This issue of Freedom appears in Anarchy Archives with the permission of the International Institute for Social History
Freedom Masthead

Vol. 2 -- No. 17 FEBRUARY, 1888 MONTHLY; ONE PENNY


THERE is a considerable amount of confusion, even among Socialists, as to the real meaning of words that run off the end of our tongues every time we speak of the revolutionary movement. Take, for instance, the words Socialist, Communist, Collectivist, Social Democrat, Anarchist, and collect the opinions of the first half dozen men you meet as to what they understand by them, and you will hear as many interpretations as replies. Yet amidst this seeming confusion it is quite possible to gather the general lines of tendency expressed in these disputed terms.

     Thinking a little about the matter, one soon comes to see that Socialism is an economic term; it refers to man in his relation to wealth. Further, that in spite of all differences of opinion amongst Socialists, there are certain definite and extremely important points upon which all Socialists are agreed. All Socialists look on the wealth of a community as the result of the common labour of the working men and women of that community in the past and present, and therefore. the common possession of all of them.

     All Socialists are agreed that individuals ought not to be allowed to monopolise (to claim an absolute right to prevent others from using) the necessary means for the production of wealth, whether land and raw material or capital created by past labour, because this monopoly gives to the monopolists dominion over the lives of all other people, who must, of course, work that they may live, and who cannot get at the means for doing so without the monopolists' permission. And we, very well know that this permission is not granted except in return for the lion's share of all the worker can produce. Hence the extremes of idle luxury and toil-worn misery which disgrace our civilisation. All Socialists are, therefore, agreed upon the attempt to change the existing method of producing and distributing wealth.

    Socialism, however, is a very general term covering a variety of opinions as to the exact character of the new economic system; opinions that group themselves round the two main schools of modem Socialism-Collectivism and Communism

    Collectivists hold that only certain big monopolies of the direct instruments of production are practically hurtful-e.g., land, factories, machinery, and such like. These they would nationalize, leaving other wealth in private ownership. This dividing line between public and private property seems somewhat hard to draw, and the unconverted are prone to inquire on which side such things as sewing machines, for instance, are to be placed. But a more serious difficulty is to find a just principle for the distribution of individual possessions. Are the 'workers to receive according to their skill and industry, or according to time, or at a fixed time rate adjusted according to the average amount produced per hour? But in any case Collectivists are agreed that the principle of distribution ought to be, To each according to his deeds.

     Communists, on the contrary, would have society recognise no rights of private property at all. In the creation of all wealth the united efforts of brain and muscle of the whole community have home their part, and the exact fraction contributed by each is impossible to distinguish. In a society of workers all the wealth consumed is in the broadest sense capital, since all is devoted to increasing and developing the resources and capacities of wealth producers. A shirt and a steam-engine are both means for enabling a man to work to the best advantage to himself and his neighbours. Moreover, there is scarcely a form of wealth which, if monopolized, may not be used as a means of extorting unpaid labour from the needy. All wealth, therefore, is a public possesion and the principle upon which it must be shared amongst the members of the community is, To each according to his needs. The supply of our needs is the object of our labour. We associate ourselves in our work because thus we can supply our needs better and with less effort. Let us, therefore, share what we produce according to the needs which are the reason of our work and our association. This principle of distribution according to needs is recognized in England, after a fashion, in the Poor Law. But whilst the object of the Poor Law is to supply as few people's needs as inadequately as possible, the object of Communism is to supply everyone's needs as fully as possible.

     So much for the two schools of Socialism. But these economic views do not necessarily imply any one special political creed. A man may be a Socialist and believe in absolutism, or in the rule of the wisest, or of the majority, or he may disbelieve in any rule at all. Practically, however, in the great popular Socialist movement of our


time there are only two ideas of political organization which have serious hold of the masses--Democracy and Anarchism.

    Democrats claim for Democracy that it means the rule of the people by themselves; but as after all everybody cannot actively rule everybody else, the administration of affairs rests with the delegates of the majority, controlled (theoretically) by the majority itself, that is, by the noisiest and most energetic portion of it.

     If this form of social organization be, as some of our Social Democrat comrades are fond of saying, the counterpart in politics of Socialism in economics, then it is a very curious fact that the political development of the future society has so far outrun its economic development that the democratic idea has already (in America and Switzerland, for instance) attained almost complete practical realization, while Socialism has as yet scarcely been put into practice at all.

     Anarchism, as the word implies, is the theory of social organization on the basis of the equal freedom of all members of the community, without the recognition of any rule or authority of one man over put it another way, it is the theory of the autonomy another. Or, to of the individual , the rule of each by himself.

     Society has already adopted, this principle as the bads of social relations in matters of opinion; Anarchists would adopt it in all departments of human life. They would, in fact, substitute the principle of unanimity, of free consent, for the principle of majority rule. They would extend the principle of association of the jury, and abolish the principle of association of the vestry and the parliament.

