These committee minutes document a meeting of the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) on June 6, 1947, regarding investigation of the annual May Day Parade held in New York City on May 1, 1947. The minutes include a written summary of photos and film of the parade that were gathered expressly for the committee.
May Day parades had a long history as organized labor’s annual festival. An 1886 march for the eight-hour workday was considered the first May Day associated with the labor movement, and in HUAC’s opinion, its sympathy for communism. Congressman John Rankin of Mississippi, a member of HUAC and outspoken anticommunist, gave a speech on the House Floor about the parade on May 6, 1947. “In that parade they carried placards denouncing me personally, which I consider a compliment,” Rankin gloated. “They hate me because of my fight against the Communist menace in this country.”