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FOSL: This is an interview between Cate Fosl and Louis Lusky, conducted from my home on April the 20-, 20th, 1999.

[Pause in recording.]

FOSL: Okay, I think we're taping now.


FOSL: So, um, you want me to just go on and ask you the questions again? How bout that?

LUSKY: Oh, that's probably the best thing.

FOSL: Okay. Um, well, how bout if you just begin by describing Louisville to me as you knew it in the 1950s. And I asked you about, especially around race relations and liberalism in general and McCarthyism.

LUSKY: Well--(clears throat)--Uh, Kentucky, you know, was a boarder state. (clears throat) And although it never seceded from, from the union back in, uh, 1860, um, they, ----------(??), the races were 00:01:00pretty well segregated in Louisville. Uh, I've tried, I've tried to remember the first time I met Carl Braden. (clears throat) He was a reporter for the Louisville Times newspaper.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, a labor reporter. And he and I were on a radio program together, uh, I guess some time--(Fosl clears throat)--early in 1954. Um, and, we discussed various public questions. And that was really the only contact I had with him until, until he was indicted.


FOSL: Um-hm. Well, well, lemme back up for a minute and ask you to tell me a little bit about yourself with relation to Louisville. Are you a native Louisvillian?

LUSKY: No, I was born in Columbus, Ohio.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: But I grew up in Louisville, went to, to high school and college there.

FOSL: Oh, okay. So you went to University of Louisville?

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, then I got a scholarship to Columbia Law School in New York City.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, uh, that's where I had my law training. But, I grew up in Louisville. And, it was, it was a pretty well-segregated place. All 00:03:00of Kentucky was at that time. It was racially segregated.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, let's just see.

FOSL: And so what were, what was your career at that time? Were you a civil liberties lawyer?

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Um-hm. So you had already been doing that on behalf of the ACLU or--?

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Well it was the KCLU at that point.

FOSL: It was--I'm sorry?

LUSKY: The Kentucky Civil Liberties Union.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Which was affiliated, of course, with the, with the, the New York Civil Liberties Union, which was, which was the main one.

FOSL: Well, somehow I had gotten the impression that the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union was really kind of, um, founded in the context of the Braden sedition case. Is that not true?

LUSKY: That is right.

FOSL: Um-hm.


LUSKY: I remember there was a man named Arthur Kling.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Who was active in, in organizing it. And the first real, how shall is say? The first important contact I had with the Bradens was when they bought a house in a, in, in Shively, Kentucky, which was a hard-, hard hat community just south of Louisville. And by subterfuge, they bought a house for a black named Andrew and Mrs. Wade.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: W-a-d-e.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Who had wanted to buy a house, but they, for, for themselves and 00:05:00their, their child, but they weren't able to get any-, anybody to sell to 'em because they were black.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And, I mean, he was a war veteran. But they still couldn't find any, any house. And the Bradens, by subterfuge, got them a house in, in Shively just south of Louisville.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, the house, well, the first thing that happened was, when they moved in if, it, the, the man that sold it to 'em was, was shocked. I forget his name.

FOSL: Rone.


FOSL: Rone, James Rone.

LUSKY: Oh, that's right. And, and he tried to buy it back, and they 00:06:00wouldn't do it. And--(clears throat)

FOSL: Did you remember reading about all this in the paper later, when it all kinda got so explosive?

LUSKY: Well, yeah. I--

FOSL: I mean but early on was there very much, you know what I mean? Were people very aware of this from when it was first going on?

LUSKY: Oh yeah. They, they, well, the first thing that happened was that a cross was burned.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Across the street from the Bradens' house, or the house that the Bradens had bought for the Wades.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I guess you know that a, a fiery cross--

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: --is a, is an encouragement to lynching.


FOSL: Right. And they shot out the windows.

LUSKY: And then the house was bombed.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Actually, there was a--nobody was hurt luckily. But the Bradens began to criticize the prosecutor, Scott Hamilton, and Larry (??) Higgins, his associate for failing to prosecute the bombers of the house. And instead of doing that, they, although there, there was a, a clear evidence of, that this had been done by the local people. But they, they indicted the Bradens--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --conspiring to overthrow the government.


FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: On the ground that they were Communists.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And I remember there was insurance had been written on the house by Charles Tachau.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Know who that is?

FOSL: Yeah. I, I've interviewed him, actually.

LUSKY: Is he still alive?

FOSL: It was, it was Eric Tachau. And yes, he is still alive, although his wife died a few years ago.

LUSKY: Yeah, I know that. Well anyway, Eric, that's right. And he had insured the house. And, anyway, what the grand jury did in a, a basic- , mainly the, the, the chair, the chair person of the, of the grand jury was--(clears throat)--a, a woman named Handmaker, the wife of Herm-, Herman Handmaker who was a, an ardent anti-Communist.


FOSL: Oh, I didn't know that.

LUSKY: Yeah. And they indicted Carl for, for conspiring to overthrow the government by force and violence. And, and the bond was set at seventy-five thousand dollars, as I recall it, in order to get him out pending trial, which was more that was a lot more money then than it is now.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And actually, I circulated this, I sent questionnaires to all the different counties in Kentucky, and found that this was a higher bond than had ever been set, even in murder cases. But the court would not dismiss the case on that ground, on the ground that it was 00:10:00discriminatory. And it was set down. And, and he had to stay in prison, I think, for seven months.

FOSL: That's right.

LUSKY: And finally the, they ended up indicted, indicting the, the Bradens. He was in prison for seven months until a, an, in another case involving a, a, a case that was handled by a talented lawyer named Leonard Boudin, you heard of that name?

FOSL: Um-hm. Yeah, I know that name.

LUSKY: (clears throat) They--

FOSL: So Leonard Boudin was a, was the attorney in the Nelson Case?

LUSKY: That's right.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: That's the case in which the Supreme Court said that mere 00:11:00membership in the Communist Party did not provide a basis for, for conspiracy actions--

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: --prosecution. And, and so he, when this--

FOSL: Now was Leonard Boudin with the ECLC?

LUSKY: That's right.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: Emergency Civil Liberties Community.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: -----------(??) committee. Emergency Civil Liberties Committee. And I remember he came to our house in Louisville and, and I asked him if he was a Communist, and he was offended by this. He said, "Nah," he just was with, was indignant that the, the way communists were being prosecuted.

FOSL: (clears throat) Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, and I, I believed him. Did then and I do now.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, and, and we re-circularized all the counties and, and found that the seventy-five thousand bet--bond, that he was called on to make, was way out of line.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And still, it was not enough to get him out.

FOSL: So, so do you think that Judge Curtis was terribly biased in the trial?

LUSKY: Um, that's hard to say. He, he, he had the same feeling about separation of the races that, that was prevalent in Louisville.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I, I, I thought he was a, you know, an honest man, or as honest as any of, any of us are.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, he felt he was doing the right thing. And, and so it wasn't 00:13:00until Leonard Boudin get--won this other case--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --that, that Carl was liberated. And I, I really, I went out and got him at the, at the LaGrange Reformatory.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And the first thing he did was to settle down in a little restaurant where he ate a pint of ice cream.

FOSL: Yeah, I've got the photograph the newspaper had of y'all walking out of there. And it said that in the story, too.

LUSKY: And, so then, the problem was to, to go on from there.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And the--

FOSL: Well, let--could I back up a little bit to a little bit more 00:14:00detail about how you got involved in the case? Because, now I was just looking at some of the clippings from the newspaper yesterday. And I, like, as the trial opened, it said that you were, um--

LUSKY: Friend of the court.

FOSL: --Friend of the court. And I, I don't know, you know, I don't know the legal jargon that well. I don't know really what that means. But somehow or another you went from being a friend of the court to being head counsel for the appeal. Isn't that correct?

LUSKY: Yeah. I--

FOSL: So could you say a little bit about that?

LUSKY: What?

FOSL: Could you say a little bit about that, how that changed, or--?

LUSKY: The, the, there was a lawyer in Louisville named Grover Sales--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --who had been counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union back in the days when, when there was a strike in the coal mines. And 00:15:00he had joined with the, the national organization to--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --to represent the strikers.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: But he was much older than I was. And he was in bad health. And so he asked me to appear not for, for the Bradens, but, but to argue the legal question whether mere membership in the party, without any proof of, that they'd actually done anything

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: ----------(??)--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --was a basis for, for prosecution. And while that case was pending, Leonard Boudin won this Nelson Case. And that resulted in 00:16:00the, in Carl's liberation.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And--

FOSL: So you worked really closely with this team of Zollinger and Anbrow (??), even through the first trial?

LUSKY: Well, I was on their side. And I sat at the counsel table--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --with them as I recall it. Or maybe just, just behind 'em.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, then when, when the trial court jury convicted Carl, and the case went on appeal, I really did the work on the appeal because I, I don't know if you know this, but I started out as a law clerk, just after a year in Co-, after I got out of Columbia Law School.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, I was a law clerk to, to Justice Stone of the U.S. Supreme Court.

FOSL: Oh. Um-hm.

LUSKY: And who was a, a great civil liberties lawyer.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And so I, I, I had a good understanding of the, of the procedure and the substance up, up until that time, I don't think they had ever reviewed a, a case. There, there was no precedent in the Supreme Court for this kind of a case.

FOSL: Um-hm. Well, it seems that there was a lot of debate going on in the country all through the early fifties as to whether membership in the CP should be a crime. You know, I know that in that Communist Control Act, earlier in fifty-four--

LUSKY: Right.

FOSL: --there was, you know, originally a piece of that legislation that 00:18:00would make it a crime, but it didn't pass.

