Antiwar and Radical History Project – Pacific Northwest
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Activist Oral Histories

We have begun to collect video oral histories of antiwar, pacifist, feminist, and radical activists from the Pacific Northwest. Follow the links below to watch streaming video excerpts from the interviews and read a short biography.

Early Cold War Activists

Christian socialist Ivan King co-founded the 1957 Anvil Club at UW, which sought to sustain activism at the height of the Cold War, as well as involving himself in civil rights work.

Lyle Mercer organized protests to the 1948 Canwell Commission's hearings against UW professors with "communist sympathies," and went on to organize against HUAC in the 1960s.

 

Vietnam War-era Activists

Megan Cornish helped run the GI coffeehouse, the Shelter Half, in Tacoma before joining a socialist feminist organization.

 

Steve Ludwig was a member of Students for a Democratic Society at UW, where he worked with draft resisters, soldiers, and campus unions, and was involved in the student strike in 1970.

Bruce MacLean

Lyle Quasim

Bruce MacLean was an active part of the American Servicemen's Union while stationed at Fort Lewis, helping publish Fed Up, taking part in a 1970 mock trial of the army, and broadening the GI movement to encompass other social justice issues.

Lyle Quasim, born into a long line of union and civil rights activists, worked as an Air Force medic in Vietnam and while stationed at Fort Lewis, an experience that committed him to working in the GI antiwar movement.

Randy Rowland

Barbara Winslow

Randy Rowland turned against the war during his experiences as a medic in Vietnam and committed himself to the antiwar GI movement, taking part in the Presidio Mutiny in San Francisco and organizing GIs at Fort Lewis.

Barbara Winslow was a member of SDS at UW, and quickly became a leader of the emerging women's liberation movement in Seattle, helping found Radical Women and Women's Liberation Seattle.

 

"A People's History of the UW"

 

A panel discussion of antiwar, social justice, and anti-racist activism at the University of Washington in the 1960s and 1970s, held on May 26, 2010 in Seattle. Featuring Aaron Dixon, Larry Gossett, Steve Ludwig, Py Bateman, Dean Paton, and (unrecorded) Oscar Rosales-Castaneda. Video produced by Mike McCormick.

 

 

Anti-Nuclear Activists, 1970s and 1980s

Bill “Bix” Bichsel

Katharine “Kay” Bullitt

Bill Bichsel, a Jesuit priest and part of the Catholic Worker community, was involved in nonviolent civil disobedience at Bangor Naval Base, in opposition to the Trident nuclear weapons.

Civil rights and school desegregation advocate Kay Bullitt is also a peace activist, and helped organize “Target Seattle” anti-nuclear protests in the 1980s.

Kim Wahl

 

Kim Wahl began pacifist civil disobedience against nuclear weapons in 1981, taking part in Ground Zero's 1982 peace blockade, a tiny flotilla of boats that aimed to stop the Trident nuclear submarine from docking at Bangor Naval Base on Hood Canal.