The Rebel (1895-1896)/01/03

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Vol. 01 November, 1895 — pdf. No. 03

AN ANARCHIST-COMMUNIST JOURNAL
DEVOTED TO THE SOLUTION OF THE LABOR QUESTION.


In Memoriam, by Edward O' Donnell

Years roll on entombing men and deeds And slaves or despots leave no trace behind, While lying scroll unto the future pleads Conceding honor where vice lorded blind. Rut there are imprints on the sands of time That granite shaft dare not to hope outliveYou may strangle freedom; yet what of the crime? Demanding justice it will still survive! In every age and every clime you'll find Uncrumbling tokens of human thought To noble effort in some cause outlined, And vengeance mad by retribution sought. The rack and gallows crimson with the tide Of gallant hearts in vigor stricken down

\,Iust surely perish, but on every side

New fears and dangers shall at tyrants frown. To-night wherever thinking men abide, Or thro' mock freedom servile justice spies, Chicago's martyrs by foul pen decried, As fixed stars blaze amid hope's clearing skies.

The Eleventh of November:

A Crime and its Results, by William H. Holmes

,'Weare birds of the coming storm!" These memorable words of our martyred comrade, August Spies, uttered at a meeting of Congregational ministers held in Chicago nearly a year before the Haymarket tragedy-a meeting at which I was also present- were the keynote of the then general revoluary spirit prevailing in this country. The active revolutionary propagaUda, more active perhaps in Chicago than elsewhere in the United States, was given a new impetus as a result of the Pittsburg Congress of the International Working People's Association, held in October 1883. Both Parsons and Spies were delegates to the Congress, and both assisted in the famous manifesto issued by that body, Not only these two comrades, but all active members of the various International groups which were then and afterwards organized, based their revolutionary teachings chiefly upon that manifesto. To wage "energetic, relentless, revolutionary" warfare against the existing class rule; to warn the tyrants of the world of the "scarlet and sable lights of the judgment day"; to urge the workers everywhere to unite against their oppressors-these were the tenets and this the spirit of revolutionary agitation which gave to our cause its martyrs. A few ardent souls there were, like Louis Lingg and Adolph Fisher, who construing but a single meaning from the manifesto openly proclaimed the propaganda by deed, and there were not wanting those who waited but the opportunity to carry out desperate projects already conceived; but the great majority of our revolutionary comrades interpreted it more liberally, and were content, for the time being to speak and write in prophetic warning of the wrath to come, and to urge their hearers and readers to make thorough preparation for the revolution. Thus, comrade Parsons, in his famous lake front speeches, would point to the palaces which adorn that vicinity, and in his wonderfully persuasive and eloquent way would explain to the thousands of working people there assembled how their labor, their skill and their intelligence had planned, fashioned and built the costly edifices, and exhort them, as they loved liberty and justice, to prepare to wrest them from the hands of the exploiters. That Parsons was an earnest revolutionist there can be no doubt, and yet he comprehended in its full meaning the significant wordsc of St. Just: "They who make half revolutions simply dig their own graves." On one occasion after a particularly successful meeting, he said to me with much feeling, "I earnestly hope the revolution will not come too soon; we have had enough failures." At the time of the Haymarket outbreak there were probably in Chicago alone fully three thousand enrolled members in the various International groups. The American group, of which Parsons, Fisher and Spies were all members had in January 1886 fully one hundred and fifty enrolled members. Some of the German groups had as many as four to six hundred. These (except the few spies, who were generally known) were all revolutionary Socialists and Anarchists. Such, then, was the condition of the revolutionary movement and feeling on the first of May 1886. Thousands who had listened to the burning speeches of our martyred comrades, had become imbued with their spirit, their natural timidity mainly preventing their actual affiliation with us as group members. On the occasion of a demonstration held, I think, in November 1884, fully four thousand men and women were in line of march, every individual of them wearing a red badge. Walking eight abreast there was at least one red flag or banner to each file of marchers. Many think it was this imposing, and to the capitalists alarming demonstration which decided them upon that course of action which the daily press of Chicago forshadowed in these words: "Force the leaders into a violation of the law and then make examples of them." But the influence of the revolutionary teachings of our dead heroes and their living comrades was far more fully shown by the innumerable multitudes of sobbing, wailing mourners who filed one by one past the biers of the dead, and lined the streets along which moved the solemn funeral procession. I stood by the coffin of comrade Parsons on that gloomy Sunday morning (Noven~ber 13, 1887) from seven 0' clock until past ten, waiting for a cessation of the stream of weeping humanity, but when we finally closed the doors the line still reached far down the street, and this scene was repeated at the homes of each of the five victims of plutocratic hate. Thousajjds of the spectators who lined the streets were in tears. Cries and lamentations came from the windows and doorways. I noted even many police officers were weeping. "Hang these men and you kill Anarchy in this country!", shouted Grinnell in his closing speech to the jury. When the capitalistic conspiracy had reached its climax the daily press took up the refrain and cried "Anarchy is dead." But the judicial murder of our comrades neither "killed" anarchy nor abated in the least the revolutionary sentiment. On the contrary, the feeling which theretofore had concentered mainly in Chicago was by that act diffused more broadly throughout the land, nay, throughout the world. For some time after the hanging I was in a position to feel the changing radical pulse of the country. Dozens of letters were received from fanner enemies of the movement, and all breathed the same spirit: sympathy for the martyrs and condemnation of their murderers. From Dakota a young lady wrote that her only source of information of the trial was a Chicago daily paper, yet from the published reports she was satisfied that our comrades were innocent. Tens of thousands of copies of the speeches in court were distributed, a Chicago weekly journal published autobiographical sketches of the victims, from sales of which a handsome revenue was collected. There is no attempt to claim that a great number of those who were brought under the influ. ence of the speeches or writings of our comrades were forthwith converted to anarchistic or revolutionary doctrines; but the influence of radical thought was sown broadcast, and added to the general feeling of unrest which already pervaded the country. Here in the West, among the middle and laboring classes there has been a tremendous revolution of feeling, and it is now difficult to find a man or woman who unreservedly approves the judicial murder of our friends. Many condemn the act outright. Samuel Fielden, now a resident of this locality, finds no difficulty in making friends, and there are those hereabout who make no secret of their revolutionary tendencies. It is true, most of them still call themselves "silverites" and "populists", and vent their epithets against the politicians of the two old parties, but while they charge their immediate wrongs to the. , 'crime against silver", they more or less feel that our comrades were foully dealt with for championing the cause of the oppressed, which is their cause. Thus one cause helps ~.nother of a similar tendency with the final result of bringing all victims of capitalistic oppression to feel that their wrongs are identical. Many of our most intelligent and earnest workers were brought to us as a result of the Chicago judicial murder. Who that reads these lines has not gained a near fr~end and comrade by that crime? ~o while the revolutIOnary cause may not now be drawn 111 such specific lines in this country as during the active existen.ce of the International groups, the work goes bravely on, and the cause does not fail or drop. One valuable lesson it seems to me may be learned from the past: the citadel of the enemy can be attacked and demolished better by the modern method of secret tunnelling and undermining than by the ancient one of the battering ram. A word to the wise is sufficient. It has been charged by the enemies 01 our cause that the reason for revolutionary inaction at the climax of the tragedy of 1886-7 was the cowardice and lack of preparation of the revolutionists. It is time they were undeceived. They owe the tragic culmination of their savage conspiracy and their own security not to any deficiency or lack of courage of the revolutionists of this country, but to the expressed wish of their victims while calmly awaiting the scaffold. Their united thought was well expressed by him who said with his dying breath "There will come a time when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you strangle today."

WILLIAM HOLMES.

The Fruit of the Sacrifice, by X. Y. Z.