    Anarchism, like Democracy, is a political theory compatible with divers economical opinions. As there are Individualist and Socialist Democrats, so there are Individualist and Socialist Anarchists. In. newly settled countries there-is plenty of room for economic individualism. Accordingly we find Individualist Anarchism represented in Australia by the Melbourne "Honesty", and in America by four or five papers: "Liberty" in Boston, "Lucifer" and the "Sun" in Kansas and, since its revival by Dyer Lum, the "Alarm" in Chicago; whilst in Europe its adherents are few and far between. The Auberon Herbertites in England are sometimes called Anarchists by outsiders, but thet are willing to compromise with the iniquity of government to maintain private property. In fact, Individualist Anarchism would seem to be represented on this side the ocean in the person of comrade Robert Harding, who aided to assert the right of public meeting by chaining himself to the railings in Trafalgar Square.

     Space fails here to discuss the economic theories of these political comrades of ours. Most of them are Mutualists, disciples of Proudhon, who have accepted the master's views unmodified by the experience of the last thirty years of the labour movement.

    We, as our readers know, are Socialists, and share with our European comrades and the brave men who recently sealed their faith with their blood in Chicago, the conviction that Anarchism and Communism are political and economic counterparts. Both intrinsic elements of that tremendous popular revolt which has been gathering head, like an incoming sea, throughout this century of middle-class domination, that uprising of the deepest well-springs of human nature fated in the end ,to sweep away both property and authority in . the full tide of free, brotherly association


Our lion-hearted comrade Louise Michel is as true to Anarchist principles in her conduct as she is energetic in their propogation.

    On Sunday, January 22nd, she went to Le Havre to deliver two lectures for the benefit of L'Idee Ouvriere the organ of the Anarchist groups in the town and neighbourhood. Both meetings were crowded and enthusiastic, but at that in the Gaiety Music Hall, where about two thousand were assembled in the evening, some disturbance was made during the lecture, and some factious opposition offered afterwards by a noisy group of Conservatives. They wanted to know what was to be done with the pennies charged for admission (the meetings were organized, as we have said, for the benefit of the local Anarchist paper), and accused Louise Michel, who, as every French workman knows, lives very plainly on what she makes by her writings, of praying on the people. She had indignantly refuted the calumny when an ill looking fellow, with six feet of stature and a hang-dog face, came on the platform, stammered a few incoherent sentences, and sat down behind Louise. A. little later, when she was dismissing the meeting, his personage sprung up, crossed himself, and fired two bullets in

66 FREEDOM MAY, 1888.

quick succession. One cut her right ear and lodged in her hat; the other tore her cheek and neck and entered the left side of her head.

    Instantly the crowd rushed upon the wretched assassin, and he would probably have paid with his life for his cowardly outrage upon the best-beloved woman in France, had not Louise implored mercy for him. As it was, be was seriously injured before the police dragged him away, in spite of his victim's entreaties and her refusal to make any change against him.

     Early the next morning Louise insisted on returning to Paris. If her wound should prove fatal, she said, she would die in Paris, where her funeral could be of most use as a propagandist demonstration. A large force of police were sent to the station to prevent any sympathetic manifestation on her arrival, but they came five hours too late !

    It has proved impossible to extract the bullet, and the doctors have had grave fears of erysipelas. The latest reports are, however, more favourable, and we have every hope that our brave comrade will soon be able to resume her work.

     From the first moment her one aim has been to make light of her own sufferings and to enlist public opinion on behalf of the man who has injured her. He is a superstitious Breton peasant of 32, Pierre Lucas by name. A man with a bright, thrifty wife and one boy of 13 . He was earning £5 a month as shop porter in Havre, and his wife £2 a month in the same shop. He has once been committed for drunkenness, and appears to be an habitual tippler. According to his own "count, being half drunk , be was excited by the spiteful remarks of the Conservative mashers at Louise's afternoon meeting, and, with a sort of idea that " by killing the Queen of the Anarchists be could destroy the party, which would disappear, having no chiefs," he went home and asked his wife for 18s., which be spent on the revolver he used in the evening. This is how Louise writes of him to the editor of the Intransigeant, Henry Rochefort :

     " The heated atmosphere of a room overflowing with people, ideas which he did not understand whirling about him, must have magnetised the poor fellow. My denial of the existence of his god, and the calumny spread about by the good-for-nothings, that I was living at the expense of the people, must have revolted his fanaticism and his honesty, as a man of the stone age. The workings of his clumsy brain must necessarily have ended as they did. He is a being of another epoch, to whom ideas taken burning hot from our epoch of transition have given this brutal and false instinct. We shall see plenty more of his sort in our times. I think I am right in saying that science would be a lie if it did not serve to make us more just to irresponsible people."

