Terence Evan Carroll Memorial Webpage

Welcome. This is a biographical webpage about Terence Evan Carroll (1925-2009). He was a friend of the editors of this page. The editors thus far are Toby Terrar. If you would like to be an editor or add material, we would be glad for the help.

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A Life for Progressive Health Care Reform:

The Biography of Terence E. Carroll



5. Post-War Labor, Education and Student Activism: 1946-1950.
9. Employment in Auto, Credit Union and Insurance: 1950s.
Health Care Advocacy in Washington, DC: 1960-1973.
13. Back to Detroit: 1973-1991.
To Washington, DC and the Clinton Health Care Debate: 1990s.
20. Conclusion.

This is a biography of Terence Evan Carroll, a lifelong political activist and public health advocate in Detroit, Michigan and Washington D.C. He died at age 84 on November 10, 2009 in Reston, Virginia.[1] From 1960 when he served as director of the National Institutes on Rehabilitation and Health Services (NIRHS) until the time of his death, when he was heading up the National Association for Public Health Policy (NAPHP), he supported  every advance made in the difficult task of establishing and improving America’s socialized health system.

Mr. Carroll was born on August 21, 1925 in the Detroit, Michigan suburb of Berkley, the son of Philip Joseph Carroll (1885-1939) and Effie Jeanette (Grubb) Carroll (1881-1977). His father, in addition to being a rubber worker in an auto factory in the 1920s and a house painter in the 1930s, was both a founding member of the Michigan Communist party and also what Mr. Carroll termed a “utilitarian Catholic.”[2] The elder Carroll helped build St. Mary’s Parish church in Royal Oak. The Catholics had requested the new church from the diocese in order to cut down on the travel distance to the nneighboring Our Lady of La Salette church. With the consent of the pastor, Fr. Martin, the St. Mary’s church hall was used for communist meetings. According to the junior Carroll, within the parish, the main complaints against the pastor were that he wore his shoes without socks and that he was suspected of having an affair with his housekeeper. The elder Carroll took a liberal view, maintaining that since she was a Catholic, it was permissible.[3]

In growing up, young Carroll witnessed the political struggles that occurred in his neighborhood, such as that against racism. In this his family played a role. Mr. Carroll summarized:

I was raised in Berkeley, a northern suburb of Detroit, which during the twenties and early thirties was infested by the Klan. My father, who had been an organizer for the IWW and a left-socialist, was a founding member of the Communist Party in Michigan, but was also President of the local Parish Catholic Church and recruited Catholics into the Party, in part to counter the Klan. I recall the aftermath of one pitched battle to resist a Klan eviction of a black family, when my dad came home bloodied by a bat to the head with his boast that he had laid his opponent out cold with a haymaker. Another early memory was my presence at the funeral of a Black lawyer, Oliver Green, in Pontiac. Green was a militant defender of poor people, both Black and White, and was a close friend of my parents.[4]

Along with anti-racism, the elder Carroll taught his son about the militant history of the Irish, such as their role in Michigan’s Fenian War in the 1860s. The younger Carroll himself later taught this history in classroom and trade union settings. Like his siblings he also absorbed from his father a culture in which alcohol played a role. The younger Carroll was not a drunk, but throughout his life, alcohol was c constant companion. In planning for his death, he asked that there be no memorial service but rather that his friends get together and drink a toast in the manner of the traditional wake.

Young Carroll’s mother, Effie Jeanette, like her husband, was politically active. Mr. Carroll described her education and work, “ She was born in 1881 on a farm in northwestern Ohio that had been settled by her family as a result of the Homestead Act. Her mother and siblings were Seventh Day Adventists. She [Effie] attended the Adventists’ Kellogg Sanitarium Nursing School in Battle Creek, Michigan and after graduating worked at the Adventists’ Haskell Home, an institution for developmentally disabled children. That experience led her to a life-long commitment to advocating  services for handicapped persons. At that time she also discussed with Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, the Medical Director of the Sanitarium, her interest in becoming a physician, which he dismissed as an absurdity, advising her that because of the limitations of women’s intelligence and temperament they were only able to assist the sick under the supervision of male physicians.“[5]

