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Jim Kershner’s This Day in History

Thu., May 27, 2010

» On the Web: spokesman.com/topics/local-history

From our archives, 50 years ago

About 300 Kellogg high school students staged a controversial anti-communist demonstration, titled “I Am an American Youth.”

A crowd of 3,000 lined the march route. No incidents were reported.

Why was it controversial? Because it took place in a tense labor atmosphere in the Silver Valley. The mine-mill union had gone on strike earlier in the month against two mine companies, idling 2,700 workers. Passions were inflamed when the news came out that two of the union officials had earlier been convicted of conspiracy for “falsely signing noncommunist affidavits.”

The students said they were against communism “in any position in American life.” They said they just wanted to “make people aware of the danger of communism – do exposure work.”

Some of the parade signs said, “Don’t Let Khrushchev Solve Our Labor Problems.”

However, other signs took a more conciliatory tone: “Pro Labor. Pro Union. Anti-communist.”

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1937: The newly completed Golden Gate Bridge connecting San Francisco and Marin County, Calif., was opened to pedestrian traffic. (Vehicular traffic began crossing the bridge the next day.)



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