Eight times has our Mother Earth bareu her scarred breast to the bitter blast, -eight times laid naked this nnhealing wound whence blood still issues, this deep gash near her heart wherein they thrust her mnrdered children's bodies-the grave at \Valdheim. Eight weary years have the women wept, and the orphaned children placed upon their fathers' tomb their wreaths of tcar-wet flowers. Eight slumbrous years has the powerful silence lain upon those lips that, living, never unclosed save to utter uefiance to the tyrant that strangled but could not subdue. Eight solemn years has the sweet, dead voice, that filled the gloomy corridors of Cook County .Jail with the tender song of nnuying love, on the last night that it ever sang, been echoing over the world. Far, far beyond the black wall of the prison, borne on invisible wings, up, high into the garrets, and down, low, into the cellars of the world, floatg the swan-song of death, till from out the night of the people's sorrow, in near and far-off lands, the unknown voices waken and sing "Annie Laurie." Eight rain-breath'd springs have the graves grown green, eight withering autumns turned old and white, and the immortal seed lain germinating in the furrow. For you, Grinnells and Garys of the world, who for eight blasting years have borne upon your brows the burning brand of Cain, for you-the earthquake, for us, liberty. Oh, there are so many things to gather from this grave, upon whose sodden grass the scarlet leaves whirl, and scatter-whipped in the Novcmber winu, flying in the faces of the thousands gathered there, even as the words of the dead men whirl and scatter, scarlet, flaming, lighting blazes iu the hearts they touch. \Vhat shall we gather, comrades? What thought shall we bear away to serve us in another year of struggle for that cause to us most dear? What is the most priceless lesson we can learn from the martyrdom of Parsons, Fisher, Engel, Lingg, anu Spies? For the saddest thing to me in all these commemorations is that the most of us only drop the tears of regret, only say, "Ah, they took away the best of our comradesand there are none to fill their places." The idea of incommensurable, irreparable loss, the idea that whatever good came from the agitation created was bought far too dear, sends a continual pulsation of pain, a hopeless ache in the heart, such as one feels when the clang of the prison gate rings on the ear, and is told that a prisoner for life has gone in thereat.

Is this pain justified? Is it true that sacrifice is foolish, and martyrdom an llnf'ompensated loss? In the general breaking up of all our former conceptions based upon the theological idea of man and his relations, this is one that calls for an examination. All the history of the race, as we know, has been one long interlinking of sacrifice. Not a corner of the populate,d world so isolated, not a people so barbarous, not a religion so rude, not a reform so insignificant, but has had its Hofers, its Cranmers, its Savonarolas, breathing defiance under the mouths of guns or singing glorias from the centre of smoke! But at the heart of these ecstatic triumphs over death, has ever been the idea of a compensating God who for pains suffered here will grant reward of bliss hereafter! Now modern science has proven that this God does not exist; nowhere in sky or earth or sea can any trace of him be found. On the contrary telescope, microscope, spectroscope, all enter the protest that cannot be gainsaid against a belief in the existence of any mythical power which troubles itself about an individual's life or death; all confirm the utterance of that wise man who said: "For what preeminence has man above the beast. As the one dieth so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath." From the heights of the stars we hearken to the dust of the dead, and know that, truly, "there is nothing new under the sun." 'rherefore the old belief, which sustained the martyrs of the past, the old certainty of reward which upheld the sacrifices of the past, plays no part iu our view of the tragedy of November 11. Since God no longer enters into our estimate of the conduct of life, we must either regard sacrifice and martyrdom as acts of individual folly and social waste, or we must find a scientific basis to justify them. That is we must find some reason which will not contradict any well-grounded statement of the processes of nature (or as we commonly say natural law) some reason which will warrant a human being in voluntarily becoming a handful of senseless ashes for the sake of an idea. For the nineteenth century has produced these men-men who bowed at no shrine, acknowledged no God, believed in no hereafter, and yet went as proudly and triumphantly to the gallows as ever Christian martyr did of old. It is known that Albert Parsons of his own free will returned and gave himself up to trial by the court which sentenced him to death, when in fact nothing was easier for him than to have left America till the storm passed. It is not so generally known that even till the last, even on the fatal Annie Laurie night, had he but signed the petition to the Governor, his sentence would have been commuted, and to-day he would have been free. He knew this-knew it to a certainty; for had he been willing to sign the petition such a pressure would have been brougt to bear upon Oglesby as he could not have refused. When Parsons received Capt. Black's telegram from Springfield, urging him to do it, he placed the telegram upon the table and beside it-theM a I' s e i 11 a i s e. It was to say: "Let this answel' that. Let the old strong song of defiance that the people have hurled against the rulers since '93 be my reply to those who bid me sue for my life at the feet of tee state. No, I will not petition." Was it an act of folly ?-or heroism? which? Fielden, Schwab, andNeebe, are free to-day. He might have been. Was it folly? Let us see the facts a little further. He knew that he could he saved, but his comrades Lingg, Fisher, Engel and Spies could not. They knew it too. Yet knowing it they said, "Nevertheless we will sign if Parsons will. We are willing to record ourselves as cowards if by it we can influence him to save his life." And in that hope Spies did sign the petition though he knew it would be rejected. But Parsons said: I will not sign. 'What is my life that for its sake my comrarles should stand before the world as cowards, and their death be lost to the cause? What is my life that for it they should satisfy the passion of the state's attorney, when he said, 'I want to make them do something for which the Anarchists shall hate them.' Take your petition -I will not sign." Ah, Mr. Grinnell, astute as you are, you failed. You did not make them waste the wine of the sacrifice; you could not make the Anarchists hate them. No,-but for every drop of blood you spilled on that November day you made an Anarchist. You sent their words on wings of flame in many tongues and many lands: where you hoped to saw the seed of hate the immortelles of love have bloomed; and to-night ten-thousand, nay thrice tenthousand repeat in reverence the names of Parsons, Fisher, Engel, Lingg, and Spies. Lost? Lost to the cause? Gained! gained a thousand fold! Whenever men dream of liberty, and dreaming dare, and daring strike, there above them, white, luminous, shining, as they stood upon the scaffold, appear the ghosts of Parsons, Fisher, Engel, Spies. Wherever in the horrible conflict between laborers and soldiers a shattered, shredded striker is borne away by his comrades, who lookiilg on his blood hate deeper, there walks the mangled corpse of Louis Lingg, that brave, beautiful boy who, tossing his proud head, "with his tawny hair like a lion's mane," and gazing with dauntless eyes full at the court about to sentence him, exclaimed; "I do believe in force, han g me for it !" "Ah," you say, "you are talking poetry," Let us see if we are not near the solution of the problem of martyrdom, -the answer to the question, "what shall it profit a man if he aid a cause, and yet lose his own life, sinee there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave whither he goeth." Let us, then, ask another question, What is "a man '?" The theological idea was a sou 1and abo d y. But seience says the body is so much lime, so much iron, so much suI phur, so much carbon, and so on, which disintegrate at death and pass into other forms but cannot be destroyed., But what is the soul? The seientist answers a compound, an organism of certain psychological elements, just as much facts as the physical ones which accompany them. The sonl of a man is so much courage, so much energy, so much prudence, so much daring, so much poesy, so much fear, hope, and so on through the qualities that make a man. As the body of every individual is a little different in the prop' 0rtions of its composition from every other so is the soul. fhis is all that makes an individual. But the soul-elements, like the body-elements, are common to all mankind, and at death nothing is lost in the one case any more than in the other,-only transmuted. Death, indeed, to the person who has thrown aside the old ideas of God and immortality, simply means a setting free of original elements to form new combinations,-the lower forms being weeded out by the slow but certain action of natural selection, the higher constantly becoming more active and beneficent. To all the nobler elements of our comrades, brought so strongly forth in that unjust trial, sentence, incarceration, and execution death meant only an intenser, larger life(?) And when I say this I do it not only from my own theoretical stand-point, but in the certain knowledge that such was their belief and acceptance in the case of Parsons and Fisher at least. I know it from the lips of one who never lied, one who lifted their standard when it was stricken down, one who saw them day after day in prison, one who would have gone to the scaffold with them, one who, strangled by the invisible rope of poverty, now lieS six feet deep in the eternal dark with the eternal smile upon his lips-D y e l' D. L u m! And these were his words; "In so exalted a state were they, so sure that death by the gallows was but a means of spreading further into the hearts of the people they loved the ideas apart from which they had no life, that it was exactly the trufh when Fisher said; 'This is the happiest moment of my life!' And those who saw his face say that it shone with a white light on the scaffold.

