Take the 2-minute tour ×
History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

A long time ago -- either when I was in school, or via some documentary -- I learned that Einstein had to face a public immigration hearing in 1933 [edit: probably it was a naturalization hearing in 1940]. One of the groups speaking against him was a women's organization (I believe the tail end of the suffragettes?), motivated by the fact that he had divorced his first wife.

Googling on line for details about this, however, I've found absolutely nothing, not even a discussion of the hearing. This seems odd since I'm sure there was some vocal public opposition on account of his Jewish heritage.

Can anyone confirm this with further information?

share|improve this question
2  
Looks like he renounced citizenship in 1933 but had his (optional) citizenship/naturalization hearing and swearing in October 1, 1940 with Judge Phillip Forman. I don't find any good hits referring to anyone speaking against him at the hearing but perhaps that will help someone find more details. Another source said he "took out his citizenship" papers (presumably for US citizenship) in 1936. –  kmlawson Jul 28 '13 at 14:30
add comment

1 Answer 1

up vote 9 down vote accepted

I wonder whether what you're recalling was the battle waged against Einstein by the Woman Patriot Corporation.

The "corporation" was anti-suffragette in character, possibly anti-Jewish and certainly anti-communist and anti-pacifist.

In 1932 the organisation filed a memorandum complaining about Einstein's return to the United States. They claimed, according to Einstein on Politics: His Private Thoughts And Public Stands on Nationalism, Zionism, War, Peace, and the Bomb edited by David E. Rowe, Robert J. Schulmann:

Einstein was not merely a pernicious influence; he was the ringleader of an anarcho-communist program whose aim was to shatter the military machinery of national governments as a preliminary for world revolution.

The Jewish Telegraph archive has a report of the battle here:
http://www.jta.org/1932/12/05/archive/professor-einstein-reiterates-pacifist-views-in-challenge-to-womens-patriot-corporation

Einstein's archive is not available online but a search of the archive for "Woman Patriot Corporation" lists a number of documents which attest to the nature of the battle:
http://alberteinstein.info/vufind1/Author/Home?author=Woman%20Patriot%20Corporation

Their rather hysterical list of complaints against Einstein however do not seem to have included his treatment of his wife.

For details of the history of this strange organisation and their opposition to women's suffrage see Votes for Women: The Struggle for Suffrage Revisited edited by Jean H. Baker (p.125) and also this Britannica link.

share|improve this answer
1  
Is anything else known about this outfit - Woman Patriot Corporation? They seem like a one-hit wonder... –  Felix Goldberg Jul 30 '13 at 15:26
1  
@FelixGoldberg from Votes for Women: "After passage of the Susan B. Anthony amendment, a handful of die-hards transformed NAOWS into the Woman Patriot Corporation which, throughout the twenties, continued its anti-suffrage battle in the guise of anti-socialist, anti-bolshevik, and anti-radical rhetoric. Mary Kilbreth, the last president of NAOWS and the main figure leading the Woman Patriot Corporation, warned Congress that women who supported disarmament in the twenties promoted the cause of Lenin ... –  Tea Drinker Jul 31 '13 at 10:09
1  
... and Trotsky. She also fought against an Equal Rights Amendment, a Uniform Marriage and Divorce Law, a Child labor amendment, and a department of education." –  Tea Drinker Jul 31 '13 at 10:09
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.