    " Do not concern yourself so much about me," she said to a reporter who called for a bulletin of her health, "keep a little pity and solicitude for the wife of this unhappy Lucas, who, in Havre, perhaps finds herself without bread and without resources. You must save this madman from the clutches of justice, and prevent his family from suffering want. That should be the business of the press." A curious contrast, says L'Intransigeant, between the attitude of this wounded Socialist, a bullet still in her head, and the ridiculous parade of Jules Ferry, when Aubertin's shot just grazed his skin !

    The following letters speak for themselves:

Louise Michel to Madame Lucas.

    Madame,--Knowing of your sorrow, I wish to reassure you. Be easy; as it is inadmissible that your husband could have acted in the -exercise of his judgment, it is consequently impossible that he should not be restored to you Neither my friends, nor the doctors, nor the Paris press, without forgetting that of Havre, will cease, until this happens, to demand his liberation. And if it is too long delayed, I shall return to Havre, and this time the meeting will have no other object but to obtain this act of justice. The whole town will be
there.                                                                                           "Louise Michele."

Lucas' Sister-in-Law to Louise Michel.

    Mademoiselle,--Permit the twin sister of Madame Lucas to thank you for the great generosity that you show towards her brother-in-law. Certainly you have judged rightly; be knew not what be did ! He never troubled himself about politics, and assuredly his aggression was involuntary. Indeed, the inquiry which, thanks to you, cannot fail to be instituted, will prove it. Whatever may be the result of the inquiry, it can only show two things: the incoherence of this unfortunate Lucas, and your greatness of heart. Receive, I pray you, the gratitude of one who admires you.   
                                                          "Widow Legall"

Pierre Lucas to Louise Michel.

     'Madame,--I come to-day to appeal to your kind heart to be so ,good as to intercede for me with the judges who will be called on to condemn in(,-. Forgive, Madame, the attack on you of which I have been guilty. A moment's madness drove me to commit this crime; but, believe me, my fault was not premeditated, and since my arrest the thought of the evil I might have done you has not left me. Be merciful then, Madame, to me, to my wife and my child, these two creatures having only me to gain their bread. Awaiting a favourable reply, deign, Madame, to receive the wishes of a penitent for your speedy recovery. "Lucas, Pierre" Louise Michel to Pierre Lucas "Monsieur Lucas,--Your letter gives me great pleasure; it is one more proof that we are right in believing that you were suffering from an hallucination, and consequently cannot be judged. For the rest, I

am going on well, and my greatest desire is that you should be restored to your family. That wig be justice, and we hope that it will soon be done.
So take courage.                                                                          "Louise Michel"

     Lucas is to be tried in March. Louise Michael has engaged Laguerre (the Mr. Thompson of our Paris comrades) to defend him.



    We have changed our address. The Link the new organ of the Law and Liberty League, edited by comrade Annie Besant and Mr. Ste-ad has turned us out of our old quarters We are now lodged under "We same roof as another new journal of Socialistic bent, comrade Bolas's "Leaflet" Newspaper." To both ventures we heartily wish a career of much service to the revolutionary cause. Every wedge driven into our rotten social structure hastens its downfall.

   *          *          *

  More victims of "justice." Two poor and ignorant men condemned to fifteen years of living death for having last year entertained ideas which the prosecution admitted had since been completely abandoned. Granted for a moment that their intended action was evil. What can a man who meditates evil do more than repent and renounce it ?And with what pretence of justice can his fellows torture him for actions he has not committed and plans he has laid aside?

 *          *          *

    But these men were not accused of any selfish crime, but of having intended to protest by the strongest means in their power against such vile outrages upon humanity as our Irish correspondent details in another column. What sort of proportion is there between the possible injury to innocent persons caused by such explosions as these Irishmen are supposed to have meditated, and the unutterable heap of suffering, the outraged human feeling, the ruined lives that are dragging each Irish landlord, each British capitalist who holds Irish mortgages, down to hell ?The guilt is not with those who devote their lives to protest in any shape against the horrors with which the greed and domination of heartless men are disgracing our common humanity; but with those who fold their hands in sight of the wrongs committed against their brethren and say Let us eat, drink, and be merry, these things concern us not.

 *          *          *

     All the pain inflicted by all the most violent and ill-considered actions of all the rebels in the cause of freedom that the world has seen is but as a drop in the bucket compared to the measureless, ceaseless misery inflicted by rulers and their mechanism of legality. Will the most rabid Conservative venture to seriously contend that all the Socialists in Germany have caused one millionth part of the tears and despair, the mental and physical suffering and the moral degradation implied in the list we publish of the persecutions of Bismark and his confederates, with their soldiers, constables, spier., and agents provocateurs?