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: So--

LUSKY: Yeah. I can't remember if it passed or not. But--

FOSL: Well, the bill passed, but the, the part of the bill that would've made membership in the CP clearly a crime, that part didn't pass. But then there were other people. I mean, I'm probably telling you stuff you already know. But there were many that said that there, that certain of the principles in the McCarran Act of 1950 had already made CP membership a crime. But it does seem to me that it was never clearly, you know, settled in the courts, or it had not been at that time, certainly.

LUSKY: Well, lemme just give you an idea of, of the attitude--

FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: -- in Louisville.

FOSL: Good.

LUSKY: Of--there was a, the best restaurant in Louisville, in downtown 00:19:00Louisville, on Fifth Street, across the street from the Herald Post building was called The Old House. And there was a, there were a couple of black lawyers, one was James Crumlin, I remember.

FOSL: Um-hm. I've interviewed him, actually, yeah.

LUSKY: You've interviewed him?

FOSL: Um-hm. Not so much about that case as just some earlier he, he knew Anne earlier when she was a reporter for the Times.

LUSKY: Right. And we appeared at The Old House and asked to have lunch served to us. And there was a great flurry and they, there was, the person in charge of the restaurant was named Irma Kaaye, I think. K-a- a-y-e. And, actually her husband, who was the owner of the restaurant, 00:20:00had, had gone to, he was at, at Sanford Field, the airport--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --ready to fly to some kind of a convention out, a Republican convention. And it was such a crisis that he came back and had us put in a stuffy little upstairs room.

FOSL: Huh. And this was you and Crumlin?


FOSL: This was you and Jim Crumlin?

LUSKY: No, there were about four or five of us.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: There was another, there was a black lawyer--

FOSL: Maybe Al Carroll?


FOSL: Alfred Carroll?

LUSKY: Yeah. Well, he was one. And there was another one who, who's a kind of a weird character. He, remember he wore a cross around his neck and, and was a, a minister. I can't remember his name. But, 00:21:00anyway, there were about five or six of us. And we were put in this stuffy little room, and were given lunch, and were not allowed to pay for it. So--

FOSL: Huh.


FOSL: So this meant they hadn't really served blacks?

LUSKY: Yeah, the, they, they had not, no. They sure hadn't. They didn't allow 'em in the place.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: Except for serving the meals and that sort of thing.

FOSL: Um-hm. When would this have been, this incident?

LUSKY: Huh? What?

FOSL: When would this have been, this incident you're telling me about?

LUSKY: It would have been in 1954 or five.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I'm not sure which.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: But it, but, anyway, the Supreme Court had not yet held that, that you couldn't make, you couldn't prosecute a person simply for 00:22:00membership in the party without proof that he had done or planned to do something harmful.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Which they couldn't prove. And, as I say, this was, this was such a, a outlandish thing to do from the viewpoint of the proprietor, that he just didn't wanna have anything done that would indicate an open mind on the question of, of separation of the races.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: There was this prosecutor named Scott Hamilton.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And he and, and his assistant, Larry (??) Higgins, were in charge 00:23:00of the local prosecutions. And the Bradens made a, they, they were pretty outspoken in their criticism of the prosecution for, for failing to pursue the, the people who had--oh, I forgot to tell you that, that the, that there was a black couple named Andrew Wade and his wife.

FOSL: No, you, you mentioned them.

LUSKY: Okay. They, and, and, that the, there was a cross burned and--

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: --and shots were fired. And finally, the house was bombed. Well, uh--


FOSL: Tell me some of your impressions of Scott Hamilton.

LUSKY: Well, he was a bully. And actually, I think he died when he was shot by his wife.

FOSL: No, he shot himself, actually.

LUSKY: Himself? Well, I don't know exactly why he did it. But I, I, I, I really don't know why he did. I don't think I ever knew. But, he, he, he, he was a, a leader of the segregation viewpoint. And, let's see. I've got some notes here. Let's see if I can read 'em. Oh yeah. The, the, well, I don't know, I, I guess I may have told you 00:25:00most everything. Let's see. Oh, the, the, the case, I think it was the Braden case was, I, I, I started out as, as a friend of the court, amicus curiae.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And then, because I had clerked in the U.S. Supreme Court, I was really getting charge of the appeal. And I, I took it on with the understanding that I wouldn't have to answer to, to the Communist Party or anybody else--

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: --for the way I handled the case.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And of, of course, as I told you, the, the case was washed out 00:26:00when Leonard Boudin--

FOSL: Won in Nelson.

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Yeah. Well, tell me this. Will you ta-, talk to me a little bit about, like, your experience of working with Anne and Carl?

LUSKY: Just a minute. There's another call, and I've gotta get rid of it.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: Just hold on.

FOSL: Okay. I was asking you about your recollections of Anne and Carl themselves.


FOSL: And especially of Anne.

