History


The First Ten Years for LEPOCO

LEPOCO, the familiar acronym for the Lehigh-Pocono Committee of Concern, has over the past ten years become an organization known to thousands, loved by many , and despised by more than a few.

LEPOCO’s roots date back to the early 60’s to a group of people concerned about the Vietnam War and other issues of world peace. They called themselves the “Lehigh Valley Peace Council.” These people and those who have followed throughout LEPOCO’s history were never a monolithic block, but individuals drawn together by conscience and a common desire to speak out. What all have shared is a concern for some form of suffering.
Naturally, Vietnam took most of the group’s energies for many years and kept us from speaking out on other issues as much as we might otherwise have done.

But though the War was our major concern, it has been by no mean s the only concern. Member s have over the past ten years, worked on ecology, women’s rights, world hunger; peace conversion, simplified life styles, race relations, education and community problems, to mention a few of our “other” concerns. It would be impossible to list all the activities and participants over the years, but here are some highlights .

ROOTS

In November 1965, a group of Lehigh Valley residents including Bob Thompson and Sue Ravitz decided that the area should be represented in DC on Nov. 27 for the “March on Washington” rally. About 27 persons wanted to go, but almost immediately they ran into opposition: the bus drivers for Tri-City Coaches voted not to drive any buses to Washington for the demonstration. After a lot of scrambling, Sue found another bus company.

Upon returning, John Oliver Nelson and several others called a meeting at the Kirkridge retreat center near Bangor to discuss “United States policy in Vietnam..” Invitations were sent to 59 people (14 of whom are still dues-paying members of LEPOCO). Of those attending; about 35 decided to form an organization to speak out against the Vietnam War. It was first called the “Ad Hoc Committee of Concern for Vietnam” but soon became the “Lehigh- Pocono Committee of Concern for Vietnam,” later shortened to today’s title. The members of the new group held their first demonstration on Dec. 23, 1965 in Allentown and Easton.

As has often been the case during the last ten years, some of the first demonstrations were small, consisting of as few as four persons. Hostility towards people opposed to the War was intense in those early years and we were harassed by counter pickets many times.

The first draft of purpose and platform was prepared by February 1966. Peter Cohen took an early leadership role and became LEPOCO’s first chairman that year.

EARLY ACTIONS

The founding members of LEPOCO believed strongly in the U.S. political system and so sought to express their point of view through the ballot box. The first effort was Henry Messinger’s “peace” candidacy for Congress in 1966. Henry lost the Primary to Fred B. Rooney, but he was able to speak out against the War.

During 1967, LEPOCO started a speaker’s bureau, with Peter Cohen. Henry Messinger, Jane Nelson, John Oliver Nelson, Ed Shaughnessy and Bob Thompson listed as available to speak at any function imaginable.
One highlight during 1967 and 1968 was the vigil every Saturday in Easton. Although sponsored by the Easton chapter of WILPF and not LEPOCO directly, many LEPOCO members were active in WILPF and took part in the vigils. The activity ran from May 20, 1967 to May 17, 1968.

Also during 1967, LEPOCO picketed Hubert Humphrey when he spoke at the dedication of Freedom High School in Bethlehem. It was typical21 of what was to follow: an overabundance of police. There were about a dozen LEPOCO members, along with 48 Bethlehem police, 25 Bethlehem Township police, state police and Secret Service.

Also during 1967, LEPOCO sent two busloads to the “March on the Pentagon” and sponsored many vigils and demonstrations locally.

1968 CAMPAIGN

In 1968, LEPOCO returned to the political arena. On Feb. 12, the Common Sense Party was formed. Peter Cohen became the candidate for Congress, and Mary Cohen, Agnes Coleman, Philip Jurus and Robert Richardson were officers of the party. Peter lost but Rooney still refers to the campaign.
In an effort to bring the peace issue before the people and support candidates backing the peace position, it was decided that LEPOCO members would run for delegate positions at the nominating conventions in an attempt to increase the likelihood that one would get favorable ballot position, The ballot was flooded with peace people intending that after positions were drawn, all candidates would support the top two or three.
For Democratic delegate, John Coleman got the first slot, Paul Pfretzchner was 2nd, Howard Agar 5th, Art Ravitz 7th, Hugh Moore Jr. 8th, Adelaide Geist 10th and Roberta Wood was 11th. Ed Shaughnessy was 2nd for alternate delegate. John Wood drew top position on the Republican ballot, with George Dinsmore Glenn Fisher was first for alternate, Ernest Farmer 4th.

