Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community

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The Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community was founded by Joseph J. Cohen in 1933. It included fourteen square miles in Alicia, Albee Township in Saginaw County Michigan.

From the description of Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community papers, 1934-1936. (Public Libraries of Saginaw). WorldCat record id: 317404207

The Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community was founded in 1933 by New York anarchist Joseph Cohen. Located on an established, economically depressed farm near Alicia in Saginaw County, the commune was intended as a Jewish self-help agrarian colony in which everyone would work for the good of all and disparities of wealth would not exist. The membership requirements were strict and meant to insure the success of this experiment in cooperative farming. No one over age 45 were permitted to join. There would be no large families with many children, nor would conservatives, religious people, or professed communists be allowed to join. Although most members were Jewish, this was not a requirement.

The Community drew members from fourteen states. Each was required to pay a membership fee, some of which went to pay hired men needed to restore the neglected farm to commercial viability. Financial stability would always be a problem for the commune as would organizational struggles within the commune.

By 1936, many of the original members hoped to return to the cities for steadier employment opportunities. Others looked to the government's Resettlement Administration to purchase the farm and then resell it in smaller parcels with assistance given to the building of homes, barns, and fences. The sale was finalized on December 7, 1936. With the sale, a large portion of the settlers moved away. Others, who hoped to continue the communal existence, took their share of the sale and purchased a farm in Samos, Middlesex County, Virginia.

From the guide to the Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community records, 1933-1937, (Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Stein, Ruth M. Ruth M. Stein photograph series. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Sanders, Charles,. Charles Sanders, plaintiff, vs. Sunrise Co-operative Farm Community, a Michigan corporation, and Sam Stone, Joseph J. Cohen, and David Cohen, individually and as the directors and officers of the Sunrise Co-operative Farm Community, a Michigan corporation, defendants. Equity 580 [Midland, Mich., 1936]. University of Michigan
creatorOf Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community. Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community papers, 1934-1936. Public Libraries of Saginaw
referencedIn Dept. of History (University of Michigan) senior honors theses, 1969-[ongoing] Bentley Historica Library University of Michigan
referencedIn Cohen, Joseph Jacob, 1878-1953. Correspondence, with Agnes Inglis, 1934-1948. University of Michigan
referencedIn Cohen, Joseph Jacob, 1878-1953. In quest of heaven; the story of the Sunrise Co-operative Farm Community [194-?]. University of Michigan
referencedIn Dibner, Andrew S. (Andrew Sherman), 1926-. Sunrise, a cooperative farm community, 1949. University of Michigan
referencedIn Stein, Ruth. Ruth Stein interview /, 2006. University of Michigan
referencedIn University of Michigan. Dept. of History. Dept. of History (University of Michigan) senior honors theses, 1969-[ongoing]. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Sunrise reunion, 1993 / Molly Bursin, [et al], 1993. University of Michigan
referencedIn Sunrise reunion 1988 / Marty Clapper, [et al], 1988. University of Michigan
creatorOf Cohen, Joseph Jacob, 1878-1953. Sunrise Co-operative Farm Community papers, 1933-1940. University of Michigan
referencedIn Butterfield, Ira William, 1915-. The Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community, 1935. University of Michigan
referencedIn Yelensky, Boris, 1889-1974. Papers, 1939-1975. University of Michigan
referencedIn Bluestein, Abe. Abe and Selma Bluestein papers, 1930-1991. University of Michigan
referencedIn Yelensky, Boris. Boris Yelensky papers, 1939-1975. University of Michigan
referencedIn Stein, Ruth M. Ruth M. Stein papers, 1933 or 34 and 2005. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Sunrise Cooperative Farm Community records, 1933-1937 Bentley Historica Library University of Michigan
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Abbott, Leonard Dalton, 1878-1953 person
associatedWith Bluestein, Abe. person
associatedWith Butterfield, Ira William, 1915- person
associatedWith Cohen, Joseph Jacob, 1878-1953. person
associatedWith Dibner, Andrew S. (Andrew Sherman), 1926- person
associatedWith Einstein, Albert, 1879-1955 person
associatedWith Goldman, Emma, 1869-1940 person
associatedWith Hall, Bolton, 1854-1938 person
associatedWith Sanders, Charles, person
associatedWith Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968 person
associatedWith Stein, Ruth. person
associatedWith Stein, Ruth M. person
associatedWith University of Michigan. Dept. of History. corporateBody
associatedWith Yelensky, Boris. person
associatedWith Yelensky, Boris, 1889-1974. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Saginaw (Mich.)
Saginaw County (Mich.)
Alicia (Mich.)
Michigan--Saginaw County
Subject
Agriculture--Michigan--Saginaw County
Cooperative societies--Michigan--Saginaw County
Jews--Michigan
Depressions--1929--Michigan--Saginaw County
Collective settlements
Communal living
Occupation
Activity

Corporate Body

Active 1934

Active 1936

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Ark ID: w6g7901f

SNAC ID: 11493472