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Larry Dukes


Larry Stratford Dukes

Dukes, Larry Stratford. b. April 6, 1917, East St. Louis, Illinois; African American; High school education; Single; Driver; YCL 1932; received passport# 366310 on February 9, 1937 which listed his address as 4500 Fireworks Street, East St. Louis, Illinois, and 3431 Cozens Street, St. Louis, Missouri; Sailed February 20, 1937 aboard the Ile de France; Arrived in Spain on June 2, 1937; Served with the XV BDE, BDE Auto Park, Lincoln-Washington BN, MacKenzie-Papineau BN, Co. 1. Served at Retreats; Returned to the US on December 15, 1938 aboard the Paris; WWII Civilian; d. November 6, 1981, St. Louis, Missouri and he is buried in Calvery Cemetery, St. Louis, Missouri. 

Source: Sail, SACB, Cadre, RA, Ancestry.

Photograph: Larry Dukes, November 1937. The 15th International Brigade Photographic Unit Photograph Collection; ALBA Photo 11; ALBA Photo number 11-0654. Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives. Elmer Holmes Bobst Library, 70 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012, New York University Libraries.



Larry Stratford Dukes was born in East St. Louis, Illinois on April 6, 1918. His father, Sam Dukes, was an entrepreneur who ran an express rail business but this activity was merely a front for robbing trains. Indicted in 1918 for interstate theft, Sam was found guilty and sentenced to a fourteen-year prison term that he began to serve in 1921. While awaiting the start of his prison term, Sam Dukes moved the family to a farm in Middle Branch, Ohio where he began recruiting African-Americans into an organization later known as the National Negro Cooperative League of North America. Following his release from prison, Sam returned to East St. Louis where he joined the Communist Party and rose quickly in its ranks, running as the Party's candidate for a Congressional seat in 1935. Larry Dukes was a mechanic and joined the Young Communist League in 1932. He sailed for Europe aboard the Ile de France, on February 20, 1937. In Spain, Dukes served as a truck driver and later as an infantryman. He was wounded in the right leg at Mora de Ebro. After his return to the United States on December 15, 1938 aboard the Paris, Dukes resumed his Communist activities. During World War II he attempted unsuccessfully to enlist in the U. S. military. Dukes eventually severed his ties with the Communist party in the late 1950s. He died in St. Louis on November 6, 1981. ~ Chris Brooks

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Larry Stratford Dukes

Full Database Record

Last Name Dukes
First/Middle Name Larry
Ethnicity Note
Immigration Status
AKA Last Name 1
AKA First / Middle 1
AKA Last Name 2
AKA First / Middle 2
Foreign Nation
Foreign Nation City
Alt Pob State, City
Family: Name
Family: Relationship
Family: Begin Date
Family: End Date
Family: Comments
Education HS
Education College / Univ 1
Education College/Univ Notes
Education College/Univ 2
Graduate or Doctoral Work
Graduate or Doctoral Work Notes
Prior Military Service
Passport #
Passport Series
Passport Reported Lost in Spain
Passport Age
Passport Date
PP or Known Address Street
PP or Known Address City
PP or Known Address State
ALT City
Alt State
Sail Date
Marital Status
Marital Notes
Vocation 1
Vocation 2
Vocation 3
Party Affiliation
Date Affiliation
ALT Affiliation
ALT date
ALT affiliation 2
Arrival (in Spain) Date
Units served with
Battle action
Returned Date
Returned other
WWII Service
Place Died City
KIA/MIA/Died other
KIA/MIA/Died other Date
KIA/MIA/Died other Location
KIA/MIA/Died other Battle
Additional Notes