This then is the justification of sacrifice even to death, th"t through it thc most active and enduring element in the martyr's personality is projected into the intillitely greater life of the race. Lct us bear this thought with us. Let us believe that from under the granite shaft at \Valdheim, from under the stone pedestal whereon the warrior mother, with the great, sorrowful stern eyes, st:1nds, grasping the dagger while she drops the laurel on her slaughtered ehild, from lmder the earth and the night and the blight of death, we hear again: "Let the v 0 ice 0 f the lJ eo lJ lle be he a I'd !" ; and low in the ear that listens the lllurderell five repeating, "I am not dead, I am not deall ; I live a life intense, divine; Yours be the days forever fled But all the mol'l'ows shall be mine."

X. Y. Z.

On the Evolution of the Idea of the Fatherland, by A. Hamon

The idea conveyed by the tpl'ln 'fathedand' PI'PSUpposes a state of solidarity, of llnion, all association of illllividuals; it implies the idea of a gathpring togpther; in short, we coulll not COlll:ei I'P, nor w01l1d it sepm possible to us for anyone to ('()Jll:l'i ve of a 'fatlH'rland' comprising but one individual. The tpl'm then, asslllnes all assembilige of beings, a qnantity of which the l'omponent parts are individuals. In order that these illllividllals may amalgamate and give birth to the l'l'sulting llatioll, WP nillst have a eOIllmon character, a resemblance which ill sOllie sort unifies and leads these indi viduals to asso(,iate. \Ve ('allnot conceive of beings laekillg qualities or l'lJarader in ('ommon entering into fellowship or uniting to form an association. These primal qualities in eommon were indubitably what gave birth to, or rather whil:h formed the grollp amidst which the individual was bred and developed, anli the first 'fatherland' therefore was the horde, tribe or dan. Life in comlllon developes a eommunity, further solidi' tied by ties of blood, or manners, customs, language, feelings and sentiments-all of which tend to form a oneness of interests and to bind human beings together. They feel themselves to be members of one and the same corporate body, an aggregation of individuals. AIso, in the horde, tribe or elan, men feel that they are one, whilst relatively to the neighboring tribes they feel on a different footing, almost of another nature; living apart they seldom (~ome in contact except for purposes of dispute or war. Theil' manners, customs, language, sentiments and feelings are dissimilar; the others are strangers, an enemy. The country or 'fatherland' is simply understood to mean this partieular horde tribe or clan. Little by little as time passes, man, emerging from the hunter stage, beeomes a shepherd, next an agriculturist, and the City is formed. Then the 'fatherland' becomes that city. The stranger, the enemy, is the man who does not beloilg to that city. The number of individuals possessing a similar character, increases; solidarity is extended over a wider field but is diminished in strength owing to the growth of ('aste and classes in the city. 'rhe fatherland has grown, means more, but the sentiment of brotherhood is less powerful bec'ause there seems less reason for solidarity. But new wants arise with c~ivilisation; ('ommerce is developed, and eonsequpntly there eomes a ('loser eontaet between neigh boring cities. Men come to know each other better, to dread eaeh other less, they even learn to love ea('h other. The differentiation of habits grows less marked; languages intermingle; interests are occasionally assimilated; alliance, then union is fOl'llwd. So the young State is born. A new 'fatherland' is the result; wider in territory, containing more people. In this State, the manners, customs, language and sentiments tend towards uni~ formity, uIltil at length they become the same North and South, East amI West. Solidarity is yet further diminished.

The Crisis of Socialism, by P. Kroptkine

Our friend Domela Nieuwenhuis published in the Societe Nouvelle of Brussels [March and May 1894], two remarkable studies of German Social Democracy: "The Divers Courses of the German ."'ocial lJemocra()!," and "Socialism in Danger;" and he follows these two studies by a third" L iberta ria n .S'ocialisJII and Authoritarian Socialism,'; published in the September and October numbers of the same review. In these articles, based entirely on what has been said and published by the chiefs of the party themselves, and entirely divested of the element of polemics, Nieuwenhuis has demonstrated how the party, by its very essence, is forcibly brought to become bonrgeoisist [the mere representative of the well-to-do midcUe class] to abandon its socialistic program and to become more and more the password, not of the proletarians, but of the radical petty bourgeois. Formerly when the Anarchists said this to their social-democratic friends they were treated as calumniators. Today it is admitted in the official organ of the party, by one of its most esteemed chiefs, Bebe!. In these articles Nieuwenhuis shows clearly that -to use the words of Bebel-' 'this defilement and this debilitation (Verwcessernng) of the party" necessarily results from diverse causes: the principles themselves , enunciated in their program of Erfurt; authoritarian organization and authoritarian principles, and finally, the economic basis of the life of the party, ---the emolument of the editors and agitators, and the "little socialist trade" practised on a big scale, which greatly increases numbers, but finishes by causing the petty bourgeois to dominate. It follows that when Vollmar, the chief of the "right" of the party, went so far as to turn completely over to bourgeoisism, even to voting in the Bavarian diet the budget of the government, and that an important faction of the democracy, with Bebe1 at the head, wished to censure him for it, the Congress passed a sponge over it by saying that his conduct was absolutely in conformity with the principles enunciated at Erfurt, at that time the constitution of the party; that it COI1formed in every point with all preceding parliamentary practices. In other words: the development into bourgeoisism was foreseen; it was will e d by the very enunciation of the principles. The moral "considerations" were only a far-off ideal, an ornament. Let us add here the absolute absence of the critical spirit. For fear of destroying the unity of the party, all criticism is eliminated in advance. Whoever dares to criticise, be it the principles or the theoretic ideas in vogue, the tactics, or the acts of any of the "men of trust" who constitute what has been called "the future dictatorship of the proletariat," is immediately torn to pieces, thrown as prey to the journalists and orators whose capacities and degree of advancement are measured very often (according to the just remark of Richard Calwer) by their "venomous tongues;" (they do not discusss; they preach or they insult; again one of the distinctive features of the party.) Also, while economic ideas are gaining in depth, even in the bourgeois science, under the whip of socialistic criticism, and new questions and new perceptions are surging forward-as it always happens with science under the official seal, the science of the party is motionless. It is arrested at the "Communist Manifesto," which dates fifty years back, and at Marx's "Capital", which, whatever may be said of it, has had its day. Whether there be dissensions in the German Social-Democracy or not, whether there be divisions with outbreaks or no, scarcely interests us. The governmental socialist party is already divided into so many warring factions in France and England, that a division more or less would not make any difference. The German Social-Democracy is also divided- we are well aware of it: there are the Vollmar, Bebel, and Liebknecht factions, and still others. Exterior unity only is maintained-above all by the ever renewed persecutions-and if this show of unity disappeared also, hardly anything would be changed. The essential thing for us, is this. This is, undoubtedly, a time of arrest in the development of Socialism. The time has arrived when the soci~listic workers, after having been blindly ranged under this or that flag, put to themselves the question as to the essence of socialism. And this question, once put, they will be forced to treat it, to elucidate their ideas, to become exact. And we are persuaded, that if political events do not precipitate us too suddenly into the fiery furnace of wars and revolutions,-which is very possible-governmental socialism, split everywhere into parties and divers factions, will be forced to change its tactics completely. We see this renovation and rejuvenation coming, and we hail it with joy. We see, betrayed by a thousand various indications, the need of revising throughout the fundamental principles of governmental socialism penetrating further every day. And we are persuaded, by the thousand little facts which we observe in the movement, by the change of language even and the new ideas which permeate the socialist writings and discourses, that this need is making itself felt more and more. It only seeks its constructive formula to affirm itself in broad daylight. Hence can we believe, can the workers believe, in this "revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat," which formerly inspired so many millions of workers? Vague formulas, which constituted the "Communist Manifesto," which they accepted in its poetic generalization without fathoming it, and which we have seen translated in Germany by the "men of trust," in France by b 1a n qui s m e--=--government, in a word, by the secret society. Does anyone believe in it now? Incapable of bringing to a safe harbor a single party, is this lie of a di~atorship of the prletariat capable of inspiring the masses? No, assuredly no. Again, do they, in Germany itself, believe in the popular parliament-in the Vol k s t a a t or popular State-represented by a parliament of ele~ors, who will seize all lands, mines, machines, railways (leaving the inhabited houses and stores to their owners, according to the formula, or perhaps taking possession 01 them also) and regulating from Berlin the laws and customs concerning the possession of land, the price of the possession of machines, their supply of raw mater als and their manufa~ure, the carrying of merchandise, exportation and foreign commerce, sending out' 'armies of agricultural workers" to tear down hedges and make the steam engine go under orders from Berlin, etc., etc.? Do they believe in this, as Marx and Engels believed in it in 18 j6, and as it was believed in in Germany after the success of the armies of Moltke, when men new nothing of the war but what the lying bulletins said ot it? No, they believ it no longer, even in Germany. Certainly not in the Vollmar fa~ion, not among those who have addressed the peasants and who have taken good care to mirror to them the ideal formerly preached by the authoritarian communists. And certainly they no longer believe it in Berlin where they have had a close view of what a parliament is, what it must be from its very essence, what it would be again after a revolution. As to France and England, the people do not believe too much in even municipal socialism; and at Paris they are suspicious even of the socialism of a revolutionary Commune. And in the constr'"u~iv'"e eco'"nomic ideal, a revolution almost as profound has, for twenty years, been taking place among the thinkers. Twenty years ago, not understanding any too well the terminology of Marx, one might still speak naively of the grand discovery of "surplus value," and win applause by saying: "Surplus value to the worker!" But to-day he who hasards this tirade i" speedily engaged in recolle~ ing that sur p 1u s value means the exploitation of some one by another; that the worker will have none of it, and that the question is to know "what to do il1 order that all things may be produced in c such quantities, that each may have his necessities gratified at his discretion and luxuries to satisfa~ion -that which is luxury to-day becoming the necessity of to-morrow!" Finally, in Germany itself, the belief in the popular and socialistic state is greatly shaken. Not only is the impossibility of it perceived, but the people commence to understand that since they have parted with the idea of "the conquest of power" in the a~ual State, they will be forced to work for the maintenance of the State in general,-that is to say, for the maintenance of the phase of civilisation which, throughout all history, (the empire of Alexander, the Roman empire, and the modern empires) has corresponded to the destrut1;ion of all libetties, to the enslavement of the producer, to the fornlation of industrial and land monopolies,-a phase which leads inevitably, either to Ccesarism or to the destru~ion of the State from top to bottom by the social revolution; and that, in the a~ual conditions, the chase after power must lead, has led, to the abandonment of socialism, to any and every accomodation with industrial exploitation, and to political and military servitude. '" '" '" Well, these ideas, we say, have penetrated the masses. And this is why it is no longer a question of one simple division more, in the womb of the great governmental-socialist party. Complete revision of fundamental principles is demanded. Socialism, such as has been propagated up to our days, must change its plan entirely, under pain of disappearing. It must become communistic again. And since, in becoming communistic, it cannot remain authoritarian without falling into absurdity, it must become anarchistic.