 *          *          *

    Nay, more. Has the most barbarous criminal whom Mr. Poland has hunted down in the name of society been a source of so much cruel and unmerited distress, of so much depravity amongst his fellows, as can he laid at the door of the Public Prosecutor-the man who for gold and (rave the mark !) for fame has sold himself to be the sleuth-hound of class tyranny and property rule?

 *          *          *

    Alike in its persecution of those who exceed the average limit of social feeling and its torture of those who fall below it, the judicial system is an outrage upon humanity. When the superstition of authority no longer vails our eyes, and the poison of property no longer eats into our hearts, we shall look upon it with the loathing we now feel for the barbarous follies of the Inquisition.

 *          *          *

     Louise Michel, more than most persons of to-day, lives and sets in the spirit of the new social relations that are growing up amongst men. Her conduct towards the stupid assassin who has just attempted her life is a practical illustration of the attitude of the coming Anarchist society towards those who have lagged behind the average of human development.

 *          *          *

    The verdict against the Lewis crofters has surprised no canny Soot who realises the true meaning of the " Not guilty, as libelled," which so charmed some of our Radical contemporaries in the previous case of the deer raiders. Anywhere else than in Edinburgh the asserters of the claims of men against deer, the people against the landlords, would have got off as free before a Scotch as an Irish jury. But Edinburgh is a stronghold of middle-class flunkeydom, tainted throughout with the notions of English land thieves; that is why the crofters are tried there. The queer rider to the first acquittal was merely a hint to the Government lawyers to draw up the indictment in better form next time. They have taken the hint, and the brave rebels are condemned to weary months' imprisonment for their social conduct.

 *          *          *

    Meanwhile Lady Matheson, one of the most heartless of the land appropriators, figures on a London committee to aid the crofters to emigrate. The Highland soil is so over-populated! It is said that the wasp suggested that the bee-hive was over-populated when she paid a visit to the combs and found the honey to her liking.

67 FREEDOM MAY, 1888.


'THE last service rendered by Albert Parsons to the cause of the people, before he laid down his life on their behalf, was to put i together as well as the cruel circumstances of his imprisonment won -permit an explanation of the principles for which he died.* This 1 book, compiled last autumn under the very shadow of the gallows, ties now been published by his devoted comrade and wife, Lucy Parsons, and we heartily commend it to our readers' attention.

    The first part contains an interesting summary by Parsons himself of the rise of capitalism in the United States. Until the tragedy of ,Chicago riveted our eyes upon the American labour movement, we European Socialists were too much inclined to ignore the extraordinarily ,rapid development of industrialism across the Atlantic, where twentyfive years has done the work of a hundred in Europe, and the transition from chattel slavery to the most exaggerated evils of the wage system has been accomplished in two generations. Already the curse of capitalism has eaten deeper into the vitals of society in the States than in England. Its monopolies are more gigantic, more crushing to all free initiative and honest endeavour to labour for human needs; its mechanical relation between man and man is more brutal and soul-paralysing than in the old country. It has been said of Russia that her civilisation (the forced civilisation of Tzardom) was rotten before it was ripe. The same would seem to be true of the capitalism of America, At all events, the reaction treads upon its heels, and the spread of Socialistic ideas in the last two or three years has increased at a pace which explains the murderous terrors of the Chicago employers of labour.

    Parsons goes on to contrast and explain the gradual development of capitalism in Europe, following Marx and the historical school of -economists, and concluding with a long extract from the grand Communist manifesto published by Marx and Engels in 1848.

     The second part of the book consists of extracts from the speeches and writings of the Chicago Anarchists (including Lucy Parsons) illustrative of their ideas, followed by the two articles on Anarchism by P. Krapotkine which appeared in the "Nineteenth Century" in February and August, 1887, Eliseé Reclus' article on the same subject in the "Contemporary Review" for May, 1884, a series of articles by Dyer D. Lum from the Alarm since its revival, and an extract from C. L. James' tract on Anarchy.

    The object of the whole work is to lay clearly before the world the great ideas for which the Chicago Anarchists were ready to fight, and, 1 if need be, to die, the vision of hope and deliverance for all men for which they were willing to renounce all selfish personal joy. It is also the only legacy besides his untarnished honour and the memory of a life of devotion which Parsons left to his wife and children. Need we I say more to induce our readers to obtain a copy as soon as possible?



WHAT is there about money and its function in commercial societies that entraps so many into laying on "the currency " the responsibility for that disease of modem societies of which the tricks of the money market are but a single symptom Not capitalism, they would have us believe, is the enemy, but coined money.

    Here is a pamphlet by our comrade D. A. Andrade**, of the Melbourne Anarchists' Club, which is really quite bewildering in its mixture of sound sense and--opinions on currency. Andrade ought, by his own showing, to be quite free from the influence of the vulgar illusions which haunt the threshold of the study of wealth, for he warns us that money is simply " the token by which one individual keeps record of and measures that portion of his wealth or capital which he disposes of to another." And he is not polite to the Protectionists " of Victoria.

    But this native hue of resolute opinion is presently sicklied o'er with a cast of thought apparently reflected from journals of Individualist or Mutualist Anarchism in America. In America they have excuses They have a Bland Act, functioning at the rate of two hundred million dollars a month, and they don't seem able to stop it, but just go on building houses for the pile. And they have experience of the gold rings. This nightmare of the silver mintage may be responsible for some of the nests of her species that Andrade has stumbled on.

    Anyhow, having carefully stated that money is not synonymous with capital, he rides off on a spirited argument depending on the assumption that it is. "A penny," says he, "invested at 5 per cent. compound interest in A.D. 1, would now have increased to more money than could be contained in 150 millions of globes of gold each the size of the earth." Prodigious! The fallacy, of course, lies in speaking of money as identical with capital. Interest is paid for the use of capital, that is to say, of an instrument of production; the money which passes is simply the " record and measure " of the portion of capital to which the lender has a claim, which claim he transfers temporarily to the borrower. The borrower uses the capital to produce wealth, a portion of which the lender takes from him under the name of interest, after it has been sold for money. In order to get compound interest," the capitalist has to find a fresh investment for this interest (if he does not

*"Anarchism: its Philosophy and Scientific Basis as Defined by some of its .Apostles." By A. R. Parsons. Published by Mrs. Parsons, Room 35, 169, Washington Street, Chicago. Price, paper cover, 2s. 1d.; cloth, 4s. 2d.

** 'Money' : Andrade, Melbourne, Australia.

  consume it), that is to say, he must find a borrower for some fresh instrument of production. It is to be presumed that the penny-wise person of the example would have glutted his market pretty early in our era, looking to the then condition of industry. But the probability is greater that the capital would have been lost at a pretty early stage of the process. Capital has not filled up this world yet.

    In most loans of capital, as a matter of fact, no money panes at all. The claim is passed to the borrower by a cheque or other paper instrument of credit, just as Andrade would have the claim to the products of labour passed in a sound society. We do our best in this direction. Only 4 per cent, of transfers of wealth in England are made by cash payment. The rest are effected on the mutual banking principle. This truth is not affected by the fact that most of the property dealt with is stolen goods.

    In spite of gold rings, money is one of the "freest" of commodities even now. Our property system gives to sharks an occasional opportunity of profiting by the. fact that the supply of gold is limited, just as they profit by the same fact in the matter of cottons and copper and a hundred other commodities. A gold currency has this and other disadvantages as a medium of exchange, but the scare as to the special effects of the limitation of the supply of gold is mere moonshine.

     So long as men, exchange wealth according to measures of value at all, so long must their measure of value be something which itself possesses value in exchange. A metallic currency has value in exchange because of its non-value for purposes of trade, and because it costs labour to produce. The only alternative measure of value namely, time of labour-will not serve as a substitute, because labour has not always use-value. And we cannot measure everything in terms of everything else. On the whole, commercial society has evolved as good a currency as it is capable of. When we give up trying to weigh men's services and deservings by the standard of their competition value, we shall not trouble ourselves with records of claims on society for labour performed or promises to pay for necessities relieved, either coined or printed. Communism will need no currency.



    The pastor of a Congregational church writes to us:
    "I find in your issue of this mouth you say in your article on Reason-Worship: 'Christian theology and pessimist philosophy are agreed in condemning the nature of man as essentially evil.' As a regular reader of your paper, I was sorry to find such a mistake. This may be some people's impression of the teaching of theology, or it may actually be taught by some ignorant preachers. It is not the doctrine of theology, but on the contrary has been specially condemned, and I believe never revived. Theology teaches that sin is in the will but not in the essential nature of man. These views are distinct. Man is created in the image of God: this is the teaching of the Bible and of theology. The emphasis laid upon the fact of sin has led you astray."

     Is not the will part of the essential nature of men? If the will is depraved (however that may be said to have come about), is not the man a depreaved being?
     We fully admit that many Christians theoretically, and a vast number practically, do not believe in the essential wickedness of human nature. The vital force of Christ's religion, as distinct from theology, has been its loving reverence for man; and the section of the Christian Church to which our correspondent belongs is one of those that has retained most of the popular and humanitarian character of their master's teaching. But we must reassert that the doctrine of the evil nature of man has been an article of faith in the dominent forms of Chris- tian theology during the last 1800 years, and has exercised a great and injurious moral influence upon social relations.




