WRL Centennial History Blog

War Resisters League - Southwest Campaigns: Kirtland AFB, Sandia and Los Alamos Laboratories

War Resisters League - One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance

WRL Southwest formed as a chapter and then as a regional office in Albuquerque, New Mexico, during the Vietnam War. We wanted to be a voice for peace, pacifism and nonviolence in the area, which hosted the Kirtland Air Force Base and the two atomic weapons laboratories: Sandia in Albuquerque and Los Alamos National Laboratory in northern New Mexico, where the first nuclear weapons were researched and designed....

Annual Tax Day Protests

War Resisters League - One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance

“[T]he customary band of pickets” was how a 1953 New York Times article dismissively termed Tax Day demonstrators from WRL, Catholic Worker, and the Peacemakers outside the Manhattan IRS. The article went on to report “they either refused to pay Federal income taxes or sympathized with those who did not because ‘the huge program of armaments can only lead to a third world war.’”

Virginia Baron's Introduction to the 1997 WRL Peace Calendar

War Resisters League - One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance

Virginia Baron edited the 1997 WRL Peace Calendar, “Womanspirit Moving: ” a collection of profiles, quotations, and stories about women organizing for peace and justice around the world. In a lifetime of activism herself, Virginia worked for the Fellowship of Reconciliation, traveled the world on peace delegations, and was active with War Resisters League for at least the last 30 years of her life. Virginia died at age 91 in 2022. This is an excerpt from the introduction to the Womanspirit Moving Calendar.

The Early Years: The Feminist Leadership of WRL

War Resisters League - 100 Years of Nonviolent Resistence

In founding and then leading WRL for nearly 20 years, Jessie Wallace Hughan was supported by an impressive group of women, many having previously headed other women’s pacifist, suffragist, anti-conscription, and socialist organizations. Unusually independent for their time, most had graduated from prestigious universities, supported themselves with careers, and were engaged in romantic relationships with like-minded women.

Southern Intersectional Organizing in the Reagan Era: WRL Southeast

War Resisters League - One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance

When, in late 1979, Durham, NC-based lesbian feminist organizer Joanne Abel heard about the Klan and Nazi murders of five local leftists at a Greensboro march organized by the Communist Workers Party, she called a friend at the War Resisters League...

(This piece is intended as the first post in a series about WRL Southeast over the course of 2023)

Early WRL Demonstration

One of WRL’s earliest known street actions was a demonstration marking the 10th anniversary of the World War I armistice.

On November 10, 1928, 27 pacifists and socialists -- including the Youth Division of the War Resisters League, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Union Theological Seminary, Young People’s Socialist League, Bronx Free Fellowship – marched from Bowling Green up Broadway to an antiwar rally in Union Square.


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