"THE REBEL" A MONTHI,Y JOURNAL 01<' ANARCHIST-COMMUNISM. Issued by the "REBEL" Group. Yearly Subscription, 50 cents. Six months, 25 cents. Single Copy,S cents. Terms for Advertisement by special arrangement with H. M KELLY, manager. All Literary ComlIlunications to be addressed to the Editor, C. W. MOWBRAY. Printed and published by H. M. Kelly and James Robb. Entered at the Boston Post Office as second class mail matter. BOSTON, MASS., NOVEMBER 20, 1895. ,~,----,-- ,- -----

Notes.

We shall not be responsible for any remittances but those addressed to H. M. KEI,T,Y, G. P.O., Boston, Mass. Subscribers, groups, and readers please he edt his! THAT BAIT-the eight-hour work day-that has been nibbled at in the past so many times, but never hauled off the hook by the trade union fish-is being once more held out to the toilers of this country as a tempting morsel to be captured by them with the aid of the politicians (sympathetic souls!) on the coming First of May, 1896. To those who have been close students of the labor movement in our country this theme has become already a stereotyped article at this time of the year. After the fall elections, which occupy the minds of the "sovereigns" for a while are over, it behooves the officers of the trade unions to mete out to their constituents some food to be munched during the long and dreary winter months for fear they might forsake the fold. And experience has taught our shrewd "labor leaders" that there is hardly anything so strongly possessed of conglutinative properties in the way of cementing the rank and file as the much talked of conquest of the shorter workday. Up till now it has been but tal k on the part of heavy salaried men with a view of maintaining a good place that enables one to gnaw a fleshy bone. This time, we are told, it is meant in earnest, and the subject is to be made the hard nut which the A. F. of I",. will be invited to crack at its coming convention in New York. In fact it was voted at the Denver meeting of that body to make a national move for eight hours on May I, 1896. Some of the labor papers are foolishly elucidating the virtues and vices of this or that individual on whom is to be bestowed the honor of leading, or, to be more exact-' 'ordering", the labor batallions of the country in what may turn out to be one of the greatest strikes in the world's history. Who is the coming man? they ask; will it be the radically (??) inclined McBride or the reactionary ex-prophet, Gompers. There are a host of others who are being spoken of in connection with the presidency of the Federation. To us it does not matter which of these gods hold the reins. We are not going to discuss here the merits or demerits, the wisdom or folly of such a move. If this movement be a popular one it is our place to be there. It may not be amiss to keep in memory the fact that it was the eight hour movement in 1886, participated in by our murdered comrades, to which the Anarchists have contributed such a weighty share. What interests us is the method to be adopted for the realization of the demand. It is only along the lines of a general strike [and nothing short of that] that success is sure to crown the effort. That the sympathy of all the unorganized, and not their's alone but of all the discontented elements will be on the side of the exploited has been sufficiently demonstrated at the time of the A. R. U. strike. But should any other tactics be decided upon by the leaders at the coming convention our advice to all those who are willing to give us ear is-keep aloof.

THE ANNUAL cong'"ress'" of 't"he German Social Democrats in Breslau has once more, in the history of the decline of the once revolutionary party, furnished an illustration of the intolerance prevalent in the great army of "loyal kickers" towards members who happen to deviate from the course dictated to them by the usurpers of the 'creed'. The list of the excommunicated from the party for "insubordination" has been enriched by one more name-that of Dr. Rudt. His crime is the promulgation of atheistic teachings, and lese-majeste committed against Kaiser Liebknecht. Dr. Rudt, whose spirit has not been in the least dampened by the action of the men who aspire to a minister's portfolio, issued a leaflet in which he assures the readers in his determination to follow in the future his own path in the methods of doing effective propaganda work for the principles of socialism, without the approbation of the authoritarians. The blind followers of the German dictators may soon be induced to ponder over the beauties and nice things held in store for us by the new hierarchy -State Sociali~m. And yet some misguided persOnS in this country strive to make us believe in freedom coming from Germany. An attempt we cannot well conceive of. '" '" '"

LOUISE MICHEL has accepted the invitation of a lecture agency to undertake a tour through the States, and is expected to arrive here in the middle of December. The stipulations contracted by our comrade are very advantageous and she intends to establish with the money thus realized a home for political refugees in London.

The past of Louise Michel is an open record before all the world of a life sacrificed to the devotion of a cause-the liberation of the wage slaves-a past that commands the respect even of her enemies. It is to be expected that our friend will in the intervals be able to address audiences in meetings called by comrades, and thus furnish an opportunily for the unfolding of a wide propaganda for Anarchist Communism among the English-speaking people of this country.

IT IS already about five years that Louise Michel, a: victim of the base manceuvres of Constans and his magistracy took refuge in England. Before her departure to Amerika she paid a visit to Paris, where she addressed a meeting on the 16 inst., in the Tivoli Waux-Hall, on the subject: "What do we want." We also learn that it is planned by the Anarchists -to arrange an agitation tour for L. Michel and the celebrated orator Sebastien Faure embracing about twenty of the larger French cities as a means towards the procuring of the funds required for the publication of the recently started weekly journal Le Libertaire, 5, Rue Eugene Sue, Paris, 8 frs. per annum, with Faure as editor, twice a week. THE FRENCH police, having failed last year to furnish proof of the existence of an "association of malefactors" invented by them, did not give up the battle yet. "Les Temps Nouveaux" has the infonnation from a reliable source that the "black cabinet" is performing its functions as rigorously as it ever did, and that most of the letters received by comrades who rank among the number of the 'noted' ones are read and photographed previous to delivery. Our confrere, therefore, warns the comrades to be careful in the correspondence carried on between themselves, to avoid all ambiguous expressions which may be misinterpreted by the police so as to furnish a pretext for persecution. This fact may serve as a fair example of the respect our rulers have for the secrecy of private correspondence. Infamies like these are the usual straws which constitute the State "broom." One may ask how great and impressive must the thrashing applied to the worshippers of the State idea be to at last open their eyes. -x FROM THE Freiheit: "J. SCH., Boston.-Our opinion of the everlasting founding of new papers, instead of thinking of the maintenance of existing organs, has been expressed more than once, but seems to have no effect whatever. The old song is sung again. As long as the comrades of the particular locality, in the first strawfire of enthusiasm, are willing to sacrifice their last pennies the printing goes on briskly. Afterward the hothouse plant breaks down again. If 0 n e paper were placed on a solid foundation, it would perhaps be time to think of starting a second, certainly not before." Comrade Most's opinion in all matters concerning our propaganda is certa.inly entitled to serious consideration. If the "Freiheit" were printed in the English language there would be no room for argument, it would be the duty of every Anarchist-Communist to concentrate his efforts on the support of that paper, especially as that includes the support of John Most, whose services in the cause deserve the most effective recognition. But we are living in an English speaking country, and the FREIHEIT is printed in German. Now it is evident that if we are ever to convert the masses of this country we must carryon a propaganda in the language of the country. Saverio Merlino recognized this obvious truth when he visited this country and at once began the publication of Solidarity. I, too, told Merlino that his paper would be only a hot-house plant, and would not live in the chilly atmosphere of the American labor movement, but his answer silenced my objections, and converted me to his views. "Suppose it does not live, every number we succeed in publising is so much accomplished of the task we have undertaken." 'Solidarity' is dead but during its brief and pitiful existence it accomplished a great work in spreading a knowledge of our doctrines among the English speaking people of this country. The FIREBRAND has and is doing good work, and I am happy to say bids fair to live. Every number is an improvement on its predecessor. The Rebel is a more ambitious attempt; so far it deserves the support of all comrades who have the cause of Anarchist-Communism at heart, and so far as health and strength permit I shall certainly co-operate in the task of making it all it ought to be. "But would you let the FREIHEIT die in order that the Rebel may live ?" I will answer this question squarely. Certainly no one can accuse me of any personal enmity to the Freiheit. I have always done what I could to support it, and one of my greatest personal pleasures is to read the paper. Nevertheless if I had to choose between the propaganda carried on in German and the propaganda in Fnglish, I would unhesitatingly choose the latter, simply because we live in an English speaking country, and if it became a question between the Firebrand and the Rebel, I' would choose the former, for certainly the easiest task should come first. But is it necessary that one should die in order that the other may live? I don't believe it; let us all go to work with renewed energy to put all these on a living basis. And finally if we find that only one can live, why not publish the Freiheit in English. J. Most is perfectly competent to make the change, and we would then have an organ on which we could all unite our heartiest support. J. H. EDELMANN.


Altough rain fell in sheets the evening of Novembel' 17, the meeting held at Caledonian Hall in commemoration of the death of the Chicago martyrs was a successful one, nearly every seat being taken.

The program opened with a violin solo excellently rendered. Comrade Geo. Miller, chairman, after a few appropriate introductory remarks anllounced the first speaker, H. M. Kelly, who dealt with "the Crime and its consequences." Comrade J. Hughes then sang simply and touchingly the beautiful old song Annie Laurie, now known the world over as Parsons last song. Voltairine de Cleyre followed with an address that dceply impressed the audience, after which those assembled were invited to join in singing Nesbitt's "Hope of the ages." Additional speeches were then made by Samuel P. Putnam, Prs't of the American Secular Union, who said that the Chicago men were martyrs to human liberty, Messrs. Curtis and Morton, the former a socialist and the latter a nationalist, who while not agreeing with the anarchistic doctrines strongly affirllled the right of free speech for which Parsons, Fisher, Engel, IJingg, and Spies were done to death. Thus the years do justice to the dead, and the haUl' approaches when their names will be coupled with John Brown's in speech and song, nationcwide, world-wide.

The New Era, by Peter Kropotkin

"Another idea, no less rich In consequence, dawns also upon modern thought. "When we note how all things hold together in Nature, how rare are the cataclysms which it would seem might frequently destroy all life in our globe, as well as the solar systems themselves, man cannot but conceive that there is a certain harmony in Nature, and seek to discover its cause. "Why, for instance, do these pursue their course through space without dashing against and destroying one another? Why do not volcanic eruptions and sudden subsidences from time to time annihilate whole continents, engulfing them under subterranean lava or beneath the waves? Why do not whole species of plants and animals become extinct in a few years--devoured, annihilated by other species? How is it, in fact, that human communities remain so stable? How can they last without being disintegrated by internal convulsions? Why not a chaos of continual cataclysms? "To this question, which man has never ceased to pose himself, the answer has varied with the ages. Formetly the reply was concise. It was the Creator who protected His own handiwork. Later a better solution offerred. It was especially in our present J acobinic era that the idea of law came to be substituted for that of divine arbitrariness. But, instead of remaining satisfied with what is called "natural law" -a simple suggestion, perceived by us, though without a full comprehension of the conditional character of such "natural laws" (it being plain that if one thing is produced another like it must necessarily be produced), we came by and by to consider the "law" -that is, the relation of phenomena to each otherto be a something superior to phenomena, a something, as it were, linked to phenomena, but governing and directing them. "The whole science of our century was conceived under the domination of this idea. Not only the natural sciences, but also those treating of man; and ot only has the science of universities been affected by it, but the language of the politician, the reformer and the revolutionist. "The idea of law, of control, of order, imposed upon things as well as individuals, permeates all our language, and we hear the echo of it in revolutionary meetings as often as in the courts of a bourgeois university. Our whole philosophy is tinctured with the Jacobinism of 1793.

"But a new current is already making itself felt in science which should before long influence all our conceptions. If a certain harmony exists in Nature (that it has limits is well to remember), if fearful convulsions but rarely disturb the order of the great facts of Nature, if everything and every living creature finds itself more or less adapted to the conditions under which it lives, it is because they are the products of these very conditions. It is their surroundings which have made them what they ·are.

This is why they are not in danger of destruction. The free play of constructive and destructive energies itself creates the things which represent the most durable equilibrium between the opposing forces. And if such a harmony exists, it can but be the result of these forces continually changing, continually renewed by them, according to the needs of the hour. , 'It is Lamarck and Fourier clasping hands. The idea of Lamarck applied to human communities; the idea of Fourier applied to the phenomena of nature.

