To William Mullendore [Letter 447]

Item Reference Code: 144_MFx_037_001

Date(s) of creation

April 1, 1953


William Mullendore


36 East 36 Street
New York 16, N. Y.

April 1, 1953.

Dear Bill Mullendore:

I have just received a letter from Louis Dehmlow, telling me about the strike against the Southern California Edison Company and sending me copies of two of your ads (of March 11th and March 17th). I had seen no reference to this strike in the New York newspapers.

I want to express my deepest admiration for the stand you have taken. What impressed me most was the tone of unapologetic and uncompromising moral assurance in your ads, the tone of a moral issue, which, as a rule, is the quality most disastrously missing from the public utterances of modern businessmen. As you know, it is my fundamental conviction that the battle for free enterprise cannot be won unless we fight it in moral terms—so you will understand what I felt when I saw your manner of fighting. I must say that the last paragraph of your letter to the Company employees is the greatest statement by an American businessman I have ever read.

With my deepest respect, admiration and wish for your victory,



In the paragraph to which AR refers, Mullendore wrote that his company’s stand against compulsory unionization is “a stand taken by men who will, I assure you, never give in to these men in the face of these threats, and now speaking for myself only, I will further assure you that I will resign my position as President of this Company before I will give my consent [to the union’s demands].” Los Angeles Times, March 17, 1953.