Tuesday, October 13, 2020

HENRY JACOBI’S BRAVE DEED: Helping Seven Escaped Slaves as the Confederacy Ended in Little Rock

Confederate patriots living in Little Rock were alarmed when the Union Army shattered the Confederate forces that attacked Helena on July 4, 1863 and a few weeks later began moving west.[1]  As the Federals slowly advanced toward Arkansas’ capital, some of the city’s wealthier families began leaving, many taking their slaves to safe havens further south.  

Ann McHenry Reider

Among those who wanted to protect their slaves from Yankee freedom was the widow Ann McHenry Reider. She had inherited eleven of them from her husband when he died on June 11, 1861. Jacob Reider had been among the earliest German-speaking immigrants to settle in Arkansas. Emigrating from Zürich, Switzerland, Jacob arrived in the Arkansas Territory in about 1821 – the year of his arrival is not certain – and in 1826 was living in Batesville.[2]   He moved to Little Rock on May 18, 1828.[3] 

Reider opened a mercantile business to sell groceries, dry goods, shoes, liquor, and whatever else consumers might want.[4]  Beginning in 1830, he conducted his business at a one-story building on the corner of Main and Market Streets, where he also lived. He prospered, and in the late 1830s, bought his first slaves. The 1840 census showed that he owned six slaves; by 1850 he possessed sixteen and in 1860 he had twelve. In 1860 census Reider was the richest German-speaking immigrant living in Little Rock. The self-assessed value of his real and personal property was over $1.2 million in current dollars.[5] An “unlettered man” not active in local civil affairs, he was a devoted Catholic. In 1830, he attended the first Catholic mass conducted in Little Rock.[6]  

Jacob and Ann McHenry had married on April 30, 1833. Born in Tennessee in 1805, she came with her parents to Arkansas in 1818 “in a canvas covered wagon.” After the marriage, the couple built Little Rock’s first two-story building, a house near the corner of 2nd and Louisiana Streets.[7] The widow and her slaves were still living there in 1863. 

Advertisement for the Return of Charlotte

Among Mrs. Reider’s inherited slaves was “Charlotte,” who had run away from the Reiders twenty years earlier. To get her back, Jacob offered a reward of up to $100 for her return. In a  Weekly Arkansas Gazette advertisement, he described her as “a mulatto girl,” who was “about 17 years old, 5 feet 6 inches high, rather slender and genteel in her appearance, color tolerably light for a mulatto, smiling countenance, has a down look when spoken to and a habit of rolling her eyes when retiring, and is very active in walking.”[8] The ad was discontinued after two weeks, indicating that likely Charlotte was captured quickly.  In 1863, she was in her late 30s and was the mother of two children, also owned by Mrs. Reider. Aside from the brief time spent on the lam, Charlotte had lived her whole life “within one mile of Little Rock.”[9]  

One day in the middle of August, as General Sterling Price was strengthening Little Rock’s fortifications in preparation for a Union Army attack, Charlotte bumped into Henry Jacobi, a 50-year-old German immigrant who had moved to Little Rock in about 1848.[10]  A couple of years later, he had opened a book bindery. In the decade that followed, he had expanded his Markham Street store to sell books and other assorted goods.[11] Charlotte was thoroughly acquainted with Jacobi because, she later explained, “As my mistresses house in town was near his store, I often ran in there [Jacobi’s store] to buy little things before the war and got to know him well.”[12] 

Jacobi was an educated man interested in public affairs. A U.S. citizen since 1844, he was active in the “Sag Nicht” movement that in the middle 1850s sought to counteract the anti-immigrant and anti-Catholic Know Nothing party.[13]  Jacobi may have been Jewish, but likely was not.[14] In 1845, while living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he had married Sarah Ann Jewel (1826 – 1904), who was not Jewish. After moving to Arkansas, he was not active in Little Rock’s nascent Jewish community in the 1850s or the B’nai B’rith congregation that officially formed after the Civil War. None of his children were raised in the Jewish faith. Perhaps a freethinker, he apparently did not attend any church in Little Rock. 

Portrait of Henry Jacobi

Although Jacobi worked hard to build his business from its modest beginning, he had mixed success and sometimes struggled to support his growing family – during the 1850s, he and his wife added five children to their household, including a set of twin girls.[15]  When he made extra profits from his business, he invested in real estate, buying large tracts of undeveloped land near the city. At the end of the 1850s, he encountered severe financial difficulties and ended up deeply in debt.[16] To help financially, his wife opened a shop in 1859 next to his bookstore that first sold “hoop shirts” and, later, shoes.[17]  

Jacobi closed his store just as the Civil War was arriving. With a partner, he opened a beer garden and grocery store in May 1861 on about twelve acres of unincorporated fenced land he owned by the western edge of the city. He lived in a house on this land, which sat a few blocks south of the state penitentiary (now site of the state capitol) at a location that was 10th and High Streets before High Street was destroyed by Interstate 630.  Jacobi initially called his establishment “Jacobi’s Garden,” but it became known as “Jacobi’s Grove.”[18] 

During the Civil War, Jacobi was quietly pro-Union, like many ethnic German immigrants living in Pulaski County.  He said little publicly about his views but confided in a few close friends and some of the slaves he knew.  For example, Shederick Parrish, who was in bondage until the Union Army occupied Little Rock, testified before the U.S. Southern Claims Commission in 1874 that Jacobi “always talked in favor of the Federal government and said the Yankees would lick the rebels at last. He would read the papers to colored men and tell us how things were going on.”[19]  Another former slave, Asa Richmond, who served on the Little Rock city council from 1869 to 1872, told the commission, “I have often spoken to him about the war, but he would not have much to say about it, for it was dangerous for a white man like him who was suspicioned and threatened to talk to a negro – he told me he was a union man. I know he dared not to do anything to show he was a loyal man….” A third former slave, Sol Winfrey, testified, “I believe from what I know of old man Jacobi that he is a union man and that he had to keep what he did a secret or he would have been taken out and hung.” 

At the chance encounter of Charlotte and Henry Jacobi in August 1863, the German immigrant warned her, as she later related in her own words, that Mrs. Reider “was getting wagons and fixin to send us to Texas” the next day. Jacobi suggested, she said, that “I had better run off if I could, that the Federals would be in town soon….” Jacobi offered to help her.[20]   

Knowing that if she were taken to Texas, she would be beyond the reach of the Union army and the freedom it would bring to slaves in Little Rock, Charlotte ran away that night from Mrs. Reider. She was joined in her escape by six other slaves, including her two children, two other females, and two other children. The seven escapees hid in wooded land lying near the borders of Jacobi’s Grove. She later recalled, “[F]or three weeks we laid out in the woods, night and day, wet and dry, and along in the evening every day, Mr. Jacobi sent out a little girl to us with a bucket full of victuals. She would go up the hill like she was going for water and slip round to us in the bushes.” 

By helping the escaped slaves, Jacobi put himself and his family in danger. If his actions had been discovered, he would have been arrested, or more likely would have been beaten or worse, and his property destroyed. According to Charlotte, Jacobi “was suspicioned of having us there for one night some rebel soldiers came out to his house. I was only 200 yards in the timber and saw it all as it was bright moon light, the men were on horses and surrounded the house, some them went in and made the old man get up, then they looked through the stable and everywhere – and when they could not find us they got mad and went down in the cellar and brought up all the barrels of wine and liquor, and after they drank all they wanted  – they throwed the rest out.” 

One night two weeks after that incident, Charlotte was at Jacobi’s house when a “Federal spy” arrived. He told her that the Union Army “would open the ball(?) at Bayou Meto next morning,” and advised her “not to stay in the woods because the rebels would catch us if we were there as they would scatter them all over.” Immediately, the seven escaped slaves moved to conceal themselves “under the colored Methodist Church.” Charlotte described what came next: “Sure enough next morning the cannons begun to fire, and about 10 o’clock the rebels began to leave there and kept it up till three, and about four o’clock I heard the clank of the cavalry sabers, and looked out and seen the men with blue coats, and I knew it must be the yankees.” 

After the union army arrived on September 10th, Mr. Jacobi boarded Charlotte and her six companions for two weeks at his house as they began their lives as free people. They had avoided being taken to Texas, where most of the slaves were not freed until many weeks after the war ended in April 1865. 

After her emancipation, Charlotte took Edwards as her family name or married a man whose last name was Edwards. Little is known about her life after she was freed.[21] Her voice speaks through time only in her testimony before the Southern Claims Commission, where she told the story of her escape. She likely lived in Little Rock for the rest of her life (she was still living there in 1874 when she gave her testimony). Although it is not certain, she may be buried in Little Rock’s Fraternal Cemetery where more than 2,000 African Americans have graves.[22]  Among them are at least fourteen with the last name of Edwards who were buried before 1915. Their burials were recorded in the cemetery record book, but their graves are not marked, either because they have no tombstones or, if they do, any writing on them is illegible. One person listed in the cemetery record book is Lotte Edwards, who was buried on June 29, 1909.[23] Perhaps she was the Charlotte who escaped from Mrs. Reider. If so, she lived the last half of her life as a free woman, reaching her eighties before her death. 

Reider Burial Grounds

Unlike the post-war life of her former slave, that of Ann McHenry Reider is easy to trace. She resumed her life in Little Rock after the war with some of her wealth remaining.[24]  She continued to live at 2nd and Louisiana Streets in her house that was “all enclosed with green shutters” and had “an old-fashioned garden in which flowers bloomed in profusion” until April 1887 when she moved to a large home at 1406 Lincoln Street, which is now Cantrell Road.[25] She occupied the house, later known as the “Packet House,” with the families of her daughters Cassie (1839-1931) and Amanda (1845-1920) who were married, respectively, to brothers Robert C. Newton (1840-1887) and Thomas W. Newton (1843-1908).[26] Mrs. Reider overcame the trauma of losing her slaves to live a long life, dying in 1897 at the age of 93. According to one obituary, she was at the time of her death “the oldest resident of Little Rock.”[27] 

Like her husband, Mrs. Reider was a devout Catholic, and both are buried at Little Rock’s Cavalry Cemetery. Their burial places are in a family plot marked by a marble monument more than a dozen feet tall that features the sculpture of a near life-size woman whose arm is draped over a cross. The sculpture stands on a massive base with Jacob Rider’s name and birth/death dates prominently inscribed in the front. 

Jacobi stayed in Pulaski County for the rest of his life, sometimes living in the city but mostly residing on a farm about eight miles from Little Rock. After the war, he did not return to his bookbinding business but continued operating Jacobi’s Grove until about 1871.[28] In addition to the hospitality business, Jacobi found government work. When the Union Army occupied Pulaski County, he signed on with its Provost General Office as a detective and a “secret service” member. For a few months after the end of the war, Jacobi served as the city’s appointed police chief. In 1866, he was elected the city’s constable and collector.[29] 

In 1868, Jacobi was elected county coroner at the same election at which voters approved a new state constitution. He was re-elected to that office in 1870 as part of the brindletail ticket.[30] Two years later, he ran for circuit and criminal court clerk, an elective county government office, but lost.[31]  After Reconstruction ended, he was defeated in his 1874 campaign to be elected a Justice of the Peace (JP) from Big Rock Township. However, he was appointed to fill a vacant JP seat a couple of months later on Dec. 31th.[32]  During most of the decade that followed, he was known as ‘Squire Jacobi, and he presided over a JP court, later called a magistrate court, where people accused of breaking county laws were tried. He resigned from the court in December 1883.[33] 

The paltry salaries of his elected positions and the meager profits he earned from his beer garden and farm provided too little income to pay off his pre-war debts. In 1872, the Pulaski County Chancery Court forced him to settle the $7,000 debt owed to creditors in New York, Philadelphia, and Cincinnati by selling large amounts of land he had bought in the 1850s, including 320 acres located fifteen miles from Little Rock, 120 acres nine miles from the city, and three city blocks.[34]   

In the early 1870s, Jacobi filed a claim with the U.S. Southern Claims Commission for compensation for property (mainly lumber and animals) taken from him by the Union army soon after it occupied Little Rock. (It was as part of the investigation of this claim that Charlotte Edwards was called as a witness in 1874.) His initial claim was rejected, but when he refiled it in 1876 with letters from Gen. Frederick Steele, who led the successful Union army attack on Little Rock, and Sen. Clayton Powell, it was approved. He was awarded $821.50 of the $3,582 he requested. The commission had no doubts about Jacobi’s loyalty but questioned the value of the property taken from him.  

Jacobi Tombstone

‘Squire Jacobi, a respected citizen, died on January 23, 1887, a couple of weeks before his 74th birthday. His wife, Sarah Ann, lived for 78 years, passing away on December 31, 1904 (the year on her tombstone is wrong). They share a marble headstone at Little Rock’s Mt. Holly cemetery.[35] Jacobi was remembered in his obituary as “charitable, kind, and affectionate to everybody….a true and warm friend always ready to help and assist.”  Those characteristics, along with compassion, were evident in his good deed nearly twenty-five years earlier when – at some risk to himself and his family – he assisted Charlotte Edwards and six other slaves to gain freedom that would have been delayed at least twenty months without his help.   


1.  Mark K. Christ. 2010. Civil War Arkansas 1863. University of Oklahoma Press. See chapter 4 “The Battle of Helena” and Chapter 5 “The Campaign to Capture Little Rock.” 

2. Reider’s obituary stated that he came to Arkansas “about 40 years ago.” “Obituary.” 1861. Little Rock True Democrat, Aug. 1, p. 2.  His presence in Batesville is mentioned in “Early Times in Arkansas by N.” 1858. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Jan 9, p. 2. 

Reider’s year of birth is uncertain. The date on his tombstone is 1776, which would have made him 85 years old when he died in 1861. His obituary stated he was 85.  However, in the 1860 census, his age is given as 76.  In the 1850 census, his age was listed as 53, and the 1840 census indicates that his age was between 40 and 49.  According to the 1850 census, he and his wife had a three-year-old child, which means that if he were 85 years old in 1861, he would have been 71 when the child was born. 

3. The exact day he arrived is mentioned by Fay Hempstead (p. 773) in Pictorial History of Arkansas from Earliest Times to the Year 1890, published in 1890.  Accessed via Google Books. 

4. His first advertisement in the Arkansas Gazette, which at that time was published at Arkansas Post, appeared on May 21, 1828.  Because of the time needed to set up a store, Hempstead's arrival date (footnote 3) was likely not accurate. New Goods.” (Adv). Ark. Gazette, May 21, 1828, p. 4.  

5.  According to the 1860 census, Reider owned real property worth $25,000 and personal property valued at $15,000. In 2020 dollars, the amount was about $758,000 (real property) and $455,000 (personal property).  I used the inflation calculator at http://www.in2013dollars.com/  to determine the present values in 2020. The site estimates that a $1 in 1860 had the purchasing power of $30.31 in 2020. 

6. “St. Andrews Cathedral, Little Rock.” 1924. The Guardian (Official Organ of the Diocese of Little Rock), December 20, p. 8.  Accessed at http://arc.stparchive.com/Archive/ARC/ARC12201924p08.php

In his obituary, Reider was described as follows: “An unlettered man, he was endowed by nature with remarkable mind and memory, and sound judgment.” “Obituary.” 1861. Little Rock True Democrat, Aug. 1, p. 2.  

7. “Glimpses of Yesterday.” 1934. Ark. Gazette, Mar. 11, p. 30. 

8. “$100 Reward” (adv). 1841. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Nov. 10, p. 3. 

9. This quote and all others attributed to her are from testimony given in 1874 to the U.S. Southern Claims Commission related to claim 21,507, filed by Henry Jacobi. Jacobi’s complete file with all related testimony can be found at Fold3.com in the database “Southern Claims Commission, Approved Claims, 1871-1880.” 

10. Jacobi testified to the U.S. Southern Claims Commission that he came to Little Rock in 1848, but his arrival may have been in 1849 or 1850. The first advertisements for his bookbinding business showed up in the Arkansas Gazette in 1851. 

Jacobi was born on February 10, 1813, in Trarbach, now known as Trauben-Trarbach, a small town on the middle section of the Moselle River, famous for its winemaking. The city was in the state of Rheinland-Pfalz when he was born, but in 1816 the area was annexed by Prussia. According to Jacobi’s obituary, his family was “highly reputable,” and his father was an officer in the Prussian army. He was educated by a wealthy grandmother, and before emigrating, he traveled extensively as a wine salesman for a vineyard owned by a family member. He emigrated “before 1837” and settled in Pennsylvania, where he learned the bookbinding trade. He applied for citizenship in 1842 and received it in 1844. That year, he married Sarah Ann Jewell (Dec. 14, 1926 – Dec. 31, 1904), a native Philadelphian. See “The Late Henry Jacobi.” 1887. Ark. Gazette, July 5, p. 5 and “Died.” 1887. Ark Gazette, June 24, p. 1. 

Jacobi and his wife had seven children, one of whom died in childhood. They were Rachael (1846 – 1905), Henry Jr. (1848 – 1851), Susannah (1850 – 1873), Clara (1852 – 1828), Lillie (1854 – 1920), Rosa (1854 – 1937), and Albert Cohen (1857 – 1919). Rachael and Henry Jr. were born in Pennsylvania, the others in Little Rock. 

Catherine Jewell (1837 – 1901), the younger sister of Sarah Ann Jewell, moved to Little Rock from Cincinnati with her husband George Baehr in the latter part of 1860 or early 1861. Baehr, born in Bavaria, was, like Jacobi, a bookbinder. He volunteered for the Capital Guards, a Little Rock militia, incorporated into the Confederate Army as Co. A, Arkansas Sixth Regiment. Baehr was killed in action on June 27, 1864, at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain in Georgia. According to testimony heard by the U.S. Southern Claims Commission, Catherine Jewell lived in a small house on land next to Jacobi’s Grove during the Civil War.  Calvin L. Collier. 1961. First In – Last Out: The Capitol Guards, Arkansas Brigade in the Civil War. Pioneer Press (Little Rock), p. 115. 

11. His first advertisement was published on October 14, 1851.  “Book Binding.” 1851. Ark. Banner, Oct. 14, p. 3.  The same ad was published on Oct. 17 in the Weekly Ark. Gazette.  Jacobi regularly advertised in the years that followed.  His typical advertisement was as follows:

“The undersigned would inform the public of Arkansas that his Book-Bindery is in full operation, and that he is prepared to bind new books or to rebind old books at Cincinnati prices. As he purchased his stock of materials for cash in New York and executes the work himself, in person, there are no extra charges for profits at his Bindery. Persons in the city or in any part of the state who may have the kindness to give him their patronage may rely on their work being done on unusually reasonable terms and with neatness and dispatch.”  

On Dec. 5, 1957, he started publishing a new, longer advertisement that repeatedly ran in the Arkansas Gazette.  See “Henry Jacobi. Bookseller, Book Binder, Stationer, and Blank Book Manufacturer.” Weekly Ark. Gazette, Dec. 5, p. 3.    

The ad included this note:  “N.B. As I am a practical mechanic, much experienced, and long established in my business; doing most of my work with my own hands and when assistants are necessarily employed, giving it my immediate personal supervision, I am enabled to not only guarantee its fidelity, but to sell it at mechanic’s prices, without extra profits. And essentially as I do business on the cheap system (both buying and selling) I am further enabled as I have done from the beginning, unchanged even by late flush times, to supply my customers with every article in my line, in good faith at the lowest prices, at which it is practicable to live, carry on business, and to remain solvent in this community.”    

12. Testimony to the U.S. Southern Claims Commission. Claim 21,507 filed by Henry Jacobi, “Southern Claims Commission, Approved Claims, 1871-1880,” a database accessed at Fold3.com. 

13. “The Great Sag Nicht Rally in Saline.” 1855. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Nov. 2, p. 3. 

14.  Carolyn Gray LeMaster claims in her book that Jacobi was Jewish but offers no evidence to support that conclusion. She may have mixed him up with Hirsh Jacobi (1840 – 1897), who settled in Little Rock after the war and was active in the local synagogue. Hirsh’s wife, Amalia Kahn Jacobi (1834 - 1926), opened a Millinery and Dry Goods Shop on Main Street in 1871 and advertised herself as “Mrs. H. Jacobi --  Millinery and Fancy Goods” until she went bankrupt in 1876. See, for example, “Mrs. H. Jacobi – Millinery and Fancy Goods (adv).” 1874. Ark. Gazette, p. 4 and “Bankrupt Sale.” 1876. Ark. Gazette, Aug. 19, p. 4.  Henry Jacobi and Hirsch Jacobi were not related. 

15. LaMaster reviewed Jacobi’s credit reports compiled by R.G. Dun & Co. during the 1850s. (These reports are housed in Harvard University’s Baker Library.) The reports document that he was “quite poor with modest trade” when he started his store, but gradually increased his stock and business. LaMaster, 1994, p. 14. 

16. Some evidence suggests that part of Jacobi’s financial problems resulted from unpaid or under-paid binding work he did for the state Printing Office in 1858, 1859, and 1860. Before the Civil War and for several years after its end, he tried to get the Arkansas General Assembly to pay him more for the work he had done. See, for example, “Legislative Proceedings.” 1860. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Nov. 17, p. 2 and “House of Representatives.” 1860. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Dec. 22, p. 2. (The State Senate passed a relief bill for Jacobi, but the House of Representatives narrowly rejected it.) Also see, “General Assembly of Arkansas. “1868. Ark. Gazette, Dec. 15, p. 2. 

17. “Hoop Shirks” (adv). 1859. Weekly Ark. Gazette, Oct. 1, p. 3 and “Ladies’ Shoes at Mrs. Jacobi’s” (adv) 1860. Weekly Ark. Gazette, January 28, p. 3. 

18. “Jacobi’s Garden.” 1861. Weekly Ark. Gazette, July 6, p. 3. The advertisement stated:  “The undersigned at his place near the western boundary of the city of Little Rock, has opened a garden, and is prepared to furnish refreshments to such as favor him with the patronage. The place is quiet and retired, and kept in the most orderly manner. Ice cream, light wines, and other refreshments on hand, and served to persons singly or in parties. He solicits a share of public patronage. Henry Jacobi.  

19. The testimony of Shederick Parrish and the others that follow are in Claim 21,507 filed by Henry Jacobi, “Southern Claims Commission, Approved Claims, 1871-1880,” a database accessed at Fold3.com. 

20. Jacobi gave similar advice to Nelson Douglas, the slave of a Confederate Army officer. According to Brooks, a few days before the occupation, “[Jacobi] told me to remain in Little Rock and not to go south with Col. Brooks and the Confederate Army.” Brooks took the advice. On the day that the Union Army arrived, Brooks went to work for Jacobi, living at his place until June 1865. Testimony of Nelson Douglas in Claim 21,507 filed by Henry Jacobi, “Southern Claims Commission, Approved Claims, 1871-1880,” database accessed at Fold3.com. 

21. Nothing was found about her in searches of Ancestry.com, familysearch.org, newspapers.com, newspaperarchives.com, and geneologybank.com. 

22. See http://www.arkansaspreservation.com/National-Register-Listings/PDF/PU5892.nr.pdf  

23. “Oakland and Fraternal Historic Cemetery Records,” accessed on familysearch.org.  

24. According to the 1870 census, the self-assessed value of her real estate was $10,000, about $198,500 in 2020 purchasing power. The estimate of 2020 purchasing power was calculated at the following website: https://www.in2013dollars.com/ 

25. See “Glimpses of Yesterday.” 1934. Ark. Gazette, Mar. 11, p. 30 and Renton Tunnah. 1929. “City Wore a Different Aspect During the Reconstruction Days.” 1929. Ark. Gazette, March 31, p. 12. For more on the Packet House, see http://www.arkansaspreservation.com/National-Register-Listings/PDF/PU3243.nr.pdf.  

26. Robert C. Newton commanded Baxter’s military forces in the 1874 Brook-Baxter War. 

27. Mrs. Reider’s tombstone has the date of her death as November 16, 1898. However, her obituaries are dated 1897: “Mrs. Anna Reider’s Death.” 1897. Ark. Gazette, Nov. 16, p. 5 and “The Oldest Resident of Little Rock.” 1897. Forrest City Times, Nov. 19, p. 6. (The likely date of her death was Nov. 14, 1897;  the Arkansas Gazette obituary published on Tuesday, Nov. 16, stated that her death was on the preceding Sunday.) 

28. Jacobi’s Grove hosted many events, including the city’s first Maifest, held by ethnic Germans in 1867. Also, it was a popular venue for events held by the city’s former slaves. Jacobi sold this property in the early 1870s, but the name and venue remained in use into the 1880s. See “May Festival.” 1867. Ark. Gazette, May 19, p. 3 and “The Fourth of July.” 1868, Weekly Ark. Gazette, Jul 7, p. 2. 

29. “Post of Little Rock.” 1865. Ark. Gazette, May 11, p. 4; “Item.” 1865. Weekly Arkansas Gazette, Oct 7, p. 2; and “City Chamber, Little Rock.” 1867. Ark. Gazette, March 21, 1867, p. 3. 

30. “Election Results.” 1868. Morning Republican, March 4, p. 2 and “Result of the State Election.” 1870. Ark. Gazette, Nov. 15, p. 4. 

31. “For Circuit and Criminal Court Clerk and Recorder” (adv). 1872. Ark. Gazette, Sept 13, p. 4. 

32. “The Election: The Returns as Far as Received–Pulaski County Redeemed.”1874. Ark. Gazette, Oct 15, p. 4 and “Little Rock Locals.” 1874. Ark. Gazette, Dec 31, p 4. 

33. “Resigned.” 1883. Ark. Democrat, Dec. 12, p. 1. 

34.  Jacobi mentioned the forced sale of his land in his 1874 testimony before the U.S. Southern Claims Commission. Claim 21,507 filed by Henry Jacobi, “Southern Claims Commission, Approved Claims, 1871-1880,” database accessed at Fold3.com. 

35. “The Late Henry Jacobi.” 1887. Ark. Gazette, July 5, p. 5 and “Mrs. S. A. Jacobi Dead.” 1905. Ark. Gazette, Jan. 1, p. 7.


Thursday, October 1, 2020

Remembering the Life of Denis John Fodor (1927 - 2020)

When I learned of the recent death of Denis Fodor, I immediately recalled my conversation with him in June 2012 that evoked a past I had previously explored only through old newspaper articles, biographies, and history books. I had been researching the life of Denis’s father, M. W. Fodor, a Vienna-based correspondent who had covered middle Europe and the Balkans during the inter-war period for the Manchester Guardian, and Denis knew more about his father’s life than anyone else alive. Plus, he had memories of living as a child in Vienna during the early 1930s, and many adventures after that. I spent more than two pleasurable hours listening to Denis tell about his life and that of his father, seeing the past through the eyes of a witness.

The conversation with Fodor has been arranged and was also attended by Fabienne Gouverneur, who at the time was a doctoral student at Andrássy University in Budapest doing research for a dissertation that centered on M.W. Fodor and his correspondence over the years with important people, especially Sen. J. W. Fulbright. She had interviewed Denis Fodor once before and would have subsequent meetings with him, becoming well acquainted with him and his family. Information gathered from her talks with Fodor helped inform her dissertation and related book, both titled Personal, Confidential: Mike W. Fodor als Netwerker und Kulturmittler. Both include a comprehensive biography of M.W. Fodor. 

We met with Denis Fodor at his apartment on a quiet street in Munich and our conversation was accompanied by a modest lunch that he served. He answered our many questions with eloquence, intelligence, and some sharp edges. He remembered some things that occurred more than seven decades ago with great clarity, but some memories were elusive and, frustratingly, some things, such as the circumstances of the deaths of his grandparents, he did not know. He later replied to many other questions in e-mail exchanges. 

Denis was still residing in Munich when the end came in late July 2020. He was 93 years old. His death was not (as far as I can tell) reported by any newspaper or memorialized in any obituary.  In his honor, I will tell here some of his life's narrative and a few of the memories that he shared with Fabienne and me. 

M. W. Fodor

The story of Denis Fodor’s life must begin by introducing his father and describing the circumstances of Denis’s early life in Vienna.  M. W. Fodor, Denis’s father, was named Marcel Vilmos Fodor at birth and was later known by his friends as “Mike.” He was born to a wealthy family in Budapest in 1890, and he trod an improbable path to a distinguished career in journalism; from that perch, he observed, commented on, interpreted, and swam in the tide of events in Europe that changed the world after World War I.  After earning a degree in 1911 from the University of Budapest in chemical engineering, M. W. went to Great Britain in 1912 to work for the Frodingham Iron and Steel Company in Scunthorpe.  When World War I began, he was initially interned as an “enemy alien,” but was released in March 1917 to live on the estate of Lord Mowbray at Allerton to do “important war work.” As the war ended, he -- implausibly -- got a job as a Manchester Guardian correspondent reporting from Vienna.[1] Although he lacked experience as a journalist, M.W. Fodor spoke several languages of countries in middle Europe and the Balkans, and he had traveled extensively in the areas he was to cover for his newspaper. He soon developed an encyclopedic knowledge of the leaders and politics of the European countries on this beat and he made good friends of other Anglo-American correspondents stationed in Vienna during the inter-war years, most of whom hung out at the Café Louvre, where M.W. was often at the center of conversations about current events.     

Photograph from Ken Cuthbertson,
Inside: The Biography of 
John Gunther. 

In 1925, M.W. Fodor married Martha Roob, whom he had met in Vienna. She had been born in Slovakia.  Her mother was Slovakian, and her father, from Vienna, was a professional soldier in the Austrian army. She lived for many years with her parents in Hungary after her father was posted there. 

Denis entered the world on June 27, 1927. He was M.W. and Martha Fodor’s first and only child. Their  celebration of his birth was interrupted a couple of weeks later when M. W. had to cover Vienna’s “Days of Horror” (July 15-17), during which Vienna’s police killed 85 demonstrators who were protesting a court’s acquittal of three right-wing militia members who had murdered a child and an invalid war veteran in January. They had shot into a crowd of Social Democrats who were parading in Schattendorf, a village near the Hungarian border. The July eruption of violence, during which demonstrators set the Ministry of Justice building on fire, propelled Austria toward the end of its democracy.[2] 

A year later, a more pleasant event occurred in the lives of the Fodors:  J.W. Fulbright of Fayetteville, Arkansas, came to Vienna. The future senator’s study at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar had ended, and after a tour of Europe with his mother, he decided to hang out in Vienna. While there, he found the Café Louvre and M. W. Fodor, who became a mentor. Later, M. W. Fodor and Fulbright exchanged correspondence for more than two decades. 

As Denis was growing up, he met his father’s famous friends, sometimes with his parents at the Café Louvre and sometimes at their home on Börsegasse, near the Maria am Gestade Church. These friends included Dorothy Thompson, who arrived in Vienna as a young woman in 1921 with hopes of breaking into journalism; John Gunther who moved in 1930 to Vienna to cover events for the Chicago Daily News, and William Shirer, a journalist who stumbled into Vienna in 1929 as an insecure leftist reporter for the Chicago Tribune, a paper owned by reactionary capitalist. Thompson later became the second most famous woman in the U.S., eclipsed only Elinor Roosevelt, through the newspaper column she wrote from the later 1930s into the 1950s; Gunther’s fame came from his series of “Inside,” books, the first of which was Inside Europe, published in 1936; and Shirer – who was fired by his newspaper not long after he arrived in Vienna became a household name when he made regular radio reports from Berlin in the latter part of the 1930s and his books Berlin Diary and the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich became best sellers. 

Picture was taken in about 1932. Published in M.W. Fodor. 1939. South of Hitler.

Another of Fodor’s friends was Robert Best, whom Denis also liked, a reporter for the United Press news service, who later became infamous when he stayed in Germany during World War II and made propaganda broadcasts back to the U.S.  After the war, Best was convicted of treason for his actions and died while still in prison.[3]  

Robert Best (left) with his
brother and sister as his treason trial ended.
AP press photograph

Surrounded by these and other talented journalists, Denis Fodor grew up in turbulent times. In February 1934, a few months before his seventh birthday, Vienna had a brief civil war instigated by Chancellor Englebert Dollfuss and the Christian Socialist Party, with its militia and the country’s army routing the supporters of the Social Democrats. The victors installed the one-party Fatherland Front (Vaterländische Front), an Austro-fascist government, as the country’s regime. A few months later, at the end of July, Dollfus was murdered by Austrian Nazis as they attempted to take over the government. In March 1938, when Denis was ten years old, Hitler sent the German Army to annex Austria.[4]

During his early school years, Denis was enrolled in the Schottenschule (now Schottengymnasium), a private Catholic school located a short walk from his home. At the time, he attended a Catholic Church with his mother, a Catholic. His father did not go to church but embraced Quaker beliefs. Nevertheless, both M. W. and Denis Fodor would have been classified under Nazi racial laws as Jewish because M. W. Fodor’s mother, Berta von Auspitz, came from a Jewish family. (M. W.’s father, Janos Fodor, was not Jewish.) 