Mr. Carroll related that Effie Jeanette’s forbears had participated in the American Revolution, including the Battle of Saratoga Springs in 1777. A later generation had been in the movement for the abolition of slavery and the battles for the preservation of the Union. They came to Ohio along the Mohawk Trail from New York. These family traditions he stated were passed down by his mother, along with a sense of justice that led to her resisting expression of bigotry toward people of color, Native Americans, the foreign-born, homosexuals and adherents of minority religious views. He summarized, “Ultimately, my mother became an ardent advocate of trade unionism and socialism. She was very active with the International Labor Defense during the later twenties and early thirties.”[6]

Effie Jeanette’s socialism had a religious basis. Her grandson commented, “My grandmother believed in spiritualism, which was a powerful movement in this country from about the middle of the nineteenth century until perhaps the 1960s. She was almost certainly a Swedenborgian (Church of the New Jersualem), as were many prominent people. Helen Keller, I think was. When my father was about ten years old [in 1935] his parents went to an auditorium where Helen Keller gave a speech.”[7]

Philip and Effie Jeanette Carroll had six children, with Terry, as he was called, being the youngest. During the early Depression, when Effie Jeanette went to Battle Creek to work, young Terry’s sister, Gladys, who was 20 years his senior and already married, helped raise him.[8] Because of this, he always had a close relation to his Gladys. Terry had innate musical and artistic talent. He was offered admission to the prestigious Cranbrook School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, but his father died in 1939 at the time the offer was being considered. Even with a scholarship for the tuition he could not afford the cost of the room and board which was not covered by the scholarship. Terry had a strong bond with his father. His death when Terry was only 14 years-old was something he regretted throughout his life.

Young Terry worked many jobs as a teenager, including that of caddy, gravedigger and apprentice butcher. He liked playing football, baseball and especially golf, at which he starred. At age 17 in 1943 he graduated from Berkley High School. At that time World War II was in progress. Young Carroll enlisted in the Army Air Corps. In boot camp he became a sharp shooter with the Browning carbine and an expert with the .45 automatic and with the 50-caliber Thompson sub-machine gun. His officers respected him for having enlisted, rather than for having waited to be drafted. They attempted to accommodate his wishes to be trained as a pilot. But, as his son summarized, he scored too high on the aptitude test. There was a greater need for engineers than for pilots. As a result he was sent to the University of Kansas to study engineering. At the end of the first semester he complained that he did not join the army to go to college for four or five years. He wanted to contribute to the war effort. So he was trained as a tail gunner on the B-25 and ended up in the Philippines.[9] He was in the 675th Bomb Squadron of the 417th Bomb Group. By the time he was honorably discharged from the military in the spring of 1946, he was a corporal.

Post-War Labor, Education and Student Activism: 1946-1950. After the war jobs were scarce. Mr. Carroll sold men’s clothes for a short time. In 1949 he worked at Briggs designing engines.[10] As a beneficiary of the GI Bill of Rights he was also able to attend Central Michigan College and then Wayne State University in Detroit. At these schools he was politically active. While at Wayne State he became chair of the campus chapter of the American Veterans Committee and organizational secretary of the Michigan Student Veterans Association. The latter organization had affiliated organizations on nearly every Michigan campus with a total membership of over 100,000 student veterans.

One of the campaigns which Mr. Carroll helped lead as part of the Veterans Association was the successful effort in the spring of 1948 to re-authorize the GI Bill and to expand its educational benefits.[11] The lobbying campaign for this was intense. Two major veterans’ organizations at the time, the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars, wanted to eliminate the educational benefits of the GI Bill and divert the funds to increased pensions for World War I veterans. They had experienced lobbyists and the ear of many members of Congress, and equally important, the friendship of Harry Truman, then the President and a  Legionnaire whose political career had started with the support of the old-line veterans’ organizations. The nations’ colleges and universities of course had a stake in the continuation and expansion of the educational benefits and in a low-key manner supported the student veterans. Wayne State provided Mr. Carroll with an office, unlimited phone and postal expenses, access to a mimeograph machine and a part-time secretary.[12]

A highlight of the GI Bill campaign for Mr. Carroll was when he learned of a wholesaler in Christmas ornaments who had a freight-car load of plastic snowballs. The wholesaler agreed to sell the snowballs at a ridiculously low price. To these the veterans attached shipping tags to the snowballs with pipe cleaners and mailed them to members of congress with the message, “We don’t have the chance of a snowball in Hell of finishing our education with the present level of assistance.”[13] Their campaign “snowballed” with national publicity, including support from most of the nation’s newspapers, especially those in Washington and New York.

