Annie Buller

Annie Buller, married name Guralnick, political activist, union organizer (b in Ukraine 9 Dec 1895; d at Toronto 19 Jan 1973). Her Jewish parents immigrated to Montréal when she was a child.

Annie Buller
Annie Buller addressing a crowd before the Estevan Riots, SK, 1931
Canadian Communist Party
Canadian communist leaders, pictured in 1942. Front row, left to right: Henri Gagnon, Fred Rose, Tim Buck, Émery Samuel and Sam Lipschitz. Back row, left to right: Gus Sundqvist, Bill Kashtan, Évariste Dubé, Jim Litterick, Sam Carr, Willie Fortin, Stewart Smith and Stanley B. Ryerson.
Annie Buller, married name Guralnick, political activist, union organizer (b in Ukraine 9 Dec 1895; d at Toronto 19 Jan 1973). Her Jewish parents immigrated to Montréal when she was a child. During WWI she became active in the Socialist Youth Movement, and after studying Marxism at the Rand School of Social Sciences, New York, established the Montréal Labour College with Becky Buhay and Bella Gauld. She joined the Communist Party of Canada in 1922 and devoted herself to full-time party organizing and managing party publications.

In the early 1920s she went to Cape Breton to organize mine workers. After returning to Toronto, where her son Jim was born, she organized for the communist-led Industrial Needle Trades Workers Union in the early 1930s. While serving on the IUNTW executive board, she helped lead a general strike of Toronto dressmakers in 1931. That same year, she organized support for coal miners in Estevan, Sask. After a riot in which 3 strikers were killed by the RCMP (see Estevan Coal Miners Strike, 1931), Buller was jailed. While working as a business manager for the communist paper The Western Clarion in 1939, she was again arrested and interned until 1942.

After the war she concentrated on party organizing, managing party publications such as the Tribune and National Affairs. She also participated in the party's National Women's Commission and the Housewives' Association campaign to roll back prices. She retired from full-time party work in the late 1950s but remained politically active until her death.


Further Reading

  • Joan Sangster, Dreams of Equality: Women on the Canadian Left, 1920-50 (1989); Louise Watson, She was Never Afraid: The Biography of Annie Buller (1976).