the churches ? 



4110 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

]Mr. Reno. I was very interested in these churches because of the 
specific ministers preaching in them. Since there had been a close- 
ness of activity with these ministers, I was interested in attending 
their cliurches to see what kind of a church service they conducted. 

(Representative Clyde Dojde entered the hearing room at this 
time.) 

Mr. Reno. It was also true that I felt it would be possible, by 
attending these churches, to become a little better acquainted with 
the congregation, and in this sense, be sort of accepted by them. 

You are quite right, I normally would not have attended church 
services. 

Mr. Jackson. I assume that during the period of time in question 
you shared the general Communist philosophy respecting a Supreme 
Being and spiritual values. 

Mr. Reno. I would say yes. 

Mr. Jackson. And, of course, that consists of nothing at all, 

Mr. Reno. That is more or less the position of an atheist. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta'V'enner. Can you give the committee any additional facts 
regarding the activities of either or both of the ministers in connection 
with work in which the Communist Party was engaged? 

Mr. Reno. Well, they spoke at several mass meetings, principally 
under the auspices of the American League Against War and Fas- 
cism. I described one previously that was held at the corner of Orwin 
and East Baltimore Street. I recall another that was held in the 
northwest section of Baltimore in a rather compact Jewish neighbor- 
hood. That would have been in the early fall or summer of 1936, 
specifically the demonstration around the battleship Emden^ and 
these are the principal activities that I recall. ISIore than that at the 
moment I do not think I can recall. It was principally speaking at 
mass meetings. Under the auspices of the American League Against 
War and Fascism. 

Mr. Tavenner. The committee during the course of its various in- 
vestigations has received evidence about Communist Party activities 
at Johns Hopkins University. Were you familiar with Communist 
Party activities there ? 

Mr. Reno. Well, we had a YCL, Young Communist League, unit 
there, composed mostly of postgraduate students. Dr. Albert Blum- 
berg was instructor in the department of ]ihilosophy of the section 
committee of the Communist Party in Baltimore. I have forgotten 
the name of the person who was instructor in French, who was also 
a member of the Communist Party in Baltimore. Evelyn Howard, 
who was in charge of the physiology department of the medical school, 
was a member of the Communist Party. Those are the people I can 
specifically recall at this moment. 

Mr. Tavenner. You mentioned the name of Howard earlier in 
your testimony. 

Mr. Reno. That was in relation to the boy that worked in the 
Eastern Rolling Mill. 

Mr. Ta\i:nner. It is a different person, of course. 
Mr. Reno. Well, there is a relationship. When he first came to 
Baltimore, his name was Silvers. Under the instruction of Leonard 
Patterson, who was Young Communist League organizer, he adopted 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4111 

the name of Smith or Smitty. At a later date he was married to 
Evelyn Howard and adopted the name of Mike Howard. 

Mr. Tavenner. Can you tell the committee anything more with 
regard to the Communist Party activities of Evelyn Howard ? 

Mr, Reno. Her activities were not too extensive, principally keep- 
ing contact with some of the people in the medical school and the hos- 
pital at Johns Hopkins who could be induced for one reason or an- 
other to make contributions, for example, to the American League 
Against War and Fascism or to some such cause. She was used in the 
summer of 1936 in Cumberland^ogether w4th Mike Howard or Smith 
or Smitty or Silvers, and Tom Pinkerton, for the purpose of organiz- 
ing a Communist Party section out there, and spent a number of weeks 
out there in that particular activity. Other than that she had not too 
much activity. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did either of the ministers, Eeverend Nowak or 
Reverend Hutchison, have any connection with Communist Party 
activities to your knowledge at Johns Hopkins ? 

Mr. Reno. Not to my knowledge. The one incident, the student 
strike of 1936, 1 believe Reverend Hutchison spoke at on the campus at 
Johns Hopkins. That is just a recollection, and I cannot be too con- 
vincing about that. 

Mr. Jackson. Well, was that a strike directed by the Communist 
Party ? Wasn't that a Communist Party activity ? 

Mr. Reno. The Young Communist League members at Johns Hop- 
kins were the driving force in the development of that student strike. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you know whether that strike had any relation- 
ship to the demonstration against the battleship Emdenf 

Mr. Reno. No ; it was called for an entirely different purpose. 

Mr. ScHERER. What was that purpose? 

Mr. Reno. It was a general antiwar, peace demonstration and was 
tied with anti-Fascist demonstration, too, but not specifically tied to 
the battleship Emden, as I recall. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you have a discussion at any time wdth either 
or both of the ministers, Reverend Now^ak and Reverend Hutchison, 
regarding activity that they should engage in in bringing other min- 
isters into cooperation in any of the organizational work of the 
American League Against War and Fascism ? 

Mr. Reno. In the period when we first discussed that they should 
work in the American League Against War and Fascism, it was dis- 
cussed at that time that they would be the ideal people for contacting 
ministers and so on, to bring them into the American League Against 
War and Fascism activity. 

Mr. Tavenner. ^Vlien did you leave the city of Baltimore? 

Mr. Reno. At the end of 1936. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wh^it was the reason for your leaving? 

Mr. Reno. I was transferred back to the Detroit or the Michigan 
district of the Communist Party because that was the period of the 
sitdown strikes. The sitdown strikes had begun in Flint, Mich., at 
that time and, due to the fact that I had spent a number of years in 
the Communist Party in Michigan, the national committee felt I was 
needed in Michigan for that reason, because of my familiarity with 
the auto industry, with the automobile union, and with the Communist 
Party in Michigan. 



4112 COjMMUNIST ACTIV'ITIES est the BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. You have told the committee about your other 
numerous assignments as a Communist Party organizer, culminating 
finally into your being State chairman, I believe, of the State of 
Indiana. 

j\Ir. Reno. State chairman and district secretary of ISIichigan in 
1938. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that your last assigTiment in the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Reno. In Indiana was my last assignment. 

Mr. TA^'ENNER. Wliere you became the head of the State organiza- 
tion of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. More or less. I was one of the three heads of the organ- 
ization. I was specifically assigned to Gary, Ind., but also held the 
position of State chairman, but not State secretary. The State secre- 
tary was Phil Bart, who lived in Indianapolis. 

Mr. Ta-vt^nner. Wliat was the date when you held that position ? 

Mr. Reno. I went to Gary in April 1940, and that was the time that 
I assumed that post. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien did you leave the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reno. About April or May, May 1942. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, the circum- 
stances under which you withdrew from the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. Well, it was a process actually covering a number of 
years, actually 3 years, in which I began to feel either that I was 
an alien in the Communist Party or that the Communist Party was 
alien to the things I had started out to achieve. The thing that 
brought it into sharpest focus in my mind was the Russian-German 
pact of 1939. I had begun to feel at that time that my national spirit 
was rising, and my individualism was rising. I began to feel that 
the Communist Party was not by any means the thing I had started 
out thinking it was ; it had proven itself to be an instrument of the 
Soviet Union rather than achieving the needs and aims of the Ameri- 
can people, and when such a thing as the German-Russian pact occurs, 
where you feel that naziism is a genuine world danger, and this 
merely preserves the Soviet Union from an attack, unless the world 
faces the attack, then you begin to ask a lot of questions. 

This developed in my mind until in 1942 it was impossible for me 
to stay any longer because I just no longer agreed with the principal 
program nor aims, and I left. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you go through the formality of resigning or 
notifying anyone of your withdrawal from the Communist Party? 

Mr. Reno. I did not resign. I notified the district secretary of the 
Chicago district, Morris Childs, that I was leaving, and I just left. 
That is just about the sum of it. 

Mr. Tavenner. We have found in many instances where that has 
occurred, when the Communist Party then takes action expelling an 
individual. 

Mr. Reno. That is right, and that occurred in my case, too. A 
few months later, approximately 6 months later, when I did not re- 
turn, I did not issue any statements. I was expelled from the Com- 
munist Party by action of the Illinois district, on the basis of desertion 
of post, and frankly I do not know what other charges they may 
have placed, but principally that was it. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4113 

Mr. Tavenner. Was any effort made to bring you back into the 
party before the act of discharging you from the party, expelling 
you ? 

Mr. Reno. I had been notified that if I would return and make a 
statement, I would be taken back, but I paid no attention to the 
request or the notification. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the source of that notification? 

Mr. Reno. That came from the Chicago district. It came to me 
from the Chicago district, officially from the district committee of 
the Illinois district. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you engaged in any Communist Party activi- 
ties since 1942 ? 

Mr. Reno. No, I have not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Your break with the party then was full and com- 
plete, as I understand, and final, 

Mr. Reno. And final. I have had discussions with some of the 
Communist Party people as late as 1945, but not in the sense of being 
active. I was questioned at that time as to my attitude, and if I had 
considered coming back. This was the occasion of the discussion with 
Gilbert Green in New York, but at that time I told him, as I said 
before, there was nothing in common, I have no intention of coming 
back. There is nothing that I could come back to. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, I believe that is all I desire to ask 
of the witness. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Scherer. Have your appearances before the Un-American 
Activities Committee been your first appearances before any congres- 
sional committee? 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Scherer. That is, your appearances in connection with the mat- 
ters you have just testified about? 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Scherer. I have no further questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Walter. 

Mr. Walter. I have no questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle, would you care to ask any questions? 

Mr. Doyle. I have a couple of questions. 

How long have you been employed by the United States Depart- 
ment of Immigration ? 

Mr. Reno. 3 months. 

Mr. Doyle. I am interested in your testimony about the Young 
Communist League in Baltimore. Were you in touch with what the 
Young Communist League was doing nationally or in areas other than, 
in Baltimore ? Was it a nationwide movement at that time ? 

Mr. Reno. It was a nationwide movement. 

Mr. Doyle. How was it financed? 

Mr. Reno. The same as the Communist Party, through contribu- 
tions, social affairs that were organized for the purpose of raising 
money, and so on. 

Mr. Doyle. How did they pick the leaders of the Young Com- 
munist League units over the country? Where was their source of 
supply ? 

Mr. Reno. You mean of people for leadership ? 

Mr. Doyle. Yes, the Young Communist League leaders. 



4114 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Reno. In a very lar^^e sense, district or section leaders were 
nsnally sent out from New York. Sometimes they were local people 
who were put in the position of district organizers and so on, but 
generally they were sent out from New York. 

Mr. Doyle. When you say from New York, you mean from the 
national Communist headquarters? 

Mr. Rexo. National Connnittee of the Communist Party; yes. 

Mr. Doyle. Paid for by the national committee? 

Mr, Reno. Usually paid for by the districts in which they worked. 

Mr. Doyle. Have you any suggestion to this committee as to what 
we should do, if anything, in addition to wliat Ave are doing ^ 

That is one question. Right alongside of that, have 3'ou any sug- 
gestion that we are doing anything we should not do as a congressional 
committee ? 

Mr. Reno. I have had some experience with the House Un-Ameri- 
can Activities Committee, and I have been impressed with the extent 
of research, and, in my opinion, quite honest reseai'ch, into the activi- 
ties of communism in the United States and the efforts to combat it. 
I have no suggestions to make at this time. There are some things 
in my mind that I think might be done, but I would like time to for- 
mulate that, and I would be glad, if I can put the things into organized 
form, to submit it to the committee; that is, some additional things 
that I think might be done. 

Mr. Doyle. I am sure the committee w^ill be glad to receive them. 
That is why I asked you if you had any such opinion. 

I asked you this morning if you could give us an approximate break- 
off date or termination date when, in your judgment, the attitude of 
the people generally, American people generally, to your knowledge 
or your appraisal, changed toward the Communist Party, and Chair- 
man Jackson suggested that it might have been the time of the first 
prosecution under the Smith Act. 

Mr, Jackson. No ; may I correct that? My intent was to point out 
that the attitude of the functionaries in preserving their secrecy or go- 
ing underground dated from that rather than the change in public 
opinion. 

Mr. Reno. I would like to say in relation to this particular question, 
there never was a time when the Communist Party did not prepare for 
underground activity. It has always been true, where they have put 
printing machinery and so on in hiding places in the event that the 
Cominunist Party would have to work on a strictly underground basis. 
Tactics of working in an underground condition have always been 
taught. Always there has been a certain semiseclusion of party lead- 
ers who live by themselves, quite often using aliases at their residences 
so they cannot be picked up quickly. Rut the exact date when they 
transformed to this semiunderground condition at the present time 
when it began to be a hidden leadership, that would date probably 
starting around 1950. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this then, and you anticipated my next ques- 
tion some, which is this: Up until 1042 when you withdrew from the 
Communist Party in April or May, I believe you said, that year, at 
which time you said you had come to no longer agree with their pro- 
gram and principle in April or May of 1942, up until that time, to your 
personal knowledge, was the Connnunist Party in America, in the 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4115 

United States, at least secretly advocating the use of force and vio- 
lence, force and revolution ? 

Mr. Reno. I do not think the fundamental position of the Commu- 
nist Party ever changed. I think that starting about 1938, when they 
began to formulate the public declaration that the Communist Party 
is not a party of force and violence, was the result of public reaction to 
the program advanced up to that time. I think if you read all of the 
party literature you will find that the avowed purpose has always been 
the same, and it is no new trick for the Communist Party to shift the 
way it says a thing to fit the public mood, but continuing along the 
same line all the time. 

Mr. DoTLE. Assuming that you, since you withdrew, have been ob- 
serving and naturally were interested in what the Communist Party 
program was, even though you were not in it since 1942, have you seen 
any publicity or known of any declaration, official declaration by the 
Communist Party which in your judgment has gone contrary to their 
established policy so far as the use of force and violence was concerned 
while you were in the party ? In other words, have thej changed that 
as far as you know ? 

Mr. Reno. I have not seen anything that would indicate that the 
basic tactics and program of the Communist Party are changed. 

Mr. Doyle. I think that is all, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 

Mr. Reno, assuming that the program which you headed up in 
Baltimore and which was related to and a reflection of the national 
program of the Communist Party, assume that that program had 
ever achieved fruition, had ever come into being, what would have 
happened to the church in America ? 

Mr. Reno. The church would have suffered the same treatment that 
the church in the Soviet Union has suffered. It would have been 
subjected to a campaign that would eventually have led to its com- 
plete liquidation. 

Mr. Jackson. In your opinion there can be no freedom of religious 
faith or freedom of religious worship under the Communist system? 

Mr. Reno. I think if you read a little of the Marxist philosophy, 
you will find that Marx, who is the father of communism, said that 
religion is the opiate of the people ; it has nothing in common with 
communism. 

Mr. Jackson. Lenin also said, "Down with religion. The spread 
of atheism must be our chief task" ; is that correct? 

Mr. Reno. That is correct. 

Mr. Jackson. Any further questions ? 

Mr. Walter. 1 have often wondered whether or not you ex-Com- 
munists were still Communists, spelled with a small "c." 

Mr. Reno. Well, I think I understand your question. I can speak 
for myself. I cannot speak for all ex-Communists. I think every 
ex-Communist had a reason for leaving. I would not want to try 
to explain the reason that every ex-Communist left the Communist 
Party, not to mention the face that some have left officially. But I 
think that most people who went in in a period when they had certain 
ideals — that there were inequalities in society, injustices, probably 
feel as I do — the Communist Party is not the answer to it, but there 
are certain inequities, certain injustices that need correction, but I 



4116 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

think they feel as I do, a great many social changes have taken place, 
tremendous improvement in social life in America, and I think con- 
tinuing as we did for the last five generations, America will solve its 
social problems, and we do not have to be a satellite of the Soviet 
Union to do it, and I do not think we must have to have a revolution 
here to do it, either. 

I think when we have social security, old-age benefits, a great many 
of these things, America is answering its social problems. That is 
maybe a little bit slowly, maybe even too slowly to satisfy what I 
would like, but, nevertheless, if I am going to achieve them, I am 
going to achieve them — let me say, I do not want to sound too patri- 
otic ; I am not going to wave a flag — ^but I will try solving them the 
American way. I think a great many ex-Communists feel thai, way. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask one more question, Mr. Chairman? When 
you were a high functionary in the Communist Party, did you adapt 
yourself and act in accordance with their program which was revo- 
lution by force and violence, if and when necessary ? 