"Harmony, order, wherever there exists order and harmony, are not the products of a divine will. Neither are they the products of laws imposed by anyone single active force. They maintain themselves solely on one condition-that of being freely established and in equilibrium with all other forces moving toward the same end. If the play of any of these energies is impeded by the human will, none the less do they continue to operate, but their effects will accumulate, until one day the dam will burst, and there ensues disaster-a deluge, a revolution. Harmony is not a thing that lasts indefinitely. It can exist only upon condition of continual modification, of changing its aspect every moment-for nothing exists either in Nature or amongst human relations that does not change momentarily. Continual change is the very life of Nature. And if there is this harmony in Nature, and if cataclysms are always local and rare, it is precisely because among natural forces there is no outside will endeavoring to shackle their energies. Each moves freely; all commingle together; and all together create things which last, because among the infinitely small energies pertaining to a work, as among the individualities grouped closely together to form the whole, a close bond of solidarity is established.

"Finally, we perceive that the harmony of Nature should not be exaggerated. If growths which it has taken millions of years to form, such, for instance, as living creatures and continents, become modified with incredible slowness, that has nothing to do with phenomena of recent origin. We must distinguish between the harmony of celestial spaces and that of life, which develops with infinitely greater speed. ,'Plant and animal species vary, and give rise to new species far more rapidly than has been supposed. The same applies to geological changes. With this order of facts evolution does not move with the slow and uniform step we desired to attribute to it. Evolution in these forms becomes constantly interrupted by local revolutions, and these revolutions, theSE periods of accelerated evolution are every whit as much a part of the harmony of Nature as the periods of slow evolution.

"These, in brief, are the two great currents of ideas which are beginning to penetrate the thought of our century.

"If we understand by philosophy, not merely physical abstractions, but a general survey of all the phenomena of the universe, of life, human communities and their relations, as well as the application of these views to each little fact of life and daily struggle, we can affirm that the whole philosophy of the century is about to suffer a profound modification. Anarchism is simply a part of this general survey. We might say that it is its application to the relations between men in communities, if thought as a rule did not tend in an opposite direction-that of constructing the philosophy of the universe from a simple observation of human affairs.

(To be continued.)

Labor vs. Politics, by Edward O' Donnell

What has politics done for the labor movement '! This question is asked in all seriousness by thinking men; and emanating from such mature sources the response demands well poised consideration, tempered with that degl'ee of fairness, which the gravity of the query and the great issue involved is entitled to. The treatment of this proposition, first of all, eompels one important concession, namely: that the labor question is simply and purely one of economics. Any other environment flung around it is erroneous. Setting out therefore, from this premises, adjustment is wholly impossible upon political lines. If legislative effort has any pretence at all to consistency, and if its zeal be founded upon justice, which must be generally mutual, then the adjustment of the labor question by statute is impraetical. You cannot by any stretch of logic or rectson unloosen the wheel of the chariot of progress by binding one other, and expect to reach a desired goal. In making this claim I am not of course blind to the fact the labor side of the axle has been, and is to-day, and always will be corroded, so long as politics and industrial economics are forcibly matched. Emancipation must not be hoped for by tying down of onehand amI releasing the other, ani this is precisely what political dabbling is altel'llately accomplishing in every detail. Right here we are unconsciously brougl1t face to face, as it were, with the true magnitude of the great question agitating busy minds---"what has politics done for the labor movement ?"

There is only one reply admissible:

Nothing!

Of course the advocates of political action, will laugh, and say nonsense; but it requires more than a rebuff to establish a contrary claim.

The legal protection afforded stock gambling, which stands as a watch-dog before the gateway of industrial economics, more than offsets labor legislation.

I will not deny that many of the bills framed into "law" through the instrumentality of the labor organization have given a modicum of satisfaction in some direction to the manifest dissatisfactiou of other features of the economic movement.

Legislation that will not release every limb of the labor problem only fastens tighter the shackels, and diverts the evolutionary process from its legitimate trend. The politician is merely playing possum with the labor "reformers", and in very many instances the labor reformers are playing possum with the politician.

There is not one solitary enactment spre~1d upon the public statutes for the assumed benefit of labor that will remain intact when passed through the legal sieve. 'When "constitutionally" tested, as they sometimes are, when occasion requires it, they fall to pieces, and "constitutional" agitation is confronted with the ghost of its inadequacy and futility in its attempts to solve the problem upon political lines.

Politics and labor make very poor house-keepers, and, in the light of experience they should not be forced into unfraternal partnership.

The passing odor of politics contaminates the labor movement, since the principle involved savors not of politics, and the purest motives and best intentions which fail, to perceive the danger line, are oftentimes impugned. For this reason alone, if none other was presentable, the solution of the labor question should be continued solely upon economic ground.

Corruption has sapped the economics out of the body politic in every land, with perhaps the single exception of Switzerland, and even here it is fast developing into an article of commerce. Political economy, as a science, is like justice-you hear a great deal about it bnt never see it-it, is a "Will 0' the 'Visp," flung out to mislead the unwary. Far from labor being .intebted to politics the latter has been its curse; its very rottenness is contagious, and the moment labor reformers come in contact with it they are smirched in spite of themselves. Every attf'mpt to adjust labor grievances by law, invites hostile legislation and swells the treasury of the obby.

The conspiracy and injunction laws more than counterbalance all your labor legislation, which of themselves are oppressive upon the very interests they aim to ameliorate. Political tinkering with the industrial economic problem only ret:lrds its progress, and stimulates the vicious side of human selfishness, too weak to resist the temporary inducements alluring the labor movement into destructive channels.

The eagerness with which labor leaders throttle one another when they take political issue, even with labor the pres\llned object of benefaction, is sufficiently suggestive of evil doing on either or both sides, and right here, if nowhere eIRe, labor suffers most criminal injustiee. Unfortunately for the eobweb politicians in the labor organiz:1tions, ignorance of the true status of the movement cannot be placed to their credit in every instance. Many of them are criminally censur,1ble because they are fully conscious of the depth and magnitude of their offence. True, transgression oftentimes finds itself on the gridiron, but the labor movement is the greater sufferer in the process of incineration. In as much as the labor question is one of economics, I deny point blank that its solution comes within the scope of politics, and every statutory attempt to fathom it only misleads and tern pts it from its legitimate course. A third of the time devoted to the study of the eeonomil' side of the problem within the labor organizations, now given its erroneous political phase would be more healthy and profitable to the principles of freedom.

Our Movement

GERMANY.

In spite of the never-ending persecutions the promulgation of our ideas is vigorously set forth by the Anarchists in the land that harbors such stanch a,lvocates of stern discipline as Bismarck and J,iebknccht. A new scries of the Sozialis! is being issued. It is conducted on the same lines as Les lI'JIlPS ,Vou,'eallx of Paris. It is a six-page weekly with a literary supplement comprising two pages. Its first editor, comrade \Vitzke, was sentenced on a groundless charge of l{'si'-1tlajes!e to three months imprisonment, which has been foilowed bv the conviction and sentence of comrade \Viesenthai to six- months. A second edition of the well known Anarchist trial of Magdeburg is announced to take place before the county court of Halle. In fact the charges against our comrades are far too manv to be enumerated, and convictions come like a hail-storm. 'rhere being now some differences in the conception of the theories held by various comrades, the adherents of anti-authoritarian socialism find it necessary to come to a better understanding of the doctrines of Anarchism an,l with this end in view a call for a conference of German speaking Anarchists is published in No. I I of the Sozialis! by our \Vupperthal comrades who have agreed on the necessity of the conference for the provinces of Rhineland, \Vestphalia amI adjoining districts, encouraging the comrades of all the German provinces to a like enterprise. At the coming meeting papers are to be read on: (I) "\Vhat is Anarchism and \Vhat Is the Attitude of Stirner and Proudhon Towards It?" (2) "\Vhat Kind of Propaganda Is the Most Advantageous Vnder Existing Conditions?" (3) Miscellaneous. (4 and 5) Literature, "Systematic Agitation." Let us hope the ,liscussion will be of great value in clearing the ground for the more rapid advancement of the cause of freedom.