While the university administration supported Mr. Carroll’s work to extend the GI Bill, it opposed many of his other activities which they considered “communist.” Reflecting later on the attempts to silence him, he described one such confrontation. He was called to a meeting at the office of David D. Henry, the Wayne State president. Also at the meeting was the dean of the law school, the provost, the chair of the faculty senate and G. Flint Purdy, the university librarian and chair of the local chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AUUP). At the meeting, the president immediately launched into a speech, stating that he had been working long and hard with the governor, the legislature and the executives of the major banks and corporations to make sure the university was adequately funded for the expansion that was planned. He stressed that the adverse publicity which Carroll and his friends were generating, gave the university the reputation of being a haven for radicals and would jeopardize the success of his plans. He stated that he believed in freedom of speech but threatened to expel Mr. Carroll if the university name was again dragged in the mud and painted in the press as a “Communist” school.[14]

Mr. Carroll summarized his response to the tirade:

After a few minutes of absolute silence, I cleared my throat and said that I had no intention of addressing his threats other than to note that in enrolling as a student I had not given up my rights as a citizen. But, I said, I did want to correct his misconception of a university—that contrary to his impression, a university was not the embodiment of its president. I went on to say that a university had only three essential elements: the faculty, the students and the library. The functions of the administration was to see that the faculty was paid and that there were enough books in the library and that the classrooms were hearted and swept. I looked around at the group, took a deep breath, said “Think about it” and got up and left. After I had walked about a half-block I heard footsteps behind me and felt a slap on my back. Purdy said to me, “Nobody has ever told that stuffed shirt off any better than you did.”[15]

During this time he was a student at Wayne State, Mr. Carroll met Selma E. Wineberg (1926-2004). Her parents were from Ontario but had moved to Detroit where she was born. Soon after their graduation from Wayne State, Selma and Terry were married on June 15, 1949. Their first child, David Sean was born the following year. In 1956 they had twins, Daniel and Julie.

In the same period that he was graduating from Wayne State, Mr. Carroll went to the dean of the law school and asked him about enrolling there. The dean told him, “You will get into this law school and into any other law school only over my dead body.” As a result he enrolled in the graduate department of history at Columbia University. During his year in New York, he and Selma lived on Long Island. He earned a master’s degree in spring of 1950 and also completed the requirements for a teaching certificate. His mentors at Columbia were the prominent scholars Richard Hofstadter (1916-1970) and Henry Steele Commager. His other teachers were Robert Lynd, Alan Nevins and Richard Morris. Among his fellow students and friends were Judith Mogil, Herbert Gutman and Irving Widaen.[16] Mr. Carroll’s thesis, titled “A History of the Jehovah’s Witnesses,” studied the struggle of that working class community against the capitalist-economic system. While a student he also worked part-time jobs, including that of gravedigger. He hoped to continue on for a doctorate, but the financial constraints of paying for a family prevented this.

Employment in Auto, Credit Union and Insurance: 1950s. After graduating from Columbia University, Mr. Carroll was denied certification to teach by the Michigan state board of education because of his political activism and the repression of McCarthyism.[17] As a result he took a job as curator of industrial history at the Detroit Historical Museum. While organizing an exhibit on the city’s experience with industrial medical care, he became aware of the importance of public health for working people. This was an interest to which he would later devote much of his political efforts.

As a curator Mr. Carroll also continued what was for him a life-long interest in the history of his Irish heritage.[18] It was noted above that he occasionally gave lectures to school and trade union groups on the role of Irish-Americans in Michigan unions and politics. He would escort the group to the site of the battery of cannons that were used by the Irish Republican Brotherhood for the bombardment of Canada during he Fenian War of the 1860s. This war included an invasion of Canada made from the Buffalo area and an attack on the British army in the Western Provinces.[19] While curator he was once called a “(expletive deleted)-Irish Druid commie” by what he called “a sick former employee” who tried to assassinate him and another employee.[20]

After his stint as a curator and with a growing family that needed a more lucrative income, Mr. Carroll in 1953 took a job at an automobile plant, where he joined the United Auto Workers union and was a shop steward.[21] He later alluded to the corrupt unionism and struggle that he and his fellow workers waged against it:

The role of the Reuther political machine in promoting the numbers racket and dope peddling in the auto industry and the efforts of Communists in the UAW to expose those activities has never been told, and probably never will be. (The alliance among the peddlers, the numbers operators, the Social Democratic Reuther Caucus, Schachtmanites and the management of the Briggs Corporation was beginning to come to light in the early 1950s and that is probably why Reuther got a warning shot in the arm at the time.) As a consequence of Reuther’s alliances with Senator McCarthy and J. Edgar Hoover, Communists in the UAW were mostly deprived of any positions of influence in the Union, and for that matter, in the community at large.[22]

In 1955 Mr. Carroll moved his employment from the auto industry  to become an assistant managing director of the Michigan Credit Union League (MCUL), which was allied to the trade union movement. When the MCUL acquired ownership of the League Life Insurance Company, he was named its executive vice president and ch ief operating officer. He also worked as treasurer of the Ferndale Cooperative, the nation's largest consumer coop, which is now known as Credit Union One.

Some of the organizations and causes which Mr. Carroll supported in the 1950s, as well as later in life were the American Civil Liberties Union, the People’s World, the Irish Democrat (newspaper of the connolly Association)  and the Irish People (New York, NY). In 1959 he was a precinct chairman for John Kennedy’s nomination in the primary.[23]

Health Care Advocacy in Washington, DC: 1960-1973. With the electoral victory of the Democrats in 1960 Mr. Carroll was offered a trade union-backed, federally funded position in Washington, as director of the National Institutes on Rehabilitation and Health Services (NIRHS). The Carroll family moved to the Virginia suburbs in the summer of 1960 and later to Maryland.[24] The NIRHS embodied the labor movement’s support of occupational health and safety measures, rehabilitation initiatives and prepaid group practice medical care programs. It contributed to legislation such as the Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969 and the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970.[25]

As director of the the National Institutes, Mr. Carroll led in founding and was the first editor of the journal, Rehabilitation & Health.  In his advocacy Mr. Carroll authored scholarly articles on health care and worked with colleagues in the labor movement, especially Lorin Kerr of the United Mine Workers Department of Occupational Health. The NIRHS also collaborated with union leaders to help establish the New York City Labor-Rehabilitation Liaison Project and the Sidney Hillman Health Center in Rochester, New York.[26]

   At the time that he went to work for the National Institutes in 1960, Mr. Carroll also joined the faculty at his alma mater as an adjunct associate professor in the Department of Community Medicine at the Wayne State University School of Medicine. He continued in this position for 20 years. As an educator and in his work at NIRHS Mr. Carroll advocated for “socialized” medicine. In this he took issue with what he maintained was America’s “capitalist-dominated” system and its supporters in the US Public Health Service, the National Institutes of Health and the American Medical Association. Mr. Carroll maintained that a decent health care system began with a secure job, housing and educational security, as in the socialist countries. He summarized:

The principle element in a national health program is a full employment program that would provide socially useful, non-hazardous jobs at a living wage to every worker able to work. One of the first steps toward achieving such a program would be the repeal of the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act and its sequel, the Landrum-Griffin-Kennedy Act and an anti-union NLBR, which have impeded workers’ efforts to unionize and obtain fair working conditions and wages. Instead of compounding the error of employer-based medical care insurance by promoting its extension, the nation should adopt a truly progressive medical care program, a single-payer federally funded, universal and comprehensive program, one patterned after the British National Health Service which provides comprehensive quality medical services to the entire population, including “the strangers within their gates” at a per capita cost of two-thirds of the fractured and error-prone US non-system. (It should be noted that the British program, unlike that of Medicare and Medicaid, has been remarkably free of the scams perpetrated by the Hospital Corporation of America, Tenet, and any number of for-profit medical labs and insurance companies.)[27]

In his family life, Mr. Carroll in the early 1960s served as the leader in his son’s Boy Scout troop. He enjoyed the televison series that starred Phil Silvers and rank-and-file Army life. His son commented, “My father though the show was terrific because he said that’s what the Army was really like. Sargent Bilko was constantly running some scam and the officers were being duped. It was like so much of big business and government, where the people with authority are mostly a bunch of clueless dumbells and the people doing the grunt work are the ones with the brains.”[28]

In 1963 Mr. Carroll and his wife obtained a divorce. Mr. Carroll was sad but not bitter over the split. It resulted simply because he and his wife were not meant for each other. They had different temperaments. As they grew older they found those differences were becoming more pronounced.[29] After the divorce Selma did the bulk of the child rearing. In 1971 Mr. Carroll re-married to Sally Irene Aufrecht. That marriage lasted 39 years until his death.

Back to Detroit: 1971-1991. Mr. Carroll believed that the NIRHS made remarkable progress in providing both rehabilitative programs and capitated group practice programs. Nevertheless, it was a federally funded program and the Nixon administration, following, as Mr. Carroll put it, the wishes of the Chamber of Commerce, terminated its support in 1971. Mr. Carroll then continued to subsidize the program from his consulting fees.[30] In this period he also became president of the District of Columbia Rehabilitation Association and the director of the District of Columbia Public Health Association. The latter organization suffered much from lack of sufficient funding.

Because of the need for a more secure income, Mr. Carroll returned to Detroit in 1971 to become the executive director of the Comprehensive Health Planning Council of Southeastern Michigan (CHPC-SEM). Like the NIRHS, this employment lasted for more than a decade, ending only when when the Reagen administration shut down the organization. Mr. Carroll commented on the demise of the CHPC-SEM:

Although the Health Planning Agency in Southeastern Michigan was the nation’s second largest, with a complexity far exceeding that of the New York City Agency (the population covered more families with farm income than did any other Agency in the nation) the Board itself was dominated by big business and the financial industry. When the Reagan administration cut off the funding for health planning in 1986, the Board was only too eager to terminate the agency. I had been successful in raising funds from local government and individual contributions so we had a nest egg of a half-million dollars, which the bankers and the auto industry voted to give to the local United Way, to lessen their own contributions to that agency.[31]

               With the demise of the CHPC-SEM, Mr. Carroll organized and for five years served as president of the Detroit-based Public Health Information Services (PHIS), a not-for-profit organization which published Public Health Comments, a semi-monthly periodical which received much attention and complements from public health people and animus from the insurance industry, but had to depend more on volunteer labor than subscription revenue for its survival. As Mr. Carroll put it, “We were seriously under-capitalized and the fact that we continued to publish for five or six yeaers is testimony to the value of labor for love rather than business acumen.”[32]

               To Washington, DC and the Clinton Health Care Debate: 1990s. In 1991 Mr. Carroll and his wife returned to Washington DC area in order to assist Mrs. Carroll’s parents who were in failing health. At the same time Mr. Carroll succeeded Milton Terris as the president of the Reston Virginia-based National Association for Public Health Policy (NAPHP). He continued in this position until his death. During the Congressional debate in the early 1990s concerning the adoption of national health care, Mr. Carroll led the NAPHP in taking an active part in seeking a socialist system. Illustrative of his position was a letter he wrote in 1993 to the Washington Post:

Representative McDermott’s assertion with reference to “uncontrolled free enterprise” in the delivery of medical care is absolutely correct. Apart from the relatively modest amounts of medical care provided by the Veterans Administration, the military’s medical facilities and personnel, the Indian Health Service and local public health departments, medical care in the U.S. is provided in an entrepreneurial mode. One of the unfortunate consequences of the emphasis on “free enterprise” in the delivery of medical care has been the emphasis on specialty care, high technology medicine delivered in tertiary level facilities, because that is where the profits and excessive incomes are, and the neglect of primary care and prevention.[33]

In the letter quoted above, Mr. Carroll also pointed out the difference between health care and medical care, “Both Representatives Armey and McDermott can be faulted for using the terms ‘health care’ and ‘medical care’ as if they were synonymous. They are not: ‘health care’ is the entire panoply of services (including all of those factors that make up the ‘Standard of Living’) that determines the health status of the population. While medical care can be important and sometimes does include both prevention and rehabilitation, a full-employment economy that would provide the opportunity of a non-hazardous job at adequate wages to everyone able to work would do more for the health of the population than a ‘Doc-in-the-Box’ with free services on every street corner. As Ludwig Wittgenstein, one of the pioneers in symbolic logic noted, ‘Our intelligence is often bewitched by our language.’ The concern with ‘health care reform’ should not distract our political leaders from the tasks involved in improving the nation’s economy.”[34]

The National Association for Public Health Policy in viewing health care as an entire panoply of services, worked to advance militant trade unionism. Illustrative of its philosophy was Mr. Carroll’s comments on political campaigning in May 2001:

The absence of a call for the repeal of Taft-Hartly and the Kennedy-Landrum-Griffin Acts troubles me, although I also recognize the futility of a repeal campaign at this time. But I think we should keep in mind that those laws are arguably the greatest hindrances to the successful organization of the unorganized. The escape clauses given empolyers in those laws can lead to interminable delays in obtaining union contracts and the firing of union activists. I recall for exsample that the SEIU won four elections over five years at the Mercy Hospital in Monroe, Michigan, and still was not certified as the collective bargaining agent, and as far as I know the hospital is still non-union, twenty-five years later. Paradoxically, the Sisters of Mercy, as a religious order, have been in the forefront of efforts by Catholic organizations to assist the unionization of farmworkers. Go figure.[35]

The focus of Mr. Carroll and the National Association for Public Health Policy’s advocacy beginning in 2003 was the “United States National Health Care Act, or the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act.”[36] This legislation was introduced by Mr. Carroll’s long-time colleague and Detroit neighbor, John Conyers. Mr. Carroll had worked in the 1964 campaign that brought Conyers to Congress. He had continued to support and adivse the Congressman as he advanced in seniority. The legislation proposed by Conyers, which has been reintroduced in each session of congress since its initial introduction, calls for the creation of a universal single-payer health care system in the United States, in which the government would provide every resident health care free of charge. In order to eliminate disparate treatment between richer and poorer Americans, the Act would also prohibit private insurers from covering any treatment or procedure already covered by the Act. The rough equivalent of Canada's Medicare, the United Kingdom's National Health Service, and Taiwan's Bureau of National Health Insurance, under the policies this Act would enact, all medically-necessary medical care decided between doctor and patient would be paid for automatically and directly by the Government of the United States, ending the need for private insurance for such care. The system would be paid for through taxes, and these monies would replace insurance premiums.

Mr. Carroll died before the enactment of President Obama's “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” on March 23, 2010.[37] But in advocating to US Representative Jim McDermott in 1993 he gave his views on similar legislation that was based on public money for private “avarice.” He commented, “When the administration’s proposals for a national medical program (which I hope will also include some elements of a health program) are finally presented to the Congress, I hope you and others will consider the paradox presented by any proposed system which would be socially funded and privately delivered, with the mistaken assumption that avarice is a motivating factor that inevitaly leades to efficiency.”[38] While he opposed the continued existence of the private insurance system, Obamacare did contain several elements for which Mr. Carroll had advocated., such as the philosophy that all should have guaranteed health care and the elimination of the “pre-existing ban” on coverage.

Mr. Carroll and the NAPHP took a broad view of health care, tackling state and local as well as national problems. Charistically, he lobbied his Virginia state senator, Janet Howell in a campaign to abolish what he called “state homicide.” He stated:

The killing of accused persons, in the majority people of color, is an inheritance of Virginia’s practice of lynchings, an attempt to give the mask of the cover of law to a practice intended to terrorize a substantial portion of the population, to make them more docile in their economic exploitation. In the entire history of the state, a millionaire has never been executed. The failure of the Virginia legislatjure to call for the establishment of a special state prosecutor to indict and prosecute local police offiers, prosecutors and judges who have colluded in sentencing innocent persons to prison and even death puzzles me. Is it possible that there are some, maybe many, members of the legislature who might feel that they are subject to those accusations?[39]

In addition to his leadership at the NAPHP, Mr. Carroll was instrumental in establishing the “Discussion Group.” This was a progressive political-social organization that met monthly for lunch and to discuss current events with an interest in making change. It continues to function to the present date. Mr. Carroll described the founding of this organization, “In the spring of 1991 my wife and I became concerned about the failing health of her parents and we decided to return to the Washington area to be of assistance to them. (They had moved to Reston in the late sixties.) I told Carl Winter, who was then the Chair of the Michigan District of the CPUSA of our plans to move to the Washington area, and he informed George Meyers of our impending move and gave me George’s phone number. After we settled in I called George and arranged to meet him at the Post Tavern on L Street NW, near 15th Street, where I had often met with reporters for the Washington Post. (George had meetings scheduled with people at the AFL-CIO which was only a few blocks away.) George and I had lunch and exchanged lists of people in the area who might be interested in discussing current and future events and who would have an interest in changing the future. Both George and I were familiar with Marx’s dicta: Our first task is to understand the world; the second task is to change it.”[40]

Mr. Carroll remarked concerning the founding of the Discussion Group that it occurred in the context of the then recent split in the American Communist Party. He wrote:

The split in the CPUSA resulted in the defection of a number of comrades to form a “Committee of Correspondence,” an alternative to the Party, which would stress class-collaboration rather than class struggle and would seek to form alliances with the more liberal elements of the ruling class. Both George and I felt that they were misguided and confused but that many of them remained sincerely committed to the welfare of the working class and that we should continue to try to involve them in struggles on behalf of the working class. George was a loyal participant in our discussions and attended meetings with a commute from Baltimore nearly up to the date of his death.[41]

At the Discussion Group meetings, Mr. Carroll’s analysis of current political affairs was found by participants such as Ed Elkind to be insightful and humorous. Illustrative of Mr. Carroll’s Discussion Group presentations was his analysis of the presidential race in 2007. He commented, “The Republicans are all caricatures of Elmer Gantry and, other than Ron Paul, war-mongers. (He strikes me as being a mostly well-intentioned nut.) The Democrats are not any better, speaking in glittering generalities, trying their best not to offend any one.”[42] Not long before he died, Mr. Carroll remarked on the current political scene, “I think that Obama is a remarkably competent snake oil salesman and a political opportunist beyond compare. He promised ‘change,’ but is apt to deliver the same old, same old. I must concede that he will be an improvement over Bush.”[43]

Conclusion. When living in Washington, D.C. and working for the AFL-CIO, Frank Goldsmith, was part of the Discussion Group. In his career Goldsmith was dean of the Harry Van Arsdale School of Labor Studies at Empire State College, SUNY and director of the Center for International Health at the State University of New York in Stony Brook. Upon learning of Mr. Carroll’s death, he commented on the help which his friend’s life had been to him, “Terry helped give me a ‘World View’ that has sustained me. This ‘World View’ was always on the side of the workers and those in poverty. He had a class consciousness that came out every time he spoke.”[44]

A. L. Morton was an historian of the English Civil War whom Mr. Carroll liked to quote . What Morton said concerning the Levellers might also be said of Mr. Carroll’s life as an advocate, “A Party that held the center of the stage for three of the most crucial years in our nation’s history, voiced the aspirations of the unprivileged masses, and was able to express with such force ideas that have been behind every great social advance since their time, cannot be regarded as wholly a failure or deserve to be wholly forgotten.”




Terence E. Carroll, “Workmen’s Compensation and Comprehensive Health Services: Existing and Emerging Patterns,” American Journal of Public Health and the Nations Health (February 1965), vol. 55, no. 2, pp. 215-224, accessed May 20, 2012 at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1256180/pdf/amjphnation00154-0047.pdf.


______. “The Ideology of Work” Journal of Rehabilitation (July-August, 1965). vol. 31, p. 26.

______. “Book Review: Bargaining for Health: Labor Unions, Health Insurance and Medical Care,” American Journal of Public Health and the Nations Health (December 1967), vol. 57, No. 12, pp. 2217-2218, accessed May 20, 2012 at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1228017/pdf/amjphnation00080-0157.pdf

______. “Workmen's compensation: a senile form of social insurance,” Journal of Rehabilitation (May-June 1969), vol. 35(3), pp. 15-8.

______. “Letters to the editor, “ American Journal of Public Health and the Nations Health (January 1970), vol. 60(1), pp. 6-8; accessed May 20, 2012 at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1349573/pdf/amjphnation00030-0008.pdf

______. “Book Review: Expanding Dimensions in Rehabilitation,” American Journal of Public Health and the Nations Health (February 1970), vol. 60(1), pp. 412-413; accessed May 20, 2012 at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1350044/pdf/amjphnation00031-0188.pdf

______. “Book Review of Health Systems Agencies by Sondra Z. Koff,” in Journal of Public Health Policy, Vol. 10, No. 1 (Spring, 1989), pp. 129-131.

______. “Review of Forging Linkages: Modifying Disability Benefit Programs to Encourage Employment by Monroe Berkowitz,” in Journal of Public Health Policy, Vol. 12, No. 1 (Spring, 1991), pp. 129-132.

______. “Review of No Benefit: Crisis in America's Health Insurance Industry by Lawrence D. Weiss,” in Journal of Public Health Policy, Vol. 16, No. 3 (1995), pp. 370-372.

______. “Review of State Medical Boards and the Politics of Public Protection by Carl F. Ameringer,” in Journal of Public Health Policy, Vol. 22, No. 1 (2001), pp. 114-117.


[1]The cause of death was bacterial infection secondary to a broken collarbone. There are several sometimes inconsistent chronologies of Mr. Carroll’s life. These are Anonymous, Marquis Who’s Who in America (Berkeley Heights, NJ: Marquis Who’s Who, Inc., 2004); Anonymous, “Terence E. Carroll,” Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terence_E._Carroll, accessed May 19, 2012; and David F. Duncan, “An Eveninhg with Terence Carroll: National Association  for Public Health Policy Honours Its Long Time President at APHA National Meeting,” at http://www.naphp.org/index.php/fuseaction/magazine.article/articleid/11/, accessed May 19, 2012.

[2]Terence Carroll, “Letter,” manuscript, October 2, 1993 in possession of Toby Terrar.

[3]_____, “Letter,” manuscript, December 15, 1993 in possession of Toby Terrar.

[4]_____, “Letter to Mark Solomon,” manuscript, January 14, 2000 in possession of Toby Terrar.

[5]_____, “Letter to Claire E. Morrison,” manuscript, June 9, 2002, within letter to Will Moody, manuscript, November 16, 2002,  in possession of Toby Terrar.


[7]David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 26, 2012,  in possession of Toby Terrar.


[9]David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 24, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[10]_____. “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 26, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[11]Terence Carroll, “Academic Freedom and the Basic Components of a University,” typewritten manuscript, July 1996, included in “Letter to Suzanne,” April 4, 2005, in possession of Toby Terrar.





[16]Terrence Carroll, “Letter to Columbia Magazine” at http://www.columbia.edu/cu/alumni/Magazine/Spring2006/letters.html accessed May 19, 2012; David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 26, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[17]Terence Carroll, “Letter,” manuscript, April 4, 2005 in possession of Toby Terrar.

[18]_____, “Letter to Claire Morrison,” manuscript, June 9, 2002, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[19]_____, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, February 28, 2006, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[20]_____, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, December 2007, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[21]Terence Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, December 28, 2008, in possession of Toby Terrar.


[23]David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 26, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[24]Carl Esco Obermann, A History of Vocational Rehabilitation in America (Minneapolis: T.S. Denison, 1967), p. 131.

[25]Anonymous, “Terence E. Carroll,” Wikipedia, accessed March 5, 2012 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terence_E._Carroll.

[26]David Duncan, “An Evening with Terence Carroll,” National Association of Public Health Policy (NAPHP), Reston, VA, January 3, 2003, accessed March 5, 2012, http://www.naphp.org/index.php/fuseaction/magazine.article/articleid/11/.

[27]Terence Carroll, “Memorandum to DC Discussion Group: Meeting Notice,” manuscript, September 5, 2003, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[28]David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, May 26, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[29]David Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, June 7, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[30]Terence Carroll, “Letter to David Gillespie,” manuscript, April 7, 2003 in possession of Toby Terrar.



[33]Terence Carroll, “Letter to the Editor, Washington Post,” manuscript, June 11, 1993, within “Letter,” October 2, 1993, in possession of Toby Terrar. The letter was never published.


[35]Terence Carroll, “Memorandum to DC Discussion Group: Meeting Notice,” manuscript, May 5, 2001, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[36]Anonymous, ‘United States National Health Care Act, or the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act” (HR 676) at http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/111/hr676/text, accessed May 19, 2012; Anonymous, “John Conyers for Congress,” at http://www.johnconyers.com/healthcare, accessed May 19, 2012; John Geyman, Hijacked: the road to single payer in the aftermath of stolen health care reform (Monroe, Me.: Common Courage Press, 2010).

[37]Anonymous, “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act,” (PPACA, Obamacare, Pub.L. 111-148, 124 Stat. 119, March 23, 2010).

[38]Terry Carroll, “Letter to Congressman Jim McDermott,” manuscript, June 11, 1993 in possession of Toby Terrar.



[39]Terry Carroll, “Letter to Senator Howell,” manuscript, November 28, 2001 in possession of Toby Terrar.

[40]Terence Carroll, “Letter to David Gillespie," manuscript, April 7, 2003 in possession of Toby Terrar.


[42]Terence Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, December 2007, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[43]Terence Carroll, “Letter to Toby Terrar,” manuscript, December 28, 2008, in possession of Toby Terrar.

[44]Frank Goldsmith, “Letter,” manuscript, March 23, 2012, in possession of Toby Terrar.



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