    A correspondent writes to us from Buenos Ayres:
    I send you a copy of a handbill circulated by Anarchists of Buenos Ayres after a meeting of sympathy and grief for the victims of Chicago. It will probably interest your readers to know that something is doing here, though it is not very much yet. I who write have been for some time a Socialist, though not an Anarchist, as I did not understand Anarchism. I think I am an Anarchist now, and the crime of Chicago has done more than anything else to make me study the subject."

    After relating the circumstances of the tragedy, with which our readers are familiar, the handbill continues:
    "The bourgeois in condemning and executing these brave champions of the workers' cause has made no mistake. These martyrs proposed to overthrow the vile domination of the bourgeoisie, they desired to expropriate some of the wealth that it withholds with injury to civilisation, and to substitute for present institutions, which are the cause of misery, physical decay, moral degradation, prostitution, wars, and crimes of all -to substitute for them a new social Organ isation, in which all that exists shall belong to all men, and all will give to society the aid of their work, and each one will possess abundance and liberty.

    "The bourgeoisie has killed five Anarchists; but what they wished to obtain, hundreds of thousands desire also,--and they will obtain it.

    "At the news of the execution of the Socialists in Chicago, the Socialists of Buenos Ayres called a meeting for the 27th of November in the theatre-hall in 336 Commercio Street; but the police of this city, firm friends of all oppressors, as the workers are of all the oppressed, prevented the meeting from being held in that place. The Socialists then met in another place, and passed the following resolution :

    " 'The Anarchists met together in Buenos Ayres bow themselves in token of grief before the tombs of their brothers assassinated in Chicago by the North American bourgeoisie.

"They declare their approval of the acts which brought these noble victims to the gallows, and they promise to persevere energetically in the struggle to the death undertaken by the people against the bourgeoisie,-& strife whose object in the substitution of social justice for the crimes and iniquities of the present system.'

    "The Anarchists of Montevideo sent a delegate to represent them at the meeting, and later on sent their adhesion by telegraph. Also the Anarchists of Rosario and the city of La Plata sent by means of letters their adhesion to the said meeting."

68 FREEDOM MAY, 1888.



In no countries more than in these (Russia perhaps excepted) is the history of the revolutionary movement last year such a dreary catalogue of persecutions and condemnations.

    Sentences to penal servitude (Zuchthaus) and imprisonment have been dealt out with a free hand for no other offences than distribution of prohibited papers, or even electoral manifestos. Workmen's meetings have been abruptly attacked and dispersed often by the police, sometimes even by the military, with the usual results in the form of wholesale arrests and bloodshed. Some officers and soldiers have been suspected of professing Socialist opinions, and arrested at Munich and elsewhere.

    An exceptional law exceptionally administered hangs over Socialists, and when the state of siege is proclaimed in a town or a district, there is no outrage to which they are not subjected. In the course of 1887 the state of siege already existing in Berlin, Leipsic, and the larger towns, was proclaimed in Stettin, Offenbach, and other places of secondary importance.

    The workmen exiled from Leipzig, Frankfurt, etc., may be numbered by thousands; and the year was inaugurated by the wholesale and violent expulsion of Russians and Poles from the E. astern provinces.

    Thus the reaction triumphed all along the line in Germany as elsewhere. The Government has obtained an increase of the army; the convents are, after thirteen years, opened anew. The war scare is ably kept up and manipulated by speculators, assisted by the opportune confidence and advice of men in power.

    German detectives have been very busy this year in concocting reports about Anarchists for the official press. Two of them succeeded with the connivance of the Belgian Government, in kidnapping John Neve, one of the best champions of Anarchism, and handing him over to the German Government, which by means of paid witnesses got him convicted of high treason before the Leipzig High Court, and sentenced to thirteen years' penal servitude.

    The Austrian Government emulating these glorious feats of its ally and master, delivered to the Russian despot the Nihilist Jassevitch.

    Nevertheless, an increase of nearly 300,000 in the number of Socialist votes at the election of 1887 over that of 1881 (an increase the most signifigant as it took place chiefly in districts not yet acquainted with the inanity of parlimentary tactics), shows that persecution has not suppressed the new economic ideas against which it is directed. And the beginning of the present year will most likely' Bismark defeated in his attempt to introduce further repressive legislation.

    Another encouraging fact is the increasing dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Parliamentary leaders, and in general with the results of Parliamentary tactics, expressed by the State Socialist delegates at the Congress held by the party at St. Gallen in September.

    We subjoin a catalogue of Government persecutions enumerated in the "Freiheit":--

    January.--More than 100 Socialists are exiled from Frankfurt, and two more committed to prison in Magdeburg for distribution of Anarchist papers. In Vienna, comrade Stendel is sentenced to three years' penal servitude, Sznarz and Ordreczkc to eight years of the same punishment.

