Carl Geiser letters published

September 19, 2013

Geiser_letters_coverNow available for pre-orderLetters from the Spanish Civil War by Ohio volunteer Carl Geiser, introduced and edited by Peter N. Carroll and Fraser Ottanelli. From the publisher, Kent State University Press:

Letters from the Spanish Civil War provides a unique perspective into the motivations that led a young man from the American heartland to defy U.S. neutrality and travel to Spain to fight in defense of democracy against Nazi- and Fascist-backed aggression. Born in a small town in rural Ohio, Carl Geiser came from a deeply religious German-speaking family that had recently emigrated from Switzerland. The onset of the Great Depression exposed Geiser to the reality of hard times and discrimination, challenging his belief that hard work would bring self-reliance and just rewards. This awakening led him to question the logic and values of capitalism and to become active in a range of youth and student organizations linked to the Communist Party.

Later in life, Geiser made important contributions to the historiography of the Spanish Civil War, particularly the experience of Francoist POWs.  His papers are part of the ALBA Collection at NYU’s Tamiment Library. His bio from the Tamiment website:

Carl Frederick Geiser was born in Orrville, Ohio on December 10, 1910. He fought with the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War and was taken prisoner and held in a fascist prisoner of war camp for a year before being released in April 1939. After a successful career as an aeronautical engineer, in his retirement he began to research and write a history of American volunteers captured during the Spanish Civil War. His labors resulted in the publication of Prisoners of the Good Fightin 1986. In addition to Geiser’s Spanish Civil War correspondence, this collection consists chiefly of research materials gathered by Geiser in the course of writing his book. It includes correspondence with International Brigade veterans, biographical materials and subject files, along with typescript copies of Geiser’s original 900-page manuscript.

Support ALBA by pre-ordering the book from Powell’s.


3 Responses to “ Carl Geiser letters published ”

  1. Alan Warren on September 20, 2013 at 1:55 am

    Best of luck to Peter and Fraser with this new book. When is the actual release date? Will it be avaialble to put under the Christmas tree in Spain? Or possibly for the Three Kings! I am looking forward to reading it when it comes out.

  2. Fraser Ottanelli on September 20, 2013 at 7:34 am

    Allen, according to the publisher the book will be released by the end of October. Plenty of time to stock up for the holidays.

  3. Alan Warren on September 20, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Thank you for the information, Fraser. Are you having a release of the book in the States? Best of Luck!