As Vienna’s Nazis became more brazen in their behavior and anti-Semitism grew in Vienna, Denis’ parents sent him to England in 1936 to study at Abinger Hill School, a progressive and prestigious private school in Surrey. He was studying there on March 12, 1938, when German troops marched into Vienna. His parents fled Austria a week later after selling their apartment at a fraction of its value, leaving behind furniture, books, and papers. 

Soon after the Anschluss, the Fodor family made a trip to the United States and began the process of obtaining U.S. citizenship. With their citizenship clock ticking and permission granted to be absent from the U.S., the Fodors departed for England in June 1938 so that M. W. could resume reporting from Europe for the Chicago Daily News and the New Republic and Denis could prepare to return to his school. 

Two years later, following Germany’s invasion of the Low Countries, Denis and his mother hurriedly left England to travel to the United States, arriving aboard the M.V. Britannic on June 21, 1940. They were joined there by M.W. Fodor on the following day. He had been in Belgium in May when the Germans attacked, had made his way to Portugal via Paris, and had flown to New York City on a Pan Am “Atlantic Clipper” flight. 

The Fodor family spent the summer of 1940 at Dorothy Thompson’s expansive farm in Vermont. There, Denis spent time with his good friend Michael Lewis (1930-1975), Dorothy’s son, whom he had met earlier while living in Vienna. When summer ended, the Fodors settled in Chicago, where M. W. taught for a while at the Illinois Institute of Technology and later became a columnist for the Chicago Sun.  In 1943, M. W. was granted citizenship and Denis received “derivative citizenship.” 

Initial Citizenship Application, 1938

Denis attended Chicago’s Francis W. Parker High School, a private school with a progressive college-prep curriculum, graduating in May 1944.  One episode in his life during his high school years was documented in the Chicago Sun:  Living with his family at the Sherwin-on-the-Lake Apartments, 1205 Sherwin Ave., a few hundred feet from Lake Michigan, Denis had tried to rescue occupants of an airplane that had crashed into Lake Michigan within view of his apartment. According to the Chicago Sun, “Dennis Fodor, 15, … saw the plane crash, ran downstairs from his apartment…and began swimming out to the plane. His mother said, ‘Dennis tried at first to launch his sailboat, but he couldn’t; the water was too choppy. He then kicked off his shoes and began swimming but the rescue boat had already reached the pilot.’”[5] 

Between Fall 1944 and March 1949, Denis earned an undergraduate degree in English from Harvard College, taking time out to serve in the U.S. Army, with a stint as an army translator in Vienna. At Harvard, he played club football and basketball, and he had several stories published in the college’s literary magazines. He lived with two roommates in the apartment inhabited by Franklin Delano Roosevelt when he studied at Harvard. After graduating, Denis moved to Germany – the front line of the Cold War -- where he took a job reporting for the United Press. His parents were living in Berlin at the time. His father edited the Berlin edition of Die Neue Zeitung, a daily newspaper published by the occupying U.S. forces.  

1947 Harvard Yearbook 

In about 1953, Denis Fodor began reporting for Time and Life magazines. He covered the 1956 uprising in Hungary and soon after that was sent to Beirut to write about events in the volatile Middle East. Not long after finishing that assignment, he switched from reporting to editing for Time and Life magazines. He spent the rest of his life working as an editor, first for Time/Life, then the Encyclopedia Britannica, and finally Reader’s Digest. He lived during much of the 1960s in New York; several years during the 1970s in Paris, where Reader’s Digest had its European office; and most of the rest of his life in Munich. In 1981, he co-wrote a book, The Neutrals, about the history of the European countries that remained neutral – or tried to – during World War II. Published by Time/Life, it was positively reviewed. 

Cover of The Neutrals by
Denis J. Fodor

When I had the chance to ask him questions in June 2012, most of my inquiries had to do with his memories of his early years in Vienna and of his father. Below are the summaries of some of the questions I asked and his responses to those questions, plus some of his other recollections that the illustrated the richness of his life. 

The Stammtisch for Anglo-American Journalists at the Café Louvre

As I read about the lives of Fodor, Thompson, Gunther, Shirer, and other English-speaking journalists stationed in Vienna during the 1920s and 1930s, I was struck by the Café Louvre's role in their lives.[6] It was a regular meeting place for them as they did their work, and it provided a comfortable locale for socializing. At the Café Louvre, the journalists had a Stammtisch – a table or tables at the café reserved for them because they were regular customers. The café’s first-district location was perfect: it was a few steps from the Central Telegraph office from which the journalists could send their stories by telegraph. Also, it was across the street from Radio Austria, which could transmit urgent stories to their newspapers by wireless communications. 

Cafe Louvre in about 1940
From Der Spiegel

I was eager to hear what Denis remembered about Café Louvre, where he spent time as a kid. In the interview and some email exchanges, I learned the following from him: 

The café, located at the corner of Wipplinger and Renngasse, was in a neo-baroque or gothic building that “had eyebrows." The building had a dog-leg design. It was about five stories tall. 

In the middle of the L-shaped room of the cafe were marble top tables with cane chairs. On the sides were booths, upholstered in cloth. The waiters carried silver trays. The head waiter wore tails. The others wore smoking jackets with butterfly ties. Patrons called the head waiter by his last name. They called the other waiters by their first names. The usual order was one of several types of coffee -- melange, kleiner braune. You could also get a simple meal such as goulash or soup such as leberknödel. The dessert trays had cake and strudel of various kinds.” 

Robert Best at the Café Louvre 

One journalist used the Café Louvre as his office, even receiving telephone calls and his mail there. That man was Robert Best, who had, over time, made the café the central meeting point for most English-speaking foreign journalists in Vienna. He had done so by running a side business at the café that helped other journalists stay informed about breaking stories, covered for them when they were absent from the city, and provided other small services that made their jobs easier. The many journalists who worked with Best during his time in Vienna, most of whom considered him a friend, were shocked when he stayed in Europe after the start of World War II and made anti-Semitic propaganda broadcasts back to the U.S.[7] 

Best was a well-liked, but strange character. Elements of his life and personality were captured in two books written by journalists who knew him well. The first book, The Lost City, was written by John Gunther in the last half of the 1930s, but the publication of this roman a clef was delayed for nearly thirty years because of fears that some of its characters, who were clearly based on journalists and others living in Vienna in the early 1930s, would sue the publisher for libel. Foremost among those who might have claimed defamation was Robert Best, whose character in the novel was James N. Drew. According to the novel, Drew was “at once bashful, boyish, and portentous… a stout man in his middle thirties, with a heavy long face and an extraordinarily sweet – that was the only word for it – smile…. He was a mess, but, God damn it, he did have that sweetness.” In the novel, Drew – as apparently in real life --did some sleazy and even dishonest things.[8] 

Best was also the inspiration for the main character of William Shirer’s novel, The Traitor, which was set in Berlin. The character, Oliver Knight, according to the cover blurb, had “to choose…between returning to the land of his birth or staying in wartime Germany to satisfy his hunger for lust and power.” He made the wrong choice.[9] 

I asked Denis of his memory of Robert Best, and he gave a surprising answer. According to my notes, he observed that Robert Best was among his father’s best friends. Denis remembered Best as a "very nice man" and a "poor slob" who was deeply Southern, not too bright, and a bit uncouth. Illustrating the last point, Denis noted that Best spooned goulash sauce onto his Sachertorte. He also mentioned the Romanian "Princess" that Best supported (the “princess” was also an unsavory character in the novels written by Gunther and Shirer), saying that she was on drugs and he had to scramble to pay her costs. 

