Chapter 16 – The Shaping of a Socialist

In June 1948, Richard prepares for his upcoming study trip to Canada to see “democratic socialism” in action. The governing Cooperative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) party in Saskatchewan was holding its convention in Moosejaw. Before he leaves on his journey, Richard accepts an offer from the League for Industrial Democracy to serve as Student Secretary in the fall. Richard hitchhikes 1,000 miles from Greenwich Village in Manhattan to the Madison, Wisconsin, farm of Walter Uphoff, the Socialist candidate for governor. In Madison he meets up with a group of eighteen students. Richard decides to throw in his lot with three other men and travel the remainder of the way in E. Scott Maynes’s  Model T Ford half truck. At the CCF convention, Richard is moved by the down-to-earth nature of the delegates and their pragmatic concern about how the government programs were serving the people. In meeting one of the CCF’s founders, Richard receives validation of his conviction that there is a place for religion in social and economic justice.

Share this with your friends:
Facebook Twitter Email Pinterest

2 thoughts on “Chapter 16 – The Shaping of a Socialist

  1. avatarRichard Frothingham

    In looking over a carbon copy of my application to participate in the summer of 1949 Students in Industry project in Chicago, I mentioned my membership in the Wooster chapter of SLID. I am sure that carried weight with Vic Obenhaus, the project’s director.

    1. avatarRichard Poethig

      The Students in Industry project laid the foundation for a long standing program “Ministers-In-Industry” which began in 1950 in Pittsburgh and moved to McCormick Seminary, Chicago in 1952. The program, which was initiated under The Presbyterian Institute on Industrial Relations, had seminarians work during summers in industrial situations, “on-the-line”, and meet after work to discuss their
      experiences. Some 3,000 ministers went through P.I.I.R. programs. See chapters 22 and 23 of this autobiography for the 1950 Pittsburgh experience.

Comments are closed.