New Fandom, a club launched in 1938 by Sam Moskowitz, strongly assisted by Will Sykora, Jimmy Taurasi (the Triumvirs), and to a lesser degree by Mario Racic, Ray Van Houten, and others, ran the first Worldcon in 1939. Its Official Organ was also called New Fandom.
By 1940, the Official Organ had ceased to come out; no activity had been shown by the organization since the NYCon, except for the leaders making various declarations in the name of New Fandom; and both leaders and members seemed willing to let the whole matter drop.
|From Fancyclopedia 2, ca. 1959
|(Speer:Moskowitz) Name derived from a series of articles entitled "Annals of the New Fandom", altho they referred to the Second Fandom, while New Fandom rose and fell in the Second Transition.
The organization was launched in the late summer of 1938, about the time that reaction was setting in against the Wollheimists and Second Fandom generally. Moskowitz initiated it, strongly assisted by Sykora and Taurasi, and to a lesser degree by Racic, van Houten, and others. The dormant SF Advancement Association, led by van Houten, formed the basis of the membership. New Fandom announced that it would put on the convention (NYCon I) in 1939, and at the PhilCo in fall 1938 was recognized as the organization to take responsibility for this first Worldcon. NF also ignored the existence of fan feuds, and won the support of the great majority who were opposed to their continuance. Thereafter, fans generally joined up. Regional representatives were appointed, OO issued, dues paid, etc. The pros gave much cooperation. The Convention was put on, very successfully on the whole; exact relationship of New Fandom to this was never clear, since NF was treated as an organization contributing to and receiving from the convention fund when the accounts were published, while the Triumvirs actually ran things.
Up to this time Managing Secretary Moskowitz had held absolute power, it being explained that it was necessary to have a going organization to get people to join, and time-pressures of the oncoming Convention precluded decision of details by democratic vote. SaM called it a democratic dictatorship, meaning that NF had to regard the fans' opinions just as pro editors did. After the NYCon they spoke of putting NF on a democratic basis and presented a constitution which essentially only substituted elected officers for the appointees, rather than incorporating changes suggested by Rothman, Speer, and others. The Triumvirs agreed to submit this constitution to a vote along with any other endorsed by a given number of members of New Fandom; such a constitution was presently brought forward by Speer, but the Unholy Three delayed voting, calling a conference at Newark in Spring of 1940 to which the Phillies, Warner and Speer were invited. The two latter sent regrets; the Phillies attended and the con appointed temporary officers for New Fandom in line with the setup of the Triumvirs' proposed constitution. However, by this time the Official Organ had ceased to come out; no activity had been shown by the organization since the NYCon, except for the leaders' making various declarations in the name of New Fandom; and both leaders and members seemed willing to let the whole matter drop.
|Reports on the First Worldcon
|final issue; ed. James Taurasi
New Fandom online at fanac.org.
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