Mr. Eeno. Oh, yes. You see, this is a subject all by itself that 
probably would make a good book. A great many people start out 
as I started. You have certain ideals: you have neighbors who are 
suffering; you have certain human sympathies. Little by little you 
find that you as a person are changing. You find you are batting up 
against certain things that are a little bit revolting from time to time, 
and then you go through a process of rationalizing, adjusting — "Well, 
maybe this is necessary for the purpose of achieving my ultimate" — 
the thing that I want, and little by little you become part and parcel. 
\ ou agree. 

I do not want to make any error about this. In the height of my ac- 
tivities I was in full agreement. It is this thing that you reach. I 
think one of the things that drove me out was the fact that you sit 
and look back in retrospect and you think, "I am not the person I was 
10 years ago or 12 years ago. I am not achieving the things I was 
looking for 10 or 12 years ago. I wonder what has happened." 

Then when you begin to examine from that viewpoint, you begin to 
see things in an entirely different light. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this question : In your personal knowledge, 
if you have such personal knowledge, what percent or proportion of 
the leaders of the Communist Party in America in 1935 and 1936, when 
you were a luminary in it, and up until 1942 when you were still in 
it, until April or May of 1942, what portion of the Communist Party 
luminaries in your rank, or even less high than you, also advocated 
forceful, violent revolution and overthrow of the constitutional gov- 
ernment ? 

Mr. Reno. I think all of them did, or they would not have been in. 
If they were in disagreement with the fundamental policy of the 
Communist Party, they would have been expelled. 

Mr. Doyle. I notice in your testimony that you were not hungry. 
You were employed. 

Mr. Reno. I was employed at that time, yes. 

Mr. Doyle. At the time you went into the Communist Party. 

Mr. Reno. That is right. 

Mr. Doyle. That the men all around you were hungry and unem- 
ployed. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4117 

Mr. Reno. My entire neighborhood was in rather dire distress, yes. 

Mr. DoYX,E. I just cannot understand, under those conditions, how 
a man with your maturity would go in and stay in from 1935 until 
1942 in a movement that you now state wks advocating the forceful 
and violent overthrow of our form of government. I just cannot 
understand it. 

Mr. Reno. Possibly at this time I do not myself. 

Mr. Jackson. I might say for the record that a number of people 
in much better financial circumstances than you were at that time 
went into the Communist Party, and we had several out in Holly- 
wood who went in, making $2,000 to $3,000 a week, so the economic 
aspect of it is not the only consideration. Are there any further 
questions ? 

Mr. Walter. No. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Counsel? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Reno, on behalf of the committee, may I ex- 
press our thanks for your full cooperation since the outset of this 
investigation. 

If there is any more material which you find later is available to 
you, we will appreciate it very much if you will furnish it to the 
committee. 

I think that your testimony has added a considerable amount to 
the sum total of the knowledge of the committee relative to the ob- 
ject, the nature, and the extent of Communist efforts to infiltrate into 
the institutions of this country, and with the thanks of the committee 
you are excused. 

(Whereupon the witness was excused and the subcommittee pro- 
ceeded to hear the testimony of additional witnesses on the same sub- 
ject which is printed in Part 3 of this title.) 



INDEX 



INDIVIDUALS 

Page 

Bart, Phil 4112 

Berne, Jimmy 4099 

Bhimberg, Albert 4093, 4101, 4102, 4106, 4107, 4110 

Bohannon, Edith 4089, 4093 

Bohamion, Walter 4089, 4093 

Browder, Earl 4088, 4096 

Childs, Morris 4112 

Dixon, Earl (alias for Earl C. Reno) 4082, 4097 

Green, Gilbert 4113 

Himoff, Mary 4105 

Howard, Evelyn 4086, 4110, 4111 

Howard, Mike (alias Silvers, Smith, and Smitty) 4111 

Hudson, Roy 4086, 4088 

Hutchison, John A. (Jack) 4079, 4080, 4100, 

4102, 4104, 4105. 4106, 4108, 4109, 4111 

Nowak, Joseph 4100, 4102, 4104, 4105, 4106, 4108, 4109, 4111 

Patterson, Leonard 4086, 4089, 4101, 4102, 4105, 4110 

Pinkerton, Tom 4086, 4111 

Reno, Earl C 4079-4117 (testimony) 

Schlesinger, Walter 4089, 4093 

Silvers (see Mike Howard) 4110, 4111 

Stachel, Jack 4088 

Swerdloff, Sam 4089, 4092 

Ward, Harry 4100 

ORGANIZATIONS 

Aberdeen Proving Ground 4094, 4095 

American League Against War and Fascism 4080, 

4087, 4089, 4090-4096, 4100-4102, 4104, 4108-4111 

Celanese Corp., Cumberland 4086 

Communist Party 4080-4117 

Eastern Rolling Mill 4083, 4084, 4086, 4095, 4110 

Emden (German battleship) 4080, 4089, 4093, 4094, 4104, 4108, 4110, 4111 

Ethiopian Defense Committee 4086, 4089, 4095, 4100, 4101, 4103 

Ethiopian League 4080 

Fort George G. Meade 4094 

Fort Holabird 4094 

International Brigade 4108, 4109 

Johns Hopkins University 4093, 4110, 4111 

Socialist Party 4085 

State Department 4094 

Supreme Court 4099 

Unemployment Councils 4081 

Union Theological Seminary 4080, 4100, 4101 

United States Immigration and Naturalization Service 4080, 4113 

Young Communist League 4093, 4094, 4095, 4110, 4111, 4113 

Young Communist League, Baltimore 4084, 4086, 4089 

Young Communist League, New York 4084 

4119 






^lnynLf 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMORE AREA-Part 3 




HEARINGS 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 

EIGHTY-THIRD CONGRESS 

SECOND SESSION 



MARCH 25 AND 26, 1954 



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



INCLUDING INDEX 




UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
46914 WASHINGTON : 1954 




Boston Public Library 
Superintendent of Documents 

JUN 1 6 1954 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERI(Cl'lfJ ACTIVITIES 

United States House of Representatives 

HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois, Chairman 

BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York FRANCIS E. WALTER, Pennsylvania 

DONALD L. JACKSON, California MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri 

KIT CLARDY, Michigan CLYDE DOYLE, California 

GORDON H, SCHERER, Ohio JAMES B. FRAZIER, Je., Tennessee 

ROBERT L. KUNziG, Counsel 

Frank S. Tavennee, Jr., Counsel 

THOMAS W. Bealb, Sr., Chief Clerk 

Rai'hael I. NixON, Director of Research 

II 



CONTENTS 



March 25, 1954: 

Testimony of— Page 

Leonard Patterson 4121 

Joseph S. Nowak 4134 

Sam Swerdloff 4153 

March 26 1954: 

Testimony of Mary Himoflf Neflf--_ 4157 

Index-- _--_ 4163 

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, 2cl session, which provides : 

Be it enacted bij 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 
******* 

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

RxjleXI 
powers and duties of committees 



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

(A) Un-American activities. 

(2) The Committee on Un-Americau Activities, as a wliole or by subcommit- 
tee, is authorized to make from time to time investigations of (i) the extent, 
character, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United 
States, (ii) the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un- 
American propaganda that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic 
origin and attacics the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our 
Constitution, 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 tliereof, 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. Subpeuas 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 83D CONGRESS 
House Resolution 5, January 3, 1953 

* r^ * * * * * 

STANDING COMMITTEES 

Rule X 

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

:i: * « * * ' * * 

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

POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES 

Rule XI 
******* 

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 extent, char- 
acter, and objects of un-American proiiaganda activities in the United States, 
(2) the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un-American prop- 
aganda 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 (3) all other questions in relation thereto that would aid Congress in 
any necessary remedial legislation. 

The Committee on I'n-Auierican 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 
investigation, 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 connnittee or any subcommittee, or by any 
member designated l)y such chairman, and may be served by any person desig- 
nated by any such chairman or member. 

VI 



INVESTiaATlON OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMOEE AKEA— Part 3 



THURSDAY, MARCH 25, 1954 

United States House of Representatives, 

Subcommittee of the Committee 

ON Un-American Activities, 

Washington^ D. G. 

The subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities 
met, pursuant to call, at 10 : 29 a. m., in the caucus room, 362 Old 
House Office Building, Hon. Donald L. Jackson presiding. 

Committee members present: Representatives Donald L. Jackson 
(acting chairman). Kit Clardy, Gordon H. Scherer, Francis E. Wal- 
ter (appearance noted in transcript), and Clyde Doyle (appearance 
noted in transcript) . 

Staff members present : Robert L. Kunzig, counsel ; Frank S. Tav- 
enner, Jr., counsel; Thomas W. Beale, Sr., chief clerk; Raphael I. 
Nixon, director of research ; and George E. Cooper, investigator. 

(Following preliminary statement made by the subcommittee and 
the testimony of Earl C. Reno, both of which are printed in part 2, 
under this title, the subcommittee continued with interrogation of 
additional witnesses:) 

Mr. Jackson. Who is your next witness? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Leonard Patterson, will you come forward, 
please ? 

TESTIMONY OF LEONARD PATTERSON 

Mr. Jackson. Raise your right hand. Do you solemnly swear in 
the testimony you are about to give before this subcommittee you will 
tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help 
you God? 

Mr. Patterson. I do. 

Mr. Tavenner, "V^Tiat is your name, please ? 

Mr. Patterson. Leonard Patterson, two t's in Patterson. 

Mr. Tavenner. I note that you are not accompanied by counsel. 

Mr. Patterson. No ; I do not think I need any. 

Mr. Tavenner. If you decide you desire to consult counsel, you will 
have that privilege. 

Mr. Patterson. Thank you. 

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

Mr. Patterson. I was born February 6, 1906, State of North Caro- 
lina, county of Wayne. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere do you now reside? 

Mr. Patterson. Jamaica, New York City. 

Mr. Tavenner. How are you presently employed ? 

4121 



4122 COMJMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Patterson. I am employed by the Bethlehem shipyard as a 
rigger and also as a taxi driver. When one is not busy, I work with 
the other one. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Have you ever been a member of the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Have you ever been a member of the Young Com- 
munist League? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien did j'ou become a member of the Young 
Communist League? 

Mr. Patterson. In the fall of the year of 1928. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. "Wlien did you join the Communist Party? 

Mr. Patterson. In the early part of the summer, latter part of the 
spring, in 1930. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you now a member of the Young Communist 
League, or. rather, the Communist Party? 

Mr. Patterson. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you leave the Communist Party? 

Mr. Patterson. In the summer of 1937, I believe in August. It 
could have been September. 

Mr. Tavenner. "Will you tell the committee, please, the circiun- 
stances under which you first became a member of the party, or rather, 
I should say, the Young Communist League ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. I secured a job as a bootblack in the district 
headquarters of the Communist Party of the Xew York district at 26 
Union Square, and for about 3 months the district leaders, the na- 
tional leaders, and everyone was trying to make me a Communist, and 
I did not want to be a Communist. So they made a bet with me, if I 
would take a course in the Workers' School, that when I completed 
that course. I would join the Communist Party or the Young Com- 
munist League, so I had taken up the bet, and before I finished the 
course I had joined the Young Communist League. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you ever attain a position of prominence in 
the Young Communist League such as occupjdng a high position as 
a functionary? 

Mr. Patterson. Well, I held almost all leading positions in the 
Young Communist League except its executive secretary. 

]\Ir. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, what the major 
positions are which you liave held in the Young Communist League ? 

Mr. Patterson. Well, I was 

Mr. Tavenner. Ajid the dates and the places. 

Mr. Patterson. As near as I can, I will. In 1929, the spring, the 
year I was elected as a delegate to the district convention of the Young 
Communist League: however, at that time the name Avas the Young 
Workei's Communist League. T attended the district convention and 
I Avas elected a member of the district committee of the Young Com- 
munist League, Ncav York City district. 

Ml-. T.\\enner. New York district? 

Mr. ]*ATTKKS0N. Yes. At that district convention I AA-as elected a 
delegate to the national convention of the Young Communist League 
that Avas held in the spring of 1929 — in fact, it Avas the same time 
as the Gastonia strike was going on in North Carolina. At that con- 
vention I Avas elected a member of the national executive committee 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4123 

of the Yoiino; Communist League and was reelected at every conven- 
tion and remained a member of the national committee until 1935 
at the time I went into the Communist Party for exclusive Connnunist 
Party work. 

In 1931 in Philadelphia, from about March until August, I was 
district organizer of the Young Communist League, and 1934 I was 
organizer for the Young Communist League for the Maryland-Dis- 
trict of Columbia area. I was national representative of the Young 
Communist League in the Birmingham. Ala., district, Detroit district, 
Cleveland district, Connecticut district, and the Philadeh^hia district, 
and the Pittsburgh district, and I held positions in the Young Com- 
munist League as national chairman of the Young Communist League 
Negro commission. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was the Negro commission of the Young 
Communist League ? 

Mr. Patterson. It was a special body, a subcommittee of the na- 
tional committee of the Young Communist League to deal specifically 
with issues concerning the Negro youth, and in 1933 I was also national 
fraction secretary of the unemployed councils and also was national 
youth organizer for the homeless youth at the same time. 

Those are the main or major positions I held in the Young Com- 
munist League. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you ever selected for training, Communist 
Party training, in the Soviet LTnion ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. When did you go to Moscow, and how long were 
you there? 

Mr. Patterson. I landed in Moscow in September 1931, and I re- 
mained there until September 1932. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have told us you were district organizer of 
the Communist Party in Maryland and the District of Columbia in 
1934. 

Mr. Patterson. The Young Communist League. 

Mr. Tavenner. Of the Young Communist League. How long did 
you remain on that assignment? 

Mr. Patterson. Until around September 1935. 

Mr, Ta-s^nner. Will you tell the committee, please, what you sought 
to accomplish for the Young Communist League in Baltimore during 
that period? 

Mr. Patterson. To organize the Young Communist League in the 
basic industries in Baltimore and the colleges, universities. National 
Guard, Army, the fleet, the merchant ships, and among the long- 
shoremen and every key enterprise in the city of Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee briefly what the activi- 
ties of the Young Communist League were, what they actually ac- 
complished in Baltimore during the period between 1934 and 
September 1935. 

Mr. Patterson. AVell, specifically, I succeeded in organizing com- 
mittees against war and fascism on ships sailing out of Baltimore, 
specifically the Oakmoor and the Massmoor. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell those names? 

Mr. Patterson. I do not know if I can spell them myself or not. 
I was successful in organizing those committees. In fact, when I 
say "T,"" I am speaking of the Young Communist League at that 

46914 — 54 — pt. S J 



4124 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

time. I was successful in organizing groups of young seamen into 
Young Communist League nuclei, small groups*^ on ships here in 
the port of Baltimore, AYe were successful in organizing and pre- 
paring Young Comnninist League members for distribution squads 
for the distribution of Communist literature and other anti-Fascist 
literature into the National Guard and into Camp Meade, Md. It 
was my specific duty then to prepare and train certain individuals 
for this task, turn them over to Stanley Bloomberg, and from then 
on, he would work with the secret committee and carry that through. 

1 was organizing the Young Communist League members in the 
National Students League, organized them into groups in the uni- 
A'-ersities, like the Johns Hopkins University and the University of 
Maryland and other schools and colleges in the city of Baltimore 
and would prepare them for certain activities, such as strikes against 
war and fascism, for academic freedom, and also to prepare them to 
involve the organization of the employees of the university and involve 
them in any activities that would be developed on the campus. 

Then mass meetings, open-air meetings, organization of defense 
committee for Ethiopia, organization of clelegates for the Youth Con- 
gress to Detroit, and generally to participate in the campaigns of the 
Communist Party and to support the Communist Party in all of its 
campaigns. 

Mr. Taat>nxer. What was your connection with this group that was 
known as the Ethiopian Defense Committee ? 

Mr. Patterson. I was the one responsible to the Communist Party 
for this committee. I was responsible to organize it, to supervise it, 
to see to it that the party line, party policy, the l>arty tactics, the 
party strategy, was carried out in this committee. 

Mr. Ta\t:xner. Will you tell the committee whether or not you 
received the assistance in that work of two ministers who had recently 
come to Baltimore from the Union Theological Seminary in New 
York? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes, I will. 

In 1935, 1 believe it wa.s in the month of August — it could have been 
July, but to my best recollection it was August — Earl Reno assigned 
me to organize a defense committee for the defense of Ethiopia and 
to create a mass movement of people in Baltimore, and his instruction 
was to penetrate the churches, the YMCA's, and trade unions, ditferont 
societies, and involve mass indignation of the Negro people in IJalti- 
more for the defense of Ethiopia, but he warned me to realize one 
thing, that the Communist Party must control this and the line of 
the Communist Party must be carried out. 

So I asked him for forces. As head of the Young Communist 
League, I had my own headaches. So he said that would have to be 
discussed, and 2 individuals came into the Communist Party office, 

2 ministers, one by the name of Rev. Joe Nowak, and one by the 
name of Rev. Jack Hutchison. 

Mr. Tavenner. Let me stop you there just a moment. When you 
first told the committee about the connection of the two ministers with 
the work of this group in Baltimore, you were unable to recall their 
names. Is that not correct? 

Mr. Patterson. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you here in the hearing room on last Thurs- 
day, March 18, when Dr. John A. Hutchison testified here? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4125 

Mr. Patterson. I was not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you in the corridors of the building liere 
adjacent to this room? 

Mr. Patterson. I was. 

Mr. Ta\tenner. Did you see Eeverend Hutchison in the hearing 
room ? 

Mr. Patterson. I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you see him on the witness stand? Did you 
see him occupying the witness chair ? 

Mr. Patterson. I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was he the same person to whom you are now re- 
ferring as one of the young ministers who came into the Communist 
Party headquarters in Baltimore? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Some time in 1935 ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Jackson. There is no question in your mind as to this important 
fact, is there ? 

Mr. Patterson. Absolutely none. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. How are you able now to identify the name of the 
other minister as Reverend Nowak ? 

Mr. Patterson. I have spoken with Reverend Nowak. I saw him 
here today. I talked with him. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is there any doubt in your mind as to whether or 
not he was the second of the two ministers to whom you referred? 

Mr. Patterson. Absolutely none. 

Mr. TA^^NNER. Well, I interrupted you. You say two ministers 
came into Communist Party headquarters in Baltimore? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you fix the time as nearly as you can? 

Mr. Patterson. Well, the time I fixed before was the nearest I can 
come to it. It was, I would say, in the afternoon. It was approxi- 
mately August — July. It was almost immediately after the Italian 
invasion of Ethiopia. It was around that period. 

Mr. Ta\t3nner. In 1935 ? 

Mr. Patterson. 1935. I am definite about the year. 

Mr. Tavenner. After you had been assigned the job of organizing 
the Ethiopian Defense Committee? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. ^'\'1io were present in the Communist Party head- 
quarters on that occasion besides the two ministers? 

Mr. Patterson. Earl Reno. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that the name used by Mr. Reno at that time? 

Mr. Patterson. No, it was Earl Dixon. However, I had known 
him also by Earl Reno. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was any other person present ? 

Mr. Patterson. Mary Himoff. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat position did Mary Himoff hold in the Com- 
munist Party? 

Mr. Patterson. She was a member of the Baltimore committee of 
the Communist Party, the leading committee of the Communist Party 
in Baltimore, and she was the educational director for the Communist 
Party of Baltimore. 



4126 COMMUXIST ACTIVITIES IX THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Ta\ KXXER. In other words, she was also a high functionary in 
the Communist Party in Baltimore? 

Mr. PArrERSON. I would say she was; in fact, I know she was. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Now, will you tell the committee, please, just what 
occurred at the time the two young ministers came into the Communist 
Party headquarters, as far as you can recall ? 

Mr. Pattersox. Well, there was a conversation with Earl Dixon 
and Mary Himoff. I was not sitting right together with them in this 
conversation, and I do not know specifically what was discussed. I 
did hear the name of the party mentioned, but after discussion was 
over, Mary Himoff said to me, ''You want forces? Here's two minis- 
ters. Take them and put them on your Ethiopian Defense Com- 
mittee." 

]Mr. Tavexxer. Well, were you introduced to the two ministers at 
that time? 

Mr. Pattersox. Yes ; Mary Himoff introduced me to them. 

Mr. Ta\t:xxer. To both of them?" 

Mr. Pattersox. Yes. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Then what occurred? 

Mr. Pattersox. Well, I believe — I do not know exactly when it 
was — maybe tiie next day or a couple of days after. Reverend Hutchi- 
son and Reverend Xowak reported to me at my headquarters of the 
Ethiopian Defense Committee that was located in the vicinity of 
10th — 1100 block on Pennsylvania Avenue on the right-hand side going 
north. It was a store front. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Were you an open member of the Communist Party 
in Baltimore at that time, or was your identity known? 

Mr. Paitersox. I was very well known. I was an open member of 
the Communist Party and a member of the section committee, was 
district organizer for the Young Communist League. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Did you explain on the occasion of the next meet- 
ing ; that is, the meeting on 1 or 2 days after you first met them, as to 
what work these 2 ministers should do in the Ethiopian Defense Com- 
mittee work? 

Mr. Pattersox. Yes, I did. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Will you tell the committee just what conversation 
took place there, as nearly as you can? 

Mr. Pattersox. I explained to both of them — and I am referring to 
them. I mean both Reverend Hutchison and Reverend Nowak — that 
this Ethiopian Defense Committee wanted to reach out into the 
churches, particularly Negro churches, and we wanted to make this a 
broad committee, not just inter-Communist Party, Young Communist 
League membership, but a committee that would reach people that the 
Communist Party could not reach otherMnse, and that this 

Mr. Tavexxer. Are you certain that you mentioned to them the 
name of the Communist Party reaching other people? 

Mr. Patterson. I am positive of what I jtist said, that we wanted 
to reach peoj)le that the Comnuiiiist Pai'ty could not reach otherwise. 

Mr. Tam:n'nek. Are you i)()sitive tliat that was said to these two 
ministers? 

Mr. Pa'i'tkksox. T am absolutely positive. I said even more than 
that, i f you will let nie finish. 

Mr. Tavexxer. All right, proceed. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4127 

Mr. Patterson. And said, in fact, I have taken these tw'o ministers 
as Communist Party members. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliy did you do that? 

Mr. Patterson. Because I was given them to work with when I 
asked for forces by Mary Himoff who was a member of the section 
committee of the Communist Party, and I did not take them as stran- 
gers. I took them as Communist Party members, and I discussed the 
party policy with tliem, and that I am trying to explain to you 
now. 

I explained to them by bringing in certain ministers and doctors 
to sign a sponsoring call that we would get out and that we would 
send the ministers and other non-Communist Party niembers to cover 
the various churches and speak and ask for affiliations to this com- 
mittee; it could be done, and that the Communist Party members, the 
Young Communist League members, would take similar steps to pene- 
trate the trade unions and other organizations in Baltimore to bring 
them into this committee, and that we would try — we would use the 
International Workers' Order, the Italian branch that was close to 
the Communist Party, to penetrate the Italian branch of the Inter- 
national Workers' Order and the Italian people, that we would 
organize mass meetings in the Italian neighborhoods in regards to 
this issue, defense of Ethiopia. 

Then the two ministers told me, both Eeverend Nowak and Kev- 
erend Hutchison, and they can cross me if they want to — I stand open 
for it — in fact, they smiled and said, ''We know all about that," that 
"We were well schooled in Marxism, Leninism while we were in the 
Union Theological Seminary," that Professor Ward had taught them 
all of that, and during our discussions from then on I found out they 
were pretty well equipped with Marxism and Leninism and under- 
stood the Communist Party line. In fact, I had no trouble whatsoever 
in convincing them or forcing them to pursue the Communist Party 
line. 

After a few meetings Comrade Hutchison was taken away from my 
committee. 

Mr. Tavenner. You do not mean Comrade Hutchison 

Mr. Patterson. I mean Reverend Hutchison. He was taken away 
from my committee. Mary Himoff called me and told me, "I will 
leave Reverend Nowak with you, but we have to take Reverend 
Hutchison and assign him to the [American] League Against War 
and Fascism, and he will work with Swerdloff." 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Who was Swerdloff? 

Mr. Patterson. Swerdloff was a member of the Communist Party 
in Baltimore assigned bv the section committee of the Communist 
Party to be head of the [American] League Against War and Fascism 
in Baltimore. He was head of the Communist Party fraction of the 
[American] League Against War and Fascism, and I believe he was 
the executive secretary of the Baltimore chapter of the [American] 
League Against War and Fascism. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you seen him here today? 

Mr. Patterson. I have. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. What Avas the character of the work done by the 
two ministers in helping von witli the work of the Ethiopian Defense 
Committee, if you know ? 



4128 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr, Patterson. Well, I do not remember just now. I know Rev- 
erend Xowak worked with me longer than Reverend Hutchison did. 
I think about all he did was attend meetings of my committee. 

Now, whether or not I gave Reverend Hutchison any assignments 
to visit churches or speak at different meetings or so, I do not — I mean 
Reverend Xowak — I do not remember at the present time. At the 
time that they were on my committee, became on my committee, it was 
more or less in the initial stage, and I only wanted them mostly to 
give non-Communist color to the committee. 

Mr. Ta\-enner. You say that you met these two ministers in August 
of 1935. Did you say that you left the Baltimore area in September 
1935? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes ; I was on my way out at the time I met them. 

Mr. Tavenner. So then it was only for the period of about 1 month 
that you were acquainted with them ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you ever have occasion to meet them after that 
in Baltimore? 

Mr. Patterson. No. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you see either of the ministers at the Com- 
munist Party headquarters in Baltimore at any time after the occa- 
sion when you met them, first met them there ? 

Mr. Patterson. I do not remember whether I did or not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliat was the reason for your leaving Baltimore? 

Mr. Patterson. For an assignment by the Communist Party in 
Philadelphia. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien did you say that you withdrew from the 
Communist Party ? 

Mr. Patterson. In the summer of 1937. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your reason for leaving the Communist 
Party after the year of extreme activity that you had engaged in? 

Mr. Patterson. I was finally convinced that the Communist Party 
was no place for me, that the Communist Party was not sincere as a 
protector of American labor, that it did not champion the cause of 
the American people, that it was not interested in solving the problems 
of the Negro people, but the Communist Party was using the question 
of organizing labor, the question of fighting for the advancement 
of the Negro people as a means of furthering its aim to accomplish 
its ultimate aim, for the overthrow of the American Government 
through force and violence, for the establishment of the dictatorship 
of the proletariat. 

Now, I had the opportunity to spend a year in Russia, to travel 
about, travel very widely over Russia. 

Mr. ScHERER. How did that happen ? 

Mr. Patterson. I was a student of the Lenin School in Russia. 

Mr. Sciierer. What year was that? 

Mr. Patterson. From September 1931 to September 1932. ' 

Mr. Sciierer. How old were you at that time ? 

Mr. Patterson. Let me see. 

Mr. Sciierer. Approximately. 

Mr. Patterson. I was born in 1900, and that was 1931. 

Mr. Scherer. Who sent you to the Lenin school ? 

Mr. Patterson. The Communist Party of the United States of 
America. 



COJVO/IUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4129 

Mr. ScHERER. How long were you at that school ? How much time 
did you spend in the Lenin School ? 

Mr. Pattersox. Approximately a year. 

To finish your question, by seeing both sides of the picture, by being 
sincere for the Communist Party, strikes, picket lines, going to jail, 
being clubbed, beaten up, and then seeing the other side in Russia, 
and then seeing that in the United States, in those years, particularly 
under the administration of President Roosevelt, that the problems 
of America trying to be solved and could be solved in a peaceful 
way. 

So I made up my mind to leave the Communist Party. In particu- 
lar when the Communist Party, under the leadership of Harry 
Bridges, called a second west coast strike of longshoremen on the west 
coast, and due to the agitation and organization, under my leadership 
in Philadelphia, we tied up the entire port of Philadelphia in connec- 
tion with the longshoremen on the west coast, and we put forward 
our local demands and the shipowners gave us every one of them. 
Everything we asked for was given, and when I reported it back to 
the Communist Party, they said, "You can't settle the strike. You 
can't call off the strike." 

I said, "Wliy? We got everything we want. We asked for 8 men 
in the hold discharge instead of 6. We got that. We asked for 85 
cents an hour instead of 75, and we got that. Wliy can't we settle the 
strike?" 

They said, "The west coast strikers are out on strike, and you want to 
stab them in the back. We are not interested in a measly 10 cents 
more an hour or 2 more men in the gang. We are for a big political 
thing. We are for a general strike. We are for keeping the port tied 
up. You went to the Lenin School. You know that every economic 
struggle becomes a political struggle. You know this is a means of 
involving the east and west coasts in direct struggle against the state 
power, against the United States Government." 

So the whole scales dropped off my eyes then, so I left the Commu- 
nist Party as of that day. However, I was called to several meetings 
of the district committee, of which I was a member, and the central 
committee control commission in New York, and was asked to come 
back into the Communist Party, but from that day on I had nothing 
to do with the Communist Party, the Communist Party affiliates, with 
the exception of speaking to and talking to certain friends that had 
been in the Communist Party up until 1945. 

Mr. Walter. Because of your activities in the longshoremen's or- 
ganization, did you happen to know any of the people who today are 
tying up the port of New York ? 

Mr. Patterson". No ; due to the fact that I have not studied that 
New York situation thoroughly. I have not paid much attention 
to it. 

However, I do know in Philadelphia that there are certain Com- 
munist Party members like Sam Kovat, Joe Bishinsky, I think Bish- 
insky, and one named Banks, was trying to exploit that situation in 
New York to tie up Philadelphia. I know that. 

Mr. Walter. Are they members of the Communist Party? 

Mr. PattersojST. Kovat and Bishinsky are. I do not know about 
Banks, whether he is a member or one that is being used by the Com- 
munist Party. 



4130 COIVIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Walter. So that these Communists are today endeavoring to 
tie up the port of Phihidelphia by resorting to the tactics that you 
]iave just described, purely political? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes. The situation in Philadelphia is aknost a 
repercussion. The people there got good jobs, they are working, they 
are satisfied, and still the Communist Party is exploiting it — at least 
attempting to exploit it. 

Mr. Tavenner. You spoke of the Communist Party using certain 
organizations in which the Negro people were interested in order to 
exploit them for Communist Party purposes. Do you know anj-thing 
about the American Committee for the Protection of the Foreign 
Born ? Do you know how that was handled ? 

Mr. Patterson. I do. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell us just briefly? 

Mr. Patterson. That committee, alongside of another committee, 
was considered by the Communist Party as a transmission belt. It 
was a committee that could appeal to the foreign-born people in the 
United States and properly claim to be their protector as a means of 
rallying the foreign born in the unions and in the mills and in the 
factories into the Commuist Party. 

However, there was another reason, so far as the protection of the 
foreign born was concerned. The overwhelming majority of the Com- 
munist Party membership at the time I was in there were foreign- 
born people, and most of them were not naturalized. Therefore, by 
creating a committee for the protection of the foreign born, the Com- 
munist Party was trying to work to safeguard its own membership, 
so it had two purposes. 

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

Mr. Jackson, Mr. Scherer? 

Mr. Scherer. No questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Walter? 

Mr. Walter. No. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle? 

Mr. Doyle. Were you here in the hearing room this morning? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Doyle. I have not ever met you before. What sign, if any, 
was over the headquarters of the Communist Party where you say 
you met these two young preachers? 

Mr. Patterson. I do not believe there was any sign. The only time 
that I believe there ever was a sign over the Communist Party head- 
quarters in Baltimore was during the election campaign, but I do not 
believe — fh^re. was no sign over there. 

Mr. Doyle. You have not testified — at least I have not heard you 
testify — I was late from the floor in getting to the committee this 
afternoon — of there being any Communist cells in Baltimore, Com- 
munist cell.s. 

Mr. Pat'I'erson. Oh, yes, there were cells in Baltimore. 

Mr. DoYi.E. Have you testified as to whether or not either of these 
young preachers that you have named were members of the Communist 
Party cells ? 

Mr. Patterson. No ; I have not. 

Mr. D0YI.E. Well, were they, to your personal knowledge ? 

Mr. Patterson. To my personal knoM-ledge T have not attended a 
meeting with either one of them in a Communist Partv cell. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4131 

Mr. DoTLE. You said, and I wrote down here about as you said it, 
''I wanted them most to give non-Communist color to the committee." 
Mr. Patterson. That is correct. 

Mr. Doyle. At that time in Baltimore in 1935 and 1936 when you 
were there — or may I ask you — you were there in 1935 and 1936. I 
think you said you were there in August 1935. 

Mr. Pattersoist. I was not there in 1936. I left there in Septem- 
ber 1935. 

Mr. Doyle. What, to your personal knowledge, was the attitude gen- 
erally of the public in Baltimore toward the Communist Party ? 
Mr. Patterson. Generally it was antagonistic. 
Mr. Doyle. It was what ? 
Mr. Patterson. Antagonistic. 

Mr. Doyle. Because of your great familiarity with the Communist 
Party generally in the United States, was there an approximate date 
upon which, in your judgment, the attitude of the American people, 
as appraised by you, stopped being antagonistic toward the Commu- 
nist Party as it was in 1945 in Baltimore ? 
Mr. Patterson. I do not think it ever did stop. 

]\Ir. Doyle. Well, was there any change in the public attitude to- 
ward the Communist Party function in the United States, either favor- 
able or unfavorable ? 
Mr. Patterson. Well, I believe today it is more unfavorable. 
Mr. Doyle. Well, I hope so. There is no question about it. What 
I am getting at, ]\Ir. Patterson, is, I think Mr. Reno this morning, I 
understood him to say that these meetings of the Anti-Fascist League, 
and so forth, were very largely attended, sometimes more than 2,000 
people. Now, were those the same meetings that you attended ? 

]\Ir. Patterson. Well, I do not know whether I attended those 
specific meetings or not, but I could answer your question, if you 
would let me, 

Mr. Doyle. Well, what I am getting at, to try to get what the feel- 
ing was of the Baltimore public toward these meetings of the Anti- 
Fascist League and the Ethiopian League 

Mr. Patterson. Well, a lot of these people who were in these meet- 
ings did not know it was Communist-laid or Communist-dominated, 
and when they found out, a lot of them would disassociate themselves 
with it. A lot of ministers would come to these Ethiopian Defense 
Committee meetings and other things, but the minute they found out 
it was a Communist-dominated or controlled affair, they would dis- 
associate themselves from it. However, that wasn't the case with all 
of them. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this with reference to your experience and 
knowledge growing out of your having been, I think, chairman of 
the Negro conmiission, the Communist Negro commission — I think I 
bear in mind your testimony, but what, specifically, if anything, did 
the Communist Party do during your membership in it, to your per- 
sonal knowledge, to raise the level of living, either economically or 
politically, of the American Negro ? 
Mr. Patterson. Nothing, as I see. 

(Representative Bernard W. Kearney entered the hearing room at 
this point. ) 

Mr. Doyle. What, if anything, to your knowledge, if there is any 
such program that you have any knowledge of, does the Communist 

46914 — 54 — pt. 3 S 



4132 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Party in ^Vinerica now have by way of programs for the betterment 
of the level of living economically or politically, so far as alleged civil 
rights are concerned, for the American Negro ? 

I\Ir. Patterson. None. 

Mr. DoTLE. I think that is all. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. Any further questions? 

Let the record show that Mr. Kearney has just come into the 
committee. 

Did you hear the question I addressed to Mr. Reno relative to what 
the church might reasonably expect if the program upon which you 
were embarked with other Communists had ever come to a successful 
fruition ? 

Mr. Paiterson. I did not understand it, but I think I can answer 
it for you, 

Mr. Jackson. I wish you would. 

Mr. Patterson. The church could expect the same as the peasants 
or the farmers where the Communist Party promised land, or the 
minority groups where it promised self-determination. It could 
expect under a Communist government in the United States a suppres- 
sion of free speech, free worship, religion, and gradually liquidation. 
I had the opportunity to see that in Russia. 

Mr. Jackson. Well, as one who has lived through the experience of 
being a functionary in the Communist Party with the background 
that you have, from that standpoint, do you say that the pulpits of 
America stand in greater danger of the Communist Party and the 
fellow travelers or from this committee? 

Mr. Pati-erson. The main danger to religion in the United States 
or any country in the world is communism, and I want to say that God 
bless this committee, it has got the nerve to go out and to investigate 
communism in the churches, and there is no use of minimizing this 
question. The Communist Party has penetrated a large section of the 
church in the United States. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask this, Mr. Chairman, of the gentleman ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. DoTLE. Did you ask God to bless this committee while you were 
a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Patterson. This committee? 

Mr, Doyle. I say, did you ask God to bless this committee. You say 
now God bless it. Did you ask God to bless it while you were a member 
of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Patterson, No, I fought you, I believe, I fought, I believe, the 
Fish committee and all the other committees because I was on that side 
of the fence then. I was sincere. Now I am on this side of the fence, 
and I am sincere. 

Mr, Jackson, You asked intervention from other quarters as far as 
the committees were concerned at that time, 

Mr, Patterson, That is right, 

Mr. Jackson. May I ask, and you have every right to decline to 
answer this — I do not know what your answer is going to be — are you 
a church member yourself ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes, I am ordained deacon of Mount Calvary Free 
Will Baptist Church, Brooklyn, N, Y, I am now chairman for the 
Baptist committee for the fifth anniversary of that church. Anybody 
who wants to buy some tickets, I will give them to him. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4133 

Mr. Jackson". CongTatulations. That represents a considerable dis- 
tance you have covered since 1935, Mr. Patterson. 

Are there any further questions from the committee ? 

Mr. Doyle. Mr. Chairman, I think perhaps I want to ask one more 
question. I want to state to tlie witness the background of this short 
question is that in my congressional district I have many thousand 
American citizens who are Negroes; in my book, a grand bunch of 
people, and I think some of the other members of this committee and 
many Members of Congress have American Negro citizens in their con- 
gressional districts. In view of your answer to my questions a few 
minutes ago, that the Communist Party never did anything to raise the 
level of living economically or politically for the American Negro, 
have you any suggestion or advice to this committee as a congressional 
committee as to how we can get that fact across to the American Negi-o ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes, I have. 

Mr. Doyle. Wlio is presently being misled by the Communist Party 
even yet ? 

Mr. Patterson. Yes, and I thank you very much for asking me this 
question. I have been wanting to have the opportunity to speak to the 
committee a long time. In fact, I made three trips in your territory, 
California, and I am amazed to see the improvements of the condi- 
tions that the Negro has in the Los Angeles area and the Frisco area. 
In fact, I was there last summer. 

My wife, who has never been a member of the Communist Party, 
she was amazed in the improvement of the condition of the Negro in 
California. I do not want to take up too much of your time, but I 
would like to cite a little incident in Frisco. I happened to be in 
Frisco, and I saw people from all parts of the Southern States — Texas, 
Louisiana, and the Negro, too — and it is amazing how they all are get- 
ting along together. 

Now, I believe — not believe, I know — that there is tremendous 
progress being made in the United States in regard to solving what we 
call the race problem. I could take my home county, Wayne County, 
N. C. I was there a few years ago, and you would be surprised to know 
the achievements and the advancement of the Negro and the growing 
understanding and cooperation between the two races, and that is 
done because of enlightenment and education, and here is where the 
church can play a great role — and it is — Congress is doing a great job, 
Government is doing a great job, and I think with more education of 
both groups, popularizing that education — I mean popularizing the 
achievements, and less talk about condemning everything, that that is 
the best way, and I believe that we are on that road, and, in conclusion, 
I want to say at the time that I was active in the Communist Party 
I was definitely convinced that nobody in the world could solve the 
problems of the American Negro but the Communist Party, and I am 
so grateful and thankful since that time that I see that in the United 
States we have capable people that are not only giving lip service to 
solving this issue, but they are actually doing it, and you can just look 
right out the window, Washington, D. C. — and see for yourself. I do 
not need to say any more. You don't need a revolution to do that. You 
didn't need a picket line. You did not need to steal the atom bomb to 
do that, but we did it in the American way. 

Mr. Doyle. I hope that when you come to California again I may 
know long enough in advance so that I can plan that you can help 



4134 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

inform and educate and interpret to many of the thousands in L#os 
Angeles Count}^ of the American Negro that I know. 

Mr. Pattersox. Yes, sir ; I would be glad to. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Patterson, as to your closing statement, I wish 
the House provided us enough funds to make several million copies of 
it and drop them behind the Curtain. Unfortunately, they do not. 
However, I do want to say on behalf of the committee that we are 
grateful to you for your cooperation during the period of your previ- 
ous interrogation and also today. 

Again, the committee and the Congress and the American people 
know what they do about communism today and its operations due to 
the fact that former Communists are willing to come forward and do 
a very onerous and disagi'eeable chore in testifying as to the extent 
and nature and objectives of the party as of the period of their mem- 
bership. We get no information from fifth-amendment witnesses. 
They add nothing to the knowledge of the committee nor of the Con- 
gress. With the thanks of the committee, you are excused, Mr. 
Patterson. 

Mr. Counsel, the committee will take a recess for 10 minutes. 

(Whereupon, at 3: 35 p. m., the hearing was recessed, to reconvene 
at 3:45 p. m.) 

(Whereupon, at 3 : 50 p. m., the hearing was reconvened, Representa- 
tive Clyde Doyle having left the hearing room during the recess. ) 

Mr. Jackson. The committee will be in order. 

Are you ready to proceed, Mr. Counsel ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Call your next witness, please. 

Mr. Tavenner. Rev. Joseph Nowak, will you come forward, please, 
sir? 

Mr. Jackson. Will you raise your right hand, sir? Do you sol- 
emnly swear in the testimony you are about to give before this sub- 
committee to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, 
so help you God ? 

Mr. NowAK. I do. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well. 

TESTIMONY OF JOSEPH S. NOWAK 

Mr. Tavenner. You are Rev. Joseph S. Nowak ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right, sir. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. Will you spell your last name, please? 

Mr. Nowak. N-o-w-a-k. 

Mr. Tavenner. I notice you are not accompanied by counsel. 

Mr. NowAK. No, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you desire counsel ? 

Mr. Nowak. If you do not mind, I came here to tell truth and noth- 
ing but the truth, so I hope with that kind of evidence I need no 
lawyer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Very well, sir. 

When and where were you born, Reverend Nowak ? 

Mr. Nowak. I was born in Lwow, Poland. It was Austria then, 
on October 17, 1903. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell the names of the places, please ? 



COIVO'TUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4135 

Mr. NowAK. L-w-o-w, Lwow, Poland. It used to be Poland. It is 
not Poland any more. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is it now ? 

Mr. NowAK. Soviet Union. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you come to this country, Reverend 
Nowak? 

Mr. NowAK. My parents, or rather, my father came first, and then 
my mother followed when he got his job. My mother brought me 
over in June of 1906. 

Mr. Taivenner. Are you a naturalized American citizen ? 

Mr. NowAK. Through my father's citizenship papers I am, sir. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. What is your occupation, please? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, social worker and minister. 

Mr. TA%'EN]srER. Will you tell the committee, please, what your for- 
mal educational training has been ? 

Mr. NowAK. I think so. Baltimore City College, which used to be 
high school in Baltimore City, graduate 1921. Then I went to work 
and did not go back to college until 1928, Johns Hopkins University, 
bachelor of arts in 1932. Then in 1935 bachelor of divinity at the 
Union Theological Seminary, New York City. 

Mr. TA%'i:]srNER. Will you tell the committee, please, what assign- 
ments you have had since the completion of your educational training? 

Mr. NowAK. Yes. In general from 1934, that is, the year before 
my graduation, till 1942 I was in charge of a small mission, St. Paul's 
Presbyterian Church in the city of Baltimore, Md. By the end of 
1942 the mission was dissolved, and then I held a pastorate in Chicago 
in 1943—14, minister of Portage Park Presbyterian Church in Chicago. 
Then from 1944, after a very short stay of several weeks, practically at 
the Association House, Presbyterian Settlement House in Chicago, I 
became adult education director of the University of Chicago 
settlement. 

From 1944 until 1950 I received another appointment from the 
Presbyterian Church to the Mountaineer Mining Mission around 
Morgantown, W. Va., from where in 1951 I was called to Detroit to 
Dodge Community House, where I resigned as of January 1, 1953. 

Since then I had occasional jobs, the last one being at the YMCA, 
Downtown YIVICA, in Detroit — whether I am or have been, I do not 
know yet — desk clerk at the Downtown Y in Detroit. 

Mr. Jackson. Just a moment, Mr. Counsel. Would you explain? 
You say you have been ; you do not know whether you are any longer. 
What is the situation ? 

Mr. NowAK. I do not know how to put it, because 24 hours ago I 
was sure I had it, but now, if there is an appropriate time for it, I will 
probably try to explain. In other words, I have caused quite a bit 
of publicity to the YMCA, and therefore, while I have not been offi- 
cially laid off, I was made to understand that the situation is very 
unpleasant, and it is up to me to make a decision, but the final decision 
still rests in the hands of the metropolitan secretary, who can fire if 
he wants to. 
Mr. Walter. Up to you to make a decision ; is that what you said ? 
Mr. NowAK. Yes. 

(Representative Bernard W. Kearney left the hearing room at this 
point. ) 



4136 COMIMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Walter. Was the innuendo that if you did not refuse to testify, 
you were going to lose your job? 

Mr. NowAK. It was not put that way. 

Mr. Walter. Nobody had better ever do that to a witness in this 
committee, or they will find themselves in more trouble than they can 
imagine can happen to any one person. 

Mr. NowAK. Mr. Congressman, if you do not mind if I say this one 
thing, please, I am not implying that they made any innuendoes, but 
they figured I got them into unfavorable publicity and therefore, 
well, they did not want to have any more unfavorable publicity. I 
can see their argument pretty clearly, but that is the situation, sir. 

Mr. Walter. No attempt was made to influence you not to testify ? 

Mr. NowAK. Oh, no ; I would not say that. 

Mr. Walter. All right. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Ta\tenner. I think it is only fair to the witness that everyone 
reserve their opinion about you until they have heard your testimony. 

Mr. NowAK. Well, it is bad publicity anyway. 

Mr. Tavenner. Isn't that fair ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is what I would feel. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Reverend Nowak, you appeared as a witness before 
an executive session of the committee on the 22d day of December 
1953. 

Mr. NowAK. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. At which time, in answer to a question as to whether 
you had ever been a member of the Communist Party, you replied 
that you had not. 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. TA^T.NNER. Is it true that at a subsequent time you voluntarily 
advised an investigator of this committee that your denial of Com- 
munist Party membership was not truthful? 

Mr. NowAK. That is true, sir. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. And that your conscience compelled you to correct 
your testimony? 

Mr. NowAK. That is true, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was any promise made, either directly or indirectly, 
by the investigator, any member of the staff of the Committee on Un- 
American Activities, or any member of the committee — that is, directly 
or indirectly, either in the nature of affording immunity or offering 
any reward or promise of any character in the event you would cor- 
rect your testimony ? 

Mr. NowAK. None whatsoever, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. I would like to give you the opportunity, if you 
desire to take advantage of it, to make any statement you desire re- 
garding the reasons for your desire to change your testimony in that 
respect. 

Mr. Now^\K. Well, of course the main reason was probably this, 
that after I have given false testimony on 22d of December, I knew 
that it was not true, and I felt bad and was afraid, but the second 
more important thing is this, Mr. Tavenner: For 8 years I have been 
trying to dodge the fact that I did belong to the party, and I thought 
I buried the whole memory of it, and I Imew I had been one, and that 
blamed thing just haunted me all the time. That probably may ex- 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4137 

plain even some of my actions in the last 8 years because, though I was 
pretty sure nobody knew, at the same time I knew that I was one, 
and finally it got to the point where I could not live it myself. I had 
to tell or else be a fool or a crazy nut or something like that, so I did 
tell, and it relieved me quite a bit, sir. 

Now, would that sound intelligible? 

Mr. Tavenner, Yes, sir ; I think that is easy to understand. 
(Representative Clyde Doyle returned to the hearing room at this 
point.) 

Mr. Tavenner. It is easy to understand that you would want to 
correct a misstatement. You say you have been a member of the Com- 
munist Party? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. "Where and when did you become a member? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I became a member in Chicago in 1946 in the 
month of May, and I sneaked out of it, let us put it that way, some 
time early in the fall. 

Mr. TA-\rENNER. Of the same year? 

Mr, NowAK. Of the same year. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you had any connection with the Communist 
Party since that time? 

Mr. NowAK. As a party organization; no. I have seen the indi- 
viduals because I was involved in the union organizing, and I have 
seen some of these people. 

Mr. Tavenner. But you have taken no part in any Communist 
Party activity since the fall of the same year in which you joined the 
Communist Party? 

Mr. NoWAK. No, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. I will ask you a little later about the circumstances 
under which you left the Communist Party. 

Mr. NowAK. All right, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner, Were you a member of the Communist Party while 
you were on your assignment in Baltimore? 

Mr. NowAK. No, sir ; I was not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Although you were not a member of the Commu- 
nist Party while you were in Baltimore, did you collaborate with 
functionaries of the Communist Party while you were there 

Mr, NowAK. I worked together 

Mr, Taa^nner. And worked with the Communist Party ? 

Mr, NowAK, I worked together with them ; yes, 

Mr, Walter, Knowingly? 

Mr, Nowak. As an official of the American League [Against War 
and Fascism] ; yes, and also knowingly. I knew that they were offi- 
cials in the party. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you continue in that relationship with officials 
of the Communist Party during the entire period after your gradua- 
tion from the Union Theological Seminary until you left Baltimore 
in 1942? 

Mr. NowAK. I would say I was actively — I worked with them as 
long as American League Against War and Fascism existed. When 
the whole thing disintegrated, well, there was nothing else to be done 
for the American League, and there was no collaboration. 

Mr, Tavenner, Did you work with the Communist Party in any 
way prior to your coming to Baltimore in 1935 ? 



4138 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. NowAK. No, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Before coming to Baltimore in 1935 had you come 
to any conclusion in your own mind as to what you would do if you 
had the opportunity to work with the Communist Party? 

Mr. NowAK. Do you mind if I say it in a few more words, probably, 
than you expect ? I believed at that time in the theory of the united 
front. I believed in the so-called anti-Fascist program of the Ameri- 
can League Against War ond Fascism, which included open collabo- 
ration with the Communist Party as one of the constituent groups of 
the united front. I believed in it, and therefore I worked with any 
group which would be willing to work with the American League. 
Does that answer what you want from the question ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you familiar with Marxian principles and 
the doctrines of the Communist Party before you arrived in Balti- 
more ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, in theory, yes, because there were books available, 
and we did study, for example, in the Seminary a course which was 
Christian ethics something or other, in which we studied various 
branches and kinds of socialism, and we devoted quite a bit of time 
to the theory of orthodox Marxism, Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin. 

Mr. Walter. And where was that? 

Mr. NowAK. At the Union Theological Seminary. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please 

Mr. Scherer. May I interrupt just a moment, Mr. Chairman? 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Scherer. Was Harry Ward one of your professors ? 

Mr. Nowak. Sure. 

Mr. Tavenner. Would you tell the committee what your attitude 
was and your viewpoint was toward working -svith the Communist 
Party after having acquired a knowledge of Communist Party doc- 
trine as you have described ? 

Mr. NowAK. Let us see what you mean by this question. Do you 
mind of repeating it or putting it around so 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes. I want to know whether or not before you 
came to Baltimore you had any preconceived ideas on your own part 
as to what you should do about working with the Communist Party 
in any of its projects. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Counsel, I think I get the idea. May I rephrase 
your question for you ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. How does it happen. Reverend Nowak, that a man 
who had just graduated or who was about to graduate and who had 
dedicated his life to the service of God, gets linked up with an organi- 
zation knowingly which was working toward the complete destruction 
of Christian ethics ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, Mr. Jackson, it is not as easy as that, and it 
surely was not as easy as that in 193.5. There were two lines, two 
reasons for my working together, and that is, if I chanced to work 
with the Communist Party, if I chanced to meet them in my plans — 
in the first place, there was the danger of fascism, and we were going 
to fight fascism, and also do something about the unemployment situ- 
ation in America, possibly, seeing all the unemployment, things like 
that, where Christian ethics does not agree with the so-called ethic of 
the society that we were living in. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4139 

Therefore, there were points which I believed in common between 
the ethics of communism and the ethics of Christianity. That is 
point No. 1. 

Point No. 2, we were coming to this conclusion — I can speak for 
myself, but I know we discussed it among the students — that the 
great world depression was going to wind up eventually in the struggle 
of classes in which the working class or the masses, as we believed, 
would array itself against the upper classes, the bourgeoisie, and there 
would be what you may call a revolution. We believed that this 
movement which we called communism was going to lead and head 
up the masses and that the church is not going to be able to hold 
them back because the church in the period of unemployment, in the 
period of stress, is not taking the part of the common people. There- 
fore it is up to those individuals who believed in the Christian ethics 
of the New Testament to go out on their own and identify themselves 
with the masses so that if and when such things should happen, when 
the church would be disowned by the masses, there would be those 
Christian individuals who were part of the masses who could then 
show that they as Christians did not abandon those masses, but stayed 
with them and helped to bring the new order. 

Mr. Jackson. You were going to use the Communist Party ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, yes. 

Mr. Jackson. That is not an uncommon mistake. A lot of other 
people have made the same one. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. If I understand you correctly, you were expecting 
that capitalism and our form of government would perish and that 
communism would survive ; is that what you 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I would not equally say capitalist system and 
our form of government, because forms of government can survive 
while their contents may be different, and after all, we were not such 
a wonderful theoretician that we provided for every possibility in 
the future, but we were firmly believing that there was going to be 
a change, and in that change we sympathized with the masses and 
demands of the workers for the organized labor and things like that 
that would stand with them and by them, firmly believing that we 
were doing Christian duty and at the same time saving ultimately 
what would be called church from tremendous defeat to come. Well, 
let us put it that way. 

Mr. Tavenner. How could you expect the church to resist tre- 
mendous defeat if the Communist Party, with its beliefs regarding the 
church, was the dominant power? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, hindsight is better than foresight, you see. We 
believed that the changes were coming and, according to the Christian 
ethic, those changes were justified, and therefore that there would be 
somebody to witness for religion over in the camp of the masses, 
let us put it that way. 

Mr. ScHERER. Is that from a Harry Ward talk? 

Mr. NowAK. That is not the exact words, but I know that most of 
these ideas would come out of the courses and discussions among the 
students, that there has to be some kind of definite action on the part 
of these groups of masses. You see, it was not as clear to me as 
right here at the table, but we believed in that thing, and we got it 
from our school classes. 

46914— 54— pt. 3 4 



4140 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Jackson. How jrenerally accepted was that thesis at Union 
Theological Seminary during the period of time you were a student? 

Mr, NowAK. I think just a small gi'oup believed in it. 

Mr. Jackson. A minority, a small minority of the entire student 
body? 

Mr. Nowak. Yes ; small minority would have reached that point. 

Mr. Ta\-enner. Well, was it those beliefs and those views that you 
have just expressed which led you into cooperation with the Commu- 
nist Party when the opportunity afforded itself in Baltimore? 

Mr. Nowak. I would say so. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wlien clid you begin your work in Baltimore? 

Mr. Nowak. I began it the second week of September 1934. 

Mr. Tavenner. During that period of time you were still enrolled 
in the Union Theological Seminary ? 

Mr. Nowak. Yes ; that is right. 

Mr. Ta%t:nner. Wliere you received your degree in May of 1935 ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. So you devoted full time to Baltimore some time 
after May 1935 ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you meet a person by the name of Mr. Earl 
Reno in Baltimore ? 

Mr. Nowak. I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did he use that name at that time? 

Mr. Nowak. No. He was Earl Dixon. 

Mr. Tavenner. What position did Earl Dixon hold in the Commu- 
nist Party? 

Mr. Nowak. He was the party organizer for Baltimore. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was he an open party member? That is, was it 
known publicly that he was the organizer for the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was any effort made by the Communist Party or 
by Mr. Dixon to conceal from anyone the fact that he was a Commu- 
nist Party organizer ? 

Mr. Nowak. Not to my knowledge. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you acquainted with Reverend Hutchison? 

Mr. Nowak. I imagine. We went through the seminary. 

Mr. Taa'enner. Rev. John A. Hutchison. 

Mr. Nowak. Yes; we were through the seminary together. 

Mr. Tavenner. He came to the city of Baltimore from the same 
class ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. As your class? 

Mr. Nowak. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. At Union Theological Seminary ? 

Mr. Nowak. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, whether you 
and Reverend Hutchison in August of 1935 went to the Communist 
Party headquarters in Baltimore and talked to Mr. Earl Dixon. 

Mr. Nowak. It was around the end of August that we were in the 
Communist Party headquarters. 

Mr. Tavenner. To whom do you refer when you say "we" ? 

Mr. Nowak. Jack and I, or Rev. John A. Hutchison. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4141 

Mr. Tavenner. Where was the Communist Party headquarters at 
that time? 

Mr. NowAK. 209 Soutli Bond Street, right below 

Mr. Tavenner. Was that the first time that you met Mr. Dixon? 

Mr. NowAK. That was the first or the second, because I know that 
we had a meeting on the corner of Orvin Street. That is one block 
east of Broadway and Baltimore Street — about that week wiien Jack 
was speaking and I was speaking, and Mary Himoff was speaking, so 
it might have been that I did meet Earl first on the street, but I know 
that I did go to the office. 

Mr. Tavenner. And the time that you are referring to when you 
met Earl on the street was about the same week when you had 

Mr. NowAK. It might have been a couple of days previous or a 
couple of days subsequent to that meeting in the party headquarters. 

Mr. Tavenner. In any event, not more tlian a week's difference 
either before or after you met him ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is about it, yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. In the Communist Party headquarters? 

Mr. NowAK. That is about it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall seeing any other person or persons in 
the Communist Party headquarters when you and Reverend Hutchi- 
son went there and talked to Mr. Dixon in August of 1935 ? 

Mr. NoWAK. I can remember two people, Mary Himoff, Earl 
Dixon's wife, and Leonard Patterson. 

Mr. Tavenner. Both of them were there ? 

Mr. Nowak. They were on the premises. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, just what the 
nature of your conversation was with Mr. Dixon at that time ? 

Mr. Nowak. Well, we were probably full of enthusiasm about the 
activities of the Ethiopian League, because let me just put in one bit 
of information which will kind of round it out : As far as I can recol- 
lect, the first person who told me about the Ethiopian [Defense] 
Committee was a fellow by the name of Walter Potrzucki. He was a 
Polish tailor. His wife happened to attend the church where I was 
the minister. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell the last name, please? 

Mr. Nowak. P-o-t-r-z-u-c-k-i. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you learn whether or not he was a member of 
the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Nowak. Well, he was like the village fool. Everybody in the 
Polish colony knew he was a Communist. I have no documentary 
evidence, but everybody called him that, and then he came to me full 
of enthusiasm and asked me to go to a meeting of the Ethiopian 
[Defense] Committee, and that was an evening in the middle of the 
week, and I went with him to a meeting on East Baltimore Street in 
one of those lodge halls about 1100 East Baltimore. There were about 
a dozen people there. Then that same night — I would not know 
exactly whether that same night or following night I was already 
speaking on the street corners, I was so glad to get in on the band- 
wagon, and within 1 week I met the American League [Against War 
and Fascism] people, I met the party people, Ethiopian League 
people, all within the space of 1 short week which was about near 
the end of August of 1935. 



4142 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. A^Hien yoii went into the office of the headquarters of 
the Communist Party and met Mr. Dixon, did you tell him where you 
had come from, where you had had your training? 

]Mr. XowAK. I am sure I would have told him that, because we were 
kind of i)r()ud that we came from Union Theological [Seminary], and 
we were Harry Ward's boys. 

]\Ir. Tavennek. Do you recall whether you told him that you were 
Harry Ward's boys? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, if I did not tell him that first meeting, I must 
have told him the second meeting, but I know that I did tell him. 

Mr, Tavenner. Why did you tell him you were Harry Ward's boy ? 

Mr. NowAK. Because Harry Ward's boys were so active in the 
American League [Against vYar and Fascism] and in the work 
against fascism and against Italy, that they were proud of it and 
bragged about it. It was almost like an "open sesame," let us say, 
to the activities of the Ethiopian [Defense] Committee, an explana- 
tion why we were there. 

IVIr. Tavenner. What did you talk to Mr. Dixon about, you and 
Reverend Hutchison, if you can recall at this time? 

Mr. XowAK. Well, I cannot recall the actual contents of those words. 
It has been years ago, so now at this present moment I can only say 
that we must have talked about the campaign going on and w^here we 
can fit in. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. You were anxious to be of any assistance that you 
could? 

Mr. NowAK. I was anxious, and I am sure that Jack must have been 
also, interested and anxious. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall whether or not you met Leonard Pat- 
terson at that time in the headquarters ? 

Mr. NowAK. I met him around that time, and I know that pretty 
soon I worked with him on the Ethiopian [Defense] Committee. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall who told you to work with him on the 
Ethiopian Defense Committee? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, it might have been Dixon, because we met all 
within those few days, and I knew he was YCL representative, there- 
fore he nnist have been introduced to me. 

Mr. Tavenner. After you met Leonard Patterson or saw Leonard 
Patterson when you and Reverend Hutchison were at the Communist 
Pai'ty headquarters, when did you next see him? That is, Leonard 
Patterson. 

Mr. Nowak. It is hard to tell, probably within that week because 
w^e had meetings, street-corner meetings, and all the campaign was 
going very fast, and I know that witlnn 2 weeks at the most I must 
have been active at least 4 or 5 nights at various street-corner meetings. 

Mr. Tavenner. Well, when you saw^ Mr. Leonard Patterson the next 
day or the next week, whenever it was, were you and Reverend Hutch- 
ison together, or were you separate ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, all I remember, that both myself and Reverend 
Hutchison were in the party headquarters several times. I was there 
myself many more times because I lived close by, and I got to like Earl 
Dixon quite a bit as an individual, but I cannot put regular chronolog- 
ical order, that would be too far back for me to remember. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you and Reverend Hutchison talk with Leonard 
Patterson about the work of the Ethiopian Defense Committee 2 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4143 

Mr. NowAK. Yes. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere did that conversation take place? 

Mr. NowAK. There again, you see, their headquarters were in the 
■colored neighborhood in the lower part of northwest Baltimore. I 
know that we did meet over at the party headquarters, which is also 
in the center of a smaller Negro community in east Baltimore, so all 
I remember is that I was at both places. 

Mr. Tavenner. Was anything said by you or Reverend Hutchison 
or both of you to Leonard Patterson regarding the training that you 
had had in Marxian and Communist doctrine ? 

Mr, NowAK. I would not be surprised that it would be the first or 
second time that we would be bragging that we know our Marxism. 
We were proud that we knew the books, we knew the theory, and like 
youngsters would, were cocky about it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did he, that is, Leonard Patterson, attempt to 
explain Communist Party doctrine to you ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is true. 

Mr. Tavenner. And did you tell him you already knew ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, in these words, we simply let him know we knew 
the stuff as far as theory was concerned, because we did know it. 

Mr. Tavenner. What did you and Reverend Hutchison do in con- 
nection with the committee work, that is, of the Ethiopian Defense 
Committee? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, we did a lot of talking. We called the series — 
we worked out that strategy of series of neighborhood meetings. 

Mr. Tavenner. To whom do you refer when you say "we" ? 

Mr. NowAK, The committee — in other words, the heart of the com- 
mittee consisted of Sam Swerdloff, the executive secretary of the 
league, Leonard Patterson, representing the Ethiopian League, and 
other people who were more or less coming in into the committee. 
Then the two of us were a welcome addition as speakers, and our 
plans were to call mass meetings in each neighborhood, the details 
were worked out by people who knew the neighborhood better than 
we did, where we put out platforms — of course, we had to get police 
permit for that — got the lighting setup and setup streets like you 
would set them up for carnivals, give out leaflets in the whole neigh- 
borhood, go around the neighborhood with a loudspeaker and an- 
nounce the mass meeting to defend Ethiopia, and then at a given time 
we would stop, get up on the platform and start a series of speeches, 
and we had an attendance of anywhere from 400 to 2,000 people in 
at least 6 or 8 meetings within a very short time of about 3 or 4 weeks. 

Mr. Jackson. Did you know that the direction of these demonstra- 
tions was in the hands of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. NowAK. I would say at that time that I knew that the Com- 
munist Party was very active and were very active participants in the 
whole campaign. 

Mr. Jackson. This grew out of your personal discussions with mem- 
bers of the Communist Party, in some instances at least, relative to 
how the demonstrations were to be carried on ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, we relied on the people who knew more about it 
than we ourselves did. 

Mr. Jackson. Were those the Communists ? 

Mr. NowAK. In most cases they were. 

Mr. Jackson. Thank you. 



4144 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. How many sjieeches did you make in furthering the 
objectives of the Ethiopian Defense Committee? 

Mr. NowAK. Good Lord, I couldn't count it. For example, some 
niolits we made a sort of running flight from one corner to another. 
Then I would probably speak about 3 or 4 times that 1 night. 

Mr. Tavenxer. To whom do you refer when you say "we"? 

Mr. NowAK. Tlip active group in the Ethiopian [Defense] Com- 
mittee, which included American League [Against War and Fascism] 
people and Ethiopian League people who were managing the meetings 
and speeches. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you know whether Reverend Hutchison made 
any speeches in connection with the work of this committee? 

Mr. NowAK. He made several. 

Mr. Ta^-enner. Were you present when the speeches were made? 

Mr. NowAK. Sure, on the same platform. 

Mr. Tavenner. 1 ou may have told us how often j^ou and Reverend 
Hutchison discussed activities with Mr. Dixon, but I do not recall what 
y^ou said. 

Mr. NowAK. I would say that we both went there several times. I 
went there by myself much more often. 

Mr. TA^^ENNER. Well, what was your purpose in going? 

Mr. NowAK. Partly to discuss what had been done, partly to talk 
over the events of the day in the newspapers with someuocly who was 
sympathetic, and partly because I liked Earl, and I kind of had fun 
chewing the rag with him, listening to what he had done in Detroit, 
and all that sort of stuff. Frankly, I liked Earl very much. We be- 
came pals ; it was funny. I liked Sam Swerdloff very much. It seemed 
like within a week or so we were buddy-buddies, and it was strong 
personal feeling that I liked these guys. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you know whether Sam Swerdloff was a member 
of the Communist Party? 

IMr. Nowak. I woukl say I did, but don't try to ask me when I 
learned about it. I do not believe he would have denied it if I had 
asked him. 

Mr. Taa^nner. Have you seen Sam Swerdloff here today? 

Mr. NowAK. I did. He hasn't changed a heck of a lot. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you receive directions or instructions from Sam 
Swerdloff at any time as to the function that you should perform in 
any of these organizations? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, Mr. Tavenner, the chairman is usually some- 
thing like a rubber stamp, executive secretary is usually the active 
person. So I relied on Sam's judgment quite often and followed what 
he suggested, but it was more like a cooperative enterprise than any 
one person dictating, but Sam handled the details as an executive 
director of the league. 

Mr. Tavenner. We have learned that the American League Against 
War and Facism, at the instance of the Communist Party, sponsored 
a demonstration at the docking of the Geiinan battleship Emden. Do 
you recall that? 

Mr. NowAK. I recall some of it; yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you take part in it? 

Mr. NowAK. I did. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you discuss the matter with Mr. Dixon prior to 
your taking part in it? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4145 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I know that discussion was carried mostly 
through the executive secretary of the American League. 

Mr. Tavenner. That is Mr. Swerdloff ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. I know that I was active in it. I know 
that, for example, I went, and I got as a speaker Mr. Thurgood Mar- 
shall, who was at that time legal representative of the National Asso- 
ciation for the Advancement of Colored People. Why I was picked 
out, probably because I have known him, and he would have said yes 
to me. He might not have said yes to others. He was the main 
speaker. 

Mr. Tavenner. Just a moment. Are you doubtful whether he would 
have accepted from the head of the Communist Party in Baltimore? 

Mr. NowAK. I think he would have had sense enough to say no. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. He did not know, in fact, of the Communist con- 
nection with this demonstration, did he ? 

Mr. Nowak. I cannot tell other peoples minds. 

Mr. Tavenner. But as far as you know, did he know ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is again hard to tell because American League was 
being criticized more and more later as being controlled by the Com- 
munists, whether he felt that way in 1936 I could not tell you. 

Mr. Tavenner. At any rate, you were active in that demonstration ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. What part did you play in the actual demonstra- 
tion ? 

Mr. NowAK. I was on the sound truck and opened the meeting with 
an invocation. 

Mr. Tavenner. Reverend Hutchison — did Reverend Hutchison 
take any part in the demonstration? 

Mr. NowAK. I know he was on the platform. I cannot remember 
now whether he made a speech or rather read a set of resolutions to 
be adopted by the meeting. 

Mr. Tavenner. Who prepared the resolution? 

Mr. NowAK. At a meeting of the committee where Sam Swerdloff 
and others were present, and we prepared them. 

Mr. Tavenner, Is there anything else that you can recall about the 
presence of Reverend Hutchison at that demonstration ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I know this much, that Reverend Hutchison and 
I left the demonstration in the same car. Jack took me home and 
dropped me off at my home after the demonstration. 

Mr. Tavenner. You seem to express concern about the part that you 
played in that demonstration by giving the invocation. 

Mr. NowAK. Well, frankly I felt like a fool, even when I agreed 
at the meeting prior to the demonstration, at a meeting of the com- 
mittee, to take that part, because after all was said and done, I felt 
it was not appropriate to have a meeting of that kind started with 
a prayer, but I went along with the whole business. When I got 
through with it, I spoke to Earl and to others that I felt like a 
damned fool, and I know that I felt that way, that it was a foolish 
thing for me to do, not so much being active to it as rather sticking 
prayer right into that kind of a meeting. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were there any arrests made at that demonstra- 
tion? 

Mr. NowAK. To be frank with you, I heard now that there were 
arrests. I do not remember. I remember police closing in on some 



4146 COIVCMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

kind of fracas on the outskirts of the crowd, and I remember the 
police closing in, but you see, I do not remember all those details. 
I might even say now I remember, which would not be quite fair 
because I might have heard somebody say that. 

Mr. Taa^nner. I only want what you, yourself, recall. 

Mr. NowAK. Yes, I understand. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, whether or not 
you discussed tactics with Mr. Dixon, that is. Communist Party tac- 
tics, how to carry out certain objectives, if you had such conversa- 
tions? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I discussed tactics as of a given date. I would 
not call it Communist Party tactics, but my relationship to both Earl 
and Sam would have been like somebody who did not know the traits, 
so he bowed to the judgment, not only bowed, but sought the judgment 
of those who were better trained than he was. But I know that I al- 
ways thought Earl knew so much more than I, that of course if he had 
suggested something, unless it was something violently against my 
convictions, I would agree to go along. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall having any such discussion with Earl 
Dixon in the presence of Swerdloff ? 

Mr. NowAK. There again I have never been in the party headquar- 
ters when Sam Swerdloff was present there. I have gone there on 
several occasions when Sam said, "Go over and see Earl." Of course, 
either Earl or his wife, Mary Himoff, were so-called bona fide mem- 
bers of the American League, on the committee. Mary Himoff was 
really in charge of women's work. 

"Go ahead and see Mary Himoff about it or see Earl about it," 
O. K., if I had time I would go in and see. 

Mr. Tavenner. Do you recall any occasion when Mr. Dixon at- 
tended your church ? 

]Mr. NowAK. I know Mr. Dixon and a whole gang of YCL'ers drop- 
ped into a New Year's party, and actually they did so with my knowl- 
edge. I knew they were coming from their party. Then our church 
was sort of a community center. Wlien we had parties, dances, 
lectures, young people's meetings — our church was used by certain 
groups like during the big maritime strike, various committees used 
it, and I know that Earl was to the New Year's party. I remember 
that distinctly, I do not remember, though I cannot say that it was 
not true, any other time that Earl Dixon would be in my church. 

Mr. Jackson, But you do have a clear recollection of the New 
Year's Eve party 

Mr. NowAK, Oh, yes, the gang came about 2 o'clock in the morning 
and danced with our own gang until about 3 : 30. 

Mr. Jackson. That is the occasion to which he testified here today. 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you at any time engage in any work in which 
the Communist Party was interested in the steel mills or in the sea- 
men's union? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I was active as an active volunteer, you might 
say, around the National Maritime Union headquarters with Pat 
Wlielan. Tlieir headquarters were also within my parish territory, 
and I dropjied in quite often. I was genuinely interested in the CIO 
organizing committee, and I was genuinely in contact with the CIO 
organizers, and in those early days before you had well molded, you 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4147 

may say, bureaucracy of the unions, most of the actual volunteer work 
was done either by the Communists or Communist sympathizers. 
Only later, after the unions began to grow stronger, did you have 
staffs and everything else that you have now, 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you aware of the Coinmunist Party interest 
and activity under Pat Whelan and the maritime strike? 

Mr. Now^'VK. I do not think you could escape it. 

Mr. Tavenner. Did you assist in any way in the strike, on the picket 
line or otherwise? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, there were not any big strikes of NMU except 
the first one where I did not take part in it while I was with Pat 
^Vhelan, so I was in no picket lines of the National Maritime Union. 
I was active in various unofficial committees organized to get people 
into the unions, and, of course, gave names, say, of specially Polish 
people, members of fraternal organizations who formed unofficial 
committees to organize the steelworkers. Their headquarters were 
downtown. There you saw all kinds of people, and, of course, every 
organizer would have known that Communists were active in organ- 
izing the unions. Every union organizer knew it. 

Mr. Tavenner. You have told the committee that you became a 
member of the Coimnunist Party in 1946, May, I think, of 1946. 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee why it is you were not 
a member of the Communist Party in Baltimore, though you later 
became a member in Chicago? 

Mr. NowAK. In Baltimore I do not think I felt any need or desire 
to be a member. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliy? 

Mr. NowAK. I was a united-front man, and I believe in collabora- 
tion of the Communists with the other left-wing groups, and when 
later this was impossible, I dropped the whole business and turned to 
studying and other things. 

Mr. Ta\'t:nner. Well, as a matter of fact, your work in Baltimore 
was so close to the Communist Party that it was virtually the same 
as though you were a member, was it not, other than the payment 
of dues ? 

Mr. NowAK. I would not say that. From the 1954 angle it may 
look that way, from the 1954 angle, but in 1935-36 you still had 
people believing in the united front, and I was doing the united 
front work. Let us put it that way. At the same time I had that 
belief that I mentioned in the beginning, if you identify yourself 
with the masses, which meant CIO organizations, labor unions. New 
Deal, then you would become one of that group. 

Mr. Jackson. Reverend Nowak, in doing the work within the 
united front as a non-Communist with knowledge of the Commu- 
nist influences in the united front, the practical effect was that you 
were doing the same type of work as those who were actually mem- 
bers of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. NowAK. In a great many cases, I agree with you that I would. 

Mr. Jackson. And that your value to the Communist Party was 
enhanced in many instances by virtue of the fact that you did not 
carry a Communist Party card ? 

Mr. Nowak. That is right. 



4148 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. What led you to become a dues-paying member of 
the Communist Party in 1946 ? 

]\Ir. NowAK. Well^ I was at that time active in the United Office 
and Professional Workers Union. We were organizing social work- 
ers in Chicago. We tried very hard to organize workers in especially 
the group work field which is a special branch of social work, and 
includes almost all adult education workers and workers in various 
settlements. The union was left-wing dominated. I got involved in 
union politics. I did not like the rise of the right-wing CIO activi- 
ties. Up to that time there was a sort of truce between the two wings, 
and under persuasion, against my better judgment, I agreed to join 
the party. I joined and belonged to the branch of the United Office' 
and Professional Workers, which was mostly composed of the small 
group of functionaries of the union which met on Michigan Avenue 
near Walton in Chicago. As I kept attending the meetings, most 
of the meetings were devoted to the denunciation of Browder and 
Browderism. Well, the other part of the discussion was devoted to 
the so-called male chauvinism. 

The majority of the members were women, and they were mostly 
wasting their time talking that w-e still have male chauvinism in the 
country, even within the party — in other words, the men are the 
bosses, and the women are nothing but the executors of the wills of 
the men. Then I began to wonder wdiether really the unions were 
going to win anything from the leftwing movement as it was then, 
so I dropped out without getting to any arguments or fights, simply 
stopped paying dues, and I w^anted to forget my activity there. 

Mr. Ta-s^nner. How many meetings do you think you attended 
of the Communist Party? 

Mr. NowAK. Let me see. I was a member there about 4 months, a 
meeting was every other week. At first I attended fairly religiously, 
I would say about 5 to 7 meetings. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then when you dropped out of the Communist 
Party at that time, you have remained out of it? 

Mr. NowAK. I have remained out of the party. 

Mr. Tavenner. You had hoped to forget it ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, I hoped to, but I evidently didn't forget it, so 
I had to get rid of it right now by telling you about it. You see, Mr. 
Chairman, here is a thing I might add : It is easier to get into a thing 
than to get out of it, and even when I w^as in that party I had ac- 
quired a certain reputation among the union people and the Polish 
element that I was sort of an unofficial, well, what would you say, 
leftwinger, but nobody, at least I thought nobody knew that I was a 
party member because none of the people of Polish extraction ex- 
cept one person belonged to this United Office and Professional Office 
Workers Union that we were in, so, therefore, as long as I stayed in 
Chicago, the people still looked up to me as one of the representatives, 
"That's Mr. Nowak," and incidentally, I might as well repeat one 
thing out of turn here, but you don't mind if I say it, because I told 
it to the committee, and I might as well repeat it. 

You know, as I told you, I was an organizer for the International 
Workers' Order in Chicago. I was a bum organizer. I was too re- 
ligious for everything else. But still people in Chicago knew about 
it, and, brother, trying to forget, I went to West Virginia trying to 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4149 

forget it, went to Detroit and tried to forget it, and it caught up with 
me. That is about all I can tell you. 

Mr. Tavenner. During the course of the testimony of Reverend 
Hutchison, reference was made by him to the receipt of a letter from 
you, which I believe was put in the record. 

Mr. NowAK. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. That was after you had testified before this com- 
mittee in December of 1953, was it not? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right, sir. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee about that? I think 
since the matter has been mentioned, we should have a full explana- 
tion of it. 

Mr. NowAK. You see, my hearing was held the 22d of December. 
I think it was about the middle or around the 11th or 15th of January 
that I received a letter from Reverend Hutchison — I call him Jack 
because I remember him so well. In that letter he expressed a cer- 
tain amount of concern, because he said he was going to be called to 
the hearings. He suggested we might get together and talk the 
things over before the hearing and wanted an answer. It was a nice 
friendly letter, but I was scared, and I wanted to forget about the 
whole thing. I did not answer. Later, about the 24th, 25th, or 26th 
of February, toward the end of February, I got a phone call from 
Reverend Hutchison, long distance call to my place of work at the 
YMCA, asking me certain questions, specifically the question raised 
by the testimony of Earl Reno, that we two came down to the party 
headquarters. 

I told Reverend Hutchison on the phone I could not answer such 
things on the phone, so he said he would write a letter, and he wrote 
me a letter which I received, I think, around the 1st day of March, 
maybe, or — no, about the 26th of March possibly. I mean about the 
28th of February. In this letter he asked me to write him something 
refuting that charge by Earl Dixon. I was worried. I was in deep 
enough as it was, and then I did something which wasn't very smart. 
I went to Dr. Neigh with the letter, and I want you gentlemen to know 
that Dr. Neigh did not know about my background, in Chicago. He 
still thought it was an escapade of years ago and didn't worry about 
it very much. 

Mr. Walter. Who is Dr. Neigh. 

Mr. Nowak. Dr. Neigh is a member of the executive of the Michi- 
gan Synod of the Presbyterian Church. I showed him the letter, and 
he looked it over, probably he didn't even read it. He said, "Joe, I 
wouldn't be worried. Write him the letter." 

So I said O. K., I would write Jack a letter, but that I would send 
him a copy. I went home and stayed for about a weekend without 
writing that letter. I still didn't like it. Mostly I was afraid, let 
us not put it on my conscience in honesty. I was afraid. Finally 
I said, "I will write it." I wrote the letter to Reverend Hutchison and 
sent 1 copy to Dr. Neigh and kept 1 copy myself. 

Mr. Jackson. Let me interrupt at that point. Of what were you 
afraid ? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, here is the point : I knew perfectly well that I 
lied to you in September — in December. I still followed the old 
policy of forgetting about 1946 and any reference to my experience 
in Chicago I tried to forget it by almost digging my head in sand 



4150 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES EST THE BALTIMORE AREA 

like an ostrich, and here come up those questions which require me 
to face the facts. 

Mr. Jackson. In other words, you were afraid that anything you 
miglit put in a letter which would satisfy the request would in fact 
not be the truth? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Walter. Did Dr. Hutchison indicate that he wanted you to 
tell something that wasn't true ? 

Mr. NowAK. He wouldn't put that in a letter. 

Mr. "Walter. Over the telephone did he indicate that? 

Mr. NowAK. He wouldn't put that in the telephone either, but the 
very fact of denial that we ever met Earl Reno in the party office 
was untrue. 

Mr. Doyle. May I ask, Mr. Chairman, where the letter is? 

Mr, Jackson. The letters have been incorporated into the record. 

Mr. Doyle. I see. I w^as going to suggest that as the best thing by 
itself. 

Mr. Jackson. They were incorporated into the executive testimony. 

Mr. Doyle. I see. 

Mr. Jackson. Of Eeverend Nowak. 

Mr. NowAK. Did I make that story clear? So therefore I Imew 
that when I wrote the letter the way I did write it — I can't blame 
anybody for writing the letter. After all, each one should be re- 
sponsible for his own acts. I did lie indirectly or directly, which- 
ever way you want to say it, because I supported the contention that 
there was no such meeting. 

Mr. Jackson. Wliere as a matter of fact you knew perfectly well 
that there had been such a meeting. 

Mr. NowAK. I knew there had been a meeting. I did not remember 
all the details, but the fact is, I knew that we had a meeting or more 
than one meeting. We were friendly, we met, and we talked and did 
things. It is no use to deny it. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

]\Ir. Ta\^nner. Do you know whether Reverend Hutchison had 
written a letter to Dr. Neigh before or about the same time he wrote 
you? 

Mr. NowAK. That I wouldn't know, sir. That I would not know. 

Mr. Tavenner. I think that is all. Reverend Nowak, that I desire to 
ask you. 

Mr. NowAK. I thank you. 

Mr. Jackson. Have you completed your examination, Mr. Counsel ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. Mr. Walter. 

Mr. Walter. No questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. In asking you this question, Mr. Nowak, I wish to state 
I haven't had the benefit of reading your testimony, so I don't know 
what is in it, but as I understand it from Mr. Walter, and you testified 
today, that you were not a member of the Communist Party until you 
reached Chicago, subsequent to your residence in Baltimore, is that 
correct ? 

Mr. Nowak. Well, I don't know what the understanding would have 
been. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4151 

Mr. Doyle. Well, was that your testimony, that you were not a 
member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. NowAK. That is right ; that is right. 

Mr. Doyle. Until a few years later in Chicago. 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Doyle. Now, at Baltimore have you personal knowledge of 
whether or not Reverend Hutchison was a member of the Com- 
munist Party while he was in Baltimore ? 

Mr. NowAK. I could not tell, sir. 

Mr. Doyle. Well, at Baltimore did you and he ever sit together, in 
your personal knowledge, where it was a closed Communist cell 
meeting ^ 

Mr. NowAK. Well, we — I did attend one meeting which was a meet- 
ing of the Communist fraction. By "fraction" they mean a group in- 
volved in a given project. That was a meeting held in a studio in 
1936, in a studio of Sam Swerdloff, who had with his wife a nice studio. 
Sam Swerdloff was an artist. I hope he still is an artist. That room 
was an old room over an old barn in the back of some old residences on 
Franklin Street. It was a room about forty-some feet long and about 
thirty-some feet wide. In Baltimore that is a big room. Maybe 
elsewhere it wouldn't be. Then we had a bunch of people, maybe 
about 15 or 20 people. When I came in — now I came in myself, how 
I stumbled on it, I must have been invited because otherwise we don't 
come to those meetings. 

Pat Whelan was haranguing the whole gang that they weren't 
living up to their Communist requirements and everything else, and 
he was whipping up the spirit of the group. That was the only 
meeting to my knowledge that I attended of any closed Communist 
group by itself. 

Mr. Doyle. And was Reverend Hutchison there with you? 

Mr. NowAK. He was in the room, and there was Sam Swerdloff and 
his wife, and there were a number of people from the American 
League [Against War and Fascism]. 

Mr. Doyle. What was the subject of the discussion, if any, other 

than you have just said that 

Mr. NowAK. Well, it was a pep talk, and then we listened to some 
Russian music, drank a little bit, ate a little bit, and that was about 
all. 

Mr. Doyle. Is this the same Sam of whom you, a few minutes ago, 
said, when counsel asked you whether or not he was a Communist, 
you said, "I don't know where I heard it?" 

Mr. NowAK. That is the same one, that is right. 
Mr. Doyle. I wrote down here the exact answer. Then in that 
testimony a few minutes ago your answer was based on hearsay, wasn't 
it ? You had no personal knowledge of whether or not Sam was then 
a Communist member, or did I understand your testimony? 

Mr. NowAK. Well, you know many things when you deal with peo- 
ple, and yet when you are put in the corner to state exactly time and 
date after many years, you couldn't do it. 

Mr. Doyle. Well, of course 

Mr. NowAK. That is why I say- 



Mr. Doyle. Of course for me, I don't want evidence based on 
heai^ay. 

Mr. NowAK. There vou are. 



4152 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Doylp:. I want facts, and I noticed your answer, which was, "I 
don't know wliere I lieard it." 

Mr. NowAK. That is right. 

Mr. Walter. About what? 

Mr. DoYLB. About -whether Sam was a Communist. 

Mr. Walter. Who is Sam? 

Mr. Doyle. I don't know. Was it the same Sam you now testify 
to? 

Mr. NowAK. Sam Swerdloff; yes. 

Mr. Jackson. I don't think there has been any question heretofore. 
I think at tlie conclusion of Reverend Hutchison's testimony the Chair 
went to great length to say that there had been no allegation made at 
any time during the course of this investigation of his testimony that 
he was at any time a member of the Communist Party. 

As I say, the Chair went to great lengths to put that on record, 
and it was so reported in the press. 

Mr. Doyle. Of course the purport of my question, not having heard 
your original testimony nor read your executive testimony, is to get 
the facts, whatever they are, not based on hearsay. Therefore I asked 
that question, not knowing in advance, of course, what your answer 
might be, but whatever the facts are. 

I think that is all from this witness. 

Mr. Jackson. Reverend Nowak, during the course of Reverenu 
Hutchison's testimony he testified that he had never met Earl Reno 
or Earl Dixon. Out of your personal knowledge of the circumstances 
surrounding the instances you have related, is that a true statement 
or not? 

Mr. NowAK. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Reverend Hutchison also testified that he had never 
been in Communist Party headquarters in Baltimore. Was that a 
t rue statement or not out of your own personal knowledge ? 

Mr. Nowak. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Reverend Hutchison testified during the course of his 
examination that he had never participated in the demonstration 
against the battle cruiser Emden; out of your own personal knowledge 
was that a true statement? 

Mr. Nowak. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Reverend Hutchison testified during the course of 
his examination that he had never met Leonard Patterson, the organ- 
izer for the Young Communist League. Out of your own personal 
knowledge was that a true statement? 

Mr. Nowak, No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Any further questions? 

Mr. Walter No questions. 

Mr. ScnERER. No. 

Mr. Jackson. Do you have any further questions ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson Reverend Nowak, I want to express to you the thanks 
of the committee for the cooperation you have given it during the 
course of this investigation. I know that your ordeal has been some- 
what compounded by the fact of the statements which were made 
originally in executive testimony and Avhich later developed to be 
false. I, for one, want to express the hope that the extent of your 
cooperation will betaken into consideration by the YMCA, the Young 
Men's Christian Association, when they consider what action might 
be taken with respect to your future employment. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4153 

It has been a very difficult ordeal for everyone concerned in this 
investigation, including the members of the committee. It has not 
been an easy task. Certainly if there is Christian charity, I am sure 
that it will be exercised by the YMCA in consideration of the services 
you have rendered the committee, the Congress of the United States, 
and the American people in giving your personal knowledge of the 
attempts to penetrate into groups and organizations in Baltimore by 
the Communist Party. 

If there are no further questions from committee or counsel, the 
witness is excused with the thanks of the committee. 

Do you have another witness ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Will you call him, please? 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Sam Swerdloff. 

Mr. Jackson. Will you raise your right hand, sir ? 

Do you solemnly swear in the testimony you are about to give before 
this subcommittee to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but 
the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Swerdloff. I do, sir. 

TESTIMONY OF SAM SWERDLOIT, ACCOMPANIED BY GERHARD 

VAN ARKEL, HIS COUNSEL 

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

Mr. Swerdloff. Sam Swerdloff. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you spell your last name? 

Mr. Swerdloff. S-w-e-r-d-1-o-f-f. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you accompanied by counsel ? 

Mr. Swerdloff. Yes, sir, I am. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel please identify himself for the record ? 

Mr. Van Arkel. My name is Gerhard, G-e-r-h-a-r-d, Van, V-a-n, 
Arkel, A-r-k-e-1. I am admitted to practice in the District of Colum- 
bia. I would like to request, Mr. Counsel, that the record show that 
Mr. Swerdloff is here pursuant to a subpena served on him on Febru- 
ary 27 by this committee. 

Mr. Jackson. It will be so indicated. 

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

Mr. Swerdloff. I was born in Edgerton, Wis., on September 1, 
1909. 

Mr. Tavenner. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Swerdloff. I conduct a public-relations agency in the city of 
New York. 

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

Mr. Swerdloff. Yes, sir. I graduated from high school in Madison 
Wis., and graduated also from the Colt School of Art in Madison, 
Wis., and completed 3% of attendance at the University of Wisconsin, 
also at Madison. 

Mr. Tavenner. In what year did you complete that work? 

Mr. S^VERDLOFF. About June of 1931. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, briefly what 
your record of employment has been since June 1931 ? 

Mr. Swerdloff. Well, I have, up to 1940 — my primary employment 
or my primary activity was that of a fine artist. I was a painter. 



4154 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

However, there were other part-time jobs that I did from time to 
time because in those years it was extremely difficuh to earn a living 
from the practice of my art — I mean from 1931 to 1940. I thought I 
made that clear. From 1940 on I engaged in the field of public rela- 
tions, being employed as a staff person for several years and then 
founding my own agency, about 1942, except for 2 years which I served 
in the United States Army. 

Mr. TA^'ENNER. Have you lived at any period of your life in Balti- 
more ? 

Mr. SwERDLOFF. Yes, sir. I came to Baltimore in September of 
1931. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you remain there ? 

Mr. SwERDLOFF. I remained there until some time in the fall of 
1946. It would be either October — 1936. rather, October or Sep- 
tember. 

Mr. Ta\^nner. Were you acquainted with Mr. Earl C. Reno, other- 
wise known as Earl Dixon, while you were in Baltimore ? 

Mr. SwERDLOFF. I will have to refuse to answer that question, sir ; or 
any similar questions on the basis that the answer might tend to in- 
criminate me. I would like to state, however, that I would waive my 
privilege if the committee were in any position to restrict the questions 
they ask me to matters involving my own activity purely and would 
not direct me to answer questions regarding the activities of other 
people who I believe to be decent and law-abiding citizens, and who 
would be subject to possible harrassment or difficulty if their names 
were brought into these proceedings. 

Mr. Walter. In other words, do I understand you to be making this 
proposition to the committee, that you will admit that you were a Com- 
munist yourself if the committee will agree not to ask you about other 
people that might have been associated with you in the Communist 
activities? 

Mr. Sa^tsrdloff. I will have to decline to answer that question, sir. 

Mr. Walter. You don't have to. 

Mr. Jackson. You do so decline? You are under no compulsion; 
you don't have to. 

Mr. Swerdloff. Would you repeat the question, sir? 

Mr. Van Arkel. Mr. Congressman, I wonder if I could state what 
I believe to be Mr. Swerdloff's position. 

Mr. Jackson. No, I believe we all understand Mr. Swerdloff's posi- 
tion. The committee of course is in no position to 

Mr. Saverdloff. I didn't get a chance to state — at the end of this I 
was interrupted, if I may : I say that I reluctantly revoke my privileges 
under the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Walter. I am sure you do it reluctantly ; I am sure of that. 

Mr. SwioRDLOFF. I didn't understand your question, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well ; you decline to answer the question that has 
been asked on the grounds of the fifth amendment? 

Mr. Swerdloff. That is right, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well. Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Were you assigned by Mr. Earl Dixon as the Com- 
munist Party representative to function in the organization known as 
the American League Against War and Fascism? 

Mr. Swerdloff. Could I consult my counsel for a moment, please? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4155 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

(At this point Mr. Swerdloff conferred with Mr. Van Arkel.) 

Mr. Swerdloff. I woukl decline to answer this question, invokinj^ 
the fifth amendment, but I would like to also raise another reason for 
declining to answer the question, and that is that I do not believe that 
the question involving the American League in 1935 or 1936 is actual- 
ly pertinent to the inquiry of this committee. 

Mr. Jackson. That, sir, of course is your opinion, and it does not 
constitute a legal reason for your declining to answer the question. 
However, your reliance upon the fifth amendment does, and that is in 
the record. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

(At this point Mr. Swerdloff conferred with Mr. Van Arkel.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Did Mr. Joseph S, Nowak, Kev. Joseph S. Nowak 
and Rev. John A. Hutchison serve on any committee of the organ- 
ization to which we just referred while you were its secretary? 

Mr. Swerdloff. I will decline to answer, sir, on the grounds that I 
have already stated. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, it appears to me that it is a waste 
of time for me to ask the witness any further questions. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Tavenner. Mr. Chairman, I do liave another' question or two. 

Mr. Jackson. Very well, 

Mr. Ta%^nner. Are you now a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Swerdloff. No, sir ; I am not. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you ever been a member of the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Swerdloff. I will have to refuse to answer the question on the 
basis of the fifth amendment. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Do you have any more, Mr. Counsel ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Scherer. 

Mr. Scherer. No. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Walter. 

Mr. Walter. No. 

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Doyle. 

Mr. Doyle. No questions. 

Mr. Jackson. The witness is excused. 

