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War Resisters League Building

About this listing

A center for pacifist activism

Place Details

Borough : Manhattan
Neighborhood : NoHo
Institution, Office

Place Matters Profile

The "Peace Pentagon" has served, in its own terminology, as a "'sanctuary' for the movement" for 35 years. Owned since 1978 by the A.J. Muste Memorial Institute, the building provides highly subsidized office space to left-focused pacifist organization ranging from the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom to the Metropolitan Council on Housing and Paper Tiger Television.

The Peace Pentagon, as some call the building, is easy to miss despite its central location at the busy intersection of Lafayette and Bleeker Streets, a block up from Houston Street. Its ground-floor boutiques fit in nicely amid the bustling expansion of NoHo; only the War Resisters League logo (two hands clutching a rifle snapped in two) and leftist banners visible in the second-floor windows give the Peace Pentagon away.

The organizational strategy employed by the Muste Institute -- providing grants in the form of in-kind office donations, funded in large part...

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2002 Sanborn Map.

About WRL.

A.J. Muste Memorial Institute.

A.J. Muste Memorial Institute: Biographical Background.

AJ Muste: the Communists' "Dean of Peace."

NYC Department of Buildings records.

Interview with Ralph DiGia, War Resisters League.

Interview with Murray Rosenblith, Executive Director, A.J. Muste Memorial Institute.

Interview with Wendy Schwartz, former Executive Director, A.J. Muste Memorial Institute.

Interview with Diane Tosh, A.J. Muste Memorial Institute.

War Resisters League. 70 Years of Nonviolent Action (pamphlet).

War Resisters League Records, 1923-date.

On The Web

War Resisters League


Anonymous Nominator

This place has served as a haven for New York City's pacifist left for over 30 years and is a model of self-sustaining activism.

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