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Twentieth Century Radicalism in Minnesota Oral History Project: Interview with George Dizard
BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION: George Dizard was born in Duluth, Minnesota, in 1917 and spent most of his formative years there. From his mother, a Danish immigrant, he learned a deep commitment to peace and justice. During the Great Depression, Dizard attempted to go to college and was forced to drop out for lack of money. During his years as a student he did participate in the American Student Union and the Minnesota Youth Congress. He worked briefly on a project of the National Youth Administration and (after his marriage to Rhoda Levine in 1940) on the Clerical Project of the Works Progress Administration. Just before the US entry into the Second World War, Dizard got a job at Diamond Caulk and Horseshoe Company (later Diamond Tool) in Duluth. He quickly became active in the union, Federal Local 18650 of the American Federation of Labor. During the next twenty years he held various offices in the union, in the Duluth Federated Trades and Labor Assembly, and in the state AFL-CIO. Dizard was equally active in the Democratic Farmer-Labor Party. In 1946 he ran for a seat in the state legislature. He served as secretary for the St. Louis County DFL, and in 1948 led the supporters of Henry Wallace out of the county convention. After retirement Dizard remained active with the Trades and Labor Assembly retirees and various groups working on peace and justice issues. He was a founder of the Minnesota Nuclear Weapons Freeze Campaign in 1982. At the time of this interview he still lived in Duluth. SUBJECTS DISCUSSED: Development of his political ideas; political experiences growing up; American Student Union activities; the Minnesota Youth Congress; NYA and WPA projects; labor union activities in Duluth and in the U.S. as a whole; opinions on the mistakes and future direction of the labor movement; Congressman John A. Blatnik Presidential campaign of Henry A. Wallace. COMMENTS ON INTERVIEW: Dizard's memory is good and he gives a lively account of his life. Dizard talked quickly and started many sentences he didn't finish. The transcript has been fairly heavily edited for readability. He also interjected a few offhand comments on current events and issues that were edited out.
3 hours sound cassette
36 pages transcript
Content Category: sound recordings
Content Category: text
02:23:46 running time
Interviewee: Dizard, George
Interviewer: Ross, Carl
Made in: Duluth, Saint Louis County, Minnesota, United States
Creation: 07/31/1987 - 10/25/1987 (Interviews conducted 7/31/1987, 10/23/1987 and 10/25/1987.)
|Holding Type||Oral History - Interview|
OH 30 (Library Call Number)
AV1990.228.12 (Accession Number)
MHS Library Catalog
Oral History - Project, MHS Collection, project: 'Twentieth Century Radicalism in Minnesota Oral History Project'