Denis recalled that Best often would loan his father money at the end of the month to help him make ends meet. He stated his opinion that his father would have testified in favor of Best as his trial for treason. He said that neither he nor his father blamed Best for what happened. According to Denis, Best was forced into his actions by specific circumstances, and we do not know what we would do if we were in those circumstances. 

The Fodors in John Gunther’s Novel, The Lost City

Among the sympathetic characters in Gunther’s The Lost City are three who were clearly based on the Fodors, whom Gunther obviously liked.  Laszlo Sandor was the name given to M. W. Fodor, Martha Fodor was Erji Sandor, and Denis was Albrecht, nicknamed “Putzi,” which was Denis’s nickname when he was a boy. Here are some short descriptions from the book: 

Like Balkan kings, [Laszlo] Sandor spoke no language perfectly, not even his own. His English had a Hungarian accent, his Hungarian a French accent, his French a German accent, his German an Italian accent, his Italian an English accent and so on around. His voice carried a friendly chuckle, and his eyes, beyond heavy owl-like spectacles, held a friendly gleam. He loved to elucidate, to share his wisdom; he would say, “Now, it is something inter-est-ing that will happen. Let me tell you about. He seldom conceded the necessity of using pronouns at the end of sentences. 

Erji was a Slovak and probably had gypsy blood. Her father, of the most respectable class, had been an officer….She asked nothing better of life than that she should run the household while he worked, sit quietly with him when he wrote his dispatches, and then go to a coffeehouse by his side in the evening. Laszlo asked for nothing more than what he had. She must always be close by [and] she could sing the old gypsy songs when they had a party.  

Albrecht, nicknamed Putzi, their six-year old son, came in with Fräulein. He paid little attention to his parents, but casually sat on the floor of the room where Sandor worked and pulled a pile of toys from a bottom shelf. Laszlo beamed and Erji dropped on her knees beside him, worshiping him with her eyes, adoring him. The child yanked at a tin locomotive. 

“For my name day I want a new locomotive. This locomotive has only one smokestack. I want a locomotive with two, three, six smokestacks! 

         “Locomotives do not come with six smokestacks.”

         “Oh, yes, they do. My locomotives do.” 

When I went to talk Denis Fodor in 2012, I took along a paperback edition of The Lost City to give to him in case he did not have a copy, had not read it recently, and might want to reread it.  A few days after the meeting, I received an e-mail from Denis in which he mentioned that he had re-read the book and concluded that “the characters in it are either more or less composites. My mother, for instance, is more composite than mother. I am Gunther’s Putzi and was called that, but don’t remember myself as acting Gunther-like.” 

Dorothy Thompson’s and Sinclair Lewis’s 1933 Christmas Celebration at Semmering

Denis was present as a child at a famous Christmas party hosted in 1932 by Dorothy Thompson and her husband Sinclair Lewis. The ten-day party was held at Semmering, a small Alpine ski resort town in Lower Austria about fifty miles from Vienna, and was attended by about forty of Dorothy’s friends, both journalists and others.[10] 

Accounts of this party can be found in the biographies of Dorothy Thompson and Sinclair Lewis and in a book titled Dorothy and Red by her friend Vincent Sheehan. Opinions about the party varied. M. W. Fodor is quoted in one of Thompson’s biographies as describing it as “a week of unadulterated pleasure enlivened by witty companions and his lovely Martha’s gypsy songs performed nightly to her own guitar accompaniment.”[10]  Other accounts, such as that given by Lilian Mowrer, had less generous assessments of the party.[11]  Amid ten days of fun, boredom, and drinking, two things happened to change the life of Dorothy Thompson: her deepening estrangement from her husband Sinclair Lewis and the feelings that she developed for one of her guests, Baroness Christa Hatvay (also known as Christa Winsloe), author of a book titled Mädchen in Uniform, which developed into a love affair.[12] 

Photos from this holiday party can be found in Sheean’s book and in Dorothy Thompson’s papers housed at Syracuse University. Included among them are those of the five young children at the party, including Denis. On December 24, 2012, the day before the eightieth anniversary of the party, I sent an email to Denis to ask him if he had any recollections of it. He replied that he had some, but they were vague: “The Fodors put up at our accustomed hostelry, the burgherly Hotel St. Johann. The others stayed at the Panhans, a modern (for the times) luxury hotel. One or others may even have stayed at the very conservative and luxurious Südbahn Grand Hotel. For skiers there was one slope that had a rope-lift, a novelty at the time, and another slope that had none. I used the slope that had none (neither my father nor mother skied). Meetings were over meals and cocktails. Buses, belonging to the postal service, had skis attached to their front wheels and chains at the rear, took care of the to-ing and fro-ing.” He later added, “I seem to remember a large Christmas tree, very silvery, and boxes etc…..people… and Red Lewis sitting there smiling benignly…It was in a house, not a hotel or hotel room. No Dorothy, no Michael.”

Children at Semmering, 1932
Denis Fodor is standing. Sitting by him is Michael Lewis.

Later I sent him two photos of the five young children at the event and asked him to point himself out in the photos. He confirmed that he is the only kid standing in the first picture, and the young boy near him was Michael Lewis. In the second picture, he is sitting, and Michael Lewis is standing. Denis commented, “I used to dress well back then.”

Children at Semmering, 1932
Denis Fodor is sitting. Michael Lewis is standing.

Fodor and Fulbright

Denis was only one year old when J. W. Fulbright showed up in Vienna, so he had no memories of him. However, he heard his father talk about Fulbright. I asked him what he recalled his father saying, and he replied that M. W. Fodor had liked Fulbright from the start. He was impressed and amused by him. Then he repeated a story about Fulbright that he heard from his father: 

In Vienna, it was custom before Christmas for different charities to collect donations from people for "Winterhilfe" -- literally winter help. One day, he and Fodor were together at a place selling dairy products and were chatting when a person soliciting contributions for the Nazi Winterhilfe campaign came into the room and walked up to Fulbright to ask for a donation. Fulbright looked at the guy then turned to Fodor for help figuring out who was soliciting the donation, asking, "What domination is this?"