John Coleman was elected a Democratic delegate, with John Wood similarly selected for the GOP convention, but the other positions went to machine candidates. Ed Shaughnessy was elected a Democratic alternate and later hi21tch-hiked to Chicago for the convention.

In June of 1968 LEPOCO showed that its concern went beyond Vietnam and joined 50,000 other people in Washington for “Sol­ idarity Day” at Resurrection City. Earlier the Easton vigil became a silent memorial to Martin Luther King after his assassination.

DRAFT RESISTANCE

Early 1969 found m any of LEPOCO’s members and friends resisting the draft. LEPOCO sent a busload to Scranton for Neal Neamand’s trial. Bill Lang Jr. turned himself in to FBI agents after refusing induction. Jeff Vitelli tossed his physical forms into a waste basket at the induction center.

MORATORIUM ACTIVITIES

In late 1969, anti-war sentiment reached its peak and LEPOCO was present as a catalyst for people to express their dissent and disgust. The first moratorium on Oct 15 found LEPOCO people participating in the following activities:

Rally at Moravian College – average of 50 participants at any one time.
“Walk for Peace” from Moravian Seminary to Nisky Hill Cemetery .About 400 take part.

Lehigh University demonstration – 600 participants. David Amidon spoke.
Cedar Crest rally with Shirley Chisholm.

Muhlenberg College – 1500 at morning rally with John Oliver Nelson. Evening rally drew 4000 , Seymour Hersh spoke and a group from Allentown College walked from Center Valley to Muhlenberg carrying a casket.

Reading of war dead at Center Square Easton – 100 participated.
All night vigil and reading of war dead at Bethlehem City Center. Readers included Bill Gramley, Guy Gray, Bryn Hammarstrom, Howard Cox, Edith Scott, Sally Seem, Emily Cox and Joe Osborne.

For the November moratorium. LEPOCO took five busloads of people to Washington for the biggest rally of the War. The December moratorium found LEPOCO sponsoring a candlelight procession through Bethlehem in which 200 people participated. Three days later there was a similar march in Allentown. Interestingly, most of these activities were reported in the press as “’uneventful” – no violence?

INTO THE 70’s – CHANGES FOR LEPOCO

In 1970, LEPOCO participated in and or sponsored many demonstrations. During this period we were starting to look for an office, but finances were a big problem. This difficulty was overcome by an anonymous gift of $5000 in November. John Wood, then in the first of his two terms as chairman, had received word of the gif t, but was really shocked upon arriving home one night and finding an envelope with $5000 in smal1 hills laying on his dining room table and no one: else in the house . He suddenly became very apprehensive about having that much cash in his possession and. finally found a bank in, which to deposit the money that night.

On February 14, 1971, LEPOCO members ratified the constitution and by-lows, which we still use. The office at 14 West Broad Street, Bethlehem, was opened on Feb. 20 and Anna Hunt took on the job of coordinator. We also became a corporation early in 1971.

1971 was a very eventful year for LEPOCO.

During the year, we showed the film “Selling of the Pentagon” at a regular monthly meeting with 200 people present (the largest LEPOCO meeting ever). LEPOCO members participated in many local and national demonstrations, but the most exciting was in September when Mike Adams, Don Burns, Anna Hunt and Gary Rhiel were arrested at the Bethlehem Draft Board after chaining themselves to the door.

During 1972, LEPOCO found that people were still misinformed about the war in Vietnam and started an education campaign by buying the NARMIC “Automated Air War” Slide Show. It was shown to 50 different groups during the ensuing year.

Many members spent Holy Week 1972 in Harrisburg for the “Harrisburg Seven” trial and were joined by others on Saturday for a mass rally.
Between June 1971 and January 1973: LEPOCO sponsored 480 draft counseling sessions at the office (there were also sessions at Friends Meeting and Lehigh University) with many members assisting.

McGovern OR NOT?

1972 being an election year, it soon became apparent that LEPOCO had grown into two distinct albeit supportive factions. There were those who thought the political process was no longer the way to proceed, and those who saw George McGovern’s election as the only way to win peace in Vietnam.

Marie Burns, John Coleman and Roberta Wood ran for delegates to the Democratic convention. Edith Scott ran for alternate and Howard Penley ran in Lehigh County. Marie won and set about getting McGovern nominated. Other members decided to work with the Indochina Peace Campaign and sponsored the visit of Jane Fonda, Tom Hayden and Holly Near to the Lehigh Valley .