LUSKY: Well, my fir-, my main, in recollection, was that she was brighter than, than Carl. I mean she, and she, she had a much more disciplined mind.

FOSL: She had a much more what?

LUSKY: Disciplined.

FOSL: Disciplined mind.

LUSKY: She was from, I think Anniston, Alabama. Does that sound--

FOSL: That's right.


LUSKY: And which is a Deep South community. And so she was exposed to more anti-immigration feeling than, than I, than I was.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But she, she reacted in, in, in the way that a strong-minded person would.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I, I remember, I remember sitting down with Carl and Anne in my home in Louisville.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And we were dis-, discussing whether he should deny membership in the party.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I remember that she was really against that.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But he went ahead and did it. I, I mean he had to be the one to decide. And he did deny membership. And then the prosecution produced a witness named Alberta Ahearn.

FOSL: Right, I know that.

LUSKY: And--

FOSL: Well, what did Anne think he should do?

LUSKY: Well, she was uneasy about it. I think she thought it was wrong.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Of course it turned out to be very wrong. Incidentally, after the indictment, I don't know if you know this. Scott Hamilton offered to dismiss the indictment if they would leave the city.

FOSL: I didn't know that. She's never told me that.

LUSKY: Yeah. And they refused.


FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: I think it was Anne who, who simply wouldn't be pushed around this way. I'm not sure how Carl felt about it.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: But anyway, they didn't. And he, he served, ----------(??) they kept him in the LaGrange Reformatory for, I think seven months.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Un-, until finally he was liberated.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And, incidentally, my own--(laughs)--my own parents were Republicans, and, and were horrified by the whole business, but they stuck by me.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I, I remember my father used to buy me a cigar every time we had lunch together. Which is a filthy habit, of course. (Fosl laughs) 00:30:00I still smoke cigars.

FOSL: Oh, you do? (laughs)

LUSKY: And, except my wife won't let me do it in the house.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I have to go out in the yard or in the car.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: It's raining here, by the way.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And, well, the nut of it was that, that he, he, he finally, incidentally, Carl kept right on with his, with his criticism of the establishment and ended up getting arrested down South somewhere.

FOSL: Right, in Atlanta, which is my hometown.

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: Right.

FOSL: Well, um, tell me this. What--do you think that Scott Hamilton really believed that they'd done this? I mean it seems that he knew who 00:31:00did it. What do you think, I mean was he legitimately driven by this terrible fear of Communists in the era? Or do you think that he just was trying to deflect away from the segregation and make some political hay?

LUSKY: -----------(??) Governor (??). I think it was a political position.

FOSL: (clears throat) Okay.

LUSKY: I, I, I mean it seems hard to believe that anybody could get elected on that ground, and still all over the South there were, there were those that considered Governor Wallace--

FOSL: Oh yeah.

LUSKY: --all over the South, anybody that favored mingling of the races was considered a public enemy.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: That's, you know, it, it's a hangover from the Civil War.

FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: And, and actually, I think it's probably some of it left. 00:32:00Although, now we've got so many black heroes. I don't know if you're old enough to, to remember how recently blacks were allowed in the major leagues in baseball.

FOSL: Well, I wasn't around then, but I know that it was 1947 or eight.

LUSKY: That's right. And, of course, this all took place before then. And as a matter of fact, in World War II the, the, the blacks were segregated pretty largely.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Even in the Air Force, where I worked.

FOSL: Um-hm. Would you say that this case sort of raised your consciousnes--ss--about the, you know, how fir-, you know, to what length the segregationists would go?


LUSKY: I, I'm sure I didn't understand that.

FOSL: I said would you say that this case sort of raised your awareness of the length--(clears throat)--excuse me, to which segregationists would go?

LUSKY: Yeah. Of course it did.

FOSL: So you don't think Hamilton was at all driven by real anti- Communism, he was just--

LUSKY: He was trying to advance his own position of--

FOSL: Um-hm. Okay.

LUSKY: I mean, the--(laughs)--there's nothing unusual about that. You generally take a position that you think will appeal to most of the voters.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And that certainly was true of, of the position he took on, on Communism. And actually, of course, the Communists were a pretty dangerous group.

FOSL: Well, you mentioned that you didn't want the Communist Party to have any, you know, influence in your representation of them. But the 00:34:00Communist Party was not involved in that case at all, were they?

LUSKY: Only the, only the allegation. They, they got some weird characters to come in and testify.

FOSL: Right, the ex-Communists.

LUSKY: What?

FOSL: The ex-Communists, right?

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: And, and they testified to, that all the plots that had been made to, to blow up public places and that sort of thing

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I don't think that ever amounted to a great deal. And still, it was believed pretty widely by, by many whites.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: And, and the, well, it was, it was just a, a time of, of considerable unrest on how to deal with this, with this problem.


FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: The problem of, of segregation of the, on racial lines. And, actually, I think there's, there's still some residue of that. It's--

FOSL: Oh yeah. Yeah, there's a lot of battles that go on about the public schools here and, you know, they haven't done the best job.

LUSKY: And a fair amount of neighborhood segregation.

FOSL: Yeah. Um-hm.

LUSKY: Still. But, and I'm now, well, next Monday (??) I'll be eighty- four. (Fosl laughs) And I'm pretty sure that I won't live to see a, a dec-, a society that is completely free of that kind of feeling.

FOSL: So you were born in 1915?

LUSKY: Yeah.

FOSL: That's the same as my father-in-law.


LUSKY: Really? (laughs) Well, I was born May fifteenth. When was he born?

FOSL: He was born, he just had a birthday about two weeks ago. I think it was around April the eighth or so.

LUSKY: Well, then he's about five weeks older than I.

FOSL: Yep. Yep.

LUSKY: Glad to know somebody is.

FOSL: Yes. Going strong. Well, getting back to your working for Carl and Anne, did you find them to be difficult clients?

LUSKY: Well--

FOSL: You, you mentioned on the phone the other day that Carl was so different from Anne.

LUSKY: Well, I think, I think he was more of a gambler, maybe.

FOSL: Yeah. She, she would agree.

LUSKY: I, yeah. I, I, I think he, lemme ask you, do you know of the name Marie Runyon?

FOSL: Boy, that is a familiar name, but I don't know how I know that name.

LUSKY: Well, she worked for the, for the American Civil Liberties Union 00:37:00at that time.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: She, she lives in New York. I could give you her phone number.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I will give you her phone number.

FOSL: Okay. Well first, tell me what you were gonna say about her.

LUSKY: Well, she provided, she got the American Civil Liberties Union to provide some, some money to the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union, to get us started.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I mean, she was pretty active in those days. She's, actually, she's about half a year older than I am.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, she's still going strong. And, and she got money advanced 00:38:00so that we could form a, a civil liberties union in Louisville and another one in Lexington, which I think you're, I think you are.

FOSL: Yeah, I just went to a meeting of it the other night.

LUSKY: Yeah. Well, she, she was in on the organization of, of the Kentucky affiliate.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: If you like, I'll give you her phone number.

FOSL: Yeah, I'd love to have it.

LUSKY: You, you're more likely to get her in the evening. Because I think she is out most of the day. But you can try her, anyway, you can leave a message on her tape.

FOSL: Um-hm. So did she know Anne and Carl?

LUSKY: Yeah, I think so. I think so.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: I don't know how recently she's thought about 'em. But--

FOSL: Right. Okay.

LUSKY: And she, very likely, I mean, she's got her, all her, her, she's got her good memory. And I, I think she may remember those days.


FOSL: Okay. Well, t-, you know, your wife said something' to me yesterday that stuck with me, 'cause she was talking about what an uproar Louisville was in during this case. Could you say a little bit about that?

LUSKY: Yeah, sure. I, I can remember that o-, old friends of mine, people I'd gone to high school and college with would cross to the other side of the street when they saw me coming.

FOSL: Wow.

LUSKY: That sort of thing. And, you know, I was, I, I felt that I'd kind of, turned out to be an enemy of the people. Not really, but, I mean, in, I, there was deep dis-, actually, my own father regretted the 00:40:00work I was doing.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Though he never, he stuck by me. But, I don't, I don't think he was happy about it.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And--

FOSL: How did it affect your law practice afterwards?

LUSKY: Well--

FOSL: Or did it?

LUSKY: It, the way it affected it was that my local practice died, died down pretty much. I, I didn't lose any clients. But I, but the only cases that were referred to me by other lawyers were the difficult cases. And I won some and lost some.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, my, I, I have been a, a member of the, of a law firm formed by Wilson Wyde (??), who'd been--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --president of, of, who'd been mayor of, of Louisville. And Arthur Grafton (??), who was a very fine lawyer, and, and other people, 00:41:00I don't know if you know the names Robert Sloss, S-l-o--double-s.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And McCauley Smith (??). And Cornelius Grafton, he, he and, and Arthur, incidentally, had been raised in China.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: Father was a missionary there. And, and they were, they were all very good lawyers. I cut loose from them, I guess, in 1954, and s-, set up my own practice in, in, at, at first I was completely alone. And then another lawyer just out of law school named Marvin Morse--


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --filled the empty room. And the, the way it started out with, as a law, as a partnership between me and George Braden, who has, who was no kin to the--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --the, to Carl and Anne. His father had been police chief in Louisville. And we had grown up together and had played golf and bridge together. And he failed to get tenure at Yale Law School where he'd been teaching. And he cut loose, and he and his wife moved to Louisville.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: We practiced together for, for a year. And then he and his wife decided that Louisville was not for them and they moved back up, moved up East, I think to somewhere in Connecticut, I'm not sure. But, 00:43:00anyway, and I, I don't know if he's still alive or not.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: In any case--

FOSL: But (clears throat)--

LUSKY: --they left. I had an empty room in the office. And this young lawyer named Marvin Mores, Marvin H. Morse, M-o-r-s-e--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --moved into that office. And we, we, we weren't partners. And we, we, we weren't partners, but we, we, he paid his rent by giving me--(Fosl sniffs)--giving me a certain amount of his time.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: I, I don't know if you've ever heard of the Sam Thompson case, have you?

FOSL: Yeah, I have, a little bit. Um-hm.

LUSKY: Well, I remember he, he and I handled that case together.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: And, and that really broke some new ground in the Supreme Court. 00:44:00It was the first case where it was held that it's a denial of due process to convict a person if there's no credible evidence against him.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Do, do you know that?

FOSL: Yeah, I do. Um-hm.

LUSKY: Well, that was the case in which it was, in which it was established.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: And as a matter of fact the, you know, the, the highest Kentucky court, which was then the court of appeals--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --had, had failed to, had held that this was not a grounds for reversal.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I remember there was a Lou-, Louisville lawyer named Lawrence 00:45:00Grauman.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: G-r-a-u-m-a-n. Who was a very fine lawyer. And he, what we, in my mind, was convicted of, of disorderly conduct, I think.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Some trivial offense. Because he had, well, ostensibly because he had, had refused to obey a, a direction of a policeman. But actually, what the policeman had done was to, was to pick him up because he'd been, he'd been--

FOSL: Drunk or s--

LUSKY: Because he was black.

FOSL: Oh, is that right?

LUSKY: He (??) was in a, in a white restaurant. Actually, he was, he was not a political person at all. He lived in, out by himself in 00:46:00an outskirt, in one, on the outskirts of Louisville. And he was in, in a little tavern shuffling his feet to the music of a jukebox when a couple of police--(Fosl clears throat)--policemen came in and, and picked him up.

FOSL: Well, you know, truthfully, there, there's been a case like that in Louisville just recently. Of course, now, you know, civil liberties are better, you know, established than they were at that time. But, you know, a guy that was like twenty-years director of the YMCA and a very respected civil rights activist, was in a, a, like a fast food restaurant, also out in Shively. This just happened two or three weeks ago. And the--

[Pause in recording.]

FOSL: Well, lemme just redirect you back to the, this one thing that we talked about earlier that I really wanted to find out a little bit more about. I'm hoping you can help me there. Is I understand that there 00:47:00was some kind of conflict between the ACLU and the ECLC. And I know that they had different visions anyway. But--

LUSKY: What?

FOSL: They had a, you know, different visions. The ECLC was much more, I think, if, correct me if I'm wrong. It was just much more, you know, left-leaning. And the ACLU tended to shy away from cases involving Communists. Is that true?

LUSKY: Well, I don't know if they shied away from 'em. But I, the--

FOSL: I just saw a really interesting documentary not too long on--ago on, on Roger Baldwin. And it just seemed like he as much as said that, you know.

LUSKY: He did what?

FOSL: He as good as said that, that they really wanted to, you know, just, they were very anti-Communist, a lot of them, so much so that they really just didn't wanna get involved with defending Communists.


LUSKY: Well, that's true. And as a matter of fact, the, you know, the Communists were, were--(Fosl sniffs)--what can I say? They felt that-- (both clear throat)--they were justified in, in doing things that, that I couldn't agree with. I mean, you know, the, the Communists were doing their best to stir up racial hatred.

FOSL: Right. Well, what were your own reactions to what the Bradens had done?

LUSKY: I didn't like it.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, it had nothing to do with the question of their legal rights.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: It was just, I mean, the idea of buying a house by subterfuge.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: You see, what they did this is, this, this fella--(both clear 00:49:00throat)--who, for whom they bought the house for the black couple was really, was really harmed.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: They did. And I, I, I sure didn't like that.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, what can you do? I mean--

FOSL: Well, what do you think were their motives?

LUSKY: I really don't know. I, I, I think their motives were to, really to prove that there was a bad fracture in our society.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: That, that they were trying to criticize and, and overcome.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, it's hard to say whether it's a good attitude or a bad attitude.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: When you're speaking, any political attitude that is rigid is not 00:50:00a good thing.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: I mean, the way we, we get along together is to, is to argue with each other, but not to fight with each other.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And we're doing pretty well about that now.

FOSL: Um-hm. Well, I--

LUSKY: Certainly than we were in those days.

FOSL: I'm still curious about these conversations about whether to deny membership in the CP or not. I just wonder what the alternative strategy would have been.

LUSKY: Membership in what?

FOSL: In the Communist Party.

LUSKY: Oh. Well, I certainly never considered joining the Communist Party.

FOSL: No, I meant for them, and their legal strategy, in his case.

LUSKY: The what?

FOSL: I meant for him in the legal strategy in his case. What would 00:51:00have been the alternative to denying membership in the CP?

LUSKY: Well--

FOSL: I guess he could have taken the Fifth Amendment.

LUSKY: Well, that wouldn't have helped.

FOSL: No, I don't think.

LUSKY: You've heard the expression, "A Fifth Amendment Communist."

FOSL: Right, right,

LUSKY: And, I don't really know, I don't think I, I, I think that she was actually more rigid in her, in her attitudes, in her beliefs, than Carl was. I think he was more of a pragmatist. But--

FOSL: Well, c-, but what do ya, like, rigid in what sense?

LUSKY: That she, she simply would, I mean, she might accept something as, as if she had to. But she would never, in her own mind, justify it.


FOSL: Um-hm. Hmm.

LUSKY: And would not try to justify it to other people.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, in other words, I think she's a brave woman.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And I hope you tell her I said hello.

FOSL: I will. I will. Well, I'm trying to get a sense of whether you liked them, what you thought of them. It's okay if you didn't. I just am curious, you know.

LUSKY: ----------(??) think what I thought of 'em. Uh, I, in a way, I really admired Anne because the path that she took was not the easy one.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, you know, anybody that really stands up for, for a cause is 00:53:00taking a chance. [noise] Look ----------(??) Joan of Arc.

FOSL: Um-hm. It, well, I couldn't, I missed what you said. Look at who?

LUSKY: I said look, consider what happened to Joan of Arc.

FOSL: Oh yeah.

LUSKY: Hold on, there's a call again.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: Wait a minute.

FOSL: All right.

[Pause in recording.]

LUSKY: No, I, I, I, I forget where we were.

FOSL: What (??) you were talking about Anne as a brave woman.

LUSKY: Yeah. As I started to say that, consider what happened to Joan of Arc.

FOSL: Yeah.

LUSKY: I, and whether, it's hard to say whether we would be social 00:54:00friends.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: Lived in the same place.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I really don't know.

FOSL: Um-hm. Well, one thing about Carl is he seemed to be the kinda person, either you really like him or you really don't like him. I never met Carl.

LUSKY: Yeah. Well--

FOSL: But a lot of people have said that to me.

LUSKY: I think that's true. And, well, that's true of most people. But, you know, it's, it's simply not a, not a, well, it's, it's just not a, a, anything that you can decide in the abstract.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Either you like people or you don't.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Incidentally, I told you about Marvin Mores.

FOSL: Right.

LUSKY: He was a, he, he lives in Washington D.C.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And is a, a, I think a former judge, a lower court judge now.

FOSL: Huh.

LUSKY: And maybe he's retired by now. He's younger than I am, but he's probably still at retirement age. But he, he lives somewhere in, in northern Virginia.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, I don't exactly know how to tell you to get in touch with him. But, if you want to. But--

FOSL: I, I don't think that'll be necessary.

LUSKY: Don't think so.

FOSL: But tell me this. Now there was nine years you continued to live in Louisville between when you got involved with that--their case, and when you left Louisville.

LUSKY: Well, the, I, I nev-, I didn't lose any clients.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But I never got any new clients except by referrals from my old law firm in New York.

FOSL: I see.


LUSKY: That was Root, Clark, Buckner, and Ballantine.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Which was a, I don't know if you know the name Elihu Root.

FOSL: Unh-uh.

LUSKY: You don't?

FOSL: No, I've heard it, but I don't know who that is.

LUSKY: Well, his father was Secretary of State under Theodore Roosevelt.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: And he was a very conservative lawyer, a very fine lawyer, Elihu Root, E-l-i-h-u.

FOSL: Yeah, that's an interesting name.

LUSKY: Who, he and a-, another lawyer named Grendell (??) Clark (??)--

FOSL: Um-hm. Now that's a familiar name.

LUSKY: Well, the two of them formed a, a partnership right after World War I. And then Emory Buckner (??), who had been prosecut-, chief prosecutor in New York--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --joined. And Arthur Ballantine--


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --who was Hoover's Secretary of the Treasury--

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And the four of 'em formed this firm, Root, Clark, Buckner, and Ballantine.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Which later became Dewey Ballantine.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: The, uh, Dewey, Governor Dewey of New York joined the firm.

FOSL: Hmm.

LUSKY: And that split the firm, because some of the partners didn't, couldn't stand him, and, and formed another firm called Cleary, Gottlieb, Friendly, and Ball.

FOSL: (laughs) Um-hm.

LUSKY: And they're all absolutely (??), I mean, both of 'em are absolutely top-notch firms. And I was with them down to World War II.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: Then I, I went and went and did operational research for the Air Force in England--


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: --during the war. And, then afterwards, came home and got married and so on. But--

FOSL: Where's your wife from?

LUSKY: Uh, I, I've been married twice. My first wife was from Duluth, Minnesota. My second wife was from New Jersey, actually.

FOSL: And what is her first name? I talked with her yesterday on the phone, but I didn't know her name.

