The Voice of Labor (New York). Vol. 1 No. 1. August 15, 1919. Inaugural Issue.

The first issue of V.O.L. from the forces that would soon become the Communist Labor Party. John Reed and Ben Gitlow had recently split from ‘Revolutionary Age’ edited by Louis Fraina over attitudes toward the upcoming Socialist Party convention with, broadly speaking, V.O.L. trying to win the Socialist Party and the ‘Revolutionary Age’ intent on splitting it.

The Voice of Labor (New York). Vol. 1 No. 1. August 15, 1919. Inaugural Issue.

Contents: Look Out! Railroad Crossing! by Casey Jones, Goodbye Fellows! A Letter to American-Born Working Men by Ivan Ivanovitch, The Fall of Soviet Hungary, We’re Through with the Job-Trust by Benjamin Gitlow, How to Help, What’s Going On, Atlantic City and After [AFL Convention] by Joe Tillet, Labor’s Raw Deal at Paris by Tom Paine, Striking on the Job, Shop Committees in Russia by John Reed, Craft Unionism Canned in Canada by Ben Legere, My Own Shop.

The Voice of Labor was started by John Reed and Ben Gitlow after leaving Louis Fraina’s Revolutionary Age in the Summer of 1919 over disagreements over when to found, and the clandestine nature of, the new Communist Party. Reed and Gitlow formed the Labor Committee of the National Left Wing to intervene in the Socialist Party’s convention, eventually forming the Communist Labor Party, while Fraina became the first Chair of the Communist Party of America. The Voice of Labor’s intent was to intervene in the debate within the Socialist Party begun in the war and accelerated by the Bolshevik Revolution. The Voice of Labor became, for a time, the paper of the CLP. The VOL ran for about a year until July, 1920.

PDF of full issue:

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