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Title: Investigation of Communist activities in Seattle, Wash., Area, Hearings, Part 2
Author: A, United States Congress  House Committee on Un-American
Language: English
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Libraries.)



  INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE
  SEATTLE, WASH., AREA--Part 2

  HEARINGS
  BEFORE THE
  COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES
  HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
  EIGHTY-FOURTH CONGRESS
  FIRST SESSION

  MARCH 18 AND 19, 1955

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

  (Index in part 3 of these hearings)

  [Illustration]

  UNITED STATES
  GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
  WASHINGTON: 1955


  COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES

  UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

            FRANCIS E. WALTER, Pennsylvania, _Chairman_
  MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri       HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois
  CLYDE DOYLE, California           BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York
  JAMES B. FRAZIER, JR., Tennessee  DONALD L. JACKSON, California
  EDWIN E. WILLIS, Louisiana        GORDON H. SCHERER, Ohio
                 THOMAS W. BEALE, Sr., _Chief Clerk_



CONTENTS


  March 18, 1955: Testimony of--             Page
      Robert B. Krahl                         379
      Robert Miller                           382
      Eugene Victor Dennett (resumed)         391
      Lawrence Earl George                    414
      Harriett Pierce                         416

  March 19, 1955: Testimony of--
      Eugene Victor Dennett (resumed)         419
      Paul William Delaney                    438
      Jacob Bitterman                         441
      John Stenhouse                          443

  Afternoon session:
      John Stenhouse (resumed)                450
      Eugene Victor Dennett (resumed)         466
      Abraham Arthur Cohen                    490
      Eugene Victor Dennett (resumed)         492
      Bernard Freyd                           493
      Hans Lenus Adolph Westman               495

(Testimony of Eugene V. Dennett, Harold Johnston, Edwin A. Carlson, and
Margaret Elizabeth Gustafson, also heard on March 18, 1955, is printed
in pt. 1 of this series.)



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 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 whole or
    by subcommittee, 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 attacks 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 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 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 84TH CONGRESS

House Resolution 5, January 5, 1955

       *       *       *       *       *


RULE X

STANDING COMMITTEES

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

       *       *       *       *       *

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


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 (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 attacks 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 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 committee or any
    subcommittee, or by any member designated by such chairman, and may
    be served by any person designated by any such chairman or member.



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE SEATTLE, WASH., AREA--Part
2



FRIDAY, MARCH 18, 1955

  UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
  SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE
  COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES,
  _Seattle, Wash._


PUBLIC HEARING

A subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met, pursuant
to recess, at 1:30 p. m., in Room 402, County-City Building, Seattle,
Wash., Hon. Morgan M. Moulder (chairman) presiding.

Committee members present: Representatives Morgan M. Moulder (chairman)
and Harold H. Velde.

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will be in order.

Are you ready to proceed, Mr. Wheeler?

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Robert Krahl.

Mr. MOULDER. Will you hold up your right hand and be sworn?

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

Mr. KRAHL. I do.


TESTIMONY OF ROBERT B. KRAHL, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, JAY G. SYKES

Mr. WHEELER. Would you state your full name?

Mr. KRAHL. My name is Robert B. Krahl.

Mr. WHEELER. Will you spell the last name?

Mr. KRAHL. K-r-a-h-l.

Mr. WHEELER. I see you are represented by counsel.

Will counsel identify himself for the record?

Mr. SYKES. Jay G. Sykes.

Mr. WHEELER. When were you born, Mr. Krahl?

Mr. KRAHL. To the best of my knowledge, I was born on February 6, 1925.

Mr. WHEELER. Where do you presently reside?

Mr. KRAHL. I live in Seattle.

Mr. WHEELER. What is your present occupation?

Mr. KRAHL. I am unemployed.

Mr. WHEELER. What was your occupation before becoming unemployed?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. With the chairman’s permission, I would like to make a very,
very short statement, less than a hundred words.

Mr. MOULDER. What was the question, Mr. Wheeler?

(The pending question was read by the reporter.)

Mr. MOULDER. That question calls for an answer, not a statement. And
you can reply or give the answer, and then make any explanation you
wish if it is relevant to the question and your answer.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Well, I have been employed with odd jobs the past 9 months;
haven’t really been employed. I just worked a few days here and there.

Mr. WHEELER. Would you relate to the committee your occupational
background for the past 5 years?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. To the best of my knowledge--let’s see; 5 years would be
around 1950. I think I have worked as a waiter, I have worked as a
draftsman, I have done a little extra work as a casual laborer, worked
a little time in a sawmill--I think that about covers it.

Mr. WHEELER. What is your educational background?

Mr. KRAHL. I graduated from high school. I have got a couple of years
of college. I haven’t graduated from college.

Mr. WHEELER. What college did you attend?

Mr. KRAHL. The University of Arizona.

Mr. WHEELER. When did you cease your studies there?

Mr. KRAHL. I think it was around the end of 1947.

Mr. WHEELER. How were you employed from 1947 to 1950?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. From 1947 until 1950 I worked as a seaman part of that time;
I think most of that time.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you served in the Armed Forces?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Yes; I have.

Mr. WHEELER. In what branch of the service did you serve?

Mr. KRAHL. In the United States Army.

Mr. WHEELER. What were your dates of service?

Mr. KRAHL. I am not sure, but I think it was around the beginning of
1951 until about the end of it, probably 2 weeks after the first of the
year, until a week prior to Christmas 1951, I am pretty sure.

Mr. WHEELER. What type of discharge did you receive?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I received a general discharge under honorable conditions.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you familiar with the committee called the Youth
Committee that is within the circles of the Communist Party in King
County?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. At this point, Mr. Chairman, I would like to invoke the
fifth amendment on the ground that I think that this may lead into
questions which could force me to testify against myself.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you acquainted with Mrs. Barbara Hartle?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I give the same answer, for the reasons previously stated.

Mr. MOULDER. You decline to answer for the same reason?

Mr. KRAHL. I decline to answer for the reasons previously stated.

Mr. WHEELER. I would like to refer to part 2 of a document entitled
“Investigation of Communist Activities in the Pacific Northwest Area.”
It is a copy of the transcript of hearings held here last June. Mrs.
Hartle is testifying:

    About 1949 and 1950, the last year that I was in Seattle--a youth
    committee was set up which I worked with, controlled, and guided
    all of its activities and tried to train the youth along Communist
    Party lines; and on that youth committee I remember a young man
    named Al Cumming, Robert Krahl, Calvin Harris.

Are you acquainted with Mr. Al Cumming?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I invoke the fifth amendment for the reasons previously
stated. I believe that is the way to work it.

Mr. WHEELER. What were the functions of the youth committee of the
Communist Party?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I again invoke the fifth amendment on the grounds previously
stated, and refuse to answer.

Mr. WHEELER. Was Mrs. Hartle correct when she identified you as a
member of the Communist Party, a member of the youth committee?

Mr. KRAHL. I give the same answer, for the same reasons.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you a member of the Communist Party today?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I give the same answer, for the same reasons.

Mr. WHEELER. No further questions, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you decline to answer as to whether or not you are
a member of the Communist Party today, and, as the reason for your
refusal, do you invoke the fifth amendment?

Mr. KRAHL. That is correct; yes.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Velde, any questions?

Mr. VELDE. Were you a member of the Communist Party during the time you
were in the Army?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. For the reasons previously stated, I must invoke the fifth
amendment and refuse to answer.

Mr. VELDE. I take it that you will refuse to give this committee the
benefit of your knowledge concerning the Communist Party activities,
and rely on the fifth amendment whenever you are questioned about
anything touching on communism. Is that correct?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I refuse to answer that question for the same reasons and
the reasons I have previously stated.

Mr. VELDE. That is all.

Mr. MOULDER. How long were you in the service? I forgot the period of
time. That is, in the armed services of the United States.

Mr. KRAHL. About a year. Just under a year.

Mr. MOULDER. Was that the full period of your enlistment, the time you
served, or were you discharged prior to the termination of your period
of enlistment?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Well, I was drafted. I didn’t enlist.

Mr. MOULDER. Why were you discharged?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. I decline to answer, reluctantly, because I am a little--I
don’t really understand where this question of waiver comes in. So I
decline to answer that question on the grounds of the fifth amendment,
and for the reasons that I have previously stated.

Mr. MOULDER. Where were you stationed while in the service?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Well, I was stationed for a while at Fort Ord. I think it
was a few days. And then I served the rest of my time at Camp Roberts.

Mr. MOULDER. Are you now or have you ever been a member of the
Communist Party? I believe the question was asked in another form.

Mr. KRAHL. Mr. Chairman, I decline to answer that question on the
grounds of the fifth amendment, and for the reasons I have previously
stated.

Mr. VELDE. Did I understand you to say that you were given a general
discharge under honorable conditions from the Army?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. That is what I said; that is correct.

Mr. VELDE. That is not as high class a discharge as an honorable
discharge; is it?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Well, I really don’t know. I don’t know the answer to that.

Mr. VELDE. Don’t you have any idea why you weren’t given an honorable
discharge instead of a general discharge?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. At this point I invoke the fifth amendment and decline to
answer that question on the grounds that I have previously stated.

Mr. VELDE. That is all.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you know whether or not you were discharged for
security reasons?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Mr. Chairman, I reluctantly invoke the fifth amendment
again, and for the same reasons, the reasons that I have previously
stated.

Mr. MOULDER. While you were serving in the armed services were you at
any time engaged in any un-American or subversive activities?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. KRAHL. Mr. Chairman, I decline to answer that question on the
grounds of the fifth amendment and for the reasons previously stated.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

Call your next witness.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Robert Miller.

Mr. MOULDER. Put up your right hand and be sworn.

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

Mr. MILLER. I do, sir.


TESTIMONY OF ROBERT MILLER, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, SOLIE M. RINGOLD

Mr. WHEELER. State your name, please.

Mr. MILLER. My name is Robert Miller.

Mr. WHEELER. When were you born, Mr. Miller?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge, November 22, 1922.

Mr. WHEELER. Where do you presently reside?

Mr. MILLER. Seattle, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. What has been your educational background?

Mr. MILLER. General, normal grammar school. I don’t know whether you
call it junior or senior. And up to the third year of high school.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you currently employed?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. How are you employed?

Mr. MILLER. I am an appliance, radio and television repair man, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Is that here in Seattle?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. And what has your employment background been, say since
1940?

Mr. MILLER. Since 1940, part of the time in the shipyards, part of the
time in Boeing Airplane Co. Part of the time also was spent in the
Armed Forces during the period which you mentioned.

Mr. WHEELER. What is your military service record?

Mr. MILLER. I was inducted into the Navy, and, the best I can recall,
the dates are from June of 1945 until March of 1946.

Mr. WHEELER. What type of discharge did you receive?

Mr. MILLER. It is difficult for me to answer that. I believe it was an
honorable discharge. There is some question now that you bring it up,
as to whether it was what the Navy refers to as a battleship discharge,
which I think they reserve to only those who have served overseas.
There are no peculiarities in regard to my discharge, if that is the
intent of the question.

Mr. WHEELER. When were you employed at Boeing Aircraft?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge, with interruptions, of course,
it was in 1943. I do not know now when I was last employed by Boeing
Aircraft except to place it in relation to an event which would be
several months prior to the strike which has been mentioned, of course,
in the proceedings. I could not recall even the month or the year
involved.

Mr. WHEELER. How were your services terminated at Boeing?

Mr. MILLER. My services were terminated for lack of attendance there.

Mr. WHEELER. Lack of attendance at work?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. While at Boeing were you a member of any union?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. What union was it?

Mr. MILLER. The Aeronautical Mechanics Union,[1] sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you still a member?

Mr. MILLER. No, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Why are you no longer a member of the union?

Mr. MILLER. Because when I was terminated from Boeing Aircraft I saw no
reasons for further continuing membership, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. I see you are represented by counsel.

Will you identify yourself, please?

Mr. RINGOLD. My name is Solie, S-o-l-i-e, M. Ringold, R-i-n-g-o-l-d. I
am an attorney practicing law in the city of Seattle.

Mr. WHEELER. Do you know a person by the name of Barbara Hartle?

Mr. MILLER. I have known her in the past, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Under what circumstances have you known her?

Mr. MILLER. I recall one. I have eaten dinner with her at my
father-in-law’s establishment.

Mr. WHEELER. Did you ever see her on any other occasion?

Mr. MILLER. I have seen her on television, perhaps on the street, and I
may have other than that.

Mr. WHEELER. Do you recall ever meeting her in connection with
Communist Party activities?

Mr. MILLER. It is difficult to say as to what were the connections. I
would say that perhaps it was in relation to the Communist Party, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. When did you first become a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge, in 1943, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. What were the circumstances under which you joined the
Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. It is difficult to reach back that far for me and determine
just what motivated my becoming a member. The only thing that I can
recall is I attended several open Communist Party meetings during that
period of time and I saw nothing at variance with what I believed to be
for the common good of the people of the country. I thereupon became
active, and I could not even recall the initial period of action, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Who contacted you to get you in the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. That I could not recall at this time, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. After you joined the Communist Party were you assigned to
any particular group or unit?

Mr. MILLER. Not at any time that I recall, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Not at all?

Mr. MILLER. Not that I can recall, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. How long were you a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. There were perhaps interruptions while I was in the
service; I believe there were. To the best of my knowledge. I was
probably a member of the Communist Party from 1943 until 1948, the best
I can recall. I believe there was a period of time there that I was not
a member, and it is hard for me to distinguish between what is actual
membership and carrying of a card, if there is such a thing, or payment
of dues, and whether I just worked with them. It is difficult to reach
that far back in my mind, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. During this 1943-48 period I believe you stated you were
in the United States Navy. Is that correct?

Mr. MILLER. For a portion of that--from 1945 until 1946. Approximately
9 months, to the best of my knowledge.

Mr. WHEELER. When did you say your employment terminated at Boeing
Aircraft?

Mr. MILLER. I cannot name a date. I can only relate it to some several
months prior to the major strike which they had. I could not name the
date.

Mr. WHEELER. Was that in 1943 or 1944?

Mr. MILLER. No. Could someone refresh me as to when the strike occurred
at Boeing Aircraft Co.?

It was 1946 or 1947; I believe in there, at the time which I was
terminated.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you a member of the Communist Party while employed at
Boeing?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you employed at Boeing when you became a member of
the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. I do not recall. I think I was perhaps a member prior to
going to Boeing Aircraft Co. I do not recall, however.

Mr. WHEELER. Mrs. Hartle, in previous testimony before the committee,
went into quite a bit of detail on the efforts of the Communist Party
to infiltrate Boeing Aircraft. Do you have any knowledge along those
lines?

Mr. MILLER. The answer that you want from me is whether there was any
direction as far as I was concerned, as to where to get employment. Is
that, as I understand, the intent of the question?

Mr. WHEELER. Yes.

Mr. MILLER. At no time, to the best of my recollection, was I directed
to go anywhere to work or to do any specific thing, as I can recall it
now.

Mr. VELDE. Do you have knowledge of any attempt by the Communist Party
to infiltrate the Boeing plant?

Mr. MILLER. I have no specific knowledge which I can testify as to
facts, sir. I assume that is what you want, only things I know to be
fact.

Mr. VELDE. Yes.

Mr. WHEELER. Did you ever hold an office in the Aero Mechanics Union?

Mr. MILLER. Yes. I was at one time a shop steward, at one time a shop
committeeman, and, if memory serves me right, I was president of one
of the locals during the war. I am not too clear on whether that was
president or vice president, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. To your knowledge, were there any other members of the
Communist Party in the Aero Mechanics Union?

Mr. MILLER. I do not know with any degree of certainty anyone at Boeing
while I was there who might have been members of the Communist Party.
There was certainly speculation or perhaps reason to assume they were.
However, I would like to confine my testimony to facts, and I do not
know any to be a fact.

Mr. WHEELER. We desire to be confined to facts. Are you testifying that
you knew no one at Boeing Aircraft Co., to be a member of the Communist
Party?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my recollection at this time, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. You knew no one in the Aero Machinists Union to be a
member of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. In the Aero Mechanics Union?

Mr. WHEELER. Aero Mechanics; I am sorry.

Mr. MILLER. I relate the two together, in that I believe the Aero
Mechanics were only involved with employees of Boeing.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WHEELER. You have also stated, I believe, that you were not
assigned to any group or unit of the Communist Party.

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my recollection, that was my testimony, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. You don’t recall who recruited you into the Communist
Party?

Mr. MILLER. I do not, sir. In fact, I might explain it this way: I am
not even sure whether it was any specific individual or whether, during
the course of an open meeting, it fell upon me, a desire to become a
member. It is difficult for a man to reach that far back in years and
testify with any certainty, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. You were very vague in your testimony as to how you became
a member of the Communist Party.

Mr. MILLER. Sir, is it unreasonable to be vague on something that
occurred nigh onto 12 years ago when I was between the age of 20 and
21, sir? Is that difficult to understand, that a man might honestly be
vague?

Mr. WHEELER. How many meetings of the Communist Party did you attend
from 1943 until the time you went in the Armed Forces in 1945?

Mr. MILLER. I would be unable to give you any number with any degree
of accuracy. It would be pure speculation and only an estimate. If you
want an estimate, I could give it if the committee so desires.

Mr. WHEELER. I think you can speculate on this part of your testimony.

Mr. MILLER. As I get the question, you are asking me how many do I
think might have gone to. If I am recalling something I would have an
actual number and would not have to estimate. I am not able to recall
any number of meetings at which I attended. There was perhaps 30, 40
meetings, I do not know, over this period of time. It is purely a
speculative answer, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. But you may have attended that many?

Mr. MILLER. That is right. And that may be at variance 50 percent one
way or the other.

Mr. WHEELER. We are not binding you on this.

Mr. MILLER. Thank you, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Where were these meetings held that you attended?

Mr. MILLER. I cannot recall specifically where any meetings might
have been held. In fact, most of my activity while at Boeing’s was in
legitimate, recognized trade-union work within the framework of the
contract with Boeing Aircraft Co. Most, or if any, activity with other
members, who I perhaps suspected to be Communists, or persons of my
particular persuasion, was not in the form of a meeting, but perhaps
I would meet one while at work, or I might meet one at the cafeteria,
or several of us might meet together in the cafeteria and just discuss
general problems.

Mr. WHEELER. Did you receive any direction from the Communist Party to
conceal your membership because of your employment at Boeing’s?

Mr. MILLER. I do not believe it was at anyone’s direction. Thinking
back--and I can only assign, a reason now going backward--I perhaps
knew of my own intelligence not to do so. I would perhaps be expelled
from the Aero Mechanics Union, which, of course, would mean loss of
employment at Boeing’s. I do not recall any specific direction.

Mr. WHEELER. But you have testified that you may have attended
approximately 40 meetings during the period from 1943 to 1945, a period
of, say, 18 months or 20 months.

Mr. MILLER. I had thought I was testifying during the whole period at
which I was in the party.

Mr. WHEELER. No, it is confined to the period from the time you joined
the Communist Party to when you entered the United States Navy.

Mr. MILLER. Well then, of course, it makes more obvious that the answer
was purely speculative and could well have been largely in error. I
thought I was answering or speculating in regard to my whole membership
in the Communist Party.

Mr. WHEELER. Would you like to estimate again that period of time?

Mr. MILLER. Well, I have got to go backward here. Which period of time
are you referring to?

Mr. WHEELER. From the time you joined the Communist Party until you
entered the United States Navy.

Mr. MILLER. That would be from 1943 up until 1945. Right? Two years?

Mr. WHEELER. That is right.

Mr. MILLER. Again a purely speculative answer: perhaps 20 meetings, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Now you attended approximately 20 meetings from 1943 to
1945. And from 1946 to 1948 you attended approximately 20 more. And you
don’t recall the place where any of these meetings were held?

Mr. MILLER. I have testified where I recalled that I thought we had
conducted some. I cannot recall any specific place. One or two might
have occurred at a rooming house where I stayed. I do not recall, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Where were they usually held? Was there a regular meeting
place?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge; no, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Who called the meetings? That is, how did you get a notice
there was going to be a meeting held somewhere? How did you know where
to go?

Mr. MILLER. About the only way that I can think of it backward now, and
I am not at all sure, is I would probably see or meet someone else on
the job or in the cafeteria, and they might mention that we were going
to get together and discuss the general problems.

Mr. MOULDER. On the average, how many people would ordinarily attend
those meetings?

Mr. MILLER. As I recall it, it was a very, very few. I could not say.
Probably under 10, looking way, way back. But it is difficult to say.

Mr. MOULDER. Were they composed of people that you knew at the same
place of employment?

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. All of them?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge now; yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Proceed, Mr. Wheeler.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. MILLER. Mr. Chairman, might I make one brief point in regard to
this time? It might be better understood.

The question probably arises as to how I am so vague on meetings and
meeting places. It might be better understood if we take into account
that, as best I can recall, this occurred during the time when the
Communist Party was then the Communist Political Association. I believe
that they held open meetings. I do not recall too much secrecy involved
in it. And for that reason secrecy did not perhaps impress itself on my
mind. And to recall in one period of time where a change takes place
and into another, it changes things, looking backward and forward.

Mr. MOULDER. Yes; I can appreciate what you are saying.

Mr. MILLER. Thank you.

Mr. MOULDER. At those meetings would there be a record kept of the
meeting; minutes of any sort?

Mr. MILLER. Not to my knowledge, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Would there be an officer or a person presiding at the
meeting? Someone who would act as a chairman or some official?

Mr. MILLER. Whether it would be a person who acted as a chairman or
whom the rest might just look to on the basis that--from the manner in
which they spoke, they appeared to----

Mr. MOULDER. Were dues paid at those meetings?

Mr. MILLER. I cannot recall anything specific. However, I would imagine
that there were, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. I wish to compliment you for coming forward here as a
witness admitting that you were a member of the Communist Party, which
is far better and a better reflection upon you as an individual and as
an American citizen than to hide behind the fifth amendment. But surely
while you were a member you recall having paid membership dues.

Mr. MILLER. Sir, I would have to answer it in this way, that
undoubtedly I did. However, to recall a specific instance--I could not.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you recall the name of any one person who attended
those meetings at any time? I mean during that long period of time,
with the frequent meetings you have admitted that you attended, and the
close contact that you had with the individuals, where you say you not
only attended meetings, but frequently had lunch or ate meals together
or visited with one another and discussed the meetings, surely you
could remember the name of at least one person or more that you know,
of your own personal knowledge, who associated with you at the same
time in that respect.

Mr. MILLER. Perhaps I am confused. Perhaps that is the difficulty I
have in answering. I was under the impression that the only names which
you wished from me, to give out here publicly, would be persons whom I
was certain or knew to be Communists.

Mr. MOULDER. Right.

Mr. MILLER. And it is only for that reason that I do not mention names.
It is probable that I could prod my memory into remembering persons
whom I met with or worked with while at Boeing’s in the trade unions.
But to identify them here gives the impression that I am identifying
them as Communists, which I do not know to be a certainty.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you recall the names of any persons who attended any of
those meetings that you have referred to as Communist Party meetings
or as Communist Political Association committee meetings, who were not
members of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. Sir, I could not be certain of where they were. I mean
either way. If I was certain of those who were not members, that, by
process of elimination, would make me certain of those who were. And I
am not certain either way, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Mrs. Hartle testified that you were a member of the Holly
Park Branch of the Communist Party. Does that refresh your memory to
any degree?

Mr. MILLER. In relation to what question, sir?

Mr. WHEELER. Do you recall being a member of that unit or cell of the
Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. I do not recall any activity in the branch that is
mentioned. It is possible that in their records or in their
determination that they maybe have regarded me as a member of that
branch and that I did reside there.

Mr. WHEELER. You testified that during the period of time of your
membership, the Communist Party was dissolved and the Communist
Political Association formed. However, when you returned back from the
Army in 1946 the Communist Political Association had been disbanded and
the Communist Party reformed. A reorganization had taken place and the
party had tightened up considerably after the Duclos letter, if you are
familiar with that.

But did you notice, upon your return from the Armed Forces, any
difference in the structure of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. I don’t know that I paid any particular attention, sir. I
don’t recall any great activity in the Communist Party after I returned
from the service.

Mr. WHEELER. You have also testified that you left the Communist Party
in 1948. For what reasons did you leave the party?

Mr. MILLER. As to the best of my knowledge, sir, I was dropped from the
Communist Party for inactivity.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you attended any other Communist Party-type meetings
like the Socialist Workers Party since you left the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. To be specific, as far as the Socialist Workers Party,
I never have. And, to the best of my knowledge, I have attended no
meetings of that type, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. And at this time you cannot recall one individual who was
a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. Well, I could put it this way: I could recall knowing
Barbara Hartle. The only way I could say that she was is that she has
publicly testified that she was.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Chairman, I have no further questions at this time.
However, I would like to recommend that the witness’ subpena be
continued.

Mr. MOULDER. All right.

Do you have a question, Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. Yes.

I believe you said you got out of the Army in 1948. Is that correct?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge, sir.

Mr. VELDE. What prompted you to get out of the Communist Party when you
did?

Mr. MILLER. To the best of my knowledge, the party dropped me for
inactivity, sir.

Mr. VELDE. You never wrote a letter disavowing membership in the
Communist Party then?

Mr. MILLER. No, sir, I never did.

Mr. VELDE. Or any other formal withdrawal from the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. Not to my knowledge, sir.

Mr. VELDE. Are you a Communist Party member today?

Mr. MILLER. No, sir, I am not. And again I have to testify to the best
of my knowledge. I hope and trust that no one has me on the rolls
unbeknownst to me. To my knowledge, I am not a member, no, sir.

Mr. VELDE. I certainly do appreciate your coming forward. It is rather
refreshing.

It appears to me that with a little searching of your memory you might
be able to recall some of the incidents more clearly than you have.
I am sorry to say you are vague in your testimony about activities
of the Communist Party in this area. So I will be in favor of the
recommendation of Mr. Wheeler that you be retained under subpena so
that you might check. If you want any assistance from our files, I
am sure Mr. Wheeler will be able to give that to you. Next time you
testify you may testify a little more definitely.

Mr. MOULDER. For your own benefit and for your own interest, I will ask
you this question:

You say, as far as you know, you are no longer a member of the
Communist Party.

Mr. MILLER. Yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. That is with the fear that some organization or someone
might still be carrying your name on the rolls.

Mr. MILLER. It is a possibility.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you publicly, and here and now before this committee,
disavow any belief in the Communist Party and refute all of the
principles and policies for which it stands? Do you now take that
stand, and do you now so testify?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. MILLER. The question, as I understand it, is--I mean the question
of my avowal of a belief.

I hope I am allowed a little bit of latitude in answering this.

I state I am not a member of the Communist Party today due to any
action on my part. I further state that I disavow anything which is
contrary to the best interests of our country and of our people. As
to pinning it down to the Communist Party, I have to frankly concede
that I am not at all sure where the Communist Party is. I mean if the
things that are ascribed to them are true, certainly I disavow them. I
say that I have no association with them. It is only that I hesitate to
disavow anything that I am not sure of.

I am sure of the one thing, that I am opposed to anything that is
against the best interests of the people of our country.

Actually, since I was dropped in 1948 I have been inactive in all
political activities to the point where I am not even registered
to vote, I don’t believe, since 1948. I am confused on where most
everybody stands, and I have not enough facts to draw a conclusion on
it.

Mr. MOULDER. The reason I ask you that question is because there is
considerable evidence before this committee and other investigative
Government agencies that many Communist Party members ceased to be
active as party members but have gone underground and still continue in
their same belief, the same philosophy, and with, of course, the same
objectives. I believe your answer is clear to this point: you attended
all of those Communist Party meetings; I believe you said a hundred,
and it would vary one way or another, 50 percent either way.

Mr. VELDE. Approximately 40, wasn’t it?

Mr. MILLER. That is it.

Mr. MOULDER. But during that period of time you certainly must have
been well versed and qualified to know the purposes and the policies of
the Communist Party as such, because at those meetings didn’t you study
the Communist Party literature and study the purposes for which it was
organized?

Mr. MILLER. Is that the question?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.

Mr. MILLER. Yes, I did.

Mr. MOULDER. Has your opinion now changed with respect to the
Communist Party from what it was when you were attending the Communist
Party meetings? Or is it the same as it was then?

Mr. MILLER. I see what you are driving at, and it is hard for me to get
my understanding across.

Mr. MOULDER. You say you have severed your association with the party,
and I want to know if it is just a technical disassociation or is it a
clean break from the Communist Party?

Mr. MILLER. No; it is not a technical disassociation. If I might have a
moment, I would like to go on a little further.

First, the reference is to having attended, say, up to 40 meetings, one
way or the other, and being aware of the goal of the Communist Party. I
would have to say this in all honesty: During the time I was a member
of the Communist Party I at no time was aware of their desire to do
anything which was contrary to the best interests of the people. Now it
could conceivably be that I was not aware, perhaps naive.

All of my activity--and, in fact, that is what prompted me not to
take the fifth amendment. At no time in my life have I knowingly
done anything contrary to the best interests of the people of this
country. And certainly were I to be aware of that in an association and
continue activity I would be guilty of doing something against the best
interests of the people.

Mr. MOULDER. The subpena that has been served upon you will be in full
force and effect. You will be subject to recall upon due notice.

Mr. MILLER. Should I leave for the day?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.

The subpena will remain in full force and effect, and you will be
subject to recall upon due notice at any time in the future. That does
not mean, of course, that you have to attend any of the hearings here
today or tomorrow.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, I would like to call Mr. Eugene V. Dennett
at this time.


TESTIMONY OF EUGENE VICTOR DENNETT, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, KENNETH
A. MacDONALD--Resumed

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, at the time we suspended your testimony you
had completed your narrative with regard to your experience in the CCC
camp, and told us that immediately thereafter you had been shanghaied
into working shipping.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder left the hearing room.)

Mr. DENNETT. A little freight boat here in Puget Sound.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am sure that would be a very interesting story, but it
is not a matter we are investigating in our work here.

After you had that experience how long was it before you returned to
the work of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. It was within a very few months because I didn’t know at
the time I started to work in the freight-boat industry in Puget Sound
that there was an organizing drive of a union to organize the employees
and that they had reached the point before I came along where they had
entered into an arbitration. And they were awaiting the decision of
this arbitrator. Finally the decision came down, I think about 3 or 4
months after I entered the industry, and the decision was so adverse
that the men stopped work as soon as the boats got into port.

Mr. TAVENNER. What do you mean by saying that a decision came down?

Mr. DENNETT. The arbitrator handed down his decision. He was a very
long time making his decision. When it finally came down it was very
disagreeable to all the employees. In fact, they rejected it; they
refused to accept it and called a strike.

When they called that strike they were confronted with a problem of
electing delegates to attend a meeting of the union to determine what
course of action to pursue.

I was elected a delegate from the crew that I was working with.

When we arrived at this meeting--I believe the meeting was held in the
labor temple--we discussed the award, and the union leaders at that
time were very frankly disappointed in the results of it.

The sum total of it was that it led to a strike, and the members
seemed to like the way I presented their case during the course of the
arguments, getting ready for the strike. And when the strike occurred
I was elected chairman of the strike committee and chairman of the
negotiating committee.

So we were again brought into public attention, and the Communist
Party looked me up very quickly to find out what was going on and to
try to advise me how to conduct myself in the course of that strike.
They really knew very little about it. They learned a great deal from
me because I was working with the men. And their advice was I must
immediately fight the leadership of the union.

I made a few feeble efforts in that direction and found that I didn’t
have any good reason for fighting that leadership because they were
carrying out the program which I had advocated in the original strike
meeting to satisfy the needs of the members.

Mr. TAVENNER. Apparently, the Communist Party was more interested in
promoting its own objectives than it was the objectives of the union
which was on strike.

Mr. DENNETT. They were anxious that someone from the Communist Party
gain control in that organization.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the name of the organization?

Mr. DENNETT. At that time it was called the Ferry Boatmen’s Union of
the Pacific. It later has changed its name, and, in making use of that
name, I certainly want it to be clearly understood that using that name
in nowise should be construed as meaning that it was any Communist
organization because it was not.

Mr. TAVENNER. It rather demonstrated just the contrary.

Mr. DENNETT. And its leaders were not.

But the leaders of that organization were making as sincere an effort
as they knew how to represent the wishes and needs of the membership.

While there were some tactical differences between myself and them
on various occasions, we did adopt a program wherein we agreed with
each other that none of us would attempt to do anything or to speak in
behalf of the organization without conferring with the other. In other
words, we made a mutual agreement among ourselves as officials of the
strike committee which required the exchange of mutual confidence. And,
to the best of my ability, I carried that out, and I think, in all
fairness, it should be said that, to the best of their ability, they
carried their part out. I think the value of that is demonstrated by
the fact that in the final settlement of that strike we succeeded in
raising the wages of the freight-boat employees from $49 per month,
without any regulation of hours, to a wage of about $150 per month with
a regulation of hours and provision for overtime.

Mr. VELDE (presiding).

I am not quite clear about this ferry boatmen’s union. Was it a local
union not affiliated with any other?

Mr. DENNETT. It was a part of an American Federation affiliate. At
that time it was the Ferry Boatmen’s Union of the Pacific, affiliated
with the International Seamen’s Union of America, affiliated with the
American Federation of Labor.

Mr. VELDE. In what year?

Mr. DENNETT. That was in 1936.

Mr. VELDE. How large was the local? How many members?

Mr. DENNETT. I think there were in the neighborhood of 300 or 400
members in Puget Sound at that time. But that, of course, controlled
all the tug boats and all the barges, all the towing, all the
servicing, on the waterside of the smaller vessels.

I think that that completes the statement of what was in progress at
the time of the question.

Mr. TAVENNER. After this experience on the waterfront what was your
next contact with the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. The next occurred in the district council of the Maritime
Federation of the Pacific. That was Northwest District Council No. 1
which was in Seattle. This was the council to which delegates were sent
from all the maritime unions.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. DENNETT. And some of the shoreside unions, which worked in the
shipyards.

These unions were brought together in the 1934 strike, which was before
my time. And I would be presuming on you to try to give any testimony
about the exact way in which it was formed except to say that,
consistent with the Communist Party policy, it was our objective, from
the days of the old Marine Workers Industrial Union, which was one of
the affiliates of the Red International of Labor Unions, to organize
all the maritime workers into one organization.

However, it was the desire of the workers in the industry to choose
their membership in the duly constituted, chartered organizations of
craft unions which were already in the field, such as the Sailors’
Union of the Pacific, the Marine Firemen, Oilers, Water Tenders and
Wipers Association, the Marine Cooks and Stewards of the Pacific.[2]
And later on I believe the radio operators, the masters, mates, and
pilots,[3] and the marine engineers.[4] Then, of course, the shoreside
organizations of longshoremen, machinists and shipwrights, joiners,
boilermakers. There were many organizations that were involved in any
kind of waterborne traffic.

Through the Maritime Federation of the Pacific all of these were
brought together, and, for a brief period of time at least, cooperated
quite successfully.

However, by 1935 one organization began to object to the Communist
Party influence in the federation. That was the sailors’ union under
Harry Lundeberg. However, in that dispute it wasn’t clear to the
average person who was in the industry just what the nature of the
dispute was, and most people felt that the dispute was a personal
dispute between the leaders of the sailors and the leaders of the
longshoremen. My own knowledge of the situation, of a later date, would
lead me to believe that that is not an adequate explanation of what the
dispute was all about.

The dispute ran much deeper than personality clashes. The dispute was a
fundamental policy question dispute, and that dispute centered around
whether or not the organization would move closer and closer to the Red
International of Labor Unions through this new form or whether it would
permit itself to separate into the respective component parts and each
function separately and independently without that international Red
affiliation.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the outcome of that dispute?

Mr. DENNETT. The outcome was that the split spread. First one
organization and then another began to have misgivings as to the
consequences of being full partners in the Maritime Federation of the
Pacific.

The first one to show the disaffection were the sailors. Subsequently
the marine firemen showed disaffection. Then the master mates
and pilots showed disaffection. And the marine engineers showed
disaffection. The radio operators began to show some disaffection. Some
of the longshoremen showed disaffection.

So the result was that by the time 1937 or 1938 rolled around the
Maritime Federation was becoming sort of a bare skeleton which existed
with a powerful name but did not have the moral backing and support of
the members of the organizations that were affiliated to it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was the organization Communist-dominated?

Mr. DENNETT. The Maritime Federation of the Pacific top leadership had
at all times some prominent Communist leaders, some persons who were
Communists.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you at this time give us the names of those who
occupied an official position in that organization who were known to
you to be members of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. One of the first ones that I knew was a man by the name of
Walter Stack.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did Walter Stack become very prominent in the Communist
Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Walter Stack was in the marine firemen’s union and
exercised a great deal of influence in that organization here.

Another was Ernest Fox. Ernest Fox was a patrolman in the Sailors
Union of the Pacific, and he exercised a great deal of influence in
the sailors union. He was one of the original ones. When Mr. Lundeberg
was the first president of the organization Mr. Fox was his right hand
bower who did most of the leg work for Mr. Lundeberg at that time.
Lundeberg was the first president of the Maritime Federation of the
Pacific.

Mr. TAVENNER. At that time was he anti-Communist?

Mr. DENNETT. I think, from the stories that I have been told, that
Mr. Lundeberg was thought so well of at that time that he was invited
to take part and did participate in some top fraction meetings of the
Communist Party in the Maritime Federation. And when he turned against
the Communist Party a little bit later on that incensed the Communists
so much that they looked upon Mr. Lundeberg as a potential traitor
who might reveal a good deal more about them than they wished to have
revealed, so that they launched many attacks upon Mr. Lundeberg for the
political purpose of diverting the attention from the real reason for
the attack.

I do not mean to say by that that I endorsed everything Mr. Lundeberg
did, because I disagreed with most of the things he did on a
straight trade-union basis on a later date. But this much about that
relationship I do know, and I know that--continuing the answer to your
question as to the others--the next one whom I knew who also became
president of the Maritime Federation of the Pacific was a man by the
name of James Engstrom.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you spell the name, please.

Mr. DENNETT. E-n-g-s-t-r-o-m. Engstrom also came from the Marine
Firemen’s Union here in the Seattle branch. Mr. Engstrom exercised
powerful influence in the organization. However, he came to a very
sad end in his relationships there because, for some reason or other,
he began to have some difficulty following the Communist Party line
and instructions, and ultimately took a vacation, went to Alaska,
thought the situation over, and I believe that he informed some Federal
Government agency of his connection and relationship at that time, and
severed his connection or resigned from his position, and what happened
to him after that I do not know.

Mr. VELDE. I am not clear on this probably because I am not up on my
organization of labor unions as well as I should be.

Was the Sailors Union of the Pacific a part of the unit within the
federation?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, it was affiliated.

Mr. VELDE. It was not a new organization then when it split off
under----

Mr. DENNETT. No. The Sailors Union of the Pacific is one of the oldest
organizations on the west coast, founded originally by old Andrew
Furuseth.

Mr. VELDE. Is the same true of the other organizations that split from
the federation? Were they at one time units within the federation?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, they were. Later on there was a man that became
an official in the Maritime Federation, by the name of Pringle,
P-r-i-n-g-l-e. I do not remember his first name. Pringle occupied a
high position in the federation. I do not recall at this moment the
exact position, but I do know that when I had business to transact on
behalf of the Ferry Boatsmen’s Union at that time, as it was known, I
had to deal with Mr. Pringle. And he was a member of the party also.

Later on I came to know another person who later became president of
the Maritime Federation, and was the last president to the best of
my recollection, a man by the name of Bruce Hannon, H-a-n-n-o-n. Mr.
Bruce Hannon was a longshoreman from the city of Seattle, worked on the
Seattle waterfront for a good many years. Mr. Hannon also came into
conflict with the Communist Party policy while he was a member of the
Communist Party, and totally disagreed with the decision to wipe out
the Maritime Federation.

The policy decision arrived at on that question was due to the fact
that the CIO was coming into existence in 1937, and it was the belief
of the Communist Party that if the Maritime Federation were dissolved
and liquidated that the affiliates of it would form a very good, solid,
and substantial core of the new CIO organization and would be able to
take all the fishermen unions with it into the CIO.

Mr. Hannon did not agree with that policy. He felt that the Maritime
Federation still had a function to perform and it should not have been
liquidated. And he came into violent dispute with the party leadership
over that question. How it was finally resolved I do not know. I did
not see Mr. Hannon until after the war, and I met him one day very
casually and he did not at that time express anything definitive which
I could contribute now to enlighten anyone as to what he felt except to
say that he was still bitter.

Mr. TAVENNER. As a result of that change of emphasis on the part of the
Communist Party, that is, from the Maritime Federation to its component
parts, which were to form another organization, was the Maritime
Federation of the Pacific disbanded?

Mr. DENNETT. That is right.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you give us the approximate date?

Mr. DENNETT. To the best of my recollection, it would be right around
1938 or 1939. I may be a little bit off one year or another there, but
it is close to that date.

Mr. TAVENNER. During this period, between the time that you were
shanghaied on a boat here in Seattle and 1938, did you engage in any
other activities in the Communist Party not connected with maritime
affairs?

Mr. DENNETT. I certainly did. I was sent as a delegate from the
Inlandboatmen’s Union.[5] The name didn’t become Inlandboatmen until
much later, but I think of it now in that term. The name actually was
Ferry Boatmen’s Union at that time.

As a result of the successful conduct of our strike in 1936, the
members and the good relationship which was established between the
officers and myself, the officers agreed with the membership in
electing me a delegate to represent the organization in the Central
Labor Council. And that, of course, involved attending a weekly meeting
every Wednesday night in the labor temple.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where?

Mr. DENNETT. In Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. Just tell us very briefly what the Central Labor Council
was.

Mr. DENNETT. It was the city organization to which all American
Federation of Labor affiliates were affiliated, and sent delegates to
discuss their mutual business weekly.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the fact that you were sent there as a delegate make
you a member of the Central Labor Council?

Mr. DENNETT. It did. Because of my activity in the Maritime Federation
District Council, the delegates there, most of whom were also delegates
to the Central Labor Council, elected me chairman of the maritime
caucus which was comprised of all those affiliates from the maritime
unions who were also affiliates of the Central Labor Council. There
was a duplication of affiliation there, and I was elected chairman of
that caucus. As that chairman, I was able to speak in behalf of that
caucus--all those maritime delegates--which was the largest caucus at
that time in the Central Labor Council.

Consequently, when I arose to speak the chairman of the Central Labor
Council would recognize me rather than recognize any other member of
the caucus because he was recognizing the duly elected leadership of
the caucus. Consequently, it was my function to represent that caucus
on the floor of the Central Labor Council on all important questions,
which I did. And it caused a great deal of attention to be focused on
my work and on the work of the maritime unions.

We were trying our level best to support the policies which the
Communist Party urged upon us, and that pertained especially to the
question of war, fighting the program of involvement in war at that
time. It involved being very critical of the top leadership of the
American Federation of Labor, which many other people criticized as
well as we, and by we, I mean the Communists were not the only ones
that criticized; many of the rank-and-file members who had no knowledge
of Communist Party policy or activity were also critical. But because
of this similarity of criticism, the Communists, knowing where they
were going, were able to direct this criticism along very effective
lines. And I was a central instrument in that effort in the Central
Labor Council in the city of Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. As a result of your experience on the Central Labor
Council were you selected for other organizational work in the
Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, I was.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the nature of your work?

Mr. DENNETT. The Communist Party recognized that the position which
I was attaining in the Central Labor Council represented a powerful
political influence in the city because the city of Seattle at that
time had the reputation of being the best organized labor city in the
United States of America. There was hardly an industry that was not
actually organized in some labor union, holding bona fide labor-union
contracts with its management or employer. And the city had a very wide
reputation in that respect. Some people looked upon that as good; some
people looked upon it as bad. The Communist Party looked upon it as
being very good because it provided us an opportunity to reach every
single worker in the city indirectly.

Mr. TAVENNER. Would you say that as a result of your successful efforts
while a member of the Central Labor Council, you took part in other
Communist Party activities?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you describe the nature of those activities?

Mr. DENNETT. It was in the Washington Commonwealth Federation,
which was an organization which came into existence, the elements
of it came into existence, prior to my coming from the CCC’s. But
this organization originally grew out of the transformation from
the unemployed to the employed workers. And people built what was
known as Commonwealth Builder Clubs. And then, of course, you recall
that in that earlier period, 1933, there was a change of political
administration due to a national election. And in that period there
were a group of young, ambitious politicians who wanted to get elected
to public office. There were many young aspiring graduates of college
who felt that they had a contribution to make, and they sought
audiences before these respective organizations to win political favor,
make speeches and otherwise become publicly known so that when they did
choose to file as a candidate for public office that they could expect
enough support to get elected.

These Commonwealth Builders ultimately merged and formed what was known
as the Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was there anything of a Communist origin that you know of
in the establishment of the Commonwealth Builders?

Mr. DENNETT. No. To the best of my knowledge, this was a result of
the efforts of people who were not directed or led by the Communist
Party. However, their efforts met with such sweeping success that the
Communist Party had to concern itself if it was going to remain a
political factor.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, the Communist Party in order to become
the leader in the field which it desired, would have to get control of
such organizations. Is that what you mean?

Mr. DENNETT. Absolutely. We recognized that. And since being pushed
into leadership in various activities in the city, it fell to me to do
a lot of this representative work of the Communist Party in the ranks
of the Washington Commonwealth Federation, because the prestige I had
in the Inland Boatmen’s Union as a result of the successful strike made
it a comparatively simple matter for the members to elect me a delegate
and be a bona fide representative of a bona fide labor union in the
Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. TAVENNER. Without going into detail, will you tell us what the
connection was, between the Commonwealth Builders and the Washington
Commonwealth Federation, or how one may have succeeded the other?

Mr. DENNETT. The Commonwealth Builders were the groups of small
organizations which preceded the Washington Commonwealth Federation.
The Communist Party became interested in the success of Commonwealth
Builders and brought forth some proposals to cause the organization to
expand and grow.

One of the proposals of the Communist Party was that steps should be
taken by the Commonwealth Builders to make possible the affiliation not
only of neighborhood groups alone----

Mr. TAVENNER. Neighborhood groups of what?

Mr. DENNETT. Of either Democrats or Commonwealth Builders, or
unemployed organizations or Workers Alliance. There are still a few
remnants of those, remnants of the old Unemployed Citizens League
organizations. These had all transformed and became the foundation upon
which the Commonwealth Builders rested.

The Communist Party, however, conceived that if the organization were
to become as powerful as it should and ought to be, that provision
should be made for the affiliation of larger organizations. And the
Communist Party succeeded in prevailing upon most of its members to
enter the American Federation of Labor unions. Consequently it was
a simple matter to introduce resolutions in numerous labor unions
urging that the American Federation of Labor unions affiliate with the
Washington Commonwealth Federation. At the same time they proposed the
calling of a convention to broaden the base of the organization of this
Commonwealth Builders.

That was done. And the Washington Commonwealth Federation was brought
into existence as an organization with affiliation from large numbers
of unions in addition to Democratic clubs and unemployed clubs and
fraternal organizations. Anything and everything which was willing
to affiliate was certainly welcomed and urged to affiliate to the
organization, pay dues, participate in its conventions, participate in
the electoral activities it engaged in.

Mr. TAVENNER. The method that the Communist Party used to assist in the
organization of the Washington Commonwealth Federation was to induce
the leadership of the particular organizations which they were members
of, such as the various labor organizations that you mentioned----

Mr. DENNETT. They would raise perfectly legitimate reasons which any
ordinary person would recognize as proper.

Mr. TAVENNER. And they brought their influence to bear on the formation
of the organization through that method.

Mr. DENNETT. That is right.

Mr. TAVENNER. As a result of that action did you say a convention was
held?

Mr. DENNETT. A convention of the Commonwealth Builders was held, which
changed the name to Washington Commonwealth Federation.

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde left the hearing room.)

Mr. DENNETT. Because of that affiliation of whole organizations which
were not geographical in nature--take a labor union: It was not
geographical in nature; it was a complete affiliate without having
geographical definition whereas a Democratic club in a particular
district or a particular part of the city was restricted to a
particular area.

I say the federation part became a necessary part of the title because
of the nature of the changed affiliations.

Mr. TAVENNER. Before the name was changed what was the title?

Mr. DENNETT. Commonwealth Builders.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, it was a conversion of Commonwealth
Builders into an overall organization.

Mr. DENNETT. It was.

Mr. TAVENNER. Titled “Washington Commonwealth Federation.”

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will stand in recess for approximately 5
minutes.

(Whereupon a short recess was taken.)

(Representatives Moulder and Velde were present upon reconvening at the
expiration of the recess.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, I think you have made it clear in your
testimony that the Commonwealth Builders were not organized by the
Communist Party and that there was very little, if any, Communist Party
influence within those affiliated organizations as such. Am I correct
in that?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, that is essentially correct.

Mr. TAVENNER. I want to be certain as to what the picture is with
regard to the Washington Commonwealth Federation which succeeded; that
is, whether or not at the inception of that organization it was heavily
controlled by the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. No; it was not. And, as a matter of fact, it was quite
anti-Communist at the very beginning.

Mr. TAVENNER. The original method used by the Communist Party to become
entrenched in the federation was through the various organizations
which were affiliated with it.

Mr. DENNETT. Through the process of building the organization larger
and bringing into affiliation organizations in which it did have
influence and ultimately getting top influence in the WCF.

Mr. TAVENNER. I think that explains it.

You made reference to a convention that was being called. When
and where was the convention held? That is, the convention of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. DENNETT. In the year 1936 it held two conventions. One was in April
and another one was later in the year. The one in April was concerned
with several important questions. It was the largest convention of any
of the WCF conventions that I ever attended, and I understood it was
the largest convention ever held. It was in Everett, Wash., in April
1936.

It must be remembered that 1936 was a Presidential campaign. The
political situation in the whole country was quite alive. Many new
people were rising in the political sphere. And, of course, the
Washington Commonwealth Federation was an open and ready instrument
through which ambitious political persons could make their first bid
for public office and fame.

Many of them did so. Many young graduates of the university did so. I
have very little personal knowledge about them, and I wish to make sure
that you understand, and everyone else does, that I am not referring
to these persons as Communists. They are not. And I make no inference
of that kind. I simply recite the fact that here was an organization
which was capable of exerting a great deal of political power, and it
attracted all persons who had political ambitions. As a matter of fact,
there were some Republicans as well as Democrats and Independents who
beat a path to the door of the Washington Commonwealth Federation to
obtain political endorsement.

Now this convention in 1936, in April, had before it several important
policy questions. At that particular time the Communist Party had
to exercise its influence by indirection. The top leadership of the
federation were not Communists at that time.

The Communist Party was striving to obtain an endorsement of that
federation convention which would call for the organization of
either a farmer-labor party or a new independent political party. In
other words, our effort, speaking of the Communists, was to drive
the federation into making a completely new, independent, separate
political organization. However, our plans were dependent upon approval
from the central committee of the Communist Party. And the central
committee of the Communist Party kept us dangling on the end of a
string for many, many weeks prior to the opening of this convention.

The reason they kept us dangling on a string was that nationally the
Communist Party wanted to see organized and wanted to have a part in
organizing a new national organization which would be separate from
and independent from the Democratic Party or the Republican Party.
And it hoped to attract all persons known as liberals or progressives
to support and participate in such an organization. But its chief
difficulty was to obtain some national figure of great prominence to
lead the thing to give it the initiative and give it the original
sendoff that it needed to draw the strength necessary to win something
in the next election.

The party leadership felt that the person most capable of accomplishing
that purpose and fulfilling that objective was the then Governor of
Minnesota. I think it is Minnesota. Yes. His name was Floyd Olson. He
was Governor there. And he was a Farmer-Labor Governor there.

The very designation lent itself to the spreading of a nationwide
farmer-labor party. And it was the original hope of the Communist Party
that through various forms of manipulation----

It was the Olson from Minnesota. I am quite sure, thinking back on it
now, it was Floyd.

But be that as it may, it was the Governor Olson of Minnesota who was
Governor in 1936 as a Farmer-Labor Governor.

However, at the very last moment when we had the resolution all ready
to press before the convention, we finally received word that this
Governor Olson was not well enough to undertake the job of organizing
a new national farmer-labor party because of ill health, and begged
off from the responsibility. Nationally, we were unable to find
another figure of as much prominence whom we thought would be capable
of leading such a successful effort. Consequently, we had to whip
our party machinery into shape rather rapidly and change our tactics
right on the floor of the WCF convention, and reverse ourselves in the
process of debating the question.

Actually the resolutions committee had come in with a report in which a
majority had objected to going the independent route. But I was one of
the delegates who was in the minority who was leading a fight for going
the independent route. And in the process of starting the debate we got
the official word that it was a hopeless task, and we had to withdraw
that effort.

We made a last-minute switch in our strategy and tactics, and some
of those who had been fighting us so vigorously on the floor were
completely dumfounded to find that we compromised--what appeared to
be a compromise--when we changed our policy during the course of the
debate on the resolution itself and withdrew our minority position.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you change your policy as a result of directions from
the Communist Party head in New York?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes. And the district organizer of the party was in the
anteroom of the convention hall, sending word and direction to those of
us who were up near the microphone who had an opportunity to command
the microphone and the debate. And there were runners running back and
forth to us rather rapidly telling us what the latest news of the party
line was.

And the executive secretary of the Commonwealth Federation at that time
was a man by the name of Howard Costigan who became somewhat alarmed to
see such an obvious maneuver where between 15 and 20 different people
were running back and forth passing messages to me and to others up in
the front from Rappaport advising us what the official party policy
was. He later on commented that he could see the party line running all
over the place, but he didn’t know what was in it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was Howard Costigan a member of the Communist Party at
that time?

Mr. DENNETT. Not at that time.

But that demonstration of power that we exercised in that convention
was very convincing to him that if he wanted to remain as head of that
organization he would have to make his peace with us, which he did
before that summer was over.

Mr. TAVENNER. And did he become a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. He did.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, I think the record should show that Mr.
Howard Costigan has appeared before the committee and has testified
regarding some of the matters which have been mentioned here,
including the fact that he did become a member of the Communist Party
at about the time indicated by this witness, and at a later time, at
approximately 1940, he left the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. I could substantiate that.

There was another matter which arose as a serious issue in that
convention, and it concerned a proposal for an initiative measure which
became known as the production-for-use initiative.

Many people, because of the Communist Party influence in the
unemployed days, were quite concerned and alarmed over the problem
of unemployment, insecurity, possible impoverishment, et cetera.
All the consequences of economic dislocation. They had read many
of the so-called utopian pieces of literature such as Bellamy’s
Looking Backward and other documents of the kind. They had also
read Mr. Upton Sinclair’s program in California. They were somewhat
acquainted with the propaganda of the Soviet Union, to the effect that
production-for-use was the solution to the problems of capitalist lack
of planning. In other words, planned economy.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Dennett, you testified that you received the party
line by courier, by runners from Rappaport. Do you have any idea how
Rappaport received it from headquarters of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes. Sometimes he received it by telegraph. In this
particular instance, about this Governor Olson, he received that by
telegram.

Mr. VELDE. Was there any secrecy involved, especially at that time?

Mr. DENNETT. No; there was no secrecy in that communication. As a
matter of fact, they took parallel measures to see that somebody in
Governor Olson’s staff also sent word to Howard Costigan directly.
He also received the word. So that there was parallel information.
At least we did make that concession to Costigan, that he would have
official information about it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the rank-and-file membership of the Washington
Commonwealth Federation know of the Communist Party manipulations which
you have just described?

Mr. DENNETT. I am quite sure that most of them did not, although the
behavior of many of the Democratic Party leaders at that convention
would lead me to believe that they suspected it, because they fought us
so bitterly and so hard.

Mr. TAVENNER. Proceed, please.

Mr. DENNETT. The story on the production-for-use initiative is simply
this:

Because there was such a popular demand for some change in the economic
situation to assure continued production and a cooperative effort, many
people tried to translate an ideal of a cooperative commonwealth into
some form of legislative effort. This resulted in many conferences and
the calling in of legal talent to try to draft a measure which would be
legal and which would satisfy the ambitions of the people to have the
so-called dream of a cooperative commonwealth organization.

Mr. TAVENNER. Describe in a practical sense what production-for-use
meant?

Mr. DENNETT. I wish I could satisfy you completely on that point
because that is one of the problems we ran into in trying to draw up
this initiative measure.

We could never satisfy ourselves that we had it satisfactorily
organized. However, the staff who worked on it worked long and hard and
finally produced a measure which was known as the production-for-use
initiative. It was ready for presentation to that convention. However,
some of us in the Communist Party, while we agreed that such a measure
was a good propaganda weapon and felt that it was an excellent means of
popularizing the ideas which we understood and claimed were the basis
of the operation of the economy in the Soviet Union, we were startled
when we read the document and found that it sounded a little bit more
like the Fascist corporate state that the Italian leader Mussolini had
established. We became so alarmed about it, and were so perplexed that
we asked a very world-famous person, who happened to be a guest of the
convention, what this person thought about it.

The person to whom I refer is Anna Louise Strong, who had just come
from the Soviet Union, extended greetings to us, to the convention, and
otherwise gave a very enlightening report on her travels, and won wide
acclaim for that effort.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did she, on the floor of the convention, address herself
to the problem of production-for-use?

Mr. DENNETT. She did not. Not at that moment. She spoke only in general
terms about it, referring to it in a complimentary way and hoping for
success. But at that moment she did not know very much about what was
in that document.

However, we felt that she, coming from the Soviet Union with fresh
knowledge, might know quite a lot about it and might be able to assist
us in revising the document so that it would be possible to satisfy
us that it was, in fact, a step in the direction of a cooperative
commonwealth.

So she consented very graciously to take the document and work on it
overnight. She did exactly that. And we read it the next morning, and,
much to our surprise, she had moved the emphasis in the control even
more in the direction of top control and less in the direction of
allowing the members or the organizations to have anything to say about
it, which was just the reverse of the trend that we had hoped for.

Consequently, we began to ask ourselves, that is, the Communists asked
themselves, if this is the end result of an effort to draw up an
initiative, maybe it would be smarter politically for us to see that
this measure dies aborning. Consequently, we came to the conclusion
that it was impossible to draw up an initiative measure which would be
adequate and which would answer our propaganda needs and our desires to
satisfy us that it was in harmony with our program. So we embarked upon
a campaign in the course of the election----

Mr. TAVENNER. Was this a campaign to pass the proposed measure or to
defeat it?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, we all went out presumably to win support to get
the measure adopted. That is, it was an initiative measure and it was
before the voters. The voters were to cast a vote yes or no on this
initiative.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel asked me if I knew the number of it, and I have
forgotten the exact number of that initiative at this moment. So I
can’t furnish that. I wish I could. It is a matter of official record,
however, and it can be verified if anyone is curious about it.

The Communist Party found itself in that predicament. We were committed
to support the measure, but we were determined to bring about its
defeat. Consequently, we campaigned far and wide all over the State of
Washington, explaining the measure in such a way as to convince the
people that they should not vote for it.

At the same time we represented ourselves as campaigning for the
measure.

And we did it so successfully that the measure was defeated. If we
hadn’t of done it I am afraid it would have been adopted.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel asked me who was the “we.”

I am referring to the Communist Party in that instance.

The leaders of the Washington Commonwealth Federation were terribly
disturbed by the nature of the campaign that we were carrying on, that
is, the Communists.

Mr. TAVENNER. I should think it would be a rather confusing campaign
where the Communist Party, in order to defeat it, actually supported it.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true. It was very confusing to everyone, even to
us at times.

Mr. TAVENNER. That is a very interesting thing. The Communist Party,
in order to defeat this measure, went out and conducted a state-wide
campaign in favor of it. But in order to accomplish its defeat, if I
understand you correctly, the Communist Party so represented the issues
that people would be bound to vote against it.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. MOULDER. I understood the situation to be that because of Communist
Party support of the measure, the public sentiment opposed it.

Mr. DENNETT. Not necessarily so, sir, because they didn’t know that we
who were speaking were Communists. They thought we were representatives
of the Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. MOULDER. Proceed.

Mr. DENNETT. There is triple deception in this maneuver, which is
rather hard to follow. I hope I have explained it.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am afraid that the point may not be absolutely clear in
the record, and I want to be sure that it is clear:

If I understand you correctly, it was not the fact that the Communist
Party was supporting this measure that caused its defeat.

Mr. DENNETT. You are correct, sir. That was not the reason. It was the
way we, as disguised Communists, carried on the campaign, ostensibly
for it, but, in fact, against it.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, your representations were of such a
character as to make known the weaknesses in the bill; and a person
would actually think you were supporting it.

Mr. DENNETT. True. You understand it quite clearly.

Mr. TAVENNER. I think the bill was properly named when you used the
word “initiative” because that certainly is the use of initiative.
I am glad to know it is Communist Party initiative. It is a very
deceptive type of campaign.

Mr. DENNETT. Mr. Tavenner and Mr. Chairman, I would like to make one
observation about my testimony earlier this afternoon.

I get the feeling, and I have a fear that perhaps people listening to
this presentation might think that because of my testimony I was the
only figure who was active in the Washington Commonwealth Federation
carrying on this activity.

I hope that no one assumes that because I was one of a team. There were
several others.

Mr. TAVENNER. Who composed the team?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, I didn’t mean to bring that up because I don’t like
to have to do that. But I was fearful that people might think I was too
much of a braggart in this thing, and I don’t mean to be because it is
all ancient history and I am simply trying to furnish such information
as I know of my own knowledge about that experience so that other
people may comprehend it in full.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am sure, Mr. Dennett, that the committee, having heard
as many witnesses as it has on the subject of communism, recognizes
that it is teamwork that has enabled the Communist Party to get where
it is, rather than grandstand playing.

Who were the other members of the team?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, that takes me into a description of the district
bureau of the Communist Party in that particular period.

As I look back over it I might call it the golden age of the Communist
Party’s efforts in the Northwest because it did at that time enjoy,
that is, the leaders of the Communist Party did enjoy a relationship
among each other and among themselves, and in the organizations to
which each were members--they did enjoy a very full and rich democratic
experience in procedure.

This, I think, was due largely to the efforts of Mr. Morris Rappaport
who was the district organizer whom I mentioned earlier, who had, by
his adroitness in calling the political moves, established himself in
the eyes of the central committee of the Communist Party of the United
States as a person capable of directing the political activities in the
Northwest without the need of daily supervision on the part of national
headquarters of the Communist Party. In other words, they did accord
him the recognition that comes of confidence that he knew what he was
doing and was capable of carrying it out.

And I am quite certain that the way he coordinated the efforts of each
of us in the district bureau at that time were so gratifying to the
central committee that most of the members of the central committee
didn’t dare to try to interfere with our efforts for fear that they
might be responsible for upsetting the applecart so to speak.

Now in that team were, first of all, Mr. Morris Rappaport, the district
organizer. His right-hand man, who was also the trade-union secretary
of the district, was a man known to me by the name of Henry or Harry
Jackson. I know that that is not his real name, but I do not know what
his real name was. That was his party name. That is the only name I
knew him by in this area.

Mr. TAVENNER. How long was he in this area?

Mr. DENNETT. He came shortly after Morris Rappaport came.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did he come from New York?

Mr. DENNETT. He did. His original home was San Francisco.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am sure we know him.

Mr. DENNETT. Mr. Jackson had his early training in the Marine Workers
Industrial Union organizing maritime workers. He came here originally
for that purpose, and then his assignment was switched to that of
trade-union secretary for the district in the Northwest.

I was one of his closest associates because I was footloose and free
and available to carry the Jimmy Higgins load that had to be carried at
that time. We were working daily and devoting all of our time to that
effort.

We had a few people who were prominent in the University of Washington
at that time who were active members of our district bureau. One was
Mr. Harold Ebey, E-b-e-y.

And another was Mr. Hugh DeLacy.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was he at one time a Member of Congress?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, he is the same person who was called as a
witness before this committee at Dayton, Ohio, in September 1954, and
who refused to answer material questions on the ground that to do so
might tend to incriminate him.

Mr. DENNETT. I mentioned Mr. DeLacy’s name with a great deal of regret
because I was a very close associate of Mr. DeLacy and I had a great
deal of respect for him, and he for me. It is only under the compulsion
of the subpena and the fact that I am testifying and I have to testify
when I mention his name. I do so with regret. I wish the rules
were such that it wasn’t necessary because it is a source of great
embarrassment to me. But I feel that I owe a big obligation to the men
that I work for, and, under the rules as constituted by this committee
and the way it is operating, I have no choice in the matter.

I make my apologies to Mr. DeLacy for having to do this. I regret it.
But at the same time, in the long run, I don’t think it is going to
hurt him, and I think it may do him some good. I hope so.

Others who were prominent in the district bureau were, of course, Mr.
Howard Costigan, Mr. Jess Fletcher, Mr. William K. Dobbins, Mr. Karley
Larsen.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let me make this suggestion to you.

If you know whether any of these persons whose names you have
mentioned, testified publicly before this or other committees and
acknowledged their Communist Party membership and a withdrawal from the
Communist Party, I think you should state it.

Mr. DENNETT. I can state that about three persons whom I know. I know
that Mr. Jess Fletcher separated from the Communist Party, and he has
testified in a number of instances. He began testifying before the
Canwell committee when he was separated from the Communist Party and
from his union as a consequence of that fight. He later testified
before a number of Government agencies in a number of court cases.

Mr. Howard Costigan testified before this committee. I read his
testimony in the proceedings which have been published by the committee.

Mr. Harold Ebey also appeared before the Canwell committee and
testified there. He is out of the Communist Party and has been for
quite a considerable period of time. At least, I believe, since this
period 1936, 1937, and 1938.

Costigan is out of the Communist Party. He left shortly after later
political difficulties arose, which I will soon get into.

There may have been a few others who were in and out of the district
bureau. This district bureau was the leading body, the leading organ
in the district. It was the top body which had the top authority to
determine party policy in this area.

At one time I believe there were about 12 or 14 members of this bureau.
It may have been confined to nine. I have some recollection that there
were nine members officially on the bureau, but there were a few who
were candidates. That is, they were the next alternates to become
members in the event of any vacancy on the bureau so that we could
always have a reserve to fill any vacancies which might occur.

That district bureau covered the Northwest area which were the States
of, at that time, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Alaska.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do I understand you to mean that it was that group of
individuals who took the leadership in the work within the Washington
Commonwealth Federation?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes; they did.

Mr. Rappaport could not directly participate in the work of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation because he was what was generally
called the face of the party. He was the official representative of the
party. And the Washington Commonwealth Federation, even though there
were Communist leaders in it, it at no time accepted an affiliation
from the Communist Party, and it at no time would acknowledge a
Communist as a Communist in the organization unless it be someone like
Rappaport who had the authority to represent the party as such.

By that I mean that if I presented myself to the Washington
Commonwealth Federation to speak on any matter or to urge anything
before its body, I could not speak in the name of the Communist Party
even though other members of that executive board may know that I was
a member of the Communist Party. I could not speak as a Communist. I
could only speak as a member of that executive board, and it was the
presumption that I was representing the affiliate from which I had been
sent as a delegate.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, which of these
Communist Party bureau members became officials in the Washington
Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. DENNETT. Mr. Costigan already was an official. He was the executive
secretary.

Mr. DeLacy became the president of the Washington Commonwealth
Federation.

I became the vice president of the Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. Harold Ebey served in some advisory capacity. I think that he came
from a teachers’ union affiliate at that time.

Mr. Dobbins was a member there, but I do not recall the exact relation
that he held to obtain his position.

Mr. Karley Larsen was a leader there by virtue of the fact that he
was a leader in the Northern Washington District Council of the
International Woodworkers of America.

Mr. TAVENNER. It would seem that the Communist Party had complete
control of the organization.

Mr. DENNETT. We had another person there who is now deceased, but
I don’t think that it gives a complete picture without mentioning
him, and that is Mr. William Pennock, because Bill Pennock was the
workhorse. Bill Pennock carried the load. He was a very efficient man,
one of the fastest shorthand artists that I ever knew, and was capable
of keeping up with the fast pace that Mr. Costigan set.

Mr. Pennock deserves honorable mention for the work that he did in that
setup.

Mr. TAVENNER. What position did Pennock hold in the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. He attended the bureau meetings, but I do not remember
exactly whether he was a member of the bureau. But he attended most of
the bureau meetings by virtue of the fact that he became the head of
the pension union which was one of the big affiliates of the Washington
Commonwealth Federation.

