Labor Unions and Strikes

  • Noble Order of the Knights of Labor formed

    Noble Order of the Knights of Labor formed
    This Labor Union was organized by Philadelphia workers, and lasted until 1900. The organization was available to farmers, merchants, and wage earners. The main goals of this union was to provide equal pay for equal work, maintain 8 hour work days, and abolish child labor.
  • Labor Day Holiday Created

    Labor Day Holiday Created
    Labor Day was first observed in Boston, on August 26, 1878, and became a federal holiday in 1894. It takes place the first monday of every September, causing the exact date to vary from year to year. This holiday has the main intention of having people celebrate the strength and spirit of their nation's trade and labor organizations.
  • American Federation of Labor (AFL) Formed

    American Federation of Labor (AFL) Formed
    The AFL posed as a labor union that focused on better working conditions, and provided better wages. This group was craft oriented, producing goods and services that were mainly for artistic and decoration needs. Union labels were placed on the produced items of the AFL.
  • Haymarket Square Riot

    Haymarket Square Riot
    On this date, Chicago workers marched for eight hours to protest against the McComick Harvesting machine. Soon, police became involved to break up the strike, but because of anarchists who began to create violence, eight policemen died, and a one-hundred people were wounded. Because of this, the public began to see unions and anarchists as a problem.
  • "How the Other Half Lives" Written

    "How the Other Half Lives" Written
    This article was a form of early photojournalism by Jacob Riis. It described the poor conditions of the slum tenaments in New York in 1990. The wording makes readers feel as if they are following the narrator of this publication.
  • The Homestead Strike

    The Homestead Strike
    This strike and industrial lockout began on June 30 of 1892, and resulted in combat between the industrial workers and private security agents on July 6. This happened at the Homestead Steel Works in the Pittsburgh area town of Homestead, Pennsylvania. The Homestead Strike was known as one of the most serious disputes in history.
  • The Pullman Strike

    The Pullman Strike
    During the Panic of 1893, wages were slashed, but George M. Pullman, refused to lower the rents for the homes in his town of Pullmen. Eugene V Debs led other workers on strike, and thousands of railroad workers went on strike in 27 states or territories within a few days. Because of Federal Governor Clevelands loathing of unions, the federal government sent troops, who imprisioned the union leaders and caused the strike to collapse.
  • The Coal Strike

    The Coal Strike
    The Coal Strike of 1902 was formed by United Mine Workers of America in the Eastern Pennsylvanias anthracite coal fields. This action almost shut down the winter fuel supply to all major cities. However, President Theodore Roosevelt managed to suspend the strike, which never resumed, for the workers recieved a higher wage on a shorter basis, and the owners recieved more money for coal.
  • "The Jungle" Written

    "The Jungle" Written
    "The Jungle" was a gruesome article written by muckraker Upton Sinclair. This revealed the meat packing industrys filthy enviroment and handling of its products with specific, vile descriptions. This piece of journalism led to the creation of the Pure Food and Drug Act, and the Meat Inspection Act.
  • "The Bitter Cry of Children" Written

    "The Bitter Cry of Children" Written
    Muckraker John Spargo wrote the article, "The Bitter Cry of Children," to show the complications in child labor. Focusing on a certain group of workers, Spargo went into the coal mines to observe and work with children workers. He described the gloomy enviroment of the facilities, and what these boys had to go through in these jobs for just sixty cents a day.
  • The Pure Food and Drug Act Passed

    The Pure Food and Drug Act Passed
    This federal law was passed in order to maintain healthy conditions for food and medicines.This act states that meat products will be thoroughly inspected by federal officials. The manufacture, sale, or transportation of adulterated food products and poisonous paten medicines is also forbiden because of this law.
  • Triangle Shirt Factory Fire

    Triangle Shirt Factory Fire
    A tragic fire within The Triangle Shirt Factory was ingnited by the butt of a cigarrette. The garment workers could not excape through the most practical exits, for the managers sealed the doors and stairwells shut, so no one could leave work early. Multiple people, trying to escape ever so desperately, leapt out of eight, nine, and ten story windows. The females who were victim to this fire were between fourteen and fourty-eight years old, and 148 workers perished overall.
  • Congress of Industrial Organization Formed

    Congress of Industrial Organization Formed
    The Congress Industrial Organization used to pose as a part of the American Federation of Labor, until it broke away in 1935. This union broke away because it was more of an industrial-oriented group, rather than a craft-oriented one.
  • The National Labor Relations Act Passed

    The National Labor Relations Act Passed
    Also known as the Wagner Act, this allows permits pro labor in the work industry. The National Labor Relations Act also led to the creation of the National Labor Relations Board. One other asset of this law is that it provides the power to punish those who create unfair labor.
  • GM Sit-down Strike

    GM Sit-down Strike
    General Moters employees went on strike, shuting down plant operations in Flint, Michigan, and other cities. Unlike past strikes that implemented violent rebellion, this sit down strike involved workers settling in their workplaces, not performing any business operations. Giving in to the pressure of President of Franklin D. Roosevelt, GM used the UAW to negotiate a contract with their employees, allowing the workers to participate in this company's running in the first time in history.
  • Fair Labor Standards Act Passed

    Fair Labor Standards Act Passed
    The Fair Labor Standards Act provided federal regulation of child labor. Because of the federal law from then on, minimun ages of employment were created and monitered, The hours of work for child employees is also regulated, thanks to this act.
  • Steel Strike

    Steel Strike
    This strike of the United Steel Workers of America against ten steelmakers, including U.S. Steel, was postponed from its origional date, April 9, when President Harry S. Truman took control of the facilities. After the court case Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer vs. U.S., the Supreme Court decided that it was not in the president's power to control these steel mills. The Steelworkers then went on strike for 53 days, gaining a wage increase as a result.
  • Major League Baseball Strike

    Major League Baseball Strike
    This was the first players' strike in Major League Baseball history. After the baseball playerrs agreed on a $500,000 pension increase and to add salary arbitration to the Cllective Bargaining Agreement, the games resumed. Eighty-six games were missed due to this strike, and were never made up.
  • New York City Transit Strike

    New York City Transit Strike
    The Transport Workers Union Local 100 (TWU) called a strike in New York City reguarding the transit workers. Negotiations for a new contract failed because of extensive retirement, pension, and wage increases. Service on subway and buses stopped, and millions of commuters were impacted. After the strike was over, service was restored, and all transportation systems were fully operational.