Skip to main content

Matthew and Elizabeth Serviss Fox Papers

 Collection — Box: Small Processed Collections: E-F, Box 5, Folder: 16
Identifier: LP000583

Scope and Content

Haywood pencilled the first letter on seven large sheets of paper, while incarcerated in the Cook County Jail in Chicago, awaiting appeals after being sentenced by Judge K. M. Landis to twenty years in prison. Dated September 5, 1918, it expresses Haywood's feelings, and was partly meant to inform the judge who had so stiffly sentenced him on a conviction based on no personal criminal action but rather on what were considered "criminal" beliefs. Members of The IWW had been described in the trial as wild-eyed foreign radicals, against the war and therefore very unpatriotic. Haywood describes his American antecedents and his feelings about the war, as well as his personal beliefs.

The letter of February 2, 1921, was written from Chicago and includes fourteen pages of warm, playful talk about dogs, some mining camp reminiscence on the subject, and other personal matters.

On May 18, 1921, Haywood wrote from the city of Moscow, not long after his flight to Russia to avoid twenty years in Leavenworth Prison. He describes, in this six page letter, the sights of Moscow, his activities, and the revolutionary notables he met. It reveals that he had believed his bonds had been taken care of, and includes expression of his feelings about this "exile".


  • 1918
  • 1921

Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials.


Mr. and Mrs. Fox were both members of the Industrial Workers of the World. Mrs. Fox was the secretary of William D. Haywood when he was that organization's General Secretary-Treasurer. These letters were written by Haywood to her.


.25 Linear Feet (1 folder)


Matthew and Elizabeth Serviss Fox were both members of the IWW. Mrs. Fox served as the secretary-treasurer, William D. Haywood's secretary during his tenure. These papers consist of three letters Haywood wrote to Elizabeth Serviss Fox during his appeals process and subsequent flight to Russia.


Materials arranged in 1 folder.


Copies of three letters from William D. Haywood were given to the Archives in 1973 by Matthew and Elizabeth Serviss Fox.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Guide to the Matthew and Elizabeth Serviss Fox Papers
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA