Corliss Lamont was associated with the communist party, and it is for this reason that when he passed 23 W became the central headquarters of the American Communist Party from the 1940s-60s. Now housing the party's president Gus Hall, the building became the central location where communists met and corresponded with one another. Most notably, the Communist paper The Daily Worker was printed and published here. Because communist presence in The Capital of The World was not welcomed during this period in time, the building was under FBI surveillance in addition to suffering bombings from the local militia. Despite this, the building remained a central communist location through the '60s, permitting would-be assassin Lee Harvey Oswald to address his letters to the organization using the same address that would later become The Writers House.
It was June 10, 1962, when Oswald first corresponded with the American Communist Party, addressing his letter to The Daily Worker specifically. In response, a man by the name of Arnold Johnson replies to Oswald, stating that, Your letter to The Worker has been referred to me for reply. It is good to know that movements in support of fair play in Cuba have developed in New Orleans as well as in other cities. The letter is signed Arnold Johnson, Director Information and Lecture Bureau. Because of this correspondence, along with a few others, on April 17, 1964, Arnold Samuel Johnson was questioned by J. Lee Rankin, general counsel for The President's Commission on The Assassination of President Kennedy. Although it is widely believed today that Lee Harvey Oswald was acting alone in the assassination of our beloved 35th president, the point in time in which the lone wolf reached out to the Communist HQ in New York does raise concern.
Today, The Writers House bears little resemblance to this troubled past, as it has become an influential publishing house within the literary world. Just a few of the many world-renowned authors who have been published by this agency include Neil Gaiman, Lisa Jackson, Stephen Hawking, and more. Featuring many, if not most, of the authors on the New York Times Bestselling List, the Writers House remains committed to aiding authors in reaching their full potential as masters of literature.