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(1881-1956) American anarchist, cigarmaker, businessman, lovers with Emma Goldman.

Biographical/historical notes:

Leon Malmed, Friend and lover of Emma Goldman, was born Leon Bass in Russia (1881) and emigrated to the United States in about 1895. His name, due to an error on the part of an immigration officer, was recorded Malmed or Malmet, the name of the half-brother who came to meet him.

Leon Malmed went to work in New York City as a cigarmaker. In 1904 he married Millie Mott (born ca. 1882), a Russian emigrant who worked in a brush factory. Although not a radical herself, she attended meetings with a friend and there met Leon. After their marriage the Malmeds moved to Albany, where Leon continued to work as a cigarmaker until the factory was closed permanently by a strike.

By 1907 Leon Malmed had opened a delicatessen, which he ran with his wife. In the mid-twenties he was involved in real estate for a period of five or six years; during which time he closed the delicatessen and opened a hosiery store.

Leon Malmed was a radical and supported the anarchist movement, although his active participation seems to have decreased as his business demanded more time. Beginning in about 1903, he attended and arranged meetings and distributed literature.

He met Emma Goldman in about 1906; his friendship with her continued until her death. In 1915, after some travel on his own, he joined Emma Goldman, Ben Reitman, and Alexander Berkman on a cross-country lecture tour, during which he was arrested and fined in Portland, Oregon, for distributing birth control material.

In 1926 he contributed to a fund which made possible Emma Goldman's trip to Canada. Canada: Emma Goldman arrives by ship, to lecture; proximity rekindles her hope for readmission to the US, where she grew up, but has been banished from the "Land of the Free." Shortly after Emma's arrival, Leon visited her from Albany, N.Y., & they become lovers.

In 1934 Leon arranged her lectures in Albany.

After Emma Goldman's death he wrote, "I feel I lost the very essence of life in Emma's death".

Leon Malmed died in 1956.

This page, added October 2005; This text comes from The Emma Goldman- Leon Malmed papers at Harvard's Schlesinger Library,

See also, Jewish Women's Archive. "Virtual Archive - Collection Information for Papers of Emma Goldman and Leon Malmed."

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