Foster, William Zebulon


Foster, William Zebulon
(1881-1961)
   Born in Taunton, Massachusetts, William Foster grew up in poverty in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Having traveled the country as an itinerant worker, he joined the Socialist Party of America in 1901 but left to join the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). Foster gradually gravitated away from the IWW in favor of converting existing trade unions to syndicalism. In 1912, he established the Syndicalist League of North America, which became the Independent Trade Union League in 1914. During World War I, he helped mobilize the meatpacking workers. The American Federation of Labor then appointed him to lead the drive to unionize the steel industry in 1919. The resultant strike ended in defeat, partially because Foster’s past affiliations were used to brand the strikers as revolutionaries. Foster converted to communism in the early 1920s and was the candidate for the Communist Party of the United States of America (CPUSA) in the 1924, 1928, and 1932 presidential elections.
   As leader of the demonstration in New York’s Union Square in March 1930, which turned into a riot, Foster was jailed for six months. The jailing did not stop him from running for president, and in 1932 he won more than 100,000 votes. He resumed leadership of the CPUSA following the ideological differences between the established executive led by his long-time rival, Earl Browder, and Moscow in 1945. In 1948, Foster was one of 11 communist leaders indicted by the government under the Smith Act of 1940. He was not jailed due to his ill health, but his codefendants were. Foster, who was unswervingly loyal to the Soviet Union, died in Moscow and received a state funeral there before his ashes were flown back to the United States.

Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era . . 2015.

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  • Foster — /faw steuhr, fos teuhr/, n. 1. Stephen (Collins), 1826 64, U.S. songwriter. 2. William Z(ebulon) /zeb yeuh leuhn/, 1881 1961, U.S. labor organizer: leader in the Communist party. 3. a male given name. * * * (as used in expressions) Dulles John… …   Universalium

  • foster — fosterer, n. fosteringly, adv. /faw steuhr, fos teuhr/, v.t. 1. to promote the growth or development of; further; encourage: to foster new ideas. 2. to bring up, raise, or rear, as a foster child. 3. to care for or cherish. 4. Brit. to place (a… …   Universalium

  • William — /wil yeuhm/, n. 1. a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter W. 2. a male given name: from Germanic words meaning will and helmet. * * * (as used in expressions) Huddie William Ledbetter Aberhart William George William… …   Universalium

  • William Z. Foster — William Zebulon Foster (February 25, 1881 September 1, 1961), born in Taunton, Massachusetts, was the long time General Secretary of the Communist Party USA and trade union leader. He passed through the Socialist Party of America and the… …   Wikipedia

  • William Z. Foster — William Zebulon Foster (* 25. Februar 1881 in Taunton, Massachusetts; † 1. September 1961 in Moskau) war der langjährige Generalsekretär der Kommunistischen Partei der USA (KPUSA) und Gewerkschaftsführer. Foster war ein überzeugter Syndikalist… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • William Z. Foster — William Zebulon Foster (25 février 1881 1er septembre 1961), était un syndicaliste américain et fut secrétaire général du Parti communiste des États Unis d Amérique (1929 1932). Il se présenta aux élections présidentielles américaines en… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Zebulon — as a first name may refer to these people: *Zebulon Baird Vance (1830 1894), an American Civil War hero and North Carolina Governor *Zebulon Brockway (1827 1920), an American penologist *Zebulon Butler (1731 1795), an American colonial soldier… …   Wikipedia

  • Foster — I. biographical name Stephen Collins 1826 1864 American songwriter II. biographical name William Zebulon 1881 1961 American Communist …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Liste der Biografien/Fo — Biografien: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Фостер Уильям Зебулон — (Foster, William Zebulon) (1881 1961), амер. полит, деятель. В 1909 г. вступил в проф. орг цию США Индустриальные рабочие мира , а после стачки сталелитейщиков в чикагском регионе в 1919 г. стал членом только что созданной Коммунистической партии …   Всемирная история