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For satisfaction however, I again went across the street and into the Department of Commerce building looking up some of my boys. On entering the building a guide, thinking I was seeking work sent me to the seventh floor where a mass of Negroes were working and the folks up there were crying for help. When I got up on the floor I was greeted by the booming voice of "Furto Holt", a 1938 graduate of Morehouse. Furto came up and grabbed me and said, "sit down here; you are in charge of this section of code punch operators, and your pay is $1,800, sign these papers." I did not know how to tell "Furto" what my real business was so I sat down, signed the papers and was immediately placed on the payroll. I became a section chief in charge of 48 ladies key punching materials on cards which I later found out was the charting of the beaches in France where the American army was to land on "D" day. With my job at the Census Bureau and my job with Hugo at the "Courier," I was able to pay my rent on tenth Street. Now let me skip a few paragraphs and bring this narrative back to Hulan Jack. I worked for the "Courier" in Washington and achieved a little note, so much so that the Army caught up with me and demanded my services - But this is another story - Now back to Hulan, I caught up with Hulan when after four years of service in the Army at Camp Lee, Indian Top in Gap and three campaigns in Europe; serving under General Bradley and George Patton; and was the operator of a battalion newspaper and a stringer for "Stars & Stripes" the Army newspaper in Manheim, Germany. While in Manheim, I entered the famed Heildelburg [[Heidelberg]] University as their first American Army Black student. This deal was engineered with some Heildelburg [[Heidelberg]] professors whose houses we had commandeered to billet our troop in Northwestern, a section of Manheim. The professors offered to teach me German and allowed me to study at the University in exchange for my allowing them to stay on the bottom floors of the houses which we had taken. When it came time for me to return to the United States under the point system, I and a couple of my buddies were placed on a shipment of soldiers picked to pose as students and to attend Biarritz American University in Biarritz, France. The assignment was for six months and it was the time I had to spend in Europe while waiting for my departure number for rotation home to come up. So I consented to go to Biarritz American University. I was sent there to study Journalism under Red Mott, the head of the Missouri University School of Journalism, and Mr. Mott was equally impressed with me, so much so he offered me a four year scholarship at the University of Missouri. We were in Biarritz because the Army wanted a battalion of American troops in the town because plans called for us Americans to invade Spain. We got to Biarritz under the guise of saving the town after the British Eighth Airforce bombed some building on the outskirts of the town. At Biarritz my job, as well as studying Journalism, was to go into the mountain every Saturday night and engage the spanish border guards in conversation while our guys slipped down into the spanish town distributing propaganda telling the town folks to rise up against Franco. Oh yes Hulan! On discharge from the Army in 1945 I came back to New York to work for the New York/Edition of the Pittsburgh Courier. Being a New Yorker, this came as a surprise to Wilhelmina Adams, a local democratic district leader who thought me to be a Southerner and offered to introduce me around to the folks. I also thought that I should look up some of my childhood buddies and I started going to Sigma Frat meetings on Saturday nights. At one of those meetings I was introduced to Brother Hulan Jack I admired Mr. Jack because I found him a powerful orator and one West Indian with drive and a will to make it on the political scene in Harlem. Hulan at that time was operating out of a democratic club on Manhattan Avenue. Most of the brothers were not interested in politics. I saw Jack as a source of stories for the "Courier" so we struck up a friendship. I was not interested as intensively as he in Harlem politics. I was only interested when something happened which would provide the "Courier" with a story. The occasion presented itself when Hulan, who had become the Manhattan Borough President, wanted to deliver a speech from a rostrum pitched in front of the entrance of the Theresa hotel. The speech as I remember was to commemorate Marcus Garvey day. But Adam Clayton Powell, who was having a bad time with Tammany at that time had other ideas on how Hulan's speech was to be delivered. Adam had Jack Pacard, his loyal assistant to stack the crowd with hecklers and when Jack began his program on a signal from Jack Pacard the hecklers drowned out Mr. Jack. Jack was fit to be tied but try as he might he could not quiet the crowd and just as soon as he was getting ready to get off the stand in strolled Adam through the crowd and up on the rostrum. Powell then turned to the crowd and said "Let's quiet, let's hear from Hulan". Of course the hecklers stopped immediately and Powell, then laughing to beat the band, turned to Hulan and said "Speak Brother Jack". Well you could have fried an egg on Jack's head, he was so mad at Adam. We newspaper people there knew the incident was staged because we spotted Powell waiting in his Jaguar car on the corner of 124th Street for Hulan to get up on the rostrum. After Pacard fired up the crowd the plan was for Adam to come out into the crowd as if he was just coming from somewhere. Hulan showed up at Frat meeting that night still fuming over the way Powell had taken over his meeting. After I told him what Powell had done he vowed that he would get even. The following Monday after that incident, Hulan sent James Campbell, one of his photographers, to ask me to come down to see him in his office in the Municipal Building. Campbell, who knew my wife Fanny, implored her to see to it that I kept the appointment with Hulan—which I did. When I got into Jack's office, Hulan came right out and said to me, "I appreciated what you did for me on Saturday out there in front of the Theresa and what you told me at our frat meeting and I want you to come and work for me as my P.R. man in Harlem. The job he said would not take up much of your time, all I want you to do is to make up a schedule of affairs and things I should attend which will make me known in the Community. And see to it he said, that I go to them". Mr. Jack, however, has another problem in Harlem—In one of his speeches he said that "Negroes did not elect him Borough President" and Powell and his detractors would not allow him to lay that ill-timed utterance to rest. I told Jack that I wanted to accept his offer but I wanted to know from him, who would I be working for; because it seemed that everyone in Harlem, but me, knew that Jack wanted to hire me. Fannie told me that our phone had never stopped ringing from callers who told her to tell me that they were responsible for Jack's decision to employ me. The callers wanted me to bear them in mind. The calls distressed Fannie so that she ordered me to ask Mr. Jack in front whom was I to work for; He or all the callers, which included every district leader in Harlem at that time. I asked Jack during our first talk the question: "If I accept your offer whom would I be working for" "You or all the leaders in Harlem? Mr. Jack laughed when I asked him the question. He pushed a buzzer on his desk in the office and in popped in Artie Greeniner, his administrative assistant and Mitch Bloom, his deputy Borough President. Mr. Jack said to them, I want you to meet Mel Patrick my new assistant who will work for us but will only answer to me for assignments in this office. After some handshakes, Artie went out and Continued on next page... 381
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