LEPOCO continued to work to bring the war to an end in 1973, January found LEPOCO members in Washington twice, once to lobby and once to demonstrate. When the cease fire agreement was signed , LEPOCO members soon realized that the war was not really over. While the rest of the country was celebrating the return of the POW’s LEPOCO was calling for unconditional amnesty for those who had resisted the war.

In February l973 Anna Hunt became our second international delegate (Bill Gramley being the first when he attended a conference in Paris while the Peace Talks were being held) . Anna represented LEPOCO at the Paris Amnesty Conference (which was cancelled at the last minute) and at the Stockholm Conference on Vietnam held in Rome. Anna and Bill both met with Madame Binh and other well known Vietnamese. Numerous speaking engagements gave them the opportunity to tell of their experiences when they returned from their respective trips.

EXPANDING CONCERNS

During 1972 and 1973, LEPOCO members started to get involved in many different concerns, including the United Farm Workers union and tax reform (a local chapter of the T.E.A. Party was formed). LEPOCO also started seriously calling for Nixon’s impeachment and worked hard to bring this about. Also in 1973, Hans Wuerth took over the helm of LEPOCO.
We found in late 1974 that LEPOCO members had been called “labor thugs” on one of the tapes most damaging to Nixon. The remarks referred to a demonstration against Tricia Nixon at the dedication of the new Boy’s Club in Allentown on June 18, 1972. It was rather satisfying to know that our meager actions had drawn that kind of attention, but also showed how Nixon and company were acting on misinformation.

After the war actually ended in 1975, LEPOCO decided to concentrate on three basic concerns: peace conversion, democratic socialism and simplifying lifestyles.

Although LEPOCO may not be as news making as before, we’re still working hard to bring about a better world. As before, education of the people is a basic tool.

Also during the past year, LEPOCO has begun sharing our office with the Lehigh Valley Friends of the Farm Workers and their staff person. As expected, it h as been a mutually beneficial arrangement. In October 1974 Ann a Hunt temporarily moved to Florida to take care of her aging parents after resigning as LEPOCO coordinator. Nancy Stinnett took over the coordinator duties at that time. In January 1975 Clarke Chapman became LEPOCO’s fourth chairman.

Our work over the first ten years to end the War and advance the human cause has been difficult. At times it was very rewarding, though 0ften it was very frustrating. But no matter how frustrating, we will continue

The Second 10 Years

1975

The 1975 Year in Review started out with a statement saying that some people think the movement in general and LEPOCO in particular is not doing much anymore, but we knew better and gave a pretty impressive list of activities for the year.

Sometime in 1974/75 seven people moved into a collective living situation in West Bethlehem on Westminster Street.  They chose to call it Westminster Abbey.  The initial seven were all LEPOCO members and they included Tim Laidman, Gail Meyer, Nancy Tate, Tom Stinnett, Al Fladd, Tom Hill and Charlene Krueger.  Later Charlene left and was replaced by Tory Rhodin.  After two years of renting they decided to buy a house in Freemansburg.  The house was purchased by six individuals with Tory and Al leaving and replaced by Joe DeRaymond.  They chose to call themselves “The Quite Early Morning Collective” (QEMC) after a song by Pete Seeger.  The house continued to be a hub of many LEPOCO activities until the early 80’s.  It was sold to the Joe DeRaymond family after Joe’s sudden death.

We leafleted in Allentown on the second anniversary of the Vietnam Peace Accords.  Sixteen LEPOCO members participated in the assembly to save the peace agreement in D.C, On April 30th of 1975, the Thieu regime was overthrown in Vietnam.  We had a Vietnamese dinner and discussion with Elaine Fuller.  We participated in a panel on Vietnamese refugees at the Easton YWCA.  We leafleted for amnesty for resisters, not just Ford’s amnesty of Nixon.

We held a 10th anniversary dinner (which ultimately became an annual event) with William Sloane Coffin as the speaker.

We elected Clarke Chapman as our Chairman in 1975.  We had programs on the Middle East, India, China (with William Hinton) and Nuclear War (with Bill Davidon).

We sent Ursula Wuerth as a LEPOCO delegate to the Women’s Disarmament Conference in New York City.  Nancy Tate represented LEPOCO at the SAVE Conference in New York City on the Arms Race and the Economic Crisis.

We became more involved in the Farm Workers movement.  Gail Meyer started working for the Farm Workers Union and attended their convention in California.   Five LEPOCO members were arrested in Dorneyville leafleting at a Laneco.  These arrests were thrown out by the local Justice of the Peace because he determined that ruling in favor of the charges would mean he could not pass out his election brochures when he had to run for election again.

