JF Ptak Science Books
JF Ptak Science Books
JF Ptak Science Books Post 2627
Plight of Ukrainian DPs : a few typical letters of many being received daily from Europe describing the tragic plight of Ukrainian displaced persons whom the Soviets would forcibly repatriate and doom to enslavement, persecution or death. Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, New York City, 1945/6. 21.5x14 cm, 29pp. Provenance: Library of Congress, with their surplus stamp on the rear cover. Scarce publication, with 11 copies found in the WorldCat/OCLC. Wrappers. There is a 1-inch tear at the middle-bottom on each page. $250
This pamphlet--published not after March 26, 1946, with the latest letter in the text being September 25, 1945--describes the "plight" of Ukrainian "DPs" at the end of WWII. "Plight" is a very weak word for their situation, as is the term designated them, "DP" or "displaced person". These people--several million of them--had been slave laborers, taken by the Nazis in the advance through Central Europe, and sent to work in German factories and fields. Many were theoretically and semi-practically paid a wage, though in general much of that went to providing themselves food and clothing and such that enabled them to work. These people were known as Ostarbeiter (Eastern Laborer), and at the end of the war, many were repatriated to their country of origin. Of the 3-5 million Ostarbeiter, about 2.5 remained alive at war's end, with the vast majority--over 2 million--being from the Ukraine. This pamphlet details some of the terrible accounts of Ukrainians being repatriated to the Soviet Union and being treated as plagued outsiders, criminals, and worse, some simply executed, while hundreds of thousands of others were sent on for "re-education", with many winding up in the Gulags. It was a terrible position to be in--the slave returned home after the war to be treated as a criminal, and slave again. The conditions for repatriation to the Soviet Union were so bad that by October 1945 General Eisenhower forbade this action in the U.S. Occupied Zones.
I've reprinted the full text below. (Plight of Ukrainian DPs : a few typical letters of many being received daily from Europe describing the tragic plight of Ukrainian displaced persons whom the Soviets would forcibly repatriate and doom to enslavement, persecution or death, ca. 1945/6, or 1945 according to WorldCat/OCLC.)
\NOTE: good, clear images are available when you click on the page images; double-click for giant images.
JF Ptak Science Books
Weimar-Era to 1944 German Social, Political, and Military Pamphlets
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The Soviet Union and Communism (1920's-1945)
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Lavish Architectural Chromolithographs, 1886
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JF Ptak Scienec Books
"If you think covering a war is hard, you ought yo try covering this San Francisco Security Conference"--Alexander Uhl, May 14, 1945
No doubt! This is a collection of journalist Alexander Uhl's coverage of the San Francisco Conference establishing the United Nations, and Uhl had seen fighting in Spain (covering the war there for Associated Press) and WWII (reporting for the great PM newspaper and for which he was awarded the French Legion of Honor medal). What we have here is Uhl's very own ribbon-copy typescript of his nearly-daily coverage that were telegramed back to the PM headquarters in New York City. Many of the reports are written on the back (and sometimes the front) of "Western Union Press Message" stationery. The writing is clear, concise, and filled with sharp observations.
Provenance: the estate of Alexander Uhl 1899-1976) via Gladys Uhl Katcher (1910-2000). Alexander Uhl, a New Yorker (CCNY and Columbia School of Journalism) was a Major League Old-School reporter of a high order. He began 1935 when he began covering the Spanish Civil War for the Associated Press, where he remained until 1938. Uhl went from there to Europe where he covered the war and post-war from 1940 to 1948, and was one of the earliest on-the-ground reporters covering hard action--this for the famous Leftie newspaper PM, which vowed never to take advertising money and to survive on subscription and daily sales. At the time of his reporting on the U.N. Conference Uhl was the foreign editor of PM.
"San Francisco Conference, formally United Nations Conference on International Organization, (April 25–June 26, 1945), international meeting that established the United Nations. The basic principles of a worldwide organization that would embrace the political objectives of the Allies had been proposed at the Dumbarton Oaks in 1944 and reaffirmed at the Yalta Conference in early 1945."--Encyclopedia Britannica
"Mike Quinn". The Yanks are Not Coming. 1940. Published by Keep America out of War Committee, 1940. 15pp. Printed wrappers. Rare. Only a few copies located in OCLC/WolrdCat. $125
This pamphlet is a reminder that it wasn't simply right-wing groups (like the Lindbergh-sponsored "America First") that sought to keep the United States out of the war in Europe in 1940. It was a "European War" to these groups at this point--it was of course a World War, World War II, but it just didn't involve the United States, yet. The "Keep America Out of War Committee" produced this vicious pamphlet, equating the war with the sole pursuits of "big business", connecting the "filthy mess" of fighting to connected interest of Parliament and the Reichstag in producing a money-making scenario for the controllers of industry.
Now there are plenty of ugly wartime relationships during WWII--and not just those that existed through December 1941, but were in place for the duration of the war. But the arguments made in this pamphlet seemingly in support of the average working man protecting them from the multinational corporations who were conducting the war for the sake of profits takes the argument into an entirely different and bad place. ("The best way we can help the people of Europe is to keep Wall Street out of it" claims the pseudonymous author, Mike Quinn. Besides, as he continues in the section called "We're Too Busy": "We've got a first class job on our hands straightening out this civilization we have right here". Too busy for war.
Collection of Police-Sponsored Anti-Crime, Bunko-Squad Pamphlets, published by the Boston Better Business Bureau. All in the same format, printed via offset on 8.5x11 inch sheets. [Title in pencil: "Pamphlets on Fraudulent Business Methods and Schemes".] 1936. There are 34 in all, stapled sheets at left-top, each about 10pp long (making for about 350 leaves), with each having an example of a conversation between the consumer and the grifter. These are ex-library with the occasional stamp from the Library of Congress ("Pamphlet Collection"), via the U.S. Copyright Office. Good condition, if a bit dusty. $350 (If you were writing period crime novels of the 1930's, this would be prime resource material fo rcrimes of confience.)
They include: Bait Advertising (Window); Free Permanent Wave Scheme, Smuggled Goods Scheme, Bait Advertising Scheme, Business Opportunity Scheme, the Re-load Scheme, A Switch and Sell Scheme, Bucket Shop Scheme, Tipster Sheet Scheme, Sewing Machine Scheme, Memorial Park Cemetery Scheme, Heir Scheme, Bait Advertising Scheme, Song Writing Scheme, Is It Bait?, Action Sale Scheme, Stuffed Plate Scheme, Stuffed Flats (Furs), Buy Wholesale Scheme, Insurance Association Scheme, Partner Wanted Scheme, Long Distance Tailoring Scheme, Bait Advertising (T.C. System), Free Lot Scheme, Home Work Scheme, Furniture Club Lottery Scheme, Charity Merchandise Scheme, Suit Club Scheme, Picture Enlargement Scheme, Puff Sheet Scheme, Territorial Rights Scheme, Obesity Cure Scheme, Territorial Rights Scheme, Cash Bond Scheme, Unordered Merchandise Scheme.
These do describe crimes and there were victims involved, but the description of it all is quite delightful.
[Item: Passaic Strike relief broadside. 13x8.5 inches. Ca. early 1926. H.L. Mencken's copy, with his stamp of gift on the reverse. Very good condition. $250.]
This broadside was an appeal to like-minded people to contribute to a fund to help relieve thew dire conditions of textile worker strikers in Passaic, New Jersey, in 1926. There were more than 16,000 people involved in this sometimes-brutal strike, people who were trying to stay even in their lives, looking for a little more money and a little better working conditions than what they had. The Passiac (a working city just south of Patterson in an industrial triangle section of the state) strikers were moving against a number of textile (wool and silk) mills there, trying to force management to pay them something closer to the $1400 annual income for a family of four to survive.
Most workers there were making $1,000-$1,200 a year ($800-$1,000 if the worker was a woman, and about half of them were) for 50+ hours of labor per week. The result was that the workers could not afford good housing and food, and those disadvantages paid off in high rates of tuberculosis, very high incidence of child mortality, and a low average life expectancy. The strike began slowly in January 1926, with the mills responding with vicious attacks by paid thugs and by police. IT was a long and involved process for the strikers, with the strike lasting its way for another 14 months, finally getting choked out in March 1927. It looks like there were some victories, but those seem mainly pyrrhic to me--at the end of the process many of the strikers were hired back but soon terminated, replaced by other workers who agreed to work for less.
There's quite a bit written on this strike, and most seem to say that it was an important event in the history of "labor relations", and that it was the first time that a Communist-led strike succeeded in the United States, (There is a complex legacy as to who the leadership was for this strike, but the end result is that, at the end, the Communists were in charge.)
But what I wanted to say here about this broadside was the communal effort involved with keeping the strikers (and the strike) going. The strikers needed money to live, as there was certainly no money coming in, and since there was obviously no union, there was no general fund from which any of these families could draw food money from). they needed money just to buy food and pay for housing. SO the call for "Give all you can!" and "Give right away!" were as desperate as they sounded. My guess is that there would be a representative of the International Workers Aid society national office going from factory to factory, or door-to-door, soliciting for money for the Passaic workers' relief. The strike was no doubt a very nasty business, with a victory only a victory once there was more food on the table, less illness, and far fewer babies dying from preventable causes. Probably this looked like a victory to others so far as the future of fair labor/pay was concerned, but not so much for the strikers who brought this about.
It is also interesting to note that this copy was given at some point to H.L. Mencken, who gave it right away to the Library of Congress, where it wound up in a forgotten "Pamphlet Collection", and then sold to me (years afterwards).
ITEM: Dr. William T. Shanahan, Colonies for Epileptics, 1912. 9x6, 7pp. Original printed wrappers. Good copy. $95
Ref: JF Ptak Science Books Post 1450
This series is meant to illustrate the very transitory, shadowy and basically non-existent nature of "normal".
"It is thus with regard to the disease called Sacred: it appears to me to be nowise more divine nor more sacred than other diseases, but has a natural cause like other affections. . ."--Hippocrates on epilepsy and recognizing it as just another brain disorder devoid of mysticism, about 2400 years ago.
