Transcript of Judy Holliday's Testimony - Page 7
Mr. Arens: Did you register in 1948 as a member of the American Labor Party in New York?
Miss Holliday: Yes; I did. Was that the Wallace year?
Mr. Arens: Yes.
Miss Holliday: Yes.
Mr. Arens: And in what area or what section or what segment of the American Labor Party did you register? Where were you at the time?
Miss Holliday: 1948 I was already married, but I don't know whether I was living at my mother's or down in the village then.
Senator Watkins: What do you mean by the "village"?
Mr. Rifkind: Greenwich Village.
Miss Holliday: It could have been either on Seventy-fifth Street or it could have been ----
Mr. Arens: Manhattan or Brooklyn?
Miss Holliday: Everything is in Manhattan.
Mr. Arens: Did you know at the time that the Communist Party was undertaking to capture the American Labor Party throughout New York State and that they had succeeded in capturing the Manhattan and Brooklyn sections of the American Labor Party?
Miss Holliday: No; I did not know that.
Mr. Arens: Who solicited you to join the American Labor Party section in Manhattan?
Miss Holliday: I don't know. I don't even know if I was solicited. I think it was just something that I did when I went into the registering thing.
Mr. Arens: How do you reconcile your position that you took earlier in this session with us today to the effect that your life was being completely absorbed in your theatrical work with your interest here now in joining the American Labor Party.
Miss Holliday: First of all I didn't join the American Labor Party.
Mr. Arens: Well, in registering with the American Labor Party.
Miss Holliday: That was something I did instead of saying Democrat or Republican. I said American Labor.
Mr. Arens: What prompted you to do that?
Miss Holliday: Because the American Labor Party, as far as I knew it, and not having anything to do with Communists taking it over, was a sort of middle party.
Mr. Arens: How did you arrive at that conclusion?
Senator Watkins: Middle party between what, which extremes, which other parties?
Miss Holliday: It was the party that wasn't in power, and it was not the Republican Party. That is about all.
Senator Watkins: Was it middle as to its views, as to its philosophy, or was it middle because it was not in power?
Miss Holliday: Frankly I don't know too much about it and didn't know too much about it, it just seemed a good thing to do.
Senator Watkins: Do you know if any of your friends are members?
Miss Holliday: I don't know whether they were members.
Senator Watkins: Were your followers? Did you believe in that particular party's approach?
Miss Holliday: Maybe.
Senator Watkins: Is your husband a member?
Miss Holliday: I don't think so.
Senator Watkins: Did you ever discuss politics?
Miss Holliday: Only lately. And boy, we talk about nothing else now. But at the time I must admit I did do impulsive things that had no thought in back of them, no investigation. It's true I did it. Now, I am quite different, but it's too late. At the time I did things that seemed like a good idea and didn't think of the consequences or the full meaning of the act.
Senator Watkins: Did you not have some friends who were members of the Communist Party that were talking along the lines of the Communists?
Miss Holliday: My husband's friends talked either music or records, and my friends talked show business and who was getting where and what you had to do to get a job and what kind of notices Variety gave this out of town. If you are among actors there is no limit to how much they can talk and gossip about that kind of thing. When I was at gatherings where there were discussions of world policies or international affairs, I must confess that I didn't listen. I had no interest in it, and I would try to swing the conversation back to something that I too could participate.
Senator Watkins: You knew that the artist, Jo Davidson, was an advocate of somewhat leftist policies?
Miss Holliday: I found that out later.
Senator Watkins: Did you not know that at the time?
Miss Holliday: I did not know at the time. Jo Davidson was a great name in art, it was a respectable name.
Mr. Arens: Who is Stella Holt?
Miss Holliday: I don't know.
Mr. Arens: H-o-l-t?
Miss Holliday: I don't know.
Mr. Arens: Do you know the executive secretary for the Voice of Freedom Committee?
Miss Holliday: No; who is it?
Mr. Arens: Stella Holt?
Miss Holliday: No.
Mr. Arens: Are you a member of the Voice of Freedom Committee?
Miss Holliday: I don't know if I am a member. I gave them $2 once.
Mr. Arens: And your name appears and is used by the organization as a sponsor along with a number of other persons, does it not?
Miss Holliday: Yes; but it's also used as something much bigger than that, I don't know, "chairman" or "secretary" or something, which I have no knowledge of and never agreed to.
Mr. Arens: Well, now I lay before you a photostat of a certain document with the signature appearing there, "Judy Holliday," and ask you is that your signature?
Miss Holliday: It is.
Mr. Arens: I suggest to the chairman that we file that as exhibit 1 and place it on file for reference by the Committee.
(Exhibit 1 was marked and filed for the record.)
Senator Watkins: This particular document that has been handed to you marked "Exhibit 1" you admit was signed by you?
Miss Holliday: That is definitely my signature. I don't remember signing it, but that is definitely my signature and I remember the issue which I then believed in and still believe in, but whether the thing was subversive I don't know.
