My name is Bob Helms, and I had the privilege of knowing Paul Avrich during the last several years of his life.
I wish to warn you of a quicksand that I have fallen into, which I will call “the Paul Avrich Vortex.” This is where you may find yourself, as I did, after reading his books and feeling compelled to uncover just one more drop of information, and then another and another, beyond the ocean that Paul discovered about thousands of anarchists, both living and dead.
There are special things that I have found in Paul’s work that tell of the way he gave back to us, the anarchists, our humanity. We were a cadaver when he found us. Paul dove in like a surgeon and restored strength to our bones, and breadth to our old lungs. Here is one example of how he did this: