THE MICHIGAN DAILY
SUNDAY, MARCH 15, 1953
'Radical' File Unfolds Past
* , *
By GAYLE GREENE
Though the University saw bit-
ter exchanges over parades, pick-
eting and ideological debates, the
announcement in 1940 of loyalty
oaths for State employes failed
to arouse much notice according to
an easily-accessible file of "Radi-
cal activity" in the General Li-
Tucked into nine cream-colored
folders in the library's main ref-
erence room is a voluminous se-
ries of clippings from The Daily,
Detroit and Ann Arbor newspapers,
an occasional bit from Time Mag-
azine and the Nation, plus a hand-
ful of both professionally printed
pamphlets and more amateurish-
ly mimeographed leaflets-all filed
under the general heading: "Mich-
igan U, Radicals."
* * *
THE FOLDERS tell a lengthy
tale of cooperative bookstores, and
boarding houses, of pacifist action
and a variety of "isms" as re-
viewed, extolled, denied or sub-
jugated by the University in the
last 18 years.
Clipped unobstrusively into
the file, the brief, concise news
item on loyalty oaths which
failed to 'arouse controversy in
"In compliance with a State
Senate resolution University em-
ployes have recently been com-
pelled to sign affadavits swearing
they are not members of 'any polit-
ical party or organization which
advocates the overthrow of our
constitutional form of govern-
Passed, on July 9, the resolution
had just gone into effect at the
University although many of the
teachers had previously been re-
quired to sign a similar teacher's
Nine years later, however, an
Arbor News headline announced:
"U-M Already Out in Front in
Ousting Red Teachers." The ar-
ticle said "Ruthven appeared to
have gotten the jump on other
college presidents when he an-
nounced recently that he had
required loyalty oaths at his in-
stitution since 1941."
This Ruthven scoop was revealed
at the National Education Asso-
ciation in Boston where a resolu-
tion to ban all Communist Party
members from teaching had been
NEATLY attached with mask-
ing tape as the first item in the
file are several clippings describ-
ing the organization of a non-
profit cooperative book store
scheduled to open in 1933.
Though termed "radical"~ in
the thirties, no mention of any
book exchange or such co-oper-
ative venture in later years has
rated a spot in the file of radi-
Similarly, an article in the De-
troit Free Press, dated Nov. 4, 1934,
which told how members of the
Socialist House, a co-operative
boarding house whose members
paid two dollars per week for room
and board and the Michigan Wol-
verine where 20 meals per week
cost $3.50 are the one clipping on
co-op housing included in the Rad-
* . *
FROM speakers imported to dis-
cuss "The Truth of the Radio City
Controversy" over a Diego Rivera
mural and the arrival of Tony
Sender to address an assembly of
"Communists, Socialists and Amer-
ican Fascists in Radical Hall," the
first in the series of folders goes
off into the deluge of clippings,
editorials and indignant letters
which followed a May Day epi-
sode in 1934.
Members of the campus. Van-
guard Club and the local Na-
tional Student League had rent-
ed a truck which was driven to a
Detroit May Day parade by Rev.
A. Lee Klaer, associate pastor of
the First Presbyterian Church.
According to a Daily clipping
their attempt to "show solidarity
with the workers" met with a rude
shock when the workers failed to
put in an appearance and left
the students to conduct an im-
promptu one-truck parade of the
down-town district singing the
"Internationale" and giving lusty
cheers for the workers with an oc-
casional interpolation of "The Vic-
tors" amid thousands of pedestri-
ans and police.
The pastor told how students
had been seized, searched and some
actually thrown from the truck as
police forced the group to disband
and left the pastor to drive home
an empty truck.
President Ruthven called for
an investigation and told re-
porters: The Communist group
here is small." The Free Press
quoted the president as adding
"I keep them here to amuse
Amusing or not, the known par-
ticipants in the much-publicized
incident went before the Univer-
sity Disciplinary Committee the
LOCAL WITCH HUNTS-A University coed intently studies the
"Radical" file in the General Library, checking to see whether
her blind date for Saturday night is listed as being involved in any
* * *!
next day. Although the students
were said to be guilty "of regret-
table immaturity of attitude," no
action was taken against them.
* * *
AS THE presidential election of
1936 approached, The Daily par-
ticipated in the usual poll fever.
On Oct. 31, a report of a faculty
poll showed 10 votes had been cast
for the Communist Party candi-
date, Earl Browder.
A headline the following day
read "Regent Seeks to Dismiss
10 Faculty Reds." Another re-
gent defended the faculty
"Reds," saying there "is no need
for alarm in the fact that 10
out of 800 faculty members de-
cided to vote for Browder."
In April, 1937, several students
were arrested on various charges,
and the campus went up in arms.
The Student Workers Federa-
tion, affiliated with the Ann Ar-
bor Trade Unions Council had led
campus participation in a pin
setters strike for higher wages at
a local bowling alley. (They were
aiming at a minimum wage of one
dollar per day.)
When Ralph Naefus (later killed
in the Spanish Civil War and for
whom the local student Commu-
nist Group is named) addressed
the crowd, he was arrested. An-
other SWF leader who rose to
speak was also arrested.
* * *
PRESIDENT Ruthven's com-
mencement speech in June, 1940
issued a warning to students plan-
ning to enter or return to the Uni-
versity the next year, saying
"Michigan welcomes only students
who are convinced that democ-
racy is the ideal form of govern-
ment for a civilized people."
A few days later 13 students
were refused readmittance to
While a storm raged in Detroit
papers and reports came over the
Associated Press, The Daily car-
ried no news of the expulsion until
the end of June, when they print-
ed a letter supporting the Univer-
sity's action with a brief editor's
note telling of an organized pro-
test against the expulsion by mem-
bers of the American Student
The Michigan Committee for
Academic Freedom scheduled a
meeting to protest the dismissal
in Detroit. The meeting took
the form of a trial, with several
of the students under question-
ing by a local labor lawyer as
the prosecuting attorney. No one
was on hand to represent the
The crowd assembled at the
meeting heard Prof. Jerome Davis
of the New School for Social Re-
search say "President Ruthven
told me there was no such thing as
academic freedom for students
when I interviewed him a few
days ago to try to secure an open
trial for the students involved."
RUTHVEN'S withdrawal of the
Michigan Youth for Democratic
Action and a subsequent contro-
versy came to a head when
* *, *
the group, operating off-campus'
brought Gerhardt Eisler to town.
The group had secured a per-
mit for Felch Park but later
Mayor Brown rescinded permis-
sion. With police waiting for mob
action, Eisler and Carl Marzani
by-passed the crowd and drove
to the apartment of Ed Schaffer,
MYDA leader. There in a room
lit only by candles, Eisler held a
press conference for about 150
The Phillips-Slosson debate held
off-campus in a State St. Cafeteria
aroused a storm of publicity in
1950 and left 2,000 people jam-
ming the streets in an attempt to
catch snatches of the debate from
inside the packed room.
Bringing the file up to' date are
a recent series of articles on cam-
pus Communist activity by Daily
Feature Editor Zander Hollander
and several clippings which tell
of the Velde investigation and the
comment it has aroused.
But the file seems to be more
sparse over later years than it was
in the thirties, ignoring letters to
the Editor which are parallel to
those which played sueh a promi-
nent part in the earlier folders.
Five Students Win
Art Contest Prizes
Five University art students
came out on top in a Brochure
Contest held recently by the Art
Directors Club of Detroit.
In competition with six other
state colleges, the University walk-
ed away with five out of seven
awards. First prize of $100 went
to Beverly Arble, '53A&D; second
prize of $50 to Barbara J. Herri-
der, '53A&D; third prize of $25 to
James I. Bernardin, '53A&D, and
honorable mentions to Barbara L.
Wildman, '53 A&D, and John V.
Reizian, '53 A&D.
Six years in a publishing house
hardly sounds like a training
course or an inspirational begin-
ning for a prospective poet.
However, it was during his stint
at the advertising department of
a publishing house that versifier
Ogden Nash got the idea for his
particular brand of poetry.
* * *
BEST KNOWN for "tripping the
light fantastic" in verse through
the pages of the Saturday Even-
ing Post and other national maga-
zines, Nash has also published
more than a dozen books of poetry.
Ann Arborites will have a
chance to hear Nash recite a
number of his "classics" and
comment on the turn of events
in his life that caused their crea-
tion when he appears at 8:30
p.m. Thursday in Hill Auditor-
Except for a brief tenure as
managing editor of the New York-
er in 1931, his life has been one
long round of poetry and more
poetry since the end of his ad-
vertising career. For the past sev-
eral seasons, he has combined lit-
erary life with treading the boards
of nationwide lecture platforms.
Tickets for his local appearance
will be on sale Wednesday and
Thursday at the Hill Auditorium
Briton To Talk
"Britain's Struggle for Economic
Survival" will be discussed by
James Callaghan, a leader in Brit-
ain's Labor Party, at 4:15 p.m. to-
morrow, in Auditorium A, Angell
First elected to Parliament in
1945, Callaghan has served as
chairman of the Defense and Ser-
vices Committee of the Labor Par-
ty, and was Parliamentary secre-
tary to the Ministry of Transpor-
tation and the British Admiralty.
Phi Sigma Society
To Hear Lectures
The Phi Sigma society will hold
an open meeting at 8 p.m. tomor-
row in the Rackham Amphitheater.
Prof. Mark Nickerson of the
pharmacology department will
speak on the "Chemical Blockade
of the Sympathetic Nervous Sys-
tem," and John H. Taylor of the
Engineering Research Institute
will discuss "Studies in Central
Livingston To Talk.
James H. Livingston, Booth
Traveling Fellow in Architecture
for 1952, will give an illustrated
lecture, "Modern European Archi-
tecture," at 4 p.m. tomorrow in
Livingston, speaking under the
auspices of the student branch of
the American Institute of Archi-
tects, studied housing last year in
Events of the Week
James H. Liviifgst(n, 19 2 :66th traveling Fellow, will lecture on
"Modern European Architecture" at 4 p.m. in the Architecture Au'di-
James Callaghan, Labor member of Parliament, will speak on
"Britain's Struggle for Economic Survival" at 4:15 p.m. in Auditorium
A, Angell Hall.
Phi Sigma Society will meet to hear Prof. Mark Nickerson of the
Pharmacology College discuss "Chemical Blockade of the Sympathetic
Nervous System." John H. Taylor of the Engineering Research In-
stitute will speak on "Studies in Central Color Vision." The meeting
will begin at 8 p.m. in the Rackham Amphitheater.
* * * * -
Prof. Emeritus Haven Emerson of Columbia University will lecture
on "Some Problems of Drug Addiction" at 4 p.m. in the School of
Public Health Auditorium.
The Botany Department will sponsor an address by Prof. William
Weston of Harvard University on "Points of Interest in the Fungi
of Deterioration" at 4:15 p.m. in the Rackham Amphitheater.
* * * *
The Department of Journalism will present newspaper editor
Edward Lindsay in an address on "Newspapers and Politics" at 3 p.m.
in the Rackham Amphitheater.
The speech department will present finals of the Detroit Free Press
scholarship contest at 4 p.m. in Rackham Lecture Hall.
The Stanley Quartet will give a concert at 8:30 p.m. in the Rack-
ham Lecture Hall.
* * * *
Prof. Tatsuji Takeuchi of Columbia University will speak on
"Japan and the Two Worlds" at 4:15 p.m. in Rackham Amphitheater.
The Oratorical Association will present author Ogden Nash
in "An Evening, with Ogden Nash" at 8:30 p.m. in Hill Auditorium.
A panel on "How to Teach by Discussion" will be presented at
3 p.m. in Kellogg Auditorium.
The SL-Cinema Guild will present "The Ghost Goes West" and
Walt Disney's "History of Aviation" at 7 and 9 p.m. Friday and Sat-
urday and at 8 p.nt. Sunday in Architecture Auditorium.
Scouts Given Vocational Talks
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More than 200 Boy Scouts from
the Detroit area attended the Ex-
plorer Vocational Conference held
at the University yesterday.
The conference was presented
under the joint auspices of the,
University Extension Service and
the Detroit Area Council of the
Boy Scouts of America.
* * *
SCOUTS FROM Districts six
and seven started the conference
with a movie on vocational coun-
At a luncheon in the League
the delegates were welcomed by
University Extension Service di-
rector, Everett Soop. Prof. Del-
mont K. Bryan of the Educa-
tion school addressed the meet-
ing on "Choosing Your Voca-
The afternoon session consisted
of group conferences between the
boys and adult counselors repre-
senting 15 professional fields.
The conference concluded with
a dinner at which the representa-
tives were presented with certi-
ficates in recognition of their par-
ticipation in the conference.
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