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April 3

Uphaus v.Wyman and Civil Liberties in the McCarthy Era

Kennett High School


Fifty-eight years ago, Willard Uphaus went to jail for refusing to cooperate with the legal authorities of New Hampshire. Across the decades, his story speaks to major civic discussions that continue to this day.

UNH English professor Michael Ferber will lead a panel of distinguished scholars in a discussion of Uphaus v. Wyman, a notable 1950s legal case that was ultimately decided by the US Supreme Court. In it, NH Attorney General Louis Wyman sought to prove that Willard Uphaus and the White Mountains conference center of which he was director (the World Fellowship Center) were guilty of subversive activities. No such subversion was proved, but Uphaus ended up serving time in Merrimack County Jail for his principled refusal to turn over lists of guests, staff and speakers.

The panelists and audience members will consider questions that resonate today -- the balance between individual rights, liberties and conscience and the rights and needs of the broader society.

In addition to Professor Ferber, the members of the panel are W. Jeffrey Bolster, UNH Professor of History; Clare Chapman, Executive Director of the NH Council of Churches; and Maria Sanders, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Plymouth State University.

This program is presented by the World Fellowship Center and made possible by a generous grant from New Hampshire Humanities and the hospitality of Kennett High School.


Click for more info: worldfellowship.org