Mr. TAVENNER. You have given a very full description of how the
Communist Party maneuvered to capture this organization.

Why was the Communist Party so interested in obtaining control of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation?

Mr. DENNETT. Because we wanted to ultimately obtain political power for
the Communist Party in the United States of America.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. TAVENNER. In the same manner, I assume, that you were attempting to
gain power for the Communist Party in every other field of endeavor.

Mr. DENNETT. Of course.

My counsel has suggested that I indicate the total membership of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation in that period.

Mr. TAVENNER. Yes, I think you should.

Mr. DENNETT. I am unable to give that in exact numbers, but I can give
you a proportionate situation which may indicate something of value.

It was our estimate and the result of our study from the election
returns of the candidates that we endorsed and the propositions that we
supported----

Mr. TAVENNER. When you say “we” are you speaking of the Communist Party
or the Washington Commonwealth?

Mr. DENNETT. The Washington Commonwealth Federation.

It was our estimate that it was capable of influencing and obtaining
the vote of one-third of the members who voted in the Democratic Party
slate or side of the ticket. And because of that fact and because we
were in a higher state of mobilization than the rest of the Democratic
Party, when primaries came along we could exercise a more direct
influence in the primaries than anybody else because our members in the
Washington Commonwealth Federation had a greater zeal and a greater
devotion to carrying out their objectives than the other Democrats who
frequently relied upon making their decisions in the general elections.

Mr. MOULDER. What do you mean by other Democrats?

Mr. DENNETT. Those who voted in the Democratic Party who were not
members of the Washington Commonwealth Federation through affiliation.

Mr. MOULDER. How many Communists would you estimate were members of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation?

Mr. DENNETT. The nearest I can give you by indication of that is
that in the period 1937-38, the high point of membership in the
Communist Party, as I recall the reports made to the district bureau
by the organization secretary, was in the neighborhood of 5,500
members of the Communist Party in the Northwest, in the 3 States of
Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, and Alaska, the Territory of Alaska.
Those 5,500 members of course, were scattered throughout all the
other organizations in the Northwest. And I am firmly of the belief
that fully 90 to 95 percent of that were members of the Washington
Commonwealth Federation through affiliations of one kind or another.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder left the hearing room.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the Washington Commonwealth Federation extend
throughout the entire 12th district, or, that is, in the Northwest
area? Or was it confined only to the State of Washington?

Mr. DENNETT. It was confined to the State of Washington. However, there
were some efforts made in the State of Oregon to develop an Oregon
Commonwealth Federation, but I have no direct knowledge of that, and I
would be unqualified to give you any testimony about it because I did
not participate in it and I do not know the people who did.

Mr. VELDE (presiding). Did your district committee of the Communist
Party, however, have representatives from Alaska and from Oregon?

Mr. DENNETT. No, there was no territorial representation like that.
The representatives of the district bureau of the Communist Party were
chosen because of their capability as political leaders, not because of
any particular area that they came from. And it was determined largely
by their ability to influence public opinion and to intervene in the
decision of public affairs.

Mr. VELDE. Did the district bureau act for the 12th district of the
Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, it did.

Mr. VELDE. But were they all from the State of Washington?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true. I think perhaps it is necessary at this
point to clear up one little problem of organizational structure that
existed in the Communist Party at that time.

It was not based upon territory. Representatives of the higher
committees did not have to come from any particular territory. They
were chosen because of their availability and their influencing ability
to carry the party policy into the mass organizations or before the
public.

Mr. VELDE. Were they actually chosen by the national committee of the
Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. Not in this district they were not, no.

Mr. VELDE. Just how were they chosen?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, that is another organizational problem of
interorganization of the Communist Party which is rather difficult for
persons not familiar with it to comprehend. But let me try to do it as
briefly as possible this way.

When I first came into the Communist Party the usual procedure was
something that went under the title of “Cooption.” Cooption meant
that the district organizer could appoint anybody he wanted to the
district committee or to the district bureau and could call them in to
serve, and everybody else had to accept such a person as being a fully
qualified member of that body. In other words, it was a handpicked
staff which represented the wishes of that particular leader who held
the authority at that time. That was the process of cooption in the
event of a vacancy. He could appoint someone to fill that vacancy, and
he did so. It was his responsibility to do so.

However, with the rise of Hitler Germany, the trials of the Reichstag,
an international leader by the name of Dimitrov acquired world fame
because, in his defense against the frameup which Goering tried to put
over on him, he learned that the Communist tactics and the Communist
policies in Germany had turned the masses of German workers against
the Communist Party and had resulted or had certainly played a part in
contributing to making it possible for Hitler Germany to result with
Hitler’s ascension to power.

Therefore, Mr. Dimitrov, when offered asylum by the Soviet Government,
immediately went to work for the Comintern, and, in that capacity as
leader of the Comintern, brought forth what was known as a new line.
And that new line called for introducing the practice of democracy
into the ranks of the Communist Party organization. He urged and
advised that the practice of cooption be abolished, and that the
higher committees be elected by a democratic process. And he, in fact,
insisted that that must be done in all countries where the party was
not illegal.

Recognizing that it was not possible to hold conventions where the
party was illegal, and that applied especially to the United States,
when Mr. Rappaport came to this district he tried his best to follow
out the decisions which were laid down by the Communist International
and the national headquarters of the Communist Party, and that practice
of electing the leadership was followed. However, at the district
convention there was always a nominating committee who carefully
screened the names of persons who were being proposed for leadership
or election to these committees, and, in doing so, succeeded in
accomplishing the original result, only satisfying ourselves that we
were practicing democracy.

Mr. VELDE. What year did that change take place, Mr. Dennett?

Mr. DENNETT. Right around 1936.

Mr. TAVENNER. So the matter of making nominations through a committee
was a mere matter of form.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. DENNETT. The district organizers still carefully looked it over and
still had a controlling influence there. But in this particular case
Mr. Rappaport exercised his influence not in any arbitrary way but in a
convincing way, because we all recognized that his broader experience
and his tremendous capacity for work equipped him to give us the
benefit of better wisdom than we had.

Mr. TAVENNER. Going back to the Washington Commonwealth Federation, you
were asked a question as to what the membership of the Communist Party
was in the district. Do you know what the membership of the Communist
Party was in the State of Washington at that time?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, most of that membership was in the State of
Washington. And I don’t know the exact number, but I think it would be
quite safe to say that around 85 to 90 percent of it was in the State
of Washington.

Mr. TAVENNER. How long did the Communist Party succeed in bringing its
influence to bear on political elections through this organization
known as the Washington Commonwealth Federation?

Mr. DENNETT. Until the international situation became unstable in about
the year 1938.

Mr. TAVENNER. How did the international situation affect political
matters locally here in the State of Washington as far as the Communist
Party was concerned?

Mr. DENNETT. The Communist Party had as one of its principal objectives
and one of its chief propaganda weapons, which it used upon other
persons of political mindedness, that the Communist program was a
consistent program on a domestic policy and on foreign policy, that our
program was liberal domestically and liberal internationally. However,
in 1938, after a long period of struggle and effort, the Communist
Party succeeded in prevailing upon many people to accept the slogan of
collective security as the proper policy to pursue in foreign affairs.
That, of course, was quite consistent with the policy of the Soviet
Union because it was the Soviet delegates to the League of Nations who
had continually agitated for a policy of collective security.

I think it was some time in 1938 that the Italian Premier launched his
attack in Ethiopia, and while we were clamoring for collective security
to be applied to that situation, it wasn’t too long afterwards when
the Soviet Union had a serious dispute with Finland, and hostilities
broke out and the Soviet Union smashed the Finnish Army and the Finnish
military installations.

We were confronted with the necessity of making an immediate switch
demanding nonintervention.

Mr. TAVENNER. What do you mean by we?

Mr. DENNETT. The Communist Party.

So our insistence upon nonintervention contradicted our prior
insistence upon collective security. This presented no end of trouble,
especially to those who had to meet the public and had to answer to
the public for the consistency of their program and policies from one
day to the next. It ultimately led to the disaffection of Mr. Howard
Costigan. And the chief reason that Mr. Costigan disaffected at that
time was because of his loyalty to Franklin D. Roosevelt as then
President of the United States, who came out in bitter denunciation
against the Soviets for attacking Finland, which left him in the
position of having a consistent policy because he had complained
bitterly against Mussolini’s march into Ethiopia. He had also been
critical of the Japanese invasion of China. He had also been critical
of each military venture where one country had attempted to impose its
will upon another by military means.

So Costigan felt that he was on sounder ground to continue his support
of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and he did so with as much effort as he
dared, without bringing down the wrath of the Communist Party on him at
that particular moment. However, the Communist Party sensed that he was
beginning to disaffect, and we proceeded to isolate him from everything
we could. I mean the Communists proceeded to isolate Mr. Costigan.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was this the period when the Communist Party was crying
from the rooftops that the President of the United States was a
warmonger?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, it was. I am a little bit fearful that if anyone
looks at the record very carefully they will find that I made a few
speeches on that subject myself.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, as a result of the international
situation the Communist Party had gotten itself into a position which
adversely affected its interests locally.

Mr. DENNETT. That is very true.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the result of that adverse effect upon the
Communist Party locally?

Mr. DENNETT. The most damaging effect to the Communist Party was
that it shook the faith of many of those who were members of the
district bureau at that time. I must admit that I tried to present the
appearance myself of not losing faith in the integrity of the Soviet
foreign policy. However, I must also admit that there was a little bit
of deception in that for the reason that I could not completely justify
it, no matter how hard I tried, and I found that Mr. Costigan became
very bitter about it. I found also that Mr. Ebey had a few misgivings.
He didn’t express them at that time too sharply because he is a very
mild-mannered sort of person. But those of us who were in the rough and
tough political battles put on a case-hardened outward appearance which
was intended to inspire the ranks to hold the line.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the final result?

Mr. DENNETT. The final result was that various organizations affiliated
to the Washington Commonwealth Federation found their political
conviction to be inconsistent with the official policy expressed by
disguised Communist leaders in the Washington Commonwealth Federation.
So that many of them began to disaffiliate and leave the organization,
so that it did not embrace the commanding minority which it had
previously had.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, your position of control in that
organization was weakened, if not virtually destroyed, by this
disaffection that had arisen within the Communist Party ranks largely
as a result of international problems.

Mr. DENNETT. That is very true.

Those of us who presented what might be referred to as a case-hardened
outward appearance did so largely in the hope and faith that our
loyalty to the Soviet Union under those circumstances would be rewarded
by the Soviet Union remaining loyal and true to the socialist ideals
which all of us held.

However, at a later date, after the Second World War, just to make the
comment without going into detail at this moment, many began to find
out through their experience in the Army and military efforts, and
through persons who traveled abroad and came into contact directly with
the Russian military effort--many became convinced that there was a
considerable difference between the democracy that had been preached
about in the Soviet Union and the actual practice which they found.

Also there was a serious disillusionment when large numbers of soldiers
learned, to their dismay, that even during the war period the Soviet
Union had in labor camps very large numbers of persons who were held in
those camps as political prisoners, a policy which we had been led to
believe, through all the official propaganda, that the Communist Party
in the Soviet Union wouldn’t possibly indulge in such a practice, that
only the capitalist countries would practice such a heinous crime.

But it was a terrible shock and disillusionment when large numbers of
people found, out of their own direct knowledge, that these huge forced
labor camps did in fact exist and that people who were committed to
them were committed to them for terms ranging from 25 years to life
instead of the official propaganda which has been preached, to the
effect that no sentence was over 10 years in length in the Soviet
Union. And we found there was a great deal of difference between fact
and fancy.

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde left the hearing room.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Is the Washington Commonwealth Federation in existence
today?

Mr. DENNETT. It is not. It was liquidated by the Communist Party
leadership during the Second World War.

In my records there will be found some correspondence between Hugh
DeLacy and myself because I was a vice president of the federation, but
I was in the military service at the time this disillusion took place.

Mr. DeLacy had written me something about it, and I disagreed with it.
He had also written to me suggesting that since I was in the military
service maybe it would be better for me to give up my share of stock
which entitled me to be a member of the board of directors of the New
World, which was the official newspaper published under the federation
at that time.

I found occasion to disagree violently with him over the suggestion
for the reason that I felt that those who were in the armed services
should not be removed from their official positions because they were
in the armed services. I felt that they were more entitled to continue
their representation on the organization because they were in the armed
services.

We had an exchange of correspondence there which was quite acrimonious
at points, and I am amazed when I look back at it and see how it
developed.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, I believe this is a satisfactory point to
suspend the examination of this witness.

Mr. MOULDER. Yes, Mr. Dennett. We thank you for your patience and the
information which you have given the committee. We are endeavoring,
whenever possible, to give you a rest so there will not be this long
stress upon you for a long period of time.

Mr. DENNETT. I appreciate that. In my younger days I used to have a
marathon endurance, but I find I don’t have it any more.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you wish to call another witness?

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Lawrence Earl George.

Mr. MOULDER. Will you hold up your right hand and be sworn, please.

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

Mr. GEORGE. I do.


TESTIMONY OF LAWRENCE EARL GEORGE, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, PHILIP
L. BURTON

Mr. WHEELER. Will the witness state his full name, please?

Mr. GEORGE. My name is Lawrence Earl George.

Mr. WHEELER. Where do you reside?

Mr. GEORGE. Seattle, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Will counsel identify himself for the record, please?

Mr. BURTON. My name is Philip L. Burton. I am a Seattle attorney.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. George, what is your occupation?

Mr. GEORGE. I am a warehouseman, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. How long have you been a warehouseman?

Mr. GEORGE. Oh, for 12, 15 years; 12 years anyway.

Mr. WHEELER. Being a warehouseman, are you a member of any union?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Sir, upon advice of counsel, I will invoke my rights and
privileges under the first and fifth amendments of the Constitution of
the United States.

Mr. MOULDER. I didn’t hear your reply. Did you say you decline to
answer the question?

Mr. GEORGE. Because of certain insinuations about any union, it
is necessary for me to invoke my rights under the first and fifth
amendments of the Constitution and decline to answer the question.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you held any positions in the union that we are
discussing?

Mr. GEORGE. Again, sir, I shall have to invoke the fifth amendment.

Mr. WHEELER. Is it not a fact that the warehousemen are members of the
International Longshoreman’s and Warehousemen’s Union? I am not asking
you if you are a member of the ILWU; just a blanket question.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Yes; that is a fact.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you a member of the International Longshoremen’s and
Warehousemen’s Union?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Again, sir, I have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you at any time during your residency in Seattle been
acquainted with a lady by the name of Barbara Hartle?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Again, sir, I shall have to invoke my privileges under the
fifth amendment.

Mr. WHEELER. Mrs. Hartle testified before this committee last June that
she knew you as a member of the waterfront section of the Communist
Party. Is that correct?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Again, Mr. Chairman, I have to invoke the privileges
granted me under the fifth amendment of the Constitution.

Mr. WHEELER. Will you also invoke the privilege on all questions
relating to the waterfront section of the Communist Party?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I shall have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment in connection with that.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you an official of the union in 1951?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Again I have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment and decline to answer the question.

Mr. WHEELER. Did you sign a Taft-Hartley affidavit?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I invoke my privileges under the fifth amendment and
decline to answer.

Mr. WHEELER. Is it not a fact that the Communist Party advised members
of the Communist Party to disassociate themselves from the Communist
Party and sign the Taft-Hartley affidavit?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I shall have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment to that.

Mr. WHEELER. Is it not a fact that the members of the Communist Party
remained loyal and in the discipline of the Communist Party although
they officially did resign?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I will have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment as to that.

Mr. MOULDER. Did I understand you to say that your birthplace was here
in Seattle?

Mr. GEORGE. Sir, I didn’t give my place of birth. I wasn’t asked that
question.

Mr. MOULDER. Where were you born?

Mr. GEORGE. I was born in Denver, Colo.

Mr. MOULDER. When did you move to Seattle?

Mr. GEORGE. I came to Seattle after the First World War. I think it was
in 1918 or thereabouts.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you resided in Seattle ever since?

Mr. GEORGE. Yes, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you ever heard of the Negro and National Groups
Commission of the Communist Party of King County?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I shall have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment as to that, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Mrs. Hartle in her testimony stated you were chairman of
that group. Was she correct in this testimony?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. Again, sir, I will have to invoke my privileges under the
fifth amendment and decline to answer.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you familiar with an organization called the
Interracial Action Committee?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I will have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment.

Mr. WHEELER Are you a member of the Communist Party today, Mr. George?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. GEORGE. I will have to invoke my privileges under the fifth
amendment and decline to answer that, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. No further questions, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

Mr. WHEELER. Harriet Pierce.

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. MOULDER. Do you represent Mrs. Pierce? Will you step up?

Mr. TROLSON. Yes, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. MOULDER. I want to talk to him.

(Whereupon Mr. Trolson conferred with the chairman.)

Mr. MOULDER. Call the witness again, please.

Mr. WHEELER. Harriet Pierce.

Mr. MOULDER. Would you raise your right hand and be sworn. Do you
solemnly swear that the testimony which you are about to give before
this committee will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
truth, so help you God?

Mrs. PIERCE. I do.

Mr. TROLSON. May I make a statement before you begin to question the
witness?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes; you may.

Mr. TROLSON. My name is Roy Trolson. I am a member of the Board of
Trustees of the Seattle Bar Association.

Mrs. Pierce has come to the bar association and rendered a statement
that she is unable to secure counsel because she has no funds for that
purpose. The president of the Bar Association has asked me to represent
Mrs. Pierce, and I want to make it clear that I am representing her
without compensation and at the request of the Legal Aid Bureau of the
Seattle Bar Association.

Mr. MOULDER. We certainly appreciate your position and wish to say
that you should be commended as an attorney when requested by the Bar
Association to appear and represent any person who has no funds to
employ counsel.

And certainly it should have no reflection, and doesn’t have any
reflection, upon you whatsoever.

For a person who is unable to employ counsel, it is the duty of a
lawyer under those circumstances to comply with that request, and the
burden that has been placed upon you.

Mr. TROLSON. Thank you.


TESTIMONY OF MRS. HARRIET PIERCE, ACCOMPANIED BY HER COUNSEL, ROY F.
TROLSON

Mr. WHEELER. Will you state your full name, please?

Mrs. PIERCE. Mrs. Harriet Pierce.

Mr. WHEELER. Where do you presently reside?

Mrs. PIERCE. In Seattle.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you presently employed?

Mrs. PIERCE. Yes; I am.

Mr. WHEELER. Where are you employed?

Mrs. PIERCE. I am employed at the Tacoma Country and Golf Club.

Mr. WHEELER. Do you have any part-time employment other than your
present position?

Mrs. PIERCE. No; I do not.

Mr. WHEELER. Would you advise the committee of your occupational
background prior to your present occupation?

(The witness confers with her counsel.)

Mrs. PIERCE. I wish to invoke the fifth amendment on this question.

Mr. WHEELER. On all prior occupation?

Mrs. PIERCE. Yes, sir; that is on all prior occupation.

Mr. WHEELER. Isn’t it a fact that you worked for the United States
Government at one time?

Mrs. PIERCE. On this question, too, I wish to invoke the protection of
the fifth amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you mean to say that your employment in the United
States Government may tend to incriminate you?

Mrs. PIERCE. I have already stated my answer, sir.

(The witness confers with her counsel.)

Mr. MOULDER. If investigation, Mr. Wheeler, reveals the witness’
employment, then I suggest that you ask the question according to what
your investigation has revealed, the specific questions which she can
answer.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you ever been employed by the United States Post
Office Department?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer that question for the reasons
previously stated, sir. And I would like to explain that I fear that
answering these questions may lead to other questions which might tend
to incriminate me.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you dismissed from this position because of security
reasons?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer that question for the reasons
previously stated.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you been a paid employee of the Civil Rights Congress
of the city of Seattle?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer that question for the reasons
previously stated.

Mr. WHEELER. Do you know Mrs. Barbara Hartle?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer that question, sir, for the reasons
previously stated.

Mr. WHEELER. She testified that you were a member of the Georgetown
Club of the Communist Party, King County. Is that a statement of fact
on the part of Mrs. Hartle?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer, and invoke my protection under the
fifth amendment.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you active in any way with the Progressive Party here
in the State of Washington?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer that for the reasons previously
stated, sir.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Chairman, I think it is quite obvious that we are not
going to get the information we desire from this witness.

I have no further questions.

Mr. MOULDER. May I ask the witness where you were born?

Mrs. PIERCE. I was born in Martinsburg, W. Va.

Mr. MOULDER. And when did you come to the State of Washington?

(The witness confers with her counsel.)

Mrs. PIERCE. I believe it was in 1942 or possibly 1943. I am not
certain.

Mr. MOULDER. Were you married at that time?

Mrs. PIERCE. No, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Did you come to Washington alone?

Mrs. PIERCE. Yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Did you have employment when you arrived or did you have
to seek employment after you arrived?

(The witness confers with her counsel.)

Mrs. PIERCE. On this question, sir, I wish to invoke my privilege under
the fifth amendment.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Chairman, I fail to see how that could possibly tend to
incriminate her or lead to incrimination. I suggest that the witness be
directed to answer the question.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is directed to answer the question.

(The witness confers with her counsel.)

Mrs. PIERCE. Sir, this is a question which I would like very much to
answer, and answer fully, but I feel that it might lead either to other
questions which might incriminate me or to a waiver of my right to
claim the protection of the fifth amendment, and I therefore do claim
protection of the fifth amendment.

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

Mrs. PIERCE. Again I claim the protection of the fifth amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

Mrs. PIERCE. I claim the protection of the fifth amendment on that
question, too.

Mr. MOULDER. Are you now employed?

Mrs. PIERCE. I have already answered that question.

Mr. MOULDER. Then would you care to answer again?

Mrs. PIERCE. Well, I could answer it again the same as I did before. I
am employed now.

Mr. MOULDER. Where are you now employed?

Mrs. PIERCE. At the Tacoma Country and Golf Club.

Mr. MOULDER. How long have you been employed there?

Mrs. PIERCE. I decline to answer under the privilege of the fifth
amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you mean to say the length of time you have been
employed there would tend to incriminate you? Is that your reasoning on
that?

Mrs. PIERCE. I have already stated my answer, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Any questions, Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. No questions.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

The committee will stand in recess until tomorrow morning at 9 o’clock.

(Whereupon, at 4:50 p. m., the subcommittee was recessed, to be
reconvened at 9 a. m., Saturday, March 19, 1955.)



INVESTIGATION OF COMMUNIST ACTIVITIES IN THE SEATTLE, WASH., AREA


SATURDAY, MARCH 19, 1955

  UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
  SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE
  COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES,
  _Seattle, Wash._

PUBLIC HEARING

A subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activities met, pursuant
to recess, at 9:30 a. m., in Room 402, County-City Building, Seattle,
Wash., Hon. Morgan M. Moulder (chairman) presiding.

Committee members present: Representatives Morgan M. Moulder (chairman)
(appearance as noted) and Harold H. Velde.

Staff members present: Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., counsel, and William A.
Wheeler, staff investigator.

Mr. VELDE. The subcommittee will be in order, and we will proceed, Mr.
Counsel.

Mr. TAVENNER. I would like to recall Mr. Eugene V. Dennett to the
stand, please.


TESTIMONY OF EUGENE VICTOR DENNETT, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, KENNETH
A. MacDONALD--Resumed

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, will you come forward, please.

When your testimony was suspended yesterday we were inquiring into
the activity of the Washington Commonwealth Federation. In the course
of your testimony on that subject no mention was made of the Workers
Alliance.

To what extent was the Workers Alliance affiliated with that
organization?

Mr. DENNETT. It was one of the principal affiliates in the early days,
and it had regular representatives on the Washington Commonwealth
Federation board. One of the most prominent of those was a person by
the name of Harry C. Armstrong, who was better known as Army Armstrong.
He later became a legislator, and I think he was at one time the head
of the Workers Alliance.

Mr. TAVENNER. At the time he was head of the Workers Alliance and
active in the Washington Commonwealth Federation was he also a member
of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. At first he was not. But the Workers Alliance, of course,
was one of the organizations in which the Communist Party worked very
actively, and ultimately Mr. Armstrong became a member of the Communist
Party. I knew him when he was a member of the Communist Party.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was he active in Communist Party affairs?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, he was quite active in the Communist Party affairs
for a short time. He later had differences with the party over policy,
and became too much of a Democrat to suit the Communists, and came to a
parting of the ways with the Communist Party.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you give us the names of any other individuals,
active in the work of the Washington Commonwealth Federation or any
of its component parts, who were known to you to be members of the
Communist Party during that time?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, my random recollection is a little bit too
unreliable to go on. I think that I mentioned all of the principal ones
yesterday with the exception of Mr. Armstrong, whom I have explained
this morning.

Mr. TAVENNER. During the period that the organizational work was
being done by the Communist Party within the Washington Commonwealth
Federation was there in existence in the State of Washington an
organization known as the Washington Pension Union?

Mr. DENNETT. That is correct, there was. That was a organization which
came into existence principally because the Governor of the State had
ordered some cuts in the pension, or the assistance to the old-age
groups. It was prior to the organization of anything.

Mr. TAVENNER. Prior to the organization of what?

Mr. DENNETT. Of the union, of the Old-Age Pension Union.

It seems as though there was an attempt to cut on the relief, and some
of the relief authorities thought that they could cut the benefits to
the elderly people and there would be little protest for it. But Howard
Costigan, being very alert to the political possibilities, spoke about
it on the radio and, in response to that speaking, received many, many
calls by telephone and by letter asking him to do something about it.
He didn’t know what to do.

He came to the party of people and explained to us afterward that he
was perplexed but he was going to call a mass meeting and ask these
people to come and make their protests in public.

He did exactly that. The meeting was overwhelmingly successful; far
more elderly people arrived than he expected. The hall was packed
to overflowing, and he had to call more meetings to satisfy their
desire to express their protest. During the course of that, Costigan,
not knowing what else to do, suggested that they set up a permanent
committee to continue their protest against this form of relief cut.
The old-age people responded so vigorously that they themselves
determined that they must have a union. And they chose the name of
Old-Age Pension Union.

At first, I believe, Costigan was not an officer of it. As a matter of
fact, he felt that he had more than he could carry handling the work of
the Washington Commonwealth Federation. So he asked the party people
to find him some help to see if he could carry on this extra work that
needed to be done. And, through the efforts of Mr. Lowell Wakefield,
they found a person by the name of William J. Pennock who was a very
able man. And Bill Pennock assisted Costigan in all of his work when he
was in the Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Later when the time came to organize the Old-Age Pension Union, Pennock
assisted Costigan in finding people to head up that organization.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder entered the hearing
room and assumed the chair.)

Mr. DENNETT. In the very beginning the original leaders who held the
original titles of president and vice president of the Old-Age Pension
Union were not members of the Communist Party. They were chosen by
these old-age pension people, knowing them to be public-spirited
persons, and I don’t know whether it is proper to identify those
persons or not at this point.

Mr. TAVENNER. No. The committee would not be interested in going into
that phase of the matter.

You mentioned a person by the name of Lowell Wakefield. Will you tell
the committee what you know of his activities?

Mr. DENNETT. Lowell Wakefield was a member of the Communist Party.
He did come from the East on his assignment by the central committee
to work in this district. However, after he had worked here a
comparatively short time he came into dispute with the succeeding
leader who came, Mr. Morris Rappaport, and ultimately Mr. Wakefield
left the Communist Party and I believe that he has had no connection
with the Communist Party for a great many years.

Mr. TAVENNER. The point you are making is that in its inception this
union, the Old-Age Pension Union, was not of a Communist origin or of a
Communist character.

Mr. DENNETT. No; it was not. But the Communist Party recognized that
the terrific response that Costigan received meant that here was
a potential group of people capable of doing enormous amounts of
political work.

Remember, please, their situation: They were retired; they had ceased
working daily on a job. Therefore, they had the leisure time to do what
they wanted to do in most instances or at least in many instances. The
result was that some of these people could go out and peddle leaflets
and knock on doors. They constituted an enormous political strength.
And the Communist Party conceived the idea that these people certainly
would be the most able people to carry on political programs if they
could be won to support such a program.

So the Communist Party set about to do exactly that in the pension
union.

Among those who were urged to go into the pension union to work
vigorously was a person by the name of Thomas C. Rabbitt.

Tom Rabbitt became a very powerful and influential man in that
organization. He did so very largely because he succeeded in being
elected to the Washington State Legislature as a Democrat, and, in
the State legislature as a State senator, was able to embarrass the
governor and the administration on their promises to aid the elderly
people on the pension program. His efforts were heralded as making a
real--well, he was considered to be a real political leader because he
had succeeded in a situation where it was vitally important.

My counsel reminds me that Mr. Rabbitt has been before this committee,
and he appeared in your executive session last June.

Mr. Rabbitt found that there was an enormous amount of work to be done
in that organization, and he had to call for help. And he built up a
comparatively important machine with which he worked.

Mr. TAVENNER. You have told us that the Communist Party, upon seeing
the great potentialities in this new organization, decided to do
something about it. Tell the committee just what it did and the methods
it used to gain control of the Old-Age Pension Union.

Mr. DENNETT. It concentrated first at the top levels of the
organization. It wanted to get strong leadership there capable of
carrying two important points: first, that they carry on a relentless
struggle for better and more welfare assistance to the aged people
so as to insure their loyalty and support among those members; they
wanted, next, to be certain that a large body of people became ardent
supporters and friends of the Soviet Union so that it would be possible
to defend the political policies of the Communist Party in that respect
and to give assistance to the Communist program in this area.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, as indicated by his testimony, the
knowledge of this witness is very great concerning the scientific
features of communism and how it operates in the Northwest.

Because of the limit of time, we have had to confine ourselves to the
high spots. I will ask, if we are to conclude his testimony today, that
Mr. Dennett confine his testimony chiefly to his own activities and
circumstances surrounding them; otherwise we will be unable to complete
what we had planned today.

Mr. MOULDER. Yes. As you say, it is very important testimony. We are
grateful to receive it. I believe any additional information which he
might wish to submit could be submitted in writing to the committee at
a later date. I mean after we have concluded our hearings.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, it is obvious we will have a great deal of
work ahead of us in connection with documentary information which he
has at hand, as well as to give this witness time to explain fully the
implications of his statements today.

Mr. MOULDER. It may be possible when the hearings are held in Los
Angeles in June that additional hearings could be held here to complete
the testimony of Mr. Dennett.

Mr. TAVENNER. Certainly further consideration will have to be given to
that.

I wanted to make this explanation principally so the committee would
understand that I have asked the witness to confine his testimony today
principally to his own activities. I did not want the committee to feel
that the witness was attempting to relate what he had done alone as a
matter of his own choice.

Mr. DENNETT. Thank you.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Dennett can be subpenaed to appear in California when
hearings are held there; the subcommittee could resume hearings here
at a later date if we feel it is necessary to secure his additional
information.

Mr. TAVENNER. Continuing with the subject of the old-age pension, were
you active in it in your individual capacity?

Mr. DENNETT. No; I was not. I spoke before it on a number of times on
invitation of the leaders to indicate some labor support because I was
representing the State CIO at that time.

Mr. TAVENNER. Tell us briefly to what extent was the Communist Party
successful in the accomplishment of the two purposes you stated the
Communists had in interesting the leadership of the old-age pension
unit.

Mr. DENNETT. As I indicated at the outset, the first leaders of the
pension union--president, vice president, and some of the other
officers--were anti-Communist people. And it did not take too long
before they came into conflict with those Communists who were trying to
make certain that the organization carried out these purposes which I
have indicated.

I believe that the first president of the organization left it very
quickly. Later on another person took over as a president of the
organization, who was a member of the Communist Party, and he remained
a leader for quite a long time. Ultimately he got into conflict with
the Communist Party, and the Communist Party did what we call a hatchet
job on him.

Mr. TAVENNER. Who was he?

Mr. DENNETT. A man by the name of N. P. Atkinson. And Atkinson was
expelled from the party. And when he was expelled from the party he was
also pushed out of the pension union.

Mr. TAVENNER. After Communist Party overtures to the leadership of the
union was any effort made to capture the rank and file?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes. There was a considerable effort made. A person by the
name of William J. Pennock, whom I have mentioned before, who is now
deceased--Pennock was a very successful figure in this work because he
was such a tireless worker.

(Representative Harold H. Velde left the hearing room at this point.)

Mr. DENNETT. He worked day after day, every day, and had a very
pleasing personality and was a very successful man in convincing the
ordinary person that the program and policies they were pursuing were
the best for the organization. And I think it should be recognized that
certainly those efforts of the organization to maintain a standard of
decency and comfort for public assistance for the elderly people is
something which should be recognized as proper. It is something which
should not be condemned because the Communists were trying to use that
as a basis for successfully planting its other ideas in the ranks of
the organization. And I hope no one will condemn the elderly people for
trying to improve their own economic position, which they were trying
to do in the pension union.

Mr. TAVENNER. How can organizations of this type, which have a very
fine purpose in view, be able to accomplish their ends without
permitting the Communist Party to take them over and subvert them to
the purposes of the Communist Party?

What is the best defense? What defense can they have to the Communist
Party which is trying to manipulate them in the manner you have
described?

Mr. DENNETT. My own experience leads me to the conclusion that the
soundest defense and the soundest practice which can be pursued is that
wherein we all insist upon the complete observance of the fundamental
principles in the Constitution of the United States and the legal
procedure of the court system in the United States, in which we first
insist that all persons shall be considered to be innocent until proven
guilty when charged with anything which appears to be a violation of
either the Constitution of the United States or the principles of the
organization that they belong to.

I say that advisedly because I have had a number of experiences,
personal ones, where I have been treated as a guilty person until
proven so--not in connection with Communist material either. And I
observed with a great deal of interest last night’s television report
of Mr. Harry Cain’s remarks on that very point.

Mr. Cain comes from the State of Washington. Some of us knew him rather
well. And I might say that at one time he certainly impressed the
people very strongly in this State because of this precise idea which
he was expressing last night on TV.

And I cannot pass up the opportunity to remind all of us that it is
a fundamental principle of our form of Government, of our democratic
representation system, that we honor and dignify the individual as
an individual for his own worth, and not completely subordinate this
individual to the purpose of a mass and make him a faceless creature.

I think that each person is entitled to the individual dignity and
the recognition of his right as an individual. And when he combines
in an organization it is for the purpose of assisting in the further
development of these human beings as creatures that are entitled to
treatment as human beings.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. MOULDER. What is your next question, Mr. Tavenner?