AUSTRIA.

The tide of human affairs knows no barriers, no frontiers, no dams, and even the iron hand of General Att'y Hawlath, the Cerberus of the Habsburg empire, is powerless to check the spread of Anarchism in the country he is entrusted to watch over. The penalties inflicted by this brute on men whose only crime is the holding of views contrary to the interests of the upholders of Inodern Society is little less severe than those of the asiatic barbarians. The most trifling offences are changed, as if by magic, into heinous crimes. As an illustration, comrades 1'0plican and Schantl have been sentenced by a jury in Cilli: the first for a "disturbance of religion" and incitement to ten months, and the latter for a like offense and disturbance of the peace, to eighteen months hard labor! Housesearchings and confiscations of whole issues of the anarchist sheet, the Zukunjt, are the order of the day. The editor of the latter, Hansl, has been given two months of arrest for defilement of the marriage institution. Yet the avalanche of discontent and rebellion is rolling on, even under so stern a regime as that of the Austrian monarchy, and the propagation of revolutionary ideas is carried on fearlessly by men who have once and forever abandoned the well trodden paths of compromise with the "powers that l:e", knowing very well that he who laughes last -laughes best.

ITALY.

Luigi Molinari, late editor of ral'itla, our brave comrade who had been sentenced by Francesco Crispi to t wen t y t h r e e years imprisonment for a single speech delivered to the quarrymen of Massa di Carrara, three months previous to the outbreak of the revolt of last year in that place, and which sentence, owing to public indignation, had been reduced to seven years imprisonment, has, upon the granting of the recent amnesty, regained his liberty. He is now put under police surveillance for two years. Molinari has abandoned his profession of a lawyer, and is from now on to follow the vocation of a compositor. We hail with delight the resurrection of this friend who has been looked upon and bewailed as buried alive.

An Appeal, by Prof. Richard T. Ely

Correspondence.

University of Wisconsin.

Madison, Wisconsin, November 18, 1895.

Dear Sir,-

I have deposited my collection of labor and social reform papers in the library of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, at Madison. This collection must now amount to three hundred volumes, or more, and is probably the best collection of labor newspapers in the United States. It is as yet, however, by no means all that I would have it. I wish to make it as nearly complete as possible, in order that it may be used some day in the preparation of a book upon the history of the labor movement in this country. I have, as you may know, written, myself, a book called "The Labor Movement in America," but I have something far more comprehensive in mind. Will you announce to your readers that it is desired to add to the collection, and that any newspapers or periodicals which belong to the class of labor papers or social reform periodicals will be most welcome? It is especially desired to have as many complete files as possible.

This is an enterprise undertaken in the general interest, and it is hoped that many will give their aid to it. Anything sent for this collection should be addressed, "Reuben G. Thwaits, Esq., Librarian State Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin," marking the wrapper, "Ely collection."

May I ask that other labor papers copy this letter? Yours truly, RICHARD T. ELY.


The annual parade and demonstration at the graves of our beloved murdered eomrades did not take place this year, as the "directors" of the vValdheim cemetery refused admission to the grounds.

"We are not only masters of the living but also own the dead."

The call for the mass-meeting on Monday night was well responded to. The large Turner Hall was crowded to its utmost capacity, and though the police tried to outdo themselves in creating some distnrbance, they did not succeed. Comrade Oliver as chairman called the meeting to order, and with a few preliminary remarks introduced comrade L. E. Parsons. Her speech was liberally applauded throughout. In a part of her speech she referred to the godly Christians who so ardently assisted in hastening the terrible tragedy exelaiming: "I tell you if I had never been an infidel before, I would be one after that trial and execution. Do you think I would sit in heaven with Gary?" At the mention of Gary's name inspector Shea stepped up to her, and taking her by the arm, said: "I won't have another word of that kind of talk here, and warned her not tom e n t ion any n a m e s. Shouts of "~hame!" "Shame!" This is not Russia," etc., filled the all'.

Urging the people to keep quiet in their seats, as nothing would so please the inspeetor and his band of ruffians as to see some excitement in such a crowd, Mrs. Parsons, with utter coolness, resumed her address. And in defiance of inspector Shea and his crew, shouted in the climax of her speech: "Our comrades were foully and cruelly murdered by 0 g 1 e s b y, S e h a a c k, G a I' y, and Bon fie 1 d!"

Comrade Most spoke in German. He was also warned "to keep time." He replied that he would only state the facts as a historian would do. His speech was well received by the German part of the audienee who greatly apprer ciated his sareastic criticism of his enemies. E. E.

The Past and Future of the Ladies' Liberal League, by Voltairine de Cleyre

When a friend goes to death, we know that it is well,-with him at least; when he says, "I don't like your road; I like the other way better" we may disagree with him, but we know that he is satisfying himself, doing as we would choose to do under similar conditions; but when a friend extends his hand and says, "Good-bye; I don't know when I'll see you again. I've tramped the city over for a job, but it's no use"; or when one night he sits particularly quiet and you don't know quite what ails him, and don't want for fear of offending, and the next night and the next and the next, a stranger sits in his chair, and he never comes again, and you know in your unwilling heart that he is lost in the eddy of the black night, that strain eyes as you will you will never see aught of him again but a wavering fading shape melting away in the unresting mist, then, then you feel like taking down the Fathers of the Church and learning how to curse systematically! Dead, and deserted, and gone; but there are many of the old faces yet, and we "feel as stout-hearted as we ever did, and now and then some new ones come in to help us. Not many-we wish we were more; but "valuable articles are done up in small packages", and I am sure the originator of that clever saying must have had his prophetic eye on the L. L. L. when he said it. These additions came about, principally, at the time we joined our fortunes in part with those of the Radical Library, an institution somewhat older in years and good works than ourselves, founded for the purpose of supplying a defect in our public libraries by furnishing radical works upon all subjects at a slight expense to readers, and being open at an hour when working men may avail themselves of it.

At this time we took upon ourselves the onerous duty of paying rent, which is, was, and ever shall be an everlasting, unmitigated curse, and assuming a slightly more public character, though still retaining the purely social form. It was in the room then occupied that the question of rising finances first became urgent. In the beginning it had been mostly income and no outgo. The rent paying altered the situation, as did likewise the panic which afflicted us in common with the poor fellows whom Ward McAllister tells us were cut down from $15,000 to $10,000 a year, and cut most of us down to below zero. Our dues were only five cents a week and most of them not paid. The outlook was dubious, sky heavily mottled and no light visible.

Just here appeared the stroke of genius in the shaping of our destiny. There were two members of the society, (out of respect to whose modesty I forbear to mention the names, but if anybody guesses I won't say no) who proposed to wring success from despair, by doubling, nay tripling, the expenses, and opening a public lecture course. There were those of us who shrugged the shoulders as who should say, "I don't wish to be answerable for the consequences." I was one of them. But the daring two, who probably couldn't have paid a demand note for $1.00 between them at the time, so deeply had the iron of the engineers of the panic been driven home, these daring two went ahead; and to the saving grace of dar i n g must be attributed our salvation at this critical juncture. The thing went! A good intellectual treat was offered to the public, and the public partook freely and didn't grumble about paying for it. And such has been our experience all the time; whenever we have done ourselves justice in the matter of good speakers the audience has been willing to testify to its appreciation.

Let us right here get an understanding of the principles which governed the making up of these programs, in fact our existence as a Liberal League. We know that there is forbidden fruit waiting to be gathered, the fruit of the tree of knowledge, and we propose to put up a step-ladder before every get-atable apple and help ourselves and others to it. \Ve do this by means of the free platform. Questions of science, usually locked within the walls of colleges and only to be approached through tuition fees and expensive books, and that with due reverence and non-questioning belief, have been here presented, by scientific men and women who were willing to break the trust and divulge the secrets of science without money or price; and afterward they have been discussed by the layman.

