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Guide to the Liggett Family Papers TAM.463

Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY, 10012
(212) 998-2630
tamiment.wagner@library.nyu.edu


Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive

Collection processed by Tamiment staff

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on July 15, 2014

Historical/Biographical Note

Walter William Liggett (1886-1935), American author, journalist and political activist from Minnesota, worked at several newspapers in New York City, including the New York Times,  Sun,  New York Post,  Daily News, and the Socialist publication,  The Call, before becoming a free-lance writer. His writing career began during World War I at local papers: the  Pioneer Press,  Minneapolis Journal, and  St. Paul Dispatch. In 1932 he returned to his home in Minnesota. A large portion of his time was spent promoting the Minnesota-based populist reform movement of the 1920s known as the Farmer-Labor Party, and working on publications for a Farmer-Labor newspaper, the  Midwest American. On December 9, 1935, Liggett was gunned down in front of his wife and daughter in Minneapolis after exposing a connection between local organized crime and Floyd B. Olson, the progressive Farmer-Labor governor of Minnesota. In 1938, his widow, Edith Fleischer Liggett, sued Comprodaily Inc., the holding company that published the Communist Party newspaper, the  Daily Worker, for libel. The prosecuting Attorney was Thomas E. Dewey, the district attorney of New York. After five years Edith Liggett won a judgment of $2500. In 1998, Marda Liggett Woodbury published an account of Liggett's life and assassination in a book titled  Stopping the Presses: The Murder of Walter W. Liggett.