• November 30, 2020
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    Today's Labor History

    This week’s Labor History Today podcast: From 1980 to 1995, during a time of significantly declining membership in most other American labor unions, the Service Employees International Union – SEIU -- nearly doubled its membership. Dr. Timothy Minchin explains why, in this excerpt from the Tales from the Reuther Library podcast. The Columbine Mine Massacre, which took place on November 21, 1927, was an important moment in the Colorado Mine Wars. Bob Rossi, who hosts a monthly labor segment on the Willamette Wake Up show on KMUZ in Salem, Oregon, discusses miners' organizing efforts. Plus: On this week’s Labor History in 2:00, Rick Smith tells the story of the 1909 Uprising of the 20,000.
    Last week’s show: A journey down the Working River

    November 25
    Some 10,000 New Orleans workers, black and white, participate in a solidarity parade of unions comprising the Central Trades and Labor Assembly. The parade was so successful it was repeated the following two years - 1883


    November 26
    Six young women burn to death and 19 more die when they leap from the fourth-story windows of a blazing factory in Newark, N.J. The floors and stairs were wooden; the only door from which the women could flee was locked - 1910


    November 27
    The pro-labor musical revue, “Pins & Needles,” opens on Broadway with a cast of International Ladies Garment Workers Union members. The show ran on Friday and Saturday nights only, because of the casts’ regular jobs. It ran for 1,108 performances before closing - 1937


    November 28
    Some 400 New York City photoengravers working for the city’s newspapers, supported by 20,000 other newspaper unionists, begin what is to become an 11-day strike, shutting down the papers - 1953


    November 29
    Clerks, teamsters and building service workers at Boston Stores in Milwaukee strike at the beginning of the Christmas rush. The strike won widespread support – at one point 10,000 pickets jammed the sidewalks around the main store – but ultimately was lost. Workers returned to the job in mid-January with a small pay raise and no union recognition - 1934


    November 30
    “Fighting Mary” Eliza McDowell, also known as the “Angel of the Stockyards,” born in Chicago. As a social worker she helped organize the first women’s local of the Amalgamated Meat Cutters Union in 1902 – 1854


    - David Prosten

    Today’s Labor Quote: Mother Jones


    “I’m not a lady, I’m a hell-raiser!”

    Mother Jones died on November 30, 1930 at the Burgess Farm in Adelphi, Md. Photo: Mother Jones marker at the site with Friday's Folklore's Saul Schniderman, who worked to get it placed there. 

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