I don't mean to say that these discussions have been altogether without their amusing and even objectionable features. Many will no doubt be able to recall instances of that sort, when the layman has made rather a mess of science, and spoken somewhat to the confusion of the scientist and the ladies. But what of that? When we adopted the principle of liberty we accepted all that went with it. \Ve realized that the fool has as good a right to his opinion as the wise man, and that only through the expression of opinion can the wise man be discerned from the fool, or the one capable of receiving enlightenment receive it.

Among our scientific lecturers has been Dr. M. V. Ball of the Eastern Penitentiary, who is at present becoming noted as the opponent of the scientific Presbyterianism of "that learned donkey Lombroso," as Alexander Berkman styles the celebrated Italian expounder of criminal anthropology. Dr. Ball has spoken a word before us for the criminals, those voiceless children of the Sacrifice, whom Society first creates, then damns. Dr. Frances Emily White of the Woman's Medical College, has spoken likewise a word for "humanity's eternal priestess", the prostitute, another social sufferer. Prof. E. D. Cope, the world's great paleontologist, together with others of perhaps less distinction but not necessarily less worthy of a hearing, have addressed us.

We have given a good portion of our time to the discussion of economic questions, which together with the sex question seem to be of the greatest interest to our attendance. The advocates of Co-operation, Populism, Proportional Representation, Single Tax, Prohibition, Woman Suffrage, Free Money, Socialism, Anarchism, Anarchist-Communism, and Revolution all had a hearing. (And we are anxious to give it to them again any time a good speaker is forthcoming.) We have listened to Doctor Metzler on socialism, Messrs. Hetzel and Stevens on the Single Tax, Mr. Kitson on Free Money, all noted authors, with numerous other speakers, including the well-beloved Chas. W. Mowbray, the jolly comrade with the great head and greater heart. We had the honor indeed of introducing him to Philadelphia, though we had not the honor of his subsequent arrest under our auspices. This arrest by the way, which occurred between Christmas and New Years last year, had the effect of increasing our audience by a number of ambiguous personages, of large gi~th, somewh~t casklike in shape, big around the nuddle a\ld pomty t.owards top and bottom. It is unfortunate to be bU1lt that way, because there seems to be some sort of secret affiliation between these human casks and a very mal-odorous occupation. Whenever we see ~)11e particularly round and vicious and sleepy-lookmg, who gazes at the big gold ring on his .little finger when Prof. Cope is talking about the TertIary and Quarternary epoch as if he wished it were Aladdin's and would transport him by wishing to a good beer saloon, we don't exactly know, you know, but we strongly suspect what he is there fo!. . Of course this class of person IS very unpromIsing; still, as St. Paul says, "F~ith, hope ,~nd Charitv and the greatest of these IS Chanty. These p~~ple may have somewhere down in the imme?se fog-bank of their unders~andings, a. feebly fluttenng thing that tries to beat ItS unused WIngs towards the light. The chances .are i~ will be. smothered ;----:-but we'll do our best to gIve thIS weak httle subconsclOus ego a square show. We will do our bes~ to make t~ese important issues in t ere:, tin g a.n d In:, t r u c t 1 V e to the detectives and pohce of Plllladelphla, and we sincerely hope that they may eventually be able to learn something. \Ve have again not been unmindful of the. fact that there are ethical and moral and educatlOnal questions pressing for consideration. We were detennined to run into no rut, to become no petty propagandist "group" with but one idea to hawk,. in and out of season, to confine ourselves to no particular class of subjects; we said: "Some people haven't settled their account with God yet-let us let them tell us why; some people feel the need of a rec.onstruction of the principles of religion into an c:thlcal system, and believe that the proper understandmg of these principles will give a better nucleus for the concentration of the efforts of life, than he who is cast adrift without such can command. In some this reconstruction has taken the form of theosophy, in others unitarianism, in others spiritualism, in others Whitmanism. As to Unitarianism we have been addressed by the Rev. W. 1. Nichols, a most courteous and delightful speaker, from whom we learned that Unitarianism means essentially the development of the individual, no bars being placed on his unfold~entprecisely what most of us. are a.imi~Ig at. . An~ 111deed the large tolerance of tIllS Umtanan, WIth Its sweet reverence for the individual's right, might serve as a <rentle lesson to our intolerant ones, who want to scream God out of heaven, forgetting that he is not there but in the human heart-the heart which bleeds bitterlv for its idols. As to Theosophy we have been favore~l by speakers from England, by Dr. Charlotte Abbey, by that stern thinker and exquisite poet, \Vayland Smith; while as to Whitmanism w~ ~ave been instructed by that ardent exponent and dIscIple, Thomas Harned and right loyally has he spoken for his teacher.

Upan the strangely obscure but terribly important question of the educatlOn of children we have been more than interested by that good and gentle woman, Constance McKenzie, Superintendent of the kindergarten of Philadelphia, and not less so by that equally good though not so pleasantly employed .la~y, Marv O'Reilly, factory inspector, under whose plty111g eye 'the sorrows of enslaved childhood are daily revealed. (To be continued.)

Miscellaneous

MOWBRAY'S VISIT TO ST. LOUIS. It was with a sigh of relief, that I stepped from the train which bore me from Chicago to St. Louis. And I soon found myself surrounded by good friends and true in the persons of comrades Piednoir, Rinke, Lelievre, Smith and Favereau. I need not detail the various meetings held; they were of the usual character, and I was greatly pleased at the general success which characterised our @fforts.

Here in St. Louis I found the opposite of Chicago, there being no police interference whatever. T.he press as usual tried to misrc:pr~sent what I. saId. Their efforts, however, resulted 111 111creased audIences. I addressed meetings of the Journeymen Tailors' L.ocal I I, Cigar Makers and Trades and Labor CounCIl, and was pleased at the manner in which ~ was r~ceived by them. I went also to hear Kelr HardIe and F. Smith, for the purpose of taking part in the discussion. It was whispered around that I was present and this fact seemimgly was not relished by our soci~l democratic lovers of free speech-"with a gag." The moment, therefore, that Hardie and Smith had finished, the chairman closed the meeting. I spoke to Hardie regarding the closure, and it is only fair to state that it was no fault of his. Social Democracy is not likely to succeed by such cowardly methods as these.

I thank the St. Louis comrades, one and all, for the efforts they made to aid me in doing successful propaganda work, and for the manner in which they made my stay among them both pleasant. and us~ful. St. Louis is a good field and I have senous notlOns of making that city the centre of my propaganda work. I believe it will be better for the movement. I shold like suggestions from comrades on this point. C. W. M.

REPORT.

Worcester, Mass. At the invitation of the Central Labor Union of Worcester comrade Mowbray delivered an address on "What is Anarchy?" to a very fair audience on Tuesday, Nov. 5. The discussion was of the usual kind and the almighty lucky bag known as the ballot box was trotted out with the usual vigor, but when its defenders 'yere asked to name anything which labor had. obta111~d from the use of said' 'box" its supporters saId noth111g had been done yet but still urged another try in the same manner that the keeper of a 5 cts. lucky fish pond urges unwary children who have tried once and failed to try another 5 c. dip. .

The game is almost up now and people 111 futu~e will be more likely to try the old methods of theIr forefathers and resort to the convincing argument of force which was successfully used on Bunker Hill. Comrade Mowbray disposed of quite a quantity of THE REBEL and has been urged to pay Worcester another visit. C.

--Comrade P. Gori who is touring the country and spreading the ideas of Anarchist-Communism among the sons of Italv has been for two weeks in Boston. He held several very successful meetings at which our comrade spoke on various subjects pertaining t.o our movement. He always understood how to faSCInate his hearers by a clear and eloquent exposition of our theories welded with that sympathetic warmth and pathos which betray the southerner. He wor:nd up his propaganda in this city by a speech on the cnme of the II Nov. on the night of that date leaving on the following morning for other parts. Au revoir!