The exhibit is called “Red Menace: The Sacramento Conspiracy Trial of 1935. And it documents how 17 Communist farm labor organizers were accused of plotting to overthrow the U.S. government and put on trial.
UC Davis History Professor Kathryn Olmstead is speaking at Friday night’s opening. On Capital Public Radio’s Insight, she said the defendants were admitted Communists who were trying to raise wages for farm workers.
“They contended it was a free speech issue since the Communist Party was legal. Yet they were accused of belonging to a revolutionary organization and that could send you to San Quentin at that time. But their real crime was trying to organize these farm laborers into a union.”
The exhibit includes police arrest photos, newspaper clippings and courtroom documents. It opens at 6 PM Friday at the Center for Sacramento History on Sequoia Pacific Boulevard…off of Richards Boulevard, near I-5.