1976

1976 being the Bicentennial year for the U.S. brought about many activities including joining the Continental Walk for Disarmament and Social Justice.  We had a mini-walk in the Lehigh Valley, a feeder walk to Philadelphia, and extensive participation in the final activities in D.C.

We created a Peace Conversion Fair in September which was held on the Bethlehem City Plaza between the Library and City Hall.  It involved a large “machine” into which you could load war making items in one side and out of the other end would come more peaceful items.  We also assembled a Peace Conversion Coloring Book and the Utopia Game.

On March 27th, FBI Chief Clarence Kelley came to Muhlenberg College to speak at a symposium on crime.  Several LEPOCO members passed out leaflets, and when we were ordered off the campus five members decided to stay.  They were eventually arrested by the Allentown Police and became known as the “Muhlenberg Five”.  This arrest was eventually appealed all the way to the State Supreme Court by Don Miles (their attorney) and was finally ruled on in their favor in 1981.  Much activity happened over the five years it took to settle this case.

LEPOCO started the Peace Library in 1976.  We also had programs with various speakers on various topics throughout the year.

1977

Mike Schlosser and Debbie White were elected as Co-Chairs in 1977.  LEPOCO began to actively oppose Nuclear Power and produced a statement in opposition.  During these years LEPOCO held four weekend retreats to work on what we wanted to concentrate on, and we formed many Working Groups to work on Food Issues, Socialism, Nuclear Issues, Counter-Recruitment, South Africa and Military Spending.

Activities included a major fight locally to stop the proposed Trexler Dam. Member Jeff Vitelli composed the fine tune, “The Ballad of Trexler Dam”. In 1977 LEPOCO testified at Trexler Dam hearings and later Lehigh County Council voted it down 3:1.  Nine members went to New Hampshire to support the Seabrook Campaign and two joined the occupiers.

The second ten years of LEPOCO’s existence involved an annual fundraiser at the Bethlehem City Fair and our lemonade sales became a major fundraiser until ArtsQuest took over the fair and later stopped it.  We placed several ads in the newspaper against the B-1 Bomber, Berwick Nuke, and for the Mobilization for Survival goals with people’s names listed.  During these years we started passing out leaflets at post offices on Tax Day, which continues to current times.

1978

In 1978 LEPOCO held a general meeting in March featuring Dave Cortright of SANE as the speaker.  This became the first of our Annual Dinners in March with special speakers which has continued throughout the years.

In January “The Spectre of Death” (Reggie Regrut) was harassed and arrested in Easton and subsequently vindicated.  Later “The Spectre of Death” got national attention at Barnwell, South Carolina.  During 1978 we sent four people to the nuclear processing facility in Barnwell,  50+ people to a rally for disarmament in NYC, six people to a sit-in for survival at the US Mission to the U.N., 10 people to a rally and action against the Limerick Nuke, five people to a rally at Seabrook, N.H. nuclear power site, various numbers of people to action at NRC in D.C., an ERA rally in D.C., the “Longest Walk”, Mobilization for Survival National Conference in Iowa (and lots of regional MfS meetings regionally), Anti-Spying Conference in Michigan, Arms Expo Demonstration in D.C., Year of the Child activities at the Pentagon.

1979

1979 involved support for the Tocks Island squatters and the eventual stopping of the Tocks Island Dam.  LEPOCO started to first get involved in Alternative Energy such as Solar Power and Windmills in this year.

In 1979, the Three Mile Island disaster occurred and for several days some members evacuated to travel to Virginia to Nancy Tate’s homeplace.  In May we had five buses travel to a “No More Harrisburgs” march on D.C. (100,000 people attended), followed by lobbying our senators to stop Nuclear Power.

Due to a fire in our office at 14 West Broad Street in Bethlehem, we had to move out of the office and for a few months the office furnctioned out of QEMC in Freemansburg.  On May 26, 1979 we moved to a new office at 555 Main Street (above Woolworths).  The office was much larger than the office on Broad Street.  It gave us a separate room to put the printing press, and allowed us to expand the Peace Library. We had a grand opening October 20th.

The Annual Dinner speaker in 1979 was Terry Provance.

On June 3, 1979, a major rally against the Berwick Nuke was held.  LEPOCO took several buses there.  We had been involved closely with the Susquehanna Alliance Against the Nuke and took on responsibility for training marshals to facilitate parking, disseminate information, keep order, provide first aid, accommodate speakers, etc.  We recruited approximately 60 people to do this.

On October 13, 1979, the International Year of the Child Demonstration for Disarmament was held in D.C. and several LEPOCO members attended.  In November, we had a Potluck and Politics (P&P) on Iran which became the first of many such program to inform our members on various subjects and they continue until today.

1980

In 1980, we had several P&P’s on issues from China, Political Art, to Nuclear victims.  We created a Nuclear Study Group in Allentown and in Easton in addition to the one we already had in Bethlehem. Midway through the year we revamped the newsletter with a new format with the help of Steve Kraft who worked at the time for the Bethlehem GlobeTimes.

In 1980 we travelled to the Pentagon four times:  April 28th – Coalition for a Non-Nuclear World, May 5-10 – Election Year Presence, November 17th – Women’s Pentagon Action, and December 28-31 – Year End Presence.  We also rallied at the Berwick and Limerick Nuclear sites.  We marched against the Draft and Militarism in Allentown and Bethlehem on four occasions and in Harrisburg and D.C.  We also protested the participation of Henry Kissinger at Lehigh University’s graduation.

We continued our work against Nuclear Power by attending various events involving PPL and Met-Ed.  We continued to sell lots of lemonade at the Bethlehem City Fair.  Our Annual Dinner speaker was Dave McReynolds of the War Resisters League and the Socialist Party.

1981

In 1981 when the Reaganites celebrated in January, we did also with a Counter-Inaugural Party (A Celebration of Commitment).  While the government reorganized, so did LEPOCO.  In order to make our operation more democratic we revised our constitution and our bylaws.  We formed working groups on El Salvador and Nuclear Power.  1981 was the year in which the Muhlenberg 5 decision by the PA Supreme Court came down in favor of free speech.

Sold more lemonade at the Bethlehem City Fair.  Our Annual Dinner speaker was Dave Dellinger.  We held a “Ground Zero” concert in October at Godfrey Daniels featuring Fred Small, a lawyer turned singer from Massachusetts. This was in conjunction with Disarmament Week.  We held a candelight march in Allentown on December 2nd to remember the four Maryknoll nuns killed in El Salvador.

1982

In 1982 LEPOCO concentrated on the following issues:

Disarmament

We spent a large portion of the year on activities around the Second Special Session on Disarmament at the U.N.  We sponsored several buses and took 300 people to NYC for a huge rally on June 12th and had a Lehigh Valley Affinity Group of 15 people (named MIR) for a civil disobedience action on June 14th. We had a “Bread Not Bombs” walk for Hiroshima/Nagasaki days.  We flew the Peace Bird in the Bethlehem and Allentown Halloween Parades.

El Salvador

In March we joined a national march in D.C.  We arranged speaking engagements for Father Allbert Reymann and Philip Wheaton.  We collected 1,300 signatures on petitions calling for an end to military aid for El Salvador.  On December 2nd we remembered the slaughter of four Americans and thousands of Salvadorans with a vigil and commemorative service.  Barbara Lloyd returned from a two week visit to a refugee camp of El Salvadorans in Honduras and described how bad the situation was.

Committee Against Registration and the Draft

We counseled young people on the draft.  We leafleted area high schools and presented programs on the draft.  We held a rally in July to support those resisters who were indicted for their refusal to register.  We went to D. C. to support protest activities at the Selective Service Office in October.

Nuclear Power

We organized around hearings and legal proceedings involving Met-Ed and PPL.  A Safe Energy Film Festival was held in March.  We worked against PPL’s rate hike to pay for the Berwick Nuke.

Miscellaneous

Our Annual Dinner speaker was Leslie Gagan.  We had Potluck (or Pretzels) and Politics on Cuba, Three Mile Island, El Salvador, Soviet Union and Lebanon.  We had a “State of the Dis-Union” party in January to raise money.  We designed, printed and sold t-shirts with LEPOCO’s logo on them.  We sold lots of lemonade at the Bethlehem City Fair and at Allentown’s Super Sunday.  We held a Labor History Film Festival in March.

We formed the LEPOCO Peace Chorus in 1982 and it continues today.  We had another retreat in October to consider where we had been and where we wanted to go.  We worked with many other groups in the valley during 1982.

The ERA failed to pass in 1982, Bernie Berg ran for Congress and wars began or continued all over Central America.

