Harry Pollitt (1890-1960), General Secretary of the Communist Party of Great Britain [ Jimmy Shields (1900-1949), Scottish communist, editor of the Daily Worker ]
Ivybank Road, Port Glasgow. Undated, but with postmark of 13 June 1949.
1p., 4to. In good condition, on aged paper. In envelope with stamp and postmark, addressed by Pollitt to 'Mrs J Shields | 9 Rothwell St | London N.W.1.' At the time of writing Mrs Shield's husband was in a TB sanatorium, under surveillance from the British security services. Pollitt writes that he has received the 'letters and papers' and his girls are looking forward to seeing 'Rose when she comes up'. 'We had a cutting of a paper from Mrs Elvin from Dublin where it mentioned how they were talking about Jimmy at a meeting in Dublin.
Jimmy Shields, Scottish communist, General Secretary of Communist Party of South Africa, twice editor of Daily Worker [ Harry Pollitt, General Secretary of Communist Party of Great Britain ]
[ Communist Party of Great Britain, London. ] England and South Africa. Between 1924 and 1949.
Jimmy Shields was described in his obituary in the Daily Worker as 'Hero of the African Peoples' Struggle' and a 'great Communist and humanist', and by Harry Pollitt as 'one of the most devoted revolutionary workers I have ever met'. He was born in Greenock, and joined the Communist Party of Great Britain in 1921. Having moved to South Africa in search of work in 1925, he was within months elected General Secretary of the country's Communist Party. Following his return to Scotland in 1927, he served in various CPGB posts, and was elected to its national executive.
Issued on behalf oif the Hands off Russia Committee. Printed at the Pelican Press (T U.), 2 Carmelite Sytreet, E.C.
Two copies, One printed page, 12mo, good condition. An unknown hand has written in pencil on the reverse, pp.18 and 20, concerning the Soviets, Bolsheviks and Kerensky. P.18 commences: "the Soviets having everywhere grown strong through their peace propaganda and the ['propagation of the' excised] of the realisation in practice of their slogan 'All Power to the Soviets' Nov. 7 - the greatest date in Russian history [...]" The handbill fulminates against the possibility of Allied aid to the Polish "squires and militarists' (their "unprovoked attack", etc).