Harry P. Cain (left), former Tacoma Mayor and U.S. Senator, will be the subject of the March 15 Lakewood Historical Society monthly lecture. Mark Smith, a Tacoma native and author of “Raising Cain: The Life and Politics of Senator Harry P. Cain” will speak about Cain from his newly released book. The lecture starts at 7 pm at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church (10630 Gravelly Lake Drive Southwest, Lakewood).
Written by Tacoma native Mark Smith, this brand new book delves into the life of one of the state’s fastest-rising political stars. Cain’s personal convictions never allowed him to be comfortable in either political party for very long. Instead, he remained true to one paramount goal – supporting the rights of the individual.
Only thirty-four in 1940 when he was first elected mayor of Tacoma, Cain’s unpredictable and sometimes contradictory politics followed him to the U.S. Senate, the Subversive Activities Control Board during the Eisenhower Administration, and finally, even to the Miami-Dade County Commission in his adopted Florida.
In Raising Cain: The Life and Politics of Senator Harry P. Cain, C. Mark Smith takes us behind the apparent contradictions to reveal the core of Cain’s conservative-libertarian philosophy. Nothing ever swayed Cain from that view. He stood nearly alone in opposing the internment of Japanese American citizens during World War II. And in the controversy that ultimately destroyed his public career, Cain defied both his party and his president to fight for the civil liberties of thousands of Americans whose loyalty was questioned during the McCarthy era.
Copies of the book will be available for sale at the meeting, according to Huber.
According to Becky Huber, Society president, the church will now be a permanent home for the lecture series. “There’s more space for our growing attendance, a better sound system is available to us and we are pleased with the support shown to us by Father Kendall Hayes, pastor of the church,” Huber said. “And, with topics such as the Cain book I think we will continue to draw more to our lectures.”