By Bill | August 27, 2010
I recently found out from reading my Illinois Labor History Society newsletter that the Haymarket Memorial in Waldheim Cemetery is in need of repair. Apparently it was “vandalized by metal thieves who removed the original bronze floral arrangement at the base of the monument and the bronze plaque naming the Martyrs.”
When I read that I was gutted a little bit.
I reckon a lot of you reading this blog already know the story of the Haymarket Martyrs. Theirs is one of the most inspiring stories in Anarchist history in my opinion. I’ve personally visited the memorial twice now.
In 1997 the monument was recognized as a National Historic Landmark by none other than the U.S. Department of the Interior and the ILHS was named its official “Steward.”
At the ceremonies celebrating this recognition Les Orear, then ILHS President, declared:
“The Monument is a place of pilgrimage. It is a place where people come for inspiration. Some may visit in worship of ancient dogmas. Others find encouragement to carry on the struggle, however the goal may change through the years. Some fix on a symbol of injustice at the hands of the state; to others the Monument speaks, magnificently, of the determination to overcome all injustice.”
I’d agree with that sentiment. Hell. I made two pilgrimages myself. Anyway, they are trying to raise $30,000.00 to restore the monument and insure future maintenance. They’ll even list your name in connection with the rededication ceremony planned for May Day 2011.
I wasn’t able to find a link where you could donate online. The newsletter gives these details:
Make check payable to the Illinois Labor History Society and mail to 28 E Jackson Blvd., Room 1012, Chicago, IL 60604
and for those who can deduct these sorts of things: ILHS is a 401(c)3 organization.
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