Merle’s brother, Foster “Doc” McCurdy returned to Cleveland after serving in the Army during World War II with renewed concerns about continuing labor issues and racism in the United States. On April 27, 1949, Foster was sentenced by Judge James C. Connell to ten days in jail and fined $500 for picketing the Judge’s home after lengthy jail terms where given for persons who picketed a company who refused to recognize a Union. Later that same year, Foster attempted to bring entertainer, Paul Robeson to perform and give a talk in Cleveland. Robeson was an outspoken critic of President Truman for failing to promote civil right issues of the day, such as integrating the armed forces and putting an end to lynching in the South. According to Robeson, during a meeting at the White house, “President Truman said it wasn’t politically expedient to do something about lynching at that time” (The Baltimore Sun,1948, p. 2).
Jail, Fines for Picketing of Judge’s Home in Strike. (1949, April 28). St. Louis Post-Dispatch, p. 14.
Terror Tactics Used, Paul Robeson Charges. (1948, May 3). The Baltimore Sun, p. 2.