Author Archive for Chris Brooks

Prisoners in Franco’s Prisons – By John C. Blair

February 5, 2018
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Prisoners in Franco’s Prisons – By John C. Blair

By John C. Blair, The Volunteer, Volume 6, Number 3, October 1984 (Our comrade John Blair, died in 1982. This account of prison life, forwarded to us by his widow, Harriet, was written the year before he died. “He had other stories planned,” said Harriet Blair in her letter to us, “but after typing...
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Saga of an Ambulance – By John Tisa

January 24, 2018
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Saga of an Ambulance – By John Tisa

John Tisa, The Volunteer. Volume 4, Number 2, 1982. Dr. Pike and I drove together to Madrid in the early morning of 18 May 1937 – he for medical supplies, and I with a stack of unedited materials for the Volunteer for Liberty, our new front line tabloid. Here is a story he told...
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The Vernon Snow Center

January 13, 2018
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The Vernon Snow Center

Vernon Snow was killed in action at Fuentes de Ebro during a Nationalist air raid on October 18, 1937.  Snow was serving in the Lincoln-Washington Transmissions section when he was killed.  Pat Read his section leader recalled Snow as “a comrade with a loveable personality, calm courage and plenty of ability. (“A Life for Every...
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Commonwealth College Fortnightly, Papers Now Online

December 30, 2017
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  The University of Arkansas Libraries Special Collections completed a project on October 31, 2017 to digitize the run of the Commonwealth College Fortnightly online. The issues begin with volume 2, number 1 (January 1, 1926) and end with volume 14, number 5 (March 15, 1938).  The paper was written, edited, typeset and printed...
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Reuben Barr: A Fighting Mensch –By Rob Waters

November 2, 2017
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Reuben Barr: A Fighting Mensch –By Rob Waters

Rob Waters kindly allowed The Volunteer blog to reprint his interview with Reuben Barr, originally published in The Tenderloin Times, June 1984, v. 8, no. 5, pp. 4 and 8. When Reuben Barr was, as he says, “pinched” last summer blockading outside the Lawrence Livermore Lab, it was not his first brush with the...
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The Hofmann Twins

September 27, 2017
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The Hofmann Twins

                  Shortly after the publication of the blog post Seven American Volunteers Refused Permission to Land in France, Paul Hofmann the son of volunteer Albert Hofmann, sent an email correcting and clarifying some of the information in the article. The most important correction was to the...
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An Analysis of American and Canadian Volunteers Compiled by the International Brigades in Spain

September 26, 2017
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An Analysis of American and Canadian Volunteers Compiled by the International Brigades in Spain

The Russian State Archive of Socio-Political History records on U.S. and Canadian volunteers deepens the available insight into the organization and employment of the International Brigades (IB) during the Spanish Civil War.  From these records, it is evident that the IB Command was interested in documenting the background of the volunteers. Two documents prepared...
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Arrests of Volunteers in France

September 2, 2017
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Arrests of Volunteers in France

                      On April 4, 1937, French authorities arrested American John William Tylus, along with thirteen volunteers of various nationalities, near Prats de Mollo, Pyrénées, Orientales.  The group was described as being “in poor shape” after being lost in the Pyrenees mountains for several days....
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Seven American Volunteers Refused Permission to Land in France

July 9, 2017
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Seven American Volunteers Refused Permission to Land in France

The flow of American volunteers to Spain during the first months of 1937, prompted the United States State Department (State Department) to request the assistance of the French government in dissuading American volunteers from crossing France and entering Spain.  French efforts were somewhat half-hearted with officials often turning a blind eye to American travelers...
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George Zoul’s Data Base Entry

June 24, 2017
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Zoul, George. (Zoule); b. November 27, 1908, NYC, Czechoslovakian American; Father Vincent Zoul, Mother Mary Zoul; Divorced; Received passport# 355923 on December 4, 1936,  address listed as 420 East 18th Street, NYC; Sailed December 26, 1936 aboard the Normandie; Served with the XV BDE, Lincoln BN, Served at Jarama (May have transferred into the...
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