Senator Watkins: Was there any attempt to prevent people from using their radio? Was there any fight as to whether we would have a free radio?
Miss Holliday: That was a question of news commentators being thrown out of their jobs for not being inept or inadequate, but for having certain liberal views.
Senator Watkins: Have you anybody in mind?
Miss Holliday: William L. Shirer and Gram Swing.
Mr. Arens: When you say "liberal views," I suppose you do not mean Communist views?
Miss Holliday: Certainly I do not mean Communist views.
Mr. Arens: Would you kindly identify the photostatic copy of the document which is now before you?
Miss Holliday: I am sure that I didn't have ----
Mr. Arens: That is a letterhead of the Voice of Freedom Committee, is it not?
Miss Holliday: Yes; it is.
Mr. Arens: And your name appears there as one of the sponsors, does it not, on the letterhead?
Miss Holliday: Yes, it does.
Mr. Arens: And there are a number of Communists also appearing there on that letterhead as sponsors, is that not true?
Miss Holliday: Well, if they are Communists I don't know which ones are Communists. But I am sure that there are Communists in there, there are Communists in all of these.
Senator Watkins: How do you know that?
Miss Holliday: I have been told many times. I didn't know it then.
Senator Watkins: That is very crux of this investigation. When were you told that these people were Communists?
Miss Holliday: I have been told every day for the past year practically. Not every day, but I have had my eyes opened like they have never been opened in the last year by Columbia, by lawyers, by people that I have hired to investigate me. I wanted to know what I had done.
Senator Watkins: You hired people to investigate you?
Miss Holliday: I certainly did; because I had gotten into a lot of trouble.
Mr. Arens: What do you mean by you had gotten into a lot of trouble?
Miss Holliday: Yes.
Mr. Arens: Has anybody tried to prosecute you?
Miss Holliday: Yes.
Mr. Arens: Who?
Miss Holliday: Prosecute? No; I thought you meant persecute.
Senator Watkins: Who has tried to persecute you?
Miss Holliday: I have had my contract threatened, and I have been picketed.
Senator Watkins: Where did those threats come from?
Miss Holliday: One was the Catholic War Veterans, who picketed me three times in New York City.
Senator Watkins: Would you tell us about the times?
Miss Holliday: One time was when Born Yesterday opened, which was last year. It opened the day after Christmas. The next time was when I opened in Dream Girl.
Senator Watkins: You do not mean a personal appearance?
Miss Holliday: A personal appearance. They were outside. The next time was when this picture opened at the Victoria Theater.
Mr. Rifkind: Which picture?
Miss Holliday: A couple of weeks ago, The Marrying Kind.
Senator Watkins: When you say they picketed you, you mean the picture?
Miss Holliday: The signs read "While our boys are dying in Korea Judy Holliday is instead defaming Congress." That was one of them, which is so terrible and wrong that I naturally was very upset by it. Another one said "Judy Holliday is the darling of the Daily Worker." That was another one. In another one I don't remember exactly what they said. This time I didn't see the pickets. Then they had leaflets saying that I was a Communist, and they handed them out to all the people. Then this time they had different signs, which I didn't see, which named me along with the other people who were connected with the picture. So when you want to know why I say I am in trouble, that is the kind of trouble I am in, because I didn't know the subversive character of any of these things.
Senator Watkins: Of course, what you have said in effect here is that you, on most of these, your answer has been no, that you were not connected with them in any way.
Miss Holliday: I can tell you plenty that I was connected with.
Senator Watkins: What ones that are under suspicion?
Miss Holliday: All right; I went to speak against censorship.
Senator Watkins: When was this?
Miss Holliday: I made a 1-minute tape recording. You see, I don't like to appear with large groups of people. I don't like to go to parties. I never go to Sardi's, which is a theatrical hang-out, or club. It is hard for me, I get very self-conscious and I don't like it. So my participation when it was of a physical nature was always very restricted. In this case I went to Sardi's Restaurant upstairs, there were no people up there -- you know, no diners -- and talked against censorship.
Senator Watkins: You made this recording?
Miss Holliday: Into this little recorder which was to be used for the Stop Censorship Committee; the book banning.
Mr. Arens: Who is banning books in this country?
Miss Holliday: Books have been banned in Boston.
Mr. Arens: Those are licentious books, are they not?
Miss Holliday: Some of them have been proved not to be licentious.
Senator Watkins: Not books of a political tinge?
Miss Holliday: No.
Mr. Arens: Do you think books advocating treason and sponsoring the forcible overthrow of the Government, advocating Communist conspiracy in this country, ought to be disseminated in this country?
Miss Holliday: No, I don't, but I think that brings up the whole question of do you think that people ought to be allowed to say what they are thinking and write what they think. I think, and this is just a theory, that I think it is a lot better to know what people are stirring than to let them stew around subterraneanly.
Page navigation: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | Topical Index | Home