Denis Fodor and Kim Philby

Denis lived in Beirut for more than a year in 1958 and 1959, and he recalled that his residence was an apartment had an angled view of the campus of the American University of Beirut and another angled view of Beirut`s main lighthouse. Among Denis’s acquaintances in Beirut was Kim Philby, who was a journalist working for the Economist. According to Denis, Philby used to hang out at the Hotel Normandie, just off the Corniche, and “after stealing the wife of Sam Pope Brewer, the Beirut bureau chief of the New York Times,” he took an apartment not far from there. Denis saw him daily and went to his house many times. In fact, according to Denis, Philby was good friends with all the Americans there. Philby stayed in Lebanon until January 1963, when he flew to Moscow as evidence was mounting that he had been an important spy for the Soviet Union. Before then, according to Denis, he and Philby’s other past and present colleagues did not know that he was a spy.[13]

Denis recalled that his father had known Philby when, as a young man, he “pitched up in Vienna in female company.” Philby connected with the Anglo-American press corps in Vienna because of his connections with a member of the British press corps there.[14] During his time in Vienna, according to Denis, “He seems to have been an overt far-leftist… and only turned surreptitious later.” Denis also noted that “ingenues of the Liberal flavor” who were visiting Vienna, as well as other visitors with suitable recommendations, often ended up “being hand-held by my father.” 

M.W. Fodor From His Son’s Perspective

When you read about someone’s life, it is important not only to find out about what they did but also get a sense of what they were like and what motivated them. We know that many of Fodor’s friends thought highly of him, but it is also valuable to see him through his son's eyes. Here are some of Denis’s observations about his father:

         My father was gregarious. Before and during World War I, he had the money to circulate among the haute monde. 

My father was never a writer as such. He was a Central European intellectual of a liberal orientation and had the kind of gregarious personality that could land him all kinds of interesting jobs. He was a wonderful moderate man and a pacifist. 

[My father] deserved to be rated an intellectual…He had a higher education not only in engineering but also in the humanities. 

The significance of John Hamilton [whom M.W. Fodor said was his mentor] to my father was as a teacher of the craft, not of the flow of history. My father was anything but a journalist by education (though my grandfather (part-) owned two newspapers, one in Budapest the other in Vienna). It was Hamilton, something of an intellectual, but mainly just a Manchester Guardian hand, who showed my father how to make his special kind of savvy of use to the editorial desks in Manchester. My father was grateful to him for this, but he also respected him for the acuity of his judgment of the situation as it developed in Berlin in the twenties.”  

As the only correspondent on the Guardian’s staff who was not Anglophone, the copy-desk editing that my father required was done in Manchester….My father filed daily by dictation over the telephone and did so from our apartment’s library, not from a separate office. His daily beat consisted of meeting a circle of local personalities – officeholders, diplomats, scientists, musicians, artists, and so on. 

   My father:

*never wore a wedding ring.    

*never raised his voice, even when he was angry; in fact, he was seldom angry.  

*was not docile but was quiet, even-tempered.

*had a strong sense of history.

*understood and wrote about leaders as people.

*was not a monarchist but thought the breakup of the empire was a mistake. 

*did not like Dollfuss very much. (Contrary to my impression based on his book, South of Hitler)


In one email, Denis told me, “I always enjoy opportunities to talk about my father, who remains to me dearly memorable.”  I am glad that I had the opportunity to meet Denis Fodor, not only to learn more about his father and but also to learn more about his remarkable life.   



[1] Fran Baker. 2016. South of Hitler: Marcel W. Fodor and the Manchester Guardian, August 12, The John Rylands Library Special Collections Blog, accessed at https://rylandscollections.com/2016/08/12/south-of-hitler-marcel-w-fodor-and-the-manchester-guardian/

Fabienne Gouverneur. 2019. Personal, Confidential: Mike W. Fodor als Netzwerker und Kulturmittler. New Academic Press, Vienna.   The dissertation on which the book is based can be accessed at this web site: https://www.andrassyuni.eu/pubfile/de-213-dissertationfabiennegouverneur2016-doi.pdf

Dan Durning. 2011. Marcel W. Fodor, Foreign Correspondent  


[2] See July 15-17, 1927: Days of Horror in Vienna, Austria (blog entry). https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2012/01/july-15-17-1927-days-of-horror-in.html 

[3] Finding M. W. Fodor: Fulbright, Vienna, and Me (blog entry). https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2011/09/finding-m-w-fodor-fulbright-vienna-and.html 

[4] See Austria’s Fatherland Front, 1933-1938 (blog entry). https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2011/08/austrias-fatherland-front-1933-1938.html 

The Assassination of Engelbert Dollfuss, July 25, 1934 (blog entry).  https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2011/08/assassination-of-engelbert-dollfuss.html 

[5] “Lake Crash Kills Flier in Snow Storm.” 1943. Chicago Sun, April 14, p. 1.

[6] A Great Night at the Café Louvre in Vienna (blog entry). https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2012/02/great-night-at-cafe-louvre-in-vienna.html 

[7] Edwards, John Carver. 1982. “Bob Best Considered: An Expatriate's Long Road to Treason.” North Dakota Quarterly, Winter, 50 (1): 73-90 and “Worst Best.” 1943. Time, February 15. [About journalist Robert Best]  

[8] John Gunther. 1964. The Lost City. Harper & Row. 

[9] William L. Shirer. 1950. The Traitor. Farrar, Straus, & Co. 

[10] Dorothy Thompson and Sinclair Lewis Celebrate Christman in Semmering (Austria), 1932 (blog entry). https://www.eclecticatbest.com/2012/12/dorothy-thompson-and-sinclair-lewis.html 

[11] Marion Sander. 1973. Dorothy Thompson: A Legend in Her Time. Houghton Mifflin Co. p. 179. 

[11] Vincent Sheean. 1963. Dorothy and Red. Houghton Mifflin Co., p. 213. 

[12] See Peter Kurth. 1990. American Cassandra: The Life of Dorothy Thompson. Little, Brown and Company. 

[13] Robert Littell. 2012. Young Philby. Thomas Dunn Books. (Philby’s time in Vienna is included in the roman a clef.)

[14] The reporter was G.E.R. Geyde. His powerful account of the 1934 civil war is in chapter 9 of his book (p. 104), Betrayal in Central Europe in which he mentions, but not by name, a young Englishman who was helping some threatened social democrats escape capture. The young man was Philby, who had recently signed on with Moscow as a spy. G.E.R. Geyde. 1939. Betrayal in Central Europe, Harper & Brothers Publishers. Also, see Littell 2012, p. 53.