Chapter Three: "Fractured Fandoms"
The proliferation of U.S. fan organizations
(-CONTINUED FROM PART 4-)



* Indiana
  - Buck and Juanita Coulson
    > came into fandom in early 1950s as part of Eastern Indiana SF
      Association (EISFA)
      -- club had formed at Ball State College
      -- club sponsored a fanzine, also called EISFA, originally edited by
         Juanita Wellons (before she became Juanita Coulson) and Beverly Amers
         (later Beverly DeWeese)
      -- Coulsons married in 1954, about the time that EISFA started to fade
    > by late 1950s, the EISFA fanzine had metamorphosized into YANDRO
      -- by that time, was exclusively edited by Buck & Juanita
         >> name derived from old folk song in a Manly Wade Wellman story
      -- (some info about the content, frequency, etc.)
      -- won Hugo Award for Best Fanzine in 1965
  - other prominent Indiana fans
    > Sandra Miesel
      -- wrote sercon articles for fanzines, notably GRANFALLOON
      -- foreshadowed career in prodom that began in decade of 1970s

* Chicago and other Illinois fandom
  - University of Chicago SF Club
    > formed in 1950, by Tom Seidman, George D'Asaro, and John Boardman
    > meetings in its early years were usually very informal to the point of
      being chaotic, but never dull
      -- in 1952, the club had staged a Halloween party that ended with an
         imitation black mass, which resulted in unfavorable attention from
         the university president
    > in 1963, split into two groups, meeting at members' homes
      -- Rosemary Hickey helped form Chicago SF League, a social and drinking
         group
         >> had been felt that meetings had been getting dull
         >> meetings were bi-monthly, hosted by each member in turn
      -- George Price wanted a more sf-oriented group
         >> George had been preparing all the programs and meeting notices
         >> began hosting a monthly meeting
      -- in actuality, perhaps main reason club died was that none of
         attending members were Univ. of Chicago students any more
         >> contributing factor was Price's desire to go back to college for
            M.S. in Chemical Engineering, which would leave little time for
            fanac
     > club was re-born as University of Chicago SF Society (when?)
       -- by 1969 was meeting weekly at Ida Noyes Hall on campus
       -- launched an unsuccessful and short-lived bid for the 1973 Worldcon
  - George Price
  - Ed and Joanne Wood
  - Earl Kemp (might be profiled elsewhere in book)
  - Mark & Lynne Aronsen
  - Jon & Joni Stopa
  - Mike & Carol Resnick
  - Alex & Phyllis Eisenstein
  - George Martin (?)
  - (need lots of info on clubs, organizations, and how these people fit into
    the fandom there)
  - Peoria High School SF Club
    > existed for a time in the late 1960s
    > most prominent member seemed to be Don Blyly, who was editor of the
      club's fanzine, SCIENCE FICTION NEWSLETTER

* Minneapolis/St. Paul
  - fandom in Minneapolis/St. Paul area dated back much earlier than the 1960s
    > in 1937, the Minneapolis chapter of the old Science Fiction League was
      organized with Oliver Saari as director
      -- weren't very many members of the group, but two who became notable
         were Carl Jacobi and Don Wandrei
      -- did not last long, but it set the stage for other fan organizations
    > Minneapolis Fantasy Society began in November, 1940, with first meeting
      taking place at the home of Cliff Simak, who had recently arrived in
      town
      -- group met biweekly, and brought into science fiction future notables
         such as Gordon Dickson, John L. Chapman, and Redd Boggs
      -- was never very large (9 people at start; at its peak, there were only
         19 members), and had faded away by 1944
    > after World War Two, the Minneapolis Fantasy Society was re-formed by
      Simak and Chapman under the name of Tomorrow, Inc., with an emphasis on
      advances in science rather than interest in science fiction
      -- name reverted back to Minneapolis Fantasy Society in late 1947, when
         it was clear from member interest that turning science fiction fans
         into science fans wasn't an easy thing to do
      -- resurgence brought back some of the older fans such as Jacobi and
         Chapman; also brought out some newcomers such as Poul Anderson and
         Rich Elsberry
      -- group lasted until the early 1950s
    > there was largely a fannish void in the Twin Cities during the mid and
      late 1950s, but there were some attempts to bring fans together
      -- Ruth Berman and some friends tried to start a Twin Cities Fantasy
         Society in late 1950s, but could not generate enough interest to keep
         it going for very long
    > for the first part of the 1960s, no real organized fandom existed in the
      twin cities
      -- Ruth Amelia Berman was the most prominent fan in Minnesota in the
         early 1960s
         >> became active in fandom in the mid 1950s when she was high school
            student
            --- (what brought her into fandom?)
