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Stokes (Wieslander), Rose Pastor

STOKES (Wieslander), ROSE PASTOR (1879–1933), U.S. socialist writer and lecturer. Born in Augustow, Poland, her impoverished family emigrated to London in 1882 and then settled in Cleveland, Ohio, when she was 12 years old. She educated herself while working as a cigar maker, and in 1903 moved to New York to work at the Jewish Daily News, which had earlier published some of her poems. Through an assignment to interview the prominent railway president, J.G. Phelps Stokes, she became active in the latter's social projects in the University Settlement on the Lower East Side, and she married Stokes in 1905. Both became socialists, but while her husband left the Socialist Party in 1917, Rose joined the left wing and was later one of the founders of the Communist Party. Rose Stokes toured the U.S., lecturing and writing articles expounding her radical views. She was a prominent figure in the hotel and restaurant workers' strike and in the shirt-waist workers' strike and was one of the leaders of the birth control movement. She divorced Stokes in 1925 and shortly afterward married Isaac Romaine, a language instructor with similar political views. She died in Frankfurt. Her works include a three-act play, The Woman Who Wouldn't (1916), and a translation of Morris Rosenfeld's Arbeter-Lider as Songs of Labor (1914).


New York Times (June 21, 1933), 17.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.