Wrote Jack K. of his—and our—favorite month, in On the Road. On October 30 the free public event described below will unfold at the historic home of Pete Corridan and the Xavier Labor School, 30 W. 16th Street in Manhattan.
Pete Corridan and his boss Phil Carey, S.J. lived in the Jesuit community residence at Xavier. Budd Schulberg wrote at least one draft of the screenplay for On the Waterfront at a desk in the corner of the labor school’s office. Xavier was also home to the insurgent dockworkers movement supported so ardently by Carey, Corridan, and Schulberg and immortalized in the film Budd wrote there. October 30 at Xavier promises a memorable event: it is surely unprecedented, this gathering of students and devotees of the labor school and its waterfront legacy; home again at Xavier, thanks to the hospitality of Mr. Jack Raslowsky, president of Xavier High School.
Event organizers and fellow panelists Jane LaTour, Joe Doyle, and Bill Mello are exemplary labor movement historians and activists. We all share a devotion to archival collections as indispensable to waterfront histories grounded in documentary sources not folklore. The papers of the Xavier labor school languished untended for years in crates and filing cabinets in that same cramped office where Budd wrote his screenplay. They were providentially rescued, catalogued, and permanently housed at O’Hare Special Collections of Fordham’s Walsh Family Library, under the expert care of archivist Patrice Kane. I found my archival home there, as will anyone intent on discovering the waterfront histories made by Phil Carey, Pete Corridan, and Budd Schulberg, some of which will be shared on October 30 at their Xavier home.