Archives On The Air 240: Rabbi Turned Journalist — William S. Gailmor Papers

Dec 13, 2020

William Gailmor began his career in the 1930s as an Orthodox Jewish Rabbi in New York. By the 1940s he was a nationally known journalist and radio news commentator.

He was blacklisted in the late 1940s for presenting “popular front” viewpoints on the radio. The popular front was a mass democratic social movement that embraced labor rights, civil rights, and economic democracy.

By 1950 he had returned to journalism, writing a regular column on human welfare issues for a liberal newspaper, the Daily Compass.

Scholars writing on U.S. politics and the media during the mid-twentieth century have paid little attention to lesser known journalists such as Gailmor.

But a look at his columns reveals how a minority of popular front journalists challenged the Cold War narrative, even at the height of the Red Scare.

Learn more in William Gailmor’s papers at UW’s American Heritage Center.