Edith Wynner, secretary of Rosika Schwimmer

Edith Wynner

Edith Wynner [1915] was born in Budapest, Hungary. Her family emigrated to the United States in 1921 and settled in New York City. Visiting Europe in 1926, she stayed nearly two years, attending school in a small town in Czechoslowakia. Instruction was in Slovak, but the population spoke also German and Hungarian. Returning to the United States, Edith Wynner attended Junior and Senior High School in Chicago and had a four-year scholarship at the Art Institute graduating as an honor student. After a brief try at college, she decided in favor of a job and a practical apprenticeship in political action.

Returning to New York, she worked in a department store, as governess, secretary and for a time was on the stuff of Tide Magazine of Advertising, one of three reporters selected out of a thousand applicants.

In 1934, she spent four months travelling in France, Austria, Switzerland and Czechoslovakia. After her return, Edith Wynner served as National Secretary of the Griffin O’Day Bill Committee working for legislation to reconcile naturalization procedure with the Bill of Rights.

From 1937 to 1941, she was New York Secretary of the Campaign for World Government, and served as its delegate to numerous national and international conferences, among them those of The American Academy of Political and Social Science.

The problem of the organizing government on a world scale has preoccupied Edith Wynner since the age of eighteen. At the time she conducted her first course on problems of war and peace organized for youth leaders by the Young Women’s Christian Association. Using the material acquired there, one of her New Jersey students promptly won first prize in a D[aughters]. [of the] A[merican]. R[evolution].-sponsored contest on “World Peace and the American Example.” Since then Edith Wynner has been speaking incessantly to adult and youth groups on the need for organizing federal world government.

This young women is a born leader, has plenty on her mind and knows how to say it. Simple, sincere and forceful, a brilliant debater she is out to make “foreign affairs” OUR AFFAIRS by bringing the whole problem out of academic ivory towers into the hearts, minds and determination of the people.

Edith Wynner is co-author with Georgia Lloyd of the outstanding source-book on international organization, SEARCHLIGHT ON PEACE PLANS: CHOOSE YOUR ROAD TO WORLD GOVERNMENT (Dutton 1944). Reviewers and experts in this country and abroad call SEARCHLIGHT ON PEACE PLANS the “one book all peace planners, statesman, committees on foreign relations and, in truth, all men and women of good will and high hope everywhere, will need to have near at hand.”

New York Public Library Manuscripts and Archives Division. Rosika Schwimmer Papers, Box 426.

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