Mr. TAVENNER. Counsel is consulting the witness.

Mr. DENNETT. Counsel is calling my attention to the nature of your
question asking what steps can be recommended, and he is trying to
bring me back to that point a little more directly, and I appreciate
it. I hope you will bear with us on it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let me suggest this to you:

My question was not so much directed at what you mentioned as it is
to this particular phase of the matter, that here is an organization
which had very proper purposes: It apparently had no desire to be
controlled or influenced by the Communist Party; but the Communist
Party determined it was going to take it over.

Now my point is: How, from your experience in the party, could this
group have successfully resisted being taken over by the Communist
Party?

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. DENNETT. I think there is no one single guaranty. I think it
requires a number of changes in our behavior and in our attitude in the
various democratic organizations. I mean by that democratic in form; I
am not referring to a party as such.

In that respect, many people in the union to which I should belong have
asked me many times how could they guarantee that some untoward thing
would not occur in the organization. And it has been my recommendation
to them that the only guarantee anyone has is that he participate fully
in the life of his own organization and not delegate and not allow his
own responsibilities to be passed on to somebody else.

If you leave it to George, let George do it, you wake up some time and
find that George hasn’t done it the way you would have preferred to do
it or the way you would have done it had you been there.

And it is my firm conviction that one of the most hazardous parts
of our democratic process is the tendency of people to leave it to
somebody else to take care of their own responsibility.

If a democracy is to work, if it is to be a democracy or continue to be
a democracy, it is essential that each participant, each member be a
participant. That is the best recommendation I can make.

Mr. MOULDER. That is very true. In our investigations the committee has
found many instances where the Communist Party leaders have been able
to infiltrate into, say, a local union in the eastern section of this
country because the membership did not attend the elections and did
not vote and participate actively in the meetings. If there were other
means of voting than to be personally present, that might be avoided.

Mr. DENNETT. I favor referendum votes myself.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, the point you are making is: There is a
very great responsibility on each individual in his own organization
regardless of the organization.

Mr. DENNETT. I would add to that, sir, if I may, please, that it is
necessary that members do more than attend meetings. I mean they must
have some adequate conception of the purpose of their organization.

Just like in the conduct of the affairs of the Government of the United
States, I don’t think it is sufficient for persons to be elected as
Congressmen and then just sit there. I think they have got to know
what the Constitution of the United States provides, and I think they
have to be the guardians to make certain that everybody abides by it,
and that they abide by it themselves and insist that their own members
abide by it.

I think that the question of a member just being a member of an
organization and just being a card-carrying member is not sufficient.
Likewise, it is not sufficient to have representatives of government
just be present. Being present isn’t enough. They have to understand
what they are there for. And pursue their purpose of representing their
constituents.

I say that as a comparison because the two things are similar. There is
an identity.

Our greatest democratic practice occurs in the organizations which are
not directly associated with government as such.

Mr. MOULDER. That applies, as you have said, to unions and
organizations social or otherwise, as well as the general election of
the United States where probably only 65 percent of the people go to
the polls and vote.

Mr. TAVENNER. A very simple way of expressing what you have said is
that people should be informed.

Mr. DENNETT. They must be informed.

And I am strictly opposed to secret negotiations, whether it occurs
between employers and unions, whether it occurs between heads of
organizations, or whether it occurs in international affairs. I think
that the only safeguard that we have that the rights of the people will
not be trespassed upon is when everything is out in the open.

I am willing to admit that until an agreement is arrived at, until a
conclusion is reached, it may be necessary to conduct the negotiations
or the conferences with a limited amount of access to public
discussion. That may be so. I am not prepared to say that everything
must be done in a goldfish bowl. But I am very insistent in my own
conviction and in my own practices, at least for the past several
years, that anything I do is going to be out in the open where the
whole world can take a look at it. If they don’t like it they can say
so. And if that is the way they feel about it, fine. I’ll step aside
and retire. But if they do approve it, let them go ahead.

Mr. MOULDER. When discussing the Washington Commonwealth Federation
yesterday, did you give an estimate of 5,500 as being, in your opinion,
the total Communist Party membership in the State of Washington or in
this district?

Mr. DENNETT. I said at that time there were approximately 5,500 members
at one time in 1 year. I think it was 1938.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you any knowledge or information, whether it be
in the form of an opinion or from your experience, as to the total
Communist Party membership in this area at the present time?

Mr. DENNETT. No. I have no adequate idea about that. I think that it
must be very small. Someone asked me the other day what I thought it
was, and I said, “Well, I think the ranks of the Communist Party have
been decimated by their own foolish behavior and by the change in
public attitude. I think that has resulted in them being reduced to a
mere handful, a shell of its former self.”

Mr. MOULDER. Then you would tell us now that you have no knowledge or
information of any communistic or Communist Party activity in Seattle
at this time?

Mr. DENNETT. No. We are coming to the point of my expulsion, which
occurred 7, nearly 8 years ago. So my experience and knowledge would
have to break at that point with respect to the Communist Party itself.

Mr. VELDE. I presume you are familiar generally with the testimony
Barbara Hartle gave here?

Mr. DENNETT. I listened to it very carefully.

Mr. VELDE. She brought Communist Party activities in this area up to
date as nearly as anyone possibly could in her situation.

Would you appraise her testimony as being true as to general matters
concerning Communist activities here?

Mr. DENNETT. In all fairness to her and in all fairness to the persons
that she mentioned, I would have to say that I think Barbara Hartle was
her real self when she was here. She appeared to me to be exactly the
same as the person I knew many years before. She was very deliberate
and methodical. She always had been. And I think that she gave as
accurate an account as she could possibly do. I marvel at the ability
that she displayed in doing it, the names that she mentioned.

I have tried to explain to my personal friends--they have asked me
about it; how could a person name so many people as she did? I can
only say that Barbara was in a position where she had access to those
records. It was part of her duty to handle records of the membership.
Therefore, she would be required to know those things.

People have asked me, “Well, do you know the same people that she
knew?” And I have had to answer, “I certainly knew most of those
people.”

But I am not in a position where I could say that, of my own knowledge,
I knew those persons as members of the Communist Party.

I knew practically all of those persons in some capacity or another,
but in very few instances is it possible for me to say, of my own
knowledge, that I knew such and such a person to be a member of the
Communist Party.

And that was a very important distinction for me to make.

But I must say that it is my considered judgment that Barbara Hartle
gave very valid and very accurate information.

Mr. VELDE. I certainly thank you for that, Mr. Dennett. That was my
impression, too. Not being in a position to know as much about it as
either of you I did get the impression that she told a very valid story.

Mr. DENNETT. I am sure she was accurate.

Mr. VELDE. I appreciate your verification of her story as to the extent
of the Communist Party in this area.

Another thing I would like to get cleared up before we go further, Mr.
Counsel and Mr. Chairman, is a matter of your identification of Harry
Lundeberg as having attended fraction meetings. I think you probably
are as anxious to get that cleared up as we are. We know that Mr.
Lundeberg has been a very faithful anti-Communist for a long time.

Would you like to make further comment on that?

Mr. DENNETT. I didn’t expect that that would come up, and I was quite
surprised at the furor it has created. I had no idea at the time that I
mentioned this that it was of such importance or that such importance
would be made of it.

I think perhaps it requires that I give you a little bit more detail of
how I had such knowledge so that you may judge for yourselves as to the
accuracy or validity of what I had to say.

Mr. VELDE. Actually, of course, back in those days about which you
were testifying there was nothing seriously wrong in the minds of most
American people with attending fraction meetings of the Communist
Party. So I agree with you. I don’t see any reason for all the furor.
But I thought possibly you would like to clear it up.

Mr. DENNETT. I certainly would, sir. Thank you for asking me.

The first I heard of the furor, a friend of mine called me on the phone
last night and asked me if I had read the morning paper which carried
the story of Mr. Lundeberg’s denial. I said I had not. So he read it
to me, and he asked me what I had to say about it then. Some of my
personal friends did. And I had to remind him, just as I just stated
to you, that I had no idea it was going to have that much importance
attached to it.

But let me give you the facts as it occurred.

You will recall in my testimony I mentioned going into the
Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific, what was then the Ferry Boatmen’s
Union. It was in 1936--Well, it was in 1935, the end of 1935 when the
first strike occurred against an arbitration award.

At that time the Maritime Federation of the Pacific had been already
organized. Mr. Lundeberg was the president of it. Their headquarters
were here in Seattle. He had an office here in a building close to the
Pioneer Square. I believe it is properly called Pioneer Place. Mr.
Lundeberg held an office there as the president of the federation, and
his first and able assistant was Mr. Ernest Fox whom I have mentioned
before.

When I was elected a delegate to represent the crew of the ship that
I was working on, to attend our first strike meeting, on my way to
that meeting I stopped at the office of the president of the Maritime
Federation of the Pacific, Mr. Harry Lundeberg, and asked him what he
thought of the situation that I found myself in; namely, elected as a
delegate, representing an organization which I knew practically nothing
about. And I asked him further what advice he would give me.

Mr. Lundeberg was very gracious to me, and advised me that the “tule”
sailors--by which he referred to our Sound freight-boat men because
he didn’t consider us to be genuine sailors at all because we didn’t
get outside into deep water; we were always here in the rivers or the
harbors, and he called us “tule” sailors.

And he said, “The first thing you have got to do is get rid of your
finky leaders.”

And I asked him on what basis he made such a statement.

And he said, “You talk to Ernie. Ernie can tell you the whole story,
and I will O. K. and vouch for it.”

So I asked Ernest Fox a little bit more about it. And Ernie explained
to me that the maritime leaders at that time had a great hatred for the
leaders of the then ferry boatmen’s union because those leaders of the
ferry boatmen’s union had not gone along with the general strike plans
in San Francisco in 1934. And Mr. Lundeberg was one of the principal
supporters of those strike plans at that time.

As a result of Mr. Lundeberg’s attitude at that time, the Communist
Party had the utmost confidence in his integrity and in his leadership.
And Mr. Fox, Ernest Fox, informed me that Lundeberg had attended
fraction meetings, taught fraction meetings where he had met with 1 or
2 party leaders to outline the policy and program to be followed.

Mr. VELDE. When you say “party leaders” are you referring to the
Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. That is right; I am referring to Communist Party leaders.

But Mr. Fox also warned me at that time that he had a few misgivings
about where Mr. Lundeberg was going because Mr. Lundeberg had already
begun to show evidence that he was beginning to have differences
with the party and that he was resisting attending any more fraction
meetings at a very early date.

So it is quite true that Mr. Lundeberg was incensed. He didn’t like the
Communist Party.

I simply mention in passing, at the outset, that he had been brought
into a fraction meeting, and it was common knowledge.

Mr. MOULDER. In other words, he had been brought into contact with the
Communist Party leaders as a result of the work he was performing but
not in the capacity of being a Communist himself? Is that what you are
saying?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true. Even the most ardent anti-Communist can be
drawn into Communist activities.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you mean drawn into contact with Communists?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes.

My counsel cautions me to be certain that you understand I at no time
accused Mr. Harry Lundeberg of being a Communist.

Mr. VELDE. I think that is a matter of record. In fact, you have
said everything favorable to Mr. Lundeberg’s record. But I suppose
it might be presumed that if you and another Communist Party leader
had a conference with Mr. Lundeberg some time that that would be a
meeting such as you mentioned in your testimony yesterday, or could be
considered a fraction meeting; could it not?

Mr. DENNETT. No; that would not be regarded as a top fraction meeting.
A top fraction meeting would be only a meeting where the leaders of an
organization who were members of the Communist Party met either with
themselves or with some official of the Communist Party. And in Mr.
Lundeberg’s case----

Mr. VELDE. Is that the type of meeting to which you referred when you
said that you had general knowledge, or it was common knowledge that
Mr. Lundeberg attended top fraction meetings?

Mr. DENNETT. True.

Mr. TAVENNER. My recollection of your testimony was that you made it
clear Mr. Lundeberg was not a member of the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. I thought so; I meant to, certainly.

Mr. TAVENNER. You meant to, and if there is any question about your
testimony on that point I understand you now do make it clear that you
did not intend, and that you did not characterize Mr. Lundeberg as a
member of the Communist Party. Am I correct in that?

Mr. DENNETT. That is correct.

Mr. TAVENNER. And your only information about his attendance at a
so-called fraction meeting was the information given to you by his
assistant, Mr. Fox?

Mr. DENNETT. And I might say, for verification, that the very line
which Mr. Lundeberg had urged upon me to follow was exactly the line
which the leaders of the Communist Party gave me at that time also;
namely, attack your leaders, get rid of them.

Mr. TAVENNER. We were discussing the activity of the Communist Party
within the Old-Age Pension Union. Will you tell the committee, please,
whether you can at this time recall the names of other persons active
in that organization who were known to you to be members of the
Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. My own knowledge doesn’t extend beyond the top leaders of
that organization, which I have already mentioned.

Mr. TAVENNER. That brings us to the period you described yesterday
when the Washington Commonwealth Federation was being dissolved. My
recollection is you indicated that it was dissolved at the instance of
the Communist Party. Am I correct in that?

Mr. DENNETT. It did that during the Second World War when I was in the
military service. I only know of that from correspondence and what I
read in the newspapers.

Mr. TAVENNER. You also told us that the component parts of the
Washington Commonwealth Federation began to pull away from that
organization.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the reason for that?

Mr. DENNETT. The main reason was the conflicting international policies.

You will recall that in that historical period there were rapid changes
taking place.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am trying to return to the point where we broke off
testimony on that subject.

What became your activity in the field, in this general field upon the
weakening of the federation as a result of the change in international
problems you described yesterday?

Mr. DENNETT. With the rise of the CIO following the split in the labor
movement I was elected to be the secretary of the Seattle CIO Council,
and subsequently became the executive secretary of the Washington State
CIO Council.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you give us dates, please?

Mr. DENNETT. In 1937 the American Federation of Labor started expelling
from its ranks those unions which had advocated the industrial form
of organization. I was in a union which did advocate the industrial
form of organization, but we were not one of those that attracted
primary interest. Therefore, they did not expel our union right away.
They never did expel it in fact. However, since we were supporting the
industrial form of organization, I advocated that our organization be
among the first to swing to the CIO. That was the Inlandboatmen’s Union
of the Pacific.

Subsequently, a referendum vote was held and the membership voted
overwhelmingly to withdraw from the American Federation of Labor and
affiliate with the CIO.

Being one of the most regular representatives of the organization among
outside affiliates, I was selected and elected by the members of these
unions to represent what was first called the Seattle Unity Council, in
1937. In that year we had affiliated to that council both CIO and A. F.
of L. organizations and unaffiliated organizations.

To make a long story short, I could say that my activities there were
transferred to a larger field when I became the secretary of the State
CIO council, which was founded in 1938. And history will confirm that
the first convention of the CIO was also held that year in Atlantic
City.

I was a delegate to that convention, and there I came in contact with
the national leadership of the CIO unions, and with the national
leaders in the CIO unions who were known to me as Communists.

Do you wish me to go into that now?

Mr. TAVENNER. Yes, briefly.

Mr. DENNETT. One of the first instructions that I received in
that matter was from a man by the name of Roy Hudson who was the
national--well, he objected to being called the labor expert in the
central committee of the Communist Party. However, he usually had the
duty of following the assignments of the respective Communist members.

Mr. TAVENNER. Just a moment.

Mr. Chairman, you will probably recall that we had Roy Hudson as a
witness in our California hearings in December of 1953, but he refused
to give this committee any material information.

Mr. DENNETT. Well, he gave me some instructions when I went to a
national convention, and his instruction to me was very brief. He said,
“Any time you need to settle a question and you are in doubt, just see
Lee Pressman.”

Mr. TAVENNER. Lee Pressman?

Mr. DENNETT. Lee Pressman.

I did try to do that, but my experience with Lee Pressman was highly
unsatisfactory, and I came back to one of the district bureau meetings
and reported the unsatisfactory nature of my relations with him, and
the district organizer instructed me to destroy the report which I had
brought back.

I had brought back a somewhat detailed report of my unsatisfactory
experiences with him, and the bureau listened with considerable
astonishment at my impressions of how unsatisfactory this situation
was. That was from the first convention. And after that, after they had
instructed me to destroy the records, they also instructed me to not
talk about it with anyone because they feared it might undermine the
prestige of such an important person as Mr. Lee Pressman.

Mr. VELDE. During what period of time did you know Mr. Pressman?

Mr. DENNETT. That was in 1938.

Mr. VELDE. At that time he was in the CIO. He had left the Government,
as I understand it.

Mr. DENNETT. He was the general counsel of the CIO, and was John L.
Lewis’ righthand man.

Mr. VELDE. I do not recall the date of Mr. Pressman’s testimony. Was it
in 1949?

Mr. TAVENNER. Yes; in 1949 or early 1950 we had him as a witness before
our committee and interrogated him on his connection with the CIO at
that particular time.

Mr. VELDE. Did you know Lee Pressman as a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. I didn’t know that personally. I was just under the
instruction--I asked Roy Hudson who I should see in the event I got
crossed up and didn’t know what policy to pursue or anything, and he
said, “See Lee Pressman. Do what he says.”

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, this is a matter which we should follow
through. But, not knowing the character of the experience this witness
had with Mr. Pressman, I believe it is a matter we should investigate
fully before attempting to further examine the witness on the subject.

Mr. MOULDER. Very well.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you have documentary evidence of any character on that
incident?

Mr. DENNETT. I can’t be sure whether I have or not. I don’t recall all
the things that I have in my files.

Mr. TAVENNER. Proceed, please.

Mr. DENNETT. Well, I came in contact with many other leaders in the
national CIO. I used to have the habit of attending the national CIO
executive board meetings whenever the convention was over. There had
been an election of new officials at the close of the convention, and I
was usually there in company with the president of the Inlandboatmen’s
Union of the Pacific, who became a member of the executive board. And
he usually asked me to come along with him.

And it has always been my habit to take rather copious notes. As a
matter of fact, most people screamed to high heaven because the notes
I take are a little bit too full and too elaborate. I do that for my
own benefit because I try not to rely solely on memory. I have found it
very profitable in my own experience to have my full memoranda at hand
when I am called upon to testify.

And in this testimony here I am testifying almost completely from
memory, but I assure you that I have plenty of memoranda and data
which cannot only substantiate what I have been testifying, but enrich
it very, very much.

Mr. TAVENNER. What further information can you give us as to the
Communist Party membership of individuals in this new field in which
you were engaged?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, of course, one of our principal centers of interest
was the International Woodworkers of America. And there, of course,
it became my responsibility to become well acquainted with the top
leadership in the International Woodworkers of America. And I think
that many people have made the accusation but probably few people know
of their own knowledge such as I do, that practically all of the top
leaders were, with a few exceptions, members of the Communist Party.
And that began with Mr. Harold J. Pritchett.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you spell the last name?

Mr. DENNETT. P-r-i-t-c-h-e-t-t.

Mr. Harold Pritchett was a very able and outstanding man from the
lumber industry.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was his official title?

Mr. DENNETT. He was the president.

Mr. TAVENNER. What is the period or the date?

Mr. DENNETT. 1938.

He was a Canadian and was barred from reentry into the United States
shortly afterward, and has been unable--he was at that time unable to
continue his functions as president, and had to give up the office of
president.

We were quite disappointed that that occurred. We tried every way
we knew to insure that he could continue to serve in that capacity.
However, we had to be satisfied with allowing another member who was
a vice president to take his position. This was Mr. O. M. Orton,
O-r-t-o-n, better known to us as Mickey Orton. He was the vice
president who took over when Mr. Pritchett had to give up the office.

The office staff--I mean the girls who worked in the office were
virtually cleared by the Communist Party before they secured their
employment in the office. The girl who was in charge at that
office--the name I knew her by----

Mr. TAVENNER. You said virtually cleared?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. Does that mean that the worker you have in mind must have
been a member of the Communist Party? In other words, we do not want
you to give us the name of a person unless you have evidence of actual
Communist Party membership.

Mr. DENNETT. I will not name anyone unless that person was a member
of the Communist Party, according to my knowledge. Well, the girl
who was looked upon as the office manager--I don’t recall the exact
title she had--but her name was Gladys Field, F-i-e-l-d. And all the
stenographers and bookkeepers who were employed by the organization had
to meet her approval before they could be employed in that office. And
her approval was based upon whether or not the person would be friendly
or hostile to the Communist Party, as well as being, of course,
efficient and able to do the job. She was an exceedingly efficient
girl herself, and did a splendid job as an office manager. She would
be a credit to any office so far as her office work is concerned, and
she was a credit to that organization. She had as one of her able
assistants a girl by the name of Helen Sobeleski. I am not sure that I
can spell that. It is a Polish name.

Well along in that period Mr. Karley Larsen came into prominence in the
Woodworkers.

Mr. TAVENNER. To what union does this testimony relate concerning
officials and employees?

Mr. DENNETT. The International Woodworkers of America.

Another person I knew was Nat Honig, H-o-n-i-g.

Nat Honig was brought into the district by Morris Rappaport to become
an agitprop director. I knew Mr. Honig quite well, and I sympathized
with the task that he had. He didn’t last very long in that either.
He soon found himself as editor of the Woodworkers’ paper, the
International Woodworkers of America’s paper. And I had occasion to
attempt to get him to carry out the party line, and I was amazed to
find a man who was officially holding a position of district agitprop
director while he was editor of that paper, and yet, when the May
Day issue of that paper came out there wasn’t one single mention of
the fact that May Day was the historical day to be commemorated for
the 8-hour day in America and was heralded throughout the world as
laborers’ day.

Mr. Honig explained it away, that he didn’t think it was appropriate to
do it.

I went to Mr. Rappaport complaining, “What kind of a district agitprop
is this man anyway?”

And Rappaport had quite a session with Honig, and shortly after that
Mr. Honig began to have some disaffection from the party and the party
policy, and I believe he appeared before the Canwell committee shortly
afterward and gave voluminous testimony about the Communist Party. I
have not read his testimony. I do not know how valid it is. I couldn’t
confirm or deny what he said. I don’t know.

Mr. VELDE. What was the approximate time?

Mr. DENNETT. That was in that period 1939, I believe; 1939 or 1940 when
that happened.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you recall any other individuals connected with the
International Woodworkers of America who were members of the Communist
Party?

Mr. DENNETT. I have a little difficulty thinking of any others at the
moment in that particular union.

Mr. TAVENNER. The committee had before it at Albany, N. Y., in July
1953, a Canadian by the name of Patrick Walsh who was connected with
that organization in the western part of Canada during one period of
time and who later became very prominent in the Canadian seamen’s union
strike in 1949.

Did you become acquainted with Patrick Walsh?

Mr. DENNETT. No; I never knew him.

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will stand recessed for 5 minutes.

(Whereupon, a short recess was taken.)

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will be in order.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, you were giving us the names of persons
known to you to be members of the Communist Party within the field of
labor at the time that you were a member of the CIO council.

Mr. DENNETT. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you proceed, please?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, of course, I think I mentioned Mr. Hugh DeLacy
before. He was from the teachers union. And, of course, there was one
of his associates, a man by the name of Harold Eby. They were the only
ones that I knew directly in the Communist Party, in the teachers
union, from the university.

There was another person by the name of Victor Hicks who was quite
well known to me who was in the other teachers union. There were two
teachers’ unions, locals here. One applied to the public schools, and
one applied to the university. Victor Hicks was in the one that applied
to the public schools, although I don’t believe he was a public-school
teacher himself. But he had taught in one of those Government
assistance programs. I forget which one it was. There was some kind of
an educational program that was conducted in the depression days that
Mr. Hicks was associated with, and he was the principal one. In fact,
he was responsible for nominating me to the position of secretary of
the council in the first CIO council in Seattle.

Of course, I knew Mr. Jess Fletcher in the Building Service Employees
International Union, which was an A. F. of L. union, not one of the CIO
unions.

In the Longshoremen’s Union[6] I knew Mr. Burt Nelson, B-u-r-t
N-e-l-s-o-n.

I knew these people as members of the Communist Party, and they were
the leaders with whom I dealt most frequently in dealing with union
affairs and with party affairs.

Mr. MOULDER. When naming a person, if possible, identify him in some
way so he will not be confused with any person who may have a similar
name.

Mr. DENNETT. Burt was a longshoreman. He worked as a longshoreman on
the Seattle waterfront.

George Bailey was a longshoreman known to me first in Raymond, Wash.
Later I knew him on the Seattle waterfront.

Mr. TAVENNER. How does he spell his name?

Mr. DENNETT. I believe it was B-a-i-l-e-y.

In the early days of the organization of the warehousemen’s local of
the International Longshoremen’s and Warehousemen’s Union the two
principal officers of the organization were very well known to me as
members of the Communist Party. However, they frequently did not comply
with the party policy, and we had frequent difficulty trying to get
them to comply with it. And I believe that they have both since left
the Communist Party. I make that by way of statement to be certain that
there is no misapprehension as to my knowledge about them. One was Mr.
John Stevens, better known as Johnny. Another one was Adrian Lawrence,
A-d-r-i-a-n L-a-w-r-e-n-c-e.

In the Marine Firemen’s Union,[7] which was not in the CIO, but it was
a waterfront union with which I was closely associated, was Mr. Walter
Stack, S-t-a-c-k, who has previously been mentioned, and a person
by the name of George Flood. Now I hope no one will mistake him for
another individual who is very prominent as a lawyer. I am not speaking
of the lawyer. It is not the lawyer at all, because he is a well known
leader of the Republican Party, and I am sure that no one will confuse
him.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel advises me that that George Flood is deceased.
I was unaware of it.

The George Flood of whom I am speaking was a sort of hunchback fellow
who was a marine fireman.

At an earlier period I knew a group of people in the Boeing union, the
machinists union, who were known to me as members of the Communist
Party. That came about when one of the organizers of the United
Automobile Workers of America came into Seattle wanting to swing the
affiliation from the machinists union to the United Automobile Workers.
That national leader was a man by the name of Wyndham Mortimer,
W-y-n-d-h-a-m M-o-r-t-i-m-e-r. He was an organizer. At that time he
was stationed in California. He was quite anxious to bring about the
change in affiliation of the Boeing workers because he knew that
the employment at that plant would increase, and had hoped that, by
winning that group of workers, they would add considerable prestige
and strength to the United Automobile Workers aircraft division. He
had been active in a big plant. I think it was the Lockheed plant in
California at that time.

When he came here he conferred with two persons known to me very
well, a man by the name of Hugo Lundquist, L-u-n-d-q-u-i-s-t, and
Barney Bader, B-a-d-e-r. They were at that time the top leaders of
the aeronautical workers union, and they became known to me through
Mr. Mortimer as members of the Communist Party. And they completely
disregarded my counsel which was that they were embarked on a foolhardy
effort and that we disagreed with any attempt at jurisdictional rating.
Our policy here was strictly opposed to it.

However, Mortimer was operating under authority of the top apparatus
of the party, namely, the central committee in New York City. And he
completely disregarded any advice or counsel which was offered by the
district bureau or the district leaders of the Communist Party in this
area.

It was our policy to not disturb the existing unions to change
affiliation. To us that was ridiculous and had no point of value.
Our concern was to not have our members upset or disturbed in those
organizations.

Mr. TAVENNER. It may be of importance for us to know the year in which
this incident occurred.

Mr. DENNETT. I would have to consult my records, but I can assure you I
have records on that. I have extensive correspondence with Mr. Mortimer
on that subject.

Mr. TAVENNER. That will be satisfactory.

Mr. VELDE. Is the Walter Stack, to whom you referred, the same Walter
Stack who was convicted of violation of the Smith Act?

Mr. BENNETT. I don’t know what his violation is, but I am sure he is
the man who was very prominent in the marine firemen’s union over a
great many years. He came from here when I knew him.

Mr. VELDE. I feel certain that it is one and the same person. I noted
in the newspaper the other day that his appeal was turned down by the
United States circuit court of appeals.

Mr. DENNETT. In the national conventions of the CIO, after my first
experience, which was highly unsatisfactory, with Mr. Lee Pressman, I
complained so bitterly when I came back to the district that the next
convention I went to I was instructed before I left that I should work
through Reid Robinson, who was president of the International Union of
Mine, Mill, and Smelter Workers of America at that time. Mr. Robinson
proved to be a very cooperative man and readily discussed party affairs
with me. That was in 1939.

Mr. TAVENNER. You say you were given instructions to work through
Robinson. Was that an instruction from your union as such, or was it an
instruction from the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. That was from the Communist Party.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel thinks that I have not sufficiently identified
Mr. Lee Pressman. He was at the time I knew him general counsel of the
CIO.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you proceed, please.

Mr. DENNETT. My relations with Mr. Reid Robinson were quite
satisfactory except that at a little bit later date, when I was under
sharp attack because of the growing split between left and right wings
in the State CIO in this State, I tried to get Mr. Reid Robinson to
come to this State to try to pacify the situation, and he was fearful
of doing so for fear he would get into more complications than he could
solve. So he deserted me when I needed help.

Earlier, of course, I knew Ferdinand Smith from the National Maritime
Union of America. I believe he has been deported from the United States.

Mr. TAVENNER. That is correct.

Mr. DENNETT. It is the same person. I had known him over a period of
several years.

I also came to know the president of the officeworkers union at that
time. That was the United Office and Professional Workers of America,
Mr. Lewis Merrill. He was known to me by that name then. I have heard
from friends since then that that was an assumed name or something.
At any rate, he is doing business in New York City under an entirely
different name as of this date.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you know that name?

Mr. DENNETT. I do not know that name. I know a person who does, who
lives in the city of Seattle, and who knows him. But I do not know him
myself.

Mr. TAVENNER. How do you spell his name, the name that he went by here?

Mr. DENNETT. L-e-w-i-s M-e-r-r-i-l-l.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you proceed, please?

Mr. DENNETT. At a much earlier period--I am going back to try to pick
up the loose threads that we left out when we should have mentioned
them, but I was unable to connect all my thoughts consecutively at that
time. In the organization of the Marine Workers Industrial Union Mr.
Harry Jackson, whom I mentioned to you, was the chief leader of that
effort here. But he had 2 or 3 very able assistants, one by the name
of James Archer, A-r-c-h-e-r. Archer is the man to whom I delivered
about $35 which was taken up as a collection when I was in the CCC camp
when I came to Seattle on a visit from the camp. It was a collection
from the men in the camp to assist the maritime strikers at that time,
and Mr. Archer is the man to whom I delivered that money in the
headquarters of the Marine Workers Industrial Union.

Another person who was very active in that work was a person by the
name of Tommy Ray, R-a-y. Later I met Tommy Ray after I was expelled
from the Communist Party. Tommy Ray at that time was a port agent
for the National Maritime Union. And I tried to discuss with him the
question of the disciplinary practices of the Communist Party, and
Ray was so incensed about his own experience that he wouldn’t discuss
it with me except to say, “Don’t talk to me about those so-and-sos. I
don’t want to have anything further to do with them.” And that is about
all I was able to obtain from him. But it was the same person, and I
believe he is still an active person in the National Maritime Union.
But he is bitterly anti-Communist today.

There was another person by the name of Tom Burns. I don’t know how
we can make a distinction for him, because there are so many persons
by that name except to say that he was a seaman. I learned later from
Tommy Ray that Tom Burns became a licensed man, left the Communist
Party long before, and has had nothing to do with it; that is, in
recent years. Although he was a very able man way back in the period of
1932, 1933, and 1934 when he was very active in the organization of the
Marine Workers Industrial Union, and had a great part in organizing the
sailors on the waterfront in Seattle at that time.

I knew Tommy Burns’ wife quite well, a person by the name of--I knew
her originally as Helmi Hutenen.

Mr. TAVENNER. Spell it, please.

Mr. DENNETT. I cannot be certain of the spelling of it, but, as near as
I recall, it was H-u-t-e-n-e-n. There was double spelling in there that
I am not certain of. Helmi was H-e-l-m-i.

There was a leader of the radio operators, marine radio operators, by
the name of Thomas J. Van Erman. I observed in Mrs. Hartle’s testimony
that she referred to a Mr. Van Orman. I am not referring to any Van
Orman. I don’t know any Van Orman. The man I know was Van Erman,
V-a-n E-r-m-a-n. And Mr. Van Erman that I knew worked on the Seattle
waterfront as a radio operator and was, I believe he was the port agent
of that organization.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let the record show in describing these persons you knew
and met, that you knew them as members of the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. That is correct.

I frequently made myself quite obnoxious to Mr. Van Erman because I
was always asking him to be a little more militant and a little more
positive in his work. And he was quite insistent that I was wrong, and
we had a continuing friction over that point. However, we were great
personal friends.

The Cannery Workers Union was a local affiliate of the United Cannery,
Agricultural, and Packinghouse Workers of America. In the national
leadership I knew a Mr. Donald Henderson, who was the president of that
organization. I knew him very well, associated with him frequently at
the convention, transacted a great deal of business with him concerning
the cannery workers out here because we were having a great deal of
difficulty over language problems. The cannery workers in that union
were those who were sent to Alaska regularly each year to work in the
salmon industry.

And in the local area I knew Mr. Conrad Espe. Mr. Con Espe was the
local representative of that international union.

There was a member of that union who was the most promising Communist
that we had, by the name of I. Hosue, H-o-s-u-e. He was a very able
man. I have heard since from people who are somewhat acquainted
with the facts that Mr. Hosue went into the military service,
became an officer during the course of the war, and turned bitterly
anti-Communist. And I understand that he gave testimony against certain
other members of the organization in certain deportation hearings. I
can only give you that much by way of identification. But that is the
man I am speaking of.

Mr. TAVENNER. May I suggest, Mr. Chairman, if the witness recalls any
other names, that he give them to us at a later period, as we desire to
proceed now with other witnesses.

Mr. MOULDER. All right.

Mr. TAVENNER. I want to recall this witness a little later in the day
on other matters.

Mr. MOULDER. At what time do you want Mr. Dennett back?

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe that he should be back after lunch. I would say
at 2 o’clock.

Mr. MOULDER. Two o’clock.

Thank you, Mr. Dennett. At 2 o’clock you will be recalled.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Paul Delaney, please.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony which you are
about to give before this committee will be the truth, the whole truth,
and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. DELANEY. I do.


TESTIMONY OF PAUL WILLIAM DELANEY, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, RICHARD
L. GEMSON

Mr. WHEELER. Will the witness state his full name, please.

Mr. DELANEY. Paul William Delaney.

Mr. WHEELER. Will you spell the last name?

Mr. DELANEY. D-e-l-a-n-e-y.

Mr. WHEELER. When and where were you born, Mr. Delaney?

Mr. MOULDER. May I ask, Mr. Delaney, are you represented by counsel?

Mr. DELANEY. Yes; I am.

Mr. MOULDER. Will counsel identify himself?

Mr. GEMSON. R. L. Gemson. I am a practicing attorney here in Seattle.

Mr. MOULDER. Proceed, Mr. Wheeler.

Mr. WHEELER. When and where were you born, Mr. Delaney?

Mr. DELANEY. I was born in 1903 in the State of Minnesota.

Mr. WHEELER. How long have you lived in Washington?

Mr. DELANEY. 51 years.

Mr. WHEELER. Advise the committee of your educational background,
please.

Mr. DELANEY. I went to school in this State: through grammar school and
high school; I attended the University of Washington 2 years. I didn’t
graduate.

Mr. WHEELER. What 2 years was that?

Mr: DELANEY. I think in the years 1923 and 1927.

Mr. WHEELER. What is your present occupation?

Mr. DELANEY. I am an architect.

Mr. WHEELER. How long have you been so engaged?

Mr. DELANEY. Well, I grew up in the construction business. I have been
a licensed architect since 1950 or 1951. I can’t state accurately.

Mr. WHEELER. How were you employed prior to that?

Mr. DELANEY. I came to Seattle in 1941. I worked at Sims Drake Puget
Sound. It was a contracting firm here. I worked with a construction
company after that who built defense housing. After that I worked, the
last year of the war--in my recollection--at Boeing Aircraft Co.

Mr. WHEELER. When did your employment terminate with Boeing Aircraft?

Mr. DELANEY. When the war was over.

Mr. WHEELER. In 1945?

Mr. DELANEY. Yes.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you completed your employment background?

Mr. DELANEY. Do you want me to bring it up to date?

Mr. WHEELER. Yes.

Mr. DELANEY. As soon as the war was over I went to work as an
architectural draftsman. I went then with an architect by the name of
Collins. I think he left in 1950 or 1951, and I have been alone since
then.

Mr. WHEELER. Did you ever know Barbara Hartle?

Mr. DELANEY. May I confer with my attorney?

Mr. WHEELER. Yes, sir?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DELANEY. On the advice of my counsel, I must invoke the fifth
amendment, on the grounds that it might tend to incriminate me.

Mr. MOULDER. As previously explained by the committee because your
counsel advises you to take or invoke the fifth amendment that does not
compel you to do so. If you prefer, you may state that you decline to
answer the question on the grounds of the fifth amendment.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DELANEY. Yes; that is correct.

Mr. WHEELER. Mrs. Hartle has advised the committee that you were a
functionary of the Queen Anne section of the Communist Party during the
years 1943-45. Is she correct in that statement?

Mr. DELANEY. May I again confer?

Mr. WHEELER. Yes.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DELANEY. For reasons previously given, I decline to answer this
question.

Mr. WHEELER. Our investigation has also developed information that you
were chairman of the Hilltop Club of the Communist Party in the year
1948. Is that correct?

Mr. VELDE. What was the name of the club?

Mr. WHEELER. Hilltop, H-i-l-l-t-o-p.

Mr. DELANEY. Pardon me one moment.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

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

Mr. WHEELER. Our investigation has also developed that in the year 1943
you were issued Communist Party book No. 28704. I doubt, if you recall
the number of the book, but were you issued a Communist Party book in
the year 1943 by the Communist Party?

Mr. DELANEY. I decline to answer for the reasons previously given.

Mr. WHEELER. In the year 1945 were you issued Communist Party book No.
42131.

Mr. DELANEY. I also decline to answer that for the reasons previously
given.

Mr. WHEELER. In the year 1947 were you issued Communist Party book No.
55934 by the Communist Party?

Mr. DELANEY. I decline to answer for the same reasons previously given.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you a member of the Communist Party today, Mr. Delaney?

Mr. DELANEY. I must--I decline to answer that for the reasons
previously given.

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

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. Have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. DELANEY. I must--I mean I decline to answer that.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DELANEY. For the reasons previously stated.

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

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Delaney, we have heard many arguments against
persons coming before congressional investigative committees and
making accusations or statements concerning other people, and that
those people do not have the opportunity to clear themselves or make
explanation of the charges made against them, such as Mrs. Hartle has
testified concerning you and your activities.

This committee has very carefully in each instance given the person so
mentioned an opportunity to come before the committee to deny, affirm,
or explain the charges made. And that opportunity is being presented to
you today by a subpena issued upon you for your appearance here.

In reply to the questions propounded to you, I understand you decline
to answer because of the protection afforded you under the fifth
amendment of the Constitution of the United States. Is that right?

Mr. DELANEY. That is correct.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you wish to make any explanation, or to deny or affirm
any of these statements or charges which were made by Mrs. Hartle
concerning your communistic activities?

Mr. DELANEY. May I confer with my counsel?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DELANEY. My counsel instructs me to state that I decline to answer
that question on the grounds of the fifth amendment--on the ground that
it might tend to incriminate me.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. MOULDER. Counsel, proceed with the next witness.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Jacob Bitterman.

Mr. MOULDER. Will you hold up your right hand and be sworn?

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony which you are about to give
before this congressional committee will be the truth, the whole truth,
and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Yes, sir.


TESTIMONY OF JACOB BITTERMAN, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, KENNETH A.
MacDONALD

Mr. WHEELER. Will the witness state his full name, please?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Jacob Bitterman.

Mr. VELDE. How do you spell the last name?

Mr. BITTERMAN. B-i-t-t-e-r-m-a-n.

Mr. WHEELER. Will counsel identify himself for the record?

Mr. MACDONALD. Kenneth A. MacDonald, attorney at law, in Seattle.

Mr. WHEELER. When and where were you born, Mr. Bitterman?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I was born in Russia in 1904.

Mr. WHEELER. When did you enter the United States?

Mr. BITTERMAN. To the best of my knowledge, in 1906.

Mr. WHEELER. How did you acquire American citizenship?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Through my father’s papers.

Mr. WHEELER. When you became 21 years of age?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I was 12 when he became a citizen.

Mr. WHEELER. How long have you lived in Seattle or in the vicinity of
Seattle?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I came to Seattle in 1923.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you lived here continuously since that time?

Mr. BITTERMAN. With the exception of 2 years, 1928 and 1929. That is,
in the fall of 1928 to the fall of 1930 I lived in Aberdeen, Wash.

Mr. WHEELER. What is your educational background?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Well, I went to the third grade in country school.

Mr. WHEELER. What has your employment record been for the last 10 years?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Machinist.

Mr. WHEELER. In Seattle?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Yes. I have been a machinist ever since I have been in
Seattle.

Mr. WHEELER. Are you a member of the International Association of
Machinists?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Yes. I am a member of local 79.

Mr. WHEELER. Have you held any offices in local 79?

Mr. BITTERMAN. No, I haven’t.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WHEELER. During the time you lived in Seattle did you ever meet
with, know, or have any conversations with Barbara Hartle?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will invoke the fifth amendment because it might
incriminate me.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you decline to answer that question?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I decline to answer.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you decline on the grounds and on the reasons of the
protection afforded to you by the provisions of the fifth amendment?

Mr. BITTERMAN. Yes.

Mr. WHEELER. I would like to refer to a document entitled
“Investigation of Communist Activities in the Pacific Northwest, Part
3,” page 6173. It is the testimony of Barbara Hartle in June 1954.
She is identifying members of the Communist Party, and I quote the
following:

    Jack Bitterman, then husband of Ruth Bitterman, was a member of
    this section in the machinists’ branch, and was for a time chairman
    of that branch.

Do you wish to make any comment on that testimony?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. I invoke the fifth amendment, on the same grounds
previously stated.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Wheeler is not asking you to confirm or deny it, but
asked merely if you wanted to make some comment on it. Why do you take
the fifth amendment on that question?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. I decline to answer that question on the same grounds.

Mr. WHEELER. Were you chairman of the machinists’ branch of the
Communist Party?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I decline to answer that question on the same grounds
previously stated.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. Chairman, I see no reason for asking further
questions. The witness is invoking the fifth amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. I have no questions.

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

Mr. BITTERMAN. No.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will again invoke the fifth amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. You say you are not now a member of the Communist Party.
Were you a member of the Communist Party a year ago?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will again invoke the fifth amendment for fear it
might incriminate me.

Mr. MOULDER. Were you a member of the Communist Party a month ago?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will again invoke the fifth amendment on the grounds
previously stated.

Mr. MOULDER. Would you say a week ago?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will again invoke the fifth amendment.

Mr. MOULDER. How about yesterday?

Mr. BITTERMAN. The same answer.

Mr. MOULDER. But you are not a member today?

Mr. BITTERMAN. I am not a member today.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

Mr. VELDE. I would like to go a little further. Were you a member of
the Communist Party an hour ago?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. No, I was not.

Mr. VELDE. Were you a member of the Communist Party 5 hours ago?

Mr. BITTERMAN. No.

Mr. VELDE. When did you leave the Communist Party?

Mr. BITTERMAN. As to that I invoke the fifth amendment.

Mr. VELDE. Were you a member of the Communist Party at midnight last
night?

Mr. BITTERMAN. No, I was not.

Mr. VELDE. How about 11 o’clock last night?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. BITTERMAN. I will invoke the fifth amendment to that question.

Mr. VELDE. I think that is close enough, is it not, Mr. Chairman?

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. MOULDER. Counsel, call the next witness.

Mr. WHEELER. Mr. John Stenhouse.

Mr. MOULDER. Will you raise your right hand and be sworn?

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony which you are about to give
before this congressional subcommittee will be the truth, the whole
truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you, God?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I do.


TESTIMONY OF JOHN STENHOUSE, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, JACK R. CLUCK

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you state your name?

Mr. STENHOUSE. John Stenhouse.

Mr. TAVENNER. It is noted you are accompanied by counsel. Will counsel
identify himself?

Mr. CLUCK. Jack R. Cluck, C-l-u-c-k, 535 Central Building, Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. When and where were you born, Mr. Stenhouse?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I was born in Chungking, China, on January 22, 1908.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you spell your last name, please.

Mr. STENHOUSE. S-t-e-n-h-o-u-s-e.

Mr. TAVENNER. Are you now an American citizen?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. When and where were you naturalized?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I was naturalized in Los Angeles on April 23, 1943.

Mr. TAVENNER. When did you arrive in the United States?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am not quite certain, but it was either December of
1940 or January of 1941.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you been in the United States continuously since
that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. In June 1948 I went out to China, and returned to
the United States either September or October of the same year.

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

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I went to a public school in England, and after
completing my education in England I went back to China.

Mr. TAVENNER. When did you go back to China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. In 1928.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where did you live in China from 1928 until you came to
the United States?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I was in my father’s business in China. The name
of the firm was MacKenzie & Co., and they had several branches in
China. I spent some time in Shanghai. I then went to--

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you fix the dates, please.

Mr. STENHOUSE. It is pretty hard. But approximately 9 months in
Shanghai. That would be in 1928.

I really don’t remember the month that I got to Shanghai, but I was
there approximately 9 months.

Then I went to Tientsin, and I was there until the beginning of 1931, I
think it was.

Mr. VELDE. What kind of a company was MacKenzie & Co.?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, it was a British trading firm. We had---

Mr. VELDE. Import-export?

Mr. STENHOUSE. And warehouses and shipping and that sort of activity.
Then I went to Hankow. I was there until about 1934. I remember the
date because we went home on leave at that time, and I got married that
year. And then after leave I went back to Tientsin, and I was there
until 1939 when we went home on leave again.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you mean to your home in England?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes. Then I went back to China in the fall of 1939, just
after war was declared, and I was in Tientsin until the end of--well,
the end of 1940. During 1940 I was sent up on a mission by my company
to Chungking and to Hong Kong. That lasted about 3 or 4 months, I think.

Mr. TAVENNER. After your arrival in this country how did you become
employed and where?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, before I left China I had made arrangements with
a firm in Peiping to import and sell Chinese antiques. And he gave
me the name of a man in Los Angeles with whom he had done business,
and suggested that I call on him because he was in somewhat similar
business. And when I got to Los Angeles I called on this gentleman and
made arrangements to work out of his establishment.

Later on--I can’t remember the date--I went into partnership with him
under the style of Alkow & Stenhouse, and we conducted an importing
business of Chinese antiques and sort of handicraft items, and had a
retail outlet on Wilshire Boulevard.

Mr. TAVENNER. How long were you so engaged in business in Los Angeles?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Until Pearl Harbor. And I decided then that----

Mr. TAVENNER. From what date until Pearl Harbor?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, as soon as I got to Los Angeles, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. That date was what?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember the exact date, but it was sometime in
January of 1941.

Mr. TAVENNER. That is sufficient.

Will you proceed, please. You continued in that business until Pearl
Harbor. How were you employed after Pearl Harbor?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor the war
was on. And, for one thing, I wanted to participate in the war. So
I took a drafting course and then got a job with Shell Chemical in
Dominguez, I think it was until the end of--I was there for 3 or 4
months, I think it was. I don’t remember the exact date now.

Mr. VELDE. What was the name of the company?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Shell Chemical.

Mr. VELDE. Is that also known as Shell Development Co.?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t know. It may be a subsidiary. It was connected
with the Shell Oil Co.

Then I got a job with Fruehauf Trailer Co., which was nearer home. And
I was there until, I think, about June of 1943.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you proceed a little more rapidly? What was your
next employment?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Then I went to Bendix Aviation in North Hollywood.
The reason for the change was, or one of the reasons for the change
was, it was much nearer home, and gasoline was a problem. Time and
transportation time were problems. And I was at Bendix until about
March 1945, when I had a hernia operation and was told to get out of
that sort of work.

At about that time there were notices in the papers asking for people
with some background in the Far East to assist in finishing off the
war against Japan. So I applied for a number of jobs. One was with the
Office of War Information, and another was with the Office of Strategic
Services. I also applied for work with 2 or 3 American companies who
were planning or had had affiliations in the Far East.

And then I got an appointment with the United States Department of
Commerce as an economic analyst in the China Section of the Far Eastern
Division.

Mr. TAVENNER. Is that the first position you held under the United
States Government?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. And when did you enter the employ of the United States
Government?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think it was June 1945.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did your duties require you to go to Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. How long did you remain in Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I remained with the Government until November
1947, and----

Mr. TAVENNER. Is that with the Commerce Department until 1947?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. VELDE. Were you an economic analyst in the Far Eastern Division
during your entire employment by the Government?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. About a year after I was there I was promoted to
Chief of the China Section and, some time in there, as Acting Assistant
Chief of the Division. And a little later, just before I left the
Department, I was temporary Acting Chief of the Division while the
Division Chief was away.

In 1947, November 1947, my employment there terminated, and again I was
looking for a suitable occupation. And I applied many, many places. I
applied with many American firms who were in business in the Far East
or had business connections in the Far East. And I also applied for an
appointment that I heard about with the United Nations.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you receive the appointment with the United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. When?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think it was about June of 1948. There was a period
when I was living in Washington that I was not employed.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the nature of your employment by the United
Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I had a 3-month special appointment to go out to
Shanghai to work on the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East,
which was a separate section of the United Nations. And the work was
related to the rehabilitation of trade, with special reference to
the development of interregional trade in the light of the changed
situation after the war.

I wrote a report which was included in a document published by the
United Nations.

At the end of the 3-month period I was appointed administrative
assistant to the--I don’t know what his actual title was, but it was
something like director of food and agriculture mission in China; a
3-month appointment again, and I worked in that capacity for about 3
months; I think until the end of September, when I was found to have
some possibilities of tuberculosis. So I wanted to go back to the
United States and get a thorough investigation of that, and I got
a letter from the director of the mission there to the home office
suggesting that I be given a permanent contract--not a permanent
contract but a more long-range contract to go out under circumstances
that would allow me to take my family out. However, on the way back
from China I stopped here in Seattle and met some businessmen for whom
I had done some work in my official capacity in the Department. They
were pleased with the work I had done and they suggested that I join
their firm in Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the approximate date of your return to the
United States when you first became a resident of this community?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, my return to the United States was about September
or October of 1948. I went back to Washington----

Mr. TAVENNER. I understand that. But you told us about your return to
the United States and stopping here in Seattle.

Mr. STENHOUSE. You asked me when I first came here, and became a
resident. There was a gap of a couple of months because I went back to
Washington to pick up my family, and we actually came here to Seattle
as residents in January of 1949.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you resided in Seattle since that date?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. What is your present occupation?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am an insurance agent.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you read any of the testimony before this committee
of General Willoughby who was G-2 on General MacArthur’s staff, which
related to the development of communism in China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. General Willoughby documented considerable evidence
before this committee regarding the activities of certain American
citizens in China. My desire now is merely to ask you whether or not
you observed any Communist Party activities on the part of American
nationals in China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. And I refer particularly to the period 1928 and 1929 when
you were in Shanghai.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I didn’t know anything about it. I was a businessman.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you at any time been affiliated with the Communist
Party, and, if so, in what country or countries?

Mr. STENHOUSE. During the war some 10 years ago I was a member of the
Communist Party in this country.

Mr. TAVENNER. In this country?

Mr. STENHOUSE. And that is the only affiliation that I have had.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am not asking you now about your own affiliation, or
indicating that I believe you were affiliated with the Communist Party
in China, but we are anxious to have any information you have regarding
Communist Party activities in China.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I haven’t any information, Mr. Tavenner. When I left
China in 1940 I only had a very vague idea about what was going on
there.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let me put the question to you this way because it is a
very broad subject.

General Willoughby testified before this committee that the form of
organization of mass organizations in China from 1929 on was virtually
identical with what we have found in this country since the early and
middle thirties, that is, in working through mass organizations or
front organizations, as we frequently call them in this country.

Did you observe any activity of that kind?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No, and I wouldn’t have done it because I was living
in the international concessions in watertight compartments where we
associated, except in business, with Europeans and Americans. I am
somewhat--what was going on in the interior of China and in Chinese
politics I was somewhat abysmally ignorant of in those days.

Mr. TAVENNER. It has been demonstrated that Americans, people from this
country took an active part in some of that organizational work in
China.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I never did.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the fact that you were in an international section
mean that you could not have had any knowledge of it?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I didn’t have any knowledge of it. I was involved
in business until the Japanese threatened my business. I wasn’t
concerned with politics.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am not indicating I have any information that you were
involved in it. I am merely asking what knowledge you had of it?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I really have no knowledge.

Mr. VELDE. I think we ought to make this clear: Are you referring to
the period of time you were in China prior to 1940, and not about your
trip the second time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is correct.

Mr. VELDE. Have you been back more than once since 1940 to China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. Only once.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you say you became a member of the Communist Party
while you were in Los Angeles?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the approximate date of your becoming a member?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, to the best of my recollection, it was in the
latter part of 1943.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where were you living at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. In Horseshoe Canyon.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were you assigned to any particular group of the
Communist Party when you first became a member?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t think it was a matter of assignment, to my
knowledge. I was asked if I would like to attend some discussion group
meetings and, to the best of my recollection, there were not more than
4 or 5 of them in Los Angeles.

Mr. TAVENNER. Four or 5 what?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Of these discussion group meetings.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you mean that you attended 4 or 5 of these discussion
group meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you recall whether or not you were transferred from
one such group to another?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am pretty certain I wasn’t. I am not aware of it.
Somebody may have transferred me. But, as far as I know, I attended a
group of discussion meetings somewhere, not too far from where we lived
in North Hollywood. I don’t remember now whether it was in more than
one home. It may have been in 1 or 2.

Mr. TAVENNER. How many persons attended those meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. About 4 or 5.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were they always the same persons or did the group vary
as to its composition?

Mr. STENHOUSE. It may have varied. I don’t remember for sure.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the nature of the business conducted at those
meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, we discussed Communist and other literature and
articles. We discussed the affairs that were concerning all of us at
that time, of the war and the winning of the war--and it was just talk.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you recall whether or not Communist Party literature
was made available for your purchase at the meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, it was.

Mr. TAVENNER. And for your use?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, it was.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you take part in the study group, in the study of the
Communist Party literature yourself?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Oh, I suppose I read what we were asked to read or was
suggested we read, and made some attempt to discuss it at the next
meeting.

I might add that the literature that was at those meetings was also on
sale in some of the bookstores in Los Angeles. There was a Lincoln Book
Store there which had Communist and other material for sale. I was in
the bookstore 2 or 3 times. There was also at these meetings material
that was not Communist, at least not published by the party.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was the Lincoln Book Store known as a Communist book shop?

Mr. STENHOUSE. It wasn’t known to me as such.

Mr. TAVENNER. There has been evidence of that character presented to
the committee.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I wouldn’t doubt it actually. But they sold things
other than Communist Party literature. And it wasn’t under the table.
It was right out in the open. Anybody from the street could walk in and
pick it up and read it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Who invited you to become a member of that group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t know, sir. At that time I was very active in the
United Auto Workers. I felt that the United Auto Workers was doing a
fine job in increasing production for the war. Their no-strike pledge
was very loyally kept, and there were people there who always attended
meetings, who were always ready to try and get other people to come to
the union meetings, who were ready to do jobs for the union in the way
of promoting blood-bank drives, and so on, getting people to register
to vote, and the sort of things that I was interested in. Some one of
these people who I had some knowledge of their actions asked me if I
would go to such a meeting, and I said I would.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were the other members of this group of Communist Party
persons employed in the same business in which you were employed?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, as far as I remember, there were possibly 2 or 3
of the group who were at the Bendix plant. I am not sure now. It is
hard to differentiate.

Mr. MOULDER. You say you were interested in the same things that they
were interested in, that is, getting people interested in elections and
going to the polls to vote.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Sure.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you recall whether or not at that time the Communist
Party had candidates for whom you could cast a ballot?

Mr. STENHOUSE. We weren’t interested in it. We were voting Democratic.
I was a Democrat.

Mr. MOULDER. The point I was trying to make, if you were interested in
that party why did you join the Democratic Party? I don’t understand
why you affiliated yourself with a party that had no candidates for
whom you could vote.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I didn’t deliberately go out to affiliate myself with
it. Somebody who was interested in it also, as a Democrat--and these
things that were part of the war effort--suggested that I go to one
of these meetings. And he had become a person I had some respect for
because of his apparent adherence to the things that the majority of
the American people were doing at that time. I accepted the idea and
went to the meetings.

Mr. MOULDER. Were they Communist Party organization meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t understand you.

Mr. MOULDER. Are you talking about Communist Party meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. I am talking about union meetings and how it came
about that somebody invited me to go.

Mr. MOULDER. I am referring to the Communist Party meetings.

Mr. STENHOUSE. There were many meetings at that time, Mr.
Chairman--union meetings; many union meetings I attended. I was very
much impressed with the union.

Mr. MOULDER. Were the union meetings you attended Communist Party
meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think we have got at cross purposes someway here.

I was trying to explain how it came about that somebody invited me
to go to one of these discussion group meetings, and it was through
the association with somebody whom I had some regard for in his union
activity that I accepted an invitation.

Mr. MOULDER. Was the discussion group meeting a Communist Party meeting
or merely affiliated with the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am as confused as you are about that.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you know whether you were a Communist at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, to be frank about it, I believe I signed a
Communist Party card at some time.

I have a vague recollection of a card which had an American flag on
it and some very patriotic phraseology about the war effort and the
alliance between our country and the Soviet Union. It may have even
had some words about the Communist Party on it. But it seemed to me
entirely innocuous. In fact, again it appeared to be directed to the
things I was interested in, in the war effort.

Mr. MOULDER. Did you pay dues to the Communist Party after signing the
Communist Party card?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I believe there was some sort of dues structure, but I
don’t remember now how it worked. There were these materials for sale
at the meetings, and money changed hands. I don’t remember now how much
of it was for books, how much of it was for dues.

Mr. MOULDER. Over what period of time did you continue to participate
in such meetings and in what you then considered to be Communist Party
activity?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I find it hard to set the actual dates, but it
was, I think, some time during the latter part of 1943 and 1944.

Mr. MOULDER. And thereafter you have never in any way whatsoever
participated in any Communist Party activity?

Mr. STENHOUSE. That isn’t the truth, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. What would you say?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I also attended some similar meetings when I was in
Washington, D. C.

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will stand in recess until 2 o’clock.

(Whereupon, at 12:03 p. m., a recess was taken until 2 p. m. this same
day.)


AFTERNOON SESSION, MARCH 19, 1955

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will be in order, please.


TESTIMONY OF JOHN STENHOUSE, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, JACK R.
CLUCK--Resumed

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Stenhouse, we were discussing the Communist Party
branch or group of which you were a member in Los Angeles. Will you
give the committee, please, the names of those who were associated with
you in that group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am unable to give you the names, Mr. Tavenner. It is
a long time ago, and I have been trying to remember. As I indicated to
you the other day, if you give me some ideas of whom you think were
present, it might refresh my memory.

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe I told you that we would try to present you
with a list of persons who had been identified in the Los Angeles area
as members of the Communist Party, but we do not have that list with
us, and we are unable to present it to you now. We may do so later in
an effort to refresh your recollection.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am willing at any time to tell you if any particular
individual in my recollection was at those meetings.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, how you became
employed in the United States Department of Commerce in Washington.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, as I indicated, after I was obliged to have my
hernia operation and get out of the defense work that I had been doing
I sought occupation in a number of places. And somewhere along the line
somebody brought my qualifications in the Far East to Congressman Ellis
Patterson, and he referred it to Henry Wallace, and the appointment was
made on that introduction.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you finally become head of your Section in the
Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Chief of the Section.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was that the Section dealing with China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is right.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did your activities in the Department of Commerce have
anything to do with known Communists in China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. The work that I was doing was related to the
rehabilitation of trade. We were answering the inquiries of businessmen
relating to regulations and economic conditions in China and the
Far East. We prepared articles for the Foreign Commerce Weekly and
conducted an economic analysis of the possibilities of reopening trade.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you tell the committee that you attended Communist
Party meetings in the city of Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is right.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was that during the entire period of time you were in
Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can’t be sure of the time again. But it was somewhere
between the end of, I think, somewhere between the end of 1945 and the
end of 1946.

Mr. TAVENNER. How soon after your arrival in Washington did you become
identified with the Communist Party there, and attend those group
meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can’t place it. I know that shortly after I got to
Washington I had another serious operation, and I was busy getting
adjusted to my new work. Sometime about then I joined the Federal
Workers Union.

Mr. MOULDER. I did not understand you. You joined what?

Mr. STENHOUSE. The Federal Workers Union.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was it after you became a member of the Federal Workers
Union that you first began attending Communist Party meetings in the
District of Columbia?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can’t be sure. I think it was.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you advance to the point of holding an office of any
type in the union while you were in Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I was a shop steward and collected dues from 4 or 5
people. That was all.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, the circumstances
under which you were approached to identify yourself with the Communist
Party while you were working for the Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, again I think it was that one of the fellows in
the union asked me to attend some of the similar sort of meetings that
I had before. But it is possible that it was from some contact in Los
Angeles. I am not sure about that.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did that individual indicate that he knew you had been
associated with a branch of the Communist Party in Los Angeles when he
first talked to you about attending such meetings in the District of
Columbia?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember whether he did or not.

Mr. TAVENNER. Who was the person that contacted you in Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, again I can’t remember his name. But I have
already told you who I thought it was in terms of his union function.
He was a member of the grievance committee in that department.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you give a better identification of the individual
than the fact he was with the grievance committee?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I can give you a physical description to some
extent. He was a fairly short fellow and dark, dark hair.

Mr. TAVENNER. About what age person was he at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Oh, I imagine maybe 30, 32; something like that.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where did he live?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t know. He may have lived in Virginia. I say that
because one of the houses where we met was in Virginia.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was it his house?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am not sure now.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was he also employed by the Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was his position in the Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. He was in the Balance of Payments. I am not sure of the
actual name of the division. The work of that division was related to
the study and report of international balance of payments.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you tell us where his office was located in the
Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. It was a huge building and I don’t remember what
floor it was on. It was in the main building.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was it on the same floor as your office?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you give us his name?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; I can’t sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were all of the members of this group employees in the
Department of Commerce?

(Representative Harold H. Velde entered the hearing room at this
point.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am not sure of that. I think they were. I identified
them in my mind at least with members of the Public Workers Union. And,
while I was--well, I was going to say with that local. But I am not
sure of that.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the number of the local?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember. I only attended about, oh, not more
than 4 or 5 union meetings. I dropped out of the union around the end
of 1946, I think it was. And, as a matter of fact, I was extremely busy
in my work and wasn’t actually familiar with the organization of the
union.

Mr. TAVENNER. You were active enough in the union to be made a steward.

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is right. I was a shop steward.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was it your duty, as a shop steward, to represent the
membership of the union in legitimate grievances?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, we never had any. And all I did was collect dues
and turn them over to another fellow.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were any of the persons from whom you collected union
dues members of the group of the Communist Party to which you referred?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. No; I don’t think they were.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was this a mixed group, men and women?

Mr. STENHOUSE. In the discussion group?

Mr. TAVENNER. Yes.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes; I think it was only men.

Mr. TAVENNER. How many?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Four or five.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you give us the names, if you can, of any of the
members of the group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No, sir, I can’t.

Mr. MOULDER. You have referred several times to the discussion group.
Can you tell us what you discussed?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, we discussed international affairs, domestic
problems; we discussed articles, as I indicated before, in Communist
and other publications.

Mr. MOULDER. In any of these groups were you ever addressed by
prominent Communist officials or leaders?

Mr. STENHOUSE. In those discussion groups?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Not that I know of. They were all people, as far as I
could determine, just like myself, maybe temporarily off on a wrong
track. There was never any use of fictitious names as far as I know. I
didn’t use a fictitious name.

Mr. MOULDER. Will you repeat over what period of time did you attend
discussion groups when you were in Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, it was some time between the latter part of 1945
and 1946.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Chairman, it seems unusual to me that the witness cannot
remember anybody’s name, or the name of any person who attended these
meetings.

This occurred less than 10 years ago, did it not?

Mr. STENHOUSE. About 10 years.

Mr. VELDE. And you cannot remember the name of a single person who
attended those discussion groups?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. And I have tried to do it, and I have offered to
cooperate to the best of my ability with the staff of your committee,
sir.

It is, as you say, 10 years ago. I have moved out into a different
part of the world, an entirely different environment, new thoughts.
Since I have been out here I have been working hard to establish myself
economically, and I haven’t had association within that time to remind
me.

Mr. VELDE. Have you conscientiously tried to search your memory, to
review the history of that period to determine whether you could name
any persons who attended these meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I have, sir.

Mr. VELDE. Did you say you have consulted with our staff to determine
whether or not they can refresh your memory?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. VELDE. Of course, it still seems odd to me that you cannot remember
one single person.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, as a matter of fact, I can’t remember the names of
people whom I was in much more direct contact with in those days.

Mr. VELDE. You are a very intelligent person. There is no question
about that. It does seem to me that you could remember someone that you
went with. But can’t you remember the occasion of your first visit to
one of these discussion groups?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. VELDE. Or how you happened to get to the meeting?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember where it was. It was apparently in the
house of one of the members of the group.

Mr. VELDE. Do you remember the physical surroundings of the meeting
place? Apparently it was in a home of one of the members of the group.

Mr. STENHOUSE. One of the meetings, as I recall, was in, I think it was
an apartment in one of the projects over on the Virginia side.

Mr. VELDE. On that occasion can you remember anyone discussing any
particular legislation; for instance, legislation pending at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; I can’t. They were very----

Mr. VELDE. Can you recall the name of any individual discussing any
particular item?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No, I don’t.

Mr. VELDE. By physical description?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. They were very informal discussions. We just
exchanged ideas back and forth. Somebody had read an article out of a
paper or one of the publications, and we discussed it, and that was
about it.

Mr. VELDE. Your impression was, however, that it was a Communist Party
discussion group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, that is my impression.

Mr. VELDE. Did you discuss Marxism?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. VELDE. You cannot recall what you discussed except that you vaguely
remember it was a Communist Party discussion?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I say we were discussing foreign affairs, domestic
problems. I remember at that time the question of price control was in
people’s minds, and I am pretty sure that that was one of the things we
discussed.

They were nothing more nor less than an attempt, from a certain
viewpoint, to study and explain, if you like, the phenomena we were
living in.

Mr. VELDE. Have you no independent recollection whatsoever of how you
happened to get into the first meeting?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Except that I was invited, as far as I remember, by this
fellow that I have described.

Mr. VELDE. But do you remember his name?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I probably saw him not more than, oh, 20 times during
the whole time I was in Washington. And there were many people in
Washington whom I saw every day, whose names I can’t remember.

Another thing, Mr. Congressman, we discussed the same topics from a
different viewpoint with other people. And it is very hard to remember
now exactly which topic was discussed at which meeting.

Mr. VELDE. I am sure, Mr. Stenhouse, it is very hard to remember
exactly. But certainly I think that a person of average intelligence
and a fair memory could remember at least one person.

Mr. STENHOUSE. If I could name them I would. And in offering to go over
a list of names, I have done the best I can to cooperate with your
committee.

Mr. MOULDER. When you filed your application for Government employment
did you file Government form 57?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you remember the names of the persons you gave as
references on that application?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, if form 57 requires references, I don’t---- Maybe
it wasn’t form 57. I don’t want this to be misinterpreted.

Mr. MOULDER. It is a standard application form required by governmental
departments.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t recall any application in which I put
references. It may be so.

Mr. MOULDER. But you did make a written application setting forth your
experience and qualifications?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Oh, yes.

Mr. MOULDER. And was there an oath on that application?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. MOULDER. Which you had to sign?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. MOULDER. And did anyone recommend you for this position to which
you were assigned in Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Somebody recommended me in the sense that they referred
my name and qualifications to Ellis Patterson.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you know who that person was?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am not sure who it was. We had a large number of
friends from Los Angeles at that time, and it may have been one of the
people that we were active with in that Democratic campaign. I think it
probably was.

Mr. MOULDER. When you were made section chief, who was your immediate
superior?

Mr. STENHOUSE. (Name deleted.)

Mr. MOULDER. Did he have anything to do with your promotion to that
position?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I am sure he did.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you remember the names of the persons who were employed
under your immediate supervision?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, there was one fellow just prior to my promotion.
(Name deleted.)

Mr. MOULDER. I am not suggesting any of those persons be named in the
record; I am testing your memory as to why you remember some people
with whom you were associated and why you cannot remember the names of
some other people with whom you were closely associated.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can remember the names of many of the people in my
division because we have exchanged Christmas cards since then, and I
have seen some of them since then.

Mr. MOULDER. In line with Mr. Velde’s questioning regarding the first
Communist Party meeting to which you referred, how did you go? By car,
by bus, or by train? Was it just as you say, a short distance? How did
you get there?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No, I didn’t say it was a short distance. I said it was
in Virginia.

Mr. MOULDER. That is not far from the District of Columbia.

Mr. STENHOUSE. We lived in Maryland.

Mr. MOULDER. How did you travel to the place of the meeting?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I suppose it was by bus because we didn’t have a car in
those days.

Mr. MOULDER. You went by bus over there?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I say bus. I mean public transportation.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Chairman, I think we ought to make it clear we have
no intention of having the public press or anyone else feel that
any of the persons you mention who were associated with you in your
professional work at that time are connected in any way with the
Communist Party or any of its functions. We have hitherto tried to make
that perfectly clear. The mere fact that you mention a name of one of
your associates should lead no one to believe that he is in any way
connected with it or has been connected with the Communist Party or
Communist Party activities.

Mr. MOULDER. Did other employees in your section attend any of the
meetings to which you have referred?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. MOULDER. In line with Congressman Velde’s suggestion the names
mentioned by you in that connection will be stricken from the record.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I want to make one clarification.

In regard to this matter of references, I don’t want it on the record
that I didn’t give any references. If they were required I suppose I
gave them. But don’t remember now who I gave.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Another point, Mr. Chairman, in regard to this matter of remembering
the names of the people who were at these discussion groups, there were
not more than 3 or 4 meetings as far as I remember. There were very few
in number.

Mr. MOULDER. How many meetings did you attend while you were in
Washington?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Three or four; at the most, five; I can’t remember
exactly. They are very limited. I am trying to live back in those days
and pinpoint when it could have been and where they could have been.
And I can identify in a vague way three locations.

Mr. MOULDER. Were you issued a Communist Party membership card at any
time while you were in Washington, D. C.?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t think so.

Mr. MOULDER. But you still refer to them as Communist Party meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is what I understood them to be. I am sure in my
own mind now that I was just on the fringes of this thing, that----

Mr. MOULDER. Proceed, Mr. Tavenner.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you not describe the meetings in Washington as being
the same type of meetings you attended in Los Angeles?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I said they were similar.

Mr. MOULDER. Doesn’t that mean the same type?

What difference was there between the meetings you attended in
Washington and those you attended in Los Angeles?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I suppose one difference would be that in
Washington, D. C., to the best of my knowledge, all the people present
were members of the union.

Mr. MOULDER. Were they also all employees in the Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Right.

Mr. MOULDER. Were any of them employees in your immediate section?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. MOULDER. The China Section of the Department of Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you, of your own personal knowledge, know whether any
of the persons attending those meetings were members of the Communist
Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, they were at the meetings.

Mr. MOULDER. Yes; but that isn’t my point. They were at the meetings,
but do you know of your own personal knowledge whether or not they were
Communist Party members?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Why I don’t know how you identify that exactly. I don’t
recall seeing anybody’s card. Again, there was some sort of dues
payment.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you recall hearing any one of them say that they were
members of the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can’t remember now whether they did or not. I
was there and I thought I was some sort of a member, and I just
assumed--Maybe I shouldn’t assume it. But I just assumed they were.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you pay dues in this organization or in this group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, again, it was somewhat the same arrangement as
before. There were books to be bought and some sort of dues arrangement.

Mr. TAVENNER. To whom did you pay the dues?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I don’t remember who the individual was. The money
was just--somebody said “Well, here are the books.” And the money was
put on the table.

Mr. TAVENNER. How long did you remain a member of that group or attend
meetings of that group?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, that is the question that you asked before, and,
as I told you, I find it very difficult to pinpoint the time. I think
I can limit it to somewhere near the end of 1945 because of the fact
that I didn’t get there until June and I had the operation, and then my
family came out, and we were preoccupied with getting into a house and
things of that sort. And I think it was--I was out of it by the early
part of 1947.

Mr. TAVENNER. So that you continued until the early part of 1947?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I say it was somewhere in that area. And I can’t
remember.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, the circumstances
under which you stopped attending these meetings?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, the Communist publications that we were studying
seemed to be overready to excuse the Soviet Union and criticize our
country, and this didn’t jibe with the ideas that I had had about the
situation during the war. And I just stopped going and nobody ever
tried to get me back in or approached me in any way.

Mr. TAVENNER. You have said that you cannot recall the names of any of
these people or give any more descriptive information than you have
because of the lapse of time, and the fact that you are separated now
by long distance from the place you were then.

Did anything occur in 1946 or 1947 which would have served to refresh
your recollection as to who these individuals were?

Something that would have called this matter very definitely to your
attention and would have impressed itself on your memory. Do you recall
anything of an unusual character having occurred?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I suppose you are referring to the fact that I was
investigated or questioned by the FBI.

Mr. TAVENNER. That is right.

Mr. STENHOUSE. It may have recalled their names to me then, but it
doesn’t now.

Mr. VELDE. Did you give any names to the FBI when you were questioned?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; I didn’t.

Mr. VELDE. You said it may have recalled some of the names to you at
that time but it doesn’t now. If at that time it recalled the names of
people with whom you had associated, why didn’t you give them to the
FBI?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I declined to state whether or not I had been a member
of the Communist Party in Los Angeles.

Mr. VELDE. Do you mean you declined to state to the FBI whether or not
you had been a member of the Communist Party in Los Angeles?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes. And, as far as I remember, he told me I didn’t have
to state. I can’t be sure of that, but that is my recollection.

Mr. VELDE. Of course, you don’t have to tell the FBI anything. But I am
just wondering what was in your mind at that time--the reason why you
did not give the FBI that information.

Mr. STENHOUSE. The reason was that I had, to the best of my knowledge
and conscience, done nothing hostile to the United States. In fact, I
thought that I had been a very loyal and active citizen in promoting
the war effort.

Mr. TAVENNER. When did your employment terminate with the Department of
Commerce?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I got my termination notice in October, and it was
effective in November of 1947.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the reason for termination of your services?

Mr. STENHOUSE. It stated that I was being relieved due to a reduction
in force.

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe you stated then your next employment was with
the United Nations. Is that correct?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, how you obtained
your employment with the United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I was trying many avenues to get employment.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am referring only to your employment with the United
Nations.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, there may have been a number of channels through
which I got it, but I think that it may have been through the Institute
of Pacific Relations.

Mr. TAVENNER. Why did you appeal to the Institute of Pacific Relations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Because I had been a subscriber to the Institute of
Pacific Relations, and I knew of the Institute as one interested in
far-eastern affairs. And that, amongst several dozens of business firms
and organizations, seemed to be a likely place to find an occupation in
the area where I wanted to be.

Mr. TAVENNER. Before going to the Institute of Pacific Relations, did
you have in mind that you desired to secure a position with the United
Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; I don’t think I did. In fact----

Mr. TAVENNER. Was the suggestion then made to you by the Institute of
Pacific Relations that you seek employment with the United Nations?

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder left the hearing room.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think it was suggested to me there that this
commission was being formed--the commission was already in effect, but
that there was this job to do on this subcommittee of trade relations
and that I should contact a Dr. Lokanath. He was an Indian economist.

(At this point Representative Morgan M. Moulder returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think that may have been the channel through which
it came. I am not entirely certain. But I did contact him and got the
appointment.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the person or persons with whom you conferred in the
Institute of Pacific Relations know of your Communist Party membership?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you furnish any references to the Institute of
Pacific Relations when you went there to confer on the subject of your
employment?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think I probably did. You mean a sort of curriculum
vitae.

Mr. TAVENNER. The real purpose of my question is to find out whether or
not you were recommended to the Institute of Public Relations by any
person who knew you had been a member of the Communist Party.

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. I went there entirely on my own initiative.

Mr. VELDE. Did you know any of the defendants in the Amerasia case?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. VELDE. Had you ever met any of them?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Not to my knowledge.

Mr. VELDE. Do you know who it was from the Institute of Pacific
Relations who first interested you in the United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I was interested in the United Nations myself.

Mr. VELDE. Naturally, I suppose you were. Was any one person at the
Institute of Pacific Relations responsible for your employment by the
United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. I went to the Institute of Pacific Relations as one
of many, many sources for a new occupation. And in the office of the
Institute of Pacific Relations I was told that there was this opening.
So I applied to the United Nations. I have at home a file about that
thick [indicating] of letters to many business firms that I wrote to
and had interviews with.

Mr. VELDE. Do you have any written memorandums or anything else in
writing that would show your contact with the Institute of Pacific
Relations at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I have nothing to hide about my Institute of Pacific
Relations contacts. I was a subscriber to the Institute of Pacific
Relations. I thought they were doing a good job of objective reporting
on the Far East. I was interested in it because of my background.

While I was in Washington, D. C., I went to several Institute of
Pacific Relations meetings and discussion groups. It was only natural
that that should be one place where I would go to find out if there was
any firm or any organization that was associated with the Far East who
would be interested in my background.

Mr. VELDE. Of course, I don’t want to cast any reflections on the
individual members of the Institute of Pacific Relations or any others
you have contacted, but I do feel it would be valuable to the committee
if you would make available the various letters you used when applying
for jobs in order that we might search our records. Would you be
willing to make those available?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Do you want me to tell you the names of the people in
the Institute of Pacific Relations?

Mr. VELDE. No. I am not particularly anxious for that. Again, I want
to say if you do mention names of persons in the Institute of Pacific
Relations, it should be no reflection upon them whatsoever because you,
as a former Communist, contacted them.

I am interested in finding out who you contacted or who in the
Institute of Pacific Relations recommended you for a job with the
United Nations.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I haven’t been asked that question.

Mr. VELDE. I ask you that question.

Mr. STENHOUSE. If you want to know who it was in the Institute of
Pacific Relations who I think gave me the information, I am very frank
to tell you that it was Mr. Carter.

Mr. VELDE. Do you know his first name?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Edward C.

Mr. VELDE. Was he in his office at the time you went to the Institute
of Pacific Relations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. VELDE. What did he do to promote your appointment in the United
Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. He may have contacted Dr. Lokanath, for all I know. I
think he possibly did.

Mr. VELDE. Did you get recommendations from members of the Institute of
Pacific Relations other than Mr. Carter?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. VELDE. Did you have recommendations of any kind other than the
Institute of Pacific Relations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

The chief of my division gave me a very fine recommendation. A
colleague who was in the China legal section gave me a very fine
recommendation.

Mr. VELDE. Did either Mr. Carter or the chief of your division know
that you were a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; they did not.

Mr. VELDE. What type of formal application did you make for the
position you sought and afterward obtained in the United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t recall now any formal application. I have in my
files a letter of appointment, but I don’t recall a formal application.

Mr. VELDE. Proceed, Mr. Counsel.

Mr. TAVENNER. After accepting the position with the United Nations,
were you sent on a project to China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. Before your selection for that project, were you
interviewed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Not to my knowledge.

Mr. TAVENNER. When was it you were interviewed by the Federal Bureau
of Investigation at which time you refused to advise them as to your
previous Communist Party membership?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I think you gave me the date of that the other
day. I had forgotten it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Don’t you remember it?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No; I don’t. But you said it was in 1946, and I think it
probably was.

Mr. TAVENNER. So before you were selected for the position in the
United Nations and, particularly for this project in China, you had
refused to give information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation as
to whether or not you had been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, that is true, some nearly 2 years before. By the
time I had applied for the position in the United Nations I didn’t
consider myself to be whatever it was I had been before.

Mr. TAVENNER. And no governmental agency, after the FBI came to see
you, ever made any inquiry until the present time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, that is not so.

Last September I was called by a Treasury representative, and he told
me he wanted to ask me some questions. So I met him at my home and he
started to ask me about the sort of work I did and whether I ever did
much traveling. And in the course of that discussion I told him that I
had been in Washington, D. C. I told him quite frankly what I had been
doing.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you tell him you had been a member of the Communist
Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. He didn’t ask me.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was that the first time you had been questioned along
this line?

Mr. STENHOUSE, Yes. But he did ask me a question did I know a certain
individual in Washington, D. C. And the name of the man was----

Mr. TAVENNER. I would suggest that you not mention the name in public.
The committee, I think, would want to know privately.

Let me ask you this:

In seeking that information from you, did it have any connection with
the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t know what his intentions were at that time.

Mr. TAVENNER. I think, Mr. Chairman, under those circumstances, we
should not ask him to state the matter in public when we have no idea
what it is he is talking about.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. You asked me if I had ever been questioned.

Mr. TAVENNER. I mean questioned about communism in a Federal agency and
regarding the matters under discussion here.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I beg your pardon. I thought you meant had I ever been
questioned by an agency of the Government in the interim.

Mr. TAVENNER. Of course, we are not interested in whether you have been
interrogated by someone in a Government department on matters not at
all related to the functions of this committee. I understand you to say
you have not been.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. The reason I thought you might be interested in it was
that he did ask me a question which related to the Institute of Pacific
Relations. And since it related to that, I thought that the committee
should know about it.

He asked me if I had ever known (name deleted).

And first I couldn’t remember the name. But then he said, “Well, didn’t
you ever go to a luncheon in Washington, D. C., sponsored by the
Institute of Pacific Relations?”

And then I remembered that I had, along with several hundred or so
other people, gone to such a luncheon.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, this being a matter about which we have no
knowledge at all, I believe we are getting into a field that should not
be explored in public without some investigation on our own part.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Tavenner, will you step up here, please?

(Mr. Tavenner confers with the chairman.)

Mr. STENHOUSE. May I make one concluding remark as to that last
testimony?

Mr. MOULDER. At this time the name you mentioned will be stricken
from the record until further investigation can be made of your last
testimony.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, this individual, I may say, addressed a large
group of people in what was substantially an open meeting, and reported
on----

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, in light of your ruling, I suggest we
not go into that matter at all until the committee staff has had an
opportunity to investigate the witness’ last testimony.

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Mr. Chairman, may I make one concluding statement in
regard to my last remarks?

When the man who was questioning me heard my report he then asked me
why I was changing jobs. And I said I had no intention to change a job.
And he said, “Did you apply for a job with the Treasury Department?”

And I said, “No.”

And he said, “Well, do you know another John Stenhouse?”

And I told him I did.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, the purpose of the
project on which you were sent to China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think I have already stated that. Do you want me to
repeat it, sir?

Mr. TAVENNER. Yes.

Mr. STENHOUSE. It was to study and report on the rehabilitation of
trade in the Far East.

Mr. TAVENNER. And that necessitated your travel in what part of China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. The headquarters were in Shanghai.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you spend all of your time in Shanghai?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No. I was in Nanking--well, while I was with that
particular commission I spent all of my time in Shanghai.

Mr. TAVENNER. When was it that you went to Nanking?

Mr. STENHOUSE. After 3 months with the Economic Commission I then
was with the Food and Agriculture Administration, and the Food and
Agriculture Administration had an office both in Shanghai and in
Nanking. And it was my duty, as administrative assistant, to supervise
both offices.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you state the dates you were stationed in Shanghai,
and the dates you were in Nanking?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I can’t do it. I was back and forth.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you state the dates which divided your time between
the two places?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think maybe there is a mistake in my previous
testimony as to dates.

Could the recorder----

Mr. TAVENNER. Rather than to take the time to look that up, if you give
us what you consider to be the correct dates now, we will understand
if that is different from what you stated before that you are thereby
correcting the date.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I think I went to Shanghai in April--April, May, June,
with the Commission. And then June, July, August, or something like
that, with Food and Agriculture.

Mr. TAVENNER. Of what year?

Mr. STENHOUSE. 1948.

Mr. VELDE. Were you a member of the Communist Party at that time, Mr.
Stenhouse?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you define your duties in the various assignments
you held while in China?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, on the Commission it was research and analysis
and reporting, and I wrote a report on the problems of reestablishing
interregional trade in the Far East. And it was published by the United
Nations--not under my name, but incorporated in a much larger volume.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you identify the volume and the article for the use
of the committee?

Mr. STENHOUSE. It must have been published. I suppose it was published
in 1949 probably.

Mr. TAVENNER. Under what caption?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I don’t remember that. It was published by the Economic
Commission for Asia and the Far East as a subsidiary agency of the
United Nations. But my material wasn’t any single article. It was
incorporated with a lot of other material by a lot of other people.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, your article was used as source material
in the preparation of a report by the United Nations. Is that what you
mean?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. During your assignment in China were you required to
confer with known members of the Communist Party?

Mr. STENHOUSE. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. Or Communists?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, I want to be frank here, but, first of all, I
would like you to tell me in the context of Chinese people what the
definition of a Communist is.

Mr. TAVENNER. Living in China as long as you did, you probably should
understand that.

Mr. STENHOUSE. That is very difficult. The longer you live in China the
harder it is to do it.

Mr. VELDE. Were you conferring with the economic leaders in China when
you were on this assignment with the United Nations?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes.

Mr. VELDE. Was China under Communist domination at that time?

Mr. STENHOUSE. It certainly wasn’t.

Mr. VELDE. When was this?

Mr. STENHOUSE. 1948.

Mr. VELDE. At that time then you didn’t actually know whether you were
dealing with Chiang Kai-shek forces or the Red forces?

Mr. STENHOUSE. At that time, Mr. Congressman, Shanghai was still under
the Nationalists, and we dealt with officials of the Nationalist
Government.

Mr. VELDE. Then you certainly wouldn’t expect them to be Communists.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I wouldn’t expect it, but there were many, I
suppose--from what I know now--there were Communists in Shanghai at
that time.

Mr. VELDE. As leaders in the Nationalist Government?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Well, the reason why I asked for the definition was we
are always running into this problem of what is a Communist.

Mr. VELDE. There was nothing wrong in you conferring with Communists at
that time; understand that.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I want to answer the question.

Mr. VELDE. Or with Nationalists either. That was part of your duties.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I asked for the definition because one of the men who
was a consultant--and I didn’t appoint him--to the group that I was
working with was the chief of the Foreign Exchange Department of the
Bank of China.

Mr. VELDE. Do you recall his name?

Mr. STENHOUSE. Yes. Chi Chio Ting.

Mr. VELDE. You certainly do have a good recollection as to some
of these people, and you fail to recollect other people, chiefly
Communists, with whom you were associated.

Mr. STENHOUSE. China is my field. I remember him because he was related
to an area that I have since had contact with. And I remember him, too,
because shortly after--I think it was shortly after I left Shanghai or
while I was still there--he went over to the Peking Government. And,
as far as I know, that is the only contact that I had in Shanghai with
anything that you could call a Communist. And I don’t know that he was.

Mr. VELDE. Certainly I am sure, as Mr. Tavenner has very well stated,
that you, being acquainted in China, would certainly have a lot better
knowledge of communism in China than probably any of us here would. I
would like to ask if you recognized any of those associated with you
on the United Nations Commission in China as being what you consider
Communists?

Mr. STENHOUSE. The answer to that question is “No.”

This particular individual was acting only in the capacity of a
consultant. And I don’t think he was actually a member of the United
Nations. We were consulting with him and people like him because we
were concerned with finance and foreign exchange and so on.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, may I suggest that if the committee desires
to go into the Chinese phase of that matter carefully that it be done
at some other time. I believe, with the witnesses we have here, we
would not be able to complete the work that is outlined if we attempt
to go into that matter now. Besides, I think it is a matter we should
discuss with the witness, at least preliminarily, before attempting to
have a public hearing on it.

Mr. STENHOUSE. I would be very happy to do that.

Mr. VELDE. Let me say this, Mr. Chairman: I am disappointed at the
witness’ lack of memory concerning his early Communist associations
and his inability to identify the members of the group with which
he associated. However, I do feel that the information the witness
possesses would be valuable to this committee, and he certainly should
be given an opportunity to refresh his memory on any of these aspects
as much as possible.

I would suggest our staff immediately prepare, or start an
investigation into the matters related here today so we might hold a
future hearing to secure more valuable information than we have today.
And in that connection I would suggest that the subpena to this witness
be continued until some future date.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Stenhouse, the subpena which was served upon you will
remain in full force and effect until you are otherwise notified, or
notified to appear here as a witness before this committee in further
open session.

Mr. STENHOUSE. Mr. Chairman, may I make a short statement?

Mr. MOULDER. You will not be entitled to make a statement. You mean you
want to ask a question?

Mr. STENHOUSE. I just wanted to refer once more to this matter of
remembering the names. There were not more than 5 of these meetings.
They occurred in a context where I was discussing the same sort of
subjects in many different groups with many different individuals with
many different points of view. As I said before, I cannot remember the
names of people with whom I was in daily contact at that time.

I have moved out of that part of the country. I have very few
associations with it. It is entirely impossible for me to drag names
out of the air.

If the committee or its staff will be able to submit names to me I will
do my best to say whether or not I can remember those people.

Mr. MOULDER. That is the purpose of continuing in force and effect your
subpena. And you are now temporarily excused as a witness.

(Whereupon the witness was temporarily excused.)

Mr. MOULDER. Call the next witness, Mr. Tavenner.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett.

Mr. MOULDER. The name of the witness?

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett.


TESTIMONY OF EUGENE VICTOR DENNETT, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, KENNETH
A. MacDONALD--Resumed

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, I would like you to resume at this point the
identification of individuals who were prominent in Communist Party
activities in this area during the period that you were a member of the
CIO council.

Mr. DENNETT. Mr. Chairman, there is one fellow that came to my mind
after I left the stand here in connection with the Boeing plant, a
fellow by the name of Sam Telford, who was very well known to me at
that time.

Telford was very active in the organization of young people. His
wife, Kate, was one of the principal workers in the office of the
International Woodworkers of America. I happen to recall that because
Kate and I had one thing in common--we had both attended church when
we were young and had learned a number of hymns. And whenever social
affairs occurred she and I would be singing hymns. And it seemed to
grate on the nerves of the comrades. They wanted to know if we didn’t
know some revolutionary songs, and we got a big kick out of irritating
them with that.

I have quit singing, however. My voice doesn’t suit for that.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you recall whether the first name was Kate or Kay?

Mr. DENNETT. I knew her by the name of Kate, K-a-t-e.

Now the other day Mr. Wheeler asked me to think of the names of persons
whom I knew, and I wrote down those which came to my mind in an offhand
sort of way. Now in speaking of these names I want to again reiterate
my personal moral objection to being called upon to bring to public
notice the names of people whom I did know in the Communist Party
for the reason that I think it is much better for them to speak for
themselves.

Mr. TAVENNER. Just a moment. If you can devise some plan for Communists
speaking for themselves without the committee ascertaining their names
we would be glad to have the suggestion.

Mr. DENNETT. Maybe when I get through they might want to.

Mr. TAVENNER. I might say the committee has to take the responsibility
for asking you these questions, and realizes that it is not being
generously given.

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde left the hearing room.)

Mr. DENNETT. Well, I make the point of my objection for the reason that
among nearly all of my friends are people who believe in bending over
backwards the other way to protect the good name of any person. And I
fear the consequences to the individuals.

I mean I just hate to be a party to doing anything which will in
anywise injure any of them. I trust that the way in which this is done
it will not injure them. However, I know that they are going to suffer
some embarrassment as a consequence of it. However, the names that I am
going to submit to you are persons who were known to me to be members
of the Communist Party, and I am sure they knew what they were doing
when they were members of the Communist Party.

These names are somewhat scattered. In order to expedite the business,
I think I should go down through those that I have not previously
mentioned to you, and make their identification so that we can get on
to other matters which I know counsel wishes to cover.

Mr. TAVENNER. Please proceed.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. Long ago, I knew a man by the name of Revels Cayton, who
was the head of the International Labor Defense.

C-a-y-t-o-n is the last name, Revels--R-e-v-e-l-s, the first name.

Later, I knew Mr. Cayton as an official in the Marine Cooks and
Stewards of the Pacific union.[8]

Way back in the unemployed days I knew a man by the name of Iver Moe,
I-v-e-r M-o-e.

Iver Moe’s importance and significance is that he led an unemployed
demonstration in Anacortes to a privately owned store which had
foodstuffs in its stock, and the populace of Anacortes helped
themselves. Mr. Moe was one of the leaders of that group, and was
prosecuted for it. He was a member of the Communist Party at the
time he did this. He thought he was doing the right thing. And, as a
consequence, he was put on trial and was convicted and sentenced, and I
know that he was turned against the Communist Party as a consequence of
that experience.

(At this point Representative Harold H. Velde returned to the hearing
room.)

Mr. DENNETT. Another person known to me in the unemployed days was a
lady by the name of Mrs. Harter, H-a-r-t-e-r. Her significance to me is
that she later became the wife of Alex Noral, before he left here. He
took her with him as his wife to California.

She was a very active person in the unemployed movement, in the
unemployed councils.

Later on, I knew Mr. Terry Pettus, who was the editor of the New World,
and now the northwest edition of the People’s World.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you spell the name, please.

Mr. DENNETT. P-e-t-t-u-s, Pettus.

Mr. MOULDER. Are all the names you are referring to individuals who
once were, or who now are, members of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. They were known to me at the time I was in the Communist
Party as members of the Communist Party, and I had Communist business
with them.

Another person’s name was Jim Cour, C-o-u-r or C-o-u-e-r. I am not too
sure of that spelling.

But Jim Cour was in an editorial capacity on the old Voice of Action,
which was the predecessor of the present paper, the northwest
edition of the People’s World. In between the name changed many
times. At one time they had the New World, and, another time, it had
several different names. But it was the same organization, the same
subscribers, the same leadership. The change of name was intended to
more adequately satisfy the attitude of the public toward political
questions at that particular moment.

There was another one by the name of Bill Corr, but his was spelled
differently, and it was C-o-r-r. Bill Corr was in the business
management end of the paper, the Voice of Action.

Later I knew a person by the name of Huber, L. R. It seems to me
that his first name was Louis, L-o-u-i-s. He served as editor of the
Lumberworkers’ paper for a long period of time, that is, the paper
issued by the International Woodworkers of America, at the time that
Harold Pritchett was the president of the organization.

Another person whom I knew was Charles Daggett. Charles Daggett I knew
in several different capacities. At one time he was the city editor of
the Seattle Star, a paper which went out of business in Seattle a great
number of years ago.

Mr. Daggett later was known to me as an official in the inlandboatmen’s
union,[9] having become elected business agent in the San Francisco
branch of the organization, and got into financial difficulties there;
later went to Los Angeles. That is the last I heard of him.

Mr. TAVENNER. We have seen him since then, and he has testified before
this committee and admitted his Communist Party membership.

Did you know him in this area in any activity within the newspaper
guild?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, I knew him in the newspaper guild, but I was not
certain of his Communist Party activity at the time that I knew him
then. I knew him as a Communist just as he left here.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was he active in that field in Los Angeles?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, he was. He was very active as a newspaperman. He had
a great deal to do with three other newspaper people whom I became
closely acquainted with because of the official position that they held
in the organization.

The first was a person by the name of Ellen McGrath. I have heard since
that she is deceased. But Ellen McGrath was a sort of business agent
for the newspaper guild when it was first organized here, and I knew
her both in the official capacity as a representative of the newspaper
guild and as a Communist actively operating in that field.

I knew her successor in that field, a man by the name of Claude Smith.
Claude Smith was also known to me at that time as a Communist.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, he is the one who was expelled from the Party at the
same time that I was subsequently.

I knew another person by the name of Robert Camozzi, C-a-m-o-z-z-i.
Robert Camozzi was the president of the Seattle CIO council at the time
I was its secretary, and we had official business representing the
council, and also we had official business as Communists.

In the building service union,[10] in addition to Mr. Jess Fletcher,
whom I knew quite well because of his work on the district bureau of
the Communist Party, I also knew a man by the name of Merwin Cole,
C-o-l-e. Merwin Cole was one of the business agents of that union, and
was quite well known to me because I had tried very hard to recruit
him during some of the peace demonstrations that the youth from the
university had organized downtown some time in the summer of 1936, I
believe. Or perhaps it was 1935. It may have been a year one way or the
other.

I also knew one of his associates, Mr. Ward Coley, who was a business
agent in that union, C-o-l-e-y.

I knew another man by the name of Daggett. His name is Herbert Daggett.
He is a brother of Charles Daggett. Herbert Daggett was known to me as
a Communist in the National Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association.
Herbert Daggett was some official there. I do not recall exactly what
it was at that time. I do not know as to his political position as of
the present time either. I do understand that he is now the president
of the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association with headquarters
in Washington, D. C. I repeat that I do not know what his political
attitude is now.

He had an associate in the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association by
the name of Ted Rasmussen. Rasmussen, I am not sure of the spelling.
There are several different ways of spelling that name, and I am not
positive of it. You will have to take the best guess you can make. But
Ted was a member of the marine engineers organization, and I knew him
as a Communist. I am not sure whether I am the person who recruited
him, but I think I am because at the time I first started to work
in the Inlandboatmen’s Union Ted Rasmussen was the organizer of a
dissident group of engineers who wanted to separate themselves from
the existing organization. And I worked very hard to persuade him not
to split the organization, and finally did prevail upon him, with
the assistance of Harry Jackson, who was the Communist leader in the
trade-union field here at that time, and either Mr. Jackson or myself
recruited Mr. Rasmussen.

In the lumber organization I recall the name of Ted Dokter,
D-o-k-t-e-r. Ted Dokter was a very able man in the lumber industry, and
we thought he was very efficient, and we liked his work at the time I
knew him. Later, after I ceased to know him personally and directly, I
heard criticism of him to the effect that he did not follow the party
line. So I don’t know what has happened to him.

Of course, I knew Dick and Laura Law. Both are now deceased.

I have previously mentioned Helen Sobeleski and Gladys Field who were
in the woodworkers’ office.[11]

One of my successors in the Seattle CIO Council was a man by the name
of Arthur Harding. He was known to me. I understand he is deceased.
I have not known of him for several years. But he was a loyal party
member and so was his wife, a Jean Harding, J-e-a-n.

I have previously mentioned Ernie Fox, who was in the Sailors Union of
the Pacific.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let me suggest that we not lose time by repeating any of
those that you have already named.

Mr. DENNETT. I knew his wife very well. She went by the name of Elsie
Gilland, G-i-l-l-a-n-d. One day a very peculiar thing occurred to
me. Mr. Harry Jackson came to me with a request. He said that he had
received an application card from a Mr. Roy Atkinson, and asked me
whether I felt Mr. Atkinson could possibly really mean to join the
Communist Party.

I expressed my belief that I didn’t think he could because I had never
seen anything on his behavior which would indicate any sympathy toward
the Communist Party. He said, “Well, we have received an application
from him. We have received dues. Instead of doing anything about it we
will not issue a card to him, and we will not let him be assigned to
any branch. We are suspicious of that application. So we will not honor
it.” Mr. Atkinson was an active official in the CIO, and I thought that
it was quite a ridiculous thing myself.

Mr. TAVENNER. In other words, you thought that he desired to join the
Communist Party in order to obtain information of its activities.

Mr. DENNETT. That was my opinion.

Mr. TAVENNER. Rather than to become genuinely a member of the Communist
Party.

Mr. DENNETT. Yes.

Two persons who came to this area from the national office were known
very well to me, Mr. Andrew Remes--and I know that that is not his
proper name--but I don’t know what his proper name was. That was a
party name. And it was always spelled R-e-m-e-s, as far as I remember.

One of his associates, who also came from the East, was Mr. Lou
Sass--S-a-s-s.

The committee will probably remember testimony from Mr. Leonard Wildman
to the effect that he knew me in the Communist Party, which is correct.
I did know him in the Communist Party.

I also knew his wife, Muriel. I also knew Elizabeth Boggs, who gave
testimony to the effect that she knew me in the Communist Party.

I knew Mr. Harold Johnston, who was on this stand here this morning.
Mr. Johnston was known to me as an active Communist and a close
associate of Mr. Morris Rappaport.

Mr. VELDE. Was he a Communist at the time you left the Communist Party,
to your best knowledge?

Mr. DENNETT. I had no direct knowledge as to what Mr. Johnston’s
position was after I went in the service. I did not know him after
1942-43. But I understand he was quite amused over my remark that Mr.
Rappaport made short work of me. He was in a position to know.

I knew Mr. Glenn Kinney--K-i-n-n-e-y. I knew him over a period of a
great many years. As a matter of fact, he was one of the first persons
with whom I attempted to build a shop unit out in the steel mill. I
wasn’t employed there at the time. I believe he was. I was an official
working here in town, doing full-time work for the party. Later on Mr.
Kinney became a machinist, or I think he was a machinist actually at
that time, but he became a machinist and rose to the heights in the
machinists’ union,[12] at least to the extent of being a business agent
there several times.

In the old days there was an old man known to me by the name of F. S.
U. Smith. And the reason we called him F. S. U. Smith was because he
made one speech wherever he went, and that was to ask for people to be
Friends of the Soviet Union, which was the name of an organization that
he was very ardently supporting. He was a very loyal man to the party
and did the best he knew how and the best he could.

These that I am scratching off are names that I have previously
mentioned.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Dennett, I wish to apologize and thank you for your
patience in being called and recalled, but we previously set the recess
at 3:30. Do you mind at this time if we have a 5-minute recess and
resume the hearings after it?

Mr. DENNETT. I would like to finish the names before we recess so we
can take up the other business.

Mr. MOULDER. All right; let’s proceed if you wish to do so.

Mr. DENNETT. A very old friend of mine with whom I went to school--I
have no knowledge as to what has become of him now--but at the time I
knew him in the Communist Party he was the section organizer in King
County. His name is Al Bristol. Al was a very fine friend of mine, a
very patient fellow. I knew his wife Frances quite well.

Another official that held the position of section organizer here was
Clayton Van Lydegraf--V-a-n L-y-d-e-g-r-a-f. Clayton Van Lydegraf was
one of the officials who took part in my expulsion from the party,
signing the expulsion notice.

Another person whom I knew as a Communist was Mr. Earl
Payne--P-a-y-n-e. The last I heard of him he had been assigned section
organizer in the Portland, Oreg., area. When I knew him he had just
returned from serving in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade in Spain.

