Side-Lights on the Conference from the Baltimore Press


How Calmly Faces Opposition and Argues Against Hasty Revolt – I. W. W. Representatives Active.

A genuine “bum,” especially decorated for the occasion, was piloted into the Holliday street. Theatre at the afternoon session of the conference of the International Brotherhood Welfare Association and deposited in a seat. He wore a crushed and dilapidated silk hat, and as a coat he had on a woman’s plush jacket, heavily and elaborately braided and of an ancient vintage. Some comedian had painted his face with a fringe of whiskers and a black eye.

He was apparently far gone in liquor and was assisted to his seat by a man who brought him in and then vanished. It was probably the work of some joker, and Round Sergeant Carey and Patrolman Downes were on the lookout for disorder, but the hobo’s hat fell of and he quietly fell into a profound slumber, so that the meeting was not disturbed.

War of Words and Ideas.

The two sessions yesterday were taken up chiefly with the war of words and ideas be. tween the pacific Socialists of the James Eades How stripe, and the little band of firebrands from Philadelphia who want to make the association an adjunct to the Industrial Workers of the World, advocates of ‘direct action’ in wresting the industries from the capitalist class. This little group made a lot of noise and spoke frequently with fire and fervor of their alleged wrongs, but they seemed to have very little effect on How, whose smiles and forgiveness were ever on tap, like his coffee and sandwiches for the unemployed.

Alexander Law, of New York, was elected chairman for the day, but this was not a victory for the Industrial Workers of the World faction, for Law is vice-chairman of the national organization, and a friend and supporter of How, as he himself explained. How is national chairman, chosen by a referendum vote in January last and cannot be ousted until next January at the earliest.

How Tries Reconciliation.

How himself, in an effort to reconcile differences, made a conciliatory and sensible speech in the afternoon. He wanted, he said, to see the advent of the ‘Industrial Commonwealth’ as much as anyone, but realized that their aspirations, but he asked how they could expect all working men to be as far as this could not be brought about over night. The Philadelphians, he said, were right or nearly so advanced as they were. How could the working class bring about the great reform is wanted when it was divided into any number of groups wrangling among themselves as to methods and principles, he asked. The French Revolution, he declared, had ended in butchery and failure because the Jacobins had launched the revolt before the French people were educated up to it. For the present, he said, the work of the Welfare Association ought to consist of practical aid to the unemployed, the fight against vagrancy laws and the bringing to. Rether of the workingmen into solidarity as to principles and methods by hurian kindness and brotherly love.


How’s ideas were called the maunderings of weakness and ‘old women’s remedies’ by ”Brother Murray, who was sarcastic, defiant and vociferous. One of the radicals was called an anarchist and proudly admitted it.

A Baltimore local of the Brotherhood is being organized, with IIarry II. Johannes, called the ‘Humanitarian Hobo’ and a social worker in this city connected with a number of organizations, as its guiding spirit.