    February.--An electoral meeting in Stettin is attacked by the military, three workmen killed and several wounded. The state of siege is proclaimed in that town, and 80 Socialists are banished; ditto in Munich. In Posen, two Socialists are sentenced to nine months' and two years' imprisonment respectively for the usual offence-distribution of prohibited papers. In Magdeburg, 38 workmen are arrested. In Duisburg the police disperse a workmen's meeting and drag eight persons to prison. In Saarburg the people fight the police, leaving a man on the battle-field. The state of siege is proclaimed in Offenbach. A Socialist in Leipzig is sentenced to four months' imprisonment for distributing revolutionary- prints in a barrack.

    March.--The Commune is duly commemorated. In Vienna a demonstration of workmen is attacked by the police; near Berlin a fight ensues between gendarmes and Socialists for the possession of a red banner. In Magdeburg same event. In Lubeck a revolutionary bill is seized by the police, and eight years and two months penal servitude awarded to Drichel for an offence against the Dynamite Act.

    April.--Many arrests of Socialists take place in Bielefeld, Mainz, and Hamburg. In Posen, seven Socialists are sentenced to various terms of imprisonment, ranging from two months to two years. In Vienna, where official statistics number the homeless persons at 20,000, 13 Anarchists are sentenced to penal servitude from one to twenty years. The Belgian Government bands to German detectives comrade John Neve.

    May.--31 Socialists are sentenced in Magdeburg to from 9 to 36 weeks each. In Barmen two Anarchists fall in the bands of the police. In Chemnitzer, the Socialist Neuineister is imprisoned for one month. Comrade Lichtensteiger dies in Lechhausen, near Augsburg, from consumption contracted in the prison of Halle.

    June.--21 Socialists sentenced in Danzig to from 2 to 48 months each; 6 more arrested in Konigsberg. In Breslau, 36 workmen arrested and charged with conspiracy. The inhabitants of Elberfeld disturbed by numerous police raids. Exiles from Leipzig pour out. Klaerig receives eight months' imprisonment for a speech at the grave of a comrade; ten more Socialists are sentenced for distributing papers. In Chemnitz, three workmen are charged with perjury in a Socialist trial, and sent to prison for one and two years. The Socialist Lutz in Karlsruhe, is sentenced to four weeks' imprisonment only. In Pfersen a fight takes place between soldiers and workmen; several arrests are made. In Frankfart the Socialist Conradi dies in prison. In Vienna and Sechshaus, IS workmen and two women are arrested for "Anarchist tendencies." Comrade Hajek receives four years, and comrade Markowitsch four months' imprisonment.

    July.-The Socialists Schreiblechner and Bleicher die in Austrian prisons. Comrade Fischer, released from the Praga prison, enters the hospital. In Leibach several soldiers are imprisoned on suspicion of being Socialists; 80 workmen are prosecuted in Munich under the Anti-Socialist Act. In Breslau, a sentence of one year's imprisonment is passed on a Mr. Colin for offences against the Emperor.

    August.--Two officers are arrested in Munich for Socialistic propaganda. Popular meetings in Leipzig and Ludwigshafen are. dispersed by the police. Revolutionary placards are affixed to the walls at Berlin.

    September.-Six Socialists in Mannheim are sentenced to prison from 3 weeks to 10 months. In Zwickau a spinner gets 6 months of the same punishment for distributing an electoral manifesto. In Dresden a reserve man gets 8 months for Socialistic propaganda. The Socialists Schuhman and, Szukalski are tortured to death in German prisons; six more workmen exiled in Leipzig. In Halle, several arrests. The Socialist Neissel sentenced to 8 months imprisonment.

    October.-Our comrade John Neve is arraigned before the High Court of Leipzig and sentenced to 15 years' penal servitude. In Mainz several Socialists receive sentences of three and six months imprisonment; the Socialist Grunberg in Kiel gets three months of the same; 17 Socialists more are expelled from Leipzig. In Vienna, comrades Dam and Futz are arrested. The Nihilist Jassevitch is handed over to Russian vengeance.

   November.--Five agitators are rewarded with various terms of penal servitude, whilst a policeman, who had murdered a workman, returns safe and sound from the hands of "justice" to his old pursuits. In Stuttgart comrade Waibel is sentenced to two months for distribution, etc., as above. In Vienna, Kral arrested.

    No doubt in this black list, which concludes with November, there must be several omissions. But, even as it stands, it implies a total amount of suffering inflicted on workmen and their families which is simply appalling. When is this tyranny to have an end?


    The new feature in the Irish persecution is that of the landlords or their emergency men, accompanied by a police escort, going into the shops of men, known to be leading Nationalists, and demanding, in as offensive terms as may be, some article or other which the shopkeeper mayor may not have to sell. The refusal to famish the required ware, on no matter what grounds, serves as an excuse for summoning before a "Pair of Patent Convictors " the objectionable Nationalist, who is forthwith clapped into jail for a month, with hard labour. Unfortunately for Balfour and Co., the wife and children, thanks to the National League, do not starve while the breadwinner is in quod; and aggravatingly, too, the prison doors never fail to reopen for a hero, however obscure a man the good Nationalist went in. But it no doubt serves some Governmental purpose to put out of the way, for a time even. the most active spirits in the village communities, and then what a balm it must be to the outraged feelings of the landlords.

    The horrible story of Greally, his wife and three young children, has no doubt been read by many in all its heartrending details in the pages of the "Star" or "United Ireland." But for those who may not have seen those papers we may recapitulate it briefly. Thrust out from his little holding, although a kind priest offered to pay a year's rack-rent and to guarantee future payments, the unfortunate man built a hut to shelter his little ones from the wintry blasts. For this crime he was imprisoned, with an arm broken by a blow from the bastard son of the landlord, who undertook the extermination of the family. Naturally when Greally got out of jail he again constructed a shelter of some kind, which the bastard fired over the heads of these unfortunate creatures, and the father was again dragged to prison. Next time they sought shelter under the arch of a bridge, where every tide drenched their poor bodies with cold slush. One child here sickened and died of a loathesome disease, contracted from exposure and want, her little throat actually rotting away. To reach the shelter of the bridge a portion of the landlord's ground had to be crossed, and Greally was arrested and imprisoned for trespassing. He was once more freed, only to again seized for trespass, this time with his wife. Their two helpless little ones attracted by their cries the attention of a priest, who with some neighbours undertook to take; them from their fearful asylum and to build them a hut on a bit of common land. For this charitable act these Good Samaritans were threatened with an action, but the Government withdrew the prosecution, on condition of the but's being removed to another site and the people's refraining from making any demonstration of joy over the saving of the poor children.


    Another promising popular movement seems to have shared the fate of the Belgian strike last year. The workers employed in preparing the Universal Exhibition at Barcelona struck early in December for shorter hours, Both skilled and unskilled men went out, and they were joined by others employed in the town. The police violently interfered, arrested right and left, and did their best to stir up divisions amongst the men. Nevertheless the strikers unanimously refused the compromise of an increase of wages, offered for the purpose of stirring up dissensions, and the affair might have become formidable, but that the strike, committee were taken with the unhappy idea that they must "satisfy public opinion allarmed by the danger threatening the honour of Barcelona, because of the engagements undertaken in reference to the Exhibition," and accordingly they must needs " propose to prove that the sons of toil are friends of progress, and refrain from putting obstacles in the way of a competition which shows that our town has reached the degree of civilisation attained by the foremost nations of Europe". So spoke and acted the committee at the end of December; and of course the outbreak has collapsed, like the Midland strike, where the same sort of misdirected social feeling crippled the action of the men. Surely it is far more important for the whole community in England and Barcelona that the wronged an oppressed men there shall obtain justice, than that the traffic shall be uninterupted. or the exhibition held at the right date. And yet the workers have not enough confidence in their cause to understand that, for the whole community as well as for themselves, its triumph is of far more real importance than any other consideration.

    The Spanish labour papers are saying that the strike failed because the men were not sufficiently organised; but facts seem to indicate that, like the Belgians, they were organised too much, or rather on a false principle, so that the scruples and terrors of one central committee could undo all that the workers' private initiative had accomplished.



Annual Subscription one shilling. Post free in England and within the Postal Union one and sixpence.

All communications to be addressed to The Editor, FREEDOM Office, 19 Cursitor 'Street, E.C. Office hours, Mondays, 8 to 5 p.m. During these hours a member of the Freedom Group will always be at the office.

FREEDOM can be obtained in London from W. Reeves, 185 Fleet Street; the Freethought Publishing Company, 64 Fleet Street; the Socialist League Office, 18 Farringdon Road, E.C.; or ordered through, a newsagent.

The Freedom Group propose to hold monthly public discussions upon Anarchist Socialism. The first meeting will be held in the Hall at 13 Farringdon Road, E. C., on Thursday, February 16 at 6 pm., when C. M. Wilson will read a short paper on Anarchism and Socialism.

Freedom Publication Fund.--A. W., £2; H. G., 7s.

We have for sale a few copies of the likeness of the Chicago Anarchists published with our last issue, price Id. each.

    Any subscriber who receives Freedom with a blue mark against this notice is thereby informed that his subscription is in arrears, and unless we receive it before our next issue we shall conclude that he desires to discontinue the paper.

    We heartily thank all those comrades who co-operate with us in the wholesale distribution of Freedom, and who, in response to our last notice on this subject, have paid us monthly or in advance. If all would manage to do so, we should be able to publish more punctually, for we must, of course, pay our printer's bill for each number before beginning the next.

Printed and Published by C. M. Wilson, 19 Cursitor Street, London, B.C.