Mr. Scherer. I w^ill not be in Washington tomorrow, and I just 
want to make this observation in connection with this matter : 

It was in New York last spring, I believe, that Leonard Patterson 
testified before this committee the first time. It just happened that I 
was presiding at that particular session. It was at that time that 
Leonard Patterson told just incidentally to his main testimony about 
the two young ministers coming down from Union Theological Sem- 
inary to participate in Communist Party activities in Baltimore. 

Subsequent to that hearing the committee and I were criticized 
by Bishop Oxnam in my own town for even permitting a witness of 
the type of Mr. Patterson to testify. 

There was a great deal more said about it at that time, but I think 
I should make tliis observation at this point in this hearing. 



4156 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Jackson. Very well, and I thiiilv the Chair should also say that 
the investigative work which has been conducted on this matter has 
been of a very high order. 

With that, the committee will stand in adjournment until 10 : 30 
tomorrow morning. 

(Whereupon, at 5 : 10 p. m., the hearing was recessed until 10:30 
a. m., Friday, March 26, 1954.) 



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE 
BALTIMOEE AKEA— Part 3 



FRIDAY, MARCH 26, 1954 

United States House of Representatives, 

Subcommittee of the CoMMiiiiiiK 

ON Un- American Activities, 

Washington^ D. G. 

public hearing 

The subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities 
met, pursuant to recess, at 10 : 42 a. m., in the caucus room, 362 Old 
House Office Building, Hon. Donald L. Jackson presiding. 

Committee members present: Representatives Donald L. Jackson 
(presiding) and Francis E. Walter. 

Staff members present : Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., counsel ; George E. 
Cooper and Donald T. Appell, investigators ; and Riley D. Smith, Jr., 
acting for the clerk. 

Mr. Jackson. The committee will be in order. 

The subcommittee for the taking of testimony this morning con- 
sists of Messrs. Scherer and Walter, with Jackson acting chairman. 

The hearing this morning is a continuation of the committee's 
previous hearings into the extent, nature, and objectives of Commu- 
nist infiltration and penetration in the Baltimore, Md., area. 

Mr. Counsel, are you ready to proceed ? 

Mr. Tavenner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. Call your first witness, please. 

Mr. Ta\'enner. Mary Himoff , will you come forward, please ? 

Mr. Jackson. Mrs. Himoff, would you raise your right hand, 
please ? 

Do you solemnly swear in the testimony you are about to give before 
this subcommittee that you will tell the truth, the whole truth and 
nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mrs. Neff. I do. 

Mr. Jackson. Be seated, please. 

TESTIMONY OF MRS. MAEY HIMOFF NEFF, ACCOMPANIED BY HEE 

COUNSEL, JOSEPH FORER 

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

Mrs. Neff. Mary Himoff. 

Mr. Tavenner. Is that your present name ? 

Mrs. Neff. No. My present name is Mrs. Mary Neff. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you accompanied by counsel ? 

Mrs. Neff. I am. 

4157 



4158 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

Mr. Tavenner. Will counsel please identify himself for the record? 

Mr. FoRER. Joseph Forer, 711 14th Street NW., Washington, D. C. 

Mrs. Neff. I would like to make a statement before this committee. 

Mr. TA^^;NNER. If you will address your remarks to the chairman, 
he will consider that. 

Mr. Jackson. I am sorry. I didn't understand. 

Mrs. Neff. Mr. Chairman, I would like to make a statement before 
this committee. 

Mr. Jacksox. You may, in accordance with the rules of the com- 
mittee, submit a statement, which will be considered at the end of 
your testimony and may, by a majority yote of the subcommittee, be 
incorporated in the record. 

The Chair will be happy to receive your statement. 

Thank you. 

Proceed, Mr. Counsel. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, where you were 
born? 

Mrs. Neff. In Ukraine, Russia. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you come to this country ? 

Mrs. Neff. Some time in April or the beginning of May 1913. 

Mr. Tavenner. Are you a naturalized American citizen ? 

Mrs. Neff. I am. 

Mr. Tavenner. When and where were you naturalized ? 

Mrs. Neff. I'm a citizen by virtue of the fact that my father was 
naturalized in 1920. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where was he naturalized ? 

Mrs. Neff. In Bronx County Supreme Court, I believe. 

Mr. Tavenner. And what was your father's name ? 

Mrs. Neff. Abraham Himoff. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you tell the committee, please, briefly what 
3'our formal educational training has been? 

Mrs. Neff. I graduated from public schools in New York City; 
went through Hunter College High School and went to Hunter Col- 
lege for a few years. 

Mr. Tavenner. When did you last attend Hunter College? 

Mrs. Neff. Either 1928 or 1920. I'm not sure. 

Mr. Tavenner. ^Yliat is your present occupation ? 

Mrs. Neff. Housewife. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere do you reside? 

Mrs. Neff. Chicago, 111. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long have you lived in Chicago? 

Mrs. Neff. Oh, since September 1946. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you lived there continuously since September 
1946? 

Mrs. Neff. I have. 

Mr. Tavenner. Prior to 1946 where did you reside? 

Mrs. Neff. Bronx, N. Y. 

Mr. Tavenner. How long did you live at the Bronx, N. Y. ? 

Mrs. Neff. Since December — that address since December 1938 to 
about April or June or July 1946, just before I went to Chicago. 

Mr. Tavenner. What was your address at the Bronx ? 

Mrs. Neff. 563 Caldwell Avenue. 

Please take that out of my eyes. 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4159 

Mr. Walit.r. That is disconcerting. (Addressing photographers.) 
Take those pictures and then desist. 

Mr. Jackson. Proceed, Mr. CounseL 

Mr. Tavenner. Prior to June 1946 where did yon reside? 

Mrs. Neff. Prior to June 19 — — 

Mr. Tavexner. I beg your pardon. Prior to December 1938 where 
did you reside ? 

(At this point Mrs. Xeff conferred with Mr. Forer.) 

Mrs. Neff. Well, I returned to New York, in Manhattan, where my 
father and mother resided then, some time in May 1938, and they lived 
at the Manhattan address until December 1939, and I lived with them 
there until 1946. 

Mr. Tavenner. Will you raise your voice just a little higher? 
There is no amplification system here. 

Mrs. Neff. I am sorry. 

Well, before that, from about May 1938, I guess, to— now, these 
exact months may not be accurate 

Mr. Tavenner. I can understand. 

Mrs. Neff (continuing). To December 1938 I lived with my 
parents at their Manhattan address. 

Mr, Tavenner. And wdiat was that address? 

Mrs. Neff. I think it was East 18th Street, somewhere near Second 
Avenue. 

Mr. Tavenner. All right. 

Prior to May 1938 where did you live? 

Mrs. Neff. I think I was in Detroit. 

Mr. Ta\t:nner. For how long a period of time were you in Detroit? 

Mrs. NeSt. Well, I would say for about — as I say, again this is 
approximate — about 7 to 8 months, I think. 

Mr. Tavenner. Then some time around October or November 1937 
you went to Detroit? 

Mrs. Neff. That's right. 

Mr. Tavenner. Where did you live j)rior to the time you went to 
Detroit? 

Mrs. Neff. I lived in New York for a spell. 

Mr. Tavenner. What do you mean bv "a spell" ? 

Mrs. Neff. Well, about 4 or 5 months. 

(At this point Mrs. Neff conferred with Mr. Forer.) 

Mr. Tavenner. Then that means you went to New York at ap- 
proximately in May of 1937? 

Mrs. Neff. Let's see now — either the end of April or the beginning 
of May, I would say. 

Mr. Tavenner. Wliere did you live prior to going to New York at 
the end of April or the early part of May 1937 ? 

(At this point Mrs. Neff conferred with Mr. Forer.) 

Mrs. Neff. Baltimore, Md. 

Mr. Ta\t3nner. When did you go to Baltimore? 

Mrs. Neff. This is all 19 years ago. I don't know. February, 
March, April, May 1935 — some time around then. 

Mr. Tavenner. Some time between January and May of 1935 ? 

Mrs. Neff. Thirty-five. 

Mr. Tavenner. And did you live there continuously from that time 
until you went to New York in May 1937 ? 

Mrs. Neff. I think I did. 



4160 COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 

(At this point Mrs. Xeff conferred with IMr. Forer.) 

Mr. Tavexxer. Mrs. XelF, the committee has received testimony 
here — in fact, it was tlie testimony that w^as given yesterday in this 
hearing room — tliat in Auiriist of 10;'>5 Mr. Earl Dixon, whose real 
name was Mr. Earl Eeno, was Commnnist Partj^ organizer in Balti- 
more and was in the office of the Communist Party lieadquarters in 
Baltimore wlien two young ministers by the name of Rev. Joseph S. 
Nowak and Kev. Jolm A. Hutchison came into Communist Party 
headquarters and talked to Mr. Dixon. It was testified that at the 
time of that conversation, which occurred, as I said, some time in 
August of 1935, that Mr. Leonard Patterson, who was the organizer 
for the Young Comnumist League in Baltimore, was present and 
that you were present. Do you recall the incident? 

(At this point Mrs. Xeff conferred with Mr. Forer.) 

Mrs. Xeff. I refuse to ans^Yer that question on the basis of my 
privilege under the fifth amendment not to be a witness against myself. 

Mr. Tavexxer. You are unwilling to state to this committee 
whether or not you recall that you were present at the time of that 
conference ? 

(At this point Mrs. Xeff conferred with Mr. Forer.) 

INIrs. Xeff. I refuse for the reason previously given. 

Mr. Tavexxer. It was the testimony of Mr. Leonard Patterson that 
you were assigned by the Communist Party to work in the Baltimore 
area and that j^ou performed there the functions of educational direc- 
tor and that you were at the head of the women's work of the Com- 
munist Party in Baltimore; is that correct? 

(At this point Mrs. Xeff conferred ^vith Mr. Forer.) 

Mrs. Xeff. I refuse to answer that for the reason ])reviously given. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Let me ask you the questions in this form so as to 
be certain of the position that you are taking : Were you present at 
the time of the conference in Communist Party headquarters between 
Mr. Dixon and the two ministers whose names I mentioned? 

Mrs. Xeff. I think I gave you my answer. I refuse to answer that 
question for the previously given reason. 

Mr, Tavexxer. Were you a functionary of the Communist Party 
in August 19-35, assigned to the city of Baltimore? 

Mrs. Xeff. I refuse to answer that also for the reason previously 
given. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Mrs. Xeff, the committee, as a result of its investi- 
gation, has ascertained that a meeting was held in March of 1930 in 
your home in Xew York City, which was attended by a Russian by 
the name of Boris Damanan — D-a-m-a-n-a-n, who later assumed the 
name of Max Young, and that you acted as interpreter for him at that 
meeting. Mr. Damanan is now being held for deportation. Will you 
tell the committee, please, what you know about that meeting and 
what its purposes were ? 

Mrs. Xeff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

Mr. Tavexxer. You are acquainted with Boris DanTanan, otherwise 
known as Max Young, are you not ? 

Mrs. Xeff. I refuse to answer that for the reason ])reviously given. 

Mr. Tavexxer. Have you at any time held the position as a member 
of the national executive committee of the Young Communist League 
of the United States? 



COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE BALTIMORE AREA 4161 

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

Mr. Tavenner, You have told the committee that you spent a 
period of 7 to 8 months in Detroit just prior to May of 1938. Were 
you at that time or at any other time the district secretary of the 
Young Communist League in Detroit ? 

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

Mr. Tavenner. At the period of time you were living in the Bronx 
did you at any time serve as administrative secretary of the Connnu- 
nist Party? 

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

Mrs. Tavenner. Have you at any time been engaged in the teaching 
of principles of the Communist Party in any Communist Party 
school ? 

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

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

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

Mr. Tavenner. Have you ever been a member of the Communist 
Party? 

Mrs. Neff. I refuse to answer that for the reason previously given. 

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

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Walter. 

Mr. Walter. How old were you when you were brought to the 
United States? 

Mrs. Neff. About five, sir. 

Mr. Walter. Did your father become a citizen shortly after his 
arrival or when was it ? 

Mrs. Neff. I believe it was the exact period, you know, necessary 
for getting first papers and second papers, because he arrived in 1912 
and he got his papers in 1920. It was 8 years. 

Mr. Jackson. Is there any reason why the witness should not be 
excused ? 

Mr. Tavenner. No, sir. 

Mr. Jackson. The witness is excused. 

The subcommittee is adjourned, subject to the call of the chairman. 

(Whereupon, at 10: 58 a. m., the hearing was adjourned, subject to 
call of the Chair.) 



INDEX 



Individuals 

Page 

Banks 4129 

Bisliinsky, Joe 4129 

Bridws. Harry 4129 

Browder, Earl 4148 

Damanan, Boris 4160 

Dixon, Earl (alias for Earl Reno) 4125, 

4126, 4140, 4141, 4142, 4144, 4146, 4149, 4152, 4154, 4160 

Forer, Joseph 4157-4161 

Himoff, Abraham 4158 

HiniQfT, Marv (see also Xeff, Mary Himoff) 4125-4127, 4141, 4146, 4157 

Hutchison, John A ■_ 4124-4128, 4140-4145, 4149-4152, 4155, 4100 

Kovat, Sam 4129 

Marshall, Thurgood 4145 

Neft". Marv Himoff (see also Himoff, Mary) 4157-4161 (testimony) 

Neish. Dr 4149, 4150 

Nowak. Joseph S. (Joe) 4124-4128, 4134-4153 (testimony), 4155, 4160 

Oxnam, Bishop 4155 

Patterson. Leonard 4121-4134 (testimony), 4141-4143, 4152, 4155, 4160 

Potrzucki, Walter 4141 

Reno, Earl C 4124, 4125, 4131, 4132, 4140, 4145, 4149, 4150, 4152, 4154, 4160 

Roosevelt, President . 4129 

Swerdloff, Sam 4127, 4143-4146, 4151, 4152, 4158-4156 (testimony) 

Van Arkel, Gerhard 4153-4156 

Ward. Harry 4138, 4139. 4142 

Whelan, Pat 4146, 4147, 4151 

Young, Max 4160 

Organizations 

American Committee for the Protection of the Foreign Born 4130 

American League Against War and Fascism 4327, 

4137, 4188, 4141, 4142, 4144, 4151, 4154, 4155 

Baltimore City College 4135 

Camp Meade, Md 4124 

Communist Party 4122-4133, 

4136-4139, 4141-4143, 4146-4148. 4150-4155. 4160, 4161 

Communist Party, Baltimore 4125 

Congress of Industrial Organizations 4146. 4147, 4148 

Dodge Community House 4135 

EnifJni (German battleship) 4144,4152 

Ethiopian Defense Committee 4124-4127, 4131, 4141-4144 

Ethiopian League 4181, 4141, 4143, 4144 

Hunter College 4158 

Hunter College High School 4158 

International Workers' Order 4127. 4148 

Johns Hopkins Universitv 4124,4135 

Lenin School, Moscow 4128, 4129 

National Association for the Advancement of Colored People 4145 

National Guard 4123, 4124 

National Maritime Union 4146. 4147 

National Students League 4124 

Steamship Massnwor 4123 

4163 



4164 INDEX 

Page 

Steamship Oakmoor 4123 

Union Tlieological Seminary 4124, 4127, 4135, 4137, 4138, 4140, 4142, 4155 

United Office and Professional Workers Union 4148 

University of Chicago 4135 

University of Maryland 4124 

University of Wisconsin 4153 

Workers' School 4122 

Young Communist League 4122—4124, 

4126, 4127, 4142, 4146, 4152, 4160, 4161 

Young Communist League, Birmingham, Ala 4123 

Young Communist League, Cleveland district 4123 

Young Communist League, Connecticut district 4123 

Young Communist League, Detroit district 4123 

Young Communist League, Maryland-District of Columbia area 4123 

Young Communist League, Philadelphia, district 4123 

Young Men's Christian Association 4124, 4149, 4152, 4153 

Young Men's Christian Association, Detroit 4135 

Young Workers Communist League 4122 

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