Eisler, Gerhart

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Gerhart Eisler (1897-1968) was a prominent communist in Austria, Germany, the United States, and the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). His brother was the leftist composer Hanns Eisler. From 1929 to 1931 he was a liaison between the Communist International and the Communist Parties in China and then from 1933 to 1936 to the United States. Gerhart Eissler was charged in two trials in 1947 first with refusing to testify before the U.S. Congress' House Un-American Activities Committee, then of violating U.S. laws by misrepresenting his Communist Party affiliation on his immigration application. He was sentenced to one and three years in prison, but was released on caution. When his last legal appeal had failed he jumped bail and secretly boarded the Polish liner MS Batory bound for London in May, 1949. Once in England, authorities allowed him to leave for the German Democratic Republic, where Eisler became chief of East German radio.

From the guide to the Gerhart Eisler Scrapbook, 1946-1947, (Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Siegfried Bernfeld journals, 1903-1919 Hoover Institution Archives
referencedIn Guide to the Daily Worker and Daily World Photographs Collection, 1920-2001 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Eisler, Gerhard. Address by Gerhard Eisler, 1949 February 21. Harvard University, Archives
referencedIn Van Sickle, Leftist Pamphlet Collection, 1900-1993 Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries,
referencedIn J. B. Matthews Papers, 1862-1986 and undated David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
referencedIn Guide to the Abraham Unger Papers, 1936-1980 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Gerhart Eisler FOIA Files, Bulk, 1947-1951, circa 1941-1968 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
creatorOf Gerhart Eisler Scrapbook, 1946-1947 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Bernfeld, Siegfried person
associatedWith Communist Party of the United States of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University. Corporation. corporateBody
associatedWith Harvard University. John Reed Society. corporateBody
associatedWith Matthews, J. B. (Joseph Brown), 1894-1966 person
associatedWith Schrecker, Ellen person
associatedWith Unger, Abraham, 1899-1975 person
associatedWith United States. Congress. House. Committee on Un-American Activities. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation. corporateBody
associatedWith Van Sickle person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Radicals--United States
Anti-communist movements--United States


Birth 1897-02-20

Death 1968-03-21


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