The Red Scare

November 1917

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Worker Strikes

With WWI ending, soldiers were returning home to a place of unrest. Although supportive of the war and its efforts, workers now took to protests and strikes. With prices rising due to WWI, workers demanded higher wages. In total over three thousand strikes occurred across the nation. One such group striking at this time known as The Communist Labor Party was formed in 1919. This group believe in much the same views as those who had over thrown the Russian power. You would imagine this might then cause unease within the nation. However, along with other government powers, Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer took action against these sorts of movements, and squashed them before America faced the Russian fate.

Vladimir Lenin

A motivational figure who led a successful revolution of Bolshevik worker force In Russia. WWI had just ended as forces changed their attention to a new threat. Lenin, as well as the group, were communist believing powers. The thought of communism as well as a plan had been round for many around sixty years. This happened to be the first successful show of communist force. Although under aid from those west of Russia, including the United States troops, Czar Nicholas was over thrown. The entire Royal Czar family was slaughtered and communism, also know as Reds (Hence Red scare), took over.

Sacco-Vanzetti Trial

During this time period one very important case was filed.

April 15th, 1921

Two employees at a warehouse were found dead after a break in and robbery. Two suspects, both Italian and of Anarchist and Socialist belief were taken into custody. Although little evidence was provided, they were found guilty two weeks later they were found guilty. Protests erupted on the false verdict. In fact, four years after the verdict, another man came clean and confessed to the crime. The victims were not given a retrial. Finally, three years later in 1927, the men were sentenced to death, even with the lack of evidence in the first place, and the man's claim. It is believed that the men were innocent, as they claimed, but were tried more on political views than crime.


During 1919-1920 multiple accounts of false deportation occurred against Russians. near 250 Russians were deported back to Russia on account of belief of danger to America. Palmer then created the FBI who then arrested five thousand suspects involved in anarchy, however none were given their rights because Palmer saw the need to find traitors higher than giving rights. Many of the five thousand were released, but many were also deported.

The Scare

Based on events above, you might imagine the unrest in the nation and around the world. People feared they might be next. They feared what it would be like if a real threat was found.