Carlo Tresca pp 237-247 | Cite as

The Town Anarchist

  • Nunzio Pernicone
Part of the Italian and Italian American Studies book series (IIAS)


Tresca by the 1930s had acquired celebrity status in New York City as the “Town Anarchist.”1 Major newspaper and prestigious magazines now portrayed him as a revolutionary icon, a flamboyant and larger-than-life character, a die-hard rebel of the old school who no longer posed a menace to society. Always amenable to public notoriety, Tresca willingly provided vivid accounts of his tumultuous career, stimulating the pens of noted columnists Joseph Mitchell of the New York World-Telegra?, Archer Winston of the New York Pos?, and the radical intellectual Max Eastman, who described his friend in a two-part “Portrait” for The New Yorke?.2 Tresca relished his title of “Town Anarchist,” and was delighted to have America reminded that he had been “at the violent center of more labor trouble over a period of thirty years than any other known agitator.”3 Journalistic accounts of the “Town Anarchist” were usually accompanied by a description or photograph that captured the flamboyance and dash of this defiant rebel, with his signature goatee hiding the scar on his cheek, the glowing eyes beneath his steel-rimmed glasses, his five-and-a half-gallon black felt hat, and the pipe or cigar habitually clutched in his teeth. But the photographs and exciting stories reflected only the “Town Anarchist?” Tresca, the private man—his personality, lifestyle, family, and friends—generally eluded published portrayals.


Child Support Violent Center Playing Poker Spending Habit Journalistic Account 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 8.
    Max Eastman, “Profile [Carlo Tresca]: Troublemaker—II,” New Yorke? 10, 32 (September 22, 1934): 26–27.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Nunzio Pernicone 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nunzio Pernicone

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations