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The Death of Liberty Hall

My name is Alexander Reisinger. Liberty Hall was started in my mother's basement, Susan. The people involved were Brian, Leif Desert Rat, Christian Nostalgia, Jenny Knowles, and myself. The Hall was started in anticipation of a UPS walkout, commiserate to a turnover and signing of a long term contract. The contract between the labor unions, (ILWU) International Long Shore Union, and the UPS bosses was signed. No actions by Liberty Hall had to be taken. We were leasing Liberty Hall from an Ethiopian Activist, Allum, who held the Hall as a music venue before us. It had been a Reggae Hall.
The rent was very high for us, as struggling worker activists. Brian and Desert Rat were at the WTO Protests at Seattle, just as I had been. Brian and Desert Rat had been part of a group of people making the calls to shut down the west coast ports in solidarity with people's struggle around the world. I was in Seattle cutting my teeth as a combat journalist and as an activist. So we all, as people, came together to fight for the creation of Liberty Hall, just as the bosses and the governments have their offices, compounds, halls and buildings, we have ours. This is no different, and no less important. We opened up the Hall to all community use. I had a fully operationally print shop in the clerestory, overlooking the main room. We had radio folks that had also run broadcasts in the deep forests around Seattle, during the WTO protests. There was Food Not Bombs, classes of all kinds, political poster shows, and the continuing subject of music shows. I had played many shows on that stage, under the name "Riot Cop". The acoustics were very difficult. There was a great echo.

During the early days of Liberty Hall a memorial gesture was inscribed into the mission statement. Written on the Liberty Hall sign, inscribed as a Red and Black Anarchist Syndicalist Symbol, a Green and Black Environmental activist symbol, and the words "Liberty Hall in memory of our fallen". These words, in memory of our fallen, referred to an activist soldier named Horehound, she had fallen out of one of the tree sits at Eagle Creek. These actions were taken to save Portland's water supply. She thus became a martyr for the health of our forests, for the health of our water, for the life blood of our city, Portland. This is the purest water coming from the oldest woods at Eagle Creek, she fell two hundred feet to her death. She lay on the forest floor with a broken back, talking to her comrades while she took her last breath. No one shall forget. Liberty Hall in memory of our Fallen.

Those heady early days of Liberty Hall, the FBI raids on activists, helicopter gun ships shooting tracer rounds over the tree sits. Funerals and triumphs. These times were both and arduous and difficult and awe inspiring. Under the IWW the Hall lived on as an important part of the community. Liberty Hall's story is woven into the hearts and minds of us all. To this day, I will shout out, Liberty Hall, in the great, great echo upon entering that main room. Long live Liberty Hall for us all.