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Herman F. Erben

Dr. Herman Erben was born on November 15, 1897, in Vienna, Austria. He came to America on March 6, 1924, and filed his credentials with the New York Board of Medical Examiners in 1926 and passed in October of 1930. Dr. Herman Erben and Lloyd Usinger were on board merchant ships traveling from port to port. It became apparent that these two individuals were there to incite the crew and to keep the ship for loading and unloading unless the crew signed up with the American Seaman's Union. Dr. Erben was dismissed first but Lloyd Usinger continued on the ship and continued to cause problems with the crew and other stevedores, until asked to leave the ship. This case was presented to the United States Attorney who refused to prosecute either of the men because there was no attempt to take over the ship. Dr. Erben signed on as medical officer on these ships. The officers, on the ships he served, claimed he was spreading Communist propaganda on the ships. The crew claimed they refused to work because of the poor quality of the food served on board this ship. They demanded that the cook and steward be dismissed. When the steward was dismissed, the crew went back to work. On March 12, 1941, Federal Judge Martin L. Welsh revoked Dr. Herman Erben's citizenship because he had not resided in the United States for five years or in San Francisco for six months before he filed his petition for naturalization on August 1, 1930.


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