Townsfolk Protest Legion's Attack on Sarah Lawrence

Conservative Bronxville, New York, rose up to protect the American Legion's inquiries of communism in Sarah Lawrence College. A group of 175 lawyers, clergymen, club-women, and house-wives blasted the charges of the Westchester County Legion.

Harold Taylor, president of the school, replied to Legion "redactor" charges by declaring that no Communist could get or hold a job on the Sarah Lawrence faculty. The Legion's Americanism committee called this statement inadequate and unacceptable.

Taylor had stated that the school encouraged thinking among the students, giving courses in which the girls were left to form their own opinions. He asserted that because of this free thought the college would not let faculty members indoctrination their students with either political or religious dogmas.

Residents were circulating protests against the Legion today and yesterday. None of the workers and signers of the petitions are connected with the school, and many of them are members of the Legion.


The protest stated that "the moment private conviction, however lofty, is made the equivalent of a legal right, the door is open to tyranny of the obsessed few over the many--the very threat that the Legion is said to be determined to fight."

The petition added that "if there is going to be an investigation, here, or elsewhere, of any individual, school or organization, let it be under safeguard of the law and not by headlines and innuendo."

Hohley Questions Methods

Reverend Harold F. Hohly, rector of Bronxville Protestant Episcopal Christ Church, questioned the Legion's methods and their right to investigate Sarah Lawrence, calling them different "only in degree from those used in Nazi Germany and presently in Argentina and Russia."

Hohly conclude his letter to the Legion by saying. "I do not believe the American Legion has the extra-legal right to question and demand answers from anyone as to their religious, political or social beliefs." Hohly told the Legion to call the F.B.I, if they think any person is subversive.

The letter was written to Daniel E Woodhull. Jr., who heads the post. Woodhull answered that he had attacked Sarah Lawrence, but had tried in vain to get specific answers from Taylor about communism there.

Fourteen specific questions were sent to Dr. Taylor by the Legion Americanism Committee, and Mr. Woodhull now believes the questions should be withdrawn because of faculty wording.

Earlier in December, Allen A. Zoll, Executive Vice-President of the National Council for American Education, listed II Sarah Lawrence teachers as Reducators.