1983

LEPOCO members join the Point Pleasant Blockade to “Dump the Pump” construction, and later the “Vote Yes to Dump the Pump” won a victory at the polls in Bucks County where several LEPOCO members helped out.  We had another “State of the Dis-Union” party featuring Bob Dorough at Godfrey Daniels.  We had a packed house.  We began a Foreign Policy Film Series and began with films on East Timor and Korea.

We learned in February that Leslie Cole (who was in the military at the time) had gone to see a film about Gandhi and had then refused an order which got her court-martialed and jailed.  LEPOCO CARD (Committee Against Registration and the Draft) members worked hard for her release.

LEPOCO’s Annual Dinner speaker was Paul Mayer.  The Central American Working Group sponsored Gould and Sterns play “Life of a Peasant in El Salvador.”  LEPOCO convened a local Jobs with Peace meeting attended by 40 peace and labor activists.   We held a conference on Feminism and Militarism which drew 80 participants and praise from all who attended.  After numerous visits by LEPOCO members, Northampton County Council adopted a LEPOCO supported resolution prohibiting county funds from being used for civil defense planning for nuclear war.

In July, Barbara and Tom Lloyd, Arlene Wallach, and Phyllis Perna joined a peace delegation to Nicaragua and returned with many inspiring stories.  We encouraged and helped with WRL’s (War Resisters League) 60th Anniversary Conference at Lafayette College.  At the end of July, eight LEPOCO women travelled to the Seneca Falls Encampments to protest the deployment of the Cruise and Pershing II missiles.

For Hiroshima/Nagasaki Days, we held programs on three different days in three cities, and we placed 20,000 door hangers on people’s doors throughout the valley, warning of Euromissiles.  LEPOCO took part in a broad coalition and sent six buses to the 20th Anniversary of the Marin Luther King March on Washington.

We held a rally in Allentown to stop the war in Nicaragua, which drew 100 people.  We took a bus to Philadelphia for a rally against the Euromissiles.  We held Draft Counselor Training, which was attended by 13 people.

Nancy Tate brings a cruise missile to a Peace Parade in Allentown for protection.  The Volvo powered cruise had very efficient ground following capabilities but failed to offer more than the illusion of security.  The parade was a success, moving from Allentown to Bethlehem and then forming a human Peace Sign at the Bethlehem Fair Grounds.

The U.S. invaded Grenada in late October, and we responded with letters and a speakout in Bethlehem.

On November 1st, Woolworths informed us they were not renewing our lease and as it turned out they were giving the space to the stock broker that already were in part of the building. We once again called on Don Miles to negotiate with Woolworths to get us a couple of months longer to find a new office, and he also helped draft our new lease. In February 1984, LEPOCO moved from Main Street to 313 West Fourth Street on the south side of Bethlehem. This remains our office in 2016 (32 years later).

We sent a bus to a Washington rally against intervention in Central America.  We supplied the stage banner and a staff person for this rally.

We held a send-off party for Joe DeRaymond, John August, Barry Lally and Phyllis Perna, who were going to Nicaragua to assist with the coffee bean harvest.

1984

Our finances improved with the starting of the pledge system we have today.  Getting regular checks from several individuals on a monthly or quarterly basis helped stabilize our income at this time.  It also helped that in the fall of 1984 we received our 501(c)3 approval from the federal government thus allowing for a tax deduction for gifts to LEPOCO.  Our Annual Dinner speaker was Grace Paley.

In March during Central America Week, we had a congressional candidate forum moderated by State Senator Henry Messinger.  We went to Washington for a rally and then visits to our Senators Heinz and Spector.  The Central America Working Group (CAWG) participated in mass civil disobedience in June at the Federal Building in NYC.  CAWG members made many calls to Washington to urge them to end the covert war in Nicaragua.  The CAWG convenors during this time were Arlene Wallach and Bill Buskirk.  During 1984, we activated the Pledge of Resistance and the Pledge of Witness and Support, should the U.S. invade Nicaragua or El Salvador.  We ultimately ended up with over 40 folks agreeing to civil disobedience and over 60 others agreeing to offer support.  We held seven or eight Potluck and Politics during the year on various subjects.  In April we helped out IRPC (Interfaith Peace Resource Center) with a concert with Bright Morning Star, which was held at Foy Concert Hall.  In October, we had a concert at Jacobsburg Park featuring Bob Dorough and Marcia Taylor (of Bright Morning Star).  Dave Fry was the M.C.  Dave and Jeff Vitelli also sang some songs.

What a busy 10 years since the end of the Vietnam War.  We were involved in so many activities.