Cleveland Letters

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This is part of an exchange of letters between the Cleveland, Ohio, Central Committee Chairman, Clarence Snyder, and the Alcoholic Foundation headquarters, between 26 June 1944, and 21 July 1944.

The notes to the left of, and underneath, the page images are the comments that Clarence Snyder handwrote in the margins. The red numbers are footnotes.

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  Cleveland Page 1, 208 kB
This fellowship
is an avocation.

The only persons
I know in this
fellowship who
Do not work
are retired
or chiselers.
Why should Wilson
be out of a job
for 9 years, & have
a 27000 1 home &
Cadillac car?
When AA is a
Why weren't we
told about contribs
before then
Others have
accomplished much
without any thot 2
of financial reward
Professionalizing a
organization or
mercenary 3 motives
will kill the
fellowship or
impair its effectiveness
EG 4 :
But he was
receiving money



Cleveland page 2, 366kB

Many new
People: They
are in ignorance
of fine principles of
displayed in earlier
times by founders.

Why ?

Really ?
Then what are
We talking about ?

By whom?

We have
failed in
this as a
Labor of Love,
due to selling our
birthright for
mass of pottage 5.
A usual ending
of many fine

This was a

This is fast
figuring but
no basis for
fact. Any
amount could
be raised for the
office even tho 6
we didn't have
a book.

Very legal
Perhaps, but
definitely a
breach of


Cleveland page 3, 379 kB

As always, it seems monetary matters are bound to conflict with
principles. How often I heard the recipients state that no one could ever
cast in on this Labor of Love without disastrous results. I believed them, and they wer 7 right,
time will prove them so, unfortunately for the fellowship as a whole.


I saw this in 1941
At the time of our
Statler Dinner 8


What will
be circumstances
in 1946 ?
If promis 9
mean nothing

Group contribs 10
OK, but no
accounting of
Foundation money

I have not seen
Wilson in 3 yrs 11.
I was in the
Army then
in fall of 42

Cleveland page 4, 325 kB

Very few persons
are now available
who have knowledge
of the fundamentals &
original structure
& aims & promises
of O.G.12
People are uninformed
in the hinterlands,
& the natural tendency
of hero worship is
most dangerous in
such a fellowship as

I know nothing
about this.
I was not asked
for suggestions.

A far cry
from the

Refer to
1941 letter.


Cleveland page 5, 238 kB

Such a hub bub following a simple
request for info that any member is
entitled to. It tells a story of what is now established and further in the making monies of course the

My efforts have always been conscientious & honest
and on numerous occasions, they have put the chill on me, I presume for reasons that
other types of persons are more easily dealt with. Cleveland has done its share of promoting
a fine fellowship on true principles. We are thankful for many members who have a keen
sense of obligation to our fellow sufferers & on God, and an attitude of willingness to be helpful
with no thot of financial reward. They recognize the transformation that takes place when
individuals lose sight of the true meaning & intent of our group.

  Cleveland page 6, 266kB


1 $27,000.00  land and home in Stepping Stones, Bedford Hills NY
2 thot
3 mercenary
A person who works merely for money or other material reward.
4 EG:  
Genesis 25: 33f  And Jacob said, swear to me this day; and he swore to him: and he sold his birthright to Jacob.  Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.
6 tho
7 wer
the "Dr. Bob" appreciation dinner was held October 5, 1941 in Hotel Statler, Cleveland, about 850 AA members attended
9 promis
10 contribs
11 yrs
12 O.G.
Oxford Group