‘William Stanley Dead’ from The Industrial Worker (Spokane). Vol. 3 No. 4. April 20, 1911.

William Stanley (center) and Simón Berthold (center right) in Mexicali, 1911.

William Stanley was born in Canada, moved to California, became a wobbly in Imperial Valley, where he was secretary of I.W.W. Local 413. A deserter from the U.S. Army who, like many others including Joe Hill, fought with the anarcho-syndicalist Liberal Party in northern Mexico. There Stanley led a PLM ‘Foreign Legion.’ Rising to ‘General.’ On April 11, 1911 comrade William Stanley was shot and killed during an ambush by his column of 80 men on a regiment of 500 Federals.

‘William Stanley Dead’ from The Industrial Worker (Spokane). Vol. 3 No. 4. April 20, 1911.

Captain Stanley, a member of the I.W.W., a Spokane Free Speech fighter, a deserter from the United States army, and a rebel against the rule of the despot Diaz, has been shot to death. He was killed while leading his 80 men against an army of 500 Mexican soldiers armed with machine guns. Had it not been for the rapid-fire machine guns the 500 federal soldiers would have been put to route. Stanley has left a heritage to his relations and to his union. He lived and died a man battling for freedom. He has gone where thousands of others have gone who have dared to “beard the lion in his den.”

To desert the army that is used for the express purpose of defending the private interests of a lot of multi-millionaires, was an honorable act. To join an army that was fighting for the right to live on nature’s soil was creditable. To die an I. W. W. man was proof of the recognition of the class struggle and that the interest of one worker was the interest of all workers. When enough workers can say that they would follow in the footsteps of William Stanley, it would be to say that the days of murdering each other would be over and a brighter day ushered in for the toiling millions. We doff our hat to our dead fighter and to all the workers who were with him in his memorable charge of the brave 80 reds.



General William Stanley, commander-in-work in the shape of extending the I. W. W. victorious over great odds, but when the recent battle was over he was brought across the line to Calexico to die. He is said to have been almost shot to pieces. He was one of the Spokane prisoners, one of the first six who went from Brawley to Spokane. Afterward he was for a while secretary of the Imperial branch. A noble, true fellow he was, brave and sincere as a revolutionists, genial and generous as a friend. He had but lately been commissioned as a general, having won fame while a captain, so mush so that the tyrant Diaz set a high price on his head.

Our fellow worker and fellow soldier is at rest, but like John Brown, “his soul goes marching on.”

E. B. BOND (Rebel).

The Industrial Union Bulletin, and the Industrial Worker were newspapers published by the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) from 1907 until 1913. First printed in Joliet, Illinois, IUB incorporated The Voice of Labor, the newspaper of the American Labor Union which had joined the IWW, and another IWW affiliate, International Metal Worker.The Trautmann-DeLeon faction issued its weekly from March 1907. Soon after, De Leon would be expelled and Trautmann would continue IUB until March 1909. It was edited by A. S. Edwards. 1909, production moved to Spokane, Washington and became The Industrial Worker, “the voice of revolutionary industrial unionism.”

PDF of full issue: https://www.marxists.org/history/usa/pubs/industrialworker/iw/v3n04-w108-apr-20-1911-IW.pdf

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s