February 14, 1915

by Richard van Pelt, WWI Correspondent

A brief editorial in the Oregon Statesman asks “What Is Truth?”

No doubt Germans in America have occasionally been treated unfairly in the controversies growing out of war feeling. But the situation really isn’t so bad as represented in a dispatch to the Cologne Gazette from a correspondent in Rochester, N.Y.

This dispatch, two columns in length and prominently displayed on the front page of the German paper named, relates that American cities, and Rochester in particular, are infested with the “scum of Europe,” and that the people inhabiting them have no moral worth and are incapable of appreciating moral values. The writer declares that Americans in general are so bitter in their hatred of all who sympathize with Germany that many Germans in their despair have been driven to suicide. He is surprised that this wrath against the Fatherland has not already broken out in open war. The situation is still worse, he says, in Canada, where mobs have slaughtered Germans in the streets merely because they were Germans.

The Gazette soberly adds an editorial note saying: “The picture given in this letter is certainly true.”

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About whclarc

We are devoted to providing information fresh from the Archives, Library and Collections of the Willamette Heritage Center in Salem, Oregon. We specialize in the history of Marion County and the greater Salem area.
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