         >> by the end of that decade, she was writing for fanzines, and had
            attended her first convention, the 1959 Detention
         >> in 1960, as part of her college speech class at the University of
            Minnesota, she produced a one-act play of a Gordon Dickson story,
            "Loepsday"
         >> although she may be more familiar for her activities later in the
            decade as a STAR TREK fan, with her TREKzine T NEGATIVE (which
            will be described later), she was also a `normal' fanzine
            publisher
            --- in the late 1950s, she and two other co-editors had published
                the fanzine ALL MIMSY under the pseudonym of `George Karg'
            --- in 1967, Ruth and her sister Jean started a fanzine they
                titled NOUS; when Jean dropped out after the 4th issue, in
                1969, Ruth changed the title to NO, since it was now only
                "half of us"
      -- by the mid 1960s, many of the older fans from previous eras had
         become inactive and it fell to a new generation of teenage fans
         instead (many who knew of each other through fanzines) to form the
         nucleus of the next twin cities organization
         >> among the first of this new generation to take such action were
            two teen-agers, Frank Stodolka and Fred Haskell, both from the
            twin cities area
            --- Stodolka and Haskell had been comic book readers, and learned
                of fandom by reading a letter from Rick Norwood in STRANGE
                ADVENTURES
         >> in 1964, Stodolka and Haskell, plus two other teen-agers, John
            Kusske from Alexandria, Minnesota, and Gil Lamont from Beloit,
            Wisconsin met at Haskell's parents' house for an informal get-
            together that was dubbed by Stodolka as "the first annual PAINcon"
            --- a one-shot fanzine resulted, and Stodolka began thinking about
                putting together a new club, which he intended to call the
                North Central Fan Group
         >> although North Central group never came to be, seeds had been
            planted for a new twin cities fan club that would be based on an
            informal approach, without "a predilection for long, boring
            business meetings" as Haskell would later remember
  - Minn-Stf formed on November 25, 1966, in a meeting at Stodolka's parents'
    home
    > "floundering fathers", as they came to be known, were Haskell, Stodolka,
      Jim Young, Ken Fletcher, and Nate Bucklin
      -- Bucklin had arrived from Washington state a few months earlier to
         start college, and had been introduced to others by Stodolka
         >> Bucklin had corresponded with Haskell for some months before his
            move, and they had intended to start a rock and roll band
         >> Bucklin was also a member of the NFFF, and had found Stodolka's
            address in a fanzine review column in the NFFF's clubzine
      -- Young was a teen-ager who had found out about fandom from Jean
         Berman, who was a high school classmate
         >> he was a member of APA-45, and had heard about the meeting through
            that channel
      -- the group quickly decided on the name Young proposed: `Minn-stf',
         short for `Minnesota scientifiction'; according to Jim Young, "It
         seemed fannishly intriguing.  Everybody thought `Minn-stf' was
         exactly the right sort of weird name for the group.  And right from
         the start, we all agreed we had coalesced as a real fan club, however
         anti-formal we all were."
    > first officers of the new organization were Stodolka as President, Young
      as Vice President, Bucklin as Secretary, and Fletcher as Treasurer
      -- as Haskell later remembered, "We made Frank president in recognition
         of the fact that he'd brought us all together, and we made Jim vice
         president in recognition of the fact that he'd managed to formalize
         us into a club."
      -- Haskell himself was elected Official Happy Deadwood, over his
         protests that a club needs members, too
    > other prominent members during early years included Linda Lounsbury,
      Floyd Henderson, Richard Tatge, and Al Kuhfeld
      -- (need examples of why they were `prominent')
    > first meetings were held at the University of Minnesota on Saturdays, in
      an unlocked room in the Mechanical Engineering building
      -- not too much later, the club relocated its meeting site to the back
         room of Golab's Bookstore in Minneapolis
      -- and later still, meetings started to be held at homes of members
      -- meetings averaged about 10-20 people
         >> Stodolka had actively recruited new members, by approaching anyone
            he happened to see who was reading science fiction, wherever he
            went
    > events and focus of Minn-stf
      -- fanzine publishing was a core activity of Minn-stf
         >> APA-45, which many of Minn-stf became members of, acted as the
            center for the club's publishing activities for the remainder of
            the 1960s
         >> many Minn-stf members were or became fanzine publishers
            -- Haskell's was CHEAP THRILLS; Stodolka was publishing LUNAtic
            -- Young's fanzine HOOP was done using multi-color ditto
            -- Fletcher also did his fanzines using multi-color ditto; they
               were usually filled with cartoons featuring what came to be
               known as the Minn-stf brand of humor
            -- Young credited the group's humorous influences of Ernie Kovacs,
               MAD magazine's Wally Wood, and the British radio show THE GOON
               SHOW plus their own strange view of reality for the content of
               their fanzines
      -- music was often a part of Minn-stf meetings
         >> Young sometimes played the piano, while Bucklin and Haskell
            occasionally brought guitars to meetings
            --- Bucklin would sometimes try out new songs he had written
            --- Haskell would often get a roomful of people singing along with
                him
         >> according to Young, "There was a distinctive counter-culture
            quality to early Minn-stf meetings, stemming from our love of rock
            music"
      -- the club eventually adapted to a semi-anarchistic structure that was
         well-suited to its laid-back, fannish nature
         >> as Haskell put it, "There were people who couldn't deal with our
            sort of laissez-faire attitude of running the club.  Of `Well, you
            want something?  Go ahead and try to organize it, but we're not
            going to form a standing committee.'  People who couldn't deal
            with that left."
      -- (what else happened at club meetings? or outside the club?)
      -- the club incorporated as a non-profit educational organization in
         1969
    > clubzine was named MINNSTF NEWSLETTER
      -- first issue was (when?), edited by (who?)
      -- almost immediately, club voted to change its name to RUNE
         >> (reasoning?)
         >> this caused one of the club's founders, Fred Haskell, to briefly
            quit the club (for about 2 weeks), in protest because he hated the
            new name so much
         >> Ironically, after Haskell rejoined the club, he later (in the
            1970s) became editor of RUNE and made it into a much-respected
            fanzine that further expanded the boundaries of what a clubzine
            could be, in the way that notable club-sponsored fanzines like CRY
            had a decade or more earlier
    > sponsored Minicons
      -- first was held at University of Minnesota, taking advantage of club's
         application to be a university student organization
      -- Minicons became foundation for club's other convention-related
         activity, bidding for the 1973 Worldcon
         >> as Jim Young later remembered the first Minicon, "I did much of
            the planning, including printing up a program sheet and
            advertising placards for it.  And I did it primarily because I
            wanted us to run a worldcon."
    > the Minneapolis in '73 worldcon bid
      -- was initiated by Jim Young on September 1, 1967, at Nycon III
         >> Jim Young was approached by Dave Vanderwerf, who inquired if
            Young and Minn-Stf fans had ever considered bidding for a worldcon
            --- Young remembered that "it sounded like a brilliant idea to me
                at the time.  It seemed to be exactly the thing that would
                help us hold Minn-stf together."
            --- after the convention, Young got everyone to agree that the
                club needed to start a regional convention if they were to
                have a chance to win a worldcon bid
         >> the first Minicon was the direct result, and actual gearing up for
            the bid started soon after the first Minicon, in 1968
         >> the bid gained momentum, when Young went out to the 1968 Baycon,
            where he proselytized for the bid and passed promotional flyers
      -- However, some dark clouds soon appeard on the horizon
         >> Young was advised by Ray Fisher, co-chair of the St. Louiscon, not
            to continue the bid, if he wanted to keep his sanity
         >> strong competition had surfaced from a Dallas "Big D in '73" bid
            headed by Tom Reamy
            --- Young, Haskell, and Fletcher had taken a dislike to the Dallas
                bid, which to them appeared to have been organized like a very
                large comics convention; Young remembered: "It seemed to be
                the apotheosis of all that was crass in life, with none of the
                faanishness left in.  Our desire to see a faanish bid drove
                me, in particular, to keep going even after money and time
                were running dreadfully short."
      -- the Minneapolis bid became defunct in late 1970
         >> turned out that it became financially impossible to continue
            --- Young's father had died in 1968, and his mother was laid off
                from her job in 1970; Young was living at home and holding
                down a part-time job, and could not afford to keep backing the
                bid with what little money he had
         >> also, second thoughts about the whole thing had also crept in:
            As Young later recalled, "The real problem in bidding for a
            worldcon is that you might win. And if you do, suddently you have
            to deal with fifteen billion people, all in one hotel.  So we
            decided, about December 1970, that, really, the worldcon itself
            wasn't the best thing.  We figured, well, we kind of liked
            throwing parties, so why don't we just keep bidding?"
         >> Dallas bid had dropped out by then, so the deciding factor was a
            new bid group, from Toronto, that was felt could put on a
            convention everyone in the Minneapolis bid would be happy to
            attend
            --- when the 1973 Torcon II finally rolled around, Young and other
                Minneapolis bidders happily declared that the convention hotel
                in Toronto to be within the domain of the city of Minneapolis,
                and the conclusion of the bid therefore successful
      -- even though the 1973 worldcon bid itself disappeared, the fannish
         activities surrounding the bid did not
         >> Young and other supporters had discovered that it was more fun to
            bid for a big convention that it would have been to put one on, so
            therefore there was no reason why the bid itself could not
            continue
         >> the bid was "revived" in 1973 by Bev Swanson and Chuck Holst
            ---  bid parties continued to be held at many conventions,
                 promoting not so much a now-defunct worldcon bid as Minnesota
                 fandom itself
         >> the main legacy of the bid was that interest in Minneapolis/St.
            Paul fandom continued to increase, making the organization one of
            the largest and most visible in the U.S.
            --- failing to win the worldcon was seem by many as a blessing in
                disguise, as there was none of the divisiveness worldcons
                often bring to fan organizations
         >> "Minneapolis in '73" became a fannish catchphrase, and the bid
            became the subject of much legendry in later decades
            --- (examples?  some brief details?)

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