Mr. Philip Frankfeld was sent here by the Central Committee to take
over when Mr. Morris Rappaport was removed, or when it was known----

Mr. VELDE. When was Mr. Rappaport removed?

Mr. DENNETT. It was about the time of the outbreak of the war, shortly
after the party had to make modifications in its practices because of
the passage of the Voorhis Act. And Mr. Rappaport had been born in old
Russia at the time of the Czar and was one of those continuing problems
to the Immigration Department because no country would accept him as
a deportee. And the Immigration Department could not dispose of him
except to hold him in their jail. He was one of their problems. And the
party, in preparation for its super-patriotic efforts during the Second
World War changed its constitution to provide that only citizens of the
United States, or persons who were eligible to become citizens of the
United States could be members of the Communist Party. When that was
adopted, Mr. Rappaport could not qualify, and was removed from office
in the Communist Party.

Mr. VELDE. In 1941 or 1942?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, it was about in that period. I can’t be too certain
of it because I was beginning to fall into some disrepute myself, and
was being left out of many activities and much information.

Another person well known to me in this period was Mr. John
D-a-s-c-h-b-a-c-h. Daschbach was known to me as a comparatively young
man who worked--I’ll be blessed if I know where he worked, but I know
he was always active in the Communist Party activities.

A longshoreman known to me that I failed to mention this morning was a
rather heavy-set fellow who was known to me in a rather incidental sort
of way. I know he was in the Communist Party, but I know little of any
activity that he took part in, a man by the name of Wayne Mosio. I am
not sure of the spelling. I think it is M-o-s-i-o. It may be z, but I
am not certain.

Another longshoreman who was well known to me as a member of the
Communist Party is a person who broke with the Communist Party and
later changed his occupation from longshoreman to that of lawyer. He
went to school while he was longshoring and qualified to be admitted to
the bar.

I know that he was bitterly anti-Communist long before he became an
attorney. I don’t know whether you wish his name mentioned or not, but
he was known to me and he certainly was known to the longshoremen. His
name was Philip Poth, P-o-t-h.

A national leader of the party whom I failed to mention before was Mr.
John Williamson, one of the Smith Act defendants who suffered penalty
of conviction and incarceration. He served as the trade-union section
or secretary, replacing Mr. Roy Hudson.

A person who was well known to me in my work of attempting to organize
steel workers into the Communist Party was a section organizer, a man
by the name of Charles Legg, L-e-g-g.

Another person known to me as a member of the Communist Party who later
turned up as an informer for the Government and served as a witness for
the FBI was known to me under the name of Doc Dafoe. He was employed
at that time in the steel mill at Northwest Rolling Mills.

Another person well known to me in the Communist Party many years ago
who was rather mild in his Communist Party efforts when I knew him and
who later turned against the Communist Party was Dan Adair, A-d-a-i-r.
He was in Olympia, his home was Olympia.

I also knew his father whose name was Robin Adair.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you mean by that you are identifying his father as a
member of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes; both of them were members of the Communist Party
at that time. Mr. Dan Adair, the last I heard of him, was bitterly
anti-Communist and has left the State.

Mr. TAVENNER. I would like to remind you, wherever it is known to you
that a person being identified has left the Communist Party, that it is
only the fair thing to say so.

Mr. DENNETT. True.

I believe, sir, that covers all the names that I have not covered
before.

Mr. MOULDER. We will stand in recess for 5 minutes.

(Whereupon, a short recess was taken.)

Mr. MOULDER. The committee will please come to order.

Proceed with the witness, please, Mr. Tavenner.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, at the time you were a member of the CIO
Council what union was it that you were representing?

Mr. DENNETT. I was from the Inlandboatmen’s Union at that time.

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe you have given us the names of those in that
union who were known to you to be members of the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. The only ones that I know----

Mr. TAVENNER. I don’t want you to repeat them. I want to make certain.

Mr. DENNETT. The only ones I knew in the Inlandboatmen’s Union--two are
deceased.

Mr. TAVENNER. We are not interested in that.

Mr. DENNETT. I think that is of no value.

There was a person known to me in the Inlandboatmen’s Union by the
name of Gene Robel, who was a member of the Communist Party in the
Inlandboatmen’s Union. I think that he was one of the witnesses
subpenaed before this hearing.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did he testify several days ago?

Mr. DENNETT. I believe so.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you at a later time become a member of the Steel
Workers’ Union?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. TAVENNER. What date did you become a member?

Mr. DENNETT. Some time in 1942, I think it was. Yes, it was in 1942.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, if any members of
that union were known to you to be members of the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. I have this recollection about that:

Remember now all of that transpired more than 7 years ago. I have been
expelled from the party for the past 7 years, going on 8.

My recollection is positive about 2 persons. There are others about
whom I have a very indistinct recollection, and I would be afraid to be
positive about. But the two that I can be positive about--one’s name
was Andrew Marshall. He was referred to in Barbara Hartle’s testimony
as Andy. She did not finish the name. He was well known to me.

Another person was Alex Harding. H-a-r-d-i-n-g.

I know that there were around 6 or 7 active members of the Communist
Party in the steelworkers at that time, but I am so uncertain about the
other names that I would hesitate to mention them for fear I might be
wrong and might speak of the wrong person.

Mr. TAVENNER. There are other matters that I wanted to obtain
information about, but there is apparently not time to do it.

I wanted particularly to inquire into examples of discipline exercised
by the Communist Party over its members. We shall not have time to
cover that even in a general way, but I know from what you have said
during the course of your testimony that on a number of occasions the
Communist Party disciplined you. You have told us of two occasions
so far. I wish you would tell the committee of other examples of
discipline.

Mr. DENNETT. Well, the most important one was my expulsion and that of
my former wife.

This occurred after my return from the service. You will recall that
I have previously indicated that by the time I was inducted into
service I was beginning to fall into some disrepute in the party, and
the reason for that was that I had been actively engaged in trying to
develop a struggle for equal rights for Negroes.

I was very much impressed by cases of police brutality against Negroes
in the city of Seattle way back in 1940 and 1941. And some special
cases had been brought to my personal attention, and I had developed a
rather broad struggle on behalf of those people through my connections
with the Washington Commonwealth Federation.

Of course, I was trying to build a considerable corps of Negro people
in the Communist Party.

Without going into the detail of that, I simply want to say that my
activities at first met with the approval of the Communist Party, but,
with the outbreak of the war and the changed policy of the Communist
Party, my activities met with the sharp disapproval of the party.

In other words, the party adopted the policy during the war of
subordinating all other things in supporting the war. They had a slogan
of “Subordinate the sectional or local interests to the national
interest.” This was quite a sharp change in policy.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you construe that as a sharp interest in the policy of
the United States or of some other country?

Mr. DENNETT. It was not with respect to the policy of the United
States. It was intended to guarantee that the full strength of the
United States would be brought to bear on the side of the Soviet Union
in the war which was then raging with Nazi Germany; and to guarantee
that it would be complete, the Communist Party ordered that the fight
for equal rights for Negroes should be subordinated and that Negroes
would have to wait for their equal rights, they would have to cease
being troublemakers over this question. And they used that term. They
used that term against me, that I was simply a troublemaker organizing
diversionary interests.

Well, I felt that if the war that was being fought was worth anything
it certainly was worth applying the principle of equal rights
throughout the length and breadth of this Nation of the United States,
especially when I knew of the heavy burden which the Negroes were
carrying in parts of this country. And I knew that there were some
attitudes around here which were extremely offensive to the Negro
people. They certainly do object to segregation, and they certainly
have a right to object to it.

It is my feeling, and always has been, that it is the duty of the white
people to see to it that they are not treated as inferiors.

So I was pressing that point, and I defied the leadership of the
district in the party to show me anything anywhere which justified
their change of attitude.

For my militant determination on it I was falling into bad graces so
rapidly that they removed me from the district bureau.

Before I went into the service I also quarreled with them over some
of the literature published under the name of Earl Browder, under
the title of “Victory and After,” in which I challenged some of the
contentions of Browder that it was possible to get along with some of
the big capitalists of the United States in the interest of the war
effort and forget the interest of the workers who were employed by
those capitalists, because in too many instances the capitalists were
making enormous profits in the war but the workers were not increasing
their wages.

This was an issue which was of extreme importance to me. I was working
in a steel mill and I felt that the steelworkers’ wages at that time
were altogether too inadequate. I think that history since has borne
out the justification of my attitude in it, and I think the Communist
Party policy which flip-flopped all over the place at that time has
proven how unstable it was, and has proven that it was not genuinely
trying to improve the condition of the workers.

Mr. VELDE. When were you removed from the district bureau of the
Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Some time in 1941 or 1942, I believe it was. Then, of
course, I went into the service.

Upon return from the service I tried to become as active as possible in
the party work, tried to restore organization of the party apparatus.
I was first advised by Mr. Andrew Remes when he came--he had just
returned from the service ahead of me. He advised me that when he was
in the service, evidently, Mr. Huff, who had been left in charge of the
district, had permitted the entire district to collapse, because when
he came back from the service--I am speaking of Mr. Remes--he told me
there was not a single functioning branch of the Communist Party in
the entire district, that it took him several weeks to get together
the membership of any one branch. And he could only do it by legwork,
walking from house to house, to the old addresses of the people he knew
before he went into the service. And he was dumfounded to find that
condition existing.

When he had gone in the service the party numbered in the neighborhood
of 5,000 in this district.

In other words, it was baffling to us as to why that thing had happened.

Later on I came to the conclusion that Mr. Huff was either representing
the Federal Bureau of Investigation or somebody else who was as
opposed to the party as anybody could be because I couldn’t account for
any explanation for that development.

I soon found that I was running into a stone wall. Everything I
proposed by way of reorganization or by way of organizational
activities--I, for instance, felt that a fundamental policy of the
party was to concentrate in the mass production industries, to
concentrate in basic industries. I had always been taught that that was
one of the party’s chief concerns.

But, lo and behold, when I approached the district leaders asking
for assistance to concentrate on making a strong party in the
steelworkers, they said, “Oh, we’re not interested in them. We have
got other problems that are more important to us than just a bunch
of steelworkers.” Which was an attitude expressing to me a certain
contempt for the workers, which didn’t go very well because I have the
greatest respect for men who have the audacity to try to work for a
living. And I didn’t like this business of people who were sitting up
on top sneering, speaking about the membership in such a cursory way.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the question of Communist Party activity in veterans’
organizations come up at that time?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes; it did.

Mr. TAVENNER. Just touch on it very briefly, please, because we have
very little time.

Mr. DENNETT. I was called to a fraction meeting of returned veterans
to try to work out some kind of veterans’ policy, and some of these
veterans reported boastfully that they had just walked into some
veterans’ posts and had captured the leadership--no trouble at all.

I chastised them for being so naive as to think that the Communists
could capture a veterans’ organization when the purpose of the
veterans’ organization was to oppose the Communist Party. And I told
them they were foolish to undertake such a task and that they shouldn’t
embark upon that policy. They told me I was nuts and that they knew
what they were doing because they had the success of having captured a
post.

Mr. TAVENNER. Time, however, proved that you were correct, did it not?

Mr. DENNETT. I think it did.

Mr. TAVENNER. You said both you and your wife were disciplined by the
Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

When I returned from the service it didn’t take very long before rumor
was circulated to the effect that I was alleged to be an FBI agent.

Mr. MOULDER. Was your wife a member of the Communist Party, too?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. I would like to say at this point that it is not the
practice of this committee, and it is not my practice to ask a witness
any questions relating to the activities of his wife. There have
been several occasions when witnesses felt that, in order to give
the complete story to the committee, it was necessary to speak of
their wife’s activities. But when they did, they did it on their own
volition. Therefore, I am not asking you any questions with regard to
your wife. If you mention her it is purely on your own volition.

Mr. DENNETT. To explain this disciplinary action I have to advise that
my former wife and I were expelled from the party on the same document
with the same explanation, the same reasons. The documentary evidence
will bring her into this part of it.

And the account which I wish to make about the discipline against her
is of far more importance than the discipline against me, although I am
convinced that the purpose of the discipline was to get me out of their
hair.

It seems as though some people in the district leadership did not like
to be reminded of what the party policy used to be, and they objected
to my reminding them of the zigzags which they had followed in the
intervening period.

I was trying to find some way of bringing them to what I considered to
be the official party position, and they seemed to have an entirely
different attitude than I.

It resulted finally in a series of meetings with the district
disciplinary body known to me originally as a control commission. The
last I heard it was called a review commission. But, in effect, it
amounts to a kangaroo court because, in my case, they started out with
this rumor that I was an FBI agent, asked me to explain it, and all I
could do was explain that my former wife had done something which they
had authorized. And Mr. Huff admitted that he authorized it.

It is true that it ultimately led her to make certain reports which did
contribute to the war effort by way of eliminating bottlenecks which
she found in various parts of the war production industry. But this had
been approved by Mr. Huff.

And then when I was on the pan, Mr. Huff first admitted that he had
authorized her to engage in this activity, then later denied that
he had done so, and used the allegation that I was an FBI agent
as the excuse to cause my expulsion from the party, mainly and,
in my judgment, solely because I was in total disagreement with
them on policies relating to civil rights, policies relating to
Veterans’ Administration and veterans’ work, and policies relating to
organization in basic industry.

And the civil rights question was extremely important to me because
in the organization of civil rights struggles it was my conception
that if you are going to fight for civil rights you have to fight for
civil rights for everyone. And when we attempted to organize a civil
rights congress at the outset with that purpose in mind, and that as
our declared effort, we were advised that the Communist Party could not
afford to waste its time fighting for civil rights for everybody, that
they were only interested in fighting for civil rights for members of
the Communist Party.

Mr. TAVENNER. Is that one of the matters on which you disagreed with
the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. It certainly was. Mr. Andrew Remes advised me personally
that that was the situation, the party was in so much difficulty that
it had to restrict its efforts to the defense of the Communist Party
and that the Civil Rights Congress was created solely for that purpose.

I ceased to have any interest in it whatsoever, and, as a consequence,
one thing led to another, and they finally expelled us with a notice on
the early week of October 1947.

Mr. VELDE. You were removed from the party then. Membership was taken
away from you for about the same reasons that you were removed from the
bureau, from the district bureau?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. VELDE. That was about 6 years before?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. VELDE. Do you mean they spent all that time trying to change your
mind about civil rights?

Mr. DENNETT. Well, there was an intervening period in which I was away,
you know. I was in the service.

Mr. VELDE. That is right.

Mr. DENNETT. There were several breaks there.

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe you were in the service from 1943 practically
through the year 1945.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. TAVENNER. I do not want you to go into great detail, but I believe
the record should be a little clearer on the character of work in which
your wife was actually engaged, which you say was authorized by the
head of the Communist Party.

Mr. DENNETT. A stranger approached her and asked her if she would
submit reports to him about any bottlenecks that she found in war
production. He advised her that he had been informed that she was a
very well-informed person, knew a lot of people, and would be capable
of doing this work. She didn’t know what to make of it. So she wrote to
me while I was in the service asking my opinion, and I told her to hold
off until I got back on furlough.

At that time I suggested to her that she take it up with the district
leadership of the party, which she did, and got this approval.

The nature of that work she found----

Mr. TAVENNER. That had nothing to do with reporting to any agency of
Communist Party activities as such?

Mr. DENNETT. No; it did not.

Mr. TAVENNER. But it was just a matter of reporting things which
interfered with the war effort in industry?

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Among the things that she found, some of the outstanding things, was
one occasion pertaining to the Tacoma shipyards. She learned by various
sources--friends that she knew in the labor movement--that the shipyard
had been in operation for a period of around 10 months or more and
still didn’t have a ship on the ways. She made a number of inquiries as
to how they could account for such a thing, and at one point she ran
across a name that rang a bell with her.

She started to do a little probing, and found out that this name was
the same as that of a person who had been removed from the navy yard
some time before, either 2 or 3 years before, maybe. It might have been
longer than that. But the person had been removed as a Fascist. He was
known to be a member of a Silver Shirt organization.

Lo and behold, this person turns up as the production supervisor or
superintendent in this particular shipyard.

Anyway, she submitted a report of all the information she had gathered
on the subject. Within a couple of weeks’ time this person was removed
from his position, and within a short time afterward ships were on the
ways in that shipyard and production started booming. We could only
draw a conclusion that her information had, certainly, some value.

Mr. TAVENNER. We will be very much interested to hear of other
occasions, but, because of the shortness of time, we will have to move
on.

The point is, that before undertaking that type of work your wife
conferred with the leadership of the Communist Party and obtained
approval.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true.

Mr. TAVENNER. Then take it up from there and tell us what occurred.

Mr. DENNETT. That was part of the story on which this allegation of FBI
agent thing arose.

When I was first confronted with the story I recounted this whole thing
in every detail to the leader of the section. The person was Mr. Jim
Bourne. Mr. Jim Bourne told me to sit tight, do nothing, say nothing
until I heard from the district.

I waited from March until June 1947, and still had no word from them.
About sometime in June I was invited to a meeting which was called by
the Communist Party for the purpose of preparing its defenses from
the anticipated attack which would come from the Canwell committee
investigation which was about to open.

I reluctantly went to the meeting because I felt I was under a cloud.
However, I did go. I am glad I did because they did discuss the whole
question of these investigating committees, and it gave me some insight
as to my rights under the fifth amendment of the Constitution of the
United States. It was thoroughly discussed in this meeting, and we
understood that that was the sole and only real protection that a
person had if he wanted to avoid testifying.

However, during the course of that meeting I spoke to a leader of the
party, asking what was happening to my case. He advised me to speak to
Mr. Huff. I spoke to Mr. Huff about it and Mr. Huff, as a result of it,
arranged a meeting of the control commission.

The control commission called me to a meeting within a week’s time.
We reviewed the whole situation, the whole case, and I told them
every single thing I knew about it. They asked me to submit a written
statement. I did exactly that. I detailed everything that I knew about
the situation in the statement.

I declined to sign the statement, however, because at that time I
feared that their practices and methods were a little bit too loose,
and I feared it might fall into the wrong hands and be used against me.

However, they accepted the statement, but they did not like what was in
it.

They called me to another meeting, and at the second meeting they
upbraided me and accused me of everything under the sun, and we finally
broke up in rather a violent battle over whether or not they were
trying to help the working class or not.

That occurred some time in August.

By October Mr. John Lawrie, the chairman of the control commission,
visited our home, demanded our books, our party books.

We reluctantly gave them to him, protesting that we understood that a
person had a right to be charged and tried, hear witnesses, and that
sort of thing.

He said, “Well, you will get a statement.”

About a week later we did receive a statement. The statement was an
expulsion notice from the Communist Party.

No charges had ever been actually preferred, no opportunity for trial
had been granted us, and we were blasphemed and accused of everything
under the sun which is looked upon as a crime by the members of the
Communist Party.

This statement was circulated to all the Communist Party sections,
and evidently it reached other hands, because shortly afterward some
security agencies of the Government called me up and asked me what was
going on. I told them I didn’t know, and I declined to talk with any
of them, and I have never talked to any of them except on one occasion
when Mr. John Boyd asked that I stop by the Immigration Bureau Office.

I did stop by there. He asked me a number of questions then, and I
refused to be of any assistance to him whatsoever at that time. That
was shortly after the expulsion.

Now, the most important part of this disciplinary action is what I have
to say at this time, because immediately after receiving this notice,
we received rumors to the effect that the Communist Party members in
the union of which my former wife was the president, which was the
United Office and Professional Workers of America, Local 35--I heard
the rumor that they were going to come into that meeting that night and
demand her removal from the organization.

Mr. TAVENNER. You mean that the union members were going to demand----

Mr. DENNETT. I heard the Communist Party members in that union were
going to make a demand in that union that my former wife be removed
from office and be removed as a member of that union because the party
had disciplined her.

The situation in that union was very peculiar. It was a union of about
65 members, and there were no more than a half-dozen persons in it who
were not members of the Communist Party.

That seems incredible, but the reason for it is that most of the
persons who were members of the union were working as secretaries in
various union offices, or were working for some individual employer
with whom there were no collective-bargaining contracts and there were
no regular functions of a union. It was simply a home where these
people could pay dues and use the union label wherever they wanted to
for their own convenience. As a matter of fact, that is the reason why
the Communist Party usually uses the union label on its circulars or
letters, because it has members in the Communist Party office who were
members of that union.

This particular expulsion drew the attention of the Communist Party to
us, and especially to my former wife. They knew that the steelworkers
union was bitterly anti-Communist. They didn’t dare to try to make any
approaches to the steelworkers union to have me thrown out, but they
did have absolute control, they thought, in the office workers union,
and they thought they would take their revenge on my former wife by
proceeding against her.

When I learned of this I went to the office of the party and asked for
the district leadership to give me an audience.

They treated me like scum under their feet when I went in their office
because I had just been expelled. However, I did speak to them and
advised them that I heard this rumor, that I urged them not to be as
foolhardy as that because to do so would attract public attention. And
if that was done it would do irreparable harm to that union and might
also bring down a great deal of criticism on the entire labor movement
for something for which the labor movement itself was not at fault but
was something for which the Communist Party was at fault.

I, therefore, asked them if they would be so considerate as to allow my
former wife to resign her position if it was inconvenient for them to
have her in that position.

She had no desire to remain in it any longer than necessary. She
thought she was rendering them a service and thought she was rendering
the union a service by holding that position.

But they said they would not take their advice from expelled members.

So they proceeded that night to introduce a mimeographed proposal
preferring charges against my former wife.

Now I have borrowed this from a person who has kept the file because he
was prevailed upon by my former wife and myself to act as her counsel
during the course of that proceeding, and he kept a complete file.

I have here the original of the charges that were preferred against
her, and the substance of it is simply this: That they were asking for
my former wife to be expelled from that union and from the office of
president in that union simply because she had been expelled from the
Communist Party on a kangaroo court proceeding. And the names of the
signers are here and in their own original handwriting. Some of them
have been called before this committee before.

Mr. VELDE. Is that for expulsion from the United Office and
Professional Workers Union or from the party?

Mr. DENNETT. No. This is the charges that were preferred in the
Office Workers Union by members of the Office Workers Union who were
also--they must have been members of the Communist Party. I didn’t
know of them of my own knowledge, but my former wife did, and it is in
their handwriting. Their names are there in their own handwriting. And
I think the committee would like to know this and have this as a matter
of record.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you read the names into the record.

Mr. VELDE. If you are sure that they are all members of the party.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel raised the same question, Mr. Tavenner,
that inasmuch as I cannot testify of my own knowledge about their
membership, that perhaps it is not proper for me. However, this is the
document which was used in that union.

Mr. TAVENNER. Let me ask you a few preliminary questions.

Were you given a written notice of expulsion by the Communist Party?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, we were.

Mr. TAVENNER. Can you identify language in that expulsion notice as
being virtually the same language as in the notice of charges given by
the union to your wife?

Mr. DENNETT. It certainly is. In both instances they accuse her of the
crime of being an informer for the FBI.

Mr. TAVENNER. We will not take time now to analyze those documents, but
I would like for them to be in evidence, and, in light of the fact that
the names signed have not been shown by evidence to be members of the
Communist Party, I ask that that part of the document be deleted until
investigation has established whether or not they are members of the
party.

Mr. MOULDER. As requested by counsel, without objection, it is so
ordered.

Mr. TAVENNER. I would like for the document to be marked “Dennett
Exhibit No. 10.”

(The document above referred to, marked “Dennett Exhibit No. 10,” is
filed herewith.)


DENNETT EXHIBIT NO. 10

    We, the undersigned, prefer charges against Harriette Dennett,
    President, United Office and Professional Workers of America, Local
    35, for violation of the Constitution of the National Union under
    the following Articles:

    ARTICLE II, Section 3. “No person whose interests are deemed to lie
    with the employer as against the employees shall be eligible for
    membership.”

    ARTICLE II, Section 5, Obligations of Members. “... to bear true
    allegiance to, and keep inviolate the principles of the union; ...
    and to promote the interests of our members in harmony with the
    best interests of our country.”

    ARTICLE VI, Section 9, Obligations of Local Union Officers. “...
    to perform all your duties as required by the laws of the Union
    and the instruction of the membership ... and that you will do
    everything in your power to forward the interests of the organized
    labor movement.”

    We have certain evidence clearly revealing that Harriette Dennett
    has made regular reports to the Federal Bureau of Investigation
    over a long period of time for which she has received payment. We
    are convinced that no honest trade unionist would have connections
    with any police body, especially the FBI, and still serve the best
    interests of the Union.

    Let as examine the role of the FBI. Organized labor recognizes
    that law enforcing agencies are absolutely necessary in the
    protection of public and private property, prevention of crime,
    and safeguarding our welfare. However, various police bodies, both
    Federal and local, have always allied themselves with the employers
    in economic struggles. In strikes, the U. S. Army and National
    Guard have smashed picket lines and arrested union leaders, and, in
    conjunction with the courts, have framed them, had them imprisoned,
    deported, and even executed.

    The FBI especially, acting as the undercover arm of these police
    forces, while it has done a commendable job in the apprehension of
    criminals, has constantly used its prestige and power in aiding
    employers and local police agencies in their efforts to weaken
    and destroy unions by hunting down progressive and militant trade
    unionists and having them blacklisted from their jobs.

    In the Bridges Case, witnesses were either paid or intimidated
    by the FBI to testify falsely. They did not hesitate to use
    wiretapping, dictographing, and other devices, although illegal. At
    the present time, John Santos, long-time leader of the Transport
    Workers Union, is undergoing an ordeal very similar to that of
    Bridges. Strenuous efforts are being made to deport him because he
    has earned the enmity of powerful transit and utility corporations.
    He is charged with being an alien “red.” And, once again, the FBI
    is playing a key role in this hearing by rounding up questionable
    anti-labor characters to testify against him.

    According to the La Follette Civil Liberties Committee, the
    Pinkerton Detective Agency was found to have 300 operatives
    enrolled in unions as members, _of whom at least 100 were union
    officials_--of them 14 presidents of locals, one national
    vice-president, 14 trustees, and 20 local union secretaries.

    We are at present witnessing an attack upon a union in our own city
    as a result of the combination of discredited labor leaders, the
    un-American Canwell Committee and the Seattle P-I and its FBI agent
    and strike-breaker, Fred Niendorff.

    Today, Labor is faced with and all-out offensive of the
    profit-greedy NAM. They are determined to bring wages down while
    continuing to raise the cost of living. This attack on the
    peoples’ living standards is most serious to the thousands of
    greatly underpaid white-collar workers.

    To accomplish this union-busting program, the most vicious
    antilabor legislation, such as the Taft-Hartley law has been
    passed, and the Un-American Activities Committee, the little
    Dies Committees and numerous other government agencies--all in
    conjunction with the FBI--are engaged in a witch-hunt against labor.

    Let us recall that it was not until trade unions were made impotent
    in Germany that Hitler dared to embark on the road to concentration
    and extermination camps.

    The National CIO has condemned the Department of Justice for
    conducting a “gumshoe” probe of CIO political expenditures.
    President Philip Murray has reported “furtive operations and
    dramatic unearthing of clues by the FBI ... which can have only the
    objective of harassing and intimidation.”

    Anyone working with the FBI or with any of the above-named
    antilabor committees or against the best interests of the union
    must clearly be labeled an enemy of labor and removed from
    membership in any labor organization to which he may belong.

    Therefore, in pursuance of the procedure established by Section
    I, ARTICLE XV, which states that any elective or appointive
    officers of a local union may be removed from office subject to
    provisions of this Article for any violation of this Constitution
    “or because of the commission of an act impairing the usefulness of
    the organization,” we are presenting these charges, and demanding
    the expulsion of Harriette Dennett from UOPWA 35. We call upon
    our Union to immediately set up a trial committee to investigate
    these charges and report back its findings to a special membership
    meeting to be called for action by the membership.

    uopwa 35 cio

Mr. TAVENNER. And I would like also to introduce in evidence at this
time the expulsion notice that was given you, and ask that it be marked
“Dennett Exhibit No. 11.”

Mr. MOULDER. As requested by counsel, without objection, it is so
ordered.

(The document above referred to, marked “Dennett Exhibit No. 11,” is
filed herewith).


DENNETT EXHIBIT No. 11

NOTICE OF EXPULSION

  To All Sections, Clubs, and Members of the
      Northwest District Communist Party, U. S. A.:

    This is to notify all Sections and Clubs of the expulsion from the
    Communist Party of Eugene V. Dennett, Harriet Dennett, and Claude
    Smith.

    In the case of Eugene Dennett and Harriet Dennett, the expulsion
    is based upon violation of the conditions of membership in the
    Communist Party as set forth in Article 9, Sections 1, 2, and 4 of
    the Constitution of the Communist Party, U. S. A., based upon the
    following facts established by the District Review Commission:

    1. Admitted employment of Harriet Dennett by an agency of the F.
    B. I. and the submitting of regular reports to said agency over a
    long period of time, with the knowledge and consent, and direct
    participation of Eugene V. Dennett. This was established by his
    admission of personal contact with a known agent of the F. B. I.
    and his concealment from the Party of Harriet Dennett’s activities
    and his own personal contact with the F. B. I.

    2. Admitted personal and political relations by Eugene V. Dennett
    with known Trotskyites with established participation by Harriet
    Dennett.

    3. An established record of anti-party, disruptive, and provocative
    activity by Eugene Dennett on numerous occasions and by Harriet
    Dennett in several instances.

In the case of Claude Smith, the expulsion is based upon violation of
the conditions of membership in the Communist Party as set forth in
Article 9, Sections 1, 2, and 4 of the Constitution of the Communist
Party, U. S. A., and based upon the following facts established by the
District Review Commission:

    1. Admitted participation in the preparation of the reports
    submitted by Harriet Dennett to the Agency referred to above as
    well as sharing in the payment for those reports and concealment of
    these activities from the Party.

The District Review Commission wishes to call to the attention of
the Party membership and its organizations the necessary conclusions
from these facts. First, in this case as in many in the past, a
negative, carping attitude toward the Party and its program has upon
investigation disclosed enemies of the Party and the working class.

The same thing must be said of toleration and association with
Trotskyites who are simply fascists hiding behind “left” phrases. While
such attitudes may be due to lack of understanding in new members, in
the case of experienced long time members it can only be regarded as
conscious assistance to fascism and to the agents of fascism. It must
be noted also that the personal record of these people is marked by
individualism instability and extreme egotism.

The District Review Commission also wishes to point out that it is
necessary to learn to distinguish between honest differences of opinion
which we have to constantly resolve by discussion and majority decision
and disruptive, dishonest attacks upon the program activities and
leadership of the Party, which is the earmark of the provocateur and
agent of the enemy. Only by more resolutely defending and fighting
for the program of the Party can we make this distinction clear. Only
by becoming more alert to the smell of anti-Party poison can we root
out these disrupters. Only by fighting for the unity of the Party and
testing our cadres struggle can we create guarantees that such elements
will not remain long in the Party or be able to steal into its posts
of leadership, and that the damage that they do will be reduced to a
minimum.

Harriet Dennett is at present holding the position of President of the
Seattle UOPWA Local Union No. 35. Eugene Dennett is a member of the
Board of Control of the NEW WORLD and a member of the Steelworkers
Union. Claude Smith is at present editor of the Washington State CIO
news.

All Party members are warned against personal or political association
with these expelled members and to give them no consideration or
comfort in the excuses and protests they can be expected to make
against the expulsion action which was ordered carried out by unanimous
vote of the Northwest District Committee in executive session on
October 6, 1947.

  Signed:
      HENRY HUFF,
        _District Chairman_,
      C. VAN LYDEGRAF,
        _District Orig. Sec’y_,
  _For the Northwest District Committee Communist Party, U. S. A._

uopwa No. 35.

Mr. VELDE. There is one question I would like to ask you, Mr. Dennett,
about your expulsion and your wife’s. You probably recall the argument
that took place within the ranks of the Communist Party during the
change from the Communist political association to the militant type of
organization it was before.

Did you or your wife engage in any of those arguments after the receipt
of the Duclos letter?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, we did.

Mr. VELDE. I am interested in that, if you will please be as brief as
you can.

Mr. DENNETT. I will do my best, sir.

I was still in the service at the time. This occurred in New Orleans.
My wife was still doing this same work in New Orleans.

Mr. VELDE. Was that in the middle of 1945?

Mr. DENNETT. That is right, in May and June of 1945.

And with the publication of the Duclos letter in the Daily Worker,
which my wife was a subscriber to at that time, we observed that
something tremendous was taking place within the party. And she made
contact with some of the party people in New Orleans.

When they found that we had an interest in it, they invited us to the
meetings where this discussion took place. And I was quite startled to
find that the general criticism was mainly directed at the bureaucratic
attitude and dictatorial policies pursued by Mr. Earl Browder. I was
flabbergasted because I did not have that conception of him, and I was
quite surprised as a result of it. And, of course, you know the rest of
the story, which was published.

Mr. VELDE. In other words, you and your wife both took the side of Earl
Browder?

Mr. DENNETT. I wouldn’t say that my former wife took the side of Earl
Browder. I wouldn’t say I took the side of Earl Browder either because
I was not in the party at the time. I was simply a visitor invited, and
I was mainly surprised. I questioned the reports that people made. I
didn’t pass judgment on it. I simply could hardly believe the criticism
which I heard.

Mr. VELDE. It appears to me from your testimony that you were probably
sort of independent in this matter of following the Communist Party
line as handed down from Soviet Russia, and that was probably one of
the chief reasons why you were expelled. Is that not right? You would
not follow the party line? You thought for yourself.

Mr. DENNETT. I thought I was following the party line, and I thought
the leaders around here were zigzagging all over the lot, and they
didn’t know what the line was. They thought I was nuts. I thought they
were nuts.

Mr. VELDE. Maybe you were just like Trotsky or Lovestone. You just
didn’t happen to be in the ruling class as far as the party line was
concerned.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, we have just checked the names on exhibit
No. 10, and find that all of the persons whose names appear there have
been identified in testimony before this committee as Communist Party
members. Therefore, I see no reason for restricting that document in
any way in its introduction in evidence.

Mr. MOULDER. It is so ordered. Do you wish to read the names?

Mr. TAVENNER. I desire the witness to read the names.

Mr. DENNETT. Alice Kinney, known to me before as Alice Balmer,
B-a-l-m-e-r; Trudi Kirkwood, Helen Huff. Helen Huff was known to me
as the wife of Henry Huff, who was the district organizer of the
party, and Helen Huff was one of those persons to whom I spoke when I
requested that they allow my former wife to resign, but they would have
nothing to do with that. They wouldn’t allow it. They wanted to make an
example of her. Hallie Donaldson, Vivian Stucker, S-t-u-c-k-e-r, Jean
R. Hatten.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Dennett, are there any other facts relating to your
expulsion which would be of interest to this committee?

Mr. DENNETT. I think, Mr. Tavenner and members of the committee, that
there are probably many. But, in view of the pressing time, I think
that this is sufficient to give you the picture, and, if you want to go
into more detail at a later time when you have more time available, I
think maybe we could do that. I have said all I think I need to say at
this time.

Mr. TAVENNER. After your expulsion have you been identified with the
Communist Party in any way?

Mr. DENNETT. No, sir; I have not.

Mr. TAVENNER. The committee had information indicating that you may
possibly have become a member after your expulsion, or even prior to
that, of the Socialist Workers Party. And the information that the
committee had in that respect was a nominating petition of that group
signed by you.

We would like to know whether you were at any time a member of the
Socialist Workers Party.

Mr. DENNETT. The answer is very simple. I was not. I never have been a
member of the Socialist Workers Party.

The occasion for that signature on that nominating petition is the
result of a request from the Socialist Workers Party leader, Mr. Daniel
Roberts, who was the leader at that time, that I sign a nominating
petition to permit their candidates to get on the ballot.

In the State of Washington a provision is in the election laws allowing
nominating petitions to be signed by a minimum of 25 people who are
qualified voters who did not vote in the primary. In other words, it is
equivalent to casting a vote.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did the Socialist Workers Party endeavor to recruit you
as a member?

Mr. DENNETT. Yes. Mr. Daniel Roberts tried time and time again to
recruit me, thinking that my vast experience in the Communist Party
gave me plenty of background to qualify me if I would simply change my
thinking with respect to certain fundamental ideas which were points
of difference between the Socialist Workers Party and the Communist
Party. However, I never was able to accept all of the ideas which Mr.
Roberts and some of their national leaders to whom he introduced me--I
could never resolve all of the policies which they advocated to my own
thinking.

And the whole experience caused me to go back and question and
challenge the validity of the theoretical basis upon which the
Communist Party was organized and upon which it operated. And it caused
me to reach the conclusion a long time ago that it is very inadvisable
for anyone to commit his political fealty to anyone or any organization
that he doesn’t understand in full. And I do not to this day completely
understand the Socialist Workers Party.

Mr. TAVENNER. I noticed in some of the earlier documents introduced in
evidence that reference was made to you when the Communist Party was
critical of you as being a Trotskyite.

Mr. DENNETT. That is true. Remarks were made about me on a number of
occasions. And, as near as I can make out, the reason for it is I was
asking embarrassing questions. It seems as though Trotsky did that
against Mr. Stalin in the Soviet Union--when everyone especially was
interested in a democratic procedure that went contrary to Stalin’s
rule. His rule was that you had to accept his decision whether you
liked it or not. And that is the rule of democratic centralism, a
principle with which I am in total disagreement today. I thought
for a long time that that was a wonderful principle. I had read
Lenin’s writings on the subject. I thought that his explanations were
quite good. But once I had had service in the military, once I knew
what military organization was like, I recognized the principle of
democratic centralism as the application of military rule to civilian
life. And I am strictly opposed to it.

Mr. TAVENNER. In light of your experience in the Communist Party,
and from your study of the Socialist Workers Party, would you please
state as briefly as you can the principal differences between these
organizations as you understood them.

Mr. DENNETT. One of the principal differences lies in the fact that the
Socialist Workers Party people accused the Communist Party people, in
particular Stalin and Stalinism, of having deserted the principle of
socialism, of internationalism, accusing Stalin of degenerating into
nationalism. That is when he developed the so-called theory of the
possibility of developing socialism in one country alone.

Mr. TAVENNER. That country being the Soviet Union.

Mr. DENNETT. That country being the Soviet Union.

The Trotskyites maintained that Stalin was thereby deserting the cause
of internationalism and that he would think first of the interests of
the Soviet Union, and later, if at all, subordinate the interests of
the world working class to building the Soviet Union at the cost of
letting the working class in other countries go by the boards.

In other words, if a revolutionary situation developed in some other
country Stalin would exert his power to prevent the success of the
revolution in that country for fear that it would detract from the
success of the Soviet Union.

Mr. TAVENNER. Unless, of course, such a revolution would strengthen
his power and his regime in the Soviet Union. Wouldn’t you make that
qualification?

Mr. DENNETT. That might be a consideration. But all history, all
experience since the Second World War would indicate that Stalin at
no time approved successful revolutions in any country. He opposed
revolutionary effort of the Yugoslavs. He opposed the revolutionary
effort of the Communists in Greece. He opposed the revolutionary
effort of the Chinese Communists. He even made commitments, and part
of the deal which people seemed to be so concerned about at Yalta and
Potsdam and Cairo and Casablanca involved Stalin making commitments to
Roosevelt and Churchill to the effect that the Soviet Union would use
its influence to suppress the revolutionary effort of the workers in
the various countries that were on the brink of revolution.

And that is why when the Soviet Red Army marched into those border
countries in eastern Europe they did not attempt to create a Soviet
revolution. They, instead, created something they called people’s
democracies. But they were established in some instances with the aid
of the Red army marching in, and the people in those countries had
nothing to say about it.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the attitude of the Trotskyites as to Stalin’s
agreement with reference to Greece, for instance?

Mr. DENNETT. They accused him of betraying the working class not only
in Greece but in the Soviet Union because he was ruling in the Soviet
Union with such an iron hand that workers there were being suppressed.
They were being forbidden from enjoying the efforts they were putting
in to build a Socialist country. In fact, they were being deprived
of the fruits of what was intended to be socialism. In fact, the
Trotskyites, as I understand, their philosophy in the matter is that
the Soviet Union has suffered from an arrested development--it is not
truly Socialist; it has not been permitted to become Socialist, and
that the biggest crime Stalin committed was to pretend and hold the
Soviet Union up to world view as a Socialist country when, in fact, it
was not a Socialist country.

I also came to the conclusion, as a result of some of the theoretical
material I read in about 1946, where Stalin was insisting that,
instead of the authority of the state withering away as predicted
in the writings of Engels and Lenin, that Stalin insisted that the
authority of the state must increase, that the police power must be
increased in the Soviet Union to make sure that they would continue in
an ordered fashion, which certainly was contrary to all the earlier
writings on the theoretical subject of the development of the state.

Mr. TAVENNER. It has been demonstrated time and again, has it not, to
your satisfaction, that Stalin has endeavored to use international
communism as a tool in order to advance his own foreign policy which
necessarily, of course, meant his strengthening his own position in the
Soviet Union.

Mr. DENNETT. It certainly is.

Mr. TAVENNER. There are many other matters that I would have liked to
have gone into with you, but I must terminate the examination. I do
not like to do so without giving you an opportunity to state anything
that may be in your mind about the effect of your experience in the
Communist Party or your present attitude toward the Communist Party.

I am not insisting that you do, but I merely want to give you the
opportunity.

Mr. DENNETT. My counsel has already advised me to be very brief. I
am very appreciative of the suggestion because the hour is late, and
I want to thank you for the opportunity you have given me to make a
statement.

The only statement I would make at this time is some elaboration over
what I started to say earlier when we were talking about what steps to
take to protect yourself against this sort of deception.

I am sure that some people in hearing the account which I have given
by way of testimony before this committee may gather the impression
that I learned quite a little bit about deception. And I am sure that
some people were quite firmly convinced that I would do nothing except
deceive this committee when I appeared before it.

I wish to assure you that I have testified to the best of my ability
about the facts that I know and facts which I can substantiate with
documentary evidence in my own records.

Those records are available to the committee. They have been made
available to the committee, and I understand that you intend to have
the United States Marshal pick them up and place them in protective
custody where they will be available for me for further study and also
to yourself.

I simply recite that as some indication that in my testifying before
you the only reservation that I have is that I still have some
misgivings about this kind of procedure because I fear that we are
needlessly hurting individuals when we name them in such vast numbers
as the committee has called upon me to do.

I think that some means needs to be found to change that procedure. And
I believe that there will be more information of value to convincing
the general public and to assisting the Congress, by way of its
legislative effort, if a better effort is found.

And I hope that you will seriously pay attention to the recommendations
of the American Civil Liberties Union in this regard. I think their
recommendations deserve your worthy consideration.

I think, gentlemen, that is about all that is needed for me to say at
this time. I can only say that I am available for whatever further
work that you wish to do with me. I do not want anyone to think that
they are going to make a professional witness out of me. I have no
intention of being a professional witness. I would like to be able to
live in peace and quiet because my own health will not permit me to do
all the other things that need to be done.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Dennett, as chairman of this committee, and on behalf
of counsel, Mr. Tavenner, and Mr. Wheeler, and I believe I should
presume to express appreciation also on behalf of the full committee
on Un-American Activities, the Congress of the United States, and
the people of America for your honest, courageous, patriotic, and
convincing testimony and information concerning communistic activities.

Your comprehensive and intelligent testimony is not only revealing but
has been ably presented by you in a patriotic and conscientious spirit
and duty to your country and also to yourself.

We commend you for your appearance and conduct before this committee
as an example--and I emphasize this--as an example of how any and
all former Communist Party members can clear themselves of any doubt
whatsoever concerning their loyalty to the United States of America.

And, speaking for myself, I am glad I had an opportunity to observe
your conduct on the witness stand, and, having heard your testimony, I
am deeply impressed by the valuable information you have given to the
committee.

Mr. Velde, do you have anything?

Mr. VELDE. Yes, Mr. Chairman. I don’t think I can add too much to your
very fine statement.

Let me say that I concur with our distinguished friend from Missouri in
his statement about your testimony.

I happened to be here last year when you refused to testify. I think
I mentioned earlier--last Thursday--that you would have a lot more
friends after you got through testifying than you had before or during
the time that you appeared here last time, and I sincerely hope that
that is true. I believe it will be.

The reason, of course, that we were not able to hear your testimony at
the sessions here last June was that we had too many other witnesses
subpenaed to be heard as we do apparently this time, Mr. Chairman.

Let me say that I think you have made a great addition to the
information that is already on file concerning the activities of the
Communist Party. But, chiefly, you have made a great contribution in
substantiating, in large part, the testimony that was given by Mrs.
Barbara Hartle and other witnesses who gave information here last June.
For that we are very appreciative.

I want to say just a word about Mrs. Hartle.

As you know, she is presently serving in the prison in West Virginia, a
Federal penitentiary in West Virginia.

I think she certainly exhibited a great deal of courage and a great
deal of American spirit in giving the testimony that she did.

Mr. Dennett, as far as the particular testimony you have given about
your expulsion from the Communist Party is concerned, the experience
that you had is similar to the experience of other persons who have
been expelled from the Communist Party.

I think, of course, that you should be proud to have been expelled
by the Communist Party. And I trust that, while you might at times
find yourself in the same position of following the same line that the
Communist Party does at the present time, that you no longer cling to
the philosophy that we know the Communist Party represents here in
the United States, that is, the philosophy of the Soviet Union, which
intends of course, to rule the world eventually, whether it be by
changing governments by peaceful means or by overthrowing it by force
and violence.

We say it has been a great pleasure to hear your very fine testimony,
and let me say also that I agree that you have been a very intelligent
and truthful witness.

Mr. MOULDER. With our thanks and gratitude, you are excused.

Mr. DENNETT. Thank you, sir.

I wish to say, upon my being excused, that I want to extend my greatest
appreciation to the patience of Mr. Tavenner, who has been the counsel
to examine me. It has been a pleasure to work with a gentleman who is
as well versed and who knows what he is doing as well as Mr. Tavenner.

And I want to thank Mr. Wheeler for the patience that he had, and the
committee as well.

Mr. MOULDER. Call the next witness, Mr. Tavenner.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Abraham Cohen.

Mr. MOULDER. Hold up your right hand.

Mr. Photographer, when you take your picture, would you stand to the
right or left so I can swear the witness.

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

Mr. COHEN. I do.


TESTIMONY OF ABRAHAM ARTHUR COHEN, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, EDWARD
E. HENRY

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

Mr. COHEN. Abraham Arthur Cohen.

(Whereupon a brief disturbance occurred in the corridor outside the
door of the hearing room.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Let’s proceed.

Mr. MOULDER. Please be seated. We will have order in the hearing room,
please.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will everyone be seated, please.

Mr. MOULDER. No pictures will be taken, please.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you seat those people at the door, and close the
door, please.

I note you are accompanied by counsel. Will counsel please identify
himself.

Mr. HENRY. Edward Henry, of the Seattle bar.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am not going to take the time to ask you various
questions which I know the committee is interested in asking you
because of the lateness of the hour. I will confine my questions to
just 2 or 3 matters. Are you now a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. COHEN. I am not.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. COHEN. I have been.

Mr. TAVENNER. Over what period of time were you a member of the
Communist Party?

Mr. COHEN. From early in--well, I believe July 1937 until I left for
the Armed Forces in March of 1942, and then upon returning from the
war, oh, some time early in 1946, I would say, until January 1, 1951.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you been a member of the Communist Party since 1951?

Mr. COHEN. No, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. I believe you are one of the few, if not the only person
in the United States, who registered as a member of the Communist Party
upon the adoption of the Internal Security Act of 1950.

Mr. COHEN. It wasn’t a thing of which I was ashamed. I felt I was in
the party. I felt that what I was doing was the right thing. I had no
conscientious qualms about belonging to it. I felt what we were doing
was right. And everything that I saw--nothing I saw led me to believe
that it was subversive. I felt it was--what we were doing was in the
interest of the workingman.

Mr. TAVENNER. Our purpose in subpenaing you was to ask you certain
facts we think are within your knowledge regarding Communist Party
activities. You have indicated a full desire, a willingness to give the
committee the facts that you have. You have given a a written statement
to the staff.

Mr. COHEN. Yes, sir.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am not going into any of those matters now because they
are here available for us. But, out of fairness to you, I want to give
you the opportunity to make any further statement you desire regarding
your own attitude toward the Communist Party.

Mr. COHEN. Do you feel that I haven’t stated my position enough in that
brief?

Mr. TAVENNER. We would ask you additional questions if we had time
to do it, and we may do that later. But for the present I want to be
certain you have an opportunity to tell the committee anything further
that is on your mind that might be of some benefit to yourself.

Mr. COHEN. Well, I felt that my desires on leaving the party were that
I was in it primarily because of its connection with the trade-union
movement. It helped the Guild in the early days to organize.

Mr. TAVENNER. And you function within the American Newspaper Guild?

Mr. COHEN. That is right.

I felt it did a worthwhile job there. And a great many
people--Communists and non-Communists--benefited thereby. After the war
the situation changed.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

Mr. TAVENNER. I am not sure that he is through.

Mr. COHEN. I am ready to quit talking at any time.

Mr. TAVENNER. This is your time to talk if you want to.

Mr. COHEN. After the war I felt that we were in a--we were extending
the neighborhood branches, and that the trade union, the time for trade
union action was past. We didn’t function in trade union matters. My
working hours were changed, and I no longer was--I rarely attended
meetings. I really lost what contact I had.

And the act that finally culminated in my leaving was the fact that I
wanted to take a trip abroad, and under one of the provisions of the
McCarran Act it required that no Communist should be granted a passport.

And so I wanted to visit scenes of where I had been during the war, and
I explained to the party that I wanted to leave. And it startled them,
I admit, reasonably. But I succeeded in resigning. And there have been
no repercussions since.

Mr. VELDE. Do I understand you have been, and are willing at any time
to make available any information you have relative to your activities
in the Communist Party?

Mr. COHEN. Yes, I am. I will say--before anybody even talks to
me--there weren’t very many. There were very few; there weren’t very
many.

Mr. VELDE. But are you willing to make those available to us?

Mr. COHEN. Yes.

Mr. VELDE. And, of course, we would be willing to hear you at length if
we had the opportunity to do so.

Mr. TAVENNER. In light of the witness’ statements, I have no further
questions.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you have any further statement you wish to make, Mr.
Witness?

Mr. COHEN. Nothing further to say.

Mr. MOULDER. Then you are excused as a witness.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. TAVENNER. May I call Mr. Dennett to the front of the rostrum for a
moment?


TESTIMONY OF EUGENE VICTOR DENNETT, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, KENNETH
A. MacDONALD--Resumed

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Dennett.

Mr. DENNETT. Yes, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. It has been my suggestion, after conferring with counsel,
that probably it would be best that we revoke and withdraw our order
excusing you from the force and effect of your subpena, and keep you
under subpena.

Mr. DENNETT. I still have it.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, I believe there may be a legal technicality
involved, and I ask that the witness be resubpenaed. So there will be
no question about it.

Mr. MOULDER. It is so ordered.

Mr. TAVENNER. That is a matter of protection to the witness.

Mr. VELDE. I think we ought to make this additional statement, that
the reason for resubpenaing you is so that you might be within the
protection of the United States Government in case anything arises as
apparently happened out here a few minutes ago.

Mr. MOULDER. That is our only purpose in issuing another subpena.

Mr. DENNETT. Thank you.

Mr. MOULDER. Call the next witness.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Bernard Freyd.

Mr. HATTEN. May I request the Chair to ask the photographers not to
take pictures?

Mr. MOULDER. We will have order in the hearing room.

Mr. HATTEN. Will you please not take any pictures?

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Hatten.

Mr. HATTEN. I would like to request, Mr. Freyd does not like to
have his picture taken in the hearing room. Would you so direct the
photographers?

Mr. MOULDER. Very well.

The photographers will please refrain from taking pictures of the
witness approaching the witness stand.

Hold up your right hand and be sworn, please.

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony which you are about to give
before this congressional committee will be the truth, the whole truth
and nothing but the truth, so help you, God?

Mr. FREYD. I do.


TESTIMONY OF BERNARD FREYD, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, C. T. HATTEN

Mr. TAVENNER. What is your name?

Mr. FREYD. Bernard Freyd--F-r-e-y-d.

Mr. TAVENNER. It is noted you are accompanied by counsel.

Will counsel identify himself for the record?

Mr. HATTEN. My name is C. T. Hatten. I am an attorney residing in
Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. When and where were you born, Mr. Freyd?

Mr. FREYD. I was born in Seattle in 1893.

Mr. TAVENNER. What is your occupation?

Mr. FREYD. I am not employed by anyone.

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

Mr. FREED. I went through the public-school system, high school of this
city, and University of Washington.

Mr. TAVENNER. When did you complete your educational training at the
University of Washington?

Mr. FREYD. It was about the year 1930.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you tell the committee, please, how you have been
employed since 1935?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. FREYD. I had no regular employment until the outbreak of the war,
and I worked in various war plants until I was incapacitated by an
accident in 1943.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was your business between 1930 and the outbreak of
the war?

Mr. FREYD. Well, I was unemployed.

Mr. TAVENNER. During that entire period of time?

Mr. FREYD. Practically, as I recollect.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were you engaged in any work of any kind during that
period?

Mr. FREYD. Well, there was no work available that I could find.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you mean you were unemployed until 1941, December 1941?

Mr. FREYD. Yes.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where did you live in 1940?

Mr. FREYD. I lived in Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you engage in any work without remuneration?

Mr. FREYD. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. During the period from 1935 to 1940?

Mr. FREYD. No.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were you connected with the Civil Rights Congress?

Mr. FREYD. I think I should invoke the fifth amendment on that question
as I feel that it may tend to incriminate me.

Mr. MOULDER. To clarify the response, do you decline to answer by
invoking the fifth amendment of the Constitution, or do you refuse to
answer for fear it will tend to incriminate you?

Mr. FREYD. And also the first amendment, which guarantees freedom of
speech and of the press and the right of people to assemble peaceably.

Mr. TAVENNER. The witness who preceded you a few moments ago, Mr.
Eugene V. Dennett, described his disagreement with the Communist Party
in connection with its policy toward the Civil Rights Congress. He
told the committee that the Communist Party had organized the Civil
Rights Congress, but that he disagreed with the policy of forming an
organization which would defend only Communists. And, for that reason,
he incurred the wrath of his superiors in the Communist Party.

He further testified that he was told by the leadership of the
Communist Party that it didn’t have time to protect the civil rights
of people generally, but it was only interested in the civil rights of
members of the Communist Party.

Now it is our information that you held an official position in the
Civil Rights Congress. I may be wrong about that. But surely you were
in a position to know whether or not Mr. Dennett was telling the truth
about the attitude of the Communist Party toward the Civil Rights
Congress or the work of the Civil Rights Congress.

Mr. FREYD. I should like to confer with my attorney.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. FREYD. I invoke the first amendment and the fifth amendment for the
reasons previously stated. And I may add that I am pleased to notice
that there has been very widespread doubt expressed prominently in the
press about the veracity of a witness testifying before this committee.

Mr. TAVENNER. If you have any doubt about that you are now in a
position to straighten the committee out on it. In what particular, if
any, was Mr. Dennett in error in his testimony?

Mr. FREYD. I would like to confer with my counsel.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. FREYD. I claim, again, the first and fifth amendments of the
Constitution, and I wish to add that I am reluctant to answer any
questions which would require me to claim the protection of the first
and fifth amendments.

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

Mr. FREYD. The answer is the same, for the same reason.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. FREYD. The answer is the same, and for the same reason.

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

Mr. MOULDER. Any questions, Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. No questions.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. MOULDER. Call the next witness, Mr. Tavenner.

Mr. HATTEN. Mr. Chairman?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.

Mr. HATTEN. While I am here may I address the Chair with reference to
the O’Connell matter again?

Mr. MOULDER. Yes.


STATEMENT OF C. T. HATTEN, ATTORNEY AT LAW, SEATTLE, WASH.

Mr. HATTEN. I notice that on a number of witnesses the subpenas have
been continued, and I would like to formally move that the subpena in
case of Jerry O’Connell be continued to some later date at which time
his health might be better.

Mr. MOULDER. The committee cannot entertain your motion.

Mr. HATTEN. I merely would like to make it for the record.

Mr. MOULDER. You have made the request on the record.

Mr. HATTEN. To state the position, I understand that possibly you
cannot pass upon it.

Mr. MOULDER. Call the next witness.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Lenus Westman.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony which you are
about to give before this congressional committee will be the truth,
the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you, God?

Mr. WESTMAN. I do.


TESTIMONY OF HANS LENUS ADOLPH WESTMAN, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, C.
T. HATTEN

Mr. WESTMAN. Mr. Chairman, under the first and fifth amendments----

Mr. TAVENNER. You haven’t been asked any questions.

Mr. WESTMAN. O. K.

Mr. TAVENNER. We will give you a chance.

What is your name, please, sir?

Mr. WESTMAN. Under the first and fifth amendments, as the result of
having been subpenaed, I wish to apply these two amendments as reasons
for not giving my name.

And also, in the light of the statement that was made here this
afternoon, that you would like to have some witness that didn’t have to
use his name, that is, that you could have appearing before you.

Mr. TAVENNER. You are mistaken.

Mr. MOULDER. We will have order, please.

Mr. VELDE. Do you refuse to answer as to what your name is?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. I am going to confer with my attorney.

I wish to state that----

Mr. MOULDER. You are directed to answer the question.

Mr. WESTMAN. I will answer the question under protest.

My name is Hans Lenus Adolph Westman.

Mr. TAVENNER. Will you spell your last name?

Mr. WESTMAN. W-e-s-t-m-a-n.

Mr. TAVENNER. It is noted that you are accompanied by counsel.

Will counsel please identify himself for the record?

Mr. HATTEN. C. T. Hatten, previously identified as an attorney in
Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where do you live, Mr. Westman?

Mr. WESTMAN. In Seattle.

Mr. TAVENNER. What is your occupation?

Mr. WESTMAN. I would like to confer with counsel.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Well, I will answer under compulsion, and I am a
sheetmetal worker.

Mr. TAVENNER. Do you have any other occupation?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Do you mean at the present time?

Mr. TAVENNER. During the last month, say, during the month of March.

Mr. WESTMAN. I would like to confer with my counsel.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Well, sir, I would like--I will decline to answer that
question under the fifth amendment, as I do not know what is referred
to as work by the question, and, hence, it might be something that
is construed by you, sir, as constituting work that might be of a
character that would waive my rights under the fifth amendment. And,
hence, I will take the fifth amendment.

Mr. TAVENNER. I will be more specific.

Have you been engaged during the month of March in any publication work
of any kind? That will limit it within narrow bounds.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. I will decline to answer that under the fifth amendment.
And I would like to go into the reasons why I take the fifth amendment,
because under----

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, the witness has stated his reason as being
the fifth amendment, which is a ground, under the circumstances here, I
think he is entitled to use. And, therefore, it would not require any
speech to accompany it.

Mr. MOULDER. Please make a direct answer to the question. We will get
along more quickly.

Mr. WESTMAN. I said that under the fifth amendment I decline to answer
that question, and I would like to just point out, Mr. Chairman, that
I do take the fifth amendment because of the fact that it is in the
Constitution to protect the innocent, and for the same reason that you
gentlemen of Congress have congressional immunity.

Mr. MOULDER. You have made yourself clear about the fifth amendment.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you at any time, during the month of March 1955,
been the press director of the Communist Party?

Mr. WESTMAN. I will decline to answer that under the first and fifth
amendments, as, under the first amendment, that is directly inquiring
into the freedom of the press and into matters of like nature, and,
under the fifth amendment, I decline because such testimony might be
construed as testimony against myself.

Mr. TAVENNER. Mrs. Barbara Hartle testified before this committee, in
June of 1954. In the course of her testimony in identifying various
individuals as members of the Communist Party, she stated:

    Lenus Westman was a member of a club in the central region and
    lived in that area. Most of his Communist Party activities were in
    mass work at that time, like the Progressive Party or election work.

Tell the committee, please, what knowledge you have of the activities
of the Communist Party, if any, within the Progressive Party.

Mr. WESTMAN. Well, Mr. Chairman, I will decline to answer that question
under the fifth amendment.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. I think I have made my point clear on that.

Mr. MOULDER. May I ask you a question?

Where were you born and reared?

Mr. WESTMAN. I was born in Sweden, Umea, Sweden; and came to this
country at the age of 7.

Mr. MOULDER. How old are you now?

Mr. WESTMAN. I am 52 years of age.

Mr. MOULDER. Are you a citizen of the United States?

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes, I am.

Mr. MOULDER. How long have you been a citizen?

Mr. WESTMAN. Since 1936.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you served in the armed services of the United States?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes; I have.

Mr. MOULDER. What branch of the armed services?

Mr. WESTMAN. In the infantry, Army.

Mr. MOULDER. For what period of time?

Mr. WESTMAN. From July 1942, until February 1943.

Mr. MOULDER. Did you receive an honorable discharge from the service?

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes; I did.

Mr. VELDE. I would like to ask one question.

How did you obtain citizenship in this country?

Mr. WESTMAN. Through naturalization.

Mr. VELDE. Did you file your petition for naturalization on your own?

Mr. WESTMAN. It was by petition.

Mr. TAVENNER. What was the date of your naturalization?

Mr. WESTMAN. It was July 1936.

Mr. TAVENNER. Was it July 27, 1936?

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes; I think that was the exact date.

Mr. TAVENNER. Where were you naturalized?

Mr. WESTMAN. Here in Seattle in the Federal court.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were you a member of the Communist Party at the time you
were naturalized?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question under the fifth
amendment.

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

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question for the same reasons
that I have given.

Mr. TAVENNER. Have you been a member of the Communist Party at any time
between 1936 and the present date?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question for the same reason that
I have given.

Mr. VELDE. Were you a member of the Communist Party at the time you
were naturalized?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question also, and for the same
reason.

Mr. VELDE. Mr. Chairman, it appears to me there is some evidence
that should be referred to the United States Immigration and
Naturalization Service for future consideration, possibly with a view
to denaturalization and deportation.

Mr. TAVENNER. Were you elected to the Senate of the State of Washington
in the election of 1940?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes; I was.

Mr. TAVENNER. Did you serve? That is, were you seated?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question, sir, under the fifth
amendment.

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

Mr. VELDE. I want to go a little further. When did you file your
petition for naturalization?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Well, at the moment I don’t recall exactly when I filed
the petition, but it is a matter of public record.

Mr. VELDE. Would it have been approximately 5 years before the date of
your naturalization in 1936?

Mr. WESTMAN. Yes.

Mr. VELDE. Probably in 1931?

Mr. WESTMAN. It would be approximately in that period.

Mr. VELDE. How old were you at that time?

Mr. WESTMAN. I was 29, I believe, at that time.

Mr. VELDE. Then during the 5 years following your filing of a petition
for naturalization did you engage in any type of Communist activity?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question for the reasons that I
have given before.

Mr. VELDE. Did you know what the Communist Party was at that time?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question for the same reasons
that I have given.

Mr. VELDE. Where, and in what court did you receive your citizenship?

Mr. WESTMAN. It was at the Federal courthouse here, but I am not sure
at the present time which court it was.

Mr. VELDE. At the time that you received your citizenship in the court,
United States district court, were you engaged in any Communist Party
activities?

Mr. WESTMAN. I decline to answer that question for the same reasons
that I have given before.

Mr. MOULDER. Have you, to your own best knowledge and information,
ever committed any act, a subversive act or one of un-American conduct
against the United States of America?

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. Well, sir, under the fifth amendment, I must decline to
answer that question, and I also know that this committee knows that I
have not been engaged in such activities. I am sure that this committee
knows that.

Mr. VELDE. As a member of the committee, I certainly do not know that
you have not been engaged in subversive activities.

Mr. MOULDER. It seems to me you now have an opportunity to tell the
committee that you have not been engaged in subversive activities.

(The witness confers with his counsel.)

Mr. WESTMAN. I still decline to answer the question under the fifth
amendment because I do not consider this an opportunity.

Mr. MOULDER. You say you served in the Armed Forces for a period of how
long?

Mr. WESTMAN. Approximately 6 or 7 months.

Mr. MOULDER. And why were you discharged?

Mr. WESTMAN. That was because I was over 40.

Mr. MOULDER. What was the extent of your services in the Armed Forces?
Were you in combat service?

Mr. WESTMAN. No.

Mr. MOULDER. Are there any further questions?

Mr. TAVENNER. No, sir.

Mr. MOULDER. Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. No questions.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Frank Kerr.

Will you come forward? Just have a seat, please.

(Mr. Frank Kerr came forward, accompanied by his counsel, Jay G. Sykes.)

Mr. TAVENNER. Mr. Chairman, this witness has been subpenaed, and a
doctor’s certificate has been given which is wholly inadequate as a
medical certificate to show that this gentleman was not in condition to
appear here.

Counsel was advised to get a doctor and give us a certificate that we
thought would mean something.

There may have been some confusion about who was to have the
examination made, but, regardless of that, it is quite apparent, from
observation, that the man is not well, and I don’t feel satisfied in
interrogating him under these circumstances unless the witness himself
wants to be interrogated.

(Mr. Sykes conferred with Mr. Kerr.)

Mr. SYKES. He would rather not.

Mr. TAVENNER. Under those circumstances I do not feel like insisting on
it.

Mr. MOULDER. Do you wish the subpena to be continued or remain in full
force and effect?

Mr. TAVENNER. No, sir. Under the circumstances, I think Mr. Kerr should
be dismissed.

Mr. MOULDER. The witness is excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

Mr. TAVENNER. There are no further witnesses, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. MOULDER. The hearing will remain in order.

As chairman of this subcommittee, and on behalf of the staff of the
committee, our able counsel, Mr. Tavenner, and our investigator,
Mr. Wheeler, and myself, we are all deeply grateful to the police
department and the highly qualified police officers who have served
this committee so faithfully and efficiently.

We are also deeply grateful and want to express our appreciation to
all city, county, and Federal officials who have cooperated with us in
every possible way.

As a member of the Committee on Un-American Activities, I want to say
that I have attended many hearings in many sections of the United
States, and I have never had the pleasure of enjoying more genuine,
warm hospitality than has been extended to us during the hearings which
have been held here in Seattle, Wash.

I am deeply grateful for the opportunity and the honor of having been
associated with so many fine people as I have found here in Seattle.
They have cooperated with us during the hearings.

We also wish to express our deep appreciation for the efficient service
rendered by the sheriff’s office, as well as all other public officials
who have cooperated with us during the hearings.

Mr. Velde?

Mr. VELDE. I simply want to say this, Mr. Chairman: I appreciate the
courteous and fair manner in which you have conducted the hearings here
in Seattle.

I have a soft spot in my heart for the people in Seattle, and I concur
with you that we have been given more courteous treatment, or at least
as courteous treatment here in the city of Seattle and in the Northwest
area as we have been given in any other section of the country. We
really do appreciate it.

Mr. MOULDER. Thank you very much, Mr. Velde.

The committee will be adjourned.

(Whereupon, Saturday, March 19, 1955, at 5:35 p. m., the committee was
recessed subject to the call of the Chair.)



FOOTNOTES:

[1] This is a reference to International Association of Machinists,
AFL, Aeronautical Industrial District Lodge 751.

[2] This is a reference to National Union of Marine Cooks and Stewards.

[3] This is a reference to Masters, Mates, and Pilots of America,
National Organization (AFL).

[4] This is a reference to National Marine Engineers’ Beneficial
Association (CIO).

[5] This is a reference to Inland Boatmen’s Union of the Pacific.

[6] This is a reference to the International Longshoremen’s and
Warehousemen’s Union.

[7] This is a reference to Marine Firemen, Oilers, Watertenders and
Wipers Association Pacific Coast.

[8] This is a reference to National Union of Marine Cooks and Stewards
of the Pacific.

[9] This is a reference to Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific.

[10] This is a reference to Building Service Employees’ International
Union, AFL, Local No. 6.

[11] This is a reference to International Woodworkers of America (CIO).

[12] This is a reference to International Association of Machinists,
AFL.


[Transcriber’s Note:

References ‘uopwa 35 cio’ are ‘United Office and Professional Workers
of America, Local No. 35 C. I. O.’

Page 395, duplicate sentences ‘Mr. Dennett. E-n-g-s-t-r-o-m.’ removed.

Page 420, ‘The meeting was overwhelming successful’ changed to read
‘The meeting was overwhelmingly successful’.

Page 432, ‘Was was his official title?’ was changed to read ‘What was
his official title?’

Obvious printer errors corrected silently.

Inconsistent spelling and hyphenation are as in the original.]





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