Before They Were Stars: Harvey Matusow In The Minor Leagues

“Why, oh why, oh why oh, did he ever leave Ohio?”

Dateline: Dayton Ohio, February 25, 1952

The Ohio House Un-American Activities Committee probes the Red Menace.

In the chair is Harvey Matusow, a young ex-Communist looking to get big in the burgeoning field of Anti-Communism, and hoping Ohio’s laboratory of democracy will loose him upon the world as a made man:

“Q. In addition to the folk singing, did they also use square dancing?”

Was there no aspect of America’s faux folk past safe from Communist marauders?

Fortunately yes, as the Committee’s Chief Counsel rushed to assure:

“You are not saying, and you are not testifying, or want to give the impression that there is anything subversive or un-American about folk singing or square dancing?

A. That is correct.”

The Committee is interested in Yellow Springs’ Antioch College, a Pink festering sore on Ohio’s ass since the days of the Abolitionists.   Harvey was gunning for the big leagues, and Red subversion of innocent youth was to be his ticket out of there.  Shortly after this out of town production he came to Washington, started lying about Owen Lattimore, and left Ohio behind.

Matusow ran through a greatist hits of folk Commie Classics during his testimony, mangling lyrics as he went.

One of the better songs he namechecked: Banks Of Marble

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