LUSKY: Ruth.

FOSL: Ruth. Okay.

LUSKY: R-u-t-h.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Uh, and--

FOSL: Well, tell me this. In those nine years between the sedition case and when you left Louisville--

LUSKY: What?

FOSL: The, those nine years that you were in Louisville after the Braden case, would you, how would you say that case affected Louisville? Did you see changes in those nine years, or--


LUSKY: I can't say that I did. I, I, I mean, I was never physically threatened with anything.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, on the other hand, although I kept my old clients, I never got any new local clients. On the oth-, but the, the New York firm referred quite a good number of cases.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: And my father, who was a successful real estate broker--

FOSL: Um-hm. Oh, the fact that he was in real estate must have been a little point of contention in that case, I would guess.

LUSKY: Well, but he, he, he stuck by me.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, you know, and we had a, a, a, a good family relationship.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: He, he died at age of seventy, which was considered to be a, a 01:00:00normal death age. Nowadays, of course, it's much higher.

FOSL: Yeah, it is. Um-hm.

LUSKY: But, right down to the time of his death, he, he, he stuck by me. And--

FOSL: Well, um, just going back to one more thing, I still, I'm still trying to understand better the conflicts between the ACLU and the ECLC in this case. There's a lot of references to that in Anne's correspondence. But I've never really understood what they were.

LUSKY: Well, I think it's a question of, of attitude toward Communism.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, I think the ACLU, although they would defend Communists, they always did it as a, a friend of the court.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And not as representing the party, as such.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: Whereas the ECLC was, was not, did not draw that, that line.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, and they did a lot of very effective legal work. I mean they, they were fine technicians. And--

FOSL: Well, Bo-, Boudin or, well, how-, however you say his name, he got involved with the Braden case, too, didn't he?

LUSKY: Yeah, I think he did.

FOSL: I thought he did.

LUSKY: I think he filed a, a brief as friend of the court.

FOSL: I see.

LUSKY: But I, I think that we did not make any point of it. I mean, we didn't, we were uncomfortable about getting that kind of support.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: And, and because, because it, the, there was considerable opinion 01:02:00against Communism in those days. How old are you?

FOSL: I'm forty-four.

LUSKY: My God. You look young (??)--(laughs)--

FOSL: I was bor-, I told your wife I was born the day after he was convicted.

LUSKY: My gosh. Well, um--

FOSL: December the fifteenth, 1954.

LUSKY: I'll be darned.

FOSL: Um-hm. Isn't that funny?

LUSKY: Well, it's, it's interesting. (Fosl laughs) It's easy for you to remember, anyway. (Fosl laughs) Well look, I, I don't know that there's anything more that I could tell you. Lemme just look at my notes.

FOSL: Okay.


FOSL: I did have one more question.

LUSKY: All right.

FOSL: You go ahead, though.

LUSKY: What's that?

FOSL: Um, after the KCLU got going, how would you describe the stance of people like Arthur Kling towards the Bradens?


LUSKY: Well, I think he felt the same way I did, which was that they had to be defended, but you didn't need to love 'em.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: You know, I, I, I'm always uneasy in the presence of, of rigid people. And I think Anne really was quite--well, she had to be in order to survive from, down in Alabama.

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: But I don't criticize for it exactly. But I myself try to, to be, to, to be flexible.

FOSL: Um-hm. Um-hm.

LUSKY: And--

FOSL: But you would describe it as a cordial relationship?

LUSKY: Not really. It's, it's more a matter of, of admiration.


FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: I, I do admire the woman.

FOSL: Okay.

LUSKY: Uh, and I hope you'll give her my--

FOSL: I will. I, I'll be speaking with her, you know, within a, the next few weeks, anyway. I don't talk with her every day. But--

LUSKY: Um-hm.

FOSL: I talk with her regularly. My husband teaches at Transylvania, and we brought her over to speak not too long ago.

LUSKY: Oh, really?

FOSL: Um-hm.

LUSKY: She's in good health, is she?

FOSL: She's in pretty good health. She looks older than she is. I think it's all that smoking.

LUSKY: Oh yeah.

FOSL: She smokes like a chimney.

LUSKY: Well, so do I.

FOSL: Oh, do you? (laughs) Oh, okay.

LUSKY: Not in the house.

FOSL: Well, I'll tell her you said that, because she's always interested to--(Fosl laughs)--hear about that.

LUSKY: My wife will not tolerate it in the house.

FOSL: Well, good for her. I'm an avid non-smoker myself.

LUSKY: Well--

FOSL: Well, okay, my last--why don't you look back through your notes. And meanwhile, you noticed on the sheet, I guess, I always ask everybody this, of, is there anything I haven't asked you that you 01:05:00think might be important for me to know that you could tell me in writing about this case and about Anne?

LUSKY: Well, I can't think of anything right now

[End of interview.]