One stop in the history of normalcy is the perception of brain disorders, which is a long and complex history--very long in the case of epilepsy, its epidemiology stretching back thousands of years before Hippocrates. It particular normalcy for the vast majority of that time was that people who exhibited the results of the disorder were cursed, or touched by the gods as holders of some possible divine inspiration, or touched by the gods as accursed and punished people, or bewitched (I wonder about the number of epileptics put to the flame during the Witch Hunt crazes), and so on. The first pharmaceutical treatments for the disorder really didn't come about until Emil Fischer and Bayer introduced phenobarbitol in 1902/04, which was able to calm the seizures of some people with epilepsy. Until that point, most treatments were generally topical, plus the quack ingestives and various sorts of incantations, spells and prayers.
In Dr. William T. Shanahan's Colonies for Epiletpics, written in 1912, the treatment of epileptics was seculsion, warehousing them in state asylums in the countryside. Shananhan felt that the epileptic needed "its" own environment, "apart from the the defectives"--and by that he meant apart from the wide classification of people who did not fit the scheme of 1912 normalcy, like "morons, imbeciles, the insane, the sexual addict, the recurring syphlitic [and] the criminally insane...". Actually this as a good move in some cases--apart from the vocabulary--as epileptics were stored away in almshouses and prisons along with the criminal element and the hopelessly insane, and at least removed the epileptic from a different sort of horror and disgrace.
Dr. Shanahan's aim was to remove the epileptic from society because they "couldn't adjust to a life in the ordered community" and that holding a job for them was "impossible"--that plus what he saw as the need to protect society from the epileptic's "progressive mental deterioration". He felt that "the great majority should be committed[to the epileptic colonies] as are the insane", and also to remove them to these places "from a young age", to an "institution for defectives", there separated according to "sex and mental grade".
Overall, though, it was Shanahan's other aim to provide as "normal" a life for epileptics as could be arrived at, and outside of his trying to save society from them--at a time when the eugenics people were out castrating epileptics--, he was arguing that this method was the best of all possible worlds for people with this disorder. He does however seem to be totally ignorant of any medical approach to dealing with epilepsy.
By the way, there's a very curious imprint on the back cover of this pamphlet showing who printed it and where. I cannot recll ever having seen such a small thign, placed so centrally, in such an obvious place. Its obvious and present, yet tiny. Here it is, before magnification:
And here is what the slug says:
JF Ptak Science Books
James Farmer of the RAND Corporation wrote a summary of the U.S.-backed insurgency against Fidel Castro's government in the infamous Bay of Pig campaign in his Notes on the 1961 Cuban Revolution sponsored by the U.S. Air Force Project Rand Report, and published (May Day!) May 1, 1961. This is an internal document, or pre-print of the report, reproducing the document in some sort of photo-mechanical way, and it focused on the failures of the “Cuban revolution”—the same day as Castro’s May Day speech proclaiming his overwhelming victory against the counter-revolution.
Farmer states in his opening line: “If tacticians and political scientists can learn from errors, the first 1961 Cuban Revolution should be invaluable”.
Farmer evidently was sending a message in this medium as he refers again and again to the “first 1961” Cuban Revolution. He was not referring of course to 1953-1959 Castro-led revolution that ousted President Batista--rather it was a political statement by the author relating to what he assumed would be subsequent "movements" against the Cuban government.
For some reason the only references on the internet that I've found for this document come from me.
Zworykin,Vladimir. "Description of an Experimental Television System and the Kinescope." In: Proceedings of the Institute of Radio Engineers, vol 21 no. 12, December 1933. (Note: the article notes that this original manuscript was received by the IRE in July, 1933.) Article occupies pp 1654-1673 of the December journal which covers pp 1621-1762, plus an index (of approximately 30 pp). Bound in the original wrappers. Very nice copy. $450
This issue includes four other contributions on television, including: Engstrom. A Study of Television Characteristics. Pp 1631-1651; Engstrom\, An Experimental Television System. Pp 1652-165; Kell, Description of Experimental Television Transmitting Apparatus. Pp 1674-1691; and Beers, Description of Experimental Television Receivers. Pp 1692-1706.
The Zworykin paper in December 1933 seems perhaps the earliest of the full technical treatment of the iconoscope, more so than the papers he published earlier in the summer and fall.2
Zworykin, V. K. (filed 1931, patented 1935). "Method of and Apparatus for Producing Images of Objects". Patent No. 2,021,907. United States Patent Office. Zworykin, Vladimir K. (filed 1923, issued 1935). "Television System". Patent No. 2,022,450. United States Patent Office. Zworykin, V. K. (filed 1925, patented 1928). "Television System". Patent No. 1,691,324. United States Patent Office.
2. Zworykin, V. K. (September 1933). The Iconoscope, America's latest television favourite. Wireless World, number 33. p. 197; and Zworykin, V. K. (October 1933). Television with cathode ray tubes. Journal of the IEE, number 73. pp. 437–451.