history of labor unions and strikes

  • Noble Order of the Knights of Labor formed

    Noble Order of the Knights of Labor formed
    This group was organized by Philadelphia garment workers. It was opened to farmers, merchants and wage earners. The goals were to get equal pay for equal work, abolish child labor and set an 8 hour work day.
  • Labor Day holiday created

    Labor Day holiday created
    The first Labor Day was created by the Central Labor Union in New York. It was a "working men's holiday". The first official plan for the holiday included a parade and festival for workers and their families. This showed the public the spirit and strength of the trade and labor organizations. June 28, 1894 congress passed an Act for the 1st Monday in September to be Labor Day.
  • American Federation of Labor (AFL) formed

    American Federation of Labor (AFL) formed
    This organization focused on better working conditions. They fought for better pay and putting union labels on produced items. They were craft oriented.
  • Haymarket Square Riot

    Haymarket Square Riot
    Workers in Chicago march for an 8 hour day to protest McComick Harvesting machine. And then the police showed up to break up strike. Anarchists where blamed for violence.8 policeman died and hundreds injured. The public saw unions and Anarchists as a problem.
  • How the other half lives

    How the other half lives
    This novel by Jacob A Riis is about the bad living conditions in apartments in New York City. This led to more rights for better living conditions for the tenants. Also more laws that property owners had to abide by.
  • The Homestead Strike

    The Homestead Strike
    It was an industrial lockout and strike from june 30,1892 culminating in a battle between strikers and private security agents on july 6,1892. It was one of the most serious disputes in US labor history. This event occured at the Homestead Steel Works in the Pittsburgh area of Homestead,PA between the AA and the Carnegie Steel Company.The final result was a major deafeat for the union,and a setback for efforts to unionize steelworkers.
  • The Pullman Strike

    The Pullman Strike
    The Pullman Company built homes for it's employees to rent. The rents were high and during the depression, wages were cut back but not the rent. Workers went on strike and within days, there was no railroad transportation from Chicago to West Coast. President Cleveland didn't like unions and had union leaders arrested. The strike collapsed.
  • The Coal Strike

    The Coal Strike
    This strike was by the united mine workers of america in the anthracite coal fields of eastern Pennsylvania. The strike threatened to shut down the winter fuel supply to all major cities. Theodore Roosevelt set up a fact finding commission that suspended the strike. The miners recieved more pay for less hours and the owners sold coal at a higher price. This was the first episode in which the government intervened as a neutral arbitrator.
  • The Jungle

    The Jungle
    The Jungle is a novel written by Upton Sinclair telling about the immigrants in America working in the meatpacking industry. It told of the unsanitary conditions in this industry. It eventually brought about the Food and Drug Administration in 1930.
  • The Bitter Cry of The Children

    The Bitter Cry of The Children
    A novel by John Spargo is about children who worked in coal mines. They had dangerous and unhealthy working conditions. This led to child labor laws to protect kids.
  • Pure Food and Drug Act

    Pure Food and Drug Act
    United States federal law that provided fedral inspection of meat products and forbade the manufacture,sale,or transportation of adulterated food products and poisonous patent medicines.
  • Triangle Shirt Factory Fire

    Triangle Shirt Factory Fire
    There was a huge and devastating fire at this shirt factory in New York City. 146 died, mostly women and teenagers. The result of the fire brought together a commision to investigate the city's "sweatshops". This helped put in place labor laws to protect factory workers from fire, health hazards and disability among other safety issues.
  • The National Labor Relations Act passed

    The National Labor Relations Act passed
    This Act was Pro Labor. It legally recognized Labor's right to organize. From this the National Labor Relations Board was created. It had power to punish unfair labor practices.
  • Congress of Industrial Organization formed

    Congress of Industrial Organization formed
    This organization was part of the AFL until 1935. It broke away because it was geared more towared the industrial lines rather than craft lines. Reintegrated into AFL in 1955.
  • GM Sit-down Strike

    GM Sit-down Strike
    Strike by General Motors employees that shut down plant operations in Michigan and other cities from December 30, 1936- February 11, 1937. This was a sit-down strike. This means workers stayed in the workplace while on strike to prevent business from operating normally. This ended in workers participating in running the company- a first in history.
  • Fair Labor Standards Act

    Fair Labor Standards Act
    For the first time,minimum ages of employment and hours of work for children are regulated by federal law.
  • Steel Strike

    Steel Strike
    United Steel Workers Of America on strike against U.S. steel and 9 other steel companies. Steelworkers wanted a wage increase. The strike lasted 53 days and it ended with the union winning. They got what they originally asked for four months earlier.
  • Major League Baseball Strike

    Major League Baseball Strike
    This was the first players strike in baseball. It occured from April 1st,1972 to April 13,1972. Baseball resumed because the owners and players agreed on a $500,000 increase in pension fund payments and to add salary arbitration to the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Games missed while on strike weren't made up because owners did not want to pay for them while they were on strike.
  • New York City Transit Strike

    New York City Transit Strike
    The 2005 New York City transit strike was a strike in NYC called by the Transport Workers Union Local 100 (twu). The strike began at 3:00 a.m. on December 20,2005. Most NYC Transit Authority personnel observed the strike,effectivelyhalting all service on the subway and buses. Millions of commuters were affected. The strike ended at 2:35 p.m. on December 22,2005. Service was restored overnight,with all transportation systems fully operational by the morning commute of the 23rd.